Friday, February 14, 2020

Is Palestinian Terrorism Good For Israel?



1. Introduction of the Issue

The Question
The question of this post is whether or not Palestinian Terrorism is good for Israel. In order to answer the question one needs to define "what is good for Israel". For purposes of this post I will assume that what is good for Israel is land. The post will then discuss the historical relationship between Palestinian Terrorism and its effect on the quantity of Israeli land. 


2. Discussion


1947 UN Partition Plan For Israel/Palestine
The above is the original proposed separation of land for Israel and the Palestinians per the 1947 UN Partition Plan. This post will emphasize the changing relationship over time/events/offers between Israeli land and (offered/non-Israeli) Palestinian land. The comparison will primarily be quantitative rather than qualitative as quantitative is more objective. 

Per this plan Israel was to receive 54% of the land, the Palestinians 45% and 1% would be the International city of Jerusalem. Qualitatively, the majority of the land is in the Negev desert and Israel was allocated almost all of the Negev. 

Reactions

Israeli/Jewish = Acceptance of Plan.

Palestinian/Arab = Rejection of Plan and position that it would not accept any land being given to a Jewish State. 

Subsequent Events

On May 14th 1948 Great Britain left Israel/Palestine. The next day all surrounding Arab countries invaded Israel with the intention of not allowing any Israeli/Jewish State. Egypt and Jordan, the two main invading Arab powers, did not intend any Palestinian State either, they wanted to colonize parts of Israel/Palestine for themselves. It's unclear, if the Palestinians would have been able to decide for themselves, whether or not to accept the Partition Plan, they would have or not. In any case they allied with the surrounding Arab countries.

In preparation for the invasion Palestinian/Arab leaders publicly threatened that the intent of the invasion went well beyond a mere military victory:


"Haj Amin al-Husseini said in March 1948 to an interviewer in a Jaffa daily Al Sarih that the Arabs did not intend merely to prevent partition but "would continue fighting until the Zionists were Annihilated".[115]"

[Note al-Husseini was the highest Muslim religious figure in Palestine and had recruited Palestinians for the SS during WWII]


Arab Higher Committee:


"The Palestinian Arabs make a grave declaration before the UN, before God and before history that they will never submit to any power that comes to Palestine to impose a partition. The only way to establish a partition is to get rid of them all: men, women, and children."


Arab League's Secretary-General Azzam Pasha:


"I personally wish that the Jews do not drive us to this war, as this will be a war of extermination and a momentous massacre which will be spoken of like the Mongolian massacres and the Crusades"

Plenty more where those came from but you get the idea. 


Conclusion = Palestinian/Arab reaction to Israeli/Jewish acceptance of the Partition Plan was Terrorism. 

Saturday, July 27, 2019

The Counting Of The Omar (Antisemitic Statements). Is Ilhan Omar Antisemitic?


1. Introduction of the Issue

The Question
The question of this post is whether or not Ilhan Omar is antisemitic. In order to answer the question one needs to select a definition of antisemitism. For purposes of this post I will use the most recent definition of antisemitism which is used by some governments agencies and generally by the United States which is =
Working Definition of Antisemitism

The Working Definition of Antisemitism has the following definition:

“Antisemitism is a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of antisemitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.”

With the following examples:

"Calling for, aiding, or justifying the killing or harming of Jews in the name of a radical ideology or an extremist view of religion.





  • Making mendacious, dehumanizing, demonizing, or stereotypical allegations about Jews as such or the power of Jews as collective — such as, especially but not exclusively, the myth about a world Jewish conspiracy or of Jews controlling the media, economy, government or other societal institutions.
     
  • Accusing Jews as a people of being responsible for real or imagined wrongdoing committed by a single Jewish person or group, or even for acts committed by non-Jews.
     
  • Denying the fact, scope, mechanisms (e.g. gas chambers) or intentionality of the genocide of the Jewish people at the hands of National Socialist Germany and its supporters and accomplices during World War II (the Holocaust).
     
  • Accusing the Jews as a people, or Israel as a state, of inventing or exaggerating the Holocaust.
     
  • Accusing Jewish citizens of being more loyal to Israel, or to the alleged priorities of Jews worldwide, than to the interests of their own nations.
     
  • Denying the Jewish people their right to self-determination, e.g., by claiming that the existence of a State of Israel is a racist endeavor.
     
  • Applying double standards by requiring of it a behavior not expected or demanded of any other democratic nation.
     
  • Using the symbols and images associated with classic antisemitism (e.g., claims of Jews killing Jesus or blood libel) to characterize Israel or Israelis.
     
  • Drawing comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to that of the Nazis.
     
  • Holding Jews collectively responsible for actions of the state of Israel." 

  • Note that the above generally contain two significant elements:


    1. Assuming a negative conclusion regarding Israel/Jews while denying/minimizing the related discussions/arguments needed to support the conclusion. 

