Friday, January 09, 2009

The Invasion of Gaza: What Does it Mean?

This is the second part of an essay by Alan Woods, about the situation in Gaza. His analysis has more depth than most analysis around. This part one.

By Alan Woods
Friday, 09 January 2009

Hamas is under intense pressure to accept international demands for a ceasefire. After the ferocious pounding they have received, they seem to be indicating that they may be prepared for a ceasefire, including halting rocket attacks on Israel. But Israel is not likely to stop the war just yet. It is demanding not only that that Hamas cease firing missiles, but that it accepts Israel, renounces violence, and adheres to the Palestinians' previous peace deals. In other words, it is demanding unconditional surrender.

Sooner or later, after the fighting stops, there will be new moves for a deal. The likelihood of some kind of deal between Syria, Iran and the USA before the end of the war must have been a cause for concern to the Hamas leadership, which depends heavily for financial and military support on Damascus and Teheran. The latter have made a reputation for themselves as the Palestinians' friends. But all history shows that the Palestinian people should place no faith in the friendship of foreign governments, because, as someone once said, countries have no friends, only interests. If the interests of Syria and Iran conflict with those of the Palestinians, it is not hard to see what they will do.

This fear on the part of the Hamas leadership may well have been the reason for their conduct in recent months. From the public declarations of some of the Hamas leaders it is obvious that they hope that Palestinian suffering would rouse the world's conscience and rally fellow Muslims to their side. In this they have succeeded. But if they imagined that this would be sufficient to force Israel to back down, they were sadly mistaken. Once they started the offensive, there was no going back for Israel, no matter how many demonstrations are held or how many EU missions are dispatched.

All these elements must have determined the tactics of Hamas, which must otherwise appear suicidal. They organized rocket strikes against Israel, and kept up a barrage of accusations against Fatah. Last winter they engineered the dramatic breach of Gaza's border with Egypt to advertise Gaza's misery and arouse the people of Egypt to their support. This was not appreciated by the Egyptian ruling clique, which is facing growing popular discontent as a result of the deepening economic crisis and falling living standards.

Effects on World Relations

The consequences of this war for US foreign policy will be far-reaching. This is not the eleventh of September! In the new world situation, the US can no longer achieve its objectives without the backing of regional partners as well as China, Europe and Russia. That is why there will be significant differences between the foreign policy of Obama and Bush. But in foreign policy one thing leads to another. In order to get Russia to support what the US regards as its vital interests in the Middle East will require that Washington be prepared to take Russian interests elsewhere into account.

This will probably mean that the US will agree to put on hold plans for missile defence in Europe, on condition that Russia takes steps to slow down the Iranian nuclear programme. Similarly, Nato expansion to include Georgia and Ukraine could be slowed. Since none of these things affect the vital interests of the great powers, such "sacrifices" could easily be made, just as one sacrifices a useless pawn in a game of chess.

In the same way "sacrifices" must be made in the Middle East. The fact that David Miliband, Britain's foreign secretary, recently visited Syria was a sign that the diplomatic machine was already in action. The reason for this is quite clear: Washington wants to get out of Iraq with a minimum of fuss. It must protect its rear and for this it requires the collaboration of Syria and Iran. But since it would be embarrassing for Mr. Bush to admit that he is talking to a "terrorist state", he sends his office boy from London. For their part the Syrians and Iranians are anxious to see the back of the Americans as soon as possible and would like, if possible, to obtain better relations with the transatlantic giant with the possibility of trade and investments this would open up.

Too weak to make war, Syria has proved strong enough to deny its neighbours peace, as we see from its meddling in Lebanon. Even the thickest minds in Washington are beginning to realise that the possibility of talking to Syria could cause less damage than leaving it as an enemy. Even Israel's outgoing prime minister, Ehud Olmert has understood this. According to Aluf Benn, a columnist in the Israeli daily, Haaretz, Olmert struggled in a recent meeting to persuade Bush that the Golan Heights may be a worthwhile price to pay for a major change in the region's strategic alignment.

Syria has recently grown closer to Turkey, which is keeping a close eye on developments in Iraq, especially the Kurdish area in the north, which sits on its border and serves as a base for the PKK. According to the Economist: "Syria, Mr Olmert explained, sat at the crux of two axes, one linking Iran to Hamas via Hizbullah, the other linking such 'pragmatic' powers as Turkey, Jordan, Egypt and Saudi Arabia. A switch by Syria would dramatically weaken the extremists, the Israeli leader was said to have concluded."

Syria's economy is being damaged by collapsing crude reserves and world prices. It needs foreign investment to deal with unemployment that is unofficially estimated at more than 20 percent. Syria is a secular state and its leaders fear the growth in influence of the Islamist groups they sponsor abroad. A wave of support for Hamas inside Syria would not be good news for them, any more than for the leaders of Egypt and Saudi Arabia. It does not require much imagination to see that in the future their attitude could change - if the terms were right.

The case of Iran is even clearer. The Iranian regime is facing revolutionary developments which we have analysed in previous articles. Its economy is being hit hard by falling oil prices. There has been a wave of strikes and student protests. The Ahmadinejad regime is clearly on its last legs and the ruling clique is looking for a replacement. A negotiated deal with Washington would be to its advantage.

How does this affect the Palestinians and Israel? History provides us with many examples where the rights of small nations have been used as bargaining chips by the Great Powers who cheerfully gamble them away without even the pretence at consultation. Once the professional diplomats sit down to talk, everything will be placed on the table and everything will be up for negotiation - including the fate of the Palestinians. As always, they are the pawns of great power diplomacy, and can be sacrificed very easily. The Palestinians should bear this firmly in mind, and not place any trust in the good will of even its most fervent "friends" in foreign governments.

On the Palestinian question up to now Syria and Iran have presented themselves as the most intransigent supporters of the hard line and have backed Hamas and Hezbollah with money and arms. The Americans and Israelis object to this. How can we solve this problem? Let us see... Israel possesses the Golan Heights, which Syria wants to be returned at all costs, since 1967. "Why not give us Golan?" the Syrians will say. To which the Americans will shake their head sadly: "For our part we would be delighted to oblige, but our friends the Israelis will object because it is a matter of their security." "Is that all?" the Syrians will answer. But we can also help them with the security issue. Don't forget we pay a big part of the bills for Hamas and Hezbollah."

At this, the Iranian delegate begins to express his displeasure: "The rights of our Palestinian brothers are non-negotiable," he protests, banging the table. But after a few hours (or weeks, or months), the Iranians have recovered their good spirits when the Americans produce a whole packet of economic proposals for trade and investment in Iran." "This comes just in time," says the Iranian, as the falling price of oil is causing us a lot of grief. Maybe we ought to be a bit more flexible on the Palestine issue after all." "Yes, says the American, with a broad smile, and don't forget when we withdraw you guys will control half of Iraq. All in all it is not a bad bargain."

This conversation is, of course, fictitious. But let nobody imagine that such things do not occur in the secret world of diplomacy where principles are nothing and cynical calculation everything. Naturally, not a word of these secret deals will be made public until decades later when some high diplomat writes his memoirs. In the next few months the opposite impression will be created: that the negotiations are very difficult, that Teheran and Syria are being very stubborn (it is always necessary to strike a hard bargain, especially in the Middle East where the tradition of haggling is strong). The talks will probably break down more than once, then they will be resumed. The time it takes to get agreement depends on many factors. But sooner or later a deal will be done, because it is in the interests of all parties that it should be so.

But nothing is simple in the politics of the Middle East. There can be complications for all this. Elections in Israel in February could produce a government opposed to any concessions. Binyamin Netanyahu not long ago was favourite to win the general election, although that will be affected by what happens in Gaza. His right wing Likud party generally opposes the withdrawal of Jewish settlers from the West Bank. And the extreme right wing of the party strengthened its position in the primaries on December 9th. Moshe Feiglin, who heads that wing runs a website that denies the right of Palestinians to nationhood and urges Israel to annex the West Bank.

This kind of thing could push Syria and Iran back to the policy of "rejectionism". But in the long run they will have to negotiate. In any case, the new Israeli government, whoever leads it, will have to deal, not with George W Bush but with Barak Obama, whose agenda for the Middle East is rather different to that of his predecessor. Since America subsidises Israel, Obama will have a fair amount of leverage with which to exert pressure.

The only thing that can completely upset this scenario is the revolutionary movement of the masses in the Arab world and in Iran. The invasion of Gaza has set in motion forces that it will not be easy to halt. This is a factor that the politicians and diplomats cannot control with their usual methods of bribery, trickery and intrigue. In the last analysis it is the only hope for the people of Palestine and the whole world.

War and Revolution

Although Hamas has taken a battering, the longer the Israeli army stays in Gaza the more it may find ways of striking back. Until yesterday Hezbollah had only offered rhetorical support. However, the latest reports of rockets being fired into northern Israel may indicate that the conflict could spiral out of control.

As the BBC has reported: "Rockets have been fired into northern Israel from Lebanon, raising fears the Israeli offensive in Gaza may spread. Israel's army responded with artillery to a barrage of at least three rockets. No group has claimed responsibility."

The same report goes on to explain that, "The rocket attacks from Lebanon have raised concerns about a wider war, (...) It is is not clear if the rockets were fired by Hezbollah or by one of the armed Palestinian groups that operate in Lebanon. If Hezbollah mounted the attack there is a grave risk of a very strong Israeli reaction, our correspondent says. The Palestinians in Lebanon do not have the capacity to fight a war with Israel, but Hezbollah does."

Israel is clearly anxious that Hezbollah might be tempted to join in. If it does, in the present context, the Israel military will be pushed into hitting back very hard. This is very worrying to the imperialist powers, particularly the European who fear such a scenario. Whether Hezbollah gets sucked into the conflict we will see in the coming days. Meanwhile, inside Israel, too, this war will have serious consequences, as it drags on over time.

