Tuesday, October 31, 2023

Leiter's language today.

An Israeli "Intelligence Ministry" document explores the possibility of relocating all the Palestinians in Gaza to the Sinai Peninsula.  This may not be the "official" policy, but for obvious reasons, that it is even being considered will greatly alarm the Palestinians and the Egyptians. 

Some people tell you to separate the Israeli state from its actions now, or the Israeli people from the actions of the state, or Zionists here and elsewhere from the actions of Israelis, but they're all of a piece.

Most states are founded in conquest. Israel is the only state that demands liberals celebrate not the richness of its culture but the crimes that brought it about. And that's why the culture is so thin. It doesn't even have the richness of a dissident culture. Any real dissident just has to leave. 

Israel is a society built on ideology, and the ideology will only fade after the state itself is gone.

Monday, October 23, 2023

Youssef is a comedian, speaking from experience as comedians do.

I'll ignore the claim that Hamas is dedicated to Israel's destruction.

Also, blasts from the past
Mountaintop on edge of Golan Heights illustrates complexities." 

Moshe Ya’alon’s office refuses to elaborate after alluding to contact with terror group"
and my old standby

Sunday, October 22, 2023

Israel's response has been so extreme and its defenders so unhinged that they're losing support of people who've been reliable in the past. Liberal Zionists needed to be able to lie to themselves; Arab autocrats needed cover for normalization policy that was unpopular with their subjects. Israel has blown it all up.

Shadi Hamid

More than 1 million Palestinians displaced, 4000 killed, 10,000 injured, and 1000 children dead and yet people are still obsessing about far-left student groups signing letters. Let's save some of our anger for the actual people being killed as we speak. 

What I've seen from any number of respectable, mainstream commentators these past two weeks has been surprising. When it comes to Palestinians, a lot of people really do have a massive blind spot. It's worth asking why and what can be done to address this.

"people really do have a massive blind spot." A new realization.

Nwanevu, another new realization and another really do

I really do think some of these people have been so corroded by their own propaganda that they're not capable of reason anymore, or at least not capable of grasping their own contradictions. It's plain who's being punished for wrongthink right now; the piece itself lays it out.

responding to Bari Weiss, quoting herself 

"The events of the last week have shattered the illusion that wokeness is about protecting victims and standing up for persecuted minorities. This ideology is and has always been about the one thing many of us have told you it is about for years: power."

She was always in favor of censorship, but events have forced a change in consciousness in moderates who once needed to give her the benefit of the doubt. Events force a change in ideas: that's how it always works.


An Israeli woman who survived the Hamas assault on settlements near the Gaza boundary on 7 October says Israeli civilians were “undoubtedly” killed by their own security forces.

It happened when Israeli forces engaged in fierce gun battles with Palestinian fighters in Kibbutz Be’eri and fired indiscriminately at both the fighters and their Israeli prisoners.

“They eliminated everyone, including the hostages,” she told Israeli radio. “There was very, very heavy crossfire” and even tank shelling.

The woman, 44-year-old mother of three Yasmin Porat, said that prior to that, she and other civilians had been held by the Palestinians for several hours and treated “humanely.” She had fled the nearby “Nova” rave.

A recording of her interview, from the radio program Haboker Hazeh (“This Morning”) hosted by Aryeh Golan on state broadcaster Kan, has been circulating on social media.

The interview has been translated by The Electronic Intifada. You can listen to it with English subtitles in this video and a transcript is at the end of this article.

One of first videos Hamas released showed fighters with children in the kibbutz, one of them tying a toddler's shoelaces, another rocking a cradle,  and a statement that they don't kill kids. The IDF showed an edited version with the statement removed.

How do you square this with Israel's description of slaughter? I don't know. Israel has a long history of lying, but Hamas can be stupid, and their teenage fighters can go off on their own. 

Their have been multiple assessments, Al Jazeera, Forensic Architecture [the packaging as art is offensive—a subject for another day], Channel 4, Middle East Monitor, that contradict the Israeli claims about the al-Ahli Arab Hospital bombing, and others have confirmed it, including the AP

The US isn't interested in a full investigation.
At a press conference of the patriarchs and heads of churches in Jerusalem the day after the bombing, Anglican Archbishop Hosam Naoum said the hospital had received three warnings from Israel to evacuate after the hospital had been hit twice, days before.
Source for the edit hereDecensored News is on Rumble and Gab

Israeli leaders, Bennett, Herzog, Ben-Gvir, Feiglin, are calling for genocide. State dept. veterans are signing in-house letters against US policy; peers in the EU are doing the same.

Guardian, "Pro-Palestinian views face suppression in US amid Israel-Hamas war."

Nathan Thrall 
Ads for my book were pulled from  @NPR  & the  @BBC . I told  @guardian : "I’m quite sure that a book advocating for Israel would not have had its advertisements pulled...There's an atmosphere that is wholly intolerant of any expression of sympathy for Palestinians under occupation."

via Mark Ames on twitter, if you click to follow Palestine Action US @Pal_ActionUS, and reload the page it's been cancelled.

(August 13) Times of Israel: "Ex-IDF general likens military control of West Bank to Nazi Germany"

(Sept. 6) AP, "A former Mossad chief says Israel is enforcing an apartheid system in the West Bank" 

Jewish Currents, "A Textbook Case of Genocide"

UN OHCHR, "Gaza: UN experts decry bombing of hospitals and schools as crimes against humanity, call for prevention of genocide"

I have no real interest in writing about this. It's just record-keeping of some sort.

LRB, Adam Shatz, "Vengeful Pathologies" very good about some things, less clear about others.

Friday, October 13, 2023

Wednesday, October 11, 2023

 Closer and closer to genocide

Monday, October 09, 2023

This second one been passed around a lot. A pleasant surprise. I found the first one today.
Twitter may die so it's good to have a record

Saturday, October 07, 2023

 The rubber is meeting the road: pretensions to commitment.

Wednesday, October 04, 2023

Monday, October 02, 2023

I think I've said before; someday someone will do a book and an exhibit of these things.  The two below are far from the best, but they reminded me.  I hate the word "memes". If you want to be determinist then Dennett's arguments and their popularity are as determined as the Taylor Swift's songwriting. In the past I've said Lady Gaga. I'm offended mostly by the sense of superiority of Dennett and Dawkins, Remove that and you get Skinner, who offends more people because he seems so innocent.

NFTs are the perverse inverse: the meaningless but one-of-a-kind as a market substitute for things rich with meaning and/because infinitely reproducible. Paul Pfeiffer began with something similar—working off it, not inventing it; the art world imperative derailed him. Banksy is better. 

But "memes" are the equivalent of children's games, or slang. We know the origins of some but know them mostly as things passed around, less as things made than things chosen for survival, which is why the name of course. MoMA should do the show, but they won't. Paris would be good.