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  #251  
Old 03-12-2019, 07:50 AM
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The point is that, speaking as a Jew, Paul Krugman can sniff out the difference between antisemitism and "antisemitism".
By that logic, you'd undoubtedly agree that Clarence Thomas is an authority on what's racist and what isn't.
  #252  
Old 03-12-2019, 08:30 AM
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See, this is what Zionism has become in practice, regardless of however people here or elsewhere want to define it. Zionism has become an ideology of violent oppression of non-Jews to establish a Jewish homeland, and this homeland exists not just anywhere, but in a so-called holy land, which has also been home to two other major religions. Moreover, it's an ideology that depends in no small part of the participation of Jewish activists worldwide, many of whom occupy positions of power, economically, socially, and politically. And it's simply dishonest to believe otherwise.
Boling mine.

I think this is the part that is debatable and that most Jews who would consider themselves Zionist (and I am not sure I do) would take issue with.

So let me ask, if we remove the bolded part, is there anything that is wrong with the rest? If it was instead changed from violent oppression to peaceful and safe coexistence would there be anything wrong with that?

Last edited by NAF1138; 03-12-2019 at 08:32 AM.
  #253  
Old 03-12-2019, 02:52 PM
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Boling mine.

I think this is the part that is debatable and that most Jews who would consider themselves Zionist (and I am not sure I do) would take issue with.

So let me ask, if we remove the bolded part, is there anything that is wrong with the rest? If it was instead changed from violent oppression to peaceful and safe coexistence would there be anything wrong with that?
To answer the question literally, no, there would be nothing wrong with establishing a Jewish homeland peacefully, assuming there were no displacement of people in developing the territory into a state. In terms of history, however, the truth is more complex than that. The Jewish aliyah and waves of settlements thereafter inevitably displaced the people who called themselves Palestinians. Israel isn't just an idea of a Jewish homeland; it represents a clash of cultures instigated by mostly European Jewish settlers who were there not to 'settle' and integrate but to create a new Jewish state, and thereby establish a completely new culture and set of rules. In other words, Zionism is essentially another form of imperialism. It is impossible to reconcile your question about the establishment of a peaceful Jewish state with the historical record of Zionist Israel.

This is not anti-Jewish, and not even anti-Israel. This is a factual characterization of history, and yet the Zionist lobby has brainwashed Americans into believing that anyone writing or saying the above is an antisemite. Let me assure everyone reading this that I am not. I don't consider myself an expert of any kind on global Jewry or the Jewish diaspora, but I suppose I know enough to state that I've lived in numerous communities in which Jews have contributed greatly to the cultural, social, political, and economic fabric of those communities, and enriched them greatly. And visited and read about many more. I don't even consider myself anti-Israel, really (for the record I'm a believer in the 2-state approach, however impractical that might seem at times). Moreover, I can absolutely acknowledge that Palestinian activism (Hamas, for instance) and pan-Arab nationalism have hardly helped matters over the years. I don't have a problem criticizing Israel's neighbors, particularly those oppressive regimes who've simply used Israel as a way to deflect attention from their own political incompetence and oppression. I just wish that we could talk more plainly about Israel without the conversation being always so one-sided and automatically labeling someone like Ilhan Omar an antisemite without accepting that she might have misspoken and giving her a chance to revise and explain more clearly what she really meant.

Last edited by asahi; 03-12-2019 at 02:54 PM.
  #254  
Old 03-12-2019, 02:58 PM
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By that logic, you'd undoubtedly agree that Clarence Thomas is an authority on what's racist and what isn't.
Clarence Thomas is a judge who happens to be black, and Paul Krugman is an economist who happens to be a Jew. They're authorities of their domain, but that doesn't preclude them from offering assessments on matters such as race. I think the burden of proof is on you if you think that Paul Krugman is some kind of self-hating Jewish uncle Tom.
  #255  
Old 03-12-2019, 03:42 PM
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Clarence Thomas is a judge who happens to be black, and Paul Krugman is an economist who happens to be a Jew. They're authorities of their domain, but that doesn't preclude them from offering assessments on matters such as race. I think the burden of proof is on you if you think that Paul Krugman is some kind of self-hating Jewish uncle Tom.
You're missing the point.

It gets tiresome to see attempts at dismissing the viewpoints and feelings of a large number of people of whatever ethnic or religious minority, on the basis that a token figure (or poster, for that matter) who shares a similar background doesn't feel offended (or in the case of Paul Krugman, intimates that The Other Side Is Worse so nevermind, nothing to see here).

Paul Krugman or Clarence Thomas are free to offer personal opinions, but that doesn't make them spokesmen for their ethnicity/race.

Last edited by Jackmannii; 03-12-2019 at 03:44 PM.
  #256  
Old 03-12-2019, 08:40 PM
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You're missing the point.

It gets tiresome to see attempts at dismissing the viewpoints and feelings of a large number of people of whatever ethnic or religious minority, on the basis that a token figure (or poster, for that matter) who shares a similar background doesn't feel offended (or in the case of Paul Krugman, intimates that The Other Side Is Worse so nevermind, nothing to see here).

Paul Krugman or Clarence Thomas are free to offer personal opinions, but that doesn't make them spokesmen for their ethnicity/race.
I never meant to suggest that Krugman was a spokesman for his race, but neither is Benjamin Netanyahu. There are a lot of Jews who can understand what Omar might have been trying to say, even if her limited background and cultural knowledge might have caused her to unintentionally step in it. People are soooo worried about Omar's anti-semitism, well here's the reality: there are many more Jews and Zionists in positions of power in the United States than there are Somali Muslims like Ilhan Omar, so I'd say they're doing just fine. I'd say that their worldview is being rather well represented. Omar's? Not so much.
  #257  
Old 03-13-2019, 03:33 AM
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I never meant to suggest that Krugman was a spokesman for his race, but neither is Benjamin Netanyahu.
Who said he was?

