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Re: RF1, I did misinterpret your comment, not sure how I can properly misinterpret you comments in the future? but will try. I personally found the 'We are the world' parody creepy. I think this idea is a far better, braver, and smarter one: Awesome: Israeli students trying to organize flotilla to Turkey Another sea-bound venture is being organized in an effort to draw attention to Turkey’s own controversial policies – this time to Cyprus, to “call for an end to the Turkish occupation” of the island’s northern half – and is being organized by Meretz activist Pinchas Har-Zahav, and his son Haim, who has also signed on for the voyage…
Jon Stewart on the Korean and middle east peninsulas, brilliant. Btw, just a hint, if you are resorting to 'hey we are not as bad as North Korea' somethings wrong.
Apologies, got confused. This is just RF1 and Steve H having an argument in a year old comment thread. Ignore previous comment.
The link seems to be dead, googling for it I found: this link. Is this the full article? btw, I think IAS has - excuse the pun - missed the boat, regarding what is the more important discussion this week. Looking at the comment thread anyway.
Anyway you wish to slice this, it was an unmitigated disaster, from Haaretz One of the most telling images of the day, along with footage from the ships, was the expression of Navy Commander Major General Marom at the noon press conference. The many weeks the navy spent preparing to meet the flotilla, the advance praise it received for its professional preparations, all culminated in a resounding failure. We should be clear: If Israel's goal was to "contain" the flotilla and prevent it from triggering a major crisis, we failed utterly and completely, and in no way is this the soldiers' fault. or from a domestic political Israeli point of view: Israel’s policy-making no longer seems to me to be particularly related to concrete policy objectives at all. Neither the Lebanon war nor the Gaza war had actual military goals. Both were essentially wars for domestic consumption. Hezbollah and Hamas were firing rockets at Israel, and Israelis were understandably furious. “Something” had to be done about that, to let the Israeli public know that their leadership felt their fury. So the government did “something.” Outsiders criticized the disproportion of the response, but the point of the response was its disproportion – not because the only thing the enemy understood was force, but because, in the absence of any way to actually solve the problem, the only thing that would convince a domestic audience that the government felt the way they did about the situation was to respond with a fury proportionate to that of the electorate. or from the international reaction to this incident If Israel's goal were to provoke as much disgust and contempt for it as possible, it's hard to imagine how it could be doing a better job.
I Wish you and your family long life.
Toggle Commented Jun 3, 2010 on Letter to my father at It's Almost Supernatural
Hey Steve, You are correct about the scope of the debate. Looking at RG statement, he mostly talks about why and how he was involved. AK statement makes more sense to me now. I wish they would have talked about the report, personal bias. Pity about the opening statements, they don't seem to have added, nor resolved anything.
Some thoughts: Most of AK's points, are besides the point. First three paragraphs are redundant (especially considering the audience). His criticism of the HRC is not part of this debate, RG himself agrees with the criticism. Other countries have done and are doing terrible things, they should be investigated and held responsible but that is another debate, this is about a specific report, authored by a specific individual about a specific war. Eventually AK actually gets to some specifics, accusations of bias and contextual criticisms, and concludes that the report is: 'tainted to the core' and rejects it. Asking that: "Israel is not treated in a manner different to any other nation" There are a couple of problems with this way of arguing. 1. It is ironic that he is doing exactly what he accuses Goldstone of doing, ignoring facts and criticisms. Read the findings of the report AK doesn't address a single one. He simply rejects them all. They are easily found and AK could have easily incorporated them into his opening remarks. 2. "Israel is not treated in a manner different to any other nation" is AK implying that the UN should treat Israel as it does Russia? ie ignore human rights atrocities? seems to be the implication. AK has it precisely backwards, the UN should treat the rest of the world the way it treats Israel. I agree with you about RG opening statement, it was also redundant, a summary of what everyone already knows. I thought he should have got straight to the point and argue the critiques. BUT, these are opening statements only? It is difficult to gauge much on that. Is the rest going to be released?
