“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

The most pithy and tragic observation came from a Palestinian journalist in Gaza, Jehad Saftawi, who Tweeted, he said, in Gaza we're anxiously waiting for the results of the Israeli elections to see which Israeli politician will bomb us.

The advantage, from the Palestinian perspective, of having Netanyahu is that it's sort of truth in advertising. You know, when you buy some junk food and you have a box that says nutrition facts on the box, well, it tells you exactly what's in there, how much fat, how much high-fructose corn syrup, how much of the other things that might harm you are in there. And so Netanyahu is kind of a truth in advertising. He's very clear: no Palestinian state, no compromise. And so I think that’s very salutary for the world to understand what Israel really is and to begin to have to reckon with the reality that Israel has to be dealt with on that basis and not return to a charade of a peace process, where the Palestinians are dragged into endless negotiations while Israel is allowed to kill them, colonize their land, impose apartheid on them with no consequences.


  1. Netanyahu sounded like a classical anti-Semite in terms of saying the Arabs instead of the Jews--the Arabs and foreign moneyed interests are conspiring to overthrow me. He sounded paranoid.

    But in reality I think he is a shrewd politician and he knows that this kind of paranoid rhetoric, this victim rhetoric, really does mobilize his base. And it appears to have worked, along with the incitement against Palestinian citizens of Israel, when he said in a video he released this morning, the Arabs are moving on the polling places in droves.

    And it was interesting that in the language he used in Hebrew, he used particularly military analogies.

    He talked about the Arabs moving on the polling places as if they were advancing in a military fashion. And he told Jewish voters, we do not have V15 (that's this organization he claims is working against him); we have order number eight. Now, order number eight, as all Israelis know, is the call-up order for the general reserves.

    When order number eight is implemented, it means that Israeli reserve soldiers should go to their mustering sites. So he was actually appealing to Jewish voters as if they were being called up to a military operation.

    Of course, this military operation is directed against Palestinian citizens of Israel. So what it shows is a mindset where he and his base view Palestinian citizens of Israel as an internal enemy. But that rhetoric is very, very effective

  2. ... and the GOP Likuds Force is stuck with him. Sticky, slimy, on the soles of their shoes tracking his stink wherever they go for the next two years.

  3. VOA News
    March 18, 2015 5:56 PM

    The U.S. State Department says Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's reelection will have no impact on nuclear talks with Iran.

    Spokeswoman Jen Psaki said Wednesday the U.S. has long been familiar with Netanyahu's opposition to a possible deal with Iran. She again said that meetings with Iran have been "difficult but constructive." However, she said the talks on the technical side have been "professional and fruitful" in clarifying and sharpening the issues.

    Two weeks before the Israeli election, Netanyahu angered the Obama administration by addressing the U.S. Congress and calling the still-pending deal with Iran a "bad deal."

    In Lausanne, Switzerland - site of the current round of nuclear talks - Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said Wednesday that Friday's planned meeting with the other foreign ministers involved in the negotiations is unlikely. Zarif told Iranian television that everyone says the political will for a settlement exists, but it is still to be seen if it is really there.

    The foreign ministers would join the negotiations when it looks like a deal is close.

    Iran and the so-called P5 + 1 (Britain, China, France, Germany, Russia and the United States) face a March 31 deadline for a framework agreement.

    Iran would scale back its uranium enrichment program to prevent it from being able to build a nuclear bomb. The U.S. and its partners would ease sanctions that have devastated the Iranian economy.

    Opponents to a deal, including Netanyahu and a number of U.S. lawmakers, say it gives too many concessions to Iran and leaves it room to still develop a bomb.

    Iran consistently denies wanting to build atomic weapons, saying its nuclear program is strictly for peaceful civilian uses.

  4. The Obama administration assumes that it needs Russia to get an Iranian nuclear deal. But behind-the-scenes happenings suggest that Russia has its own plans. That may explain why the administration is willing to bypass Congress to get a pact with Tehran.

    Russia and Iran have been moving closer in recent months. On Jan. 20, they signed a military cooperation agreement after the first visit of a Russian defense minister to Iran in 15 years. They have agreed to share intelligence and operate joint facilities on the Syrian-Lebanese border, and both nations support Syrian President Bashar Assad. These come on top of existing agreements and ongoing Moscow-Tehran talks over nuclear technology, trade, energy and arms sales.
    There are signs that Russia and Iran’s relations are about to get even closer. One of Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s top advisers, Ali-Akbar Velayti, visited Moscow in late January, and a visit to Tehran by Russian President Vladimir Putin appears to be in the offing. Leaders in both countries seem to be thinking of bigger things.
    What is driving interest in warmer relations is obvious. Russia and Iran share strategic hostility to the U.S., with some in Moscow going so far as to suggest an anti-American strategic alliance with Iran. Putin adviser Sergey Glazyev recently said that “a world war is beginning with the aggression of the USA against Russia in Ukraine and against Iran and Syria in the Middle East.” Mr. Glazyev is a hard-liner known for incendiary statements, but he is also close to Mr. Putin and clearly has his ear on Ukraine. Given how aggressive the Putin strategy there has become, these statements should not be ignored.


