Raw Footage of Marmara
June 11, 2010 11:46 AM   Subscribe

 
wow...this footage is amazing
posted by kuatto at 11:50 AM on June 11, 2010


Full disclosure/request: I couldn't actually watch this at work, but I had someone verify the content for me. Could someone please indicate NSFW content if there is any?
posted by griphus at 11:53 AM on June 11, 2010


What are the firecracker like sounds at 36:00? It doesn't sound like gun fire. Are they shooting paintballs?
posted by geoff. at 12:00 PM on June 11, 2010


I scrolled through. A lot of people lying on stretches having bullet wounds tended to, blood on the walls. This is pretty raw information, and not especially pleasurable to watch.
posted by Astro Zombie at 12:01 PM on June 11, 2010


What are the firecracker like sounds at 36:00?

Yes, paintball guns shooting. Probably something like this.
posted by procrastination at 12:05 PM on June 11, 2010


Could someone please indicate NSFW content if there is any?

I started watching at ~30 minutes and have been fast forwarding through it. There's blood on the walls and some injured men being carried around, paramedics performing CPR, but much less gory than you'd expect. Less than you'd see on an episode of ER.
posted by geoff. at 12:06 PM on June 11, 2010


42:10 has them using slingshots against a military helicopter. Like with rocks. Like from Old Testament biblical times. I'm sure there's a symbolic comment that could be made here but I think the visual speaks for itself.
posted by quadog at 12:10 PM on June 11, 2010 [3 favorites]


Link to the site imprinted on the video: culturesofresistance.org
posted by vapidave at 12:12 PM on June 11, 2010


There's military helicopters in the Old Testament?
posted by Kirk Grim at 12:16 PM on June 11, 2010 [4 favorites]


There's military helicopters in the Old Testament?

Maybe in this edition.
posted by griphus at 12:21 PM on June 11, 2010


No, Goliath was a tank.
posted by furiousxgeorge at 12:22 PM on June 11, 2010


quadog: "42:10 has them using slingshots against a military helicopter. Like with rocks. Like from Old Testament biblical times. I'm sure there's a symbolic comment that could be made here but I think the visual speaks for itself."

That's basically what the first intifada was about.
posted by The White Hat at 12:22 PM on June 11, 2010 [2 favorites]


There's military helicopters in the Old Testament?

EZEKIEL 1:4-5
I looked, and I saw a windstorm coming out of the north -- an immense cloud with flashing lightning and surrounded by brilliant light. The center of the fire looked like glowing metal, and in the fire was what looked like four living creatures.
posted by joe lisboa at 12:23 PM on June 11, 2010 [24 favorites]


This is a good time to mention that you can link to the middle of a youtube video using #t=XmXXs, e.g. for 42:10 you would add #t=42m10s:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vwsMJmvS0AY

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vwsMJmvS0AY#t=42m10s
posted by anthill at 12:25 PM on June 11, 2010 [25 favorites]


Also, if you're embedding video via the "embed" option in YouTube, you can do the same thing by adding "&start=[length in seconds]" to both instances of the URL. So "http://www.youtube.com/v/vwsMJmvS0AY&hl=en_US&fs=1&" would become "http://www.youtube.com/v/vwsMJmvS0AY&start=2530&hl=en_US&fs=1&" for the 42:10 link.
posted by griphus at 12:29 PM on June 11, 2010 [5 favorites]


Finally, my voracious childhood reading of Erich von Däniken's "work" has amounted to something.
posted by joe lisboa at 12:34 PM on June 11, 2010 [2 favorites]


Full disclosure/request: I couldn't actually watch this at work

We're posting links to the FPP that we haven't even looked at now?
posted by Justinian at 12:51 PM on June 11, 2010


Justinian: "We're posting links to the FPP that we haven't even looked at now?"

If this ends with a screeching ghoul jumping out to scare me, I'll be pissed.
posted by brundlefly at 12:53 PM on June 11, 2010 [4 favorites]


posted by Justinian We're posting links to the FPP that we haven't even looked at now?

Well, we comment without looking at the links, so it works out.
posted by mattdidthat at 12:55 PM on June 11, 2010 [23 favorites]


When there's finally a use for it, joe lisboa beats me to it. ;)
posted by dabitch at 12:57 PM on June 11, 2010


As others have mentioned, it doesn't get crazy till the 40 minute mark, or there abouts. I guess the start is included to show they weren't chanting death to Israel and cocking their guns, etc. It's pretty amazing footage. There must be more like it out there, because there seem to be other people filming, and lots of people have cameras.
posted by chunking express at 1:10 PM on June 11, 2010


We're posting links to the FPP that we haven't even looked at now?

We hadn't started that already?

Oops.
posted by shakespeherian at 1:16 PM on June 11, 2010


Justinian: We're posting links to the FPP that we haven't even looked at now?

That does seem a little weird.

I can't watch the video. (Honestly, I doubt I will. I have no interest in watching people be murdered.) But even taking into consideration the obvious: that the people releasing it have a biased agenda, if it really is unedited I think disseminating it is a good thing. The more information about the incident which can be assessed objectively the better.
posted by zarq at 1:18 PM on June 11, 2010


We're posting links to the FPP that we haven't even looked at now?

We hadn't started that already?

Oops.



Is this where I mention that there were 75 friggin' links in my 110th post (including the one I put in that second comment) and I watched all of 'em? :P

Metafilter: I B DOIN IT RONG
posted by zarq at 1:20 PM on June 11, 2010


He's that cat that jumps in the box, right? I love that cat.
posted by symbioid at 1:24 PM on June 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


This isn't the kind of thing I want to watch, but I am interested in knowing this sheds any light at all on this boat disaster.
posted by cell divide at 1:24 PM on June 11, 2010


MeTa
posted by mr_crash_davis mark II: Jazz Odyssey at 1:30 PM on June 11, 2010


I can't watch the video. (Honestly, I doubt I will. I have no interest in watching people be murdered.)

I just watched it from the ~40 minute mark, and there's nothing like that. The cameraman in is the stairwell for the most part, but one by one, people with bullet wounds are carried to the lower decks. At least one guy is being resusitated, and it doesn't look good.

Nothing conclusive here, one way or the other, but interesting all the same.
posted by Acey at 1:31 PM on June 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


Jeez, that was harrowing to watch.
posted by unliteral at 1:48 PM on June 11, 2010


The guy holding up the booklet around the 44:30 minute mark is Kevin McNeish. I used to protest with him in Victoria, BC in the run-up to the Afghanistan and Iraq wars. Fucking surreal.
posted by Beardman at 2:05 PM on June 11, 2010


So, let me ask you - this boat, part of a flotilla, the Marmara - it was apparently in international waters when this shit went down, right?

What kind of obligation or legality is there involved in a military action that doesn't take place on your sovereign soil? As much as you can get away with?

Like, if I was out on international waters on my yacht (you know, my yacht!) and a bunch of Israeli agents fell from the sky onto my boat and started ordering me around, is it basically the edict of might versus right? Insofar as, well, they're there, and they have guns, and I don't have a gun, so I'm going to do what they say and the consequences will be sorted out later?
posted by kbanas at 2:17 PM on June 11, 2010


Really?...your going to throw a bottle? You're going to use a slingshot? Your going to use a stick?...Really? Watching that video made me lose some sympathy for the protesters. If you are going to be peaceful then be peaceful. If you're going to be violent at least do it in a way that is effective. Otherwise you look like a total tool who looks more like they are trying to provoke a reaction than make a statement or solve any problems. And it always seems to be the religious types who are the idiots doing this sort of thing. Don't get me wrong; I don't support Israel's reaction, but this type of shit just pisses me off.

I actually had a really good argument recently with one of my good friends. He is an ardent supporter of Israel. I noticed, over the course of the discussion/shouting match, his inability to see things from a Palestinian point of view. I found myself suddenly labeled as a supporter of terrorism. Needless to say that in reality I think that there is enough blame to go around in the I/P discussion. Really....a bottle? Fucking amateurs dude.
posted by AElfwine Evenstar at 2:25 PM on June 11, 2010 [4 favorites]


Assuming you want to keep living, yes. You raise your hands, you sit down, and you follow directions, and hope that the rule of international law will eventually work in your favor against these pirates.

Assuming you want to create an international incident, as well as a few martyrs for the cause, you fight back.
posted by crunchland at 2:27 PM on June 11, 2010


"is it basically the edict of might versus right? Insofar as, well, they're there, and they have guns, and I don't have a gun, so I'm going to do what they say and the consequences will be sorted out later?"

