Should Americans, as part of their school curriculum, learn Arabic numerals?
“Civic Science” a Pittsburgh-based research firm, put that question to some 3,200 Americans recently in a poll seemingly about mathematics, but the outcome was a measure of students’ attitudes toward the Arab world. Some 56 percent of the respondents said, “No.” Fifteen percent had no opinion.
In the ancient days(the years between 1971 and 1973), I was an exchange student at Justus Liebig University, a small (80,000) town north of Frankfurt. German was the lingua Alamannia spoken by fellow students from Iran to Japan. Learning an unfamiliar language breaks barriers in unexpected and humbling ways.
German and English are close lingual relatives. They share familial bonds with Proto-Indo-European (PIE). Persian, although it hardly looks the part, is a branch of the PIE tree. Persian borrowed Arabic script, but its grammar and vocabulary roots place it among most European languages.
A wall between two once and future German-speaking occupied lands had been erected, enforced, and thought eternal ten-years earlier. Politik: Real. Of course, English has long become the international language. But languages offer a way out, an outlet, an escape. I often go to YouTube in order to learn Arabic from people who also learned German as their second language — people like me, people like you.
Visit a local mosque (masjid). I’ve visited ours dozens of times and have always left with hope in my soul. Don’t allow a propagandist, an ideologue, a demagogue, a polemicist… to monger your mind.
Arabic is a beautiful artful language.
It’s not from the Protoindo-European family.
It is a friendly language.
has an intensely intuitive grammar.
is the language of the Qur’an.
Arabic is a fun language.
Thanks for reading.
Below, a draft I wrote in German to organize my thoughts. FWIW.
In den alten Zeiten (zwischen 1971 und 1973) war ich Austauschstudent an der Justus Liebig Universität. Deutsch als eine zweite Sprache musste ich ohne Computer und ohne Internet lernen.
Natürlich ist Englisch schon lange die internationale Sprache geworden. Aber Sprachen bieten einen Ausweg, einen Auslass, einen Escape. Oft gehe ich zum YouTube, um Arabisch zu lernen. Jede Menge von Videos stehen zur Verfügung. Da finde ich Lehrer und Lehrerinnen in Deutschland, die, wie ich Deutsch als ‘ne zweite Sprache zu lernen. Leute wie ich, Leute wie du. Eine kleine Clue: sie sind keine Monsters.
Resultat: Arabisch finde ich eine ganz logische dritte Sprache. Na klar! Fabelhaft.
ist eine wunderschön kunsthafte Sprache.
stammt nich aus der protoindoeuropäischen Familie.
Arabisch lerne ich um Verständnis und Mitgefühl erreichen zu können. Auf der anderen Seite, Propaganda ist Verfälschung. Übersetzungen sollten nie verschmiert werden. Arabisch lerne ich um die Wahrheit zu erkennen. Übersetzungen können grosse Lügen werden, giftige Lügen. Sprachen sollten Verständnis bauen — Propaganda zerstört die Wahrheit mit Absicht.
Nota Bene: Criticism of Israel does not constitute antisemitism.
Matti Friedman argues that “There Is No Israeli-Palestinian Conflict” — from the perspective of a Canadian-Israeli, a soldier-poet, an apologist for Israeli rightwing family values: a kindred spirit for those who think of Palestinians in terms of cardboard cutouts, and a considered belief that they are a waste of cardboard. He works words with great economy, clarity and imagination — a Western writer living in a Middle-Eastern geography . Mr. Friedman is currently residing in Palestine’s capital city: Al Quds.
…a kindred spirit for those who think of Palestinians in terms of cardboard cutouts…
Friedman’s opinion piece “There Is No Israeli-Palestinian Conflict” is a study guide on how to look through both sides of a pair of binoculars in order to begin understanding that non-conflict. The article uses fifteen paragraphs to house fifteen straw men. I had intended to critique each, but have discovered that it might take a multi-part series to adequately address them, so here are the first couple straw men.
Matti Friedman (@MattiFriedman), a contributing opinion writer, is the author of “The Aleppo Codex,” “Pumpkinflowers” and the forthcoming “Spies of No Country: Secret Lives at the Birth of Israel.”
JERUSALEM — If you are reading this, you’ve most likely seen much about “the Israeli-Palestinian conflict” in the pages of this newspaper and of every other important newspaper in the West. That phrase contains a few important assumptions. That the conflict is between two actors, Israelis and Palestinians. That it could be resolved by those two actors, and particularly by the stronger side, Israel. That it’s taking place in the corner of the Middle East under Israeli rule.
They brought house keys along, planning to unlock their doors upon their return home.
