Some questions for the apologists of Hamas

17 November 2012

12:47 AM

17 November 2012

12:47 AM

The latest offensive between Israel and Hamas may only just have begun. But already a set of the usual lies have entered the British coverage. Let me pose a few questions to the people who are propagating them.

1) Why are Hamas firing into undisputed Israeli territory?

The territory that Hamas are firing rockets into is not disputed territory. They are firing into Israel proper – that is, into land which absolutely everyone except for Israel’s annihilationist enemies recognises is the land of Israel.

Is this Hamas’s way of calling for a two-state solution? Is it their way of trying to persuade Israel to sit down with Hamas’s enemies in the PA? Of course not. The reason Hamas are firing into the heart of Israeli territory is because they do not believe that there is any such thing as Israel. They do not accept that it is there. They do not believe it should be there. They want to do everything they can to ensure that it is not there. The reason Hamas are firing into the heart of Israel is because they do not believe that Israel should exist anywhere at all. Hamas are not quibbling over the 1967 borders, or the Oslo parameters. They are showing that they do not accept the 1948 borders. Hamas do not accept Israel. They say so and, by actions like these, they demonstrate it.

2) What is a proportionate response to Hamas aggression?

Already some people have focussed on the issue of ‘proportionality’. Now that three Israelis have been killed by a Hamas rocket fired towards Tel Aviv these people are presumably a lot more content.


In its most popular version the recently invented concept of ‘proportionality’ seems to assume that there is an obviously acceptable manner in which to respond to Hamas attacks, but that this is not it. Israel’s response is deemed to be proportionate only when Israel does nothing in response to Hamas attacks. Everything beyond ‘doing nothing’ is deemed ‘disproportionate’. The concept is based on a wild, or more often wilful, misunderstanding.

Hamas fires projectiles into Israeli population centres in the hope of hitting any target. Sometimes, as with the apparent block South of Tel Aviv hit yesterday, they succeed. Hamas does not target military installations. They fire into Israeli population centres in the hope that they will cause as many casualties as possible. The ‘proportionate’ response to Hamas would be for Israel to respond to each rocket sent by the terror group by sending their own unguided and random missiles into the population centres of Gaza. This they do not do.

Israel’s choice – when pushed – is to respond to random and untargeted attacks with highly specific and targeted attacks. An example of this was the assassination of the Hamas military commander Ahmed al-Jaabari in his car in Gaza earlier this week. Israel’s targets in the Gaza are specific individuals and specific sites. The latter include sites where Hamas store their rockets and rocket-launchers.

Do innocent people sometimes get killed in this situation? Yes, tragically and inevitably they do. As they do on the Israeli side. But unlike Hamas, the killing of innocent civilians is not Israel’s war aim. Everything possible is done, from using the highest precision missile technology to warning Gazan civilians by mobile phone where and where not to go at specific times. As British army Colonel Richard Kemp observed during a previous round of this conflict, no army in history has taken such care to avoid harming civilians living in the same area as that in which an enemy is operating.

It is not only in Israel’s strategic interests to limit the suffering of innocent Palestinians in Gaza, it is in their moral interest. And here we come to what is perhaps the key difference between the two sides.

3) Is Israel targeting civilians?

You are a Hamas militant in Gaza. You are dedicated to the annihilation of Israel. Your neighbours are all Palestinians. Some support Hamas, some support Fatah and some are doubtless done with politics altogether. Nevertheless, when you launch missiles against Israel you know that the Israelis often locate – and swiftly – the sites from which these rockets are launched, and often respond with immediate force against the spot where the launch occurred.

Knowing that, where do you choose to launch your rockets? Do you settle for an area of Gaza where there is nobody about? Some waste-ground, for instance? At least if you do then you know that this is about you and your enemy facing off. No innocent Palestinian needs to be brought into your quarrel.

Sadly, this is not what Hamas do. On the contrary, Hamas knows from experience that Israel is infinitely more careful with Palestinian lives than Hamas are. Hamas know that there are targets which Israeli forces are not only reluctant, but unwilling, to hit. These are therefore the places from which Hamas launches its rockets: schools, hospitals and other civilian targets. There are enough videos of this now, enough independent corroboration to establish this beyond doubt.

When Hamas launch rockets from beside a pram with a baby in it – as they do – they know that the Israelis have two options: they must either allow the rocket-launcher to remain in place to fire more rockets into Israel, or they must hit the site and risk killing the baby. For Israel these are two terrible options. For Hamas it is a win-win. If the Israelis do not strike then Hamas can fire more rockets at Israel. If they do hit then Hamas have another dead child they can hold up for the cameras and weep fake tears for. Hamas know that these pictures will travel round the globe and bring the anger of much of the civilised world against Israel. For Hamas, the child is worth it, for the child is a tool of their war.

If any of the current defenders of Hamas – open and discreet – would like to answer these questions themselves I would be very interested to read their answers.

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Show comments
  • rndtechnologies786


  • Safdar Shah

    “3) Is Israel targeting civilians?”

    Of course. It is not possible to kill thousands of civilians by accident. The Goldstone report on Operation Cast Lead concluded that civilians had been targeted by the Israelis.

    The Operation Cast Lead bombings started at 11.25 am which is the changeover time for schools in Gaza. That is when the most children are on the streets. Do you imagine this time was chosen by accident ? .

  • Safdar Shah

    “2) What is a proportionate response to Hamas aggression?

    Already some people have focussed on the issue of ‘proportionality’.”

    The correct response is to address the reason for the problem. Israel should lift its blockade of Gaza and end its illegal occupation of the West Bank.

  • Safdar Shah

    “1) Why are Hamas firing into undisputed Israeli territory?

    The territory that Hamas are firing rockets into is not disputed territory. They are firing into Israel proper – that is, into land which absolutely everyone except for Israel’s annihilationist enemies recognises is the land of Israel.”

    Because Israel is colonising Palestinian land in the West Bank and illegally blockading Gaza. There is no “disputed territory” in the West Bank as well as attacking and killing Gazans. Only Israel and its most one-eyed supporters think that any of the West Bank is disputed. Even the US state department said that the Israeli settlements were illegal. As for the 67 borders being recognised as Israel it’s uncertain that this should have happened. It was just an armistice line and the 1948 UN borders were quite different. It is inadmissible to gain territory by warfare under the Geneva Convention.


    how about some questions for apologists of Ed Milliband in Rotherham

  • Robert Burns

    Folks all this argument is for nothing.
    Throughout history every non-semitic (by this I mean not Arab or Jewish) intervention into the Middle East has ended badly. The Middle East is the third rail in international relations: touch it and you die.
    It is odd that for centuries Jews and Arabs lived (relatively) peacefully together until Zionist members of the Jewish diaspora decided to “return”.
    It is also very unfortunate that they brought with them the traumatic experience of the Holocaust, the support of high and heavy-handed imperialist sponsors (this included the USSR who, I believe, supported the UN resolution that created Israel) and a big attitude problem.
    This was never going to work.
    Argue all you want, but the leaders of Hamas, Hezbollah, etc. know one thing and it is this:
    They do not need to ‘drive every Jew into the sea’, blah, blah……they just have to keep Israel ‘engaged’ and sooner or later it will implode politically and socially no matter how much money, weaponry (including illegal nuclear, chemical and biological weapons) or preferential treatment Israels’ sponsors throw into this Black Hole.
    They do not recognise the ‘legality’ of Israels’ existence in part because it was not created by the will of the people who had actually been living in what we now call Israel for 1200 years but according to the will of politically, culturally and intellectually alien forces.

  • aelita

    I have another question I’d like to pose; many of those who rail loudly against Israel claim they are not anti-semitic, it is not anti-semitic to ‘criticise’ Israel and they are merely ‘anti-Zionist’ – what is your definition of a Zionist?

    We know what Hamas’s definition is; it’s any Jew in Israel, older incomers or newborns who have no control over their place of birth. Hamas wants to annihilate them all. Is that something you mere ‘anti-Zionists’ over here agree with?

  • Jeremiah

    Regrettably, Israel has been let down by its allies – particularly the USA, who in earlier days could have forced both sides to the table and got a settlement, before generation after generation became entrenched in their respective positions. It is now too late. The poison of mutual violence and hatred has gone too deep on both sides. There will be no good ending to this story.

  • Cassandra1963

    There is more than enough land in the middle East and surrounding the tiny state of Israel..but in reality even one square metre for the Jewish state is too much for the Arabs to give up, its not about Gaza or the West bank, these are are made up fictions in order to squeeze Israel into an ever smaller space ready for destruction. The Arab side love to talk about pre 1948 borders but refuse to talk about the wars they started and lost. Move on and get over it and live together like normal people do all over the world. Designate borders for both sides and live in peace, its not rocket science is it? But the only rocket science the Arabs are interested in involves ones aimed at civilians

    This isnt about land borders because if the Arabs had any interest in negotiating secure and fair borders it would have been done years ago, it could be completed in weeks in fact. The Arabs peddle the convenient talking point of the pre 1948 borders, in fact Israel agreed to sign up and the Arab side refused believing it could grab all the land by a war of extermination, they failed and they lost and they tried again and lost and again and lost but being Arabs the fools dont know when they have lost, cant accept that they have lost. Millions of acres of land but not the tiniest interest in sharing any of it, all the good will of the West and not one ounce on the Arab side. Maybe the Arabs do in fact need one more thrashing by the IDF before they give up and accept the right of Israel to exist, I doubt it though.

    The whole problem has become perverted and warped by the Arab agenda which is clearly no peace until the state of Israel cuts in own throat or is railroaded into making one too many land for (non)peace where it is easy prey. Israel wants peace and is ready to negotiate and agree borders, the Arab side does not want peace and is determined to avoid a border settlement whatever the cost. If only one side wants peace there will be no peace. These idiotic Arab war mongers want a final war, everything they do and everything they hold out for has that end of days final solution to their Jewish problem in mind, the essence of stupidity is trying the same failed strategy over and over again and expecting a different result.

  • Baron

    novoludo, you still around? Have a look at this

    next time you down there on the Strip, tell your friends to start telling the truth, will you, please.

  • djkm

    I see that the ‘infinitely more careful’ approach paid off yesterday, with the accidental bombing of the wrong house, leading to the deaths of 12 members of the same family. Surgical strikes, my arse.

    • Augustus

      You probably think that a greater number of Jewish dead would be more “fair,” to use the vernacular. Of course, the rockets fired by Hamas at Israel’s cities
      are designed to kill Israeli civilians. But this does not matter in the public
      relations arena, since most of the rockets miss their targets (or are destroyed
      by interceptors fired from the Iron Dome batteries). What matters is that many
      more Palestinians are killed by Israel in these conflicts than Israelis are
      killed by Hamas (or Hezbollah). So now, for the first time in history, a nation at war is told to pull its punches, and is condemned because it has
      been successful in keeping its own side safe, and for doing a good job of
      destroying enemy combatants. Wars tend to produce fewer civilian casualties when
      they are won quickly and decisively.

      • djkm

        I don’t think anything’s ‘fair’ here, however, I would rather not listen to anyone basically lie to themselves with this absolute nonsense regarding how ‘accurate’ and, ‘precise’ they are, when they can ‘accidentally’ blow up the wrong house so easily.

  • Augustus

    Nobody in his right mind could be an apologist for Hamas. In its leader, Mahmoud al-Zahar’s book, No Future Between Nations, he developed the thesis according to which the Jews are a foreign presence rejected by the world’s countries. In the book, Al-Zahar uses verses from the Quran to justify the murder of Jews and as proof that Zionism is doomed to extinction as it has “no future between nations”. Mahmoud al-Zahar’s book was found on board the Mavi Marmara. This vicious anti-Semitic line has always been an outstanding characteristic of Hamas, being an important part of its identity and a tool for propaganda and recruitment among certain populations. It is reflected in numerous statements made by senior Hamas officials and clerics affiliated with the movement. The anti-Semitic incitement is aimed to inculcate various targets audiences with hatred against the Jews and provide legitimacy, based on Islam as well as on the history of European countries, for waging a campaign of terrorism to Israel’s destruction and the expulsion of all Jews from it. The terrorist campaign is Hamas’ alternative to the path of negotiations, a path that Hamas denies.

  • Idris Ellis

    If Israel were destroyed, there would be little left fro Palestinians to inhabit. Hams ” continues to look to the welfare of those whom it represents”, just as the fox guards the hen house.

