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O2K
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Anti.Agent036 wrote:
his pro-israel views are so antithetical to the image he attempts to portray. it just leads you to believe that his "enlightened progressivism" is a sham, but this appears to be the case with most American liberals.



This is absolutely on point.
Post Tue Jun 15, 2010 11:30 am
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Charlie Foxtrot



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Israel agrees to ease Gaza land blockade

AP

JERUSALEM – Israel agreed Thursday to ease its land blockade on the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip, hoping to quell growing worldwide outrage following a deadly raid on an international flotilla bound for the Palestinian territory.

In one of the major changes, Israel will now allow in more desperately needed construction materials for civilian projects, provided those projects are carried out under international supervision, government and military officials said. Israel has barely allowed in materials such as cement and steel, fearing Hamas militants could use them to build weapons and fortifications.

That policy has prevented rebuilding after Israel's brief but fierce war with Hamas in Gaza last year.

An Israeli military official told The Associated Press that all foods would be freely let in to Gaza, effective immediately. He spoke on condition of anonymity because he wasn't authorized to speak on the record. Israel has previously allowed a narrow and constantly changing list of authorized food items.

A brief government statement announcing Thursday's decision also indicated the naval blockade on Gaza would remain in force.

Israel will "continue existing security procedures to prevent the inflow of weapons and war material," it said. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has repeatedly warned that if the naval closure is lifted, then the Iranian-backed Hamas would turn Gaza into an "Iranian port."

There was no mention of lifting or easing bans on exports or the import of raw materials that would be crucial to galvanizing the territory's battered economy. And the statement contained no specifics on what else would be allowed into Gaza.

But the fact that Israel was forced to respond to an international outcry over the blockade was evidence of the intense pressure the country's leaders felt.

The European Union cautiously welcomed the decision.

"This is a step in the right direction," said Cristina Galach, spokeswoman for the bloc's Spanish presidency.

The EU's foreign policy chief, Catherine Ashton, said officials wanted to see how the Israeli decision is carried out. "The detail is what matters," she said.

Israel must "make sure that many, many more goods can get in to Gaza to enable people to reconstruct their homes, to build schools, to place infrastructure, and also enable people to get on with ordinary lives," she said.

U.N. spokesman Chris Gunness said the blockade has prevented the United Nations from bringing in construction materials needed to carry out an internationally approved plan to rebuild thousands of homes and other buildings Israel damaged or destroyed in last year's war in Gaza.

The closure has also shuttered hundreds of factories, put tens of thousands of people out of work and brought the territory's fragile economy to a standstill, mainly hurting ordinary Gazans.

EU officials will discuss the possibility of helping reopen Gaza's border crossings, Ashton added. The EU helped monitor Gaza's southern border with Egypt until Hamas took power in 2007.

The partial lifting of the siege did not satisfy Hamas.

"We want a real lifting of the siege, not window-dressing," said Hamas lawmaker Salah Bardawil.

Israel, with Egypt's cooperation, imposed the blockade three years ago after Hamas, which calls for Israel's destruction, violently wrested control of Gaza. For the most part, only basic humanitarian goods have been allowed in.

But the blockade failed to achieve its aims of stanching the flow of weapons to Gaza, weakening Hamas or winning the release of an Israeli soldier held in captivity in Gaza for years. A network of smuggling tunnels under the Egypt-Gaza border became a conduit for both weapons and commercial goods sold at black market prices. Gazans sank deeper into poverty, turning their anger against Israel and not their Hamas rulers.

Israel drew new scrutiny of the embargo when it sent naval commandos to stop a blockade-busting flotilla in late May. The troops clashed with activists on board one of the ships, killing nine Turks. Both sides said they acted in self-defense.

In the West Bank, the rival pro-Western Palestinian government of President Mahmoud Abbas also criticized the Israeli decision. Negotiator Saeb Erekat said the closure should be ended altogether. "The siege is collective punishment and it must be lifted."

Amid the heavy international criticism that followed the Israeli naval raid, Egypt opened its land border crossing with Gaza — the main gateway for some residents to enter and exit the crowded territory.

But most Gazans remained confined to the territory. Egypt is only letting in people with special travel permits, such as students and Gazans with foreign passports. In the past two weeks, only 10,000 Gazans have crossed into Egypt.

On Sunday, the Israeli commission appointed to investigate the flotilla attack met for the first time. Two international observers are to join the deliberations later.
Post Thu Jun 17, 2010 5:56 am
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neveragainlikesheep



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Hamas needs to shut the fuck up and stop launching their shit rockets now. Grow up, stop the violence and try to figure out a solution.
Post Thu Jun 17, 2010 7:24 am
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O2K
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neveragainlikesheep wrote:
Hamas needs to shut the fuck up and stop launching their shit rockets now. Grow up, stop the violence and try to figure out a solution.