The aim of the war is to marginalize Hamas, to weaken and if possible destroy it. This aim is secretly welcomed by the "moderate" Arab regimes. And Abbas would not lose any sleep over it either, except for the fact that the attack on Gaza has caused outrage in the West Bank. The so-called moderate Arab regimes have been strangely restrained so far in their condemnations. In reality the rulers of Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Jordan would not be too displeased if Hamas were to be wiped off the face of the earth, although these rulers would never dare to admit such a thing in public.

The petty bourgeois pacifists can only see the horrors of war but they are incapable of seeing the other side of the picture. History has shown many times that wars can lead to revolution. However the invasion of Gaza ends, one thing is sure. Sooner or later, there will be revolutionary developments in the Arab world that will lead to the overthrow of one rotten regime after another. All these reactionary regimes are all hanging by a thread. They live in constant fear that the poverty and discontent of the masses might erupt, leading to a revolutionary overthrow.

The world economic crisis that has led to a collapse of oil prices has underlined this threat. The present situation will lead to a further process of radicalisation throughout the Middle East. The workers and students who come out onto the streets to protest against the invasion of Gaza are not only protesting against the cruel treatment of the Palestinians. They are protesting against the inactivity of their own rulers, against their complicity with Washington and therefore with Israel, against their luxurious lifestyles that contrast so brutally with the misery of the masses.

In an editorial of 17/12/2008, the Financial Times expressed its concern about the stability of the Arab regimes: "Ripples through these regions easily build into waves. The US-allied leaders of Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Jordan, initially happy to see Israel hit Hizbollah or Hamas, quickly change their tune as soon as their peoples rally to the militants. Their legitimacy and survival is at stake." (my emphasis, AW)

In Egypt, where there was serious unrest even before the war, police have arrested dozens of campaigners for trying to send convoys of food and medicine to Gaza, and Internet organisers were calling for a general strike in support of the strip. There have been mass demonstrations in the Lebanon and the US embassy in Beirut has been attacked. There was a mass demonstration in Istanbul, and other big demonstrations have taken place in Jordan and the West Bank and all over the Middle East, in Indonesia, in Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan, Srinagar in Indian-administered Kashmir.

In the northern Israeli town of Sakhnin tens of thousands of Israeli-Palestinians have protested against Israel's offensive. At present the majority of Jewish Israelis have remained passive or support the offensive, deceived by the propaganda about a defensive war. But as the war continues and casualties grow, that can change. There are already signs of differences in the Israeli ruling class. A former head of Mossad has said that Hamas must be included in future negotiations. This already indicates growing doubts even among the ruling layer. If the rockets keep on coming, even in reduced numbers, questions will be raised in Israel and elsewhere about what has really been achieved, especially as the death toll both among the Israeli troops and Palestinian civilians becomes even more severe.

The rulers of the Middle East are right to fear the revolutionary potential of the masses because it was already implicit in the situation before these events. Now it is coming close to boiling point. Arab governments, though furious with Hamas, will come under pressure to reflect the anger on the streets to take some action, and may face overthrow if they do not do so. That is why people like Gordon Brown want peace as soon s possible, because war means instability and instability can have effects that will not be to the liking of either London or Washington.

A Betrayal is Being Prepared

It is impossible to understand the events in Gaza outside this context. The aim of the Israelis is to pulverise Hamas in order to weaken them as against Fatah, whose services they will need in the next period. On the other hand, Hamas is attempting desperately to gain the sympathy of the Arab masses in order that they will not be completely marginalized. And both sides are issuing a message to those who are preparing to do a deal behind their backs.

Under Abbas the leaders are attempting to arrive at an accommodation with Israel. There is still talk of setting up an independent Palestinian state on land currently occupied by Israel. But how can this be established? The moment we pass from generalizations and pious declarations to the hard facts, the problems come to the fore. I wrote on this question in December 2007, when Bush organized the farce of the Annapolis conference:

"The slogan of the Israeli government is: what we have we hold. The Zionists have no intention of giving any important concessions. Hamas boasted that they had expelled the Israeli army from Gaza. That is a joke. The Israelis withdrew from Gaza as a tactical move to silence international criticism and create the impression that they were giving up something important, when in reality they have no interest in Gaza. This was intended to strengthen their stranglehold on the West Bank, which is the decisive question.

"The Israelis have relentlessly continued building the monstrous wall that slices through Palestinian territory on the West Bank, robbing large chunks of land under the pretext of 'defence'. The settlers have become increasingly bold and insolent. After the incidents in Gaza no Israeli government will want to confront the settlers in the West Bank.

"Then there is the little matter of Jerusalem, which both Jews and Arabs claim as their natural God-given capital. As for the right of return of Palestinians expelled from their homes since 1948, there is no question of Israel accepting them back, since that would completely upset the demographic balance of the ‘Jewish state'."

How are these problems to be resolved? To this question diplomacy has never produced a satisfactory answer. The defiance of the Israelis has just been expressed in the eloquent language of bombs, rockets and artillery fire. And what will the Palestinians say? They will have nothing to say because they will not be invited to these negotiations. The people who have fought and given their blood to fight for their rights, will see that their destiny is being determined by foreign governments who are only concerned with their own narrow national interests.

When all the fundamental issues are nicely decided, there will be a Middle East Conference, with the participation of all the well-known "friends of Palestine" - Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and others. Abbas will then be invited, not to decide anything, but like a man invited to the last day of a trial to listen to the sentence. As for Hamas, whether they are invited or not depends on their good behaviour. In any case, it will make not the slightest difference to the outcome.

A Blind Ally

It is the elementary duty of every proletarian internationalist to defend the Palestinians against the violence of Israeli imperialism. But it is also our duty to say what is: the tactics of suicide bombing and firing rockets at Israeli towns are counterproductive and useless. They do not represent armed struggle because they do not even dent the armour of the Israeli state, but strengthen it by pushing the Israeli masses behind it.

A big part of the appeal of Hamas comes from its image of resistance to occupation. Hamas won the election in 2006 because the masses were tired of the corruption of the PLO leaders and their connivance with Israel. But if we pose the question purely in nationalist terms (Jews against Arabs), then no solution of the Palestinian question is possible. It is not possible to solve the problem of the Palestinian people by tactics like suicide bombings and firing rockets at Israeli towns and villages. The methods advocated by Hamas were tried by the PLO for 40 years and have led only to one bloody defeat after another. No amount of sympathy for the sufferings of the Palestinians can alter that fact.

What will be the end result of the war? In military terms Hamas will have lost massively. Many of its cadres will have been killed or taken prisoner. Its military infrastructure will be shattered. In terms of physical assets, Gaza will be left devastated. The economic damage will take many years to rebuild. In this sense the Israelis will have got what they wanted. More serious for Israel will be the long-term political effects. Although it will have suffered a severe blow, Hamas will not be destroyed.

And what will Israel have gained? The Israelis' "victory" in Gaza will turn to ashes in their mouths. Let us remember that the whole point was to achieve security. In the end they will have earned an even greater hatred in the Arab world than before. The threat of terrorist actions will not be any less than before but far greater. For every Hamas militant they kill there will be ten, twenty or a hundred youths who are now children filled with bitterness and hate, who will be ready to volunteer for suicide missions against Israel and its allies in the Arab and western world. If this is the idea of creating security for Israel in the future, it is a very strange one!

What will Hamas have achieved after all the dust settles on the ruins of Gaza? They may win some meagre concessions - perhaps a loosening of Israel's siege, an opening of Egypt's border, a lot of aid from fellow Muslims, and maybe a modicum of international recognition. Their prestige among the Arabs may have been enhanced. But the question remains: what has been solved by all this? We merely return once more to the same never-ending cycle of violence, wars and killings that solve nothing. The rage in Gaza over Israel's violence may momentarily boost Hamas' popularity, but after the excitement dies down the people of Gaza may start to ask what brought them to this mess.

The actions of the Israeli army are stirring up the whole Middle East. They will reap a new harvest of hate, bitterness and a thirst for revenge. But the tactics of groups like Hamas can never succeed. In fact, they are entirely counterproductive. The leaders of Hamas say: "As the weaker party we have the right to use any methods available to us to defeat our oppressors." To this we reply: "Yes, you have that right and we understand that the methods of terrorism and guerrilla warfare are always resorted to by a weaker side against a stronger oppressor.

To professional soldiers such guerrilla methods are always to be condemned. In olden times the shepherd David used his sling to kill the giant Goliath and doubtless the Philistine generals considered that an unfair and barbarous method that did not comply with the rules of warfare. But by the use of this simple but effective method, David won and Goliath lost his head. All that is true but we will say also this: a good general will only make use of such methods that are consistent with his strategic aims and likely to be successful. Only a bad general makes use of methods that do not lead to victory but will guarantee defeat. And the methods used by Hamas can only lead to defeat and help the enemy. That is why we oppose these methods.

If the methods of Hamas have failed to benefit the Palestinians, so have the methods of the Israeli imperialists failed the people of Israel. Every attempt by Israel to guarantee security by force has turned out to be counterproductive. The occupation of Palestinian territory after the 1967 six-day war has intensified the conflict with the Palestinians. Its invasion of Lebanon in 1982 led to the creation of its Nemesis, Hezbollah. Its 2006 war on Hezbollah undermined the pro-western government in Beirut. The current pounding of Gaza has discredited Mahmoud Abbas, the moderate Palestinian president. Security is a mirage that constantly eludes Israel's grasp, and the future of the state of Israel always has a question mark over it.

Equally, every attempt to defeat Israel by military means has ended by reinforcing reactionary Zionism. From the failure of the so-called armed struggle, Abbas and the leaders of Fatah have drawn the conclusion that the only alternative is to negotiate with Israel and seek the good offices of the imperialists. But we have already seen what that means over the last decade or so. It means negotiating surrender and selling out the cause of Palestinian national self-determination. Neither Hamas nor Abbas therefore offer any way out.

