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« Palestinian children are cannon fodder | Main | Breaking Story: full details in tonight’s TGIF Edition »

Comments

Adolf Fiinkensein

These children are not in 'occupied territories.' They are in a place called Gaza, which is governed by the elected fundamentalist, murderous Hamas party. It is NOT occupied and has not been for some years.

It is possible Gaza might well SOON be occupied but that is another story.

Peter Johns

Real men hiding behind their children, Tui Billboard anyone?

Probably having a bacon buttie as well as they cannot be seen eating it.

What a thilthy race these people are.

peter

These photos must be a setup surely! What would be the point of this, other than for a fancy dress session at a mums' coffee group.

Christian fundamentalists will believe anything. Anything that fits there pre-conditioning.

usabikes

Uh-hum...
If I may refer you to the Hamas Charter again peter:~

http://memri.org/bin/articles.cgi?Page=archives&Area=sd&ID=SP109206#_ednref5

And this quote from it that I posted on Saturday:
"The nationalism of the
Islamic Resistance Movement is part of its [Islamic] faith. It is in the
light of this principle that its members are educated, and they wage jihad
in order to raise the banner of Allah over the homeland."

This is why they train their kids up from the earliest age to be shahids and mujahideen. It is not a hoax.

OK, you may commence ignoring the facts and raving as per usual in 3...2...1

googoocachoo

Is anyone else bored senseless with the interminable "The arabs started it!!!! No! Israel started it!!! Did not!!! Did so!!!" debate that starts off every single time either side so much as looks funny at the other?

Seriously, Ian's posting on the matter consists of nothing more than trotting out the same photos he uses whenever he wants to ram home how subhuman he considers the Palestinians to be, accompanied by a few snippets recycled from an article he wrote seven years ago. The comments swiftly divide themselves into the two camps mentioned above.

The subject is crying out for some original, objective analysis that actually takes into account the reality on the ground. I fail to see how rehashing events from sixty years ago in a transperent attempt at guilt-by-association, accompanied by the usual atrocity propaganda, actually adds anything to the debate.

All isn't lost however, Peter Hitchens has some excellent posts online at his blog, as has Spiked-Online. Think I'll stick with them....

robk

googoo

You say "how subhuman he considers the Palestinians to be"

I don't think Ian regards ALL palestinians to be subhuman, only terrorists...

How about you? Do you think it subhuman to send your kid out with explosives wrapped around their waist? I bet you do!

Actually there are a lot of Christian Palestinians and moderate Muslims trapped in Gaza too. Of course Christians are concerned for them.

robk

PS
If we don't have to go back in history to find out how conflict began, that lets us Pakeha off honouring the treaty of Waitangi, does it not?

AcidComments

"Actually there are a lot of Christian Palestinians and moderate Muslims trapped in Gaza too. Of course Christians are concerned for them."

Yep!

Unfortunately for the Christian Palestinians and the moderate Muslim Palestinian civilians and families.

The death toll for them being butchered, massacred and assasinated by radical Palestinian elements over the years is overall higher than all the civilian casualities due to any Israeli defensive operation!

Arafat's Al Fatah had a good butcher session of moderate Palestinians in the 90s.

googoocachoo

Robk,

Maybe Ian regards Palestinians as subhuman, maybe he dosen't. That wasn't really my point.

My point is that for all his undoubted gifts as a journalist, Ian's postings on the conflict are hackneyed and predictable. Same goes for 98-99% of everything thats appeared in the New Zealand media, regardless of the side taken. None of it adds anything to the debate or advances a peaceful solution, so what on earth is the point?!

The demonstrators are chanting the same tired slogans and making the same tired (and offensive) comparisons. They're on autopilot.

Over at NZ Conservative, they're crowing about pro-Israeli demonstrations in New York and, I think, London. But are they any different? It's the same mindless support for "their side", without any objective analysis of whether the Israeli action is actually justified or wise. Understandable, but futile. The exceptions to all this (the aforementioned Peter Hitchens, for example) are few and far between.

And when both sides know that neither their patrons (be it the UN or the US)nor their supporters in the West will ever hold them accountable for anything they do (or don't do), then what are the odds of change anytime soon?

Sorry to ramble, but it just frustrates me....

googoocachoo

PS- You mention the Treaty Of Waitangi. It's a good example of what I mean.

The Treaty was signed too long ago and in circumstances too different to the present to be of any real use today. We need to move forward on the basis of where we're at NOW. So do the Israelis and Palestinians.

usabikes

Israel has things to answer for during its establishment and existence since 1948. No doubt about that. I have a "Palestinian" Christian acquaintance who has some harsh criticisms of Israel. There is a strong nationalist movement in Gaza & the West Bank that is independant of Islam, or Islamism. I've seen a photo of the inside of a Catholic church in Gaza with a large portait of their Bishop and next to it a very much larger picture of Arafat. So there are concerns regarding Israel's actions & support for Fatah in the non-Muslim community too.