    1. {...}

      So what are the implications of a Russian-Iranian alliance?
      For one thing, beware of Moscow’s endgame on the Iranian nuclear talks. If Iran gets a one-year breakout potential along with lifted sanctions, it would suit Moscow’s interests perfectly by making its new BFF the region’s biggest power player and giving it increased access to Iran’s expanding quasi-empire that includes Shiite Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen.
      For another, Moscow becomes the kingmaker in deciding the fate of an Iranian nuclear deal. One of the first things Russia could do is to ask the United Nations Security Council to codify the agreement and lift sanctions on Teheran. Having already signed off on the deal, the Obama administration would have to go along.
      That may very well have been Mr. Obama’s endgame all along. As Harvard law professor Jack Goldsmith suggests, if the terms of a P5+1 agreement is folded into a Security Council resolution, it would be binding on the U.S. as a matter of international law. As was done in the Libya war resolution, going directly to the United Nations lets Mr. Obama bypass Congress, effectively going over the heads of the American people to cut a binding deal with the “international community.”
      If this happens, and Iran decides to cheat on the deal, it will be the United Nations tying America’s hands, not Iran‘s. It would be exceedingly difficult to reimpose U.N. sanctions on Iran, and if the U.S. did so unilaterally, it would stand accused by at least Iran, Russia and China of violating international law. Iran could very well get a nuclear weapons program under the nose of the world, and short of war, the U.S. would be out of options.
      This situation suits Russia just fine. Moscow, not Washington, becomes the key decider of whether Iran does or does not acquire nuclear weapons. Russia may now prefer that Iran not get them, but in the future Moscow’s interest in enhancing its strategic position in the Middle East may trump its current caution.
      If Washington is not careful, a nuclear Iran may be only the beginning. We also could see the rise of an anti-American axis comprising Iran and Russia, both determined to see the U.S. driven out of the Middle East.

      - A former assistant secretary of state, Kim R. Holmes is a distinguished fellow at The Heritage Foundation
      Originally appeared in The Washington Times

    2. There Are No "Distinguished" Fellows at The Heritage Foundation.

  5. The party of stupid, OOrahing behind Captain Cotton, think that the Russians are not smart enough or bold enough to take advantage of the damage done by The GOP Likuds Force?

    They really are a ship of fools.

    1. CNN/ORC has Hillary up by double digits against All of their potential candidates.

      (Not that Hillary should give anyone the "warm and fuzzies" either.)

    2. Iran is going to make a deal. They'd be nuts not to, and they know it.

    3. Btw, Obama's gamble not to provide air cover to "The Warriors of God"tm is turning out to have made a powerful point.

  6. Replies
    1. Getting, maybe, just little too interesting? :)

  7. Surprise! Netanyahu wins as Israeli Right soars
    posted at 8:31 am on March 18, 2015 by Ed Morrissey

    In the end, the Israeli election wasn’t even close — and certainly not in the way that analysts expected. For the past week, media outlets in the US had written Benjamin Netanyahu’s political obituary, insisting that Likud and the Right had collapsed, and looked forward to a Left coalition that would align better with Barack Obama. Instead, Netanyahu scored a decisive victory, taking 30 seats as the Right ran to an easy majority in the new Knesset:

    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party was the clear winner in Tuesday’s election, a near-final tally showed early Wednesday morning, defeating the Zionist Union by a margin of some six seats.

    That margin was far more decisive than TV exit polls had predicted when polling booths closed at 10 p.m. on Tuesday. All three TV polls had put Likud and Zionist Union neck-and-neck at 27 seats, albeit with Netanyahu better-placed to form a coalition.

    On the basis of those TV polls, Netanyahu hailed a Likud victory, though Herzog initially refused to concede. As counting proceeded through the night, however, the Likud opened a growing margin of victory.

    By 6 a.m., with some 99% of votes counted, the Central Elections Committee was indicating a dramatic victory for Netanyahu, with the Likud heading for 30 seats, compared to Zionist Union’s 24 seats.

    The Washington Post’s William Booth acknowledges that a lot of people got this wrong, and wonders why:

    Before the vote, pundits were beginning to write the first drafts of Netan­yahu’s political obituary. Reporters asked him in interviews what he planned to do in retirement.

    But in the past five days, Netan­yahu took to the airwaves, warning repeatedly that Herzog and the left were going to turn over land to the Palestinians and divide Jerusalem, which both Israel and Palestinians claim as their capital.