  • heb macman

    Proportionality is misused in this context… Yes, there are two related terms (distinction & proportionality) in international law (regarding the legal use of force)… However, proportionality in this context doesn’t mean that if you’re hit with 3 rockets you may only reply with 3-4 rockets of your own…

    What it does mean, in this context, is that the harm caused to civilians or civilian property must be proportional and not excessive in relation to the concrete and direct military advantage anticipated by an attack on a military objective…

    In other words, the death of civilians during an armed conflict, no matter how grave and regrettable, does not, in itself, constitute a war crime… International humanitarian law and the Rome Statute permit belligerents to carry out proportionate attacks against military objectives, even when it is known that some civilian deaths or injuries will occur… A crime occurs if there is an intentional attack directed against civilians (principle of distinction) or an attack is launched on a military objective in the knowledge that the incidental civilian injuries (a.k.a. “collateral damage”) would be clearly excessive in relation to the anticipated military advantage (principle of proportionality)…

    To make it real simple to understand I will give an example: if, one of the opposing sides in the course of targeting an opposing combatant causes the death of some civilians:

    1) Said action would be perfectly legal if the enemy combatant being targeted is believed to be a high ranking important officer…

    2) Said action would be illegal (i.e. a war crime) if the combatant being targeted is believed to be a lowly clerk or quartermaster…

    Notice that I wrote “believed to be”… If the intelligence which was believed to be of high trustworthiness turns out to be wrong and the target turns out to be a lowly clerk or quartermaster the attack is not a war crime (as there was no commensurate intent)… War is hell and $h1t happens…

  • John Thomas

    The Brazenly Biased Corp, for one, don’t have to worry about facts, logic, or answering embarrassing arguments, like the ones seen here; they just broadcast their (anti-Israel) version, and we all have to pay for them to do it, and have no say.

  • djkm

    another point as well – on what basis does Murray assert that the Israelis are ‘infinitely more careful’ when targeting people? That they, as they are currently doing, shower the area with leaflets warning that they’re about to be attacked? I guess that’s one way of being more careful. Or at the very least, a way of saying, ‘don’t say you weren’t warned!’ when their rockets rain down on their homes.

    Also, the fact is that Israel consistently refuses to cooperate with the UN when it comes to deciding whether the human rights of the Palestinians have been violated or not; what is it exactly that the rest of the world does not see, that Israel, and it’s apologists, do?

    • Augustus

      “what is it exactly that the rest of the world does not see, that Israel, and it’s apologists, do?”

      The minute the rockets stop flying into Israel, there will be an end to Israeli
      strikes against Hamas targets in Gaza, pure and simple.

      • djkm

        No, that’s obvious. Now, what about the rest of it? What is it that the UN is incapable of seeing that is plainly obvious to Israel, regarding the treatment of Palestinians, and the territories that are allegedly, ‘in dispute’? The borders, when drawn up way back when, were pretty clear, yet over 500k Israeli citizens have been allowed to set up shop there. Would you mind if I built a house in your back garden, or would you be even slightly peeved by my intervention?

        • Augustus

          ” Would you mind if I built a house in your back garden…”

          That’s an old chestnut. Let me ask you, what would happen if Israel were to disengage completely from Judea and Samaria as
          it did in Gaza? (use your imagination to figure that one out)

          • djkm

            Sadly, i don’t have the imagination that you have, however, it would certainly be a good start for Israel to vacate all land to which they have no entitlement to, and pull down the west bank barrier in order to allow each party to be on an equal footing prior to peace negotiations.

  • djkm

    Do you remember the time the UK went into the Republic of Ireland pouring white phosphorus over the place, and destroying schools and hospitals? Oh that’s right; never happened.

    There are far more amicable ways to settle disputes than bombing the opposition back into the stone age, just because we can, as demonstrated by our own history.

    And it really isn’t good enough to point out the faults, of how Hamas are, ‘just not trying hard enough’ – when the same can more than be said for the Israeli authorities – the number of illegal settlements in the west bank is absurd, and no one on the Israeli side could, with a straight face, say that they’re doing all that they can to sort this – their inaction speaks volumes – if you argue here that Hamas wish that Israel did not exist at all, then exactly the same argument could be said regarding Palestine as well.

    • ProfessorMiao

      He isn’t arguing that Hamas wish that Israel did not exist at all. He is reiterating Hamas’ charter regarding Israel. Hamas’ charter is its motivating doctrine. If this is beyond you, go to Sderot and live in an apartment without a safe room for a year.

      • djkm

        Oh, I see, so when he said, ‘Hamas are firing into the heart of Israeli territory is because they do not believe that there is any such thing as Israel. They do not accept that it is there. They do not believe it should be there’, he absolutely did not mean that Hamas did not wish Israel not to exist at all. Got you. Makes perfect sense now.

  • JoeDM

    Excellent article.

  • Iain Hill

    Is he paid by the Israeli Embassy?

    • AY

      ask your imam – he knows everything and never lies.

  • Christopher Ward

    Douglas Murray plays a very slick game – calling those who wants to take a balanced and thoughtful approach on the Israel/Palestine issue (in which the Palestinians are not automatically labelled as savages) as “current defenders of Hamas”. This is intellectually dishonest, and a display of very vulgar debating skills. It is derogatory and unhelpful, intended to frighten anybody who won’t conform to his agenda.

    When people are subject to military occupation, they do dreadful things. When people are subjugated, they do dreadful things.

    Saying they are “dreadful thing” is entirely redundant. It is up to us – the west to respond as a civilised society to whatever barbarity we face. Murray wrote a very sentimental book about the murders committed on Bloody Sunday, so moved was he by the murder of (white) innocents at the hands of the British Army at a time when they faced a serious terrorist threat.

    He calls those who disagree with his position as “defenders of Hamas”. Well, he is a military-occupation supporter, a hegemony-supporter, an empire-supporter, a drone-supporter.

    He is a wicked little man whose famous words “we are better than al-Qaeda, we don’t have to show it” continue to haunt him, and will taint his legacy.

    • AY

      Germany and Japan were subject to military occupation after WWII, and they didn’t do “dreadful things”, – because for them it was time to stop doing “dreadful things” exterminating and enslaving others.
      the same applies to palestinian arabs now – it is time to check if everything is OK in their national consciousness.
      in the fifth million nine hundred and second time – primary goal of IDF is neither to kill nor to produce palestinians.
      the later are responsible adults. they declared war, they went to war, they fought, and this is result. period.
      your twisted demagoguery is not helpful.

  • anotherjoeblogs

    the apologists are pathologically ill kids who pissed the bed and threw their toys out expecting nanny to organise it all – as they do now. ” mammy my teddy bear has stopped breathing, can you not get a russian nanny to fix it ? i promise to be a good lefty on telly and make people laugh because i will call them racists if they don’t. and i believe supporting palestinians is cool ‘

  • truth


  • Roy

    The battle that is Gaza could be ended tomorrow if the political terrorists that is the ruling body of the Gaza strip would work for piece. But they have hate in their eyes and don’t want piece. In fact they could be as one with the State of Israel and be part of a democratic free thrifty little state that shows no enmity to anyone. To the astonishment of all fair thinking people the West are determined to shoot themselves in the foot and stand with the villains of the piece, Hamas. Even competing with one another on who can give them the most cash and who can call the Israelis the most villainous name, discrediting them at every turn.

  • novoludo

    Those on here puzzled as to why Palestinians might suddenly wake up and decide to launch missiles at their benign Israeli neighbour, might care to read the following. Of course you won’t agree with any of the opinions, that’s fine enough, but there are a plethora of facts here (eg how in the last major Hamas / Israel conflict over 700 innocent Palestinians died, including over 300 children – and 3 Israelis).

    Those who deny that Palestinians actually exist, and that anything wrong is being done to them – well, you may be beyond the reach of fact and reason by now, but give this a try:

  • Maverick

    Myth:Israel always tries to minimise civilian casualties – it is targeting only Hamas

    The truth: Israel has the most technically advanced weaponry in the world, with the exception of the US. Its computerised drone planes (which it sells to the UK) send back extremely detailed information about every square foot of the Gaza Strip. And yet hundreds of civilians have been killed and wounded, with the one power plant, ambulances, schools and hospitals being hit.

    Myth:Any nation faced with missile or bomb attacks would respond with massive fire power

    The truth: For years Britain experienced terrorist attacks by the IRA, with many more fatalities than Israel has suffered. It never resorted to bombing civilian targets and infrastructure, but succeeded through patient negotiation.

  • Maverick

    If IdF propaganda is to believd bout them bombing 90% o Hamas’ rocket, why still prepare for. Found offence…

    • Maverick

      Meant why still prepare for ground offence….

    • Baron

      how about doing a rough draft before opening your mouth, Maverick.

  • Maverick

    “Hamas, to my great regret, is Israel’s creation,” says Mr. Cohen, a Tunisian-born Jew who worked in Gaza for more than two decades. Responsible for religious affairs in the region until 1994, Mr. Cohen watched the Islamist movement take shape, muscle aside secular Palestinian rivals and then morph into what is today Hamas, a militant group that is sworn to Israel’s destruction.

    Another question for neo-con loser Murray who created Hamas?

    New York Times Reporter David Shipler cites the Israeli military governor of Gaza as boasting that Israel expressly financed the fundamentalists against the PLO:

    “Politically speaking, Islamic fundamentalists were sometimes regarded as useful to Israel, because they had conflicts with the secular supporters of the PLO. Violence between the two groups erupted occasionally on West Bank university campuses. Israeli military governor of the Gaza Strip, Brigadier General Yitzhak Segev, once told me how he had financed the Islamic movement as a counterweight to the PLO and the Communists. ‘The Israeli Government gave me a budget and the military government gives to the mosques,’ he said.”

    Instead of londonistan… avivstan!!

    • Trofim

      Well done! First one to play the neocon card! Pass GO.

    • vix

      There are a lot of quiet Israelis out there working to bring common sense to play. These people are normally suddenly found to be insane, homosexual, in debt or rapists. So convenient.
      Another Israeli worked in Gaza.
      Why would the Gaza Palestinians vote Hamas in?
      Amira Hass: Drinking the Sea at Gaza c 1993
      Page 56:
      According to a study by the Association of Israeli and Palestinian Physicians (PHR)..2,285 people were shot in 1988, 7,049 were severely beaten, and 3,295 suffered ill effects from inhaling tear gas. In 1989, 6,974 people were shot, 10,774 were beaten and 3,196 suffered the effects of tear gas (no distinction is made between live ammunition and rubber- or plastic coated bullets)…. between August 1989 and August 1993, 1,085 persons treated in its clinics had been shot in the head: 302 of these were between the ages of seventeen and twenty four, 163 of them (15%) were women, and 545 were under sixteen – of whom 97 were children under the age of six. In its study, the PHR points out that during the five years of the intifada, a child under the age of six was shot in the head once every two weeks…

      So, Douglas, if you had had a child under 6 in Gaza would you have voted for Hamas? Just yes or no….. Simple isn’t it?

    • Baron

      Three possibilities here, one of the three people, you, Maverick, this chap Shipler, or the quoted military governor is mildly retarded. The sentence you quote ain’t in English. Help us to decide who, will you, please?

  • Maverick

    Myth: Israel is a law-abiding nation seeking to live in peace with its neighbours

    The truth: In 1948, shortly after the embryonic UN gave 56 per cent of Palestine to the largely immigrant, minority Jewish population, the Jewish forces drove out most of the indigenous Palestinians and took 78 per cent of the land. They razed to the ground over 400 Palestinian villages, so that the refugees could not return. In 1967 they occupied the rest of Palestine, including Gaza, and began to settle their citizens in these areas, in contravention of the Fourth Geneva Convention. In 2002 they began the construction of the 400-mile long barrier, largely on Palestinian land, using it to take land and water resources from what is left of the West Bank.

    The centres of population in the West Bank have been isolated into ghetto-like enclaves, surrounded by the Israeli army and illegal settlements. Many methods are being used to drive Palestinians out of their homes in East Jerusalem, which Israel has annexed, in contravention of international law.

    Israel is in violation of over 60 UN Resolutions, which call for the return of refugees, withdrawal of the settlers, dismantling of the wall and a lifting of the siege on Gaza.

    Myth: Israel is threatened by its Arab neighbours

    The truth: Egypt and Jordan have diplomatic relations and trade agreements with Israel. Lebanon and Syria do not, as Israel still occupies part of their territory. Nevertheless, on several occasions the Arab League has offered Israel full normalisation in return for a viable Palestinian state on the West Bank and Gaza. Israel has refused.

    Myth: Israel withdrew its settlers and the army from Gaza in 2005, but the Palestinians rejected this peace offering and simply resorted to more violence

    The truth: Israel did withdraw 8000 settlers from Gaza, after 38 years of occupation – but immediately sent 30,000 more to the illegal settlements in the West Bank (which now has over 450,000 settlers).

    At the same time, it placed extremely tight restrictions on all entry points to the Gaza Strip, making it almost impossible for the local economy to function. Over the next two years Israel fired about 16,000 artillery shells into Gaza, killing 120 men, women and children and damaging much of the infrastructure of the towns.