If someone has guns and you don't and you choose to resist them violently the consequences are usually pretty instantaneous; and obvious to boot. So to answer you question: No its not an edict of might vs. right. It is an edict of logical consequences. Notice I didn't say moral or necessary consequences.
posted by AElfwine Evenstar at 2:32 PM on June 11, 2010


Unless they are already shooting people, at which case you might think you are fighting for your lives with whatever is available.
posted by Big_B at 2:34 PM on June 11, 2010 [5 favorites]




Democracy Now interview with Iara Lee, director of the Cultures of Resistance network.
posted by homunculus at 2:55 PM on June 11, 2010


Around 42:50 when the helicopter that dropped the commandos off flies away and the shouting starts, shit goes from tense to unpleasant. Wake up, Israel.
posted by Burhanistan at 2:56 PM on June 11, 2010


"Unless they are already shooting people, at which case you might think you are fighting for your lives with whatever is available."

I don't think the Israelis killing everyone on board is really realistic. Killing a few people for sport and intimidation purposes is more realistic. I do remember seeing a Al Jazeera video linked to in the original thread that supposedly showed people shot before the Israelis boarded so I'm not saying this didn't happen. I am only going to reiterate my previous point: If you are going to be peaceful, be peaceful. If you are going to be violent, use violence in a effective manner.
posted by AElfwine Evenstar at 2:56 PM on June 11, 2010


> illing a few people for sport and intimidation purposes is more realistic

At 44:00 an American holds up a piece of Israeli intel (complete with photos and names) nabbed from a soldier. They had great intel and knew who to target ahead of time.
posted by Burhanistan at 2:59 PM on June 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


don't want to get into senseless arguement but:
be careful of footage declared "raw." Reuters got caught with photos they had cropped and otherwise fixed to make the flotilla people look a lot better. Caught, Reuters finally released
the real unaltered photos...clearly altered for propaganda.[want source for this? email me]
Then: better check before you declare (as above) that Israel had no legal right to stop ships in "international waters." Look into this and you will see that there is a right to do so, and that the US has used this right previously.

We do not know the true story at this time. Our electronic snooping outfits I am convinced do know more precisely what took place but I doubt we will hear from that source.
I am curious how 40 people were able to board a ship without passports or IDs and leave Turkey to go to Gaza...(yes: Israel stated there were no Passports and the 40 refused to give their names etc)...
but it is Friday and so martini time begins...
be of good cheer.
posted by Postroad at 3:00 PM on June 11, 2010 [2 favorites]


Yes, I'm sure the people of Gaza are celebrating the arrival of Friday with a round of martinis. Cheers!
posted by [citation needed] at 3:08 PM on June 11, 2010 [2 favorites]


On the whole, this doesn't show much other than tending to wounded below decks, a standoff at a door, and other scenes of tension. What sounds like gunfire can be heard t. It's a good bet that the IDF has crystal clear video of every hostile transaction but good luck in that ever coming to light.
posted by Burhanistan at 3:12 PM on June 11, 2010


They had great intel and knew who to target ahead of time.

Their "great intel" was probably culled from publicly-available blogs and news articles online to find out who was aboard. The flotilla's organizers were trying to attract as much attention to their mission as possible, and gave interviews to anyone who was interested. Also, one of the organizations put photos of the participants on their website. The Free Gaza movement announces some of the more famous people will be sailing with their flotillas before they're launched, including pictures, bios and contact information for anyone who wants to interview them.

I could be wrong about this, but suspect it wouldn't have been difficult for me to make a similar list.
posted by zarq at 3:17 PM on June 11, 2010


They had great intel and knew who to target ahead of time.

Are you suggesting that these killings were targeted assassinations?
posted by Pope Guilty at 3:25 PM on June 11, 2010


don't want to get into senseless arguement but:
be careful of footage declared "raw." Reuters got caught with photos they had cropped and otherwise fixed to make the flotilla people look a lot better. Caught, Reuters finally released
the real unaltered photos...clearly altered for propaganda.[want source for this? email me]
Then: better check before you declare (as above) that Israel had no legal right to stop ships in "international waters." Look into this and you will see that there is a right to do so, and that the US has used this right previously.


I disagree. I believe it was cropped carelessly, with the intent of focusing the viewer's eye on the action and everything else, including the hand holding the knife, was superfluous.

I have worked in a variety of newsrooms over the years and never, ever, have I seen the kind of conspiracy you suspect here.

Most stupid news decisions are just that, decisions made in haste, without awareness or without thought to the consequences or simple mistakes. I wish I had a nickel for every time a reader complained and saw conspiracy when it was merely a mistake. I once used a map of Jerusalem that was intended for one purpose, showing, I think, archaelogy digs, but we used it to illustrate a political story. The facts are dim in my brain, but I believe we used it because we had it available and were in a mad rush. Both Arab and Jewish readers called to scream over the same map and the conspiracy they saw when it was simply a bonehead decision on my part.

I have never worked for Reuters but I simply don't believe it was a deliberate, anti-Israeli act.
posted by etaoin at 3:27 PM on June 11, 2010 [3 favorites]


> Are you suggesting that these killings were targeted assassinations?

Not necessarily, but just going on what I saw it would seem that the IDF had a specific agenda beyond simply stopping or harassing the flotilla. Like zarq said, it wasn't really deep HUMINT intel they had, but it still was a clear document of names and faces. I don't think they were looking for autographs...
posted by Burhanistan at 3:28 PM on June 11, 2010


I can't read Hebrew. The intel might as well be a list of people not to shoot. Like Burhanistan says, we don't see much happening apart from the wounded being taken cared of. The only IDF troops we see are either on boats or dropping off choppers, no interaction with the civilians. It's all shot from the rear and it seems to be focused to a relatively limited area of the ship as we keep seeing the same faces, of journalists waiting for the storm to falter and activists overwhelmed by the events. Either way, this is still gripping material. Death looks scary in HD.
posted by surrendering monkey at 3:29 PM on June 11, 2010


Like, if I was out on international waters on my yacht (you know, my yacht!) and a bunch of Israeli agents fell from the sky onto my boat and started ordering me around, is it basically the edict of might versus right?

Well, no. It might have the same immediate practical upshot of obeying someone who is armed during a home invasion, but no, they would be solidly criminals and pursued were that the case.

Taking everything else off the table (I have some strong opinions concerning the execution of the boarding action among other things) there are a number of things that allow a state to board a ship.
For example, in on your yacht, Israeli agents could board because in your example you don’t have a national registry.
On the high seas any nation can board a ship that doesn’t have a nationality, or is engaging in piracy, slavery, or illegal broadcasting or smuggling certain substances (typically illegal narcotics).

Otherwise though, ships have immunity from the jurisdiction of a state other than their flag state.
So if you were flying a Brazillian flag or U.S. flag, the Israeli’s would have to answer to those countries. Just as, if you live in the U.S., someone busts into your house wielding firearms, yeah, practically in the immediacy, you have to obey them. But the cops are going to come after them.
Lots of other factors in shipping and registry. That morass aside – there are distinctions between the middle of the ocean high seas and where you get into exclusive economic zones about 200 nautical miles out.
Coastal nations have jurisdiction rights in the EEZ.
They can come board you out to 200 nm from the coast (at least according to the UN conventions on the law of the sea, there are some other things here like the Helsinki stuff - *hand wave off*).

Now, there is some dispute over the occupation of Gaza, so that’s a whole different wrinkle.
As to that - the law of the sea and the exclusive economic zone (article 56) says you get sovereign rights to the natural resources of the sea bed and its subsoil in addition to some jurisdictional rights.

There may be large quantities of natural gas there.

One can speculate then (and I reiterate - speculation) that there may be a relationship between the assertion of maritime rights (by either side) in and of themselves as part of the struggle.

So – you’re out on your yacht, say 199 miles off the coast of Joe-istan. The Joeistanians don’t want you there because maybe you’re looking for oil. So they come out and board your ship. And they have the right to. 'Cos it's their coast. They want their guys fishing or drilling for oil. Not you.
Practically, if some resource wasn’t being contested, they probably wouldn’t bother.

Now - if Joeistan’s coast is contested, say, some people from Fredistan are fishing out there, the UN conventions sort of lump natural resources all together. So if you’ve been, in your Fredistan flagged yacht, fishing for 20 years, you could reasonably claim that, hey, I can dig up the oil too, because of Fredistan's EEZ rights.

Speculation aside - suffice it to say, whatever one’s opinions or the deeper facts of the case or what one thinks about it either way – the boarding wasn’t 'falling out of the sky' arbitrary.

If they were arbitrary, the Israelis would have to answer to Turkey (and the other registry from wherever) in a very specific and definite way defined by U.N. maritime law and they can take it before a sort of judge and get restitution, etc.

