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Yitzhak Shamir

  • Overplaying the 'terrorism' card

    The reaction to this week's killings of two IDF soldiers showed that Israel's moral condemnation of deliberate civilian killings is a tactic, no more.      The most powerful argument Israel makes in its campaign to paint the Palestinians as the bad guys and itself as the good guy is to point out that Palestinians deliberately kill innocent civilians, which Israel doesn’t do, at least not as policy. Although this claim conceals much more than it reveals (for example, that Israel doesn’t have to target civilians because its policy of aggression makes killing them inevitable), it is true as far…

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  • Settlers assault Israeli human rights workers near West Bank outpost

    Yesh Din personnel, who were in the West Bank doing the job that police simply aren't doing, were attacked last week by settlers near Havat Gilad. And these are the people the defense minister wants to sign a deal with? By Yesh Din (written by Yossi Gurvitz) Three Israelis – and yes, there is the necessary proof that they were Israelis – attacked a Yesh Din team near the illegal outpost of Havat Gilad on Tuesday, June 25. The assault came a day before the High Court of Justice was to hold a hearing about the evacuation of several illegal…

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  • 'Nothing will happen. Maybe some more terrorists will be killed'

    Declassified documents from meetings held before and during the Sabra and Shatila massacre in 1982 reveal Ariel Sharon's contempt for Palestinian lives. Published last week by the New York Times, the documents demonstrate the arrogance of Sharon and a young Benjamin Netanyahu in their dealing with American diplomats and officials, who expressed justified concerns over the fate of Palestinians in areas conquered by Israel. The Jewish New Year (Rosh Hashana) also marked the 30th anniversary of the massacre in the Sabra and Shatilla Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon. At least 800 people, including many women and children, were killed by…

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  • Shamir and Netanyahu: It takes one to know one

    Former Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir passed away yesterday at the age of 96.  To me he will be remembered as the man who loved the status quo. The man who did nothing, and for years. The man who basically taught Benjamin Netanyahu the art of stalling. Shamir can rest in peace knowing his pupil has outdone him in the field of inactivity. Shamir, the man who executed his own Lehi friend for treason. Shamir, the man who said "For Eretz Yisrael, it is permissible to lie." Shamir, the man who said "The Arabs are the same Arabs, and the sea…

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  • Knesset vote reveals how weak the settlers truly are

    How come a decision by the government to built 850 housing units in the West Bank is praised as a move toward peace? The answer has to do with the political theater taking place for decades How bad is this political moment? It's enough to say that a move in which the prime minister announces the construction of 850 new housing units in the West Bank – most of them on the eastern side of the separation wall, the one located on land supposed to be within a future Palestinian state, even according to Netanyahu - has won him praise…

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  • Is an Israeli cover-up keeping Jonathan Pollard in prison?

    The Americans are convinced Pollard - who spied on behalf of Israel in the 1980's - didn't act alone, and have made it clear that if Israel gives up the other name(s), he can go free. It's been a mystery for many years why Jonathan Pollard is still in prison, why U.S. president after president refuses to pardon him. The reason in the minds of his hardcore right-wing supporters, those who see him as a Jewish hero, is anti-Israeli/anti-Semitic feeling high up in Washington, which is too stupid and rotten a claim to bother refuting. No, it has to be an American belief that freeing Pollard could do further damage to U.S. security, because…

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  • Will Israel's rocket defense system help or hurt the conflict?

    By David Lehrer Those of us who grew up in the United States in the 1960s may remember that period as one of naïve optimism overshadowed by apocalyptic terror.  We were terrified of the possibility that nuclear missiles from the USSR would be launched at us but naïvely believed that if we just crouched down under our school desks and held our heads between our hands we would be safe. We lived in a MAD, mad world, where MAD stood for Mutual Assured Destruction, the military doctrine and foreign policy that guided the strategic relationship between the two superpowers.  The…

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  • Netanyahu won’t deliver

    A year and a half into Benjamin Netanyahu’s second term, it’s clear that no matter what the Palestinians do or say, this Israeli PM will not sign a final agreement. I don’t think that even the US administration can change that. At most, it could ignite a process that the next government can carry on; much in the way President Bush forced PM Yitzhak Shamir into the Madrid conference. Every Israeli leader is more likely to prefer the statues quo to concessions on the Palestinian issue (I explained why here). But in Netanyahu’s case, stalling the process doesn’t seem to be…

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