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Occupation is the problem, not the people talking about it

Israel’s Foreign Ministry is going after Israeli human rights and anti-occupation activists overseas. Doing so will only make things worse for Israel.

By Ilan Baruch

Israeli soldiers blindfold and arrest a young Palestinian man in Hebron. (photo: Activestills.org)

Israeli soldiers blindfold and arrest a young Palestinian man in Hebron. (photo: Activestills.org)

It’s been less than a month since Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely instructed Israeli embassies abroad to explain to the nations of the world that the land of Israel is ours in its entirety. Global hostility toward Israel, she insisted, does not stem from the occupation or settlements.

Now, we have learned that she instructed the Israeli embassy in Switzerland to attempt to cancel a “Breaking the Silence” exhibition in Zurich. The exhibition presents soldiers’ testimonies on their experiences during their military service regarding the daily reality in the occupied territories.

In this fashion, Hotovely compelled the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to conduct a right-wing political campaign, which aims to eliminate any opposition to the ongoing occupation and settlement expansion. Leaders of this campaign, both in the Knesset and elsewhere, seek to perpetuate the occupation indefinitely. They aim to do so through complete integration of the occupied territories into Israel proper, by deepening Israeli military control over the territories, and through expanding settlements.

As such, they repeatedly attack organizations that oppose the occupation, accusing them of “delegitimizing” Israel with their public criticism abroad. This, in turn, condemns soldiers of conscience — who are merely exercising their right and duty to expose a reality that isn’t debated publicly — as enemies of Israel.

Having served in the foreign service for most of my adult life, and as a citizen concerned for the strength of Israel, I cannot remain silent about the severe damage this campaign has on Israel’s standing in the world. Criticism of Israel in Europe, the United Nations and the United States is not about the multiplicity of opinions in Israel. They are not concerned with those Israelis trying to prevent human rights violations and trying to end the occupation. The recurring criticism toward Israel harks back to one topic: the denial of liberty to the Palestinian people in the name of conquest through settlements.

It is important to understand that this criticism will not go away by silencing Israeli human rights organizations. The international community has opposed military control over the West Bank’s civilian Palestinian population for nearly half a century. When Israel acts contrarily to the spirit of democracy and freedom of expression, in silencing opinions that oppose its policy of occupation, it contributes to its own international de-legitimization. Of all the nations of the world, Israel, in particular, is in need of international legitimacy.

Occupation and the deprivation of Palestinians’ liberty endanger Israel’s status as a Jewish and democratic state. Within this reality of profound internal disagreements regarding Israel’s future path and values – and in light of growing external criticism regarding its policy toward the Palestinians – it is the State of Israel’s duty to ensure an open platform for the diverse voices of its civil society.

Thus the role of the Foreign Ministry is not to silence “Breaking the Silence,” but rather to strengthen its activists’ voices along with those of other groups working toward a more tolerant Israeli state, not reliant on the sword alone, alongside a Palestinian state.

Deputy Minister Hotovely, please do not contribute to this campaign of de-legitimization against human rights organizations, which will inevitably result in the deepening de-legitimization of the State of Israel. Do not sow seeds that undermine Israel’s commitment to democracy and freedom of expression. Do not provide other countries with reasons to view our country as one that shamefully hunts its critics. I appeal to the government of Switzerland to please continue supporting and cooperating with human rights organizations, and any other groups that seek to build a better future for the people of the region.

Ilan Baruch is a political adviser to the Meretz party Chairperson, a political activist, and former Israeli Ambassador to South Africa.

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    COMMENTS

    1. Gioira Me'ir

      Revisionist Zionist political correctness. Dissent and opposition, not tolerated.

      Reply to Comment
    2. Bruce Gould

      The solution to the whole problem as seen by Blue White Future:

      http://bluewhitefuture.org/

      Blue White Future (“BWF”) is a non-partisan political movement founded by Admiral (ret.) Ami Ayalon, the former Director of the Israel Security Agency, Colonel (res.) Gilead Sher, a prominent advocate and former senior peace negotiator, Orni Petruschka, a hi-tech entrepreneur and former IAF fighter pilot.

      BWF’S OBJECTIVES

      Blue White Future seeks to help resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict on the basis of a “two states for two peoples” solution by facilitating the relocation of settlers so that all Israel’s citizens reside within secure permanent borders that guarantee a Jewish majority.

      Reply to Comment
    3. Ginger Eis

      The Dishonesty Of Illan Baruch

      Earlier this month, Ilan Baruch, a veteran Israeli diplomat resigned from the Foreign Ministry, and publicly stated that he could no longer represent Israel abroad. As Ynet reported:

      Ilan Baruch says he quit because “Israel’s foreign policy is wrong,” pointing to the Palestinian issue.

      Should this trend continue, he warned, Israel will turn into a pariah state and face growing de-legitimization.

      Baruch told Israel TV Wednesday that Israel’s standing was in danger because of its policies, which he said were “difficult to explain.”

      Shortly after, Ha’aretz’s Gideon Levy published an Op-Ed commending Baruch, and berating most of the diplomatic corps as “spineless propagandists void of values or a conscience” (“Israel’s diplomats are spineless propagandists,” March 6, 2011). Ambassador Rafi Shotz, Israel’s ambassador to Spain, responds to Levy, calling him out for hypocrisy. Below is CAMERA’s translation of Ambassador Shotz’s open letter to Levy.

      Dear Mr. Levy:

      Not long ago, during the tenure of the current government, Ilan Baruch presented his candidacy for the position of ambassador to Egypt. Only after another candidate was chosen over him, only after he understood that in the few remaining years until he reaches retirement he is stuck in a professional dead end, only after he completed negotiations over the terms of his retirement, only after all these things, was Baruch suddenly overcome by audacity and ideological heroism.

      These facts were known to all those interested in truth as opposed to propaganda. Nevertheless, from the moment Baruch’s resignation letter was published, it was clear to me that in short order it would become a goldmine in the hands of anti-Israel propagandists both in Israel and abroad. I am convinced that Baruch also knew this. He knew that despite the fact that he explicitly said that Israel is not an apartheid state, that his letter would nevertheless be exploited by those who poison the atmosphere by smearing Israel as an apartheid state. But Baruch is not the subject of this letter. He will have to do his own personal reckoning.

      Indeed I was not surprised. Pavlov would have enjoyed seeing how his theory works. Baruch’s fingertips were barely off the “enter” key when your article appeared, describing him as a patriot, brave and honest. If only you could have been satisfied with words of praise, I would have chuckled and moved on, but of course you did not stop there. In order to magnify and heap onto what Baruch did, you had to smear me. (…)

      Your hateful column was translated (of course) into Spanish and published (no surpise) in Publico, a newspaper which is the definition of anti-Israel. Spain, which knows how to protect its democracy, outlawed all parties which maintain any ties to the Basque underground ETA and banned their participation in elections. But when we request to distance from our Knesset those who openly identify with Hamas, the criticism against us rages. One of the stable arguments of these critics in this context, as well as others, is “but Gideon Levy of Ha’aretz also wrote it.”

      For some time, you, Mr. Levy, have been an asset and useful tool in the hands of those who are not satisfied with legitimate criticism of government position and activities, but rather object to the existence of Israel as a nation of the Jewish people. You also make a nice living from this. They translate you, invite you to lecture, knowing full well that you’ll supply the goods, you and a few other Israeli “stars,” whose names I shall not mention. You all spread your venom around the world and became the darlings of the BDS campaign, (…)

      Rafi Shotz, Israeli Ambassador to Spain
      Madrid March 30, 2011

      http://www.camera.org/index.asp?x_print=1&x_context=6&x_article=2018

      Reply to Comment
      • Ben

        This vituperative, backbiting attempt to smear Ilan Baruch does not wash. For very different perspectives please kindly see here:

        http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/news/veteran-diplomat-s-rebuke-of-netanyahu-lieberman-strikes-chord-with-colleagues-1.346790

        And here:

        http://www.economist.com/blogs/newsbook/2011/03/israeli_politics

        That adherence to an official Foreign Ministry line kept an ambassador from being more vocal, and that as a non-employee he then became more vocal, in no way invalidates his message. His message stands or falls based on its content and its intrinsic merits not on selectively psychoanalyzing his motives. We have the former Israeli ambassador to South Africa breaking the silence. And doing it in a most thoughtful, informed and nuanced way. How many are the Foreign Ministry staff who would like to speak out but don’t dare? Don’t you feel a gathering momentum though? I don’t think you’d see these kinds of statements in these numbers a few years ago.

        Reply to Comment
        • BigCat

          Brian alias “Ben” alias “MuslimJew” alias “Giora Me’ir” alias etc. it really beggars belief that YOU, an unemployed individual from Seattle WA, fixates on- and obsesses about Jews and Israel 24/7, getting all emotional and all riled up about Jewish Affairs that are no way no how any of your business. It beggars belief that you let this fixation and obsession prevents you from finding a job to take care of yourself and stop depending on food-stamps provided by the United States Government with my tax dollars. It is equally mind-boggling that you continue to humiliate yourself using your usual rambling mumbo jumbo responding to someone who told you that “you are a pig” and that she will never respond to your obsession with her. Go get a life and seek professional help, you psychotic moron!

          Reply to Comment
          • E823

            BigCat, how can you credibly accuse others of sock-puppeting when, if anything, there is better evidence that you are a sock puppet of Ginger? I invite readers to compare your attack on Ben above to Ginger’s attack last year on a different commenter, and to draw their own conclusions. You’ll deny it, but it just goes to show that you and Ginger have, at most, one imagination between the two of you.

            Ginger Eis: “Your own country (the USA) has more social, racial and human rights problems than Israel, but you do absolutely nothing to help the poor, downtrodden and oppressed minorities in your own country! On the contrary, you spend 7-days a week and 24hrs a day (except when you sleep) obsessing with Israel, ranting against Israel, talking incomprehensible mumbo jumbo and boring folks to death, (while unemployed and surviving on government food-stamps and other social benefits). Get professional help, sicko. Begin with finding a job!”

            http://972mag.com/truth-tapes-and-two-dead-palestinians/91215/

            Reply to Comment
          • BigCat

            Obviously you are getting very nervous Brian, alias “Ben” alias “MuslimJew” alias “Giora Me’ir” alias “A Consciencious Objector” alias etc., but instead of correcting yourself and stoping using multiple identities on this site, you are doubling down and creating even more false identities? Now you also call yourself: E823? Oh dear….

            Anyways, Check This Out, Brian:

            1). “Bruce Gould, Monday, June 15, 2015

            The South African apartheid government also claimed that the anti-apartheid movement was trying to destroy South Africa. But when apartheid ended South Africa continued to exist, it just continued in a form in which one ethnic group didn’t have a monopoly on power.”

            Reply to Comment

            2). “Ginger Eis, Monday, June 15, 2015

            Watch. And Weep!

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AcEL-NlxBk0

            The crude, vulgar lies you, Mr. Bruce Gould, spread against Israel re “apartheid” are gratuitous and designed to smear and demonize Israelis. What reasons do you have to hate so much? What have Jews done to you? Where is this deranged, brutish hate hatred of Jews coming from, Mr. Bruce Gould?”

            3). “Ben, Tuesday, June 16, 2015

            The crude, vulgar lies you, Mr. Bruce Gould, spread against North Korea re Our Dear Leader are gratuitous and designed to smear and demonize ethnic Koreans. What reasons do you have to hate so much? What have ethnic Koreans done to you? Where is this deranged, brutish hate hatred of ethnic Koreans coming from, Mr. Bruce Gould?”

            Now, apply YOUR OWN logic and tell us what the result is, you psychotic moron.

            Reply to Comment
          • BigCat

            BTW, Brian, here is the best parts of the statement which you cut out from the quote in the link YOU provided (why would you do that?):

            “Ginger Eis
            Friday
            May 23, 2014
            Mr. Greg Pollock, you yourself have admitted to being obsessed with Israel. You yourself described said obsession as “deviant” (I will post the link if you deny!)….”

            To which Greg Pollock replied:

            “Greg Pollock
            Friday
            May 23, 2014
            Ginger has proven my point. Of course I’m deviant. So are you. Ben Gurion was deviant, as was Spinoza. You do know what happen to the latter, I trust?”

            So, I think that Ginger’s comment is a good medicine that can be used against individuals with similar disease such as Greg Pollock (who has since ran away) and YOU, Brian! I have also seen similar comment expressed on other websites by others. You use the same/similar medicine for the same disease and I will continue to remind you of your disease to help you find professional help. Finally, I will remind you that YOU and your ilk have confused me before with Sluggo, Pedro, Slug, Merav, Gustav, etc. and now Ginger? Thanks for the compliments, jerk!

            And BTW, Brian, “007” is still free. You might want to use it to create another false identity, you delusional moron!

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            More deviousness! LoL! Ok, my own logic tells me that that was a funny skewering of you, Eis, since the link Bruce employed, and which you have removed here of course, was a link to a picture of Kim Jong-il! How do you think that makes you appear to everyone else here? I really have to wonder about your IQ now. Unbelievable.

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            LOL!

