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Politics and its Discontents: Zionism Does Not Excuse Gaza

There are some self-identified Liberals (and New Democrats) who proclaim their support for Israel in its current butchery in Gaza and they tend to do it in the name of Zionism.

Zionism comes in many shapes and flavours, so many that its meaning is often unintelligible.

The New York Times’ Roger Cohen is a proud Zionist but he sees the Gaza tragedy a little more clearly than some of our Liberal friends:

I am a Zionist because the story of my forebears convinces me that Jews needed the homeland voted into existence by United Nations Resolution 181 of 1947, calling (Read more…)

drive-by planet: ‘Zionism is the problem’: new Presbyterian study guide takes a criticial look at Zionist ideology

A recent post on Electronic Intifada discusses a new study guide published by the Presbyterian Church in the U.S. titled Zionism Unsettled. It takes a critical look at Zionist ideology that has influenced many of the unjust Israeli policies targeted by the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement.

In an upcoming General Assembly in Detroit, the Church will consider divesting from three U.S. companies with Israeli military contracts.

The Presbyterian Church may not have acted as assertively as many of us would have liked when it comes to boycott and divestment initiatives, but to its credit it has (Read more…)

drive-by planet: Ilan Pappé exposes Zionist mythologies surrounding the creation of Israel: Australian Press Club address

Ilan Pappé is an Israeli historian – born in Haifa, son of German-Jewish parents who fled Nazi persecution. He is a professor with the College of Social Sciences and International Studies at the University of Exeter in the United Kingdom – director of the university’s European Centre for Palestine Studies and co-director of the Exeter Centre for Ethno-Political Studies.

Professor Pappé is the author of The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine (2006), The Modern Middle East (2005), A History of Modern Palestine: One Land, Two Peoples (2003), and Britain and the Arab-Israeli Conflict (1988).

In the above Press Club address Pappé (Read more…)

Song of the Watermelon: Fanatics, Zealots, Warmongers, and Peaceniks: Israel’s Crowded Electoral Landscape

Haneen Zoabi

Due perhaps to my Jewish identity and my family’s history, Israel tends to be the country whose politics I follow most closely apart from Canada’s and the United States’. Nevertheless, there is a giant gulf separating numbers one and two from number three. My understanding of Israeli parties, personalities, and issues is far from perfect, and when I observe the campaign leading up to the January 22 elections to Israel’s Knesset, I do so as an outsider.

There is the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, something that I feel very passionately about, as I strongly believe in Palestinian national aspirations, equal

. . . → Read More: Song of the Watermelon: Fanatics, Zealots, Warmongers, and Peaceniks: Israel’s Crowded Electoral Landscape

The Canadian Progressive: The Ugly Canadian in the Canada-Israel relationship (VIDEO)

Canadian writer and commentator Yves Engler discusses the Harper Conservative government’s pro-Israel policy with The Real News. Yves’ new book, The Ugly Canadian, Stephen Harper’s Foreign Policy, “sets out to provide “a small spark in lighting a fire of interest in Canadian foreign policy.” This video is available on YouTube RELATED: “Israel is demolishing hope” READ MORE

RedBedHead: Israel Blind To Its Own Isolation

I wrote less than two weeks ago that Israel was in an accelerating decline as a result of changed geopolitical realities in the Middle East, most recently and acutely the Arab Spring. That Arab Spring is now in the throes of a 2.0 reawakening and reconstitution of last year’s settlements, as events in Egypt in the last two weeks have made clear, not to mention the momentum of Syrian rebels,

RedBedHead: Gaza & The Not So Slow Decline Of Israel

Not alone any more: Egyptian protestors in Tahrir last year

In some ways what just went down in Gaza was business as usual. Israel provoked a mini-war with Gaza killing a leading Hamas politician (who was, in fact, the chief negotiator for a long term ceasefire with Israel) after engaging in its “normal” policies of drone flights, missile strikes and, of course, economy-crippling embargoes. In

Drive-by Planet: Avraham Burg and the hard truth about ‘Israel’s Fading Democracy’

Avraham Burg has an opinion piece in the New York Times this week titled “Israel’s Fading Democracy.” It’s well worth the read. Burg doesn’t shy away from addressing hard truths about the Israel of Binyamin Netanyahu – a society that has becomes more radicalized, in some respects more extremist.  

There are plenty of good reasons to pay close attention to the disturbing tilt to the right in Israel, provided you can access the coverage. The odds of finding an outspoken piece of writing as informed and insightful as Burg’s anywhere in Canadian mainstream media aren’t great. Media outlets

. . . → Read More: Drive-by Planet: Avraham Burg and the hard truth about ‘Israel’s Fading Democracy’

RedBedHead: Canada’s Foreign Affairs Minister Drops The "H-Bomb"

I’m not talking about that other H-bomb, the one that the US government dropped on innocent civilians in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. No, I’m talking about Adolph Hitler, yes, that H-Bomb. Every time our leaders want to justify a war against another people they whip out the Hitler’s name. He is our Great Satan, the face of incomprehensible evil. There is nothing to be understood about Hitler, he was

RedBedHead: Is America Worried Israel Is Gonna Go Ape Shit On Iran?

