Comments: Why Does The New Republic Hate Israel?

And take a look if you can at the commenters. Jeez!

Posted by empty at January 3, 2009 01:33 AM

I think WE can ALL agree that the ONLY answer is to bomb Iran into the stoneage.

Posted by Mike Meyer at January 3, 2009 01:49 AM

Well, he has written for the Washington Post and the New York Times so he must be telling the truth. If he mentioned the 400 or so murdered Palestinians I must have missed it but I couldn’t read the whole column though I tried. Come to think of it that’s what the NYT and the WaPo does, leave out information that would have a direct bearing on what they are reporting. I realize it might be too much to expect from the TNR to have the highest regard for journalistic excellence since it is one of the finest publications ever but “filth” describes it perfectly.

Posted by Rob Payne at January 3, 2009 02:18 AM

Rob Payne: Possibly because the Palestinians we already in the stoneage when they got bombed, therefore not that newsworthy a feat.

Posted by Mike Meyer at January 3, 2009 03:25 AM

Let's be fair here. That could have been written by Pelosi.

Posted by Dick Durata at January 3, 2009 03:29 AM

When Halevi refers to "moderate Arabs" it sounds like an insult. I subscribed to TNR for 12 years, until the cheerleading for Iraqwar 2 in 2002 became too much to take. Now I think if I frequented their website today I would feel too great an urge to write "you realize you're all a bunch of racist, delusional motherfuckers, don't you?"

So I don't.

I imagine Egypt is a tinderbox of resentment right now, as Mubarak toes the line and keeps the border shut. How that translates to stabilization of the region, or in any way a net benefit to the US, is beyond me.

Posted by Jonathan Versen at January 3, 2009 04:49 AM

It was Israel at its best. In response to random attacks aimed at its civilians, Israel launched precise attacks aimed at terrorists. In place of political schism, Israel suspended election campaigning, and initiated coooperation [sic] between government and opposition.

So we've got bombing and suspended elections. What's not to like?

Posted by SteveB at January 3, 2009 11:24 AM

Israelis will not tolerate again being turned into a nation of shut-ins, fearful of congregating with their fellow citizens and ceding their public space to terror.

Of course, that has been given away to Palestinians very ggenerously long time ago!

If the international community forces the IDF to end the operation before the missile threat against southern Israel is resolved, Israelis will inevitably conclude that, even when we withdraw to the 1967 borders, as we did on the Gaza front in 2005, the international community will not allow us to protect ourselves.

Israel's repeated lies about 2005 unilateral disengagement from Gaza translating into freedom, unchallenged by MSM has been their best propaganda.

Israel has accepted the principle of a two-state solution; Hamas's goal is the destruction of Israel.

I believe, the author was crossing his fingers behinf his back when he wrote this.

Dead civilians are not an Israeli interest but a Hamas interest:

Of course, dead civilians do not complain and can not be witnesses to war crimes. The author is deranged.

We still don't know what the government wants to achieve, and what the army believes is achievable. What constitutes victory? Will we know how to translate military success into political gain?

This sounds rather eerily familiar. Our govt does not know what it wants out of its wars either and how do you define victory for plitical gain? To make matters worse, for The USA or Israel, there is no dictionary that provides the answer.

Prof Chazelle, if I knew a word that could be worse than "FILTH", I would use it.

ps and why restrict this to only Pelosi? any Likudnik democrat would have been more than happy to write and support it to out do his/her colleague! I am shocked at my usually sensible senior senator issuing an outrageous staement about Gaza offensive.

Posted by Rupa Shah at January 3, 2009 02:34 PM

"random attacks"
"precise attacks aimed at"
The coldly specific language of psychopaths.

Posted by roy belmont at January 3, 2009 02:43 PM

What does Hamas want? Answer based on: its Charter? Other documents or speeches? Actions?

Posted by donescobar at January 3, 2009 02:52 PM

Other Documents and Speeches for 500 Alex?

April. 21, 2008

The leader of Hamas said Monday that his Palestinian militant group would offer Israel a 10-year "hudna," or truce, as implicit proof of recognition of Israel if it withdrew from all lands it seized in the 1967 Middle East War.

Khaled Mashaal told The Associated Press that he made the offer to former U.S. President Jimmy Carter in talks on Saturday. "We have offered a truce if Israel withdraws to the 1967 borders, a truce of 10 years as a proof of recognition," Mashaal said.