As it is, how things are going on shore, and how the Israelis are exercising what they perceive, or are asserting, to be their rights under maritime law - affect the situation.

This general concept can also be applied to people in Gaza holding on to the ground and the flotillas attempting to reach their (perceived/asserted) shore (with obvious particulars changed). That is, as an attempt to demonstrate the rights to the area.
If I’m from Fredistan, I’m sending my fishermen and humanitarian aid boats out to establish that it’s my backyard, influence public opinion, and assert my rights to the EEZ by sailing into 'my' port.

So, the an ongoing debate as to the legal status of the Gaza occupation which affects the legality of jurisdiction rights off the coast.

And again – all other things, right, wrong, illegality of restriction of humanitarian aid, military necessity to stop the strengthening of terrorist elements/smuggling, international law, the Helsinki principles, the rectitude of the debate itself, blah blah, aside.

It’s still sort of an argument, in force, over the definitions themselves. But it's not an arbitrary assertion of power the way stopping some guy in the middle of nowhere would be.
(Also there happens to be what amounts to a gigantic bag full of cash sitting right nearby, which might have something to do with something.)

As my speculation on other elements of the conflict spectrum is likely to prejudice my otherwise professional opinion on the tactics of this event, I'll withhold other comment.
posted by Smedleyman at 4:11 PM on June 11, 2010 [4 favorites]


Correct me if I'm wrong... If you were running a blockade at night and delivering the cargo was paramount, then wouldn't you turn off your lights and not take flash photography? Seems like baiting to me.

And btw, I have no respect for either side in that part of the world.
posted by CarlRossi at 4:16 PM on June 11, 2010


"So, there is an ongoing debate as to the legal status of the Gaza occupation which affects the legality of jurisdiction rights off the coast." - should be.

(Sorry, gonads getting in the way of brain activity. I have issues with folks of whatever stripe using ideological stalking horses and spending lives to grub for money. S'why I have my namesake.)
posted by Smedleyman at 4:20 PM on June 11, 2010


And btw, I have no respect for either side in that part of the world.

There are many, many sides, not just two.
posted by Pope Guilty at 4:36 PM on June 11, 2010 [2 favorites]




The Haaretz editorial is right about the way the Palestinians are being treated.

However, this is still a bullshit, one-sided perspective which conveniently doesn't bother to mention that the Palestinians spent years targeting and killing Israeli civilians with rockets, mortars and suicide bombs prior to the current, disproportionate Israeli oppression in Gaza. I agree that what the Israelis are doing is absolutely wrong and needs to be stopped immediately. But for fuck's sake if you're going to accuse the Israelis of being Nazi-esque, at least have the honesty and the balls to point out that there really is a lengthy history which led to the Israelis adopting these tactics. Hamas, Fatah and the PLO sure as hell aren't an innocents. They bear a partial responsibility for their people's current situation that must be acknowledged.
posted by zarq at 5:59 PM on June 11, 2010 [2 favorites]



Correct me if I'm wrong... If you were running a blockade at night and delivering the cargo was paramount, then wouldn't you turn off your lights and not take flash photography? Seems like baiting to me.

And btw, I have no respect for either side in that part of the world.


And that, ladies and gentleman, is why we have wars.
posted by hal_c_on at 6:04 PM on June 11, 2010


Made me think of this.
posted by squalor at 6:58 PM on June 11, 2010


"...this is still a bullshit, one-sided perspective which conveniently doesn't bother to mention that the Palestinians spent years targeting and killing Israeli civilians with rockets, mortars and suicide bombs..."

Perhaps, in this instance. Despite the *ahem* media's best efforts to convince us that Arabs are insane demons bent on destroying Israel, maybe it's worthwhile to study the history of Israel. I mean...doesn't anyone ever wonder...why?

You can connect the dots. There are lots of interesting stories that go along with this history of Israel. Some of them don't really reflect well on the Jews.

Been thinking it would make a good FPP.
posted by Xoebe at 11:17 PM on June 11, 2010


It’s still sort of an argument, in force, over the definitions themselves. But it's not an arbitrary assertion of power the way stopping some guy in the middle of nowhere would be.

Oh, yes it is.

posted by Smedleyman: "Coastal nations have jurisdiction rights in the [Exclusive Economic Zone]."

Ah, here's the thing. Israel hasn't declared an EEZ. In fact, most countries haven't declared an EEZ for the Mediterranean Sea -- France has explicitly said that they don't have an EEZ Mediterranean sea.

Therefore, the Mavi Marvara was actually in the 'high seas', or in true international waters.

What happened here? A foreign ship was boarded by a another country's aircraft. Here's the corresponding part from the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (or UNCLOS):


Article 88
Reservation of the high seas for peaceful purposes

The high seas shall be reserved for peaceful purposes.

Article 89
Invalidity of claims of sovereignty over the high seas

No State may validly purport to subject any part of the high seas to its sovereignty.

Article 90
Right of navigation

Every State, whether coastal or land-locked, has the right to sail ships flying its flag on the high seas.



Okay, great. The flotilla had the right to be there, and Israel doesn't have any right to govern where the flotilla was.


Article 110
Right of visit

1. Except where acts of interference derive from powers conferred by treaty, a warship which encounters on the high seas a foreign ship, other than a ship entitled to complete immunity in accordance with articles 95 and 96, is not justified in boarding it unless there is reasonable ground for suspecting that:

(a) the ship is engaged in piracy;

(b) the ship is engaged in the slave trade;

(c) the ship is engaged in unauthorized broadcasting and the flag State of the warship has jurisdiction under article 109;

(d) the ship is without nationality; or

(e) though flying a foreign flag or refusing to show its flag, the ship is, in reality, of the same nationality as the warship.

2. In the cases provided for in paragraph 1, the warship may proceed to verify the ship's right to fly its flag. To this end, it may send a boat under the command of an officer to the suspected ship. If suspicion remains after the documents have been checked, it may proceed to a further examination on board the ship, which must be carried out with all possible consideration.

3. If the suspicions prove to be unfounded, and provided that the ship boarded has not committed any act justifying them, it shall be compensated for any loss or damage that may have been sustained.

4. These provisions apply mutatis mutandis to military aircraft.

5. These provisions also apply to any other duly authorized ships or aircraft clearly marked and identifiable as being on government service.



SO:

a) The ship wasn't engaged in piracy; as it was not committing "any illegal acts of violence or detention, or any act of depredation, committed for private ends by the crew or the passengers of a private ship or a private aircraft," directed "on the high seas, against another ship or aircraft, or against persons or property on board such ship or aircraft" (Article 101)

b) The ship wasn't engaged in the slave trade.

c) As far as I can find information about it, the ship wasn't engaged in 'unauthorized broadcasting', or "the transmission of sound radio or television broadcasts from a ship or installation on the high seas intended for reception by the general public contrary to international regulations" (article 109).

d) The ship was flying under the Comoran flag.

e) Not applicable - clearly Israel understood that the flotilla was not an Israeli fleet!


===

So according to UN law, this is illegal. It's exactly the same situation as if they "stopped some guy in the middle of nowhere". According to UN law, it's the same illegal situation as if Canadian sailing boat was way far out in the Atlantic, and a US warship stormed the boat and shot a couple of the crew.

Yes, it's an "arbitrary assertion of power".
posted by suedehead at 2:16 AM on June 12, 2010


zarq
the Palestinians spent years targeting and killing Israeli civilians with rockets, mortars and suicide bombs prior to the current, disproportionate Israeli oppression in Gaza... at least have the honesty and the balls to point out that there really is a lengthy history which led to the Israelis adopting these tactics. Hamas, Fatah and the PLO sure as hell aren't an innocents. They bear a partial responsibility for their people's current situation that must be acknowledged.
And to adapt your own language, the "targeting and killing Israeli civilians with rockets, mortars and suicide bombs" was likewise a "disproportionate" reponse to the "lengthy history" of racist and illegal military occupation stretching back decades, and that one "should have the honesty and the balls to point out that there really is a lengthy history which led to [Hamas/Fatah/ the PLO] adopting these tactics".

These organisations may not have the moral high ground of a Gandhi, but it is equally "bullshit" to pretend that the occupation of Palestine is the consequence of Palestinian terrorism rather than its cause.
posted by moorooka at 2:59 AM on June 12, 2010


The response from the Israeli government to qassam fire has been so disproportionate as to render the initial trigger irrelevant. If you throw a pebble at me and I beat you to within an inch of your life, I wouldn't consider it vitally important to remember that you instigated the violence.
posted by Dysk at 3:45 AM on June 12, 2010


The thing about the Gandhian moral high ground is that it gets results.