What will be the outcome of negotiations on a "Palestinian state" - the "two-state solution"? This solution depends on one thing only: the agreement of Israel (which, after all, will be one of the two states, and not the weakest of them). What will Israel agree to? They might accept some adjustments of the present frontier with the West Bank. They might allow some opening of the border with Gaza (which they can close at any time). They may impose some restrictions on building new Jewish settlements on Palestinian land, and they may even dismantle a few of the existing ones. They cannot hand over Jerusalem, which they regard as their capital, though there may be some sort of sharing agreement. Nor will they allow the right of return to Israel proper, although they might permit some to enter the Palestinian territory.

This is the best the Palestinians can hope for on the present basis: a truncated pseudo-state, which will be economically dependent on Israel, whose presence will stand over it like a dark and menacing shadow. Control of this "state" will be entrusted only to those Palestinian leaders like Abbas, who is prepared to act as a puppet of Israel, and who will mercilessly repress any dissident Palestinian group.

In other words, it will be a "solution" similar to that imposed on the Irish by British imperialism in 1922. That led to a bloody civil war in Ireland in which many more Irish were killed than were ever killed by the British. The same thing can happen with the Palestinians in the future, as we saw with the civil war in Gaza in 2007. Some Palestinians might accept, while others would undoubtedly reject, leading to new conflicts and bloodshed.

Take the revolutionary road!

Napoleon said that defeated armies learn well. All the defeats and sacrifices and martyrdoms will serve for nothing unless we are willing to learn from them and turn them to our advantage. If we merely look at the present bloody mess in sentimental and moralistic terms, as is too often the case, we will gain nothing from it. Our task, in the words of the philosopher Spinoza, is: neither weep nor laugh but understand.

Ultimately, both Jews and Arabs must have the right to live in peace and control their own destinies in a homeland of their own. It is easy to state this aim, but not so easy to say how it can be achieved. The so-called Peace Process is dead. There is no doubt it will be revived, but not until the Israeli army has done its bloody work in Gaza thoroughly.

We can predict that after the war there will be one deal after another, and they will break down one after another. None of this will do anything to solve the problems of the Palestinians. Nor will it guarantee security for the people of Israel. However, there is a solution to the Palestinian problem that is neither futile acts of terrorism or diplomatic sell-outs.

The events in Gaza were the spark that fell on a parched prairie. It provoked a wave of mass protests that has shaken all the existing regimes in the Middle East. The revolutionary potential implicit in these movements was instantly recognised by the strategists of Capital. Thus, the Economist wrote: "But unless the current furious street protests spark a region-wide revolution that scares the wits out of Israel and its friends, Hamas will still face the same painful old choice of how to come to terms with an immensely more powerful and equally determined enemy."

These words express the essence of the problem excellently. What do they mean? The intelligent bourgeois understand that the Palestinian question can act as a catalyst for all the accumulated frustration, rage and discontent of the masses in the Middle East. That is why they are continually pleading for peace, ceasefires, agreements and moderation. They can see what the Marxists can see: that a region-wide revolution is implicit in the whole situation. That is the starting point for the success of the Palestinian Revolution, and no other.

The question is posed very clearly by the above lines. The Palestinians are faced by an immensely more powerful and equally determined enemy. The events in Gaza have clearly shown the impossibility of defeating this monster by purely military means. Is there a power that is even stronger and more determined than the power of the state of Israel? Yes, there is such a power. It is the power of the masses, once they are organized and mobilized to fight. Two intifadas have shown that the Palestinian masses are prepared to fight heroically. But in war courage is never enough to win. A clear strategy and tactics, and above all good generals are necessary. In revolutionary terms this means that in order to win, the masses require a revolutionary programme, correct methods and tactics and good leadership. This is what is needed and this is what is lacking.

The present leaders of the Palestinians offer no alternative. Some of the leaders of Fatah in reality would not be sorry to see Hamas liquidated. They have in fact blamed Hamas for the Israeli invasion! This has caused a wave of disgust among ordinary supporters of Fatah and the mass of Palestinians on the West Bank, who are asking why their top leader has adopted such a position while their compatriots are being slaughtered. Arafat, with all his faults, would not have behaved like this. Many Palestinians are drawing the conclusion: "Abbas is a puppet of Israel."

Hamas is hoping to inspire Palestinians in the West Bank to overthrow Fatah. They have not yet succeeded in this. However discredited Abbas may be, Palestinians do not see Hamas as an alternative, though some young people in desperation may turn to it. That would be a tragedy. What is required is not a new generation of suicide bombers seeking revenge and martyrdom, but the construction of a viable mass revolutionary alternative.

The first condition for the future success of the Palestinian revolution lies in the revolutionary overthrow of the reactionary bourgeois regimes of Egypt, Jordan and Saudi Arabia, and then for a settling of accounts with the reactionary Zionist state itself. The whole Arab world is now in a state of ferment. The one thing that is lacking in the situation is a genuine revolutionary leadership, standing on the basic ideas of Marxism-Leninism. That is what is required to find a way out of this bloody quagmire.

In the past there were powerful Communist Parties in the Arab world, which claimed to stand for Marxism-Leninism, although the Stalinist two-stage policies of the leadership led to one defeat after another. Since the fall of the USSR, the old Communist Parties have ceased to exist. But there are many revolutionary cadres who are dissatisfied with the existing political leaderships and are looking for an alternative. It is to these layers, especially the youth, that we address ourselves. That is the only hope for the future.

Those who consider that the people of Israel are one solid reactionary mass understand nothing. If this were the case, then the future of the Palestinians would be hopeless indeed. But it is not true. On more than one occasion the masses in Israel have demonstrated against the brutality of their own imperialists and in solidarity with the Palestinians. Even in this conflict we had the first signs of protest in the recent anti-war demonstration in Tel Aviv. On more then one occasion the Israeli workers have organized strikes and general strikes. The class struggle exists in Israel as in any other country. What is necessary is to intensify it and cut the ground from under the feet of the reactionary Zionists.

The victory of the socialist revolution in a country like Egypt would have important echoes within Israel, especially if it stood on the programme of Leninist internationalism.

The Palestinian question is part of the overall problems faced by the masses throughout the Middle East. The only real perspective for solving the problem is the creation of a Socialist Federation of the peoples of the region, with complete autonomy for Arabs, Jews, Kurds and all other peoples who inhabit this land. The fight for a free and genuinely democratic Palestine will be won as part of the internationalist socialist revolution, or it will not be won at all.

London, January 8, 2009



Una said...

It is a very good.Israel abused its power. Do Israelis want to kill all Palestinians?. They received a land where Palestinians lived

Daniel Hoffmann-Gill said...

It means lots of dead civilians.

na said...

This is like a huge chess game being played out on a global game board. Russia's Iranian connections and the United States Israeli connections are going to ultimately bring in the major powers of the chess board for a final conflict. While the Chinese Empire will be the ultimate winner of the game.

SecondComingOfBast said...

You're right, Blue Skull. I said in a comment on an earlier post, I think the internationalist powers and ideologues in the UN and others see this as a kind of social engineering experiment, not at all dissimilar to how the world powers of the thirties viewed the Spanish Civil War. In that case, it was a contest of ideologies-fascists versus communists.

In this case, we have a scenario involving two peoples of competing cultural philosophies and prejudices. It's like they are determined to make them learn to get along. If they can make that experiment work in that part of the world, they can make it work anywhere.

It's not a whole lot different than the philosophy behind forced desegregation in the US, specifically in the south. The idea behind that social experiment here was that over time the last vestiges of racism would gradually fade away.

That's why they are determined to keep trying to force the same failed policies to work. It's an ideological philosophy on the part of the world leaders involved. They are determined that over time it will succeed, if they can only keep a lid on the violence or keep it down to what they would consider manageable levels.

I guess they figure in nine or ten generations the Palestinians and Israelis will learn to love each other, or at least "tolerate" each other. That's strange, it seems to me they are just growing more hatred year after year, but then again, I'm no "expert".

Frank Partisan said...

Tere: Much is explained in this post. Elections in Israel are in February, so the politicians are posturing.

Daniel H-G: Congratulations for being hired by the National Theater.

When aircraft became weapons of war, a certain general believed that populations can be bombed to changing allegiances. I never bought that.

Blue Skull: Thank you for visiting. The Chinese aren't players here.

Pagan: The West Bank and Gaza didn't become part of Israel, until 19 years after it was formed.

The remarks about desegregation and the UN are rambling. The problem is one of leadership. Fatah andd Hamas are bankrupt. The Palestinians need more than heroism, they need strategy and tactics that win.

na said...

The Chinese are not involved here, that is correct, but they will be involved the future. The Chinese are waiting their turn in the wings for their opportunity to become more involved in Middle East affairs. After the USA and Russia have proven their selves unable to control things in the Middle East, due to violent fighting and their own economic meltdown, China will be there to guide and support what is left of the Middle East. Eventually China will implode on their self because of their poor populace revolting against the corrupt ruling elite.

This is all future prediction based on the gaming theory developed by Dr. John Nash and further developed by Dr. Bruce Bueno De Mesquita. So don’t take it as some wise political and foreign policy analysis on my part.

Your welcome for the visit.

Gert said...


I found this comment about me on Madze's blog:

"I don't agree with Gert about using the term apartheid."

Since as I'm now de facto barred from that blog (he does that, off-and-on), allow me to respond here. I posted this on my own blog a couple of days ago:

"There will be no two state solution, it's too late for that. All the Palestinians can hope for is somehow to hang in there [WB] for dear life, and try and softly resist further land expropriations by Israel and "its finest" (the settlers). I say 'softly resist', as all harder resistance will be branded Global Islamic Terror and met with exterminative 'counter-measures'.

