Twitter drones – are you one of them? Part 2.

This is post is a sequel for my previous post about my experiment with Twitter channels “#GazaUnderAttack” and “#IsraelUnderAttack”. In this post I’ll describe the discussions I had with “Joe”, the only responsive and coherent real user who responded to me from the “Palestinian” (“#GazaUnderAttack”) channel.

Here’s a post by Joe that caught my attention when I saw some of his tweets in the channel:
tweet

However, my interaction with Joe started with me tweeting to a different user, who himself mentioned Joe. By virtue of replying, my tween also reached Joe. The original user hasn’t responded. My question to that user was:

“Occupation of what? Not a single Israeli in Gaza.”

This is a factually correct statement, by the way.

From now on I’ll transcript the tweets exchange between Joe and myself, dropping the less relevant portions. It is quite long, so feel free to scroll down to the conclusions if you’re not interested in the actual transcripts.

Transcripts

Joe’s response:

“TLA – what are you doing? Gaza is a prison; not a country. They want to be free.”

And here’s the dialog (my tweets aligned to the left, Joe’s – to the right).

“Again talking points… They’re free. Free to fire rockets, apparently. What prison?”

Somehow more people got added to the thread, but at some point it was just me and Joe.

Sara – should the US should back an ethnic supremacism like Israel whose laws violate our constitution?

“Can you tell us which laws are these, and what other countries’ laws violate it?”  – here I was trying to see if Joe would admit that most, if not all, middle eastern countries have laws contrary to the US notion of human right. Including the Palestinians, I even brought an example to the table.

“Israel controls Palestine. Rights based on citizenship, citizenship based on race.”

“Citizenship in Israel is not based on race. I personally now [sic] Israeli citizens that are arabs” – that is true, I do.

Joe then responded with:

over 50 laws discriminate against Israeli Arabs. But Israel has absolute control of WBGS” – WBGS is West Bank and Gaza Strip, I’m guessing. This statement is factually incorrect (all of it). I’ll elaborate more below.

Is a democracy with a managed demographic really a democracy?

I asked for example, and a list of other countries. For example: [link to an article about Palestinian Authority sentencing a person to death for selling real estate to Jews].” – here I was trying to show that the facts are exactly the opposite of what Joe thinks. I got no response to this tweet.

Next thread started with this message:

But Hamas is a symptom of 20 years of hopeless occupation. End occupation & end hamas” – Joe was responding again to “Sara” who was participant in the thread and posted this image.

Except that… There’s no occuation! Not a single Israeli in Gaza! What else do you want?” – me again repeating what I’ve already said…

Annex it and grant full citizenship to all its residents.” – this one shocked me, frankly, as I was confident that Joe supports Palestinian independence. In any case, this is something that will never happen.

There are 1.7 million people that live there. Most escaped Nakba. What do U propose?

Joe, how about “live a normal life”? I know, strange idea. Lets shoot rockets instead.

Palestine existed since the Romans destroyed temple in 80 AD.”

What temple exactly did the Romans destroy in 80 AD? Was it a Buddhist temple?” – here I was trying to see how far back after 80 AD Joe would go. Apparently not too far…

When the Romans dealt with the zealots and destroyed Jerusalem.”

And who were these zealots? Early Republicans? Russian Communists? Nazi troops?

Why do U asks this? Do U know history of Israel/Pali/Levant?” – he figured out what a mistake he had made.

I do actually. I know the answer, I just want you to say it.” – I got no response to this, he went on changing the subject entirely. The answer, to those of you who don’t know the history of ancient Levant, is of course that the Temple was Jewish, and the Zealots were a Jewish sect.

Why do you think Hamas shot those rockets? Out of the blue? What wax going on last 10 d?

Joe, why are you not answering any questions? Are you trying to preach? But do tell – why?

U R asking stupid stuff.what matters is what is causing the tension. That’s supremacism.” – here Joe slipped a little, but I let it go. Also, the “racism” motive start appearing here.

I’m confused. You asked my “why” – I don’t know. I asked you “tell me” – you responded …?”  – I got no more responses to this. Question left hanging unanswered.

Next thread:

I explained to Joe that I intend to write a post about our conversation and asks his permission to mention him. He OK’ed it, and then this exchange happened:

your blog focus on the conflict instead of the condition and control that creates conflict.

My blog focuses on consumer issues. I don’t really care about the conflict as much as I want to show that the news are false.

I agree with thesis but you leave off the vile racism exhibited by Jewish youth. That’s a real & frightening story.” – Racism motive again. Here that tweet I mentioned at the top of the article comes handy.

I know. Racist are everywhere. You, for example, call Israelis “nothing more than dirt”, yet no-one shoots you for that. So?” – I’m referring directly to that tweet.

that’s not racist. That a statement of total repulsion and rejection of this level of violence and terror on part of a state.

Zios [sic] use racism, antisemitism, as a shield. Its bullshit. Zionism is racism by definition. Jabotinsky was rejected.”  – this is not something I understood entirely. Maybe someone could clarify this in the comments.

Claiming “all Israelis are XXX” is racism exactly as claiming “all Palestinians are XXX”. After all – they have excuses too.