West (orientalists): Palestine is in the Middle-East, it was part of the Ottoman Empire until 1918. The League of Nations — a short-lived and long defunct Western (orientalist) attempt at world order — The League unilaterally granted the British a legal instrument termed “Mandate for Palestine.” They colonized Palestine until May 1948, when 700,000 unarmed Palestinians were forcibly removed from their homes, their neighborhoods, their ancestral homeland with only what they could cart or carry. They brought house keys along, planning to unlock their doors upon their return home — a right, ironically enough, guaranteed in that same catastrophic year by the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights: 1948.
Not surprisingly, Palestinians lived in greatest number along the Mediterranean Coast.
Particularly by the stronger side: The only armed forces — unless you consider rusty Ottoman-era weapons, unreliable and inaccurate mortars, and rocks from the rubble of demolished homes to be forces rather than farces — has always been the occupier.
Let me be clear: there is no “both sides.” There is a terrorist org that endangers civilians, and there is a state that protects them. Soon, the world will stare reality in the face and finally condemnation.
Let me be clearer: Hamas has no army, no navy, no air force, no tanks, no attack helicopters, no fighter jets, no armored vehicles, no missiles, no bombs, no nothing but rocks and a few crude unguided rockets which land with a thud. From the bottom of my heart, shut the fuck up.
Corner of the Middle East: a feint that reminds me of Goebbel’s Ministry of Propaganda — Lebensraum defined in terms of population density, where British “living space” included Canada and Australia.
Under Israeli rule: Not surprisingly, Palestinians lived in greatest number along the Mediterranean Coast. See Mahmoud Darwish’s famous poem “Unfortunately, It was Paradise.” Palestine is comparable to Southern California in terms of climate and real estate value. Displaced refugees were driven into Gaza, and the West Bank of the Jordan River. Ironically, again, the number of “settlers” in the West Bank is now greater than the 700,000 granted diaspora in 1948. That corner of the Middle East.
Let me be clearer: Hamas has no army, no navy, no air force, no tanks, no attack helicopters, no fighter jets, no armored vehicles, no missiles, no bombs, no nothing but rocks and a few crude unguided rockets which land with a thud. From the bottom of my heart, shut the fuck up.
Presented this way, the conflict has become an energizing issue on the international left and the subject of fascination of many governments, including the Trump administration, which has been working on a “deal of the century” to solve it. The previous administration’s secretary of state, John Kerry, committed so much time to Israeli-Palestinian peace that for a while he seemed to be here each weekend. If only the perfect wording and map could be found, according to this thinking, if only both sides could be given the right dose of carrots and sticks, peace could ensue.
To someone here in Israel, all of this is harder and harder to understand. There isn’t an Israeli-Palestinian conflict in the way that many outsiders seem to think, and this perception gap is worth spelling out. It has nothing to do with being right-wing or left-wing in the American sense. To borrow a term from the world of photography, the problem is one of zoom. Simply put, outsiders are zoomed in, and people here in Israel are zoomed out. Understanding this will make events here easier to grasp.
International Left: A political leaning so distasteful in Israel that the Left is nearly extinct. Netanyahu, a perfect storm of a politician, remarks that his opponent Benny Gantz “leans to the left.”
Deal of the Century: Trump is a fellow White Supremacist, “subject of fascination of many governments…” Trump’s interests do not include any measurable intellectual curiosity. Trump is just another convenient tool — Obama was considerably too melanin-rich, but he delivered the 3.8 billion in funding to allow the largest per-capita military prowess to eke along, to scrape a respectable secure “defense” that now includes the ethnical-cleansing maiming marvel: butterfly bullets.
John Kerry: He knows what war is, he knows who Trump is, he successfully completed the difficult negotiations with Iran — a country without nuclear weapons. Israel gets to have it both ways: nuclear weapons? Yes, No, Maybe, Meh. “Hey, what’s happening over there?” No, it’s what’s happening here, we’re picking your plump wallet.
Perfect Wording : Who is your new friend there? I hear he comes from a good Saud family (the only country in the world run by a single family.
… a political leaning so distasteful in Israel that the Left is nearly extinct.
I include myself among those who sense that a long, deep and deadly conflict has extended into the longest and most threatening conflict in at least the last several centuries. I was eight-months old in May 14, 1948, but have only been paying close attention to the conflict/non-conflict since the mid 1960s.
The population of Palestine/Israel has reached parity, there are as many Palestinians as Israelis within the same geography. Israel has managed to eliminate any remote semblance of a two-state solution with a divide and occupy strategy:
Maintaining an apartheid wall
“Withdrawing” from the Gaza Testing Range and Petri dish
Nota Bene Too: The phrase “security for the Jews” has been consecrated as an exclusive synonym for “the lessons of the Holocaust.” It is what allows Israel to systematically discriminate against its Arab citizens. For 40 years, “security” has been justifying control of the West Bank and Gaza and of subjects who have been dispossessed of their rights living alongside Jewish residents, Israeli citizens laden with privileges. — Amira Hass
It’s always a good day to learn something you did not know before, but it’s a better day when you learn things that confound your complacency and introduce you to post-Santa compassion.
