February 13, 2002
12:36 AM   Subscribe

MSNBC declares State of Palestine The Arabic version of MSNBC's site includes Palestine in its list of countries. More interestingly, there is no mention of Israel as if it did't exist. I can understand including Palestine to represent the PLO, but c'mon like it or not we can all agree Israel DOES exist, right?
posted by rabbit (27 comments total)

This post was deleted for the following reason:



 
uh...don't let an Arab hear you say that...
posted by maschnitz at 12:50 AM on February 13, 2002


maschnitz: Yeah. You should head on over to IRNA.com and count how many times they use the phrase "Zionist Regime". It's almost comically equivalent to Bush's "axis of evil".
posted by rabbit at 12:57 AM on February 13, 2002


Why can't we just rename a state in America "New Israel" and allow any jewish people anywhere in the world to come to it and make it their new home? Why do they have to fight over that place for thousands of years? It's just land. Let the baby Palestinians have it. God's not about land.
posted by ZachsMind at 1:14 AM on February 13, 2002


First of all, your link doesn't appear to have anything to do with the contents of your post.

Second, it's not really "MSNBC's arabic version." It's a partnership between MSNBC and some Arab outfit called Good News 4 Me. MSNBC provides the content management system and the Arabic-language rights to a lot of its articles, and GN4ME mixes it in with a ton of its own homegrown content. And judging from the articles I read at the time the site was launched, MSNBC was pretty much taking it on faith that GN4ME wouldn't pull any funny stuff with its translations of MSNBC's stories, or include lots of inflammatory anti-Semitic rhetoric.
posted by aaron at 1:22 AM on February 13, 2002


Well, we could just give Southern Iraq to the Palestinians.

We already have a "New Israel" in the U.S., except its called Hollywood

In all seriousness the conflict will be likely be resolved soon, though I'm not making any predictions as to how soon
posted by rabbit at 1:27 AM on February 13, 2002


how about predictions as to how violently?
posted by maschnitz at 1:31 AM on February 13, 2002


aaron, oh your right looks like i may have posted the wrong one, but that one's even better wouldn't you say?

Nevertheless MSNBC taking it on faith that an Arab publication wouldn't have any anti-semetic rhetoric is pretty absurd considering the legacy of Middle East News Publications
here is the link of the originial article referred to above
posted by rabbit at 1:32 AM on February 13, 2002


rabbit: "We already have a "New Israel" in the U.S., except its called Hollywood"

Wow.

I'm acrid and stuff, but you are giving us rabbits a bad reputation.

First, learn to spell and puncuate correctly.

Then, please stop trolling.
posted by acridrabbit at 1:49 AM on February 13, 2002


but he was doing fine, acrid...
posted by maschnitz at 2:08 AM on February 13, 2002


Why can't we just rename a state in America "New Israel" and allow any jewish people anywhere in the world to come to it

Why give away our land when we can give away somebody else's? Better yet, we can give away the land and the billions of dollars in military aid that it would take to subjugate the original inhabitants ...
posted by hipstertrash at 2:25 AM on February 13, 2002


That's trolling but this isnt:

uh...don't let an Arab hear you say that...

Ah yes, I almost forgot every national or ethnic group thinks a like. Thanks for reminding us.
posted by skallas at 2:25 AM on February 13, 2002


Actually you're the one trolling acridrabbit. I live in Hollywood, and it's just a joke so give me break.

I obviously know how to spell and punctuate just fine. These are called typos. Granted I should have used a spellchecker as a safeguard, but I'm you would have found something to flame me for so it's a moot point.

Oh look, I found a spelling error in one of your recent posts....

For fuck's sake. Dude, "Middle Easterners" are not some seperate "race". -acridrabbit
posted by rabbit at 2:27 AM on February 13, 2002


You sure that ain't trolling, skallas? Seems pretty PC to me. Or are skallas and rabbit the same person?

Besides, you could say some analogous about Americans without a problem ... "Don't let an American hear you say [something equivalently stupid about WTC]." Don't see the problem, frankly.
posted by maschnitz at 2:33 AM on February 13, 2002


This whole thread belongs under a bridge.
posted by donkeyschlong at 3:11 AM on February 13, 2002


wah wah wah yadda yadda rhubarb....
posted by Spoon at 3:28 AM on February 13, 2002


I am reminded of some guy who had worked for Jimmy Carter and said that America ought to reocgnize a state of Palestine when Saudi Arabia reocgnizes a state of Israel.
But then if you look at maps used in PLO controlled schools, there is no state of Israel shown. And Arabia.com still refers to an "occupied Jerusalem." And so it goes..l.
posted by Postroad at 4:28 AM on February 13, 2002


The translator confirms that MSNBC.com's Arabic version includes "Palestine" in a list of 19 countries on the side of the site under the heading "Local Arab News." The "nations" are: "Emirates, Egypt, Saudi, Syria, Palestine, Jordan, Lebanon, Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia, Libya, Kuwait, Iraq, Sudan, Yemen, Somalia, Qatar, Bahrain, Oman and Mauritania."
Palestine is represented in the UN and belongs in a list of Arab countries. Israel is NOT an Arab country and wouldn't belong in that list.
What are we talking about?
posted by talos at 4:46 AM on February 13, 2002


why do we have countries at all?

you can say that i'm a dreamer, but i'm not the only one.
posted by will at 5:03 AM on February 13, 2002


imagine there's no assholes...
and no religious freaks too...
posted by quonsar at 5:23 AM on February 13, 2002


[why do we have countries at all?]