From here a separate thread started, I’ll post it further down. Here’s the continuation of this one:

I am not racist – be careful. Racism is the core of the problem. Don’t confuse that with frustration with Israeli govt

But you’re not saying “Israeli government is dirt”, you’re saying “Israelis are dirt”. See the difference? And to my question?

There are many peaceful Israelis. But bibi is very popular – right? And Lieberman even more a Nazi.” – I disagree with the statements. For those who need explanation – “bibi” is Benyamin Netanyahu, the Israeli PM. Lieberman is the Israeli Foreign Minister.

Actually both statements are false. Bibi’s party lost 11 mandates last elections and is barely at 20 MKs, according to wiki.” – I’m relying on this page here.

As to Lieberman, he’s an idiot maybe, but very far from being a Nazi. I’m not sure you know what “Nazi” means. Look it up” Here’s a link for you. As to Lieberman being an idiot – that is my personal opinion based on the little I know of him, not a fact in any way.

Another thread started with me describing my plans for this post and mentioning media bias. I then said this:

And that is true for both sides, because Palestinians keep showing charred bodies but can’t actually explain why they ask for it.” – I’m referring to the pornography of death I was talking about in my previous post.

But the problem isn’t the bodies or conflict. Those exacerbate. Problem is the Jewish supremacist state and oppression.” – well… Remember this. We’ll see a statement to exactly the opposite from Joe very soon.

So the Palestinians shooting rockets is just fine?

Seriously?? What happened before they launched? Why were they launched? Come on!!” – Notice how my question is not being answered…

So it is OK then? Just verifying. You’re OK with indiscriminately killing civilians, as long as they’re Israelis?

is getting very old and transparent. Why won’t you admit the apartheid and the role it plays in creating violence?” – he refuses to answer a simple “yes/no” question. I’ll explain why in the conclusions section.

I don’t believe it exists. You see – I answered your question. Can you answer my?” – I’m not afraid to answer a question though.

No that’s stupid. I hate all violence. But what was that month long witch hunt and how many innocents arrested & killed? 250?” – thank you for that.

This Israeli technique of pushing Palisade to the brink of hopelessness the yelling ‘terrorist’ when the defend themselves ++”

No answers again… It goes both ways. When you shoot rockets at someone – aren’t you expecting a response?

Bibi knew who kidnapped those settler boys the day it happened and let the terror hunt go 2 weeks.” – not sure how it is related, but I’ll bite…

So… who kidnapped those settler boys?” – I still don’t know…

Israel in the month of July has behaved more like the Jewish KKK than a democratic state. Riots, witch hunt, teen girls txt” – wasn’t able to correlate this statement to the actual news…

So teen girls txt makes it OK to try and kill people? How many times did you try to kill someone who wasn’t nice to you?

the rockets were the response. Should have ignored them. Who got hurt??” – And bingo – here we go. That’s the punch line, please remember it.

So you’re allowed to try and kill people as long as you fail? Is that they [sic] US law as well?” – not surprisingly – got no response to this. Just to make sure everyone is on the same page – attempted murder is a crime in the US which may get you life in prison, regardless of how much damage was caused during the attempt.

Lets separate. How many arrested – I don’t care. How many killed – Why? Where? By whom? Does it justify the rockets?

You don’t care? Obviously not. You seem only concerned about what happens to Jews, not what Jews do to others. That’s racist

No, I don’t care about arrests, because Hamas didn’t launch rockets to arrest people. Or disproportionate responses are OK?” – no response for this.

Now back to the branched out thread:

Israelis acting as a state against a stateless, hostage community. Over 70% casualties women & children. Repulsive.” – Remember the previous tweet saying that the bodies are not the problem? Apparently, now they are.

So you’re basing your racism on your conviction that these children and women dying? What about this: [Canadian PM blaming Hamas of using human shields] ?

that report is crap. Britain, like US, has powerful pro-Israeli lobby that they fear will cost elections.” – pick and chose what to believe? Nice strategy.

That’s from Canada actually, they have a very large Palestinian population. How about this (from Gaza)

I’ll have to watch tomorrow. Google “Jewish teens tweet Arab”. Does that racism trouble you?” – still waiting for the response after he has watched it.

I’m not posting you about racism, I’m posting you about dying women and children. Any racism troubles me, including yours.[sic]

The next two tweets were exchanged the next day. Remember, he promised to watch the YouTube clip I posted to him and respond, so I guess this is the response:

To me you sound like another exercise in Hasbarra – trying to put lipstick on this pig by focusing on what doesn’t matter.” – oh, that word again. Read my previous article if you don’t remember what it means.

So trying to convince children and women to commit suicide doesn’t matter, but when they turn up dead – then it is genocide?” – to this there was no response.


Summary

At some point the posts became repetitive and I felt like we’ve made a full circle. To continue the discussion was quite pointless as it was obvious that he knows exactly what he’s doing and is doing so willingly. I’m still responding to his tweets, but I don’t feel continuing the transcripts would add to the article. Obviously his goal was not to engage in a debate but rather to overwhelm with a flood of factoids and obscured statements. He cannot be bothered with self-contradictions, factual observations or challenging opinions. That’s not what he’s on twitter for. Although he’s obviously intelligent and self-aware – he’s, after all, a drone.