    2. Applying standards to Israel/Jews that are not applied to others, especially those most in conflict with Israel/Jews.

    Application of Omar's Significant Statements to The Question
    As Israel is currently most in conflict with Hamas, this post will only consider significant statements from Omar regarding Israel or Hamas. Omar's statements then will be evaluated specifically based on the examples above and generally based on their extent of double standards. 

    2. Discussion



    A neutral place to start looking would be Omar's Wikipedia page at the 

    Israeli–Palestinian conflict section:



    1. "she supports the BDS movement"

    Here we have the double standard that she supports penalties unilaterally against Israel without any consideration of penalties against those that Israel is in conflict with or for that matter any other country in the known Universe.

    2. A 2012 Tweet "Israel has hypnotized the world, may Allah awaken the people and help them see the evil doings of Israel,"

    This is a direct demonization of Israel ("hypnotized"and "evil") and she has further given it a religious context by using "Allah" for God. She initially claimed a defense of limited demonization, just Israel and not Jews. However, the context she uses it in is limited to Jewish Israel and not all of Israel which includes a significant amount of non-Jews. Plus, her context includes that the supposed victims of Israel are the non Jews in Israel. So she is demonizing a group of Jews, which happen to comprise about half the Jews in the world.

    Omar subsequently apologized for the tweet confessing that the demonizing language she used has been common historical antisemitic rhetoric used against Jews in general and could therefore be understood/connected to all Jews and not just Israel. But this is not a defense here as she has left her intent as demonizing Israel. 

    Wednesday, December 5, 2018

    Why Did CNN Terminate Its Contract With Marc Lamont Hill?



    1. Introduction of the Issue

    What Happened?
    CNN recently terminated its contract with Marc Lamont Hill for Commentator services. A quick search of the Internet does not show a direct related statement from CNN. However, it's generally accepted that this is true and the best second hand statement seen (from CNN Business) is:

    CNN severs ties with liberal pundit Marc Lamont Hill after his controversial remarks on Israel:

    "(CNN)CNN said Thursday that it had severed ties with contributor Marc Lamont Hill following controversial comments the liberal pundit made about Israel.
    "Marc Lamont Hill is no longer under contract with CNN," a spokesperson for CNN confirmed in a short statement.
    The move was first reported by the media news website Mediaite."
    Why It Happened?
    So far CNN has not publicly stated why it terminated the contract so you have to try and deduce/guess why. A summary of the first page of a related Google search gives popular reasons/guesses. Note that those critical of Hill give relatively better potential main specific reasons for why the contract was terminated and those supportive of Hill give relatively worse reasons:

    The Washington Post = Apologists for Israel conducted a smear and harassment campaign.

    Jewish Journal = For saying “free Palestine from the river to the sea,”.

    Jewish Exponent = For saying “free Palestine from the river to the sea,”.

    Campus Reform = For saying “free Palestine from the river to the sea,”.

    Insider NJ = For supporting equal rights for Palestinians.

    The Inquirer = For saying “free Palestine from the river to the sea,”.

    Al Dia = For saying “free Palestine from the river to the sea,”.

    TruthOut = For saying “free Palestine from the river to the sea,”.

    BreakingIsraelNews = For saying “free Palestine from the river to the sea,”.

    Ebony = For saying “free Palestine from the river to the sea,”.


    2. Discussion


    1. The Contract
    CNN has not released any information about the contract between CNN and Hill so the terms needed to be guessed at. Something to look at than would be known contract information from similar contracts between commentators and major networks, especially CNN. Unfortunately CNN also does not appear to release general information regarding contracts with Commentators either. Since Hill and others who have had their contracts terminated by CNN have not stated exactly what was in the contract that caused its termination we can only deduce that one term of the contract was that the Commentator was prohibited from revealing the terms of the contract. 

    2. Possible Terms of the Contract that Caused Termination
    Commentator contracts often limit the commentator from making comments that the Network considers overly negative such as inflammatory, prejudiced, biased, controversial and false. The Network could decide that a Commentator went over the limit with a single comment, an entire commentary or cumulative comments in commentaries on the same subject. 

    A contract could also have a term that the Network reserves the right to terminate the contract without cause. This could be caused by a Commentator being too controversial, outside pressure on the Network or the Network simply deciding that this Commentator was not a very good commentator. 


    3. The Best Reason is the Worst Comment
    The best reason to terminate is usually the one worst comment because individual comments are easier to publicize than cumulative ones. Let's look for the possible worst comment by Hill in his recent speech to the UN:



    The worst comment appears to be:
    “Contrary to western mythology, black resistance to American apartheid did not come purely through Ghandi and nonviolence," Hill said (see video below.) "Rather, slave revolts and self-defense and tactics otherwise divergent from Dr. King or Mahatma Gandhi were equally important to preserving safety and attaining freedom. If we are to operate in true solidarity with the Palestinian people, we must allow the Palestinian people the same range of opportunity and political possibility. If we are standing in solidarity with the Palestinian people, we must recognize the right of an occupied people to defend itself. We must prioritize peace, but we must not romanticize or fetishize it. We must advocate and promote nonviolence at every opportunity, but we cannot endorse a narrow politics of respectability that shames Palestinians for resisting, for refusing to do nothing in the face of state violence and ethnic cleansing."

