Monday, December 29, 2008

Israel's Christmas present to Gaza

Israel has caused yet more outrage by launching attacks on Gaza. Whilst your humble Devil deplores the loss of civilian life, he has to agree with Iain Dale's article on this matter (not something that happens often). Whilst Iain's article is fairly comprehensive and worth reading in full, for me it is the following paragraph that sums up the issue.
Hamas broke the ceasefire by firing more rockets into Israel. Imagine if this had happened here. Imagine if France fired rockets onto Dover from Calais. Would the British people expect its government to stand idly by and do nothing? Of course not.

The simple fact is that Israel endures near-daily rocket attacks from Gaza; let's face it, when the Israelis withdrew from the Gaza Strip, it took less than a week for Hamas to start firing rockets into Israel.

As Iain points out, many people blame Israel for the appalling living standards in Gaza.
They are wrong. Hamas is to blame for keeping its people in abject poverty. Israel handed over the governmental administration of the Gaza Strip in 2005 to the Palestinian Authority. They had an opportunity to run it themselves. Instead, since Hamas took power, they have done everything in their power to keep their people in poverty and use it as an excuse to radicalise those who are inclined to believe their propaganda. But even despite this, Israel was providing huge amounts of humanitarian aid to Gaza - more than 4,000 truck loads a month as well as fuel and electricity (despite the ongoing rocket attacks). Conditions were by no means good, but there was no humanitarian crisis, according to Khaled Abdel Shaafi, director the United Nations Development Programme in Gaza. He said this month that "this is not a humanitarian crisis... It's an economic crisis, a political crisis, but it's not a humanitarian crisis. People aren't starving."

Whilst it is appalling that civilians are being killed, as with Hezbollah in Lebanon, there would be far fewer casualties were Hamas not firing their rockets from civilian areas. And whilst one could argue that this is not the fault of the Palestinians, one could equally argue that if the Palestinians did not condone these attacks then... well... maybe they should not have elected Hamas to the be their government (although I admit that the choice at the time was, roughly speaking, between a fresh turd and a slightly less fresh turd).

If, of course, Hamas gave two shits about the people of Palastine, one would have thought that they would at least allow them to receive medical treatment but apparently not.
Egypt says the Hamas militant group, which controls Gaza, is preventing hundreds of wounded Palestinians from leaving for treatment in Egypt.

Cairo says dozens of empty ambulances are at the Rafah crossing - the only one to Gaza which avoids Israel.

And as David Davis at the Libertarian Alliance points out, if Hamas actually gave two shits for the people that it is supposed to represent, then maybe they should look at their spending priorities?
If they can afford rockets, they can afford food, which is much cheaper!

Quite. Still, why bother, eh, when the European Union is busy bunging them large amounts of our money in order to buy more rockets educate Palestinian children into thinking the Jews are lower than animals legitimately develop their government spending programmes?

There are any numbers of "on one side but on the other" arguments that one can have about this situation but, for me, there really is only one relevant point to make: do you think that Israel, given that it has for some 60 years now, have the right to continue to exist?

Yes, one can say that it should never have been set up in the first place, but it was and it now exists: given that, does Israel have the right to defend itself? Did Israel have the right to defend herself when the Arabs tried to invade—three fucking times?

If you think that Israel shouldn't exist (given the above conditions) and thus has no right to defend herself, will you please have the balls to say so. Thank you.

UPDATE: Old Holborn has a debate going on over at his place, and he has published this rather revealing map.


It is, of course, a little disingenuous, since this map only goes up to 2000 and thus reflects none of the concessions that the Israelis have made since then. Just to throw fuel on the fire, here is the comment that I have left over at Old Holborn's post.
OH,

Let's leave aside the Bradford question, shall we? It's a little bit silly.

Let us instead consider what you would do were France – or, indeed, Ireland – to launch rockets, thousands of them, on London.

Let us also consider concessions that have been made by the Israelis over the last few years (for I notice that, somewhat disingenuously) your happy map only goes up to 2000).

They gave back (partially, admittedly) the Gaza Strip. The Knesset removed Israeli settlers from there, and parts of the West Bank (provoking the opprobrium of their own people). One might say that Israel is at least trying to make some concessions, no?

Or would you not?

I would say that they are: the things that you say that they have not allowed in the Gaza Strip – a port, or an airport, for instance – are fairly fucking sensible, no? If you were Israel – constantly under attack – would you simply allow your enemies to bring in fuck loads of weapons by boat, or allow them an easy launchpad for airstrikes?

If you are, you are a tactical numpty and I hope that you never become a Defence Minister for this country.

If the transfer of Gaza had gone well, and rockets had not been launched within three fucking days of it being "returned", then I am sure that more concessions might have been made.

As it is, the Israeli government would be fucking stupid to allow any kind of major trade route into Gaza that by-passed Israeli checkpoints because then the amount of weaponry would increase exponentially.

DK

The Bradford question is silly: four people from Bradford killed 54 people on the Tube in the name of a religion and in protest at our invasion of another sovereign country. No doubt, in Old Holborn's eyes, these deaths were justified—have we given Bradford their own port, airport or tax system? No, damn it all: we haven't!

Come people of Bradford: rise up and start firing rockets at London: Old Holborn says you can!

As I have said, I don't necessarily condone Israel's actions, but I do understand them.

UPDATE 2: another gentleman has left a decent, non-rabid and pretty historically accurate comment over there (which I reproduce in full).
I apologise, but this is a little long.

An unbelievable amount of crap is burning my computer screen here, from garbage about mixed-marriage children being deported from Israel, to "Palestinian" land being appropriated. It's normal to support one side or another in a war even when they're both pretty rank (I'm talking about Bosnia, stupid), but that doesn't give anyone free rein to spout a whole lot of lies. A little basic knowledge would be helpful, instead of visceral hatred from people who "have no problem with Jews" but detest "ZioNazi Israelis", "especially the women" (you wish, Max-I-mean-Ampers). You yourself, OH, referred to "Yid moneylenders" in a recent post but hey, if you're offended, don't come here, right? Right.

