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Israelis celebrate terrorism
July 23, 2006 9:42 AM   Subscribe

Yesterday was the 60th anniversary of the bombing of the King David Hotel in Jerusalem by the Zionist Irgun organization, which killed 92 people. Bibi Netanyahu attended a celebration of the event.
posted by Ty Webb (69 comments total)

 
Freedom fighters.
posted by Meatbomb at 9:45 AM on July 23, 2006


Well, you could've perhaps chosen a less strident summary for your first link, Ty, but thanks for the note about Bibi. I knew he'd become a political whore, but I didn't realize just how low he'd sunk. Joining right-wing extremists to celebrate one of the lowest points in the history of Israel? Wow. He must really be desparate.
posted by mediareport at 9:49 AM on July 23, 2006


I'm not so certain Israelis consider this "one of the lowest points in the history of Israel."
posted by FormlessOne at 10:02 AM on July 23, 2006


Sadly, obviously, for some that is true. For others, Glorious Myths of Our Fabulous Founding do nicely. But there are many who aren't proud of the King David bombing.
posted by mediareport at 10:06 AM on July 23, 2006


I'm not so certain Israelis consider this "one of the lowest points in the history of Israel."

Yes, well, the last couple of weeks certainly are in the running.
posted by xmutex at 10:07 AM on July 23, 2006


[Actually, I should say I've spoken over the years with *some* who aren't proud of the King David bombing. "Many" is perhaps a hope of mine.]
posted by mediareport at 10:13 AM on July 23, 2006


I do not count this bombiong as a plus in Israeli history but I do note in passing that :"...The success of the Jewish underground in striking at the heart of British government in Palestine, and the high toll of victims, sent shock waves through England and the rest of the world. At first, the Mandatory government denied having received a telephone warning, but testimony submitted to the interrogating judge made it clear beyond a doubt that such a warning had in fact been given. Moreover, the Palestine Post telephone operator attested on oath to the police that, immediately after receiving the telephone message, she had telephoned the duty officer at the police station. The French Consulate staff opened their windows as they had been told to by the anonymous woman who telephoned them, and this was further evidence of the warning." Why has this part of the story ignored?
posted by Postroad at 10:24 AM on July 23, 2006


So mass murder is okay if you warn them first?
posted by empath at 10:38 AM on July 23, 2006


Israel has the right to "defend itself", remember? You just have to be, oh, you know, a teensy bit flexible with the definition of "self-defence".
posted by Decani at 10:41 AM on July 23, 2006


It helps to be God's Chosen People (tm).
posted by Optamystic at 10:42 AM on July 23, 2006


Postroad, the first link does mention the 35-minute warning, but it's long been a disputed part of the story. You might want to source your quote so we can better compare it to the Times Online story.

The deeper point to bringing up the King David Hotel bombing, though, is usually to make the point that during those years there was a campaign of terror aimed at both Palestinians and British coordinated by the folks who'd eventually go on to form Israel's first government. Check the first link's discussion of the motive behind the bombing and you'll see that clearly.
posted by mediareport at 10:43 AM on July 23, 2006


If you disagree, you hate freedom.
posted by theorique at 10:45 AM on July 23, 2006


It would be an interesting excersize for civilization to actually define what constitutes terrorism.

But I think it's more convenient for us to just label anything we don't like and celebrate what worked for us, however we see fit.

History is indeed written by the victor.
posted by JWright at 10:54 AM on July 23, 2006


Well, you could've perhaps chosen a less strident summary for your first link, Ty...

How is the summary strident? There was a King David Hotel bombing. It did in fact happen 60 years ago yesterday. It was done by the Irgun, and the Irgun was a Zionist organization. It's no more strident than saying "the Islamist Hezbollah," just an accurate description of historical facts.
posted by jonp72 at 10:59 AM on July 23, 2006


I'm impressed. 14 replies and no cries of "anti-semitism!" from the "criticism of Israel/Zionism = jew-hating" crowd yet. Is this a record?
posted by Decani at 11:09 AM on July 23, 2006


Shhh...we're trying to keep this one calm and reasoned.
posted by mediareport at 11:28 AM on July 23, 2006


To be honest, I've long felt that Irgun, the King David Hotel bombing and similar provide a certain historical logic to the Palestinian intifada. Basically, an extremist organization resorted to bombing civilians in order to win a state of their own, and low and behold, it worked! Why wouldn't Palestinians faced with similar desires try to go the same route?