This half-arsed resistance theatre? Not so much.
posted by flabdablet at 4:15 AM on June 12, 2010


But if I throw a pebble after you steal my family's house because you think you have some divinely-ordained racial entitlement to it, I wouldn't call that instigating.
posted by moorooka at 4:22 AM on June 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


The thing about the Gandhian moral high ground is that it gets results.

That's overly simplistic and does a disservice to Gandhi and other peace activists, non-violent or otherwise.
posted by fuq at 4:41 AM on June 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


I'm a little confused by the idea of a violent peace activist.

Could you point me to examples? Could you point me to effective examples?
posted by flabdablet at 6:05 AM on June 12, 2010


Effective violent peace activists?

But that level of violence is a little more than we're talking about here.
posted by anthill at 6:49 AM on June 12, 2010


I don't know that I'd be comfortable characterizing the Résistance as "peace activists"; wouldn't it be fairer to describe it as an anti-occupation insurgency?
posted by flabdablet at 7:03 AM on June 12, 2010


The Resistance was up against a foreign military occupation. Presumably they should have been non-violent, since that is what apparently "gets results".
posted by moorooka at 7:17 AM on June 12, 2010 [3 favorites]


You know, it's OK to like Israel AND be critical of the IDF shooting up a boat full of civilians. You don't have to try and explain away every ridiculous thing the IDF does. They are not a proxy for the Jewish people. It's OK not to like everything they do.
posted by chunking express at 7:19 AM on June 12, 2010


These organisations may not have the moral high ground of a Gandhi, but it is equally "bullshit" to pretend that the occupation of Palestine

I was referring solely to the Israel-imposed humanitarian crisis in Gaza.

is the consequence of Palestinian terrorism rather than its cause

The blockade and various military attacks by Israel have nearly always been direct responses to Palestinian Authority-sanctioned attacks, whether they have been claimed by the PLO, Hamas or Fatah. To repeat myself: responses by Israel to those attacks (and I suppose I should also mention kidnappings,) have been disproportionate, often extremely so, which is absolutely wrong.

But by presenting the Palestinians purely as innocent victims (and by ignoring the history of the region, and therefore also ignoring their culpability here, I believe it does so,) the editorial is casting a biased fiction.
posted by zarq at 7:32 AM on June 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


"However, this is still a bullshit, one-sided perspective which conveniently doesn't bother to mention that the Palestinians spent years targeting and killing Israeli civilians with rockets, mortars and suicide bombs prior to the current, disproportionate Israeli oppression in Gaza. I agree that what the Israelis are doing is absolutely wrong and needs to be stopped immediately. But for fuck's sake if you're going to accuse the Israelis of being Nazi-esque, at least have the honesty and the balls to point out that there really is a lengthy history which led to the Israelis adopting these tactics. Hamas, Fatah and the PLO sure as hell aren't an innocents. They bear a partial responsibility for their people's current situation that must be acknowledged."

Zarq you are single minded aren't you. You have to be sure in every thread about the I/P problem to point out that it is also/mostly the Palestinians who are at fault. The fracking article isn't set up to analyze the whole debate it is pretty clear from the title what aspect of the problem he is going to analyze and it sure as hell ain't the Palestinian side. So for once in your life please think before posting in an I/P thread. Your comments are predictable and add nothing to the discussion.
posted by AElfwine Evenstar at 7:56 AM on June 12, 2010


> I can't read Hebrew. The intel might as well be a list of people not to shoot.

The title says רשימת מפליגים וספינות - "list of passengers and ships". The contents seem to support this; for instance, here:

"Defney - Algerian delegation consisting of 20 people, 10 parliament members, 4 journalists"
"Passengers it is not known on what ship they will be sailing"

Make of this what you will.
posted by iati at 8:00 AM on June 12, 2010


The response from the Israeli government to qassam fire...

And mortars.
And kidnappings.
And suicide bombers.

All of which targeted civilians. Terrorist acts, all.

Let's not sugar coat it. It's been hundreds of such attacks over a period of years. If Canada had done the same to the US for decades, and had been repeatedly asked to stop through diplomacy, yet the attacks continued, what do you think the US response would be? What do you think the US population would demand? If our gov't couldn't make the attacks stop we'd vote in another that was more hawkish, again and again until the attacks stopped. Avigdor Lieberman and Netanyahu are a disaster for Israel, but I can understand why the country elected those extremists.

I know that Israel has been a barrier to peace as much as they have called for it. They have not acted in good faith too damned often, as far as I'm concerned.

has been so disproportionate as to render the initial trigger irrelevant

But their responses have not always been disproportionate, either. We didn't just suddenly get to this point. It happened over time.

I cannot emphasize strongly enough that Israel is in the wrong for Gaza's current state and that must be stopped. Ideas that were initially presented as reasonable responses (the security fence will stop suicide bombers, security checkpoints will stop them too,) have turned into disgusting excuses for oppressive acts. But yes, I think the initial triggers matter a great deal. Acknowledging them is important. Or else, we're never going to be able stop the cycle of violence and death.
posted by zarq at 8:12 AM on June 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


AElfwine, Yes, I do. Because the revisionist history being presented is not accurate. Obviously I think a more balanced perspective is relevant to the discussion.

I have been consistently, harshly critical of Israel in many lengthy comments here for months, by the way.

If you disagree with the points I'm making feel free to counter them. But no, I'm not going to stop commenting because you happen to disagree with me.
posted by zarq at 8:20 AM on June 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


The bits I found especially interesting were:

45:20 - 45:50. Somebody (who looks way out of his depth, I hope he's OK) says that they got another Israeli soldier; we see the wounded soldier being dragged down the steps; then Twoflowers tells us that "they hold two soldiers down here, bleeding and wounded".

50:10 to about 52:00. A bunch of guys with clubs and the odd knife or two are apparently defending a door.

1:00:40 Here's something worth seeing - we hear someone saying "... stupid [?] to shoot the Israelis. To try to/two soldiers [?]" Then there's what looks like a very brief edit, and a woman says something like "Think it was charged [?] ammunition?" There have been denials that the activists fired on the Israelis; this might be the smoking gun, as it were.

I wish that we had the unedited footage, from both sides. Everybody involved has been spinning this like an analogy involving particularly creative DJs.
posted by Joe in Australia at 8:41 AM on June 12, 2010


"AElfwine, Yes, I do. Because the revisionist history being presented is not accurate. Obviously I think a more balanced perspective is relevant to the discussion.

I have been consistently, harshly critical of Israel in many lengthy comments here for months, by the way.

If you disagree with the points I'm making feel free to counter them. But no, I'm not going to stop commenting because you happen to disagree with me."


What revisionist history? The article doesn't claim to be an authoritative history of the I/P conclict and guess what it's not. What it is is an introspective piece about what mabye, just mabye, the Israelis could do different. So you getting all huffy and puffy and spouting off about non-existant historical revisionism is complete nonsense and a waste of time. I never asked you to stop posting. What I did ask you to do is to think a little bit before posting.
posted by AElfwine Evenstar at 8:42 AM on June 12, 2010


"I wish that we had the unedited footage, from both sides."

I guessing that would make both sides look like a bunch of buffoons who could have easily avoided the bloodshed if they had wanted to.
posted by AElfwine Evenstar at 8:44 AM on June 12, 2010


If our gov't couldn't make the attacks stop we'd vote in another that was more hawkish, again and again until the attacks stopped.

The beatings will continue until morale improves!

But the sad thing is I agree with you. I can't for a minute imagine the US collectively deciding to take a step back and find out why its northern neighbor kept firing rockets and sending (polite!) suicide bombers. It would indeed almost certainly respond in the manner you suggest.

The Resistance was up against a foreign military occupation. Presumably they should have been non-violent, since that is what apparently "gets results".

That's a fairly juvenile argument. My point is that the Résistance was not a peace activist organization. It was an armed resistance movement.

Peace activism works by making people think. It operates by seeking to sway public opinion, ultimately to the point where those who would destroy the peace simply can't obtain the public support required to do so. My point about Gandhi is that for a peace activist organization to be successful, it must consistently occupy the high moral ground and be seen to do so.

The tragedy of the Mavi Marmara is that the flotilla's reputation as a peace activist operation has been badly and perhaps even fatally dented by the fact that a smallish group of hot-headed fools did attempt to take on a helicopter gunship crew with slingshots and marbles. They got their David and Goliath all mixed up with their peace activism, and buggered both of them completely up. All the IDF has to do is keep pointing to the footage of these fuckwits attacking their personnel, and they win; they can successfully characterize their opponents as fake peace activists.

