Israel–United States relations and associated politics

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Victoria Raverna
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Victoria Raverna »

I think it is more of good men that did nothing, borrowing AOC's words.
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Pyperkub »

A lot of us think that a lot of good women and men are trying to do something while also trying to make sure far, far worse doesn't happen down the Road (a time measured in a few scant years, if not mere months) and that given both Hamas (& allies) and Netanyahu that is VERY, VERY difficult.
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by YellowKing »

I was going to angry post but I deleted it. Suffice it to say, being called immoral just because you take a realistic view of what people can and can't do is bullshit.
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Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Dogstar »

Zarathud wrote: The cornerstone of the U.S.-Israeli military alliance is to defend Israel from attacks. That policy comes from Arab attacks intended to eliminate Israel shortly after its founding, which is why slogans about driving Israelis into the sea are so offensive. Attacks continue weekly, from rockets to stones. We’re not going to stop helping Israel, even if we disagree with their methods or the fallout from their tactics. We may pressure them privately and publicly.

You calling anyone an apologist, especially in this thread, might cause one to wonder if you do any self-reflection.

Some of us would like the tenor of our support for Israel to change. A reasonable case could be made, as it always has been, that arming Israel for its defense is a good thing. What’s going on in Gaza for awhile now isn’t that. Some of us would like Israel to do a better job of not killing or starving civilians. Some of us would like Israel to open the borders to aid for humanitarian relief so we don’t have to air drop supplies or build a pier. Some of us would like Israel to stop annexing land that isn’t theirs like they recently did in West Bank. I could go on. Some of us would like those negative actions not be enabled by our tax dollars and weapons.

Friends are honest with each other and don't enable more bullshit behavior (yes, I’m well aware those aren’t the same thing as allies in the world of realpolitik). That's the course of action Israel has been on, and that's the course that Netanyahu would set them on for the future. Biden’s options are limited, especially in an election year, and I’m not pulling my support, but I fully endorse doing everything reasonable that we can to bend Israel away from its current actions and path. Even if we can’t move with the pace that VR, AOC, or any number of others would like, that doesn’t mean we should stop doing what we can to effect these changes in policy.


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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Zarathud »

Internet activism by posting propaganda is just wishful thinking and ideology. AOC’s rhetoric skips over the essential point — whether what is happening in Palestine is genocide. It’s a goddamn tragedy, it’s potentially preventable, and better heads would find a solution. Biden is trying, but neither Israel nor Hamas are willing partners.

But it’s NOT genocide. AOC, VR and many pundits overuse the term in ways that ignore its very specific legal meaning. Why? Because they’re pushing for an emotional reaction, and using “genocide” as propaganda for that purpose.

I’m a lawyer and that deliberately misleading use of language pisses me off. I’ve taken a class on international law from a national expert, and taken many undergraduate classes on international political economy and geopolitics. I’m not “woke” on Palestine for legitimate and rational reasons (as I’ve explained before), and the best counter so far is that I’m ill-informed and too heartless. Being called immoral, insensitive and lacking introspection is frankly pretty damn hilarious.

I would think my posting reputation is pretty clear I’ve never been a bleeding heart, have a clear position (usually), and am more than willing to beat a dead horse/rhetorical point. Or to punch back.

Is that “substantive” enough, or just considered more apology?
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Zarathud »

And spare me the “my tax dollars” protest bullshit. You open that door and Texas refuses to pay for immigration. Or a million other MAGA arguments to defund public health, public education, etc. It’s an argument that has long been rejected by the courts and anyone who takes public policy seriously.
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“It is the impractical things in this tumultuous hell-scape of a world that matter most. A book, a name, chicken soup. They help us remember that, even in our darkest hour, life is still to be savored.” - Poe, Altered Carbon
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Victoria Raverna
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Victoria Raverna »

If it is any other country that did the thing that Israel do now, US is going to stop any military aid. US is going to sanction and boycott the country. But Israel is special. no matter how evil they act, US has to support them. Even a temporary stop on military aid doesn't seem to be acceptable. US has to beg Israel. US has to workaround by air dropping and building new pier just to be able to send food to the starving civilians.
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Zarathud »

Again, not true. There is no way the US would stop military aid to Britain or Germany or Japan or South Korea for any reason.