History doesn't quite repeat itself, though, and the very different international situations of the Jews post-WWII and the Palestinians during perhaps the entire 20th century mean that just because it worked once doesn't mean terrorism will work again. But thanks for the link, the King David bombing is one of the more important events in the history of Israel and it so often gets overlooked.
posted by matematichica at 11:36 AM on July 23, 2006


Haaretz published an op-ed today about the bombing anniversary and the new plaque that tries to paint the operation in non-terror terms. It's yet another of those editorials with a critical perspective you see in Israeli newspapers much more often than in American ones. Odd, that. An excerpt:

Her Majesty's ambassador and the consul have written to the mayor of Jerusalem that such an act of terror cannot be honored, even if it was preceded by a warning. To this day, it is not clear what made the bombing's planners believe the British would evacuate the building. Would Benjamin Netanyahu, as prime minister, have ordered his bureau evacuated on the basis of telephone threat from a Palestinian terror group?

Netanyahu spoke at the conference. The difference between a terrorist operation and a legitimate military action is expressed, he said, in the fact that the terrorists intend to harm civilians whereas legitimate combatants try to avoid that. According to that theory, the kidnapping of an Israeli soldier by a Palestinian organization is a legitimate military operation, and the bombing of Dresden, Hanoi, Haifa or Beirut is a war crime.

posted by mediareport at 11:37 AM on July 23, 2006 [2 favorites]


It should also be noted that the Irgun were not that popular amongst the Jews at the time and routinely labelled as terrorists by the Jewish Agency and the Haganah (who the majority of Jewish guerillas in the area belonged to), although the latter did have communication channels with them. Even it's original founder, Avraham Tehomi, left them and rejoined the Haganah after some intra-party factionalism. In 1944 the Jewish Agency held "hunting season" where they actively helped the British arrest nearly 100 members.

The final straw was the Altalena incident in 1948 when the Haganah (commanded by Yitzchak Rabin) opened fire on a ship full of weapons bound for the Irgun, killing 16 Irgun members, basically forcing them to disband at gunpoint.
posted by PenDevil at 11:38 AM on July 23, 2006


Getting our counter-accusations in first, Decani? What sort of response are you hoping for?
posted by topynate at 11:39 AM on July 23, 2006


Oops. Add another 0 the number of Irgun arrested by the British with the help of the Jewish Agency.
posted by PenDevil at 11:48 AM on July 23, 2006


Getting our counter-accusations in first, Decani?

No, I don't counter things that haven't happened yet. I was making an observation about the readily-observable fact that many pro-Israel or Zionist types trot out the cry of "anti-Semitism" when it is neither appropriate nor correct, but as a response to criticism of Israel or Zionism.

What sort of response are you hoping for?

One in which the above does not happen. And I'm pleased that - so far - this has been the case. If it continues for the duration of this thread I assure you I will be absolutely cock-a-hoop.
posted by Decani at 11:58 AM on July 23, 2006


Thanks for posting this - I saw an announcement in the In Memoriam column of two papers yesterday to Bernard Bourdillon, "a wonderful husband and father who died in the bombing of the King David Hotel," and wondered about it.

Also made me wonder when "dastardly" could last be used seriously by politicians.
posted by paduasoy at 12:02 PM on July 23, 2006


In my experience, a bomb threat, even if suspected as false, always requires evacuatgion of ALL people in the building...In a land filled with terror and bombings, such a threat had to be perieved as a real threat. The building should have been evacuated but those in charge ignored the call. Not nice to bomb the building. And not nice to ignore the phone call. The IRA, also terror group at one time, usually called in for an evacuation for a bomb about to be set off.
posted by Postroad at 12:03 PM on July 23, 2006


It would be an interesting excersize for civilization to actually define what constitutes terrorism.

I think we're pretty solid on the definition: The use of force or threat of force against non-combatant populations to achieve a political goal.

My main idea in posting this link (aside from trying to draw attention to the stark absurdity of Israelis, led by a former PM, celebrating this act of terror while at the same time their military rains ordinance down upon the Lebanese people in response to the capture of two of its soldiers) is to point out that the term "terrorist" is more constructively used as an adjective, not a noun, and that organizations, state and non-state, use terrorist means at various times to achieve otherwise legitimate goals.