I noticed the following from Joe:

1. He would not answer questions to which the answers would embarrass him. For example, he mentioned the Roman destruction of the Jewish Temple, but he refused repeatedly to say that the Temple was in fact Jewish. He mentioned the Zealots, but refused to explain who they were (a Jewish sect). This is because in his mind, Jews are invaders in Palestine, and admitting that there was a Jewish holy site there thousands of years before the Arab Palestinians ever laid claim on the land defeats his whole ideology. Yet, he does know that, so it is kind of weird to see a person ignoring facts he obviously knows just for the convenience of keeping his beliefs. Not at all uncommon among religious people, so it looks like Joe religiously believes in whatever, not knows it.

2. Once I ask a difficult question – he changes the subject. Once I pose a challenge – he treats me as a group and argues against a claim I didn’t make (straw man fallacy). For example “You seem only concerned about what happens to Jews“. Towards the end he also attributed me to “Hasbarra”, same as the automated drones I wrote about in the previous article. Probably a “talking point“.

3. Sometimes, he would ask me a question, and I’d return the same question to him. Specifically with regards to “who killed the settler boys”. I said I don’t know. He claimed he does. But when I asked him “Who…?” I got no response. According to the news reports, it was Hamas, by the way. The same organization shooting rockets at Israel. Since Joe didn’t elaborate, I can only assume that it is true, otherwise it wouldn’t be so inconvenient for him to respond.

4. I also tried to turn his own argument against him. For example, in our discussion of racism, I showed him that there’s no difference between claiming “All Israelis are XXX” and “All the Palestinians are XXX”. Yet, he claimed the latter was a valid reason to attack Israel with rockets, and the former was his own tweet. When I asked him if he thought it would be OK to shoot someone not being nice to him (for example, saying “all XXX are YYY”, where XXX is a group Joe would be a part of) – I didn’t get an answer.

5. Joe also suggested that Israel shouldn’t have responded to the rocket attacks. After all, “nobody was hurt”. Well, that’s not true, to begin with – people were hurt. There were several severely wounded, a lot of damage to property, etc. But it is true that the damage and casualties in Israel pale in comparison to those in Gaza. That is why I asked this question: “No, I don’t care about arrests, because Hamas didn’t launch rockets to arrest people. Or disproportionate responses are OK?” . Not surprisingly – I got no response.

6. Several “facts” that Joe mentioned were easily refuted. For example, there’s no racial discrimination in the Israeli citizenship law. Israelis are all equal citizens, there are 11 (out of 120) members of the Israeli parliament from Arab-dominated parties (including the Israeli Communist party, I wonder if Joe is aware of the treatment to that party in the US), and an Arab Supreme Court Justice was the one who sent the former Israeli President to jail. Another example would be claiming that the Prime Minister Netanyahu is “very popular” when his party only got 20% of the popular vote, or that the Foreign Minister Lieberman is “more than a Nazi” when Lieberman is closer to the US libertarian opinion holders than the extremely socialist Nazi.

7. Contradictions – when I mentioned the charred bodies, he claimed that “bodies are not the issue”, but very quickly we came back to the “dead women and children”, making bodies the main issue. One report about using human shields was dismissed because it was “British”, I have not gotten the response to the report in Arabic from an actual Hamas member of the Palestinian parliament.

Conclusions

So what are my conclusions?

1. Again – truth is of no importance. Joe ignores the truth even when he knows it, and skews it, stretches it, or just makes it up as he goes. Palestine existed since 80AD? Maybe. What was before that? Joe conveniently ignores. Joe says: “over 50 laws discriminate against Israeli Arabs. But Israel has absolute control of WBGS” – nothing in this sentence is true. Israel has no control over the Gaza Sector (had it had any – there wouldn’t be rockets, would there?), and most of the West Bank is controlled by the Palestinian Authority. As to the 50 laws – I’m aware of 50 ways to leave your lover, but I’m not aware of 50 discriminatory laws in Israel. Joe didn’t elaborate, although I did ask for specific examples (the only one he provided was false).

2. Double standards – Palestinians always get leniency, Israelis are always treated strictly. Israel is expected to ignore the rockets because “noone got hurt”, but it is perfectly fine to fire those rockets because “teen girl txts” or someone got arrested. But Joe conveniently ignores the fact that “noone got hurt” not because there was no intention to hurt, but because Israelis excel in defense technology. One would ask why the Palestinians don’t have defense technologies? After all – they do have tons of rockets. One can also wonder why should Israelis ignore Palestinian rockets, while the Palestinians should not ignore “teen girls txts”. Joe didn’t provide answers to these questions. He also refused to answer the “disproportionate response” question. Because firing rockets in response to “teen girls txts” or arrests is not really proportionate, but the Palestinians claim that the Israelis respond disproportionately to their attacks.

3. Racism – I called out Joe’s racism against Israelis, and I feel that it caused him some discomfort. He got very passionate about this, and abruptly changed the subject. Racism, or more precisely, antisemitism, explain Joe’s behavior very well:  blame the Jews, for whatever happens.