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There are a lot of Jews who can understand what Omar might have been trying to say, even if her limited background and cultural knowledge might have caused her to unintentionally step in it. People are soooo worried about Omar's anti-semitism, well here's the reality: there are many more Jews and Zionists in positions of power in the United States than there are Somali Muslims like Ilhan Omar, so I'd say they're doing just fine. I'd say that their worldview is being rather well represented. Omar's? Not so much.
There might not be a lot of Somali Muslims, but there are still a lot of antisemites as well, and it shouldn't matter what side they're on.
  #258  
Old 03-13-2019, 05:56 AM
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People are soooo worried about Omar's anti-semitism, well here's the reality: there are many more Jews and Zionists in positions of power in the United States than there are Somali Muslims like Ilhan Omar, so I'd say they're doing just fine. I'd say that their worldview is being rather well represented. Omar's? Not so much.
I'ma argue with everyone here .

First, it doesn't at all matter how many Zionists and/or Jews are in positions of power, in terms of whether antisemitism is a problem. That seems like a real non sequitur to me to mention the number of Jews in power in the US, and honestly it (and other things you've said) is rubbing me the wrong way, as though Jews have so much power in the US that antisemitism is okay.

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the Zionist lobby has brainwashed Americans into believing that anyone writing or saying the above is an antisemite. Let me assure everyone reading this that I am not.
That's a pretty gross thing to say in the first sentence. The second sentence? I mean, c'mon man.
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Zionism has become an ideology of violent oppression of non-Jews
I reject this accusation entirely. Likud !=Zionism.

Now I'ma argue with Jackmanii:
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Originally Posted by Jackmanii
It gets tiresome to see attempts at dismissing the viewpoints and feelings of a large number of people of whatever ethnic or religious minority, on the basis that a token figure (or poster, for that matter) who shares a similar background doesn't feel offended (or in the case of Paul Krugman, intimates that The Other Side Is Worse so nevermind, nothing to see here).
Speaking only for myself, I quoted Waldman's sentence in which he identifies as Jewish because of the exact opposite of what you said. There are attempts--I don't remember if it's in this thread, but it's absolutely happening--to suggest that non-Jews don't get to have an opinion on whether something's antisemitic.

I find that idea reductive and anti-intellectual; but because it's anti-intellectual, it's very difficult to argue persuasively against it. One way to argue against it--or, better yet, to prevent it--is to show that not all Jews agree on what's antisemitic.

That said, the main reason I quoted Waldman is because I think he raised some excellent points about how Omar's words about pledging loyalty are not at all antisemitic. I'd much rather have folks talk about his points than his ethnicity.
  #259  
Old 03-13-2019, 07:06 AM
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That's a pretty gross thing to say in the first sentence. The second sentence? I mean, c'mon man.
You've pretty much demonstrated what as I said, which is that you cannot point out the history of Zionism, and you cannot point out the influence and impact of Zionist lobbying without being called an antisemite. That's because the pro-Israel causes have been successful in shaping the narrative of Israel as a victim, essentially equating Israel's victimization with that of the Jews in late 19th Century and early 20th Century Europe.

The reality is that Zionism was not necessarily harmless; it has been a disruptive movement. Zionism uprooted people, caused upheaval in a society that was predominately Muslim and Christian. That is the historical reality, and the Zionists have been trying to sell people around the world on this notion that Zionism was just a bunch of European Jews trying to escape pogroms who then ended up harmlessly and quietly settling in completely abandoned and uninhabited areas and were then inexplicably hated as settlers because they're Jewish, and that is nothing but simplistic, falsified history. Yes, many of them were escaping horrific antisemitism in Europe - no denying that. But all along, they intended to mass migrate and create a new state and new culture - the feelings of its existing inhabitants be damned.

Is it my use of the words Zionism and Zionist that bother you? Do those words trigger perceptions of antisemitism on my part, because I honestly don't equate those terms with inherent Jewishness. Someone can be Jewish, even conservative Jewish, and not necessarily all that interested in the fate of Israel as a Jewish state, just as you can have an Israel that is inclusive to more than just Jews (don't tell that to the Likud, thoguh). If my use of the words "Zionism" and "Zionists" are offensive, I'm sorry but I don't know what else to call it. Maybe we could call it Jewish nationalism?
  #260  
Old 03-13-2019, 07:10 AM
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Who said he was?



There might not be a lot of Somali Muslims, but there are still a lot of antisemites as well, and it shouldn't matter what side they're on.
I'll put it this way: it's not Ilhan Omar and her Somali American followers who are marching through Charlottesville saying "Jews will not replace us." I think that's the point that Krugman was trying to make, which is not to say that you can't find antisemites among the left - I'm rather sure you can. But the right wing is much more likely to normalize antisemitism and antisemitic rhetoric and violence than the left. Want proof? Look at what happened in Pittsburgh. That wasn't a lefty.

This is also why it's really, really important for people to understand clearly the distinction between criticism of Israel and anti-Jewish sentiment. They are NOT the same. And to conflate these two things is dangerous because it makes it more difficult to have discussions based on facts and truth. When people can't have discussions based on facts and truth, they end up not knowing what to believe, and they're more likely to be influenced by things like lies and conspiracy theories -- which put Jews, Zionist or not, in even greater danger. There should be room for nuanced, respectful criticism of Israel (and even Jewish nationalism, just as there should be of any kind of nationalism) without having to defend against charges of antisemitism.

Last edited by asahi; 03-13-2019 at 07:14 AM.
  #261  
Old 03-13-2019, 07:18 AM
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That is the historical reality, and the Zionists have been trying to sell people around the world on this notion that Zionism was just a bunch of European Jews trying to escape pogroms who then ended up harmlessly and quietly settling in completely abandoned and uninhabited areas and were then inexplicably hated as settlers because they're Jewish, and that is nothing but simplistic, falsified history.
This is bullshit. The vast majority of Zionists that I know recognize the reality that many people were harmed during the creation and early history of Isreal, and that it was not an "abandoned and uninhabited area". In fact, I'm not sure if I know a single Zionist who believes this.

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Yes, many of them were escaping horrific antisemitism in Europe - no denying that. But all along, they intended to mass migrate and create a new state and new culture - the feelings of its existing inhabitants be damned.
This is also bullshit. The Jews escaping Europe were looking for a safe place to live. That's it. And they had very good reason to believe that the only possibility of a safe place to live was to create their own country. Why on Earth would they believe, after the Holocaust in Europe, America's indifference during the Holocaust and continuing white supremacism, and the rest of the world's pretty much open hostility to Jews, that they would be safe anywhere else?