As PenDevil rightly notes, the Haganah eventually moved against extremist elements like Irgun, and many of these extremists were brought into the mainstream political process. Two of them, Begin and Shamir, both of them formerly wanted terrorists, went on to become Israeli primi ministers.

Successive Israeli governments seem intent on preventing this process from taking place within Palestinian society, continually holding all Palestinians accountable for the acts of a few extremists, and hobbling efforts to build insitutions which could provide political alternatives to violence. Their response to the duly epected Hamas government is exhibit Z.

As for the point that the Irgun warned the British about the bomb, I hardly think it would mean much to Israel if Hizballah phoned ahead of their rockets landing in Haifa.
posted by Ty Webb at 12:06 PM on July 23, 2006


Didn't the japanese call ahead 15 minutes to warn about perl harbor?
posted by delmoi at 12:06 PM on July 23, 2006


Oh and speaking of calling ahead, I read the other day about Israelis using auto-dialing technology to call Lebanese civilians and warn them to leave.
posted by delmoi at 12:10 PM on July 23, 2006


Murdering 92 people is "not nice"?

Yeah, bombing Beirut and slaughtering over 300 innocent Lebanese people is "kind of a bummer" from the Israeli standpoint I guess.
posted by bardic at 12:18 PM on July 23, 2006


So if Hezbollah just remember to ring up Israel next time and let them know they are sending over some rockets then their terrorist acts will be legitimate?
posted by D-503 at 12:23 PM on July 23, 2006


Well if they were attacking a military base I guess there would be some arguement for that. Unfortunately they've preferred to aim those Katushya's and Qassams at heavily populated civilian areas.
posted by PenDevil at 12:27 PM on July 23, 2006


So if Hezbollah just remember to ring up Israel next time and let them know they are sending over some rockets then their terrorist acts will be legitimate?

Did someone say that the act of providing advance notification of terrorist acts makes the acts legitimate? I must have missed that.

What a particularly tatty-looking straw man.
posted by Decani at 12:28 PM on July 23, 2006


Didn't the japanese call ahead 15 minutes to warn about perl harbor?

Are you sure you're not confusing the history with the allied leafletting of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in advance of the first atomic bombs?
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 12:34 PM on July 23, 2006


Civil_Disobedient: Perhaps it's a reference to the fact that a US Navy ship sunk a Japanese midget submarine (basically a kamikaze torpedo) before the actual attack happened, basically giving the US about a 45 min heads up that something was up.
posted by PenDevil at 12:38 PM on July 23, 2006


terrorism is other people
posted by matteo at 12:43 PM on July 23, 2006


I have not said that what the Irgun was a good thing. It was an act of terror. It was terrorism. I had sadi that a phone call ahead would have saved lives but the call was ignored. In the same manner, Israel is presently warning civilians in south Lebanon that they need to get out because Hebollah is sending off rockets from within civilian heavily populated places and Israel intends to go after those rockets.

The reference to a phone call both from Irgun and the IRA merelyh poionts out that an act of terrorism about to be done allows for people to get out of harm's way. That does not justify terrorism but it does help those who are able to escape.

But if you believe Hebollah is doing something good for both Iran, the group, and Lebanon, then that is your perspective. If you think Israel is overdoing things, then what would you do to a group on your border that has some thousands of rockets, has been shooting them into your country for month after month, and has declared it wants to exterminate your people? Ask them to stop it?
posted by Postroad at 12:43 PM on July 23, 2006


Didn't the japanese call ahead 15 minutes to warn about perl harbor?

Couldn't have been, it was strongly typed.

posted by gimonca at 12:45 PM on July 23, 2006


f you think Israel is overdoing things, then what would you do to a group on your border that has some thousands of rockets, has been shooting them into your country for month after month

Only one in a thousand actually hurts anyone.
posted by delmoi at 12:53 PM on July 23, 2006


Sixty years ago a lot of things happened, which sixty year old people don't remember. Just to put things in perspective here.

July 22nd 1998, Bill Gates names Steve Ballmer president of Microsoft.

July 22nd 1992, two policemen entered the home of Jeffrey Daumer and raided his freezer. They learned he was into the OTHER other white meat.

