The Goldstone Report Part I and II: A Failure of Intelligence, A Miscarriage of Human Rights

I have just published an article in MERIA (Middle East Review of International Affairs) on Goldstone’s Gaza Report in two parts:

The Goldstone Report Part I: A Failure of Intelligence

and

The Goldstone Report Part II: A Miscarriage of Human Rights

From the conclusion:

Intimidation and Advocacy: The Narcissistic Payoff

There is something more sinister here even than various forms of animosity toward Jews, conscious and unconscious, or radical ideologies that have somehow lost their way. If it were only that problem, then reasoned discourse, hard evidence, and some serious self-criticism on the part of the parties involved might help, at least in some cases. One wouldn’t find so much unanimity. There is, however, something more fundamental that underlies the positions taken in the Arab-Israeli conflict, something that explains why, despite so many powerful anomalies (like Hamas using human shields and shutting out aid at the Egyptian border), “progressives” continue to cling to their self-destructive paradigms and adopt positions that so violate the very principles they claim to espouse. That more powerful factor is: “We are afraid and we cannot admit it.”

Journalists in particular, subject to pervasive threats and occasional violence in the Palestinian territories (and elsewhere in the Middle East), cannot possibly admit this to their readers and viewers for fear of losing credibility. Moreover, not inclined toward living in the constant recognition that they have succumbed to the double indignity of bending their knee to jihadi demands, and to hiding that fact from their audiences, they prefer to believe that they say what they do out of advocacy. They can thus feel noble by embracing the cause of the oppressed (who happen to be the same people who threaten them). How much braver it feels to accuse the Israelis of whining about unfair coverage than to admit one cannot report honestly on Hamas’ behavior. With the alchemy of advocacy for the “oppressed” and “wretched of the earth,” they transform this double cowardice into bravery, “speaking truth to Israeli power.”

That intimidation, however, extends beyond the journalistic front lines to the home front as well. Since the Salmon Rushdie affair in 1989, Muslims have realized that they can extend Shari’a through intimidation, that when they call for targeted killings of blasphemers of Islam, the West will back down. The twenty-first century has been a privileged terrain for such spectacles of intimidation and appeasement, among the most spectacular (and enduring) concerned the “Muhammad Cartoons.” Note that the same radical forces in Islam that responded so violently–and so openly about their agenda–to Western indiscretions, also, in the first decade of the twenty-first century, produced a stunningly long list of suicide attacks on civilians of all faiths around the world, beginning with Israel, but then becoming frequent in both the West and Muslim-majority societies.

Much of this intimidation has been internalized in the form of a politically correct narrative whose hegemony depends on the silences it imposes. It denounces any criticism that offends Muslims as gratuitous insult and provocation. The key issue, of course, is where should one draw the line between gratuitous insult and important criticism? If politeness is not saying certain things lest there be violence, civility is being able to say certain things and there won’t be violence. Is contemporary Western discourse too obsessed with being polite with Muslims? Are they too thin-skinned (especially given how violently they can dish out the criticism)? It certainly seems strange then that supporters of human rights and defenders of free speech expend far more effort silencing those who “seem” to insult Islam, than offensive Muslims who call for the death of blasphemers, who carry signs in the streets of European capitals that read: “Slay all those who insult Islam.”

Those who follow this politically-correct line so dominate the public discourse that any dissent takes one on a perilous path to marginalization–those who make even mildly critical remarks about Muslims, Arabs, or Palestinians are rapidly dismissed as proto-fascists. If they persist, they may be accused of incitement, Islamophobia, and even holocaust denial (of the genocide against the Palestinians). What is portrayed as politically correct–whether Hina Jilani’s it would be “cruel not to believe” or Erik Alterman’s it is an “inarguably racist rant” to say that “Arabs are feigning outrage”–trumps trying to determine what actually happened based on the evidence. They think they are being virtuously generous and open-minded; but in the world of cognitive warfare, the outcome is systematic renunciation all the West’s main defenses.

As a result, Americans don’t know how to protect themselves from real enemies like Major Malik Hassan, FBI Arabic translators whose loyalties lie elsewhere, or government advisors who “help” law enforcement and security deal with the Muslim community. Ironically, stigmatizing as a “right-winger” and an “Islamophobe” anyone who points out the “us-them” ideology–wala wa bara (loyalty to fellow Muslims and enmity to infidels), a mentality so prevalent among Muslims and so effectively incited by radicals–will make it harder to counteract that problem. The losers here are moderates on all sides, especially among the Muslims whom jihadists like Hamas and Jama’at-e-Islami are permitted to stigmatize as collaborators with the enemy.

Alas, Goldstone may have won his peaceful sleep at the cost of the Gazans’–and everyone else’s–nightmares, for not only does his report target Israel, it will eventually serve to target every civil polity with a powerful army attacked by this asymmetrical war waged by jihadi forces. Ironically, once these other armies become aware of the heightened standards, they go straight to Israel for advice on how to lower the civilian tolls in their military maneuvers.

The consequences of such self-delusion are massive. The Goldstone Report embodies an astonishing failure of Western culture to collect reliable intelligence, to “see” clearly enough to make sober judgments and take effective decisions. A systematic inversion sets in: al-Dura 2000, symbol of Palestinian blood libels, becomes “Israel’s images of hate”; Jenin 2002, the most exceptional example of military self-sacrifice for the sake of sparing enemy civilians in the history of human warfare, becomes “the Jenin Massacre”; Lebanon and Gaza 2006-2009, the revolting spectacle of religious fanatics victimizing their own people in a war of extermination, become symbols of freedom fighters resisting Israeli apartheid imperialism. The result, as Irwin Cotler points out, is the grotesque double moral inversion of making Israel the only country accused of genocide, even as it is the only contemporary country subject to incitement as the object of genocide.

It may make many in the West feel good to “believe” the Arab Muslim narrative of suffering at the hands of the Israeli oppressor. After all, it allows them to be generously empathic, and to wag the finger at Israel. Yet it also empowers the very forces of intolerance, violence, and reactionary goals they imagine they are opposing. It is neither honorable nor courageous; it is a capitulation that endangers the most hard-earned freedoms. Even as they congratulate themselves on bravely balancing advocacy and “objective” journalism, reporters daily betray the very charge given to them by the citizens they serve–to report accurately.

If someone had told the founders of Hamas, as they penned their genocidal “charter” of Islamic supremacy in 1988, that in 20 years time, infidels in Europe would be carrying their flags and chanting “We are Hamas,” they would have laughed in disbelief. It is not that the jihadists–violent and “non-violent”– are so smart or talented at deception; it is that their Western counterparts are so stupid. Great civilizations do not necessarily die or fall to superior powers; they can self-destruct.

Goldstone’s inexcusably unprofessional report represents a major step on the way to either the suicide of a human rights culture unique in history and a millennium in the making, or a global war that will beggar World War II for casualties. The tragedy is that this fight might be won largely non-violently by showing some courage, honesty, and judgment. Given the cost in lives that would ensue in a war with the vicious forces now empowered daily, is that too much to ask for?