4. Straw man arguments – while you can’t expect anything else from bots, people shouldn’t use the straw man arguments. This is a sign of weakness, it shows that the person is trying to make things up in order to avoid confronting with the inconvenient truth. But then again – remember #1? Truth is of no importance. It’s just the presentation, trying to shift the “blame” to the other side in order not to feel cornered.

5. Complete misuse of words. Claiming that the 200 civilian casualties are the result of an Israeli genocide is, frankly, offensive to any intelligent person. Genocide is what was going on in Bosnia, or in Rwanda,  or still goes on in Syria, or what was going on in Europe in the 1940’s. You can call the massacre of Armenians by the Turkish a genocide, or the massacre of the Kurds by the Iraqis. You can even look at the American history and ask where did all the Native Americans suddenly disappear. That’s genocide. Claiming that 200 people died during a war time operation within several days – it is not genocide. It is saddening, I’d wish it hasn’t happen, and I definitely don’t want anyone dying. But choose your words. This is not genocide. If Israelis wanted to kill all Gazans – they would do that in an hour. They have the power. What they don’t have is the will – and that is exactly the opposite of what Joe, and others, are claiming. Looking at the weapons at the Israelis’ disposal – one can only wonder how come they’re so careful that only so many casualties are there. I can’t imagine a F15 dropping a bomb in a middle of San Francisco with only 15 people being hit. So they must be doing something right.

8. Blatant antisemitism – well, that’s a given. When someone claims that “Israel has no right to exist. Israeli is no better than ISIL. Both are a threat to humanity and US should fight to end them both.” – it’s hard to suspect that person of any shred of objectivity. I wonder how Joe would react to “Palestine has no right to exist” or “American is not better than ISIL”.

Joe's tweet calling for destruction of Israel

A classic example of an antisemitism.

Support for Osama Bin Laden and 9/11 is not surprising as well…:

Joe justifies the 9/11 attacks as a blowback for the US supporting Israel

Joe on 9/11

7. Last but not least – Exercise in logic. Why Gaza? Ask yourself – why is it that the clashes are so frequent – but only in Gaza? Why is that that the Palestinians in the West Bank don’t shoot rockets at Israel since more than ten years ago? Why is that that the Israeli “genocide” is not occurring in the West Bank, part of which is, in fact, under the Israeli military control? And why is that that Gaza is under siege – by the Egyptians? After all, Israelis are at war with Gaza, so it is reasonable for them to impose a maritime blockade. But why does Egypt block the border it has with Gaza? Maybe its not because of the Jews, but because of the people in Gaza behaving so badly that even their own “brothers” want nothing to do with them? I mentioned this point to Joe, I got no response.

So, what to do?

Nothing much. Just pay attention to the information you’re getting. Once you start cross-referencing, it becomes easy to identify the bias, filter out misinformation, and shake off the racism. You just need to be aware of it. The Arab-Israeli conflict reports are a perfect example of how much contamination we’re getting in our reports, both through the social media and through the news outlets. But it is there on almost any topic. You’ll need to learn to identify the trash and throw it away. Whatever left, no matter how inconvenient, will be the truth. Don’t be a drone.

By the way, if you think that drones only exist in these two channels, or on this specific issue – you couldn’t be further from the truth. This is just the easiest to experiment with, but I could probably pull the same thing off with a Republican conservative talking about the ACA, or a Democrat talking about the path to citizenship. Christian evangelist supporting Israel or a Berkley student brainwashed by the Palestinians. Pretty sure I could find a couple of Ukrainians and Russians exhibiting these symptoms, or any other parties of a conflict here or there. Drones are everywhere, on every topic, and you deal with them daily. I hope you’ll deal with them better after reading this article.

Your Little Advisor.

PS: It was published by CNN while I was writing this article, that Egypt was trying to broker a cease fire. Reportedly, it was Hamas to be rejecting it. Go figure.

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6 Responses to Twitter drones – are you one of them? Part 2.

  1. Hi, Joe here.

    I could not disagree more with your article. This is less journalism than it is intellectual masturbation. A self-serving fantasy stimulated by browsing through the pornography of emotional expressions (tweets) and interpreting it in a way that suits your particular perversion until you satisfy yourself.

    First of all, as I stated earlier and a read between your own lines will confirm – Twitter is not suited for discussions. Its intended to let your followers know what you are doing or thinking at the moment. Its good for making statements, not questions and answers. Its difficult to track a conversation. The confusion and discomfort on my part that you observed was not aversion or deception, but confusion and discomfort and at trying to have a meaningful conversation without being ripped to shreds by misinterpretation. In that every sentence is a ‘tweet’, and tweets are viewed by themselves without context, its impossible to have a conversation. You are a smart guy and know that, but it points to your own prevarication to insist on that modality of communication.

    I also completely disagree with most of your conclusions and set-ups. You worked very hard to continuously corner me into admitting that I have antisemitic feelings; as though the existence of any measurable antisemitism is justification to discount my observations or opinions. That is utter bullshit – or, in the parlance of such a sophisticated social observer as yourself – a false dichotomy.