July 22nd 1987, Gorbachev said he was willing to negotiate on banning nuclear missles. He convinced the commie-pinko hating Ronald Reagan that not all Russians are bad.

Also in 1942, we began rationing gasoline in the U.S. along the Atlantic seaboard in response to World War Two. four years before that, again on July 22nd, the Third Reich started issuing special ID Cards for jews, so they'd later know which ones to keep and which ones to 'shower.'

First successful solo round the world flight was completed on July 22nd, 1933 by Wiley Post. Why no one makes movies about him but we all remember Amelia Earhardt and Charles Lindburgh is beyond me.

June 28th 1914 is seen in history books as the start of World War One with the assassination of Ferdinand, but on July 22nd 1914, German Undersecretary Arthur Zimmermann first viewed the text of an ultimatum from Austria to Serbia, and had some harsh things to say about it. Things didn't happen as fast back then as they do now. We didn't have cellphones and speed of light communication systems. Took a few weeks for information to reach around the world. The wheels of progress leading to war are speeding up nowadays.

A lot of things have happened on July 22nd pretty much every year. Some more significant than others, but what makes the significance highlighted at the start of this thread any more or less than any other significance, well it's over my head.

Human beings hurt one another. We blow each other up and shoot quick projectiles into one another's body parts. We wage wars with each other. I think it's genetic. It sure as hell has nothing to do with logic.
posted by ZachsMind at 1:17 PM on July 23, 2006


"what would you do to a group on your border that has some thousands of rockets, has been shooting them into your country for month after month

Only one in a thousand actually hurts anyone."


Just a minor nuisance, then. Nothing to be alarmed about.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 1:32 PM on July 23, 2006


I don't think anyone is arguing that what Hezbollah is doing re: Katyusha missiles into Israel is "good," but it certainly is effective--Hezbollah is getting the IDF bogged down in its very own "Vietnam" (again!), anger at Israel and the US continues to rise, world opinion is solidly against Israel's bombing of Lebanese civilians, and the mullahs in Iran must be chuckling that they've accomplished a lot by hardly lifting a finger. With enemies like Israel and the US pretty much serving up strengthened political power on a silver platter, who needs friends?

But call me crazy--I'd argue that Osama bin Laden got exactly what he wanted when the US invaded and began occupying Iraq. Same effects--waste of US lives and treasure, an unwinnable war, the strengthening of Iran via Shia proxy in Iraq, etc.
posted by bardic at 1:35 PM on July 23, 2006


I'm with Postroad here. what is israel supposed to do? the rockets actually did not only hurt, but kill innocent civillians.
though i don't agree with bombing civil targets in beirut, israel isn't left with an other coise right now than cracking down on the hezbollah.
posted by kolophon at 2:01 PM on July 23, 2006


Just a minor nuisance, then. Nothing to be alarmed about.

Less alarming than pointedly firing rockets at civilians in visual range who are
a) attempting to flee areas they been told to evacuate by the side now firing at them
b) driving into a hospital compound seeking treatment

etc.
posted by NinjaTadpole at 2:10 PM on July 23, 2006


I'm sick and tired of having to remind people that Lebanese =/ Hezbollah.

And of the passive-voice, lack-of-agency notion that Israel "had to" invade Lebanon.

And the lack of a basic sense of proportion to realize that 10 dead Israelis (while admittedly horrible) =/ 300 dead Lebanese.

Honestly, remember that guy--what was his name?--oh yeah, President Fucking Bush, who got all excited by the "Cedar Revolution," and his little cheerleader Condi jetting around the globe saying "See?! See?! Occupying Iraq has all these wonderful dividends beyond dead Iraqis and American soldiers!" The argument was that Syria, so shaken by the "success" in Baghdad, pulled all of its soldiers and political operatives out of Lebanon when the populace of that country took to the streets to protest the murder of one of their moderate politicians.

So who am I to believe? If I believe Bush and Condi (something I rarely do, I admit), then Israel is an amoral aggressor sending a nascent democracy into the stone age. This makes Israel a hater of freedom. This makes Israel a terrorist state, according, again, to Bush's logic.

So I guess that makes Israel the new KSA or Pakistan--we now that they do horrible things to innocent people, but hey, that's the price of advancing freedom. It's realpolitik, baby, and sometimes you gotta back a rogue nation for the greater good of the world.