If they do manage to hang in there, Israel will become a de facto Apartheid State with a three tier population: 1st class citizens (Jewish Israelis), 2nd class citizens (Arab Israelis), 3rd class citizens (West Bank Palestinians)."

Of course the public opinion's turning against Israel's and Hasbara getting bogged down in parroting the same old tired lies may yet make all the difference. We need to reach the American public though, they by and large are in the usual coma when it comes to Israul and the ME...

Here's large flickr photo album, all about Gaza. Everyone has to see those pictures.

Frank Partisan said...

Blue Skull: This is from a document my comrades wrote: The eyes of the bourgeois are now fixed on China, from whence they hope that salvation may come. But China is now firmly embedded in the capitalist world market and must suffer the consequences of the downturn along with all the rest. In order to keep unemployment at its present levels a growth rate of at least eight percent is required. If growth falls below this level, the prospect arises of serious social conflict. The latest IMF estimate for China's growth in 2009 is now only 5 percent. Dominique Strauss-Kahn, managing director of the IMF, said: "We started with China at 11% growth, then 8%, then 7%, then China will probably grow at 5% or 6%." This is still high when compared to the growth rates in the USA and Europe. But it is a sharp fall in comparison to the kind of growth rate of around 10 percent enjoyed by China in the last period. And it is not clear that even this level will be reached.

China has a large internal market, probably about 300 million. But this is insufficient to absorb the huge productive capacity that Chinese industry has built up over the last two or three decades. The falling demand in the US market is hitting China's exports. The contraction in Chinese industrial production deepened in November with steel production down 12.4% from a year earlier, steel mill product deliveries down 11.3%, generation of electricity off by 9.6% and petrochemicals output down as well. In November year-on-year exports fell sharply by 2.2 percent, whereas analysts had expected them to rise by 15 percent. To understand the change, it must be remembered that between 2000 and 2006 China's exports grew at an annual rate of 26 percent. In the same month imports fell by 18 percent. This was the first time since 2001 that imports have fallen.

There are emerging signs of overproduction and overinvestment in China, whose internal market, though considerable, is not big enough to absorb the colossal productive potential built up over the last two or three decades, and which is now reaching its limits. The first warning of a crisis was the sharp fall on the stock exchange, which has lost about 60 percent of its value. But the crisis is not confined to the stock markets. House prices are falling, construction is slowing and industry is slowing faster than GDP. Car sales in November in China fell by over 10% year on year. Power generation, generally regarded as a reliable index of economic growth, fell by 7 percent.

These figures have altered the views of western economists on China. The previous optimism is fast turning to pessimism. The Economist (13th December 2008) stated: "Optimists even hoped that these huge emerging markets (India and China) might provide the engines that could pull the world out of recession. Now some fear the reverse: that the global downturn is going to drag China and India down with it, bringing massive unemployment to two countries that are, for all their successes, home to some two-fifths of the world's malnourished children."

It is true that China has huge reserves, which it can use to foment public works schemes to develop the infrastructure. In November the government announced a four trillion yuan (nearly $600 billion) fiscal stimulus package. But according to some estimates, this would add up to an increase of GDP by just over one percent. This is insufficient to get the kind of results that China needs. Beijing only has one other option: to try to solve the crisis by exporting more. This brings it into a direct collision with Europe and the USA, which is pressurising China to reflate in order to import more. Paulson visits Beijing to ask China to revalue the yuan, but Beijing is more likely to support a devaluation, which will deepen the contradictions between China and the USA.

The leaders are afraid that the worsening economic situation will produce what one of them referred to as "a reactive situation of mass-scale social turmoil". The Economist (13th December 2008) reports: "Each week brings fresh reports of factory closures, particularly in the industrial belt around the Pearl River Delta in Southern China. Unpaid workers have been staging violent protests." The same journal adds: "Indeed, demonstrations and protests, always common in China, are proliferating, as laid-off factory workers join dispossessed farmers, environmental campaigners and victims of police harassment in taking to the streets."

The slowdown in China is hitting Japan, for whom the Chinese market has become increasingly important. In the three months to September the Japanese economy shrank at an annualised rate of 1.8 percent. Other emerging economies are even less able to provide the necessary stimulus to the world economy than China. All will be dragged down in the next period. This signifies social and political convulsions on a huge scale. The chaos in Thailand is a further indication of this.

Gert: You have been MZ's friendly opposition forever on his blog. Without the freedom of speech, his blog will die.

You should read both parts of Alan Woods's article.

Obama wants the two state solution. I think it would be a failed state, under present conditions.

The hope for the Israelis and Palestinians, is socialist revolution in Egypt. Palestinians could decide to join Egypt, and get the benefits of socialism, as free healthcare etc. They should be able to decide, if they are Palestinian, Egyptian, or want to return to Israel.

I think you are describing the situation correctly. I think the apartheid term isn't the right one.

Larry Gambone said...

Demands of the Third Camp (*)

* Immediate ceasefire! No attacks/occupation of Gaza! No rockets into Israel!
* Immediate withdrawal of Israeli forces from Gaza!
* No to Israeli state terrorism! No to Hamas Islamist terrorism!
* Peace through the formation and recognition of a viable, equal state of Palestine!

The Third Camp already exists. Just read its Charter on, and join!

(*) Maryam Namazie belongs to the Third Camp

Frank Partisan said...

Larry G: The leader of Maryam's party died Mansoor Hekmat died young. He is buried next to Karl Marx.

That statement is far better than much on the left.

See this. Hamas has become a "serve the people organization" according to the Maoists.

SecondComingOfBast said...

At least the Third Camp has enough gumption to call out Hamas. Unfortunately, I can't support them. I can't support anything that calls for the Israelis to withdraw from Gaza until Hamas is totally and irrevocably destroyed-every single man, woman, and immam. Then they should concentrate on dismantling Fatah. Before there can ever be peace in this area, the Israelis need a good faith negotiator. Notice I said a good faith negotiator, not good faith "partner".

Until Hamas and Fatah are gone, nothing is going to work, or at least Hamas. Fatah might possibly be reformable, but that would be totally contingent on their desire to reform, which is a questionable proposition at best. No one can make them reform, however, as that would just make them look like US-Israeli puppets, which they are already laughably accused of being anyway.

Frank Partisan said...

Pagan: Israel openly stated, they are not for regime change in Gaza. You are talking about an imaginary war, not what is happening.

AW said in this post: And what will Israel have gained? The Israelis' "victory" in Gaza will turn to ashes in their mouths. Let us remember that the whole point was to achieve security. In the end they will have earned an even greater hatred in the Arab world than before. The threat of terrorist actions will not be any less than before but far greater. For every Hamas militant they kill there will be ten, twenty or a hundred youths who are now children filled with bitterness and hate, who will be ready to volunteer for suicide missions against Israel and its allies in the Arab and western world. If this is the idea of creating security for Israel in the future, it is a very strange one!

What will Hamas have achieved after all the dust settles on the ruins of Gaza? They may win some meagre concessions - perhaps a loosening of Israel's siege, an opening of Egypt's border, a lot of aid from fellow Muslims, and maybe a modicum of international recognition. Their prestige among the Arabs may have been enhanced. But the question remains: what has been solved by all this? We merely return once more to the same never-ending cycle of violence, wars and killings that solve nothing. The rage in Gaza over Israel's violence may momentarily boost Hamas' popularity, but after the excitement dies down the people of Gaza may start to ask what brought them to this mess.

Dave Brown said...

Woods doesnt seem to see this massacre in the context of the world crisis and growing tension between the imperialist powers over control of Asia.

One thing. I see he thinks that Israel is imperialist. I think if the US pulled the plug tomorrow, Israel would fold. I don't see Israel as living off superprofits offshore. I think there is a better case for characterising it as white-settler garrison state.

He says the object is to weaken Hamas. Yes, but why now? Political motives? I don't think much of the election argument. Maybe but hardly the determining cause. Whoever wins will go down the same track.

Maybe Woods is right to suggest Israel is reminding the US that its more important than Syria and Iran in keeping the peace in the Middle East. That after all is the rationale for the billions the US pours into Israel to arm its gendarme. But I think Israel is looking beyond the Middle East.

I think that Israel is gambling on pushing the US in crisis to support an aggressive and expansionary Israel as the dominant power in the Middle East. The extra arms shipments including bunker bombs suggest that the Bushite regime at least is a willing player. After all this is all about the war on terror for oil yeah?

Israel is going for broke to grab back Gaza and its gas and protect the energy corridor off the coast as Chossudovsky claims, and looking to provoke a response from the Arab nations that it will use for a preemptive strike on Iran which is a prime target for the US and Israel opening up Central Asia and pushing back if not defeating Russia and China.

I don't think the US is looking to China to rescue the world economy. I think that it is figuring how it can partition China and Russia and grab their territories. Israel as an aggressive partner against 'Islamic terrorism' is made in heaven.

In other words this war is the opening gambit of a US Israel plan for new imperialist wars of conquest, mainly for the repartition of Asia.

It follows that I don't think that Woods is reading this big enough. And he is looking at the Middle East and Arab nations as the immediate solution. But what about the rising surge of protests and the signs that unions (as in Norway) are moving beyond boycotts and divestment to strike action?

Maybe there are other articles from your tendency on the duty of workers in the imperialist countries to mount industrial action against the companies that prop up Israel. The South African WIVL is calling for an international general strike against the genocidal attack on Gaza.

That sort of international action is absolutely necessary to back up the workers in the Middle East to overthrow their pro-imperialist regimes.

Out position on Gaza is on our blog
our paper is also on our website
pdf too in glorious color.

SecondComingOfBast said...


