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Old 01-06-2009, 03:57 PM   #136
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Originally Posted by Irvine511 View Post
i know we like to identify the USA as the source of all bad things on the planet, but once in a while, things are more complex than that.
And you are somehow uniquely positioned to see special nuance whereas most of the rest of us as well as pretty much the rest of the world isn't?

I sure know that if it were my tax dollars, to the completely absurd value of $5 billion going to Israel, I would have some major concerns about why, what regime I am supportive of and why it is that we are seeing an apartheid in the making.
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Old 01-06-2009, 03:58 PM   #137
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the truth of the matter, is that this appears to be a tragic, inexcusable mistake by the IDF.
What are you basing this on?

I would have to go dig up the article but a few days ago one of the Israeli politicians or generals (can't remember which) stated that any target perceived as a threat would be included in the offensive.
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Old 01-06-2009, 04:01 PM   #138
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And you are somehow uniquely positioned to see special nuance whereas most of the rest of us as well as pretty much the rest of the world isn't?

I sure know that if it were my tax dollars, to the completely absurd value of $5 billion going to Israel, I would have some major concerns about why, what regime I am supportive of and why it is that we are seeing an apartheid in the making.


true enough. on my tax returns this year, i'll be sure not to check the box that says "would you like us to spend your money to help Israel kill 3rd graders?"
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Old 01-06-2009, 04:03 PM   #139
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What are you basing this on?

I would have to go dig up the article but a few days ago one of the Israeli politicians or generals (can't remember which) stated that any target perceived as a threat would be included in the offensive.


i'm basing this on what i've been saying all along -- regardless of military importance, blowing up a school is precisely the kind of thing Hamas wants the IDF to do. thus, it's a tragic mistake, both for the lives lost and for, yet again, Israel doing exactly the things that will continue to guarantee it's lack of safety for the next 60 years.
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Old 01-06-2009, 04:06 PM   #140
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i'm basing this on what i've been saying all along -- regardless of military importance, blowing up a school is precisely the kind of thing Hamas wants the IDF to do. thus, it's a tragic mistake, both for the lives lost and for, yet again, Israel doing exactly the things that will continue to guarantee it's lack of safety for the next 60 years.
Gotcha - I initially understood you to imply that the IDF had the wrong coordinates and wasn't targeting the UN schools.
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Old 01-06-2009, 04:06 PM   #141
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What are you basing this on?

I would have to go dig up the article but a few days ago one of the Israeli politicians or generals (can't remember which) stated that any target perceived as a threat would be included in the offensive.
Well that's simply illegal (not that the US would allow anyone to actually pull the Israeli's up about it). Even if weapons are being stored at location containing a high number of civilians, the attacking forces is legally bound not to take action which would put the lives of those civilians in grave danger unless on balance of probabilities the attack would bring about an end to hostilities.

Indiscriminate attacks are those which are not directed at a specific military objective or those which use a method of attack that cannot be directed at or limited to a specific military objective. (Protocol I, Art. 51, Sec. 4)

This includes area bombardment, where a number of clearly separated military objectives are treated as a single military objective, and where there is a similar concentration of civilians or civilian objects. (Protocol I, Art. 51, Sec. 5a)

This also includes attacks where the expected incidental loss of civilian life or damage to civilian objects is excessive to the military advantage anticipated. (Protocol I, Art. 51, Sec. 5b)

Indiscriminate attacks are prohibited. (Protocol I, Art. 51, Sec. 4)

Combatants must distinguish between civilian and military objects and attack only military targets. (Protocol I, Art. 48)

If it becomes apparent that an objective in an attack is not a military one, or if that attack could cause incidental loss of civilian life or damage to civilian objects, then the attack must be called off. (Protocol I, Art. 57)

So we can expect to see the IDF in the Hauge when exactly. A UN run facility where the likelihood of weapons being stored is extremely low, and which was designated as a shelter. It's the lowest of the low, a war crime by it's very nature but par for the course for the IDF.
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Old 01-06-2009, 04:16 PM   #142
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If only there where some independent observers in the region like reporters, but Israel stopping them getting in, in the weeks leading up to their illegal invasion.
Journalists are allowed in some places.

