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Old 10-08-2003, 11:14 AM   #46
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I agree, just because Sharon was elected doesn't make him good. Don't misunderstand me; I support the state of Israel. I subscribe to a Jewish news service and read press releases at the Israeli Embassy web site to try to keep an open mind. I'm irked at Sharon not only because of the attacks on Syria and Lebanon, I think he's risking Israel's security as well by running the risk of starting a whole ugly conflagration in the area. I keep having nightmarish thoughts of all sorts of ugly attacks in Tel Aviv in particular since that's where my friend lives.
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Old 10-08-2003, 04:08 PM   #47
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Originally posted by Rono
And who had made that swamp anyway ?
Anti-semitism
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Old 10-08-2003, 07:08 PM   #48
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So Long, Middle East Road Map

By Ian Williams, AlterNet
October 7, 2003

The Middle East road map finally met its untimely but expected demise over the weekend when Israeli bombs landed near Damascus, aimed at an alleged terrorist training camp.


The question this week in diplomatic circles is not how to salvage the peace process but how to avert global mayhem. It's not a question, however, that worries the Bush administration, which appears content to let the Middle East hurtle down the path to possible armageddon.


Supporting the Israeli action, the president said, "Israel's got a right to defend herself, that Israel must not feel constrained in terms of defense of the homeland." This weekend's Israeli attack on Syria shows how far Israeli leader Ariel Sharon will go and just how willing Bush is to cover for his excesses. When the issue came before the UN Security Council on Sunday, Kofi Annan and most of the other delegates correctly described the attack as a violation of international law and the UN Charter.


In contrast, the Americans decided that any resolution had to be "balanced" with a condemnation of terrorism in general, and the Haifa bombing in particular. (There is no doubt that the Haifa suicide attack was horrific, but the Syrians had no provable or likely connection whatsoever with the bombers.) The Israeli ambassador to the UN, Dan Gillerman, showed equal chutzpah in decrying Syria's request for an emergency Security Council meeting. He said, "For Syria to ask a debate in this council is comparable only to the Taliban calling for such a debate after 9-11, it would be laughable if it was not so sad."


The attacks on Syria mark the end of any hope that the U.S. will take a firmer line with Sharon. "One-sided," "biased," or "unbalanced" are the knee-jerk reactions to any UN resolution (or indeed any TV program, or any printed article) that suggests that Israeli government behavior is less than perfect. Relentless reiteration by Israel's supporters, the Bush administration, and Tony Blair's government have shifted the terms of the debate to the point that one suspects that any action of Israel, however outrageous, could not be condemned without the insertion of such "balancing" references, or more likely vetoed outright using the handy justification of self-defense against terrorism.


Last week, Kofi Annan condemned Israeli plans to build 600 new homes for settlers in the Occupied Territories as "serious obstacles to the achievement of a two-State solution," and said that the settlements are "a clear breach of the Fourth Geneva Convention and also contradict Israel's commitments under the Quartet's Road Map." The U.S. shamefacedly suggests that the settlements and the wall, not to mention the assassination and exile threat are simply "unhelpful," and so far has shown no signs of suspending the aid that pays for these unhelpful breaches of international law.


The exception was the administration's announcement that it may deduct some of the construction cost for the Israeli security wall separating Israel from the West Bank from the $9 billion in U.S. loan guarantees to Israel as authorized by Congress. UN Human Rights Rapporteur John Dugard, a South African anti-apartheid activist and lawyer, recently issued a report that found that those "living between the Wall and the Green Line will be effectively cut off from their farmlands and workplaces, schools, health clinics and other social services. This is likely to lead to a new generation of refugees or internally displaced persons." Unsurprisingly, the Israelis immediately denounced Dugard's report as "biased and one-sided" even though it had refused to even meet with him during his visit to the region.


Thus far, U.S. has shamefacedly suggested that the settlements and the wall, not to mention the assassination and exile threat are simply "unhelpful," and has shown no signs of suspending the aid that pays for these breaches of international law. And in a typical show of "balanced" policymaking, during the same week, it vetoed a resolution condemning Israel's statements threatening to exile and if necessary assassinate Yasser Arafat (who for all his faults is the only freely elected leader of the Arab world). U.S. Ambassador John Negroponte predictably insisted that the resolution lacked "balance."


The degree of support for U.S. policy in the Middle East can be measured by the vote in the UN General Assembly to condemn Israel for its threats on Arafat. It makes the so-called "coalition of the willing" look impressive. The United States and Israel were joined by Micronesia and Marshall Islands, two tiny states totally dependent on Washington for their budget, the only states to vote against the resolution.