In spite of the the crap on the map, there has never, ever, ever been a state called Palestine, nor a nation of people called Palestinians. They exist in the same way as, for example, Yorkshiremen (among whom, of course, there are now many Muslims). Gaza and the West Bank were part of Egypt and Jordan respectively from 1948 to 1967. They, and the rest of the territory, were part of a wider British Mandate until 1948 when Israel became independent. They were occupied in 1967 when some bastard neighbours used the areas to attack Israel.

Secondly, no one ever pushed anyone out of the region called Palestine. In 1948 the Arab states warned the people living in the area that they would attack the fledgling state and that for their own good it would be as well to get out, at the same time expelling almost 900,000 Jews from cities such as Baghdad and Damascus, who had lived there for over a thousand years. Many of these people, unsurprisingly, came to Israel and instead of living in "refugee camps", they built things like houses and cities. This may help dorks who call Israel a "racist colony" understand why there are over a million Muslim Arabs in Israel today, including Muslim MPs and a Muslim cabinet member.

Now that we have the facts straight, we have to look at the realities. The Palestinian leaders have wasted 60 years and squandered every dollar and opportunity given to them. They have as much chance of getting their homes back as the Baghdad Jews do of getting theirs, but the leaders are divided between messianic religious fundamentalism and corruption on a massive scale, and the Europeans, who created the problem in the first place, pay lip service to both and prolong the agony.

But the ordinary Palestinian sees a white, mainly European, almost totally highly educated and middle-class people living across the border and he doesn't like the skank he seems to have to put up with on his side of the border where he has little chance of either a decent education or a decent job outside the "security forces". So to give his life meaning after he's watched the 15th rerun of Dynasty, he goes out and stabs a Jewish child or launches a rocket (courtesy of the mullahs) from the nearest school playground. What? You mean they didn't tell you?

It must be obvious to anyone that the only way out of this is a) to get rid of Hamas and b) for the Arab states to sign a peace treaty with Israel and pour money into setting up a state with a high standard of living. The first is possible; the second unlikely as even in their own countries, there is an enormous underclass, so we are not going to see a new Dubai or Sharm-el-Sheikh, let alone the fabled Singapore we all hoped for. But there is no point giving up trying, unless we want to see all the states in the region come toppling down and turning into new Irans.

If you have been, as the man said, thank you for reading.

Thank you for writing.

UPDATE 3: do feel free to wander over to Old Holborn's place and see him attempting to wriggle out of his ridiculous Bradford analogy (by the simple expedient of trying to pretend that he never said anything about it).

Oh, and have a giggle at his less than subtle "Israelis" equals "the Nazis" hints. Oh, and see him justify Hamas "throwing fireworks over the fence" because they are "a democratically elected party", but attack a democratically elected party in Israel for lobbing some back.

Can anyone say "hypocrisy"...?

UPDATE 4: Chris Gilmour has been good enough to update Old Holborn's map to 2007. There's rather more Palestinian land than there was in 2000, reflecting the fact that... [drum roll]... the Israelis have been attempting to make concessions.

In other news, D-Squared comments on the actual rules on proportionality in military conflicts.

72 comments:

Mike Gogulski said...

No state has a "right to exist". Collectives don't have rights. Individual human beings do. And there are criminals on both sides of this situation, and crimes that might never be unwound.

Ian B said...

Whether states have a right to exist may not be true, but if we work on the fact that states do exist in our current world, then we can say that Israel has as much right to exist as any other, which is a more pragmatic way of looking at the thing.

Another way of looking at it from a pragmatic perspective is that in practical terms states are a good way of protecting citizens of them. The idea of a common territory is as old as mankind- when people start waffling on about nation states as being a product of the Treaty of Westphalia or whatever they miss the point. Peoples have always wanted territories to call their own. "This is Bungoland, land of the Bungos, where the Bungos live". Many people today like to consider themselves above all that, it's petty tribalism, I is a citizen of the world! they say, while rather ignoring the fact that if you get rid of nation states, you're left not with no state but with a worldwide state, and woe betide us all if a Stalin takes it over, because there ain't nowhere to hide. Which of course is what the one-worlders want.

So, yes, Israel has every right to exist in practical terms. Like all countries, it has its faults. But its faults are magnitudes less than those of many other countries, such as all its neighbours, for instance.

haddock said...

In a state where there is no industry, little agriculture, no tourism and therefore so very few jobs it is easy to predict shite living conditions if each woman has an average of 5.19 children.
http://www.nationmaster.com/graph/peo_tot_fer_rat-people-total-fertility-rate

Israel should give the fuckers free televisions so that they have something to do except breed.

The 14.6% of Israel's population that are Muslim enjoy a better life than the caged exhibits in Gaza

Beachhutman said...

“The Palestinian people does not exist. The creation of a Palestinian state is only a means for continuing our struggle against the state of Israel for our Arab unity. In reality today there is no difference between Jordanians, Palestinians, Syrians and Lebanese. Only for political and tactical reasons do we speak today about the existence of a Palestinian people, since Arab national interests demand that we posit the existence of a distinct "Palestinian people" to oppose Zionism.”

Palestine Liberation Organization executive committee member Zahir Muhsein.
March 31, 1977

Palestine has never existed as a nation. The region known as Palestine was ruled alternately by Rome, by Islamic and Christian crusaders, by the Ottoman Empire and, briefly, by the British after World War I. The British agreed to restore at least part of the land to the Jewish people as their ancestral homeland. It was never ruled by Arabs as a separate nation. The Biblical Philistines were not today’s “Palestinians”, who ceased to exist about the time of the Babylonian empire.

Mike Gogulski said...