    It was unclear whether Israeli pollsters just got it wrong or could not keep up with fast-moving events. The last opinion polls on Friday suggested that Netanyahu was losing. Exit polls Tuesday night said it was a tie. The final vote count showed that Netanyahu had won by a wide margin.

    Leading pollster Avi Degani, president of the Geocartography Knowledge Group, said Wednesday that there were several reasons for the disparity.

  8. “We are not looking for excuses, but in Israel we are always dealing with 20 percent of the voters who have not made a decision before the election and you just do not know who they will vote for,” he said.

    That sounds like a pretty good argument for keeping the powder dry on questions about retirement plans until after the vote count. Sky News offers a slightly more bitter explanation:

    That’s certainly another view, and one likely to be adopted by those disappointed in the results. However, the Jerusalem Post’s Gil Hoffman writes that the real difference may have been Netanyahu’s appeal to the “second Israel,” and his fight against the elites:

    The Ashkenazi immigrants from Eastern Europe were seen as having an unfair advantage over their Sephardic counterparts from North Africa and the Middle East. The people who are called “the second Israel” have complained since then that the “elites” in the Israeli Left, the media and academia have discriminated against them.

    The “second Israel” did not like the the way the media seemed to be deposing of Netanyahu and bringing to power the Left under the leadership of Zionist Union leaders Isaac Herzog and Tzipi Livni, who were raised not far from each other in North Tel Aviv and are both the children of former Knesset members. …

    Many who considered staying home, or voting for one of the Likud’s satellite parties, hurried to the polling stations to cast ballots for Likud. People who have not voted in years – or at least not for Likud – felt the need to save Israel from the Left, Iran and from a hostile international community.

    The challenge for Netanyahu will likely be more on the domestic economy rather than international relations. The US will press Netanyahu to back down from his newly announced opposition to a two-state solution, but the Obama administration has torched that relationship over the last year. They were hoping to get another PM to improve their standing at home on Israel, but now it’s clear that Netanyahu will outlast Obama and John Kerry. It’s also clear that Israelis aren’t terribly keen on two-state solutions while Hamas runs Gaza and Mahmoud Abbas keeps pledging unity governments with them, either. Otherwise, Netanyahu’s final pitch wouldn’t have resulted in his surprising win last night.

    Where does this leave the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, then? In a shambles, but it’s been that way for decades, and it wasn’t going anywhere with Obama and Kerry any more than it was with George Bush and Condoleezza Rice. The problem still remains that one side wants peace, and the other side wants all the land and the Jews pushed out into the Mediterranean. When that changes and both sides want peaceful and permanent coexistence, then the problem will find an easy solution.

    In the meantime, the White House will have to find a way to reach out to Netanyahu if it wants to have any influence at all in Israel before the end of Obama’s term. Don’t expect Netanyahu to make it easy, either.

    Time to toot the Toyota horn.

  9. The odd thing is that the foreign policy of the Zionist Union is basically the same as that of Likud regarding Iran.

    The real disagreement between the two was on domestic affairs, housing, prices, etc.

    The tactics of the Islamo-fascists in the White House and in the Democratic Party of overtly intervening in Israel's election process via 'Democratic political operatives' and suitcases full of cash from American taxpayers seems to have badly backfired.

  10. Rufus is right. The Iranians would be idiots not to make a deal with Obama.

    He is giving them the store, unless our Constitution prevails and the Senate has a say, as it Constitutionally is charged with doing.

    Interesting times ?

    Not so much. I don't find it interesting to see our Constitution being continually shredded by an asshole like O'bozo and his enablers in the Democratic Party.

  11. I find it extremely distressing, not interesting.

    1. Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson stole his aunt's honor, destroyed her reputation and good name.

      He should feel distressed.

    2. Rufus IIWed Mar 18, 07:55:00 PM EDT

      You're a fool.

      You're an IDIOT.

  12. The US Solar PV Market had a phenomenal run in 2014. According to data released yesterday by the Solar Energy Industries Association and GTM Research — 6 GW of new capacity was added during the last year, taking the cumulative PV installations tally to 18.3 GW!

    That’s a growth of 30% over the previous year, representing nearly $18 billion in new investment. By the end of 2014, 20 states have reached the 100 MW mark for cumulative operating PV installations, with California alone boasting a humongous 8.7 GW.

    Before we dive into the performance of each market segment, consider this: In 2014, for the first time in history, each of the three market segments — utility, commercial and residential — installed more than . . . . . . .

