You are kind of nit-picking here. The truth is that Palestine is governed by a foreign occupation army, and the Palestinian people have no say in who can travel or immigrate to Palestine. Only the state of Israel controls the borders of Palestine.
Israeli law allows immigration of Jews to Israel, whether they were born there or not. Maybe Palestine, if there was domestic civilian law, would allow the same return. Who knows? Guess we wont know until Israel recognizes Palestine's right to exist.
And for the record, we can imagine that the male in the photo was born on the West Bank, and the signs will still be as true. If you are saying that Israel does not control the land of Palestine and does not prohibit free travel, then you are lying.
Perhaps we should have some discussion of why Palestinians are viewed differently then all other dislocated groups from mid-20th century wars.
Yeah, maybe we should. Many countries have had to reconcile with an unfortunate past. The key to success is prohibiting discrimination against previously enslaved, occupied or displaced people.
In the US, it is against the law to prohibit rights and equal access to all citizens. Other countries had it harder than the US. Consider the huge changes that South Africa had to undergo in the 1990's when it ended its own apartheid.
And now lets look at why Israel is wallowing in ethnic hatreds and strife. Israel was founded as a European colony by racists who dismissed the humanity of the indigenous people, through a brutal process of ethnic cleansing, and the establishment of an apartheid government which restricts full rights to its European elite.
Many other countries were founded the same way, but only in Israel is the process still going on. Unlike the US, it is not only not illegal to discriminate against indigenous people, it is required by law.
There will not be peace in Palestine until Israel recognizes Palestine's right to exist. The massive colonization of land that Israel claims it is not annexing, the continued ethnic cleansing of the non-European class amounts to a vicious genocide that every ethical person opposes.
Its easy to score cheap points in response to my comment? Is it? Palestinians are denied by brutal military occupation, freedom of travel, commerce, self determination, civil law, or international representation, and are daily subjected to a systematic policy of dehumanization that strips them of any dignity or hope for the future. And you chuckle to yourself and think about how you can score points in a debate like a cheap lawyer, as you defend the indefensible.
I dont give a fuck about Israel or its apologists. I care about how my country enables this racism. Every other country on earth has voted in general assembly of the UN that Israel is apartheid, and that its perpetual occupation of Palestine is illegal. Only the US, by veto in the security council stands in the way Israel being reduced to rogue nation status. I will do everything I can to ensure that my nation lives up to its own ideals, and stops enabling the horrors of Israeli ethnic cleansing and apartheidism.
Assuming a nom de internet is pretty common and welcome, but actually presuming to be another person, and to speak as that person is really not allowed.
You are new here, so I think we can all overlook your inappropriate handle. If you are President Barack Obama, your name should probably reflect that. I am sure Jerome, who I know, would be happy to have you post comments on his website.
If you are not the President of the United States, you should not take his name and address comments as him. That is a serious troll thing to do.
Email the administrators of the site, and request that your user name be changed.
I always assumed that actual progress in finding a sustainable disposition for the Palestinian people would come through pressure from Europe and the rest of the world.
Israel is a product of 20th-century European colonialism, and basic to its current functioning is a vicious apartheidism in which the European class enjoys basic rights and freedoms, while the indigenous people left to wallow under restrictive rules or a brutal military occupation.
This fact is well understood by all our allies, which is why they vote against Israel in the UN every year (votes which are blocked by US veto in the security council) but to even suggest it in the US is to be dismissed as anti-semitic, as if this was a religious issue.
I dont think the Israeli apologists in the US are bad people, but their basic ideas or assumptions can never be challenged, and honest debate is simply not allowed here.
I am disappointed with Obama's failures, and think that honest people who want to encourage a peaceful resolution should continue discussing the issue seriously. I hope you keep posting Mainstreet.
Jon Stewart's comedy news show The Daily Show is reportedly under fire from pro-Israeli groups for giving airtime to two pro-Palestinian figures on Wednesday night.
Stewart hosted Palestinian democracy activist Mustafa Barghouti and human rights activist Anna Baltzer, author of A Witness in Palestine, who explained the Israeli-Palestinian conflict from the perspective of the Palestinian side.
According to a letter reportedly written by Baltzer and circulated by blogger Eric Johnson, the show "was overwhelmed with angry emails and phone calls prior to the appearance, and up until the last minute it seemed like they might cancel."
"During the taping the show had its only heckler in 11 years," Baltzer wrote. "The entire staff were very nervous and may come to regret the monumental decision (and not make it again) as they will surely be inundated now that the show has aired."