Israel has every right to exist in practical terms. Like all countries, it has its faults. But its faults are magnitudes less than those of many other countries, such as all its neighbours, for instance.

This is about as compelling as the idea that AIDS is "better" than cancer.

Old Holborn said...

I have a rather good thread on this as well.

Oh and a punch up with Mrs Dale

Old Holborn said...

DK,

I'll ask you the same question I asked Mrs Dale.

If Israel is justified in bombing children in what is, in effect a prison camp to "quell a threat", can we , the British, bomb Bradford? If not, why not?

We know the threat is there and it has already claimed 54 lives on the Tube.

When Catholics voted for Sinn Fein, we didn't bomb hospitals and schools in the Falls Road when the IRA let off some Semtex in Brighton, did we?

As long as the Palestinians are not allowed a port, an airport, their own tax system (yes, really, still controlled by Israel), some roads, borders, fuel and food, they will continue to throw bangers over the neighbours wall. As I would if my neighbour was building his shed in my garden without asking

Old Holborn said...

As for the Palestinians thinking that Jews are lower than animals, you want to hear what some Rabbi's say about non Jews.

HERE

JuliaM said...

"Israel should give the fuckers free televisions so that they have something to do except breed."

Because that's worked so well with our own home-grown underclass, hasn't it?

Ian B said...

Mike, AIDS isn't particulary better than cancer. Piles are better than cancer. If I had a choice of being afflicted with piles, or with cancer, I'd go with the piles.

Degree actually does matter.

Old Holborn said...

As a Libertarian, I have a massive problem with the State of Israel and it's total and utter subjugation of Paestinians.

Even now, permission must be asked of Israel, the State, if they are allowed to import some oil or food or medicine because they are not allowed a port, a runway or their own borders.

A Libertarians worst nightmare. I'm frankly amazed you support it. Consider my membership of your party cancelled forthwith.

Devil's Kitchen said...

Don't be a twat, OH. I said that I had reservations about Israel's actions.

However, as a Libertarian, I support the right of the Israelis to defend their life, liberty and property against what is, at this time, an aggressor.

Get it?

Fucking hellski...

DK

Nick said...

It's all about property rights.

The libertarian view is that you should have your rights to enjoy your property (and life).

Israel is denying the right to their property to the Palistinians, for the simple reason that they would end up on a fraction of the land.

Give the Palistinians the right to their property, and to enjoy it by returning.

They would end up with the right to vote in a democracy, and the vote would go against the present incumbants.

That's the missing part.

Nick said...

-------
Israel has every right to exist in practical terms. Like all countries, it has its faults. But its faults are magnitudes less than those of many other countries, such as all its neighbours, for instance.
-------

It does.

However, it doesn't have the right to exist at someone else's expense.

If you want to create an Israel, create it in Germany that caused the problem. Don't create it in someone else's country.

If the USA feels so strongly, they could give the Israeli's New York.

However, expect the New Yorkers to have an opinion on the matter.

Nick

Devil's Kitchen said...

Nick,

You are, in some respects, correct. However, I don't think that it is quite as simple as that. Well, it isn't quite as simple as that.

What Israel is faced with is a government whose charter includes the destruction of the state of Israel.

They are backed by countries that have already tried to invade Israel three times.

Israel is in a fairly vulnerable position, and the parts of Palestine that it holds were taken as tactical buffers against any such future invasion.

Had those invasions not been attempted, any attempt by Israel to extend its borders would have been quite rightly condemned internationally. Indeed, had the Arabs signed the treaty that they had agreed to sign in 1947 – respecting Israel's borders – then we could equally condemn Israel.

So, we have an Israel which is paranoid after 60 years of attacks and a bunch of Arabs (vastly outnumbering the Isrealis) who have an ideological reason for wishing destruction upon that country.

Now, it would be nice to think that if Israel simply retreated to its original borders that everything would be OK.

But you have to convince the Israelis of that, and Hamas launching rockets from the small bit of land that was returned is not the way to do that. For the Palestinians to then elect Hamas to government was hardly going to fill the Israelis with confidence either.

At some point, we have to put aside philosophical points and deal with the reality. And the reality is that the concessions that Israel has made have been thrown back in their faces (in the form of high explosives).

DK

Devil's Kitchen said...

Nick,

"If you want to create an Israel, create it in Germany that caused the problem. Don't create it in someone else's country."

This is, of course, precisely the argument that President I'm A Dinner Jacket of Iran made in his infamous "if the Holocaust was real" speech.

(Not that I'm condemning your assertion by saying that: I'm just pointing it out.)

However, the point is that Israel exists now where it exists. What do we do about it?

DK

Nick said...


What Israel is faced with is a government whose charter includes the destruction of the state of Israel.


That's your phrasing on it.

Phrase it that the aim is the restoration of the state of Palistine in its original borders, and what's your problem?

Slightly rhetorical, you can't have the restoration of the state of Palistine without the removal of Israel, because Israel was created at the expense of the majority of the original inhabitants.

ie. Israel has a right to exist, doesn't mean that Israel has a right to exist at the expense of another country, bar it could be said, Germany

Nick said...

You're saying that you can use force to defend your land, does that extend to using force to get it back?

Old Holborn said...

I'm waiting for you to have a few more drinks, DK then we'll really see the insults fly at anyone who doesn't agree with you.

Like the last time.

Didn't you have to apologise then too?

Old Holborn said...

"UPDATE 3: do feel free to wander over to Old Holborn's place and see him attempting to wriggle out of his ridiculous Bradford analogy (by the simple expedient of trying to pretend that he never said anything about it).

Oh, and have a giggle at his less than subtle "Israelis" equals "the Nazis" hints. Oh, and see him justify Hamas "throwing fireworks over the fence" because they are "a democratically elected party", but attack a democratically elected party in Israel for lobbing some back."

