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The elephant in the room!

Discussion in 'The OT' started by jonstad, Jul 16, 2006.

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  1. Jul 18, 2006 #81 of 126
    ntexasdude

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    Okay, here's what I think in my ever so serious ntexasdude mindset. In a weird way I tend to to agree with a lot of the points in this discussion on both sides. Without taking sides in this issue (is that cowardly?).......Israel will not back down. They are sick and tired of being told they will be "forced into the sea". They are tired of their sovereign citizens being blown up on buses. They will not run out of bullets or money. Like jonstad said the US will ensure that, covertly or overtly. They can lob bottle rockets, all 12,000 of them, until they run out. Israel will then engage in in piecemeal destruction of Hezbollah and Lebannon with incredible military technology and precision. Israeli fighter pilots are regarded as the most efficient in the world. WE trained them and sold (or gave) them the technology. The terrorist simply cannot match Israel in military might - a foregone conclusion. I fear the terrorist will try to draw America into the conflict with an attact on an escort ship or something. Whatever - a serious miscalculation.

    There is not EVER going to be a positive outcome of this conflict. It just might escalate into something deplorale - even for Israel. But, I'm convinced the wealth and miltary might of the Western world will not back down - ever. And I wouldn't discount the possibility that Israel might, just might, turn Tehran into glass.
     
  2. Jul 19, 2006 #82 of 126
    jonstad

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    Well I did actually. A little sarcastic tongue in cheek to be sure, but I think everyone got the idea. Later I elaborated that dismantling West Bank settlements and returning to 1967 borders would be my moves to prove sincerity. But doing that or adhering even remotely to the "partition" Israel so famously accepted and the Arabs rejected, is not something that's even on the table, at least not for Israel.



    Well, the numbers speak for themselves. I heard reported yesterday that since the latest trouble began, Hezbollah has launched about 1100 missiles into Israel. Israeli dead as of this morning from these rockets was exactly 24, half of them "civilians". OTOH, since Israel began its attacks on Lebanon, over 200 Lebanese, mostly "civilians", have died. So even though Israel supposedly doesn't "target civilians", they've managed to kill quite a few anyway. And although Hezbollah supposedly deiberately "targets civilians", they've managed to kill very few, even with 1100 rockets.

    I certainly don't subscribe to Hamas' or Hezbollah's philosophy nor do I condone their tactics. But that doesn't mean I have to subscribe to or condone Israel's reaction to them either.

    (Breaking News Update!!! Watching the news tonight, MSNBC I believe, they reported that one additional Israeli had been killed and 31 more Lebanese. The report seemed to treat these as equal tragedies. The Israeli as a sympathetic victim of terrorism of course, and the 31 Lebanese as simply being the cost of Israel "defending itself". What struck me however is the reporter went out of his way to insure we knew that besides the single Israeli killed, something like 28 or 35 or something Israelis had been injured. He then went on to elaborate that about half of them had sustained "physical injuries". And here's the kicker, the rest had sustained "psychological injuries like anxiety attacks"! In other words, half the "injured" had just had the bejeebers scared out of them. Now being in a war zone is something I wouldn't wish on anyone. Bombs falling and bullets flying and/or the random rocket whizzing past overhead has got to be a traumatic experience. But have we really reached the point where panic attacks are reported as "casualties"???)



    A little combined reply here.

    So, Jews accepted a "partition" that carved out a country for them from land they had not had control of for at least 1500 years. And Arabs, who HAD been in control of the territory for at least the last thousand years or so rejected the same "partition".

    My, what a surprise! Why would the Arabs reject such a proposal? Who'd o' thunk it!?!:scratch:

    Duh! Why wouldn't the Jews accept such a proposal? And why wouldn't the Arabs reject it?

    Suppose the UN had decided to carve out a hunk of New Jersey or Texas or MICHIGAN as a "homeland" for some esoteric ethnic and religious minority? Ya think this group might "accept" the offer? And this group essentially forced the residents off the land with little or no compensation declaring they could never return? Ya think those former residents might "reject" the offer?

    And you can change the scenario to just about anywhere. Maybe you could get away with it in parts of Africa. But pretty much not anywhere else without strong resistance from the "locals". Why should the Arabs have to give up their land? Because it says so in some crusty old religious text? Because non-Arab Christians had an attack of the guilts over how they'd treated this minority for the past several thousand years, especially recently?