However, this current crisis centres on the Hamas. It was they who broke the ceasefire (if they ever kept it) with volleys of rockets once the current truce period officially ended, and it was they who pushed Israel to defend itself. The key point that I've been trying to focus on is that the Hamas has as part of its founding document and its very DNA the unshakeable belief that this is a Holy War, a Jihad, to regain the land from "the Zionist entity," the hated sons of pigs and monkeys, the prophet-killing Jew.

The Hamas cannot be bargained with, they do not want peace - even at Zero cost to themselves and their fellow "Palestinians". Not many know that the Hamas brought in a new law (although it was in fact a very old one) just before this recent outbreak of violence that established crucifixion for those who offended Islam in Gaza (as per Qur'an 5.33), they operate on a completely different worldview than the post-modern liberal westerner. They want Israel gone and preferably every Jew dead.

They base all this upon Islamic holy scriptures and you, oh Kufr, are an ungrateful, benighted dog that cannot even begin to grasp the surpassing revelation of Muhammad the final prophet of Allah. If you, Israel, the West or anyone else tries to understand the conflict between the Hamas and Israel and does not factor in the theological base you will get NOWHERE. You are entirely unable to grasp the actual problem.

This is not a "nationalist" cause such as Fatah say they pursue, this is a Jihad. The only Muslims guaranteed heaven are those who die in jihad. A family that has a martyr who dies in the cause of Allah in the jihad has someone in heaven who will intercede for them on behalf of Allah. This is very important in a religion that gives absolutely no assurance of eternal salvation apart from jihad. Does this help explain the emphasis on teaching even very small children that to die in the path of Allah is the best end? That is why the photos of children are so relevant.

I haven't read Peter Hitchens' article (got a link?) but unless he too addresses this fundamental worldview he will have nothing significant to say. Israel cannot bargain with the Hamas or Islamic Jihad movements. From Israel's point of view, on a purely survival level, Israel must neutralise the Hamas and if that means having to shoot every last one of their 20,000 members of the Hamas then unfortunately they must do it to try and ensure safety for their nation (which includes >1 million Muslims and many Christians BTW who die just as easily from a kassam rocket as a Jew does).

There is no grievance that can be satisfactorily addressed for the Hamas - the very existence of Israel is the grievance. In this particular conflict there is NO peaceful solution without the destruction either of Israel or of the Islamic Jihad movement & the Hamas. None. It doesn't matter how hard you look or how much you wish this wasn't the case. The jihadi enemy is at least as implacable and genocidal as the Nazis. It is not hyperbole, it is an excellent & realistic comparison.

iwishart

Googoo

For the record, I have straddled both sides of this debate...and indeed have published pieces from both sides.

HOWEVER...if you are in any way familiar with my take on things, I hate empty spin and sloganeering with a passion. Unfortunately, much of what passes for journalism in the western world's daily media can be reduced to empty spin and sloganeering.

Thus, there can be no intelligent consideration of the Middle East question until both sides and their cheerleaders are forced to face some home truths.

One of those is that the conflict didn't begin with the 1947 partition decision, nor have the Palestinian Arabs been confined to only 5% of their territory with Israel taking 95%...

In fact, that vast bulk of people desigated as Palestinian Arabs a century ago now live in Jordan, Syria and Lebanon, which together comprised much of the ancient territory we refer to as Palestine. They have their own governments and property.

Hamas don't actually want peace. Their Al Aqsa TV channel regularly broadcasts childrens' programmes educating Palestinian kids that Israel can not be allowed to exist because it is not Allah's will, and that Palestinians must eventually seize control of all the Jewish territories as well.

Like it or lump it, the Palestinian people voted this bunch of thugs into power, knowing what they stood for.

It is the Western media and peace groups portraying the lie that the Palestinians want peace.

I'm sure there are many who do, but the government they voted for doesn't, and doesn't want a two state solution.

Israel, for its part, acted stupidly in allowing settlers to build in the occupied territories, and has enormously aggravated the situation over the years.

Nonetheless, as I see from the constant stream of newswires we're hooked into, Israel has made some massive strides towards a two state solution. Yet its neighbour ignores that, and continues lobbing rockets in.

My position is not reactionary or pro-Israel for the sake of it. My position is based on realism: that "peace" will never be achieved whilst the media are not accurately reporting the context of the conflict, and whilst one side sees its Allah-given task as driving the Jews out of the Middle East.

Can anyone else here tell me how that position deserves consideration as part of a "peaceful" solution?

iwishart

And in case anyone missed my point, THIS is the reality on the ground TODAY.

Today's crisis is based on ancient hatreds, and a Crusader mentality among Palestinian Arabs that it's their divine duty to obliterate Israel.