DK, if you believe that Israel can bomb hospitals, schools and anything it likes because Hamas have threatened them, then you MUST apply the same logic to Muslim nutters in Bradford. If not, WHY NOT? Bradford nutters have killed more. Simple enough?

Secondly, I would be perfectly happy for Israel to throw a few fireworks back at Hamas. But they aren't. They are throwing EVERYTHING at innocent people and killing hundreds. Simple enough?

I see mixed marriages are still banned in Israel and any offspring of mixed relationships are deported when they reach 12. How very "un-nazi"

Achtung.

Anonymous said...

The IRA constantly attacked Northern Ireland but we didn't bomb the South. America gave tacit support to their 'cause' just as it does to Israel. Notice the similarities? The time has come where Israel can no longer hide behind historical wrongs or percieved prejudices to maintain the mass imprisonment of people. It is simply immoral. And yes, you can be anti-Zionist without being Anti-Semitic. With any other religion they'd be classed as dangerous rabid fundamentalists and it's time they were faced down.

Anonymous said...

What is it about the Israel-Palestine conflict that makes reasonable people - on both sides of the argument - fall into these ridiculous traps of exterminationst machismo?

The Palestinians have done plenty wrong over the past sixty years and there is no doubt that they have played their part - and it is a major part - in perpetuating this god-awful war, but the same can be said of Israel. Both sides have hands dripping with innocent blood. Both sides are replete with criminals and criminality. Both sides have done so much wrong that it's difficult even to attempt to catalogue it.

Why, then, does it always get turned into "Good Jews, Evil Arabs" by the right and "Good Arabs, Evil Jews" by the left?

The fact is, you have two Semitic tribes merrily butchering each other for decades in the name of their respective Sky-Daddies. The further fact is, this dirty little war would not have continued for as long as it has if both sides were not extremely happy with it.

Israelis and Palestinians alike have found existential meaning and national purpose in this endless slaughter.

Fuck. Them. All.

bill said...

That 'Nick' twat is popping up on all the other-side of leftie cunt blogs he knows. Must be a Guardian reader. Piss off!

Devil's Kitchen said...

OH,

"DK, if you believe that Israel can bomb hospitals, schools and anything it likes because Hamas have threatened them..."

Why must you put words in my mouth? I have not said that. At all.

What is your fucking problem? I have said that I don't condone the Israeli actions but I do understand them. Can you conceive of the difference?

", then you MUST apply the same logic to Muslim nutters in Bradford. If not, WHY NOT? Bradford nutters have killed more."

*sigh*

No, they haven't. OK?

And no, I don't think that I do have to apply the same logic to Bradford because it is not even close to being the same situation.

Muslim "Bradford nutters", as you put it, committed one atrocity; that can be overlooked as a bunch of disturbed people acting on their own.

It is not even comparable to what is effectively an army, armed by a foreign power.

If people in Bradford were constantly firing rockets into neighbouring towns and sending numerous suicide bombers – and had been over a period of thirty – years, then I think that I could probably justify some sort of retaliation, no?

But that is not what has happened. Do you see why your Bradford analogy is so fucking stupid?

"Secondly, I would be perfectly happy for Israel to throw a few fireworks back at Hamas. But they aren't. They are throwing EVERYTHING at innocent people and killing hundreds."

From the BBC (hardly pro-Israel): "Hamas says 312 Palestinians have died since Saturday, of which the UN says 57 were civilians. In Israel, a second person was killed by a militant rocket.
...

Dozens of centres of Hamas strength, including security compounds, government offices and tunnels into Egypt, have been hit since Israel started its massive bombing campaign on Saturday morning."


Sounds fairly targeted to me (as much as these things can be).

"I see mixed marriages are still banned in Israel and any offspring of mixed relationships are deported when they reach 12. How very "un-nazi""

Source? And who cares how they run their own country?

What I am interested in is the tactical reality: if anyone wants peace, how should we go about it?

And personally, I tend to think that if Isreal makes concessions (as they have) the least that Hamas could do is not bombard them with rockets, but instead seek the next concession.

Unless, of course, no one is interested in peace which is, I grant you, distinctly possible. In which case, let's just let the silly fuckers get on with it.

DK

James Higham said...

As I wrote - the Arab solution, minus East Jerusalem, with two perpendicular corridors and a Hamas ceasefire.

Miss Snuffleupagus said...

DK
I agree with most of your post and the people you quote. However, while is is true that a great many people live in Israel, including Arabs of different faiths, this is not an argument against the accusation of racism which is often laid at Israel's door.

Jews from Ethiopia face a great deal of racism in Israel because they are black. And the Arabs are also up against similar difficulties, if not more.

Of course there are many countries in this world which are far more racist than Britain - including so-called 'black' or 'brown' countries, so perhaps to say that Israel is a racist place is no more damming than to say it is expensive or boring.

Snowolf said...

However, the point is that Israel exists now where it exists. What do we do about it?

DK,

That's an easy one; nothing.

What Libertarianism means to me is that you take responsibility for your actions and decisions.

Both sides (and by that I mean general populations/electorate) have decided to elect people they know will perpetuate this madness.

Let them deal with it, it isn't our place. If we go wading in then we become Leg-Iron's Righteous. We stick our noses in with the best intentions, but we then can't help ourselves, promoting our values and beliefs (or worse promoting what we think are their values and beliefs, but with the bits we don't like taken out) and making an even bigger mess of it.

When the populations of both sides have had enough, they'll take action, until then there's not a damn thing we can do about it. We are in danger of being a bystander, who upon seeing a scrap outside a pub, waddles over and gives both combatants a clip round the ear. There's only one way that will finish.

Peter said...

Interesting post DK.

From a libertarian perspective, it all seems to depend on whether Israel has a right to exist. If the Palestinians had a right to some particular piece of land, and Israel nicked it (this is a genuine 'if' - I don't know the answer) then presumably Israel's continuing presence on that land is illegitimate.