    The Jews had initiated a pretty nasty guerilla insurrection in the region, in some cases employing tactics that could be construed as the precursors of what today we would call "terrorism". Our brilliant solution was to just declare Jews the winners by "creating" the state of Israel!:icon_stup Did we really expect that would be the end of it?

    http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3249568,00.html

    Strangely enough,:rolleyes: this was not covered very extensively in the US press.

    This was not yet official Hamas policy. And given recent developments, it's probably likely never to be. But Hamas has only recently come to elected political power and is still feeling their way. And if you're feeling your way, you don't lay all your cards on the table. I believe there was at least one other such "trial balloon" launched by Hamas in various, relatively obscure venues. You can interpret them any way you want, but IMHO, the above is a "hint", perhaps even a "strong" one.

    There are maps, and there are maps.
    http://www.passia.org/palestine_facts/MAPS/wbgs_campdavid.html

    There apparently were no "official" maps that came out of Camp David 2000. Yours is the plan the Israelis claim they were offering. Mine is the one the Palestinians claim they remember as being offered. Obviously there's quite a difference. I'm not sure we'll ever know exactly what happened. It does seem surprising Arafat would have flatly turned down the proposal the Israelis claim they were making, particularly after being there a week to ten days hammering out the details. But it's also surprising that in all that time no one thought it would be a good idea to draw up a map. Maybe it was a gross misunderstanding or something was lost in translation. There is a story that on one of the last days in Arafat was shown a rough map hastily drawn on a cocktail napkin or something. One of his aides recalls he returned to his quarters "white as a sheet".(no jokes please):lol: If what Arafat thought he "saw" was the second map, it would explain how he was shocked into a whiter shade of pale. But, even if it was the first map, it must be understood that all those barely visible little dots are Jewish "settlements". And if you look closely, there's a lot of them!
     
  3. Jul 19, 2006 #83 of 126
    jonstad

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    Of course I'll be labeled a "Bush-hater" for this, but past Presidents, sometimes with considerable effort, have BARELY managed to keep a lid on things over there. And even then the lid would boil over a little now and then. And don't get me wrong, I'm not praising any of them for their efforts either. But at least it seemed like a priority. Bush's efforts appear half-hearted at best. He seems to have concluded that anything Israel does is just fine with the US. And that giving them any firm direction or instruction is "interfering in their internal affairs". Never mind that those "affairs", economic and military, are supported by billions of US dollars every year.

    So, what are we getting for our investment?

    Ariel Sharon didn't like Yassar Arafat, so he virtually imprisoned him in his compound. Not only marginalizing him, but cutting him off completely. Sharon would simply not deal with Arafat at all. And although Arafat was the most prominent and recognized leader of the Palestinians for at least 30 years, Sharon with the acquiescence and full backing of the US, DEMANDED:mad: the Palestinians present him with another leader to negotiate with. And the appearance was, that this leader(Mahmoud Abbas) was hand picked by Sharon and the US. the end result was the Palestinian street lost all confidence in Arafat's party, Fatah, especially after his death, and elected Hamas as a majority party. And it appears neither Israel nor the US saw this coming and were completely stunned by the development. So yeah, that went quite well!:sure:

    So moving on, although Hamas was now the democratically elected leaders of the Palestinians, neither Israel not the US would have anything to do with them. This seems to have made a bad situation worse. And of course there was no recognition or even consideration that the previous policies of Israel or the US might have had anything to do with the current situation. That was, and remains, unthinkable.:nono: It was those stupid Palestinians who preferred "terrorism" over peace. If they'd only chosen the leaders we wanted and expected them to, everything would be just fine!:yesman::rolleyes: And now the result is the endless loops of stuff blowing up in Beirut and Haifa!:nono2:

    As stated, previous Presidents, by exercising our influence and control over Israel through the past couple decades had managed, albiet sometimes ham-handedly, to establish some semblance of peace and at least keep the parties talking. The situation now seems to be spinning out of control.

    You can talk about Israel's "sovereignty". But it's a sovereignty we've bought and paid for and we ARE entitled to some influence and control. But Bush has exercised none and it doesn't appear he intends to. Hamas is in power because Israel(and US) refused to deal with Fatah unless Fatah became their/our puppet. Hezbollah's genesis was Israel's occupation of Lebanon.
     
  4. Jul 19, 2006 #84 of 126
    Capmeister

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    "Let's say you arrest all the murderers in Los Angeles. Does anyone actually believe that other murders won't happen?"