    Myth:Israel has for many years suffered terribly from thousands of missiles fired from Gaza

    The truth: The first homemade Qassam missile was fired across the Israeli border in October 2001; the first fatality occurred in March 2007.

    Up to November 2008, 13 Israelis were killed by Qassam rockets. By contrast, between September 2000 and the end of November 2008 nearly 5000 Palestinians were killed, more than half of them in Gaza. The rockets have in the last year reached more distant targets, but in military terms they are ineffectual, compared to the fire-power of the US F-16s, Apache helicopter gunships, Merkava tanks and naval gunships with which Israel is equipped.

    Hamas say the missiles are in retaliation not only for the many deaths Israel has caused in Gaza and the West Bank, but also for the continued occupation and expropriation of land (see above). They say they hope to end the occupation in this way, much as Israel was forced to end the occupation of South Lebanon by Hizbollah.

    Myth:Hamas broke the recent ceasefire, prompting Israel’s bombardment and invasion of Gaza

    The truth: In November 2008, during the six-month ceasefire, the Israeli army killed 14 Palestinians and tightened the siege on Gaza even more. In retaliation, Qassam rockets were fired on the Negev, killing no-one. Israeli spokesmen have freely admitted that the assaults on Gaza were planned eight months ago – before the ceasefire. They clearly went into the ceasefire agreement without the intention of respecting it.

    • Maverick

      Myth:Hamas took over Gaza in a coup in June 2007, ousting the rightful government headed by Mahmoud Abbas

      The truth: Hamas won the 2006 general elections, which international observers considered free and fair, and formed a unity government in which MPs from Fatah and other parties were offered ministerial posts. However, in June 2006 Israeli troops abducted dozens of Hamas ministers and parliamentarians and put them in jail, while the US and other western governments joined Israel in refusing to recognise or speak to Hamas.

      Israel and the US encouraged Fatah to stage a coup in Gaza, but Hamas pre-empted this in June 2007. Mahmoud Abbas is the elected President of the Palestinian people, but his party, Fatah, does not have a mandate.

      Myth:Israel always tries to minimise civilian casualties – it is targeting only Hamas

      The truth: Israel has the most technically advanced weaponry in the world, with the exception of the US. Its computerised drone planes (which it sells to the UK) send back extremely detailed information about every square foot of the Gaza Strip. And yet hundreds of civilians have been killed and wounded, with the one power plant, ambulances, schools and hospitals being hit.

      Myth:Any nation faced with missile or bomb attacks would respond with massive fire power

      The truth: For years Britain experienced terrorist attacks by the IRA, with many more fatalities than Israel has suffered. It never resorted to bombing civilian targets and infrastructure, but succeeded through patient negotiation.

      Myth: Hamas uses the citizens of Gaza as ‘human shields’

      The truth: Gaza is one of the most densely populated areas on earth, with 1.5 million inhabitants living in an area about 25 miles long and five miles wide. There are no caves or forests to hide in or operate from – only urban areas.

      Myth: Israel has the welfare of the people of Gaza at heart

      The truth: Since June 2007 Israel has sealed off the Gaza Strip from the outside world, so that it is almost impossible to get in or out, or to import or export goods. Patients used to be able to leave Gaza to seek medical treatment elsewhere, but in the last year Israel has denied permits to most patients and dozens have died.

      If I’m an apologist then I’m happy to be an apologist.

      • novoludo


        And I thought like most people on this thread that the Palestinians have been incomprehensibly and ungratefully launching rockets at their good neighbour Israel for no reason at all!

        How wrong can you be, eh? Who knew any of these things?

      • Augustus

        Your concentration of venom directed at the Jewish state is particularly grotesque
        when one takes into account that Israel is the only democratic state in a region
        where Muslim fundamentalism reigns supreme, imposes barbaric practices, denies
        elementary human rights and freedom of worship and shamelessly indulges in
        violence and murder of minorities and state-sanctioned persecution. While Arab
        states like Syria blatantly butcher their citizens en masse perverse spotlight
        remains centred on condemning Israel’s efforts to defend itself from neighbours
        seeking its destruction. Your ‘truths’ are a conconction of deceit.

        • vix

          Democratic state? Show me one constituency MP. Show me a coalition that isn’t dependent on fundamentalist Jewish parties. Rabin was assassinated by your own extremists for collaborating with the enemy (i.e. negotiating for peace). Better democracy than most perhaps but still flawed.

      • Baron

        Talking about Hamas winning the 2007 election, was it during or after the brotherly struggle when the head of one of the Abbas’s men, who avoided being shot, got his head hacked off, the said head got delivered to his spouse?

        You seem to know alot, Maverick, don’t be shy, tell us. But try, address the question, don’t just fluff around your delusion.

        and another thing:

        if, as you say, it’s almost impossible to import or export goods, how did the rockets got into the Gaza Strip? Wouldn’t it be more better for the Palestinian unwashed if instead of smuggling rockets the caring Hamas were to import the drugs and stuff?

  • Augustus

    Israeli villages have been bombarded with missiles from Gaza for years, but they are not any longer home-made missiles but have become serious weapons designed to kill as many people as possible. Delivered by Iran, and smuggled in through an open border with Egypt, these rockets are larger than before and fly further, and are able to reach Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. And yet there are people in the media and elsewhere who can’t
    understand what could possibly be wrong with firing rockets at Israelis. In the meantime, as Egypt begins a slow rehabilitation
    process alongside a crippling economic dependence on the West, Cairo has displayed
    solidarity with Hamas and has warned Israel that escalation in Gaza would invite
    repercussions. A contradiction between the extreme Islamist identity of Egyptian President
    Mohammed Morsi’s anti-Semitic regime and the country’s existential interests. Egypt’s survival depends, for the time being, on a positive relationship with
    the West. That is why Egypt will continue to mediate between Israel and Hamas, despite the crisis with Israel it has deliberately created to appease
    Hamas. What a wonderfull world!

  • John Steadman

    Absolutely bang on again, Douglas Murray.

    First step towards a solution of this issue – Hamas stops attacking Isreal on a daily basis. But this will not happen, because the terrorist Hamas knows it can launch missiles at Isreal and still enjoy widespread international support from the usual suspects, most particularly those in the liberal west.
    It is extraordinary that the Left seems to abandon all standards of what is and what is not acceptable behaviour between nations when it comes to the Middle East.

    • novoludo

      Ah Mr Steadman! You give yourself away rather badly here don’t you? Rather embarrassingly I would say.

      You say: “It is extraordinary that the Left seems to abandon all standards of what is and what is not acceptable behaviour between nations when it comes to the Middle East”.

      But of course we don’t have ‘nations’ here do we? We only have one nation. Because this one nation will not allow the existence of the other. Indeed, it has occupied its putative land for decades.

      As it happens, it is true that we on the Left are generally against nations illegally stifling other groups with legitimate interests, and illegally occupying their lands. And perhaps tonight or tomorrow illegally invading them.

      Are you against these things?

      Or does the Right think it is fine for nations to behave like this – as long as they have white skins of course?

      • Augustus

        If the Mufti of Jerusalem, Hajj Amin Husseini, had chosen to lead his people to peace and reconciliation with their Jewish neighbours, as he had promised the British officials who appointed him to his high rank in the early 1920’s, the Palestinians would have had their independent state over a substantial part of Mandate Palestine by 1948, and would have been spared the traumatic experience of dispersion and exile. And so it goes with all the cynical and self-seeking leaders produced by the Arab political system. Just as the Palestinian leadership during the Mandate had no qualms about inciting its constituents against Zionism and the Jews, while lining its own pockets from the fruits of Jewish entrepreneurship, so Palestinian leaders since used the billions of dollars donated by the Arab oil states and, during the Oslo era, by the international community to finance their luxurious style of life while ordinary Palestinians scrambled for a livelihood. This applies not only to Hamas, but also to the supposedly moderate Palestinian leadership, who continue their profound hostility towards Israel and the Jews, using both classic issues of Western anti-Semitism and the instruments of the verses of the Koran. Only if a fundamentally different Arab leadership ever emerges can Palestinian Arabs realistically look forward to putting their self-inflicted catastrophe behind them.

        • vix

          Ahhh. So there are things and were things called ‘Palestinian’, in a formed body, that could have acted properly in favour of their territory. Sorry, I thought all those people were nasty Arabs who belonged in Saudi but apparently not. These posts can be a very confusing place… And this word ‘dispersion’? Is that the same as the word diaspora? ‘Exile’ of course I get. But can you have exile from a place you didn’t originally belong to? Douglas Murray, this is getting far too deep and confusing. I thought you said it was all so very simple. Are you enjoying that coffee? Yes or No?

          • Ilana Walsh

            Augustus is a little confused, or maybe he is just talking about Palestinians during the Mandate as a kind of shorthand. Because it is undisputable fact that before 1948 “Palestinian” referred to the Jews living in the Mandate territory of Palestine, while the Arabs living there insisted that they were indeed Arabs, not Palestinians. It is also undisputed fact that many of them had arrived fairly recently from Syria, Egypt and what is now Jordan. I believe the UN definition of a Palestinian refugee is someone who was living in the country for 2 years before 1948 (or their descendants, but that is another subject),
            Now of course the Arab Palestinian identity does exist. It was artificially created and has been artificially encouraged for cynical political purposes but nevertheless it does now exist and has to be taken into account in the equation.

            • vix

              I hadn’t realised the ‘Arab’ population of Palestine all immigrated in 1946. That makes the country technically empty when you took over – just like South Africa and Rhodesia were. I don’t think you should dismiss this as ‘another subject’. I’d like to hear more.

              • OritAharon Elgavi

                Jews and Arabs both lived in the area for thousands of years (not Muslims, as Islam only started in the 7th century, but indigenous pple definitely lived there), and were BOTH called “Palestinians” until 1948. The area was only ever an independent Jewish state (from ca 1020 BC to around 100 AC, with occupations in between) and never an independent Palestinian state – as I explained, the current meaning of the word “Palestinians” as referring to Arabs only is extremely recent, around 40 years or so.

          • Augustus

            I was, of course, referring to the Palestinian Arabs, as it is indeed true that until Israel existed as an independent country, a Palestinian referred to a Jew living there. But as for depth and confusion, that is because this charade is yet another indication that the world still doesn’t get it. The
            conflict with Israel on the part of the Arabs has nothing to do with Gaza
            blockades or West Bank settlements. The Middle East, which has been falling like
            dominoes into the hands of Islamist parties, is on a religious path of jihad
            against all infidels. And their first stated order of business is to wipe out the Jews.

      • John Steadman

        No, Mr/Mrs/Miss/Ms novoludo, the embarrassment is surely yours for making a pedantic point about the use of the term ‘nations’, for trying thereby to suggest, wholly unconvincingly I would claim, that I might be unaware of the basic territorial issue, for throwing in another wholly irrelevant but obligitory knee-jerk ‘racism’ slur, and most especially, for ignoring the main thrust of my brief comment – that the ball is in the court of the Hamas terrorists who run Gaza, and who, we all know, have no intention of playing it because they are simply hell-bent on the destruction of the state of Israel rather than finding a settlement.

        Nobody denies any ‘legitimate interests’ – but you seem to be unwilling to recognise the main obstacle to the means by which they might be achieved.

        And you talk so glibly about legality – ask the Israelis subject to a constant barrage of Hamas rockets about legality.

        I said, “It is extraordinary that the Left seems to abandon all standards of what is and what is not acceptable behaviour between nations when it comes to the Middle East.” Thank you for your contribution to my case.

      • OritAharon Elgavi

        Gaza hasn’t been occupied since 2005! Since then, Hamas could have built up an economy, they could have done business in the joint industrial areas at Erez and Karni instead of shooting at them, they could have used the agricultural resources left behind by the settlers instead of turning them into Hamas training camps, and they could have decided not to incessantly shoot rockets at Israel (I know, just fireworks, right? They kill and maim, but really nothing to worry about). Peaceful behavior by Hamas would have led to a complete withdrawal by Israel from the West Bank quicker than you can say :rocket attack on Tel Aviv”. But please don’t let facts obfuscate your moral feelings about history.

  • roger

    Britain responded to V2 rockets killing civilians but destroy whole cities with fire and explosives, didn’t see any Air Marshals at Nuremberg though.

    Hamas breaks every law of war and should pay the capital price, this assymetric war nonsense should be stamped out, no double standards any more . The changes in the Geneva conventions in 1949 was a sop to the illegal ‘freedom fighters’ who used to be put up against a wall and shot, now we live with the resulting chaos.

    • novoludo

      I would like to point out another example of the pro Israelis on this thread explicitly and unequivocally advocating violence against the Palestinians – in this case that they should be “put up against a wall and shot”.

      I have accused you of being bloodthirsty racists, which is indeed the case for many of you here, including roger.

      I still await those who have accused me of same to provide any supporting evidence.