    <a href="'>Lighting it Up</a>


  13. Militias Flock to Tikrit Ahead of Final Phase

    March 17-18

    Iraqi security forces surrounding Tikrit continue to receive reinforcements ahead of the final phase of the operation to clear Islamic State fighters from the heart of the city. The call to battle has attracted fighters from popular volunteer groups including the Badr Organization, the League of the Righteous, the Peace Brigades and their affiliates. Senior Iraqi army sources are keen to emphasize that many of the militias have experience fighting in built-up areas and that the Tikrit operation as a whole has played out to a largely predetermined timeline. In fact, the success of the security forces, heavily supported by Iran, has so far exceeded expectations.

    However, the most difficult phase is yet to come. While combat engineers endeavor to clear the approaches to Tikrit, removing improvised and conventional explosives, a concerted bombing campaign is softening up Islamic State positions in downtown Tikrit. A combination of light and heavy artillery, fixed wing aircraft, attack helicopters and artillery rockets continue to pound targets inside the city.


    1. A combination of light and heavy artillery, fixed wing aircraft, attack helicopters and artillery rockets continue to pound targets inside the city.

    2. The Iraqi Security Forces are going to raze Tikrit.
      That was probably always the "Plan".

      They 'stalled' the advance to pound the city with artillery and strategic bombing from the air.

    3. Eh, sounds like a "dumb" plan, to me; but . . . . . . .

      What the hell.

      It's the Middleeast, Jake. :)

    4. Tikrit, the hometown of the man most hated man by the Shia of Iraq.

      A little 'payback' will go a long way to easing the desire for further vengeance on the part of the Shia.
      Then there was the slaughter of the Shia at that military academy.

      An Iraqi mission, from start to finish, and it will finish.
      The building that have 'booby trapped' will be destroyed, razing the city, with the responsibility place squarely on the Islamic State, the Sunni radicals.

      It fulfills all the requirements for the Iraqi government and electoral majority of their "Purple Fingered" constituency.
      Neither the Shia nor the Kurds will feel remorseful that the Islamic State caused the destruction of Tikrit, in a drawn out siege.

    5. The that have 'booby trapped' will be destroyed ... placed ...


    Netanyahu’s Historic Win — and Obama’s Humiliating Loss
    Peter Wehner 03.18.2015 - 10:15 AM

    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s stunning victory yesterday — polls at the end of last week had people writing off his chances — means he will become only the second person to be elected prime minister for a third term (the other being Israel’s founder David Ben-Gurion). “King Bibi” has established himself as one of the dominant figures in the history of the modern state of Israel. Mr. Netanyahu is hardly a person without flaws. But for those of us who admire his toughness and moral clarity on world events — and who appreciate his obvious love for his nation and for ours — it was a splendid turn of events.

    As for the current occupant of the White House, it was a disastrous one.

    Barack Obama has an obsessive animosity when it comes to Prime Minister Netanyahu, which he has demonstrated time and again. So much so that Obama and his aides did everything they could to influence the Israeli election, from smearing Mr. Netanyahu — referring to him as a “coward” and a “chickens***” — to childishly elevating a difference over Netanyahu’s speech to a joint session of Congress into a foreign policy crisis to perhaps illegally funneling money to oust the sitting leader of Israel. We know that Jeremy Bird, who served as Obama’s deputy national campaign director in 2008 and his national campaign director in 2012, arrived in Israel in January to help unseat Mr. Netanyahu. This is all quite astonishing, even unprecedented. Benjamin Netanyahu may have won without the outside interference by Obama — but what Obama & Company did certainly helped.

    I’m reminded of the self-inflicted “stunning setback” Mr. Obama suffered in 2009, when he and Mrs. Obama put their prestige on the line — they both flew to Copenhagen to make an appeal to the IOC — to get Chicago the 2016 Olympics. Chicago was eliminated on the first ballot. This time, the stakes were much higher and the damage done to Mr. Obama’s reputation far greater. .

    There’s quite a pattern Mr. Obama has established in foreign policy during his presidency. He has failed in almost every instance, from his efforts at personal diplomacy to his policies. Remember the “new beginning” with the Arab and Muslim world? That claim now seems risible. Indeed, our relations with nation after nation — Syria, Iraq, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, the United Arab Emirates, Turkey, Libya, Yemen, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Russia, Ukraine, Poland, the Czech Republic, Japan, Taiwan, South Korea, China, Canada, Israel, India, Australia, Honduras, Brazil, Germany, and Great Britain, to name just a few — are worse now than they were when Mr. Obama was sworn in as president in 2009....


    1. Everyone to their own opinion.

      I think even Elizabeth Warren might make a better President than Obama.


  15. Recent high level military dialogue between General Rat "The Liar" Hawkins and General Doofus "July 14th" Rufus.......


    Jack HawkinsWed Mar 18, 09:57:00 PM EDT

    The Iraqi Security Forces are going to raze Tikrit.
    That was probably always the "Plan".

    They 'stalled' the advance to pound the city with artillery and strategic bombing from the air.
    Rufus IIWed Mar 18, 10:05:00 PM EDT

    Eh, sounds like a "dumb" plan, to me; but . . . . . . .