    You see no reason to support an ally when they're being attacked my terrorists? Then why should we be supported when they attack us?

    I assume you think the same of England, Canada, etc, right?
     
  5. Jul 19, 2006 #85 of 126
    Capmeister

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    I had a long post written, refuting much of your asinine post which gets a lot of facts wrong, but my network glitched and I lost it. So I'll just address this.

    In 1948, world Jewish population was HALF of what it had been 15 years previous. Only now, 60 years later, is it back up to about what it was pre-holocaust. Half my family is GONE because of that attempt at total genocide. GONE. Murdered. Gassed. Burned.

    I have nothing from them--no cousins from their lines, no books, no diaries, no nothing.

    Many of those who settled in Israel were the survivors of an attempt to destroy them and their families. All they had in 1945, when the war ended, were the memories of the loved ones and the lives they'd lost, and tattoos on their arms as reminder that they were considered expendable property by a world who didn't care to do anything but turn them over for extermination. How dare you call them winners in any context?

    I'm back to ignoring you. You're not worth my time.
     
  6. Jul 19, 2006 #86 of 126
    AllieVi

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    No. We realize that murderers will exist in our society forever. We have ways to deal with that certainty within our borders. I see no reason to extend a similar forever commitment to a country in another hemisphere. You didn't actually respond to my question. Do you believe other radical groups won't arise?

    I don't sense that Israel would be in any position to come to our aid. Our relationship is really very one-sided.

    Not if a country's survival is so tenuous that our continuing support for decades would be required. You seem to be willing to go the forever route. I'm not.
     
  7. Jul 19, 2006 #87 of 126
    Capmeister

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    You think Israel's existence is tenuous? Hardly. If they need to, they'll destroy their enemies to survive. And they have the nukes to not need our help.
     
  8. Jul 19, 2006 #88 of 126
    Halfsek

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    At some point people are going to have to wake up to the reality that this is just another example of militant Islam. It would exist with or without the US or Israel.

    Just in the last week:

    Philippines
    3 killed in Zambo port shootout
    India
    J&K violence continues, 4 killed in Poonch
    Thailand
    Six killed in restive border provinces
    Kashmir
    Five blasts rock Srinagar, 6 killed

    There's more, but why bother? None of these attacks had anything to do with Israel or the US. They are simply the mindset which justifies the random killing of people in order to achieve ideoligcal goals.

    And now we see Lebanon.
    Don't forget, there is a UN resolution 1557 (or something close to it) calling on Hizbollah to disarm from southern Lebanon. Hizbollah is using an innocent, weak country to carry out their attacks across international borders.
     
  9. Jul 19, 2006 #89 of 126
    Eagles

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    Not that it matters but I think it may have been 1559. What does matter and gets very little media attention in this country because it doesn't move the damage Bush action line is that Israel actually complied with that resolution while hisbutta didn't. Obviously they didn't disarm and never intended to.
    BTW it has been reported that hisbutta is not allowing civilians from that weak country to flee known target areas. Nice bunch those hisbuttas.
     
  10. Jul 19, 2006 #90 of 126
    Eagles

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    Game, Set, Match!
     
  11. Jul 19, 2006 #91 of 126
    Richard King

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    We must understand.
     
  12. Jul 19, 2006 #92 of 126
    jonstad

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    Ah yes, any expressed criticism of Israel or its policies is a manifestation of anti-semitism and a desire to complete the aims of the Holocaust. How could I have forgotten? Pardon me for a moment while I starch my brown shirt and polish my jack boots.

    OK, first let me say I am truely and sincerely sorry for your loss and the loss of the Jewish people in WWII as well as countless instances of anti-semitism that have been a hallmark of western civilization, my civilization, over the past few millenia, and that continues to this day in various insidious forms. In sheer scale of brutality and mindless inhumanity, the Nazi's Final Solution is probably unmatched, but it is hardly an isolated incident. It was a continuation and unfortunately probably the logical culmination of a history of atrocities against Jews and the Jewish people going back millenia. And there is no guarantee these transgressions will not occur again in the future. So we should recall the Holocaust, as well as the rest of the history of institutionalized anti-semitism that is a strong thread woven into our civilization. I can assure you, I have not forgotten the Holocaust, nor forgiven anyone for it. Nor have I forgotten my responsibility to remind others. Nor do I take lightly the accountability I share as a member of the human race not to allow it to happen again to Jews or any other ethnic, racial or religious minority, especially considering my "Aryan" heritage.

