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RE: [existlist] Re: A Real Life Application? The Media's Role

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  • Eduard Alf
    james, I think it is a stretch to put this in terms of Nazi killings or even of the American revolution. I think a balanced review of the mid-east situation
    Message 1 of 16 , Apr 3, 2002
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      james,

      I think it is a stretch to put this in terms of Nazi killings or even of the
      American revolution. I think a balanced review of the mid-east situation
      would reveal that the Palestinians are being used ... just as they were in
      the 1948 war. The objective of the surrounding countries in the Arab world
      is to see the destruction of Israel and one would have to naive to think
      that the Americans would not stand by and let this happen. But how are the
      Arab leaders dealing with this situation? They don't want the Palestinians
      in their own countries and the best they are doing is providing resources
      for more terrorism. Granted, one might argue that the US is doing the same
      for Israel, but the support for the US in this regard is divided. What has
      Syria, Iraq, Iran, etc. done to provide some constructive support. They
      cant even stay away from fighting each other or their own peoples.

      This is a really sorry situation and it is going to take some statesman to
      come forward to develop a new track. Unfortunately, I don't see this in any
      of the present leaders. Everyone is simply reacting to short term events.
      It will be very difficult for this statesman to come out of the Arab
      countries as his/her attempt to develop a power base may be seen as an
      internal threat, and would be quickly eliminated. And right now we don't
      have someone like Lester B. Pearson [Suez crisis era] in Canada. It does
      not look good.

      eduard
      -----Original Message-----
      From: james tan [mailto:tyjfk@...]
      Sent: Wednesday, April 03, 2002 10:01 PM
      To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: [existlist] Re: A Real Life Application? The Media's Role



      i see it as a vicious cycle of violence, where violence begets violence.
      1,
      the palestinians are (or feels) oppressed under israeli rulership, much as
      jews felt oppressed under the early days of nazi, in terms of rights, lack
      of autonomy, their own land, and the controversial holy land of jurasalem.
      if american can say, give me freedom or give me death, i don't see why the
      palestinian can't say that too, and everyone of the items listed can be
      perceived as important to the palestinians as freedom is to american. i am
      speaking in terms of american sentiments just to illustrate that there can
      be cultural rift in understanding what land, citizens rights, holy land,
      can
      be to the palestinians, lest some americans feels the palestinians are
      making a big fuss over small things. 2, the rights of the palestinians are
      not respected by the israeli authority, much as the nazi does not see much
      of the jews demand for rights and respect. i suppose there muct have been
      attempts by the palestinian authority to negotiate peacefully through
      politcally correct diplomatic channels. 3, their peaceful attempts
      bascially
      has no effect or results, after years of such attempts. where there is a
      big
      difference in military power, the weaker side basically has no weightage
      in
      what they have to ask. would a nazi consider a jew's request for more
      rights? and just as when hitler's third reich was sending the jews by the
      thousands to the gas chamber daily totally ignored by the international
      community (at least in the early years of ww2), the international
      communities basically ignore the plight of the palestinians. the
      arab/muslim
      countries do sympathize with the palestine, but their sympathy is limited
      to
      just that: emotion; they may be angry, resentful, but no real action is
      taken, esp when america the superpower is seen to be behind israel. 4,
      palestine is basically isolated in her own misery and frustration.
      powerless, isolated, alone, frustrated. 5, in this situation, a
      psycholgical
      question is, how does she cope with her frustration in her situation? one
      must bear in mind that she is totally powerless to fight israel in the
      traditional millitary confrontation, yet she IS very angry and frustrated.
      she resorted to terrorist attacks. it is a sneaky, lowly, hard to detect
      kind of attack, not strong enough to destroy israel, but enough to inflict
      pain and vent frustration to 'compensate' what they perceive the injustice
      they get from israel. but with such a big difference in power between
      israel
      and palestine, it is the only method they could think of. they do not
      think
      the gandi style is going to work with israel, just as it wouldn't work
      with
      the nazis. just as it is violent and immoral to the extent that they hit
      on
      civilians, it is also a measure of their desparation and lack of
      resources.
      they do not wish to be underdog for as long as israel sees fit, though
      they
      themselves know they are the militarily weaker. 6, israel (rather,
      sharon's
      strategy) responded to their terrorist attacks by military occupation.
      they
      sent tanks right into arafat's backyard, holding him hostage in his own
      quarter and house, executing in military style any palestinian they only
      vaguely suspect as potential terrorist; the power to decide life and death
      on the lives of palestinian is solely on the arbitrary discretion of any
      israeli soldiers. just as there are bloods on the hands of the
      palestinians,
      it would be like a ostrich head in the sand to deny there is no blood in
      the
      hand of israeli. 7, the palestinian are incensed, not only at israel's
      aggression, but at their own impotence. but they must still do something.
      8,
      goto 5.

      contrary to chris' contention, i do think news report can be biased. in
      their selection, in their perspective, in their omission, in the words
      they
      choose to describe. if a news report only emphasize the immorality of
      terrorist attacks, omit israeli's hardline policy and their own immoral
      actions against palestinian civilians, select only pieces that support
      their
      own biased perspective thus presenting a patched work representation of
      the
      situation, they CAN influence and distort perception in the readers. and
      readers are the voters in a democratic society. the saving grace in a
      american society is their openness, they have many different newspapers
      and
      tv broadcast each free to express their own views, so that there is a good
      mix, a kind of balance, no monopoly, and it is left to the readers
      themselves to decide. i don't understand what chris meant by saying the
      palestinian has weak argument. what argument? i certainly think they need
      to
      have a independent state of their own, something they can call their own
      so
      that they need not always be in a state of reaction to what they perceive
      as
      israel's unfair treatment. this is the job of the united nations? the
      catch
      is, everytime there is something coming up for that, it is sabotaged by
      some
      sucide bombers. the palestinian need to pray and ask themselves what they
      want realistically. it certainly doesn't help in the peace process, and a
      creation of a palestinian state, to have some suicide bombers killing yet
      more civilians; they need help, and suicide bombers are thwarting the very
      attempt of the helpers to help them. it can be endless if they persist in
      their senseless sucidal attacks. as for all the morality talk prior to
      this,
      i think what really works is not such talks; it is a powerful intervention
      by some united nations or america that will work, just as the state of
      israel was created as retold by swm. i do not see tommy's 'theory'
      proposing
      any practical way out, and such theory do not have practical value, only
      good for a abstract discussion forum like that.

      james.


      From: "Christopher Bobo" <cbobo@...>
      Reply-To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com
      To: "Wisdom Forum" <WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com>
      Subject: Re: [WisdomForum] Re: A Real Life Application? The Media's Role
      Date: Wed, 3 Apr 2002 10:43:56 -0800

      Tommy said:
      >>The media is who we are as various corporate
      entities. It is how internal communication within and between
      corporate entities takes place.<<

      I think much is said of media bias and I also think that for the most part
      people who make this argument against the media are merely trying to
      rationalize the weakness of their own position. They find that people
      don't
      find their arguments persuasive and then they feel, since they believe
      they
      are right, the true cause they are loosing the argument is because the
      media
      is biased. This is the age-old fallacy of blaming the messenger when you
      don't like the message.

      The American media is diverse and strives for objectivity and balance. I
      can't speak for what goes on is Scotland or Europe. Typically, on any
      news
      report or discussion forum on the current conflict in in Israel, we hear
      from both sides. We hear what Sharon has to say, and we hear what Arafat
      has to say. We hear from Hanna Ashawi (sp?) or some other high ranking
      Palestinian figure and then we hear from Netanyahu. Typically, this
      process
      proceeds like a debate or the typical American jury trial.

      The problem with the current situation is that the Palestinians have a
      weak
      argument and they are loosing that argument. Perhaps the reason they are
      loosing is because they are not accustomed to making their case in a
      public
      forum as is required in democracies. Open societies promote a degree of
      rhetorical skill and argumentative skill that is to be sure lacking in
      autocratic systems.

      I think the Palestinians are loosing the argument in the U.S. because (a)
      they try to explain and justify suicide bombing. Yet this is just
      wrong-minded. You are not going to convince anyone with a moral compass
      in
      any kind of working condition that the intentional killing of civilians,
      including children and the elderly is acceptable. It really is to the
      point
      where one wants to say--we don't care what your political grievances are,
      intentionally killing innocent people is not the way to solve them. And
      that really is the problem. Not only are the Palestinians wrong in their
      methods they seem to be trying to deceive us about the true situation.
      First, they say these bombings are not coordinated efforts of any
      authority
      or group the lone acts of frustrated individuals chafing under the boot of
      Israeli occupation. The problem with this argument is that it is patently
      false. Lone frustrated individuals do not have access to high explosives
      and detonators. Some one, and I don't believe it's these young men and
      women who are blowing themselves up, are very skilled at acquiring and
      constructing bombs. That's no something you typically learn in high
      school.
      And these bombs must be expensive. I've never personally bought
      explosives
      or detonators or the materials to package this stuff into a body bomb, but
      I
      can't believe that its cheap. I don't believe people we held in "slavery"
      as the Palestinian spokeswoman said last night, could afford to acquire,
      construct and deploy these bombs.
      There must exist an organized network supplying the materials,
      construction
      and planning for these attacks. A bombing a day is not a series of
      spontaneous acts, it's an organzied conspiracy. And let's be honest, the
      target selection is pretty sophiscated and calculated to cause maximum
      damage and terror.

      These are not spontaneous acts of aggrieved people. So why do the
      Palestinians try to tell us that they are? I think that at least we in
      America may be kind hearted and willing to give people the benefit of the
      doubt, but we are not stupid.

      So, the simple point is. We hear and see what is going on. We see
      Palestinians celebrating suicide terrorists, posting their pictures in
      public places, hanging them on street lights, and praising them. We know
      that the familiies of suicide bombers are given moral and financial
      support
      and that such acts are encouraged rather discouraged. Arafat himself in
      his
      addresses in Arabic supports and calls for such things. And when we point
      out that these things are wrong, we are confronted with the dual non-sense
      arguments that (a) we are biased toward Israel and (b) we are biased
      because
      our media is biased towards Israel. But the fact of the matter is that
      the
      Palestinians are wrong to adopt terror targeting civilians as a policy and
      a
      tactic, which they clearly have on the "corporate level", and they are
      mistaken if they think they can deceive us into believing otherwise by a
      lot
      of spurious accusations. No one is every going to win any arguments if
      their
      aim is to justify the killing of babies. Anyone who has studied public
      speech and debate knows that killing babies is a loosing argument from the
      outset.

      Aside from a military conflict that produces a decivisive victory for one
      side over the other, the only other way the situation will improve is if
      the
      Palestinians cut the BS and stop killing innocent civilians. Absent that,
      Israel is completely justified in its acts of self-defense. Quite
      honestly,
      Israel seems to have done very little in its efforts combatting suicide
      bombers to be criticized for. Unlike the Palestinians, they have not
      started blowing up people sitting down a holiday banquets or bombing
      weddings. If the Israelis start attacking weddings, banquets, restuarants
      and hotels, then the Palestinians can complain. Until then, they need to
      work on their strategy, tactics and rhetoric if they really want to
      persuade
      anyone and stop complaining about bias.


      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • james tan
      interesting comments, and u seem to have thought more about the issue. my offhand reply to u will not do justice to ur elaborate comments, but given time
      Message 2 of 16 , Apr 4, 2002
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        interesting comments, and u seem to have thought more about the issue. my
        offhand reply to u will not do justice to ur elaborate comments, but given
        time limitation, i will just shoot some in passing that comes to my mind
        now.

        u said:
        >>But they do not say give me liberty or I'll kill innocent children, old
        >>people and any one else who happen to be standing around.<<

        indeed, on the moral dimension, there is little doubt the suicide bombers
        are groundless. no arguing about it. period. any rationalization wears
        painfully thin. what i am saying now is not an attempt to rationalize their
        behaviours, but idle speculation at their (palestinian) collective conscious
        state, so to speak. say, let's have a unit of behaviour: suicide bombing of
        innocents. if we just look at this unit in isolation, we can easily comment
        it on the purely moral dimension; we condemn it (as civilised and decent
        member of humanity?). but a behavour hardly exist in isolation; there is
        always a antecedent and its consequences. this antecedent could be perceived
        grave injustice from their enemies. look at the tv's coverage of the
        palestinians: there is so much hatred and anger in their faces, their very
        souls. u said: "To offer a crude example, if you hit some one forcefully
        below the waist, and that person turns around and hits you in the head with
        club, we have a weak argument that they should not have hit you in the
        head." now, to use ur example, let's suppose a man take ur property by
        force, and u hit him forcefully below the waist, and that person turns
        around and hits u in the head with club. what the palestinians are doing is
        just that: "u continue to hit me in the head with ur club, i don't have a
        club but i am angry, i do what i can, i hit u below the belt whenever i can,
        even if ur groin is not the one who dictate ur seizing my property". from
        what i read from swm's account of the history of palestine, the land of
        palestine seems to belong to the palestinians. the united nations, united
        states of america might have pronouned the land to israel, but i fail to see
        the authority of the UN or US in making such pronouncement other than
        military might, and i certainly don't see the why the palestinian need to
        accept the pronouncement of such authority. let's suppose, as an analogy,
        that the u.s. federal govt announce ur house now belongs to mr arafat
        because of the persecution he had undergone, he needs a place, u have no
        option but to cow in, since the u.s. marines is behind this decision and is
        superior to ur garden fox and 3 shotguns u keep in ur bedroom drawer. i
        wouldn't be too surprised if u becomes suicidally dangerous when they begin
        to rape ur wife and daughters as well. again, i am not rationalizing their
        behaviours, but i am trying to see how they might have seen things. intense
        pain and hatred have its way of controlling one's behaviours. i have seen it
        in people who have gone through extreme stress. u proposed "Perhaps what is
        needed in the Middle East is not for people to give vent to psychological
        frustration and thereby act out their worst potentialities. Perhaps what is
        required is a little philosophy. Kant said that the only thing good in
        itself is a good will, and that is what this conflict in the Middle East
        seems to lack--people with good wills. Less emotion and anger and more pure
        reason is required. Hate and impatience need to yield to love and
        patience." but i, at least for one, do not always see or understand other
        people in this rational way, because all it will do is to frustrate u (as a
        psychologist). normal human reasoning and logic does not exist with people
        of great hatred and anger. and how do u expect the palestinians to have good
        wills when the israeli demonstrate their 'good wills' by occupying the land
        they perceive as theirs? the only logic is the palestinians' relentless pain
        and hatred (which motivate their SUICIDAL behaviours, and it is only such
        kind of intensity that will propel people to kill themselves). u could say
        the palestinians are still free to choose what is the right course of
        action, and indeed so; but there are times when i see in a client fixated in
        some maladaptive interpersonal pattern, totally unable to see alternative
        way, stuck as if in some kind of existential glue. u proposed patience and
        love instead of psychological frustration and hatred; well, first, it is
        easier said than done, esp when the misfortune does not fall on us, and
        second, love and patience are also psychological states. again, what u said
        is reasonable, but it is easier to be reasonable when ur basic needs are met
        (although being unreasonable does not solve problems either). the
        palestinians people are very desparate, and what i wish for them is to have
        their own state as soon as possible, and for that, i think the first step is
        to have very credible, pragmatic, realistic and effective leadership within
        palestine itself, to act as ego (reality principled) and superego (moral
        principled) strength (freudian terms) in curbing the strong drive (id) for
        destruction, so that they are in better 'mental', 'emotional' condition to
        negotiate a win-win situation. what is going on now is tragic, and just
        because the whole world is watching (and doing nothing) does not make it
        less tragic or isolated. just some points and two cents.

        james.



        From: "Christopher Bobo" <cbobo@...>
        Reply-To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com
        To: "Wisdom Forum" <WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com>
        Subject: Re: [WisdomForum] Re: A Real Life Application? The Media's Role
        Date: Wed, 3 Apr 2002 22:47:59 -0800

        James said:
        >> see it as a vicious cycle of violence, where violence begets violence.
        1,
        the palestinians are (or feels) oppressed under israeli rulership, much as
        jews felt oppressed under the early days of nazi, in terms of rights, lack
        of autonomy, their own land, and the controversial holy land of jurasalem.
        if american can say, give me freedom or give me death, i don't see why the
        palestinian can't say that too, and everyone of the items listed can be
        perceived as important to the palestinians as freedom is to american.<<

        Americans may say give me liberty or give me death. But they do not say
        give me liberty or I'll kill innocent children, old people and any one else
        who happen to be standing around. I think there is a huge difference between
        saying I'll risk my own life to secure liberty, and saying I'll
        intentionally kill civilians, unarmed women, children, old people and the
        sick to secure my own liberty, even if they have no role in my oppression
        and that their murder is justified by efforts to dramatize my
        dissatisfaction with an unjust political system.

        James also said:
        >> i am speaking in terms of american sentiments just to illustrate that
        there can
        be cultural rift in understanding what land, citizens rights, holy land, can
        be to the palestinians, lest some americans feels the palestinians are
        making a big fuss over small things. 2, the rights of the palestinians are
        not respected by the israeli authority, much as the nazi does not see much
        of the jews demand for rights and respect.<<

        There certainly is a cultural rift here and perhaps one that should never be
        crossed. Still, no one thinks that the Palestinians don't have a legitimate
        grip and over serious and significant problems. Your comparison of the
        Israelis to the Nazis is completely unwarranted. I am not aware of the
        Israelis constructing death camps for Palestinians or trying to exterminate
        them as a people. Indeed, all indications are just the opposite. The
        Israelis have tried to accommodate the Palestinian desire for a homeland,
        and have Palestinians living and working in their society. If that were not
        the case, Palestinian suicide bombers would not be able to gain access to
        Israeli sites for the purpose of detonating bombs. What's more, I do not
        think that there was any instance of the Jews in Nazi Germany, before the
        Holocaust, blowing up German banquets, weddings or restaurants, or burning
        down Lutheran churches. If the Jews of pre-WWII Germany had been engaged in
        such activities, I wonder whether there would have been as much sympathy for
        them during and after WWII as there was.

        James wrote:
        >>2, the rights of the palestinians are
        not respected by the israeli authority, much as the nazi does not see much
        of the jews demand for rights and respect. i suppose there muct have been
        attempts by the palestinian authority to negotiate peacefully through
        politcally correct diplomatic channels. 3, their peaceful attempts bascially
        has no effect or results, after years of such attempts. where there is a big
        difference in military power, the weaker side basically has no weightage in
        what they have to ask. <<

        The history of the world is replete with regimes that have not respected the
        rights of minorities or other oppressed people. Yet, as far as I know,
        there has never been an instance in human history where the oppressed people
        seeking liberation thought that the proper method to achieve their
        liberation was to murder the women, children and elderly of their
        oppressors. I have difficulty imagining any political philosophy which
        includes as one of its tenets the wanton murder of civilians in order to
        achieve political aims. I suspect that no only would such a political
        philosophy be a non-starter in academic circles, but it would be appalling
        to the average moral citizen in the street. Indeed, we have not seen such a
        thing since the Nazi regime. Perhaps the only differences between Arafat
        and Hitler are that Hitler published Mein Kampf setting forth his views
        before he undertook his mass murder and he had more effective means at his
        disposal than does Arafat. Secondly, IMHO the Palestinians have not been at
        the negotiating table long enough to conclude that their only recourse is
        violent terror committed against civilian populations.

