Powered by TypePad

« Keeping That Special Relationship Special | Main | If You're Losing Frank Rich... »

June 06, 2010

Comments

Melinda Romanoff

Watch that Caps Lock thingie when it comes to punctuation...

BR

Re discussion of possibility of Obama currently taking cocaine (Extraneus, Clarice and others in recent threads) - it is not such a far-fetched idea.

Ambrose Evans-Pritchard in "The Secret Life of Bill Clinton" wrote about Clinton's association with drug-dealer Dan Lasater (convicted in 1986).

Chapter 19, pg 290: "What is possible to verify is that Bill Clinton and Dan Lasater are rewriting history when they now claim they hardly knew each other."

Reminds me of the Obama-Ayers connection. Might also explain the WH visitor logs being kept secret.

Clinton's supplier while in the WH was allegedly a female doctor from Arkansas.

Will Obama submit to a drug test by a Tea Party representative? (I.e. not one of his doctors.) Or let's have those cigarettes and cigars examined for content.

hit and run

Let's get furious.

Linked on the last thread, too.  This one's going viral like an epidemic.

Heh, found it again at another climate site in which the blogger considered that the flotilla effort had learned lessons from Al Gore in how to con the world. LUN for more than just the poor conned anduril.
===============

Clarice

Ras has Oman at -18! Let's sing and dance and hop about!!!!HAPPY HAPPY

Old Lurker

Kim! Stop poking a stick into that cage. We are all short of pixels with his posts this weekend.

OK, I got yardwork.  I'm afraid my bees haven't overwintered successfully.

Hah, it's Caroline Glick. I thought I saw a hockey stick in there but I think it is a bent piece of angle iron.
=============

anduril

The debate is opening up--oh, everywhere but at JOM, where hysteria rules the day and rational discourse is disapproved.

The NYT's Week In Review addresses the question: Washington Asks: What to Do About Israel?

Opening graphs:

WASHINGTON — Some topics are so inflammatory that they are never discussed without first inserting a number of caveats. And so, when Anthony Cordesman, a foreign policy dignitary in this town’s think tank circuit, dropped an article on Wednesday headlined “Israel as a Strategic Liability,” he made sure to open with a plethora of qualifications.

First, he noted, America’s commitment to Israel is motivated by morality and ethics — a reaction to the Holocaust, to Western anti-Semitism and to American foot-dragging before and during World War II that left European Jews slaughtered by the Nazis. Second, Israel is a democracy with the same values as the United States. Third, the United States will never abandon Israel, and will help it keep its military edge over its neighbors. And America will guard Israel against an Iranian nuclear threat.

But once Mr. Cordesman had dispensed with what in the newspaper world is called the “to-be-sure” paragraphs, he laid out a dispassionate argument that has gained increased traction in Washington — both inside the Obama administration (including the Pentagon, White House and State Department) and outside, during forums, policy breakfasts, even a seder in Bethesda. Recent Israeli governments, particularly the one led by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Mr. Cordesman argued, have ignored the national security concerns of its biggest benefactor, the United States, and instead have taken steps that damage American interests abroad.

“The depth of America’s moral commitment does not justify or excuse actions by an Israeli government that unnecessarily make Israel a strategic liability when it should remain an asset,” Mr. Cordesman wrote, in commentary for the centrist Center for Strategic and International Studies, where he is the Arleigh A. Burke Chair in strategy. “It is time Israel realized that it has obligations to the United States, as well as the United States to Israel, and that it become far more careful about the extent to which it tests the limits of U.S. patience and exploits the support of American Jews.”

And the closing paragraphs quote two ardent supporters of Israel:

More recently, Daniel Levy, director of the Middle East Task Force at the New America Foundation and a member of J Street, said in an interview: “America has three choices. Either say, it’s politically too hot a potato to touch, and just pay the consequences in the rest of the world. Or try to force through a peace deal between Israelis and Palestinians, so that the Palestinian grievance issue is no longer a driving force or problem.” The third choice, he said, “is for America to say, we can’t solve it, but we can’t pay the consequences, so we will distance ourselves from Israel. That way America would no longer be seen, as it has been this week, as the enabler of excesses of Israeli misbehavior.”

