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July 5, 2002
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"When the Israeli army was asked to comment on the footage, it refused."
posted by donkeyschlong (54 comments total)

 
Good for them.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 6:23 PM on July 5, 2002


I/P is in the motherfucking house!
posted by ( .)(. ) at 6:27 PM on July 5, 2002


Um, why is it good for them?

I have little pity for the palestinians, yet we need to make sure this doesn't turn into a bloodbath on the Israeli part.

To ignore one sides mistakes and outright atrocities while condoning the others is foolish.
posted by madmanz123 at 6:31 PM on July 5, 2002


"Why is it good for them?"

Because the Israelis are in a no-win public relations situation. Maybe they should hire Ari Fleisher, he's good at deflection.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 6:41 PM on July 5, 2002


Wouldn't ignoring the mistakes of one and condoning the other's more or less amount to the same thing on either side?
posted by five fresh fish at 7:04 PM on July 5, 2002


Shoot first and ignore questions later.

[this is bad]
posted by tpoh.org at 7:36 PM on July 5, 2002


The people who like to talk about I/P generally aren't interested in changing the party that they're rooting for. They tend to use the introduction of damning evidence about their favoured protagonist as fodder for new and improved justification exercises. I don't expect this story to change anybody's mind, or for anyone to say "Oh, yeah, you're right! They are barbaric." or "Why yes, those little kids certainly did deserve it."
posted by websavvy at 8:01 PM on July 5, 2002


I don't see how you can tell who anyone is in those videocaps. There's a flash in the background—muzzleflash? shell exploding?—but nothing in the foreground where the people seem to be running to.

Maybe the whole videotape makes the story clearer, but I don't see how you can conclude anything from these blurry videocaps. If I were the Israeli army, I wouldn't comment either.
posted by Slithy_Tove at 8:15 PM on July 5, 2002


Well little campers, welcome to war.

People seem willing to jump through hoops to deny that the Israelis and Palestinians are at war. And in war children get killed. This is the way war is.

Hello? [knock knock] Anyone home? Why should the Israeli army comment? Both sides are shooting at each other. Kids get killed. Solders get killed. Everybody freakin' gets killed. Welcome to war.

What the hell do you want? War with no killing? War where only enlisted grunts get killed? War where no one gets killed? Eventually there will be peace. Right now both sides are shooting at each other. Hopefully both sides will get tired of this and come to a settlement. In the meantime, welcome to war kiddies.
posted by y6y6y6 at 8:57 PM on July 5, 2002


No comment. Also, some cats are gay.

Take that, dead horse!
posted by Samsonov14 at 9:13 PM on July 5, 2002


This is also war. . .

Kill, rape, pillage or maim, war is immoral and it's most inhumane technicians will one day pay.

Hate to break it to you, but there exist some humans who can think of alternatives to every last one of your immutable war-facts y6. I hear your point. But nothing will ever happen for the "good" side if someone today didn't have unconditional outrage.

Relegate yourself to war and you become a warrior. Consume yourself with how to make the world better and you become too busy to bother with it. War that is.
posted by crasspastor at 9:19 PM on July 5, 2002


What the hell do you want? War with no killing? War where only enlisted grunts get killed? War where no one gets killed? Eventually there will be peace. Right now both sides are shooting at each other. Hopefully both sides will get tired of this and come to a settlement. In the meantime, welcome to war kiddies.

You're kidding right? There's a difference between war and killing civilians, nevermind harmless children that are running away. Whatever, I/P is still in the motherfucking house!
posted by ( .)(. ) at 9:20 PM on July 5, 2002


This is also war. . .

Kill, rape, pillage or maim, war is immoral and it's most inhumane technicians will one day pay.

Hate to break it to you, but there exist some humans who can think of alternatives to every last one of your immutable war-facts y6. I hear your point. But nothing will ever happen for the "good" side if someone today didn't have unconditional outrage.

Relegate yourself to war and you become a warrior. Consume yourself with how to make the world better and you become too busy to bother with it. War that is.
posted by crasspastor at 9:21 PM on July 5, 2002


I certainly hope Israel investigates this thoroughly. If the soldier(s) did in fact knowingly fire on fleeing unarmed children then this is clearly indicative of psychopathic behavior by the soldier(s), and if this goes unpunished and untreated they may in the future endanger the lives of innocent people on both sides.
posted by bobo123 at 9:32 PM on July 5, 2002


"Relegate yourself to war and you become a warrior."

I'm not a warrior. I'm a nerdy computer programmer. I enjoy taking pictures of flowers. I cook a wonderful sherry infused, stuffed chicken breast. I write poetry. I enjoy listening to CSN very much thank you.