We’ve arguably supported Turkey, a strategic NATO member, despite their terrible treatment of the Kurds.
"If the facts don't fit the theory, change the facts." - Albert Einstein
"I don't stand by anything." - Trump
“Bad men need nothing more to compass their ends, than that good men should look on and do nothing.” - John Stuart Mill, Inaugural Address Delivered to the University of St Andrews, 2/1/1867
“It is the impractical things in this tumultuous hell-scape of a world that matter most. A book, a name, chicken soup. They help us remember that, even in our darkest hour, life is still to be savored.” - Poe, Altered Carbon
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Victoria Raverna
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Victoria Raverna »

BTW, this woman is also a lawyer and an expert in International Law, not just someone that took a class from a national expert in International Law. I posted a clip from NBC before but this is the complete video from UN HRC youtube channel:



On 26 March 2024 during the 55th session of the Geneva-based Human Rights Council, Francesca Albanese, Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967, presented a report entitled "Anatomy of a Genocide".

By analyzing the patterns of violence and Israel’s policies in its onslaught on Gaza, Ms. Albanese concludes that "there are reasonable grounds to believe that the threshold indicating Israel’s commission of genocide is met."

Special Rapporteurs are appointed by the Human Rights Council and serve in their individual capacity, independent of the UN system and national governments. They are not UN staff and draw no salary.

---

Report of reasonable unverified evidence of sexual violence is taken as UN said there was sexual violence. So why not taking "there are reasonable grounds to believe that the threshold indicating Israel’s commission of genocide is met." as UN claimed Israel committed genocide.

Link to the report:

https://reliefweb.int/report/occupied-p ... ed-version
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by waitingtoconnect »

Bibi and the far right in Israel want Gaza and want the Palestinians out.

They are trying to engineer this but it’s hard to see what they will mean for the people who will be expelled.
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Victoria Raverna
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Victoria Raverna »

waitingtoconnect wrote: Wed Mar 27, 2024 5:07 am Bibi and the far right in Israel want Gaza and want the Palestinians out.

They are trying to engineer this but it’s hard to see what they will mean for the people who will be expelled.
If most of those people die of starvation, it'll be easier to find a place to expel the few that survive to.
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by LordMortis »

Zarathud wrote: Wed Mar 27, 2024 12:30 am Again, not true. There is no way the US would stop military aid to Britain or Germany or Japan or South Korea for any reason.

We’ve arguably supported Turkey, a strategic NATO member, despite their terrible treatment of the Kurds.
And never forget our terrible treatment of the Kurds. If anyone has a legit reason to hate us, it's the Kurds going back to at least Bush the Elder. :cry:
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Zarathud »

Victoria Raverna wrote: Report of reasonable unverified evidence of sexual violence is taken as UN said there was sexual violence. So why not taking "there are reasonable grounds to believe that the threshold indicating Israel’s commission of genocide is met." as UN claimed Israel committed genocide.
The difference is that I tend to believe women who report rape and sexual abuse, not look for YouTube clips to minimize their experience. Or create a strained but false equivalency. But again, I’ve argued any rape allegations are an irrelevant sideshow to minimize the horrors of war committed by Hamas by those over-emphasizing those of Israel.

Genocide requires a standard of government intent. And the difference between us is I’m not jumping to conclusions based on a YouTube clip…or some of the anti-Semitic memes you’ve been flirting with recently, VR.

No doubt some Israelis hate Palestinians as much as Hamas hates Jews (not my assumption but their stated policy). But the horrors of starvation by refugees during war doesn’t mean it’s intentional genocide under a legal standard — and note that Egypt shares control of a border into Gaza. Are you prepared to argue Egypt is complicit?
"If the facts don't fit the theory, change the facts." - Albert Einstein
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“It is the impractical things in this tumultuous hell-scape of a world that matter most. A book, a name, chicken soup. They help us remember that, even in our darkest hour, life is still to be savored.” - Poe, Altered Carbon
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Dogstar »

Zarathud wrote: Wed Mar 27, 2024 12:06 am AOC’s rhetoric skips over the essential point — whether what is happening in Palestine is genocide. It’s a goddamn tragedy, it’s potentially preventable, and better heads would find a solution. Biden is trying, but neither Israel nor Hamas are willing partners.