    In just one paragraph Hill manages to present the entire range of positions on Palestinian Terrorism:

    1) Advocate against it.

    2) Advocate against it but don't criticize it.

    3) Accept it but do not prioritize it.

    4) Advocate for it.

    Of course the worst of this range would be advocating Palestinian Terrorism. Hill does not say this directly but a strong implication from being in favor of Palestinian Terrorism would be somewhere in between also being in favor of increased Israeli civilian casualties or at least a position with a consequence of increased Israeli civilian casualties. Note that in general an increase in Palestinian Terrorism (or for those who think the two words do not go together like Arafat & Nobel or President & Trump, "violence") is exponentially more likely to cause exponentially more Palestinian casualties than Israeli. 

    In summary Hill is clearly in favor of increased Palestinian violence and his being unclear on his exact position of Palestinian Terrorism and the related effect of increased Israeli civilian casualties leaves it open, especially to his critics, to interpret the worst.

    The next best worst comment appears to be:

    "Give us what justice requires -- and that is a free Palestine from the river to the sea"

    "from the river to the sea" has always been not just a but the main political slogan of The Palestinians/Hamas supporting a goal of complete Palestinian control of all of Israel:

    From the river to the sea

    4. The Cumulative Reason for Termination
    Per the above Hill at a minimum called for increased Palestinian violence and invoked the traditional Palestinian rallying cry for the elimination of the Country of Israel in the same speech. 

    Further cumulative effect may have been that the above also made CNN consider Hill's previous controversial comments on the same subject such as:

    JEWISH JOURNAL
    “How can you romanticize nonviolence when you have a state that is at all moments waging war against you, against your bodies, poisoning your water, limiting your access to water, locking up your children, killing them,” Hill said. “We can’t romanticize resistance.”

    Yikes! Since retracted.

    MRCNewsBusters

    "But what the Iron Dome does is it also takes away all of Hamas's military leverage which is very different than say, 10 years ago or 15 years ago in other wars like Lebanon, et cetera. As a result, it not only serves a defensive purpose but de facto serves an offensive purpose. It allows Israel to essentially assault and siege Gaza without any retribution or response on the other side. So again, to some extent, they are not just funding defense, they are funding an offensive war and ultimately an occupation. That for me, is the problem."

    Hill is against Israel having the Iron Dome defense which helps protect Israeli civilians from Palestinian Terrorist Rocket attacks.


    Hill was a supporter of Ward Churchill who was a 911 denier. 

    theAlgemeiner

    Until recently Hill said he did not know if Louis Farrakhan was a racist and anti-semite:

    Mediaite

    Hill invokes Leila Khaled, a Palestinian Terrorist, in the context of violently resisting what he considers to be a violent State:

    The Washington Free Beacon

    As that great 20th century philosopher Goose would say, "The List is long and distinguished." 

    The irony here is that Hill is really being vetted after his contract was terminated.

    3. Conclusion

       
    The best reason Marc Lamont Hill's Commentator contract with CNN was terminated may have been a combination of the recent worst comment he has made in a UN speech advocating at a minimum increased Palestinian violence against Israel along with the cumulative effect of his prior controversial comments on the same subject of Israel. CNN promotes itself as being a relatively objective Network and while trying to present both sides of an issue trying to avoid commentators with overly radical positions. 

    For those who need a simpler conclusion, based on what he should have known were CNN's standards for commentators, he was not a very good commentator. And for my Jewish readers, in the simplest terms, Marc Lamont Hill is a putz. 

    Perhaps the better question/title for this post is why didn't CNN terminate its contract with Hill earlier?

    Saturday, July 21, 2018

    Book Review of Tareq Baconi's Hamas Contained: The Rise and Pacification of Palestinian Resistance - Preface Only


    1. Introduction of the Issue

    Hamas Decontexualized

    At long last. A book which finally understands the Israeli/Palestinian conflict by fairly and objectively analyzing the central and key relationship between Terrorism and Security Measures. Baconi carefully details the strong relationship between the two, how each effects the other. More terrorism leads to more Security Measures and vice-versa. A refreshing, timely and necessary alternative analysis to the routine type of unilateral criticism which ignores one side of the relationship…just kidding.

    Baconi’s preface is just standard Palestinian propaganda. Baconi simply suggests alternatives to Hamas being a terrorist organization even though they clearly are under International Law. They don’t think they are, other countries don’t think they are, it’s unclear what a terrorist organization is and maybe they are but because they are “resisting” maybe they are not. 