58 Responses to The Goldstone Report Part I and II: A Failure of Intelligence, A Miscarriage of Human Rights

  1. Cynic says:

    RL,

    Would you consider me nuts if I find

    Moreover, not inclined toward living in the constant recognition that they have succumbed to the double indignity of bending their knee to jihadi demands, and to hiding that fact from their audiences, they prefer to believe that they say what they do out of advocacy.They can thus feel noble by embracing the cause of the oppressed (who happen to be the same people who threaten them).

    analogous in the honour/shame sense to the father who rapes his daughter and then gets the wife/mother to kill his daughter.

    The behaviour is just as cowardly.
    Anyway how does one account for those “journalists writing from the comfort of their NYT or WaPo desks?
    I still feel that for many of them reports would be more on a par with coverage of Darfur if no Jews were involved.

  2. Cynic says:

    As I commented in another thread Anthea Jeffery of the South African Institute of Race Relations published a book
    People’s War: New Light on the Struggle for South Africa

    in which she discusses Goldstone’s South African “Commission” of 1994 to uncover the facts about the previous violence.
    It seems that either he is a fool or an opportunist and certainly integrity plays no part in his juridical role.

  3. Michelle Schatzman says:

    Read the two parts of the paper. Great job!

  4. [...] Augean Stables » The Goldstone Report Part I: A Failure of … [...]

  5. Daniel Bielak says:

    I appreciate the right understanding that rl has about the situation and that the commenters on this blog have about the situation.

    I offer the following.

    The situation is serious.

    What is needed is simple, clear, honest, language. Firstly, spoken to Jewish people.

    The following is very simple, and perhaps not clear, and poorly articulated, writing that I have writen in honest visceral language.

    My fellow Jewish People,

    The world runs on concensus. If malicious people who want to destroy you are spreading lies about you that you are inherently evil and then if, as a result, the world thinks that you are inherently evil and is set out to destroy you, just because you are inherently profoundly good does not mean that the world will eventually realize that you are inherently profoundly good, and does not mean that the world will not set out to destroy you.

    You have to COMMUNICATE! You have to communicate what your situation is in a way that others will understand so that others will understand your situation! And first, you have to fully and truly know what your situation is! You have to NOT BE UTTERLY WISHFULLY DELUSIONAL about what your situation is!

    You have to realize that other people will understand what your situation is IF YOU ACCURATELY AND CLEARLY AND DISCERNINGLY COMMUNICATE WHAT IT IS!

    You have to NOT BE IN DENIAL about what your situation is!

    When you are FALSELY ACCUSED you have to VERBALLY DEFEND YOURSELF!

    Be DECENT! Be TRULY moral! Have some SELF-RESPECT!

    You are HUMAN BEINGS! You have the right TO BE TREATED WITH NORMAL HUMAN DECENCY!

    IF ONE DOES NOT RESPECT ONESELF, AND IF ONE DOES NOT VERBALLY DEFEND ONESELF, AND IF ONE DOES NOT PROECT ONESELF, THEN NO OTHER ONES WILL RESPECT ONE, AND NO OTHER ONES WILL VERBALLY DEFEND ONE, AND NO OTHER ONES ONE WILL PROTECT ONE.

    Jewish people, Be TRULY moral!

    Jewish people, when you are falsely accused, verbally defend yourselves just as you verbally defend all other people who are wronged! In verbally defending yourselves just as you verbally defend all people who are wronged you will be TRULY defending all people!

    CAUSE NO HARM! CAUSE NO HARM TO ANYONE, INCLUDING NO HARM TO YOURSELVES!

    Jewish Israeli “Leftists”! WHAT DO YOU WANT!!?? DO YOU WANT TO MAKE THE SITUATION BETTER!!?? DO YOU WANT TO ALLEVIATE SUFFERING!!?? THEN STOP YOUR DERANGED EGOMANIACAL IMMORAL HARMFUL ACTIONS!! BECOME AWARE OF THE FACTUAL HISTORY OF THE SITUATION AND BECOME AWARE OF THE CURRENT REALITY OF THE SITUATION AND BECOME AWARE OF WHAT WILL ALLEVIATE SUFFERING AND THEN DO WHAT WILL ALLEVIATE SUFFERING!! TRULY HAVE COMPASSION!! AND AS PART OF TRULY HAVING COMPASSION, HAVE COMPASSION FOR YOUR FELLOW HUMAN BEINGS WHO ARE JEWISH!!

    Jewish people, and the well-being of the whole world is, again, in severe danger from an ideologically genocidally anti-Jewish, totalitarian, supremacist, political movement, the Islamic-Supremacist modern political movement. The modern Islamic-Supremacist modern political movement began officially with the founding of the Muslim Brother in 1928 in Egypt by Hasan Al Bana. The leaders of, and the adherents of, and the Arab leaders influenced by, the Islamic-Supremacist movement, most influentially, Amin Al Husseini, who was a Muslim Brotherhood member, and who was a Nazi German ally, and who was a Nazi war criminal, and who was the founder of what Arab leaders began, in the 1960′s, to call the “Palestinian” movement, and who was the mentor of, and who was the appointer of, Yasser Arafat as his successor as the leader of Fatah, which is the intendedly genocidally anti-Jewish militia that Amin AL Hussieni created in 1958, have been waging a military, diplomatic, terroristic, and propagandic war against the country of the Jewish people, Israel, since 1920, three decades before Israel was voted as a country by the United Nations. The country of the Jewish people, and the well-being of the whole world, is today in severe danger from the poison of hatred against Jewish people, this time strategically articulated, by the carriers and spreaders of that hatred, as hatred against the country of the Jewish people, which is hatred that is being spread by lies that are believed by, and that are being being spread by, the adherents of the Islamic-Supremacist political movement and by ignorant, bigoted culturally western non-Jewish people in Western societies, and by ignorant, delusional, and deranged, Jewish people in Western societies. The Islamic-Supremacist political movement is being fueled by that hatred against Jewish people and that hatred is being spread in many different ways to many ideologically and culturally different groups of people throughout the world who, because of their ignorance, are vulnerable to believing those lies about the country of the Jewish people and about Jewish people, and about the Islamic-Supremacist political, and who, as a result of their being vulnerable to believing those lies, are vulnerable to being intoxicated with that hatred against the country of the Jewish people and against Jewish people. Jewish people! Jewish Israeli people! WAKE UP! JOIN THE WORLD IN THE FORUM OF COMMUNICATION!! COMMUNICATE HONESTLY, ACCURATELY, CLEARLY, AND DISCERNINGLY!!! PROTECT YOURSELVES!! BY PROTECTING YOURSELVES YOU WILL TRULY BE PROTECTING ALL OF THE PEOPLE IN THE WORLD!!