I also enjoy hitting people in the head under the right circumstances.

Is there no room in your world for reality? People are either devoted to killing children, or they're working for a peaceful utopia? Really? No "war is real"? Just "people who wage war are stupid"? Or is it, "Real solders never kill children"? Please help me out here. Which brand of denial are we talking about?

"Consume yourself with how to make the world better and you become too busy to bother with it."

Ummm...... What? You missed me with that one Sparky. If I think about utopia kids won't get killed in a war zone? Or if I think about utopia it won't matter if kids get killed?

"There's a difference between war and killing civilians"

Where? When? I dare you. Bring it on. Please point me to the magical time when this was true.
posted by y6y6y6 at 9:48 PM on July 5, 2002


War where only enlisted grunts get killed?

Sounds better than killing innocent noncombatants, a tactic which Western countries developed (in recent history) and perfected, abandoning arcane ideals like 'just war' and 'rules of engagement'. Now everbody's doing it.

Granted, when European nations still held to these rules, they were probably often broken, but they were there. Something about the idea that power, even the kind in war, should be limited.

There are many outstanding stories even in world war I regarding the civil way in which the german and british soldiers treated eachother, when they weren't trying to slaughter eachother. By World War II the USA was firebombing hundreds of thousands of civilians with Metamucil-esque regularity, and the Soviets were raping their way through the Fatherland to Berlin. Hooray for modern warfare.
posted by insomnyuk at 9:56 PM on July 5, 2002


Anyone have a proposal for an interim provisional tentative metafilter I/P ceasefire?
posted by srboisvert at 10:15 PM on July 5, 2002


By World War II the USA was firebombing hundreds of thousands of civilians with Metamucil-esque regularity, and the Soviets were raping their way through the Fatherland to Berlin.

They started it.
posted by gleemax at 10:24 PM on July 5, 2002


"You started it. You invaded Poland." --Basil Fawlty
posted by timeistight at 10:31 PM on July 5, 2002


(this is my last post on MeFi for a week, so i might as well make it a disclaimer)

By no means did I intend my post to be justifying the things the Nazis did, but I do not think, to borrow the old adage, that two wrongs make a right.

Nothing the Japanese did to us justified murdering hundreds of thousands of Japanese civilians, for example.

I don't think the Holocaust justified the rape (by the soviets) of millions of German women. I also don't think it justified the firebombing of Dresden.
posted by insomnyuk at 10:41 PM on July 5, 2002


I sure wouldn't get into an argument based on reports by the BBC.
posted by semmi at 10:41 PM on July 5, 2002


War where only enlisted grunts get killed?

How un-egalitarian! Let the zeroes lead from the front, like they're always talking about, and get their frickin' heads blown off too, not just the snuffies.
posted by alumshubby at 10:42 PM on July 5, 2002


Nothing the Japanese did to us justified murdering hundreds of thousands of Japanese civilians, for example.

You should have been there, then you could say it.

I don't think the Holocaust justified the rape (by the soviets) of millions of German women. I also don't think it justified the firebombing of Dresden

I'd be interested to see your source of information on millions of German women being raped by the Soviets. Although, the systematic murder of 20 million Russians (beside the 6 million Holocaust victims) by thre Germans seems to justify a little outrage.
posted by semmi at 10:55 PM on July 5, 2002


They started it.
We did not exactly try to avoid it. Well most of us did, but we were betrayed by those who wanted the war.
posted by thirteen at 11:28 PM on July 5, 2002


Upon rereading, I now realize my quoted statement was not in regarding the US fight with Japan.

There is an interesting passage in Bill Mauldin's book about WWII. I only browsed it at the bookstore, but it had to do with the feeling American soldiers had about fighting the Germans, an enemy who they had to figure out reasons to hate. They came to hate them because they were shooting at them, but most soldiers came to the war feeling no desire to fight Nazis. Hitler did declare war on America, so they did start it, but the whole thing could have been avoided were the government of the US responsive to the desire of the citizens, and not not dead set on betraying those it was meant to serve.
posted by thirteen at 11:39 PM on July 5, 2002


I/P is still in the motherfucking house!

Come on guys, nothing we say here will change the outcome. Forget about I/P. OTOH, let's bring in some more Southwest Airlines' stories! Just kidding.
posted by ( .)(. ) at 11:47 PM on July 5, 2002


I apologize to MeFi for defending ( .)(. ) in that earlier MeTa thread.
posted by BlueTrain at 12:06 AM on July 6, 2002


BlueTrain, why?
posted by ( .)(. ) at 12:12 AM on July 6, 2002


"I thought at the time and still think that the Nuremberg trials were unprincipled. Law was created ex post facto to suit the passion and clamor of the time. The concept of ex post facto law is not congenial to the Anglo-American viewpoint on law. Before criminal penalties can be imposed there must be fair warning that the conduct which one undertook was criminal."