In his comments Monday, Mashaal used the Arabic word "hudna," meaning truce, which is more concrete than "tahdiya" — a period of calm — which Hamas often uses to describe a simple cease-fire.


In Washington, the State Department dismissed Carter’s assessment of his meetings, saying there was no indication Hamas wanted peace with Israel.[/i]

And a bit on the history of Hamas rejectionism in the media.

Posted by BenP at January 3, 2009 03:38 PM

Edit button, thou have forsaken me.

Posted by BenP at January 3, 2009 03:41 PM

BOTH SIDES ought to go back to talking to GOD instead of George Bush, Dick Cheney or Condi Rice.

Posted by Mike Meyer at January 3, 2009 03:41 PM

The GOD who flooded the whole world because he got pissed off at a few sinners?
Or, do you have another deity in mind?

Posted by donescobar at January 3, 2009 03:46 PM

In fact, Sheikh Ahmed Yassin said he'd be happy with a 100-year hudna. Then Israel bumped him off.

But go on reading from the Hasbara playbook, donescobar. Yes, of course, if only Hamas recognized Israel the colonization of Palestine would come to an end. Same old tune. Same old drivel.

Posted by Bernard Chazelle at January 3, 2009 03:48 PM

Thank you, BenP
So we got (much simplified) Hamas of old (military solution only aimed at end of Zionist entity-no recognition-antisemitic forgeries in its Charter) vs the new, changed Hamas (10-year hudna-recognition-if Israel withdraws to pre-1967 borders.)

Posted by donescobar at January 3, 2009 03:59 PM

And as the author wished, the news alert..

Israeli ground forces enter Gaza Israel's military says ground forces are crossing the Gaza border in an escalation of the offensive against the territory's Hamas rulers. Defense officials say around 10,000 soldiers have massed along the border in recent days. More at:

What kind of atrocities we are going to witness now?

Posted by Rupa Shah at January 3, 2009 04:05 PM

donescobar: Whomever. No matter who did what in the past, TODAYS problem in the world of cause and effect-- George Bush, Dick Cheney, Condi Rice=CAUSE/EFFECT= bombing Gaza to build a case to bomb Iran. I would suggest THE GOD OF ABRAHAM, ISAAC, AND JACOB. ANY would do though, other than the 3 individuals named and their bootlickers of course.

Posted by Mike Meyer at January 3, 2009 04:08 PM

Mike Meyer, the -- ahem: THE GOD OF ABRAHAM, ISAAC, AND JACOB is the same god who ordered the children of Israel to invade Canaan, slaughtering every human being and the livestock in the cities, then burning them to the ground. In some other cities, virgin girls were to be spared, so that they could be enslaved... Y'know, I'm getting a sense of deja vu here. Yahweh yesterday, Yahweh today, Yahweh tomorrow.

Posted by Duncan at January 3, 2009 04:14 PM

OK, Bernard.
Israel has driven Hamas back to its old stance because its colonization of Palestine will go on, no matter what offers Hamas makes. Same old.
So, here we are, and I'm off, sadly convinced there is no solution, only the eventual demise of one people or the other in the contested area. That's where I started out from.
March of Folly, as usual, with new marchers ever so often. But there's work to be done, at least on the local and individual level.

Posted by donescobar at January 3, 2009 04:14 PM

Duncan: Yeah, that's THE ONE.
donescobar: ALL they need do is RECOGNIZE AND NEGOTIATE. Everyone had to recognize and negotiate the bad faith cease fire that ended last week. That lasted 6 months. Israel said that Hamas did indeed exist and was shooting at them and Hamas did indeed say Israel existed and was shooting back. They signed a paper, a contract.

Posted by Mike Meyer at January 3, 2009 04:26 PM

BenP: I have, thou hast, she hath, for what it's worth.

Posted by Save the Oocytes at January 3, 2009 07:08 PM

One rather astonishing impression I get from some of the pieces recommended here (ranging from quite good to simple-minded) is this:
Israel has not changed in sixty years! "It has never..." (wanted peace etc etc)
Is this really true? Do most believe this, attributing this deadly consistency to its idelogical enslavement by Zionism?
The USA has certainly changed since I arrived here in 1948.
The Soviet Union changed.
Germany, from my two stays there (first in the US Army, then as a guest prof) changed substantially.
But Israel seems stuck in the same Zionist, colonialist, racist rut from 1948 to 2008.
On my two visits, 2o+ years apart, I saw what seemed to me significant changes, some for the worse, all coming about through internal and external forces or pressures.
I don't get that sense from most of the recommended stuff. Is it because all of Israel's history is seen through the glasses of current events? But that's bad history.
Oh well.