  6. Walter Sobchak says:

    “Israel Poised to Challenge a U.N. Report on Gaza” by Ethan Bronner in the NYTimes on January 24, 2010 at page A6:

    The Israeli military is completing a rebuttal to a United Nations report accusing it of grave violations of international and humanitarian law in its Gaza invasion a year ago. Its central aim is to dispel the report’s harsh conclusion — that the death of noncombatants and destruction of civilian infrastructure were part of an official plan to terrorize the Palestinian population.

    * * *

    Israel, which had refused to cooperate with the investigation, at first dismissed the report as unworthy of attention. But the government quickly found that the world took it quite seriously and found itself accused of premeditated war crimes. It now considers fighting that charge a priority.

    “We face three major strategic challenges,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said recently. “The Iranian nuclear program, rockets aimed at our civilians and Goldstone.”

  7. Daniel Bielak says:

    I think that what I wrote in my previous comment may not have been beneficial to communicate.

    I was communicating unmindfully and I was communicating unskillfully (unskillfully meaning resulting in harmful results).

    I apologize.

    I think that communication that would be more skillful to communicate would be communication that is communicated when one is calm and mindful and that is speech that is less exciting, and less stress-inducing, and less-aggravating, and less adversarial, and more enlightening, and more comprehensive.

  8. Daniel Bielak says:

    And, BTW, I wasn’t addressing the speech that I wrote in that previous comment to anyone here. I was unmindfully ranting and I was posting it as speech addressed to my concept of groups of people who would be people who I do not think would read this blog.

    Perhaps, though, the main thing that I was trying to communicate, may be picked up on and may be beneficial.

    That main thing being that, in order to make things better, Jewish people need to start being more mindful, and need to start becoming more aware of the factual history of the situation, and need to start becoming more aware of the current reality of the situation, and need to start communicating the situation to the world honestly, accurately, and effectively.

  9. Daniel Bielak says:

    The Goldstone Report is just a gilded partial protuberance of the iceberg.

    One must see the entirety of the iceberg, and steer the ship away from the whole iceberg.

  10. Daniel Bielak says:

    The ship is the well-being of the whole world.

    The iceberg is a group of interconnected interfunctioning functionings that are occuring in the world.

  11. Daniel Bielak says:

    Some of the main dimensions of the iceberg.

    O OIC majority-voting-bloc control of the United Nations

    O Muslim-Brotherhood-controlled-blackmailed-Saudi-regime financial-political-ideological takeover of Middle-Eastern Studies and Foreign Policy Departments of Colleges and Universities in the United States and other democratic countries countries

    O complete control of Social Sciences departments in Colleges and Universities in western countries by political activists indoctrinated with and adherent to the ideological legacy of Soviet KGB Novosti propaganda agency “intellectual exchange” programs in the 1960′s indoctrinating imperceptive egocentric politically Left academics and intellectuals in democratic countries

    O utter total ignorance about and misinformedness about factual history had by, and lack of being taught how to reason had by the current generation of young people, and to, a lesser degree, had by previous generation of young people, who are now journalists, academics, intellectuals and politicians

    O take-over of European governments by ignorant indoctrinated, Soviet-sympathetic, politically Left, pathologically anti-Israel, perversely racist, Islamic-Supremacism-colluding, sanctimonious authoritarians

    O utter and total Stockholm-Syndrome-induced ineptness of Jewish people who try to verbally defend Israel from the current prevalent inaccurate obscene malicious Nazi-influenced-Islamic-Supremacist / Soviet anti-Jewish narrative.

    O ignorance, and Stockholm-Syndrome-induced delusion and prominent vocality, and and in some cases, ignorance, and Stockholm-Syndrome-induced derangement and prominent vocality of, Jewish academics, who intelectuals, and journalists who have bee the ones in western countries who have been the some of the original and who have been the most influencial propagators of the current prevalent obscene malicious Nazi-influenced-Islamic-Supremacist / Soviet lies about Israel and about the Nazi-influenced-Islamic-Supremacist /Soviet war against Israel.

  12. Daniel Bielak says:

    I apologize for all of my typos in my previous comment.

  13. E.G. says:

    Daniel,

    Nobody but you cares about your typos (though I realise you don’t care about that). And thanks for the efforts to control corrections.

    But your Stockholm syndrome assertion may only be valid for a few (and you won’t find them over here).
    May I suggest you think on a different path, applying to a more general case?

  14. Daniel Bielak says:

    “Nobody but you cares about your typos”

    O.K.

    I think that I’m not really explaining what I mean when I refer to Stockholm Syndrome.

    What I’m referring to is, I think, a pervasive state of ind among Jewish people. It’s form varies. In the vast majority of cases it is subtle. It is normal. It is normative.

    “But your Stockholm syndrome assertion may only be valid for a few (and you won’t find them over here).
    May I suggest you think on a different path, applying to a more general case?”

    I think that my communicating along these lines and talking about this aspect of the situation may not be beneficial.

    And, because of my condition, it is very difficult for me to communicate adequately in writing, even though that may not seem to be the case to observers.

    However, I’ll just say a few things.

    At this time a serious, huge, ideologically Jewish-conspiracy-theory-based, ideologically genocidally anti-Jewish political movement is existing in the world.

    At this time, deranged anti-Jewish bigotry (ignorance – wrong-views – antipathy – deranged malicious wrong views) is pervasive throughout the world.

    The two major religious of the world, Christianity, and Islam, the two religions in the world which utterly usurped the traditional religion of the Jewish people, explicitly asserts, as tenets of those religions, that Jewish people, as a group, are inherently Evil. Christianity, which was originally developed by a Jewish man, Paul (Sol/Saul), and whose main tenet is the worship of a Jewish man, Yeshua (Jesu, Jesus, Issa; Joshua) as being the human-born son of the supreme creator that is defined in the traditional religion of the Jewish people, explicitly accuses Jewish people, as a group, of having killed the son of the supreme creator being.

    The ethnic physiogomy of the Jewish people was used by European people as depicting the physical appearance of the personification of Evil, Satan, in the Christian religion.

    Bigoted anti-Jewish wrong views are, and have been for many centuries, normal, normative, taken-for-granted-as-being-true views in Western societies.

    This is all taken as being normal by Jewish people, just as the sea is taken as being normal by fish.

    Let me just say, this anti-Jewish bigotry, and this taking, by Jewish people, of this anti-Jewish bigotry as being normal, is not “normal”.

  15. E.G. says:

    Daniel,

    I’m far from sure that Judeophobia is considered as normal by Jews. It is indeed considered as a constant factor in non-Jewish societies, varying in intensity over time.

    The post-WWII years seemed relatively low-intensity ones. Those who didn’t realise that many anti-Israeli attitudes were, in fact, anti-Judaic ones were indeed surprised to discover the sad fact at the same time as the amplifying nature of Judeophobia. But it does not mean – except for a minority, and a vocal one too – that this is accepted or considered acceptable.

    Not knowing how to deal (effectively) with Judeophobia does not imply it’s been internalised.

  16. E.G. says:

    Daniel,

    In short, Jews are revolted. But show it in a rather civilized manner.

    p.s. Congrats! What you type is far more important than how you do it.