    Once Baconi has exorcised Terrorism from Hamas he postures that all we are left with are Security Measures from Israel and now, magically, there is a clear definition of terrorism which can be applied to Israel. In order to accomplish this Baconi has to be in denial regarding the history of the Conflict and make significant accusations against Israel that would be much easier to make against Hamas.

    2. Discussion

    STORY HOLE - CHILDREN'S CARTOONS FROM HAMAS




    Denial

    1. The Background of the Conflict:

    “Sitting in the darkness of the theater, I thought of Palestine. Lacking the clarity of historical hindsight, the Palestinian struggle for self-determination seems frozen in time, in many ways an interminable anticolonial struggle unfolding in a postcolonial world. It is a world that has confronted the carnage of decolonization. But the battle is still raging in Palestine, with ever-present urgency. The simplistic binaries that frame conversations of Palestinian armed struggle evoke the condescension expressed by colonial overlords”

    There was never a colonial background to the Israeli/Palestinian conflict against the Palestinians. The prior owner was Great Britain which took control after it defeated the Ottoman Empire. The War of Independence was part Civil War. The Jews already lived there, they were not fighting for the benefit of any home/native country. To the extent there was an attempted colonizing effort the Jews in fact were on the defensive having to defend themselves from all surrounding Arab countries, most of who did have colonizing ambitions. 

    Even worse, the subsequent history of Israel was Israel having to continuously defend itself against the colonizing efforts of these same neighboring Arab countries. The Palestinian role in the conflict since the beginning has been, now what’s that word that Baconi threw out? Oh yeah, terrorism. 

    2. Definitions:

    “Hamas’s actions fit into the definition of terrorism used by the U.S. Department of State, which notes that “terrorism is premeditated politically motivated violence perpetrated against non-combatant targets by sub-national groups or clandestine agents.”4 While Hamas itself admits that it has used such tactics, it vehemently rejects being designated a terrorist organization. The logic underpinning this seeming contradiction is the absence of a single definition about what constitutes terrorism.5 The term is malleable and subjective, and more importantly, it has been used as a tool of war.6 The definition put forward by the U.S. State Department has consistently and cynically been manipulated to justify illegal and morally reprehensible military measures, in this case by Israel. Furthermore, while the label of “terrorism” under this definition can be applied to Hamas, it fails to account for the terror caused by Israel’s relentless military regime over the Palestinians.”


    There is an International definition of Terrorism and it is not just the United States that considers Hamas a Terrorist organization but also the EU as well as several Arab countries. Regarding Israel’s Security Measures they are a direct response to Terrorism. 


    3. Assumptions:

    “Furthermore, this study has proceeded from the premise that Hamas is at its core a political, not a religious, party. Of course, through its own declaration, Hamas is an Islamic movement by charter and by the faith of its leadership and its member base. While this book has addressed how this belief system impacts Hamas’s political outlook, it has not explored the theological underpinnings of the movement’s ideology. In other words, this is not a book about Islam, but Islam has a key presence within the book.”

    You need nothing other than what Baconi has said above to conclude that Hamas is primarily a religious organization. Hamas is secondarily a military dictatorship as it does not allow any opposition or even criticism. Hamas is not a political organization as the word is normally used as there are no other significant political parties, no freedom of the press and no elections. There are other political parties but only those approved by Hamas. 


    “Using this material, Hamas Contained offers an overview of the three decades of Hamas’s existence, primarily as narrated from the movement’s perspective.”


    Hamas clearly lacks credibility as a source based specifically on its history and in general as since it is a Terrorist organization willing/wanting to murder innocent women and children, lying would fall well within its own range of “resistance”. 


    “During the summer of 2014, when global newsrooms were covering Israel’s military operation in the Gaza Strip, I watched Palestinian analysts being rudely silenced on the air for failing to condemn Hamas as a terrorist organization outright.1”


    Most of the countries in the world are publicly more sympathetic to the Palestinians than the Israelis as evidenced by the continuous lopsided UN votes. The US is more balanced with Conservative sources generally being more supportive of Israel and Liberal sources being more supportive of the Palestinians. Do a random search of the Internet and you will see a majority of hits (so to speak) being critical of Israel. Baconi’s footnote above refers to Sean Hannity which I have to confess was my biggest laugh of the day. 


    Backwards

    1. Attitude

    “Against the backdrop of flares and explosions lighting up Gaza’s night skies during Israeli military incursions, some Israelis trek up to raised viewing points, sit on couches, and eat popcorn while watching the “fireworks” over the beleaguered land.3”

    Even if this was true, it’s generally the Israelis that regret all casualties in the conflict and the Palestinians that cheer not only Israeli casualties caused by terrorism, by compensating the terrorists and their families, but their own casualties caused by their own terrorism by passing out candy like it was Halloween and naming public areas after Terrorists. 


    “The collective punishment of millions has become permissible, comprehensible, and legitimate. Destroying schools and targeting UN shelters, as Israel did in 2014, are military tactics that have been justified as essential for Israel to defend itself against terror. The killing of more than five hundred children during that same operation for many becomes little more than an unfortunate necessity.”