    We all have some inherent prejudices. Its natural and unavoidable. The question is do we let them take precedence over our values? Do we let our own inherent racism or supremacism dictate our actions and actively deny the rights of others or prejudice our own rights above theirs? Do we let the action of one or a group of those of a given race define our feeling of all men of that race? My answer to both is no. No matter how frustrated that I get about the government of Israel and their Nazi supremacism, I can’t let myself become racists to all Jews, because there are many, many Jews who oppose this government as strongly as I. Max Blumenthal, Norman Finklestein, Ilan Pappe, Shlomo Sand, Noam Chomsky, orthodox Jews, …,

    Your attempt to catch me in my own ignorance about the Roman destruction of the Jewish temple, and then ridicule me to your reads is revealing. Here I make the assumption that I am speaking with a Jew who does have a historical understanding of the region and people the he defends today. I don’t go off trying to school you in your own back yard. Yet, as you reveal above, now that you have the goyim in your snare you might as well make him dance and use the opportunity to illustrate the sub-Jewish level to which you have to deal with.

    But what I really want to take issue with you is your paragraph #7. That is where you manifest your abject racism against the Gazans. You pool all of your hate, your bigotry, and your tricks to justify your racial superiority and why that particular group deserves the gas chamber. The arrogance and downright hubris in that paragraph is sobering. You pick them apart and divide them from the rest of humanity no different that Goebbels did the Jews in his Communism With the Mask Off.
    http://www.calvin.edu/academic/cas/gpa/goeb58.htm

    What is it that you think this hasbara circle-jerk will accomplish. Who do you really think you are fooling? Yes, today you laugh at the carnage and asymetry of Gaza, nuke-for-rock et al. But what about tomorrow? Do you really not think that this vile and abhorrent collective behavior is indefinitely sustainable? How long do you think that Israel can sustain an ethnic supremacy at the expense of a native culture without the weight of its maintenance causing your downfall?

    I am an American. I have no clue as to the details of my heritage. A mix. I am a real bastard. But every single day for 18 years I started my morning in school with my hand across my heart reciting the Pledge of Allegiance. After that, at every football game, at every sporting event, at every public assembly. It took 9/11 to make me think about what I have been pledging all this time. Do you know what the last five words are? “… with liberty and justice for all”. I made it a point to ask 100 people what the “all” meant in that statement. “All means all”. Everyone. That’s what American’s think. ‘All’ means me. ‘All’ means you. ‘All’ means Jews. And ‘all’ means Palestinians. Our values are not in our race, as Hitler & Herzl thought. Our values are in our humanity. But at this point, having pledged all of my life, I am committed to “liberty and justice for all”, even its that antisemitic.

    • Joe, thank you for commenting and voicing your opinion in more than a sentence.

      Several things I want to respond to:

      1. Justice. This is a strong word, but what does it mean? Is murder justified? I asked you time after time why Hamas is shooting rockets, and whether you agree with this action – you either decline to answer or implied your agreement. But why Hamas shooting rockets is any different than Israel dropping bombs? Why do you look for the justification of one, while ignoring the reasons of the other? You cannot pick and choose which aggressor to justify – because they both have perfectly valid reasons. In their own opinion, at least. You share the opinions of Hamas – yet their opinions are antisemitic. You justify them yet they chose to forgo the safety of their own people in favor of attacking Israelis just for being Israelis. I see that as antisemitism, it has nothing to do with “goyim in my snare”. If you claim that killing is bad – then it is bad on both sides. And no, claiming that shooting rockets is ok because “no-one got hurt” is not acceptable. No-one got hurt (not true, by the way) is not for the lack of Hamas trying. On the other side, as I mentioned, 200 people got hurt DESPITE Israelis trying. And I do truly believe that. 200 people killed after 3000 bombs dropped – either Israelis are really bad at aiming or they ARE trying to avoid casualties.

      2. The reason I was pressing you on the matter of the temple was because you actively refused to state what it was. You claim it is the Palestinian’s land, you claim that Israel occupies it illegally – but why? Because Palestinians “were there first”? Well, the history, as you know it, shows otherwise.

      3. My questions are all reasonable and based on facts. You see me “continuously corner me” into admitting your antisemitism as something I’m not allowed to do. Why? Isn’t revealing the reasons for your behavior a good enough reason to engage in conversation? After all – I had no expectations of changing your mind. I just wanted to see what your mind was.

      4. I didn’t “attempt to catch me in my own ignorance “. In fact, I wrote that not only I think that you’re not ignorant – I think you’re very intelligent and knowledgeable. But DESPITE knowing the facts, you chose to BELIEVE contrary to them.

      5. Re point #7 – I didn’t voice opinions, I asked questions. Why Gaza? Why are they blockaded by Egyptians? As I said – you’re only blaming Israelis, but I cannot believe that Egypt, country that fought Israel numerously and cannot be considered its friend or ally in any manner, will do something so horrific as you describe just because Israelis asked nicely. So why is it that Gazans are under siege? You (or others) claimed that if someone has problems with all their neighbors – the problem is not with the neighbors. How does it apply to Gaza?