  17. Daniel Bielak says:

    To clarify,

    “At this time a serious, huge, ideologically Jewish-conspiracy-theory-based, ideologically genocidally anti-Jewish political movement is existing in the world.”

    The Nazi-influenced Islamic-Supremacist modern political movement.

    “At this time, deranged anti-Jewish bigotry (ignorance – wrong-views – antipathy – deranged malicious wrong views) is pervasive throughout the world.

    Deranged bigotry against the country of the Jewish poeple. Anti-Israeli bigotry.

  18. Daniel Bielak says:

    The foundations of anti-Jewish bigotry have always been, and continue to be, wrong views which are based on lies – which are lies that have always been most influentially propagated by people who are Jewish, and which are lies that continue to be most influentially propagated by people who are Jewish, and which are lies that almost no Jewish people have ever effectively engaged in refuting, and which are lies that almost no Jewish people effectively engage in refuting, and which are lies that could be dispelled with simple, clear, accurate, honest speech spoken with mindfulness and discernment.

  19. E.G. says:

    Daiel,

    lies that could be dispelled with simple, clear, accurate, honest speech spoken with mindfulness and discernment.

    You can bring a horse to water…

    That’s what I meant, inter alia, by “civilized discourse”.

  20. Daniel Bielak says:

    E.G.,

    “In short, Jews are revolted. But show it in a rather civilized manner.”

    I appreciate you saying that, and I agree that what you say is the case. It is very beneficial that that is the case. It is very beneficial to those who are wronged for those who are wronged to endure with patience, and not to retaliate in kind.

    “Patient endurance:
    the foremost austerity.”
    -the Buddha (the “Awakened One”)

    “Not knowing how to deal (effectively) with Judeophobia does not imply it’s been internalised.”

    I agree that that is the case.

    As part of my way of trying to cope with the situation, I am trying to, and I would like to, communicate my understanding which I think would be helpful to Jewish people, in helping Jewish people to know how to cope better with the situation, and which I think would be helpful to Jewish people, in helping Jewish people to know how to make the situation better.

    “p.s. Congrats! What you type is far more important than how you do it.”

    Thank you. I appreciate your supportive appreciation and supportive advice. It is very supporting to me. :-)

  21. Michelle Schatzman says:

    Daniel,

    I like your explanation by Stockholm syndrome, though I do not think that it applies to every Jew. I believe that it applies very well to highly self-critical Jews who think that, should Israel be nicer to the Palestinians, then the problems would go away.

    But I also feel that it applies to many journalists in the MSNM. Indeed, if a journalist knows that he cannot report what he saw in the Palestinian territories, for fear of revenge, then, he is already trapped by the thugs who run the show. When accepting this kind of rule, he makes himself vulnerable to all sorts of other rackets, and loses his own self-esteem. Then, loving the thugs is a way of repairing his self-esteem.

    I would like to see a book explain why journalism in the Palestinian territories is necessarily a joke.

  22. E.G. says:

    Chicken-soup for the soul, eh? ;-)

    Ok, let’s get off the flight to Stockholm.
    I think we agree that turning the other cheek is not the highway to felicity. Nor is waiting for the furor to go lower. Other suggestions?

  23. Daniel Bielak says:

    Michelle,

    I agree with your description of Jewish people whom you described, and I agree with your description of, and explanation about, the Western journalists who “report” from the Palestinian-Arab territories.

    I, at one time, in the past, experienced, to a relatively mild degree, Stockholm Syndrome in the same way that the Jewish people who you described do.

    I think that almost all Jewish people who have grown up in Christian-PostChristian societies, and, I think, in Muslim societies, have modes of thinking that are profoundly influenced by feelings that are caused by anti-Jewish bigotry.

    I recognize those feelings and ways of thinking in my own mind.

  24. Daniel Bielak says:

    E.G.,

    “Chicken-soup for the soul, eh? ;-)”

    Yes. :-)

    “I think we agree that turning the other cheek is not the highway to felicity. Nor is waiting for the furor to go lower. Other suggestions?”

    Yes, I agree with you.

    It is harmful to oneself to retaliate, and it is harmful to oneself to ignore danger.
    It is beneficial to oneself to protect oneself, and it is beneficial to oneself to be mindful of, and to be alert to, danger.

    In order to make the situation better, Jewish people who are aware of the situation must begin a concerted effort to organize to effectively communicate the situation to the world, and must do so with non-Jewish, and especially Arab, and especially Iranian, and especially ex-Muslim, and especially truly reform-Muslim, people who understand the situation.

  25. Eliyahu says:

    Michelle, re your #22

    Maybe the particular newspaper or press organ or TV network or press agency [AFP, DPA, AP, Reuters etc] has a parti pris. The journalist is sent to the Middle East with a clear assignment. He knows that bashing Israel is his job. And if does write what his employer does not want to hear about Israel and/or the Arabs, then he may get fired or the editors at the head office of his press organization can simply edit out what doesn’t fit the line and/or insert what they want and/or change the wording in order to give the article or TV or radio story the slant that they want, that fits their line.

  26. Daniel Bielak says:

    “I think that almost all Jewish people who have grown up in Christian-PostChristian societies, and, I think, in Muslim societies,have modes of thinking that are profoundly influenced by feelings that are caused by anti-Jewish bigotry.”

    I think that almost all Jewish people who have grown up in Christian-PostChristian societies, and, I think, who have grown up in Muslim societies, have modes of thinking that are profoundly influenced by feelings that are caused by experiencing the psychological besiegement of growing up in culturally bigoted anti-Jewish societies.

  27. Daniel Bielak says:

    Eliyahu,

    With Western journalists who “report” about the “Arab-Israeli” conflict, what you describe is what is mainly the case.

    The thing to do now is to counter the false narrative about the situation.

    The thing to do now is to,

    begin a concerted effort to organize to effectively communicate the situation to the world, and do so with non-Jewish, and especially Arab, and especially Iranian, and especially ex-Muslim, and especially truly reform-Muslim, people who understand the situation.

  28. Daniel Bielak says:

    present:

    Video documenting the factual history and current reality.

    Images documenting the factual history and current reality.

    Simple, clear, accurate, honest speech about the factual history and current reality.