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            @E823: OMG. I’m so naive about these things. It explains a lot. The obsession with defending ‘Ginger.’ The obsession with me. The constant stalking. The female ‘Merav’. The savage attack dog tone. The craziness. The disinhibitedness. The constant lying, distorting, fabricating, quote doctoring. The sheer deviousness and lack of scruples. And I had wondered how would a person manage to control oneself, relatively speaking, if there had been a previous shrieking, pouncing, harridan-martinet-style banshee phase in one’s life. How would one do that? Since people don’t change. How would one account for the phase shift? Now I know how one would. And to think such a person could constantly accuse me all the while of this kind of “sock puppetry” as you say. Well. The mind boggles. Who can doubt that she will merge you too with me? Every new person here would seem to get merged in her mind with me. (With the help of a few local paranoids, lol.) And such a person tells *me* to get ‘professional help’? I’ve been stalked all these months by this person? Oy veh! ‘BigCat’ never really existed? This teenage American male sitting inside Israel somewhere never really existed? On the one hand it’s comforting to suddenly have it dawn on one that what one thought of as two really strange individuals out there is just one. On the other hand it’s extra creepy to think that one has been stalked like this all these months by an other person hiding in plain sight and with a shockingly personal agenda. Hopefully now that this has been exposed the stalking will stop and we can all get down to rational on-topic discussion. In the spirit of the recent Ellen who could not abide vicious nonsense. It will be a relief to everybody. Of course such a person could double down in a desperate attempt to cover. Expect more craziness to follow. A person like this is never “done.” I wonder why she felt the need to add “Oingo-Boingo”? And what’s up with the predilection for repetitive nonsense syllables? Mumbo-Jumbo… Mambadunga-Mambadunga… Oingo-Boingo…? No one else uses language like that. And no one else uses language like “Hey donkey!….” Thanks for your good hearted and astute assistance here E823! I’ve always taken assurance in the fact that every person she has and will accuse of being me knows they are not me and by now that’s a veritable crowd!

            Reply to Comment
          • BigCat

            Brian alias “Ben” alias “MuslimJew” alias “Giora Me’ir” alias “E823” still rambling mumbo jumbo, talking to himself, defending himself and consoling himself, while stil clearly obsessing about Ginger. Keep whacking it….just don’t pull it too hard, else you get hurt, you psychotic moron!

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            Come on Eis. Let’s cut it out now. The jig is up. It’s not all about you. In fact it’s not about you at all. Or me. These are serious issues being discussed in these articles. Real people with real lives are suffering. Stop trivializing this site with puerile/vicious nonsense.

            Reply to Comment
          • BigCat

            You are really mentally ill. So it is still about Ginger? What is it about her that got you so obsessed with her? Oh my goodness! You don’t get it, do you, psychopath? There are posts on this site where Ginger has told you very clearly that “you are a pig” and that she will not respond to your sexual obsession with her as a result of the sexual and sexist comments you bombarded her with, some of which were cloaked in n*zi-imageries. Are you too stupid to understand that there are men who will not let you continue to do what you do, men who will intervene and deal with you man to man? You can’t deal with me your fellow man. You are afraid and running scared, idiot. Every sentence you write, every breath you take, your very strong words are all about Ginger – even though she NEVER responds to YOU! Your posts show a combination of admiration for- and rage towards her at the same time. On the one hand you admire Ginger, but on the other hand you are enraged that she won’t respond to any of your posts and that sends you going berserk and bonkers, hysterically rambling mumbo jumbo – all of them about Ginger. Woof! This minute you sound reasonable toward her, but the next minute you unleash your emotional tantrum and rage against her. Why can’t you just let go? You have a compulsive obsessive attitude and act like sex-offenders do! What an obsession! Go get professional help, you delusional psychopath!

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            This is very sad, really. Painful to watch.

            Reply to Comment
          • BigCat

            Indeed, Brian, it must be very sad and painful watch you exposed as someone from Seattle, WA, who has no job and is not looking for a job, but instead spend 24/7 obsessing about Jews and Israel using multiple identities and getting all riled up and emotional about Jewish Affairs all of which are no way no how any of his business, while neither knowing nor even caring about what goes on in his own country or elsewhere!

            Here, though, is just one example of numerous evidence of your madness Brian alias “Ben” alias “E823” alias “MuslimJew” alias “Giora Me’ir” alia etc.,

            “Ben
            Thursday
            June 18, 2015

            He’s NOT intelligent and empathetic! He’s NOT! He’s NOT! He’s NOT! Waaaaaah! LoL! I am flattered by your endless fascination with me, you knuckleheads, but it is wearisome for the rest of the readers here. Please have mercy upon them.”

            Search down thread and you will find the above comment.

            Now, only a Madman says that kind of stuff. Go get a life, jerk!

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            Whatever you say, oingo-boingo. LoL!

            Reply to Comment
    4. Giora Me'ir

      Yes, but the other side believes the reverse. And will do everything to prevent addressing the occupation.

      Reply to Comment
      • Whiplash

        Here is the rub. Israel does not occupy land to which it has a sovereign claim. Two parties emerged out of the 1948 war with claims to Judea and Samaria. Israel and Jordan signed an armistice agreement providing that nothing in the armistice agreement would affect their claims to the land. After the war’s end Palestinian Arabs living in Judea and Samaria voted to become Jordanians and did so. In 1967 Israel liberated Judea and Samaria. Jordan in 1988 gave up all claims to the territory leaving Israel with the only claim to sovereignty over the lands of Judea and Samaria.

        The Palestinian people claim a right to self determination and to establish a state on Israel’s sovereign territory.

        Reply to Comment
        • Yeah, Right

          Whiplash: “Israel does not occupy land to which it has a sovereign claim.”

          Israel does not – and never has – made a “sovereign claim” on any territory in the West Bank or the Gaza Strip.

          Not once, not ever.

          Whippie, your argument falls down at the very beginning, because you make an argument that Not Even Israel Itself Makes.

          Israel “claims” only that these “Jewish settlements” (a.k.a. Israel colonies) are a fact on the ground that is now so immutable that the territory upon which they sit must be ceded *to* Israel in any final status agreement.

          That’s not a “sovereign claim”. It is only what it is, and what it is goes by another name: “extortion”.

          Reply to Comment
        • Giora Me'ir

          Israel has no legal basis to the west bank. They were not given it by Resolution 181, or any subsequent UN resolutions. They took it, and hold it, by force. No other country in the world has recognized its right to hold it as such.

          Reply to Comment
          • Pedro X

            The Jewish nation state had sovereignty over the land of Israel until the Romans stripped them of their homeland. Although many imperialistic Islamic states have controlled areas which make up Judea and Samaria, the Jews never ceded their sovereignty and right to the land of Israel. The Ottoman empire was the last empire to possess the land of Israel and they lost sovereignty at the end of 1917.

            In 1920 the San Remo Resolution and in 1922 the Mandate for Palestine recognized the historic rights of the Jewish people to reconstitute their home in Mandate Palestine with political rights to achieve self rule, sovereignty over the land of Israel which included Judea and Samaria. Under the mandate for Palestine Jews were given the right to settle and develop the land. The rights of peoples under mandates was confirmed in the United Nations Charter in 1945. In 1948 the country of Jordan which had been carved out of the original land mass of Mandate Palestine by military force took Judea and Samaria and made the area Judenrein.

            Under the armistice agreements of 1949 Jordan and Israel preserved their claims to sovereignty over Judea and Samaria. Jordan annexed the area and called it the West Bank. Israel liberated the area in a war of self defense. Jordan gave up its claims to sovereignty. Israel is the only sovereign nation with a claim to Judea and Samaria.

            Reply to Comment
          • Yeah, Right

            PX: “The Jewish nation state had sovereignty over the land of Israel until the Romans stripped them of their homeland.”

            Yeah, because that was The Age Of Empire, which meant that if the Romans stripped anyone of their homeland then that territory became… part of the Empire.

            Because – du’oh! – the acquisition of territory by war was perfectly legit Way Back Then, even though the acquisition of territory by war is now inadmissible.

            So Pedro’s argument falls down in the very first sentence, never to recover….

            PX: “In 1920 the San Remo Resolution and in 1922 the Mandate for Palestine recognized”… only that diaspora Jews had a right to establish “a home” (pardon?) that would be “in Palestine” (oh, not “of Palestine”? Well, I never….).

            PX: …”with political rights to achieve self rule”….

            Er, no, actually, it didn’t.

            Read the source document again: it clearly says that this document did not grant anyone the right to strip Jews IN THE DIASPORA of their existing political rights (i.e. Jews could choose to come to Palestine, they can’t be dumped there).

            Read the source document again: it clearly says that the Coming Of The Jews would not strip any Arab of their existing civil rights (not political rights, of course, since nobody but the Mandatory had any political rights).

            But nowhere does it grant ANYBODY (except the Mandatory himself) any political rights whatsoever.

            Not the Arabs of Palestine (who never had any political rights)
            Not the “new” Jews of Palestine (whose coming didn’t give them any political rights).

            The only people who had their political rights recognized in that document were…. those Jews who chose to stay at home, who therefore retained whatever political rights they already had.

            PX: ….”, sovereignty over the land of Israel which included Judea and Samaria”

            Nope. Nowhere in the SanRem Declaration (it was not a “resolution”) nor in the Mandate for Palestine will you find any “sovereignty” being granted to anyone.

            Honestly, Pedro, it does pay to read the original documents….

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            [Yeah Right]:”Because – du’oh! – the acquisition of territory by war was perfectly legit Way Back Then…”

            Spoken like a true psychopath.

            Get a grip [Yeah Right]. Acquisition of territory by war is either always right or is never right. Ya gotta be consistent, dude. Otherwise you can be accused of selective morality like …

            “We can do it … but you can’t”

            Why? Because in [Yeah Right] world, the [Yeah Rights] of this world set the rules and when it suits them, they say, “we can do it when it suits us but you can’t. Not even if you defend yourself from attacks”.

            Reply to Comment
          • Yeah, Right

            Gustav: “Acquisition of territory by war is either always right or is never right.”

            Why, exactly?

            That was then, and this is now, and the people who lived Way Back Then had a completely different set of beliefs to those who run the world now.

            So I don’t see that there is much point you claiming a “right” to run Gustav’s Moral Ruler ™ over the actions of people who lived in another time since – du’oh! – that was another time.

            The British don’t apologise for conquering a quarter of the world – there was nothing to least bit illegal about The British Empire – but neither do they pretend that they can now revisit the idea of conquest.

            That was then, and this is now.

            It’s not a difficult concept to grasp, dude.

            Gustav: “Ya gotta be consistent, dude.”

            Oh, but I am.
            If it was legal then it was legal then.
            If it wasn’t legal then it wasn’t legal then.

            That’s being perfectly consistent.

            What’s being inconsistent is attempting to compare apples with oranges i.e. to compare the legal code that existed in the time of the Roman Empire with the Post-WW2 legal code that exists now.

            Q: Was it legal to conquer territory back in Roman Times?
            A: Why, yes. Yes, it was.

            Q: Is it legal to conquer territory now?
            A: Nope.

            Gustav: “Otherwise you can be accused of selective morality like”…

            … like you, perhaps?

            I do often note that when the law is against them then there is much talk about “morality”.

            Apparently waving the flag of “morality” allows a scoundrel to override the law.

            Apparently, though I can’t imagine why.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            [Yeah Right]:”What’s being inconsistent is attempting to compare apples with oranges i.e. to compare the legal code that existed in the time of the Roman Empire with the Post-WW2 legal code that exists now.”

            [Yeah Right]:”That was then, and this is now”

            The code was, if I am stronger then I get what I want from anyone weaker than me. Else I beat them up or kill them.

            But you are happy to justify that, [yeah Right], don’t deny it, read your post to Pedrox.

            But now, you are full of righteous indignation about us for having defended ourselves in 1967 and for wanting to have more secure borders than we had in 1967 (which by the way, is consistent with UN security council Resolution 242).

            Not only are you a psychopath, but you are a hypocrite too [Yeah Right].

            Reply to Comment
          • Yeah, Right

            Gustav: “But you are happy to justify that, [yeah Right], don’t deny it, read your post to Pedrox.”

            Where did you pluck the word “happy” from, dude?

            Empire-building was perfectly legal back during the Age of Empire.
            Not only legal but quite necessary for any self-respecting European Power.

            I don’t need to be “happy” about that, nor do I need to be “unhappy” about that.

            I simply need to recognize that what was legal *then* was legal *then*, and does not – and can not – confer any legality to the same action if that same action is illegal *now*.

            The acquisition of territory by war is illegal *now*, and because of that simple fact then Israel can not legally do what it is doing. And it can not excuse the illegality of its current actions by pointing (as Pedro pointed) to What The Romans Used To Do.

            That’s a very simple concept, and does not require any discussion of my “happiness”.

            Gustav: “But now, you are full of righteous indignation about us for having defended ourselves in 1967 and for wanting to have more secure borders than we had in 1967”

            And I want a pony, but that does not give me any “right” to go out and steal one.

            No state can gain “more secure borders” merely by seizing extra territory and then claiming It’s Mine Now. And such an expansionist state certainly can’t “justify” that territorial self-aggrandizement by saying “I can have it because I want it”.

            Under *that* criteria it is axiomatic the Palestinian state has much, much more need for “more secure borders” than does the state of Israel.

            After all, the former has been invaded and is under a decades-long occupation by the latter, not vice versa.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            GUSTAV: “But you are happy to justify that, [yeah Right], don’t deny it, read your post to Pedrox.”

            [Yeah Right]:”Where did you pluck the word “happy” from, dude?”

            LOL. Saying that something is legit is saying that you are fully accepting it and that you justify it. And that, in anybody’s language is equivalent to being happy about it. Isn’t that what you said to Pedro? You said that it was legit for the Romans, back then to steal our land?

            [Yeah Right]:”Empire-building was perfectly legal back during the Age of Empire.
            Not only legal but quite necessary for any self-respecting European Power.

            I don’t need to be “happy” about that, nor do I need to be “unhappy” about that.”

            Yet you pooh pooed Pedro’s claim about the Romans stealing our land. You said it was legit. You seemed awfully happy about the idea that Romans could steal our land.

            [Yeah Right]:”I simply need to recognize that what was legal *then* was legal *then*, and does not – and can not – confer any legality to the same action if that same action is illegal *now*.”

            You are a very poor listener aren’t you dude? No! It wasn’t legal then! It was the practice but being the practice does not make it legal.

            Only a psychopath like you would claim that what is practiced in a world of anarchy is legal!

            [Yeah Right]:”The acquisition of territory by war is illegal *now*, and because of that simple fact then Israel can not legally do what it is doing. And it can not excuse the illegality of its current actions by pointing (as Pedro pointed) to What The Romans Used To Do.”

