Alexander 0103-8, Alexander Roger

My friend Taki has gone too far

Last week’s anti-Israel diatribe by The

Spectator’s High Life

columnist is almost worthy of Goebbels, says

Conrad Black


The Spectator’s social writer, Taki

Theodoracopulos, has often graciously

referred to me as an indulgent proprietor.

Our relations have been cordial

for 15 years and we have frequently been each

other’s guests, have been

friendly with each other’s spouses and have

many mutual friends. Long

before I knew him I was aware of his

penchant, sometimes entertaining but

sometimes excessive, to denigrate certain

ethnic groups, most often the

Jews. With such a bonhomous character there

is a natural tendency to

overlook his lapses of judgment and give him

the benefit of the doubt that

he is only railing against the prissy

hypersensitivities of political

correctness. It is hard to imagine that a

person with whom you are friendly

and have had many memorably agreeable times

is a racist who wishes and

incites violence against innocent people

because of their ethnicity or



I defended Taki when he was attacked by the

Mayor of New York for a

very insulting column about Puerto Ricans in

His remarks were

outrageous but, as the Puerto Ricans did make

a mess on Fifth Avenue,

they contained a kernel of truth and did not

incite violence against Puerto

Ricans. Nor are Puerto Ricans under any

particular external threat. Nor do

they have a history of being savagely

oppressed. In the same spirit I

defended one of our other writers, William

Cash, against the wrath of the

entire US film industry in 1994, when he

published an article about the

leading Jewish figures in that industry which

was somewhat insulting but

well short of an incitement to racial hatred.


These were not among my most enjoyable

moments as a publisher, but it is

the duty of a publisher to defend his writers

unless they are, for whatever

reason, indefensible. Writers, like everyone

else, have the right to dislike

individuals and whole nationalities and

ethnic groups. They have the right to

express their dislike if they do so

rationally, are not legally defamatory, and

if they are within the bounds of civilised

taste. Our publications will never

be hounded into politically correct avoidance

of any forceful opinion

touching ethnicity, sectarianism, gender or

sexual orientation. To do so

would be to accept a muzzle on freedom of

expression and to prevent

comment on large and interesting aspects of

life. My associates and I

would shut down our publications rather than

submit to such restrictions.


Unfortunately, last week in this magazine,

Taki’s reflections were

indefensible. He expressed a hatred for

Israel and a contempt for the United

States and its political institutions that

were irrational and an offence to

civilised taste. In the process, I am afraid

he uttered a blood libel on the

Jewish people wherever they may be.


He wrote that the United States had intended

to invade French air space to

force down fugitive financier Marc Rich’s

aeroplane (on orders ultimately

from the same commander-in-chief who has now

pardoned Rich); that

Israeli intelligence knew more of US Air

Force activities than the Pentagon

did and shared this information with Rich

because Israel’s favour had been

bought by Rich. For Taki, the United States

was not yet ‘Israel-occupied

territory’; that is, occupied by ‘those nice

guys who attack rock-throwing

youth with armour-piercing missiles’. He

acknowledged his anti-Semitism

but implicitly defined it as ‘daring to

protest about soldiers shooting at

kids’, and he asserted that ‘the way to Uncle

Sam’s heart runs through Tel

Aviv and Israeli-occupied territory’.


In both its venomous character and its

unfathomable absurdity, this farrago

of lies is almost worthy of Goebbels or the

authors of the Protocols of the

Elders of Zion. The Jews, according to Taki,

have suborned the US

government, direct that country’s military

like a docile attack dog, and

glory in the murder of innocent or

mischievous children. He presents the

universal Jewish ethos as brutish, vulgar,

grasping and cunningly wicked.


It is a fearful thing to contemplate that

someone with whom I have had

such long and cordial relations should use a

publication of ours for such

malignant purposes, however veiled in his

familiar recourse to harmless

excess, or even amplified by his frequent and

publicly confessed intake of

intoxicating substances.


I wouldn’t suspect Taki of co-ordinating his

views with anyone else’s. But

his opinions are not greatly more extreme

than those of large sections of the

British media which habitually apply a double

standard when judging the

Israelis and Palestinians. Behind the

spurious defence of merely seeking

justice for the Palestinians, most of the

relevant sections of the BBC,

Independent, Guardian, Evening Standard and

the Foreign and

Commonwealth Office are rabidly anti-Israel.

I doubt that most of the

people involved would be hostile to someone

merely because that person

was Jewish, though some would, but they are

almost all, wittingly or not,

stoking the inferno of anti-Semitism.