Unsurprisingly, Mr. Levy advocates the second choice. But he warns that the third may become more palatable to Americans if Mr. Netanyahu’s government stays on its present course.

Jeffrey Goldberg of The Atlantic, author of one of the most well-read blogs in the American Jewish community, put it this way: “I don’t necessarily believe you solve all of America’s problems in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Yemen by freezing settlement growth. On the other hand, there’s no particular reason for Israel to make itself a pain in the tush either.”

Hey, Clarice, has Iran used its nukes yet?

Danube of Thought

Let's see...Obama may be using cocaine in the White Houe, and we know that because of some opaque passage about Bill Clinton in an obscure book? Yeah, that'll work.

And sure, any president would be happy to submit to a drug test by a Tea Party representative. That's pretty much routine.

Hoping for a Rich Haul.

What I mean is, that I'm gonna try poking a stick down a hole in the ground. Anaphylaxis, ho! We know Anduril has overwintered successfully.

What's the definition of a Gold Mine? A hole in the ground with a liar at the top.
================

I'm gonna go dig up the hatchet you didn't bury, you sorry son of a whatnot.

Oops, before I have to pick up the spade, Anduril, that's a pretty ugly taunt. Give it time. For sure they'll try to use it.
===================

Comanche Voter

Well time to throw Israel under the bus--or so suggests the New York Times. Why not? We've already peed all over the rest of our friends. Helen Thomas has set our new foreign policy.

What A Bunch of Bozos!

anduril

Kim! Stop poking a stick into that cage.

Oh, kim is well aware that I'm not in any cage. A personal note, however. Yesterday evening I made a discovery that has me very excited and may require a fair amount of attention--nothing related to anything at JOM. As a result, my efforts to spark actual intellectual exchange at JOM--as opposed to mindless cheerleading and manipulative hysteria mongering--will have to take a back seat for a while. In the meantime, there's a backlog of reading for some of you to catch up on.

Please don't put a match to it.

I got it: 'Sorry son of bee bonnet'. Don't mean to be personal, Anduril; art compels it.
============

anduril

Anduril, that's a pretty ugly taunt. Give it time. For sure they'll try to use it.

1. In the circs, I thought it as mild. As I noted yesterday, Clarice had to edit the headline in order to set the hysterical tone she was aiming for.

2. How will they use what they don't have?

3. What's the true objection to rational discourse? There are plenty of rational things to be said about a Middle East that has more than one nuclear power--why do those rational thoughts need to be shouted down at JOM?

Danube of Thought

"Anduril" is understand to mean "juvenile delinquent with ADD."

Jane says obamasucks

I couldn't care less if Obama is using cocaine - it certainly can't make his judgment any worse.

DFTT day 3

boris

"As I noted yesterday ..."

Frak off jerk, nobody here is required to follow Adrools Rools for link titles or bolding.

narciso

You have really been a Sauron this weekend, like a spoiled child craving attention, Let
see the Times, which is the arch nemesis of practically every social attitude you oppose, a flunky from Arabian supported CSIS, I recall reading one of their reports post September 11th, it stinted on the depth of Wahhabi influence administered another catspaw in J Street, Jeff Goldberg who just recently discovered they want to return to the status quo ante in '47, which is OK with you, because they are not even Jews, they are the hated Khazars in your book. What's next the rewrite of the protocols from 16 Fontanka maybe not from
Wat this time. What do you think will happen
after they nuke Israel, and of course, Hillary will then say never again, you think
that is the endgame, no that is just the end
of the beginning, as the Chiliastic views of Ahmadinejad has made clear, maybe your
medievalist view channeled by Peters will
come to life but I doubt it.

Thomas Collins

I think most of the discussion about the supposed problems Israel presents for the US ignores the fact that if the State of Israel ceased to exist tomorrow (with most Israeli Jews presumably following Helen Thomas' exhortation to go elsewhere), jihadists would likely be more emboldened in their efforts to impose Islamic law, Iran would still go ahead with its nuke program, anti-Semitism would still be at 1930s levels, Turkey would continue with its Islamist slide, Palestinians still won't be able to organize themselves into a functional nation, other Middle Eastern states won't allow emigration of Palestinians, and the US would still be saddled with a leftist, conciliatory internationalist Administration attempting to emasculate America and thus increasing the chances of worldwide war.