But it’s NOT genocide. AOC, VR and many pundits overuse the term in ways that ignore its very specific legal meaning. Why? Because they’re pushing for an emotional reaction, and using “genocide” as propaganda for that purpose.
On this we agree. I think, although I'm assuming some things here, that the term is used precisely because it does attract attention in ways that "25,000+ dead," "war crimes," and "mass starvation" have failed to do.
And spare me the “my tax dollars” protest bullshit
I wasn't aware that I indicated that citizens should get line-item vetos on what their tax dollars pay for. I understand your point well. There's nothing wrong in recognizing what my tax dollars do pay for and trying to influence policy in whatever small way I can.
But the horrors of starvation by refugees during war doesn’t mean it’s intentional genocide under a legal standard — and note that Egypt shares control of a border into Gaza. Are you prepared to argue Egypt is complicit?

It seems that the reason why more Egyptian aid isn't making it into Gaza is, unsurprisingly, because Israel is limiting the flow. If you're offering that Egypt should just accept refugees crossing the border to avert a humanitarian crisis, it's something that plays right into the Netanyahu government's dreams because once the refugees cross the border, the odds that they'll be allowed back into Gaza are practically nil. Plus, it absolves Israel of having to feed and house them.

What Israel is doing isn't the way forward for peace and stability in the region -- for Israel, for Palestinians, or the countries around them. Working to change that by donating (like to organizations like World Central Kitchen, contacting your representative or senators , signing petitions, withholding financial support (Sen. Fetterman isn't getting any more money, for example), voting for the least-bad alternative (hopefully even a little good) politician, and last but not least, informing and discussing (and perhaps even persuading) the issues and events with people around you are all ways to make progress, even if it's infinitesimal.
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Victoria Raverna »

Zarathud wrote: Wed Mar 27, 2024 8:20 am
Victoria Raverna wrote: Report of reasonable unverified evidence of sexual violence is taken as UN said there was sexual violence. So why not taking "there are reasonable grounds to believe that the threshold indicating Israel’s commission of genocide is met." as UN claimed Israel committed genocide.
The difference is that I tend to believe women who report rape and sexual abuse, not look for YouTube clips to minimize their experience. Or create a strained but false equivalency. But again, I’ve argued any rape allegations are an irrelevant sideshow to minimize the horrors of war committed by Hamas by those over-emphasizing those of Israel.

Genocide requires a standard of government intent. And the difference between us is I’m not jumping to conclusions based on a YouTube clip…or some of the anti-Semitic memes you’ve been flirting with recently, VR.

No doubt some Israelis hate Palestinians as much as Hamas hates Jews (not my assumption but their stated policy). But the horrors of starvation by refugees during war doesn’t mean it’s intentional genocide under a legal standard — and note that Egypt shares control of a border into Gaza. Are you prepared to argue Egypt is complicit?
You believe women who reported rape and sexual abuse which said that she couldn't verified any evidence, but you don't believe woman lawyer that wrote a report that Israel's action met the threshold indicating Israeli's commission of genocide?

Why? Both are official UN reports, why you trust one when even the author of the report said she couldn't verify but not the report which can be verified and supported by facts. Palestinians are in danger of starvation is a fact. Israel slow the flow of food to Gaza is a fact. US had to airdrop food and also have plan to build a pier so they can get around Israel's blockade is also a fact.

You think Israel unintentionally or accidentally block the flow of food to Gaza? Is that why it is not a genocide. Israel didn't intentionally setup a checkpoint and only let a few trucks to pass per day? They accidentally stop humanitarian aid from reaching Gaza? They accidentally limit the access to only a few hours per day?
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Zarathud »

I believe a victim can easily know if she’s been raped or sexually assaulted. Making it about UN reports is an attempt to minimize that experience, as I’ve said.

In the other hand, genocide is a legal concept. And I don’t just accept legal assertions. It’s what I do.