        James said:
        >>and just as when hitler's third reich was sending the jews by the
        thousands to the gas chamber daily totally ignored by the international
        community (at least in the early years of ww2), the international
        communities basically ignore the plight of the palestinians. the arab/muslim
        countries do sympathize with the palestine, but their sympathy is limited to
        just that: emotion; they may be angry, resentful, but no real action is
        taken, esp when america the superpower is seen to be behind israel. 4,
        palestine is basically isolated in her own misery and frustration.<<

        Actually, Hitler was sending Jews to their deaths by the millions, not the
        thousands, and as I said above, I think your comparison to Nazi Germany is
        misplaced. Be that as it may, the international community has been anything
        but a posture of "ignoring their plight". In fact, the international
        community was been seemingly obsessed with what is in effect a truly small
        inter-tribal conflict when compared with what goes on in the rest of the
        world. In reality, the conflict in the Israel occupies a disproportionate
        share of the world's attention. Out of the 57 million or so square miles of
        land mass on the planet, Israel occupies only 8.000 square miles. The
        entire West Bank is only about 2,200 square miles. Of the 6 billion people
        on the planet, only about 5 million are Israelis and there are only about
        1.4 million Palestinian occupants of the West Bank. Yet, in absolute terms,
        despite the relative insignificance of this territory and the relatively
        small number of people involved in what is essentially an inter-tribal
        conflict over territory, and notwithstanding the fact that the land at issue
        is some of the poorest real estate on the planet, virtually all the world
        governments and international institutions have no small part of their
        attention and energies devoted to what goes on there. Indeed, is it not
        amazing the that the world's greatest powers and seats of government have
        their attention riveted on the events in Israel? People around the world
        are watching and talking about what takes place on this tiny speck of sand,
        as is evidenced by the discussion on this small internet forum. It has
        become virtually a world obsession. Let's be honest, you'd need a magnifying
        glass to find the West Bank on the average globe, yet, because of the world
        media, we seem to view it under a microscope. And nearly everyone around
        the worlds wants nothing more than peace and justice in the Middle East for
        all the parties involved--Palestinians and Israelis, Muslims and Jews. The
        interest of the entire world in this conflict can only be accounted for by
        its symbolic, moral and perhaps even spiritual significance. The
        Palestinians are anything but isolated. They have the attention of
        virtually the entire world, and I think every one in all the capitals of the
        world wants them to have peace and justice. I think what concerns and
        disappoints us all is how little the involved parties have done to justify
        our concerns and hopes. The great sadness engendered by the Palestinian and
        Israeli conflict arises in part from what it says symbolically about mankind
        in general. The frustration level is high and not only for the
        Palestinians. I think everyone is frustrated and there does not appear to
        be a simple solution in sight. As for Arab frustration with America, one
        can only say that there is no magic wand in Washington that will make people
        peaceful, tolerant and just toward one another.

        James wrote:
        >>in this situation, a psycholgical
        question is, how does she cope with her frustration in her situation? one
        must bear in mind that she is totally powerless to fight israel in the
        traditional millitary confrontation, yet she IS very angry and frustrated.
        she resorted to terrorist attacks. it is a sneaky, lowly, hard to detect
        kind of attack, not strong enough to destroy israel, but enough to inflict
        pain and vent frustration to 'compensate' what they perceive the injustice
        they get from israel. but with such a big difference in power between israel
        and palestine, it is the only method they could think of. they do not think
        the gandi style is going to work with israel, just as it wouldn't work with
        the nazis. just as it is violent and immoral to the extent that they hit on
        civilians, it is also a measure of their desparation and lack of
        resources.<<

        Perhaps what is needed in the Middle East is not for people to give vent to
        psychological frustration and thereby act out their worst potentialities.
        Perhaps what is required is a little philosophy. Kant said that the only
        thing good in itself is a good will, and that is what this conflict in the
        Middle East seems to lack--people with good wills. Less emotion and anger
        and more pure reason is required. Hate and impatience need to yield to love
        and patience. Violent destructive undertakings should be replaced with
        rational and constructive pursuits of peace and justice. If the people of
        the region wont adopt these Gandhi like measures, then perhaps the only
        thing the world can to is to step aside and let them have their war until
        they have had their fill of it. It may be that there is no way to rationally
        persuade them that war and violence is not the solution to their problems
        and that only experience with war and violence with teach them this lesson.

        James argued that:
        >> 6, israel (rather, sharon's
        strategy) responded to their terrorist attacks by military occupation. they
        sent tanks right into arafat's backyard, holding him hostage in his own
        quarter and house, executing in military style any palestinian they only
        vaguely suspect as potential terrorist; the power to decide life and death
        on the lives of palestinian is solely on the arbitrary discretion of any
        israeli soldiers. just as there are bloods on the hands of the palestinians,
        it would be like a ostrich head in the sand to deny there is no blood in the
        hand of israeli. 7, the palestinian are incensed, not only at israel's
        aggression, but at their own impotence. but they must still do something. 8,
        goto 5.<<

        It seems to me, and I hope that my short term memory is correct, that Sharon
        sent in his tanks only after terrible suicide bombings. In other words,
        what the Palestinians complain of is only a response to actions they
        initiated. I don't think that there can be any serious argument against the
        proposition that the Palestinian Authority has supported suicide bombings.
        If the Palestinian Authority really opposed such attacks, they could
        indicate that by removing the postures and street signs glorifying suicide
        bombers. They could stop rationalizing suicide bombers and they could stop
        executing Palestinians believed to be collaborating with Israel is trying to
        stop them. If the Palestinian Authority were really opposed to suicide
        bombings, then their police officers would not sit on their hands when mobs
        came to lynch Palestinian "informers" accused of helping the Israelis to
        stop the suicide bombers. If the Palestinian Authority were really opposed
        to suicide bombing, then they would not be trying to import illegal weapons
        into the West Bank and Gaza. If the Palestinian Authority were committed to
        stopping suicide bombing targeted at killing civilians, then Arafat would
        denounce the practice as wrong and immoral on a daily basis, rather than
        calling for Jihad and describing the suicide bombers as martyrs. As for the
        rest of the Muslim world, I can only shake my head and wonder why Saddam
        Hussein has recently increased payments to the families of suicide bombers,
        and the rest of the world does not see him as constituting one part of an
        axis of evil. As for the power of the average Israeli soldier, I haven't
        heard any reports of them bursting into weddings, banquets or hotels gunning
        down everyone in sight. Indeed, they seem to reserve their fire for people
        firing at them and hurling missiles at them. What's more, I fail to see how
        Palestinians who take their children to a street riot replete with AK-47
        fire can complain when their children get hit by cross-fire. I was amazed
        to see on the TV last night young Palestinians who appeared to be no more
        than 10 years old throwing rocks and bricks at Israeli soldiers. I could
        only wonder where their parents were and why they were not at home.

        Although the conduct of the Israelis is not above criticism, as far as I can
        see, it is as nothing compare to that of those they are fighting.

        James said:
        >>contrary to chris' contention, i do think news report can be biased. in
        their selection, in their perspective, in their omission, in the words they
        choose to describe.<<

        I do not think that I said that the media is not or has not been biased. My
        point was that the bias is insignificant compare with the information being
        made available. We can, presumably, filter out bias. I was asserting that
        people who often hear news they don't like accuse the messenger of being
        biased in an effort to discredit the report. Even if there is bias, the
        Palestinians have simply failed to make a rational argument to support their
        apparent position that their acts of murderous terror against civilians is
        justified by anything that has been done to them. The day doesn't go by
        that Americans don't hear from two or three Palestinian spokespeople, and
        yet according to a recent pole 63% of the American public think that the
        current military actions of the Israelis are justified. I ask you to
        consider that we've heard everything that can be and has been said in
        justification of the Palestinian "cause" and actions and we just don't find
        the argument persuasive. Consider for a moment that our opinion is not
        based on some lack of information, but is rather based on full and complete
        information. Try to also imagine that we are not biased, but are trying to
        be fair-minded and even-handed. Do not resort to ad hominen arguments to
        quarrel with this conclusion and judgment, but understand it for what it
        is--an honest, reasonable and realistic assessment of the facts.

        James commented:
        >>i don't understand what chris meant by saying the
        palestinian has weak argument. <<

        I meant that their argument to justify terrorism is weak. Also, it seems to
        me that their claims of Israeli mistreatment are weak. To offer a crude
        example, if you hit some one forcefully below the waist, and that person
        turns around and hits you in the head with club, we have a weak argument
        that they should not have hit you in the head.

        Finally, James commented that:
        >>i certainly think they need to
        have a independent state of their own, something they can call their own so
        that they need not always be in a state of reaction to what they perceive as
        israel's unfair treatment. this is the job of the united nations? the catch
        is, everytime there is something coming up for that, it is sabotaged by some
        sucide bombers. the palestinian need to pray and ask themselves what they
        want realistically. it certainly doesn't help in the peace process, and a
        creation of a palestinian state, to have some suicide bombers killing yet
        more civilians; they need help, and suicide bombers are thwarting the very
        attempt of the helpers to help them. it can be endless if they persist in
        their senseless sucidal attacks. as for all the morality talk prior to this,
        i think what really works is not such talks; it is a powerful intervention
        by some united nations or america that will work, just as the state of
        israel was created as retold by swm. i do not see tommy's 'theory' proposing
        any practical way out, and such theory do not have practical value, only
        good for a abstract discussion forum like that.<<

        Here I substantially agree with James, except that I am not sure that the
        U.S. or the U.N. can impose peace on the parties when they do not want it.
        What's more, I don't think that the Israeli actions are in the main
        unjustified or that the Israelis are acting beyond the bounds of civilized
        societies. Finally, I don't know what the U.S. or the U.N. could do
        differently from what the Israelis are doing to stop suicide bombings. I
        see no advantage to substituting U.S. or U.N troops in the place of Israeli
        troops. U.S. troop deployments to Lebanon and Somalia were ineffective and
        best and disasters at worst. The record of the U.N. is scarcely any better
        when it comes to deployment in active combat zones. Benjamin Netanyahu was
        on the TV last night, saying clearly that Israel did not want Americans to
        fight their battles for them. He said they could do what needed to be done,
        and I don't doubt that. Foreign and international involvement in that
        context has not demonstrated any success. As SWM pointed out, the British
        were there before. Besides, if the U.S. sent in troops, we'd only be the
        subject of criticism for imperialism, bias, and defiling the Holy Land. I
        say, send in the Scottish. ;-)








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      • james tan
        ... Its unfortunate that the degree of civil society affordable within occupied Palestine doesn t allow for very many public displays of opulent enjoyment of
        Message 3 of 16 , Apr 4, 2002
        • 0 Attachment
          >At 10:43 am -0800 3/4/02, Christopher Bobo wrote:
          >If the Israelis start attacking weddings, banquets, restuarants and
          >hotels, then the Palestinians can complain.

          Its unfortunate that the degree of civil society affordable within
          occupied Palestine doesn't allow for very many public displays of
          opulent enjoyment of material goods such as weddings, banquets,
          restaurants and hotels. Otherwise I am sure they would represent a
          juicy target for extremist Israeli terror groups.

          If the goal is to prevent terror attacks then there should be a
          dividing line drawn in the sand with Israel on one side and Palestine
          on the other. I suspect that it is not reasonable to put Jerusalem on
          the Israel side unless it has a big wall built through the middle of
          it. The side which will be called Palestine should be recognised as a
          nation by all the relevant authorities (its recognition by the UN was
          vetoed by the US) and given at least as much per capita aid as Israel
          currently receives.

          Palestinians currently living in refugee camps outside Palestine must
          be allowed to return to their ancestral lands (though not on the
          basis of race, as Jews anywhere in the world are allowed to "return"
          to Israel) and their must be a concerted effort by means of a
          "Marshall Plan" to ensure that there is an economy there for them to
          participate in.

          I don't think we can reasonably complain that people who have lived
          for more than a generation in a refugee camp take exception to their
          plight, strap explosives to their bodies and obliterate a handful of
          those who must directly be considered their oppressors.

          Tommy

          PS. The above has got nothing to do with Communicationalism and only
          represents what it seems to me must be done if suicide attacks by
          Palestinians are to end.

          PPS. Below is an interesting article by Francis Boyle, a US Law Professor.

          PALESTINE, PALESTINIANS, AND INTERNATIONAL LAW*


          By

          Francis A. Boyle


          Professor of International Law


          Legal Advisor to the Palestine Liberation Organization on Creation of
          the State of Palestine (1987-1989)


          Legal Advisor to the Palestinian Delegation to the Middle East Peace
          Negotiations (1991-1993)


          Sometime Legal Advisor to the Provisional Government of the State of
          Palestine









          * � Copyright 2002 by Francis A. Boyle. All rights reserved. The
          viewpoints expressed here are solely my own.

          I am not Arab. I am not Jewish. I am not Palestinian. I am not
          Israeli. I am Irish American. Our People have no proverbial "horse in
          this race." What follows is to the best of my immediate recollection:


          The Big Lie

          Growing up in the United States during the late 1950s and early 1960s
          while strongly supporting the just struggle of African Americans for
          civil rights, I was brainwashed at school as well as by the
          mainstream news media and popular culture to be just as pro-Israel as
          everyone else in America. Then came the 1967 Middle East War. At that
          time, my assessment of the situation was that Israel had attacked
          these Arab countries first, stolen their lands, and then driven out
          their respective peoples from their homes. I then realized that
          everything I had been told about Israel was "The Big Lie." Israel was
          Goliath, not David. I resolved to study the Middle East in more
          detail in order to figure out what the Truth really was.

          Of course by then I had already figured out that everything I was
          being told about the Vietnam War also constituted The Big Lie. The
          same was true for U.S. military intervention into Latin America after
          the Johnson administration's gratuitous invasion of the Dominican
          Republic. The same for the pie-in-the-sky "Camelot" peddled by the
          Kennedy administration after the Bay of Pigs invasion/fiasco and its
          self-induced Cuban Missile Crisis that was a near-miss for nuclear
          Armageddon. So I just added the Middle East to the list of
          international subjects that I needed to pay more attention to in my
          life.

          Chicago

          I entered the University of Chicago as an undergraduate in September
          of 1968 after having just attended the tumultuous Chicago Democratic
          Convention. Because of the heavy common-core requirements there, I
          could not take a course on the Middle East until the next academic
          year. Then I signed up for a course on "Middle East Politics" taught
          by Professor Leonard Binder. To his great credit, Professor Binder
          was most fair and balanced in his presentation of the Palestinian and
          other Arab claims against Israel during the course of his classroom
          lectures. In addition, his massive reading list forced me to go
          through everything then written in English that was favorable to the
          Palestinian People, as well as reading the standard pro-Israel
          sources. By the end of Professor Binder's course in the Winter of
          1970, I had become convinced of three basic propositions: (1) that
          the world had inflicted a terrible injustice upon the Palestinian
          People in 1947-1948; (2) that there will be no peace in the Middle
          East until this injustice was somehow rectified; and (3) that the
          Palestinian People were entitled to an independent nation state of
          their own. I have publicly maintained these positions for the past
          three decades at great cost to myself.

          In particular, I have been accused of being everything but a child
          molester because of my public support for the Palestinian People. I
          have seen every known principle of Academic Integrity and Academic
          Freedom violated in order to suppress the basic rights of the
          Palestinian People. In fact, there is no such thing as Academic
          Integrity and Academic Freedom in the United States of America when
          it comes to asserting the rights of the Palestinian People under
          international law.

          In any event, the University of Chicago has always had a first-rate
          Center for Middle East Studies that I have heartily recommended over
          the years to many prospective students all over the world seeking my
          advice on where to study that subject. By comparison, Harvard's
          Center for Middle East Studies was then basically operating as a
          front organization for the C.I.A. and probably the Mossad as well. No
          point anyone wasting their time studying Middle East Politics at
          Harvard.


          Nevertheless, I entered Harvard in September of 1971 in order to
          pursue a J.D. at the Harvard Law School and a Ph.D. in Political
          Science at the Harvard Graduate School of Arts and Sciences,
          Department of Government. The latter was the same doctoral program
          that had produced Henry Kissinger, Zbigniew Brzezinski, Samuel
          Huntington, and numerous other Machiavellian war-mongers trained by
          Harvard to "manage" the U.S. global empire. In other words, Harvard
          trained me to be one of these American Imperial Managers: "There but
          for the Grace of God go I!"

          For the next seven years at Harvard I was quite vocal in my support
          for the Palestinian People, including and especially their basic
          human rights, their right to self-determination, and their right to
          an independent nation state of their own. Although I felt like a
          distinct Minority of One among the Harvard student body at the time,
          I did receive the support and encouragement for my pro-Palestinian
          viewpoints from several of my teachers. At the Harvard Law School
          were Roger Fisher (The Williston Professor of Law), Louis Sohn (Bemis
          Professor), Richard Baxter (Hudson Professor), Clyde Ferguson
          (Stimson Professor), and Harold Berman (Ames Professor). At the
          Government Department was my doctoral dissertation supervisor,
          Stanley Hoffmann, who has always been most sympathetic to the tragic
          plight of the Palestinian People. He is now a University Professor-
          Harvard's highest accolade, and well deserved.

          While in residence as an Associate at the Harvard Center for
          International Affairs (CFIA) from 1976-1978, I also came into contact
          with Walid Khalidi. I was present for the dramatic off-the-record
          confrontation between him and Shimon Peres at the standing CFIA
          Seminar on "American Foreign Policy" then conducted by Stanley
          Hoffmann at their old headquarters on 6 Divinity Avenue. Peres
          refused to budge even one inch no matter how flexible Khalidi was. A
          harbinger for the Middle East Peace Negotiations over a decade later.

          As a most loyal and grateful Harvard alumnus (J.D. magna cum laude,
          A.M., Ph.D.), I must nevertheless state that it is shameful and
          shameless that Harvard never granted a tenured full professorship to
          Walid Khalidi because he is a Palestinian despite the fact that he is
          universally recognized as one of the world's foremost experts on the
          Middle East. This gets back to my previous observation that there is
          no point studying Middle East Politics at Harvard. Walid and I would
          later meet again at the Middle East Peace Negotiations in Washington,
          D.C. during the Fall of 1991

          Entebbe Lecture

          Soon after my graduation from Harvard Law School in June of 1976, the
          very first public Lecture I ever gave was at the invitation of the
          Harvard International Law Society. I decided to speak on the subject
          of The Israeli Raid at Entebbe, during which I analyzed many of the
          legal and political problems surrounding this raid that had just been
          so unanimously applauded by the U.S. news media. Roger Fisher was
          kind and gracious enough to show up at this my first public Lecture
          on anything. He also offered some words of support when I was
          attacked by another professor for discussing the political
          motivations behind the Entebbe hijacking by the PFLP. I had expressed
          my opinion that the PFLP/PLO political claims can, must, and should
          be negotiated. We even got into a little debate about who was the
          real "terrorist" here. Obviously, these were not a very popular point
          of view to take back in the Fall of 1976 at Harvard. Clyde Ferguson
          would later inform me that my pro-Palestinian viewpoints prevented
          him from reporting my dossier out of the Harvard Law School
          Appointments Committee (upon which he then sat) despite his best
          efforts to get me hired there.

          In any event, I decided to take my "Entebbe Show" on the road and to
          use it as my standard job interview lecture in order to get hired
          somewhere as an Assistant Professor of Law. Not surprisingly, I was
          rebuffed at the very top law schools. But in December of 1977, I
          received an offer to become an Assistant Professor of Law at the
          University of Illinois College of Law in Champaign, which had just
          been semi-officially ranked the Number Eleven law school in the
          country by an American Association of Law Schools Report. So I moved
          back to Illinois on July 14, 1978 with the hope and expectation that
          someday I would be able to make a positive contribution to the most
          desperate plight of the Palestinian People.