  29. Daniel Bielak says:

    Some Videos (among very many other imporatant videos about very many aspect of the situation ):

    “Relentless: The Struggle for Peace in Middle East.”, (Video) Documentary by HonestReporting
    Part 1 of 6: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2SjPDnx5oi4

    “The Trojan Horse”, (Video) Documentary by Pierre Rehove; about the contemporary manifestation of the “Palestinian” movement as manifested by the organization Fatah/PLO/Palestinian Authority
    http://www.veoh.com/videos/v17400528DThBhmcA

    “Hostages of Hatred”, (Video) Documentary by Pierre Rehove; about the situation of the Arab refugees of, and of the descendents of the Arab refugees, of the 1948 Arab attack on the country of the Jewish people, who have been held in “refugee camps” in Arab countries, and in Arab-occupied territory, since 1948 by UNRWA and by Arab leaders
    http://www.veoh.com/videos/v6994502yE2tGdab
    or
    http://video.google.de/videoplay?docid=-3936205950313759056

    “The Forgotten Refugees”, (Video; Parts 1 to 5 of 5) Documentary; about the close to one million Jewish refugees from Arab and Muslim countries after the 1948 Arab attack on the country of the Jewish people
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0nwI2hzPjrA&feature=PlayList&p=DED3FB5A02EDC198&index=0&playnext=1

    “Nazis and Islam: Hitler + Palestinian Mufti Amin al-Husseini (name, on YouTube, of this video clip)”, (Video) German Television Documentary; about the Amin Al Husseini, who was the founder of what Arab leaders began, in the 1960′s, to call the “Palestinian” movement, and who founded Fatah in 1958, and who appointed Yasser Arafat as his successor as the leader of the so-called “Palestinian” movement
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nd1dmD1Fry4

  30. Daniel Bielak says:

    Michelle,

    I apologize for overriding a view which I expressed as having in my reply to your reply to my comment with my more accurately expressed view which I expressed in my reply to Eliyahu’s reply to your comment.

    I didn’t clearly, nor completely, think through, nor express accurately, my understanding in my reply to you.

    I appreciate, and I appreciated, your reply to my comments.

    I also appreciate, and appreciated, your having addressed me in one of your previous comments on the post “Apocalypse Again? Daniel Kalder on current trends with an assist from RL”.

  31. Michelle Schatzman says:

    Hi E.G.,

    re. your #24, I knew the article you linked to – reading it in “Controverses» some time ago, though I did not know Lurçat wrote it, and he explains why on the page you referred to.

    Prof. Benbassa is a rather strange character. Quite some time ago, I bought a very beautiful book by her, mixing sefardic recipes from Turkey and glimpses into the lost civilization of sefardic Jews in Turkey. It has beautiful pictures, the book is tasty in all possible ways.

    She was indeed born in Turkey in 1950, made aliya t the age of 15, studied in Israel until her BA, and completed her doctoral degrees in France – we are almost the same age, and at that time, there were two doctoral degrees. In the wikipedia article on her

    http://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Esther_Benbassa

    the cookbook is not mentioned – which is a pity. Well, food and the traditions around eating are a big part of culture, so there is no shame in this.

    Something happened around 2000, and I don’t know what. She is not alone in judeo-spanish studies, and academic fights do happen. Did she get into a fight? Was she rejected by some important figure in the french jewish community? I have no information on that. But something broke, and this is when she turned to political action books and articles.

    Her constant opposition suggests a rejection by the official jewish community. The fact that she does not give a key indicates an element of secret and privacy. This is all I can say.

    Another possibility is that she found out that a better way to be famous is to be famous among the non-jews, and for political writings, instead of erudite writings, which can be appreciated only by the small community of other erudites and the few descendants of judeo-spanish speakers who are interested in their ancestry.

    A link to a recent article by Benbassa

    http://www.rue89.com/passage-benbassa/2010/01/06/juifs-musulmans-nous-portons-tous-les-cicatrices-de-gaza-132453

    shows that she has now passed many, many, many limits, and that she will probably not come back.

    Very sad.

  32. sshender says:

    Daniel, I disagree.

    It seems that the Theobald-Jew syndrome is unique to Western (Ashqenazi) Jews. If you listen to Israel’s Jewish-Mizrahi ditractors, they are usually place all the blame on others. They blame (the “Ashqenazi-elite dominated) Israel for subjugating them, and they blame the creation of Israel and their subsequent departure from Arab countries on those same pesky Ashqenazi Zionists who cut short their (imaginary) ideal thousand years old symbiosis with their Arab neighbors.

    While the Ashqenazi Anti-Zionists are all to quick to admit collective guilt for any imaginable and unimaginable crime, the Mizrahi Anti-Zionists see THEMSELVES as the VICTIMS, akin to the Arabs. I believe this to be consistent with the Mizrahi Jews’ culture and mentality which resembles Arab culture in many aspects. (honor-shame is but one of them).

  33. Daniel Bielak says:

    sshender,

    I think that the Theobald-Jew syndrome mentality is mixed within, folded within, Jewish cultural groups.

    I think that the key is the narrative, “It’s *those* Jewish people’s fault that the non-Jewish people hate us (hate me).”

    And, yes, I think that it is, in general, manifested differently between Jewish-European, and Jewish-Middle-Eastern groups.

  34. Daniel Bielak says:

    sshender,

    Which group of Jewish people that Jewish people who are experiencing Attacked-Jewish-People-Blame-Jewish-People Syndrome blame depends on the nature of the process of how those Jewish people who are blaming other Jewish people view their self-identity.

    I think that I pretty much agree with what you said; (I realize that my saying this is kind of wishy-washy but I do not have the energy right now to more deeply analyse this thing. Maybe I will have the energy to do so later, and maybe I will do so later.)

  35. Daniel Bielak says:

    This is a comment that I tried to post earlier but which was not posted by the blog server.

    Links to some addresses of non-Jewish Arab people, Iranian people, ex-Muslim people, and truly reform-Muslim people, who understand the situation:

    “Interview on Dennis Prager show with Khaled Abu Toameh”, (Audio) Interview with Khaled Abu Toameh, who is a Muslim Arab Israeli / Israeli Arab journalist who writes for the Jerusalem Post
    http://www.standwithus.com/audio/Khaled_Interview.asp
    Direct link to audio file: http://www.standwithus.com/audio/Khaled_Interview.mp3
    “What Does ‘Pro-Palestinian’ Really Mean?”, (Document)
    http://www.hudsonny.org/2009/11/what-does-pro-palestinian-really-mean.php
    “Articles by Khaled Abu Toameh”, (Documents)
    http://www.hudsonny.org/mt/mt-cp.cgi?__mode=view&blog_id=1&id=22

    “Israel Through the Eyes of an Israeli Muslim”, (Video) Talk by Ishmael Khaldi, who is Bedouin Israeli, and who is the deputy consul general of Israel for the Pacific Northwest in the United States
    http://fora.tv/2007/05/31/Israel_Through_the_Eyes_of_an_Israeli_Muslim
    “Lost in the blur of slogans”, (Document) Article by Ishmael Khaldi which he wrote in the San Francisco Chronicle to the counter what was staged in the United States by, and what was called Israel Apartheid Week by, anti-Israeli activists
    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2009/03/04/EDRP168GMT.DTL&hw=ishmael&sn=001&sc=1000

    “Moorthy S. Muthuswamy”; (Website) Homepage of Moorthy S. Muthuswamy, who is Indian, and non-Muslim, and who is the author of a book entitled “Defeating Political islam: The new Cold War”
    http://www.moorthymuthuswamy.com
    Interview on Frontpage Magazine: http://97.74.65.51/readArticle.aspx?ARTID=29032