Posted by donescobar at January 4, 2009 12:41 AM

This post by Tony Karon is a must read. It may answer some of your questions.

"How the 1967 War Doomed Israel"

Posted by Rupa Shah at January 4, 2009 09:46 AM

This post by Tony Karon is a must read. It may answer some of your questions.

"How the 1967 War Doomed Israel"

Posted by Rupa Shah at January 4, 2009 09:47 AM

The New Republic is the progaganda organ of a foreign power, a foreign power whose interests are not the same as the interests of the United States.

Posted by ColinLaney at January 4, 2009 11:24 AM

The New Republic is the progaganda organ of a foreign power, a foreign power whose interests are not the same as the interests of the United States.

Posted by ColinLaney at January 4, 2009 11:24 AM

I read Karon, and he makes a good point.
But I was trying to find out why, it seems to me, Israel's history is seen by many the way Germany's was in the decade after WWII: an inevitable straight line from Luther to Hitler.
But it wasn't. The triumph of Hitler was preventable, it could have happened differently in Germany. No denying the powerful drives and contexts propelling Germany towards Nazism, but opposing thought and tradition were there too.
I think the same is true of Israel--it didn't have to come to this, to where Israel is and what it is today. Things inside Israel and others from outside played roles in how it did turn out.
But that goes against certain scenarios--like those interpretations of German history that saw German ideas and politics on a set track.
The mood of today, deeply anti-historic, favors the either-or views in history.

Posted by donescobar at January 4, 2009 11:41 AM

And here is what Prof. Finkelstein thinks which Yossi Klein Halevi may not approve of ( who cares for his approval anyway?!)!

"Norman Gary Finkelstein on gaza crises"

Posted by Rupa Shah at January 4, 2009 02:16 PM


The mood of today, deeply anti-historic, favors the either-or views in history.

Could you please elaborate? I do not understand what point you are trying to make. And I am trying to learn. Specifically, what are you referrring to when you say 'either-or'? Thanks.

Posted by Rupa Shah at January 4, 2009 03:10 PM

The notion that it had to be either Zionism as a philosophy and policy of oppression and apartheid or a multi-national/ethnic ideal from the beginning till today.
It did not.

Posted by donescobar at January 4, 2009 04:51 PM

Most observers who aren't just drooling on their bibs either see it as purely geo-politics or purely metaphysical. There's virtually no correspondence between those two camps, and virtually no overlap between articulate representatives of them.
Metaphysics: read the book of Joshua, the fall of Jericho, a story which many of us were told repeatedly as children that has no other justification than Jewish desire for what Jericho had, the rhetoric is tightly parallel.
Dismissing the spiritual aspects of that, as most rational observers do, discounting it, means a large part of what's happening doesn't appear in the discussion.
That's a dangerous attitude. As Bush began inflating with power the fundamentalist gas gathered up by his puppetmasters was ridiculed widely by rational observers at the time. Confronting it for what it really was might have gone some way to stopping it, and helped prevent what this is now becoming.
This is, as that was, greatly fueled by delusion and spiritual confusion, not just greed and arrogant myopia.
It didn't have to be like this, and especially it doesn't have to go where it seems to head almost ineluctably now. But to turn it we have to get down to what's really happening, and see it as that, not as what we want it to be - what it is.

Posted by roy belmont at January 4, 2009 06:35 PM

Thank you for clarifying your point.
If I may, I recommend the following article.
"Survival of the Fittest?"
An Interview with Benny Morris

"That was the situation. That is what Zionism faced. A Jewish state would not have come into being without the uprooting of 700,000 Palestinians. Therefore it was necessary to uproot them. There was no choice but to expel that population. It was necessary to cleanse the hinterland and cleanse the border areas and cleanse the main roads. It was necessary to cleanse the villages from which our convoys and our settlements were fired on."

"If Ben-Gurion had carried out a large expulsion and cleansed the whole country - the whole Land of Israel, as far as the Jordan River. It may yet turn out that this was his fatal mistake. If he had carried out a full expulsion - rather than a partial one - he would have stabilized the State of Israel for generations."

The above paras from that article should give you some idea of the intent which has continued to this day.

roy belmont
Thank you for your input.

Posted by Rupa Shah at January 4, 2009 09:37 PM