          The American-Israel Society of International Law and Power

          Around the same time, Clyde Ferguson was to become the first African
          American President of the American Society of International Law and
          would preside over their 75th Anniversary Convocation in 1981. Clyde
          decided to put me on their Concluding Plenary Panel that he would
          personally chair: "I want you to get up there and send those people a
          message!," Clyde enjoined me. And so I did, as indicated by the text
          of my Speech set forth herein, The American Society of International
          Law: 75 Years and Beyond, 75 Am. Soc'y Int'l L. Proc. 270 (1981). In
          particular, I publicly supported the right of the Palestinian People
          to self-determination and the fact that the PLO was their sole and
          legitimate representative. I also severely criticized Israel's
          grievous mistreatment of the Palestinian People as a violation of
          international humanitarian law, and soundly condemned Israel's
          criminal practices in Lebanon.

          After my Speech, I was thenceforth treated by the Members of the so-
          called Society as the proverbial skunk at their yearly garden party.
          For the next decade I would vigorously speak out in support of, and
          publicly debate, the rights of the Palestinian People at American
          Society of International Law Conventions against innumerable pro-
          Israel supporters. But after ten years of banging my head against
          this wall, I concluded that I was wasting my time. I have not
          returned since, and doubt that I ever will again return to this
          American-Israel Society of International Law and Power. Standing in
          solidarity with the Palestinian People.


          The very next year, when Israel again invaded Lebanon in1982, I
          immediately tried to organize what little academic opposition there
          was among professors of international law. I drafted a Statement
          condemning this invasion in no uncertain terms, and then proceeded to
          call up about 35 professors of international law here in the United
          States to see if they would sign it. Not unexpectedly, I could
          only "round-up the usual suspects": Roger Fisher, Clyde Ferguson,
          Stanley Hoffmanm, Richard Falk, and Tom Mallison. George Ball
          personally contributed $1000 out of his own pocket to help publicize
          our stand. But I could not even get this Statement published anywhere
          in the United States. Tom Mallison eventually got it published in
          Britain as Violations of International Law, Middle East
          International, September 3, 1982, reprinted here. It was a very sad
          and telling commentary that only a handful of American international
          law professors possessed the fortitude of soul to soundly condemn
          Israel's egregious invasion of Lebanon, and support the basic rights
          of the Palestinian People under international law. And this by a
          group of professors allegedly committed to the Rule of Law in
          international relations. Intellectual, moral, and professional
          cowardice and hypocrisy of the worst type. Not much has changed
          during the past two decades.

          Soon thereafter, I found myself speaking, writing, and lecturing all
          over the country against the Israeli invasion of Lebanon and in
          support of the basic rights of the Palestinian People under
          international law. I would later sum these viewpoints up in an essay
          entitled Dissensus Over Strategic Consensus, reprinted here from my
          Future of International Law and American Foreign Policy
          (Transnational Publishers: 1989). This essay sets forth a
          comprehensive critique of the Reagan administration's foreign policy
          toward the Middle East from an international law perspective.

          Written around the same time and in similar vein was my Preserving
          the Rule of Law in the War Against International Terrorism, reprinted
          here from my Future of International Law and American Foreign Policy
          (Transnational Publishers: 1989). This essay provided a detailed
          critique of the Reagan administration's self-styled "war against
          international terrorism" from an international law perspective, with
          a special emphasis on the Middle East. Not much has changed two
          decades later with the Bush Jr. administration's bogus "war against
          international terrorism." Plus ca change, plus, ca reste la meme
          chose--especially when it comes to American foreign policy towards
          the Middle East.

          Suing for Sabra and Shatilla

          Leading the legal charge against the Israeli invasion of Lebanon
          would ultimately result in my filing a lawsuit against Israeli
          General Amos Yaron, who bore personal criminal responsibility for the
          massacre of about 2000 completely innocent and unarmed Palestinian
          women, children and old men at the Sabra and Shatilla refugee camps
          in Lebanon. To the best of my knowledge, this was the first time ever
          that any Lawyer had attempted to hold an Israeli government official
          accountable for perpetrating a massacre against the Palestinian
          People. I lost. But for historical purposes my key court papers are
          reproduced here from 5 Palestine Yearbook of International Law
          (1989).

          Not surprisingly, when General Ehud Barak became Israeli Prime
          Minister, he appointed Yaron to serve as Director-General of the
          Israeli "Ministry of Defense." Truly Orwellian! But of course only
          fitting for Israel to have a major war criminal and genocidaire serve
          in this high-level capacity in order to inflict more heinous war
          crimes against the Palestinian People during Israel's repression of
          the Al Aqsa Intifada that was instigated on 28 September 2000 by
          General Ariel Sharon, the architect of the 1982 Israeli invasion of
          Lebanon. From this demented perspective, it made perfect sense for
          the genocidaire Sharon to continue the appointment of the genocidaire
          Yaron when he became Prime Minister of Israel. Needless to say, the
          United States government under Reagan/Bush, Clinton, and Bush Jr.
          fully supported Begin/Sharon/Yaron, Barak/Yaron and then Sharon/Yaron
          in perpetuating their serial massacres upon the Palestinian People.
          Some things never change.

          Creating the Palestinian State

          Two decades after Israel launched the June 1967 Middle East War that
          first sparked my concern for the plight of the Palestinian People,
          the U.N. Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the
          Palestinian People scheduled a 20th Anniversary Commemorative Session
          at U.N. Headquarters in New York for June of 1987. The PLO asked
          former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark and me to speak on their
          behalf. Seated right next to us at the speaker's podium was Professor
          Ibrahim Abu-Lighoud, while behind us sat the entire Palestinian
          Delegation at that time: Ambassador Zuhdi Terzi; his Deputy, now
          Ambassador Nasser Al-Kidwe; and Counsellor Riyad Mansour. The rest of
          the hall was occupied by Ambassadors from supposedly pro-Palestinian
          U.N. member states.

          After Ramsey spoke, I proceeded to state quite forthrightly that the
          time had now come for the Palestinian People to unilaterally proclaim
          their own independent nation state under international law and
          practice. I then proceeded to sketch out precisely why and how this
          could be done. I argued that the Palestinians must not go to any
          International Peace Conference to ask the Israelis to give them their
          State. Rather, the Palestinians must unilaterally proclaim their own
          independent nation state, and then attend an international peace
          conference where they would simply ask Israel to evacuate from
          Palestine. Etc.

          I spoke for about half an hour along these lines. Needless to say,
          Abu-Lighoud stared at me throughout this period as if I had just
          descended on a spaceship from Mars. At that point in time the most
          the PLO had contemplated was to declare themselves a "government-in-
          exile." By contrast, I was explaining to the PLO and to the United
          Nations Organization both why and how the Palestinians must
          unilaterally create their own independent nation state, and then have
          Palestine become internationally recognized, including by the United
          Nations itself. There must be a Palestinian State first before there
          could be a Palestinian government-something I had learned from Louis
          Sohn's final examination in his United Nations Law course at Harvard
          Law School back during the 1974-75 academic year. And less than
          eighteen months after my U.N. speech, the Palestine National Council
          would determine that the Executive Committee of the PLO constitutes
          the Provisional Government of the State of Palestine--not a so-
          called "government-in-exile." But that is jumping ahead of the story.

          Sparring with Jordan

          After I had concluded my U.N. speech, the Jordanian Deputy Ambassador
          immediately demanded from the President of the Conference the so-
          called "right of reply." He reprimanded me that as a professor of
          international law I should know better than to publicly propose the
          dismemberment of a U.N. member state at U.N. Headquarters in New
          York. Of course he was referring to the West Bank and East Jerusalem,
          which had been illegally occupied and annexed by Jordan after the
          partition of the Palestine Mandate up until the 1967 war, when the
          West Bank and East Jerusalem were then illegally occupied and the
          latter illegally annexed by Israel.

          Since I was speaking at the United Nations Headquarters as a guest of
          the PLO, I had to be most diplomatic in my response to the Jordanian
          Deputy Ambassador. So I chose my words quite carefully: "Jordan has
          been as helpful as it can to the Palestinian People--under the
          circumstances. But the entire world knows these lands are
          Palestinian." Abu-Lighoud chuckled at my diplomatic formulation since
          he knew full well that I was never one to mince words. There was some
          more diplomatic sparring back and forth between the Jordanian Deputy
          Ambassador and me about the right of the Palestinian People to
          unilaterally establish their own independent nation state on the West
          Bank and Gaza Strip, with East Jerusalem as their Capital. But
          eventually he gave up the ghost arguing with me--just as his boss
          King Hussein later would in July of 1988.

          The Intifada

          Immediately after my U.N. speech, the members of the Palestinian
          Delegation asked me a large number of questions about why and how
          they could go forward and unilaterally proclaim their own independent
          nation state under international law and practice. Zuhdi Terzi then
          asked me to prepare a formal Memorandum of Law on this entire matter
          for formal consideration by the Palestine Liberation Organization. I
          readily agreed to do so--and free of charge. Standing in solidarity
          with the Palestinian People.

          I spent the entire summer researching and drafting this Memorandum of
          Law. In the Fall, I gave it to my incoming research assistant in
          order to research, document, and add the footnotes for the
          Memorandum. He returned the footnoted draft Memorandum to me in
          December of 1987-just on time for the outbreak of the first
          Palestinian Intafada in Gaza.

          This original Intifada was a spontaneous uprising by the Palestinian
          People living under the boot of Israel's racist, colonial, and
          genocidal occupation. The PLO leadership then headquartered in Tunis
          were taken completely unaware by the outbreak of the Intifada in
          occupied Palestine. The PLO did not order the Inifada, the PLO did
          not direct the Inifada, and the PLO had to constantly scramble in
          order to try to keep up with the Inifada. Quickly the leaders of the
          Intifada living in occupied Palestine established their own Unified
          Leadership of the Intifada. And in the late Winter of 1988, the
          Unified Leadership of the Intifada issued a Communiqu� in which they
          demanded that in recognition of the courage, bravery, and suffering
          of the Palestinian People living in occupied Palestine during the
          Intifada, the PLO must create an independent nation state for all
          Palestinians around the world. It was just about at that time when I
          transmitted my revised Memorandum of Law to the PLO on this precise
          subject, which was entitled "CREATE THE STATE OF PALESTINE!" Then
          nothing happened on this project for several months. There was a
          deafening silence from the PLO.

          It was clear that the creation of a Palestinian State would generate
          too many internal political problems for the PLO, which at that time
          operated upon the principle of consensus. Back in those days the
          Palestinian Independence Movement was a genuine democracy. The
          creation of a Palestinian State would have forced the PLO to make
          some very difficult political decisions that could have produced a
          terrible division among the different groups composing the
          Palestinian Independence Movement at the very time when the
          Palestinian People were being massacred by the Israeli Army. So I
          bided my time in silence.


          On July 31, 1988 I was teaching Summer School when King Hussein of
          Jordan announced that he was severing all forms of legal and
          administrative ties between Jordan and the West Bank. Later that
          afternoon in class, my students asked me what I thought would happen
          as a result of this decision: "Honestly speaking, I really do not
          know." When I returned to my office at the end of teaching that very
          class, there was a message sitting on my desk from Zuhdi Terzi asking
          me to come to New York immediately in order to discuss my Memorandum
          of Law.

          In attendance as this meeting convened at the PLO Mission to the
          United Nations in New York were Zuhdi Terzi, Nasser Al-Kidwe, and
          Ramsey Clark, as well as Tom and Sally Mallison. Since I had already
          drafted a comprehensive Memorandum of Law on how to create a
          Palestinian State, I had to do a good deal of the talking. The
          Palestinians had a list of questions from PLO Headquarters in Tunis
          that they wanted us to answer for transmission back to the PLO
          Leadership. The first question was: "Why should the PLO create an
          independent Palestinian state?" My answer was characteristically
          blunt and succinct: "If you do not create this State, you will
          forfeit the moral right to lead your people!" So that there was no
          misunderstanding during the process of transmission, I personally
          faxed that message to the highest levels of the PLO in Tunis. At the
          end of this meeting, I agreed to serve as Legal Advisor to the
          Palestine Liberation Organization on the creation of the state of
          Palestine--again free of change. Pro bono publico in the true sense
          of that hallowed legal tradition. Once again, standing in solidarity
          with the Palestinian People.

          My Memorandum of Law would serve as the PLO's position paper for
          their right to create the Palestinian State. Although originally
          provided to the PLO under attorney-client confidence, Ibrahim Abu-
          Lighoud arranged to have my Memorandum published in American-Arab
          Affairs, Number 25(Summer 1988). It is reprinted here from my book
          The Future of International Law and American Foreign Policy
          (Transnational Publishers; 1989), together with some additional
          explanatory background materials.

          The Palestinian Declaration of Independence

          On November 15, 1988, the Palestine National Council meeting in
          Algiers proclaimed the existence of the new independent state of
          Palestine. On that same day, after the close of prayers at Al-Aqsa
          Mosque in Jerusalem, the crowd came out of the Mosque into the Great
          Courtyard in front of the Dome of the Rock, where Mohammed (May Peace
          Be Upon Him) had ascended into heaven. Then one man got up and read
          the Palestinian Declaration of Independence right there in front of
          the assembled multitude.

          It was my advice to the PLO that the Palestinian State must also be
          proclaimed from their own capital in Jerusalem; that since this State
          would be proclaimed "In the Name of God."(which it was), the State
          must be proclaimed in the Grand Courtyard in front of the Al-Aqsa
          Mosque-the third Holiest site in Islam--at the close of prayers on
          Independence Day. I told the PLO that although I would very much like
          to be the person to do this job, it would be inappropriate for me
          because I was not a Palestinian. I likewise declined their request to
          write a first draft of the Palestinian Declaration of Independence
          for similar reasons. But some of my suggestions can be found there
          and in the attached Political Communiqu�. So much for a "government-
          in-exile." We had Leadership on the ground in Palestine!

          As a tribute to the leading role played by Palestinian Women during
          this original Intifada, the Palestinian Declaration of Independence
          established full legal equality between women and men. But upon my
          return to Palestine in 1997, I was told by two Palestinian feminist
          human rights leaders from Gaza and the West Bank, respectively, that
          male-chauvinist Palestinian judges had dis-interpreted this basic
          requirement of international human rights law to be non-self-
          executing and thus non-enforceable in court. We will have to
          countermand this patriarchal chicanery in the Constitution for the
          Republic of Palestine.

          Moving the Mountain

          Immediately after 15 November 1988, Palestinian President Yasser
          Arafat sought to travel to the United Nations General Assembly in New
          York in order to explain these extraordinary developments to the
          entire world at its Official Headquarters. But the Reagan
          Administration illegally deprived President Arafat of the requisite
          visa. Abu-Lighoud called to ask my advice: "If Mohammed can not come
          to the mountain, then bring the mountain to Mohammed. Have the
          General Assembly adjourn, and then reconvene at U.N. Headquarters in
          Geneva." So it was done. President Arafat addressed the U.N. General
          Assembly meeting in a Special Session at Geneva. This was the real
          start of the Middle East Peace Process--by the Palestinian People
          themselves, not by the United States government, and certainly not by
          Israel.

          As I had predicted to the PLO, the creation of Palestinian State
          became an instantaneous success. Palestine would eventually achieve
          de jure diplomatic recognition from about 130 states. The only
          regional hold-out was Europe and this was because of massive
          political pressure applied by the United States Government.
          Nevertheless, even the European States would afford the Palestinian
          State de facto diplomatic recognition.

          Furthermore, following the strategy I had worked out for the PLO, the
          Provisional Government of the State of Palestine would repeatedly
          invoke the U.N. General Assembly's Uniting for Peace Resolution
          (1950) to overcome U.S. vetoes at the Security Council in order to
          obtain for Palestine all the rights of a U.N. member state except the
          right to vote. In other words, Palestine eventually became a de
          facto, though not yet a de jure, U.N. member state. The votes were
          and still are there for Palestine's formal admission to U.N.
          membership. Only the illegal threat of a veto by the United State
          Government at the Security Council has kept the State of Palestine
          out of formal de jure U.N. membership. That latter objective is only
          a question of time-and unfortunately more bloodshed by the
          Palestinian People.

          On Their Own

          I summarized all of these legal, political, and diplomatic
          developments in my essay The International Legal Right of the
          Palestinian People to Self-Determination and an Independent State of
          Their Own, which was accepted for publication by the exact same
          American-Arab Affairs around the early Summer of 1990. And then Iraq
          invaded Kuwait. The Provisional Government of the State of Palestine
          refused to join the so-called Coalition put together by President
          Bush Sr. to attack Iraq, but instead did its best working in
          conjunction with Libya and Jordan to produce a peaceful resolution of
          this dispute. For this policy of principle and peace, the Palestinian
          People were and still are unjustly but predictably vilified by the
          world news media.

          While the crisis over Iraq was unfolding in the Fall of 1990, I
          corrected the page-proofs for my essay that was then scheduled to be
          the lead article in the next issue of American-Arab Affairs coming
          out around the turn of the new year. Then I received a notification
          from the American-Arab Affairs editorial office that the issue was at
          the printer and would soon be distributed. The next thing I heard was
          that the executive director of their parent organization had
          resigned. It was well known that American-Arab Affairs and its parent
          organization were heavily subsidized by Gulf Arab funds.

          The next thing I knew I was informed that this entire issue of
          American-Arab Affairs with my essay as the lead article had been
          suppressed, withdrawn, and would never be published. This issue never
          saw the light of day. Apparently the Gulf Arab funders of American-
          Arab Affairs and its parent organization did not want to see a lead
          article arguing that the Palestinian People had a right to self-
          determination and an independent nation state on the verge of their
          war against Iraq without the support of the Palestinians. I would
          later get this essay published in Volume 12 of the Scandinavian
          Journal of Development Alternatives (June-September 1993), from which
          it is reprinted here.

          Of course during the past 25 years of my public advocacy of the
          rights of the Palestinian People under international law, I have lost
          track of the number of times when my lectures, panels, publications,
          and appearances have been killed outright. But this was the first
          time that my pro-Palestinian viewpoints had been suppressed by an
          Arab source. It would not be the last time. This inexcusable instance
          of anti-Palestinian censorship by a leading Arab-American
          organization should make it crystal clear how truly desperate the
          plight of the Palestinian People really is. The Palestinian People
          have been repeatedly abandoned and betrayed by Arab Leaders. The
          Palestinians are on their own, and they know it full well.

          Middle East Peace Negotiations?

          This suppressed essay provided an excellent snapshot of the legal,
          political, and diplomatic situation that confronted the Palestinian
          People just before the United States and its so-called Coalition
          launched their genocidal war against Iraq. In order to get the
          support of the Arab Leaders for that slaughter, U.S. Secretary of
          State James Baker promised them that when the war was over the United
          States Government would do something for the Palestinians. Eventually
          the Middle East Peace Negotiations would open in Madrid in the Fall
          of 1991. At that time I was invited by the PLO to come to Tunis in
          order to speak at a Conference being held there in support of and in
          solidarity with the Palestinian Delegation then in Madrid. I also
          conducted consultations with PLO leaders in Tunis who had been
          illegally barred from the Middle East Peace Negotiations by the
          United States acting in conjunction with Israel despite the fact that
          the United Nations had long ago recognized the PLO as the sole and
          legitimate representative of the Palestinian People.