            Yet, … yet… after WW2, the allies confiscated German territories. It seems that was legal?

            But if we claim more secure borders, in line with UN Resolution 242, following a war of aggression against us, that is illegal?

            Nah! That is selective morality and hypocrisy.

            GUSTAV: “But now, you are full of righteous indignation about us for having defended ourselves in 1967 and for wanting to have more secure borders than we had in 1967″

            [Yeah Right]:”And I want a pony, but that does not give me any “right” to go out and steal one.”

            Psychopaths like you [Yeah Right] pretending that what we do is stealing but what your side did is legit, does not make it reality. Get used to it.

            [Yeah Right]:”No state can gain “more secure borders” merely by seizing extra territory and then claiming It’s Mine Now. And such an expansionist state certainly can’t “justify” that territorial self-aggrandizement by saying “I can have it because I want it”.

            Says who? Says [Yeah Right]? Yet UN Security council Resolution 242 disagrees with you.

            [Yeah Right]:”Under *that* criteria it is axiomatic the Palestinian state has much, much more need for “more secure borders” than does the state of Israel.”

            Now our revisionist and psychopathic [Yeah Right] pretends that we are the ones who made war on the Palestinian Arabs for the last 100 years (nearly) rather than the other way around.

            [Yeah Right]:”After all, the former has been invaded and is under a decades-long occupation by the latter, not vice versa.”

            Yeah right, the earth is flat. There are pink flying elephants.

            Go and read up on the Arab revolt of the 1920s. Go and read up about the numerous massacres of Jews by Palestinian Arabs such as the 1929 Hebron massacre. Go and read up about the Fedayeen attacks against us. Go and read up about the Hamas and PLO charters.

            You must be related to David Irving [Yeah Right]. He is a revisionist historian too.

            Reply to Comment
          • Yeah, Right

            Gustav: “Saying that something is legit is saying that you are fully accepting it and that you justify it.”

            What a bizarre comment.

            Something is “legal” if there is a law that says that it is “legal”.

            Nobody is compelled to be “happy” about that law, nor is anybody required to “justify” that law.

            All you need to do is to accept the notion of “law abiding” i.e.
            If something is “lawful” then you can do it.
            If something is “illegal” then you can’t do it.

            Pretty simple, really.

            Honestly, sunshine, you have some very, very funny notions.

            Try this one on for size: the law is the law is the law is the law is the law.
            Then try this one next: laws change, and when they change then what is “legal” can become “illegal”, and what was “illegal” can become “legal”.

            Q: Is that change retrospective?
            A: No.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            “Something is “legal” if there is a law that says that it is “legal”.

            Ok, sunshine.

            So show me the law which said that it was “legit” for the Romans to steal our land.

            You may also want to tell me what is the difference between stealing, bread, money and other assets and stealing land? And certainly even in Roman times there were laws against stealing bread, money and other assets.

            “Nobody is compelled to be “happy” about that law, nor is anybody required to “justify” that law.”

            Nobody? Then you must be a nobody, sunshine…

            …because you certainly are on the record of justifying land theft by the Romans against us.

            …yet at the same time you never cease whining about our quest to secure more secure borders which would lessen the temptation by your pets, the Palestinian Arabs to wage further wars of aggression against us.

            See what I am saying dude? I am attacking you for your double standard and your hypocrisy.

            …like I said, either land theft is always land theft. Or it never is. Ya, can’t have it BOTH ways, sunshine.

            Reply to Comment
          • Yeah, Right

            PX: “So show me the law which said that it was “legit” for the Romans to steal our land.”

            Conquest was perfectly legal during the time of the Roman Empire.
            Honestly, why are you even pretending to argue otherwise?

            Conquest as a means of territorial self-aggrandizement was perfectly legal during the time of the Assyrian Empire, the Roman Empire allllllllll the way through to the Spanish Empire and then on through to the time of the Ottoman Empire and the British Empire.

            It only came to be considered illegal at the time of the Kellog-Briand Pact of 1928 (the Axis powers disagreed, of course, which lead to WW2) and became universally regarded as illegal with the defeat of the Axis during WW2 and the Nuremberg Tribunal and Far East Tribunal definitions of “war of aggression” as a war crime.

            This is all news to you, is it?

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            “Conquest was perfectly legal during the time of the Roman Empire.
            Honestly, why are you even pretending to argue otherwise?”

            You are not listening dude. You don’t know the difference between the words “legal” and what was “practiced”.

            In an anarchic system, people steal, bread, money, assets and lands. That does not make the practice legal.

            Only psychopaths like you, [Yeah Right] pretend that stealing anything is legal just because in those days, empires pretended that it was ok to raid, rape and loot the weak.

            Reply to Comment
          • Yeah, Right

            Gustav: “In an anarchic system, people steal, bread, money, assets and lands. That does not make the practice legal.”

            The Roman Empire was not an “anarchic system”, dude.

            And what Pedro argued – and what YOU should therefore be arguing for – is the idea that “sovereignty” survived “conquest” back in a time that was called The Age Of Empire.

            Gustav: “people steal”… noooooo, the topic is how states acquired territory, not “how people steal”.

            Gustav: “bread, money, assets and lands”…noooooo, the issue is the acquisition of sovereignty over territory, and “territory” is neither bread, nor assets, nor ever “lands”.

            Those are all very different things, and you are talking irrelevancies when you argue about what “people” do. Both Pedro and I were arguing about what “states” do when one state conquers the territory of another state during a period of history when the acquisition of territory by war was perfectly legal.

            Honestly, you are such a boob. Soooooo stupid, in fact, that you can’t even comprehend how stunningly stooooopid your argument is.

            Laughable, really.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            GUSTAV: “In an anarchic system, people steal, bread, money, assets and lands. That does not make the practice legal.”

            [Yeah Right]:”The Roman Empire was not an “anarchic system”, dude.”

            No, but 2000 years ago international relations were anarchic. The strong big nations robbed the weak nations and enslaved them. That was common practice.

            Was that legal? The robber nations just didn’t care. And if you would ask the weak nations, guess what they would have said?

            Like I said sunshine, common practice does not necessarily mean legal.

            [Yeah Right]:”And what Pedro argued – and what YOU should therefore be arguing for”

            LOL, now he is telling me what MY arguments should be. Hey boychick, you are not doing too well with YOUR arguments. Don’t try to tell ME what I should argue. What a clown…

            [Yeah Right]:”– is the idea that “sovereignty” survived “conquest” back in a time that was called The Age Of Empire.”

            Sovereignity survived conquest? Not exactly, darling. The people whom the Romans conquered became vassals of the romans. They became virtual slaves. Others became actual slaves. Any resistance was brutally crushed. Cities were burnt to the ground. People were crucified or at best expelled. Hey, we should know. That’s what happened to our ancestors.

            GUSTAV: “people steal”…

            [Yeah Right]:”noooooo, the topic is how states acquired territory, not “how people steal”.

            Nooooo, the topic is land theft. One day we were free people. We owned our lands. The day after the Roman conquest we were not free and they owned our lands. Or to be more exact, they acted as if they did. But we never gave up on our lands.

            GUSTAV: “bread, money, assets and lands”

            [Yeah Right]:”…noooooo, the issue is the acquisition of sovereignty over territory, and “territory” is neither bread, nor assets, nor ever “lands”.

            You are a clown aren’t you dude? You are pretending that stealing peoples lands and freedom is not as criminal as stealing their food and money? You are delusional.

            Go ask the Australian Aboriginals what they think about what your ancestors did to them. I know that decent Australians recognize what was done to your Aboriginals. You are obviously not a decent Australian.

            [Yeah Right]:”Those are all very different things, and you are talking irrelevancies when you argue about what “people” do. Both Pedro and I were arguing about what “states” do when one state conquers the territory of another state during a period of history when the acquisition of territory by war was perfectly legal.”

            Only according to those who perpetrated the conquest. Ask the Australian Aborigines how they felt about it? I bet they would not agree with your outrageous claim, you psychopath!

            [Yeah Right]:”Honestly, you are such a boob. Soooooo stupid, in fact, that you can’t even comprehend how stunningly stooooopid your argument is.

            Laughable, really.”

            Yeah? And what are you, sunshine? Let me see…

            Definitely a psychopath.

            Definitely a person who lacks introspection.

            Definitely a hypocrite with double standards.

            And most importantly, you are a pompous, arrogant, self important little idiot.

            Reply to Comment
          • Yeah, Right

            Gustav: …”they say, “we can do it when it suits us but you can’t”

            I’m now going to ask Gustav to identify the “they” who *can* acquire territory by war, in marked contrast to Little Ol’ Israel who – apparently – is being uniquely picked upon in this regard.

            Please, show me where the acquisition of territory by war was considered quite A-OK, because it does seem to me that an entire Second World War was fought over that very concept, and the dudes who said “Nope” happened to win that war quite convincingly.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            Sigh, now it’s my job to educate [Yeah Right]? Here, read this dude…

            “pre-war Germany was split into British, French and American occupation zones in the northwest, west and south and a Soviet occupation zone in the centre; the capital Berlin was similarly divided into four sectors. The former eastern territories of Germany were ceded to Poland and the Soviet Union and the Oder and Neisse Rivers became Germany’s new eastern boundary. This territory became Poland’s so-called “Recovered Territories”, while approximately one-third of East Prussia became Russia’s Kaliningrad Oblast; virtually the entire German population in these areas was expelled or fled. In the west, the Saar area formed a French-controlled protectorate with limited autonomy, but its own citizenship laws.”

            Don’t tell me that ya didn’t know that Germany was occupied after WW2?

            Don’t tell me that ya didn’t know that Germany lost territories after WW2?
            Don’t tell me that ya didn’t know that lotsa Germans were expelled from their homes after WW2?

            Don’t ya know anything, [Yeah Right]?

            Reply to Comment
          • Yeah, Right

            Gustav: “Don’t tell me that ya didn’t know that Germany was occupied after WW2?”

            *sigh*

            There is nothing illegal about a “belligerent occupation”, Gustav.
            But that gives the occupying power “authority” over the occupied territory, not “sovereignty”.

            Apples and Oranges, dude.

            Gustav: “Don’t tell me that ya didn’t know that Germany lost territories after WW2?”

            Yes, Germany ceded territory AFTER the war, just as Poland ceded territory to Russia AFTER world war 2.

            But ceding territory is perfectly legal, as any sovereign can dispose of its own territory in any way that it wants.

            Apples and Oranges, my argumentative but profoundly ignorant friend.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            First of all, dude, don’t call me your friend. I ain’t.

            Second of all, stop trying to weasel out of what you said.

            You tried to pretend that “back then” it was “legit” to steal land. Only a psychopath would pretend that is so!

            You tried to pretend that WW2 was the war that ended the practice of acquiring land by war. Yet, … yet … surprise, Germany was forced, yes, forced to cede land by the victorious allies.

            Do you know the difference between forced and voluntarily ceding land, [Yeah Right]? Nah, evidently you don’t.

            Annnnnnd … one can’t help but notice how quiet our weasely [Yeah Right] has gone about the forced expulsion of ethnic Germans from their homes by the allies at the end of WW2. Whats da matta, [Yeah Right]? Has the cat cut your tongue?

            Reply to Comment
          • Yeah, Right

            *sigh* What nonsense. Witness…..

            Gustav: “You tried to pretend that “back then” it was “legit” to steal land”

            It was perfectly legal to build Empires back during The Age Of Empires.

            Only an idiot would pretend otherwise, so what’s your excuse?

            Gustav: “You tried to pretend that WW2 was the war that ended the practice of acquiring land by war.”

            The acquisition of territory by war was most definitely outlawed thanks to the victory of the “conquest is not kosher” gang (a.k.a. “the allies”) over the “who said I can’t conquer?” gang (a.k.a. “the axis”).

            Only an idiot would pretend otherwise, so what’s your excuse?

            Gustav: “Germany was forced, yes, forced to cede land by the victorious allies.”

            OK, I see the word “cede” in there, which makes that legal.

            Oh, you didn’t know that?

            Gustav: “Do you know the difference between forced and voluntarily ceding land, [Yeah Right]?”

            *sigh* No, it’s obvious that Gustav doesn’t understand the importance of the word “ceding” when it comes to an act of “annexation”.

            Here’s a lesson for you, friend, so do pay attention: wars are terrible things. They are, indeed, regarded as such a terrible thing that the family of nations is pretty much going to accept **any** agreement that ends a war if the alternative is “more war”.

            So it doesn’t really matter how “forced” or how “voluntary” the agreement to cede the territory is, so long as a gun wasn’t actually held to the head of Karl Donitz (the Vienna Convention on the law of treaties doesn’t allow *that*) then any agreement that he signs was….. legal.

            He was the head of the 3rd Reich. He therefore had the authority to sign anything on behalf of that Reich. And…. he signed that document.

            That makes it legal, which appears to be something that you are unaware of.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            [Yeah Right]:”What tiresome nonsense”

            Yep, your nonsense is certainly tiresome, dude.

            GUSTAV: “You tried to pretend that “back then” it was “legit” to steal land”

            [Yeah Right]:”It was perfectly legal to build Empires back during The Age Of Empires.”

            Really? Only according to psychopaths like you, who have a selective morality.

            [Yeah Right]:”Only an idiot would pretend otherwise, so what’s your excuse?”

            My excuse is that I don’t accept the selective morality of psychopaths like you, [Yeah Right]. And what’s your excuse for being a psychopath, dude?

            Nah, don’t answer that, I know: you were born and raised that way by your Mummy.

            GUSTAV: “You tried to pretend that WW2 was the war that ended the practice of acquiring land by war.”

            [Yeah Right]:”The acquisition of territory by war was most definitely outlawed thanks to the victory of the “conquest is not kosher” gang (a.k.a. “the allies”) over the “who said I can’t conquer?” gang (a.k.a. “the axis”).”