Apparently the US Defence Secretary Leo Panetta is very worried that Israel will attack Iran come March. Those Israelis just can’t control themselves in the face of Iran’s intransigence over their – admittedly non-military – nuclear program. I mean, what if, you know, Iran decided down the road to make nukes. Then Israel wouldn’t be the only country in the Middle East or, as Israel likes to put

RedBedHead: Nobody Says "F*** You" Like Israel

As vile and racist as the regime is, you have to give them points for sheer chutzpah. Having denounced the Palestinians at the UN for not being serious about peace, Israeli PM Netanyahu has agreed two days later to build another 1,100 illegal buildings… . . . → Read More: RedBedHead: Nobody Says "F*** You" Like Israel

RedBedHead: Baird’s UN Rant Is A Museum Piece

Baird was the attack dog for the Harper government at the UN yesterday with his meandering rant that read like it was written by the Israeli ministry of international propaganda. Claiming people and nations who didn’t support Israel were akin to appeas… . . . → Read More: RedBedHead: Baird’s UN Rant Is A Museum Piece

Excited Delirium: Support Palestine’s Bid for Nationhood

Support Palestine’s Efforts to Have the UN Recognize Nationhood. . . . → Read More: Excited Delirium: Support Palestine’s Bid for Nationhood

RedBedHead: The Palestinians Would Be Foolish To Trust Obama or Netanyahu

There’s an old saying that goes “fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me”. I’m not sure what the appropriate riposte is when you’ve been scammed by the same dishonest brokers a hundred times over. That sadly describes the behaviour of th… . . . → Read More: RedBedHead: The Palestinians Would Be Foolish To Trust Obama or Netanyahu

RedBedHead: Turkey’s Snub & The Decline of Israel

Israeli blunder: Turkish ship Mavi Marmara as it’s being attacked by Israeli commandos during attempt by flotilla to deliver aid to the Gaza Strip. It was just over 20 years ago that I first became politically active around the first war against Ir… . . . → Read More: RedBedHead: Turkey’s Snub & The Decline of Israel

Death By Trolley: Where do Observant Jews and Conservative Christians get their Morals, Theologically Speaking?

Theologically speaking, where do Jews and Conservative Christians get their values? . . . → Read More: Death By Trolley: Where do Observant Jews and Conservative Christians get their Morals, Theologically Speaking?

RedBedHead: Rupert Murdoch, Friend Of Israel

Well this article is an interesting addition to the swirl of debate and exposé that’s happening around Rupert Murdoch. The attached article is from J-Wire and is written by Isi Leibler. As all this scandal and humiliation was unfolding, I hadn’t consi… . . . → Read More: RedBedHead: Rupert Murdoch, Friend Of Israel

RedBedHead: Workers of Egypt: Strike! Occupy! Bring revolution to victory!

This is an awesome leaflet from a section of the Egyptian left on how to drive forward the revolution. It deserves wide distribution and is a taste of the ferment that is going on in Egypt at the moment. From here in Canada it can be hard to really und… . . . → Read More: RedBedHead: Workers of Egypt: Strike! Occupy! Bring revolution to victory!

RedBedHead: Israel Attacks Free Speech To Defend Democracy

When is an attack on democracy not an attack on democracy? When the government says that they are defending democracy, of course. That seems to be the thinking in Israel’s higher circles in any case as a bill moves towards becoming law that will ban Is… . . . → Read More: RedBedHead: Israel Attacks Free Speech To Defend Democracy

RedBedHead: "Anti-Semitism" Committee A Rearguard Defence Of Israel’s Crimes

It’s nothing new really – the right wing, who can barely make their lips form the words “anti-racism”, spend boatloads of cash to “take a stand” against anti-Semitism. Except that what they’re really defending are the odious actions and policies of the… . . . → Read More: RedBedHead: "Anti-Semitism" Committee A Rearguard Defence Of Israel’s Crimes

RedBedHead: Freedom For Palestine: Music Video

Any song that’s pro-Palestinian and makes Glen Beck cry on TV is right on with me. At a time when Toronto city council is debating whether or not it’s discrimination – against Jews!? – to say that Israel’s practice of isolating, segregating and repress… . . . → Read More: RedBedHead: Freedom For Palestine: Music Video

RedBedHead: Israel Is No Different Than Syria

Israel likes to tout itself as the “plucky little democracy” in the Middle East, and as an island of European-style democracy besieged by a sea of dictatorships and dark, Arabic hordes. Besides the (fading) appeal to the oppressions Jews suffered in Eu… . . . → Read More: RedBedHead: Israel Is No Different Than Syria

RedBedHead: When The Ex-Mossad Chief Thinks You’re Crazy…

This article in the New York Times is interesting. The recently retired head of the Israeli Mossad (i.e. CIA) is using his newfound civilian freedoms to run around and say that Prime Minister Netanyahu and Defence Minister Ehud Barak are, basically, f*… . . . → Read More: RedBedHead: When The Ex-Mossad Chief Thinks You’re Crazy…

THE FIFTH COLUMN: Obama Gets it Right on Palestine

President Obama understands what I wrote three and a half years ago, that ending the Israeli Palestinian conflict depends on recognizing that “the solution essentially comes down to understanding the most and least that each side can accept”.We could a… . . . → Read More: THE FIFTH COLUMN: Obama Gets it Right on Palestine

Andy Lehrer's Firebrand blog: JDL allies with Austrian Freedom Party

“it’s always heartwarming to see a prejudice defeated by a deeper prejudice.” – Lone Star

On the heels of the Jewish Defence League’s rally in support of the fascist English Defence League comes the news that the JDL and Meir Weinstein is cozying up with another group of extremists – none other than the Freedom Party of Austria (FPO). You may remember their founder late, longtime leader Jörg Haider who praised Waffen-SS veterans, praised the Nazis, described concentration camps as “punishment camps” and compared the wartime deportation of Austria’s Jews to concentration camps to the postwar expulsion of Sudentland (Read more…)