Fine, if the military and political leadership of Israel is happy with this equation, so be it. But spare me any platitudes regarding the so-called moral highground Israel occupies as a shining beacon of democracy in a sea of rabid Muslim hatred. Because honestly, they're just as bad as their neighbors now, but they have better toys. That's my opinion, and the majority of the world's now.
posted by bardic at 2:20 PM on July 23, 2006


NinjaTadpole, don't forget targetting anything larger than a sedan (buses, ambulances, trucks delivering aid supplies), because it must have the capacity to launch Katyushas.
posted by bardic at 2:24 PM on July 23, 2006


Didn't the japanese call ahead 15 minutes to warn about Pearl Harbor?

They were supposed to break off negotioations thirty minutes before the attack. I think the message got there a tad early, but they sure didn't phone ahead saying, "Those torpedos on the Zeros that you'll soon be seeing aren't duds."

OK, back to solving the Middle East meltdown by sniping on the internets...
posted by Cyrano at 2:32 PM on July 23, 2006


Shit! I meant to include a notation that I corrected the spelling of Pearl Harbor from delmoi's quote in my last post. Seems only polite. It was grating on me for some reason I can't quite describe. Sorry.

And no disrespect to delmoi's comment was intended by the correction, BTW.
posted by Cyrano at 2:44 PM on July 23, 2006


But call me crazy--I'd argue that Osama bin Laden got exactly what he wanted when the US invaded and began occupying Iraq. Same effects--waste of US lives and treasure, an unwinnable war, the strengthening of Iran via Shia proxy in Iraq, etc.

Well, bin-laden is a Sunni, but yeah.
posted by delmoi at 2:51 PM on July 23, 2006


Targeting civilian infrastructure as a primary military objective is also "boldly scented".
I can sort of understand removing major roads and bridges near the border with Israel to stop the flow of rockets, and setting up a sea blockade: it's going to have a lot of consequences for the innocents in that area, but they're limiting the available catchment area for terrorists near Israel and the flow of arms.

But then why knock out televison stations.
Why destroy power plants.
Why destroy Beirut's airport.
Why allow thousands of refugees to amass around the previously safe city of Sidon before bombing it

And, while we're here, why demand that Lebanon take control and stamp down on Hezbollah before repeatedly bombing Lebanese army barracks weakening whatever control they had?

I'm sorry that this has nothing to do with the specific topic, I've been boiling over.
Channel 4 news in the UK interviewed attendees at a pro-Israel march in London today, a march festooned with the perfectly laudable slogan "Yes to Peace, No to Terror". The naughty editors made the first clip one of a man declaring "Terrorism is unacceptable; we now have to fight terror with terror!" at which point the sky darkened and the ground was rent assunder, nature abhorring a vacuous idiot.
posted by NinjaTadpole at 2:55 PM on July 23, 2006


Targeting civilian infrastructure as a primary military objective is also "boldly scented".
I can sort of understand removing major roads and bridges near the border with Israel and setting up a sea blockade to stop the flow of rockets: it's going to have a lot of consequences for the innocents in that area, but they're limiting the available catchment area for terrorists near Israel and the flow of arms into the country as a whole.

But then why start the offensive by knocking out televison stations?
Why destroy power plants?
Why destroy Beirut's airport?
Then why allow thousands of refugees to amass around the previously safe city of Sidon before bombing it?

And, while we're here, why demand that Lebanon take control and stamp down on Hezbollah before repeatedly bombing Lebanese army barracks weakening whatever control they had?

I'm sorry that this has nothing to do with the specific topic, I've been boiling over.

Channel 4 news in the UK interviewed attendees at a pro-Israel march in London today, a march festooned with the perfectly laudable slogan "Yes to Peace, No to Terror". The naughty editors made the first clip one of a man declaring "Terrorism is unacceptable; we now have to fight terror with terror!" at which point the sky darkened and the ground was rent assunder, nature abhorring a vacuous idiot.
posted by NinjaTadpole at 2:58 PM on July 23, 2006


glad that worked
posted by NinjaTadpole at 2:59 PM on July 23, 2006


Am I mis-recalling or did Irgun kidnap two British soldiers and then hang them?
posted by A189Nut at 2:59 PM on July 23, 2006


NinjaTadpole, don't forget targetting anything larger than a sedan (buses, ambulances, trucks delivering aid supplies), because it must have the capacity to launch Katyushas.