Furthermore, it is likely the case that Israel's overall military strength and nuke capacity will be a necessary countervailing force to Iran (whatever sanctions result from the current UN Iran gabfest are as likely to derail Iran's nuke program as the Kellogg-Briand Treaty was likely to end war).

In any event, because I have no hope that anti-Israeli sentiment and hatred of Jews will subside anytime soon, I am consoled only by the cold reality that, unlike the 1930s, this time the Jews have plenty of weapons and nukes, and their enemies have to deal with this fact.

BR

Jane, it is the illegality as well as dangerously unfit to be POTUS.

Danube of Thought

D-Day today. My sister and some friends are at Normandy. Never done that, but would like to some day.

Danube of Thought

Obama held hostage, Day 48.

narciso

I took a look at the Perdana site, all the clueless ones from the last 30 years, Helen Caldicott, Malathir Mohammed, Haliday and Sponeck, the former UN inspectors who didn't want to realize what they were discovering
in the sands of Iraq, call them Lemming Inc
for short

Jane says obamasucks

BR,

It seems to me this guy does just about everything illegally, not to mention unethically. And he's so damn unfit now, heroin wouldn't make it any worse.

Ignatz

Here is Rick Moran in one of the stupidest columns IMO of recent vintage.
He's upset that the ump who blew the call admitted the obvious truth that he missed the call and what's worse is upset the Gallarga is acting like a man and a Christian in not throwing a petulent temper tantrum and laments him not breaking his hand in the process.
God forbid players model themselves after Gehrig, DiMaggio or Bart Starr.

Clarice

Did Saddam send his WMDs to Syria--more evidence that he did.

http://pajamasmedia.com/blog/satellite-photos-support-testimony-that-iraqi-wmd-went-to-syria/?singlepage=true>Remember it was no priority after we invaded and we still haven't sorted it out

Janet

The NYT's Week In Review addresses the question: Washington Asks: What to Do About Israel?

How 'bout we take care of our own d#*n business. Our plate is full. These pundits are like some sick micromanaging people whose lives are falling apart while they scream instructions out about what others "should" do.

Clarice

Janet, If I didn't think you'd enlist me in one of your many doing good projects, I'd run over and kiss you.

narciso

Rest assured Janet, they don't make a lick of sense, on any field really. "Robert Langdon" is really becoming like the oil spill, you
can't navigate around it

Janet

Just an interesting note -
Two big players in Biblical end time prophecy are a re-constituted Roman Empire (Europe) and Babylon (Iraq).....everyone will be against Israel. Not that this is that moment, but it sure seems like world players are in their positions. Maybe there will be a stand down or reprieve for a time...
I sure keep the people of Israel in my prayers.

Charlie (Colorado)

Ignatz, it would be impolite and unprofessional for me to suggest my complete agreement with you about the Galarraga thing.

Janet

LOL, Clarice! Don't worry!

Joan of Argghh!

Gotcher emote right here.

God bless the Marines.

Pagar

"Did Saddam send his WMD"

The 10:45 AM link shows the new DNI appointee as one who has mentioned the movement of WMD to Syria.

Earlier today I saw an article saying that there are Democrats who will use that against him in his Senate hearings. I can't find that article right now, but it is something to keep in mind. The Democrats don't want any reason that Pres Bush gave for going to war there justified.

Captain Hate

My sister and some friends are at Normandy. Never done that, but would like to some day.

I highly recommend it for a variety of reasons related to D-Day but also because of the proximity to Mont Saint Michel.

Clarice

I'd love to do that, too, DoT. Maybe we can have a JOM team visit.

Clarice

pagar, Hot Air noted that opposition to Clapper.

centralcal

Thanks Joan of Arggh - Ann posted that here yesterday or the night before - but worth seeing again.

I especially loved watching the crowd and how they responded!