So they went to where Jews escaping pogroms and oppression had been fleeing to for decades -- the land that would become Israel.

This doesn't excuse everything that was done in the creation and early history of Israel, but this is the history. The Jews who went to that land before, during, and after the Holocaust were a truly desperate people. And truly desperate people will sometimes do truly desperate things to survive and ensure their safety. That doesn't justify everything done, but it's still an accurate characterization.

You are lumping in all Zionists with a specific racist slice of Zionism. And this provides rhetorical aid and comfort to anti-semites, whatever your intentions.

Last edited by iiandyiiii; 03-13-2019 at 07:20 AM.
  #262  
Old 03-13-2019, 07:25 AM
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You've pretty much demonstrated what as I said, which is that you cannot point out the history of Zionism, and you cannot point out the influence and impact of Zionist lobbying without being called an antisemite.
Except that's nonsense. You've not "pointed out the history of Zionism," you've made a bunch of unsubstantiated claims about the meaning and history of Zionism. Your claims are factually incorrect, which is probably why you've not cited references for them.

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Is it my use of the words Zionism and Zionist that bother you?
No; it's your misuse of the words.
  #263  
Old 03-13-2019, 10:56 AM
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in other words, Zionism is essentially another form of imperialism. It is impossible to reconcile your question about the establishment of a peaceful Jewish state with the historical record of Zionist Israel.

.
Let me pick out this sentence since others have talked about the other stuff.

Was the above true prior to 1948? If so what is your cite? If not when did it become true? May 14th 1948? Post 1967? Post 1973? The mid 90s?
  #264  
Old 03-13-2019, 11:12 AM
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There are attempts--I don't remember if it's in this thread, but it's absolutely happening--to suggest that non-Jews don't get to have an opinion on whether something's antisemitic.
What I said was that it's a loser for non-members of an ethnic/religious/racial group to preach to members of those groups that they shouldn't be offended by something that a large percentage of them clearly are.

One can believe that black people shouldn't take something as racist, but they're bound to react badly to finger-wagging from white people.

So by all means have an opinion, but better load up on really strong arguments in order to back your case and be prepared to take heat, especially if one's leading argument is "Here's a Jew/black guy/Muslim who isn't offended, so there!".
  #265  
Old 03-13-2019, 01:57 PM
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What I said was that it's a loser for non-members of an ethnic/religious/racial group to preach to members of those groups that they shouldn't be offended by something that a large percentage of them clearly are.

One can believe that black people shouldn't take something as racist, but they're bound to react badly to finger-wagging from white people.
Who says Jews shouldn't be offended by it? That's a different argument from whether, for example, "All about the Benjamins" deliberately or accidentally ties into antisemitic stereotypes.
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So by all means have an opinion, but better load up on really strong arguments in order to back your case and be prepared to take heat, especially if one's leading argument is "Here's a Jew/black guy/Muslim who isn't offended, so there!".
I certainly hope you're not reading what I've written as anything close to this.
  #266  
Old 03-13-2019, 02:19 PM
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The Jews escaping Europe were looking for a safe place to live. That's it. And they had very good reason to believe that the only possibility of a safe place to live was to create their own country. Why on Earth would they believe, after the Holocaust in Europe, America's indifference during the Holocaust and continuing white supremacism, and the rest of the world's pretty much open hostility to Jews, that they would be safe anywhere else?
Remember that America wasn't just indifferent to the Holocaust, there was a large contingent of Americans which was outright pro-Nazi. The American Nazi Party held a huge rally at Madison Square Garden at one point. (This was before the country entered the war, but still!) Many refugees trying to escape the Nazis were denied admission by America and sent back to Europe, where many ended up being killed.

No, it's impossible to find fault with the notion that Jews needed their own country. Not just their own country but their own military also, since they couldn't rely on the armies of the world powers to protect them.

People really do forget sometimes how recently the Holocaust actually happened, there are still people alive today who went through it. And it was the major catalyst for establishing a Jewish state. I think that the state was established in the wrong place; if it were up to me I'd have put it somewhere else; but it wasn't up to me. Anyway, it exists where it is, now, and there's never going to be peace until it's officially recognized. But the Palestinians really need their own state too.
  #267  
Old 03-13-2019, 02:40 PM
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Who says Jews shouldn't be offended by it? That's a different argument from whether, for example, "All about the Benjamins" deliberately or accidentally ties into antisemitic stereotypes.
If you say it isn't antisemitic (whether intentional or not), are you not inherently saying that Jews should not be offended by it?

Sure, that's not all you're saying, but it's part of it.

Last edited by BigT; 03-13-2019 at 02:42 PM.
  #268  
Old 03-13-2019, 04:09 PM
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If you say it isn't antisemitic (whether intentional or not), are you not inherently saying that Jews should not be offended by it?.
no
  #269  
Old 03-13-2019, 08:37 PM
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This is bullshit. The vast majority of Zionists that I know recognize the reality that many people were harmed during the creation and early history of Isreal, and that it was not an "abandoned and uninhabited area". In fact, I'm not sure if I know a single Zionist who believes this.
I don't have the entire article, but at least one author makes reference to the "making the desert bloom" trope, which proposes the idea that the Palestinians only became interested in what is now Israel once Jewish settlers brought their technical know-how with them.

https://www.jstor.org/stable/2536511...n_tab_contents

Shimon Peres is reported to have said in his book:

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"The country was mostly an empty desert, with only a few islands of Arab settlement, and Israel's cultivable land today was indeed redeemed from swamp and wilderness."
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This is also bullshit. The Jews escaping Europe were looking for a safe place to live. That's it. And they had very good reason to believe that the only possibility of a safe place to live was to create their own country. Why on Earth would they believe, after the Holocaust in Europe, America's indifference during the Holocaust and continuing white supremacism, and the rest of the world's pretty much open hostility to Jews, that they would be safe anywhere else?

So they went to where Jews escaping pogroms and oppression had been fleeing to for decades -- the land that would become Israel.