            Really? So how come the allies confiscated German lands after the war which was supposed to end acquisition of lands by war? Ya can’t see the irony in that?

            Only an idiot would miss the irony in it. So what’s your excuse, [Yeah Right]?

            [Yeah Right]:”Only an idiot would pretend otherwise, so what’s your excuse?”

            Like I said, I don’t accept the ramblings of psychopathic idiots like you, sunshine.

            GUSTAV: “Germany was forced, yes, forced to cede land by the victorious allies.”

            [Yeah Right]:”OK, I see the word “cede” in there, which makes that legal.”

            Oh, goodie, [Yeah Right] is playing “let’s drop the word” games. He missed the word FORCED ceding of land.

            Ok, then, can we play the same game? We too are FORCING your Palestinian Arabs to cede land for the sake of our security. They are not playing the game yet. That’s ok, they WILL in good time. In the meanwhile, there is nothing illegal about forcing them. Just as much as you claim that it wasn’t illegal for the allies to FORCE the Germans to cede land.

            [Yeah Right]:”Oh, you didn’t know that?”

            Yeah, oh, you didn’t know that I too can play the games that YOU play, [Yeah Right]?

            GUSTAV: “Do you know the difference between forced and voluntarily ceding land, [Yeah Right]?”

            [Yeah Right]:*sigh* No, it’s obvious that Gustav doesn’t understand the importance of the word “ceding” when it comes to an act of “annexation”.

            Sigh, it’s obvious that [Yeah Right] doesn’t understand that if it is “legit” for the allies to FORCE the Germans to cede land then it is legit for us too to FORCE his pets, the Palestinian Arabs, to cede lands (actually not even to cede but to swap) lands for the sake of letting us end up with more secure borders.

            [Yeah Right]:”Here’s a lesson for you, friend, so do pay attention: wars are terrible things. They are, indeed, regarded as such a terrible thing that the family of nations is pretty much going to accept **any** agreement that ends a war if the alternative is “more war”.

            …yep, so far I am with ya, sunshine… except about the bit where you call me friend. Trust me on this, dude. I don’t call psychopaths like you a friend.

            [Yeah Right:”So it doesn’t really matter how “forced” or how “voluntary” the agreement to cede the territory is, so long as a gun wasn’t actually held to the head of Karl Donitz (the Vienna Convention on the law of treaties doesn’t allow *that*) then any agreement that he signs was….. legal.”

            Fine, it’s settled then. We too are in the process of FORCING your pets, the Palestinian Arabs, to agree to land swaps. Hey, they are a bit slow, but they will come around. Last I heard, there is no legal time limit on how long one is allowed to go on FORCING a vanquished enemy to cede lands. Hey, the allies were better at intimidating the Germans into submission. We are a bit slower at it. But it WILL happen. They will come around. When they’ll see they have no other options they will agree to land swaps. Oops, I forgot, they will cede lands for lands.

            [Yeah Right]:”He was the head of the 3rd Reich. He therefore had the authority to sign anything on behalf of that Reich. And…. he signed that document.”

            Yep, I got it sunshine. Abbas or some other leader of theirs will sign too. In the meanwhile, there is a stalemate. Like you said, there is nothing illegal about belligerent occupation.

            [Yeah Right]:”That makes it legal, which appears to be something that you are unaware of.”

            Nah, you are confused sunshine. I am perfectly aware what is legal or illegal. YOU are the one who are confused. Didn’t you try to pretend that it was legit for the Romans to steal our lands? But now that I showed you the error of your ways, your double standards and your hypocrisy, you should no longer be confused.

            Well? Are you confused [Yeah Right]? If so, what is your excuse?

            Reply to Comment
          • Yeah, Right

            Gustav: “Really? Only according to psychopaths like you, who have a selective morality.”

            No, according to those Empires themselves.

            Honestly, just listen to yourself.

            There was nothing the least bit illegal about the British Empire, since it was carved out at a time when empire-building was perfectly legal.

            Ditto the Spanish Empire.
            Ditto the Roman Empire.
            Ditto the Assyrian Empire.

            Empire building used to be perfectly legal.
            It isn’t legal any more.

            Why are you continuing to act the fool, Gustav?

            You know perfectly well that Empire-building used to be perfectly legal.
            You know as well as I do that Empire-building is no longer legal.

            Why do you insist on pretending otherwise, since the only thing you are “achieving” is to make yourself a laughing stock?

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            GUSTAV: “Really? Only according to psychopaths like you, who have a selective morality.”

            [Yeah Right]:”No, according to those Empires themselves.”

            LOL. You may as well ask serial killers themselves. They too self justify. Honestly, [Yeah Right], are you really this ignorant?

            [Yeah Right]:”Honestly, just listen to yourself.”

            Did you say “Honestly?” Nah, ya couldna have. Ya literally don’t know the meaning of the word, sunshine.

            [Yeah Right]:”There was nothing the least bit illegal about the British Empire, since it was carved out at a time when empire-building was perfectly legal.”

            Show me the law which said it was legal. Stealing bread, money and assets was illegal. But stealing land was legal? You are a psychopath, [Yeah Right].

            [Yeah Right]:”Ditto the Spanish Empire.
            Ditto the Roman Empire.
            Ditto the Assyrian Empire.”

            Ditto, schmitto… Read what I said above. I too can repeat everything 100 times if you can.

            “Empire building used to be perfectly legal.”

            Again. Empire building used to be practiced. But it was about as legal as stealing bread, money and other assets. In other words it wasn’t legal.

            [Yeah Right]:”It isn’t legal any more.”

            Nor was it EVER legal.

            [Yeah Right]:”Why are you continuing to act the fool, Gustav?”

            You have not uttered a single logical argumet other than the selective morality of a psychopath who self justifies everything that he does but pretends that those who do much less then his side, are criminals. But I am the fool?

            Ya wanna see a fool, [Yeah Right]? Look in the mirror.

            [Yeah Right]:”You know perfectly well that Empire-building used to be perfectly legal.”

            Sigh, again, even if you repeat yourself 100 times, that does not make you right, dude. Stealing is stealing and the Romans stole our land. Followed by others including the Arabs.

            But now, you are pretending that what we do is stealing. I suppose if someone steals your car and you get it back from them that is stealing?

            I bet you would not say that, because you believe that you are entitled to do anythig but if others do what you feel you are entitled to do, are wrong. You have the mentality of a psychopath, sunshine.

            [Yeah Right]:”You know as well as I do that Empire-building is no longer legal.”

            It never was. But insisting on land swaps to gain more secure borders in order to minimise wars of aggression, is perfectly legal.

            [Yeah Right]:”Why do you insist on pretending otherwise, since the only thing you are “achieving” is to make yourself a laughing stock?”

            Nah, you are the laughing stock. And I insist on what I insist becsuse someone needs to set psychpaths like you straight. I do admit that it ain’t easy cos ya got an obtuse head. But hey, I am a very patient person.

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            It’s really atrocious to throw psychiatric terms at people so cheaply. Someone else started this, calling everyone she does not like “psychotic.” That’s atrocious manners. Mental illness terms as name calling. Sheer name calling. A strong term like that, and the equally strong “psychopath,” ought to be reserved for individuals to whom it can objectively be applied. For example, if someone has (1) viciously stalked people and (2) done this with flagrant, crafted dishonesty with malice aforethought, including outright, brazen quote doctoring, devious, knowing twisting of words, with sheer lying. Repetitively. With malice. Without remorse. Shamelessly. And such a person, on the face of it, in a public way, behaves in such a way as to demonstrate such specific psychopathic traits. (Gee, who would that be?) In such a case it becomes a fact not an opinion. It is demonstrable, repetitively, in the displayed behavior. But to call someone online a “psychopath” simply because you have a disagreement with him is just appalling manners. (and the context here, a debate about legality of Empire, does not justify it either.) To apply that term or the term “psychotic” here is sheer name calling. An evil practice. It should stop.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            Poor old [Yeah Right]. Once again, he is trying to sell a dead parrot. Here is a summary of his position…

            [Yeah Right]: Stop complaining, Pedro, the Romans were perfectly entitled to steal the land of the Jews back then cos stealing land was legit back then…

            GUSTAV: Not quite, stealing is stealing. And stealing land is not different than stealing other assets.

            [Yeah Right]: But in those days, everyone was empire building so it was legit to conquer and confiscate the land from the Jews. But now it isn’t because WW2 was fought to stop acquiring land by wars.

            GUSTAV: Funny that, but right after WW2, land was confiscated from the Germans. And more than that, German people were expelled from their homes. What kind of hypocrisy are you trying to peddle, [Yeah Right]?

            [Yeah Right]: But you don’t understand, Gustav, the Germans agreed to all that.

            GUSTAV: Oh, I understand perfectly, dude. YOU are the one who does not want to understand that the Germans were FORCED to concede their lands. And we too are trying to FORCE the Palestinian Arabs to accept OUR conditions. In fact, our condition has been land SWAPS, not land theft, in order to allow us to live within more secure borders which is in line with UN Resolution 242.

            [Yeah Right]: But you can’t do that because this is no longer the age of empire building when land theft was legit.

            GUSTAV: Oh dear, I already destroyed that argument of his but he thinks that by repeating himself he is proving his case. Of course, he does NOT!

            Now, [Yeah Right], please show me the law which permitted land theft during the age of the Romans and the Brits and the Spaniards and the others…

            [Yeah Right]: The empires themselves said so…

            [Gustav]: Yeah and psychopaths too self justify their crimes. Crimes like serial murder…

            [Yeah Right]: silence …

            Followed by repeating himself and claiming that back then it was ok but now it isn’t.

            GUSTAV: Hey, dude, if someone steals your car and you snatch it back from them, are you a thief?

            That is what Israel has done. We snatched part of our land back from thieves who stole it from the original thieves who stole the land from us.

            [Yeah Right]: … more repetition…

            GUSTAV: Oh dear, repetition is not proof. It only proves your bias and ignorance dude.

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            Gustav it seems to me that in the heat of an abstruse legal debate Yeah Right has coaxed out of you something close to an admission that what Israel is doing in the territories is illegal and it is indeed stealing by your own code of ethics and by a universal code. You insist that empire building was always, is, and always will be stealing, and wrong, and illegal. That’s your position. And by unanimous agreement of every country and every legal authority of standing including your own Theidore Meron, the settlements are flatly illegal and have been for 48 years, and constitute theft. You follow that declaration with what you seem to regard as an escape clause: “insisting on land swaps to gain more secure borders in order to minimize wars of aggression.” (BTW, Abbas is ok with land swaps and the basic outlines of workable swaps are well known and pretty much settled–keeping the close in blocks–a huge reward for a land grab–and returning Ariel, Ma’aleh Adumim, Efrat and such like.) But you’ve admitted in so many words that the occupation is stealing and it’s both wrong and illegal. Have I misrepresented you? And if so, how?

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            Nope, Benny.

            You seem to have a unique talent of looking only at things which support your preconceived notions.

            Read the bit about how the Romans stole our lands. Followed by other thieves who stole it from them. Then read what I said about the fact that if an owner takes back a stolen car from thieves, sane people don’t consider that theft.

            As for the land swaps. My point is to illustrate that even though Israel too could rely on the precedents set by the allies after WW2 who confiscated German lands after their victory, our demand has been land swaps. And that is for the sake of secure borders in line with UN Security Council Resolution 242. Yet hypocrites with double standards, like you Benny and [Yeah Right] are still intent to make US out to be the bad guys.

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            In my view Yeah Right has successfully, logically, and without any hypocrisy refuted your invoking of WWII “precedent”–see Dönitz and elsewhere above–but I’ll leave that for you two to battle out. Good luck. You may see that as a winning argument in your own mind but I think no credible legal arbiter of standing will and I think you have chosen a poor argument tactically if you wish to prevail in world opinion.
            As for invoking the Romans taking “your” land thousands of years ago as giving “you” the real estate title and deed and license to in 2015 take someone else’s land who has been living on this land for centuries and liken this to retrieving a stolen car that “you” “own”–which automatically invokes a time frame of 25 years or so max–I’m flabbergasted that you consider that a serious argument. Now you may, but no single other nation in the world is going to so that leaves you with a problem. I’m not trying to convince you you’re wrong, but I am asserting that your argument seems like a poor strategy if you hope to prevail in this conflict.
            The other thing is I’ve never intended to make “you” out to be the bad guys–there are bad guys on each side and I’m for the good guys on each side but your personal position does not exhaust the range of positions on the Israeli side. I’ve always argued that a compromise has been needed because there are no clear cut ways to do total justice to such a complex conflict. It’s where we set the parameters for such a compromise that engages radical disagreement. There are not simply two monolithic sides as you represent them. Unwittingly or not, that’s a rhetorical sleight of hand.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            Good old trusty Benny. One can always trust him to come to the rescue of his imagined damsels in distress. In this case [Yeah Right].

            Behold, our superhero, Rubber-Stampman, Benny. Applause. Take a bow, Benny, dear.

            Reply to Comment
          • Yeah, Right

            Gustav: “Here is a summary of his position…”

            *chortle*

            It is damn amusing to see that the only time Gustav can “win” his argument is when he “argues” with his own straw man.

            Sooooo, let’s actually use some real quotes, shall we?

            Pedro claimed that “The Jewish nation state had sovereignty over the land of Israel until the Romans stripped them of their homeland.”

            That statement is correct, as far as it goes i.e. the Roman conquest stripped “the Jewish nation state” of its sovereignty over the territory.

            Or, put another way: sovereignty went to the Roman Empire, precisely because at that time the acquisition of territory by war (i.e. “conquest”) was perfectly legal.

            Pedro then followed up with a howler: “Although many imperialistic Islamic states have controlled areas which make up Judea and Samaria, the Jews never ceded their sovereignty and right to the land of Israel.”

            That part is, of course, ignorant nonsense.