  • victor67

    The absurdity and unjust nature of Israel was summed up on BBC news at lunch time when the mayor of Tel Aviv was commenting on the rockets with a strong Brooklyn accent , when natives whose family have lived for generations on the same land live now in a penal colony.

    • Trofim

      “the mayor of Tel Aviv was commenting on the rockets with a strong Brooklyn accent ”
      Ooh, definitely anti-immigrant, hatred of the “other”. Am I right in thinking that British people who speak with a strong Pakistani accent are not properly British, compared those of us whose families have lived here for generations? Penal colony?

      • victor67

        No problem with him living in Tel Aviv, but do you or Murray have a problem with the people inhabiting Gaza, west bank or the many refugee camps whose families lived for generations on this land living there either? Lets see who the real racists are?

      • Rahul Kamath

        Trofim – your analogy would hold except that the only people who can emigrate to Israel are Jews performing aliyah. As I presume you are Jewish, you probably know this and are thus clearly deceptive (or self-deceived) in your comments. When an Arab can emigrate to Israel on the same basis as a Jew, then you can apply your analogy forthwith.

        • Trofim

          Me a Jew? We don’t really do Jews in Worcestershire. What’s performing aliyah? Is it like the splits, or a double backward somersault? By the way, time you lost a bit of weight.

          • Rahul Kamath

            You don’t know what something as basic as Aaliyah is (the emigration of Jews to Israel under the right of return laws) yet you have so many opinions on Israel and Palestine? So clearly you don’t come to this topic as a seeker of truth. I wonder what other axe you have to grind: hatred of Muslims perhaps? I’ll leave you to your destructive misery.

            • T. Botham

              Why do you believe yourself superior – as a seeker of truth? – to someone who does not know the Hebrew word for Jewish immigration to Israel? How well you have illustrated how a little learning is a dangerous thing. Would my smattering of Islamic terms – including “Islam,” “jihad”, “ijtihad,” “jizyah”, “takiyah” – qualify me to opine on Israel and Palestine and dislike Islamic terrorists? I had always thought it was my knowledge of facts, which I seek more diligently than “truth.” Pontius Pilatey of me. Although you have some knowledge of English idiom, you are not yet an adept at the British sneer, which works best delivered without any swottish tin-badge polishing.

        • T. Botham

          There are several layers of Israeli immigration rules. The right to Israeli citizenship is granted to Jews by birth (matrilineal) or conversion. Thereafter there are rules for discretionary grants of citizenship. These immigration laws are no more “racist” than any Western nation’s. Britain gives (or used to, I haven’t checked for recent changes) rights to citizenship to children of male British born subjects. There is no reason why a Frenchman, or a Tongan, or any Persian or Saudi Arabian, or any Arab inhabitant of Jordan, Syria, Lebanon or any territory beyond the borders of Israel, should have the right to emigrate to Israel on the same basis as a Jew. That Jewish nationalism should be intolerable and British, Danish, Saudi, and oh, yes, the poisonous and fraudulent nationalism of the fictitious Palestinians – is one of the many signs, not hard to decipher, of that old familiar mental disease…

          I wonder whether any HIndu families kept the keys to their homes in what became Pakistan, and insist on a right of immigration to that holy land.

    • Baron

      That’s it, victor67, why didn’t you say it before, the conflict’s solved, HURAHHH, the Tel Aviv mayor has a foreign accent, the objective, unbiased, trustworthy BBC has finally uncovered the evil ‘what’s behind it all’. Nobel Prize for it?

      BTW, is it by any chance the same objective, unbiased, trustworthy BBC that covered up a sickening peado for 40 years? We should be told, sir.

  • victor67

    Questions For Murray?

    When the Hamas leader was murdered. He was carrying a proposal for a long term truce with Israel to stop the rockets and the Israeli strikes on Gaza.

    So if Israel just wants the rockets stopped why was he killed? Who benefits from an escalation and what are the risks. Will a democratic Egypt stand by and watch their brothers and sisters in Gaza massacred again like in 2008-9. Or is Bibi playing high stakes deadly poker.
    Murray comments border on racism as Jewish Israeli life seems more important to him than Palestinian arab lives.
    In terms of Hamas firing rockets into Israel . Does he forget or dispute that a great many of 2 million souls now inhabiting the penal colony called Gaza were violently removed from their homes in some of the places where the rockets now land to make way for a “Liberal Jewish and democratic state”.

    • Trofim

      “Will a democratic Egypt stand by and watch their brothers and sisters in Gaza massacred again like in 2008-9”
      But would they sit by and watch their Jewish brothers and sisters massacred? You seem to be suggesting that Egyptians care more about Arabs than they do Jews. That sounds a bit racist, doesn’t it?
      Any evidence that the Hamas leader was carrying said document?

      • victor67

        Reported on Al Jazeera and RT. So how do you think his assasisation has helped to stop the rockets? Is this what tthe Israeli’s want.

        • AY

          Israel wants to defeat the enemy.
          that is what war is about.
          and if the enemy doesn’t give up, it is eliminated.

          • Rahul Kamath

            Good luck w/ that old chap. The one thing we can all say beyond reasonable doubt is after this war, Gaza will still be next to Israel and populated with many many Palestinians, many of whom will be seeking revenge. Clever much?

            • novoludo

              Israel’s stupid government will of course make Palestinians much more likely to resist them, more likely to fire rockets at them. it will increase the financial and military support to the Palestinians from other Arab nations. He’s a clever fellow that Bibi, no? (Or as some say – maybe this is all a rather disgraceful stunt to help him win the upcoming election.)

            • AY

              revenge for what? that they tried to attack and were beaten off?
              if kept firmly behind the fence, without proper arms and international support, they might feel revenge or sing kumbaya, who cares.
              this is named justice for the defeated enemy, not capable of murder. happened in history so many times.

          • novoludo

            That is the old stupidity of authoritarians. The belief that somehow you can defeat a whole group of people who are committed to something like their own independence. In the end, you can’t. Whether in South Africa, Northern Ireland, Vietnam, Iraq, Syria, Libya or anywhere else.

            You can keep killing their leaders. You can kill their families and their children. You can make their lives appalling and wretched. You can destroy their economies. This is Israeli policy. It is not working and manifestly will not work. It is leading to disaster.

            • AY

              what a hysterical nonsense. instead of bringing arguments, you only can accuse of murder. are you sure I did kill somebody? pity clown.

              indeed I support self-defense against terror organization.
              if not stopped in Israel, if assured that terror works – this public will soon appear in London with their rockets, suicide bombers and beheadings.
              they must be stopped.

              • novoludo

                Well I do support self-defence against countries that illegally attack, invade and occupy other countries. Do you?

                By the way, I again laugh at being accused of hysteria by an idiot who rants about “rockets and beheadings in London” if Palestinians are not systematically murdered in Gaza.

                On the murder thing, I think you will find that Israel has killed over 5,000 Palestinians in the last decade. But don’t let facts get in the way of hysteria, eh?

                Thank God that good man Bibi is preventing those beheadings in London! I feel safer already. Otherwise I would be getting really worried…

                • AY

                  gaza is not country. it is too bad for this role. it is iranian terror base.

                  and 7/7 did happen unfortunately. as well as attempt on life of British MP, and many other terror plots organized by jihadis in the UK, to intimidate establishment and population.

                  the same islam, the same jihad, the same fuzzy mugs, the same hostage taking tactics as in gaza. you can’t deny it.

    • Augustus

      “He was carrying a proposal for a long term truce with Israel to stop the rockets and the Israeli strikes on Gaza.”

      A Hamas spokesman self-righteously argued after the assassination that Hamas was actually
      preparing for a hudna – a sort of temporary ceasefire – with the “Zionist
      enemy.” He made sure to stress, however, that even a hudna would include, as it
      has in the past, “incessant reminders” in the form of sporadic rocket salvos,
      which would continue, presumably, until Palestine is liberated. You try to portray Hamas and the plethora of other Gaza terrorist groups as innocent parties. No doubt, next you’ll be arguing that they’ve been turned into Likud election tools.

    • Baron

      surely not another piece of paper entering the annals of history, victor67. You recall what happened when the original one with Adolf’s signature was waved for the mankind to see? How long was honored what was written on it?

  • novoludo

    Summary comment on you unfortunate people.

    Baron talked casually about nuking people, about no pain no gain, about hundreds of thousands of the “hoi polloi” dying… Others on here talk about tea towels, about hacking off people’s heads… You assume that there is no one in your moral superiority (as Israel as we speak murders innocents) that you could possibly negotiate with… You decide that the Palestinians are not allowed to decide what they are, and you presume upon yourselves that you can decide that they are Syrians or Egyptians – all ‘Arabs’ anyway, which you all openly bandy about as a term of abuse.

    Then you try to come over all moderate and reasonable. Think about it.

    Did I make racial comments about Jews? Make jokes about yarmulkas? Did I talk glibly about thousands of Jews dying? Did I say that Israel was so murderous and fanatical that it was useless to talk to its leaders? Did I presume to articulate what the identity of Israelis should be? Imply that all Jews are basically the same?

    You will find not. But you did all this about Palestinians and Arabs. You will not be able to quote me as saying the same things about Israel or Jews.that you casually and automatically say about Palestinians and Arabs. Your words are clear. I have quoted them back to you.

    The truth is, not matter what your desires for extinction, the Palestinians are not going away. You do not get to choose who their political representatives are. Israel through its extreme policies has immeasurably strengthened Hamas versus more moderate forces. You will keep killing, but it will not work, it will not bring peace, and eventually you will negotiate with Hamas – or its even more extreme successors.

    As I say, fortunately you do not represent in your casual racism and murderousness the very many decent people in Israel. It is still to be hoped that they will prevail and elect more responsible and far-sighted political leaders than those you are currently unfortunate enough to have.

    • AY

      so in two words – you support hamas.

      a terrorist organization responsible for 100+ suicide bombings of civilians.
      responsible for 8 years of incessant indiscirimnate rocket attacks against Israelis.
      you support gaza as terrorist base armed by iranian regime, waging war to exterminate Jews.

      otherwise, it is not clear what you are arguing for.

      Palestinian arabs have clear choice –
      or to cease fire, denounce terrorism, recognize Israel, and be good neighbour to their neighbour.
      or to continue the war.

      • novoludo

        Whether or not I support Hamas hardly relevant. As it happens I would like to support moderate Palestinians, but Israel through the stupidity and extremism of its policies has inevitably strengthened Hamas. If you build illegal settlements on others’ land, deny their identity, occupy and oppress them – you will tend to create extremist resistance. So now you have Hamas. I don’t want it either. But I didn’t create it. The Israeli Government under the idiot Bibi and his predecessors did.

        Just as the British Government strengthened Sinn Fein, and the South African Government strengthened the ANC. It is all so obvious and inevitable.

        The point now is that the Israeli Government will one day have to negotiate with Hamas, or something even worse. It will have no choice. Or you can start dismantling the illegal settlements, stop the economic chokehold on Gaza, stop killing children… And maybe you will get a better outcome. Right now you are heading for disaster.

    • Curnonsky

      Your protestations to the contrary, when you side with those who hunger to exterminate Jews you reveal your true colors. Heydrich would be proud.

      • novoludo

        I side with those who should not be occupied and oppressed and living in appalling conditions. I am against those who illegally build settlements on others’ lands, and who destroy their lives. Sorry, but I am not going to apologize for that. I do not believe we would have violent resistance – which is actually pretty moderate under the circumstances (eg rather less than the IRA when the grievances are much more legitimate) – if Israel had not pursued such aggressively hostile policies. I believe in a two state solution. It is a tragedy that Bibi and most his predecessors have not.

      • victor67

        Yawn Ywawn more Nazi comparisons. You sound like Melanie Philips.
        Norman Finklestein wrote a book about how zionest jews exploit the memory of the holocaust to deflect legitimite criticism of the state of Israel.

        • Curnonsky

          Then how do you explain your singular obsession with Israel when all around it far worse things are being perpetrated upon Arabs by other Arabs? I think we all know the answer.

    • Augustus

      Hang on. So you forgive Mahmoud Abbas for his consistent refusal to enter real negotiations
      with Israel, for his inability and unwillingness to bend on any issue, and for
      his unilateral, aggressive U.N. diplomacy? A Palestinian state? Okay, but not when Abbas doesn’t have effective control
      over his own constituency and when tens of thousands of rockets are aimed at Israeli citizens. Not on 97 percent of Judea and Samaria, and not under any “Judenrein”
      arrangements. Not without a security barrier in the Jordan Valley and on the
      Samarian hilltops. Not without an end to Palestinian attacks on Israel in global
      forums and an end to anti-Semitic broadcasts on PA television. Not without an
      end to Palestinian nonsense about refugee return to Israel. And no re-division
      of Jerusalem.