They may have said they're not after regime change, but regime change is what it's going to take. Hamas has crossed the line far too often. All of the pain that has been inflicted by Israel on the Palestinian people is the fault of Hamas and Fatah. You can't blame somebody for attacking somebody that shoots rockets into your territory. You can't just sit back and take that and allow it to go on because you're afraid you might kill a few innocent civilians, or even a lot of them.

If somebody throws a rock through my window or shoots a gun through it, I'm going to unload on them real quick. Why should I care whether I'm responsible for creating a widow and orphans? the fault doesn't lie with me, it lies with the person shooting the gun through my window at me. The fact that he resents my religion or culture, or is pissed off that I wouldn't loan him fifty dollars, etc., doesn't impress me in the least.

If this person has been causing me all kinds of unnecessary problems for years, then when he goes this rout all he has done is given me a perfect reason to put an end to my problems with him forever.

I find it hard to believe the Israelis don't see this as an opportunity to rid themselves of this scourge once and for all, regardless of any public utterances to the contrary.

I'll even take it a step further. The leader of Hamas is a cowardly douchebag piece of shit who as I type this is holed up somewhere in Syria, issuing statements on television in the safety and comfort of his Syrian home far away from the danger he has caused the people of Gaza.

What the Israelis ought to do is demand that the Syrians hand this piece of shit over to them, after which they ought to execute him on live television, for all the world to see. If the Syrians refuse to hand this scumbag over to them, they should let Assad know that he will be the next recipient of their wrath. They wouldn't have to embarrass him by saying this publicly, but they should make it plain to him privately that he is enabling this wad waste, and it is no longer going to be tolerated.

The idea that this son-of-a-bitch is sitting over in Syria living in comfort while encouraging this shit and causing all the misery he's causing makes me mad enough to fucking spit nails.

Daniel Hoffmann-Gill said...

I've been steering clear of this thread becuase quite frankly it's a lot of hot air while people die BUT I do have a wee problem with the statement:

"All of the pain that has been inflicted by Israel on the Palestinian people is the fault of Hamas and Fatah."

That is clearly not true and is moving into the area of wild generalisations caused by over-arguing a point so that the points become more and more absurb and absolute as they are reduced.

Many things in this comment section alarm me and make me grateful that people other than the ones that frequent here are in charge of global decision making but not nearly as much as the dead bodies piling up.

SecondComingOfBast said...


The nation of Israel is not entirely innocent, and their leaders are certainly not as pure as the driven snow. I don't support Israel in knee-jerk fashion. You will never see a button on my side-bar proclaiming "I Stand With Israel" or other stuff like that. I do not stand with the Israeli government, but with the Israeli people. I make a distinction between the two, just like I try to make it a point to draw a clear distinction between the Palestinian people and Hamas and Fatah.

By the same token, it's easy to exaggerate the impact of this. The last I heard, the death toll was under a thousand people, and that was including Hamas militants in addition to Palestinian civilians. I'm sure it's more than that now, and may even be over a thousand, but this is not a Holocaust. The major damage is to infrastructure, and the fact that hospitals can not function while food and medicines are in almost non-existent supply.

Yes, it's a terrible situation, but as far as the actual death toll, it is nowhere near as bad as it could be. The Israelis at least are going out of their way to warn civilians to stay away from target areas. One can only hope that Hamas will allow them to vacate the target premises, but past history suggests a problem there.

No, this is not an entirely black-and-white situation, there is a lot of gray area on both sides, but there are at the same time two distinct sides, and it's easy for me at least to see where the fault lies. One side wants peace, prosperity, and security, the other wants to use death and destruction in a wanton manner to wipe the other side completely out of the picture, and will willingly and even gladly sacrifice its own people in order to achieve its aims.

You might not think the Israelis are handling this in the right manner, but what are they supposed to do. just give Hamas or Fatah what they want? Time has proven such concessions solve nothing. If they did, this would have ended ten years ago. I'm reasonably certain that if a side can't be satisfied with over ninety percent of what it wants, there is no reasoning with them. What other options are there but a choice between force, or national suicide?

Daniel Hoffmann-Gill said...

The point I was making is that in pointless debates like this, arguments get whittled down to extremes, hence why you moved to a position that you don't actually believe in and actually have a far more in depth and nuanced view of.

I do however baulk at the idea that the death toll is slight, that is a slippery slope that leads to a very ugly place indeed; a damaged infrastructure leads to greater loss of life.

As for the Israeli warnings, I wouldn't take that as a sign of noble warfare, US forces did the same thing in Iraq but merely made en masse arrests of any males under 45, something the IDF plans to do also.

Having said that, all is fair in war.

As for the two sides you paint, the one I believe you attribute to Israel could easily be applied, depending upon viewpoint to the situation. There is plenty wanton death and destruction being enabled by Israel.

Israel are doing exactly what Hamas wants, I've said it before, if Israel was clever enough to retreat to 1967 borders, stop settlements they would become 'the good guys' rather than agressors.

I'm sure Hamas would attack and provoke but then the world would be fully on Israel's side, who would have the moral highground and we'd all join in the total destruction of Hamas.

Israel's bad politicking is fine by won't get them what they want, which is a shame.

Larry Gambone said...

"I've said it before, if Israel was clever enough to retreat to 1967 borders, stop settlements they would become 'the good guys' rather than agressors. I'm sure Hamas would attack and provoke but then the world would be fully on Israel's side, who would have the moral highground and we'd all join in the total destruction of Hamas."

I have always thought along those lines myself.

I am also a signatory to the Third Camp Declaration and invite anyone reading this who agrees with the statement to sign as well.

na said...

"All ideations take place from particular perspectives...[that is from] many possible conceptual schemes...which determine any possible judgment of truth or value that we may make...[which] implies that no way of seeing the world can be taken as definitively "true"...." -Friedrich Nietzsche

Mad Zionist said...

Gert, I never banned you, I just informed you that since you've devolved into a radicalized Palestinian activist I would no longer be patronizing your site. I find your descent from reasoned critic of both sides to being a Hamas mouthpiece most unfortunate. Your hatred for Israel and Zionism has crossed the line to bigotry, and at that point what do we have left to discuss? I don't let LWB or JB comment at my site, and as long as you are indistinguishable from them you will be censored, too.

Ren, you really believe that my site cannot exist without Gert? I assure you it can.

Regarding the article, it's simply ridiculous on so many levels I don't know where to begin. Let me start and end my response with this slogan: Want peace? Annex the territories and deport the arabs. Anything less would be uncivilized.

Frank Partisan said...

Dave: Woods calls Israel imperialist. It is a unique formation for a dependent state. It's a satellite for US imperialism. After 60 years calling it a settler state isn't correct.

Three elections are involved in US's actions, the Israeli, Palestinian and the US.

I can agree with you, part of what is happening, is a message to Obama, we can mess up what you accomplish with Iran and Syria. That can go only so far.

This is not 1935. No world war on the horizon. The US has all the weapons.

I don't know how much pressure African unions have on Israel.

Pagan: Your whole argument rests on Hamas's rockets is the only cause of suffering. Israel has carried on an embargo of Gaza strangling it economically. When the Zionists withdrew from Gaza, they gave no self determination.

Israel's attack was well planned in advance. All Hamas did was provide an excuse. The atrocity relationship is 1 to 100 for Israel.

Where are people in Gaza supposed to go, to get away from the fighting? Cairo?

Daniel H-G: I agree Pagan's statement that Hamas is the sole cause is woefully incorrect. Israel's actions are different than in Lebanon. In Lebanon it was dragged into the war without a plan. This was well executed, on barren land invasion. It has to do with regaining esteem lost in Lebanon. It is also related to upcoming elections.

Hamas will exist after the ceasefire.

I don't like MidEast posts, but I have to do them.

Larry G: Withdrawing to 1967 borders, doesn't seem to be on Israel's agenda. Your idea is correct.

I'm not sure if a Palestinian state is viable, without a socialist Egypt.

Blue Skull: Nietzsche is peachy.

Frank Partisan said...

MZ: Want peace? Annex the territories and deport the arabs. Anything less would be uncivilized.

With what army?

SecondComingOfBast said...

I never said Hamas's rockets were the sole cause of the problem, nor even did I say Hamas in general was the sole cause of the problem. It's too complicated to lay it all off on one side. In fact, I won't even go so far as to say Hamas are the worse offenders of the lot. That "honor" would fall to the UN. Hamas is just a very close second in responsibility to the current problems as they now exist. But, they have to be destroyed, or they will continue.

Look, how many times does this scenario have to be repeated before people catch on that it doesn't work? How many times have we seen this? The UN, and specifically also in this case Egypt and France, call for a cease-fire. Eventually, there will probably be a cease-fire, just like all the other times, and just like all those other times, there will be some kind of concessions agreed upon. And then, after a few short months at the most, there will be another return to hostilities, just like all the other times, and just like all those other times, it will be initiated by the Palestinian side of the equation, or one of those sides. If it isn't Hamas, it will be a branch of Fatah, or some other entity. Then, after so long-just like all the other times-we can expect a repetition of all of this all over again.

MZ is right, but impractical. What he proposes is never going to happen, but it would be best if the Palestinians could be settled into the surrounding Arab countries. I would add that all Palestinian heads-of-households should be compensated to the tune of three or four million dollars, with most of this money set up in such a way it can't be misused or stolen from them, preferably through a bank in Switzerland.

But I'm just whistling in the wind, because I know none of that is ever going to happen. You have to deal with the situation the way it stands.

Let Israel finish the job, and get this over with once and for all. I am no more concerned about the human rights of members of Hamas or other such organizations than I would be about the rights of a cockroach. At least you can make the case that a fucking cockroach arguably serves some kind of useful purpose, but I sure as hell wouldn't hesitate to step on one or squash it if I saw one in my house, or anywhere else.

Let's put an end to this god damned social engineering experiment and try something that might actually work for a change.

Daniel Hoffmann-Gill said...