Also, hasn't a statement been made that since Lebanese homes can be used to launch rockets, homes are legitimate targets?

What in Lebanon isn't a legitimate target, pray tell?
posted by dreamsign at 3:14 PM on July 23, 2006


On the 16th of June 1947, a sentence of death had been passed by the British courts on three Jews who had participated in the attack on Acre prison in which many Jewish prisoners had regained their freedom. Almost a month later in the early hours of the 12th of July, two British field security NCOs Sergeants Paice and Martin were on duty in Nathanya in the company of the Jewish Clerk. They were held up by five armed Jews and driven off to a secret hiding place. For the next two weeks and British security forces diligently searched for the kidnapped sergeants but no trace of them was ever found.

On the July 29th British authorities, unable to bow to the blackmail of the Irgun, even though British lives were at stake had no alternative but to allow the sentence of death on the three Jews to take it's course. Two days later, on the 31st to July, the bodies of the two British NCOs were found hanging from a eucalyptus tree one and a half miles from where they had been kidnapped. They had been dead for about two days. The area around the bodies was mined. The bodies had also been booby trapped. As the bodies were being cut down a hidden device on one body exploded. In this explosion a British officer was severely wounded.

Link
posted by A189Nut at 3:22 PM on July 23, 2006


Israel has the right to "defend itself", remember?

correction, that should be herself
posted by mr.marx at 3:27 PM on July 23, 2006


I'd like a member of the American media to ask Netenyahu about this, rather than fellating him during at least one of his 10 daily appearences on TV here. Israeli PM's appear on TV more often than beer commercials these days.

Israel really does have an amazing PR campaign.
posted by b_thinky at 3:31 PM on July 23, 2006


On Irgun: It certainly was a terrorist organization, its more violent spin-off, Lehi, or the Stern Gang, admitted as much. But Irgun did not bomb the King David in a vacuum (not that the other events of the time excuse terrorism) nor was it in any way the major Zionist organization in the Mandate, despite the implications of the FPP. For those interested, an exhaustive history, here, for those interested. And Netanyahu has moved rightward even more, awful guy.

On Lebanon: Some context. War against regular forces is damaging to civilians. War against irregular forces are very damaging to civilians. Hezbollah does not have marked facilities. They use weapon stocks and launching platforms in civilian areas, and they fade back into those areas after attacks. Fighting a war in those conditions results in many, many civilian deaths. That is why international law tries to limit irregular fighters. If Israel was deliberatly targeting civilians, the death toll would be much higher, but that doesn't excuse the hundreds of innocents killed, as discussed by many posters here.

At the same time, according to Human Rights Watch, Hezbollah is firing rockets, filled with roundshot, whose only goal is to kill civilians. So far, 2,200 have been fired. And now Hezbollah appears to have activated its overseas cells. The same ones that killed hundreds of Jews in Argentina in two bombings. I can only hope that this is propaganda...
posted by blahblahblah at 3:34 PM on July 23, 2006


Well, they do run Hollywood.

/I keed. Because there's very little humor in anything these days.
posted by bardic at 3:36 PM on July 23, 2006


War against irregular forces are very damaging to civilians. Hezbollah does not have marked facilities. They use weapon stocks and launching platforms in civilian areas, and they fade back into those areas after attacks. Fighting a war in those conditions results in many, many civilian deaths.

I wish I had the spare cash to buy you a ticket to Beirut. Because you could go around telling the family members and loved ones of dead Lebanese civilians this, and I'm sure they'd perk right up, Sunshine.
posted by bardic at 3:40 PM on July 23, 2006


bardic: I wish I had the spare cash to buy you a ticket to Beirut. Because you could go around telling the family members and loved ones of dead Lebanese civilians this, and I'm sure they'd perk right up, Sunshine.

bardic, no need to be a jerk. I know two people who were killed in this conflict already. This is more serious to me than it is to you, I assure you.
posted by blahblahblah at 3:44 PM on July 23, 2006


In retrospect, bardic, I apologize for bringing the personal into this discussion, something I try to avoid. The point is that I am not being flippant in my comments, since I know what is happening in that area quite well, and the consequences are quite immediate. My comments were trying to give context missing in some previous discussion, and, if you re-read them, I don't think I absolve anyone for deaths they have caused.
posted by blahblahblah at 3:59 PM on July 23, 2006


thanks for the note about Bibi. I knew he'd become a political whore, but I didn't realize just how low he'd sunk. Joining right-wing extremists to celebrate one of the lowest points in the history of Israel? Wow. He must really be desparate.