This doesn't excuse everything that was done in the creation and early history of Israel, but this is the history. The Jews who went to that land before, during, and after the Holocaust were a truly desperate people. And truly desperate people will sometimes do truly desperate things to survive and ensure their safety. That doesn't justify everything done, but it's still an accurate characterization.

You are lumping in all Zionists with a specific racist slice of Zionism. And this provides rhetorical aid and comfort to anti-semites, whatever your intentions.
As I clearly said in my previous post, I fully acknowledge that there were horrific pogroms and acts of violence against Jews, beginning with the Russian pogroms in around 1882. There was antisemitism in Poland and throughout Europe. There was the Dreyfus Affair in France, which polarized France and arguably, irrevocably destroyed not only the safety of Jews but in many ways signaled a final symbolic end to liberalism on much of the Continent. I'm not for a moment denying any of that.' Indeed, many, many Jewish migrants left because they did not feel safe, and upon reflection, I probably did a poor job emphasizing that part in my previous post.

Nevertheless, it is no less true that there were Jewish nationalists who from the beginning envisioned a Jewish state, and they had to know the kind of unrest that this was going to cause. You cannot expect me to take seriously the notion that you can just organize mass migration to a place with completely different culture and religion and expect there not to be conflict, particularly when the idea all along is to establish a "homeland" with completely different cultural traditions. The Zionists who ended up laying down the ideological and political foundation for modern day Israel did so over the objection of Ottomans, who legally ruled the territory at the time. It's worth noting, however, that the Zionists, who were fleeing anti-Jewish persecution in Europe, stood by Turkey as it massacred Armenians in one of the worst genocides in human history - because they hoped to gain Ottoman agreement to a Jewish state. This is not conspiracy theory, but fact. It's more than ironic considering what happened to Jews 20 years later.
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Old 03-13-2019, 08:38 PM
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Let me pick out this sentence since others have talked about the other stuff.

Was the above true prior to 1948? If so what is your cite? If not when did it become true? May 14th 1948? Post 1967? Post 1973? The mid 90s?
I'm not quite sure what your point is, so please rephrase your question with specifics.
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Old 03-13-2019, 08:39 PM
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As I clearly said in my previous post, I fully acknowledge that there were horrific pogroms and acts of violence against Jews, beginning with the Russian pogroms in around 1882.
It started way the hell before 1882. Does the Inquisition ring a bell?
  #272  
Old 03-13-2019, 08:40 PM
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Except that's nonsense. You've not "pointed out the history of Zionism," you've made a bunch of unsubstantiated claims about the meaning and history of Zionism. Your claims are factually incorrect, which is probably why you've not cited references for them.


No; it's your misuse of the words.
I'm more than willing to be factually rectified. I've got no skin in the game and my ego isn't so big that I'm not willing to admit that I'm wrong. I sure I probably am wrong about some of the specifics, and I'm happy to have my ignorance fought.

That being said, what specifically was factually incorrect in your estimation?

Last edited by asahi; 03-13-2019 at 08:41 PM.
  #273  
Old 03-13-2019, 10:40 PM
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I'm not quite sure what your point is, so please rephrase your question with specifics.
You say Zionism is imperialism. I am asking if you feel it always has been. Zionism existed for a long long time prior to the foundation of Israel. In your view was it Imperialist from the get go? If so, I want to see evidence to support this belief. If not I would like to know when you think it turned into an imperialist enterprise.
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Old 03-13-2019, 10:51 PM
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Imperialism is about a country turning itself into an empire, which has never been the goal of Zionism. Zionism is a form of nationalism plain and simple.
  #275  
Old 03-14-2019, 12:30 AM
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Right, because if there's one thing that Israeli pilots receive extensive training in, it's naval warfare. Because most of Israel's wars are fought on the high seas.

Seriously, though: if Israel had wanted to sink the Liberty for some nefarious political reason, they would have sent planes armed with anti-ship weapons instead of AT rockets and napalm, or even better, they would have sent a submarine. And they would have found a way to make it look like the Egyptians did it.
So, you haven't checked any other sources.

USS Liberty flew an American flag, as all USN ships do.
Aircraft armament was probably using whatever was available. I don't know what anti-ship weapons they had anywhere.
Israel had no submarine that could be 'sent' in any reasonable time. They DID send torpedo boats. Which attacked. And scored a torpedo hit.

I do not pretend to know the whys and wherefores of why Israel deliberately attacked a USN ship.
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Old 03-14-2019, 12:44 AM
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USS Liberty flew an American flag, as all USN ships do.
...
Can we get back to the Op and not this hijack, please?

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  #277  
Old 03-14-2019, 06:42 AM
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You say Zionism is imperialism. I am asking if you feel it always has been. Zionism existed for a long long time prior to the foundation of Israel. In your view was it Imperialist from the get go? If so, I want to see evidence to support this belief. If not I would like to know when you think it turned into an imperialist enterprise.
I don't know if I can answer that question, but what I can say (I think) is that Zionism before the late 19th Century was mostly an idea. Of course I can understand the motivations and justifications for the idea of Zionism, such as the perceived need to recover the dignity after being displaced and persecuted multiple times over many centuries. And the very real need to feel safe, particularly as liberalism broke down in 19th Century Europe.

After the establishment of political Zionism, however, Zionism was transformed from an idea into a political movement, with consequences. Again, the motives behind that movement are understandable, but what I'm pointing out is that this movement had very real consequences for both Jews and non-Jews alike. No matter how you slice it, the waves of Aliyahs displaced Palestinians. And what has occurred over the past century, particularly since the establishment of Israel the nation-state in 1948, is a pattern of propaganda that has been used by Zionists to justify their settlement, establishment, and expansion of a Jewish state on land that had previously been occupied by non-Jews. That's not fiction; it's fact.
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Old 03-14-2019, 06:46 AM
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It started way the hell before 1882. Does the Inquisition ring a bell?
True, but there were also periods of relative tolerance. Jews lived in Germany and were part of the German establishment in many cases right up through WWI. There were German Jews who were actively supporting the German cause during WWI because they believed (understandably) that Russia was the greatest nemesis of the Jews, not Germany. Adolf Hitler wouldn't be on anyone's radar until about 1921-23 or so. There's this belief that Nazi Germany was the culmination of centuries of extreme German antipathy toward Jews, which is not really true. Nazism was a shock to German Jews as it was to everyone else.