The point about doing it Gandhi's way is that you make it perfectly clear who the public is supposed to see as the Bad Guy. For a peace activist, that is results. But it takes tremendous discipline, and tremendous courage, to make it work.

I completely fail to see how making that point that is disrespectful to Gandhi who was, in my opinion, one of the deepest strategic thinkers of the last century.
posted by flabdablet at 8:45 AM on June 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


It turns out that the guy I characterised as being out of his depth was Kenneth O'Keefe. In this interview he claims to have been "involved in disarming two Israeli commandos". I don't think his claims are really consistent with the video showing him jigging around excitedly while the big boys dragged bodies down the stairs, but ... well, this is all a bit too sad to be snarked at.
posted by Joe in Australia at 9:34 AM on June 12, 2010


Gandhi operated as the friendly, peaceful option for the British in a country where armed insurgents were routinely killing British soldiers. He provided them a way out without admitting that they'd lost. It's unsurprising that people like to pretend that Gandhi's nonviolent resistance somehow all-by-itself got the British out of India, being as it's a fantasy that a) validates the liberal desire to believe that every conflict can be resolved peacefully and violence is unnecessary and b) basically tells any group that's being shat on that the only legitimate means of resistance is to accept whatever is done to them and resist nonviolently, rather than defending themselves. The constant fellating of Gandhi in discussions like this one makes me sick.
posted by Pope Guilty at 9:35 AM on June 12, 2010 [9 favorites]


But I saw a movie about Ghandi and everything worked out in the end!
posted by Burhanistan at 9:42 AM on June 12, 2010




The blockade and various military attacks by Israel have nearly always been direct responses to Palestinian Authority-sanctioned attacks, whether they have been claimed by the PLO, Hamas or Fatah.
The blockade and various military attacks by Israel are the latest chapter in a history of racist occupation and attacks that go back to 1967 (if not 1949 - that's an argument for another day though). You're doing exactly what you are accusing others of doing in ignoring history. The attacks by the PLO, Hamas or Fatah are/were a reaction to a foreign military occupation. The first suicide bombings didn't happen for more than twenty years after the West Bank and Gaza had been invaded. There's a long chain of cause and consequence but it ultimately comes back to a violent, racist and illegal land-grab. You are condemning others for failing to point out that Israel's atrocities didn't occur in a vacuum. At the same time you are arguing as if Palestinian terrorism did occur in a vacuum. It didn't.
If Canada had done the same to the US for decades, and had been repeatedly asked to stop through diplomacy, yet the attacks continued, what do you think the US response would be?
The analogy must include the fact that Canada has been under illegal US military occupation for forty-odd years, with Canadian land confiscated for the construction of US settlements and its people expelled to live in refugee camps for generations - all of which the US had been repeatedly asked to stop through diplomacy.

I'm not here defending any actors in this conflict. But really, your whole argument is that the occupied have some share to blame in their occupation because they have not resisted it peacefully. You can make that argument if you want, but you shouldn't expect others to make it every time they discuss the matter.
posted by moorooka at 4:12 PM on June 12, 2010 [2 favorites]




The blockade and various military attacks by Israel are the latest chapter in a history of racist occupation and attacks that go back to 1967 ...

The PLO was formed in 1964, before Israel captured the West Bank from Jordan.

The first suicide bombings didn't happen for more than twenty years after the West Bank and Gaza had been invaded.

How can this be relevant? That particular tactic hadn't been invented yet. It was introduced as a reaction to better Israeli security measures that made it harder for the Palestinians to use guerrilla assaults and unattended bombings.

The analogy must include the fact that Canada has been under illegal US military occupation for forty-odd years, with Canadian land confiscated for the construction of US settlements and its people expelled [...]

Unfortunately, to take your analogy a step further, the USA would like to pull out of Canada and did in fact pull out of Quebec. It is now under regular attack from the Quebecois, while the rest of Canada is relatively peaceful and appears to be prospering. The Quebecois and the Canadians effectively have separate governments, although each one claims to be the sole legitimate authority. Neither is willing to allow an election to test their legitimacy.
posted by Joe in Australia at 4:45 PM on June 12, 2010


How can this be relevant? That particular tactic hadn't been invented yet.

You live in a fantasy world in which suicide bombings were invented within the last few decades. No wonder you are incapable of formulating a coherent position; you believe what you would prefer to believing, wanting your own facts when you are entitled only to your own opinion.
posted by Pope Guilty at 4:59 PM on June 12, 2010


You live in a fantasy world in which suicide bombings were invented within the last few decades. No wonder you are incapable of formulating a coherent position; you believe what you would prefer to believing, wanting your own facts when you are entitled only to your own opinion.

Surely the point is that Palestinian groups were using terror tactics well before they started using suicide bombing, and that it's silly to mark the use of this tactic as somehow making a moral difference. I don't think this point is worth arguing about, but I stand by what I said: modern suicide bombing is distinct from earlier tactics.
posted by Joe in Australia at 5:20 PM on June 12, 2010


OK Joe. What is the status of Canada's occupation under international law in this parallel universe? Because in the real universe, the West Bank and Gaza are internationally recognized as the same political entity: Occupied Palestine.

You say Israel "really wants" to pull out of the West Bank, which is "relatively peaceful" and "prospering" under the regime of benevolent apartheid. Those lucky West Bank Palestinians!

Well I'm happy to argue zarq's points - he's reasonable - but there's not much to be gained when by arguing with a defender of colonial apartheid.
posted by moorooka at 5:49 PM on June 12, 2010


The PLO was formed in 1964, before Israel captured the West Bank from Jordan.
which is why I included the bit in parentheses at the end of that quoted sentence
posted by moorooka at 6:01 PM on June 12, 2010


OK Joe. What is the status of Canada's occupation under international law in this parallel universe? Because in the real universe, the West Bank and Gaza are internationally recognized as the same political entity: Occupied Palestine.

Not actually, but in order to keep things simple I'll stipulate that it's occupied. And it should be the same political entity, but it's not. The West Bank and Gaza governments only cooperate on the most basic bureaucratic levels (e.g., I think they have a common birth registry). They certainly refuse to negotiate with Israel as a single unit.

You say Israel "really wants" to pull out of the West Bank, which is "relatively peaceful" and "prospering" under the regime of benevolent apartheid. Those lucky West Bank Palestinians!

My understanding is that withdrawal and acceptance of a Palestinian state is the policy of the major parties, and Israel actually has pulled out of Gaza and demolished settlements in the West Bank. That should be evidence that Israel "really wants" to do it. As for the West Bank Palestinians being lucky, well, relative to those in Gaza they are. That's an indictment of Hamas, not a defense of Israel.

but there's not much to be gained when by arguing with a defender of colonial apartheid.

I don't believe I defended colonialism or apartheid, and if I did so inadvertently I regret it.
posted by Joe in Australia at 6:05 PM on June 12, 2010


I don't believe I defended colonialism or apartheid, and if I did so inadvertently I regret it.

Your position is colonialist and apartheidist. You would have to not believe the things you believe in order to change that.
posted by Pope Guilty at 6:29 PM on June 12, 2010


My understanding is that withdrawal and acceptance of a Palestinian state is the policy of the major parties, and Israel actually has pulled out of Gaza and demolished settlements in the West Bank. That should be evidence that Israel "really wants" to do it.
What Israel wants to do is to create several non-contiguous Gaza-style bantustans (open-air prisons) in the West Bank, which will be surrounded by territory and "security fences" controlled by Israeli forces and reserved for Jewish settlements connected by Jewish-only roads, which will have all points of entry, airspace and water supplies controlled by the IDF, no self-defense forces of their own, but which will be called a "state" (which is what South Africa called its own bantustans), and governed by native police (as were South Africa's bantustans). The reason for creating this type of Palestinian "state" (or, at least, holding out the promise of it while pushing it further and further into the indefinite future) is purely to relieve Israel of having to grant the Palestinians equal rights as they would be forced to do if the entire territories were annexed.

A defense of this type of arrangement is absolutely a defense of colonial apartheid.

What Israel does not want is an independent sovereign Palestine with the same borders as existed in 1967 - which is, in fact, what the Palestinians are entitled to under international law. So that's the sticking point. Yes, they've demolished a couple of tiny remote West Bank settlements while at the same time massively expanding the main ones. The demolitions - with the ridiculous settlers wailing in front of the cameras - are purely for PR purposes. Israel does not in fact need to actually demolish any settlements, they can just return their military forces to the '67 border - as international law demands - and then leave it up to the settlers whether they choose to stay or go.
posted by moorooka at 6:35 PM on June 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


Last Friday, The Guardian revealed that autopsy reports of victims of the Freedom Flotilla raid showed many were killed by 9mm bullets fired just inches away from their bodies.