The origins of the Arab–Israeli problem are

too complicated for easy

summary, but among the points normally

overlooked by most of the British

media is that the government of the United

Kingdom bears a unique

responsibility for the problem. It sold the

same real estate twice. In the

direst moments of the first world war Britain

promised the same territory to

the Jews and to the Arabs.


Israel, after an unconscionable length of

time, and with the exact borders

still in dispute, has accepted the principle

of two states in the territory it

once hoped to occupy itself. The Palestinians

have not accepted the right of

the state of Israel to survive. They do not

accept the Israelis as an

indigenous people and still think of them as

foreign colonial occupiers like

the British, the Turks and the Romans. This

and the implosion of Arafat’s

authority among his own people, and not the

actions of the Israelis, are the

sources of the present impasse, and every

knowledgable observer of the

Middle East knows it.


The West Bank is now governed by groups of

thugs, and Arafat has been

afraid to go there for several months. The

Palestinian Authority is a brutal

dictatorship and one of the most financially

corrupt regimes in the world.

The PLO has not lived up to any of its

significant obligations under the Oslo

Accords, including expunging the anti-Israel

clauses of the Palestine

National Charter. Barak went as far as any

Israeli leader could possibly go

at Camp David and was rewarded with rejection

by Arafat and the

unleashing of a new insurrection. Large

numbers of Palestinians have been

persuaded that glorious eternity awaits them

if they manage to die at the

hands of the Israelis. Fortified by this

belief, mobs of stone-throwers have

been pushed forward with snipers interspersed

among them and children in

the vanguard to take the brunt of the Israeli

response. Sharon gave the

Muslim leaders plenty of notice of his now

famous ten-minute walk on the

Temple Mount, and did nothing on it that was

disrespectful of Islam or of

the Palestinian people. Arafat has declared

that he requires an almost

unlimited right of return of designated

Palestinians, including millions born

after the initial departure in 1948, and the

demographic inundation of Israel

with Arabs. It is as if the UK were asked to

receive 60 million people of a

foreign nationality with which we had been at

war for more than 50 years.

Apart from Adolf Eichmann, Israel has never

executed anyone, including

terrorists — a refreshing contrast to the

peremptory executions routinely

conducted by the Palestinians and some other

neighbouring regimes.


We hear almost nothing of any of this from

most of the British media or the

Foreign Office. We hear only shrill

orchestrated solicitude for the supposed

underdog and relentless antagonism against

Israel — ostensibly the Israeli

government but, inevitably and implicitly,

the Jews.


These Jews are the same people whom Pope John

Paul II has recognised

as ‘not the cousins but the brothers and

sisters of all Christians, the chosen

people of the Old Testament’, to whom the

world should repent, as he did,

for millennia of oppression. The Pope’s own

record in these matters is

exemplary, but he repented for his one

billion co-religionists and for the

2,000-year history of the world’s foremost



Israel has many failings, and of course the

treatment of the Palestinians by

the Israelis, by the Arab powers who keep

them in the camps (breeding

grounds for their terrorist cannon fodder),

and by the United Nations is a

crime in which we are all complicit. Of

course the world must put this



But we will not put it right by returning to

the ancient and evil practice of

persecuting the Jewish people, to whom we owe

so much for its genius in

almost every field and its courage in heroic

circumstances for nearly 6,000

years. The Jews, as much as any other people,

have shown the world what

human bravery and perseverance can achieve.

It was pathetic and shaming

that many of the distinguished leaders of

London’s Jewish community felt

the need to tell me last week, after local

performances of the Israeli

Philharmonic Orchestra, that they hoped that

‘people will realise that Israel

doesn’t just quell Palestinian riots’.


All Israel really wants is to be like other

countries, to be accepted in the

world as a people with dignity and a right to

a state. Israel has that right. It

is a sophisticated democracy and a society of

laws. Those neurotic racists

who dispute that right should be forced to

come out from behind the skirts

of legitimate differences of opinion in

Middle Eastern controversies. They

should be made to face those who would be

their victims.


And those who have assisted them, through

lassitude or negligence or

malice, should follow the Pope’s inspiring

example: they should repent. The

Pharisees and hypocrites in the British press

should repent their calumnies.

A few days after Arafat cavalierly rejected

generous concessions from

Israel and unleashed his latest bloodbath,

the Foreign Secretary was

photographed walking hand-in-hand with Arafat

and caused Britain to

condemn Israel at the United Nations. He

should repent and exorcise the

institutional bias of his department.