Given that, I don't think it can be so easily said that

"Yes, one can say that it should never have been set up in the first place, but it was and it now exists: given that, does Israel have the right to defend itself? Did Israel have the right to defend herself when the Arabs tried to invade—three fucking times?"

The CRUCIAL QUESTION, from a libertarian perspective, is who has a property right to the relevant land. It cannot simply be said that an external authority has determined that the Israelis have a right to it - that sort of answer should have no truck with libertarians.

EDIT: For all instances of 'Israel' read 'the individual Israelis who now live there' etc if referring to countries is too statist for you.

nightjack said...

Re the bombing Bradford idea... if bombing Bradford is a worthwhile solution to terror attacks on civilian targets then it's very much time to roll the MOABs but of course it isn't. The same could have been said of dropping the big ones on Belfast. It's a straw man argument. Some residents of Bradford committed an atrocity. The elected government in Gaza is lobbing lethal rockets into their neighbour's civilian population. Now if Bradford City Council decided to wage undeclared war on the rest of us and OH might have a point. They haven't, he doesn't. We invaded Afghanistan and hit the established and government backed training camps there instead.

Of course despatching LGB's iron bombs or missiles to anything in Gaza that looks like a launch site, C&C centre or manufacturing facility, no matter how close it may be to the local nursery / orphanage / hospital / other mediapathic symbol, is a fairly crap idea as well. The one advantage that air strikes have for Israel is that it is the "least of our blood spilled" option. They know from bitter experience that deploying armour and infantry will not get the job done without body bags and tortured hostages.

The only lessons to be learned here are "Don't prod the snake" and "Israel's military thinks that they have figured out how to deal with asymmetrical warfare." I will watch their unfolding playbook with interest.

Old Holborn said...

The lessons to be learned are:

If you boot people off their land, take everything they own and put them in concentration camps because your God told you to, expect them to be upset. Forever.

Ask a German Jew.

End of.

Devil's Kitchen said...

Phew! Thank goodness you didn't duck any of the salient points, eh?

DK

lotocoti said...

If you boot people off their land, take everything they own and put them in concentration camps because your God told you to, expect them to be upset.
I'm not sure John Glubb was acting on religious conviction.

Old Holborn said...

DK, what part of "end of" is causing you grief?

Steal my land, my home, my livelihood and put me and my family in a prison because your "state" is better than mine and I'll throw more than fireworks over the fence at you.

What the hell is wrong with you? 50 million died the last time this happened!

Devil's Kitchen said...

This situation is not that fucking simple, OH. Why don't you get that?

And why don't you grow some balls and spell out what you mean. Come on, OH, just say it: "I don't think that Israel should exist." Go on: you'll find it liberating.

"What the hell is wrong with you? 50 million died the last time this happened!"

Oh, get a sense of proportion, will you? Fucking hellski...

DK

Old Holborn said...

Israel has EVERY right to exist. Simple enough?

Why don't you just call me an anti semite?

Or a racist?

Or a fascist?

What it doesn't have the right to do is shit on the million people it has thrown out of their homes, out of their jobs and out of their land so that God's chosen people can move in. And then herd them into a ghetto called Gaza. The Nazi's did that in Poland and it DID end in tears.

Simple enough?

Before you answer a la Iain Dale, think about a Libertarian stance for a change. How many Palestinians this evening must be saying "just LEAVE ME ALONE"?

Anonymous said...

DK,

OH is of course wrong, and as other posters have commented it is disapointing. I thought having followed his blog and his comments on others that he was a pragmatist. Apparently not.

Historical rights are clearly not the issue here, the Jews can claim onwnership of modern day 'palestine' seven hundred years before islam. The rise of the ottoman empire saw the holy land fall to the moslems seeing the jews fleeing to Europe in the eleventh century.

Zionism gained more traction following WW11 and like it or not Israel exists, its people exist and they have as much right to live in peace as 'palestinians'.

Since its modern re creation Israel has been attacked on numerous occassions on each occasion they have defended themselves and in most cases won the day. This situation is no different.

Be under no illusions. Hamas is an Iranian backed shia fundementalist military organisation, hell bent on the same mission as al qaeda. They are exploiting the people of Gaza right now, not to reclaim some historical right to some disputed land, but to attack and destroy western enlightened democracies.

Leaving this aside, what democratically elected government could or should ever sit by and allow the Qassam rockets (fireworks to OH, or homemade rcokets to the BBC) to rain down on their citizens and not react?

Not sad to see OH leave LPUK. Please Sir, set up your own party using all that money you keep telling us you have.

aNDY

Devil's Kitchen said...

OH,

This...

"Israel has EVERY right to exist. Simple enough?"

... is totally incompatible with this...

"Steal my land, my home, my livelihood and put me and my family in a prison because your "state" is better than mine and I'll throw more than fireworks over the fence at you."

The land was stolen from the Palestinians some 60 years ago. If it is wrong now, then it was wrong then.

Ergo, Israel has no right to exist. Do you see?

How difficult is this for you, OH? Is steam coming out of your ears?

DK

Old Holborn said...

Er no.

Israel has every right to exist. It doesn't have the right to put all the past inhabitants in a concentration camp though, does it?

Or bomb them with F-16's?

Thud said...

the palis would be left alone oh if they would stop supporting the murderers of Hamas...another group who;s ultimate aim is ridding the world of first the jews and then us.The IDF is fighting a considered,restrained war on Hamas and its military organisations...not the people of Gaza.

Anonymous said...

Further to my last, and responding to OH's misplaced and supposedly 'Libertarian' view that the Gazan palestinians are just individuals trying to live in peace, presumably we (the allies) were wrong to bomb the shit out of the Germans in the last war? Following your logic the actions of the National Socialists were nothing to do with the individuals in germany?