Turkish news reports have since aired video of what appears to be the beating/close-range execution of a prone passenger, claimed by their news agencies to be US citizen Fulkan Dogan.
posted by markkraft at 6:40 PM on June 12, 2010


I am trying to be as fair and impartial about this apparent execution as possible. The actual Turkish media reports used edited video, but I linked back to the original source, released on May 31.

It most certainly looks like someone being kicked by several IDF personnel, and shot at close range. The autopsy report for Fulkan Dogan as reported by the Guardian indicated that he was repeatedly shot at less than 45 cm./18 inches distance.
posted by markkraft at 6:45 PM on June 12, 2010


It certainly looks as though they're kicking someone on the ground (which is quite bad enough), but look at the lengthy process the soldier goes through in chambering each round. Surely any weapon they carried would be at least semi-automatic. Is it possible that he's actually firing one of the paintball guns they used (which again, would be quite bad enough)?

And really, would it hurt people to post actual video rather than blurry Youtube movies? Kudos to CulturesOfResistance for doing it properly, although I suspect their footage is more edited than they're letting on.
posted by Joe in Australia at 10:23 PM on June 12, 2010


Pope Guilty wrote: Your position is colonialist and apartheidist.

That's like saying "your body language is sexist". It's hard to define and impossible to refute.

Moorooka wrote: What Israel wants to do is to create several non-contiguous Gaza-style bantustans ...

What do you mean when you say "Israel wants to ...." Do you mean the present government wants to, or do you mean that opinion polls show support for the idea? I'd like to see evidence for either proposition.

What Israel does not want is an independent sovereign Palestine with the same borders as existed in 1967 - which is, in fact, what the Palestinians are entitled to under international law.

This was discussed at length a few months ago, but basically the 1967 borders are the ceasefire lines of 1948 - where the forward lines of each side's soldiers were when they stopped fighting. Nobody thinks they're a good idea - at least, nobody living in the area. I don't think they're supported by any UN resolution and, in fact, are contrary to both the initial Partition plan and UN resolutions about the international status of Jerusalem. I have no idea why people keep bringing them up.

Yes, they've demolished a couple of tiny remote West Bank settlements

Four, actually. And the whole of the Gaza Strip.

The demolitions - with the ridiculous settlers wailing in front of the cameras - are purely for PR purposes.

Oh my goodness. Do you not think these people are human? Do you not understand that they have lost their homes? If you have compassion for Palestinians who have lost their homes, you can surely summon some up for these Jews.
posted by Joe in Australia at 10:42 PM on June 12, 2010


That's like saying "your body language is sexist". It's hard to define and impossible to refute.

You support the domination and exploitation of a region by a foreign nation and the racial domination of one ethnicity over another. These are the essence of colonialism and apartheidism. That you do not wish to analyse your ideology- that you wish to exist, in a political sense, on the very surface of your opinions without examining them- does not relieve you of the obligation every human being has to engage in that examination.

Oh my goodness. Do you not think these people are human? Do you not understand that they have lost their homes?

They built those homes on land that they knew to be stolen, on land that was stolen specifically for them to build homes on. They had no right to live there and no right to build there. They are criminals, and you are cheering them on because you hate their victims. This is an example of colonialism- you are supporting the right of the Israelis to colonize areas which do not belong to them. These beliefs belong in the garbage along with all other imperialist/colonialist beliefs.
posted by Pope Guilty at 11:02 PM on June 12, 2010 [3 favorites]


Pope Guilty: You support the domination and exploitation of a region by a foreign nation and the racial domination of one ethnicity over another.

No, I don't.

They built those homes on land that they knew to be stolen, on land that was stolen specifically for them to build homes on.

How could you know that? Neither you nor I know exactly who Moorooka is talking about. But in any event I stand by what I said. It is an appallingly hard-hearted thing to say that someone who lost their home is "wailing in front of the cameras [...] for PR purposes".
posted by Joe in Australia at 11:29 PM on June 12, 2010


Yes, you both know who I'm talking about - the folks who constructed illegal settlements on land that was confiscated from its owners by an occupying military force, and who think that their race gives them the right to naked theft. No they don't have a right to these homes, the suggestion that they do marks you out as a pretty shameless supporter of colonial apartheid
posted by moorooka at 11:38 PM on June 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


By the way, I'm not saying that their wails are fake or anything, just that the whole thing is absurd - instead of dragging the settlers off against their will in front of the cameras, Israel should simply return its forces to its internationally recognized borders (1967 - with minor and mutual adjustments if need be), and let the settlers decide if they want to stay or go.
posted by moorooka at 11:45 PM on June 12, 2010


Yes, you both know who I'm talking about - the folks who ... think that their race gives them the right to naked theft.

Gosh, Helen, I didn't know that you had joined Metafilter.

By the way, I'm not saying that their wails are fake or anything, just that the whole thing is absurd - instead of dragging the settlers off against their will in front of the cameras, Israel should simply return its forces to its internationally recognized borders (1967 - with minor and mutual adjustments if need be)

Can you tell me by whom those borders are recognised?
posted by Joe in Australia at 11:55 PM on June 12, 2010


Gosh, Helen, I didn't know that you had joined Metafilter

your comment history indicates that this is the level of discourse to be expected from you. but of course, you can't argue the point. the settlers believe that the fact that they are Jewish justifies the land being taken from its non-Jewish owners and given to them.

You seem to agree.

Can you tell me by whom those borders are recognised?

The whole international community recognizes them as the basis of the two-state solution. United Nations, Quartet, Arab League, Barack Obama.

Simply put, the territory on one side of the green line is recognized by almost all members of the United Nations as indisputably belonging to the state of Israel (and has been since pretty much 1949). By contrast, the territory on the other side of the green line is recognized by the United Nations as "occupied Palestinian territories". These territories have not been recognized as part of Israel by any country, and apart from East Jerusalem, even Israel has not claimed it as its own territory (which hasn't stopped it building colonies there).
posted by moorooka at 12:28 AM on June 13, 2010 [2 favorites]


Gosh, Helen, I didn't know that you had joined Metafilter

God, Joe, really? This again?

How concerned are you with monitoring supposed expressions of anti-Semitism, and how interested are you, really, in thinking critically about whether those feelings come from? I/P is a mess, but working in talking points about who secretly hates the Jews doesn't help much, does it? Is the expression of any strongly negative sentiment about Israel proof that you're wearing a brown undershirt?

This is an enormously complicated conflict, and everyone has their side they'd like for everyone to accept. But what you're doing, however well-intentioned, is hurting Israel.

Stop hurting Israel.

Israel's real existential threat is delegitimization. Not from angry campus lefties or Euro-weirdos or Hamasniks who say they'd like to wipe Israel off the map. Helen Thomas' comments notwithstanding, it's unreasonable to imagine that Israelis will pack up their shit and head to Thailand en masse. But the more Israelis and their supporters in Australia and elsewhere stand behind a 43-year occupation, the more they beat this tired old drum - that "Israel pulled out of Gaza and demolished settlements in the West Bank;" if only, only the Palestinian leadership would reject violence, then everything would be ok - the less willing other people, myself included, will be to believe that anything other than a forcible imposition on Israel will change the status quo. If 25 years of left-wing activism haven't ended the occupation, then maybe boycots, divestments, and sanctions will. It worked in South Africa, and it will probably work in Israel.

The occupation and the siege of Gaza are odious stains on Israel's human rights record that no amount of hasbara, no amount of telling "our" side, will erase.

It seems to me that your basic point of view is that everything is fine, and it's the world that's crazy, not us.

But you're wrong. Today, we're crazy.

We've deluded ourselves into thinking that we only need to act humanely because it will benefit us. That's wrong. We as Israelis, as Jews, as supporters of Israel, need to act humanely because that's what's right. Period. That's what we signed on for when we asked for a nation like all the other nations of the world. Ending the occupation or the siege of Gaza won't lead to a final status agreement. But lessening the siege, ending illegal settlement are the right things to do.

The fact that Israel seems so unwilling to do what's right is what's making everybody so upset, not the possibly doctored photos or the Islamo-fascist euro alliance.
posted by awenner at 1:50 AM on June 13, 2010 [6 favorites]


Awenner wrote: How concerned are you with monitoring supposed expressions of anti-Semitism, and how interested are you, really, in thinking critically about whether those feelings come from?

I am not at all interested in thinking critically where antisemitism comes from. It has been well established that racism is pathological, not the result of critical thinking. I would much prefer to identify racism, to name and expose it, so that it will shrivel in the light of reason.