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And so for an 11th day of Israel’s war in Gaza, the several hundred journalists here to cover it wait in clusters away from direct contact with any fighting or Palestinian suffering, but with full access to Israeli political and military commentators eager to show them around southern Israel, where Hamas rockets have been terrorizing civilians.
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Old 01-06-2009, 04:23 PM   #143
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Originally Posted by Irvine511 View Post
and what happened in 2000?




you see, i understand this perspective. i do. i just don't think it's the end of story.






and the reverse is true as well.

again, this whole "crisis" has always been a stunt, it's always been about PR, it's always been about crying for attention, about anti-Semitism, about arab oppression, about arab insecurities, about any other million little things.

no side is innocent, and no side is guilty.
way I see it, it's not about a million things, it's about land.

The reasons people act in the ways they do are simple, not complicated.
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Old 01-06-2009, 04:27 PM   #144
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way I see it, it's not about a million things, it's about land.

The reasons people act in the ways they do are simple, not complicated.


i wish it were as simple. but that's my opinion.
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Old 01-06-2009, 04:57 PM   #145
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no... that's ridiculous. unless they're flat out saying as much, they're only showing an interest in something they feel relates to you.

i live abroad, and whenever shit goes on in my country people ask me about it too. why the hell would that put me off? if people actually care what i think, it's an honour.
Well, of course it's not at all ridiculous. Why would you even couch it in such terms, what does that accomplish? My perspective being different than yours does not qualify my thoughts as being ridiculous.

Israel's not my country, that's the thing. I'm not from there. I've never lived there. I never will live there. I've never even been there (sadly). I have distant relatives there, that's really it. I'm just a Jew and they go from there. If I lived abroad and people came to me for my perspective on American politics, that would be completely different. I also am perfectly willing to discuss it with anyone, but to expect me to be an expert due to my religion is short sighted.

I also am sure that you're not understanding the underlying ignorance I'm talking about here, though.

We just have different perspectives, and if such a thing honours (I spelled it that way to honor you) you, that's great for you. And while I cannot at all relate to that somehow being an honor, it's no more or less ridiculous than my attitude towards it.
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Old 01-06-2009, 05:59 PM   #146
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Main reason for 911 was the fact that most of America's defense budget goes to Israel.
I thought it was because of the gay sex and baby killing. Or was that Katrina?
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Old 01-06-2009, 06:14 PM   #147
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Only a fool can now believe they are not deliberately targetting civilians.
As you often say, cui bono?

For a country which always tries to appeal to the international community by saying it doesn't target civilians a deliberate attack on a school with the intention to kill a lot of innocent people makes no sense.

The IDF did blow it up and it has been Israeli bullets and bombs which have killed most of the Palestinians in this round of violence. But in this thread and much of the media narrative the burden of guilt is entirely on Israel; it is obviously a war crime to blow up a school or a mosque, but apparently using schools and mosques as places to stockpile weapons and fire mortars is perfectly acceptable.
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Old 01-06-2009, 06:18 PM   #148
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And to some, the frame-up begins here
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RAFAH, Gaza Strip, May 5 (Reuters) - By day, Awad al-Qiq was a respected science teacher and headmaster at a United Nations school in the Gaza Strip. By night, Palestinian militants say, he built rockets for Islamic Jihad.

The Israeli air strike that killed the 33-year-old last week also laid bare his apparent double life and embarrassed a U.N. agency which has long had to rebuff Israeli accusations that it has aided and abetted guerrillas fighting the Jewish state.

In interviews with Reuters, students and colleagues, as well as U.N. officials, denied any knowledge of Qiq's work with explosives. And his family denied he had any militant links at all, despite a profusion of Islamic Jihad posters at his home.

But militant leaders allied to the enclave's ruling Hamas group hailed him as a martyr who led Islamic Jihad's "engineering unit" -- its bomb makers. They fired a salvo of improvised rockets into Israel in response to his death.

Qiq's body was wrapped in an Islamic Jihad flag at his funeral, pictorial posters in his honour still bedeck his family home this week, and a handwritten notice posted on the metal gate at the entrance to the school declared that Qiq, "the chief leader of the engineering unit", would now find "paradise".