While I agree, I want to see if this is implemented and how it is implemented. To be honest, I trust Hamas more than I do Israel. It may sound strange but for some reason thats how I feel. Hamas has already said they will end the resistence against Israel if they withdraw from the 67 borders as per UN resolution. The problem is two fold- the settlements and the right to return for the Palestinian refugees. The blockade isn't really the issue, the issue is still the occupation. So much as been made of the blockade and rightfully so but the big picture is still the occupation which has not and probably will not be addressed. This is a PR move for Israel and not much more. But we will see.
Post Thu Jun 17, 2010 8:27 am
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neveragainlikesheep



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Yeah, I'm not giving Israel a pass now or anything, don't get me wrong.
Post Thu Jun 17, 2010 8:31 am
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Charlie Foxtrot



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O2K wrote:
neveragainlikesheep wrote:
Hamas needs to shut the fuck up and stop launching their shit rockets now. Grow up, stop the violence and try to figure out a solution.


While I agree, I want to see if this is implemented and how it is implemented. To be honest, I trust Hamas more than I do Israel. It may sound strange but for some reason thats how I feel. Hamas has already said they will end the resistence against Israel if they withdraw from the 67 borders as per UN resolution. The problem is two fold- the settlements and the right to return for the Palestinian refugees. The blockade isn't really the issue, the issue is still the occupation. So much as been made of the blockade and rightfully so but the big picture is still the occupation which has not and probably will not be addressed. This is a PR move for Israel and not much more. But we will see.


Israel will never accept the right to return. Even if they were willing to pay reparations, they would never allow Palestinians to move back because it would make Jews the minority and undermine their standing as a Jewish state. It's an impractical thing to ask for (whether or not you think they deserve it). As for Hamas, they tend to make all sorts of conflicting statements, for example:

According to a November 2009 survey conducted by Haaretz, 57% of Israelis support the view of MK Shaul Mofaz of Kadima, that Israel should establish a dialogue with Hamas under certain conditions, for example, that Hamas renounces violence, recognizes Israel's right to exist as a Jewish nation, and loses its designation as a terrorist organization. Hamas responded to this by labeling it "Zionist vulgarity" and stating that they will never negotiate with or recognize their "enemy", the state of Israel.
--Wikipedia

Which is a far cry from going back to the 1967 borders. I wouldn't trust either party and honestly I can't tell the leadership of both Israel and Palestine are extremely thick headed, or don't care at all about the people they represent and have ulterior motives.
Post Thu Jun 17, 2010 8:54 am
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O2K
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Charlie Foxtrot wrote:
O2K wrote:
neveragainlikesheep wrote:
Hamas needs to shut the fuck up and stop launching their shit rockets now. Grow up, stop the violence and try to figure out a solution.


While I agree, I want to see if this is implemented and how it is implemented. To be honest, I trust Hamas more than I do Israel. It may sound strange but for some reason thats how I feel. Hamas has already said they will end the resistence against Israel if they withdraw from the 67 borders as per UN resolution. The problem is two fold- the settlements and the right to return for the Palestinian refugees. The blockade isn't really the issue, the issue is still the occupation. So much as been made of the blockade and rightfully so but the big picture is still the occupation which has not and probably will not be addressed. This is a PR move for Israel and not much more. But we will see.


Israel will never accept the right to return. Even if they were willing to pay reparations, they would never allow Palestinians to move back because it would make Jews the minority and undermine their standing as a Jewish state.

Which is why i said that I labled it a problem. Hamas demands right to return Israel wouldn't even think about it. Because as you mentioned it would make it an Arab majority. That is where one stalmate is.


Quote:


It's an impractical thing to ask for (whether or not you think they deserve it). As for Hamas, they tend to make all sorts of conflicting statements, for example:

According to a November 2009 survey conducted by Haaretz, 57% of Israelis support the view of MK Shaul Mofaz of Kadima, that Israel should establish a dialogue with Hamas under certain conditions, for example, that Hamas renounces violence, recognizes Israel's right to exist as a Jewish nation, and loses its designation as a terrorist organization. Hamas responded to this by labeling it "Zionist vulgarity" and stating that they will never negotiate with or recognize their "enemy", the state of Israel.
--Wikipedia



Yea this is the link to that article it is citing:
http://www.haaretz.com/news/hamas-rejects-mofaz-call-to-talk-as-zionist-vulgarity-1.4572

Above that quote in the article it Haretz states this as the reason:

Quote:

In its official response, Hamas called Mofaz's offer "Zionist vulgarity" and said it would never recognize Israel or give legitimacy to the occupation.


Now I don't disagree that it may be double talk because it very well may be, but the thinking can be seen as "if we talk with them without them even considering withdrawing from 67 borders it could be seen as legitmizing the occupation" Its a double edged sword. The PA in the West Bank it less militant than Hamas thus there being half a million settlements if I am not mistaken. Hamas being more militant has zero settlements in Gaza if I am not mistaken. Its a political move. But I think thats the way they are thinking.