          Upon my return home, I was asked to serve as Legal Advisor to the
          Palestinian Delegation to the Middle East Peace Negotiations headed
          by Dr. Haidar Abdul-Shaffi. He is a person of great courage,
          integrity, and principle. I would fight the devil himself for Dr.
          Abdul-Shaffi. The work that I did as the Lawyer for Dr. Abdul-Shaffi
          and the Palestinian Delegation can be found here in my unpublished
          essay The Al Aqsa Intifada and International Law (30 August 2001). A
          substantially revised and edited revision of this essay was published
          as Law & Disorder in the Middle East, 35 The Link, No. 1 (Jan.-Mar.
          2002), by the Americans for Middle East Understanding (AMEU). Dr.
          Abdul-Shaffi expressly waived all attorney-client confidences with
          respect to my work as Legal Advisor to the Palestinian Delegation to
          the Middle East Peace Negotiations in the hope and expectation that
          it might do some good for me to substantiate the fact that the so-
          called Oslo Agreement of 13 September 1993 called for the imposition
          of a Palestinian Bantustan.

          The Oslo Bantustan

          It is a matter of public record that the Oslo Agreement was signed at
          the White House against the most vigorous objections by Dr. Abdul-
          Shaffi acting in reliance upon my advice and counsel. Indeed, a year
          prior thereto, Dr. Abdul-Shaffi had instructed me to draw up the
          Palestinian counteroffer to Israel's Bantustan Proposal. This I did
          in a Memorandum of Law entitled The Interim Agreement and
          International Law, which was later published in 22 Arab Studies
          Quarterly, Number 3(Summer 2000), that is reprinted here. My
          Memorandum of Law was approved by the Palestinian Delegation to the
          Middle East Peace Negotiations as well as by the Leadership of the
          PLO then headquartered in Tunis. In other words, my Memorandum of Law
          was the Palestinian alternative to Oslo, which is now dead as a dodo
          bird. Nevertheless, after the Oslo Bantustan was signed, I bided my
          time in silence for the next four years.


          Then, it was only fitting and appropriate that I had the opportunity
          to return to Palestine in December of 1997 in order to commemorate
          the 10th Anniversary of the original Intifada. I visited the very
          street where the Intifada had commenced. I then gave a Lecture before
          a Human Rights Conference convened by the Palestine Center for Human
          Rights headquartered in Gaza. The title of my lecture was Palestine
          Must Sue Israel for Genocide Before the International Court of
          Justice!, which is reprinted here from 20 Journal of Muslim Minority
          Affairs, Number 1 (2000). My thanks to the Institute of Muslim
          Minority Affairs for permission to reprint this article here.

          I then personally met with President Arafat in his recently bombed-
          out headquarters in Gaza. I discussed this proposed World Court
          Lawsuit against Israel for genocide with him. I then personally
          placed my written proposal for this World Court Lawsuit against
          Israel for genocide into President Arafat's hands. Since our last
          meeting in December of 1997, I have repeatedly asked for his
          authority to file this lawsuit for genocide against Israel on behalf
          of Palestine and the Palestinian People before the International
          Court of Justice in The Hague. Perhaps some day I shall receive this
          authorization-Inshallah!

          Jerusalem

          One of the most important issues I have dealt with repeatedly for the
          Palestinian People is Jerusalem. For example, I helped to launch a
          campaign to prevent the United States Government from illegally
          moving the United States Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. In order
          to head off this abomination, I prepared Memoranda of Law on the U.S.-
          Israel Land-Lease and Purchase Agreement of 1989, which I sent to
          Congressman Lee Hamilton who was then Chairman of the Subcommittee on
          Europe and the Middle East of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the
          U.S. House of Representatives. These Memoranda are reprinted here
          from American-Arab Affairs, Number 30 (Fall 1989). The Israel Lobby
          and its supporters in Congress are still attempting to pressure the
          United States government to move the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to
          Jerusalem. Of course this would be a political, legal, and diplomatic
          disaster.

          To be sure, there would certainly be no problem under international
          law and practice for the United States government to move its Embassy
          from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem as part of a comprehensive Middle East
          Peace Settlement whereby the Embassy would be simultaneously
          accredited to Israel and Palestine, with Jerusalem being recognized
          as the shared Capital of both States. Why and how this can be done is
          fully explained in my essay The Al Aqsa Intifada and International
          Law, which has already been commented upon above. Years ago the PLO
          had approved my proposal set forth therein on the Final Status of
          Jerusalem. But Israel wants this entire Baby for itself. And the
          United States has never been solomonic when it comes to Palestine and
          the Palestinian People.

          U.S. Mideast Policy v. International Law

          During the past two decades I have written many other publications
          dealing with Palestine, Palestinians, and International Law. For
          obvious reasons I do not have the space to reprint them all here. But
          in order to facilitate research into these heavily censored and
          outrightly suppressed subjects, I have included an incomplete
          Bibliography on this and some of my other writings on the "Middle
          East and International Law" in general. These other topics include
          Iran, Iraq, Lebanon, Libya, and Syria, inter alia. For reasons that
          should be obvious by now, it is almost impossible to get published on
          these subjects here in the United States of America-".the land of the
          free, and the home of the brave. ." It has been a real struggle for
          me just to get these meager offerings into print somewhere.

          But summing them all up into a nutshell it can be fairly said that
          U.S. Mideast Foreign Policy has not shown one iota of respect for
          international law. Of course the same can be said for the rest of
          American Imperial Policy around the world. In order to substantiate
          that latter proposition, the reader will have to consult the rest of
          my opera that are not listed here. But to return to Palestine,
          Palestinians, and International Law.


          Right after General Sharon instigated the Al Aqsa Intifada on 28
          September 2000, the United Nations Human Right Commission condemned
          Israel for inflicting a war crime and a crime against humanity upon
          the Palestinian People. The Nuremberg crime against humanity is the
          historical and legal precursor to the international crime of genocide
          as defined by the 1948 Genocide Convention.

          Historically, Israel's criminal conduct against the Palestinians has
          been financed, armed, equipped, supplied, and politically supported
          by the United States. Nevertheless, the United States is a founding
          sponsor of, and a contracting party to, both the Nuremberg Charter
          and the Genocide Convention, as well as the United Nations Charter.
          But these legal facts have never made any difference to the United
          States when it comes to its criminal mistreatment of the Palestinian
          People.

          The world has not yet heard even one word uttered by the United
          States and its NATO allies in favor of "humanitarian intervention"
          against Israel in order to protect the Palestinian People from
          Israeli war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide. The United
          States, its NATO allies and the Great Powers on the U.N. Security
          Council would not even dispatch a U.N. Charter Chapter 6 "monitoring
          force" to help protect the Palestinians, let alone even contemplate
          any type of U.N. Charter Chapter 7 "enforcement action" against
          Israel. Shudder the thought! The doctrine of "humanitarian
          intervention" clearly proves itself to be a joke and a fraud when it
          comes to stopping the ongoing Israeli campaign of genocide against
          the Palestinian People.

          As a matter of fact, in the case of Israel genocide has paid quite
          handsomely to the tune of about $5 billion per year by the United
          States government, the U.S. Congress, and the U.S. taxpayers, without
          whose munificence this instance of genocide would not be possible.
          Proving the validity of the proposition that genocide pays so long as
          it is done at the behest of the United States and its de facto or de
          jure allies. Dishumanitarian intervention by the United States of
          America against Palestine and the Palestinians.


          Just before the September 13, 1993 Oslo Agreement signing on the
          White House Lawn, I commented to a high-level official of the
          P.L.O.: "This document is like a straight-jacket. It will be very
          difficult to negotiate your way out of it!" This P.L.O. official
          readily agreed with my assessment of Oslo: "Yes, you are right. It
          will depend upon our negotiating skill."

          I have great respect for Palestinian negotiators. They have done the
          very best they can negotiating in good faith with an Israeli
          government that has been invariably backed up by the United States.
          But there has never been any good faith on the part of the Israeli
          government either before, during, or after Oslo. The same is true for
          the United States.

          Even if Oslo had succeeded, it would have resulted in the permanent
          imposition of a Bantustan upon the Palestinian People. But Oslo has
          run its course! Therefore, it is my purpose here to sketch out a New
          Direction for the Palestinian People and their supporters around the
          world to consider as an alternative to the Oslo process.

          First: We must immediately move for the de facto suspension of Israel
          throughout the entirety of the United Nations system, including the
          General Assembly and all U.N. subsidiary organs and bodies. We must
          do to Israel what the U.N. General Assembly has done to the genocidal
          rump Yugoslavia and to the criminal apartheid regime in South Africa.
          Here the legal basis for the de facto suspension of Israel at the
          U.N. is quite simple:

          As a condition for its admission to the United Nations Organization,
          Israel formally agreed, inter alia, to accept General Assembly
          Resolution 181 (II) (1947) (on partition and Jerusalem trusteeship)
          and General Assembly Resolution 194 (III) (1948) (Palestinian right
          of return). Nevertheless, the government of Israel has expressly
          repudiated both Resolution 181 (II) and Resolution 194 (III).
          Therefore, Israel has violated the conditions for its admission to
          U.N. membership and thus must be suspended on a de facto basis from
          any participation throughout the entire United Nations system.

          Second: Any further negotiations with Israel must be conducted on the
          basis of Resolution 181(II) and the borders it specifies; Resolution
          194 (III); subsequent General Assembly resolutions and Security
          Council resolutions; the Third and Fourth Geneva Conventions of 1949;
          the 1907 Hague Regulations; and other relevant principles of public
          international law.

          Third: We must abandon the fiction and the fraud that the United
          State government is an "honest broker" in the Middle East. The United
          States government has never been an "honest broker" since from well
          before the formal outset of the Middle East peace negotiations in
          1991. Rather, the United States has invariably sided with Israel
          against the Palestinians, as well as against the other Arab States.
          We need to establish some type of international framework to sponsor
          these negotiations where the Palestinian negotiators will not be
          subjected to the continual bullying, threats, intimidation, lies,
          bribery, and outright deceptions perpetrated by the United States
          working at the behest of Israel.

          Fourth: We must move to have the U.N. General Assembly adopt
          comprehensive economic, diplomatic, and travel sanctions against
          Israel according to the terms of the Uniting for Peace Resolution
          (1950). Pursuant thereto, the General Assembly's Emergency Special
          Session on Palestine is now in recess just waiting to be recalled.

          Fifth: The Provisional Government of the State of Palestine must sue
          Israel before the International Court of Justice in The Hague for
          inflicting acts of genocide against the Palestinian People in
          violation of the 1948 Genocide Convention.

          Sixth: We must pressure the Member States of the U.N. General
          Assembly to found an International Criminal Tribunal for Palestine
          (ICTP) in order to prosecute Israeli war criminals, both military and
          civilian, including and especially Israeli political leaders. The
          U.N. General Assembly can set up this ICTP by a majority vote
          pursuant to its powers to establish "subsidiary organs" under U.N.
          Charter article 22. This International Criminal Tribunal for
          Palestine should be organized by the U.N. General Assembly along the
          same lines as the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former
          Yugoslavia (ICTY) that has already been established by the U.N.
          Security Council.

          Seventh: Concerned citizens and governments all over the world must
          organize a comprehensive campaign of economic disinvestment and
          divestment from Israel along the same lines of what they did to the
          former criminal apartheid regime in South Africa. This original
          worldwide disinvestment/divestment campaign played a critical role in
          dismantling the criminal apartheid regime in South Africa. For much
          the same reasons, a worldwide disinvestment/divestment campaign
          against Israel will play a critical role in dismantling its criminal
          apartheid regime against the Palestinian People living in occupied
          Palestine as well as in Israel itself.

          During the course of a public lecture at Illinois State University in
          Bloomington-Normal on 30 November 2000, I issued a call for the
          establishment of a worldwide campaign of disinvestment/divestment
          against Israel, which I later put on the internet. In response
          thereto, Students for Justice in Palestine at the University of
          California at Berkley launched a divestment campaign against Israel
          there. Right now the city of Ann Arbor Michigan is also considering
          divesting from Israel. And just recently the Palestinian Students at
          the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (whom I am privileged
          to advise) launched an Israeli divestment campaign here. This
          movement is taking off.

          These seven steps taken in conjunction with each other should provide
          the Palestinian People with enough political and economic leverage
          needed to negotiate a just and comprehensive peace settlement with
          Israel. By contrast, if the Oslo process is continued, it will
          inevitably result in the permanent imposition of a Bantustan upon the
          Palestinian People living in occupied Palestine, as well as the final
          dispossession and disenfranchisement of all Palestinian People living
          in their diaspora. Consequently, I call upon all Palestinian People
          living everywhere, as well as their supporters and friends around the
          world, to consider and support this New Direction that is sketched
          out here.

          FREE PALESTINE!

          F.A.B.

          Good Friday 2002

          Francis A. Boyle
          Law Building
          504 E. Pennsylvania Ave.
          Champaign, IL 61820 USA
          217-333-7954(voice)
          217-244-1478(fax)
          fboyle@l...








          _________________________________________________________________
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        • james tan
          eduard, thanks for ur views. james. From: Eduard Alf Reply-To: existlist@yahoogroups.com To: Subject: RE:
          Message 4 of 16 , Apr 4, 2002
          • 0 Attachment
            eduard,

            thanks for ur views.

            james.


            From: "Eduard Alf" <yeoman@...>
            Reply-To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
            To: <existlist@yahoogroups.com>
            Subject: RE: [existlist] Re: A Real Life Application? The Media's Role
            Date: Wed, 3 Apr 2002 22:46:25 -0500

            james,

            I think it is a stretch to put this in terms of Nazi killings or even of the
            American revolution. I think a balanced review of the mid-east situation
            would reveal that the Palestinians are being used ... just as they were in
            the 1948 war. The objective of the surrounding countries in the Arab world
            is to see the destruction of Israel and one would have to naive to think
            that the Americans would not stand by and let this happen. But how are the
            Arab leaders dealing with this situation? They don't want the Palestinians
            in their own countries and the best they are doing is providing resources
            for more terrorism. Granted, one might argue that the US is doing the same
            for Israel, but the support for the US in this regard is divided. What has
            Syria, Iraq, Iran, etc. done to provide some constructive support. They
            cant even stay away from fighting each other or their own peoples.

            This is a really sorry situation and it is going to take some statesman to
            come forward to develop a new track. Unfortunately, I don't see this in any
            of the present leaders. Everyone is simply reacting to short term events.
            It will be very difficult for this statesman to come out of the Arab
            countries as his/her attempt to develop a power base may be seen as an
            internal threat, and would be quickly eliminated. And right now we don't
            have someone like Lester B. Pearson [Suez crisis era] in Canada. It does
            not look good.

            eduard
            -----Original Message-----
            From: james tan [mailto:tyjfk@...]
            Sent: Wednesday, April 03, 2002 10:01 PM
            To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com
            Subject: [existlist] Re: A Real Life Application? The Media's Role



            i see it as a vicious cycle of violence, where violence begets violence.
            1,
            the palestinians are (or feels) oppressed under israeli rulership, much
            as
            jews felt oppressed under the early days of nazi, in terms of rights,
            lack
            of autonomy, their own land, and the controversial holy land of
            jurasalem.
            if american can say, give me freedom or give me death, i don't see why
            the
            palestinian can't say that too, and everyone of the items listed can be
            perceived as important to the palestinians as freedom is to american. i
            am
            speaking in terms of american sentiments just to illustrate that there
            can
            be cultural rift in understanding what land, citizens rights, holy land,
            can
            be to the palestinians, lest some americans feels the palestinians are
            making a big fuss over small things. 2, the rights of the palestinians
            are
            not respected by the israeli authority, much as the nazi does not see
            much
            of the jews demand for rights and respect. i suppose there muct have been
            attempts by the palestinian authority to negotiate peacefully through
            politcally correct diplomatic channels. 3, their peaceful attempts
            bascially
            has no effect or results, after years of such attempts. where there is a
            big
            difference in military power, the weaker side basically has no weightage
            in
            what they have to ask. would a nazi consider a jew's request for more
            rights? and just as when hitler's third reich was sending the jews by the
            thousands to the gas chamber daily totally ignored by the international
            community (at least in the early years of ww2), the international
            communities basically ignore the plight of the palestinians. the
            arab/muslim
            countries do sympathize with the palestine, but their sympathy is limited
            to
            just that: emotion; they may be angry, resentful, but no real action is
            taken, esp when america the superpower is seen to be behind israel. 4,
            palestine is basically isolated in her own misery and frustration.
            powerless, isolated, alone, frustrated. 5, in this situation, a
            psycholgical
            question is, how does she cope with her frustration in her situation? one
            must bear in mind that she is totally powerless to fight israel in the
            traditional millitary confrontation, yet she IS very angry and
            frustrated.
            she resorted to terrorist attacks. it is a sneaky, lowly, hard to detect
            kind of attack, not strong enough to destroy israel, but enough to
            inflict
            pain and vent frustration to 'compensate' what they perceive the
            injustice
            they get from israel. but with such a big difference in power between
            israel
            and palestine, it is the only method they could think of. they do not
            think
            the gandi style is going to work with israel, just as it wouldn't work
            with
            the nazis. just as it is violent and immoral to the extent that they hit
            on
            civilians, it is also a measure of their desparation and lack of
            resources.
            they do not wish to be underdog for as long as israel sees fit, though
            they
            themselves know they are the militarily weaker. 6, israel (rather,
            sharon's
            strategy) responded to their terrorist attacks by military occupation.
            they
            sent tanks right into arafat's backyard, holding him hostage in his own
            quarter and house, executing in military style any palestinian they only
            vaguely suspect as potential terrorist; the power to decide life and
            death
            on the lives of palestinian is solely on the arbitrary discretion of any
            israeli soldiers. just as there are bloods on the hands of the
            palestinians,
            it would be like a ostrich head in the sand to deny there is no blood in
            the
            hand of israeli. 7, the palestinian are incensed, not only at israel's
            aggression, but at their own impotence. but they must still do something.
            8,
            goto 5.

            contrary to chris' contention, i do think news report can be biased. in
            their selection, in their perspective, in their omission, in the words
            they
            choose to describe. if a news report only emphasize the immorality of
            terrorist attacks, omit israeli's hardline policy and their own immoral
            actions against palestinian civilians, select only pieces that support
            their
            own biased perspective thus presenting a patched work representation of
            the
            situation, they CAN influence and distort perception in the readers. and
            readers are the voters in a democratic society. the saving grace in a
            american society is their openness, they have many different newspapers
            and
            tv broadcast each free to express their own views, so that there is a
            good
            mix, a kind of balance, no monopoly, and it is left to the readers
            themselves to decide. i don't understand what chris meant by saying the
            palestinian has weak argument. what argument? i certainly think they need
            to
            have a independent state of their own, something they can call their own
            so
            that they need not always be in a state of reaction to what they perceive
            as
            israel's unfair treatment. this is the job of the united nations? the
            catch
            is, everytime there is something coming up for that, it is sabotaged by
            some
            sucide bombers. the palestinian need to pray and ask themselves what they
            want realistically. it certainly doesn't help in the peace process, and a
            creation of a palestinian state, to have some suicide bombers killing yet
            more civilians; they need help, and suicide bombers are thwarting the
            very
            attempt of the helpers to help them. it can be endless if they persist in
            their senseless sucidal attacks. as for all the morality talk prior to
            this,
            i think what really works is not such talks; it is a powerful
            intervention
            by some united nations or america that will work, just as the state of
            israel was created as retold by swm. i do not see tommy's 'theory'
            proposing
            any practical way out, and such theory do not have practical value, only
            good for a abstract discussion forum like that.

            james.