MZ is not right, MZ is sounding like a racist bigot:

"Annex the territories and deport the arabs."

Is not the answer or reasoned thought from a clever mind, its quite offensive nonsense but let me re-phrase it...

"Annex the territories and deport the jews."

De-humanising a foe (in your case cockroaches for Hamas, cockroaches being a classic form of de-humanisation used by everyone from the ancient Chinese through to Serbians and stopping briefly off at Hitler) is not the answer, that just makes you look bad, best rahter to bend over backwards by doping the right thing and then having a moral highground to attack from.

But it seems Israel is in a bloodlust, they deserve each other, the two foes of IDF and Hamas.

Mad Zionist said...

Dan, you should be aware that the majority of the Palestinians in the territories are there because they were expelled from Jordan and Lebanon. Remember "Black September" in 1970 when King Hussein killed over 20,000 Palestinians and deported the PLO to Lebanon while hundreds of thousands more fled to the West Bank?

The Palestinian population is an arab prop, used and moved around like game pieces by the surrounding moslem countries to fight a proxy war against the Jews. Deporting the "Palestinians" from Israel and repatriating them into Lebanon, Jordan and Egypt as citizens would be merciful to all sides, and is the only possible avenue to peace.

This ends when the Palestinians are treated as citizens of Egypt, Lebanon, Syria, and Jordan, rather than a gypsy band of arab nomads who have been booted from arab country to arab country in order to protect the ruling despots and terrorize Jews.

Daniel Hoffmann-Gill said...

I'm glad I've managed to get you to be slightly more coherent again, however, if you're trying to tell me that the Palestinian people don't exist and have no claim to the land that for centuries was known as Palestine and where they lived then you still need to read more books.

Also, as a game I now read everything you write and replace the word arab or palestinian with jew and it makes for equally awful reading:

"Dan, you should be aware that the majority of the Jews in the territories are there because they were expelled from all over the world.

The Jewish population is a Zionist prop, used and moved around like game pieces by the US to fight a proxy war against the Arabs.

Deporting the "Jews" from Israel and repatriating them into America, Russia, France, Poland and Belerus as citizens would be merciful to all sides, and is the only possible avenue to peace.

This ends when the Jews are treated as citizens of Europe or America, rather than a gypsy band of jew nomads who have been booted from country to country in order to protect the ruling despots and terrorize Arabs."

Mad Zionist said...

Dan, I actually enjoy your game, and respect your argument. The fact is, I agree with the idea that both sides are being manipulated, and that both sides have a claim to one land. If the Jews were to lose to the arabs in their fight for the land I have no doubt that their would be a massive flight of Jewish refugees to America and the west.

Also, keep in mind over a million Jews living in Israel today are there because they were expelled from moslem countries in the 50's and 60's. We are nomads, indeed.

Still, we do claim that that land belongs to us, and they do claim that that land belongs to them, and that will not change. This we agree on, too.

What we disagree with is the path to resolution. You believe that replacing nationalism with socialism will be the solution, and as soon as all sides come to terms on this economic cause there will be peace in the land.

I disagree completely with that viewpoint, of course. Jews don't simply want a secular, socialist utopia where they can enjoy the fruits of the labor movement, they want their land and they want a Jewish State to be governing it. If they wanted only an economic solution they have many other countries to move to in far safer parts of the world.

Meanwhile, Arabs want an Islamic State to replace the Jewish State, not a movement of collectivism that shares the wealth with all peoples. I understand this, I don't downplay or belittle their nationalist or religious motivations for posession, even though I wholeheartedly disagree with them and seek to utterly vanquish such plans.

There is no "Two State Solution", no "Binational Solution", and no "Collectivist Solution", only a solution of Jewish State OR Arab State, one or the other, period.

I advocate a Jewish State with Arabs being monitized and humanely repatriated into surrounding arab countries.

Arabs advocate violently driving the Jews into the sea and establishing an Islamic State in place of a Jewish State. Both Fatah and Hamas have this language in their Charters.

I am a Zionist, I want to insure peace in Israel for the Jewish people, and I want the arabs to be provided every benefit in moving back to their neighboring countries so this can be accomplished.

Nothing "Nazi" about my intentions, only a desire for resolution to endless war and suffering to both sides. We need to end this canard once and for all...a proxy show war for all the world's special interests, including the US, Europe and Arab countries, has got to be stopped, and my plan will end it in the best possible way for all of us pawns and props who deserve a better fate.

Larry Gambone said...

PT, why do you insist on seeing the attempts to create a rational compromise between the Israelis and Palestinians as "social engineering." This is a paranoid world view and as with all paranoid world views you have no solid proof for it. You are creating a "hidden agenda" where none exists. The worst thing that can be said about the liberal/pacifist view is that it is naive.

Daniel Hoffmann-Gill said...


"Also, keep in mind over a million Jews living in Israel today are there because they were expelled from moslem countries in the 50's and 60's."

Expelled from all kinds of countries, not just Muslim ones.

"You believe that replacing nationalism with socialism will be the solution"

No I don't, never said socialism is the answer, I've already given the answer and its not socialist.

As for nothing "Nazi" about your intentions, I agree but they aren't very good either and so coloured by an prejudice you've just about ruled yourslef out of the decision making process.

I'm glad you're no where near power.

Anonymous said...

o/t - Ren... Here's an update on your "Dancing Girls of Lahore" story.

SecondComingOfBast said...

To Larry Gambone-

"PT, why do you insist on seeing the attempts to create a rational compromise between the Israelis and Palestinians as "social engineering.""

A better question would be why do you insist on seeing this as an attempt to create a "rational" compromise when the past sixty years history points out that there is nothing rational about it.

"This is a paranoid world view and as with all paranoid world views you have no solid proof for it. You are creating a "hidden agenda" where none exists."

What "hidden agenda"? There's nothing hidden about it. It's right out there in plain sight for all the world to see. They are insisting that it will work over time, when there is no legitimate reason to believe it ever will. Just keep the violence down to manageable levels and eventually over time it will all work out. That is social engineering on steroids.

"The worst thing that can be said about the liberal/pacifist view is that it is naive."

You are sadly mistaken, Gambone. The worse thing that can be said about the "liberal/pacifist" view is that it is continuing to cause unimaginable anguish and misery to hundreds of thousands, if not millions of Palestinians, including young innocent children who by the time they grow up, what ones that do, are going to comprise a nation of sufferers of a severely advanced collective case of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, from which an appreciable number of them, if not the majority, will never completely heal.

All because a group of international elitists want to put on a facade of adherence to some grand illusion of "peace", where none has any hope of existing under the circumstances they themselves have incubated and continue to promote.

Larry Gambone said...

And expelling them from their own country won't cause serious problems? If you think there is violence now, just wait if the right-wing Zionists try full-blown ethnic cleansing.

I don't know what the answer is, but it sure isn't that.

Yes, liberal pacifists as an elite - what a sick joke that is.

SecondComingOfBast said...


You're lumping what you consider "liberal pacifists" in with the same group of internationalist leaders who are promoting this monstrosity. The only thing that's a sick joke about liberal pacifists is the terms "liberal" and "pacifists". Well, that and the fact that they seem to think they have any kind of real influence on this matter. They are not a serious component of this discussion. They are a sideshow at best.

Since Israel has cut their power off, maybe Jackson Browne can go there and build them a few windmills and in the meantime hold a benefit concert. He'd best be careful, he might get introduced to some redneck friends he would just as soon not know about. Of course, he could always call it the Human Shield concert and hold it in front of the Hamas offices.

Those people are a fucking joke, Gambone. I'm not talking about them, I'm talking about internationalist leaders who pretend to be for peace and cooperation while they sit and hand-wring for the cameras and issue impotent declarations and meaningless resolutions, all in the name of keeping the Palestinian people contained within what amounts to a human laboratory, where they live and die in misery and despair.

I never made any statements regarding "expelling" them, the Palestinians, from their country, certainly not by force. That is not going to happen, and neither is what I actually said, which is quite different, and which involves compensating heads of households with a generous amount of money to enable them to start new lives, contingent on their willingness to do so.

With a generous compensation, they should be able to settle anywhere they desire with no objections from anyone. Still, like I said, this is not going to happen either.

There is only one other option. Let the Israelis finish the job at hand and exterminate Hamas, every single one of them. You say you don't support Hamas, so why should that be a problem? Because I promise you this problem is never going to end or fade away into the sunset as long as they are in power or have any kind of measurable influence on the Palestinian people.

They got that influence not due to their religious pretensions, but because they provided needed social services to the Palestinian people, and parlayed that into power and eventual domination over the people, enough to win an election over Fatah, who are themselves so corrupt it was really no loss. They need to go too, but at least with them there is a minimal chance at reform from within, with the right impetus. With Hamas, there is no such chance. Let the Israelis finish them off.

They have demonstrated that they have no intention of living in peace with the Israelis. Their word cannot be trusted, even if they agreed to a peace deal. Their word is worthless.

Do you really want peace? If so, get out of the way and stop supporting meaningless feel-good measures that promise nothing but meaningless slogans and sassafras rhetoric but accomplishes nothing.

Noni said...

smelling "international"..soon......

Frank Partisan said...

Noni: What????

MZ: Your position is a minority position within Zionism. It's such a minority position, your group can barely function above ground, because of its terrorist designation. Most Zionists are secular. Not only are they secular, the material conditions of the world, dictate they'll be more secular. Today as opposed to under feudalism, Jews do not dominate any field because of being Jews. That is an effect of modern capitalism. At one time Christian fundamentalists didn't enter show biz, because of it being sinful. Jews were able to thrive. Now nobody thinks about sin.

I represent a minority position. I atleast can come up with scenarios, where ideas like mine could thrive.

There are no great principles involved in Israel's slaughtering at Gaza. It's only oppurtunism involving elections in Israel, Palestine and the US. Nobody will be deported.

