Discussion in 'The Sanctum Santorum' started by Dan Lawrence, Jan 5, 2012.
You're all Assyrian apologists as far I'm concerned.
I shudder to think that our prime minister believes in the same kind of wacky crap that the lunatic fringe of the GOP does. Gah.
Fear. Not counting the blatantly racist and/or religious fundamentalist justifications, one big one that I've heard for the settlements is the concept of strategic depth. Israel without the West Bank is 15-30km wide along the most populated part of the country. There have been 4 major wars fought, not with the Palestinians, but with the neighbouring states within living memory. The fact that Israel survived these is largely due to incompetent leadership and poor training/equipment on the Arab side (none of which can be counted on in the future). Many Israelis believe that even with a Palestinian state the threat from the Arab world won't reduce and they'd be left much less able to defend the country from attack.
My opinion is that whilst strategic depth may be useful, not reaching peace with the Palestinians will in the long term prove just as dangerous to Israel as the threat of foreign invasion.
I'm sure he does but he's smart enough not to wear his evangelical nuttery on his sleeve and blurt out his Jebus-will-come-back-and-destroy-the-world beliefs to avoid pissing off the socially conservative non-Christian ethnic vote he needs to get and maintain his majority government.
Strategic depth takes the Israelis back to tank warfare as the primary limiting factor on enemy threat profiles, or arguably deployment of spear phalanxes in terms of how useful it is in the design of modern defensive strategies. It seems to me a red herring in terms of anything Israel is realistically strategizing around since the 70s, at least. You're right to dismiss it, but you're too generous in your assessment.
Basically that. If shit goes down, within the quarter hour you'll be able to walk from the Mediterranean to the river Jordan on the wings of A-10's without getting your boots dusty. In the meantime, you will have one hell of a pyrotechnic show going on below.
Israelis might talk to Meshaal
Very interesting. Israel tried to poison him, he blew up Israeli citizens but maybe they can actually talk?
The difference between a Palestinian that Israel will sit down and talk with and one that Israel will launch a missile at is mostly one of timing.
Same could be said of Hamas.
There isn't a Hamas leader Israel *hasn't* tried to kill. It's more important to talk to your enemies than your friends.
Heh, when I heard on the news this morning that some Hamas leader was coming to Gaza, I started wondering what the odds were that Israel would take a shot at him.
Which is why I thought this was *somewhat* encouraging. Of course, Israel could also plant a cake with a bomb in it to welcome him back to Gaza.
Put the other way, there isn't a Hamas leader who hasn't sanctioned terrorist attacks against Israeli civilians.
The assassination attempt in 1997 was during a sustained campaign of suicide bomb attacks. Since then, things have changed in ways that might make negotiations with Hamas useful to both sides.
The kinds of talks mentioned in the article (via mediators & third parties) happen all the time. They're not reported much in the media because they're unofficial and not for the purposes of reaching any sort of agreement beyond exploring whether it might be possible to have more official talks.
So hey, it's all equivalent! Tell me, in each pair of the following questions which one is true? Are they all equivalent too?
- Israel was founded in response to attacks on civilians by Hamas.
- Hamas was founded in response to attacks on civilians by Israel.
- Hamas kills civilians at 20-100 times the rate of Israel.
- Israel kills civilians at 20-100 times the rate of Israel.
He's trying to derail the thread into another argument over which side is "right" in this conflict, because in real life, just like in Hollywood, one side must be the bad guys and the other side the good guys.
Good, bad, I'm the guy with the falafel.
One way to look at everything is this, Israel has the ability to wipe out every single palistinian in the west bank and gaza but does not. Hamas would wipe out every Israeli citizen if they had the ability to do so.
So you're saying that Israel's actions might be justified in a fantasy world in which certain fundamental facts about the situation were completely different? I agree.
Attention shitheads, time to stop being dicks for no reason. You know that's not the point he's making, whether you agree with it or not, and you look like an asshole for distorting it.
Not at all asshole, what I am saying is that the people who want to frame Israel as being the evil and wrong side here just by how many people are killed compared to the other side are missing a critical point. If Hamas could they would love nothing more then to kill 1000 Israelis for every one palisitinian who is killed. The fact that they dont have the ability at this time to do so doesnt change that.