    Israel is the side that takes extreme security measures targeting specific terrorist targets and it is Hamas that inflicts collective punishment on Israel with general random Terrorist attacks. It is also Hamas that makes schools and UN shelters targets by launching attacks and storing weapons in them and Israel that tries to avoid them as targets. The number of Gaza children killed is something to consider if only Baconi was considering the relationship of Terrorism to Security Measures. 


    2. Definitions

    “By eliding the movement’s political ideology, as was done to the PLO before it, Israel has maintained policies aimed at depoliticizing Palestinian nationalism, and sustained its approach of conflict management rather than resolution. Through a dual process of containment and pacification, Hamas has been forcefully transformed into little more than an administrative authority in the Gaza Strip, in many ways akin to the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank. At the time of its thirtieth anniversary, the movement appears temporarily—if not conclusively—pacified, and Israel seems to have succeeded in maintaining the permanence of an occupation long deemed unsustainable.”

    It is Hamas that has prevented itself from being a political organization by instead being primarily a theocracy and preventing freedom of speech. This is clearly demonstrated in practice as the only negotiation Hamas ever participates in are cease-fires. 


    3. Conclusion

    If a resolution to the Israeli/Palestinian conflict was based on conscience all of Israel would be Jewish. As shown above there is no context of colonizing. The original and continuing context is the Holocaust and subsequent real genocide of the significant Jewish populations in all surrounding Arab countries justifying a Jewish country that protects Jews. In the real world though conscience does not create resolution, usually because the different sides have different consciences. Resolution is based on negotiation. The only thing that has prevented the Palestinians from the start from having their own country is terrorism. 
    If Baconi did try a radical new approach to the Conflict and try to consider the relationship of Terrorism to Security Measures it’s possible that he might observe that there is a direct relationship. Once aware of this he may further note the direction of the relationship. Maybe, just maybe, less terrorism creates less Security Measures. At an extreme maybe no terrorism would lead to…I’m not kidding. 

    In the meantime, even though Baconi is understandably sympathetic to the Palestinians, who should have their own country, he is ironically working against that, unwittingly helping to maintain the status quo by unilaterally criticizing Israel and exorcising Palestinian Terrorism from the discussion. Terrorism can be effective against Terrorism. Israel proved that in The War of Reprisals. But Palestinian Terrorism has not been effective against Israel. Israel has gotten better defending against it than Palestinians have gotten committing it. The majority of casualties now in terrorist attacks are on the Palestinian side. The world to some extent, especially the world powers, see Israeli Security Measures JUSTIFIED by Palestinian Terrorism. The most important country here, Israel, sees it to a large extent. In the meantime Israel gets stronger exporting oranges grown in the desert, high tech start-ups and nobel prize winners. Palestinians just continue exporting terrorism, sowing/reaping and controversy with former Arab allies. All the Palestinians need to do is drop the Terrorism to be like Israel. Really, if an Israeli and Palestinian were dressed the same and standing next to each other, could you tell the difference (other than the Palestinian being the one holding a knife)? 



    Sunday, September 17, 2017

    The Combination of Extreme Criticism of Israel & Avoidance of Criticism of Palestinian Terrorism


    1. Introduction of the Issue
    Selective reporting

    "Selective reporting involves devoting more resources, such as news articles or air time, to the coverage of one side of the story over another."

    The basic issue of The Israeli–Palestinian conflict is the relationship between claimed cause and claimed effect. Israel, its supporters and advocates, generally claim a relationship of Palestinian Terrorism is the cause of Israel's extreme security measures. Palestinians, their supporters and advocates, generally claim a relationship of Israel's extreme security measures are the cause of Palestinian Terrorism. 

    The following are criteria to determine the existence and extent of selective reporting:

    1) Reporting of one side of the relationship in absolute numbers. 

    2)
    The relative reporting of one side of the relationship to the reporting of the other side.

    3)
    The level of the description used. 

    4)
    Possible consequence of under reporting the other side of the relationship.

    2. Discussion



                             Why Israel Gets Away With Murder

    Let's test drive the criteria above for Neil Godfrey's blog Vridar starting with a search of his site for "Israel" and summarize:

    1) The number of articles involving Israel.

    2) The tone of the article regarding Israel.

    3) The extent of the article's tone towards Palestinians:

    1. Postscript on Rome’s and Israel’s foundation stories   

    Israel tone = The purpose of the article is to consider parallels between The Jewish Bible's Israel origination stories and Greek origination stories. In the comments you can see the author theorize that the Jewish stories were to some extent copied from the Greek and that a historical Jewish Palestine was significantly later than what The Jewish Bible indicates. 

    Palestinian tone = No direct mention of Palestinians here. The article has an implication, which is explicit in prior related articles, that if "The Jews'" history in Israel is much later than is commonly thought/argued than someone else must have been there earlier/much earlier such as maybe, I don't know, Palestinians?