My posts are part of the contextual framework. The Arabs have not "moved on".

iwishart

Oh, and in case the posts have caused some confusion, only the intro in this one was written by me. The photos and text are from a 2003 news story...which I snipped and pasted.

peter

Goo goo says :

"The subject is crying out for some original, objective analysis that actually takes into account the reality on the ground. I fail to see how rehashing events from sixty years ago in a transperent attempt at guilt-by-association, accompanied by the usual atrocity propaganda, actually adds anything to the debate."

Unfortunately this conflict defies objective analysis that will take account of all views. That is why this is an enduring conflict that has changed little in nature in the last 60 years.

In fact if you wanted to point to most obvious causes, it would most likely be outside of Israel and Palestinian territories!

Very regrettably, at some stage there may need to be an assessment whether Israel as currently constituted is viable in the longer term. Very regrettably. But that is my opinion at this time.

usabikes

Page 2 of a reasonable New York Times op-ed by Jeffrey Goldberg:~

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01/14/opinion/14goldberg-1.html?pagewanted=2&partner=rss&emc=rss

"Another reality worth considering concerns theology. Hamas and Hezbollah emerged from very different streams of Islam: Hamas is the Palestinian branch of the Sunni Muslim Brotherhood; Hezbollah is an outright Iranian proxy that takes its inspiration from the radical Shiite politics of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. But the groups share a common belief that Jews are a cosmological evil, enemies of Islam since Muhammad sought refuge in Medina.

Periodically, advocates of negotiation suggest that the hostility toward Jews expressed by Hamas is somehow mutable. But in years of listening, I haven’t heard much to suggest that its anti-Semitism is insincere. Like Hezbollah, Hamas believes that God is opposed to a Jewish state in Palestine. Both groups are rhetorically pitiless...

A spokesman for Hezbollah, Hassan Izzedine, once told me that the Jews who survive the Muslim “liberation” of Palestine “can go back to Germany, or wherever they came from.” He went on to argue that the Jews are a “curse to anyone who lives near them.”

Nizar Rayyan expressed much the same sentiment the night we spoke in 2006. We had been discussing a passage of the Koran that suggests that God turns a group of impious Jews into apes and pigs. The Hezbollah leader, Hassan Nasrallah, among others, has deployed this passage in his speeches. Once, at a rally in Beirut, he said: “We shout in the face of the killers of prophets and the descendants of the apes and pigs: We hope we will not see you next year. The shout remains, ‘Death to Israel!’”

Mr. Rayyan said that, technically, Mr. Nasrallah was mistaken. “Allah changed disobedient Jews into apes and pigs, it is true, but he specifically said these apes and pigs did not have the ability to reproduce,” Mr. Rayyan said. “So it is not literally true that Jews today are descended from pigs and apes, but it is true that some of the ancestors of Jews were transformed into pigs and apes, and it is true that Allah continually makes the Jews pay for their crimes in many different ways. They are a cursed people.”

I asked him the question I always ask of Hamas leaders: Could you agree to anything more than a tactical cease-fire with Israel? I felt slightly ridiculous asking: A man who believes that God every now and again transforms Jews into pigs and apes might not be the most obvious candidate for peace talks at Camp David. Mr. Rayyan answered the question as I thought he would, saying that a long-term cease-fire would be unnecessary, because it will not take long for the forces of Islam to eradicate Israel.

There is a fixed idea among some Israeli leaders that Hamas can be bombed into moderation. This is a false and dangerous notion. It is true that Hamas can be deterred militarily for a time, but tanks cannot defeat deeply felt belief.

The reverse is also true: Hamas cannot be cajoled into moderation. Neither position credits Hamas with sincerity, or seriousness.

The only small chance for peace today is the same chance that existed before the Gaza invasion: The moderate Arab states, Europe, the United States and, mainly, Israel, must help Hamas’s enemy, Fatah, prepare the West Bank for real freedom, and then hope that the people of Gaza, vast numbers of whom are unsympathetic to Hamas, see the West Bank as an alternative to the squalid vision of Hassan Nasrallah and Nizar Rayyan."

Well, good luck with that, as they say.

usabikes

2:07 minute video clip of a HAMAS suicide bomber, demonstrating his desire for martyrdom; to become an intercessor for his family; the genocidal hatred of the jew; and indefatigable hatred for the existence of Israel. "Jihad is the only way to liberate ... all of Palestine from the impurity of the Jews."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=umlWYGLixPc

You can't bargain with these people.

peter

USA Bikes

And the solution is ... ?

Bamm Bamm

Thank God that we have a Jewish Leader!

We will be able to support Israel in her efforts to annihilate the Muslim hoards!

Eh Brutus?

usabikes

peter, I'll tell you the solution when I'm convinced you understand the problem :)

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