    What the hell.

    It's the Middleeast, Jake. :)



  16. General Doofus "July 4th" Rufus

    Sorry, was laughing......

    Both our Generals have now endorsed the razing of cities via carpet bombing......

    1. No, you lying, racist sonofabitch, YOU are the sorry asshole that is constantly advocating "CARPET BOMBING!"

      I have advocated the precise strikes on individual targets, with very little collateral damage, that the U.S. has consistently accomplished.

      I said that if "razing" Tikrit was in the Iraqi plans, it was a Dumb plan.

      You are a totally worthless piece of anti-democratic, hateful trash.

  17. >>>That was probably always the "Plan".<<<

    General Rat "The Liar" Hawkins


    That was always the plan!!!!!

    If you don't find this knee slapping high-larious, as dad used to say, you've no sense of humor whatsoever.

    1. bob Thu May 27, 12:52:00 AM EDT

      But I did rip off the bank for $7500 hundred dollars, when I was on my knees, and fighting for my economic life, on my aunt's credit card. But that wasn't really stealing, just payback. …

      Just like a meth head, Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson, tries to justify his crime by saying that the loot was owed him, by the people or institution he ripped off.

    2. Your understanding of the Shia mentality, Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson, is nil.

      Your understanding of the world, even less.

    3. And, I'll just repeat my above comment:

      No, you lying, racist sonofabitch, YOU are the sorry asshole that is constantly advocating "CARPET BOMBING!"

      I have advocated the precise strikes on individual targets, with very little collateral damage, that the U.S. has consistently accomplished.

      I said that if "razing" Tikrit was in the Iraqi plans, it was a Dumb plan.

      You are a totally worthless piece of anti-democratic, hateful trash.

    4. But Robert "Draft Dodger" did understand that he was stealing his aunt's honor, destroying her good name, her reputation.

      He planned it.

      It was tough, in them days. They couldn't do a damn thing about it, I put her in the rest home, age 96. What you going to do, when she is institutionalized?

    5. But Robert "Draft Dodger" Petersondid understand that he was stealing his aunt's honor, destroying her good name, her reputation.

  18. It has been widely reported that the Iraqi government has not requested Coalition support in Tikrit.

    I have not read, anywhere, that there was a request for coalition air support and the US decided not to provide it.

    1. I know; I'm making a leap, here, Rat. But, I'm assuming that the reason it wasn't requested it that the U.S. took a look at the plan, and told them that we weren't interested, and to save the embarrassment.

    2. And, that might not be the case, but it seems likely to me.

  19. If we assume that the reports are correct, that the Iraqi have not requested Coalition support, the question becomes one of motive.

    Did the US inform the Iraqi that if they did request support, that it would not be granted, because of the makeup of the Iraqi Security Forces? I have not read this, anywhere.

    If there are only a couple of hundred Islamic State combatants in Tikrit, and the Iraqi have decided to not use infantry, but indirect fire and attack aircraft, SU-25s and Mi-24 Hinds to strike targets in the city center ...

    Their goal seems pretty clear ... destroy Tikrit.

    1. Yeah, begrudgingly, I have to admit that that does seem quite possible. Oh, well.

    2. Think of the Battle of Thermopylae.

      Rather than commit his infantry in a battle to the finish ... Xerxes used his archers to kill the last of the Spartans from a safe stand-off distance.

      The Iraqi are doing the same, and destroying Tikrit in the process, two birds, one stone.

    3. There are no arbitrary timelines for the Iraqi government, they have all the time they need, or want ...

  20. The consummate Republican

    Donald Trump, best known for having a lot of money, naming buildings after himself, being the last man standing in the “Obama isn't from America” brigade, hosting a reality show, and his impossible hair, is exploring the idea that he should run for President.

  21. Rufus on razing Tikrit -

    >>>>Eh, sounds like a "dumb" plan, to me; but . . . . . . .

    What the hell.<<<<

    General Rufus


    To me, choosing between the Shia of Iraq and Iran, and ISIS is too hard a choice.

    I'm for supporting the Kurds.

    Let the others do what they will.

    I'm nearly always wrong on elections and sure enough I got the Israeli one wrong too.....

    Cheers !!

    1. The US is supporting the Kurds, through the Iraqi government.

      The discovery of widespread FGM in Iraqi Kurdistan suggests the assumption to be incorrect that FGM is primarily an African phenomenon with only marginal occurrence in the eastern Islamic world. FGM is practiced at a rate of nearly 60 percent by Iraqi Kurds, then how prevalent is the practice in neighboring Syria where living conditions and cultural and religious practices are comparable?

      Why should a single US soldier die to protect this horrid cultural practice,

      Answer US that Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson

  22. .