Quote:


Which is a far cry from going back to the 1967 borders.

It's not really because the article doesn't state anything about the '67 borders. Not at all. Hamas wants the pre conditions of talks to be centered around the '67 borders. Now it may be unreasonable to start that way but putting the pieces together it may not be a far cry.


Quote:


I wouldn't trust either party and honestly I can't tell the leadership of both Israel and Palestine are extremely thick headed, or don't care at all about the people they represent and have ulterior motives.

I do agree with this. But for some reason I have always had a soft spot for militant groups whether it is Hamas or the FARK or the Zapitistos I always have a soft spot for these groups. I don't know why. Maybe deep down I'm dangerous like that.[/quote]
Post Thu Jun 17, 2010 9:35 am
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Anti.Agent036



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the "easing" of an illegal blockade that exists is a start, but the end of the blockade, and the end of the underlying issue that is the impetus for violent conflict, the occupation, need to end. period.

the occupation is so deep-rooted and perpetual that we now beg for, even risk lives, for the "easing" of an immoral/illegal blockade. and when israel does ease the blockade, we hail this as a victory for human rights. israel is recognized as being benevolent, and hamas is still regarded as some foreign-born organization that "violently staged a coup" in gaza against fatah (which is, as we all know, a farce).
Post Thu Jun 17, 2010 10:17 am
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Charlie Foxtrot



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The phrase "we will never recognize Israel or give legitimacy to its occupation" to me has two parts. 1) That they won't give legitimacy to the occupation; 2) that they won't recognize Israel. I suppose it's possible that they meant we won't recognize Israel because that would include recognizing the the parts of our land they are illegally occupying, but it didn't sound that way to me. Of course, it is translated from a different language.

I think a bigger issue is their rejection of a deal that seemed reasonable. Israel gets recognized, Hamas gets recognized, and Hamas renounces violence. It would be a step in the right direction. It's not like the deal said Israel would have the right to continue building settlements (which is as impossible as the right to return). One could argue that Hamas needs the threat of violence to convince Israel to withdraw, but it seems as if violence only results in great civilian casualties for them and sympathy for the Israelis. Hamas says it is willing to go back to the 1967 borders but it refuses to make any steps towards doing so.

As for having a "soft spot" for Hamas, I can't have a soft spot for an organization that various human rights organizations have accused of war crimes and crimes against humanity. To me Israel and Hamas are just as bad, only I'm not as hard on Hamas because when you're a poor, occupied territory it's hard to expect you to be rational.
Post Thu Jun 17, 2010 10:26 am
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neveragainlikesheep



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http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2010/06/16/while_no_ones_looking_the_palestinians_are_building_a_state?sms_ss=digg

This is exactly the opposite of what Hamas is doing. Fuck them. Don't support or feel bad for them one bit. I feel bad for the Gazans for putting them in a position of power. I hope the PLO can succeed.

The other side of this is that we'll see Israel's true intentions through it's support of or fight against this new initiative. The ball is in Israel's court so to speak. I think the PLO are stepping up to bat. I always knew that the Palestinians would have to be the bigger "man" in order to show Israel just how wrong it is. That process, I hope, is starting now.
Post Thu Jun 17, 2010 10:37 am
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O2K
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Charlie Foxtrot wrote:
The phrase "we will never recognize Israel or give legitimacy to its occupation" to me has two parts. 1) That they won't give legitimacy to the occupation; 2) that they won't recognize Israel. I suppose it's possible that they meant we won't recognize Israel because that would include recognizing the the parts of our land they are illegally occupying, but it didn't sound that way to me. Of course, it is translated from a different language.


I agree. It can be viewed many different ways. Either way I also do agree it is not the best rhetoric to engage in for Hamas as far as diplomacy goes. But that's just the way it read to me.

Quote:


I think a bigger issue is their rejection of a deal that seemed reasonable. Israel gets recognized, Hamas gets recognized, and Hamas renounces violence.

I don't think this is what Hamas is thinking. Remember the PA rushed into the Oslo in the early 90's and part of it was Hamas was gaining support and the other part was so that they could be recognized. Neither worked out for the PA as they lost control of Gaza and Oslo obviously didn't work out as planned. I think it goes beyond being recognized. I think that if Hamas is in charge still in Gaza and some how the occupation ends Hamas comes out the major winners. If the occupation does not end, Hamas is stil in charge and they can continue their violence in the name of resisting occupation. It's a win/win for Hamas, atleast politically there is no need for them to settle.