In our publications justice will be done.


To read Taki’s original column, click here.

Other responses to it can be

found in ‘Feedback’ and Taki’s response to

the above can be found in this

week’s ‘High Life’.


Send comment on this article to the editor

of the


From [email protected] Fri Mar  9 16:10:01 EST 2001

Article: 259082 of soc.culture.canada



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The US, Israel and me




respectfully disagree with Conrad Black’s

assessment of my 24 February

column concerning Marc Rich. I do not for the

life of me see where I

expressed hatred for Israel and a contempt

for the United States.


It was widely reported at the time that the

United States (I don’t know

which agency, but I assume the Justice

Department) had ordered the

capture of the fugitive Marc Rich. The only

assumption I made was that he

was tipped off by his Mossad contacts, in

view of the fact that he has

admitted that his bodyguards are mostly

ex-Mossad people. I certainly did

not acknowledge my anti-Semitism, as Conrad

Black writes; I said my

soi-disant anti-Semitism, meaning that I have

been besmirched with that

charge ever since I protested against certain

Israeli tactics. This does not a

Goebbels make me, as Mr Black writes, nor an

author of The Protocols of

the Elders of Zion.


I did not write nor hint that the Jews have

suborned the United States

government. I objected to the fact that Bill

Clinton allowed Marc Rich and

certain Israelis to suborn American justice.

In this I am joined by prominent

Jewish leaders such as Rabbi Eric Yoffie,

president of the Union of

American Hebrew Congregations, who wrote in

two Jewish weeklies in

Washington and New York that


We should be ashamed of ourselves, we have

undermined our community’s

moral fabric, jeopardised our political

standing, disillusioned our youth

and compromised the sacred values of our

tradition. In short, the moral

stain of this sordid affair has begun to

engulf us.


In his unusually frank piece, Rabbi Yoffie

says Jewish leaders were bought

by Marc Rich. He singled out Rabbi Irving

Greenberg, a well-regarded

Orthodox rabbi, who has since apologised for

having written letters

supporting Marc Rich. Where I made a mistake

was in the wording. By

writing I am a soi-disant anti-Semite, I

clearly meant a so-called

anti-Semite, something I ferociously deny



I agreed wholeheartedly with Barbara Black’s

article in the Daily Telegraph

of last week, reminding us that Israel has a

right to exist in peace and the

way it’s going it might well cease to exist

altogether. In my own tiny New

York paper I write this week that Arafat

reminds me of a man who breaks

the bank in a casino, plays a little longer,

loses everything, and now is

demanding credit from the bank he owned and

lost through greed. (I am

referring to the Barak offers he turned

down.) Hardly the words of an



I am the first to agree that the West Bank is

now governed by corrupt

thugs, but I am also the first to say that

Israel bears a heavy responsibility

where the unyielding settlers are concerned.

I do not and never have

wished the Jews any harm, and it is

outrageous to hint that I do.


The New York Times and the Washington Post

have both written leading

articles about the disservice to Israel by

the Rich pardon, and Jim Hoagland

has written that Barak and other top Israelis

were risking the vital and

special relationship that America and Israel

enjoy, one based on morality,

ethical values born in the flames of the

Holocaust, and strategic imperatives,

and finishes by saying that in this sordid

saga everybody loses except Marc

Rich. In a less articulate manner, I was

trying to say the exact same thing.


Conrad Black comments:

Taki’s renunciation of anti-Semitism is

welcome. In the interests of a good

cause, I will overlook the implausibility of

his assertion that, in writing ‘The

way to Uncle Sam’s heart runs through Tel

Aviv and Israeli-occupied

territory’, he was only stating ‘in a less

articulate manner’ that because of

the Rich affair Israelis are risking their

relationship with the United States

‘based on morality [and] ethical values born

in the flames of the Holocaust’.




Can the BBC, Independent, Guardian, Evening

Standard and the Foreign

Office take a similar pledge? In respect of

them, I am prepared to fear the



Send comment on this article to the editor

of the


Note that Barbara Black (she signs her pieces Barbara Amiel) is Conrad’s


I think this giveup is sucks.  What did you think?



From [email protected] Fri Mar  9 16:10:01 EST 2001

Article: 259083 of soc.culture.canada



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Subject: Re: Monsters

References: <[email protected]> <[email protected]>

<[email protected]> <[email protected]> <[email protected]>

<[email protected]> <[email protected]> <[email protected]>

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Yes, Omri, Israel is the aggressor now as the Jews of the Yishuv were

the aggressors before 1948.