    [From the previous Stream]

    You are now an official member of the Elephant blog’s Jew haters society.

    Being called racist, anti-Semite, a Jew hater (not quite sure what the distinction is), a homophobe, whatever, doesn’t really bother me in and of itself. I’m frankly too old to give a shit. At this point, I am what I am. However, what I do usually get pissed about is that those that offer up the slur rarely offer any proof of their charges. It pisses me off that those making the charge assume that you will either get defensive or let them off without demanding evidence of the charge.

    In your case, WiO, I make an exception. The charge comes so trippingly off your tongue at the slightest expression of disagreement over Israeli policy, over discussions of discrimination written into Israeli law, or disagreements with the faux history you espouse here that one has to think that it is a learned response, a reflex if you like. If the charges are because I see Bibi as an arrogant, lying, prick, if it is because I feel Zionism does not fit with the principles of the West, if I see the West Bank and Gaza as occupied territory rather than ‘disputed’ territory, or that I think that while Israel is an ally of the US that does not necessarily mean they are our our friend, well then, so be it. However, none of those were mentioned today. What was mentioned were my view on who was responsible for last year’s Gazan war.

    (continued below...)


    1. .


      Your latest charge, that I am a Jew hater, is based on my statement that Bibi was responsible for the Gazan war, that he was pissed off because of the Reconciliation Agreement between the PA and Hamas, and that the deaths of the three Israeli youths was the false flag he used to tar Hamas and drive a wedge between the PA and Hamas to end any reconciliation.

      You say,

      Hamas butchers Israel kids, launches rockets that they had spent 1 billion on preparing, spent 1 billion on tunnels into israel, refused the arab league cease fire and you call it a “false flag”.

      You base your opinion (I assume) on what Bibi tells you was his reasons for attacking Gaza. I on the other hand wouldn’t trust Bibi to tell me the time of day.

      I’ll concentrate on the deaths of the Israeli kids and the rocket attacks from Gaza rather than the other stuff you mentioned since the first two were what you mentioned initially and much of the other stuff came after the fact. However, I can’t help bringing up events that occurred prior to those acts to explain my position. They go beyond Bibi’s means to start the war and explain his motives.

      Item 1: The PA/Hamas Reconciliation Agreement

      When the Israeli/Palestinian peace talks being pushed by Kerry and the US fell apart in April, 2014, the PA and Hamas signed a reconciliation agreement combining forces. This worked for the PA because Hamas agreed to submit to PA authority on key issues including Israel’s right to exist and control of terrorist forces. On the other hand, Hamas was forced to agree with it because they were losing public support in Gaza and were nearly bankrupt.

      As for the Israelis, Bibi went batshit crazy at word of the reconciliation; and, even though previous agreements between the two groups had eventually fallen apart, Bibi overplayed his hand. The agreement eliminated one of the main talking points he had used during the peace talks, that being how can he be expected to sign an agreement with the PA when that organization only represented part of the Palestinian people. He also stormed on about Hamas being a terrorist group but the US and other allies were positive on the agreement. Bibi was also concerned that the combined group would have increased status in their push for statehood. Also, Israel had benefited from the Palestinians divided leadership and weren’t anxious to see them operating in a combined fashion.

      Bibi used every carrot and stick he could think of to end the proposed agreement from offering to continue negotiations on a two-state solution (basically lying) if it was dropped, to threatening to hold the PA responsible for any rockets shot out of Gaza, to demanding that US aid to the PA be cut off, to explaining American law to Americans.

      (continued below...)


    2. .


      Item 2: The Rocket Attacks

      Though some here blame every rocket attack coming out of Gaza on Hamas, Hamas is not the only militant group in the territory. Islamic Jihad and other groups are there too.
      As part of the reconciliation process Hamas was trying to bring about with the PA, they were trying to do their best to slow the rocket attacks on Israel. The same policing function the PA performs in the West Bank. In fact, the number of rockets attacks in 2013 was down 98% from those in 2012 and 2014 was also down until the numbers exploded after the war started in Gaza.

      Item 3: The death of the three Israeli youths

      You say that it was the killing of the three Israeli youths on June 12 that started the Gaza war. However, others point to the killings of two Palestinian youths during the Nabka day memorial in May, 2014 that precipitated the deaths of the 3 Israelis.

      Israel described the protest as a riot in which a crowd refused to disperse,[1] and initially denied responsibility, saying the cause of the deaths was unknown, the deaths were faked, that video clips of the killings either failed to capture the violence of the scene shortly before, or might have been manipulated, that soldiers had been provoked and that only rubber bullets had been fired.[1][2] Third party evidence and investigations, based on multiple sources, refuted the IDF position, while an autopsy showed that one of the teenagers had been shot with live ammunition.[3]

      The autopsy on one of the Palestinian youths showing he had been killed by live ammunition was released the day before the three Israelis were kidnapped and killed. Not long after the Israelis were killed another Palestinian youth was kidnapped, tortured, and killed.