That poster was removed soon after Reuters visited the Rafah Prep Boys School, run by the U.N. Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian refugees. Staff there said on Monday that UNRWA officials had told them not to discuss Qiq's activities.

No one from the United Nations attended the funeral or has paid their respects to the family, relatives said, adding that Qiq's widow and five children had heard nothing about a pension.

Spokesman Christopher Gunness said UNRWA, which spelled its teacher's surname al-Geeg, was looking into the matter.

"We have a zero-tolerance policy towards politics and militant activities in our schools. Obviously, we are not the thought police and we cannot police people's minds," he said.

He added that staff were also regularly instructed not to engage in political or militant activities of any kind.

The Israeli army said its April 30 attack at Rafah, close to the Egyptian border, hit a workshop used for making rockets and other improvised weaponry. An Israeli intelligence source told Reuters that Qiq was involved in developing rockets and mortars.

Yet Qiq, a physics graduate with eight years' experience of teaching at UNRWA schools, was also described by colleagues as a rising star in education. Relatives said he was promoted to run the school last year, with the title of deputy headmaster.



DOUBLE LIFE

The case of Awad al-Qiq highlights the complexities of life among the 1.5 million people of the Gaza Strip, where close to half voted for Hamas in 2006. Hamas fighters join Islamic Jihad in campaigns of rockets and suicide bombing in pursuit of a stated goal of recovering all Palestinian lands lost to Israel.

Qiq's high profile as both a public figure and in the secret world is unusual enough to cause considerable interest among those in Gaza who were surprised by the funeral arrangements.

Sympathies for guerrillas, who number in the tens of thousands, are widespread despite Israeli efforts to discredit Hamas and its allies by choking food and fuel supplies to the population.

That tactic has also set Israel and UNRWA at odds. The agency, set up to care for Palestinian refugees, has spoken out against what it calls collective punishment of civilians.

Israel has long alleged that militants use UNRWA vehicles and facilities. The United Nations has denied those charges, although some UNRWA employees have had prominent political roles in groups like Hamas -- such as teacher Saeed Seyam, who was interior minister in the Hamas-led government elected in 2006.

Some Western officials say the agency, as one of the biggest employers in the Gaza Strip, simply reflects the society it serves. But donors such as the United States, which fund UNRWA's work, insist on vetting procedures to ensure their cash does not reach groups they class as terrorists -- such as Islamic Jihad.

While many in Gaza are open about political allegiances, the threat of the kind of Israeli action that cost him his life on April 30 meant Qiq's double role was kept very secret indeed.

Surrounded by Islamic Jihad mourning posters at the family home, his sister Naima insisted: "He's only a teacher and head of the school. School was his life. He had no time to work with Islamic Jihad." Other family members nodded in agreement.

At the school, a 17-year-old who gave his name as Shadi read a poster for his former teacher and said simply: "Nobody knew."

At the bombed-out workshop 3 km (2 miles) from the school, damaged cars can be seen through now-locked gates. A 35-year-old man who gave his name as Abu Mohammed said he had found Qiq dying inside after helicopters fired a missile at the building.

"He was still alive, but he died shortly after," he said.

Relatives recalled with pride that Qiq had met John Ging, UNRWA's Gaza operations director. But while fellow teachers had come to pay their respects, they saw no U.N. representative.

Qiq's sister said his wife and five children were worried by the lack of news on any pension payment: "Awad did a lot for UNRWA," she said. "The family hoped UNRWA would support them." (Additional reporting by Nidal al-Mughrabi in Gaza; Editing by Alastair Macdonald and Samia Nakhoul)
EXCLUSIVE-Gaza headmaster was Islamic Jihad "rocket-maker" | Reuters

Those crafty zionists control the media you know, thats the only explanation.
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Old 01-06-2009, 06:26 PM   #149
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Anne Applebaum - Fighting to the End

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It's a War Process

By Anne Applebaum
Tuesday, January 6, 2009; A13



Circumstances change; so do the names of the leading players. Peace negotiators come and go; so do the details of their agreements. But in the end, one aspect of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict remains the same: When all else has failed, you can be absolutely certain that someone, somewhere, will issue a statement calling for peace.