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Old 03-14-2019, 06:50 AM
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Imperialism is about a country turning itself into an empire, which has never been the goal of Zionism. Zionism is a form of nationalism plain and simple.
Maybe imperialism wasn't the best word choice; perhaps colonialism would have been more accurate. Nevertheless, the effects of displacement and subjugation of Arabs by Zionists have been remarkably similar to what people have experienced in other parts of the world (Asia, the Americas, etc) as a result of Western imperialism (colonialism).
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Old 03-14-2019, 07:04 AM
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I don't have the entire article, but at least one author makes reference to the "making the desert bloom" trope, which proposes the idea that the Palestinians only became interested in what is now Israel once Jewish settlers brought their technical know-how with them.

https://www.jstor.org/stable/2536511...n_tab_contents

Shimon Peres is reported to have said in his book:
I'm sure there are some Zionists who believe this (and this quote is different than what you said). But you're still tarring all Zionists, or Zionism in general, as having this belief, and this is false.

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As I clearly said in my previous post, I fully acknowledge that there were horrific pogroms and acts of violence against Jews, beginning with the Russian pogroms in around 1882. There was antisemitism in Poland and throughout Europe. There was the Dreyfus Affair in France, which polarized France and arguably, irrevocably destroyed not only the safety of Jews but in many ways signaled a final symbolic end to liberalism on much of the Continent. I'm not for a moment denying any of that.' Indeed, many, many Jewish migrants left because they did not feel safe, and upon reflection, I probably did a poor job emphasizing that part in my previous post.

Nevertheless, it is no less true that there were Jewish nationalists who from the beginning envisioned a Jewish state, and they had to know the kind of unrest that this was going to cause. You cannot expect me to take seriously the notion that you can just organize mass migration to a place with completely different culture and religion and expect there not to be conflict, particularly when the idea all along is to establish a "homeland" with completely different cultural traditions. The Zionists who ended up laying down the ideological and political foundation for modern day Israel did so over the objection of Ottomans, who legally ruled the territory at the time. It's worth noting, however, that the Zionists, who were fleeing anti-Jewish persecution in Europe, stood by Turkey as it massacred Armenians in one of the worst genocides in human history - because they hoped to gain Ottoman agreement to a Jewish state. This is not conspiracy theory, but fact. It's more than ironic considering what happened to Jews 20 years later.
If this is true, it doesn't conflict with what I said.

Here's my main point -- those Jews fleeing Europe were truly desperate people. That truly desperate people sometimes do truly desperate things for their own safety and survival shouldn't be surprising. Some of those truly desperate people had a vision to create a Jewish state. You seem to be saying this like it's a shocking or terrible thing, but it's not. It doesn't justify everything that occurred, but the desire to create a state for a stateless people who have been hounded and brutalized for centuries is a pretty damn reasonable desire.
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Old 03-14-2019, 07:40 AM
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I'm sure there are some Zionists who believe this (and this quote is different than what you said). But you're still tarring all Zionists, or Zionism in general, as having this belief, and this is false.
I think some aspects of this discussion depend on one's operational definition of "Zionism" and "Zionist". As with all things, there are degrees and shades. I fully acknowledge that there are liberal Zionists who vehemently disagree with Likudism. I'm not saying all Jews or even all Zionists buy into the " 'Palestine' (in quotes) was an empty desert' trope, but clearly many do, and many of those who do are influential. After all, the Likud has power - real power. They also have powerful allies in the United States congress. This isn't my imagination, iiandyiii. It's not my imagination that the United States moved its diplomatic post to Jerusalem.

Nor is it my imagination that the US has always been much more reticent than our other Western allies in condemning Israel's aggressive and, in many cases, outright inhumane treatment of Palestinians, and that's because there is a very strong pro-Israel lobby in this country, and it's just naive and ignorant to pretend otherwise. That "making the desert bloom" myth isn't confined to Israel either; it has also been picked up and retold in American intellectual circles as well. Such as when American author Joan Peters (who was Jewish) wrote what influential book titled "From Time Immemorial." Peters' work hypothesized essentially that there was no Palestine, putting Palestine in quotes, as if to debase the authenticity of the people who were born there and had unbroken ancestral ties dating back centuries. Her scholarship essentially tried to advance the notion that there were no Palestinians, and that Arabs migrated to Israel from Egypt and other places around the Middle East.

Fortunately, there were left wing Jewish scholars like Noam Chomsky and Norman Finkelstein who tore it to pieces. As I said, I acknowledge that Jews don't all march in lock step, and not even all Zionists do. I get that.

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Here's my main point -- those Jews fleeing Europe were truly desperate people. That truly desperate people sometimes do truly desperate things for their own safety and survival shouldn't be surprising. Some of those truly desperate people had a vision to create a Jewish state. You seem to be saying this like it's a shocking or terrible thing, but it's not. It doesn't justify everything that occurred, but the desire to create a state for a stateless people who have been hounded and brutalized for centuries is a pretty damn reasonable desire.
I don't really disagree with this; there is a certain degree of 'It is what it is' to this discussion. But that's my point as well: as I see it, what Ilhan Omar did was to unintentionally stumble into anti-Jewish tropes, with which she has limited or no cultural background to draw from. She has been called out and disciplined, and I don't necessarily disagree with that. But at the same time, let's consider what Omar was attempting to do, not just what we find fault with. Omar was attempting to re-frame our discussion on Israel, and it badly - really badly - needs to be re-framed, because it's biased as hell - and also very dangerous.