      You may notice that I have never actually stated my opinion about the events anywhere in our discussions. You didn’t even asked me to. You just assumed what I think and went on arguing with your assumptions (straw man, remember?). When I suggested you contacting me directly through the blog after you said twitter was not suitable – you continued tweeting, you didn’t contact me. It was your choice, you had the option. Twitter is indeed more suitable for making statements – but that is exactly the point of this article: to show that these statements cannot be taken for what they claim to be. Your statements are antisemitic and barbaric. You justify horrific acts of terror. You call for destruction of a country just because you don’t like its people, and you defend people trying to murder other people over texts and words. To me – this is horrible. After 18 years of reciting the pledge – you still don’t know what “justice” means and how to apply it.

      • joe briggs says:

        “You call for destruction of a country just because you don’t like its people”

        I don’t call for the destruction of a country because I don’t like its people. I call for the destruction of a country because I don’t like what its people do. That is the exact reason for the crippling sanctions and conditions imposed on Germany after WWI, and that is the exact reason it should be done to Israel today.

        I call for the destruction of Israel ‘as we know it’. That specifically is an apartheid state founded on the land that others have continuously lived on since Abraham. I call for the destruction of a state that has been at war with its neighbors in one way or another since it declared independence in 1948. I call for the destruction of a state founded on terrorism, founded on lies, and founded on brutal racial and ethnic cleansing.

        The problem with Israel is not the fact that European Jews have immigrated. Sephardic Jews have lived together with the non-Jewish population in peace since the Muslim conquest of the Levant. The problem was the right-wing racists group led by the likes of David Ben Gurion who sought to divert from a binational state and push toward a Jewish-dominated state. This violence and extreme disregard for human life and value will forever taint Israel. There was every promise that immigrant Jews and Palestinians could live together up until the right-wing nutcases took over. (I will admit that much of the basis for my understanding is from The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine by Ilan Pappe, and One Country, by Ali Abunimah.)

        You attempt to point to me (in error) as antisemitic. But you fail to examine the fact that Zionism itself is the very definition of racism. I will not be called racists by someone who hides behind Zionism.

        I do not defend Hamas’ use of rockets – but I understand it. I understand the hopelessness and despair of an endlessly occupied and abused people who are out gunned and out funded and out-supported in every conceivable way. I also understand Israeli tactics of pushing the Palestinians to the brink and then calling them ‘terrorist’ when they finally fight back. I feel for the little guy.

        There will never be peace in Israel until the people of Israel – the Jews, get accept the fact that they are no better than the lowest Palestinian when it comes to the eyes God and the law. You don’t have to like Palestinians. You can still believe in your heart that you are better than them. But you do have to treat them with dignity and with humanity. You don’t have to give them welfare or handouts; you just have to give them citizenship, due process, and representation.

        Also, you talk about land and history. Unless you can dig up Abraham’s rib and genetically test that to yours, then chances are that the very Palestinians and fellahin that you are slaughtering are the real descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. The majority of Israeli Jews are Ashkenazi, and they are the product of conversion; not bloodline. I have seen a lot of fake and fudged genetic tests, but they are all based on a false predicate because you don’t have a sample of Abraham, Sarah, Isaac, or Jacob, to compare to. The only data that makes any sense whatsoever is historical, and that is defined by Arthur Koestler and Sholmo Sand. Its unassailable to anyone other than someone who is basing the title to their land on it. So this “God promised it to the Jews” crap is a laugh. Outside of the elite and the troublemakers, the Jews were never chased out of Israel. The Palestinians today descend from the same people who worshiped at that temple. And the numbers of Jews in Europe could not be rationalized even if they were. Conversion happened. Askenazi Jews are no more entitled to Jerusalem than I am.

        Its too late for European Jews to return. But its not too late to end Zionism and the hatred and bigotry that goes along with it. Israel as we know it must be ended and replaced with a single government that rules over all of Palestine with equality and justice for all.

      • Your entire premise is based on lies. You mentioned “bigotry”. Applies to you nicely.

        Lets go over the things one by one:

        “I don’t call for the destruction of a country because I don’t like its people. I call for the destruction of a country because I don’t like what its people do.” – I don’t think it matters why you don’t like the people. The fact that you suggest destroying them just because you don’t like them makes you a horrible person.

        “That is the exact reason for the crippling sanctions and conditions imposed on Germany after WWI, and that is the exact reason it should be done to Israel today.” – Except that these sanctions were the direct cause of WWII. Do you really want to repeat that mistake?

        “I call for the destruction of Israel ‘as we know it’. That specifically is an apartheid state ” – That is a complete lie. Apartheid was a system which deprived black citizens of South Africa equal rights under the law and participation in governance. That is not what happens in Israel. There’s not a single law that discriminates against one single class of its citizens. All citizens are equal before the law and have the same rights.

        “founded on the land that others have continuously lived on since Abraham.” – Most of the Earth have been continuously populated by people. Yet, we have different countries in different places. Would you justify murdering Americans to restore the Native American tribes?