Captain Hate

RE Moran's column: I stopped taking that imbecile seriously a while back; for every good columns he writes he offsets it with at least one flight of delusion. That might make for a good baseball batting average but it's strictly T-ball for punditry.

narciso

A bit of background for one of the authors, I've followed, who holds much of the same line
that most here do, along with the same biting
sense of humor, but was still very naive about
things, in the LUN

Rick Ballard

Janet,

The NYT doing "What Should Be Done About ?" pieces is a very good marker for the abysmal state of the Herbert Hussein Maladministration, just as any person's intense focus on a "them" being "the problem" is a sure tell that the person is a failure who desperately needs a cause to explain why he never quite made made the grade.

Given that the communist/socialist one world nightmare is falling to bits in Europe, Asia and the US at the same time, I believe we can safely anticipate a spate of "What's To Be Done About X" pieces right through the Democrat Demolition Derby in November.

Clarice

Eisenhower on 6/6/41:

Soldiers, Sailors and Airmen of the Allied Expeditionary Force! You are about to embark upon a great crusade, toward which we have striven these many months. The eyes of the world are upon you. The hopes and prayers of liberty loving people everywhere march with you. In company with our brave Allies and brothers in arms on other fronts, you will bring about the destruction of the German war machine, the elimination of Nazi tyranny over the oppressed peoples of Europe, and security for ourselves in a free world.
Your task will not be an easy one. Your enemy is well trained, well equipped and battle hardened, he will fight savagely.
But this is the year 1944! Much has happened since the Nazi triumphs of 1940-41. The United Nations have inflicted upon the Germans great defeats, in open battle, man to man. Our air offensive has seriously reduced their strength in the air and their capacity to wage war on the ground. Our home fronts have given us an overwhelming superiority in weapons and munitions of war, and placed at our disposal great reserves of trained fighting men. The tide has turned! The free men of the world are marching together to victory!
I have full confidence in your courage, devotion to duty and skill in battle. We will accept nothing less than full victory!
Good Luck! And let us all beseech the blessings of Almighty God upon this great and noble undertaking.
-- Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhowe

Pagar

Clarice, You're right it was Hot Air.

Janet

LUN Stars band together to protest Arizona law

Fom the WaPo. The truther, tax cheat Willie Nelson is a part of it along with Kayne West the drunken bafoon, and Carlos Santana.
Here is a C. Santana quote to give you some idea of his depth, "There is more value in placing a flower in a rifle barrel than making war," he said. "As Jimi Hendrix used to say, musical notes have more importance than bullets."

Anyway, if this group says Arizona's law is no good then I guess we better believe them. Real experts.

Jane says obamasucks

My sound stopped working when I clicked on that video. Other than it is broken, does that mean something obvious I don't know about?

Strawman Cometh

Moran has an unfortunate homonym, and is taking some eloquent chin music in the comments.

anduril

How 'bout we take care of our own d#*n business.

What a great idea! Let's start by owning our own foreign policy.

Two big players in Biblical end time prophecy are a re-constituted Roman Empire (Europe) and Babylon (Iraq)....

Uhhhhhhhhh...

anduril

the Times, which is the arch nemesis of practically every social attitude you oppose

I think you mean, "the arch nemesis of practically every social attitude you support." My point was not that the NYT consistently propagates wisdom but that it's a pretty fair barometer of what opinions may be discussed in polite society. If polite society is starting to openly discuss these issues you've got a problem.

What do you think will happen after they nuke Israel

1. I don't think anyone is about to nuke Israel and even if Iran did construct the two nukes they have sufficient fuel for I still wouldn't expect them to nuke Israel--see #2.

2. If anyone did nuke Israel I would expect Israel to nuke them right back, on a scale that would make a nuked Israel look like the Garden of Eden. If Iran used 1-2 nukes--their total capacity--I would expect Israel to use 200-300 nukes. And that fact gets us back to #1.

anduril

does that mean something obvious I don't know about?

Where to even begin?

glasater

A funny video summing up the European debt crisis:

Clarke and Dawes ask the million dollar questions ABC News Australian Broadcasting Corporation

boris

IMO Iran can't be trusted to be rational.

If Iran were rational it would not be openly provoking a country capable of delivering 100-200 nukes.

Pofarmer

Shamelessly crossposting

Fairly long article also Russia is backing away from Obama sanctions...