Quote:


It would be a step in the right direction. It's not like the deal said Israel would have the right to continue building settlements (which is as impossible as the right to return). One could argue that Hamas needs the threat of violence to convince Israel to withdraw, but it seems as if violence only results in great civilian casualties for them and sympathy for the Israelis. Hamas says it is willing to go back to the 1967 borders but it refuses to make any steps towards doing so.


The thing is we don't know (atleast i don't) know the details of the deal. Remember, almost every year this is some sort of peace initiative and every year it pretty much fails. And all Hamas needs is 1. the support of the Gazans, and 2. the world to condemn Israel. Both are happening. Like I said before, Hamas is not Israel's number 1 enemy. Israel is Israel's number 1 enemy. This conflict was here before Hamas and it will be here after hamas (yes I don't really see there being some sort of peace settlement because both sides won't agree to anything). I also don't believe that the Israeli government represents what the Israeli people want.


Quote:


As for having a "soft spot" for Hamas, I can't have a soft spot for an organization that various human rights organizations have accused of war crimes and crimes against humanity. To me Israel and Hamas are just as bad, only I'm not as hard on Hamas because when you're a poor, occupied territory it's hard to expect you to be rational.


That's partially why I have a soft spot for Hamas. I see it that way. When all legitimate means of self-defense have been taken away, you resort to non-legitimate. It is still non-legitmate and I don't agree with it, but it is something that I atleast understand. Again that is just me.
Post Thu Jun 17, 2010 10:46 am
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Anti.Agent036



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by no means is there soft spot for hamas. it is a fundamentalist organization that more than likely is committed small-scale human rights abuses in gaza, but no worse that what fatah and the PA are committing and have committed in the west bank. the western perspective that the populace is forced to adopt leads you to believe that hamas is a quasi-dictatorial organization that is quelling opposing political sentiment, and that the western-backed fatah is a beacon of freedom and tolerance in the west bank. keep in mind, individuals fail to recognize the palestinian perspective that is so underrepresented in the media. this consists of the notion that fatah is a brutal american/israeli-financed/backed force that is wholly corrupt and subservient. it has never done anything for poor palestinians, while hamas initiated some of the most revolutionary social service/welfare policies in palestinian history.

hamas refuses to recognize the state of israel as an exclusively jewish state, because that would be allowing for the palestinian/arab realization of the zionist narrative. I mean, if every palestinian organization accepted and recognized the state of israel in its current/historical carnation, then that is regarded as the acceptance of wholesale land expropriation, state-sponsored terrorism, and colonial policies, and, historically (we seem to forget this), the forceful expulsion of 750k palestinians. also, the denial of the right of return, 1967 borders (because as we know, israel has created "realities on the ground"), and so on. this in turn, would result in the arab masses in other countries to accept it as well, which would probably be devastating to the cause.

I just feel we, as americans, have subconsciously accepted the zionist narrative as the standard, forgetting those that suffer and struggle at the bottom.
Post Thu Jun 17, 2010 11:00 am
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O2K
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Anti.Agent036 wrote:
by no means is there soft spot for hamas. it is a fundamentalist organization that more than likely is committed small-scale human rights abuses in gaza, but no worse that what fatah and the PA are committing and have committed in the west bank. the western perspective that the populace is forced to adopt leads you to believe that hamas is a quasi-dictatorial organization that is quelling opposing political sentiment, and that the western-backed fatah is a beacon of freedom and tolerance in the west bank. keep in mind, individuals fail to recognize the palestinian perspective that is so underrepresented in the media. this consists of the notion that fatah is a brutal american/israeli-financed/backed force that is wholly corrupt and subservient. it has never done anything for poor palestinians, while hamas initiated some of the most revolutionary social service/welfare policies in palestinian history.

hamas refuses to recognize the state of israel as an exclusively jewish state, because that would be allowing for the palestinian/arab realization of the zionist narrative. I mean, if every palestinian organization accepted and recognized the state of israel in its current/historical carnation, then that is regarded as the acceptance of wholesale land expropriation, state-sponsored terrorism, and colonial policies, and, historically (we seem to forget this), the forceful expulsion of 750k palestinians. also, the denial of the right of return, 1967 borders (because as we know, israel has created "realities on the ground"), and so on. this in turn, would result in the arab masses in other countries to accept it as well, which would probably be devastating to the cause.

I just feel we, as americans, have subconsciously accepted the zionist narrative as the standard, forgetting those that suffer and struggle at the bottom.


I think what i mean for soft spot is that I am not as hard on Hamas as most people are. There is no doubt they commit human rights crimes. No doubt. But I am more easier on those than say other crimes by nations or other entities.

Also, a little off topic but not really. I may have mentioned it before maybe in this thread i don't remember. But I did do oral histories on the Nakba of 48. The most heart tearing stories I have ever heard. The stories that were told to me and the attrocities mentioned I couldn't even bear. I may still have the tapes, one day i'll upload them.
Post Thu Jun 17, 2010 11:14 am
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