If you were reading more about the border situation, Israel has a process to vet drivers for security. It’s a reasonable security request given allegations that UN aid organizations have been infiltrated by Hamas (and frankly it’s a pretty smart move by Hamas). Aid organizations keep sending drivers who haven’t gone through the process. Again, the details matter and aren’t covered in those YouTube clips you keep posing, VR.
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“Bad men need nothing more to compass their ends, than that good men should look on and do nothing.” - John Stuart Mill, Inaugural Address Delivered to the University of St Andrews, 2/1/1867
“It is the impractical things in this tumultuous hell-scape of a world that matter most. A book, a name, chicken soup. They help us remember that, even in our darkest hour, life is still to be savored.” - Poe, Altered Carbon
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Victoria Raverna
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Victoria Raverna »

Zarathud wrote: Wed Mar 27, 2024 9:28 am I believe a victim can easily know if she’s been raped or sexually assaulted. Making it about UN reports is an attempt to minimize that experience, as I’ve said.

In the other hand, genocide is a legal concept. And I don’t just accept legal assertions. It’s what I do.

If you were reading more about the border situation, Israel has a process to vet drivers for security. It’s a reasonable security request given allegations that UN aid organizations have been infiltrated by Hamas (and frankly it’s a pretty smart move by Hamas). Aid organizations keep sending drivers who haven’t gone through the process. Again, the details matter and aren’t covered in those YouTube clips you keep posing, VR.
So who are the women that tell you that they're rape victims on October 7th? Maybe you can help the UN's staff to get in contact with those women since she was unable to meet any.

As for genocide, the woman that claimed that is a lawyer and expert in international law, not just a lawyer that took a single class from a national expert on international law. Why you don't trust her? Is it because you think you understand international law better than a lawyer that had decade of experience in dealing with international law?
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by hepcat »

My only issue is with the increasing attempts by VR to downplay what Hamas did on Oct. 7th. At least that's how I see it. If it makes me immoral because I think what Hamas did was an atrocity and that it should never be forgotten or trivialized, then so be it.

Rape victims RARELY come forward. That's true in the United States and it's even more so in that region of the world. I think it's enough that someone from the UN said there's reasonable grounds to believe there was. I don't find it surprising that the victims didn't want to come forward at all. The UN rep NEVER states she was lying in any of those videos. She still believes there's reasonable grounds to say that rape was used as part of the attack. She's been on the ground doing the research. I believe her.

If you start discounting the UN reports on such things only when it comes to claims against Hamas, then how do you think some of us perceive your input?

And again: I completely agree Israel has gone too far. I will readily admit that. And I won't downplay or trivialized how awful they're being right now. And yes, I'm not arguing against the use of the word "genocide" anymore. I may not know if it fits all the legal parameters of such, but I do agree it's on a scale that's unacceptable so it's a matter of semantics at this point.

However, I don't see a black and white/good vs. evil struggle here. I see decades of bad actors on both sides finally tipping the scales until we now have the current situation (although to be fair, they've done so to some degree for almost the entire time Israel has existed). I wish I knew how Israelis and Arabs could live in peace in that region, but I think it's going to take a couple of great leaders to step forward and talk everyone down from their ledges.

So, to summarize: I think Israel is doing something horrible. I think Hamas is doing something horrible. What are we disagreeing about, VR?
YellowKing wrote: Tue Mar 26, 2024 11:13 pm I was going to angry post but I deleted it. Suffice it to say, being called immoral just because you take a realistic view of what people can and can't do is bullshit.
Yeah, I was pretty steamed as well. But I remember Malchior as being someone who I enjoyed discussing movies and games with. It's only here in R&P where he becomes angry and bitter. I'm sure he feels that's our fault, just as we feel it's his. But I would hope someday he returns to OO in EBG and Video Games so we can once again discuss the merits of Killer Klowns from Outer Space in peace and harmony.
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by malchior »

hepcat wrote: Wed Mar 27, 2024 9:57 amYeah, I was pretty steamed as well. But I remember Malchior as being someone who I enjoyed discussing movies and games with. It's only here in R&P where he becomes angry and bitter. I'm sure he feels that's our fault, just as we feel it's his.
I wouldn't call it angry/bitter. I'm more utterly disgusted with the discourse.