    However, none of this is an excuse to give Israel or the Jewish people a blank check to do whatever they want to, now or in the future. There are no exemptions created for Israel or Jews from normally accepted international rules and behavior simply by invoking the phrase "Remember the Holocaust". Just as there should be no exemptions for Palestinians or Arabs or any other ethnic, racial or religious minority(or even majorities) because of a perception they have been wronged in the past, even if these crimes are quite well established and documented.

    There may well be a certain amount of justice in some form of compensation, although it does not excuse the original transgression or alliviate responsibility from the perpetrators. But in order for it to be justice, compensation must come from the offending parties, or at least from parties where a significant culpability can be established. This was not the case with the creation of Israel. Arabs in general and in particular residents of Palestine or Trans-Jordan, or whatever you want to call it, were about as far removed from Nazi machinations as anyone. They may have had some tenuous alliance or remote business dealings with Hitler's Germany, but so did many others including John Kennedy's father and George Bush's grandfather. As far as knowledge of the Holocaust or the ability to stop it, the US, Britain, France and the rest of Europe were far more culpable than any Arab state or people.

    Compensation for the Holocaust should come first from Germany and its allies, and secondarily Britain, France, Russia, the US, etc. who stood by and basically allowed it to happen. If the compensation for the Holocaust was to be a "homeland" for the Jewish people, it should have been carved out of Bavaria or the Rhineland, or maybe eastern France or Switzerland, the financiers of the Third Reich. Instead, the entire burden of compensation has fallen on Arab residents of what was at one time a Jewish homeland, well over a thousand years ago.

    The result is that instead of punishing Germany and/or European Christians for the Holocaust, creating the state of Israel in its present position has furthered the goals of the Holocaust.

    Yes, "Many of those who settled in Israel were the survivors of an attempt to destroy them and their families. All they had in 1945, when the war ended, were the memories of the loved ones and the lives they'd lost, and tattoos on their arms as reminder that they were considered expendable property by a world who didn't care to do anything but turn them over for extermination."

    But when they settled in Israel, they were conveniently far removed from the Europeans who had offered them up for the ovens. And comfortably removed from their memories also. For all practical purposes, European Jewry has been eradicated, exactly what Hitler was trying to accomplish with the Holocaust, with most survivors fleeing to the safety of their new "homeland".
     
  13. Jul 20, 2006 #93 of 126
    Bogy

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    Well, I'm obviously risking a lot here, but to paraphrase you, why should I care? My father risked his life, lying in order to enlist to go end the war and the extermination. So I have no guilt. What a bunch of Germans did in the 30s and 40s has nothing whatsoever to do with me. Why should I give Israel carte Blanche to do whatever it wants today, or in the 40s and 50s, because Jews, including some of my family lines, were extinguished? Why should the experience of being the object of hate and abuse give anyone or any people the right to make others the object of hate and abuse? Being driven from your home does not make driving others from their homes right.

    Off that subject. I've been gone for about 10 days. I have NOT read all the posts in this thread. But I have a thought/question. Israeli apologists have always condemned Palestinians for focusing on Israeli civilians. The recent kidnappings were of military personnel. The action of setting off a bomb in a marketplace to kill civilians is a despicable act. But now I see posts stating that the action taken against military personal is seen in the same way. Since over 9000 Palestinians are currently being held in Israeli prisons with no charges against them, most of them civilians, how is the holding of 2 or 3 Israeli soldiers the same as attacking civilians? If all 9000 Palestinians are guilty of terrorism, why don't the Israelis charge and try them? Could it be that some of these Palestinians are for all intents and purposes "hostages" who were kidnapped from their homes and families?
     
  14. Jul 20, 2006 #94 of 126
    AllieVi

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    You're suggesting that Israel doesn't need our help to survive. Then why do we continue to drain the treasury to support it?

    Has Israel ever acknowledged having nuclear weapons? If they do have some, why aren't we attempting to disarm them to avoid the potential calamity you suggest?

    It's almost comical. We borrow the money from others (Chinese, Japanese, etc.) that we use to support Israel. American taxpayers then pay interest on that borrowed money. Such a deal.
     
  15. Jul 20, 2006 #95 of 126
    Capmeister

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    I'm not sure we're draining the treasury, we support them because they are almost constantly being attacked and they're an ally.

    Same reason we don't disarm England or France.
     