    “The Third Jihad (Excerpts)”, (Video) excerpts from a documentary by Dr. M. Zudhi Jasser, who is Muslim Syrian-American, and who is alarmed by, and who is opposed to, the modern Islamic-Supremacist political movement
    http://www.thethirdjihad.com/exclusive_clips_test.php

    “Arabs For Israel”, (Website) website of Nonie Darwish, who is Arab, and who is an ex-Muslim anti-Islamic-Supremacism activist (who is currently an adherent of Christianity)
    http://www.arabsforisrael.com

    “Faithfreedom”, (Website) website of Faithfreedom International which was founded by Ali Sina, an ex-Muslim Iranian currently living in Canada
    http://www.faithfreedom.org

    “Islam Watch”, (Website) website of Islam Watch, which was founded by M. A. Khan and other former Muslims, including Ali Sina
    http://www.islam-watch.org

    “TXHalabi”, (Video web page) the YouTube user channel page of an Arab Middle-Eastern-born young man, who is atheist, and who lives in a Western country, and who is friendly toward Israel, who makes videos in which he translates into English the teachings of Islam (supremacist authoritative orthodox Islam), which is the core ideology of the Islamic-Supremacist modern political movement
    http://www.youtube.com/txhalabi

    “Arabs Supporting Israel”, (Video) video by an Arab Israeli young man who speaks out defending Israel
    Part 1 of 2: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qbrIWyEhl8A
    Part 2 of 2: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s1rSbJ6g2_4

    “Ummat al Kuffar Part 213 C of (ABC)”, (Video) last video in of a series of videos by I. Q. al Rassoli who is Arab, Iraqi-born, ex-Muslim, and who is against Islam (who is against supremacist authoritative orthodox Islam which is the core part of the Islamic-Supremacist modern political movement), and who is friendly to Israel, and who is calling for all non-Muslim people in the world to unite to oppose Islam (who is against the resurgence of supremacist authoritative orthodox Islam which is the core part of the Islamic-Supremacist modern political movement)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BR6TeKmZ4Dg
    “YouTube – AhmadsQuran3′s Channel”, (Videos) the YouTube user channel of I. Q. al Rassooli
    http://www.youtube.com/user/AhmadsQuran3
    “Ummat al Kuffar”, (Website) website of I. Q. al Rasooli
    http://www.ummat-al-kuffar.org

  36. Daniel Bielak says:

    I think that it is probably not good to generalize along these lines, and I think that what will be beneficial to do right now is for Jewish people to come together.

    I think that Ben-Dror Yemini, who is Jewish-Middle-Eastern is pretty much, though, maybe, I think, not completely, aware of the situation.

    “Whatever’s happened to Charlie Biton? The Moroccan-born leader of the Israeli Black Panther movement has done a political about-turn.”
    http://jewishrefugees.blogspot.com/2009/03/moroccan-born-black-panther-lurches.html

  37. Daniel Bielak says:

    Just to clarify,

    My previous comment included two examples of politically vocal Jewish Israeli people whose background is Jewish-Middle-Eastern, Ben Dror Yemini and Charles Bitton.

    Also, from looking at Jewish Yemeni Israeli people’s channels and comments on YouTube, I think the Jewish Yemeni Israeli people whose channels and comments that I have seen feel very Jewish and very Israeli, and that they love Israel, and I think that they, in general, also feel culturally separate (culturally proud, culturally marginalized) from Jewish European Israeli people, and I think that they feel affection for, and desire to feel culturally unified with, Jewish European Israeli people, and I think that they feel longing to be loved by non-Jewish Yemeni people.

  38. Daniel Bielak says:

    “…culturally marginalized…”

    “that their traditional culture is under-appreciated by Jewish European Israeli people”

  39. sshender says:

    Daniel, Yemini is the stark exception to the rule. There are a few others as well whose names I can’t recall right now. But that does not negate the overwhelming victimhood narrative that underlies the Mizrahi Anti-Zionist tune. The Israeli academia are a great example of this. The Ashqenazi post-Zionist proclaim “we are guilty of creating an apartheid state and oppressing the Palis” and the Mizrahi pick up “That’s right. YOU (meaning the Ashqenazi Zionists) are guilty of all that along with the oppression of Mizrahim”. Dissenting voices of self-criticism are numbered.

  40. E.G. says:

    sshender,

    Enough with this Sephardi/Ashkenazi BS! Or provide the appropriate statistics to validate your idiotic claims.

  41. E.G. says:

    Michelle,

    Elle n’est pas une Camondo, quand bien même ses origines. Not that they were Zionists in any way. But they were not Anti.

    And with my utmost indulgence, I cannot find anything to plead in favour of this Alter-Jew par excellence. All I see is a person who uses and abuses of her “intelligentsia” status to bark her venom. And condition her students to follow her perverse intellectual dishonest path.

    But she’s not alone. How about Ambassador Stefan Hessel who abuses of his Buchenwald detention and his doubtful remote Jewish genealogy (most people think he was deported because he was Jewish – which is factually wrong) to express indignation over the Jewish state’s actions and policy?

  42. sshender says:

    No, E.G.. Not quite.

    I’d rather suggest that you stop your PC BS! It amazes me how time and time again you (and others here) evade or remain blissfully ignorant of the clear facts on the ground which this blog is partially dedicated to discussing in good faith. You talk about meaningful statistics without ever once stopping to consider how exactly does one go about investigating the completely taboo race/ethnicity/culture related topics in modern society. Do you seriously think that one can just easily commence and publish a report cataloging crime in Israel by race or ethnicity? Or, more to the point, how different ethnicities in Israel perceive honor and shame? Obviously, some statistics are available, and I will present them here, but in the long run we are left to rely on tendencies and generalizations which – while not necessarily true individually – do characterize a collective.

    With regard to this discussion, and where Daniel has agreed with me (but then again, Daniel seems to be at odds with himself from message to message), think of Israel’s worst detractors and tell me whether they are Ashqenazi or Mizrahi. Then look at the mizrahi MINORITY of anti-Zionists and see if you can identify a common theme there. My claim is sound and clear. It seems to me that while the Ashqenazi anti-zionists are governed by ideological considerations and a tendency towards masochistic self-criticism, the Mizrahim are reluctant to take blame for the Zionist project and see themselves, along with the Arabs, as the ultimate victims of the Zionist experiment.

    Here an interesting snippet from a study about Feminist discrepancies:

    http://www.ha-keshet.org.il/english/Tensions.htm

    it is not surprising that Mizrahi and Ashkenazi women’s feminist priorities are different; this difference has its roots in the tension between Zionist ideology and Arab-Jewish values.

    She then proceeds according to the narrative of the bad Ashqenazi elite trying to rob the Mizrahim of their unique Arab-Jewish identity. This is not to say that it is false, indeed, this is approximately what transpired. I just happen to think that the Ashqenazi value system and culture (western enlightment) is vastly superior to the Middle Eastern values and culture that the Mizrahi Jews brought along from their countries of origin. And this blog and its conclusions (although it persistently ignores and refuses to apply them within Israeli society) are a resonating testament to that superiority.