At one point during the interview, Barghouti asserted: "We [Palestinians] are struggling for liberty, we are struggling for justice. It's Palestinians who have been subjected to the longest occupation in history and a system of segregation that is totally unjust."
The phrase "before Moses left Egypt" was poetic and will not stand up to critical analysis, and probably poor chosen in the context.
I don't want to cycle down into a reductionist argument about ancient eastern Mediterranean historical source criticism. I was responding to Lakrosse's ridiculous assertion that modern Jews have legitimate claims to this land based on a brief period of Jewish sovereignty in the area 2800 years ago, and he calls current territory held by the state of Israel by ancient nomenclature, to support these claims.
When independent Jewish kingdoms existed in the area, large populations of non-Jews shared the land, and the current state of Israel now controls territory that the ancient kingdoms did not control, which undermines Lakrosse's own argument, even if one did accept its absurd premise.
I have two degrees in ancient languages and ancient history, with significant research in ancient Judiasm. These historical homeland arguments are so ridiculous I usually don't bother to respond. The fact is that Palestinians were living in their homeland since before Moses led the Hebrews out of Egypt.
Of the seventeen documentary programs the BBC produced on Israel over the past four years, only one presented Israel in a positive light; the other sixteen were overwhelmingly pro-Palestinian, casting Israel as a brutal aggressor nation.
I doubt the BBC documentaries are actually anti-Israeli, but even if they are, why is it a crime for an American to watch them? They are not Bin Laden rants, they are British Broadcasting Corporation documentaries. AIPAC, and a well-orchestrated political pressure campaign limits the free access to information in this country. Its no wonder that all our allies are willing to call Israel apartheid, and why Americans are shocked that anyone would criticize our "loyal democratic ally."
Once Americans have been educated sufficiently about the truth about Israel and Palestine, it wont take long for US opinion to come into line with that of our allies.
Broad Strokes Paint Poor Portraits Observations, the Bloggie Award goes to Strummerson.
I conccede the point, and I admit that serveral layers of understanding need to be explained when unpacking the adjectival phrase "ethinically pure."
Israel is not exclusively Jewish, many thousands of people who ascribe to different religions, or no religion at all, reside within the borders of Israel, and they have citizenship rights.
But Israel is demanding of the Palestinians that it (the country of Israel) be recognized as a Jewish nation, and no peace talks can precede without such recognition.
This demand is generally misrepresented in the US. It is perfectly reasonable that a nation demand to be acknowledged by its neighbors. But in Israel, and to the Palestinians, the demand actually means that Israel must be recognized, not as a nation, but as a Jewish nation that will serve the interests of this ethnic colonial class above other citizens.
Palestinians who were ethnically cleansed from their homeland, and who are told by the United Nations that they may return to the lands from which they were expelled, will not accept terms which abrogate these claims. Nor should they.
But if Israel moves in a way that international law requires, it will need to allow millions of Palestinians, many of whom have property claims and deeds to land in Israel proper to return to their homeland. And it will need to recognize West Bank Palestinians as full citizens, or allow then to form a true nation with sovereignty.
Key to US support for Israel is the understanding that Israel is a western-style Democracy. Without US support, Israel could not sustain itself, and a perception that Israel is rejecting democracy would undermine its image in the US, and threaten the diplomatic coverage that the US gives to Israel allowing it to exist.
In determining a disposition for the Palestinians, Israel, under Netanyahu, is not willing to allow the creation of a Palestinian state with sovereignty, which could be a military threat to Israel, nor to allow Palestinians to to vote, which would threaten the "Special Jewish Nature" of Israel, as millions of christians and muslims claim citizenship. So his answer is to avoid confrontation with the US, and maintain the status quo.
While not ethnically pure, Israel has succeeded in denying a state to the Palestinians, and keeping them from returning to Israel proper.
If Obama decides to confront Israel, informed by international law, then Israel may well be faced with a choice: allow citizens to return and a) lose "Jewish Nation Status" or b) become an formal apartheid nation. And annex or withdraw from the West Bank which will lead to the choice: a) incorporate Palestinians into your country and lose "Special Jewish Nation" status, or b) risk allowing the creation of a sovereign state whose people think you owe them something.
If Israel rejects these parameters it may be relegated to rouge nation status, and considering how poorly the rest of the world views Israel, it could not last long.
So Netanyahu is intent on preventing this confrontation and maintaining the current status of Israel, which can hide its apartheid under the guise of popular democratic will, and I am not convinced that Obama has the decisiveness to push the question.