Bush's position on the attack on Syria has disturbing implications for the world, coming on the heels of Kofi Annan's speech to the General Assembly warning of the dangers of unilateralism. In many ways, it's the administration's own actions that have led the way down this dangerous road of "hot preemption." If the U.S. can attack Iraq on suspicion of possessing weapons of mass destruction and harboring terrorism, then how can it call Ariel Sharon to order when he wants to whack an old enemy in a fit of pique? And down the line, what does Washington tell New Delhi if India decides to strike Pakistan or China takes action against Taiwan?


The Bush White House, however, is far more intent on pursuing its own plan for global payback, irrespective of its consequences. Its position on the Israeli attacks was hardly coincidental. There is every sign that the Bush administration is relapsing to its bad old ways. An anonymous administration official told the Knight-Ridder News Services that hawks within the administration are still hoping for "regime change" in Syria, and recently asked the CIA to come up with a list of replacements for Syrian President Bashar Assad. The Congress in tandem is considering the Syria Accountability Act, which authorizes the Bush administration to impose new economic and diplomatic sanctions on that nation.


The reality is that there is more resistance inside the Israel Defense Forces to Sharon's policies than there is in Washington. Twenty four officers of the Israeli air force in recent weeks refused to participate in raids on the Israeli-occupied West Bank and Gaza, especially the assassination raids against the leaders of Hamas and Islamic Jihad. The officers felt too many innocent civilians were being killed in the attacks. It's a pity that neither Bush nor Sharon has any such qualms.
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Old 10-08-2003, 07:23 PM   #49
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Originally posted by Scarletwine

The reality is that there is more resistance inside the Israel Defense Forces to Sharon's policies than there is in Washington. Twenty four officers of the Israeli air force in recent weeks refused to participate in raids on the Israeli-occupied West Bank and Gaza, especially the assassination raids against the leaders of Hamas and Islamic Jihad. The officers felt too many innocent civilians were being killed in the attacks. It's a pity that neither Bush nor Sharon has any such qualms.

Damn.
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Old 10-08-2003, 07:49 PM   #50
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It may be true that a democracy can elect a "bad" leader, but notice that the people of Israel CONTINUE to support Sharon and his policies. I think its about time people who trash Israely foreign policy notice that the intelligent people of Israel support the policy!

Another thing. The IDF does not target civilians it does care very much about avoiding accidents. They know it is not to their political advantage to inflict accidentaly civilian losses on anyone. I do believe they really do care for innocent human life unlike their neighbors who support the slaughter of Israely teens in Disco's through suicide bombings.
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Old 10-08-2003, 07:53 PM   #51
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Popmartjin,

"I agree that they do not willingly target innocent civilians."


"It can also be that they've learned from the behaviour of the frog and the boiling water. Kill them all at once and everybody protests, kill them all slowly (i.e. over a number of years instead of at once) and you only hear some lightly raised voices (internationally)."


I feel these two statements contradict each other as far as what you believe the Israely government and military to be doing. Which statement is more accurate when it comes to what you think about the IDF and Israely government?
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Old 10-08-2003, 07:54 PM   #52
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Just out of curiosity, Sting, I'd like to see some Israeli polls. They don't post them at the Embassy's web site.
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Old 10-08-2003, 08:59 PM   #53
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Originally posted by STING2
It may be true that a democracy can elect a "bad" leader, but notice that the people of Israel CONTINUE to support Sharon and his policies. I think its about time people who trash Israely foreign policy notice that the intelligent people of Israel support the policy!
Yeah, I know, but it's not a policy that will bring an end to it. Build walls, shoot back etc, I can see how it can 'work' in the short term, and certainly see how it looks good in a political way for Sharon, people love tough politicians, but it's not going to stop it. It'll stay the same or get worse, but it won't make it better in the long run.
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Old 10-08-2003, 10:14 PM   #54
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Tylerdurden,

"Yeah, I know, but it's not a policy that will bring an end to it. Build walls, shoot back etc, I can see how it can 'work' in the short term, and certainly see how it looks good in a political way for Sharon, people love tough politicians, but it's not going to stop it. It'll stay the same or get worse, but it won't make it better in the long run."

National Security in Israel has dramatically improved over what it was when the country was first formed in 1948. When was the last time an Arab country tried to invade Israel? Defending yourself as Israel has done for fifty years has been very positive and very beneficial for its citizens. Terrorism is like crime, you may not be able to end it, but you can manage it. Israel currently has the 22nd highest Standard of Living in the world. POPMART did good business when it was in Tel Aviv. On the other hand the Syrians and Palestinians continue to live in shit holes, refuse every peace deal that is offered, and use the money that could be improving their own peoples standard of living to kill Israely Teenagers. Syria's standard of living is #110 in the world while the Occupied Palestinians Territories have a standard of living ranked #98.

verte76,

The Israely government is similar to other parlimentary democracy's where a vote of No Confidence is required to replace a leader. I don't have the current opinion polls, but the people don't have to wait four years if they wanted a leader other than Sharon.
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Old 10-09-2003, 04:33 AM   #55
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Quote:
Originally posted by STING2
It may be true that a democracy can elect a "bad" leader, but notice that the people of Israel CONTINUE to support Sharon and his policies. I think its about time people who trash Israely foreign policy notice that the intelligent people of Israel support the policy!
I can think of some examples in history where people elected a 'bad' leader (in some cases even a murderous tyrant) and continue to support him after some years. For the sake of not directly linking the Israeli government to those governments I won't name them here.