            From: "Christopher Bobo" <cbobo@...>
            Reply-To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com
            To: "Wisdom Forum" <WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com>
            Subject: Re: [WisdomForum] Re: A Real Life Application? The Media's Role
            Date: Wed, 3 Apr 2002 10:43:56 -0800

            Tommy said:
            >>The media is who we are as various corporate
            entities. It is how internal communication within and between
            corporate entities takes place.<<

            I think much is said of media bias and I also think that for the most
            part
            people who make this argument against the media are merely trying to
            rationalize the weakness of their own position. They find that people
            don't
            find their arguments persuasive and then they feel, since they believe
            they
            are right, the true cause they are loosing the argument is because the
            media
            is biased. This is the age-old fallacy of blaming the messenger when you
            don't like the message.

            The American media is diverse and strives for objectivity and balance. I
            can't speak for what goes on is Scotland or Europe. Typically, on any
            news
            report or discussion forum on the current conflict in in Israel, we hear
            from both sides. We hear what Sharon has to say, and we hear what Arafat
            has to say. We hear from Hanna Ashawi (sp?) or some other high ranking
            Palestinian figure and then we hear from Netanyahu. Typically, this
            process
            proceeds like a debate or the typical American jury trial.

            The problem with the current situation is that the Palestinians have a
            weak
            argument and they are loosing that argument. Perhaps the reason they are
            loosing is because they are not accustomed to making their case in a
            public
            forum as is required in democracies. Open societies promote a degree of
            rhetorical skill and argumentative skill that is to be sure lacking in
            autocratic systems.

            I think the Palestinians are loosing the argument in the U.S. because (a)
            they try to explain and justify suicide bombing. Yet this is just
            wrong-minded. You are not going to convince anyone with a moral compass
            in
            any kind of working condition that the intentional killing of civilians,
            including children and the elderly is acceptable. It really is to the
            point
            where one wants to say--we don't care what your political grievances are,
            intentionally killing innocent people is not the way to solve them. And
            that really is the problem. Not only are the Palestinians wrong in their
            methods they seem to be trying to deceive us about the true situation.
            First, they say these bombings are not coordinated efforts of any
            authority
            or group the lone acts of frustrated individuals chafing under the boot
            of
            Israeli occupation. The problem with this argument is that it is
            patently
            false. Lone frustrated individuals do not have access to high explosives
            and detonators. Some one, and I don't believe it's these young men and
            women who are blowing themselves up, are very skilled at acquiring and
            constructing bombs. That's no something you typically learn in high
            school.
            And these bombs must be expensive. I've never personally bought
            explosives
            or detonators or the materials to package this stuff into a body bomb,
            but
            I
            can't believe that its cheap. I don't believe people we held in
            "slavery"
            as the Palestinian spokeswoman said last night, could afford to acquire,
            construct and deploy these bombs.
            There must exist an organized network supplying the materials,
            construction
            and planning for these attacks. A bombing a day is not a series of
            spontaneous acts, it's an organzied conspiracy. And let's be honest, the
            target selection is pretty sophiscated and calculated to cause maximum
            damage and terror.

            These are not spontaneous acts of aggrieved people. So why do the
            Palestinians try to tell us that they are? I think that at least we in
            America may be kind hearted and willing to give people the benefit of the
            doubt, but we are not stupid.

            So, the simple point is. We hear and see what is going on. We see
            Palestinians celebrating suicide terrorists, posting their pictures in
            public places, hanging them on street lights, and praising them. We know
            that the familiies of suicide bombers are given moral and financial
            support
            and that such acts are encouraged rather discouraged. Arafat himself in
            his
            addresses in Arabic supports and calls for such things. And when we point
            out that these things are wrong, we are confronted with the dual
            non-sense
            arguments that (a) we are biased toward Israel and (b) we are biased
            because
            our media is biased towards Israel. But the fact of the matter is that
            the
            Palestinians are wrong to adopt terror targeting civilians as a policy
            and
            a
            tactic, which they clearly have on the "corporate level", and they are
            mistaken if they think they can deceive us into believing otherwise by a
            lot
            of spurious accusations. No one is every going to win any arguments if
            their
            aim is to justify the killing of babies. Anyone who has studied public
            speech and debate knows that killing babies is a loosing argument from
            the
            outset.

            Aside from a military conflict that produces a decivisive victory for one
            side over the other, the only other way the situation will improve is if
            the
            Palestinians cut the BS and stop killing innocent civilians. Absent
            that,
            Israel is completely justified in its acts of self-defense. Quite
            honestly,
            Israel seems to have done very little in its efforts combatting suicide
            bombers to be criticized for. Unlike the Palestinians, they have not
            started blowing up people sitting down a holiday banquets or bombing
            weddings. If the Israelis start attacking weddings, banquets,
            restuarants
            and hotels, then the Palestinians can complain. Until then, they need to
            work on their strategy, tactics and rhetoric if they really want to
            persuade
            anyone and stop complaining about bias.


            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]









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          • Nickerson, James A.
            James, Politically speaking, I d like to see the USA reduce its financial aid of Isreal to the same amount it provides Palestine. I think the Peace process
            Message 5 of 16 , Apr 4, 2002
            • 0 Attachment
              James,

              Politically speaking, I'd like to see the USA reduce its 'financial aid' of
              Isreal to the same amount it provides Palestine. I think the Peace process
              would be severely strengthened. (Isreal receives more aid from us than
              another country in the world!)

              Philosophically speaking, truth and PEACE are much more accesible when one
              has no [material] distractions. Power, wealth and physical items tend to
              command our attention and our focus.

              My, perhaps sophmoric but relevant, two cents.

              Jay

              -----Original Message-----
              From: james tan [mailto:tyjfk@...]
              Sent: Wednesday, April 03, 2002 22:01
              To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com
              Subject: [existlist] Re: A Real Life Application? The Media's Role



              i see it as a vicious cycle of violence, where violence begets violence. 1,
              the palestinians are (or feels) oppressed under israeli rulership, much as
              jews felt oppressed under the early days of nazi, in terms of rights, lack
              of autonomy, their own land, and the controversial holy land of jurasalem.
              if american can say, give me freedom or give me death, i don't see why the
              palestinian can't say that too, and everyone of the items listed can be
              perceived as important to the palestinians as freedom is to american. i am
              speaking in terms of american sentiments just to illustrate that there can
              be cultural rift in understanding what land, citizens rights, holy land, can

              be to the palestinians, lest some americans feels the palestinians are
              making a big fuss over small things. 2, the rights of the palestinians are
              not respected by the israeli authority, much as the nazi does not see much
              of the jews demand for rights and respect. i suppose there muct have been
              attempts by the palestinian authority to negotiate peacefully through
              politcally correct diplomatic channels. 3, their peaceful attempts bascially

              has no effect or results, after years of such attempts. where there is a big

              difference in military power, the weaker side basically has no weightage in
              what they have to ask. would a nazi consider a jew's request for more
              rights? and just as when hitler's third reich was sending the jews by the
              thousands to the gas chamber daily totally ignored by the international
              community (at least in the early years of ww2), the international
              communities basically ignore the plight of the palestinians. the arab/muslim

              countries do sympathize with the palestine, but their sympathy is limited to

              just that: emotion; they may be angry, resentful, but no real action is
              taken, esp when america the superpower is seen to be behind israel. 4,
              palestine is basically isolated in her own misery and frustration.
              powerless, isolated, alone, frustrated. 5, in this situation, a psycholgical

              question is, how does she cope with her frustration in her situation? one
              must bear in mind that she is totally powerless to fight israel in the
              traditional millitary confrontation, yet she IS very angry and frustrated.
              she resorted to terrorist attacks. it is a sneaky, lowly, hard to detect
              kind of attack, not strong enough to destroy israel, but enough to inflict
              pain and vent frustration to 'compensate' what they perceive the injustice
              they get from israel. but with such a big difference in power between israel

              and palestine, it is the only method they could think of. they do not think
              the gandi style is going to work with israel, just as it wouldn't work with
              the nazis. just as it is violent and immoral to the extent that they hit on
              civilians, it is also a measure of their desparation and lack of resources.
              they do not wish to be underdog for as long as israel sees fit, though they
              themselves know they are the militarily weaker. 6, israel (rather, sharon's
              strategy) responded to their terrorist attacks by military occupation. they
              sent tanks right into arafat's backyard, holding him hostage in his own
              quarter and house, executing in military style any palestinian they only
              vaguely suspect as potential terrorist; the power to decide life and death
              on the lives of palestinian is solely on the arbitrary discretion of any
              israeli soldiers. just as there are bloods on the hands of the palestinians,

              it would be like a ostrich head in the sand to deny there is no blood in the

              hand of israeli. 7, the palestinian are incensed, not only at israel's
              aggression, but at their own impotence. but they must still do something. 8,

              goto 5.

              contrary to chris' contention, i do think news report can be biased. in
              their selection, in their perspective, in their omission, in the words they
              choose to describe. if a news report only emphasize the immorality of
              terrorist attacks, omit israeli's hardline policy and their own immoral
              actions against palestinian civilians, select only pieces that support their

              own biased perspective thus presenting a patched work representation of the
              situation, they CAN influence and distort perception in the readers. and
              readers are the voters in a democratic society. the saving grace in a
              american society is their openness, they have many different newspapers and
              tv broadcast each free to express their own views, so that there is a good
              mix, a kind of balance, no monopoly, and it is left to the readers
              themselves to decide. i don't understand what chris meant by saying the
              palestinian has weak argument. what argument? i certainly think they need to

              have a independent state of their own, something they can call their own so
              that they need not always be in a state of reaction to what they perceive as

              israel's unfair treatment. this is the job of the united nations? the catch
              is, everytime there is something coming up for that, it is sabotaged by some

              sucide bombers. the palestinian need to pray and ask themselves what they
              want realistically. it certainly doesn't help in the peace process, and a
              creation of a palestinian state, to have some suicide bombers killing yet
              more civilians; they need help, and suicide bombers are thwarting the very
              attempt of the helpers to help them. it can be endless if they persist in
              their senseless sucidal attacks. as for all the morality talk prior to this,

              i think what really works is not such talks; it is a powerful intervention
              by some united nations or america that will work, just as the state of
              israel was created as retold by swm. i do not see tommy's 'theory' proposing

              any practical way out, and such theory do not have practical value, only
              good for a abstract discussion forum like that.

              james.


              From: "Christopher Bobo" <cbobo@...>
              Reply-To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com
              To: "Wisdom Forum" <WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com>
              Subject: Re: [WisdomForum] Re: A Real Life Application? The Media's Role
              Date: Wed, 3 Apr 2002 10:43:56 -0800

              Tommy said:
              >>The media is who we are as various corporate
              entities. It is how internal communication within and between
              corporate entities takes place.<<

              I think much is said of media bias and I also think that for the most part
              people who make this argument against the media are merely trying to
              rationalize the weakness of their own position. They find that people don't

              find their arguments persuasive and then they feel, since they believe they
              are right, the true cause they are loosing the argument is because the media

              is biased. This is the age-old fallacy of blaming the messenger when you
              don't like the message.

              The American media is diverse and strives for objectivity and balance. I
              can't speak for what goes on is Scotland or Europe. Typically, on any news
              report or discussion forum on the current conflict in in Israel, we hear
              from both sides. We hear what Sharon has to say, and we hear what Arafat
              has to say. We hear from Hanna Ashawi (sp?) or some other high ranking
              Palestinian figure and then we hear from Netanyahu. Typically, this process

              proceeds like a debate or the typical American jury trial.

              The problem with the current situation is that the Palestinians have a weak
              argument and they are loosing that argument. Perhaps the reason they are
              loosing is because they are not accustomed to making their case in a public
              forum as is required in democracies. Open societies promote a degree of
              rhetorical skill and argumentative skill that is to be sure lacking in
              autocratic systems.

              I think the Palestinians are loosing the argument in the U.S. because (a)
              they try to explain and justify suicide bombing. Yet this is just
              wrong-minded. You are not going to convince anyone with a moral compass in
              any kind of working condition that the intentional killing of civilians,
              including children and the elderly is acceptable. It really is to the point
              where one wants to say--we don't care what your political grievances are,
              intentionally killing innocent people is not the way to solve them. And
              that really is the problem. Not only are the Palestinians wrong in their
              methods they seem to be trying to deceive us about the true situation.
              First, they say these bombings are not coordinated efforts of any authority
              or group the lone acts of frustrated individuals chafing under the boot of
              Israeli occupation. The problem with this argument is that it is patently
              false. Lone frustrated individuals do not have access to high explosives
              and detonators. Some one, and I don't believe it's these young men and
              women who are blowing themselves up, are very skilled at acquiring and
              constructing bombs. That's no something you typically learn in high school.

              And these bombs must be expensive. I've never personally bought explosives
              or detonators or the materials to package this stuff into a body bomb, but I

              can't believe that its cheap. I don't believe people we held in "slavery"
              as the Palestinian spokeswoman said last night, could afford to acquire,
              construct and deploy these bombs.
              There must exist an organized network supplying the materials, construction
              and planning for these attacks. A bombing a day is not a series of
              spontaneous acts, it's an organzied conspiracy. And let's be honest, the
              target selection is pretty sophiscated and calculated to cause maximum
              damage and terror.

              These are not spontaneous acts of aggrieved people. So why do the
              Palestinians try to tell us that they are? I think that at least we in
              America may be kind hearted and willing to give people the benefit of the
              doubt, but we are not stupid.

              So, the simple point is. We hear and see what is going on. We see
              Palestinians celebrating suicide terrorists, posting their pictures in
              public places, hanging them on street lights, and praising them. We know
              that the familiies of suicide bombers are given moral and financial support
              and that such acts are encouraged rather discouraged. Arafat himself in his
              addresses in Arabic supports and calls for such things. And when we point
              out that these things are wrong, we are confronted with the dual non-sense
              arguments that (a) we are biased toward Israel and (b) we are biased because

              our media is biased towards Israel. But the fact of the matter is that the
              Palestinians are wrong to adopt terror targeting civilians as a policy and a

              tactic, which they clearly have on the "corporate level", and they are
              mistaken if they think they can deceive us into believing otherwise by a lot

              of spurious accusations. No one is every going to win any arguments if their

              aim is to justify the killing of babies. Anyone who has studied public
              speech and debate knows that killing babies is a loosing argument from the
              outset.

              Aside from a military conflict that produces a decivisive victory for one
              side over the other, the only other way the situation will improve is if the

              Palestinians cut the BS and stop killing innocent civilians. Absent that,
              Israel is completely justified in its acts of self-defense. Quite honestly,

              Israel seems to have done very little in its efforts combatting suicide
              bombers to be criticized for. Unlike the Palestinians, they have not
              started blowing up people sitting down a holiday banquets or bombing
              weddings. If the Israelis start attacking weddings, banquets, restuarants
              and hotels, then the Palestinians can complain. Until then, they need to
              work on their strategy, tactics and rhetoric if they really want to persuade

              anyone and stop complaining about bias.



              ----- Original Message -----
              From: Tommy Beavitt
              Sent: Wednesday, April 03, 2002 12:14 AM
              To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com
              Subject: [WisdomForum] Re: A Real Life Application?

              At 11:30 pm +0000 2/4/02, swmaerske wrote:
              >Tommy Beavitt said:"I guess that you are being encouraged by the
              >media in the US to think of the Palestinian/terrorist/Arab side as
              >the incomprehensible Other? Here in Scotland there is virtual
              >unanimity that the converse is true judging by today's Lesley Riddoch
              >talk show on BBC Radio Scotland (www.bbc.co.uk/radioscotland)."
              >
              >SWM:
              >
              >So does it all come down then, to what media we are listening to? Is
              >there no truth beyond that?

              But this is the point I have been trying to make about corporate
              entities. To the extent that the Palestine/Israeli conflict is
              relevent it is relevant to the corporate entities within which we
              play our various roles. To say that it "just comes down... to the
              media" is a bit like saying consciousness "just comes down" to the
              neurons in our brains. The media is who we are as various corporate
              entities. It is how internal communication within and between
              corporate entities takes place.

              I think there is truth "beyond that", yes. As you rightly point out,
              we can choose to immerse ourselves in a wider range of media
              representing a range of overlapping corporate entities. This helps to
              increase the sum total of communication allowing us to understand the
              position of Self relative to Other and therefore of Whole.

              >Actually the American media is quite mixed and a lot of the
              >newscasters are flabbergasted by the scope of the Israeli response
              >and have clearly communicated that. CNN, for instance, actually has a
              >marked pro-Palestinian bias and has been slamming the Israelis while
              >Fox News is more Israeli oriented and MSNBC is somewhere in the
              >middle. We also get BBC here and various other news channels from
              >other countries so it is instructive to see their points of view. I
              >find Canadian news to be among the most pro-Palestinian/anti-Israeli
              >(along with the French broadcasts) so I guess there is something to
              >be said for the supposition that our opinions about these things are
              >less about what we know than what we are conditioned by repeated
              >commentary and news slants to accept as factual. fortunately in the
              >U.S. (or at least in the area where I am) we get quite a range of
              >views which forces one to compare packaging of the stories.

              I am starting to realise that the homogeneity of the US media in the
              immediate aftermath of 9/11 was an aberration which is beginning to
              be corrected. For instance, what of those so-called neo-nazis who
              hang out in Montana and Idaho? I guess they have their own version of
              "solidarity with the palestinians" in the face of the zionist foe?
              And what of this War Times which has recently surfaced in San
              Francisco? Do you include this publication, which includes regular
              contributions from the likes of Noam Chomsky, in your list of media?

              >Personally, I think that Chris Bobo has a point in that I think the
              >Palestinians are the more obdurate here. I am not sure about your
              >claim about the "Zionist" penchant for dissembling. From where I sit
              >it does seem to me that the Israelis offered a serious proposal which
              >would have given the Palestinians much of what they wanted (in fact
              >most of what they were then saying they wanted) about 18 months ago.
              >Arafat's decision to walk away from a deal led directly to 1) the
              >renewed intifada which he apparently gave the go-ahead for, including
              >the suicide bombing campaign, and 2) the downfall of the Israeli
              >Labor government under Barak which was seriously trying to meet the
              >Palestinians half way. In exchange they got a much more right wing
              >opponent who, perhaps, better suited them since he makes a deal that
              >much harder to achieve. In fact, I think the evidence is clear that
              >the Palestinians don't want a deal short of elimination of Israel.
              >Until they alter that view, meaningful compromise is quite impossible.

              I did semi-regret that statement. Although I do in many ways continue
              to recognise as well as to a certain extent admire the "Zionist
              penchant for dissembling". Bill Clinton was another prime suspect in
              this game with his "that all depends on what your definition of is
              is". Whenever we see Israeli spokespersons interviewed on the TV the
              interviewers appear to be asking them straight questions and
              receiving extremely crooked answers which turn the question on its
              head. Wheras the Palestinians come over as very sincere and
              passionate. (I don't say that this is a media trick any more than I
              believe statements like "Jews control the media". It is obvious from
              where I stand that right now they do not.)

              This does raise the question of whether the truth is "out there" and
              can be understood intuitively or empirically by employing the senses
              to interpret data such as facial expression, tone of voice and the
              meaning of words used (in which case, the Israelis are liars and the
              Palestinians tell the truth) or whether the question is somewhat more
              complicated.

              I do acknowledge that the zionist entity known as Israel is currently
              fighting a battle for its survival and this means that it will employ
              whatever means it can, including the terror tactics it claims to
              deprecate, to try and maintain its integrity. These are the
              consequences of survivalism at its most gruesome.

              If communicationalism was instead the raison d'etre there wouldn't be
              this frantic insistence on survival both of individual citizens and
              the entity within which they play roles. But it would be unreasonable
              to expect this to occur overnight.