    2. Comparing the Rome’s and Israel’s Foundation Stories, Aeneas and Abraham

    Israel tone = Same as above.

    Palestinian tone = Same as above. If the author wanted to objectively compare who's claim to Israel/Palestine is earlier a good comparison would be, which one, Israelis or Palestinians, use the other one's religious book as the start of their history? Hmmm. 

    3. How Philo-Semitic British Israelism Morphed into Anti-Semitic White Supremacism / Christian Identity

    Israel tone = The article is about antisemitic beliefs and not about Israel.

    Palestinian tone = The article is about Christian antisemitism and not Muslim/Palestinian antisemitism. So based on this article Israel has reason to feel threatened, just not by Muslims/Palestinians.

    4. Reality Behind Arab Threats to Destroy Israel

    Israel tone = Israeli leadership knew from the beginning that Arabs were not a significant threat to Israel and by lying to the Israeli population about the level of the threat wrongly convinced Israelis that the Arabs were a significant threat. 

    Palestinian tone = No mention of "Palestinians" in the article. Strangely, the Arabs are first described as easily having the ability to destroy Israel and than described as always realizing that they could not destroy Israel. Since there is no mention of Palestinians there is no mention that all Palestinian political organizations have always had a Charter calling for the destruction of Israel. Note that in the potential context of Palestinians as a threat to Israel, Godfrey's blog minimizes their numbers, in this case to -0-. In the context though of Palestinian refugees/supposed right of return they quickly multiple into greater numbers than Israelis and exponentially more than Jews with any religious/physical connection to Israel. 

    An objective review of the history of actual quotes/writings of Arab leaders from the beginning shows that they were not just sincere about thinking they could destroy Israel but enthusiastically sincere.

    5. Primitive Democracy in Ancient Israel

    Israel tone = Same as 1. and 2. above but now the source for The Jewish Bible has been expanded from Greek sources to (non-Jewish) Middle Eastern sources.

    Palestinian tone = Same as 1. and 2.

    6. The Inspiration for Israel’s Law of the Ideal King

    Israel tone = Same as 1. and 2.

    Palestinian tone = Same as 1. and 2.  

    7. Israel’s Best Friends to Her Rescue

    Israel tone = Israel is described as being overly influenced by its "radical" element leading to a policy of illegal settlements in the West bank. These illegal settlements are said to prevent a peace agreement all by themselves and it's said that this policy will lead to an Apartheid State.

    Palestinian tone = No mention of any radicals, illegal activity or plans to have an Apartheid Arab/Muslim State. In fact no mention of Palestinians at all except for the context of being victims.

    8. How Israel Uses (not “Misuses”) The Bible

    Israel tone = Israel is described as using The Jewish Bible to justify all of Israel being a Jewish State.

    Palestinian tone = As in 7. no mention of "Palestinians" in the article except in the context of being victims. You wouldn't know from the article that it's actually the Palestinians who are primarily a religion oriented government and have a majority of their population who think all of Israel should be Arab/Muslim based on their Bible. In fact you wouldn't even know from the article that the Palestinians are Muslim.

    9. The Tribes of Israel modeled on the Athenian and Ideal Greek Tribes?

    Israel tone = The article is similar to most of the articles above, arguing that The Jewish Bible copied from Greek stories supporting that the Jewish history in Israel is much later than Jews would argue. The comments go beyond and all the way to The Jewish Bible dishonestly invented "history" of Jews returning to and reclaiming their homeland and demonizing the people (Canaanites/Palestinians) who were there first to justify genocide.

    Palestinian tone = As always, Palestinians only referred to in the context of victims. No attempt to find similar copying/accusations in The Arab Bible. 



    Friday, July 21, 2017

    The Amazin Kristkin!

    The Amazin Kristkin!

    Story background: It's Herod's Palace, Saturday night. The warm up
    ACTS have just finished and the place is hoppin. The Manager/MC goes
    on stage to introduce the headliner. The crowd has been whipped up
    into an eschatological frenzy. If they don't get their feature act
    soon, someone is going to be crucified. Showtime!

    Manager: Okay, okay. I know you're all dying for our featured act,
    but first I have a few announcements to make. Next week at Herod's
    Palace the always popular Balaam and his talking donkey, the world's
    greatest ventriloquist act. I swear you will not be able to
    see the donkey's lips moving. And the week after, back by popular
    request, the number one burlesque show on the Gaza Strip, Eve West and
    W.C. Snake. (Lowers voice) when she's bad she's very bad but when
    she disobeys she's even better. (Wrinkles eyebrows) guys, you
    might want to start working on your alibis early. (Some guys in
    audience start nodding in agreement). We also have a VIP with us here
    tonight. Sitting in the balcony next to our own beloved King Herod is
    the Governor of this region for the mighty Roman Empire, the
    honorable Pontias Pilate. Pilate stands up and waves to sparse
    applause.