You know that.  The Zionists came to Palestine with the intention of

taking the land from the

Palestinians by hook or by crook.  The Palestinians responded by force

when the Jews were

only using money, it is true, but the aggressive intent and effort were

always there.

Why can you not admit this?  You have pretty much what you want.  I

guess you will admit

it when the Palestinians are all safely out of Palestine.



Omri Schwarz wrote:


> Roger Alexander <[email protected]> writes:


> > One more time, jerk, Israel is the aggressor.  You know that,


> If I ignore 28 years of massacres aimed

> at Jews, starting in 1920, until 1948, then yes,

> Israel is the aggressor.


> —

> Omri Schwarz —

> Timeless wisdom of biomedical engineering:

> “Noise is principally due to the presence of the

> patient.” — R.F. Farr





From [email protected] Fri Mar  9 16:10:02 EST 2001

Article: 259085 of soc.culture.canada



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Subject: Jericho under siege | Naftali Lavie

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Letters | Toronto Star | March 5, 2001


Jericho under siege | Naftali Lavie


Re Desert trench enforces siege of Jericho, March 3.


Sandro Contenta’s report was noteworthy not only because it recalls the

Bible story of the siege of ancient Jericho. In the Bible, Jericho was



to the Israelites’ conquest of the Promised Land.


More recently, “Jericho first” was the watchword for the first step in


the Middle East peace process initiated at Oslo. Since then, what has


accomplished is very much “process,” but no peace. Now it appears that


the siege imposed on the ancient oasis town of Jericho is the first step


a systematic campaign by Israel to completely isolate Palestinian


>from each other.


By restricting Palestinian communications and movement, the immediate


appears to be to break the back of the Palestinian economy, and render


occupied population more docile. The Israeli occupation forces hope to


put to rest the project of an independent Palestinian state. As in the


the Palestinians will prove to be resilient, resourceful, and tenacious,


despite their suffering. They are struggling to break out of their


to assert their dignity and recapture their humanity.


Canadians can help bring peace to Jericho, and the rest of the Promised


by insisting that Israel remove its military forces from all areas


by Palestinians.


– Naftali Lavie




From [email protected] Fri Mar  9 16:10:02 EST 2001

Article: 259090 of soc.culture.canada



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Subject: Almost unnoticed by the North American press, the terror in Gaza


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Calgary Sun | March 5, 2001


Gaza glance disturbing | BILL KAUFMANN


Almost unnoticed by the North American press, the terror in Gaza



An Internet publication known as the Ramattan Daily — produced for the

express purpose of revealing to the West the grim truth of Israel’s

crackdown on the occupied Gaza Strip — makes for an alarming read.


Reports include the daily and nightly indiscriminate machine-gunning and


shelling of whole villages by the powerful Israeli Defence Force (IOF)

an army the Ramattan writers refer to as the IOF (Israeli Occupation



Civilian traffic is shelled. Gunboats target civilians forced to skirt

Israeli roadblocks by trudging up Gaza beaches.


Troops shoot at children coming home from school, the bulldozing of

Palestinian farmland continues unabated while those who attempt to


their property come under Israeli fire.


Expelled Palestinian farmers can only watch as the Israeli army slices

access roads through their pitiful agricultural plots. There’s the


army’s months’-long siege of refugee camps whose inhabitants lived under



conditions at the best of times.


Any hope for a let-up in the destruction of homes by armoured bulldozer


tank cannon is a fleeting dream. Fleeing to avoid death or maiming is a

daily occurrence.


Palestinian workers — when they’re not barred from working in


Israel — are routinely beaten and degraded by the IDF.


A tightening Israeli military noose around Gaza has throttled the


sowing destitution, despair and fury among the virtual prisoners within.


IOF border guards prevent Palestinians returning from other countries

re-entry into Gaza — forcing them to endure the elements for weeks at a


time as they wait.


Surely these reports are exaggerated propaganda dredged up to discredit


Jewish state.


But the reports are all too true, says a Calgarian with close links to


the diplomatic and Palestinian communities and who’s lived in Gaza the


18 months.


“I wouldn’t have believed it if I hadn’t seen it myself … what’s

happening here is incredibly shocking,” Marisa Kemper, 33, says from her


home not far

>from Gaza City’s waterfront. “It’s a very, very dire situation here —


a lack of (outside) understanding of what’s going on. I’m just in a


of shock as to how the IDF has decided to approach this.”