In one of my previous posts, I italicized (meant to underline it actually) the part where I emphasize the breakdown of liberalism in 19th Century Europe. There's a reason I did so. I emphasized the breakdown of liberalism in Europe because I see liberalism breaking down now, giving way to tribalism, corrupting truth, and breeding toxic forms of competition. Liberal values are eroding and being replaced with the values of traditionalism and clannishness. That's dangerous for everyone - especially Jews. In 2019 America, I don't think we're really all that far away from our own Dreyfus affair. We're not that far away from a sharp right turn toward vicious antisemitism in this country. Supporting fervent nationalism has never worked out that well for Jews, and it probably won't work out well the next time, either. The ideology of the Likud isn't carving out a safe space for Jews; it's putting the world's Jews in danger. Jews are safer when the side with the values of pluralism, inclusion, justice, democracy, which is not what right wing Zionism has become. Again, I get that many, many Jews and modern moderate Zionists reject this ideology, fortunately.
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Old 03-14-2019, 07:43 AM
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I think some aspects of this discussion depend on one's operational definition of "Zionism" and "Zionist". As with all things, there are degrees and shades. I fully acknowledge that there are liberal Zionists who vehemently disagree with Likudism. I'm not saying all Jews or even all Zionists buy into the " 'Palestine' (in quotes) was an empty desert' trope, but clearly many do, and many of those who do are influential. After all, the Likud has power - real power. They also have powerful allies in the United States congress. This isn't my imagination, iiandyiii. It's not my imagination that the United States moved its diplomatic post to Jerusalem.

Nor is it my imagination that the US has always been much more reticent than our other Western allies in condemning Israel's aggressive and, in many cases, outright inhumane treatment of Palestinians, and that's because there is a very strong pro-Israel lobby in this country, and it's just naive and ignorant to pretend otherwise. That "making the desert bloom" myth isn't confined to Israel either; it has also been picked up and retold in American intellectual circles as well. Such as when American author Joan Peters (who was Jewish) wrote what influential book titled "From Time Immemorial." Peters' work hypothesized essentially that there was no Palestine, putting Palestine in quotes, as if to debase the authenticity of the people who were born there and had unbroken ancestral ties dating back centuries. Her scholarship essentially tried to advance the notion that there were no Palestinians, and that Arabs migrated to Israel from Egypt and other places around the Middle East.

Fortunately, there were left wing Jewish scholars like Noam Chomsky and Norman Finkelstein who tore it to pieces. As I said, I acknowledge that Jews don't all march in lock step, and not even all Zionists do. I get that.

I don't really disagree with this; there is a certain degree of 'It is what it is' to this discussion. But that's my point as well: as I see it, what Ilhan Omar did was to unintentionally stumble into anti-Jewish tropes, with which she has limited or no cultural background to draw from. She has been called out and disciplined, and I don't necessarily disagree with that. But at the same time, let's consider what Omar was attempting to do, not just what we find fault with. Omar was attempting to re-frame our discussion on Israel, and it badly - really badly - needs to be re-framed, because it's biased as hell - and also very dangerous.

In one of my previous posts, I italicized (meant to underline it actually) the part where I emphasize the breakdown of liberalism in 19th Century Europe. There's a reason I did so. I emphasized the breakdown of liberalism in Europe because I see liberalism breaking down now, giving way to tribalism, corrupting truth, and breeding toxic forms of competition. Liberal values are eroding and being replaced with the values of traditionalism and clannishness. That's dangerous for everyone - especially Jews. In 2019 America, I don't think we're really all that far away from our own Dreyfus affair. We're not that far away from a sharp right turn toward vicious antisemitism in this country. Supporting fervent nationalism has never worked out that well for Jews, and it probably won't work out well the next time, either. The ideology of the Likud isn't carving out a safe space for Jews; it's putting the world's Jews in danger. Jews are safer when the side with the values of pluralism, inclusion, justice, democracy, which is not what right wing Zionism has become. Again, I get that many, many Jews and modern moderate Zionists reject this ideology, fortunately.
Okay, I don't think there's anything in here I disagree with. It looks different than some of what you were saying earlier, but this appears to be a reasonable analysis, and close to my own position.
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Old 03-14-2019, 08:21 AM
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The Israeli treatment of the Palestinians isn't great, but let's be clear about what's going on: it's a war. The Palestinians could surrender and negotiate a settlement. Or just negotiate a settlement without calling it surrender. But as long as they are at war with Israel they should expect war to be waged against them. That's how wars work.

Where the anti-semitism comes in is people expecting Israel to react to a group of people waging war on them, is that they should show restraint not expected of anyone else in the world. It also comes in in objections to occupation, of which only the Israeli occupation is a concern, despite several others around the world. It also comes in when Palestinians die at Israeli hands and it's a huge problem but when Palestinians die at non-Jews' hands, whether it be Palestinians themselves, Lebanese, Jordanians, or Egyptians, not a problem worth talking about.
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Old 03-14-2019, 08:28 AM
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The Israeli treatment of the Palestinians isn't great, but let's be clear about what's going on: it's a war. The Palestinians could surrender and negotiate a settlement. Or just negotiate a settlement without calling it surrender. But as long as they are at war with Israel they should expect war to be waged against them. That's how wars work.

Where the anti-semitism comes in is people expecting Israel to react to a group of people waging war on them, is that they should show restraint not expected of anyone else in the world. It also comes in in objections to occupation, of which only the Israeli occupation is a concern, despite several others around the world. It also comes in when Palestinians die at Israeli hands and it's a huge problem but when Palestinians die at non-Jews' hands, whether it be Palestinians themselves, Lebanese, Jordanians, or Egyptians, not a problem worth talking about.
I don't think this is a reasonable characterization. In the present, many or most Palestinian men, women, and children are in truly desperate circumstances, with very little chance at a decent life. Some of them take desperate action, because desperate people do desperate things. Because these are human beings we're talking about -- not moral superheroes or robots -- this isn't likely to change unless and until many or most Palestinians aren't living in truly desperate circumstances.

It would certainly be very difficult to change these circumstances, but they aren't likely to change for the better without the Israeli government changing its policies. Which is why I think a large part of the moral onus is on the Israeli government -- because they have the power to change these circumstances, and individual Palestinians do not.

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Old 03-14-2019, 08:30 AM
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It's not an act of desperation to respond to your life sucking by killing people. When that happens here, we call them losers. You know what desperate people do? they surrender.
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Old 03-14-2019, 08:33 AM
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It's not an act of desperation to respond to your life sucking by killing people. When that happens here, we call them losers. You know what desperate people do? they surrender.
Bullshit. Desperate people do desperate things, including sometimes crazy things (i.e. trying to resurrect an ancient country in a land now partially populated by a different group) or even terrible things.