Nah, Benajmin Netanyahu has always been an asshole, but thank his fascist father for instilling in him his murderous impulses.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 4:46 PM on July 23, 2006


israel isn't left with an other coise right now than cracking down on the hezbollah.

So how about they actually do that instead of murdering civilians? Oh right - they're exercising their right to "self-defence". Silly me, I keep forgetting we have to use the Bush-approved doubleplus newspeak when discussing Israeli atrocities.
posted by Decani at 4:50 PM on July 23, 2006


israel isn't left with an other coise right now than cracking down on the hezbollah.

So how about they actually do that instead of murdering civilians? Oh right - they're exercising their right to "self-defence". Silly me, I keep forgetting we have to use the Bush-approved doubleplus newspeak when discussing Israeli atrocities.
posted by Decani at 4:50 PM on July 23, 2006


Whoops. Sorry about the double. Itchy trigger finger. Must be because I've been reading about current Israeli behaviour so much.
posted by Decani at 4:51 PM on July 23, 2006


Shit! I meant to include a notation that I corrected the spelling of Pearl Harbor from delmoi's quote in my last post. Seems only polite.

I routinely correct misspellings when I quote other MeFites; it is polite, and avoids unnecessary distraction. Why do you feel the need to "include a notation"? That's just more distraction.

posted by languagehat at 4:59 PM on July 23, 2006


The recent crisis has led to many people's passions getting the better of their judgement and thus the constant stream of accusations and counteraccusations in such discussions. I advise all of us to take a deep breath, cool off, and think more carefully about the judgements we make and the things we say, for as the good professor Dershowitz recently reminded us even such seemingly-familar concepts as 'innocent' and 'civilian' become quite slippery once you think about them in earnest:

There is a vast difference — both moral and legal — between an Aryan 2-year-old who is killed by an enemy rocket and a 30-year-old Slav who has allowed his house to be used to store Katyusha rockets. Both are biologically human, although the former is obviously superior to the latter. There is also a difference between a member of an inferior race who merely favors or even votes for the Bolsheviks, and one who provides financial or other material support for the international conspiracy of Jews and Freemasons.

Finally, there is a difference between enemy civilians who are held hostage against their will by terrorists who use them as involuntary shields, and those who voluntarily resist resettlement in the East in order to aid the so-called freedom fighters.

These differences and others are conflated within the increasingly meaningless word "human" — a word that carried great significance when uniformed armies fought other uniformed armies on battlefields far from civilian population centers. Today, however, as we seek to bring the glories of German civilization to the barbarous East, this same word equates the truly innocent with the guilty accessories to Communism and decadent Jewish capitalism.

The domestic law of crime, in virtually every Germanic nation, reflects this continuum of culpability. For example, in the infamous Rhine River miscegenation case (fictionalized in the film "Die Beschuldigt"), there were several categories of morally and legally complicit individuals: those who actually had sex with a non-Aryan woman; those who held her down; those who blocked her escape route; those who cheered and encouraged the race traitors; and those who could have called the Gestapo but did not.

posted by little miss manners at 5:29 PM on July 23, 2006


Ah Dershowitz. He's impartial isn't he...
posted by A189Nut at 5:57 PM on July 23, 2006


Remember the USS Liberty?

Remember the Sabra and Shatila massacre?

Or the hundreds more just like them?
Israel has gotten an official bye on every attoricity it has committed.

It is fair to say there are ZERO good guys in this conflict.

The fucking Arabs have done exactly the wrong goddamned thing every chance they have been given — from 1949 on to Dayton.

BOTH sides have had ample opportunity to save face AND get most of what they want.

I'm sick of it. Let's evacuate as many women and children as possible then cut off all aid to the region and let the barbarians slaughter each other until there is nobody left. I could care less anymore. Fuck them both.
posted by tkchrist at 6:05 PM on July 23, 2006


[panics] Um ... Godwin?
posted by ZenMasterThis at 8:38 PM on July 23, 2006


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