There is a soundbite for every event taught in American classrooms — 90% of history curricula are either grossly twisted, are outright sanctified falsehoods, or are events not complimentary to sensitive Whiteous feelings: the eighth deadly sin.
Genocide on American soil is slathered over with sugary white icing before it can meet publishing standards established in Texas. Before Columbus, Indigenous Americans were a tapestry of tribes. Should they be thankful for Western Evilization?
Blacks lived in the tapestry that was Africa before the Europeans arrived. Should they be thankful for being saved by the generous very nice plantation system that offered better? Better Lives Through Slavery?
Somehow most White genealogies trace back to families that were very very nice to their slaves. Who the hell ever learns about the Black Stock Market of Greenwood, OK that was burned to cinders in 1921? What of their American dream?
Fox News doesn’t have to be your only source for faux news, you can turn the channel, change the dial, read a “newspaper of record” and mislearn about current regime changes in the process. Perhaps you watch, perhaps you hear, perhaps you think you know about what happens in Venezuela. Here is something by Greg Palast that inspired me, something I promised to post: In Venezuela, White Supremacy is a Key Driver of the Coup.
Additional unnerving, disturbing, real-time coverage is available at Shelby Courtland dot com. Truth can be unsettling sometimes.
Most people do not even participate in their own lives, life happens in an autonomic way — if you prefer that the cranium function as autonomically as breathing, it will do so. Existing-While-Black, Existing-While-Palestinian, Existing-While-LGBQT+, Existing-While-Living InMyNeighborhood? Cognitive dissonance happens. I think myself a cognitive dissonancer because I am a lightning rod for the cognitively dissonanced. You must learn to expect such when you speak for the most exploited among us, and I even include all sentient animal beings among the most exploited. Factory farms really are death camps. It’s always a good day to eschew blood-laden “resources” — for all parties involved, both the muncher and the munched.
Avoiding television frees up the time to think independently, in my opinion. The tube/screen has always been a popular passive way to address boredom, a popular alternative to thinking, a stress-reducing mechanism. Propagandists, marketers and people like DJT know how to direct their messages to target audiences by any means possible, such as eye-scanning apps that detect minute movements in a supermarket, process the scanned data at the checkout, and follow you home. Technology is very good. Technology is very bad.
The Confederate Corporations of America announced additional wealth-management relief measures in its evolving mission statement. Most of the changes replace misleading names through the Confederate Truth in Governizing Act.
The misleading term “Partial Government Shutdown” becomes “The Parting-out of Government Share Act.” Funds previously misdirected to wasteful departments and agencies now funnel up into wealth-management relief services.
Public Service Announcement:
The Earth was doing just fine before environmentalists decided to take things in their own hands to bury a car, hug a tree, eat miso soup… If you worry about global warming, act locally to raise money through bake sales, lemonade stands or garage sales. We all have to die from something, so stop worrying.
SNAP miscreants may now be served directly at the supermarket. Participants of the new redemption program will find comfortable picnic tables behind the markets. The marginally-edible product otherwise destroyed becomes available for miscreants, and supermarkets get a boost to their profit margin — a win/win situation for everyone. Two more wins: the picnic tables are near the waste-storage units and may be used by lower-level miscreants after hours. Resource units who previously collected a paycheck at an eliminated agency may now apply for food-distribution facilitator positions.
Changes at the Top
The Decisionator Branch of Government becomes the one and only Branch, heading all governing arms and phalli.
The Legitimating Department transcribes tweets tapped by the Decisionator, now recognized as “The Intent to Govern.” Citizenship rights are allocated according to the principle “one dollar, one vote.”
The Originalist Court interprets tweet laws to ensure that they serve the intent of the Whiteous framers of the Constitution and The Natural Law: citizenship by dint of property and wealth.
The First Amendment is repealed so that the Second Amendment can become The First, perhaps the only. The scales of Lady Justice are money wasters. The officer on the beat knows how to color between the lines. Questionable police actions are no longer officially disdained.
Cheese Corp recognizes a new CEO at Foxconn. Welcome, Scott Walker!
Hollywood Corp has announced its new license-plate slogan: In Gaud We Trust.
Did you know that there are currently Thirteen Corporations in America? Yes, one for each star on the New Confederate Flag.
Western Civilization celebrates roots that extend to the Eastern Mediterranean, a body of water once surrounded by the Roman Empire. When that empire imploded, the power vacuum filled the remnant structure with fresh blood. One such pulsing corpus was Christianity — one authored by a former Roman citizen: Saul before his metamorphosis. There is no compelling historical evidence to suggest that Peter coauthored with Paul in Rome. I agree with Jewish scholar Hyam Maccoby: The Mythmaker: Paul and the Invention of Christianity for the argument that Peter had traveled to the east as far as Baghdad, but he had never ventured west of Palestine. The Roman Catholic Church relies upon an apostolic rock, but she freely admits that its reality anchors on Tradition and the Magisterium — historical facts notwithstanding.