      The killings are likely all too familiar to those living in Israel and the Occupied Territories. They might have been contained had not Bibi interfered for political reasons as explained in the following article from Forward.

      (See article below...)


    3. .

      [From Forward]

      How Politics and Lies Triggered an Unintended War in Gaza

      In the flood of angry words that poured out of Israel and Gaza during a week of spiraling violence, few statements were more blunt, or more telling, than this throwaway line by the chief spokesman of the Israeli military, Brigadier General Moti Almoz, speaking July 8 on Army Radio’s morning show: “We have been instructed by the political echelon to hit Hamas hard.”

      That’s unusual language for a military mouthpiece. Typically they spout lines like “We will take all necessary actions” or “The state of Israel will defend its citizens.” You don’t expect to hear: “This is the politicians’ idea. They’re making us do it.”

      Admittedly, demurrals on government policy by Israel’s top defense brass, once virtually unthinkable, have become almost routine in the Netanyahu era. Usually, though, there’s some measure of subtlety or discretion. This particular interview was different. Where most disagreements involve policies that might eventually lead to some future unnecessary war, this one was about an unnecessary war they were now stumbling into.

      Spokesmen don’t speak for themselves. Almoz was expressing a frustration that was building in the army command for nearly a month, since the June 12 kidnapping of three Israeli yeshiva boys. The crime set off a chain of events in which Israel gradually lost control of the situation, finally ending up on the brink of a war that nobody wanted — not the army, not the government, not even the enemy, Hamas.

      The frustration had numerous causes. Once the boys’ disappearance was known, troops began a massive, 18-day search-and-rescue operation, entering thousands of homes, arresting and interrogating hundreds of individuals, racing against the clock. Only on July 1, after the boys’ bodies were found, did the truth come out: The government had known almost from the beginning that the boys were dead. It maintained the fiction that it hoped to find them alive as a pretext to dismantle Hamas’ West Bank operations


    4. .

      The initial evidence was the recording of victim Gilad Shaer’s desperate cellphone call to Moked 100, Israel’s 911. When the tape reached the security services the next morning — neglected for hours by Moked 100 staff — the teen was heard whispering “They’ve kidnapped me” (“hatfu oti”) followed by shouts of “Heads down,” then gunfire, two groans, more shots, then singing in Arabic. That evening searchers found the kidnappers’ abandoned, torched Hyundai, with eight bullet holes and the boys’ DNA. There was no doubt.

      Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu immediately placed a gag order on the deaths. Journalists who heard rumors were told the Shin Bet wanted the gag order to aid the search. For public consumption, the official word was that Israel was “acting on the assumption that they’re alive.” It was, simply put, a lie.

      Moti Almoz, as army spokesman, was in charge of repeating the lie. True, others backed him up, including Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon. But when the truth came out on July 1, Almoz bore the brunt of public derision. Critics said his credibility was shot. He’d only been spokesman since October, after a long career as a blunt-talking field commander with no media experience. Others felt professional frustration. His was personal.

      Nor was that the only fib. It was clear from the beginning that the kidnappers weren’t acting on orders from Hamas leadership in Gaza or Damascus. Hamas’ Hebron branch — more a crime family than a clandestine organization — had a history of acting without the leaders’ knowledge, sometimes against their interests. Yet Netanyahu repeatedly insisted Hamas was responsible for the crime and would pay for it.

      This put him in a ticklish position. His rhetoric raised expectations that after demolishing Hamas in the West Bank he would proceed to Gaza. Hamas in Gaza began preparing for it. The Israeli right — settler leaders, hardliners in his own party — began demanding it.

      But Netanyahu had no such intention. The last attack on Gaza, the eight-day Operation Pillar of Defense in November 2012, targeted Hamas leaders and taught a sobering lesson. Hamas hadn’t fired a single rocket since, and had largely suppressed fire by smaller jihadi groups. Rocket firings, averaging 240 per month in 2007, dropped to five per month in 2013. Neither side had any desire to end the d├ętente. Besides, whatever might replace Hamas in Gaza could only be worse.

      The kidnapping and crackdown upset the balance. In Israel, grief and anger over the boys’ disappearance grew steadily as the fabricated mystery stretched into a second and third week. Rallies and prayer meetings were held across the country and in Jewish communities around the world. The mothers were constantly on television. One addressed the United Nations in Geneva to plead for her son’s return. Jews everywhere were in anguish over the unceasing threat of barbaric Arab terror plaguing Israel.

      This, too, was misleading. The last seven years have been the most tranquil in Israel’s history. Terror attacks are a fraction of the level during the nightmare intifada years — just six deaths in all of 2013. But few notice. The staged agony of the kidnap search created, probably unintentionally, what amounts to a mass, worldwide attack of post-traumatic stress flashback.