    Voice from crowd : Caesar sucks! (Crowd laughs).

    Pilate : Who said that?! (Directs Roman guards to find the source.
    Entire crowd shuts up and puts on innocent faces as guards begin to
    make their way through the crowd.)

    Manager : Ahem. Okay, one more announcement before I introduce your
    headliner tonight. Please remember to pick up your livestock
    from the goat check room before you leave the Palace. We are not
    responsible for any lost sheep or other animals that are left
    here over night. Finally, Rebbe Yell will lead us in our pre-show,
    non-sectarian prayer. (An old small Rebbe with a long white
    beard comes onto the stage.)

    Rebbe Yell : (All bow heads). Our gracious Father in heaven. We thank
    you for the entertainment that we are about to receive and for
    providing us with the gift of laughter.

    All : Amen.

    Manager : And now, it is my great pleasure to introduce to you,
    (crowd starts to cheer) the man you've been waiting your whole lives
    for. Direct from a sold out, extended stay, standing room only and
    record setting performance in the Galilee. (Cheer builds) Guaranteed
    to heal whatever ails you, able to get a rise out of anyone,
    including the dead, a real son-of-a-god and your ticket to heaven, The
    One, Only and Holy Guest, The Amazin Kristkin and Paul Saver and
    The World's Most Disciplined Choir! (Thunderous applause). (Paul
    leads the Disciples onto the stage on their hands and knees,
    forming a large cross, with The Amazin Kristkin laying stretched
    out on their backs with his hands and feet tied to their
    backs). (Paul pulls out a small cross and starts leading the Disciples
    in their opening number).

    Disciples : (Singing) Your love, is lifting us higher, than we've
    ever been lifted before.

    Peter : (Solo with Disciples singing opening refrain in background)
    So keep it up, quench our desire, and we'll be at your feet for ever
    more. (The cross formation reaches the center of the stage and stops.
    Then the top of the cross starts to elevate where Kristkin's head is.
    Kristkin looks to the right and his right hand immediately becomes
    untied. He looks to the left and his left hand becomes untied. He
    looks down at his feet and his feet become untied. As the cross
    continues to elevate he slowly and smoothly slides down to a standing
    position. The Disciples remain in tiered formation, still singing the
    opening number with their outside arms forward, presenting Kristkin.
    The crowd goes crazy and the continuous drone of the Palace vendors
    shouting "mutton on a stick" and "nice, cool wine, get your nice,
    cool wine here" is temporarily drowned out.)

    Kristkin : (Wearing a long, flowing, white cape and a matching white
    robe with very large sleeves and an extra large, red K emblazoned on
    the back of the cape with smaller red K's on his sleeves waves to
    the crowd). Thank you. Thank you very much. (Blows kisses). I love you
    all. (Extends and raises his right arm and a large loaf of white bread
    suddenly appears by his right sleeve). (Heavy applause). (Hands loaf
    of bread to a man sitting in front row). Here, pass this around.

    Man : Thanks. Say, do you have any butter?

    Kristkin : (Pats his vest). Um, no. Sorry. (Looks back at crowd).
    Hey, it's great to be back at the Palace. I just flew in from the
    Galilee today. (Lifts arms). Boy, are my arms tired! (Fuh-boom-Paul
    does rim shot). (Crowd roars). I tell you the truth. Show business,
    show business, it' in my blood show business. I just wish it was in
    my act! (Crowd howls). (Looks and points to a small group of Roman
    woman and their babies a few rows back). This must be the Caesarian
    Section! (Crowd is dying). Okay, now for my first trick. (Raises left
    hand and a large deck of cards appears next to his sleeve. Applause.)
    I hold here in my hands all six hundred and thirteen
    commandments. I will now shuffle the cards and let a member of
    the crowd select one without my seeing which one it is. I will
    then tell you exactly what that commandment means without knowing
    which card has been taken. (Moves to a man in the front row and holds
    all the cards out, written side facing away and turns his face away.
    The man picks one card.) The commandment you selected means love the
    Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all
    your mind.(To the man) Now, read to the crowd the commandment you
    selected.

    Man : Thou shalt not boil a calf in its mother's milk.

    Kristkin : See? (Raises arms triumphantly as crowd applauds). Thank
    you. Thank you. (Waves to crowd) I love you all. (Extends and raises
    both arms and loaves of white bread at one sleeve and dark bread at
    the other sleeve appear. Crowd oohs and then applauds. Throws bread
    into the crowd). For my next trick I was going to pull a Rabbi out of
    a hat but the Rabbi died. (fuh-boom.) Okay, I am now ready to perform
    a feat of magic never before seen here at Herod's Palace. I will
    attempt to transform a jar of ordinary water into wine. (Raises arms
    and looks upward). Paul, I'm ready. (Paul carries over a jar of rather
    brown looking water and a large shroud).