              >I would add one more thing before I head off to dinner: I think
              >philosophers can only be relevant insofar as what they talk and think
              >about has a real application in the real world. If it can't, then why
              >bother?

              With reference to which corporate entity/entities must philosophers
              justify their "relevance"? I would have thought that philosophy was
              one of those activities which found justification in its own terms,
              ie. its criterion was that of truth. The "real world" of which you
              speak sounds to me like a construct consisting of the interactions
              between different communicating (to a lesser or greater extent)
              corporate and individual entities.

              Thank you for your continuing engagement with me.

              Tommy








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            • Eduard Alf
              Jay, Lets try to get some facts in here. The 1975 population of Israel was 3m [million] Jews and 0.4m Arabs. In the Israeli occupied areas the Jews were then
              Message 6 of 16 , Apr 4, 2002
              • 0 Attachment
                Jay,

                Lets try to get some facts in here. The 1975 population of Israel was 3m
                [million] Jews and 0.4m Arabs. In the Israeli occupied areas the Jews were
                then essentially zero and the Arab 1.1m. The total of Jordan, Gulf Coast,
                Interior, Yemen, Oman, Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan and Egypt was
                140m. So even though we are speaking of 1975, the comparison of population
                is 140m to 3m or a ratio of close to 50 to 1. Sure the US is providing
                funding to Israel, but that is understandable in relation to the politics of
                the region and the set objective of the Arab league for the destruction of
                Israel. Yes one could say that "truth and PEACE" are more accessible when
                one has no material distractions, but whom exactly are we speaking about?
                Are the Israelis distracted or is the Arab League which has had the
                opportunity for billions in oil revenues? Where has this money gone? It
                has not only been wasted on wars with Israel, but also by wars within the
                Arab League itself. What has been spent in behalf of the Palestinians other
                than sending more guns and training of terrorists? Why is it that it took
                till 2002 for Saudi Arabia to propose a "normalization" of relations and
                recognition of Israel as a nation? Keep in mind that the refuge camps have
                a long history. In the 1948 war they were told to exit their properties, so
                that Arab League could have a free-fire zone. The thought was this was
                going to be an easy victory. However when the Israelis managed to win that
                war, the Palestinians were empty handed in the camps. It has been my
                impression that they are being used.

                Yes the Israelis may well be wrong in what they are presently doing. And
                perhaps there is an error in the US support. But I don't see large
                demonstrations trying to get a change of policy on the other side. Where
                are the protesters demanding fair treatment of Israel in the streets of
                Saudi Arabia, Syria and Iraq? One gets the feeling that it is easier to
                protest against the US because for one reason ... they can ... and the US
                makes a good target, especially when it is practically guaranteed that you
                will make the evening news.

                eduard
                -----Original Message-----
                From: Nickerson, James A. [mailto:james.nickerson@...]
                Sent: Thursday, April 04, 2002 9:43 AM
                To: 'existlist@yahoogroups.com'
                Subject: RE: [existlist] Re: A Real Life Application? The Media's Role


                James,

                Politically speaking, I'd like to see the USA reduce its 'financial aid'
                of
                Isreal to the same amount it provides Palestine. I think the Peace process
                would be severely strengthened. (Isreal receives more aid from us than
                another country in the world!)

                Philosophically speaking, truth and PEACE are much more accesible when one
                has no [material] distractions. Power, wealth and physical items tend to
                command our attention and our focus.

                My, perhaps sophmoric but relevant, two cents.

                Jay



                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • CLSeaWasp@aol.com
                Can someone tell me why exactly the U.S. is so damn supportive of Israel all the time? Is it just cause we helped set them up in 1948? [Non-text portions of
                Message 7 of 16 , Apr 4, 2002
                • 0 Attachment
                  Can someone tell me why exactly the U.S. is so damn supportive of Israel all
                  the time? Is it just 'cause we helped set them up in 1948?


                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                • John Taft
                  Simply because we relate to them and their plight. We saw the results of WW2 and the butchery of 7 million humans and we just can t forget it. We also feel
                  Message 8 of 16 , Apr 4, 2002
                  • 0 Attachment
                    Simply because we relate to them and their plight. We saw the results of
                    WW2 and the butchery of 7 million humans and we just can't forget it.

                    We also feel for the Palestinians too, and yet the Israelis have pulled
                    themselves up by the bootstraps, it is hard to feel the same as the Arabs
                    seem to be locked into a low productive tribal mentality, it has been said
                    that the only thing an Arab does well is hate.

                    Perhaps we are looking for balance, 6 million in a sea of 150 million need a
                    friend.

                    The basis of everything: Christian = Jew = Islam = Others, including
                    non-believers, we are all members of human race!

                    John
                    ----- Original Message -----
                    From: <CLSeaWasp@...>
                    To: <existlist@yahoogroups.com>
                    Sent: Thursday, April 04, 2002 6:06 PM
                    Subject: Re: [existlist] Re: A Real Life Application? The Media's Role


                    > Can someone tell me why exactly the U.S. is so damn supportive of Israel
                    all
                    > the time? Is it just 'cause we helped set them up in 1948?
                    >
                    >
                    > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > Our Home: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/existlist
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                  • Nickerson, James A.
                    I don t think it has anything to do with ideology. How many African nations are constantly butchering their neighbors and/or the minorities within their own
                    Message 9 of 16 , Apr 5, 2002
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                      I don't think it has anything to do with ideology. How many African nations
                      are constantly butchering their neighbors and/or the minorities within their
                      own countries? Do we intervene in the same way?

                      As to relating to their (Israelis) plight of WW2....there were a heck of
                      alot more Russians decimated at the hands of the Nazis and we're not taking
                      care of the former Soviet Union in a proportional way.

                      I'm all for assisting countries in need (when we are able) but there should
                      be parity.

                      -----Original Message-----
                      From: John Taft [mailto:J-Taft@...]
                      Sent: Thursday, April 04, 2002 21:49
                      To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
                      Subject: Re: [existlist] Re: A Real Life Application? The Media's Role


                      Simply because we relate to them and their plight. We saw the results of
                      WW2 and the butchery of 7 million humans and we just can't forget it.

                      We also feel for the Palestinians too, and yet the Israelis have pulled
                      themselves up by the bootstraps, it is hard to feel the same as the Arabs
                      seem to be locked into a low productive tribal mentality, it has been said
                      that the only thing an Arab does well is hate.

                      Perhaps we are looking for balance, 6 million in a sea of 150 million need a
                      friend.

                      The basis of everything: Christian = Jew = Islam = Others, including
                      non-believers, we are all members of human race!

                      John
                      ----- Original Message -----
                      From: <CLSeaWasp@...>
                      To: <existlist@yahoogroups.com>
                      Sent: Thursday, April 04, 2002 6:06 PM
                      Subject: Re: [existlist] Re: A Real Life Application? The Media's Role


                      > Can someone tell me why exactly the U.S. is so damn supportive of Israel
                      all
                      > the time? Is it just 'cause we helped set them up in 1948?
                      >
                      >
                      > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > Our Home: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/existlist
                      > (Includes community book list, chat, and more.)
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                      Our Home: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/existlist
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                    • Eduard Alf
                      James, I am not that much up on African wars, but should think that there has been a lot of intervention. Angola is an example. How much did the US spend to
                      Message 10 of 16 , Apr 5, 2002
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                        James,

                        I am not that much up on African wars, but should think that there has been
                        a lot of intervention. Angola is an example. How much did the US spend to
                        counteract the Cuban support in that conflict. Or was that Namibia [it is
                        hard to remember]? Then there was French military which went into Chad.
                        What about the US involvement in Somalia? What of the French involvement in
                        Algeria.

                        Perhaps the wars in Africa do not hit the headlines, because there is not an
                        immediate interest on the part of the public. After all newspapers are
                        there to make money. This can be noticed in Quebec. The French newspapers
                        tend to have more news on Africa than the English newspapers.

                        As to the new Russia Federation, I wonder how much money is now spent to
                        keep it out of a total economic meltdown. As to the old Soviet Union, there
                        was an American military contingent sent to maintain the Tran Siberian
                        railway at the time of the struggle of the Whites against the Reds around
                        1918.

                        With respect to the middle east, keep in mind that the struggle is not
                        Israel against the Palestinians, but rather the overall state of conflict
                        between Israel and the Arab League. That is a population ratio of something
                        like 50 to 1.

                        eduard


                        -----Original Message-----
                        From: Nickerson, James A. [mailto:james.nickerson@...]
                        Sent: Friday, April 05, 2002 9:04 AM
                        To: 'existlist@yahoogroups.com'
                        Subject: RE: [existlist] Re: A Real Life Application? The Media's Role


                        I don't think it has anything to do with ideology. How many African
                        nations
                        are constantly butchering their neighbors and/or the minorities within
                        their
                        own countries? Do we intervene in the same way?

                        As to relating to their (Israelis) plight of WW2....there were a heck of
                        alot more Russians decimated at the hands of the Nazis and we're not
                        taking
                        care of the former Soviet Union in a proportional way.

                        I'm all for assisting countries in need (when we are able) but there
                        should
                        be parity.


                        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                      • james tan
                        From: Christopher Bobo Reply-To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com To: Wisdom Forum Subject: Re: [WisdomForum] Re:
                        Message 11 of 16 , Apr 6, 2002
                        • 0 Attachment
                          From: "Christopher Bobo" <cbobo@...>
                          Reply-To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com
                          To: "Wisdom Forum" <WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com>
                          Subject: Re: [WisdomForum] Re: A Real Life Application? The Media's Role
                          Date: Sat, 6 Apr 2002 14:23:39 -0800

                          Tommy wrote:
                          >>The point is though that they do not. What I am calling your
                          attention to is not the question of whether it is right or wrong to
                          kill other people but the scale of the action that is being employed
                          by the Palestinions. Perhaps if they had nuclear weapons they would
                          nuke Israel in a grand, final gesture of hopelessness. But the point
                          is, they do not. They don't even have any tanks!<<

                          In don't think that the scale of the Israeli actions are disproportionate to
                          the threat. The Israeli's have not wantonly been killing women, children or
                          the unarmed. They have engaged in battle with men firing at them with
                          AK-47s. The Palestinians should not start a fight with a superior force and
                          then claim the fight is unfair. Just look at the Taliban and Al Qaeda.
                          They found themselves in a similar situation. I'm curious to know if that
                          is an especial feature of Arab or Islamic culture. I'm really growing
                          increasingly curious about the value system such acts express. And I think
                          it's a good thing that the Palestinians don't have nuclear weapons, since
                          they seem to be prone two what I might regard as irrational acts. I'm not
                          as concerned about the Israeli's, however, employing the nuclear weapons
                          that they do have against the Palestinians, because as far as I can see, the
                          Israelis appear to be behaving rationally.

                          The U.S. certainly does not refrain from using B-52, B-1s, Tommahawk Cruise
                          Missles, AC-130 gunships, daisy cutter bombs, bunker buster bombs and
                          thermobaric bombs against those who do not have them. What rationale would
                          the Israelis have to leave their tanks and armored personnel carriers at
                          home when they go off to fight. And Tommy, that you could even complain
                          about this point makes me wonder about your views, when the entire object of
                          warfare since the practically the dawn of time has been to have better and
                          more sophisticated weapons than your opponent and to use them to you
                          advantage to defeat your enemy. Surely you remember the passage from the
                          stone age to the metal age, and the passage from bronze weapons to iron,
                          from calvary to armored tanks. Why should the Israelis commit suicide to
                          satisfy your idea of fairness in a fight.

                          And I think all this talk about Palestinian "hopelessness" is pure
                          propaganda and non-sense. You should examine it more carefully. Take, for
                          instance, the 18 year old girl who decided one day to become a suicide
                          bomber. She was engaged to be married and was planning to go to college.
                          In what way was she hopeless? I don't think hopeless people have video
                          cameras and TV sets for the purpose of making and showing suicide bomber
                          last wills and testaments. American TV interviewed one of the families of
                          one of the early suicide bombers and he seemed to come from a nice home, he
                          was educated, he had nice clothes, his family was well fed, oddly enough he
                          had a think for Disney knick knacks and had a lot of Mickey Mouse statues,
                          posters and memorabilia in his room. In what sense was he hopeless. In my
                          book, truly hopeless people are starving, homeless, lack basic comforts,
                          wear tattered clothes, etc. None of these indicia of hopelessness apply to
                          the Palestinians that I have seem. Rather, I suspect there is something
                          going on behind this unsupported rhetoric of hopelessness. People are just
                          making choices about how to achieve their aims. That 18 year old girl was
                          offered a choice--get married and got to college or go straight to heaven as
                          a suicide bomber. She choose to go straight to heaven. The choice was
                          hers. To lay the blame on others for that choice is simply bad faith.

                          Tommy said:
                          >>A country can only take responsibility for its actions if it has a
                          border and an army capable of defending it. Palestine has neither of
                          these things but its people are discriminated against on account of
                          their race and culture and confined into refugee camps which have
                          become their permanent homes.<<

                          But the Paletinians do not yet constitute a country, and I think you are
                          wrong about this. The Palestinians Authority, I believe, has a security
                          force of some 30,000. What have they done with it. Absolutely nothing to
                          secure peaceful co-existence with its neighbor, Israel.

                          I have been reading Kant's Perpetual Peace lately and come across these
                          worlds "We ordinarily assume that no one may act inimically toward another
                          except when he has been actively injured by the other. This is quite
                          correct if both are under civil law, for, by entering into such a state ,
                          they afford each other the requisite security through the sovereign which hs
                          power over both. Man (or the people) in the state of nature deprives me of
                          this security and injures me, if he is near me, by this mere status of his,
                          even though he does not injure me actively; he does so by the lawlessness of
                          his condition which constantly threatens me. Therefore, I can compel him
                          either to enter with me in a state of civil law or to remove himself from my
                          neighborhood....All mem who can reciprocally influence each other must stand
                          under some civil constitution." And here the Israelis are with respect to
                          the radical Palestinians--either they we place themselves under a civil law
                          with the Israelis, or the Israelis will be compelled to attempt to remove
                          them from the neighborhood.

                          Tommy wrote:
                          >>The situation is directly analogous to that of South Africa ten years
                          ago. There is almost universal agreement after the successful
                          election of the ANC to power that what Mandela and his black
                          compatriots did was just and right. But look at the right wing press
                          prior to the fall of apartheid and you will find all sorts of
                          justifications for its continuation, mainly based around the general
                          premise (however well disguised) of "you can't trust the blacks". The
                          violence that was taking place in the townships, both black-on-white
                          and black-on-black, was cited as one of the reasons that the blacks
                          weren't to be trusted. This is exactly the argument Israel is using
                          to justify its continued racist oppression of a subjugated people.<<

                          But Tommy, the situation is nothing like that in South Africa. The ANC was
                          negotiating with the white majority government peacefully. The ANC was not
                          fire-bombing restaurants or killing civilians, as far as I recall. Even the
                          blacks in the white townships were fighting the South African security
                          forces, I don't recall them bursting into wedding and banquets and killing
                          every white person they could find, although there were no doubt instances
                          of lawless murder motivated by racial hatred. The two situations are
                          incomparable. No one is saying you can't trust the Palestinians. Even the
                          right wing is saying there are Palestinians who want peace and who they can
                          negotiate with, but it may be highly likely that Yasser Arafat is not that
                          person. Arafat is no Mandela. I think he's amply proved that. Mandela
                          rejected even his own lifelong mate and wife when it became apparent that
                          she was involved in a political murder, whereas Arafat is the sponsor of
                          murderers.

                          If he were a leader the stature of Mandela, I believe this conflict would
                          never have reached the level of violence and wanton destruction that it has,
                          and what's more, it would have resulted in a final peace by now. Arafat has
                          done absolutely nothing effectieve to indicate a willing to make peace with
                          the Israelis or to stop suicide bombing. At best, he plays lip service to
                          peace when he speaks English for the Western press, but when he speaks
                          Arabic to his supporters he's ordering them to Jihad, Jihad, and more Jihad
                          and acquiring weapons and bombs from Iran.

                          Tommy wrote:
                          >>Back to communicationalism: we must trust the Other (currently being
                          defined, generally, as "Arab", "terrorist", "Al-Quaeda" etc.) not to
                          nuke us or otherwise make our citizens dead and our countries
                          uninhabitable. This trust will not be achieved by preventing the
                          Other from developing "weapons of mass destruction", such as those
                          possessed in the large part by the US and Israel, but by ensuring
                          that the Other has as much of a stake in the overall health and
                          wealth of the world as we do. This quite patently not presently the
                          case. We will only begin to understand all the reasons why the Other
                          doesn't feel as if s/he has as much of a stake in the overall health
                          of the world as we do once we start taking on board the factors that
                          go into the decision of someone to strap explosives to his or her
                          body to attack an oppressive enemy.<<

                          The great statesman Henry Clay once said "Cultivate calmness of mind but
                          prepare for the worst." Ronald Reagan prudently observed that we should
                          "Trust but verifiy." The stakes are too high to be naively optimistic, or
                          to allow ourselves to be misguided by idealism. I agree that the other
                          should have as much at stake in the world as do we. What's more, I think
                          that they do have as much at stake in the world as we do but that they
                          motivations and reasons for action are very different from what you suppose,
                          Tommy. You know, Osama bin Laden did not seek to wage war against the U.S.
                          because he was poor, or that Arabs were poor or suffering, but because U.S.
                          troops are in what he regards as the sacred land. Bin Laden and his Sheik
                          friends are multimillionaires. They have more money than you and your
                          neighbors can even dream of. They are not poor and desperate. And neither
                          are the terrorists. Many of them were educated, had jobs, family and money.
                          They are engineers and computer programmers. They are motivated by
                          hopelessness or desperation and you should stop deluding yourself that they
                          are. You've been listening to their rhetoric far too long and not observing
                          the facts. They have thousands of dollars to spend on bombs, millions on
                          weapons, and plenty of cash to feed and equip armies of terrorists.


                          Tommy asked:
                          >>Dropping communicationalism for the moment and thinking instead about
                          pragmatic solutions to the problem of the Middle East, why don't you
                          create a homeland for the Jewish People in America and let the
                          Palestinians have Palestine? It would be cheaper in the long run and
                          there is really quite a lot of land in the US, a lot of it better
                          than what you will find in Palestine. And you folks do seem to get
                          along remarkably well with one another. Just think of the economic
                          benefits of having all those clever people under the one roof so to
                          speak. Sharon could be given a ranch in Idaho. We in Europe will
                          agree on our part to change our immigration laws to permit more Arabs
                          to settle here (there already are quite a few, especially in France).<<

                          Palestinian Muslims as well as Muslims from all of the world are free to
                          immigrate to America and have been welcomed here, as have been Jews from all
                          over Europe. They have all been guarantee the equal protection of the laws
                          and life free from discrimination and persecution because of their race,
                          creed or national origin. There are about 3 million Arab Americans here and
                          8 million Jewish Americans. And that is more Arabs than are in the West
                          Bank and more Jews than are in the entire state of Israel. They all already
                          have a homeland here. The only thing asked of them--in addition to paying
                          taxes, of course--is that that respect the creed that this is one nation
                          under God with liberty and justice for all, or in other words they pledge
                          allegiance to the constitution of the United States, which requires a
                          separation of church and state. Because this is one nation, there cannot be
                          other nations within it--except for Native American Tribes, which are
                          themselves sovereign nations which pre-existed the U.S. We know from our
                          history, in particular the Civil War, that we cannot have separate nations
                          in the U.S. and that once a state enters the Union, it cannot leave. I'm
                          sure we'd take in the rest suffeing in Israel today, as this country is
                          already home to over 24 million people who were not born here, but were, of
                          course, welcomed. To be sure, they'd have to agree to live in peace and
                          obey the laws of the land, but that's not a very burdensome requirement
                          after all.