            Where “conquest” is legal (i.e. during The Age of Empire) the question of “ceding” your sovereignty is irrelevant, precisely because a conqueror can seize that sovereignty from you.

            After all, that’s what “conquest” is.

            (And did I mention that “conquest” was quite legal back then? I think I did…)

            So it was irrelevant how long Jews like Pedro remained in denial, their “claim to sovereignty” over this territory was lost when the Roman Empire acquired that territory by war.

            And, furthermore, By The Time That Israel Did Seize That Territory (i.e. June of 1967) the state of Israel could not claim sovereignty over that territory.

            Q: Why not?
            A: It had no prior claim (that was extinguished by the Romans), and it couldn’t ACQUIRE sovereignty merely by dint of force of arms.

            Q: Why not?
            A: …”emphasising the inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by war”…

            Now, so very sorry Gustav, that’s MY argument, so if you want to argue against me then argue against ME, don’t resort to your ever-tedious straw man gambit.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            Here is a summary of [Yeah Right]’s claims…

            1. Back then, it was ok to conquer and steal the land of the Jews.

            2. Why? Because the conquerors, the thieves, and their successors, like [Yeah Right], say so.

            3. Now, after the Jews come back and we retake our stolen property, it is illegal.

            4. Why? Because those who conquered us and stole our property and their supporters, the [Yeah Right]s, say so.

            Chortle. Yep, [Yeah Right], I can chortle at your stupidity too.

            Reply to Comment
          • Yeah, Right

            Gustav: “Here is a summary of [Yeah Right]‘s claims…”

            My argumentative little friend appears to be firmly of the opinion that the straw man becomes more effective the more often he is deployed.

            Gustav is, of course, much mistaken.

            Dude, it is immensely easy to “win” an argument when you are mouthing both sides of the debate.

            Childishly easy, which is why your last post was so very childish.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            Well then sunshine, maybe then you could point out exactly where I misrepresented your nonsensical arguments?

            Otherwise, you might just want to give up while you are behind?

            Reply to Comment
          • Yeah, Right

            Gustav: “Otherwise, you might just want to give up while you are behind?”

            Hahahahahah!

            I am perfectly happy about my position in this debate, thank you very much, since I feel perfectly content that my position is “miles and miles in front of Gustav”.

            My position is this: Pedro is correct to point out that the Roman Empire seized sovereignty from the ancient Israelis when they conquered the middle east, precisely because Way Back Then the “acquisition of territory by war” was perfectly legal.

            QED: “Israeli sovereignty” was lost when the Romans conquered the region.

            My position is this: The modern state of Israel did not seize this territory until 1967, which is a period which “emphasised the inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by war”.

            QED: The modern-day state of Israel can not “reclaim” that lost sovereignty in June of 1967.

            I’m sorry if you think that’s unfair but…. no, actually, I’m not the least bit sorry.

            What happening in June of 1967 was a “belligerent occupation”.
            Nothing more. No less.

            Pedro is simply wrong. You, however, are simply a blithering idiot.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            What our intrepid [Yeah Right] really said in that above post of his is that…

            According to his laws, the Romans had every right to raid, conquer and pillage anyone whom they could and bad luck for the poor sods who were at the receiving end. Why? Because in [Yeah Right] world, it was “legit” then.

            And who said it was “legit”, the Romans and the [Yeah Right]’s of this world because of course no one else counts…

            Of course, [Yeah Right] wouldn’t dream of asking the poor sods who were at the receiving end whether in their opinion, the behavior of the Romans, or for that Matter, other invaders like the Brits were doing something “legit” or not. Because according to the [Yeah Right]’s of this world, only the opinions of the invaders matter. The conquered, the raped and the pillaged have no say.

            You heard it from the man himself. He said he is not sorry that it does not seem fair to us. Ok then, sunshine, let me reciprocate, I don’t care what you or your kind thinks either. Get it?!

            Reply to Comment
          • Yeah, Right

            Gustav: “According to his laws, the Romans had every right to raid, conquer and pillage anyone whom they could and bad luck for the poor sods who were at the receiving end. Why? Because in [Yeah Right] world, it was “legit” then.”

            *sigh*

            There can be no better illustration of Gustav’s propensity to argue with his own straw man (i.e. with himself) than the above quote.

            Note how he claims that I use the word “legit”, whereas a quick perusal of this lamentably tedious thread shows that the only person who has ever actually used the word “legit” is…. Gustav.

            Gustav, forever arguing with himself and then crowing about how clever he is to outsmart himself.

            Sad. Laughable too, yes, but still sad.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            [Yeah Right]:”Note how he claims that I use the word “legit”, whereas a quick perusal of this lamentably tedious thread shows that the only person who has ever actually used the word “legit” is…. Gustav.”

            Oh dear. Now he is in denial.

            So tell me, sunshine, who posted the following words earlier on this thread, in response to Pedro’s post?….

            [Yeah Right]:”Because – du’oh! – the acquisition of territory by war was perfectly legit Way Back Then…”

            Yep, it was little old you, you little rascal. Don’t be bashful… Own up for once in your miserable life!!!

            Reply to Comment
          • Yeah, Right

            Gustav: “Stealing bread, money and assets was illegal. But stealing land was legal?”

            OK, it is now perfectly clear that Gustav does not know the difference between the words “land” and “territory”.

            It is also abundantly clear that Gustav does not understand the difference between the words “ownership” and “sovereignty”.

            Indeed, Gustav is so ignorant of the topic under discussion that, well, he is invariably wrong from the get-go, which makes it unnecessary to read the rest of his oh-so-tedious nonsense.

            Sunshine, get the terms right first, then come back…

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            Hocus pocus mumbo jumbo.

            When all else fails [Yeah Right] resorts to word games. LOL.

            Reply to Comment
          • Yeah, Right

            I point out to Gustav (correctly) that the word “land” does not mean the same thing as the word “territory”.

            I also point out (again, quite correctly) that the word “conquest” has a completely different meaning to the word “stealing”.

            And in reply, I get this….
            Gustav: “Hocus pocus mumbo jumbo.”

            Yup. There you have it. Not only does Gustav throw around words like a loose bowel movement, but he doesn’t even care that he is stinking up the place.

            Pointing that out to him is merely “Hocus pocus mumbo jumbo”.

            Beyond laughable.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            Beyond laughable? Then laugh. So what? You sound like a hyena. They are a laughing animal too.

            We recovered our country which people like you whom you support stole from us. You WILL recover from the shock, in good time. In the meanwhile you can spin your word games all you like. You won’t change the facts on the ground. Say something worth responding to and I will respond. Otherwise read what I said already. If you want, I will copy and paste them again because I know what you are trying to do. You have been shot down in flames and you are trying to obfuscate your way out of it.

            Reply to Comment
          • Yeah, Right

            The correct description of Gustav’s last post is: demagoguery.

            Look it up, sunshine.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            [Yeah Right]:”I point out to Gustav (correctly) that the word “land” does not mean the same thing as the word “territory”.

            You can point out anything you like, sunshine. But you are still just playing your silly word games.

            ter·ri·to·ry (tĕr′ĭ-tôr′ē)
            n. pl. ter·ri·to·ries
            1.
            a. An area of land; a region.

            Get it, dude? The words “land” and “territories” mean substantially the same thing. But this psycho has the temerity to call me a demagogue.

            You are making a laughing stock of yourself [Yeah Right].

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            It’s seems that [Yeah Right] only understands brute force. Fine, I’ll use brute force to shut him up. Here is a copy and paste of what I said to him before…
            —————————-
            GUSTAV: “In an anarchic system, people steal, bread, money, assets and lands. That does not make the practice legal.”

            [Yeah Right]:”The Roman Empire was not an “anarchic system”, dude.”

            No, but 2000 years ago international relations were anarchic. The strong big nations robbed the weak nations and enslaved them. That was common practice.

            Was that legal? The robber nations just didn’t care. And if you would ask the weak nations, guess what they would have said?

            Like I said sunshine, common practice does not necessarily mean legal.

            [Yeah Right]:”And what Pedro argued – and what YOU should therefore be arguing for”

            LOL, now he is telling me what MY arguments should be. Hey boychick, you are not doing too well with YOUR arguments. Don’t try to tell ME what I should argue. What a clown…

            [Yeah Right]:”– is the idea that “sovereignty” survived “conquest” back in a time that was called The Age Of Empire.”

            Sovereignity survived conquest? Not exactly, darling. The people whom the Romans conquered became vassals of the romans. They became virtual slaves. Others became actual slaves. Any resistance was brutally crushed. Cities were burnt to the ground. People were crucified or at best expelled. Hey, we should know. That’s what happened to our ancestors.

            GUSTAV: “people steal”…

            [Yeah Right]:”noooooo, the topic is how states acquired territory, not “how people steal”.

            Nooooo, the topic is land theft. One day we were free people. We owned our lands. The day after the Roman conquest we were not free and they owned our lands. Or to be more exact, they acted as if they did. But we never gave up on our lands.

            GUSTAV: “bread, money, assets and lands”

            [Yeah Right]:”…noooooo, the issue is the acquisition of sovereignty over territory, and “territory” is neither bread, nor assets, nor ever “lands”.

            You are a clown aren’t you dude? You are pretending that stealing peoples lands and freedom is not as criminal as stealing their food and money? You are delusional.

            Go ask the Australian Aboriginals what they think about what your ancestors did to them. I know that decent Australians recognize what was done to your Aboriginals. You are obviously not a decent Australian.

            [Yeah Right]:”Those are all very different things, and you are talking irrelevancies when you argue about what “people” do. Both Pedro and I were arguing about what “states” do when one state conquers the territory of another state during a period of history when the acquisition of territory by war was perfectly legal.”

            Only according to those who perpetrated the conquest. Ask the Australian Aborigines how they felt about it? I bet they would not agree with your outrageous claim, you psychopath!

            [Yeah Right]:”Honestly, you are such a boob. Soooooo stupid, in fact, that you can’t even comprehend how stunningly stooooopid your argument is.

            Laughable, really.”

            Yeah? And what are you, sunshine? Let me see…

            Definitely a psychopath.

            Definitely a person who lacks introspection.

            Definitely a hypocrite with double standards.

            And most importantly, you are a pompous, arrogant, self important little idiot.

            Reply to Comment
          • Yeah, Right

            Gustav: “Like I said sunshine, common practice does not necessarily mean legal.”

            Hahahahahahahah!

            Honestly, Gustav, you have no idea what you are talking about.

            None whatsoever.

            This is a bedrock principle of law: where there is no law there can be no illegality.

            Now, with that in mind…..

            Q: The acquisition of territory by war is called… what?
            A: It is called “conquest”.

            Q: And is conquest illegal?
            A: Yep, it is now.

            Q: When did it become illegal?
            A: The Kellog-Briand Pact of 1928 made “conquest” illegal, and the victory of the Allies over the Axis in WW2 definitely made that concept universally-accepted.

            Q: So *before* all that……?
            A: Conquest was perfectly legal.

            Q: Why?
            A: There was no prohibition on “conquest”.

            Gustav: “Like I said sunshine, common practice does not necessarily mean legal.”

            The ignorant blathering of a blithering idiot.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            Like all psychopaths, [Yeah Right] only listens to his own impulses. Nobody else’s feelings, words, or anythithing else matters to him.

            He carries out a great song and dance about what he called “LEGIT” and he tries to wield it as a sword to achieve his own gratification.

            In [Yeah Right] world, he can confidently say that the Romans had every right to invade our country, burn our cities, take our lands and exile most of us, because according to him that was “legit” then.

            …and that’s not all. By his own admission, the allies had the right to force the Germans to cede lands even though by his own reckoning, WW2 was fought to enforce earlier laws which amongst other things forbade acquisition of lands by wars.

            But when it comes to Israel, it seems that according to our sunshine, [Yeah Right], unlike the allies, it isn’t “legit” for us to force his Palestinian Arabs to cede even land swaps in order to give us more secure borders in line with UN Security Council Resolution 242.

            This little self styled twerp is wielding the word “legit” or not “legit” to suit his own purposes.

            Now, he lives in Australia
            Yet he said that he hates Israel for being a “colonialist state”. Has anyone come across a greater hypocrite?

            He is on the record of saying that the British take over of the continent of Australia was “legit” because his own laws said so. But did he bother to ask what the Australian Aborigines thought about the take over?

            Yet he dares to criticize us for reconquering lands that belonged to us 2000 years ago and which was taken over by other thieves.

            He seems to think that only him and his civilization has a monopoly of what is or isn’t “legit”.

            What a self absorbed arrogant little moron! I am surprised that the leftists in here don’t tackle him. Then again I am not surprised. Because the so called lefties who write and visit here are not really lefties. They are here for one and only one purpose. To bash Israel and to whitewash the Palestinian Arabs. And to that end, they put up, nay, they even support supremacists like [Yeah Right]! Then they wonder why they are unelectable in Israel. And soon in the rest of the world too if they keep up the lowly standards which they display with us. We Jews have always been the canary in the mine.

            Reply to Comment
          • Yeah, Right

            Gustav: “Like I said sunshine, common practice does not necessarily mean legal.”

            !!!!!!!

            What Gustav is groping with as he thrashes out phrases like “common practice” is what people who actually know what they are talking about would call “state practice”.

            And “state practice” is, of course, a fundamental concept in International Customary Law.

            As in: if states act *as* *if* conquest were perfectly legal then – du’oh! – conquest is considered to be a Custom Of International Law.

            What Gustav is outlining – without even knowing it, which is what makes it so damn funny – is that Way Back When empire-building considered that building an empire via conquest was perfectly legal.

            Which, of course, made empire-building perfectly legal (this was, obviously, all occurring in an age that predates International Treaties, which is a much more modern concept)

            Gustav: “Like I said sunshine, common practice does not necessarily mean legal.”

            Err, sorry, dude, at the time of the Roman Empire “common practice” meant exactly that.