Is the expression of any strongly negative sentiment about Israel proof that you're wearing a brown undershirt?

I think talking about Jews as "the folks who ... think that their race gives them the right to naked theft" is about as clearly antisemitic a statement as can be imagined. I am astonished that you think it ought to be excused because it occurs in a discourse about Israel.
posted by Joe in Australia at 3:10 AM on June 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


I wrote: Can you tell me by whom those borders are recognised?

Moorooka wrote: The whole international community recognizes them as the basis of the two-state solution.

Those two things are not at all the same.
posted by Joe in Australia at 3:13 AM on June 13, 2010


Joe in Australia, the comment you're quoting was quite clearly referencing a small group of people, for whom it seems to be true. To take it as a general comment about Israelis or Jews is an absurd interpretation.
posted by Dysk at 3:18 AM on June 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


Those two things are not at all the same.

Actually they pretty much are - the line where sovereign Israel ends and occupied Palestine begins is the 1967 border. Is this in dispute? No.

Excluding Jerusalem, even Israel has not formally claimed any territory on the other side of it, despite relentless construction of illegal settlements and barriers across it.

Your "argument" rests on the fact that since (due to the occupation) there is, as yet, no sovereign nation on the other side of the green line, it is not yet recognized by the international community as a border between two states.

My point is that it is recognized by the whole world as the place where the border between two states belongs. It is recognized by virtually the whole world as the line beyond which Israel is an occupying power with no legal right to confiscate and colonize land, and the line to which Israeli forces must return if there is to be an end to the conflict. This is why it is the basis of the two-state solution, and lies at the root of this whole wretched issue.

This is why every discussion will eventually come back to the 67 border, and rightly so, despite the trolling efforts of pro-occupation, pro-settler colonialists like yourself to deny facts that are simple and uncontroversial to everyone in the world outside of extremist circles.
posted by moorooka at 4:28 AM on June 13, 2010


To take it as a general comment about Israelis or Jews is an absurd interpretation.
As if he doesn't know that.
posted by moorooka at 4:30 AM on June 13, 2010


Brother Dysk wrote: Joe in Australia, the comment you're quoting was quite clearly referencing a small group of people, for whom it seems to be true. To take it as a general comment about Israelis or Jews is an absurd interpretation.

It's using a classic antisemitic trope, perhaps the classic trope. Saying that "some" Jews think that they have the right to steal is no better than saying that "some" Jews drink the blood of babies. And in fact there is a steady stream of propaganda that makes both of those claims, believe it or not.

But I don't think it makes sense to read it down to those particular Jews. How would Moorooka explain this belief among settlers? Surely he wouldn't say that it's just a random happenstance, like a group of a dozen or so left-handed people who just happen to be in the same spot. He really must believe that it is typically Jewish (although perhaps not common to all Jews) to "think that their race gives them the right to naked theft."
posted by Joe in Australia at 4:32 AM on June 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


Moorooka wrote: Actually they pretty much are - the line where sovereign Israel ends and occupied Palestine begins is the 1967 border. Is this in dispute? No.

Yes, it is. Most Arab states do not recognise Israel's sovereignty over any territory. This is a rather fundamental dispute, given that Israel is in the Middle East. But more importantly, you're ignoring the difference between "this is the border" and "this is a starting point for negotiations about the border, and in the meantime please don't confuse things by building over the line."
posted by Joe in Australia at 4:41 AM on June 13, 2010


Joe in Australia, there are Jews who base their claim to Israel on their heritage and ancestry. This is a pretty central part of the Zionist movement. To point this out is not tantamount to anti-Semitism, and to claim that it is is ridiculous.
posted by Dysk at 4:48 AM on June 13, 2010


It's using a classic antisemitic trope, perhaps the classic trope. Saying that "some" Jews think that they have the right to steal is no better than saying that "some" Jews drink the blood of babies. And in fact there is a steady stream of propaganda that makes both of those claims, believe it or not.

But I don't think it makes sense to read it down to those particular Jews. How would Moorooka explain this belief among settlers? Surely he wouldn't say that it's just a random happenstance, like a group of a dozen or so left-handed people who just happen to be in the same spot. He really must believe that it is typically Jewish (although perhaps not common to all Jews) to "think that their race gives them the right to naked theft."
Flagged Joe, and I'm not going to dignify that pathetic garbage with a response.
posted by moorooka at 4:48 AM on June 13, 2010


Most Arab states do not recognise Israel's sovereignty over any territory.
That's because their recognition is conditional on Israeli withdrawal to the 1967 borders.
The Arab League members unanimously endorsed the peace initiative on March 27.[11] It consists of a comprehensive proposal to end the entire Arab-Israeli conflict.[2] It provides in a relevant part:

“ (a) Complete withdrawal from the occupied Arab territories, including the Syrian Golan Heights, to the 4 June 1967 line and the territories still occupied in southern Lebanon; (b) Attain a just solution to the problem of Palestinian refugees to be agreed upon in accordance with the UN General Assembly Resolution No 194. (c) Accept the establishment of an independent and sovereign Palestinian state on the Palestinian territories occupied since 4 June 1967 in the West Bank and Gaza Strip with East Jerusalem as its capital. In return the Arab states will do the following: (a) Consider the Arab-Israeli conflict over, sign a peace agreement with Israel, and achieve peace for all states in the region; (b) Establish normal relations with Israel within the framework of this comprehensive peace.[2]
posted by moorooka at 4:51 AM on June 13, 2010


There was never a claim that "some Jews" anything. There was a claim about "these specific Jews right here" which is delineated and specific in way that the former is not, rendering a reading of it as a general statement illogical.
posted by Dysk at 6:46 AM on June 13, 2010


Brother Dysk wrote: there are Jews who base their claim to Israel on their heritage and ancestry.

Yes, but that's not a "race" thing. I know we've had the whole is-Jewishness-ethnic-or-religious thing a thousand times, but I bet nobody says that they have a racial right to Israel, in the absence of ethnic or religious affiliation. Turning it into a racial thing is ... well, racist. When was the last time you heard someone talk about "the Jewish race"?

More substantively, you say that there are Jews whose religion leads them to mistakenly assert their ownership of one particular thing. Moorooka says that there are Jews who "think that their race gives them the right to naked theft". Those two assertions are not the same: Moorooka's is consistent (and I would argue dependent) on the classic antisemitic stereotype of the thieving, conniving Jew. Yours isn't.
posted by Joe in Australia at 6:54 AM on June 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


Can anyone translate the Arabic/Turkish parts at the beginning of the video? It's interesting to know what they were talking about.
posted by alon at 7:51 AM on June 13, 2010


"If you have compassion for Palestinians who have lost their homes, you can surely summon some up for these Jews."

It's Israel that is the agent, not Jews. Israel is a state, Jewish is a religion. Most Jews are not Israeli. Many are not Zionist.
posted by vapidave at 8:05 AM on June 13, 2010


be careful of footage declared "raw." Reuters got caught with photos they had cropped and otherwise fixed to make the flotilla people look a lot better. Caught, Reuters finally released

Indeed, raw data is too serious an object to be entrusted to CEOs
posted by elpapacito at 8:07 AM on June 13, 2010



I wrote: "If you have compassion for Palestinians who have lost their homes, you can surely summon some up for these Jews."

Vapidave wrote: It's Israel that is the agent, not Jews. Israel is a state, Jewish is a religion. Most Jews are not Israeli. Many are not Zionist.

Moorooka was mocking Jews who had been expelled from their homes in the West Bank and Gaza by saying that "The demolitions - with the ridiculous settlers wailing in front of the cameras - are purely for PR purposes." Can you see that your comment was not only trite (somebody or other seems to make it here daily) but absolutely irrelevant? Moorooka was talking specifically about Jews. So was I. I think we each understood the distinction.
posted by Joe in Australia at 8:12 AM on June 13, 2010


MeTa
posted by Burhanistan at 8:34 AM on June 13, 2010



"I am not at all interested in thinking critically where antisemitism comes from."

...or bothering to distinguish that antisemitism might actually be antizionism.

"It has been well established that racism is pathological, not the result of critical thinking."

... and therefore, if one were to conflate opposition to zionism, which to most people is very similar in practice to apartheid, then one wouldn't have to accept the rational arguments against it.

(Clearly, most Jewish people were antisemites 100 years ago, because most of them were antizionist too. )

"I would much prefer to identify racism, to name and expose it, so that it will shrivel in the light of reason"

Aw, c'mon. There's no reason to drag your previous comments about Arabs into this discussion.