Let's not forget the people in Gaza voted for Hamas. If they wanted to they could elect a Government that said 'We want to build a responsible state, that respects the rule of law and wishes to trade and conduct peaceful relations with our neighbours'. Would love to see that happen

Old Holborn said...

Right

Like they did in the Lebanon

Thud, the IDF would happily slit your throat. You are merely "goyim", worse than cattle.

Old Holborn said...

Anonymong,

Good Muslims are already bombing us. They came from Bradford.

Anonymous said...

OH,

You are clearly roused by the bombers from Bradford, and having read your blog and comments on others it would seem that you wish to do something about it. Why is it that the Israelis, other than the fact that they are Zionist Neocon NWO Lizards, aren't allowed to be equally offended by 'fireworks' directed at their people?

Devil's Kitchen said...

OH,

You said,

"Steal my land, my home, my livelihood and put me and my family in a prison because your "state" is better than mine and I'll throw more than fireworks over the fence at you."

This was done 60 years ago. Please stop avoiding the question: why is it worse now than it was then?

DK

Anonymous said...

"Thud, the IDF would happily slit your throat. You are merely "goyim", worse than cattle."

"goyim" is a plural noun, thud can no more be a 'goyim' than you can be albatrosses. More importantly, neither the IDF nor any other Jews think gentiles are cattle to be slaughtered. You are nothing more than an ignorant hysteric and your attempt to claim that it is not Jews per se. that you have a problem with is pathetic.


Finally, DK, you're talking rot too, I'm afraid, albeit intellible rot that merits respectful responses. Israel's 'concessions' are not laudable, they are foolish and had Gaza not been given up to its mafioso rulers by Kadima (the NuLab of Israel), all those now dead in Gaza will still be alive. The truth is that there will never be a Palestinian state and Israel will continue to run the West Bank until Jordan or some over Arab political entity takes over. At that point Israel will annex as much as possible and justly so, because the land of Israel belongs to the people of Israel just as surely as France belongs to the French.

As it happens, I oppose this particular action by Israel as I think the cost in terms of life and money will not procure a commensurate increase in security. Israel is going to have to live with the catastrophically stupid decision to leave Gaza (ethnically cleansing it of Jews in the process) and that consequence is rockets. What is important is that they don't make the same mistake again.

Finally, really this time, those maps are utter gibberish, falsely eliding property-ownership and national sovereignty on top of being based upon distinctly dubious information.

Anonymous said...

Right

Like they did in the Lebanon

OH,

Hezbollah are no more the elected government of Lebannon than Sinn Fien / IRA were of Northern Ireland

Anonymous said...

No country would be as mild as Israel in responding to provocation of this sort, unless they were not capable of anything else.

On the other hand, no other country would be so feeble-brained as to negotiate with incompetent criminal scum like Fatah, or hand over bits of territory to them.

Whatever, I am a Jew (ha I admit it, I use goyim as house ornaments and everything!!!) and basically this is what I think. I don't want to rule over others, I don't want to have an empire, or be a great power. I don't want to impose Jewish law on Britain or anywhere else, I don't want rabbis in the house of Lords. I don't want to convert anyone, I don't want to change the world. I don't want anything, in fact, except a tiny sliver of land which my ancestors have called home for millenia.

You don't like that? Fine, most people seem to have some big problem with it, but that's your prerogative. You can even claim that you are being suppressed by the zionist media, despite your narrative being hegemonic throughout the world if that's what gets your juices flowing. However, if you come to my land and try to kill my people, we're going to f**k you up.

Anonymous said...

Re. the maps.

I hadn't even noticed because it's so obvious, but what is there labelled 'Palestine' or 'Palestinian land', variously refers to "British mandate", "Jordan" and "Egypt". It's just a nonsense.

There has, of course, been an unbroken Jewish presence in the land of Israel, (including the "West Bank") for the past 4,000years. It was never "Palestine", which was simply the name of a Roman province (preserved in subsequent empires) with no national connotations at all.

Anonymous said...

"just as surely as France belongs to the French."

France of course in the Middle ages was a fairly small country surrounding Paris. Maybe the Bretons and the Aquitanes (not sure that's quite right) can start lobbing fireworks at Paris? How far back do you go?

Do they have concentration camps in Israel?
When will Jordan give back its part of the Palestinian mandate? The original Balfour Declaration was to grant a much larger area to Israel than they eventually got.

Hamas say this is a war. Israel is fighting a war. They could go in alot harder than they are. Unfortunately there will always be civilian casualties in a war. There is nothing illegal about it. Upsetting perhaps, but certainly not a war crime unless they are delibarately targetted. By placing their weapons amongst civilians, Hamas are the ones committing war crimes.

Shug Niggurath said...

Or as the 'Arab Street' like to say:

Death to Israel, Death to America

I've generally subscribed to the idea that the Palestinians are used as symbols of oppression by dictatorships who need to keep their own people occupied and Islamist factions who wish to establish a caliphate. They'll be demanding Spain back next.

Nick said...



The land was stolen from the Palestinians some 60 years ago. If it is wrong now, then it was wrong then.

Ergo, Israel has no right to exist. Do you see?

How difficult is this for you, OH? Is steam coming out of your ears?


Not true.

Israel has every right to exist.

Israel does not have a right to exist at someone else's expense.

You're deliberately leaving off the last part.

If Israel can find some land where the people there are prepared to move out for it to move in, no problem.

Alternatively, give it part of the country that caused the mess in the first place.

I notice you aren't commenting much on the question of property rights. Show's you're not much of a libertarian.

If Israel wants people to reclaim property from the 1930's, then it should also let the Palistinians reclaim property from 1967

Nick

Devil's Kitchen said...

Nick,

"I notice you aren't commenting much on the question of property rights. Show's you're not much of a libertarian."

How old are you, for fuck's sake: 12? This whole discussion is about property rights.

"Not true.