Eventually we most likely won't. It's not likely to happen in our lifetimes though. What the whole geopolitical sabre-rattling is about is what the world is going to be like at that point. Very few people are against a one-world government if it's their government that's ruling the world.
posted by revbrian at 5:56 AM on February 13, 2002


If I may address the original post for a sec...

I grew up and went to school in Saudi Arabia. Arab culture and geography was taught in one way or another every year. Israel was never mentioned. One time, I asked my Arabic language teacher about it and she threw a frothing fit, practically screaming, "there is no Israel! Only Palestine!"

They took it to such an extreme that they wouldn't allow the "I" edition of the Encycolpedia through customs if it had Israel in it. This was a real bitch when I had to do a report on the Iroquois in the 4th grade.
posted by Cyrano at 6:33 AM on February 13, 2002


All geography is consensual.
posted by rushmc at 6:43 AM on February 13, 2002


I vote we give over all of Montana.

Come on people, these ethnic land masses aren't really a poart of the future. The legitimate superpowers: nike, coke, and gap industries
posted by goneill at 8:21 AM on February 13, 2002


I live in Hollywood (well, a part of Los Angeles near Hollywood), I'm Jewish, and I have no problem with rabbit's joke. There are a hell of a lot of Jews here. A non-Jewish professor at my film school refused to hold class on Yom Kippur, stating that he wanted to plant an idea his students' minds early on: if you're going to work in Hollywood, you have got to have a general understanding of Judaism. It sounds silly, but he's not anti-Semitic, he wasn't joking, and since then I've heard a lot of gentiles who work in the industry express similar sentiments.

Still, it might be more accurate to say that New Israel is in New York, which after all (I think) still has a larger Jewish population than Israel. Also, a disproportionate number of Israeli citizens are originally from New York. So maybe they should call Israel...uh, never mind.

I can relate to Cyrano's story, from the other end. I was taught that the borders of Israel were outlined quite clearly by God, in Genesis, when he made the covenant with Abraham which (at least in mythical terms) officially began the religion that would eventually turn into what is now called Judaism. God describes boundaries using natural landmarks that still exist, and Israel in its current incarnation takes up only a small part of that space. So, Jews who take the bible literally believe it's perfectly evident that they have a divine right to that specific area. In the bible, the fact that there were other people already living in that area when the Israelites arrived didn't stop them from invading it (more than once). So, the argument goes, why is now any different? I suppose that the Palestinian perspective includes a group of people with equally dogmatic ideas. If you believe that God said that the land is important to the religion, then you can't really have the religion without believing that you have a right to the land.

I was in Israel in 1988. I met some Zionists who I've come to believe were typical of the movement. These people are not interested in a more peaceful world, so talking to them about the pragmatism of creating one is moot. They are interested in getting back the Chosen Land for the Chosen People.

There are a lot of things I like about Judaism, but that kind of Zionism is ridiculous. Unfortunately, it's not going to go away any time soon. After the Holocaust, survivors guilted the western world into making Israel a state (1948), so as I grew up I heard all kinds of rationalizations for Israeli agression, apartheid-like situations in the occupied territories, etc., which bizarrely invoked Hitler as a justification for any action that would keep Israel powerful and Jewish. But it seems to me now that those arguments were just new twists on an ancient idea. I don't agree with that idea, but the people who do are never going to be swayed by arguments that ultimately assume a kind of global consciousness that was not part of ancient thought.
posted by bingo at 8:58 AM on February 13, 2002


Do nations truly exist at all? I once met a lawyer who insisted repeatedly that "Exxon" did not exist. It was just a convenient legal fiction for grouping together a collecion of people and facilities. Sticking point with re-labeling the map to suit your fancy is not acknowledging that other people have a different working model of reality, and/or insisting that others adopt your working model of reality against their will.
posted by sheauga at 9:20 AM on February 13, 2002


I vote we give over all of Montana.


Not likely to happen. Montana is better armed than Isreal or the Palistinians.
posted by Wulfgar! at 9:42 AM on February 13, 2002


" ... Not likely to happen. Montana is better armed than Isreal or the Palistinians..."

Damn straight Wulfgar! ... one of the more curious stats I remember from living there is that rural Montana has a big pile of of the US nukes in it's silos ... to the point that the State of Montana is actually the 6th largest nuclear power in the world.
posted by MidasMulligan at 10:28 AM on February 13, 2002


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