  • Trofim

    Anyway, that Ahmed Jabari, who was assassinated, has changed his status on Facebook – he’s now in a relationship with 72 virgins. (Yeah, I know – sorry if you’ve heard it already).

    • novoludo

      You are a racist swine Trofim, truly utter excrement. What a funny joke!

      • AY

        how do you know ahmed jabari was of different race with Trofim?

  • Kevin

    “Proportionality” means that if Israel’s enemies can “volunteer” about 6 million martyrs, they could wipe out the Jewish nation on a life-for-a-life basis.

    Incidentally, there are estimated to be roughly 1,620 million Mohammedans in the world. Not all of them anti-Israel for sure, but it is a big pool for “proportionality” planners to play with.

  • Wilma

    That’s all very well – and I write this as a Jew – but what about the horrendous and totally unnecessary privations the Israelis continue to impose on the inhabitants of Gaza – which apart from being morally unacceptable, fuels the hatred against them? There’s very little food, paltry medical supplies, and even less hope – another few things which are specific and highly-targeted by Israel.

    • Baron

      you live in Gaza, have you visited recently, Wilma?

    • Kevin

      Yesterday’s TV coverage included an interview with a pharmacist whose shelves looked as well stacked as my local one.

      Even if one accepted your statement as prima facie true, who is paying for the rockets that are hitting Israel, and why are they not spending the money on food and medical supplies?

    • Curnonsky

      Why then don’t their Egyptian brethren step in to help? Could it be that privation serves to keep the Palestinian anti-Israeli flame alive?

  • Eddie

    Hama is a terrorist rganisation. End of. Read its founding document – it sounds very Hitlerish, and could be some Nazi document from the 30s, such is its hatred of Jews, its wish to blame Zionism for all the ills of the world and its desire to destroy Israel and kill every Jew there, before ‘grinding up their bones and dumping them at sea’.

    In the past, when those Arab countries were colonies, they had Christians and Jews living there. Then came Islamism and all the Jews had to leave – so it is the Arab countries who have expelled them, and it would not be a bad thing if Israel cleared Gaza of all Arabs either therefore.

    The ‘refugees’ in Gaza could easily move to Egypt too – countries like that are deliberately keeping Gaza poor and overcrowded, and then blame Israel for their doing!

    Israel has lost patience and I really do not blame them. Time to forget a two-state solution – the Palestinians are not innocent fluffy bunnies who love peace – they are Jew-hating terrorists who want to take back all land and destroy the state of Israel. They should move back to where they belong. Israel should fix borders to 1967 ones.

    • anotherjoeblogs

      bang on target yet again, eddie. with sane people like you around gives me a glimmer of hope.

      • Eddie

        Well, ta very much!

        My typing may well be a tits-up typo-strewn mental case, but I hope my opinions are more rational!

        What we are seeing with lefties and those who consider themselves ‘liberal; supporting Hamas is the same instinct we see when lefties (and authorities – councils, schools, the police, the BBC) pander to anyone with a dark skin and a religion and turn a blind eye to things like forced marriage amongst Asians, or gangs of Muslims raping young white girls. If the perpetrators were white, then the same lefties would condemn these perpetrators as abusers, bigots, and their behaviour as unacceptable; because they are brown and devout, they are offered nothing but perpetual tolerance by the great and the good.
        Ergo, anyone who appeases and supports these dark-of-face Muslims and/or turns a blind eye to their abuses – when they wouldn’t do so if the perpetrators were white – is a racist.

        Everyone should be judged by the same moral compass: the knee-jerk support of lefties for fascists like Hamas is utterly appalling – the fact they cannot see that makes me wonder whether they are just too brainwashed to realise that they are supporting the 21st version of the nazis.

        • anotherjoeblogs

          eddie mate, i know man. it is an upside down weird world. but god knows you are good ( the real god ) god bless ya

          • Sarah

            You know what’s even worse than being a really stupid no-nothing, a historical revisionist of little talent and an inciter of warfare for others from the safety of your suburban caravan park?

            It’s writing to congratulate yourself on it.

            • anotherjoeblogs

              i am melting into the bossom of the goddess lakshmi and dancing into the universe of goodness. hey this is real and this is good. i wish you the peace i have found through my years of goodness and endless compassion. peace Sarah peace

            • salieri

              Sarah, I suspect the first contribution from ‘anotherjoeblogs’ was meant to be ironic, and the next two were intended to confirm it. Mischievous in the present context, I know, but the author is actually highly intelligent. It’s the demotic and apparently mindless syntax that gives him away (occasionally).

            • Eddie

              So, Sarah, the man hating feminist who wants all men accused of rape to be assumed to be guilty and imprisoned, and who wants to destroy the patriarchy and have the world ruled by women (which will of course make it fluffy and pink with no wars and free ice cream…) is supporting Hamas, an organisation of Islamist violence whose manifesto is essentially fascisic, racist, sexist, homophobic, and anti-democratic in the extreme.
              Errrr so how does that work then, love?
              You know the only thing worse than posting nonsense here as you do? It’s being Sarah and congratulating yourself on your utter ignorance.
              Hamas are inciters of warfare, not Israel – who are defending themselves.

              • New Class Traitor

                Indeed. If shooting missiles into a sovereign nation’s RECOGNIZED (not disputed) territory isn’t a casus belli, then pray tell me what is.
                Israel has, if anything, acted with nearly superhuman restraint in painstakingly trying to avoid civilian casualties. Not for them the Sherman approach (google “March to the Sea 1864”).

        • Amergin Selby

          What is it with you and lefties that you throw unjustified generalisations around like that. I am leftie and think Hamas is a disgusting, immoral, brutal organisation. I think Muslim rapists should be weeded out and punished and where there is evidence of it being hushed up by whatever authority or party they should be banned from holding office for life.Do try to be less scattergun with your comments and try to avoid knee jerk responses about ‘lefties’.

          • Eddie

            I used to be a leftie too so know what you mean – (now I am a true independent non-affliliated statelet all to myself, like Yugoslavia, without the folk dancing and guns).

            But one cannot deny that the bulk of support for Hamas comes from the Left – the leftie sheep who follow the opinion of the Guardian, their parties and unions (all unions are anti-Israel and support Islamicts and anyone else with a brown skin and a religion).

            What I mean really is self-declared ‘liberals’ who are nothing of the sort – those who assume their support of political correctness, which make them support any Muslim or dark-skinned person with a minority religion (and accuses anyone who speaks the truth of being an ‘Islamophobe’, a racist – or worse, a Daily Mail reader), makes them a moral force for good in the world – and thus makes all who are against the Islamist terrorists called Hamas and support the democracy called Israel ‘fascists’. Errr….

            For lefties read ‘hypocrites and appeasing of fascism’ then.

            I watched Channel 4 news last night – the opening statements were SO biased it really is a disgrace. Can’t help thinking that the sheer number of Muslims and their mates working in TV makes a difference – not to mention the influence of well-known Islamophiliac Jon Snow. Shameful!

        • New Class Traitor

          It is appalling support — yet proves what many of us knew all along, that totalitarian collectivism comes in many colors — black, brown, red, and two shades of green (islamism and deep ecology). And each color draws fellow travelers from its more moderate versions.

          As Robert Heinlein put it so aptly: the most fundamental political distinction is between those who want people to be controlled and those who have no such desire.

    • ed l

      “The ‘refugees’ in Gaza could easily move to Egypt too” – In fact they are Egyptians – Arafat was from Cairo, for example. The ones on the “West Bank” are Syrian – Abbas is from Syria, for example.

      • novoludo

        So you get to decide the identity of these people! They might say they are ‘Palestinians’, but you’ve decided they are ‘Egyptians’ or ‘Syrians’.

        Do you have any grasp of our absurd and useless, not to say immoral, your position is?

        I’ve decided you are not really a Jew. you are a Pole. WHATEVER you say… (And you should now move to Poland.).

        How do you feel about this?

        • Baron

          novoludo, is there an ethnic category of raving loonies?

          • novoludo

            Quite possibly. I would happily be in it rather than the bloodthirsty racist category that you are in Baron. But it seems you enjoy happily bandying around thousands of Arab deaths. No pain no gain, eh? What’s a few thousand dead Palestinian children if it furthers your political objectives? You really are a human disgrace.

            • Cody

              You’re the closest thing this thread has seen to a bloodthirsty racist, novoludo.

              • novoludo

                Please Cody find the place, unlike others on this thread, where I have openly expressed either satisfaction or acceptance about people being killed. Or where I have said anything derogatory in any way about Jews.

                You won’t find any. Whereas the thread is full of shocking statements about Arabs.

                If you don’t find anything I have said to support what you are accusing me of, I would appreciate it if you could withdraw your accusation. Put up or withdraw.

                • OritAharon Elgavi

                  Dear Novoludo, but YOU have implied, just now, that Jews dont care about ” few hundred dead Palestinian children if it furthers your political objectives”. That’s racist, not bloodthirsty though. happy now?

            • Malfleur

              Try to keep your eye on the ball novoludo. This is not a question of race.Hamas is the purveyor of the murderous and lunatic ideology of the false prophet, Mohammed. We will have to destroy the ideology to protect our own liberties. As Blaise Pascal wrote: “It would be naive to ignore in Islam a deep thread of intolerance toward unbelievers.”

        • ed l

          amused that such a simple statement of facts (Arafat was born in Cairo, Abbas’ parents came from Damascus to Palestine and ran back there in 1948) can raise the hackles of a dunderhead like you.

          • novoludo

            You are hardly stating facts! Don’t try to rewrite what you said.

            You are arguing that Palestinians don’t really exist and therefore can be quite rightly ‘sent back’ to Egypt, Syria or wherever. Hardly neutral ‘facts’.

            Is it okay if we send you back somewhere arbitrary against your will?

            • roger

              When was this ‘Palestine’, surely it was the Viljet of Damascus for ages. Palestia was Roman a very long time ago.

          • Daniel Maris

            Not only was Arafat born in Cairo, I think I am right in saying he stayed there until his teens.

        • ed l

          ps amusing how you assume I am jewish. I make no such assumption about you, other than that you are a useful idiot.

          • novoludo

            I was just giving you the credit of an emotional response. It seems unlikely that you could be so fanatical and stupid and immoral otherwise.

            • Someone

              hello all.

              this is the first time that i’m writing here so please be patient.

              first of all i want to respond to ed about his post on the region of those people. maybe they are from Egypt or Lebanon but still they are here and they call them self Palestinians.

              second i want to respond to novoludo about his statement “I was just giving you the credit of an emotional response. It seems
              unlikely that you could be so fanatical and stupid and immoral

              i really got to ask, do you mean that only if he was a JEW (and i deliberately wrote it in large letters) he can be ” fanatical and stupid and immoral”?

              Now let me get just one thing clear, well in fact several things:
              israel has been bombarded by those awful missiles for a long time and kept calm but the palestinians (and maybe you really don’t know that because of the media) had to fire an anti tank missile at a military jeep injuring 4 soldiers, bootstrapped a fence that caused a soldiers to loose his hands and all that after they kept firing at civilians.
              i really don’t think that every JEW is “fanatical and stupid and immoral” because we are dealing here with the annihilation of my people so bombing an area from which someone just shot at us from there is just common sense.

              so please don’t judge each person by your off the trek logic, you want to say that the PM Benjamin netanyaho is “fanatical and stupid and immoral”, go ahead, you want to say that the minister of defense is “fanatical and stupid and immoral”, again go ahead but to generalize every JEW is just playing dumb.

        • roger

          The Arabs of the region didn’t have national borders within the overall Ottoman system , another invention of the post 1918 nonsense, Treaty of Sevres.
          Gaza was kept by the rich Arab countries as an extension of the UNRWA refugee camp to hold under the Israeli and Western nations noses like a stinking fish. The average Arab family wanted a home and a job, not to be a pawn in a strategic game.

          • Augustus

            Yes indeed. Why couldn’t the material progress resulting from Jewish settlement of Palestine ease the path for the local Arab populace to become permanently reconciled, if not positively well disposed, to the project of Jewish national self-determination? Because an inflow of Jewish immigrants and capital after World War I had revived Palestine’s hitherto static condition and raised the standard of living of its Arab inhabitants well above that in the neighbouring Arab states. The expansion of Arab industry and agriculture, especially in the field of citrus growing, was largely financed by Jewish capital. Arab-owned citrus plantations, vegetable-growing lands and olive groves all grew enormously In the two decades between the world wars. In fact, throughout the Mandate period, periods of peaceful coexistence far exceeded those of violent eruptions, and the latter were the work of only a small fraction of Palestinian Arabs. Unfortunately for both Arabs and the Jews, the hopes and wishes of ordinary people were not taken into account, as they rarely are in authoritarian communities hostile to the notions of civil society or liberal democracy.

        • Daniel Maris

          Yes, but Hamas say Israelis are really European and American settlers, not Israelis. So who is doing the dirty on identity?