International aid officials follow up on the reports only to find


largely true as well, she adds.


To Palestinians suffering under Israeli guns, terrorist bombings in


must appear as puny pinpricks.


Under the pretense of preventing terrorist attacks against targets in

neighbouring Israel, the IDF regularly makes travel for Palestinians



the Gaza Strip virtually impossible.


In an effort to quell the uprising against their occupation, the IDF is

fuelling the hatred and determination to resist them. Now, Israelis are

threatening to “invade” Gaza and the West Bank. To the Palestinians,


already happened.


What’s more, medical aid is withheld from the closed-off areas and

ambulances become targets of Israeli guns. Even diplomatic and UN


have become

fair game, says Kemper.


According to the International Committee of the Red Cross, the isolation


Gaza villages by the IDF contravenes UN articles on free passage of

medicines and foodstuffs, the welfare and education of children and

prohibition of

collective punishment.


Palestinian fighters frequently resist the onslaught with what few


they have, or strike back at Israeli troops and settlements.


“People are trying to throw off the forces of a belligerent occupation


this is defined by the Geneva Convention as just that,” says Kemper.


Ostensibly, Israeli troops terrorizing Gaza are there to guard Jewish

settlements. There are usually only a few hundred living there at any


time — amidst 1.2 million Palestinians.


It’s little wonder even some Israeli troops view their mission with

disgust. It also fully explains why Canada supported a UN proclamation

condemning Israel’s excessive use of force.


But UN proclamations ring hollow to Palestinians when night falls and


and machine-gun fire strafe their neighbourhoods. <end>




Can anyone read such terrible facts as this article discloses and not

be moved to exclaim “MONSTERS!”?   I know I can’t.






Roger Alexander


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Article: 259092 of soc.culture.canada


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Subject: Israel’s constant war on Palestinian children By Arjan El Fassed

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Israel’s constant war on Palestinian children

Middle East News Online

By Arjan El Fassed for Middle East News Online

Posted Monday March 5, 2001 – 10:33:38 AM EST


Palestinian children have been caught up in the crisis that erupted five


months ago, in which they are not merely bystanders, but targets. On 2


2001, Israeli occupation forces shot dead a nine-year-old boy in the


Bank town of El-Bireh after opening fire on a group of children playing


cap guns beneath his family’s apartment.


Ubey Darraj was dead on arrival in hospital after being hit in the chest


a bullet from a heavy caliber machine-gun. Shortly afterwards, a


Palestinian boy, Mohammed Mahmoud Hellis, shot on February 27, had died.


had been hit in the head with a live round while walking home from


near the Karni crossing point in the Gaza Strip.


The Israeli notion that Palestinian parents send their children to die


the reincarnation of a well-known scapegoating strategy known as blaming


victim. In a clear attempt to avoid Israeli culpability for the deaths


Palestinian children, animosity or suspicion is directed towards the


thereby justifying or excusing the original violation the victim


Mary Robinson, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights,


after her visit to the region that the Israeli claim that Palestinian

parents encourage their children to participate in clashes, is


rejected.” Israel’s shoot-to-kill policy is an illusion of restraint.


restraint did Israel show to stop a settler from spraying 18 month-old

Sara’s father’s car with bullets and killing her? What restraint did the


Israeli soldier who was posted in a watchtower at Rachel’s Tomb to


his finger from touching the trigger of his M16 shooting 14-year old

Mo’ayyad Osaama al-Jowareesh at close range in the head with a rubber


steel bullet, as Mo’ayyad walked beneath the tower on his way to school?


Israel violates every right of a child – the right to life, the right to


with family and community, the right to health, the right to the


of the personality and the right to be nurtured and protected. While the


entire civilian population has suffered as a result of the Israeli


the affects on Palestinian children are most severe. As of 5 December, a


total of 85 Palestinian children had been killed since 28 September


with an additional 5 declared clinically dead. Over 2,500 have been


Moreover, thousands of Palestinian children have been traumatized as a

result of the daily exposure to violence and repeated attacks by Israeli


military forces on Palestinian residential areas. Among Israel’s


tactics has been the detention of minors, with more than 250 children

detained during the three months since the beginning of the Intifada.


Palestinian children are virtual prisoners in their homes, due to


imposed curfews and closures. Over 30 Palestinian schools have been


and three have been transformed into Israeli military installations,

effectively depriving Palestinian children of their right to education.