"I think talking about Jews as "the folks who ... think that their race gives them the right to naked theft" is about as clearly antisemitic a statement as can be imagined."

But the full quote was:
"the folks who constructed illegal settlements on land that was confiscated from its owners by an occupying military force, and who think that their race gives them the right to naked theft."

Clearly, the Jews did not construct illegal settlements in Palestine. Aggressively zionist Israelis did... though they do happen to be Jewish.

It's a shame that aggressively zionist Israelis are blackening the reputation of an entire noble religion, but hey, let's face it... they are. Every bit as much as jihadists are blackening the name of Islam.
posted by markkraft at 8:59 AM on June 13, 2010 [3 favorites]


While it might be true that nobody would explicitly claim a racial right to the state of Israel, there are many who would claim an ethnic right, which they would not be able to separate entirely from its racial component. As an off-hand remark, race stands in reasonably well for ethnicity in the context in which moorooka used it, particularly if one wishes the emphasise the exclusionary and exceptional nature of such a claim.
posted by Dysk at 9:05 AM on June 13, 2010


...or pedophile priests and the Roman Catholic Church, for that matter.

None of the above are fair critiques against an entire religion, and yet it's the occasional willingness of some parts of the clergy and their followers to keep turning a blind eye -- or give a nod and a wink -- to such behaviors that allows injustice justified in the name of religion to continue.

It's only right and just that all major religions are being tested in such a way, I think. If there really is a God with a plan somewhere, I would hope this collective housecleaning would be part of it.
posted by markkraft at 9:28 AM on June 13, 2010


Gosh, Helen, I didn't know that you had joined Metafilter

Do not do this. There is an open MeTa thread on this topic where you can take meta-discussion. If you can not have this discussion in good faith, treating other members of the community with respect, you need to go elsewhere. I would prefer you made this decision on your own.
posted by jessamyn at 9:41 AM on June 13, 2010


Moorooka was talking specifically about Jews.

Yeah. Jewish settlers on illegally stolen Palestinian land in the occupied West Bank and Gaza. If you have a genuine problem or really require further clarification with anything I've said you can contact me by MeMail, assuming you actually believe your own ludicrous comments and aren't just throwing slime as per your past comment history.
posted by moorooka at 8:19 PM on June 13, 2010


Gandhi operated as the friendly, peaceful option for the British in a country where armed insurgents were routinely killing British soldiers. He provided them a way out without admitting that they'd lost.

Quite so. Slick, wasn't it?

It's unsurprising that people like to pretend that Gandhi's nonviolent resistance somehow all-by-itself got the British out of India, being as it's a fantasy that a) validates the liberal desire to believe that every conflict can be resolved peacefully and violence is unnecessary and b) basically tells any group that's being shat on that the only legitimate means of resistance is to accept whatever is done to them and resist nonviolently, rather than defending themselves.

I trust that my points above about making a careful distinction between peace activists on the one hand and armed resistance movements on the other have been sufficiently clear that you're not including me amongst the people who suffer from this kind of confusion.

My point is that if you're going to do peace activism, do peace activism. If you're going to do armed resistance, do armed resistance. People (as in individuals, not as in populations) who try to do both at once will simply end up making everything worse. If you're organizing a peaceful protest, it pays to weed out the hot-heads.

The constant fellating of Gandhi in discussions like this one makes me sick.

I fail to see how pointing to Gandhi as the man who basically wrote the book on non-violent peace activism, and pointing out how predictably poorly things tend to work out for self-styled peace activists who ignore that book, constitutes fellatio. Perhaps you'd care to spell it out.
posted by flabdablet at 11:07 PM on June 13, 2010


If you think peaceful activism works on its own, you are so profoundly historically ignorant that your tongue should refuse to speak in shame.
posted by Pope Guilty at 11:38 PM on June 13, 2010


"If Canada had done the same to the US for decades, and had been repeatedly asked to stop through diplomacy, yet the attacks continued, what do you think the US response would be?"

You mean if the US invaded Canada, declared it to be the US, imposed US laws, occupied the territory with US citizens who were given more rights, stole Canadian houses and gave them (furnished even) to people from the US and put some Canadians in reservations and limited imports to bare subsistance levels right? The temerity of those Canadians.
zarq your participation in these threads is usually quite reasonable and appreciated from this quarter but in the above cite your analogy is utter horseshit.
My grandfather's atlas shows a country called Palestine where Israel is now.

I get a bit wound up about this but I spare these discussions my ire. I do have the luxury of not being invested, taxes aside, on either side of this mess. What I see from the advocates of Israel is a failure to entertain, or acknowledge, what it must be like to be Palestinian. I understand this may be an effect of media and hope it isn't the case. The question I have for those that invoke the holocaust is how do you justify collecting from Palestinians a debt (invoker terms, I'm not so certain) owed by Germans?
posted by vapidave at 11:41 PM on June 13, 2010 [4 favorites]


If you think peaceful activism works on its own, you are so profoundly historically ignorant that your tongue should refuse to speak in shame.

If you can link to a comment where I made any such claim, my present estimation of your reading comprehension skills will rise.

I'd also like to suggest that watching this lecture from Norman Finkelstein that moorooka linked upthread would be a good use of your time.
posted by flabdablet at 4:20 AM on June 14, 2010


Vapidave wrote: My grandfather's atlas shows a country called Palestine where Israel is now.

I bet you it doesn't. It probably shows the British Mandate of Palestine, and it probably covers the area of now-Jordan as well as now-Israel. Jordan was carved out of that Mandate in 1947 (although the process had been started a couple of decades earlier) and the idea was that two more states would be carved out of the remainder. In the event only Israel was created: the area that would have been an Arab state mostly ended up as part of Jordan (but was captured by Israel in 1967).

The question I have for those that invoke the holocaust is how do you justify collecting from Palestinians a debt (invoker terms, I'm not so certain) owed by Germans?

There was a substantial Jewish population in former-Palestine before the Holocaust, and the British already had plans to subdivide it in order to separate the warring groups. But if I were going to justify using then-Palestine as a home for Jewish refugees I suppose I would say that refugees don't have a choice, so the moral question isn't theirs; and in any event the question is moot because Israel is now the home of their children and great-grandchildren, who had no choice at all.
posted by Joe in Australia at 5:06 AM on June 14, 2010


The CIfWatch blog has identified footage that appears to show activists discussing how "these Turks" plan to deal with Israeli soldiers. Here's the relevant bit:
Voice A: “They get held hostage or they get chucked off”

Voice B: “Chucked off?”

Voice A: “They get chucked off – they get thrown off.”

A few minutes later, Voice A explains things further for Voice B:

Voice A: “These guys … these Turks … they’re not like us … [we] come from an easy life … [they are not] just on a boat to Gaza…they’re always ready for these things.”

After a pause, Voice B expresses his concern, which is dismissed by Voice A:

Voice B: “So they’re ready to fight?”

Voice A: “Whatever happens.”
posted by Joe in Australia at 5:12 AM on June 14, 2010


"...and in any event the question is moot because Israel is now the home of their children and great-grandchildren, who had no choice at all."

This is sadly more true of Palestinians. You didn't answer the question.
How about we mandate Australia to be the new homeland and treat Australians as the Israelis do Palestinians? I'm sure you would have no problem with that right? Can we start with your house as a show of good faith?
posted by vapidave at 5:50 AM on June 14, 2010


[comment removed - Joe in Australia, MetaTalk is your option at this point]
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 6:56 AM on June 14, 2010


Iranian aid ships head for Gaza
posted by homunculus at 9:40 AM on June 14, 2010










This is (maybe) movement in the right direction but in the article there are no details and the second paragraph states:
"Israel will allow items into Gaza unless they feature on a new list which specifies banned goods."
So items will be allowed unless they aren't allowed.
What is the opposite of a Friday News Dump? Sunday News Hummer?
Tomorrows water cooler talk will be that Israel eased the restrictions on imports to Gaza.
I'd like to see the new list before I come to any conclusions.
posted by vapidave at 12:41 PM on June 20, 2010








Re: the disputed borders, and who recognizes them

The United Nations recognizes the pre-1967 borders, and has issued multiple resolutions requiring Israel to return to them.

Re: America and Canada

The question of what America would do has two answers, one practical and one moral. If Canada kept launching "terrorist" attacks, we would no doubt keep attacking them, keep imprisoning them, keep bombing them. That's the practical answer. However, that response would be unjust and immoral, as it was predicated on defending an immoral act to begin with.
posted by klangklangston at 10:36 AM on June 27, 2010






Humanitarian aid workers? I wasn't aware that they worked in that capacity.
posted by Joe in Australia at 1:03 PM on July 10, 2010


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