          • New Class Traitor

            It’s a little bit as if Ireland had been depopulated down to a remnant Irish population, then taken over by, say, Viking invaders practicing Odinism, then Irish Americans came back and resettled part of the territory, blending with the remnant — yet the Vikings would call them interlopers.
            I do apologize to the Vikings for comparing them to HamAss. Whatever the Vikings may have been, cowards using civilians as human shields they weren’t.

        • ArtistPoet

          “The Palestinian people does not exist. The creation of a Palestinian
          state is only a means for continuing our struggle [Jihad] against the
          state of Israel for our Arab unity. In reality today there is no
          difference between Jordanians, Palestinians, Syrians and Lebanese. Only
          for political and tactical reasons do we speak today about the existence
          of a Palestinian people, since Arab national interests demand that we
          posit the existence of a distinct Palestinian people to oppose Zionism.
          For tactical reasons, Jordan, which is a sovereign state with defined
          borders, cannot raise claims to Haifa and Jaffa, while as a Palestinian,
          I can undoubtedly demand Haifa, Jaffa, Beer-Sheva and Jerusalem.
          However, the moment we reclaim our right to all of Palestine, we will
          not wait even a minute to unite Palestine and Jordan.”
          – Zahir Muhsein, a leader in the PLO, in an interview with the Dutch newspaper Trouw, March 31, 1977

        • maninnina

          It doesn’t matter how Eddie feels… or how he decides to identify these people but what is important is that what he said about Arafat and Abbas nationalities was absolutely right.

          Arafat was Egyptian and Abbas Syrian and one more thing: Sharon was Palestinian because when he was born that was the known name for the Ancient Israel, under the entire British Mandate taken over the Ottoman Empire of “Palestine”.

          Is not an issue the religion but the national and historical rights. So Eddie is right and you seems to be wrong yes boludo.

          Palestine was named by roman emperor Tito? Claudio? after his conquest of Judea and Samaria (I believe around year 70 a.d.e) He destroyed the entire Israel Kingdom but even banned the name of Israel, and the Jews were one more time killed, robbed or enslaved. It was quite offensive to call them as Palestine= Philistine; it was like to say or call “pirates”…
          So boludo, it seems you have a limited mind, quite false ideas and many prejudges. But history can be learned, maybe you have the time at least to learn the basics. Maybe from Eddie.

          • New Class Traitor

            It was named by Roman emperor Hadrian (yes, he of Hadrian’s Wall) after the failed Bar-Kochba insurgence (132-135 CE). And yes, it was named after the Pelishtim/Philistines. He also renamed Jerusalem “Aelia Capitolina”.
            Note by the way that, during the British Mandate, it was called (on coins etc.) Palestine in English, Falastin in Arabic (which doesn’t have a “p” sound), but… Eretz Israel (the Land of Israel) in Hebrew.

            • OritAharon Elgavi

              Dear New Class Traitor, I sincerely hope you dont think that the Philistines are the same as the present day Palestinians? Please read up on some history before embarrassing yourself in public.

              • OritAharon Elgavi

                I see now you may have meant otherwise. If so, please accept my sincerest apologies. Just this equation Philistines = Palestinians gets me very annoyed. The area was called Palestine as a biblical reference to one of the tribes who once lived there, ALL indigenous populace (Arabs AND Jews) were then called “Palestinians”, (I should know, my father is a Palestinian and he has the British papers to prove it) and subsequently only Arabs started calling themselves that. So the similarity in name is completely spurious.

    • anotherjoeblogs

      the ‘ west bank ‘ i think it is the west bank of jordan, innit ? never the east bank always the west bank

      • HCollins

        It’s called the ‘west bank’ because that was the Jordanian name for it during their illegal occupation of the territory between 1948 and 1967. Obviously the name makes sense from their point of view to distinguish it from their original (and present) territory on the east bank.
        The name ‘west bank’ never had any other historical basis, and didn’t exist before 1948. These areas are the historic Judea and Samaria.

    • Jeremy Poynton

      Hitlerish and their salute is a Sieg Heil salute.

    • Safdar Shah

      “Israel should fix borders to 1967 ones”
      If they built their wall along this border the Palestinians would help them ! Palestinians have just got recognition as a state from the UN on these borders. The problem in the last few decades is that Israel keeps colonising more and more Palestinian land and refuses to stop. They have settled 600,000 Israelis in the West Bank and control 62% of the West Bank. Do you see how that poses a problem for the Palestinians who live there and are being bulldozed out of their homes and off their land ?

  • AY

    and the thick smell of troll guano raises up to the sky from this thread…

  • novoludo

    This strangely hysterical piece assumes that there is no history. That two peaceful countries, Israel and Palestine, woke up side by side yesterday and one of them, without any provocation, started to attack the other.

    Of course Murray knows this is an utter travesty. There is only one country, Israel, and this country, supported in effect unconditionally by the most powerful country in the world, has been dominating and oppressing the other, Palestine, for two generations.

    Palestine, and Hamas, has every right to fight back in this situation, just as black South Africans did against apartheid. Israel needs to stop 60 years of aggression and only then can the situation improve.

    • T. Botham

      Whose history have you been concussed with? There is no country of Palestine. The PLO/PA and Hamas represent an entirely concocted Arab nationalism and exist to eliminate the Zionist state. The PLO was backed by the USSR and Hamas is Islamist, offspring of the Muslim Brotherhood. There is no Arab state which does not oppress and dominate its people, with particular hardships meted out to their brethren exiled in war from within the boundaries of israel. Once again, there is NO right of resistance in international law. They fight Israel because they hate it. The analogy to blacks in apartheid South Africans fails, as it is the Arabs who are supremacist and genocidal.

      • Informed Citizen

        Your insistence on focusing on the “name” of the disputed land is ultimately what drives your argument into the ground. Palestine has been called Israel, the Levant, the Holy Land, etc since the beginning of human civilization in the area. However, what people tend to forget is that the Jewish people were just another small Semitic tribe that originated in Judea. The Jews and Arabs of the region existed peacefully for thousands of years, despite being conquered by the Romans, Christian, Islamic and Ottoman forces. It wasn’t until the West carved up the land and decided that Israel be given a disproportionate amount of it, along with all the good fertile land, that it became a problem.

        Both are responsible for committing horrible war crimes. But by the numbers, Israeli’s have just ended up killing a lot more. Why isn’t Israel a proponent of a two-state solution? What could they lose from that?

        Also, you mention that Hamas is an offspring of the Muslim Brotherhood; well Israel is also the product of an equally, ultra-religious movement called Zionism as well. Both of their justifications are equally idiotic, since religion has no place in the 21st century.

        Lastly, I’m an American who is currently living in Oman. No one here is oppressed or dominated. No one here in the UAE is oppressed or dominated. No one in Qatar is oppressed or dominated. No one in Kuwait is oppressed or dominated.

        And for the countries that do have autocracies, you can blame the West for that. We propped up Bin Laden and Saddam Hussain. We helped overthrow the Iranian Shah. We gave weapons to Iran (Iran-Contra). The reason why there are ethnic disputes, like that of the Kurds in Iraq, is because the West arbitrarily drew lines on a map, putting people who barely had any contact with one another within the border of a new-found nation.

        Instead of blaming the Palestinians or the Israelis, we should be blaming ourselves. We caused this problem, and ultimately, we have the power to solve it as well.

        • AY

          you are “not oppressed” in UAE/Qatar/Kuwait/Oman because you follow their rules, agreeing to trade your freedoms in return for oil money.

          do they allow Bibles openly on display?
          do they allow building Christian churches or synagogues?
          is there freedoms for gays?
          do they allow Jews to enter UAE?
          oh in your world obviously, discriminating Jews isn’t oppression.

          • novoludo

            Do these other countries occupy their neighbours? Force them into bantustans? And bomb them when they resist? I think you will find not. On some dimensions Israel is certainly preferable to eg Kuwait and Oman. On others, it is clearly much worse. A lot of people on here seem to think that just because Israel is a ‘democracy’ (actually arguable) it is therefore somehow allowed to assault and oppress and occupy its neighbours. It isn’t.

            • Augustus

              Egypt – 1,001,449
              Jordan – 97,740
              Syria – 185,180
              Iraq – 434,934
              Iran – 1,648,000
              Saudi Arabia – 2,149,690
              ISRAEL – 20,770 (only Lebanon is smaller)
              So whose forcing whom?

              • novoludo

                You rather forgot one Augustus:

                Palestinian State – 0

                How did you do that I wonder?

                Actually I know. So many arguments on this thread are based on the premise that there is no such people as the Palestinians and they are ‘just Arabs’ and should go and live in some ‘other Arab country’. They do not exist, they can be treated accordingly, including being in various ways eradicated, including killed. This explains the murderous illegality that Israel is perpetrating at the moment, and which is likely to escalate with an illegal invasion in the next days.

                It happens not to be true that the Palestininans do not exist. Not least because the Palestinians themselves self-identify and do not believe this.

                They exist now. They will continue to exist. Unless you try to literally exterminate them (which seems tempting to many of you), they will continue to exist.

                So your post is completely irrelevant and worthless – apart from revealing that your understanding of the basic situation in the Middle East is absolutely zero.

      • novoludo

        Indeed, there is no country of Palestine. That just might be the problem!

        (By the way, you come across as a rabid, angry, absolutist, extreme, frothing at the mouth fanatic. You might want to think about that, and how fanatics like you are not exactly helping here.)

        • Eddie

          Fanatic? Like you perhaps – a fanatical supporter to terrorism and violence if it’s done against Jews by brown-skinned Muslims.
          You are just like those leftie appeasers who defended Hitler and the Nazis in the 30s, making excuses for their behaviour because of perceived past wrongs done against them.
          And why are you so obsessed with supporting Muslim terrorists who fly missiles into a democractic state? Shouldn’t all right-thinking people be against all dictatorships – such as China, Buba, Venesuela, and every Muslims country in the world… Why always attack the ONLY democracy in the Middle East – which just happens to be the only one with a majority Jewish population?
          We know why, don’t we?

          • novoludo

            So we now we play the “you are an anti-semite and so I can just dismiss your views” card. And then the “you are like appeasers of Hitler” card. How infantile and pathetic. You should be ashamed of yourself.

            If you actually read what I said you would see that I was pointing out that there could no solution without Israel granting the Palestinians a proper space and identity to exist alongside Israel. And that is not consistent with continuing to cage and oppress the Palestinians.

            You can froth at the mouth and rant like a child all you like. The Palestinians are not going anywhere, however much you want them to. They are not simply ‘Arabs”, any more than English people might be ‘anglo-saxons’ or some such thing. The Palestinians will need to be given land without political, military and economic domination on the West Bank and Gaza. Illegal settlements will have to be removed. And until that happens, the Palestinians will continue to resist their oppressors. So you better stop ranting and get used to it. The rockets will continue to fly.

            Your frothing about “being a democracy” is misguided on two counts. First of all, being a democracy in your own territory does not entitle you to occupy and oppress other people in theirs. Secondly, it is very much in question whether Israel given its actions for decades can seriously be considered a democracy at all, certainly without significant qualification.

            Germany wasn’t much of a democracy when it occupied Poland. The UK would not be much of a democracy if it occupied Normandy. South Africa wasn’t much of a democracy when it created batustans..

  • vix

    Noam Chomsky talks of the brilliancy of limiting a debate to narrow bounds but allowing animated discussion within those bounds. It makes people feel they have had their say and they lose sight of the broader context. It is what modern democracy and debate is becoming and it is what you have just demonstrated.
    Still, this is a blog rather a feature, so perhaps that’s why you want to wind up ‘defenders of Hamas’ and monitor vitriolic comments on both sides during your Sunday. Enjoy your coffee. People are dying.

    • AY

      discussion is about right and wrong.
      basically the questions are – who is right,
      – the one who throws rockets indiscriminately into neighbouring state,
      – or the one who fights back trying to stop it.

      can you answer?

      • Informed Citizen

        Guess what, you’re an American who is living in the grand state of Minnesota. All of a sudden, the Canadians invade the land, claiming that in the “Holy Book of Canada”, written in 1670, it states that Minnesota was and always will be the “Chosen Land” for the Canadian people. A mass exodus ensues, and most of the people once living in the Minneapolis area are expelled. These Minnesotans, who have family, cultural ties, etc to their state decide to bombard the city of Minneapolis with whatever weapons they can get their hands on. Five people are killed. In turn, the Canadian people fire missiles indiscriminately into the camps of Minnesotan refugees, killing 25.

        In a different context, sounds absurd right? If Canada decided to annex one of our northern states and then played the VICTIM when the US Army/or state militia tried to retaliate?

