Archive for the ‘HISTORY OF JEWISH PEOPLE’ Tag


John Chuckman


Netanyahu is well known for despising the Oslo Accords from the beginning.

And now his long series of dark and hostile acts has pretty well succeeded in destroying them.

But that’s only a small part of what he has done. Mass killing in Gaza. Attempt to starve the people out with blockade (they actually counted the calories for minimum sustenance in the early stages). Piracy on the high seas. Horrible bombing in Lebanon. Assassinations. Threats and insults in every direction. Imprisoning without proper trial. Sending armed men more than once into holy places. Stealing homes in Jerusalem and the West Bank.

And Netanyahu has always made outrageous demands before even talking – for example, the demand that Israel (defined by what borders?) be first recognized as the land of the Jewish people (even though the overwhelming majority of the Jewish people do not live there – this is also a demand which directly threatens the lives of the million or so Palestinians who hold Israel citizenship through the accident of being trapped in horrors of 1948).

It couldn’t be clearer – although our press won’t say so – that Netanyahu is dedicated to creating Greater Israel, taking the land Israel illegally controls minus its unfortunate residents. It is slow-motion ethnic-cleansing, and nothing less.

What would you say and do if you were a Palestinian?

These people – five million or so in the occupied territories and East Jerusalem – live with no votes, no rights of any kind, almost no ability to travel, daily abuse, a good deal of danger and contempt, not even secure home ownership, and, to cap it all, the people responsible for all the oppression broadcast to the world a steady stream of public relations announcements about being a democratic country.

Netanyahu – whose acts and words literally scream a narcissistic if not psychopathic personality – is one of the most dangerous men on the planet, and an Israel under his leadership or under the leadership of anyone like him, such as the late Ariel Sharon, will never seriously consider peace and the fundamental compromises so clearly needed to secure it.

I am most afraid it will all end in tragedy.


Response to a reader comment:

First, the Ashkenazim of today’s Israel have no relationship to the ancient Hebrews beyond sharing their religion. They are people largely of European origin, a fact which is established by their history, language (Yiddish-Taitsh), and even DNA testing.

But even if one somehow imagines the Ashkenazim as the descendants of the ancient Hebrews, how do they have a claim over land they would have left 2,000 years ago and others long have inhabited?

They don’t of course. It is an absurd proposition.

If you believe that is somehow proper way of doing things, then the Greeks should control Turkey (the Trojan War), Italians should control France (Gaul), Mongolia should control much of Europe (Genghis Khan), and indeed most of the planet should be completely re-ordered.

In many cases, there would be multiple claims to particular places, and, indeed, this is very much the case for Israel/Palestine. The Egyptians and the Phoenicians (Lebanon) ruled there for a long time before the Hebrews. Greece, Italy, and others would also have claims.

The notion of a Biblical foundation for modern Israel is so preposterous that it makes one’s head spin. But more than that, it was so clearly a violent and dangerous idea from the start. If someone with weapons and threats chased you from your home, claiming ownership in the name of vague and uncertain ancestors, and murdered many of your neighbors, is there any way to look at that as promoting peace or security or a bright future? It promotes feuds and hatred on all sides.

Apologists for Israel just remain blind to these basic principles.

Now, I am someone who regards the foundation of modern Israel as a geopolitical mistake because it was certain to create strife and bloodshed for countless years, but I am also one who believes that now that the mistake has been made, we have to try making it work. That can only happen if Israel ends its occupation, returns to its 1967 borders, and starts cooperating with, instead of attacking and oppressing, its neighbors. It must also give up imperial ambitions of growth at the expense of neighbors and working to dominate all of West Asia, and that is absolutely an accurate description of what motivates a tyrant mind like Netanyahu’s, and it is guaranteed to create endless strife and horrors.

The Palestinians were not responsible for the Holocaust, an event which happened in another land on another continent in another time. Why must they pay so terrible a price? And the cowardly American and European politicians who refused to help migrating Jews three-quarters of a century ago eased their guilt by supporting the creation of Israel, making innocent people pay the price for their own misdeeds.

No settlement or resolution which does not recognize these glaring realities and injustices can possibly succeed in the long term.

I do think Israel – at least the Israel of terrifying leaders like Netanyahu – is its own worst enemy. Refusing to deal with burning injustices means Israel ultimately is likely to go the way of the Soviet Union. After all, Israel today much resembles the old Soviet state with its huge military-intelligence-security establishment, its poorly functioning general economy only sustained by subsidies, and its ruthless hold over millions of captives who do not want to be held.








Gingrich reaches new levels of the ridiculous here, reminding me a bit of the time some years ago when apologists for Israel insisted no one should use the accepted term, suicide-bomber, inducing George Bush to give a speech in which he used the non-existent term, homicide-bombers. Of course, it sounded ridiculous, but no more so than much of what George Bush said.

Gingrich has always, always been a two-faced politician, a slimy manipulator, and a man who has served various special interests for a large enough wad of money.

Here he claims what is, is not.

Even the Bible speaks of the Philistines, albeit with a negative perspective.

And why does he do this?

To attract large campaign donations from The Lobby.

There is no other explanation, because Gingrich has always been a man of shallow and rather easily altered convictions.

What an absurd business to inject into the political debate in America, especially considering here is a nation with scores of serious problems, but that’s what a politician without ethics is willing to do.

And one has to believe The Lobby is desperate to the point of insanity to invite this kind of garbage.