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Old 03-14-2019, 08:38 AM
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They do. And it's generally recognized as idiotic in any other context. But Jews and all. If this was any other people, like say, the Tibetans rising up against the Chinese, the world would be eager for the Tibetans to just stop and get the best deal they could.
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Old 03-14-2019, 08:51 AM
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They do. And it's generally recognized as idiotic in any other context. But Jews and all. If this was any other people, like say, the Tibetans rising up against the Chinese, the world would be eager for the Tibetans to just stop and get the best deal they could.
I have little doubt that anti-semitism is involved in the double-standards and other unfair characterizations much of the world utilizes when criticizing Israel. That doesn't negate the reasonable criticism of various Israeli government policies that do maintain these desperate circumstances and oppress and even brutalize Palestinians. Just like that these desperate circumstances don't justify terrorism (though maintaining these desperate circumstances does make such terrorism much more likely).

In the present, many peaceful Palestinians are in desperate circumstances through absolutely no fault of their own, because of Israeli government policies. This is wrong and reasonable to criticize.

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Old 03-14-2019, 09:13 AM
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The Israeli treatment of the Palestinians isn't great, but let's be clear about what's going on: it's a war. The Palestinians could surrender and negotiate a settlement. Or just negotiate a settlement without calling it surrender. But as long as they are at war with Israel they should expect war to be waged against them. That's how wars work.

Where the anti-semitism comes in is people expecting Israel to react to a group of people waging war on them, is that they should show restraint not expected of anyone else in the world. It also comes in in objections to occupation, of which only the Israeli occupation is a concern, despite several others around the world. It also comes in when Palestinians die at Israeli hands and it's a huge problem but when Palestinians die at non-Jews' hands, whether it be Palestinians themselves, Lebanese, Jordanians, or Egyptians, not a problem worth talking about.
The extension of that view is that anyone claiming to be a Palestinian must be removed from Israel's borders. In other words, genocide.

If you think that's the end of Israel's problems, it isn't; it's just the beginning. That is what will provide the fuel for ISIS 2.0 or 3.0 -- the crusade in the reverse to take back the Holy Land for the Muslims and restore dignity to Palestinians. Like we don't have enough problems with radicalized Islam now.

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Old 03-14-2019, 09:50 AM
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It has nothing to do with Palestinians. The main reason they have never made a deal is because they'd be considered traitors against the Jewish enemy and subject to ISIS-type organizations running rampant through their new country, with generous funding from rejectionist nations like Syria and some princes from the Gulf states. I think given that prospect they'll take occupation with the appearance of making a fight of it, which is about all they have left at this point.
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Old 03-18-2019, 10:58 AM
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Omar has an Op-Ed in the Washington Post today.

I'm curious what other folks think about it. To me, everything she says seems true and should not be controversial, and certainly nothing there looks antisemitic to me; but I'm not picking up on some things that other people are picking up on with her words, so I'd love to hear how others, especially those criticizing her for antisemitism, read this opinion piece.
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Old 03-18-2019, 11:43 AM
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In terms of principles, I don't have a major issue with what she's saying. But I have a feeling that when it comes to putting those principles into action, she and I would have more disagreements.

For example, I can see that if she were President, she'd probably take a line on human rights that is somewhat similar to Trump on trade: as in, making such a topic that overrides any other considerations in foreign relations, so that relations between the U.S. and other countries gets boiled down to mostly a single issue. I don't think things should be simplified to that degree.

So, let's take Saudi Arabia as an example. Horrible on human rights. But, let's say for argument's sake, that they are helping behind the scenes to get the Taliban to the negotiating table so we can get out of Afghanistan. Should we be as hard on Saudi Arabia as we are on other horrible human rights abusers, like Iran, when the latter countries aren't helping us at all on other issues? I think that requires a more nuanced position than thinking that Saudi Arabia should be under the same sanctions as Iran.

But even within the nuances, there's unquestionably more room to be more critical, and take stronger action, against some of our "friends" who abuse human rights. Like after the Khashoggi murder, damn right we should have started cancelling arms sales. But I suspect that Rep. Omar would probably be further to the side of, we should treat Saudi Arabia and Iran the same.
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Old 03-18-2019, 11:51 AM
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In terms of principles, I don't have a major issue with what she's saying. But I have a feeling that when it comes to putting those principles into action, she and I would have more disagreements.

For example, I can see that if she were President, she'd probably take a line on human rights that is somewhat similar to Trump on trade: as in, making such a topic that overrides any other considerations in foreign relations, so that relations between the U.S. and other countries gets boiled down to mostly a single issue. I don't think things should be simplified to that degree.

So, let's take Saudi Arabia as an example. Horrible on human rights. But, let's say for argument's sake, that they are helping behind the scenes to get the Taliban to the negotiating table so we can get out of Afghanistan. Should we be as hard on Saudi Arabia as we are on other horrible human rights abusers, like Iran, when the latter countries aren't helping us at all on other issues? I think that requires a more nuanced position than thinking that Saudi Arabia should be under the same sanctions as Iran.

But even within the nuances, there's unquestionably more room to be more critical, and take stronger action, against some of our "friends" who abuse human rights. Like after the Khashoggi murder, damn right we should have started cancelling arms sales. But I suspect that Rep. Omar would probably be further to the side of, we should treat Saudi Arabia and Iran the same.
But she's not president, she's a first term congressperson. Further, you're pretty much just guessing what she'd do as President. It seems entirely reasonable to suspect that if she had, say, 20 years experience in the House (and maybe Senate or governor), her views on how to approach issues like this might well change, even if her philosophical stance didn't.

Why not just judge her on her words and actions, including her past tweets, apologies, and this Op-Ed?
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Old 03-18-2019, 01:30 PM
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But she's not president, she's a first term congressperson. Further, you're pretty much just guessing what she'd do as President. It seems entirely reasonable to suspect that if she had, say, 20 years experience in the House (and maybe Senate or governor), her views on how to approach issues like this might well change, even if her philosophical stance didn't.
Are you suggesting that I ought to agree more with her on the basis that she's not actually in charge of anything? Or that in the future, her understanding of issues may change, so why draw any distinctions on our slightly different viewpoints today?