    If we look at other tendencies, politically (non Russian, secular) Ashqenazim are far more likely to be dovish than Mizrahim and the Shas and Likud phenomenas prove that. Statistically, Mizrahim are much more likely to commit VIOLENT (as opposed to white collar) crimes, and many of these are honor-shame related. (One can hardly imagine hearing that an Ashqenazi jew stabbed someone because of a parking lot dispute). Israeli comedians exploit these stereotypes a lot, since it is the only venue where racial differences can be discussed and ridiculed without condemnation or legal actions. It would take a willfully blind Israeli to deny these simple facts. And the culture of self-criticism is a lot closer to the Western post-modernism paradigm than it is to ME culture.

    People can moan and and bitch about it all they want, but that does not change the facts on the ground.

    On a brighter note, time and intermarriage is doing its share and these differences are getting blurred with the youngest generations. Unfortunately, Mizrahi Ghettos still exist (thanks to people like Shas) where these stereotypes manifest themselves in very stark colours.

  43. Michelle Schatzman says:

    E.G.,

    I was not trying to excuse Esther Benbassa – I was trying to understand her. If you want to fight someone, in order to be efficient you have to understand him/her, and that is one of the most interesting contradictions of war.

    Everybody needs traitors. One one side, they are hailed as heroes, on the other side, they are vilified and called terrible names.

    As I said before, I am not in the name-calling industry. I am interested by intellectual pursuits that can be put to good use.

  44. Michelle Schatzman says:

    sshender,

    you are forgetting one point in your analysis of mizrahi/ashkenazi differences. Among ashkenazim, there is a wide separation between hilonim and datim or charedim. Among mizrahim, there is a continuous spectrum, and most of the mizrahim hold to a religious practice that is much more temperate and balanced than among religious ashkenazim.

    From this point of view, I hold the mizrahim to be nicer than the ashkenazim, since you do not find so much the extreme rejection of the other side that you find among ashkenazim. There, many hate everything having to do with the religious tradition of Israel, and many others condemn every pursuit not having to do with the religious tradition of Israel.

  45. sshender says:

    The central Israeli Bureau of Statistics is probably the best source, but its categorizations are misleading: since most Israelis in jails are Israeli born, no racial distinction is made among them. The continent of origin is also problematic since it lumps different groups (like non-Jewish Russians – who are highly prone to violence – with Ashqenazim who are not). But even from these unreliable numbers the picture is clear.

    http://www.cbs.gov.il/shnaton60/st11_08.pdf

    In the context of crime, most Mizrahi scholars and politically correct people would unhesitatingly blame the social situation, and they would be partially correct, but as this blog proves, our utter disregard to the cultural dimension makes it impossible to bridge the gaps. Since we understand that its not only despair that drives Palestinians and Israeli Arabs to commit violence, it is also possible to understand why many BMW driving, brand-wearing, over-confident gangs of Mizrahi teens (and 20+) wreak havoc on the streets of ISrael almost every Friday night. They are not insecure, on the contrary, their sense of entitlement and honor renders any other point of view a provocation for violent retaliation. This is especially true with Caucasians, but also with Russians, Ethiopians and Mizrahim in general.

  46. sshender says:

    Michelle, thank you for pointing this out. I should have been more clear with that regard. I am speaking strictly about secular and and probably Datiim Leumiim, where the trends are slightly different. I do not speak of the Haredim, and my analysis does not apply to them. I can’t consider Haredim and especially the radical Satmars as independent entities. These are brainwashed herds who live in a closed society not governed by common law. For gods sake, these people think that it’s ok for Jews to be slaughtered because the messiah (talk about infantile fantasies) has not showed his face yet. I just can’t take these people seriously. Nor are Mizrahi Haredim any better. They tend to be less radical than Ashqenazim, but that’s just the result of their religiosity. The question why Ashqenazi Haredim are more fanatic than their Mizrahi counterparts is very interesting, and has a lot to do with group dynamics, but is irrelevant to our conversation.

    As for regular datiim (the so called Kipa Sruga), I must stress that they score much better than secular Ashqenazim. They too share a tendency towards self-criticism, but it does not cross into obsession. I think this is in large part due to their religious counterweight to moralistic thinking. Their religious conviction in the justice of the Jewish cause balances whatever criticism they may have and creates the perfect combination. Once stable, it is not too hard for them (given their usually superb education and good values) to sort out who is right and who is wrong in the AI conflict. Much the way we “get it”.

    I can’t speak about Mizrahi Datiim Leumiim since I never actually considered them as an independant group, given how well absorbed they are into their establishment. My guess would be that there are subtle differences but these were almost erased by years of what that feminist is talking about in her paper.

  47. Michelle Schatzman says:

    @ sshender,

    I was not trying to grade mizrahi and ashkenazi along a scale of zionism, but along a scale of participation to society and common values. I suspect that you do not know enough about the different stripes of datiim. They have also their own scale, from dovish remainders of the Meimad experience to hard nationalist ultrareligious (chardalim) settlers in illegal outposts in the Palestinian territories. I guess that they could eat at each other’s place, but either they would fight or they would not talk much besides answering amen to the brachot.

    I simply do not consider Satmar chassidim, anyway, I guess that there are more of them in the US (where they are the largest chssidische community, if I remember correctly). They are antizionist, they explain why, and some of them act as hooligans. They just haqve no place in this discussion.

    I was thinking more of the ordinary ashkenazi ultraorthodox. They are usually very much cutoff from the rest of society, and it does not havre to be the case for ordinary mizrahi ultraorthodox. I was at a wedding last October. The (mizrahi) bride is not so religious, and has an ultraorthodox brother. The brother did come, with wife and children. There was mixed dancing? OK, so he just did not go to the place where the dancing took place. There was mixed seating? He sat happily with his family and friends.

    I guess that an ashkenazi ultraorthodox would *not* have been so quiet in view of behaviors that he could consider as offensive.

    I happen to know people from many shades of conviction, in and out of Israel, and I am always pretty much revolted by the depth of separation which isolates people now in Israel, to the point of living in separate neighborhoods – and in was not the case during the first 20 years of the state.

    The point I was trying to make, but did not make clear enough, is that the separations inside mizrahim are not as deep as inside the ashkenazim. As a consequence, ideas can evolve more easily among mizrahim than ashkenazim, because they don’t have to jump above high walls and across deep ravines. The reason for extremism among ashkenazim lies precisely in this separateness. They are free-wheeling on both sides, with the ultraorthodox and chardalim imagining new chumrot (strengthening of religious law) every day, and chilonim going to more extremes social behaviors. I guess that you see more belly buttons in israeli cities in the summer than in all of France – outside of beaches.

    Among the ashkenazi chiloni part of my israeli family, marrying with mizrahim has already taken place in my generation : one of my cousins, aged 55 married a woman from Iraqi descent, and this marriage was well accepted by both sides.