        • AY

          so how far do you want to roll back history?
          do you want to give Alsace and part of Eastern Prussia back to Poland? Kuril islands back to Japan?

          do you want to remove all arabs from middle east and send them back to saudi arabia?
          or you want to send all white (and black) people back from Americas to where they’ve come from?
          or you want to send all homo sapiens back to Africa?
          sorry man, this is logics of an idiot.

          israel is internationally recognized state.
          it isn’t recognized by hamas but it is hamas’s problem.

          • AY

            sorry – “back to Germany” instead Poland, but you got the point.

        • Cayce Pollard

          Your moronic sixth-form analogy would only work if the native Canadians had all been kicked out of Minnesota hundreds of years before, if someone had just killed half of all the Canadians in the world, and if the Canadians living elsewhere are subject to unthinking bigotry and hatred. And if the United Stations had divided Minnesota in two to give the returning Canadians somewhere to live. Oh, and if no-one had been expelled but had been encouraged to leave by nutters hoping to kill all the Canadians.

          And even then, so what?

          I don’t accept the legitimacy of William the Bastard’s claim to the English throne in 1066. So by your “logic” I should be entitled to fire rockets into Buckingham Palace and expect the Guardianistas to rush to form a defensive shield when the army show up? Exactly what is it that you are informed about, citizen, because it’s clearly not history, geography, politics or current affairs?

          We are where we are. We (the West) encourage a peaceful two-state solution or we just give up. You think the theocratic fascists of the Caliphate will leave you alone if you feed Israel to their crocodile? Dream on. Even Osama only had Israel fourth on his list – first was the “tragedy of Andulucia” remember? Are you going to give them Spain and Portugal in return for a temporary ceasefire?

          P.S. None of the surrounding Arab states could care less about the Palestinians. They are nothing more than an expendable, bloody stick to beat the west with.

          • LegalBeagle


          • novoludo

            What we all know is that two peoples want the same land. And both in their differing ways have various claims on it.

            At the moment one of those peoples has complete dominance over this land. And systematically punishes the other people when they object to this state of affairs and resist.

            This is where we are. Until the Israelis share the land and stop the two generations of domination, this is where we will remain.

            People locked in cages don’t generally stay quiet.

            • Baron

              novoludo, those who similarly urge the Israelis to make a deal, ‘share the land’ you lovely, trusting people, you’ll have made a deal with Adolf, too, right? Neville did, as did Stalin, you recall what happened after? You cannot bargain, deal with a lying, deceiving thug any more you can bargain, deal with a lying, deceiving bunch of thugs.

              The conflict will never get solved, truly solved, until and unless the Palestinians have a genuinely free society in which diverse opinion are allowed to exist without fear, elections take place regularly, political disputes don’t get solved by hacking off opponents’ heads.

              Israel may and does behave badly, kills many, lies, too, but it’s a democracy, the system that has mechanisms to catch those who break the rules, not all, but enough. The other construct just stinks.

              Keep that in mind, novoludo, and please, avoid coming back at Baron exalting the virtues of democracy Hamas style.

              • novoludo

                First of all, nowhere at all do I “exalt the virtues of democracy Hamas style”. I just keep pointing out that the Palestinians define themselves as a group and will not go away or give up or be in practice eradicated by Israel. So Israel will have to deal with them by other means than denial, occupation and oppression.

                You convict yourself Baron. If you really believe that you are dealing with “lying, deceiving thugs” who simply cannot be dealt with at all – well, then of course there is no hope at all, and you will continue to be hit by rockets. Your comments (“hacking off people’s heads” etc.) are very unfortunate, and I really am sorry to say, betray that you have largely written an entire group of people off as essentially inferior human beings.

                You will reap what you sow. The rockets will continue to fall, better get used to it. Israel will of course ‘win’ the bloody fight, continuing to murder more than it has murdered, as long as the US continues to support it. But you will never secure peace. Peace cannot be based on one group dominating another indefinitely. It never has, it never will. You would think from the honourable struggle in Jewish history that you might have grasped this truth.

                • Baron

                  novoludo, Baron has always differentiated between the leadership, Hamas, Fatah, and the Palestinian hoi polloi, always will. The thugs are the opportunists who have hijacked the understandable aspirations of the latter for a place under the sun, they should go, they’re the problem.

            • Trofim

              “People locked in cages don’t generally stay quiet”.
              I just read that the Gaza strip comes 7th in the world in terms of population increase. You’d think that if you live in a cage you’d be a little more careful about adding to the overcrowding. Still, I suppose that Palestinian gene probably makes them allergic to rubber.

              • novoludo

                If you are Jewish I am really surprised that you are advocating Nazi eugenics for the Palestinians. You have no shame and you are a disgrace.

          • Baron

            Cayce Pollard, hat off to you, well said, sir. If the Arab brothers of the Palestinians had wanted genuinely to solve the conflict they could have done so easily, still can do so, but they, their Western pseudo-liberal backers, need the victimhood to continue, to get more unbearable, to twist the truth.

            • novoludo

              How would their Arab brothers solve the problem precisely? The Palestinians want to live on the West Bank and Gaza. How will the Arab brothers bring that about when Israel is occupying these lands?

              • Baron

                Here is what we do, we stop all aid to the thugs, then stick with it, ignore the screams of the the two dozen or so Guardian readers, the bleating of the ‘international community’, the wailing of the ‘blame-the-Zionists’ crowd.

                Will the aching Palestinian unwashed get hurt? Yup, but then, there has never been a gain without pain. In 1945, The Yanks dropped two nuclear bombs over Japan, killed a quarter million Japanese, mostly hoi polloi, within days Japan surrendered, has been an invaluable member of the world community ever since. The Yanks failed to discharge any nuclear devices over North Korea few years later, since when the totalitarian puppet regime has killed millions of its own, may add to the total offshore, if it goes berserk, launches a nuclear attack on its neighbors.

                But worry not, my blogging friend, In the Middle East, we’ll follow the Korean solution, it suits everyone except of course, the suffering ordinary peoples of the region, Arabs, Jews, Muslims alike.

                • novoludo

                  Your bloodthirsty taste for violence, and clear desire to exterminate Arabs, is indeed impressive. Shame we can’t use nuclear weapons on them, like with the “Japanese hoi polloi”, eh? You must be a Romney 47%er or a Tory pleb hater – do these people really have lives we should care about? Well, not according to you. No pain no gain. Could we kill you first and your family? Perhaps you might sing a different tune then. But – no pain no gain, eh?

                  You people make me vomit, you are beneath vermin.

                • Baron

                  novoludo, sir, withholding aid is hardly nuking people.

                  Why do you have to twist people’s argument? Why cannot you simply admit defeat, learn from it?

                • Baron

                  and this

                  novoludo, not that it matters to someone whose cranium’s vacuous of a chunk of grey matter found in normal people, called the brain, but if you kill Baron, he is hardly to feel anything, he’ll be dead, you know, no breathing, no pulse, no nothing.

                • novoludo

                  Casually talking about killing hundreds of thousands of people you happen not to like, all Arabs in this case, is I think correctly defined as “racial bloodlust”.

                  It is astonishing that someone supporting Israel, given its history, should support such extermination. It is shocking and depressing. But it of course explains a great deal as to why we are in the desperate situation we are in the Middle East.

                  I am tired of arguing with bloodthirsty racists and fascists on here, so I will leave you to your collective cesspit. Thank God there are very many decent people in Israel, very many, who do not share your disgusting views.

                • Baron

                  novoludo, before you leave Baron to rot in his cesspit, have a look around, see any men in white coats?

                  No? Well, you in the wrong place, sir.

                • vix

                  Voice of sanity in the wilderness, novoludo. Unfortunately Douglas Murray will be laughing over his coffee all day Sunday. It’s not journalism his piece and we have to hope that those who offer their racist views here are never actually given any real or important buttons to push.

              • enrico

                How is Israel occupying Gaza when it left there and dismantled all its territories? You could at least try and get your facts right rather than arguing through emotions only

                • novoludo

                  Enrico, read any news recently? Seen any TV? Somewhere out of reach of internet or newspapers?

                  If you think Israel is not in effect occupying Gaza you must be on Mars.

                  Suggest you join the real world in which Israel has been bombing the shit out of Gaza (again) and has killed more Palestinian children in the past week than the Palestinians have killed Israeli children in the past decade.

                • OritAharon Elgavi

                  Yes, Israel closed the border of Gaza! Of course, that border would also be a border of Israel, the countries being in fact neighbours. So what you’re saying is that Israel has no right to close its own borders?

          • roger

            What about a ‘one-state, keep your religion to yourself ‘ solution.

    • Curnonsky

      Chomsky was revealing his tactic when the discussion turned to the bloodthirsty, barbaric nature of his pet causes (being anyone who hated the US or Europe): divert attention away from the stomach-turning facts to nebulous “larger issues” and “broader context”. Hamas defenders take note.

    • Cody

      Noam Chomsky is a propagandist fool whose idea of “debate” revolves around constant obfuscation, revisionism and goalpost moving.

      Chomsky never met a fanatical Islamic sect nor genocidal Communist regime he didn’t love.

  • spurs 78

    Ask yourself why Hamas (unfortunately) exists in the first place. If someone took your land and all diplomatic efforts had failed between you and the oppressor, you would probably resort to the same thing. Also, Israeli civilians are victims because Hamas don’t have the military technology Israel have. I’m not an apologist for Hamas but you just perpetuate the “look what they’re doing now” argument, rather than the needed “look why they are doing it”

    • Eddie

      Took ‘your’ land? But it’s not their land. Israel was created for very good reason as Jewish homeland – one that has 10% Arabs – the judge who presided over the trial of a former PM for rape was an Arab FFS!
      Palestine has never existed as a country – and the people there are in fact usually Syrian or from other Arab countries.
      Why all the focus on Israel anyway? Why not on the Arabs who stole others’ land and expelled the Jews?
      Yes, you are an apologist for Hamas actually – why not symathise with the Nazis too eh (well their economy was bad and they were humiliated in WWI, so we really have to try and understand them and blame the Jews from bringing the Holocaust on themselves eh?). An appeaser just like the rest – it matters not that the Arabs have fewer weapons and and not as good at fighting. It does matter that they are firing rockets into Israel and using civilians as human shields.
      Time to evacuate Gaza completely and for the place to be taken back by Israel – the Arabs have plenty of places to go. The Jews do not – because of the slightly inconvenient fact that all the surrounding Muslim countries would kill them.

      • novoludo

        I guess you can keep denying for ever that the Palestinians are a self-identifying and geographically specific ethnic group. You can keep saying for decades, until you are blue in the face: “they are all just ARABS aren’t they?”

        But it still won’t make it true. And it won’t make Palestinians believe it. And it won’t make the Palestinians go away.

        How many more decades do we have to live before you will finally accept that the Palestinians actually exist?

        Until then, there will be no peace, and the rockets will sadly continue to fly in both directions.

        • Eddie

          The Palestinians are not an ethnic group at all, and there is no such place as ‘Palestine’ – it existed under the British for a short time, that’s it!

          YOu can keep on denying that the Islamofascist anti-semitic terrorists you suppport want peace and would be able to tolerate and accept Israel and Jews – but we all know that to be an utter lie.

          If these Hamas terrorists and fascists were white and non-religious, would you support them?
          If terrorist flew rockets from a neighbouring country into the UK which killed people, would you side with the aggressors?

          And why is it that lefties always make such a big fuss about what a democracy does in the Middle East in response to terrorists flying rockets into their country – and yet says nothing about the facist Muslim states abusing people day in day out elsehere in that region? Oh yeah – Israel is full of jews…. Now we know why…

          • novoludo

            Look, if a group of people like the Palestinians define themselves as a group with an identity and a homeland – and live under severe oppression for decades in pursuing their identity – who on earth are you to be so utterly arrogant as to say “no, you are not really a group at all, sorry, please go away”? That you as Jews have decided that the Palestinians simply do not exist, and are just Arabs who should go and live somewhere else. It’s breathtaking.

            How would you react if I said, “whatever Jews say, I don’t think they are really a group and they should just live as Germans or Poles or Russians or whatever”? Quite properly you would be outraged. But that is your attitude to the Palestinians!

            Anyway, however you froth and rant, the Palestinians are not going anywhere. They will still be there, denying and resisting your decision to eradicate their identity and to erase them from history. You really had better get used to it. Otherwise sadly the rockets will simply continue to fly.

            • novoludo

              And the oft-repeated idea that the Palestinians are “the aggressors” always makes the rest of the world laugh in utter incredulity.

              So a bunch of people living in military and economic lockdown, in extreme conditions of poverty, with illegal settlements on their land – they are “the aggressors” against a country backed for decades by the world’s great superpower? You make the rest of the world think you are bonkers when you talk like this, and you lose all sympathy.

              Like Britons were “the aggressors” against their Roman occupiers, right?