William O. Douglas, LL.D.
(Associate Justice, Supreme Court of the U.S., 1939-1975)

Two (or more) sides to every coin...
posted by Mack Twain at 12:29 AM on July 6, 2002


I'm not a warrior. I'm a nerdy computer programmer. I enjoy taking pictures of flowers. I cook a wonderful sherry infused, stuffed chicken breast. I write poetry. I enjoy listening to CSN very much thank you.

You also happen to write provocative posts that garner responses.

In general, concern yourself with war and defend its inevitability, regardless of emotional investment in said war, nevermind taking sides and you've relegated yourself to eventually, hypothetically being a warrior yourself.

Can't some of us demand better?

It may seem like blank, pie in the sky futility, except it's not. The beauty of it is, is that we live in communities that, with magnification lessened, are parts of greater communities, or societies which all eventually form up to be Human Civilization. Each of us has an impact on that smaller community. And each token impact each insignificant member makes on that community eventually affects change. Change for the better or change for the worse. We each affect change in our own way.

Taken over the course of time, perhaps more time than we mortally have, but taken over time, these little differences add the motherfuck up. Remember the oft said cliche,"Only YOU can break the cycle!"? Well, that's true too.

I choose to think that war, for whatever reason is abominable. That should cooler heads ever prevail and lessons be learned, the outcome far outweighs the amount of ego deflation that bore its cost.

You yourself y6 are a computer programmer. When you're at work puching out lines of code, how often do you imagine blowing away people? How often do you imagine yourself having to dive for your gun acoss the cubicle to defend yourself from attack? How much do you concern yourself with these things?

Truth is, I bet, you don't. And that is bcause you're not desperate for whatever reason or another a human becomes desperate.

So you ask again; Why do motherfuckers become deperate? And you spend your days trying to figure out how the fuck the most possible people on the planet can avoid feeling the sensation of desperation.
posted by crasspastor at 12:47 AM on July 6, 2002


Lovely post, crasspastor.
posted by lia at 1:33 AM on July 6, 2002


crasspastor: While I'm not attempting to diminish the ideals you've mentioned, this is the real world and in the real world it's not just enough to worry about what you do. You have to worry about the guy next door too. I suppose Native Americans should have thought happier thoughts? Without trying to get into a debate specific to Native Americans, I am using them to make the point that sometimes, your neighbor simply isn't interested in letting you live a peaceful life. He wants your stuff and wanting stuff is not something confined to people with nothing.

There has been no nation, not now, nor ever that has successfully attained peace by simply refusing to fight. Some may point at the Swiss as a counter-example but the truth is the Swiss stay safe not by being neutral rather by picking well armed friends which, of course, means that someone has to be the well armed friend.

Human nature has not changed much, if at all, since man first appeared on this planet. It is highly doubtful that man can break the cycle because the cycle is hard coded into our beings. Fear, greed, jealousy, . . . it would be nice if those things didn't exist but they do and they cause people to do unmentionable things. That's unfortunate, but it's also true so you can either accept that fact and act accordingly or you can ignore it and suffer the consequences.

Now, that doesn't mean that we shouldn't all try to live up to the highest moral and ethical standards (whatever they may be) but it does mean that I'm not leaving my door unlocked tonght because I gave money to a local charity. Even if every person on the face of this earth was living at what we consider to be middle-class standards (and yes, I do realize that the middle would move but bear with me), it's highly doubtful that the world become a less violent place. Only the actors and the motivations would change.
posted by billman at 2:57 AM on July 6, 2002


war is hell....Postroad
posted by Postroad at 3:37 AM on July 6, 2002


Ah, I was wondering where Postroad was.

Anyway.

Sounds better than killing innocent noncombatants, a tactic which Western countries developed (in recent history) and perfected, abandoning arcane ideals like 'just war' and 'rules of engagement'. Now everbody's doing it.


Please, the Mongols, on conqering towns and vilages would kill every man, woman, and Child. The Isrealites would do this too, according to the bible.

Indecency in war is not a new thing.
posted by delmoi at 4:41 AM on July 6, 2002


Now, where is ParisPrimus...
posted by delmoi at 4:41 AM on July 6, 2002


I'd be interested to see your source of information on millions of German women being raped by the Soviets.