            Honestly, I’m beginning to wonder if you know anything. Anything at all.

            Apparently not….

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            Oh dear, now he is getting demented.

            He thinks that by endlessly repeating his own talking points and ignoring the difficult bits which I presented him above, he thinks he is winning the argument.

            Psssssst, Hey deary, yeh,You, [Yeah Right]… Try and address my following points…

            1. The Allies FORCED Germany to cede lands after supposedly this was not legit “to acquire lands by means of war”.

            2. Then again, if it IS legit to FORCE the ceding of lands, then why do you insist on judging us, Israel, by different standards?

            3. What if Aboriginal or Jewish laws (or our belief) state that it wasn’t legit to conquer us and take our lands? Why do your laws or beliefs trump ours? Because you are Aryans? Yeah, Right?

            Just answer those questions for starters, sunshine.

            Reply to Comment
          • Yeah, Right

            Gustav: “1. The Allies FORCED Germany to cede lands after supposedly this was not legit “to acquire lands by means of war”.”

            The Germans agreed to cede territory (not “land”, but “territory”) at the conclusion of WW2. It was a concession that they made because the alternative was to continue the war, which Donitz did not consider to be A Particularly Clever Idea.

            But agreeing to onerous terms of surrender is not “the acquisition of territory by war”, which is simply a long-winded phrase for “conquest”.

            There is a fundamental difference, which is that “conquest” does not entail the agreement of those who have just been conquered.

            Now, I **know** that you don’t understand that concept.
            Sure, I **know** comprehension eludes you.

            But, so sorry dude, your lack of comprehension does not change the fact that you are wrong.

            Gustav: “2. Then again, if it IS legit to FORCE the ceding of lands, then why do you insist on judging us, Israel, by different standards?”

            The answer is obvious: the Palestinians have not conceded.

            Almost anything is possible in International Law if two states **agree** to an arrangement between themselves (provided, of course, there are no issues of jus cogens involved).

            But absent that agreement – and it is, indeed, absent in the case of the West Bank – then Pedro is incorrect to claim that Israel already has a claim to sovereignty over this territory.

            Israel doesn’t, and the only way that it can gain that sovereignty is via…. the Palestinians agreeing to cede this territory *to* Israel.

            Which – du’oh! – they insist they will not do.

            Gustav: “3. What if Aboriginal or Jewish laws (or our belief) state that it wasn’t legit to conquer us and take our lands? Why do your laws or beliefs trump ours? Because you are Aryans? Yeah, Right?”

            In the era of the Roman Empire?

            You have already answered that question yourself. You did so when you made such a song and dance about “common practice”.

            Gustav: “Just answer those questions for starters, sunshine.”

            Done. Done. And….. done.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            GUSTAV: “2. Then again, if it IS legit to FORCE the ceding of lands, then why do you insist on judging us, Israel, by different standards?”

            [Yeah Right]:”The answer is obvious: the Palestinians have not conceded.”

            Then tell us this oh rayal pompousness…

            Is there a time limit on us forcing them? We are still in the process of forcing them. Why are you vilifying us for doing what the allies did after WW2? Because they were better at scaring the living daylights out of the Germans to force them to cede their territories ?(see? I am game to use your terminology. It does not change anything one bit. You are still full of it)

            GUSTAV: “3. What if Aboriginal or Jewish laws (or our belief) state that it wasn’t legit to conquer us and take our lands? Why do your laws or beliefs trump ours? Because you are Aryans? Yeah, Right?”

            [Yeah Right]:”In the era of the Roman Empire?

            You have already answered that question yourself. You did so when you made such a song and dance about “common practice”.”

            Not really. We did not go about conquering other people in the Roman era. Could it have been because by then we did not believe it was legit?

            Oh and what about the Aborigines of Australia? They certainly did not believe in “the common practice” of being conquered. Why should your beliefs about what is or isn’t “legit” prevail over their beliefs? Because you are a supremacist?

            Not “done” try again sunshine.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            Now let’s go back to this nonsensical response of [Yeah Right]….

            GUSTAV: “1. The Allies FORCED Germany to cede lands after supposedly this was not legit “to acquire lands by means of war”.”

            [Yeah Right]The Germans agreed to cede territory (not “land”, but “territory”) [LOL, this land vs territory is becoming a fetish of his. Utter nonsense]

            …at the conclusion of WW2. It was a concession that they made because the alternative was to continue the war, which Donitz did not consider to be A Particularly Clever Idea.”

            In other words, the Germans were told. Give us your territories or there will be more war.

            And here I was thinking that by then it wasn’t legit to acquire territories by means of war.

            Poor old [Yeah Right] he is so rattled now that he is contradicting himself and he forgets even the words which he himself used (for example “LEGIT”).

            [Yeah Right]:”But agreeing to onerous terms of surrender is not “the acquisition of territory by war”, which is simply a long-winded phrase for “conquest”.”

            Agreeing to non LEGIT demands under threat especially after a very bloody war, in which the Germans were rendered completely helpless, is the very definition of acquiring territories by means of war, no matter which way you spin it, sunshine!

            Reply to Comment
          • Yeah, Right

            Gustav: “Get it, dude? The words “land” and “territories” mean substantially the same thing. But this psycho has the temerity to call me a demagogue.”

            Hahahahahahahah!

            The ignorant blathering of a blithering idiot.

            The word “land” does not mean the same thing as the word “territory”, in exactly the same way that the word “ownership” does not mean the same thing as the word “sovereignty”.

            If you can’t understand that concept then, so sorry, you are a blithering idiot.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            Oh dear, our resident supremacist, [Yeah Right], sucked me into his word games…

            Ok then, let’s try this word…

            “LEGIT”

            You are using it as a licence to raid, conquer, oppress, rob and exile the majority of a people, our ancestors by the Romans.

            Moreover, you use the word selectively…

            Moreover, you also try to pretend that only your civilization has the right to determine what IS/WAS or what ISN’t/WASN’t “LEGIT”.

            Wanna enlighten us with your “infinite wisdom”, oh exulted one?

            Reply to Comment
          • Yeah, Right

            Gustav: “Ok then, let’s try this word… “LEGIT” ”

            Why should we “try” that word, exactly?

            Gustav: “You are using it”…. I will now point out to you that I have never once used the word “legit” in this oh-so-tedious thread.

            Not once.
            Not ever.

            You have, many, many, many times.

            Apparently you do so without understanding that the word “legit” is short for “legitimate”, which does not mean then same thing as “legal”.

            So, please, do try again.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            [Yeah Right]:”I will now point out to you that I have never once used the word “legit” in this oh-so-tedious thread.”

            Oh dear. Now he is in denial.

            So tell me, sunshine, who posted the following words earlier on this thread, in response to Pedro’s post?….

            [Yeah Right]:”Because – du’oh! – the acquisition of territory by war was perfectly legit Way Back Then…”

            Yep, it was little old you, you little rascal. Don’t be bashful… Own up for once in your miserable life!!!

            Reply to Comment
          • Yeah, Right

            Gustav: “ter·ri·to·ry (tĕr′ĭ-tôr′ē)
            n. pl. ter·ri·to·ries
            1.
            a. An area of land; a region.”

            Utterly Hi-Larious!!!!

            You really are bandying about words that you simply do not comprehend, aren’t you?

            Here, mull these three Israeli buzzwords:
            a) “Israeli territory”
            b) “disputed territory”
            c) “The Land Of Israel”

            Two of those phrases refer to political concepts. One of them is a geographical concept.

            Now, can you spot the odd one out?

            If you can (I doubt it, but you never know….) then you should also be able to comprehend the fundamental difference between “territory” and “land”.

            You won’t be able to comprehend that fundamental difference, of course, but that’s because you are pretending to be stupid because… well…. because.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            And since we are now well and truly into word games, let’s try this one too…

            The Germans were “FORCED” to cede lands at the end of WW2.

            Doesn’t the word FORCED imply in that context that the allies acquired territories by means of war?

            That would be “slightly” embarrassing for you, [Yeah Right] wouldn’t it? I mean, I thought you said that WW2 was fought to uphold laws which prohibit such things?

            It makes you look either wrong or hypocritical. Doesn’t it, sunshine?

            Reply to Comment
          • Yeah, Right

            Gustav: “The Germans were “FORCED” to cede lands at the end of WW2.”

            You really don’t appear to understand how the world works, do you?

            There was a war, and – obviously – two sides were fighting it.

            One side (let’s call them “Allies”) gave their conditions under which they would agree to stop fighting. Those conditions were “unconditional surrender”.

            Now, the other side (let’s call them “Axis”) had a choice: they could either accept those terms or they could keep fighting.

            Admiral Donitz agreed to accept those terms, because he didn’t want to continue fighting.

            Now, so sorry, but that’s all perfectly legal, and the outcome of his signature on that document meant that the allies did not “acquire territory by war”.

            Gustav: Doesn’t the word FORCED imply in that context that the allies acquired territories by means of war?”

            No, see above. It meant that the Allies drove the hardest possible bargain, and the Germans accepted those terms.

            That’s not the “acquisition of territory by war”, which is “conquest”, and (I’ve mentioned this before, have I not?) the conquered don’t get to agree to being conquered.

            The “acquisition of territory by war” is when *you* seize *this* territory and *then* proclaim “Done. It’s mine now”.

            The conqueror doesn’t ask anyone to agree to “cede” the territory to him. His acquisition comes from the seizing of that territory by force of arms.

            Didn’t you know that?

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            GUSTAV: “The Germans were “FORCED” to cede lands at the end of WW2.”

            [Yeah Right]:”You really don’t appear to understand how the world works, do you?”

            Oh dear, behold his royal pompousness. LOL.

            [Yeah Right]:”There was a war, and – obviously – two sides were fighting it.”

            The man ain’t kidding.

            [Yeah Right:”One side (let’s call them “Allies”) gave their conditions under which they would agree to stop fighting. Those conditions were “unconditional surrender”.

            Now, the other side (let’s call them “Axis”) had a choice: they could either accept those terms or they could keep fighting.

            Admiral Donitz agreed to accept those terms, because he didn’t want to continue fighting.”

            Yep, the guy is really tedious. Fer crying out loud… get to the point!

            [Yeah Right]:”Now, so sorry, but that’s all perfectly legal, and the outcome of his signature on that document meant that the allies did not “acquire territory by war”.

            GUSTAV:”Doesn’t the word FORCED imply in that context that the allies acquired territories by means of war?”

            [Yeah Right]:”No, see above. It meant that the Allies drove the hardest possible bargain, and the Germans accepted those terms.

            Really? Are ya gonna stand there and tell me with a straight face that the Germans were happy to hand over their territories?

            No, you know they weren’t! They were given an offer they could not refuse and in anybody’s language that is acquisition of territories by means of war!

            [Yeah Right]:”That’s not the “acquisition of territory by war”, which is “conquest”, and (I’ve mentioned this before, have I not?) the conquered don’t get to agree to being conquered.”

            But they agree to hand over territories under threats after a long and very bloody war in which they were totally defeated and had no other options than to surrender to the dictates of their conquerors but that does not amount to acquisition of territories by means of war?

            If you keep on spinning any more dude, you are going to disappear up your own orifice.

            Reply to Comment
    5. BigCat

      It is fair to argue that Ilan Brauch was nothing other than a Jobnik when he worked as an Israeli diplomat! If Ilan Baruch had any principles, integrity and sense of honor for himself, he would not be writing and publishing the kind of incoherent rants we read now defending the fraudulent organization called “breaking the silence”. As a former senior Israeli diplomat, Ilan Baruch ought know better than his current exercises in foolishness: http://honestreporting.com/breaking-the-silence-more-rumor-hearsay-2/

      “In March 2009, Ha’aretz published a story alleging “war crimes” and serious ethical failures on the part of the IDF in Gaza. Predictably, many international media outlets repeated the allegations without bothering to do any rudimentary checks.
      Subsequently, it was revealed that the soldiers’ testimonies were based on nothing more than rumors and hearsay, causing acute embarrassment to Ha’aretz and serving up a salutary lesson for those media outlets that reproduced such shoddy journalism.
      Now, Israeli non-governmental organization Breaking the Silence has published a new report reliant upon testimonials from soldiers who served in Gaza during Operation Cast Lead. Once again, allegations of “war crimes” and misdemeanors are based on second-hand evidence and hearsay. Once again, international media outlets rushed to publish a story from another flawed source.

      While the BBC gleefully pushed the story to the top of its agenda, The Independentproduced a two-page center spread with a screaming headline “Israeli soldiers reveal the brutal truth of Gaza attack“. Others also covered the story, including CNN, The Guardian, Associated Press, Reuters, AFP, Financial Times, Times of London, Daily Telegraph, NPR, Toronto Star and the Globe & Mail.
      The G & M’s Orly Halpern even wrote on her personal Twitter page: “I’m reading a really moving report which I will be writing about for the Globe and Mail. It makes me sick to my stomach.” Can an objective and balanced story emerge when emotions rather than facts are the driving force?

      Defending the IDF operation against charges including the use of human shields, Golani Brigade commander Col. Avi Peled stated that one of the soldiers who testified in the report was not even in the field at the time: “He told his commander about a week [during] which he wasn’t even in the field. He reported about what he heard happened.”

      Breaking the silence is all about false accusations and blood libels based entirely on falsehoods and hearsay by anonymous soldiers in exchange for hard currency!

      Reply to Comment
    6. BigCat

      This article is all over the map, rich on slogans and clichés but lacking seriously in facts and mature, coherent analysis. Check this out – for example:

      “Thus the role of the Foreign Ministry is not to silence “Breaking the Silence,” but rather to strengthen its activists’ voices along with those of other groups working toward a more tolerant Israeli state, not reliant on the sword alone, alongside a Palestinian state.”

      BUT….!,

      “By Breaking the Silence’s own admission, the allegations are comprised of “the testimony of around 30 combatants” a fraction of the thousands of Israeli combat troops deployed during the Gaza conflict. This extremely narrow and presumably hand-picked sample is an absurd basis on which to pass judgment, and even these limited testimonies were entirely unverifiable.