    My daughter, who is datiya, married a man of Egyptian ancestry (I love him and his family, and they reciprocate). So, intermarriage between ashkenazi and mizrahi is taking place and has been taking place for a long time.

    Re. feminisim, I gave up reading the reference you mentioned. I am a feminist at heart, but I’m also a scientist, and I just dislike badly arranged arguments, long ideological tirades, and permanent reference to resentment and bitterness. Of course, they may be excellent reasons to be bitter and to resent a situation. It’s just that nurturing bitterness and resentment don’t lead anywhere, except to weaken oneself and to turn oneself into a useless idiot.

  48. E.G. says:

    Michelle,

    Of course you were not trying to defend the hysterical prosecutor (the cartoon you drew resembles her). And I too usually leave name-calling to others, and sometimes even admonish them for doing so.

    I’m not sure at all whether discovering an event (or some conjunction) in her past can be useful. People evolve and that’s it. N. Podhoretz and A. Adler, for instance, switched too. Nu? So what?

    Is it the more or less new direction that they chose that makes the sole difference? IMO no. Because while some use the same intellectual tools (e.g., analysis, inference) in the same manner when defending or attacking a position (e.g., Israeli policy), others – such as the Queen’s cartoon – are submitting their reasoning to the conclusion that needs to be reached. Teaching and preaching are not the same thing, and that’s not how a scholar/researcher’s mind is supposed to work.
    That’s infecting people’s brains with witchcraft labelled as scientific thought.

  49. E.G. says:

    sshender,

    My judgement of your Ashkenazi/Mizrahi/Sephardi comments is ideology-free.

    You mix several ambiguously defined concepts and terms that, furthermore, are either not necessarily linked or may be so but in a reverse causality chain, do not anchor your observations in any qualitative or quantitative survey or enquiry, and associate evaluating people on a subjective scale with an assessment on a more objective albeit hardly calibrated one.
    This is intellectually sloppy.

    There is no lack but profusion of studies dealing with the different sectors and groups composing the Jewish nation, and specifically the Israeli society. From all aspects of social sciences. No taboo.

    So until you gain some knowledge about the phenomena you’re not familiar enough with, as well as with the enlightenment-based means to deal with such issues, please spare us your inept philippics.

    I don’t see how your rationalised detestations contribute to the understanding of any of the topics discussed in this forum.

  50. Daniel Bielak says:

    I regretted, and regret, the way I replied to sshender’s comment about this topic of Ashkenazi/Mizrahi/Sephardin, because I did not express well my view about this topic.

    I was replying to only a part of the whole topic which was the part that sshenders specifically referred to in his comment.

    I know that, as sshender observed, it may seem to be the case that I seem to be at odds with myself from message to message.

    I do, however, in fact, have an overview understanding of the whole situation, which includes this topic, but it is difficult for me to express my general overview understanding because there are different aspects of different aspects of the whole situation.

    In my previous reply to sshender, I replied in a way that was responding to a particular aspect of this topic that involved “Anti-Zionist” views, and I replied in a way that did not express my whole view of this topic, and in a way that, I think, was not helpful.

    Also, I am not Israeli, and I have never been to Israel, so I do not want to misrepresent myself as being Israeli. However, I am aware of many aspects of Israel and Israeli society, and I think that I understand pretty well Israel and Israeli society, and I feel connected to Israel and Israeli society.

    I’ll now try to accurately express my view about this topic that sshender has been talking about.

    I think that, in general, Jewish people from all cultural and mixed ethnic backgrounds feel connected with each other and feel as being part of the whole in Israel.

    I think that Jewish people in Israel are culturally diverse and culturally integrated with each other.

    I think that there are a lot of variations of different things within all of this.

    I think that Michelle and E.G. have communicated well about this.

  51. Daniel Bielak says:

    “…I think that Jewish people in Israel are culturally diverse and culturally integrated with each other…”

    Before I wrote that I originally wrote the following, which I think may be better express what I want to express.

    “I think that Jewish people in Israel are culturally diverse and culturally integrated.”

  52. Daniel Bielak says:

    Correction:

    …which I think may better express what I want to express…

  53. Daniel Bielak says:

    Let us who are Jewish come together. Let us be mindful and let us work together to try to make the situation better.

  54. Daniel Bielak says:

    Let us work together to make the situation better.

  55. sshender says:

    @E.G.

    You mix several ambiguously defined concepts and terms that, furthermore, are either not necessarily linked or may be so but in a reverse causality chain, do not anchor your observations in any qualitative or quantitative survey or enquiry, and associate evaluating people on a subjective scale with an assessment on a more objective albeit hardly calibrated one.
    This is intellectually sloppy.

    Phew…. Thank you for showing me the richness of the English language. But seriously, you ask for perfectly reasonable things which are not available. The available data (such as average IQ deviations, education, economic prosperity etc.) tell us little about the honor-shame phenomena among oriental Jews.

    There is no lack but profusion of studies dealing with the different sectors and groups composing the Jewish nation, and specifically the Israeli society. From all aspects of social sciences. No taboo.

    All of them are irrelevant. On the other hand, following the newspapers daily and recognizing trends does help to establish certain patterns, and the one I’m talking about is undeniable to intellectually honest person in Israel.

    I don’t see how your rationalised detestations contribute to the understanding of any of the topics discussed in this forum.

    You’re missing the point. The topics discussed here are quite clear to all of us. I am simply asking you to apply them fairly so that further insights can be gained from them – insights which no one seems to dare to address publicly. Would you like to see Richard’s paradigms’ application to the AI conflict in the mainstream media? I’m sure we would all love that. So what’s wrong with trying to apply these wonderful insights on another target group, this time Jewish? It might not be connected directly with the conflict, but it might contribute enornously to advancing the internal Israeli discourse. Next time when I read about some vitcim group in the paper, I’d appreciate it very much if instead of reading how it’s all the fault of everybody else, a true balance could be achieved by also analyzing the cultural aspects that just might play a major role in that groups’ low status. I mean, honestly, we constantly stress how the Arabic culture is standing in the way of reform, progress, and the resolution of the conflict, but for some particular reason, it all becomes irrelevant when dealing with Jews originating from that culture.

    Is that really consistant?

  56. E.G. says:

    sshender,

    If you want to go on a Shlomo Sand kind of a mission, that’s your problem. Not this site/blog’s purpose.

    I mean, honestly, we constantly stress how the Arabic culture is standing in the way of reform, progress, and the resolution of the conflict

    That’s not my impression. A few features of Islamic obedience and ME Arabic culture are discussed, along with a host of documented acts and facts world-wide. And tentative interpretations of the last are made referring inter alia to the honour/shame factor.

    Israeli media is far from being the sole practising according to the victimhood principle or lens, it’s a general trend. You’ll find it in academia as well.
    Furthermore, honour/shame is a feature in most if not all cultures. Its prominence and its behavioural manifestations vary.

    p.s. Look up a dictionary for the meaning of “paradigm”.
    More generally, intellectual rigour may not be available for some, but it can be learnt. So I’m not asking too much.

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