I have always been proud of the jews as a thick skinned, intellectually combative, argumentative lot. The joke, if have three Jews in a room, you have four arguments. If we cannot sit down and rationally argue with someone as mild mannered as Richard Goldstone - himself a Zionist - then we are in real trouble. We have lost a cherished part of our intellectual tradition, and are descending down into the darkness of a middle ages mentality. If you socially ostracize all your critics, you are going to live in a world where your ideas are never challenged and therefore never examined, and that is very dangerous. As regards the bar mitzvah, there are days where you put aside personal issues for someone else. There are numerous other times and places where you can criticize Goldstone - without involving his family. This is not a right left conflict, it a reasonable crazy one. Just read Rabbi Shmuley Boteach's post Condemn his report, but welcome Goldstone I would geus you would agree with almost everything in this except for this opening paragraph: I was horrified to hear that there were South African Jews objecting to Judge Richard Goldstone attending his grandson’s bar mitzvah. Blocking a fellow Jew, let alone a grandfather, from a family’s religious celebration because of his opinions on Israel is disgraceful. I recall once that the Lubavitcher Rebbe said that any Synagogue that bars a fellow Jew from entry ought to be shut down. We’re not Hamas, Hezbollah, or Fatah. We don’t summarily execute compatriots accused of collaborating with the enemy, as these terrorist organizations do to innocent Palestinians. We don’t character assassinate them either or banish them from our communities. Rather, where fellow Jews, like Goldstone, are harsh critics of Israel, we show them respect and deference and then destroy not them but their arguments in the cold light of fact and reason.
Yeah, a boycott, great way to get out around looking like loud petulant children, the silent treatment. That will teach the bar mitzvah boy for choosing his grandparents so carelessly.
Updated news: Goldstone to attend grandson's bar mitzvah as Zionist groups end feud . Good news and the best resolution. There still needs to be some inward looking reflection, on the part of anyone who thought, protesting a bar mitzvah was a good idea.
It is only getting uglier out there, just browse the Twitter traffic for an idea. Foobar.
I care much more what Martin Buber said than Avrom Krengel. Is the most interesting thing we have to talk about Avrom Krengel? really?
Toggle Commented Apr 21, 2010 on Dramatic Quotes at It's Almost Supernatural
I have a suggestion: lets ignore the trolls. The ones doing all the shouting and labeling. Lets for once talk about something substantive. Not this childish game of he said she said, or in this case he didn't say? I really don't care anymore, this is juvenile, asinine, and frankly boring. Exactly what is IAS achieving by wondering into this muck? Maybe I am naive and this is all there is. Apologies if I am ranting, but I really am frustrated with the same arguments over the same topics, going exactly nowhere. I remember listening to Daniel Barenboim's advice, given during his bbc reith lectures May 2006: To quote Martin Buber again: 'There can be no peace between Jews and Arabs that is only a cessation of war. There can only be a peace of genuine co-operation.' End of quotation. Therefore peace requires dialogue, a dialogue which consists of sensitive talking and often painful listening.
Toggle Commented Apr 20, 2010 on Dramatic Quotes at It's Almost Supernatural
What has been forgotten in all of this is the grandson. I am all for free speech and protest, but a barmitzvah is not one of them. Ever. The protesters are punishing this young man and his family. If you want to protest, go ahead, but there are more appropriate forums and places to do that. Aside: lets keep religion and politics separate.
This is wrong place to argue about the validity of the report. What I am arguing is, to restate: using a single point, or linking to some vague video (which I watched) is hardly a substantive argument. Your characterization presents a clear one sided view, just as an illustration see Reactions to the Goldstone report
Grouse, you make many good points about bias and the failures of the UN HRC. Fair criticism, much of which I agree. Including: Pointing out transgressions of other parties does not justify any of Israels violations of human rights. BUT the claim of bias is so often is used as an excuse to dismiss a critical argument, without dealing with the actual argument. I found this particularly true of the Goldstone report. You dismissed the whole Goldstone report, taring it with one narrow criticism. You point was fine, but you cannot throw out the whole report because of one possible flaw. Richard Goldstone is no radical, he is not a nutcase. His report deserves a careful and thorough consideration. Here is Goldstone's response, in an interview: RICHARD GOLDSTONE: Well, it is outrageous, and there should have been an outrage. You know, the response has not been to deal with the substance of those allegations. I've really seen or read no detailed response in respect of the incidents on which we report. BILL MOYERS: Why is that? RICHARD GOLDSTONE: Well, you know, I don't know. I suppose people hate being attacked. There's a knee-jerk reaction to attack the messenger rather than the message. And I think this is typical of that. And of course, a lot of the allegations, I certainly don't claim anything like infallibility. But I would like to see a response to the substance, particularly the attack on the infrastructure of Gaza, which seems to me to be absolutely unjustifiable. PS Welcome back IAS.
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Apr 9, 2010