An article published on Xinhua News Agency on Saturday by Zhai Dequan, the deputy secretary general of China's Arms Control and Disarmament Association, appears to signal that China is backing out of the previous agreement on sanctions against Iran.

Citing Iran's agreement to the specifics of the swap deal, the article concluded, "Since the situation has changed, pre-planned punitive actions, too, should be altered accordingly, meaning there is no longer any rationality in imposing further sanctions on Iran."

The views expressed by the association have often reflected the policies of the Chinese Foreign Ministry, which had already issued a statement welcoming Iran's agreement on the swap proposal.

http://atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/LF02Ak04.html

anduril

If Iran were rational it would not be openly provoking a country capable of delivering 100-200 nukes.

There are many analysts who believe that Iran has no intention of actually building a nuke, only of establishing their ability to do so. Much like Japan. It's an extremely rational position, given their history and their geographical position.

Think about it. Israel is surrounded by by Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and Egypt--none of them nuclear. Iran is surrounded by Russia (N), Afghanistan, Turkey, Iraq and Saudi Arabia. It's also within military range of Pakistan (N) and Israel (N). Of their Muslim neighbors, most have been consistently controlled by hostile Sunni governments. Iran has a history of conflict that goes back millenia with Turkey, Iraq and Central Asia and has been invaded/controlled by the British and Russians, had their government overthrown by the CIA. Israel is utterly opposed to any competing regional power in the entire Middle East, but to acquiesce to Israel's demands would render Iran vulnerable to all its traditional enemies.

As a very simple introduction to what's driving the Israel - Iran thing, try this: The Root of All Fears: Why Is Israel So Afraid of Iranian Nukes?

narciso

Youre kind of giving every reason why they would build the bomb and use it

anduril

Youre kind of giving every reason why they would build the bomb and use it

The only country that built a nuke and used it is the US. Iran is looking for deterrence which will give it the security it needs to to establish and protect what it views as its legitimate regional interests. That's certainly no less rational than the policies of any other nation I'm aware of.

narciso

They've been more at war with the Brits and the Russians, really not with the Saudis in the big scheme of things, going back to the
Safavid and Sassanid dynasties, if one takes
the long view

anduril

Armed conflict may be one thing, but the Arab conquest of Persia had profound consequences, and has led to permanent antagonism between the two cultures to this day. The Persians have always turned their attention to Mesopotamia, Anatolia/Caucasus and the Gulf when they feel secure about Central Asia.

boris

It would be foolish to argue that from a certain point of view Bin Laden was "rational" with the 9-11 attack. Not impossible or even difficult ... foolish. So too is saying Iran is being rational with the ongoing provocations against Israel while acquiring a few nukes.

The proper term for that is "rationalization".

scott

That is some serious Pop! Orange on Rickie Fowler. That guy's got some flavor.

I can't help but root for Tiger to rupture a roids compromised bicep tendon every time he swings and make way for the new kid.

daddy

glasater,

Really enjoyed your link at 01:45 above.

Had no idea what to expect but that was very informative and fun. Excellent.

glasater

Thanks daddy--

Just trying to follow your path of the whimsical:)

anduril

boris, I couldn't disagree more. YOu may think it was foolish, but I doubt you'll be able to convince the people who need convincing--not JOMer groupthinkers but the Islamists themselves.

If you accept bin Laden's premises, everything else follows quite rationally.

Now, bin Laden's premises are no more rational than are Janet's re "Biblical end time prophecy," and yet...there are reasons why Islamists may believe that the Islamist line of thought has proven its rationality, but needs some tweaking.

If you're taking the long view of things, Islamists probably see reason to be encouraged for the future. Yes 9/11 provoked a reaction that must have rocked Islamists for a while, but they've absorbed some tough defeats and are still fighting.

The US was riding high for a while, but is now facing serious economic trouble and war fatigue. Afghanistan is not going well at all, and defeat there will be a terrible blow to our prestige and a tremendous shot in the arm to Islamists--first the USSR then the US find their graves in the graveyard of empires. I don't doubt that they see Obama's election as a sign of weakening US resolve--as indeed it was a result of disillusion with Bush/Cheney's global war strategy.