                          And I'm serious, as usual.

                          Chris

                          ----- Original Message -----
                          From: Tommy Beavitt
                          Sent: Thursday, April 04, 2002 3:37 PM
                          To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com
                          Subject: Re: [WisdomForum] Re: A Real Life Application? The Media's Role

                          At 9:47 am -0800 4/4/02, Christopher Bobo wrote:
                          >Tommy observed:
                          > >>I don't think we can reasonably complain that people who have lived
                          >for more than a generation in a refugee camp take exception to their
                          >plight, strap explosives to their bodies and obliterate a handful of
                          >those who must directly be considered their oppressors.<<
                          >
                          >I do and I think we must so complain. The world is populated with
                          >people who believe they have gotten a raw deal from one party or
                          >another. If all the aggrieved peoples of the world were to start
                          >strapping explosives to their bodies and obliterating those who they
                          >considered their oppressors, there would be mountains of dead people
                          >all over the world and no end to the carnage. Which is why such
                          >conduct is clearly beyond the pale of any notion of civilization and
                          >is so unprecedented. Perhaps all Europeans in Africa would be piled
                          >together and slaughtered. Perhaps all Chinese in Tibet or Singapore
                          >would be next. All Koreans in Japan might feel inclined to start
                          >killing Japanese. Native Americans would start killing everyone is
                          >sight who wasn't a native American. Under your philosophy, we might
                          >as well just nuke the planet and be done with it now.

                          The point is though that they do not. What I am calling your
                          attention to is not the question of whether it is right or wrong to
                          kill other people but the scale of the action that is being employed
                          by the Palestinions. Perhaps if they had nuclear weapons they would
                          nuke Israel in a grand, final gesture of hopelessness. But the point
                          is, they do not. They don't even have any tanks!

                          A country can only take responsibility for its actions if it has a
                          border and an army capable of defending it. Palestine has neither of
                          these things but its people are discriminated against on account of
                          their race and culture and confined into refugee camps which have
                          become their permanent homes.

                          It is only Israel that can be considered capable of acting
                          responsibly to change this situation because only it has both borders
                          and an army.

                          The situation is directly analogous to that of South Africa ten years
                          ago. There is almost universal agreement after the successful
                          election of the ANC to power that what Mandela and his black
                          compatriots did was just and right. But look at the right wing press
                          prior to the fall of apartheid and you will find all sorts of
                          justifications for its continuation, mainly based around the general
                          premise (however well disguised) of "you can't trust the blacks". The
                          violence that was taking place in the townships, both black-on-white
                          and black-on-black, was cited as one of the reasons that the blacks
                          weren't to be trusted. This is exactly the argument Israel is using
                          to justify its continued racist oppression of a subjugated people.

                          Dropping communicationalism for the moment and thinking instead about
                          pragmatic solutions to the problem of the Middle East, why don't you
                          create a homeland for the Jewish People in America and let the
                          Palestinians have Palestine? It would be cheaper in the long run and
                          there is really quite a lot of land in the US, a lot of it better
                          than what you will find in Palestine. And you folks do seem to get
                          along remarkably well with one another. Just think of the economic
                          benefits of having all those clever people under the one roof so to
                          speak. Sharon could be given a ranch in Idaho. We in Europe will
                          agree on our part to change our immigration laws to permit more Arabs
                          to settle here (there already are quite a few, especially in France).

                          Only joking. Kind of.

                          Tommy








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                        • John Taft
                          James, Well written, I can t find one iota of contention about your thoughts on your perception of the relation of the Palestinians and the Israeli s. This is
                          Message 12 of 16 , Apr 6, 2002
                          • 0 Attachment
                            James,

                            Well written, I can't find one iota of contention about your thoughts on
                            your perception of the relation of the Palestinians and the Israeli's.

                            This is the 70% that makes up American thought, which though has
                            preconceived ideas about what an Israeli is and same for a Palestinian, yet
                            basis their perception on the actual situation that is in play. Suicide
                            bombers are terrorists to the receiving party, even they may be political or
                            religious heroes to the sending party, this is all that matters.

                            I can't help feel that the moderate Palestinians are going along with what
                            is happening in the hopes of getting a windfall gain at no expense of their
                            own, hopefully not though, and I hope they are just the silent majority that
                            only wants fair play.

                            John
                            ----- Original Message -----
                            From: "james tan" <tyjfk@...>
                            Sent: Saturday, April 06, 2002 8:51 PM
                            Subject: [existlist] Re: A Real Life Application? The Media's Role


                            > From: "Christopher Bobo" <cbobo@...>
                            > Reply-To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com
                            > To: "Wisdom Forum" <WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com>
                            > Subject: Re: [WisdomForum] Re: A Real Life Application? The Media's Role
                            > Date: Sat, 6 Apr 2002 14:23:39 -0800
                            >
                            > Tommy wrote:
                            > >>The point is though that they do not. What I am calling your
                            > attention to is not the question of whether it is right or wrong to
                            > kill other people but the scale of the action that is being employed
                            > by the Palestinions. Perhaps if they had nuclear weapons they would
                            > nuke Israel in a grand, final gesture of hopelessness. But the point
                            > is, they do not. They don't even have any tanks!<<
                            >
                            > In don't think that the scale of the Israeli actions are disproportionate
                            to
                            > the threat. The Israeli's have not wantonly been killing women, children
                            or
                            > the unarmed. They have engaged in battle with men firing at them with
                            > AK-47s. The Palestinians should not start a fight with a superior force
                            and
                            > then claim the fight is unfair. Just look at the Taliban and Al Qaeda.
                            > They found themselves in a similar situation. I'm curious to know if that
                            > is an especial feature of Arab or Islamic culture. I'm really growing
                            > increasingly curious about the value system such acts express. And I
                            think
                            > it's a good thing that the Palestinians don't have nuclear weapons, since
                            > they seem to be prone two what I might regard as irrational acts. I'm not
                            > as concerned about the Israeli's, however, employing the nuclear weapons
                            > that they do have against the Palestinians, because as far as I can see,
                            the
                            > Israelis appear to be behaving rationally.
                            >
                            > The U.S. certainly does not refrain from using B-52, B-1s, Tommahawk
                            Cruise
                            > Missles, AC-130 gunships, daisy cutter bombs, bunker buster bombs and
                            > thermobaric bombs against those who do not have them. What rationale
                            would
                            > the Israelis have to leave their tanks and armored personnel carriers at
                            > home when they go off to fight. And Tommy, that you could even complain
                            > about this point makes me wonder about your views, when the entire object
                            of
                            > warfare since the practically the dawn of time has been to have better and
                            > more sophisticated weapons than your opponent and to use them to you
                            > advantage to defeat your enemy. Surely you remember the passage from the
                            > stone age to the metal age, and the passage from bronze weapons to iron,
                            > from calvary to armored tanks. Why should the Israelis commit suicide to
                            > satisfy your idea of fairness in a fight.
                            >
                            > And I think all this talk about Palestinian "hopelessness" is pure
                            > propaganda and non-sense. You should examine it more carefully. Take,
                            for
                            > instance, the 18 year old girl who decided one day to become a suicide
                            > bomber. She was engaged to be married and was planning to go to college.
                            > In what way was she hopeless? I don't think hopeless people have video
                            > cameras and TV sets for the purpose of making and showing suicide bomber
                            > last wills and testaments. American TV interviewed one of the families of
                            > one of the early suicide bombers and he seemed to come from a nice home,
                            he
                            > was educated, he had nice clothes, his family was well fed, oddly enough
                            he
                            > had a think for Disney knick knacks and had a lot of Mickey Mouse statues,
                            > posters and memorabilia in his room. In what sense was he hopeless. In
                            my
                            > book, truly hopeless people are starving, homeless, lack basic comforts,
                            > wear tattered clothes, etc. None of these indicia of hopelessness apply
                            to
                            > the Palestinians that I have seem. Rather, I suspect there is something
                            > going on behind this unsupported rhetoric of hopelessness. People are
                            just
                            > making choices about how to achieve their aims. That 18 year old girl was
                            > offered a choice--get married and got to college or go straight to heaven
                            as
                            > a suicide bomber. She choose to go straight to heaven. The choice was
                            > hers. To lay the blame on others for that choice is simply bad faith.
                            >
                            > Tommy said:
                            > >>A country can only take responsibility for its actions if it has a
                            > border and an army capable of defending it. Palestine has neither of
                            > these things but its people are discriminated against on account of
                            > their race and culture and confined into refugee camps which have
                            > become their permanent homes.<<
                            >
                            > But the Paletinians do not yet constitute a country, and I think you are
                            > wrong about this. The Palestinians Authority, I believe, has a security
                            > force of some 30,000. What have they done with it. Absolutely nothing to
                            > secure peaceful co-existence with its neighbor, Israel.
                            >
                            > I have been reading Kant's Perpetual Peace lately and come across these
                            > worlds "We ordinarily assume that no one may act inimically toward another
                            > except when he has been actively injured by the other. This is quite
                            > correct if both are under civil law, for, by entering into such a state ,
                            > they afford each other the requisite security through the sovereign which
                            hs
                            > power over both. Man (or the people) in the state of nature deprives me
                            of
                            > this security and injures me, if he is near me, by this mere status of
                            his,
                            > even though he does not injure me actively; he does so by the lawlessness
                            of
                            > his condition which constantly threatens me. Therefore, I can compel him
                            > either to enter with me in a state of civil law or to remove himself from
                            my
                            > neighborhood....All mem who can reciprocally influence each other must
                            stand
                            > under some civil constitution." And here the Israelis are with respect
                            to
                            > the radical Palestinians--either they we place themselves under a civil
                            law
                            > with the Israelis, or the Israelis will be compelled to attempt to remove
                            > them from the neighborhood.
                            >
                            > Tommy wrote:
                            > >>The situation is directly analogous to that of South Africa ten years
                            > ago. There is almost universal agreement after the successful
                            > election of the ANC to power that what Mandela and his black
                            > compatriots did was just and right. But look at the right wing press
                            > prior to the fall of apartheid and you will find all sorts of
                            > justifications for its continuation, mainly based around the general
                            > premise (however well disguised) of "you can't trust the blacks". The
                            > violence that was taking place in the townships, both black-on-white
                            > and black-on-black, was cited as one of the reasons that the blacks
                            > weren't to be trusted. This is exactly the argument Israel is using
                            > to justify its continued racist oppression of a subjugated people.<<
                            >
                            > But Tommy, the situation is nothing like that in South Africa. The ANC
                            was
                            > negotiating with the white majority government peacefully. The ANC was not
                            > fire-bombing restaurants or killing civilians, as far as I recall. Even
                            the
                            > blacks in the white townships were fighting the South African security
                            > forces, I don't recall them bursting into wedding and banquets and killing
                            > every white person they could find, although there were no doubt instances
                            > of lawless murder motivated by racial hatred. The two situations are
                            > incomparable. No one is saying you can't trust the Palestinians. Even
                            the
                            > right wing is saying there are Palestinians who want peace and who they
                            can
                            > negotiate with, but it may be highly likely that Yasser Arafat is not that
                            > person. Arafat is no Mandela. I think he's amply proved that. Mandela
                            > rejected even his own lifelong mate and wife when it became apparent that
                            > she was involved in a political murder, whereas Arafat is the sponsor of
                            > murderers.
                            >
                            > If he were a leader the stature of Mandela, I believe this conflict would
                            > never have reached the level of violence and wanton destruction that it
                            has,
                            > and what's more, it would have resulted in a final peace by now. Arafat
                            has
                            > done absolutely nothing effectieve to indicate a willing to make peace
                            with
                            > the Israelis or to stop suicide bombing. At best, he plays lip service to
                            > peace when he speaks English for the Western press, but when he speaks
                            > Arabic to his supporters he's ordering them to Jihad, Jihad, and more
                            Jihad
                            > and acquiring weapons and bombs from Iran.
                            >
                            > Tommy wrote:
                            > >>Back to communicationalism: we must trust the Other (currently being
                            > defined, generally, as "Arab", "terrorist", "Al-Quaeda" etc.) not to
                            > nuke us or otherwise make our citizens dead and our countries
                            > uninhabitable. This trust will not be achieved by preventing the
                            > Other from developing "weapons of mass destruction", such as those
                            > possessed in the large part by the US and Israel, but by ensuring
                            > that the Other has as much of a stake in the overall health and
                            > wealth of the world as we do. This quite patently not presently the
                            > case. We will only begin to understand all the reasons why the Other
                            > doesn't feel as if s/he has as much of a stake in the overall health
                            > of the world as we do once we start taking on board the factors that
                            > go into the decision of someone to strap explosives to his or her
                            > body to attack an oppressive enemy.<<
                            >
                            > The great statesman Henry Clay once said "Cultivate calmness of mind but
                            > prepare for the worst." Ronald Reagan prudently observed that we should
                            > "Trust but verifiy." The stakes are too high to be naively optimistic, or
                            > to allow ourselves to be misguided by idealism. I agree that the other
                            > should have as much at stake in the world as do we. What's more, I think
                            > that they do have as much at stake in the world as we do but that they
                            > motivations and reasons for action are very different from what you
                            suppose,
                            > Tommy. You know, Osama bin Laden did not seek to wage war against the
                            U.S.
                            > because he was poor, or that Arabs were poor or suffering, but because
                            U.S.
                            > troops are in what he regards as the sacred land. Bin Laden and his Sheik
                            > friends are multimillionaires. They have more money than you and your
                            > neighbors can even dream of. They are not poor and desperate. And
                            neither
                            > are the terrorists. Many of them were educated, had jobs, family and
                            money.
                            > They are engineers and computer programmers. They are motivated by
                            > hopelessness or desperation and you should stop deluding yourself that
                            they
                            > are. You've been listening to their rhetoric far too long and not
                            observing
                            > the facts. They have thousands of dollars to spend on bombs, millions on
                            > weapons, and plenty of cash to feed and equip armies of terrorists.
                            >
                            >
                            > Tommy asked:
                            > >>Dropping communicationalism for the moment and thinking instead about
                            > pragmatic solutions to the problem of the Middle East, why don't you
                            > create a homeland for the Jewish People in America and let the
                            > Palestinians have Palestine? It would be cheaper in the long run and
                            > there is really quite a lot of land in the US, a lot of it better
                            > than what you will find in Palestine. And you folks do seem to get
                            > along remarkably well with one another. Just think of the economic
                            > benefits of having all those clever people under the one roof so to
                            > speak. Sharon could be given a ranch in Idaho. We in Europe will
                            > agree on our part to change our immigration laws to permit more Arabs
                            > to settle here (there already are quite a few, especially in France).<<
                            >
                            > Palestinian Muslims as well as Muslims from all of the world are free to
                            > immigrate to America and have been welcomed here, as have been Jews from
                            all
                            > over Europe. They have all been guarantee the equal protection of the
                            laws
                            > and life free from discrimination and persecution because of their race,
                            > creed or national origin. There are about 3 million Arab Americans here
                            and
                            > 8 million Jewish Americans. And that is more Arabs than are in the West
                            > Bank and more Jews than are in the entire state of Israel. They all
                            already
                            > have a homeland here. The only thing asked of them--in addition to paying
                            > taxes, of course--is that that respect the creed that this is one nation
                            > under God with liberty and justice for all, or in other words they pledge
                            > allegiance to the constitution of the United States, which requires a
                            > separation of church and state. Because this is one nation, there cannot
                            be
                            > other nations within it--except for Native American Tribes, which are
                            > themselves sovereign nations which pre-existed the U.S. We know from our
                            > history, in particular the Civil War, that we cannot have separate nations
                            > in the U.S. and that once a state enters the Union, it cannot leave. I'm
                            > sure we'd take in the rest suffeing in Israel today, as this country is
                            > already home to over 24 million people who were not born here, but were,
                            of
                            > course, welcomed. To be sure, they'd have to agree to live in peace and
                            > obey the laws of the land, but that's not a very burdensome requirement
                            > after all.
                            >
                            > And I'm serious, as usual.
                            >
                            > Chris
                            >
                            > ----- Original Message -----
                            > From: Tommy Beavitt
                            > Sent: Thursday, April 04, 2002 3:37 PM
                            > To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com
                            > Subject: Re: [WisdomForum] Re: A Real Life Application? The Media's Role
                            >
                            > At 9:47 am -0800 4/4/02, Christopher Bobo wrote:
                            > >Tommy observed:
                            > > >>I don't think we can reasonably complain that people who have lived
                            > >for more than a generation in a refugee camp take exception to their
                            > >plight, strap explosives to their bodies and obliterate a handful of
                            > >those who must directly be considered their oppressors.<<
                            > >
                            > >I do and I think we must so complain. The world is populated with
                            > >people who believe they have gotten a raw deal from one party or
                            > >another. If all the aggrieved peoples of the world were to start
                            > >strapping explosives to their bodies and obliterating those who they
                            > >considered their oppressors, there would be mountains of dead people
                            > >all over the world and no end to the carnage. Which is why such
                            > >conduct is clearly beyond the pale of any notion of civilization and
                            > >is so unprecedented. Perhaps all Europeans in Africa would be piled
                            > >together and slaughtered. Perhaps all Chinese in Tibet or Singapore
                            > >would be next. All Koreans in Japan might feel inclined to start
                            > >killing Japanese. Native Americans would start killing everyone is
                            > >sight who wasn't a native American. Under your philosophy, we might
                            > >as well just nuke the planet and be done with it now.
                            >
                            > The point is though that they do not. What I am calling your
                            > attention to is not the question of whether it is right or wrong to
                            > kill other people but the scale of the action that is being employed
                            > by the Palestinions. Perhaps if they had nuclear weapons they would
                            > nuke Israel in a grand, final gesture of hopelessness. But the point
                            > is, they do not. They don't even have any tanks!
                            >
                            > A country can only take responsibility for its actions if it has a
                            > border and an army capable of defending it. Palestine has neither of
                            > these things but its people are discriminated against on account of
                            > their race and culture and confined into refugee camps which have
                            > become their permanent homes.
                            >
                            > It is only Israel that can be considered capable of acting
                            > responsibly to change this situation because only it has both borders
                            > and an army.
                            >
                            > The situation is directly analogous to that of South Africa ten years
                            > ago. There is almost universal agreement after the successful
                            > election of the ANC to power that what Mandela and his black
                            > compatriots did was just and right. But look at the right wing press
                            > prior to the fall of apartheid and you will find all sorts of
                            > justifications for its continuation, mainly based around the general
                            > premise (however well disguised) of "you can't trust the blacks". The
                            > violence that was taking place in the townships, both black-on-white
                            > and black-on-black, was cited as one of the reasons that the blacks
                            > weren't to be trusted. This is exactly the argument Israel is using
                            > to justify its continued racist oppression of a subjugated people.
                            >
                            > Dropping communicationalism for the moment and thinking instead about
                            > pragmatic solutions to the problem of the Middle East, why don't you
                            > create a homeland for the Jewish People in America and let the
                            > Palestinians have Palestine? It would be cheaper in the long run and
                            > there is really quite a lot of land in the US, a lot of it better
                            > than what you will find in Palestine. And you folks do seem to get
                            > along remarkably well with one another. Just think of the economic
                            > benefits of having all those clever people under the one roof so to
                            > speak. Sharon could be given a ranch in Idaho. We in Europe will
                            > agree on our part to change our immigration laws to permit more Arabs
                            > to settle here (there already are quite a few, especially in France).
                            >
                            > Only joking. Kind of.
                            >
                            > Tommy
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            > _________________________________________________________________
                            > Join the world's largest e-mail service with MSN Hotmail.
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                            >
                          • james tan
                            From: Christopher Bobo Reply-To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com To: Wisdom Forum Subject: Re: [WisdomForum] Re:
                            Message 13 of 16 , Apr 7, 2002
                            • 0 Attachment
                              From: "Christopher Bobo" <cbobo@...>
                              Reply-To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com
                              To: "Wisdom Forum" <WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com>
                              Subject: Re: [WisdomForum] Re: A Real Life Application? The Media's Role
                              Date: Sat, 6 Apr 2002 21:49:34 -0800

                              Tommy wrote:
                              >>It seems to me also that your argument tends in the direction of
                              regarding there to be some kind of inherent racial element here, eg.
                              Arabs are inherently unstable whereas blacks are inherently
                              peace-loving. I don't think that is the case. While I am no
                              determinist, I do believe that behaviour such as suicide bombing or
                              necklacing (the treatment given by blacks to other blacks who
                              collaborated with the apartheid oppressors) is elicited by the
                              situation within which choices such as "shall I get married or go
                              straight to heaven?" are made.<<

                              Taking this, your most grievous accusation against me, I will attribute it
                              to your fatigue before bedtime. I do not now, nor have I ever believed that
                              people are inherently one thing or the other because of their race or
                              ethnicity. What I am trying to understand is what I suspect may be learned
                              cultural differences that manifest themselves in different ways in different
                              people. There is no doubt that there are good people and bad people of
                              every color, race and creed. What I think we are discussing are the
                              attributes, inclinations, characters, decisions and actions of political
                              leaders chosen to guide particular societies. Necklacing and suicide
                              bombing are very different things. Necklacing was directed at people
                              believed to be guilty of specific wrongful acts, whereas suicide bombing is
                              directed against people innocent of any wrongdoing under any rational
                              account. And that is a huge difference. Still, I think necklacing
                              suspected collaborators is morally wrong, although not as reprehensible as
                              suicide bombing weddings, banquets and restaurants.