I largely align with what you said above. I think VR aligns with it. However, people seem to be lashing out at perceived injuries that don't exist. For example, that VR is too critical of the US. I don't think this is a big reality check but much of the world thought that our 'rules based order' was just a farce of imperialism. Now? They absolutely know it is true. And you know what? They're right. We're on the wrong side of this. We're massive hypocrites. It wouldn't be the first time but this time it is so blatant that our only reaction is to lash out at people telling the truth. We should be collectively ashamed of the evil we are enabling. And IMO you all owe VR an apology because you've all been incredibly shitty to them.

That is where a great deal of my moral outrage comes from. Just people being shitty to people telling the truth. Mostly facts. I get not liking the downplaying of the rape accusations. I don't think it's helpful but it exists in a space where Israel has been exaggerating and lying to justify their evil. This isn't complicated to unpack and where it comes from. But people want to find every small flaw in VR's approach to yell at them.

Instead of focusing on the truth - what Israel is doing is wrong. Morally, legally, and even in the realpolitik sense. Look back 6 months at what some of us predicted about how Israel would act and you'd see that it all came true. It was predictable because we were looking at reality. Not this funhouse mirror version that some people want to make it for whatever reason. Israel is increasingly isolated. Israeli are facing generations of their people being linked to a great crime. Jews everywhere are likely less safe. Etc.

And a great part of my disgust comes from people tolerating the comments from folks like Zarathud as if they they are somehow in the bounds of decent conversation. They aren't. That people are yelling at VR and not him is sort of telling. You're (collectively) so baked into a biased US-centric viewpoint that I don't even think you notice how obvious it is.

Also, on top the explanations offered from Zarathud about why they believe the way they do...are...wow. The worst sort of "realpolitik" apologia and tons of self-credentialing.

As an example,

World experts on genocide: A case of genocide is plausible based on the many examples of Israeli people and leaders saying genocidal things. A record has been established of them doing so in the press and in front of the ICJ. There was the case of an official document drawing up and recommending a ethnic cleansing plan that they appear to be executing. There are government ministers in the war cabinet calling all Palestinian's animals. Our experts are tracking multiple events that qualify as a genocide in progress. Our famine experts have now seen a general famine appear in a population faster than ever recorded in modern times and we believe it is through intentional starvation. We have serious concerns.

Zarathud: I operate in a rarified, pure legal space. Look I took a course on international law in the past. I know better than all these experts. There is no way this is a genocide.

Really? That is the epitome of Tom Nichol's 'Death of Expertise' cross-pollinated...with...let's be frank...I think the guy is utterly despicable. Yet the focus of ire is on the people pointing that out? That's why I say folks are acting immorally and unjustly. People can get angry all they want but that's probably just their conscience ringing out after a nerve has been touched.
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Zarathud »

The personal attacks are directed at me, not VR. So why would I have to apologize?

For what? Criticizing cross posting and questioning context from my knowledge, training and experience? Which by the way includes talking to people with family in Israel, whose viewpoints often make me look like a saint.

For being a U.S. centric globalist? Shit, I’ve been called worse by Rip and even popehat.

If you feel I’m a bad person for my viewpoint and won’t tolerate dissent, that’s a reflection on your intolerance not me.
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by GreenGoo »

I don't feel you're a bad person Zarathud. :wub:

At least you're not insufferable.
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by LawBeefaroni »

It comes down to what it always comes down to. Nations have self interests and often those self interests run counter to their stated ideals. It's a practical and moral calculation where you sacrifice a bit of your soul for military/political/economic stability.

Israel is a key ally to the US in the Middle East. As such, they will receive a lot more leeway. They have been caught spying on the US and allies extensively. They have been caught carrying out extrajudicial assassinations. They have been openly committing human rights abuses in Gaza and the West Bank for decades (where were all the protestors then?).

But we need them strategically (or think we do) so we let things slide.

What has happened since Oct 7 brings their behavior into high relief. It makes it harder to ignore. But it isn't anything new. Which is why the US is reluctant to abandon or censure Israel now. Israel is a sunk cost and the US doesn't want to write it off.

On a more philosophical level, Israelis and Palestinians are humans. And humans are inherently tribal, violent, and generally shitty. Our leaders, and thus our governments, often embody and distill down these qualities. The fact that this conflict is extremely difficult to reconcile isn't surprising; everyone has blood on their hands, including us.
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by hepcat »

GreenGoo wrote: Wed Mar 27, 2024 2:01 pm I don't feel you're a bad person Zarathud. :wub:
You've never spent 4 days at a gaming convention with him before....
He won. Period.
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Zarathud »

No one but you smells minty fresh after 4 days at a convention, hepcat.
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Blackhawk »

I have gone head to head with both Zarathud and VR in this thread, enough so that I've largely stopped posting in this discussion.