Israel has every right to exist.

Israel does not have a right to exist at someone else's expense."


Israel was set up at someone else's expense.

"If Israel can find some land where the people there are prepared to move out for it to move in, no problem."

This wasn't going to happen, even in 1947, so what you are effectively saying is that Israel has no right to exist.

What did happen is that Israel was set up on a piece of land that no significant player in the international game (apart from the nomadic tribes of the area) particularly gave a shit about and the surrounding Arab countries involved said, "yes, sure, you can take that bit of land." (THey then reneged on the deal.)

However, you are effectively saying that Israel shouldn't exist. Unless, of course, you want to pursue the "property rights" thing back 2000 years, when a lot of Jews did, in fact, live there.

How far back do you want to go with your property rights stuff, Nick? Shall we British be entitled to take Calais back?

And meanwhile, back in the land of pragmatic reality...

"If Israel wants people to reclaim property from the 1930's, then it should also let the Palistinians reclaim property from 1967"

If we are going to get all "property rights" stuff going on, how about we say that any land that has been improved by Israel, now belongs to Israel.

So, anywhere where the people of Israel have built houses, provided irrigation, etc. Shall we say that?

No? Because it was stolen land? Yes, but when was it stolen? Oh, by the Romans 2000 years ago... Blah blah blah.

Constantly wibbling about property rights without putting a definition on them does not make you a libertarian -- it makes you a fantasist and an idiot.

DK

Nick said...

Lets go through your points in turn.

1. Why not go back to Roman times? ie. Is there a limitation as to how far back you can go to reclaim property is perhaps the more general question.

Well, I think several different tests can be applied. First relates to the date of when you protest or make the claim. Not processing the claim can't be a reason for keeping the property.

In the case of Palistinian property, they have been claiming the property back since it was taken.

What's Israel's approach to claiming property, for example that taken from Jews in the second world war? Answer is that they are claiming it. The property was taken before the Palistinian property was taken. I can't see any reason why individuals shouldn't get their property back, and the right to enjoy it.


What did happen is that Israel was set up on a piece of land that no significant player in the international game (apart from the nomadic tribes of the area) particularly gave a shit about and the surrounding Arab countries involved said, "yes, sure, you can take that bit of land." (THey then reneged on the deal.)


Did they? So, lets see what you are saying. Countries surrounding Israel said, look you can have the land. That's a great law isn't it. The countries around Israel can now give it away to someone else. Get real. It's not the right of other countries to give someone else's land away.


If we are going to get all "property rights" stuff going on, how about we say that any land that has been improved by Israel, now belongs to Israel.


So, the land goes back. How do the 'improvers' get compensated? You could make that part of the deal. However, you would then need to compensate those who were denied 40 years of profit from the land for that loss of profit.

I'm not a fanatacist. The problem is that you started the thread by saying Israel had a right to defend its 'property'. Others and myself have pointed out that 'property' was taken from others, and those people are trying to get their property back.

Until you address, and Israel too, how to deal with the property rights of individuals, there isn't going to be a peace.

War is not a valid way of obtaining property in a modern era.

Devil's Kitchen said...

Nick,

"What's Israel's approach to claiming property, for example that taken from Jews in the second world war? Answer is that they are claiming it. The property was taken before the Palistinian property was taken. I can't see any reason why individuals shouldn't get their property back, and the right to enjoy it."

That's all very well, but who decides who's claim gets honoured? Or shall we just put all of the land in escrow until the whole thing gets sorted out.

Except that you haven't outlined how it would be sorted out. The Israelis and the Palestinians are claiming the same land: who decides who gets what?

That's the problem here: who's claim gets honoured?

"War is not a valid way of obtaining property in a modern era."

The Israelis aren't doing this round of bombing to get more land (after all, they are bombing land that they "gave back"); they are doing it to stop others bombing land that the Israelis consider to be theirs.

Defending one's life, liberty and property is entirely libertarian. If you consider that land not to be Israeli property, then fine -- but you are going to have to outline how you would decide who owns what.

DK

Mike Gogulski said...

DK said: Defending one's life, liberty and property is entirely libertarian.

True. Except that isn't what's happening here. A far more consistent view is that some inmates of a camp for political/racial prisoners have been lobbing rocks over the wall trying to nail their oppressors, killing a few. The oppressors and jailers are now coming back and killing hundreds -- collectively, regardless of their guilt in the rock-throwing crimes -- in retaliation.

Disappointingly, you seem to side with the oppressors here.

Nick said...

Well, unless you take the view that those in the Warsaw Ghetto were also criminals.

DK, I'll post a longer reply later on what needs to happen.

Perhaps if you think about the question of individual rights, and the rights of a state.

ie. Can individual's get their property back, even if there isn't a change of state.

ENGLISHMAN said...

It will not be long before bradford is firing rockets at us,as it is practically an autonomous region,ruled by a foreign alien power,which is intent upon our destruction.

Damo Mackerel said...

The real oppressors of the Palestinians are Hamas and their murderous iranian and Syrian supporters.

Shug Niggurath said...

Mike Gogulski said...

...that isn't what's happening here. A far more consistent view is that some inmates of a camp for political/racial prisoners have been lobbing rocks over the wall trying to nail their oppressors, killing a few. The oppressors and jailers are now coming back and killing hundreds -- collectively, regardless of their guilt in the rock-throwing crimes -- in retaliation.

Maybe more consistent to yourself. Not to everyone.

Here's another analogy;

...a band of gypsies have declared a patch of land outside your town as theirs because their great-grandfather lived there once and have proceeded to pile up rubbish everywhere.

They took to visiting your town centre and housing estates and murdering people by the dozen, actually targeting the weak and infirm.

Your town council decided to put a fence up to protect you and now the gypsies have started firing shotguns over the fence at anyone who is in range to take a pop at. Worse, any of the gypsies who are still laying paving for townspeople are being chased out of the camp or murdered by their own people.