        “I call for the destruction of a state that has been at war with its neighbors in one way or another since it declared independence in 1948.” – this is false as well. Israel has long standing peace agreements with Egypt and Jordan, the longest borders it has with. Syria doesn’t have a peace agreement with Israel, but has been in relative peace for more than 40 years. The only ones attacking Israel still are the Palestinians and Lebanese, and even the Lebanese are divided among themselves on the issue. In fact, Syrians, Jordanians, Iraqis, Palestinians – are all being treated quite frequently in the Israeli hospitals. Some (Palestinians especially) – at no cost to them.

        “I call for the destruction of a state founded on terrorism, founded on lies, and founded on brutal racial and ethnic cleansing.” – But there’s no ethnic cleansing. How would you call the Palestinian state? Not founded on terrorism? Not founded on lies? And speaking about ethnic cleansing – the Palestinians openly declared that they will not have Jews in their country.

        “Sephardic Jews have lived together with the non-Jewish population in peace since the Muslim conquest of the Levant.” – By the way – how many Jews are there in Arab countries? Speaking of ethnic cleansing. Jews were expelled from ALL arab countries in 1940’s, forcibly removed. However none of them were recognized as refugees. Palestinians on the other hand are refugees for generations. People who were born to people who had never set foot in the area call themselves Palestinians and demand being treated as refugees. They are the ONLY ones who get this treatment. No other people were recognized as refugees when they were living in the same place where they were born.

        “The problem was the right-wing racists group led by the likes of David Ben Gurion who sought to divert from a binational state and push toward a Jewish-dominated state.” – That was a UN decision to divide the land into three countries. Israel accepted the division. Arabs have not.

        “This violence and extreme disregard for human life and value will forever taint Israel.” – I believe Israelis give the most regard to human life. I cannot explain otherwise how with thousands of bombs and rockets so little civilians were hit.

        “There was every promise that immigrant Jews and Palestinians could live together up until the right-wing nutcases took over. (I will admit that much of the basis for my understanding is from The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine by Ilan Pappe, and One Country, by Ali Abunimah.)” – when did that happen, the “right-wind nutcases” taking over? Could it have happened in 1929? As to the ethnic cleansing, given that more than 20% of the Israeli population is non-Jewish – they’re not really good at that cleansing, are they?

        “You attempt to point to me (in error) as antisemitic. But you fail to examine the fact that Zionism itself is the very definition of racism. I will not be called racists by someone who hides behind Zionism.” – Zionism is not racism, it is nationalism. There’s no difference between Zionism and the Palestinian movement for independence.

        “I do not defend Hamas’ use of rockets – but I understand it. I understand the hopelessness and despair of an endlessly occupied and abused people who are out gunned and out funded and out-supported in every conceivable way. I also understand Israeli tactics of pushing the Palestinians to the brink and then calling them ‘terrorist’ when they finally fight back. I feel for the little guy.” – Pushing to the brink? By leaving them fully equipped agricultural facilities which the Palestinians then went on to destroy and then claimed they’re hungry? Because that happened. Endlessly occupied people are free from any occupation for almost 10 years. What have they done with themselves in that time? Other than amassing huge amounts of weaponry – apparently not a thing.

        “There will never be peace in Israel until the people of Israel – the Jews, get accept the fact that they are no better than the lowest Palestinian when it comes to the eyes God and the law.” – while I don’t care much for gods – laws we’ve covered. How about the Palestinians?

        “You don’t have to like Palestinians. You can still believe in your heart that you are better than them. But you do have to treat them with dignity and with humanity. You don’t have to give them welfare or handouts; you just have to give them citizenship, due process, and representation.” – why would Israelis give them citizenship? That’s ridiculous. They don’t live in Israel. They live in Gaza, they can set up a country there if they want.

        “Also, you talk about land and history.” – I don’t. You’re the only one mentioning history or land.

        “Unless you can dig up Abraham’s rib and genetically test that to yours, then chances are that the very Palestinians and fellahin that you are slaughtering are the real descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.” – I’m not slaughtering anyone. Not even a chicken. Never in my life had I try to kill a person. Why are you blaming me of such a thing? As to who’s descendant of who – couldn’t care less. You apparently could. Speaking of racism…

        “The majority of Israeli Jews are Ashkenazi, and they are the product of conversion; not bloodline.” – yeah, nice to hear that from someone mentioning Gebbels before. Still saying you’re not a racist?

        “So this “God promised it to the Jews” crap is a laugh. Outside of the elite and the troublemakers, the Jews were never chased out of Israel. The Palestinians today descend from the same people who worshiped at that temple. And the numbers of Jews in Europe could not be rationalized even if they were. Conversion happened. Askenazi Jews are no more entitled to Jerusalem than I am.” – ignoring the racism, lets talk facts. Jews were in fact chased out of Israel. That is a historical fact. As to conversion… Conversion happened? Maybe. So? Jews define themselves by religion, so converted Jew is a Jew. As to the Palestinians – they’re unlikely to have worshiped at that Temple. Most of the arab population emigrated into the area in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s for work. The ingenious people are the Bedouins. And you might be surprised – most of them live in Israel and Jordan, serve in the Israeli and the Jordanian armies, and fight AGAINST the Palestinians (yes, Jordanians fought against the Palestinians. Black September, look it up).