FJ: My Lahore post, has been getting hits today. Thank you for the update.

Daniel H-G: Good back and forth with MZ.

I'm against any worldview that sees Israelis or Palestinians as a monolith. In Tel Aviv 10,000 people demonstrated against the war.

Pagan: Israel was supposed to end its embargo.

Marxist from Lebanon pointed out, everytime the UN is needed for humanitarian supplies, they flee. They should have stayed in Gaza.

I have an idea. Why doesn't Hamas try democratic elections? Israel would respect a fair election.

Larry G: Unfortunately Hamas is biding its time, hoping for a spontaneous uprising somewhere. What that means in practice, is that they don't care how many casualties are involved. Interesting they are rebuffing peace proposals. I think they are like Maoists, about casualties.

Noni said...


comment was in context of 5th international (a tight one)....movement of seems world builds situations gradually..seeds are on air..messages are on wall...actions are streets...

SecondComingOfBast said...


No one can work with Hamas. There was a small UN presence in Gaza, but Hamas militants used UN buildings to stage attacks on the IDF, along with Palestinian schools. By the way, what were Palestinian children and other civilians doing in the schools during the Israeli invasion? Oh, that's right, they went there for shelter. After which Hamas fired rockets from those schools, as well as the UN buildings.

You just can't deal with these people. Anybody that used their own civilian population, especially their children, as a kind of cover from which to launch attacks against an enemy, what does that tell you about them?

No, nobody can respect an election involving people like that. This is a population held hostage by a group of thugs. I am not impressed that that same population voted for them. That's only the surface picture. The picture on the ground hints strongly of manipulation, intimidation, and coercion. Plus there were no viable options anyway.

Additionally, even if Fatah was an acceptable alternative, at the time the election was held, Fatah candidates stupidly ran as many as ten candidates for the same office in some districts. Hamas supported just one, and of course the result was Hamas won soundly. Now you see the result the people are stuck with.

You are dealing with a group of people who do not share your modern sensibilities towards bloodshed. When you are dealing with this sort of entity, you need to adjust your tactics accordingly, or you will lose. That's just the way it is.

Mad Zionist said...

Ren, having a position that is not falling in line with the majority does not make it wrong or invalid. Addressing only the current popularity of the solution presented while avoiding the substance of the plan shows a lack of reasoning to your objection.

Again, in discussing the solution of annexing the land and repatriating the arabs, I get ad hominem attacks of Nazism (ridiculous), arguments regarding the current likelihood of such a plan, and off-topic rants about the history of arabs dwelling in the land, none of which addresses the fundamentals of the dispute today, or offers a better solution to resolving the conflict than what I've presented.

When the preconceived notion of humane population transfer being inherently evil is stripped, and one objectively analyzes the options of either perpetuating a violent conflict or ending the conflict with annexation and transfer, one can see that in this situation my solution is the only one that provides for a final, peaceful resolution.

Daniel Hoffmann-Gill said...

You make me laugh MZ, if, for example, someone frequented here with the name Mad Arab, or some other such silly title and proposed the kind of things you are but merely swapped Arab for Jew they'd rightly laughed off the forum and no doubt called an anti-semite (rightly so).

I've tried to make this point to you but you persist in returning here to expound views that are intolerent, prejudiced and to some degree, verging on the nasty (not Nazi, I've never called you that). No one would accept it from a militant Muslim Arab and no one will accept it from a militant Jewish Zionist.

Minority views are mostly minority for a reason, they either aren't very good or are so extreme that not enough people can get behind it.

Of course it can be heard and you've been given more than enough space here to be heard but just because it is a minority opinion doesn't give it greater value or amenesty from vigourous interrogation.

It's been interrogated and found wanting horribly.

Best to leave it at that.

Mad Zionist said...

Daniel, again you have ignored the substance of my plan and went straight to the adjectives. Look, if you want to vigorously scrutinize I've been inviting it since I started expressing myself. Nobody here, including yourself, will engage the discussion, only deflect it or denounce it outright without giving rationale.

Also, I never claimed that minority opinions are inherently superior to majority ones. I simply made the point that if a minority idea makes sense it should not be disqualified because the majority wants nonsense. The majority of arabs want to drive the Jews into the sea and claim Israel for themselves, so does that make them right because statistically more of them believe this way than don't?

Look, the majority on both sides has been wrong all along, and the tragic results we see today are only more proof of this. Why will you not at least stop and contemplate my proposed peace plan before rejecting it as bigotry? I sincerely want peace between the Jews and arabs, and while all the anti-zionist, Palestinian sympathizers here offer no clues how to accomplish it, I'm providing an air-tight solution.

If the arabs were able to defeat the Jews and drive them off the Land than they would have. They've tried over and over again and failed. They need to earn the right to be given the spoils of victory, but because the Jewish State is mightier than the arab forces that option has failed, and the onus is upon Israel to end the conflict by removing the arabs who seek to destroy them.

I assure you, the arabs who seek to conquer Israel have no desire to humanely repatriate the Jews and financially reward them for their trouble. I am not only being humane to both sides, I'm being generous beyond what is necessary to insure the arabs who are removed are given a good deal.

Daniel Hoffmann-Gill said...

My resposte is quite simple, two wrongs don't make a right and until you can function with good will politics rather than mean-spirited ones, when you can offer solutions that have a broad base and welcome all rather than leave out many, I'll take your politics and your stance seriously.

We've talked this in circles.

Mad Zionist said...

When you can offer solutions that have a broad base and welcome all rather than leave out many, I'll take your politics and your stance seriously.

I'm awaiting your solution, then. What can you offer that will bring peace? More of the same old "two state solution" bunk that's gotten nowhere? Maybe expecting everyone to drop their claims to the land, hold hands in a single state of unity, and sing kumbaya? A bit utopian to say the least...

Searching for mystical harmony in an either/or equation is folly, and doomed to tragic failure for all involved.

Daniel Hoffmann-Gill said...

I've already offered my solution in this comment nonsense.

It's funny, in reality, this despute that are reading to inact extreme measure against is historical speaking a blink of the eye, it took over a hundred years to reach some form of peaceful resolution regarding Northern Ireland, you need to show patience and less willingness to ship people out of their homeland...

Sorry, I typed that and laughed because it's so overreaching the horror of it makes me shudder.

All the breast.

Mad Zionist said...

Dan, you are aware that this dispute predates 1947 or 1967, correct? This is no blink of an eye claim, and is far deeper than you seem to understand. Anyway, peace does not come from perpetuation of war, it comes from finality of war.

Also, be careful throwing the word "Homeland" around, too. Just because you accept the Palestinian claim instead of the Jewish claim doesn't change the fact that that this word is the heart of the dispute and neither side will ever renounce.

Either the Jews must be deported in defeat or the arabs, but the two claims are not compatible and shared nationality is impossible. One nation, Jewish or Arab, will be the final resolution for peace. If you have offered another solution please outline it, as I have somehow missed it.

Thanks for this discussion, as the more opportunity I have to express the plans for peace the better.

Daniel Hoffmann-Gill said...

reductum ad absurdum

Mad Zionist said...


Daniel Hoffmann-Gill said...


SecondComingOfBast said...

Regarding the two wrongs don't make a right canard, it is not wrong to seek to utterly destroy something like Hamas, so that is an irrelevant argument. Anybody that proposes a peaceful solution involving anybody like Hamas needs to offer something besides cliches.

Anybody that purports to believe in peace and in the same breath advocates moderation against the likes of Hamas doesn't really believe in peace, they just like the sound of it.

Daniel Hoffmann-Gill said...

And you know as well as I do Pagan (unless you've not read the thread in full, which wouldn't surprise me Mr. Knee-Jerk) that I've already outlined a far more than cliched take on the situation, so I'm not sure what you're little rant was about but it sure wasn't me.


SecondComingOfBast said...

Yeah, I know. We need to use "good will politics", as opposed to those old "mean spirited ones".

Oh, and then there's this-

"this despute that are reading to inact extreme measure against is historical speaking a blink of the eye"

I'm not trying to be mean just for the fun of it, but what the hell is that? I'm assuming we want the same end, an end to war. I think I'm on stronger ground here, because I don't see anything you've suggested that isn't a repetition of the same process that's been going on for decades.

You need to familiarize yourself with exactly what Hamas stands for and what their aims are instead of attacking in knee-jerk fashion, as you put it, those who don't agree with your allegedly tolerant approach. Otherwise you are serving merely to enable people who would gladly cut your throat without batting an eye. These are people that openly mutilated a captured soldier with their bare hands, and mugged for the cameras as they held up their bloody hands.

Is this the kind of people you think are deserving of tolerance? I beg to differ.

Frank Partisan said...

Pagan: It's nonsense to talk about Hamas, in terms like trust or not trust. They control the state in Gaza, through a fair election. Being in charge of the state, and controlling large areas of territory, means they are the ones Israel will have to talk to eventually. If you control a state or large areas of territory, you are maybe a belligerant force, but not a terrorist group. If they shoot rockets, it is a military action. Israel eventually will talk to them again. That is indisputable.

The idea of allowing children to leave Gaza, so their parents can be killed, is less than humanitarian.

Guerillas mix with civilians. That is guerilla warfare.

Alan Woods tore apart Hamas's strategy of using casualties to spark an uprising.

MZ: you know the old name of the newspaper The Jeruselum Post? It was The Palestine Post.

A religion is not a nation.

I just read Marx on "The Jewish Question." He thought Jews had the best situation in the US, where the constitution seperated church from the state. He was arguing with someone who said Jews can be free, when they are not Jews.

There is not one major Zionist leader who denies there is such a thing as Palestinians.

Daniel H-G: Comments seem to be turned off at your blog, unless my browser was being weird.

Marx wrote that Jews were best off in the USA, where the constitution seperates state and religion in "The Jewish Question." That coincides with your post.