                              Tommy said:
                              >>There my objection breaks down and so does yours I suppose since we
                              cannot, as Sartreans, ever say of somebody that they are inherently
                              this or that. It is the choices they make from moment to moment
                              within the contingency of their situation and how these choices are
                              viewed from without.<<

                              I think we must make a distinction here. It is true that we may not know
                              what lies deep inside the character of Arafat as a man. But as a political
                              leader, we must judge him on the ground of practice by what he does, even
                              more so than by what he says. What he has done in leading his people has
                              taken them into the horrific realm of murderous terrorism and plunge them
                              into the abyss of a mindless war. And even you must admit, the Israeli
                              aggression is a response to suicide bombing and not the cause of it. The
                              bombing preceded in time the military incursions of the Israelis. And
                              that's a simply fact.

                              Tommy wrote:
                              >>The Palestinian Authority is not doing these things either. There is
                              some question of whether it is using its influence over the other
                              groups sufficiently proactively. But that is completely a moot point
                              since its ability and will to use this influence diminishes daily due
                              to the emasculation it has been receiving from Sharon's Israel.<<

                              Again I think you are buying a load of political propaganda and hogwash.
                              Arafat called for Jihad and started supporting suicide bombers and
                              glorifying them long before there was any emasculation of his position by
                              Sharon's Israel.

                              Tommy said:
                              >>Your point about the Palestinians having TVs and Disney toys rather
                              than wearing rags and starving is, I am afraid, not worthy of you.
                              There is a fundamental point about occupation in terms of how humans
                              see themselves and behave which is not a simple sliding scale of
                              personal involvement in consumerist technological advances.<<

                              I think this is a relevant point. At what point does political oppression,
                              which comes in degrees, warrant murderous violence? Just because you find
                              the occupation rude, disrespectful or hurtful to your feelings does not
                              justify one in killing innocent men, women and children. If the oppression
                              rises to the level of starvation, mass murder, or genocide, then one ways
                              more warrant for extreme and violent actions. My point is that the
                              Palestinians are utterly lacking in the degree of justification, if any
                              there could be, for the heinousness of their actions. In the course of
                              human history, many people have endured much worse without stooping to the
                              levels of murder and mayhem that the Palestinian suicide bombers have
                              inflicted. Many peoples throughout time have achieved their political aims
                              without blowing up innocent civilians. The sooner they realize that these
                              actions are utterly unacceptable and unjustifiable from any civilized
                              perspective the better we will all be. I doubt seriously if European Jewry
                              on the way to the their near extermination ever thought the solution lay is
                              killing innocent German children in pizza parlors. I don't even think the
                              blacks of apartheid South Africa engaged in such tactics.

                              We have a saying for the person who occupies the top political position in
                              the U.S. That saying is that the buck stops on his desk. He can't pass
                              around the blame. He takes his office with all the burdens of
                              responsibility that it brings with it. The buck stops on
                              Chairman/President/General Arafat's too. He's responsible for what goes on
                              under his authority, the buck stops on his desk. He doesn't get to make
                              excuses, he only gets to accept responsibility and to act responsibly, in
                              accordance with the rights, privileges and powers of his office as leader of
                              his people. Sadly, he doesn't seem to realize that.


                              ----- Original Message -----
                              From: Tommy Beavitt
                              Sent: Saturday, April 06, 2002 4:08 PM
                              To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com
                              Subject: Re: [WisdomForum] Re: A Real Life Application? The Media's Role

                              >At 2:23 pm -0800 6/4/02, Christopher Bobo wrote:
                              >The ANC was negotiating with the white majority government
                              >peacefully. The ANC was not fire-bombing restaurants or killing
                              >civilians, as far as I recall.

                              That is right. What we call the ANC today was not, prior to the fall
                              of the apartheid system run by white supremacists, fire-bombing
                              restaurants or killing 'civilians'. But others were.

                              The Palestinian Authority is not doing these things either. There is
                              some question of whether it is using its influence over the other
                              groups sufficiently proactively. But that is completely a moot point
                              since its ability and will to use this influence diminishes daily due
                              to the emasculation it has been receiving from Sharon's Israel.

                              If the western world were to grant the PA the moral authority it
                              granted the ANC it may very well be that we would say of it in
                              retrospect (once the vision of a Palestinian state has been
                              achieved), "it negotiated with the Jewish majority government
                              peacefully".

                              The only legitimate question, it seems to me, is whether Mandela is a
                              man of integrity similar in inherent moral stature to a Gandhi or a
                              Luther King while Arafat is fatally flawed.

                              There my objection breaks down and so does yours I suppose since we
                              cannot, as Sartreans, ever say of somebody that they are inherently
                              this or that. It is the choices they make from moment to moment
                              within the contingency of their situation and how these choices are
                              viewed from without.

                              It seems to me also that your argument tends in the direction of
                              regarding there to be some kind of inherent racial element here, eg.
                              Arabs are inherently unstable whereas blacks are inherently
                              peace-loving. I don't think that is the case. While I am no
                              determinist, I do believe that behaviour such as suicide bombing or
                              necklacing (the treatment given by blacks to other blacks who
                              collaborated with the apartheid oppressors) is elicited by the
                              situation within which choices such as "shall I get married or go
                              straight to heaven?" are made.

                              Your point about the Palestinians having TVs and Disney toys rather
                              than wearing rags and starving is, I am afraid, not worthy of you.
                              There is a fundamental point about occupation in terms of how humans
                              see themselves and behave which is not a simple sliding scale of
                              personal involvement in consumerist technological advances.

                              Anyway, I have written far too much here. A few words would have
                              sufficed. I am off to bed.

                              Good night!

                              Tommy








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                            • Eduard Alf
                              james, I can see your point, but I tend to agree with Tommy on the aspect of Palestinians with TVs and such. In a society, those who are in the middle class
                              Message 14 of 16 , Apr 7, 2002
                              • 0 Attachment
                                james,

                                I can see your point, but I tend to agree with Tommy on the aspect of
                                Palestinians with TVs and such. In a society, those who are in the middle
                                class are usually those who have the time, connections and inclination to
                                act. Those at the lower ranks are too busy trying to survive to do
                                likewise. Those who participated in the 9-11 terrorism were well educated
                                and could hardly be said to be suffering. Yet they were more open to the
                                "meme" that suicide has its own reward.

                                My other fear is that, if Israel military withdraws from their latest
                                advancement into the occupied territories, it will be seen that terrorism
                                does indeed have a result in causing change. If there is no positive
                                indication of security for the Israeli state by the Arab League, this will
                                go on forever. You can see the some of the thinking now in the references
                                to the American revolution. "Give me Liberty or Give me Death". The point
                                is being made that if the Americans took such action [in essence terrorism]
                                against Britain, then why not the Palestinians. Of course the situations
                                are not the same, but you can see how this is going.

                                As to Arafat, I think that in his old age he is unable to take positive
                                action. I think that he was a prisoner within his own community, even
                                before the Israelis laid a siege on his headquarters. It may well be that
                                he is not capable of acting responsibly even if he wanted to. Unfortunately
                                he is the only figure head that is available. Perhaps the actions of the
                                Israelis in regard to preventing him from travelling, and the visits by
                                American spokesmen, may actually do him some good.

                                eduard


                                -----Original Message-----
                                From: james tan [mailto:tyjfk@...]
                                Sent: Sunday, April 07, 2002 7:02 AM
                                Subject: [existlist] Re: A Real Life Application? The Media's Role


                                From: "Christopher Bobo" <cbobo@...>
                                Reply-To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com
                                To: "Wisdom Forum" <WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com>
                                Subject: Re: [WisdomForum] Re: A Real Life Application? The Media's Role
                                Date: Sat, 6 Apr 2002 21:49:34 -0800

                                Tommy wrote:
                                >>It seems to me also that your argument tends in the direction of
                                regarding there to be some kind of inherent racial element here, eg.
                                Arabs are inherently unstable whereas blacks are inherently
                                peace-loving. I don't think that is the case. While I am no
                                determinist, I do believe that behaviour such as suicide bombing or
                                necklacing (the treatment given by blacks to other blacks who
                                collaborated with the apartheid oppressors) is elicited by the
                                situation within which choices such as "shall I get married or go
                                straight to heaven?" are made.<<

                                Taking this, your most grievous accusation against me, I will attribute it
                                to your fatigue before bedtime. I do not now, nor have I ever believed
                                that
                                people are inherently one thing or the other because of their race or
                                ethnicity. What I am trying to understand is what I suspect may be
                                learned
                                cultural differences that manifest themselves in different ways in
                                different
                                people. There is no doubt that there are good people and bad people of
                                every color, race and creed. What I think we are discussing are the
                                attributes, inclinations, characters, decisions and actions of political
                                leaders chosen to guide particular societies. Necklacing and suicide
                                bombing are very different things. Necklacing was directed at people
                                believed to be guilty of specific wrongful acts, whereas suicide bombing
                                is
                                directed against people innocent of any wrongdoing under any rational
                                account. And that is a huge difference. Still, I think necklacing
                                suspected collaborators is morally wrong, although not as reprehensible as
                                suicide bombing weddings, banquets and restaurants.

                                Tommy said:
                                >>There my objection breaks down and so does yours I suppose since we
                                cannot, as Sartreans, ever say of somebody that they are inherently
                                this or that. It is the choices they make from moment to moment
                                within the contingency of their situation and how these choices are
                                viewed from without.<<

                                I think we must make a distinction here. It is true that we may not know
                                what lies deep inside the character of Arafat as a man. But as a
                                political
                                leader, we must judge him on the ground of practice by what he does, even
                                more so than by what he says. What he has done in leading his people has
                                taken them into the horrific realm of murderous terrorism and plunge them
                                into the abyss of a mindless war. And even you must admit, the Israeli
                                aggression is a response to suicide bombing and not the cause of it. The
                                bombing preceded in time the military incursions of the Israelis. And
                                that's a simply fact.

                                Tommy wrote:
                                >>The Palestinian Authority is not doing these things either. There is
                                some question of whether it is using its influence over the other
                                groups sufficiently proactively. But that is completely a moot point
                                since its ability and will to use this influence diminishes daily due
                                to the emasculation it has been receiving from Sharon's Israel.<<

                                Again I think you are buying a load of political propaganda and hogwash.
                                Arafat called for Jihad and started supporting suicide bombers and
                                glorifying them long before there was any emasculation of his position by
                                Sharon's Israel.

                                Tommy said:
                                >>Your point about the Palestinians having TVs and Disney toys rather
                                than wearing rags and starving is, I am afraid, not worthy of you.
                                There is a fundamental point about occupation in terms of how humans
                                see themselves and behave which is not a simple sliding scale of
                                personal involvement in consumerist technological advances.<<

                                I think this is a relevant point. At what point does political
                                oppression,
                                which comes in degrees, warrant murderous violence? Just because you find
                                the occupation rude, disrespectful or hurtful to your feelings does not
                                justify one in killing innocent men, women and children. If the
                                oppression
                                rises to the level of starvation, mass murder, or genocide, then one ways
                                more warrant for extreme and violent actions. My point is that the
                                Palestinians are utterly lacking in the degree of justification, if any
                                there could be, for the heinousness of their actions. In the course of
                                human history, many people have endured much worse without stooping to the
                                levels of murder and mayhem that the Palestinian suicide bombers have
                                inflicted. Many peoples throughout time have achieved their political
                                aims
                                without blowing up innocent civilians. The sooner they realize that these
                                actions are utterly unacceptable and unjustifiable from any civilized
                                perspective the better we will all be. I doubt seriously if European Jewry
                                on the way to the their near extermination ever thought the solution lay
                                is
                                killing innocent German children in pizza parlors. I don't even think the
                                blacks of apartheid South Africa engaged in such tactics.

                                We have a saying for the person who occupies the top political position in
                                the U.S. That saying is that the buck stops on his desk. He can't pass
                                around the blame. He takes his office with all the burdens of
                                responsibility that it brings with it. The buck stops on
                                Chairman/President/General Arafat's too. He's responsible for what goes
                                on
                                under his authority, the buck stops on his desk. He doesn't get to make
                                excuses, he only gets to accept responsibility and to act responsibly, in
                                accordance with the rights, privileges and powers of his office as leader
                                of
                                his people. Sadly, he doesn't seem to realize that.


                                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                              • CLSeaWasp@aol.com
                                The U.S. really screwed up the Angolan war. I m pasting below an article that I recieved via email about recent investigations into the US involvement. It s
                                Message 15 of 16 , Apr 7, 2002
                                • 0 Attachment
                                  The U.S. really screwed up the Angolan war. I'm pasting below an article that
                                  I recieved via email about recent investigations into the US involvement.
                                  It's very interesting.
                                  Claire ;D


                                  Published on Sunday, March 31, 2002 in the New York Times

                                  From Old Files, a New Story of U.S. Role in Angolan War

                                  by Howard W. French

                                  In the summer of 1975, with the cold war raging and the
                                  memory of Saigon's fall terribly fresh, the United States
                                  sponsored a covert operation to prevent another Communist
                                  takeover, this time across the world, in Angola.

                                  The effort failed to keep a Marxist government from taking
                                  power but ushered in a long and chaotic civil war, involving
                                  American, Chinese and Russian interests, and Cuban and South
                                  African soldiers.

                                  Now, coinciding with the death last month of Washington's
                                  longtime rebel ally in Angola, Jonas Savimbi, a trove of
                                  recently declassified American documents seem to overturn
                                  conventional explanations of the war's origins.

                                  Historians and former diplomats who have studied the
                                  documents say they show conclusively that the United States
                                  intervened in Angola weeks before the arrival of any Cubans,
                                  not afterward as Washington claimed. Moreover, though a
                                  connection between Washington and South Africa, which was
                                  then ruled by a white government under the apartheid policy,
                                  was strongly denied at the time, the documents appear to
                                  demonstrate their broad collaboration.

                                  "When the United States decided to launch the covert
                                  intervention, in June and July, not only were there no
                                  Cubans in Angola, but the U.S. government and the C.I.A.
                                  were not even thinking about any Cuban presence in Angola,"
                                  said Piero Gleijeses, a history professor at Johns Hopkins
                                  University, who used the Freedom of Information Act to
                                  uncover the documents. Similarly, cables of the time have
                                  now been published by the National Security Archive, a
                                  private research group.

                                  "If you look at the C.I.A. reports which were done at the
                                  time, the Cubans were totally out of the picture," Dr.
                                  Gleijeses said. But in reports presented to the Senate in
                                  December 1975, "what you find is really nothing less than
                                  the rewriting of history."

                                  Cuba eventually poured 50,000 troops into Angola in support
                                  of a Marxist independence group, the Popular Movement for
                                  the Liberation of Angola. The group held the capital in the
                                  months just before independence from Portugal, declared in
                                  August 1975.

                                  But Dr. Gleijeses's research shows that the Cuban
                                  intervention came in response to a C.I.A.-financed covert
                                  invasion via neighboring Zaire, now known as Congo, and
                                  South Africa's simultaneous drive on the capital, using
                                  troops who posed as Western mercenaries.

                                  The United States gradually switched its support to Mr.
                                  Savimbi's movement, Unita, and continued to support it
                                  intermittently during nearly two decades of warfare.

                                  Dr. Gleijeses's research documents significant coordination
                                  between the United States and South Africa, from joint
                                  training missions to airlifts, and bluntly contradicts the
                                  Congressional testimony of the era and the memoirs of Henry
                                  A. Kissinger, the former secretary of state.

                                  The work draws heavily on White House, State Department and
                                  National Security Council memorandums, as well as extensive
                                  interviews and archival research in Cuba, Angola, Germany
                                  and elsewhere. It was carried out in preparation of Dr.
                                  Gleijeses's recently published history of the conflict,
                                  "Conflicting Missions, Havana, Washington and Africa,
                                  1959-1976" (Chapel Hill).

                                  The book strongly challenges common perceptions of Cuban
                                  behavior in Africa. In the 1960s and 1970s, when Havana and
                                  Washington clashed repeatedly in central and southern
                                  Africa, Cuban troops in the continent were typically seen as
                                  foot soldiers for Soviet imperialism.

                                  In fact, Dr. Gleijeses writes, Cuba intervened in Angola
                                  without seeking Soviet permission. Eager not to derail an
                                  easing of tension with Washington, the Soviets limited
                                  themselves to providing 10 charter flights to transport
                                  Cubans to Angola in January 1976. The next year, Havana and
                                  Moscow supported opposite sides in an attempted coup in
                                  Angola, in which the Marxist government, Cuba's ally,
                                  prevailed.

                                  After reviewing Dr. Gleijeses's work, several former senior
                                  United States diplomats who were involved in making policy
                                  toward Angola broadly endorsed its conclusions.

                                  "Considering that things came to a head over covert action
                                  in the U.S. government in mid-July, there is no reason to
                                  believe we were responding to Cuban involvement in Angola,"
                                  said Nathaniel Davis, who resigned as Mr. Kissinger's
                                  assistant secretary of state for African affairs in July
                                  1975 over the Angola intervention.

                                  Mr. Davis said he could find no fault with Mr. Gleijeses's
                                  scholarship. Asked why the story of America responding to
                                  Cuban intervention in Angola had persisted for so long, Mr.
                                  Davis said: "Life is funny. What catches on in terms of
                                  public debate is hard to predict."

                                  The United States denied collaboration with South Africa
                                  during the Angolan war, but it was quickly discovered by
                                  China, an erstwhile American ally against the Marxists in
                                  Angola, and was suspected and deeply resented by
                                  Washington's main African partners.

                                  --
                                  Dan Clore




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