      When the bodies were finally found, Israelis’ anger exploded into calls for revenge, street riots and, finally, murder.

      Amid the rising tension, cabinet meetings in Jerusalem turned into shouting matches. Ministers on the right demanded the army reoccupy Gaza and destroy Hamas. Netanyahu replied, backed by the army and liberal ministers, that the response must be measured and careful. It was an unaccustomed and plainly uncomfortable role for him. He was caught between his pragmatic and ideological impulses.


    5. .

      In Gaza, leaders went underground. Rocket enforcement squads stopped functioning and jihadi rocket firing spiked. Terror squads began preparing to counterattack Israel through tunnels. One tunnel exploded on June 19 in an apparent work accident, killing five Hamas gunmen, convincing some in Gaza that the Israeli assault had begun while reinforcing Israeli fears that Hamas was plotting terror all along.

      On June 29, an Israeli air attack on a rocket squad killed a Hamas operative. Hamas protested. The next day it unleashed a rocket barrage, its first since 2012. The cease-fire was over. Israel was forced to retaliate for the rockets with air raids. Hamas retaliated for the raids with more rockets. And so on. Finally Israel began calling up reserves on July 8 and preparing for what, as Moti Almoz told Army Radio, “the political echelon instructed.”

      Later that morning, Israel’s internal security minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch told reporters that the “political echelon has given the army a free hand.” Almoz returned to Army Radio that afternoon and confirmed that the army had “received an absolutely free hand” to act.

      And how far, the interviewer asked, will the army go? “To the extent that it’s up to the army,” Almoz said, “the army is determined to restore quiet.” Will simply restoring quiet be enough? “That’s not up to us,” he said. The army will continue the operation as long as it’s told.

      The operation’s army code-name, incidentally, is “Protective Edge” in English, but the original Hebrew is more revealing: Tzuk Eitan, or “solid cliff.” That, the army seems to feel, is where Israel is headed.

      Read more:


  23. "O"rdure, just can't leave well enough alone, can he?

    The Zionists are world famous for their "False Flag" operations, for murdering Jews when it suits their purposes, while attempting to blame others for their own miscreant behaviors.

  24. So, Quirk, you are saying that Hamas’ Hebron branch kidnapped and killed the Israeli teenagers?

    If so I delete my comment.

    I thought you were saying the Israelis kidnapped and killed their own, which I truly doubt.

  25. Rufus has advocated carpet bombing of Tikrit.

    Rufus on razing Tikrit -

    >>>>Eh, sounds like a "dumb" plan, to me; but . . . . . . .

    What the hell.<<<<


    I used the words carpet bombing once, thinking that might be the only way to really solve the problem, in a fit of fatigue.

    I have since retracted the idea after listening to the arguments of Abraham/Rufus.

    As far as Sunni and Shia Iraq are concerned I am taking the Noble Ash position of let them work it out.

    Abraham/Rufus now seems to be to the point of thinking so few innocent and aged and ill still live in Tikrit that it's time to let the smoke rise as if from a kiln.

    "but......What the hell"


    Rufus, who always blames whitey first, calls me a racist for, admittedly, using the n once.

    I apologized for that, but I don't much like inner city blacks who play the knock out game.

    Anyway I have desisted.

    rat asshole is the one true racist here, with his infamous quote about the Jews/Israelis being the 'scum of the earth'.

    Repeated in various guises endlessly.............

    I am giving more thought to my backing of Ben Carson for President. Still love the guy, but he needs a good campaign manager and needs to polish his words up a little. He is new to the game, and doesn't seem to know some of the pitfalls.

    This is actually a virtue.....but.....

    I am really for Judge Jeanine Pirro but she isn't running :(

  26. Why are blacks who do the knock out game not charged with hate crimes?

    Their primary targets are whites, just for the sole reason that they are whites.

    Why can only whites do hate crimes in our society ?

  27. It's odd that Rufus, that paragon of racial purity, who always blames whitey first, doesn't seem upset in the least that his butt buddy ratasshole is the biggest racist here, by far.

    But then who has ever expected consistency from General Rufus?

    The best light I can shine on this is from Walt Whitman -

    "Do I contradict myself ? Very well then, I contradict myself. I am large. I contain multitudes."


    Who said consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, or whatever it wass ?

    Emerson ?

    This is the grand tradition of our American Literary Experience in which we should place our poor dear inconsistent Rufus, who has never been right about anything, according to Trish, his admirer.

  28. Just in from 'Red Eye' -

    Secret Service asks for money to build mock up White House -

    For practice and familiarity purposes -

    Word is it is to have big wet bar and a 'Choom Room' in the basement.....

    ar ar ar