Some people have a weird understanding of what people object to, and of where we stand. Correct me if I'm wrong when I generalize, but:

1. With very few exceptions, everyone here agrees that Israel is doing something horrible, has taken it to extremes that cross the line of what what is acceptable in war or in response to an atttack, and that it needs to stop.

2. Most of us believe that two groups of people have been doing bad things for decades. One then did a Very Bad Thing, and the other responded with a Very, Very Bad Thing. We're a little tired of being called out when we state that neither side was, at any point, in the right. We can disagree with both sides of an argument, and the constant implications that the people who refuse to support one specific side or the other are doing so out of hate/ignorance is bullshit.

3. Most of us believe that the civilian populations on both sides are caught in the middle here (obviously with Palestine getting the worst of it, by far.) The war is between Israel and Hamas, but there are really three sides in play, because Hamas doesn't care about the Palestinian civilians any more than Israel does.

4. Most of us object to the idea that Biden can just casually hand-wave Israel away. The reasons for our ties to Israel are much, much more complex than just being 'buddies'. There are reasons that we want Israel secure, and there are reasons that we want Israel to be our ally (and one that we have sway over.) Simply pushing Israel away would have massive consequences, including many that likely aren't even known to us. The idea that Biden should just denounce Israel or cut ties is idealistic, and looks at this as if it were the only issue affected, completely ignoring the complexities of the situation. Likewise, damning Biden because he can't do something that his hands are tied on is seriously misplaced.

Yes, we want this to stop. Most of the world wants this to stop. We just don't agree with the idea that Biden denouncing and/or cutting ties with Israel would achieve that, or that it wouldn't bring about even greater problems. Are we complicit? Yes. That doesn't mean that the fix is as simple as a phone call. It's deeply ingrained and systemic, and it isn't limited to just the President, or even just to the government. Just like most of the issues with the US that have recently become so prominent.

5. VR comes across as hostile and condescending in (apparently) trying to convince us all of what we already believe, usually by implying that we're just ignorant/uninformed/hateful/whatever because we don't agree with their position on it. That's the kind of thing that will result in flak pretty much anywhere. And it's so unceasing that yeah, people are starting to treat it personally. Yeah, that's a problem, but it's also human, and it's to be expected.

And please, lawyers, attorneys - stop with the 'legal definition' argument. It's been dragged out for multiple things, including genocide and 'war crimes', always to tell us, essentially, that we're not allowed to use those terms unless we meet the legal criteria. Most of us do not have law degrees, and we're not using the terms in the context of dragging Israel into international court. We're normal laypersons speaking in terms of common usage. Technical usage doesn't apply here (see also: ladybugs aren't bugs, you can't rob an empty house, the internet isn't the web, etc) Those 'rules' only apply within a professional or technical context, and this isn't it.
malchior wrote: Wed Mar 27, 2024 11:16 am And a great part of my disgust comes from people tolerating the comments from folks like Zarathud as if they they are somehow in the bounds of decent conversation. They aren't. That people are yelling at VR and not him is sort of telling. You're (collectively) so baked into a biased US-centric viewpoint that I don't even think you notice how obvious it is.
Quite a few of us have argued with both of them. I seem to remember several pages of back-and-forthing with Zarathud and multiple posters, all calling him out on his apparent 'ends justify the means' position. The difference is that Zarathud posts only occasionally, and comes across as inflexible and unwilling to discuss (he states, he does not debate.) And at the same time, he is arguing from a position of expertise and authority. We can argue (as I just did) that he's applying that expertise badly, but very few of us have the background to argue toe-to-toe with him on the content of his arguements. On the other hand, VR posts constantly and comes across as condescending, and has posted a lot of obviously one-sided and biased content and sources. In other words, VR seems to be looking for an argument, while Zarathud is making rare statements that prevent arguments. VR getting more negative attention has less to do with positions, and more to do with the way in which this has all been debated.