              I have travelled from Tel Aviv, a wonderful city where I have many friends, onto the West Bank. These are completely two different worlds, two shockingly different worlds. The idea that the residents of the latter, in their extreme poverty and in their divided lives with Israeli solders all around them,, are aggressors against the residents of the former – it is utterly absurd. You just sound ridiculous.

              • Baron

                so, novoludo, how about combining the Tel Aviv and the West Bank under the governance of the place you think is wonderful. Could that be a solution to the extreme poverty of the West Bank’s inhabitants?

                • novoludo

                  First of all, why should the Palestinians be ruled against their will from Tel Aviv? They are not Israelis.

                  Secondly, there are rather easier ways of improving the economic situation of the West Bank. Like not illegally occupying it, keeping it under military lockdown, dividing it into disconnected nonviable Bantustans, and systematically undermining its governments and public services.

                  Do you actually know anything at all about the West Bank Baron? Have you ever actually been? I have. I know people who live there.

                • Baron

                  novoludo, nope, Baron has never been to the West Bank, it’s now around 10 years ago (the anointed leader Arafat still in charge) when Baron met three Palestinians from the West Bank, all three expressed, privately, the preference for living under the Israeli rule, also said that many other Palestinians would prefer the same rather than what they had.

                  You reckon they lied?

                • maninnina

                  You continue the nonsense… Palestinian have a life on the east of Jordan River… not in the West. Stop with the stupidity. Israel must kill all the Hamas terrorist. No doubt about it. I hope Israel takes in charge Gaza and stay there until children have good normal programs of study in their schools. They have converted their kids in sociopaths killers, when I see these parents destroying their young, is so sickening. We must put to an end this lost part of humanity,it is simply monstrosity from those adults who do not expect happiness in their childs life. They kill also their own child; they have no future, they chose to be nonviable. This time Israel must stay and make their minds a better place for love and hope. Otherwise we will never reach a true peaceful society. Maybe ten years twenty it doesn’t matters… put an end on this hell culture.

              • Cody

                “And the oft-repeated idea that the Palestinians are “the aggressors” always makes the rest of the world laugh in utter incredulity.”

                Your own sollipsistic apologism does not speak for the rest of the world.

                • novoludo

                  Actually Cody it largely does. Outside the United States it is very hard to find people who do not believe that Israel is largely the aggressor in this dispute. Let’s leave aside whether this is fair or not. But it is a simple fact that the vast majority of the world believes Israel is the prime aggressor.

                  The Unites States and the United Kingdom are basically the only governments in the world who more or less unconditionally support Israel (and in both these cases even that is generally to the discomfort of the State Department and the Foreign Office respectively).

        • Trofim

          Palestinians an “ethnic group”!? You mean there is a Palestinian gene, and that blood from a Palestinian and an Egyptian shows a specifiic Palestinian DNA? Jesus Christ almighty. The things people are willing to believe. Surely Palestinians are distinguishable primarily because they wear tea towels round their necks. Genetic tea towels, of course.

          • novoludo

            You are a disgraceful racist and you should be ashamed of yourself. Others on this thread I disagree with, but they make arguments one can understand and, despite the emotionality of this issue, respect. You are beneath contempt and should be ashamed of yourself.

            • AY

              what a tosh. Trofim is correct – look for the definition of “ethnicity”.
              it is as definite as sex differences.
              so, if you identify yourself as male or female – “you are beneath contempt and should be ashamed of yourself.”?

              pity you.

              • novoludo

                Shameful that you are supporting Trofim in his disgusting anti-Arab racism (do you think comments about “tea towels” are appropriate?).. It’s when one strays into blogs like this, populated by bloodthirsty racists, that one realises why the rockets are flying both ways right now in the Middle East. I leave you to swirl in your collective cesspit.

                • Trofim

                  You’ve got to be a member of the religion of peace. No sense of humour, hypersensitive, irrational. Say no more. But they do wear tea towels round their neck, like we’ve got in our kitchen – I’ve seen them on the telly. Hang on, are you sure arabs are a race?

                • novoludo

                  Have you always been an Arab hating racist Trofim?

                • AY

                  this is cheap. nobody will read your posts after that. you need to bring arguments.

                • novoludo

                  Fair enough on this one. Trofim is a disgraceful anti- Arab racist (I’m sorry, this is just describing his posts). But my comment was cheap and anyway useless against such a person.

                • AY

                  you seem very politically active but impatient and intellectually unprepared. please try to understand – collective “arabs” (meaning pro-hamas etc.) are not respected here by Trofim and many others, not because who they are but becasue what they do.

                  and “arabs” are not separate race but separate “ethnos”, “ethnicity”.
                  corresponding term is not “racist” but “xenophobe”.

            • Cody

              You keep screeching this at anybody who runs circles around you, yet the fact remains that you yourself are the one most forthright in sowing racism and cheerleading for wanton violence.

              • novoludo

                Find the place where I have cheerled for violence Cody. Where is it? It will be easy to find places on this thread where people have cheerfully endorsed violence against Arabs.

                I am pointing out that if Israel continues on its current course it will face disaster. I would much rather there were more moderate Palestinians to deal with than Hamas, but you reap what you sow. Rabin did not have to deal with Hamas and Bibi does – I wonder why? Try thinking Cody, even if it is unfamiliar to you.

    • T. Botham

      Why does Hamas exist in the first place? Hamas is an Islamist organization constituted to eliminate Israel because it is the Jewish state. They send rockets to kill Jews, because removing Jews from the land is what they exist to do. That is why they do it. They are not empowered to make peace. Peace with Zionists is beyond the scope of, and directly contradictory to, their constitutional powers. Diplomacy consists entirely of offering a hudna from time to time, for varying lengths of time, always broken by Israel’s retaliating to an attack. Hamas uses the technology they have. Their rockets and bombs kill Israeli civilians. If Hamas had more efficient technology, more Israeli civilians would be their victims. Hamas makes no distinction between Jewish military and civilians. The view their own civilians as means to an end.

      You are an apologist for Hamas, a useful idiot, deaf to what they say quite openly, unequivocally, loudly, proudly, and insistently (to the embarrassment of their western PR spokespeople) about their existential purpose, which is… to eliminate the Jewish nation.

  • Ste

    Am I allowed to support the Palestinians, but not like Hamas? Is that a thing?

    • AY

      you as anyone else, are allowed to think for yourself.
      you can support peaceful, democratic, secular, independent Palestine.
      or you can support genocide-crazy, clerical fascist ruled terror base sucking weapons and money from iranian mullas and global jihadis.

      but don’t forget it isn’t just about Israel.
      in the end everyone will need to make such choice here at home,

    • Eddie

      What, like hating paedophiles but having a soft spot for Jimmy Savile, Ian Huntley and Myra Hindley.
      Probably not, mate. Y’know…

  • Madame Merle

    This is Hamas trying on its “spring” outfit for size and to see if it meets with the approval of the brotherhood.

  • tom smith

    Funny article…half of me feels it was written by a fifth column for Palestine.

    • Rahul Kamath

      You maybe giving Douglas Murray a bit too much credit for ingenuity there!

  • Radiance Strathdee

    Breathtaking ignorance even for a so called journalist. Fake tears for a dead child? Israel defies the rule of law with impunity.That is how monsters are made

    • AY

      and how do you define “law” for Israel?
      to remain sitting duck under fire in your own home?

      ask any israeli about civilian casualties on the other side and get the answer that it is regrettable and that is what IDF tries to avoid.

      ask any muslim palestinian there about Israeli civilian casualties and get the answer that they got what they asked for, that it is result of “occupation”, that all Israelis including toddlers are enemies because they 1) serve or served or will serve in the army, 2) dare to defend themselves 3) pay taxes 4) have their own state 5) exist at all.

      • novoludo

        So Israelis are a lot more hypocritical than Arabs. They have been murdering Palestinians for two generations and it is still “regrettable”. Perhaps they could start doing less killing – to be truthful, Palestinian families with dead children don’t care much whether Israelis regret or not. That is Israeli emotional indulgence, distastefully flaunting their finer feelings, no more no less. To keep killing and then seek the moral credit of being regretful – truly a fine trick in the eyes of the world! It doesn’t really work though, does it?

        • AY

          there is no much emphasis on “regret”.

          this is an atempted “destruction of Israel” in action.

          it might go wrong, there is no guarantee of success.

          don’t like it – don’t try it.

          if you want your children to stay alive –

          1) don’t elect idiots who start wars

          2) don’t listen preachers who promise that your children will be martyrs.
          3) don’t put children under fire – this is your responsibility.

  • bluesshakeout

    Erm…Israel does not believe that the state of Palestine should exist.

    • AY

      ever heard about Oslo agreements genius?

      ever heard about Israel’s acceptance of independent demilitarized Palestine, living in peace with Israel within mutually agreed, internationally recognized borders?

    • T. Botham

      What’s the “erm” for? After all this time, Israel should not believe in a state of Palestine, and should annex the West Bank. Israel made a gross error in negotiating land for peace. To establish a hostile Arab state on that land would be very, very dumb.

      • novoludo

        And the current approach of corralling the Palestinians, bombing them when they object, and hoping one day they will become peaceful – how is that working do you think Mr Botham? Just one more push eh (annex the West Bank), and somehow everything will settle down?

        You make the same mistake as every authoritarian in history. That somehow a group of people you don’t like can be bludgeoned into accepting your domination. It has never happened and it never will. I guess you could try to systematically exterminate them, but short of that (and I am assuming you would not advocate that for the Palestinians), permanent oppression has never worked.

        • Cody

          “bombing them when they object”

          If by “object”, you mean “indiscriminately fire rockets into civilian areas and suicide bomb schoolchildren”.

          Which, given that you’re a slavvering, bloodthirsty racist who believes in fanatical violence as an end, I’d say it’s highly likely that you do.

          • novoludo

            I think you will find that all statistics show that the Israelis have killed very many more innocent Palestinians than the Palestinians have killed innocent Israelis. You might want to stay somewhere close to reality in your comments.

            Added to which the Palestinians are not illegally occupying Israeli territory are they? There is a bit of a difference.

  • Austin Barry

    Israel is the West’s canary in the coal mine, the frontline redoubt of Judeo-Christian values. Surrounded by barbarians who call for its destruction, Israel’s response is measured yet robust. Wouldn’t we do the same? Or are our elites overly concerned with the creeping demography of those who wish Israel and ourselves dead ?

    • David Lindsay

      There is no such thing as “Judeo-Christian”.

      Thus, by “Medieval”, Netanyahu means the recapitulation in Jesus Christ and His Church of all three of the Old Israel, Hellenism and the Roman Empire, as manifested by the ancient indigenous Christians who still call themselves “Rûm” (as in fact the Qur’an addresses them), or who continue to worship in Aramaic, or who alone retain any aspects of the Hellenistic synagogue ritual.

      Only that recapitulation made possible the emergence of modern science, while those Rûm founded both Arab nationalism and the whole concept of modern Filastin at American Protestant missionary universities. They led the latter, in particular, almost exclusively until 1973.

      Whereas by “Modern”, Netanyahu means an unresolved Messianic hope and expectation as issuing in all sorts of earthly utopianisms: Freudian, Marxist (and then Trotskyist, and then Shachtmanite), monetarist, Zionist, Straussian, neoconservative by reference to all of these, and so forth.

      Those are all also expressions of the repudiation of Original Sin, Christianity’s great bulwark against the rationally and empirically falsifiable notions of inevitable historical progress and of the perfectibility of human nature in this life alone and by human efforts alone.

      Netanyahu heads a coalition in which one party believes that Gentiles were created as beasts of burden while the Biblical Hebrew word for a human being only ever means a Jew, with human rights as a Christian invention (which it is – in Netanyahu’s terms, not to say objectively, it is Medieval) and irrelevant to Jews. Is that his definition of Modernity?

      I know which side I am on.

      How about you?

      • Baron

        David, you on your own, unique side, my blogging friend, there cannot possible be a side to this dispute that would accommodate you.

      • Austin Barry

        Lindsay, I afraid your argument is lost in prolixity, obscurity, tortuous intellectual posturing and just plain bad writing.

        Check out Orwell’s ‘Politics and the English Language’.

      • Stu

        David, would love to hear which Biblical Hebrew word for a human being only ever means a Jew. Please share!

      • Trofim

        Watcha talking about cock?

      • Roger the Dodger

        usual cod-intellectual rubbish from Lindsay.

      • Hexhamgeezer

        Lindsay, you are a tit. And no, I didn’t need to look that one up.

    • Daniel Maris

      Sadly maybe it is the canary. I don’t see much hope for Israel long term – a tiny territory surrounded by 500 million determined Jew-haters. There won’t be an Armageddon, there will be a slow throttle hold…leading to millions of Israelis exiting the country, including all those American and Mancunian religious nut jobs who do so much harm on the West Bank. The only thing that might save the Israelis is robot war, as they are well advanced in robot technology and it could compensate for their small numbers.