    Paul : (Holds up jar for audience to see). Hmmm. Looks like the
    Romans put the bath lines a little too close to the sanitation lines.
    (Laughter) (Places jar at Kristkin's feet and covers Kristkin with
    the shroud.) (The Disciples come slowly strolling onto the stage,
    wearing big, white, comfortable sweaters with the first letter of
    their name stitched in red on the front, singing and snapping their
    fingers to the beat).

    Disciples : Kristkin just left for Chicago, turning muddy water into
    wine.

    Simon : (Solo with Disciples singing opening refrain in background).
    He's been from Jerusalem to Egypt and all points in between. (As
    Disciples continue their song there is a small amount of movement at
    the bottom of the shroud and a barely audible squishing sound.)

    Manager : (Peering out from the side of the stage and saying to
    himself) I hate it when he does this one. I'll be up all night trying
    to get the stains out of the floor.

    Kristkin : (Dramatically removes shroud and raises jar up to reveal
    what appears to now be wine. Heavy applause. Brings jar over to front
    row to drink and then stops, raises both arms out and head upwards
    and three loaves of bread simultaneously appear, one at each sleeve
    and one at his collar). (Huge applause. As they are clapping half of
    audience is asking "how does he do that?" and the other half are
    shaking their heads saying "I don't know.") Thank you. Thank you.
    (Blows kisses) I love you. I love you all. Now be sure to pass over
    my bread and wine to King Herod. Eating and drinking is his second
    favorite activity next to taxing the peasants. (People are doubling
    over with laughter. Herod gets annoyed look on face). Actually, I
    shouldn't make fun of King Herod, we go way back together. I remember
    when he first opened up this Palace ten years ago and since then,
    there's nothing I wouldn't do for King Herod and nothing King Herod
    wouldn't do for me. And that's the way its been for ten years, we've
    done nothing for each other. (People are rolling on the floor. The
    look on Herod's face changes from annoyed to really annoyed.) And
    now, it's time for my grand finale. Never before successfully
    performed on stage. I will be placed inside a coffin with the lid
    nailed shut. There will then be spears thrust through the coffin,
    piercing my body and killing me. The coffin will be opened and I will
    have disappeared. Then the coffin will be nailed shut again and after
    three minutes I will reappear, unharmed. Paul, is everything ready?

    Paul : Yes, Kristkin. (Wheels small wooden coffin onto the stage with
    several round holes on each side and what appear to be blood stains
    next to the holes. Crowd becomes quiet.)

    Kristkin : I have here the "widowmaker" taken directly from Elijah
    the Great's final performance. (Looks down) may G-d have mercy on his
    soul. (Crowd starts to worry). (Climbs into coffin and as he's
    closing the lid says) I'll see you in the next life. (Crowd is
    becoming anxious).

    Paul : (Hammers lid shut. Goes over to Roman guards and says) May I
    borrow your spears? I think Kristkin has something caught between his
    teeth. (Nervous laughter from crowd). (Meanwhile, the Disciples are
    forming a human pyramid next to the coffin with Judas on top).

    Judas : (Singing with the rest of the Disciples humming background)
    Mistakes, he's made a few, cause he's not G-d, he's just a Jew.

    Paul : (Placing spears into coffin but having trouble pushing them
    completely through. Occasional "ow" or "ouch" can be heard from
    inside the coffin.) Say, can a couple of you guards come over and
    help me place these spears, I'm having some problems? (Two Roman
    guards come over. The first grabs a spear that's halfway in and gives
    it a forceful shove to put it all the way through. A loud "Ahhhh!" is
    heard and the crowd shudders. The second guard pulls a stuck spear
    back out of the coffin.)

    Guard : That's not how you move a spear. This is how you move a
    spear. (Backswings spear in air and then launches it forward towards
    the coffin.)

    Paul : (Tries to stop guard but it's too late). No, wait! Don't!
    (Spear goes into coffin and becomes stuck inside. A very
    loud "Aaaaaargh" is heard.)

    Judas : (Finishing song). What have we learned, during our stay? Did
    our good deeds, keep sin away? We kept the law, as best we may. We
    did it Hisss Way.

    Paul : (Starts tearing open coffin lid). Oh no. Please, no. (Manager
    comes over to help. They finally get the lid open. The coffin is
    empty and there is a trail of blood leading to a trap door underneath
    the coffin.)

    Manager : This is terrible.

    Paul : You mean because Kristkin could be seriously or even fatally
    wounded?

    Manager : No, because the act's not finished and I paid Kristkin in
    advance.(Notices small, blood spattered note at bottom of coffin).
    What's this? (Reads note) "I shall reappear on the exact one
    hundredth anniversary of Harry Houdini's death". Who the hell is Harry
    Houdini?

    Paul : I have no idea. Damn, it took me twenty years to put this act
    together. What am I supposed to do now?

    Manager : (Shrugs) I don't know. Why don't you write a book about it?

    Paul : Yea, right. A book, sure. (Scratches chin) Hey, wait a minute,
    hmmm.