Noni: Expect what happened in Greece, to happen all over Europe.

Larry Gambone said...

"Expect what happened in Greece, to happen all over Europe."

And unlike in Greece, countries like Spain, Germany, Italy and France, serious organizations far outnumber the riot for its own sake crowd. Nor is there a relatively strong Stalinist CP to hold things back. As well as a revolutionary, or at least militant tendency exists within the trade union movement, unlike in Greece where the corrupt PASOK and Stalinist KKE have hegemony. Things could get VERY interesting...

Noni said...

Added these to my previous comment..

Palestinians are seems sacrificed on the forefront on this fight against imperialism. They are bearing the ugly result of imperialism on first hand then any other nation and stood on baseline against imperialist terror while other engaged in internal conflicts.
A positive outcome is very much related to fall of imperialist order, by the time we will see in continuity of tragic sufferings of people of that region, now which is spreading toward whole south Asian region.
Once Jerusalem gave world some major beliefs/orientation… now it is spreading new wave…
No more it is issue about Israelis vs. Palestinians. It’s a naked reflection and inevitable out come of capitalism – imperialism – globalization/latest crisis on world economy and which produced a direct confrontation with imperialism. Good to see not only condemned messages from various head of states or paper works of UN, but it is people’s consciousness about their own regime, awareness about own state’s foreign policy (world bank’s controlled) and conscious solidarity with Palestinians and togetherness filled with internationalist spirit….although fundamentalism also on its pick time as a by product of imperialist order, it is also digging its own grave, ready to go to an forgotten position of history and national bourgeois are loosing its ground in most part of the world.

So…smells are on air …talks are on the streets for unified international…. may be 5th international……who knows…

Daniel Hoffmann-Gill said...


I'm trying the new embedded comments but I think for some people it causes issues so gone back to pop up box style. And excellent dispatching of PT.


Ren said it and dealth with your nonsense.

And yes I am on stronger gorund because what I suggested has never been done becuase Israel has no patience and can't wait it out and do the right thing and then reap the dividends of such a policy.

Seriously, I should be in politics, I could get Israel what they want and all it would take is time.

As for mugging for cameras, that sounds like US and UK tropps with the corpses of dead Iraqis and Afghans, seriously, all is fair in war and it makes people do stupid things. Your blinkers that Hamas is EVIL is not surprising, because you live in a black and white world.

However, what happened in Greece will not happen in the rest of Europe, we're not that daft.

Mad Zionist said...

Ren, one of the first rules in debate is to not make assertions on topics you know little or nothing about, especially when you know your opponent is extremely well versed on the matter. It's comically naive to assert that the Jewish people are simply a personal faith, not a nation, and reveals how precious little you know about both Judaism and Jewish history.

Though you undoubtedly will disagree, I would like to remind you there is a big world outside the narrow confines of Karl Marx, my friend. Stop forcing square peg solutions onto round hole problems.

Also, we are all aware that well before the recent, contrived identification of arabs being "Palestinian" came to pass, Jews were often referred to as the people identified with the barren territory of "Palestine", as it was called in the secular world.

We also understand the canard of Palestinian nationalism didn't even exist until the late 1960's. Before this time, arabs in Israel were deeply offended with any such designation, and considered themselves part of the various, surrounding pan-arab region of moslem nations.

Thank you for correctly expressing this fact.

Daniel Hoffmann-Gill said...

There is no god MZ.

Just so you know.

So jews are yet aother made up cult along with all the others but at least you don't mess around with a devil and hell fire.

Mad Zionist said...

Dan, when did I ask whether or not you believe in God? Thanks for volunteering your unsolicited opinion...I guess.

SecondComingOfBast said...


Here's the way I see it. You assert that Hamas has to be dealt with through negotiations. I would prefer to wipe them out. Failing that, if Israel does negotiate with them, it should be from a position of strength and victory, not as equal negotiators.

Thus, I propose a compromise. Israel should negotiate with Hamas, but only after eighty percent of them, at the very least, have been killed. Maybe after such a crushing defeat, once they have internalized it, the remainder will listen to reason.

On the other hand, after losing so much of it's members to a well-deserved death, they really wouldn't be in much of a position to stand as representative of the Palestinian people. Maybe then the Palestinian people will find someone more amenable to reason.


It's not me who sees the world in black and white, it's people like Hamas, and Hezbollah-who should also be utterly destroyed-who see things in black and white. That's just the problem. When you are dealing with people who have that kind of world view and back it with such fanaticism, you have to adjust your tactics accordingly. Or, to borrow a phrase from you, "all is fair in war".

Funny, I don't feel as though I've been "dispatched".

Daniel Hoffmann-Gill said...


You didn't but you've drifted off topic so I thought I better bring god into it to keep it in check.


This again?

Your comments are black and white re: Hamas, hence you're as bad as they are, hence two wrongs don't make a right, hence you're dispatched.


roman said...

In order to end the misery for both Gaza and Israeli residents or at least curtail it, all Hamas political functionaries must be killed or captured. Even if this task is impossible to accomplish 100%, it should be persued to its furthest extent possible. In every description of the definition, Hamas is a genuine terrorist organization. Hamas is the sworn enemy if Israel and has stated this in their charter. It is bent on firing rockets indiscriminately into civilian areas and has no intention of stopping this practice. As such, Israeli armed forces must eliminate Hamas because Hamas, if it had the power, would surely eliminate Israel. Any nation in the same predicament would do likewise.

Larry Gambone... said: "if Israel was clever enough to retreat to 1967 borders, stop settlements they would become 'the good guys' rather than agressors"

Most people with a good sense of history already know that the Israelis are the "good guys" and Hamas the "terrorists". You saying otherwise will not change that fact. The problem here is that no matter what concessions the Israelis have made, they soon learned the hard way that it was a mistake. There is always some group like Hezbollah, Hamas or such waiting in the wings ready to keep alive the effort of "wiping Israel of the face of the map". The same murderous fanatical idealogical elements have been busy "cleansing" Lebanon for ages way before Israel even became a nation.

Frank Partisan said...

Larry: There are already demonstrations in Spain.

Noni: See this. Many on the left are confused about Islamists. It is contrary to myth not from the slums, but the petit-bourgeoise.

MZ: I don't deny that Jewish people have national characteristics. Just by the fact that Israel is >60 years years old, that means its a legitimate state. I reject ancient arguments as relevant.

I don't see the need for Venezuela to merge with Colombia, because it was ppart of greater Colombia once. Why is DR of Congo a country? Why El Salvador? Why Honduras? Why Iraq? Lebanon?

Israel is contrary to the "Jewish Lobby" idiots, just US's satellite in the area. When Hosni Mubarak is facing a socialist movement in Egypt, it will be the IDF that will be called to save him.

The promise of Zionism can't be kept. Jews are less safe and rely more on Gentiles, than anywhere in the world.

Most Israelis want a smaller Israel.

Pagan: Hezbollah is not helping Hamas. Do you know why? They have elections in Lebanon coming up, and they don't want to lose votes. That shows you Islamists are about money and power, not religion.

Again Hamas is the government in Gaza. To be fully rid of Hamas as a military matter is ethnic cleansing. When you are government, you are the state. You can't be terrorist and be government.

Israel propped up Hamas, when Fatah was radical. Israel needs Hamas to exist. What would happen if after this the Palestinians dump Hamas? Israel wouldn't allow that.

Just like in Iran, the capitalists chose mullahs, when they saw it wasn't viable to keep Shah in power.

The CIA funded the Islamists in Afghanistan before the Russians invaded.

Israel is careful to say its not going to have regime change. This is more to do with Kadimah and Labor than Hamas.

The last thing Israel wants is a secular, socialist movement in Gaza. Hamas has to kept around to stop it.

Daniel H-G: Israel openly said it is not going to destroy Hamas. If it does, it would have a secular movement to deal with.

Not all of Europe would be like Greece. Greece has 50% youth unemployment and a giant anarchist movement.

Roman: There is no threat to Israel from anyone in the Arab world. If Hamas was a real threat to Israel, it wouldn't be screwing around shooting at the Gaza border. There would be bombs in Tel Aviv. Hamas is a mosquito.

Tell me one real threat to Israel's existence? Egypt? Lebanon? Iran?

Why didn't Hezbollah help? You are blinded by Bush's rhetoric, to realize Islamists can change tactics. They are primarily about personal power and capitalism. By your logic they should be stepping up to the fight.

roman said...


...."There is no threat to Israel from anyone in the Arab world..."

I disagree completely. You make it sound as if the Israeli forces are taking action due to imminent danger of governmental colapse which is not the case at all. They are taking action because it is their responsibility to PROTECT all Israeli residents.
Rockets are flying in helter-skelter every day from Gaza just the same as they did from Hezbollah on the Lebanese side. These are calculated provocations by the terrorist factions to invite a military response. They asked for it and they got it. Innocents are being killed when these rockets hit populated areas.
Any nation would take measures to stop or at least mitigate the frequency of these rocket attacks.
As far as I know, lobbing rockets into populated areas of a sovereign nation is an act of war. Luckilly for the Gazans, the Israeli forces are constrained to safeguard innocent civilians. When innocent Gazan people are used as human shields by terrorists, no one can be 100% sure of collateral damage.
These actions from surrounding Arab controlled areas are meant to undermine the Israeli government OVER TIME by demoralizing the populace. It is death by a thousand pinpricks.
The real outrage is that these same terrorists are using their own people as cannon fodder by their cowardly and evil battle tactic using innocents as human shields.

"..Why didn't Hezbollah help?.."

It would not help in the battle of "hearts and minds" as the media would have to identify the Israelis as a besieged nation. No, the strategy is to take turns every few years and retain their VICTIM status.

Frank Partisan said...

Roman: See this. It is an analysis, of Israel's defense status.

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