Turkey is going Islamist, a huge plus, and Iran continues to hang tough and to maintain significant international support. The Islamists have struggled back in Somalia. Even in Iraq I suspect Islamists see hope for the future, as the US pulls back to remote bases and the Sunnis whom we bought become disillusioned.

It's true, Muslim governments have resisted Islamists, and so Islamists may need to be more pragmatic for the time being, work through established governments who will support them.

And did I mention that the Islamists are undoubtedly heartened to see Israel overreacting and losing support?

These are all reasons why Islamists who take the long view are probably not too disappointed. They've had their setbacks, but they probably believe that if they stay the course they'll begin achieving more, that they've worn us down. And that means they probably also believe that their strategy has proven to be rational--just harder to implement than they may have thought at first. But Jihad is not just a struggle of a day. My belief is that a somewhat more pragmatic generation is growing up in their movement and will ultimately prove just as determined unless we find a better strategy.

A better strategy starts with determined defense--don't let the enemy into our country.

Murgatroyd

Daniel Levy, director of the Middle East Task Force at the New America Foundation and a member of J Street, said in an interview: “America has three choices. ...

I can think of at least one more option:

Suppose we stop the futule effort to be "even-handed" and treat the clowns in Gaza as the ignorant, murderous, irrational, contemptible thugs that they are? Suppose we tell them that we'll look with sympathy upon them when they start acting like human beings instead of rabid weasels?

anduril

IOW, let's ignore real issues and live in our own alternative reality.

boris

"If you accept bin Laden's premises, everything else follows quite rationally"

Thus does responsibility for OBL's colossal blunder fall to those who failed to predict the predictable. In hindsight of course everything was predictable according to a certain class foolish scolds.

Avoiding the counsel of such fools is always a wise choice.

squaredance

And androol shows us what a dreary little apparatchik he is.


groupthink? What projection. This viper is spinning out line for line the generations old collectivist agitation about the Jews in general and Israel in particular, right down to the slander that "the International Jew" somehow "runs" US foreign policy.

One waits for postings from The Elders of Zion.

JOMers should note that only rarely does a common citizen, especially one possessed of such obvious obtuseness as androol, has such well planned sophistry accompanied by such polished leftist agiprop right at their fingertips. Nor do they have the free time to engage in these sort of games.

Given his taunting of Jews on this forum, you just might want to re-evaluate your notions of him and his agenda.

The fact that he is quite mad and immoral does not mean that his appearance here is either "innocent" or "innocuous".

anduril

boris, i can't even understand what you're saying. until you're able to string a coherent sentence or two together i won't waste my time.

Jane says obamasucks

Tiger has made way for a new kid (everyone of which at some point modeled themselves after him) every time he tees off.

But you are right about the orange.

BR

SD, agree with yr last line. I usually ignore trolls, but there are side benefits to them.

If the site were ever targeted for shutdown of conservatives' freedom of speech, TM can bring up all the trolls' posts.

They're also useful as a barometer of which topics scare the liberals.

Their tactics can also be studied as a pattern on various blogs.

Oh, and great targets for remote viewing practice :)

prideandcontentment

I come upon the Kings business:

The people shall see things not there. They shall hear things not there. Yellow sash.

Thomas Collins

See LUN for an article on an Iranian offer to escort a Gaza convoy.

anduril

Here's an article by a former US Ambassador to Israel that I think is well worth reading: After the flotilla attack, it's time for a new, kinder Israeli narrative. I think most JOMers won't find it one sided. Here are some excerpts that I found striking, but there's lots more--I've left out the parts about the Intifada, the decade of terrorism, the rise of Hamas and the various peace processes, which the author fits into the context of the overall Israeli "narrative":

... Israel's narrative portrayed the country as a David facing an Arab Goliath.

Although the 1967 war changed this reality, Israel's narrative never really caught up. Newly demonstrated military superiority and deepening ties with the United States provided a measure of security the country had not enjoyed before. Egypt's President Anwar Sadat was the first Arab leader to recognize this new strategic reality, and in 1979, he made peace with Israel.