There has been no shortage of such declarations the past few days. In the wake of Israeli attacks on Gaza, Ban Ki-moon, the U.N. secretary general, appealed "to all members of the international community to display the unity and commitment required to bring this escalating crisis to an end." Javier Solana, the European Union's foreign policy spokesman, called for a halt to hostilities. "The cease-fire has to be a cease-fire complied [with] by everybody and be clearly maintained," he proclaimed. "What we need," echoed the British prime minister, Gordon Brown, "is an immediate cease-fire."

As night follows day, these statements were accompanied by a mass migration of politicians to the Middle East. French President Nicolas Sarkozy set off for Israel. So did Karel Schwarzenberg, the foreign minister of the Czech Republic, the country now holding the rotating presidency of the European Union. There, both may encounter Solana, Tony Blair and who knows how many others. Even Russian President Dmitry Medvedev sent an envoy. Like having an Olympic team that wins lots of gold medals, having your own Middle East peace policy has become, it seems, a sign of international prestige.

But other than that prestige, it's increasingly hard to see the point of such gestures. In the Middle East, the most significant and successful diplomatic initiatives have always been the quietest: The Oslo peace accord of 1993 was, at least in its initial phase, negotiated in absolute secrecy. By contrast, the diplomatic initiatives most clearly designed to serve the interests of the diplomats (or at least of their constituents back home) are the loudest and most public: Think of the Annapolis peace conference of autumn 2007, where toasts were drunk, cameras were plentiful and all kinds of marginal players were at the table. It would be giving that gathering too much credit to blame Annapolis for Israel's ground invasion of Gaza this week. Still, it's surely fair to say that that conference, for all of its pomp and circumstance, failed to prevent a new explosion of violence.

But it could not ever have done so. For the trouble with all of these peace efforts, peace conferences, peace initiatives and peace proposals is that none of them recognizes the most obvious fact about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict: It's not a peace process; it's a war. At the moment, at least, both parties are still convinced that their central aims will be better obtained through weapons and military tactics than through negotiations of any kind. To be more explicit, Hamas and its followers believe that the continuing firing of rockets into southern Israel will, sooner or later, result in the dissolution of the Jewish state. The Israelis -- both on the "peacenik" left and the more bellicose right -- believe that the only way to prevent Hamas from firing rockets is to fight back. Intervention -- whether by well-meaning Europeans, U.N. delegations, Russian envoys (or even Condoleezza Rice, who has wisely stayed home, so far) -- can postpone the conflict but cannot halt the violence, at least not until one side or the other surrenders.

That brief, halcyon period of the Oslo peace process was possible because this is precisely what happened: a combination of Russian emigration into Israel, the end of Soviet support and general weariness led at least a part of the Palestinian leadership to conclude, after 30 years, that it would never push Israel into the sea. At least some of the equally weary Israeli leaders came to believe that their occupation policies were doing Israel more harm than good and that they would gain more from negotiating than from fighting. Further negotiations will make sense only when Hamas's leaders -- currently emboldened by a combination of popular indignation and Iranian support -- finally arrive at the same conclusion as their secular counterparts, and a new generation of Israelis is persuaded to believe them.

Until then, there is no point in bemoaning the passivity of the Bush administration, the silence of Barack Obama, the powerlessness of Arab leaders or the weakness of Europe, as so many, predictably, have begun to do. It's no outsider's "fault" that the fighting continues, and pretending otherwise merely obscures the real issues. Diplomats might be able to slow its progress, but this war won't be over until someone has won.
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Old 01-06-2009, 06:28 PM   #150
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Originally Posted by A_Wanderer View Post
Those crafty zionists control the media you know, thats the only explanation.


it's the lack of perspective and the bias in the American media that allows a story like this to be published. what about the dead kids? we need to see the dead kids so i can get upset and angry and rage against the (IDF) machine. understanding exactly *why* the IDF blew something up -- without actually excusing, justifying, or applauding the actual destruction -- is something that complicates my simplistic moral outrage, so i choose to ignore it.

i hope Bono will give voice to my outrage on the new album.
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