Why yes, I do know that that's not the point he's making. Nice job seeing through my extremely thinly-veiled sarcasm. What I don't know is what point he is making. Governments should be judged by their intentions instead of their actions? Rhetoric is more important than outcomes? Israel is tops because at least they haven't opted for full-on genocide? None of those are interesting or useful ways of looking at the situation.
So? I've got news for you: if the Palestinians were in a position to pose anything close to that level of threat to Israelis, Hamas wouldn't be in charge because they wouldn't be living under apartheid. It does no good at all to talk about what people would do "if they could" when that would only be possible in a world completely different from our own.
The point he's trying to make is that Israel isn't committing genocide even though it could, and that this ought to be a point in favor of its collective character and a point against the collective character of Hamas, who (he says, not necessarily wrongly) would slaughter every last Israeli if their positions of power were reversed.
A more useful response than literally making something up and attributing it to brett, if you want to refute him -- and his point is refutable -- is that "no more Palestinians" isn't the endpoint of committing genocide even if you were okay with genocide (and you shouldn't be okay with genocide) and isn't free of additional consequences. It would be followed by Very Bad Things from other states and even the US might have difficulty supporting them after that.
Really? Sorry, I disagree. I don't give out character points just for not committing genocide. Call me old-fashioned, but I expect at least that much good behavior.
But their situations aren't reversed, so it doesn't do any good to talk about what they might do if they were. There's no point in even bringing it up.
So there is no point in bringing up the stated goal of Hamas is to wipe Israel off the face of the earth? We just wait until they get a nuke from Iran or somewhere else and use it I guess?
Hamas nuking Israel is the stupidest thing they could do. Think it through. They would effectively be nuking their own territory and people, not to mention rendering useless land they would presumably want. Also, IRAN DOES NOT HAVE NUCLEAR WEAPONS!
The point he's making is that one group literally has the mass extermination of the other group as a raison d'être and one does not. It's a point of limited value, for the reasons I mentioned among others, but it is true nonetheless and you represent your argument poorly by refusing to acknowledge it.
I'm done arguing for Brett by proxy, you two will have to figure out some kind of crude hand gesture system to communicate from now on.
Just a nit pick: Wiping Israel Off The Map != Genocide. They are not the same thing. Please do not mistake "this country should not exist" with "And we wish to murder every man woman and child from it"
Palestine's opinion (and Iran, etc etc) is that Israel as a nation should not exist. This is NOT the same as saying "gas the jews" which is what the whole Genocide thing is supposed to make you think.
That said: their position is not really any different than the extremists in the Israeli government who think Gaza and the West Bank should be Israeli turf, and all Palestinians should find somewhere else to live. And both are primarily sabre rattling. Saying that Hamas is dedicated to genocide is.. completely ignoring recent history in it's entirety. Hamas's current desire is a two state solution, per their current manifesto.
They're still violent dicks who aren't really helping the whole situation. But let's not get into an absurd argument where we accuse them of only existing to murder every Jew they can find. That way lies insanity. We don't accuse Israel of trying to murder every Palestinian they find, we simply accuse them of using disproportionate response as a method of punishment, which is also not really helping the whole situation. And of continually taking more land for settlements, which is not really helping the whole situation. Neither party is really acting in the interests of a lasting peace, and the people who suffer are the citizens of both countries.
Hamas and the current Likud are roughly equal in that neither believes the other has any right to exist. Hamas usually doesn't literally advocate genocide, just, you know, every Jew in the area should leave immediately and those remaining should be killed. Likud just stops with every Arab in the area should leave immediately. Neither option is terribly realistic (not to mention wildly immoral).