  16. Jul 20, 2006 #96 of 126
    Bogy

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    Allies don't usually try to sink your ships, killing your sailors.
     
  17. Jul 20, 2006 #97 of 126
    Halfsek

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    Oh Bogy. There you go again, latching on one thing and trumpeting it all over.

    You of course dismiss the possibility that it actually was a mistake. You also dismiss that the ship was spying and potentially hurting Israel during a time of national crises.
    Of course there is the possibility that the Israelis knew it was an American ship, it wasn't spying and Israel decided to try to blow it up anyway.

    Personally, I think the ship was spying, Israel knew it was American but decided they had to send a message. Good allies? Reasonable question.

    America should have known not to spy on Israel during such a time, but then again, killing American soldiers isn't the best bet as well. It seems that both sides have called it a draw.

    Sort of like the Palestinian family who were having a picnic next to a Hamas missle battery firing into Israel. Y'know, they were enjoying a nice, relaxing day at the beach (watching Jews being killed) when, out of the blue, an "Israeli" artillary shell missed the missle battery and blew them up.

    If you're in the middle of a war zone, there is a chance you'll get hit.

    But overall, the military benefit of Israel as an ally is huge. Some argue about the economic benefit, but there's enough out there to show that Israel is making good with the money it gets from the US.
     
  18. Jul 20, 2006 #98 of 126
    LtMunst

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    Halfsek-
    Let me preface this by saying that I agree with 100% of your previous posts in this thread..and that the 40 year old USS Liberty incident has no bearing on current US/Israeli relations.

    Having said that, I must disagree with your take on that event. The Liberty was well within international waters and flying a US flag. They had every right to collect intelligence during that crisis. Not doing so would have been criminally negligent.

    Attacked on purpose or by mistake?...the jury is still out. It is interesting that the much vaunted Israeli Airforce could not sink what was essentially a defenseless vessel.

    The biggest criminal in my eyes regarding the incident was President Johnson. We had a Carrier in the Med that was preparing to launch fighters in response to the distress calls from the Liberty. On direct orders from Johnson, the Navy was forbidden to send help. He was fully prepared to just let that crew die rather than spark a larger incident.
     
  19. Jul 20, 2006 #99 of 126
    Halfsek

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    I don't disagree. Which is why I think both countries just called it a draw. There was something else there which we don't know about.
    I don't hold Israel blameless for it and am quite sure they paid for it; maybe by the US not releasing Pollard or by some other way.

    We simply do not know the run up to it. Israel could have warned the US to move it or lose it and the US (for right or wrong) didn't. But as this was a fight for the survival of Israel, it also seems counter productive for them to divert necessary armaments simply to destroy an American ship; unless they felt they had reason to do so.

    Then again, maybe Israel just blatantly struck a US ship, their ally, during a war of survival, for no reason. Possible, but that seems to be a stretch.
     
  20. jonstad

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    Both of you have missed the point entirely.

    The Liberty Incident is just another example of the incredible, mind-numbing power and influence of the pro-Israel lobby in our government AND our media. It may be among the most blatant and obvious, but certainly not the only one.

    One of our Naval ships is attacked on the high seas with deadly force, reportedly in several waves over the course of a few hours. Our reaction is not to send assistance or aid or try to defend our distressed vessel. Our official position is almost apologetic. Like we were WRONG to have our ship in international waters and Israel was RIGHT to have attacked it. The media barely covers the story at the time and it soon fades to oblivion.

    And you and Halfsek seem to be still apologizing for it!:nono:

    It has been my contention from the very beginning of this thread that the USA will let Israel do whatever they want and will defend them from all criticism. Basically that they can do no wrong and anyone who says differently is A- Anti-semitic or B-A terrorist or terrorist supporter.''

    The Liberty incident is just one of a long line of examples of this paradigm. And the Liberty incident took place when arguably the power and influence of the pro-Israeli lobby was far LESS than it is today.

    Israel is as we speak destroying Lebanon. Perhaps someone could explain to me exactly how the Beirut airport relates to Hezbollah, terrorism, or the kidnapped Israeli soldiers that are ostensively the cause of this whole exercise. Israel and the US blame Syria and Iran for all this. Yet, neither the US nor Israel will attack Syria or Iran because the view is that Syria and/or Iran might be capable of fighting back in a significant way. And by the looks of things, even Hezbollah is a little more trouble than was expected.

    It's very obvious who calls the shots in the US/Israel relationship, and it's NOT the US!
     
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