      All statements are anonymous, and so-called “evidence” is further compromised by the absence of any details of where and when alleged incidents occurred. Consequently, were the report intended to prompt the IDF to investigate individual allegations, Breaking the Silence has made this impossible.” (see link above).

      Apparently that is what Ilan Baruch supports and wants the State of Israel to support as well. And Ilan Baruch is a former senior diplomat? Folks, if Ilan Baruch’s intellectual reach is representative of the intelligence of our diplomats around the world, we as Israelis are in deep sh**! Oh dear….

      Reply to Comment
        • BigCat

          This is very instructive, my good friend Bruce:

          “In March 2009, Ha’aretz published a story alleging “war crimes” and serious ethical failures on the part of the IDF in Gaza. Predictably, many international media outlets repeated the allegations without bothering to do any rudimentary checks.

          Subsequently, it was revealed that the soldiers’ testimonies were based on nothing more than rumors and hearsay, causing acute embarrassment to Ha’aretz and serving up a salutary lesson for those media outlets that reproduced such shoddy journalism.

          Now, Israeli non-governmental organization Breaking the Silence has published a new report reliant upon testimonials from soldiers who served in Gaza during Operation Cast Lead. Once again, allegations of “war crimes” and misdemeanors are based on second-hand evidence and hearsay. Once again, international media outlets rushed to publish a story from another flawed source.

          While the BBC gleefully pushed the story to the top of its agenda, The Independent produced a two-page center spread with a screaming headline “Israeli soldiers reveal the brutal truth of Gaza attack“. Others also covered the story, including CNN, The Guardian, Associated Press, AFP, financial Times, Times of London, Daily Telegraph, NPR, Toronto Sart and the Globe & Mail. The G & M’s Orly Halpern even wrote on her personal Twitter page: “I’m reading a really moving report which I will be writing about for the Globe and Mail. It makes me sick to my stomach.” Can an objective and balanced story emerge when emotions rather than facts are the driving force?

          Defending the IDF operation against charges including the use of human shields, Golani Brigade commander Col. Avi Peled stated that one of the soldiers who testified in the report was not even in the field at the time: “He told his commander about a week [during] which he wasn’t even in the field. He reported about what he heard happened.”

          http://honestreporting.com/breaking-the-silence-more-rumor-hearsay-2/

          Reply to Comment
      • Ben

        It’s not a scientific random sample of soldiers’ experiences but that’s not as interesting a fact as you want us to think. For every soldier willing to speak there are 10 to 100 to a 1000 who saw the same thing and are unwilling. I can guarantee you that if the US Centers for Disease Control got 30 isolated sentinel field reports of an outbreak of a mysterious deadly disease across certain regions of the country all matching a singular profile they would not sit around saying “oh gee we don’t have random sampling of disease outbreak saturating every community in the USA with perfect penetrance and reliability so these 30 sentinel field reports are of no interest.” They’d jump on it with extreme interest and investigate rapidly. And if they didn’t there’d be investigations of that failure. Witness the Texas community hospital Ebola episode.

        What has NOT happened is the contralateral phenomenon: that a complementary organization has arisen with soldiers specifically refuting the testimonies gathered by Breaking the Silence. That is the test you have to meet. Where are they? If these BtS reports are false in any significant number then any number of soldiers would come forth and say “I recognize the unit and the event these troops I served alongside are talking about and it was otherwise.” That has never happened. Anonymous or not. The reward for such a soldier would be huge. Instant right wing hero. Interviews on Channel 2, Channel 7…. Job offers. Promotions. Where are they? I don’t mean one or two cranks or the Oren Hazan-type fraud. I mean where is the grass roots IDF soldier organization that refutes Breaking the Silence in any systematic way or even with anecdotal reports that ring with authenticity? Where are they? If you have such evidence please submit it. Seriously, if you have credible evidence that Breaking the Silence is reporting fabricated material please tell us.

        Reply to Comment
        • Gustav

          “I can guarantee you that if the US Centers for Disease Control got 30 isolated sentinel field reports of an outbreak of a mysterious deadly disease across certain regions of the country all matching a singular profile they would not sit around…”

          …and I can guarantee that the US center for disease would not be sitting around and looking for the cause of the disease based on pre-existing bias, but would want to look at the entire picture…

          …now let’s translate Benny’s analogy to the IP conflict…

          …whatever goes wrong is not just Israel’s fault. The Palestinian Arabs contribute (at the least) to whatever goes wrong on the ground. How do they contribute….?

          – terrorism
          – maximalist demands
          – refusal to resolve the conflict

          What the Benny’s of this world deliberately want everyone to ignore is that Israel has been involved in a simmering 100 year old war with the Palestinian Arabs. A war which started even before there was occupation or even a Nakba. A war which the Arabs wanted and and which we had to respond to in order to defend our interests.

          …and most people know that war is awful. War is not a sanitary sunday school sporting contest in which both sides shake hands at the end. No it isn’t….

          …war is nasty, people get blown up indiscriminately, and yes it is ok for the stronger side (Israel in this case) to use any means to stop the other side from blowing up our men women and children and our 18 year old soldiers are not obliged to sacrifice their lives on the altar of some fictitious altruistic cause promoted by foreigners who would not be more altruistic if they would have to walk in our shoes. How do we know? Because we have seen how those who preach to us, fight their wars. The honest ones amongst them admit it. Funnily enough, it is the so called leftist extremists (I don’t actually believe they are REAL lefties – I think they are just extremists) who pretend that we are the worst of the worst. Well, bully for them. Bully for the Bennies of this world. They can keep on banging their heads against the wall but they will never achieve what they want. We outlived and outlasted much more formidable enemies than they are.

          Am Yisrael Chai!

          Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            Where are they?

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            That’s not them.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            “Where are the they?”

            A very cryptic question, Benny dear. I presume your question refers to this sentence of mine…

            “We outlived and outlasted much more formidable enemies than they are”

            If you do, Benny, then let me make myself crystal clear. By “THEY”, I mean enemies like YOU and others like you? Are you clear about it now?

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            No. As I asked twice in my post above, “they” refers to the grass roots IDF soldier organization that refutes Breaking the Silence in any systematic way or even with anecdotal reports that ring with authenticity? Where are they?

            Reply to Comment
          • BigCat

            Where are they?” Well, here are some of them who find the idiocy of Breaking the Silence worth refuting, and you would be a complete idiot to expect IDF soldiers to form an organization just to refute report that contain completely unverifiable accounts!

            “IDF soldiers from various units who fought in last summer’s war between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip called a recent report by NGO Breaking the Silence a “total lie.”

            The soldiers spoke to Israel’s Channel 2 to tell their side of the story, and to counter the testimonies compiled by Breaking the Silence.

            One soldier called the report “a wicked story” and a “stab in the back.”

            Another soldier, Lt. Oren (a pseudonym), was a platoon commander in the 7th Brigade during the previous Operation Cast Lead, which began in late 2008. The Breaking the Silence report claimed that one of the tank commanders in Oren’s platoon carried out a “revenge attack” by targeting civilian houses in Gaza.

            Oren refuted the claim, saying “this nonsense about ‘fire on the house that you want for revenge’ is simply a total lie.”
            He said “it is very hard for me to believe that one of ours said something like that, definitely not someone who was there.”
            Oren, who was personally involved in the operation, told a different story.

            He said that any “revenge” incident might have occurred after Armored Core Capt. Dmitri Levitas (26) was killed in battle, but that the Breaking the Silence testimony “simply is not true.”
            He said despite the fact that he and his fellow soldiers were severely affected by the death of Levitas, “we maintained combat ethics.”

            “While it’s true there was heavy [IDF] fire, this fire was directed at positions from which we were being fired upon, or suspicious locations,” he recalled.

            IDF tanks only fired “in accordance with procedure, and after a very strict identification process,” he said.
            Oren emphasized that despite “losing a great commander and friend … we still abided by shooting procedure.”

            He said that field commanders operated according to very accurate and high quality intelligence regarding almost every single home.
            Oren said, “They knew where the majority of the tunnels were located and where there were no civilians … Every shell was fired only after going through the proper procedure in which we had been trained long before the Operation.”

            He added that, “Before the Operation and also after it, we conveyed to the commanders and we conveyed to the soldiers the importance of precise fire, the importance of identifying the target and not to fire on innocents.”

            Oren said that this was not the only instance where his soldiers exercised extreme caution when it came to Palestinian civilian lives. “I can tell you about two instances where we could have fired upon what we suspected was a dispatcher, but we didn’t out of concern for innocent lives.”

            Lt. Oren was not the only soldier to speak out, nor was his story unique. Another soldier, who was a battalion commander during Protective Edge and an officer with the rank of Lt. Col., also came forward. He said that before entering Gaza, “we were provided with a large amount of intelligence, and we requested permission after permission, verification after verification.”

            The officer said that when he was notified that he and his soldiers would be entering Gaza, “I conveyed to the fighters the importance of precise fire and avoiding harming innocents.” According to him, this is a message that he and many other officers conveyed to their soldiers not just before entry into Gaza, but during ground operations as well.

            He said that every round fired received either his approval or that of another responsible officer, and that “every entry we made into an area was done after we told [civilians] to leave the area.”
            “Come now, tell me one example in history, one, of an army in the entire world that notified the enemy where it was planning to act or what they are planning to do. This is something entirely irrational,” he said.

            Channel 2 said many more soldiers and high ranking officers stepped forward to present a very different story from the one conveyed in the Breaking the Silence report, emphasizing the IDF’s strict adherence to international law — which sometimes goes beyond the requirements of the Law of Armed Conflict – and the caution the army exercised to prevent Palestinian civilian deaths.” http://www.algemeiner.com/2015/05/08/israeli-soldiers-call-breaking-the-silence-report-on-gaza-war-a-%E2%80%98total-lie%E2%80%99/

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            What’s interesting about that is that this person’s contentious propaganda-laden account complete with telling “stab in the back” terminology is belied not by testimony of Breaking the Silence but by radio chatter, recorded, by the implicated commander himself, which radio communication no one on any side is disputing did not occur.

            Where are they?

            Reply to Comment
          • BigCat

            Brian alias “Ben” alias “MuslimJew” alias “Giora Me’ir” alias etc.

            When you ask “where are they” and rant and ramble over what is provided you in response:

            Do YOU mean those to refute a). BTS allegations that have no days and dates on which they supposedly occurred?

            Do YOU mean those to refute b). BTS allegations that do not specify where exactly the allegations took place?

            Do YOU mean those to refute c). BTS allegations that that are completely made by those who did not witness with their own what they allege?

            Do YOU mean those to refute d). BTS allegations that that are completely hear-say?

            Do YOU mean those to refute e). Breaking the silence allegations made by those who are completely anonymous and remain so?

            YOU must be the Ultimate Jerk, aren’t you? Go find a job, you delusional moron and quit hallucinating!

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            You have absolutely no right to bully and personally attack people like this as you tiresomely do. Besides it being so boring, it’s a gross violation of comment rules and completely unacceptable. You’re a vicious character, BigCat. You ought to be ashamed of yourself. I know you’re not. And that’s the problem.

            Reply to Comment
          • BigCat

            Brian alias “Ben” alisa “MuslimJew” alias “Giora Me’ir” alias etc., you can run, but you cant hide:

            There are records on this site where you called Israeli commenters here such as Tomer, The Tresspasser, Pedro, Ginger, Gustav, etc. “brown shirts”, etc. and posted comments cloaked in sexual and na*i-imageries to Ginger. Who gave you the right to do all that? Are all that “acceptable by the comment rules”?

            You have called Gustav a “Jew-dreg”, “Euro-fake”, etc. That’s another example of your anti-Semitism and WE all take deep offense at that! Who gave you the right to do so? Is that allowed “by the comment rules”? Have you ever apologized for that?

            On several occasions you have claimed that “Jewishness is a mafia cult guided by the rules of omerta”! When it was pointed out to you that your comments were out of line and deeply offensive, you doubled down on it and blamed Ginger who was not even involved in the discussion when you made your comments. Is that allowed “by the comment rules”? Have you ever apologized for that?

            You are using multiple identities to post on this site. Many a time you use them posting on the same thread! When it is pointed out to you that you are out of line, you double down and create more false identities, instead of actually correcting yourself. Those multiple identities include e.g. Brian alias “Ben” alias “MuslimJew” alias “Giora Me’ir” alias “David T.” alias “Dekkers” alias “A Counsciencious Objector”, alias etc. ! Is that allowed “by the comment rules”?

            You come here EVERY SINGLE DAY demonizing, smearing and delegitimizing Israel and Israeli Jews, insulting our elected leaders, accusing us and our soldiers of all sorts of crimes based on falsehoods, supporting BDS against us, etc., while not knowing or even caring about what goes on in your own country that has far more bigger and worse social problems than Israel. Such fixation and obsession is inexplicable and is only seen in anti-Semites. Stop hiding behind the Palestinians, because this ain’t really about them!

            Ya wanna know who “ought to be ashamed of himself”? Ya really wanna know who is full of hate, envy and jealousy of a People, while incessantly rambling mumbo jumbo about issues that he does not understand? Do you want to know who fails to acknowledge his fixation and obsession as a form of mental illness? Take a very hard look in the mirror, you psychotic moron!

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            Wow! Is this “The Collected Lies, Distortions and Forgeries of BigCat” in one comprehensive volume?! LOL! From what penitentiary are you writing kid?

            Reply to Comment
          • BigCat

            I was never under the illusion that you are capable of reflection and self-criticism, because psychopaths like YOU never have such qualities. But are you listening to yourself, Brian alias “Ben” alias “MuslimJew” alias “Giora Me’ir” alias etc? This minute you get all melodramatic crying like a baby and complaining about personal attacks, yada yada yada. But the next minute you are doing the exact thing you complain about? You are not extremely clever, are you? Get a life and seek professional help, you psychotic moron!