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Why not just judge her on her words and actions, including her past tweets, apologies, and this Op-Ed?
I have said that I gave her the benefit of the doubt on what appeared to me to be a sincere apology, only to have that apology walked back. So suggesting that I take more of her words at face value does not seem like a particularly smart thing for me to listen to.

ETA: besides which, literally the entire point of the op/ed was to treat every other country the same with respect to several issues. I explained rather thoroughly that we might not want to treat every single nation exactly the same, for reasons I discussed. Who's to say that I'm NOT taking her at her word when she says all countries should be treated the same with respect to our foreign policy?

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Old 03-18-2019, 01:36 PM
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Are you suggesting that I ought to agree more with her on the basis that she's not actually in charge of anything? Or that in the future, her understanding of issues may change, so why draw any distinctions on our slightly different viewpoints today?
No, I'm suggesting judging her by her words and actions, not what you "have a feeling" she might do.

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I have said that I gave her the benefit of the doubt on what appeared to me to be a sincere apology, only to have that apology walked back. So suggesting that I take more of her words at face value does not seem like a particularly smart thing for me to listen to.
By the worst possible interpretation of her words, perhaps. By a charitable reading of her words, or even a neutral reading, I don't see how she "walked back" her apology.

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ETA: besides which, literally the entire point of the op/ed was to treat every other country the same with respect to several issues. I explained rather thoroughly that we might not want to treat every single nation exactly the same, for reasons I discussed. Who's to say that I'm NOT taking her at her word when she says all countries should be treated the same with respect to our foreign policy?
By all means argue this issue. It's a reasonable thing to disagree about. But you're still extrapolating -- "treat every country the same on issue X" doesn't necessarily mean what you suggested. And you're extrapolating in what appears to me to be the most negative possible interpretation.
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Old 03-18-2019, 02:25 PM
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It's a reasonable thing to disagree about. But you're still extrapolating -- "treat every country the same on issue X" doesn't necessarily mean what you suggested. And you're extrapolating in what appears to me to be the most negative possible interpretation.
I submit that I'm actually doing the EXACT opposite of extrapolating. She wrote: "Our criticisms of oppression and regional instability caused by Iran are not legitimate if we do not hold Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain to the same standards."

Taken at face value, that means that Egypt etc ought to be treated like Iran, with sanctions and so forth over human rights violations. I'm not sure how you get to that being "extrapolating," unless you think she chose her words poorly and didn't mean what she wrote.
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Old 03-18-2019, 02:34 PM
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I submit that I'm actually doing the EXACT opposite of extrapolating. She wrote: "Our criticisms of oppression and regional instability caused by Iran are not legitimate if we do not hold Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain to the same standards."

Taken at face value, that means that Egypt etc ought to be treated like Iran, with sanctions and so forth over human rights violations. I'm not sure how you get to that being "extrapolating," unless you think she chose her words poorly and didn't mean what she wrote.
Holding them to the same standards doesn't mean treating them exactly the same, unless you think they're all guilty of exactly the same thing, to the exact same extent.
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Old 03-18-2019, 02:44 PM
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Holding them to the same standards doesn't mean treating them exactly the same, unless you think they're all guilty of exactly the same thing, to the exact same extent.
Where does she explain this in the op/ed? (Or elsewhere.) The only logic I can make of the argument is that she thinks we hold Egypt to one standard and Iran to another... which can either mean:

1. We oppose torture of dissidents in Iran on principle, but we are in principle generally okay with torture of dissidents in Egypt.
2. Or, we oppose torture in both countries, but when it comes to actually doing something about it, we only punish Iran for doing it, and we don't punish Egypt for doing it.

I don't think scenario 1 makes a lick of sense. Scenario 2 is more or less what U.S. policy is, so I take it that she opposes that.

So let me understand you correctly: you think Rep. Omar thinks scenario 1 is actually happening?
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Old 03-18-2019, 02:53 PM
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Where does she explain this in the op/ed? (Or elsewhere.) The only logic I can make of the argument is that she thinks we hold Egypt to one standard and Iran to another... which can either mean:

1. We oppose torture of dissidents in Iran on principle, but we are in principle generally okay with torture of dissidents in Egypt.
2. Or, we oppose torture in both countries, but when it comes to actually doing something about it, we only punish Iran for doing it, and we don't punish Egypt for doing it.

I don't think scenario 1 makes a lick of sense. Scenario 2 is more or less what U.S. policy is, so I take it that she opposes that.

So let me understand you correctly: you think Rep. Omar thinks scenario 1 is actually happening?
I think you're missing the possibility of a lot of nuance and grey areas (i.e. different quantity/quality of torture, different reasons for it, different levels of punishment/sanctions/etc.). She doesn't get into this level of detail -- maybe she should (and it would be reasonable to ask her these questions), but she didn't.

I'll also ask you this -- do you believe we should do nothing about torture and other human rights violations of ostensible allies? No punishment/consequences at all for Egypt, or Saudi Arabia, or others who have done terrible things but generally side with us? It seems pretty reasonable to me to suggest that those countries should face some consequences for these terrible things, and that's what I think Omar is suggesting, broadly speaking.
  #300  
Old 03-18-2019, 02:58 PM
Ravenman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iiandyiiii View Post
I think you're missing the possibility of a lot of nuance and grey areas (i.e. different quantity/quality of torture, different reasons for it, different levels of punishment/sanctions/etc.). She doesn't get into this level of detail -- maybe she should (and it would be reasonable to ask her these questions), but she didn't.
Perhaps you can explain further what you think she meant, since you have objected to my interpretation as being so off-base.

Quote:
I'll also ask you this -- do you believe we should do nothing about torture and other human rights violations of ostensible allies? No punishment/consequences at all for Egypt, or Saudi Arabia, or others who have done terrible things but generally side with us? It seems pretty reasonable to me to suggest that those countries should face some consequences for these terrible things, and that's what I think Omar is suggesting, broadly speaking.
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