In his book, Beevor, a Sandhurst recruit turned writer, uses previously unpublished material from Russian archives in Moscow to describe vividly the horrific suffering of an estimated two million German women and girls who were gang-raped by drunken Soviet soldiers as they made their way across the country with the aim of forcing the Nazis to retreat.

Delmoi: Genau (re: "indecency in war").

(.)(.): If you don't like threads of a certain nature, why do you bother to visit and comment on them? While there certainly exist hardliners who will never change sides in the I/P issue, there also, I'm quite certain, exist some who occupy some middle ground and are interested in the I/P question and in hearing other people's opinions regarding it...
posted by syzygy at 5:10 AM on July 6, 2002


"Every one of us, in some way or another, almost every day, is guilty in some way, large or small, of forgetting that we are 99.9 percent the same. Every person, every family, every group, every nation is guilty from time to time of trying to give meaning to life by denigrating someone else who is different in some way. Honest and real differences can only be explored, confronted and worked through, and diversity can only be celebrated when we recognize that the most important fact of life is our common humanity." --bill clinton

"The banality of any great tragedy arises from our sheer mental laziness. We do not wish to trouble ourselves by trying to connect with the victims, and so we allow the numbers to slip through our minds without making any impact. Perhaps, then, the greatest tragedy is that we have forgotten our common humanity ... or that we have decided it is not worth our time." --sparky clarkson
posted by kliuless at 6:05 AM on July 6, 2002


I guess I'm missing something, because I never knew before now that The Rape of Nanking was a product of western culture.

And regarding the fate of German women...

"rape and carnality compounded many times over by utter indifference to human life"

That tells of the reaction of Berlin at the close of World War II as it sank into the shrieking chaos it unleashed on the rest of the world:
The "strange mixture of suppressed hysteria and fatalism" evident in Berlin at Christmas 1944 gave way by April to "febrile exhaustion, terrible foreboding and despair," and later that same month "a sense of nightmare unreality pervaded the city as it awaited its doom." Berliners "now referred to their city as the 'Reichsscheiterhaufen' -- the 'Reich's funeral pyre.'"

In Berlin, as the Red Army drew near, young German soldiers became "desperate to lose their virginity" and found willing companions in German girls who "preferred to give themselves to almost any German boy first than to a drunken and probably violent Soviet soldier." As Beevor puts it, "the aphrodisiac effect of mortal danger is hardly an unknown historical phenomenon," a point underscored by the goings-on in the Reich Chancellery, where, an eyewitness reported, "an erotic fever seemed to have taken possession of everybody" and SS officers were "locked in lascivious embraces" with girls they had lured off the street. It was "the apocalypse of totalitarian corruption," Beevor writes, "with the concrete submarine of the Reich Chancellery underworld providing an Existentialist theater set for hell."
And that was just a prelude to what was bearing down on them, the systemic rape of a hundred thousand women, triggering an epidemic of suicide that would claim 10,000 lives.
posted by NortonDC at 7:32 AM on July 6, 2002


This is actually a great idea for a whole new Faces of Death movie! The best way to put this into perspective is to tack this footage onto the end of some hapless camper getting his ear gnawed off by a bear. By golly, if we can't look at such a barbaric situation and feel its horrors, then at least we can appreciate it as a snuff film!
posted by ed at 7:35 AM on July 6, 2002


i know this does not sound right, but we should blame the father, how did he allow his children to go for a chocolate bar in times of war? that's like sending them to death…

nortondc: i did not know about this aphrodisiac effect of mortal danger. it has to be something new in psychology. is incredible what we can see in a war! an orgy of gargantuan proportions! amazing…

should we see a new human behavior in this war in levant?
posted by trismegisto at 8:48 AM on July 6, 2002


should we see a new human behavior in this war in levant?

i'll answer myself: yes: hordes of palestinian activists with bombs attached to their bodies, ready to blow themselves off carrying away with them a couple of jews…

is incredible what we can see in a war!
posted by trismegisto at 8:51 AM on July 6, 2002


Can't some of us demand better?

You can demand anything you like, but getting it is another story. You're out to change human nature, which is an uphill battle in the best of times and a Sisyphean task when the people you're trying to change are all riled up about something. It's like standing on the edges of a mob shouting "No! Don't riot! There's a better way to get what you want!" You'd be lucky if someone didn't break something you consider important.
posted by kindall at 9:11 AM on July 6, 2002


Life is Life. Death is Death. But overthrowing Lies and Negativity is what might one day be simplified when people think of war. Our laziness, our fear - these are things that happen - apathy vs. empathy. Pulling together is often better then pulling apart in times of people blowing themselves to peices. But that is life I suppose on Earth. I suppose.
posted by Kodel at 9:46 AM on July 6, 2002


Please, the Mongols, on conqering towns and vilages would kill every man, woman, and Child. The Isrealites would do this too, according to the bible.

delmoi: To be fair, you should add: ...and so would do present day Palestinians, if they could.
posted by semmi at 9:54 AM on July 6, 2002


delmoi: To be fair, you should add: ...and so would do present day Palestinians, if they could.