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            He’s NOT intelligent and empathetic! He’s NOT! He’s NOT! He’s NOT! Waaaaaah! LoL! I am flattered by your endless fascination with me, you knuckleheads, but it is wearisome for the rest of the readers here. Please have mercy upon them.

            Reply to Comment
    7. Marnie

      Just about anything coming from an Israeli source is questionable, thanks to the hard work and dedication of the fascist, xenophobic and racist govt of Benzion Mileikowsky, et al. The young men and women who are refusing to serve in the IDF have more credibility and honor. BTS seems more like a 12-step group for the soldiers who are ashamed of what they were ordered to do but did it anyway, instead of refusing, which is the duty of a soldier when given an unlawful command. Anyone who says war is hell is on the wrong page. There is no war in the state of Israel, only occupation. The little boy soldiers with their big guns shooting at anything that moves, murdering, maiming and mutilating boys and girls, pushing around old men and women, relieving themselves in the homes where they squat and of course theft of the property and contents.

      Reply to Comment
    8. Ben Zakkai

      You would think that people would learn, but they never do. You would think that they’d learn a little history and ask themselves, What happens when a group of people adopts a messianic vision and decides that some higher power will help them triumph over the rest of the world? How does that generally work out? What happens when one people oppresses another over a long period of time? What happens when you try to beat down and silence worldwide conscience-driven opposition to your plan of domination?

      Reply to Comment
      • BigCat

        And the point of this leftist messianic rant is exactly……what? Ya think that only the Religious can be messianic? Think again! And ya wanna know who is among the most messianic on this site? Well take a hard look in the mirror, because your comments are almost always shrilly ideological, apocalyptic, rancunous and un-apologetically extreme leftist. Aside from the fact that you have admitted on this site that you grew up with serious problems of identity (which inevitably has consequences for the ability to hold a healthy world view), you have a set of incoherent political convictions which you hold divine and believe in YOUR mind are superior to the convictions of others and that somehow the solution to the conflict must rain down from those confused beliefs and nowhere else. (Shaking my head) Oh dear….

        Reply to Comment
        • Ben Zakkai

          I think you’re confusing me with somebody else.

          What does “rancunous” mean?

          Reply to Comment
          • BigCat

            Rancunous is anglicized version of the word “rancuneus”. “Rancuneus” means “rancorous” in modern English. “Rancorous” means “bitter long-lasting resentment, deep-ill will”. Clear?

            As to you having admitted on this site that you grew up with serious identity problems, this is what you said of yourself:

            “Ben Zakkai
            Tuesday
            December 2, 2014
            Hi Marnie, I guess you’re replying to my comment? If so, I wasn’t trying to condescend, although it may have been unavoidable under the circumstances. It’s just that I spent decades enduring identity struggles similar to the ones Mya describes – and I can’t say I’m entirely done with them either – (…). ”http://972mag.com/does-israel-have-a-place-in-jewish-identity/99450/

            That “identity struggles” that started from childhood and continues into full blown adulthood and persists are scientific facts that, objectively considered, would influence one’s ability to hold healthy world vies as an adult. That accounts in my view for the RANCOROUS idiocy you spew on this site against the State of Israel, the IDF and Israelis who don’t agree with your anarchist and confused world views.

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben Zakkai

            Well, I’m flattered by your attention. I’ve seen a number of your comments too, over time, but none of them were worth remembering.

            Say, what does “ad hominem” mean? I think it means, “Can’t win an argument on the merits.”

            Reply to Comment
          • BigCat

            “Decades of identity struggles”, Ben Zakkai? And, by your own admission, you are not even sure those identity-wars that rage in your mind are over?! Those are very strong words, Ben Zakkai. What a confession! Those powerful words are textbook examples of the psychoanalytic tools that psychiatrists use to start mapping out the confused psyche of their patients and mining very deep into their troubled minds! And somehow you feel mentally competent and balanced enough to offer any healthy thoughts on political messianism, the solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict, etc? Reasonable folks will disagree on that, Ben Zakkai, but I will let this matter rest for now and might come back to it at a different time. Fascinating stuff!

            Btw
            You never have “arguments”, Ben zakkai. All we see from you is the same old tired incoherent scurrilous screed recycled and repeated over and over again in different places. There is never anything new in any of your rancorous screeds, which we now know where they are coming from.

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            What a complete asshole. He should be banned. Has to be the most obnoxious person I’ve ever met online, bar none.

            Reply to Comment
      • Gustav

        “What happens when a group of people adopts a messianic vision”

        Bigcat is absolutely right, Benny number 2. The only people on this site with a messianic vision are people who subscribe to your type of one sided ideology.

        You are the people who keep on telling us that if only we end the “occupation” all will be well. But you forget to look at what the Palestinian Arabs actually say and do. And When I say that, I mean even the PLO not just Hamas. In your messianic vision you overlook all of that Benny number 2…

        On the other hand, where is the messianic vision in what I said above? Do you mean my statement that we are going to survive this adversity too? You consider that messianic? If you do, then obviously are amongst those who can’t wait to bury us. But may I remind you that we as a people managed to survive much greater adversity than the situation that we are in today. That of course does not minimizes our sotuation but I have news for you: we have it in us to overcome. And overcome not using the self defeating, head in the sand methods which YOU advocate. There is nothing messianic in that sentiment because in case you haven’t noticed, we have come a long way since 1948.

        Reply to Comment
        • Ben Zakkai

          Hi Gustav, long time. Since today seems to be the day for digging up my old comments (and, in BigCat’s case, distorting their import in a delightfully hysterical and hallucinatory way, ), maybe you can show me where I said that if we end the Occupation (sorry, no quote marks), then all will be well. Regarding “messianic,” I wasn’t responding to your comment above. I think that should have been clear. And I agree with you, we have come a long way since 1948; but we’ve also gone back to Bar Kochba, which is a problem.

          Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            @Benny Zakai

            Do you really want me to hunt through the pages of this magazine to find a quote of yours about what you said about ending the occupation?

            Nah, I really don’t feel like it. I said what I said because those were my honest recollections about what you said about the occupation in the past. Was I wrong? Well then please tell us what your real position is with regards the occupation.

            As for your Bar Kochba comment, it baffles me entirely. Care to explain what you mean? I wouldn’t dream of trying to misrepresent you again. So please help me out and explain clearly what you really mean?

            PS.
            I stand by those comments even if you end up telling me that YOU did not say what I claimed that you said. The only thing that I will withdraw is that YOU did say it (if you DO deny saying it) but plenty of others on this site DID say it. For instance, the other Benny is on the record of glibly saying, just end the occupation. But when he was challenged to explain HOW? He became shy and bashfully declined to respond.

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            Gustav, how to end the occupation? You figure it out. That’s Netanyahu’s job. He could figure that out in 6 months if he wanted to. The Israelis have successfully executed very complex operations when they wanted to. As I said on the thread about the hunger striker, Adnan, reproduced below. And in which I referenced Bar Kokhba. ==>

            Those visiting this page should click on the several links provided above to previous articles by Noam Scheizaf, Yossi Gurvitz, Mairav Zonszein and others to get the full context here. Pedro X is always talking about context. No, I do not find Adnan’s words (if I trust the translation) warm and fuzzy at all–but, sorry, neither do I find the occupation warm and fuzzy even if it gives you a warm glow, Pedro X.

            So Adnan is a fanatic. An extremist. The Zealots and their splinter group the Sicarii and those who ended up at Masada were fanatics too. According to Josephus, the Sicarii massacred 700 woman and children at Ein Gedi. The Israeli side has its fanatics too, and they have warm family lives and bake bread too and their wives admire them. I have no doubt Eli Ben-Dahan’s wife admires him and thinks he is “warm.” Naftali Bennet too. I’m sure Shaked’s husband finds her warm though others might find her a cold woman who called for the slaughter of Palestinians mothers who give birth to “little snakes.” The expressions of their various fanaticisms have as much to do with the asymmetries of the positions of strength they find themselves in—Ancient Jews against Romans, modern Palestinians against Israelis, Israelis against Palestinians–as other factors you’re always hinting at. Look, in the Palestinians eyes the Israelis are the Romans. Among the Jews of Bar Kokhba’s time there were peacemakers and moderates and there were radicals and firebrands. And lots of murder, mayhem, occupier brutality, and terror tactics that I am sure the occupying Romans labeled as such. And people look back and argue about the wisdom or foolishness of a Bar Kokhba. I look at Adnan and I see a fanatic with all the faults and weaknesses, and strengths, fanatics have, morally and tactically. I don’t see him as “a good guy” but at the same time I don’t see the settlers as the good guys either.

            But what I also see is that the Israelis cultivate and manipulate these extremists. Something like this, whether it’s elaborated or implicit:

            “Not too much, not too little. Just enough. The last thing we are going to do is let go of the land so the moderates are to be kept on a very short leash over there so that real peace does not break out god forbid, and the extremists too are useful to maintain the “no partner” position we have and are to be kept on a similarly short leash, and the point is to play them off against each other but not let one or the other gain the upper hand. Divide and conquer. Once in a while it gets messy such as with this pesky fanatical hunger striker but these things are solvable. If we were really serious about peace and letting the Palestinians have the 22% of the land that everyone agrees is necessary and minimally just we would build up the moderates, disempower the extremists, make real and convincing gestures that would win over the Palestinian populace and get real momentum going. We know we could do it but truth be told we don’t want to. We’ve executed far more difficult complex operations when we wanted to. We feign helplessness (but only so much) against guys like Adnan so that we can maintain the status quo.”

            I feel like you participate in this feigned helplessness, Pedro X, when you sigh and say “It is beyond my comprehension why Israel would not let Adnan starve himself to death.” Israel does not let Adnan starve himself to death because it is managing him, just as it managed him when it picked him up and re-imprisoned him without due process on no substantive charges. And managing a public relations game in the real world of modern communications. Adnan is pulling out all the stops. Maybe Israel will let it go all the way, but if it does it is another calculated move in the chess game of posing as the “moderate” against Adnan’s fanaticism, in the service of the real game: Greater Israel. Someday a Josephus of the 21st Century will write the history of this version of history repeating itself. History does repeat itself. Because humans do not change, only circumstances do. Nothing Jello, Pedro, Gustav et al. have tirelessly thrown at us over these many months convinces me otherwise. To empathize with you, I think you’ll say to yourself that the analogy to the Romans is not accurate, that the Romans were REAL occupiers but WE have a true deep connection to the land. True, but so do the Palestinian Arabs. And they are real and they are there. At what point in the pages of history do we stop and say THIS page, this grievance point, this episode, defines matters? Whose finger is upon the page? So a compromise is needed. The world, despite your persecution complex, is only asking for a compromise. Really. ‘Jello’ is open about Conquest and Jewish Supremacism. ‘Tomer’ is as open a settler fanatic as Adnan is a fanatic on the other side. Others will continue to push the idea that, but for your security concerns, you’d just love to make peace (share the land, the resources, the access, the heritage, etc.) but it does not convince.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            BEN:”Gustav, how to end the occupation? You figure it out. That’s Netanyahu’s job. He could figure that out in 6 months if he wanted to…..

            …followed by a long, irrelevant incomprehensible rant about Bar Kochba and others 2000 years ago”

            Wow, just wow, Benny dear. You are out doing yourself even by your own lowly standards. But you still refuse to answer the question which I asked you here…

            http://972mag.com/against-hasbara-explaining-ourselves-to-death/107603/

            …where you Benny dear, was the one who made the following bold statement…
            ————-
            BEN:“On the other hand, why not just end the occupation?”

            GUSTAV:”Simple isn’t it?

            End it how? Unilaterally? Without a signed peace deal? Remember our unilateral withdrawal from Gaza? How did that work out?

            Or by signing a suicidal peace deal? No thanks Benny, we won’t let up to 4 million Arabs settle in Israel proper.

            Oh, and sign a peace deal with Hamas? They won’t sign one with us. At best, they are willing to sign a 10 year Hudna (cease fire). And what will they do during those 10 years? They will prepare for war against us.

            Next, Benny, let’s hear your next bright idea…”

            ———–

            Your answer, or should I say your lack of answer above, betrays one thing. That in your eyes, your dear Palestinian Arabs can just sit back and expect others to come up with solutions. They have to do precisely NOTHING except complain about the “occupation”. Ehud Barak tried, Ehud Olmert tried even Sharon in his own way tried with the unilateral Gaza withdrawal but the Palestinian Arabs responded with violence or by ignoring offers. And after all that, you, Benny have the gall to tell Netanyahu who is a hawk to figure it out?

            No, Benny dear. You are the one who came up with the demand to end the occupation, the least you can do is answer my question about what would YOU do to end it?

            Put up or shut up, Benny!

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            OK, well we’ll just have to agree to disagree. Thanks.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            No Benny dear, you are not disagreeing.

            YOU ARE AVOIDING AN ANANSWER TO MY QUESTION!!!

            You made a bold statement, claiming that all Israel has to do is to end the occupation.

            But when I pointed out that we tried many times but the Palestinians did not respond to gestures or to peace offers, you decline to answer the question…

            HOW YOU WOULD DO IT DIFFERENTLY!

            You are just avoiding an answer. Not disagreeing. Get it?

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            …all is quiet except for the crickets…

            …the crickets are chirping….

            waiting, waiting…waiting for an answer from Benny Zakai about my two questions…

            1. Where I got his views wrong about the occupation…

            2. What his cryptic reference to Bar Kochba means…

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            My comments about Bar Kokhba were a response to Pedro not you but I think they usefully link to Ben Zakkai’s comment about Bar Kokhba. That’s all.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            BS Benny.

            You wrote a rambly rant and now you are conflating my question about Bar Kochba to Ben Zakai out of the blue. Or are you Ben Zakkai?

            Reply to Comment
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