But even as the outdated David vs. Goliath theme lingered in the minds of many Israelis, among other segments of the population a new, religious-national narrative that centered on settling and holding all of Eretz Israel was taking hold. Even though settlements complicated Israel's relations with the Palestinians, and even though Israel had evacuated the Sinai settlements to make peace with Egypt -- a move that vitiated the argument that settlements were required for security -- activists such as Ariel Sharon continued to argue that they enhanced security.

...

By decade's end, a frustrated Israel had sealed off and blockaded Gaza to try to stem the flow of arms to Hamas, but because of the worsening humanitarian situation there, it was losing the battle for international legitimacy.

Narratives, as self-justifications, do little to explain the complexities, ironies and paradoxes of the Arab-Israeli conflict. In the early 1980s, while I was assigned to the American Embassy in Tel Aviv, I met a Palestinian nationalist figure in Gaza who was unrelentingly opposed to the Israeli occupation. He shocked me one day when he said he also admired Israel. After a near-fatal car accident in Gaza, his son had been evacuated to one of Israel's leading hospitals, where doctors saved his life. My Palestinian contact hated the Israel of the occupation, but he admired the Israel that was blind to the nationality of a boy in need of care.

When an Israeli military plan goes awry and civilians are killed -- as happened last week off the shores of Gaza -- should Israel's narrative take in the human dimension? Should it express empathy for those affected by the conflict and by Israeli military actions? Marla Braverman, an editor of Azure, an Israeli neoconservative journal, thinks not. In the current issue, she writes that despite a longtime tendency toward self-effacement, "Israel must learn to adopt a clear, unapologetic stance befitting a sovereign state."

The fact is, however, that sovereign states make mistakes, and they apologize. Sovereign states rely not only on military might and insistent rhetoric to defend their people, but also on diplomacy and values of empathy and understanding. Sovereign states can be strong while fostering a narrative of caring about the consequences of their policies.

In the aftermath of the flotilla fiasco, it is not just Israel's military tactics and its blockade of Gaza that need a thorough reexamination. Its narrative does, too. A dose of empathy might be a place to start. Israel will not break by military force and tough rhetoric alone the political and moral double standards by which the world judges its actions. But it can make its case better by tempering force with diplomacy, by caring as much about the humanitarian distress among Palestinians as it does about humanitarian causes elsewhere in the world, and by developing a storyline infused with the moral and ethical standards by which Israelis judge their own behavior.

Janet

Now here's a lovely picture!

From Doug Ross LUN 3,000 gather in LA in support of Israel.

anduril

Hey, Janet, what would you think if that were a sea of Mexican flags and the signs read: we support Mexico? The only flag I have in my house is the American flag. Nope, no Papal flag.

Janet

Support is different than invasion.

I don't have a Papal flag either.

anduril

Support, eh? Have you read The Israel Lobby? Or have you been told that only anti-Semites would read that? How do you feel about supporting a government that has acknowledged committing espionage against the US, and subsequently transferred information acquired by espionage to the former USSR? How sure are you that that government wouldn't do that again--or in fact hasn't been doing it continuously since the first incident, despite assurances to the contrary? Hint: I'm not talking about Vatican City.

anduril

Support is different than invasion.

That's a rather churlish way to refer to fellow Americans whose ancestors may happen to have come from Mexico.

narciso

Forget it Janet, his hatred not only of Israel, but of Jews themselves, is so great
he will repeat Arabist, leftist even Wahhabi
talking points, laundered through the Times
and the Dhimmi press in Europe

Stephanie says Obama sux

Hey, Janet, what would you think if that were a sea of Mexican flags and the signs read: we support Mexico?

Most here would think that would be AWESOME news...

Now, when are the democrats going to get on board with this "We support Mexico" initiative? I can't wait for their signs demanding that the US show its solidarity with Mexico and adopt its immigration laws and border defense. Mexican flags would be a nice touch at this rally to show support for this worthwhile cause, too.

Matter of fact, why don't we have Israeli flags and lots of other nation's flags at that rally and show solidarity with all nations who defend their borders???

glasater

For Jane and am hoping she keeps track of the Blago trial:

IS ROD BLAGOJEVICH WONDERING, “WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN ME AND OBAMA?”

Jane

I am I am glasater. I've got a busy two days coming up, so the coverage will suffer til Wednesday at least.

The comments to this entry are closed.