Quote:
Another thing. The IDF does not target civilians it does care very much about avoiding accidents. They know it is not to their political advantage to inflict accidentaly civilian losses on anyone.
Then what polical loss did they have lately?

(about the whole situation in the Middle East)

Marty
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Old 10-09-2003, 12:35 PM   #56
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Quote:
Originally posted by STING2

verte76,

The Israely government is similar to other parlimentary democracy's where a vote of No Confidence is required to replace a leader. I don't have the current opinion polls, but the people don't have to wait four years if they wanted a leader other than Sharon.
Egads, *only* with a no-confidence vote? No-confidence votes can be awfully tough to carry out. I know, the previous government was dumped with one. I'm going to investigate how many seats Likud has in the Knesset. I can't remember this to save my life right now (damn these pain pills). Likud used to *never* win elections until the Sephardic population in Israel got the numbers, and now the demographics favor Likud. I agree with Popmartjin, it's possible to elect bad governments democratically. Democracy isn't perfect. If I were Israeli I'd vote Labour. I understand that I'm not..........
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Old 10-09-2003, 01:45 PM   #57
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"Mr. Sharon is not a dictator, but the democratically elected leader of Israel. Its about time Europeans gave more respect to Israely citizens and the choices they have made with their government and foreign policy. Israel is not going to sit back and let their people be slaughtered. They know better than anyone, the lessons of not responding to evil and aggression early, back in the 1930s."

hahahaha, this is a very funny quote.... Israel and Sharon are two different things... Sharon is a terrorist who wears an American flag pin; He had slaughter 3,000 innocent women and children in Lebanon, and he deared visited the 9-11 site to grieve... Yet, did he ever apologize for what he had done in Lebanon....
Then he goes on to give the IDF free will to treat the Palestinians in any way they please... Can you imagine the many war crimes commited.. No, because no one knows what the hell is going on over there... no media coverage.
As for Israel, many Israeli's are against the occupation of Gaza and West bank...Many Israelis have gone as humen sheilds in the West Bank... A father who mourns the death of his daughter from a suicide bomber says that his daughter and the suicide bomber were victims of Sharon...
I find it hard to understand how some of you people are so quick to judge the people of Palestine and surrounding countries, when you lot have never been there...
I am not insulting Israel or Jewish people, and I don't plan 2... because it is not in my belief.and i'm not educated enough to make such bold comments.. But, how can some of you be so easy to call certain things 'ANTI-SEMETIC' , when you feel it easy to insult the Muslim community... When it easy to bash a state, and never once think of the post-physicological-bashing it has recieved... Instead of trying to find the answer to a problem...

Some of you believe that Sharon's choice in bombing house x,y, and z. ... and killing child x , y, or z, is ok... as long as the child is a suspected terrorist, it's ok????
Let me tell you, most of the victims are children.... Children are the future, and if Sharon is willing to destroy their minds, and supress them, well then, I can understand why they would blow themselves up... I don't support it, but when you grab hope of life from a child, what do they have to live for....?....?....?

This is not about Muslims Jews or Christians, this conflict has to do with a grumpy old man and his administration (Sharon and Arafat) who have lacked the idea of thinking about the children...

But when you have a Wealthy man like Sharon who has the power to destroy hospitals, homes, cut-off water from the people, cut any red-cross help or anything else... what is left.
This people see Israeli Defense Army taking their hope away, so of course they are going to support agression against him.. thats why people support Arafat, cuz he has that... They see Mehmood Abbas as a puppet given from Israel and the West... and they don't want that...

So these kids who blow themselves up are a product of what Sharon has made.... This is his tool, and he is enjoying it... and Israel is not a true democracy.. it may be labled as a democracy, just as the US is... The people didn't necessarily re-elect sharon...

========
See, a lot of times theres more to a conflict, like studying the phsycology of the state and its reasons for its actions...

If it was only easy to say that Muslims by nature are agressive.... hahaha, this is what many people think and believe, only because they are to lazy to understand the real core of the problem..
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Old 10-09-2003, 01:48 PM   #58
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nbcrusader:

Talking about AntiSemitism dosn't make 100% sense here, since the Palestinensians are semites too
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Old 10-09-2003, 01:50 PM   #59
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O, and if Sharon or Israel knew better then anyone (Int'l community, UN), they wouldn't be suffering from the current problem, which has def. escalated.
-this is responding to the above quote.
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Old 10-09-2003, 01:51 PM   #60
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Exactly, Klaus. Point well taken.
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