        “Its too late for European Jews to return. But its not too late to end Zionism and the hatred and bigotry that goes along with it. Israel as we know it must be ended and replaced with a single government that rules over all of Palestine with equality and justice for all.” – a single government like the Palestinian Authority? That claimed that there will be no Jews in their land? No. But what’s wrong with each side having their own country?

      • joe briggs says:

        “I don’t call for the destruction of a country because I don’t like its people. I call for the destruction of a country because I don’t like what its people do.” – I don’t think it matters why you don’t like the people.

        How do we get by this??? I don’t dislike Jews. I despise Zionists- both Jewish & Christian. Zionism is supremacism. Its wrong because it oppresses people, takes advantage of them, and causes harm, misery, and violence. Are you a Zionist? Then I hate you because of the harm that you do to others through the practice of your bigotry. Are you not a Zionist – then I don’t hate you. Why do you insist on conflating this?

        Why do you hate Palestinians? Its because you think you are better than they are. That can be the only reason that you want to deprive them of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Because you are a self-righteous racist bigot. You are. Not me. You.

        For you to say that the conflict and violence is all because the Palestinians don’t like the Jews is about as stupid as can possibly be. Be honest. You dislike the Palestinians. You dislike them because they launch bottle rockets toward Israel. Its just that you forget what you did to them first. You forget that Hamas did not exist until 20 years after the 1967 War, and after there was no chance in hell for equal rights or any justice at all. Hamas is not the problem – they are a symptom of Zionism. End Zionism, and the rockets will stop.

        Annex all of Palestine into a single country and make the Palestinians all equal citizens. Write or borrow a constitution and bill of rights that protects everyone. You will find the Palestinians great partners. How do I know? Look at the Bedoins and the Israel Palestinians. That’s proof.

      • This is my last response, and your next comment will be your last on this thread. You’re not going to convince me in your being right any more that I can convince you to change your mind.

        “Zionism is supremacism. Its wrong because it oppresses people, takes advantage of them, and causes harm, misery, and violence.” – Zionism doesn’t do any of these things. Zionism doesn’t in fact do anything. Zionism is not a person, it cannot take actions. Zionism is an idea. If you’re suggesting that the Zionism idea is to oppress people, take advantage of people, cause harm, misery or violence – than I disagree. The idea of Zionism is creating an independent Jewish state to avoid Jewish being persecuted everywhere else. I see nothing wrong with this idea. Do you?

        “Why do you hate Palestinians?” – I don’t.

        “Its because you think you are better than they are.” – I don’t.

        “That can be the only reason that you want to deprive them of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” – I don’t.

        “Because you are a self-righteous racist bigot. You are. Not me. You.” – Since you’ve reached this conclusion by attributing qualities to me that I do not possess, the conclusion is incorrect.

        Why does their pursuit of happiness have to include shooting rockets at other people? Why must their liberty come at the expense of liberty of others? I don’t know. But you’re advocating it – so please explain.

        “For you to say that the conflict and violence is all because the Palestinians don’t like the Jews is about as stupid as can possibly be.” – Saying “you’re wrong because you’re stupid” is something a 3 years-old does. Grow up.

        “Be honest. You dislike the Palestinians.” – I do.

        “You dislike them because they launch bottle rockets toward Israel.” – That is correct.

        “Its just that you forget what you did to them first. You forget that Hamas did not exist until 20 years after the 1967 War, and after there was no chance in hell for equal rights or any justice at all.” – Hamas is not the only Palestinian terror organization. In fact, Palestinians (PLO, in particular) had been attacking Israel way before the 1967.

        “Hamas is not the problem – they are a symptom of Zionism. End Zionism, and the rockets will stop.” – Jews had been attacked throughout history. Zionism is just an excuse.

        “Annex all of Palestine into a single country and make the Palestinians all equal citizens.” – Why? Wy do you not allow for Palestinians have their own state? By what right do you deprive them of their right to pursuit happiness and liberty? Who are you to decide for them how to live? Why do you think you’re so much better than them? You have your own state. Why don’t they deserve one?

        “Write or borrow a constitution and bill of rights that protects everyone. You will find the Palestinians great partners. How do I know? Look at the Bedoins and the Israel Palestinians. That’s proof.” – Wait, what? I thought Israel was an Apartheid state! Now the Israeli Arabs are an example of co-existence??? Did they get such a nice treatment from the filthy Jews by throwing rockets at them?

        Bottom line – You make things up as you go. You think you’re better than the people you’re trying to defend. You think you’re superior to them. You think that you, Joe, has the right to decide for them what country they should be living in. Not only for them – for Israelis as well. You already decided who should annex what, and grant citizenship to whom. But why don’t you suggest the US to annex Gaza? Why don’t you propose US citizenship for Palestinians? Why are you demanding Israel to adopt your personal beliefs, but not your own country? What is the difference? If it is the proximity – then why not Egypt? Why not Jordan (who already gave citizenship to all the Palestinians in the West Bank). Why not have them have their own country? What is it with your obsession with Israel?

        You have one last comment.

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