(Outside of this discussion, I like Zarathud and VR both. I've walked and chatted face-to-face with Zarathud, and have enjoyed discussions with both of them many times over the years. Both of you - this is about the content in this thread. It's not personal.)
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Victoria Raverna »

I found it surprising that you think I'm hostile or condescending in trying to convince you all. I think that was a misunderstanding. While sometime I'm upset because to the response of some of you, most of the time I just sharing videos or articles that I found interesting. While mostly are pro Palestinians, I also posted IDF's videos which are clearly pro Israel.

Most of the time I have no goal of trying to convince you guys of anything. I mostly just sharing my opinions and to try to balance the coverage of the war since western media at the start was one sided. Now seemed like while it is still biased, the media isn't taking what Israel's claims as fact since Israel has been caught lying repeatedly with their press release. Other than that I wanted to discuss about news or article about the war since I think that is the point of the forum, you share news or articles, you discuss it. Apparently people became upset when I shared something that they don't agree with which I found to be surprising. Are we supposed to only share things that everyone agree with? We have to have the same opinion here?
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Blackhawk »

Victoria Raverna wrote: Thu Mar 28, 2024 4:54 pm I found it surprising that you think I'm hostile or condescending in trying to convince you all. I think that was a misunderstanding.
Note that I said "comes across as". I dislike assigning motives, but I can speak about perceptions. And I think a lot of the response here is a result of those perceptions. I also said that some that have made it personal, and that's an issue itself.
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by El Guapo »

I think we should have one thread to talk about Israel, and one thread to talk about the discussion in the thread about Israel. :)

FWIW while I disagree with some of the content at times, I've had no issue with VR's posting - they've been perfectly respectful in these discussions IMO.
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Isgrimnur »

R&P is a discourse based sub. In a topic not devoted to dropping pictures or videos without context, dropping a video without context adds little and may even detract from the conversation.

Why is someone posting said video? Why should I bother with said video? Is there a detailed explanation as to the point the poster is attempting to reinforce?

Without answers to those questions, most of us aren't going to click on it.
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Blackhawk »

Isgrimnur wrote: Thu Mar 28, 2024 7:37 pm R&P is a discourse based sub. In a topic not devoted to dropping pictures or videos without context, dropping a video without context adds little and may even detract from the conversation.

Why is someone posting said video? Why should I bother with said video? Is there a detailed explanation as to the point the poster is attempting to reinforce?

Without answers to those questions, most of us aren't going to click on it.
+1. +111 if it's a long video. If I'm going to watch a 15+ minute video, I am going to know in advance that I actually want to see it. If I'm going to have to figure out what it's about 20 minutes in, I'm not going to click. And it an era - and topic - full of ulterior motives, false narratives, lies, spin, and conspiracy theories, that goes double. So, +2 and +222, respectively.
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Zarathud »

My intent in arguing that "genocide" has a legal definition was not to stop conversation. Just the ridiculous one-sided YouTube posts which have no context, no explanation, and no thought.

A simple search of Wikipedia about people convicted of genocide would show how the law had been applied by international courts of law (The Hague):
- the Holocaust, which lasted for years (why many find applying the term in a non-legal sense against Israel is offensive or even anti-Semitic)
- Bosnia-Herzegovina by many Serbs (see the 4 year siege of Sarajevo and Srebrenica)
- Equitorial Guinea by Macia Nguema (9-23% of the population)
- Ethopia by Mengistu Haile Mariam (hundreds of thousands by famine)
- Guatemala by Efrain Rios Mantt (tens of thousands of government killings of Maya peasants, including hundreds of massacres)
- Iraq by Saddam Hussein (destruction of 2,000 villages of the Kurds and mass executions)
- Rwanda (mass killings of as many as 800,000 Tutsi)

What has happened in Palestine is a tragedy and humanitarian disaster. But it does NOT compare in any real sense to the above actual crimes of genocide. I'm not saying murder isn't bad, but all murders are not school shootings or mass murders. There's a meaningful distinction that should matter.

Frankly, I'm surprised no one looked up the legal definition or historical context in international courts. Instead, people took it personally, attacked me or defended VR. Or kept posting the same YouTube videos which completely misapply "genocide" to push an agenda. This whole issue taps into my growing frustration with social media and YouTube activism -- you might THINK you've been informed, but you're really not "woke" at all.