The world is becoming totally disillusioned with Israel: its behavior is consistently aggressive, unethical, and malevolent, and no ignorant, shallow words from Newt Gingrich or anyone else is going to convince them that what they see daily is not the truth.

Israel’s credibility with people all over the world keeps falling, and indeed has not much further down to go.

All that rather than just make peace and treat its neighbors with respect. It does say something very unpleasant about Israel that no blind insistence by manipulated American politicians can overcome

“. . . despite what some folks say, it turns out that Christians are VERY open-minded. Doing whatever you want is perfectly OK with them … as long as once in awhile you say that you’ve sinned but have now — SHAZAM ! like MAGIC ! — been forgiven by God.”

It’s an aspect of one of America’s favorite continuing themes: eternal youth and being born again.

Redemption is a concept repeated in America to the point of being sickening, day after day.

You can do anything – and Newt has done some disgusting stuff – and have redemption.

The popular culture is replete with stories of drunken or drugged hillbilly singers who find redemption, along with endless tedious stories of sports figures and politicians.

There’s always a new prospect for everyone so long as they just believe.

Believe in what?

Essentially believe that you are special, going to live forever, and truly cannot do anything wrong.

By the way, Newt is not just a serial adulterer, one of his egregious stupidities was announcing to his past wife, dying in a bed of cancer, that he was divorcing her.

Doesn’t that just say something profound about this man’s character? I do believe we are dealing with a psychopath here, a relatively mild one but a psychopath.

That being understood, how easy for him to deeply cut and hurt millions of people already suffering decades of abuse from his campaign-fund paymaster.

“…Palestine Liberation Organization executive committee member Zahir Muhsein. Here’s what he 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.”

What an abysmal comment.

First, how in God’s name can you honestly quote one man as representing the truth on so profound a matter and speaking for millions of people? You cannot.

You might as well quote Mordechai Vanunu on the nature of Israel.

You are just repeating an immensely tiresome and deeply dishonest idea that Jordan is where Palestinians belong.

Jordan does not want millions of Palestinians.

Millions of Palestinians do not want Jordan.

No, the Palestinians just want the homes and farms they have resided in for centuries and centuries.

And they don’t want the migrants from Europe and America who pretty well define the establishment of Israel stealing any more of their homes and farms.

And what does Israel and apologists for Israel’s abuse, like yourself, want?

To ethnically-cleanse millions of people, stealing all their homes and farms.

In a futile effort to make that palatable, you spew nonsense like this about there being no Palestinians.

The existing apartheid situation in Israel and occupied Palestine is only intended by Israel’s establishment as a temporary one, intended to make these poor people get up and go from endless abuse and deprivation.

Go where? Go anywhere so long as it is not in the territory of what has now become that malevolent fantasy of Greater Israel.

As all apologists for Israel’s abuse, you conveniently forget that all the countries of the Middle East, including Jordan, have no long history, but that does not render any of them invalid.

The shape of the modern Middle East arose out of matters like the decline of the Ottoman Empire and the imperial adventures of Britain and France.

And the bottom-line truth is that all nationalism is pretty much a child of the 19th century. National states, as we know them today, virtually did not exist before then.

Europe and other parts of the world were divided into princedoms and empires everywhere, entities which included a polyglot of languages, religions, and ethnic identities – the Austro-Hungarian Empire being perhaps the most obvious example with its Germans, Tyroleans, Italians, Hungarians, and many others.

Nationalism is almost a virus that infected Europe in the 19th century with the idea that Germany should be for German-speakers and Italy for Italian-speakers, etc.

We saw where that virus led: in the limit, Hitler’s Reich with its absurd racial theories is where blind nationalism goes.

The early Zionists were infected with exactly the virus of nationalism sweeping Europe, and today in few places of the world is there a more backward-looking sense of identity than in Israel.

Israel for Jews. No room for others.

That sounds terrifyingly familiar.

“It seems that the Jews of modern Israel are the invented people; not the Palestinians.”


A fine Israeli academic has written a serious and scholarly book on the Jewish people and Israel’s identity.

Everyone concerned about the Middle East should read it.

You’ll find my book review here:

But even were the findings of this research to prove inaccurate, there still would be no excuse for Israel’s abuse and oppression.

“ Clearly, the anti-Israel posters here have no real notion of the history of the region and are simply parroting Palestinian talking points.”

I would be willing to match my knowledge of the region’s background with you or any other apologist here for Israel’s interests.

There is nothing more intellectually dishonest than repeating endlessly the same technically true but trite observation, an observation which is meaningless.

Again, no country in the Middle East has less historical basis than Israel, a place largely founded and governed by Europeans and Americans.

And modern scholarship seriously questions whether these founders and rulers even have any legitimate connection with the place called Israel because they are likely not descendants of the ancient Hebrews.

The Palestinian people most likely include most of the direct descendants of the ancient Hebrews.

The Romans were known not to throw all the population out of their conquests, and there is no record of them doing so despite the modern notion that the Jews have been wanderers since being thrown out.

Both the Biblical stories and some Jewish notions of ancient history we know to be incorrect.

There is for instance no record – and this among some of the world’s great past record-keepers, the Egyptians – of Israelis being enslaved or even living in Egypt.

Moses is an Egyptian-origin name, not Hebrew.

And somehow or other I have doubts about Jonah living in the whale.

You don’t base boundaries and world affairs on myths and superstitions, but if you do you get just the kind of mess we see today in Israel.