Approximately 13,000 Palestinian students and 500 teachers are unable to


reach school because of the closure imposed on Palestinian areas.


Most severe are the ways in which Palestinian children respond to the


of the current crisis. While the immediate violence may end, the


impact of the recent events will have lasting effects on Palestinian

children. Traumatic experiences affect the child’s life in every sphere,


often causing great difficulty in their ability to concentrate at

school, to

relate to their peers, to find employment, and to develop normally.


Palestinian children who suffer from stress display a wide range of

symptoms, including increased separation anxiety and developmental


sleep disturbances and nightmares, lack of appetite, withdrawn behavior,


lack of interest in play, and, in younger children, learning


In older children and adolescents, responses to stress can include


or aggressive behavior and depression.


The loss of parents and other close family members leaves a life-long

impression and can dramatically alter life pathways. The extreme and

prolonged circumstances of the Israeli occupation and its inherent human


rights violations interfere with identity development. In addition to


suffering they undergo as a result of their own difficult experiences,

Palestinian children of all ages also take cues from their adult



Seeing their parents or other important adults in their lives as


can severely undermine children’s confidence and add to their sense of



These statistics are shocking enough, but more chilling is the

conclusion to

be drawn from them: more and more of the world is being sucked into a

desolate moral vacuum. This is a space devoid of the most basic human

values; a space in which children are slaughtered and maimed; a space in


which children are starved and exposed to extreme brutality. Such

unregulated terror and violence speak of deliberate victimization. There


few further depths to which humanity can sink.


* The author is a political scientist and human rights activist and

affiliated with the Palestine Right to Return Coalition (PRRC) and a


contributor to Middle East News Online.


From [email protected] Fri Mar  9 16:10:03 EST 2001

Article: 259102 of soc.culture.canada



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Omri Schwarz wrote:


> Roger Alexander <[email protected]> writes:


> > Yes, Omri, Israel is the aggressor now as the Jews of the Yishuv were

> > the aggressors before 1948.

> > You know that.  The Zionists came to Palestine with the intention of


> Name a single incident in which Jews

> were the aggressors, prior to 1947.


> Name a single one prior to 1929.


> You can’t.


> Because the Pallies were the aggressors,

> starting with the Good Friday massacre of 1920.


Omri, seriously, you know that the Jews came to Palestine

with the design of supplanting the Palestinians in their own

country.  You cannot deny this.  Nor can you deny that

the Palestinians soon figured this out.  Further, if the Palestinians

had been masters of their own country, Jews would never have

been allowed to immigrate there, which is not unusual for

countries and foreigners generally.  So to say that the

Palestinians resorted to violence when confronted with

tens of thousands of illegal immigrants that they couldn’t

do anything about otherwise is not to say much.  Nor

could you deny that the Jews followed and continue to follow

a path of supplanting the Palestinians and taking their land from

them.  So the claim that the Jews are and always have been

the aggressors holds.  You know that, I know that and

soon the whole world will know that, because they will

have to deal with your terrible oppression.

You will admit that your oppression of the Palestinians

is terrible won’t you?






From [email protected] Fri Mar  9 16:10:03 EST 2001

Article: 259103 of soc.culture.canada


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Earlier I mentioned the Jewish saying: “Light to the Nations.”

This essay is about Social Jusice and Israel, about normalization and

how Israel can face the myths that exist. It means too that we cannot

ignore the “NEW” historians. We must realize that there were many


for Israel. Martin Buber was opposed to the Zionism which would

disenfranchise Arabs and represented a position which was for a long


ignored. Today there is a reawakening and recognition that Israel is far


>from perfect. Criticism has always been part of Jewish culture and it is


this introspection that will make possible seeing the truth and perhaps

endeavoring, if not achieving a _new_ Israel, which is also a “Light to

the Nations.”



Hagshama Department of the WZO


A Light to the Nations? Social Justice in Israel


Social Problems in the Promised Land


By Matt Plen



This trenchant article explores the burning issues in the tense


fabric of Israeli society: officially sanctioned prostitution, the

ever-increasing disparity between the rich and the poor, real wage

inequality between men and women, and the badly-defined status of

Israel’s indigenous minorities. Matt Plenn invites us to take a

no-holds-barred look at contemporary society in Israel, exploring how


these issues impact on the founding ideology of the Jewish state, and


its promise of equality.



“Let justice well up like water, righteousness like an unfailing



– Amos



* * *

From [email protected] Fri Mar  9 16:10:01 EST 2001

Article: 259081 of soc.culture.canada


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