Not that I'm entirely right on this, by the way. But the meaningful discussion has been completely bypassed by the personalities and emotions, and not the policy or meanings or context. There were some pretty decent run-downs of what's happened (thanks to those who bothered), and much of that I won't dispute. Mainly because on something this serious or stressful I want to weigh in only one those few points I think are important, even if I belabor it. Partly because I think President Biden is getting unfair press by a media ecosystem looking for "news" that feeds into the cycle of how this will impact the U.S. election -- completely ignoring that a President Trump would no doubt encourage worse by Netanyahu, Putin, Salman, Orban and others. I would even argue Trump brought on the conflict by his unilateral decision to recognize Jerusalem and formally open the US embassy there. The only path forward is for the US to be an ally to Israel that forces it to be better.

And admittedly, I can be a pedantic asshole from time to time. In the purpose of my own viewpoint and truth, of course. ;)
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by stessier »

I don't find those comparisons of genocide useful because they suggest if the group is small enough, it can't be genocide. That can't be the case, which just means the right situation hasn't come up for the law to recognize it and have an example.
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Zarathud »

That’s a fallacy. The Palestinian people aren’t a small population.

The examples show groups who are specifically targeted to be killed as a population, as a deliberate goal.

Palestinians are not being rounded up for targeted killings. They’re displaced refugees in danger of starvation and death due to war. It’s terrible and a humanitarian disaster, but something very different than genocide.
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Victoria Raverna »

So as long as it is not direct killing, it is not a genocide? You can starve them and let them die of starvation and that is not genocide just a humanitarian disaster.
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Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Zarathud »

Would you read about those charged with genocide before responding, VR? That’s basically my disagreement with you — and I’ve even expressly told you that in my post.
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Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Zarathud »

And I’ll help you even more, because even outright asking you to look it up hasn’t worked. UN Definition of Genocide.
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Exodor »

Zarathud wrote: Fri Mar 29, 2024 9:46 am And I’ll help you even more, because even outright asking you to look it up hasn’t worked. UN Definition of Genocide.
The only element I don't see happening in Gaza is transferring children to another group.

Congrats - the IDF is only committing 4/5 of the elements of genocide!
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Victoria Raverna »

Reading that seem to me that what Israel doing is clearly fit the no. 2 and while the no. 1 or intent can be disputed.

So I think the UN reporter that stated that it is reasonable to conclude it is a genocide is right. I don't know why you continue to dispute that when from the UN Definition of Genocide, other than the hard to confirm intent part, the other requirements are fulfilled.

Why you continue to insist it is not a genocide when you ask me to look at the definition that showed that it is likely to be a genocide.
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Victoria Raverna »

Exodor wrote: Fri Mar 29, 2024 9:49 am
Zarathud wrote: Fri Mar 29, 2024 9:46 am And I’ll help you even more, because even outright asking you to look it up hasn’t worked. UN Definition of Genocide.
The only element I don't see happening in Gaza is transferring children to another group.

Congrats - the IDF is only committing 4/5 of the elements of genocide!
From the words that in use in that definition, I think you don't need to commit all 5. Just one is enough.

You need mental part which is the intent and physical part. the 5 are what counted as physical part. The definition doesn't imply you have to do all 5 before it can be counted as a genocide.
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Re: Israel–United States relations and associated politics

Post by Victoria Raverna »

About the intent part. It is clear to me and the lawyer that wrote the report from Israel's action. Israel clearly know that the current flow of food supply is not enough to feed the Gaza population.

To slow down or stop the food trucks when there is a starvation problem is clear that the intent is to starve them. It is also very clear if you listen to what Israeli ministers and leaders own words.

Now I can be wrong about this, but why you think the lawyer or expert is wrong while Zarathud is the one that is right? Is it because Zarathud attended one class by a national expert on international law and attended several international law class? You think the expert/lawyer that wrote books and advice on international laws didn't attend any class and not as expert as Zarathud?

I'm not a lawyer, but the writer of the report that stated it is reasonable to conclude that Israel is doing or going to do genocide is a lawyer that practice international law.
Last edited by Victoria Raverna on Fri Mar 29, 2024 10:09 am, edited 1 time in total.
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