Really? You know this? Frankly, to be fair these are exactly the kind of statements that should be avoided. There are some on the Palestinian side who wish to see Israel dissappear (Hamas in particular) but there are also right wing Israeli political parties that advocate the cleansing of Palestinians as well (see Kahane for example).
posted by srboisvert at 1:29 PM on July 6, 2002


Heavens srboisvert, beside the fact that my comment was a response to, "the Mongols, on conqering towns and vilages would kill every man, woman, and Child. The Isrealites would do this too, according to the bible", extreme fringe US resident Kahane with hardly any following and no action but mainly threats is long dead. Your parallel, to be fair, should refer to the number of the peace demanding faction of Palestinians compared to those who want Israel annihilated to every man, women, child, to make sense here. Certainly, there is a large segment of the Israeli population that is commited to peace under almost any condition but suicide. Match that with equal number of Palestinian peace activists and there will be peace.
posted by semmi at 1:55 PM on July 6, 2002


For some background on Jenin, well worth checking out is the shocking, boastful account of one of the young men who helped flatten so much of the refugee camp. It was published in the popular Israeli newspaper Yediot Aharonot, and Gush Shalom has kindly translated it into English.

a large segment of the Israeli population that is commited to peace under almost any condition but suicide

Not in a way that translates into any common sense outside of the dysfunctional Israeli psyche. A few years back (September 1998!), a Ma'ariv poll found 65% of Israeli Jews "agreeing with deporting all the Arabs in the West Bank and Gaza," with the only hypothetical stretch being "if Israel does not pay a diplomatic price." I hope as ardently as anyone else that this majority in favor of crimes against humanity (with hypothetical impunity) will not reign eternal. But, semmi, I'm sure the news reached you before now--there's not really a significant number of Israelis left "committed to peace under almost any condition but suicide."
posted by Zurishaddai at 3:34 PM on July 6, 2002


Semmi you missed my point. While delmoi was arguing for the IMO unpalatable position that war is hell so war ought to be hell with historical and biblical examples as justifications your response was "and so would modern day Palestinians". While I disagree with delmoi's fallacious is=ought logic I find your response to be even scarier.

Is it your serious contention that ALL, or even a majority of, Palestinians would do this? Do you also believe that there are no Palestinians who would just like to peacefully coexist? Even while I agree with need to rebut delmoi's claims I find that you are painting with too broad a brush and are losing a lot of detail. I am sure that the majority of people on both sides are looking for a combination of justice and peace with a minority of people on both sides preventing it.

Comparing Palestinians
posted by srboisvert at 4:33 PM on July 6, 2002


doh! ...ignore the last line
posted by srboisvert at 4:34 PM on July 6, 2002


srboisvert: You're right about the broad brush, but a reference to "Israelites" doesn't leave much for the individual Israelite either.
As to "I am sure that the majority of people on both sides are looking for a combination of justice and peace with a minority of people on both sides preventing it" is concerned, you may be right, only there is scant visible evidence coming from the Palestinian side. I think that when the the mob-courage will be overtaken by the individual courage of humanitarian conscience above all, sanity will return, and Palestinians and Israelis will realize their brotherhood.
posted by semmi at 7:17 PM on July 6, 2002


The Israelis are doing their best to survive and pre-empt those who would destroy them, and doing it in an astoundingly humane manner. The Palestinians have no one to blame but themselves, and their pathetic co-religionists for their predicament. But of course, personal responsibility usually loses out to scapgoating in the Arab world.
posted by ParisParamus at 7:56 PM on July 6, 2002


scapegoating.
posted by ParisParamus at 7:58 PM on July 6, 2002


The Palestinians have no one to blame but themselves, and their pathetic co-religionists for their predicament.

Damn those Palestinians for kicking themselves out of their own homes!
posted by laz-e-boy at 8:08 AM on July 8, 2002


This is just impossibly sad. 6 and 13 is way way too young to have your life stolen from you. BUT, there is no way in hell these kids were just out 'buying chocolates.'

The easiest solution for stopping the deaths of these Palestinian kids is for their parents to put tight leashes around their necks rather than half-hoping that they might be made into martyrs, furthering the Palestinian's cause.
posted by catatonic at 6:38 AM on July 9, 2002


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