Yes, Hamas is currently winning the Brutal Thug Sweepstakes, but Israel is still in the running and could pull ahead at any moment - there is a faction within the Israeli ultra-right that believes that Palestinians should be killed en masse. The code word for this is usually referring to Palestinians as "Amalekites", after this Biblical injunction, among others in a similar vein: "Then the Lord said to Moses, “Write this as a memorial in a book and recite it in the ears of Joshua, that I will utterly blot out the memory of Amalek from under heaven." Right-wing Israelis (and there are many, mostly in the settler movement) who refer to Palestinians as Amalekites are literally calling for genocide. Or, to quote the no. 2 leader in Likud-Beitenu, Avigdor Lieberman:
I don't think the current Israeli administration/govt gets any moral points for not committing overt genocide. They're not doing it because they don't think its the wrong thing to do. They're not doing it cause they know they would turn even the US population against them. There are plenty inside Israel that find genocide abhorrent; Lieberman and Netanyahu are not those guys.
Just to further the point above, if you change the power dynamics you change the situation so dramatically that it is likely that Hamas, or even a Hamas like group would ever have come into being in Palestine in the first place. Once you effectively run the show you don't usually need to resort to the kind of extremist rhetoric, charitable movement building and guerilla military tactics/terrorism that characterise Hamas. Instead there would likely be an Isreali version of Hamas spouting lines about how the right wing, Arabic government of Palestine was the new Hitler and sending jewish girls to blow up full of Palestinian businessmen.
The current roles in the situation are far more a function of the power dynamics than they are of some inherent differences between the Isreali and Palestinian peoples.
There was a reversal of the power dynamic, it was called the British Mandate of Palestine, and before that the Ottoman Empire.
However, Israel *does* kill 1000 Palestinians for every Israeli killed. Ok, it's not 1000:1, it's more like 7:1. Hamas doesn't need to put up a good face to the rest of the world, whereas Israel does. That very much causes Israel to stay their hand. There are examples of Israelis saying they would like nothing more than to wipe Palestine off the map, so it's not like they are restrained out of kindness.
So what's your point again?
Both sides hate each other and want the other gone.
That wasn't a true reversal. The Ottomans were secure in their power, which makes a world of difference.* Even when their empire started crumbling, they didn't have the threats (and thus the insecurities) that Israel lives with. That doesn't excuse Israel, necessarily, but it does create a situation that's far from a simple mirror-world reversal of fortunes.
*I can't speak to the British Mandate period, since I know very little about it.
Israel isn't insecure, and hasn't been for a good long while. As seen by their willingness to randomly bomb or invade neighbours. They know that the US has got their backs if their shit comes home to roost.
Concerning the BMP: here's an attempt at a numerical breakdown. It's less apocalyptic than Brett would like to suppose. You could possibly make the argument that British crackdowns kept things from getting out of hand, but I would counter that heavy Haganah involvement in them probably didn't help matters for the Jews.
More specifically the Ottomans ("Sick Man of Europe") were demonstrably more insecure in their power -- look how they were divied up post WW1, how they were bullied militarily before that, the Young Turk Revolution, their handling of unwanted demographics (i.e. Armenians), etc.
Why do you guys keep leaping in front of Brett's drive-by shootings. I'll never understand it. I mean, go for it, but really, we all know how the conversation will play out.
Yep - and on the reversal of power stuff - the Lehi & Irgun were terrorists - they assassinated the UN mediator in 1948, and Lord Moyne in 1944. Whem the bodies of Lord Moyne's murderers where repatriated they were buried with full military honours. Wankers.
Yes, that's exactly what I'm looking at. That's standard major powers politics. Being conquered & divvied up is always a risk in that game. But they weren't facing a foe dedicated to their destruction, with the avowed goal of destroying. No, they were facing opportunisitic jackals that pounced on weakness, just like they themselves had done a couple centuries. If you get your house in order, the jackals go away. But the situation Israel faced was totally different; no matter how much their house was in order, they would still be facing enemies that wanted them gone. Plus they had the holocaust in their recent memory to remind them what failure might look like.
Granted, the current situation is radically different from the period around the Six Days' War. But your early years are your formative ones. It's a shame that they formed such a shitty country, in this case.
So what you're saying is that if we engage Brett in the discussion, the thread will go from "mildly amusing" to "Oh, now I understand why this movie was such a hit" while my wife looks on my guffawing in horror?
Separate names with a comma.