Last week the gypsies managed to severly injure you, but because you never died it only made the local paper and not the national news.

Now your local police are going in to round up the criminal element, but like many family groups they are all living amongst each other. Have they the right to do that?

Chalcedon said...

It should be pointed out that the Israelis are using precision bombing against Hamas buildings and militant camps. Of course these are sited in civilian areas so there will be some civilian casualties. There were in Baghdad for the same reason. The use of effectively human shields. Then when children are killed (which is always bloody terrible) out comes the propaganda machine.

Anonymous said...

What a nasty, vile little creep OH is.

wonkotsane said...

Your analogy of France lobbing missiles over the Channel doesn't do it justice DK. We would expect France to lob some top grade military hardware over the channel, not home made rockets or buy one get fifty free missiles made in a shed in Iran or Syria. Then, of course, it wouldn't be the French government that was doing the lobbing, it would be a terrorist group. Would we expect to react to such an attack with helicopter gunships, tanks and fighters?

Do you know what, that still isn't a very good analogy. It'd be like taking a shotgun to your neighbours kids for throwing stones at your conservatory that you've built in their back garden.

Terrorism is wrong whether it's being carried out by arab militants or the Israeli military.

wonkotsane said...

Out of interest, why does Israel have a right to exist? I'm not saying it doesn't, I'm just questioning the commonly held opinion that Israel has as much or more right to exist as Palestine. Israel's right to exist is based on a story in a book written and rewritten over the space of two millennia and a League of Nations promise to create a Jewish homeland in the middle of a load of arab states that pledged to destroy it before it was even created. Palestine's right to exist comes from the fact it actually existed until the League of Nations and then Israel did away with the Palestinian state. So, without wishing to encounter the wrath of the pro-Israel extremists, is there anything more tangible than a story in a two thousand year old book about a supernatural being to give Israel a right to exist and to exist where it currently does, illegally occupying most of another country?

Sensible answwers only please, keep your incoherent, hate-filled accusations of anti-semetism and racism to yourself.

Thud said...

Wow oh..the idf would slit my throat...well thats my mind changed...I firmly behind Hamas now as I'm sure they have such wonderful ideas for all our futures

Anonymous said...

"Palestine's right to exist comes from the fact it actually existed"

Umm, no it didn't. There has never been a Palestinian nation.

wonkotsane said...

Umm, no it didn't. There has never been a Palestinian nation.
Another one of the "facts" that pro-Israel extremists are quite happy to believe without questioning. A Palestinian state existed, administered by the British under a League of Nations mandate, after the Ottoman Empire was relieved of its empire. Palestine was parcelled up with Transjordan but administered as a separate entity. There has been a Palestinian state where Palestine and Israel are now on and off for over 3,000 years (Palestine is mentioned in Egyptian texts from 1200BC). By contrast, the earliest reference to an Israeli state are, I believe, in bible stories and a book of fairy stories isn't an accurate historical text.

Nick said...

By contrast, the earliest reference to an Israeli state are, I believe, in bible stories and a book of fairy stories isn't an accurate historical text.

------------

Not correct, there are references to Israel being conquered by Egypt on a wall of a temple. That's the earliest known reference to 'Israel'.

It's a small part of what is now Israel.

Old Holborn said...

I'm confused.

Does it matter if you were part of X or Y state when someone invades you, steals your house and land and then puts you all in a concentration camp?

Devil's Kitchen said...

OH,

"Does it matter if you were part of X or Y state when someone invades you, steals your house and land and then puts you all in a concentration camp?"

Apologies: I see what you are getting at.

From an ideological point of view, no. Unfortunately, from a point of view of pragmatism, I am afraid that it does.

I prefer to look at all of this in a pragmatic manner: ideology has already done enough damage in the Middle East.

For what it is worth, here is what I would do were I the Palestinian leadership and interested in getting "my country" back (given the prevailing circumstances). For starters, I would not have kept launching rockets into Israel from Gaza.

I would have attempted to run the province well and continue to press the Israelis for more concessions (which they seem to be in the mood at least to consider).

I would have attempted to show that I was not interested merely in destroying Israel (to the detriment of my own people) or, indeed, just lobbing rockets at non-military targets.

I think that there could be peace in the Middle East, but it absolutely requires pragmatism – not fanaticism – from both sides. We are not seeing that and it irritates the hell out of me.

DK

Anonymous said...

Wonko:

No independent Arab or Palestinian state ever existed in that area. When the distinguished Arab-American historian, Princeton University Prof. Philip Hitti, testified against partition before the Anglo-American Committee in 1946, he said: "There is no such thing as 'Palestine' in history, absolutely not."

Prior to partition, Palestinian Arabs did not view themselves as having a separate identity. When the First Congress of Muslim-Christian Associations met in Jerusalem in February 1919 to choose Palestinian representatives for the Paris Peace Conference, the following resolution was adopted:

"We consider Palestine as part of Arab Syria, as it has never been separated from it at any time. We are connected with it by national, religious, linguistic, natural, economic and geographical bonds"

Palestinian Arab nationalism is largely a post-World War I phenomenon that did not become a significant political movement until after the 1967 Six-Day War and Israel's capture of the West Bank.

Nick said...


Palestinian Arab nationalism is largely a post-World War I phenomenon that did not become a significant political movement until after the 1967 Six-Day War and Israel's capture of the West Bank.


Competely untrue. It started with the establishment of Israel in another country.

There always was a country covering the area where Israel is now.

Pro Israeli's are pushing the idea that the land was empty, it was never a country, because it confers some sort of legitamacy about the establishment of Israel at the expense of the Palistinians.

If you accept that a country can be created at the expense of other people, you're setting yourself up for the same to happen to you.

Ditto if you use war to obtain territory, you can hardly complain when those dispossesed use war to try and get it back.

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