The Eastern Mediterranean coastline describes the shortest path between Africa and Eurasia. An incomparable piece of real estate, not what I would call a swamp, though some have: Unfortunately, It Was Paradise. Palestine is sacred soil for the three monotheistic faiths that declare solemn roots at that Eastern confluence, that Holy Land, that stomping grounds of patriarch Ibrahim. Although Ishmael was Ibrahim’s eldest son, he was also the “illegitimate” son of a slave girl known by Ishmael’s father. Isaac was the “legitimate” son of non-enslaved Sara. Islam recognizes Ishmael as the elder son of Ibrahim.
You can read about it in a Qur’an near you. In fact, you may find any number of interpretations freely available online. However, I recommend that you consider an interpretation carefully. My personal copy is a translation by Abdel Haleem: The Qur’an.
I attended an interfaith program that included a local well respected and knowledgeable Imam. A seething attendee slammed his personal copy of “The Holy Koran” onto the table. His question: “Do you know what this book says?” The Imam responded: “It depends upon the translation.” Would you accept a Bible translation that recounts the poisoning of the loaves, the tainting of the wine?
Radical Google® Searches
“Radical Christian Terrorism” (About 9,310 results (0.66 seconds) )
Native Americans, African Americans, and Palestinians share something that Northern Europeans do not: a skin too red, too black or too olive (a characteristic of humans from the sun-rich climate.
That’s an unforgivable crime if racism is your touchstone. Why are Biblical personalities depicted with impossibly Northern European features, such as blue eyes, fair skin, an athletic countenance? Who were the original authors of the Torah, the Bible, the Qur’an? Is that a loaded question? They were Semitic peoples who spoke Semitic languages.
Why does Islam honor Ishmael? What did he do to deserve exile? The Judeo-Christian tradition honors Isaac. What’s up with that? I’ll check that out and get back to you, I have to get to the dirty dishes first, they’re over there in the sink.
Nota bene: The wilder the spurious translation of the Qur’an, the wider is it circulated, the ever endless is it immortalized by false witnesses.
Making stuff up to stoke an agenda is dishonest. It weakens your credibility. Just saying.
Living a vegan lifestyle is its own reward: it is personally satisfying, it improves your personal health and stamina, it rights the injustice of generational theft and recognizes the inalienable right of all sentient beings to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Being outnumbered 33 to 1 doesn’t erase that simple fact of life and death.
Yes the very word “vegan” often elicits quite a reaction from non-vegans — sometimes a shudder, sometimes a groan, sometimes a laugh.
…and y’all make the rest of us sick because we were created to eat meat and to have dominion over the appetizing entrees on the land, in the sea and in the air. That includes hunting, butchering and fashion. All fair game.
I consider myself a citizen of an Earth without boundaries, a planet where one-citizen one-vote includes all sentient beings — those yet wild and free and those imprisoned without charge in slaughter houses.
I’ve just finished reading an article by Dr. Will Tuttle. It appeared in a helpful and useful resource — one written with earthy sustainability as a goal: One Green Planet. There you may enjoy a bunch of greenish suggestions for halting the crime of generational theft
How can spiritual teachers be meat eaters? Well, most people searching for spiritual insight are not yet vegan, but that long arc leading from here to full rights for the 75 billion units served per annum? It’s way out there: way, way — but gets closer with each non-meat bite.
From experience I know that you may have to hit proverbial rock-bottom before turning the train-wreck of your existence around. The clear and present threat to vegans as well as non-vegans is not found in the news. Most news organizations are either corporately owned or corporately sponsored, advertising is their lifeblood. An endless flow of 40′ containers course their way on the open sea. When you buy cheap eye-candy manufactured of plastic, your purchase triggers an order to a factory. What’s the harm of that?
you are most likely sanctioning human trafficking.
you are contributing to further global warming
you are consuming the limited amount of biomass of a past extinction event.
the eye-candy goes to a landfill, but it eventually ends up in the oceans to maim, kill and pollute: from phytoplankton to the formerly land-based whales. Whales are highly intelligent fellow mammals who fared better in the ocean because their legs didn’t evolve very well.
Old plastics don’t die, and they don’t just fade away —they go on to kill the creatures downstream who were around before “civilization” arrived to kill all not already marked for cull. Culling is killing.
Generational Theft. It’s as unreported and as stark as the deaths of 75 billion sentient beings each year. Leave the grand kids to fend for themselves.
The futures market is a place to earn a return on livestock before they become deadstock. Pork belly futures go up and down, but the pigs heading to market only go down — they asked for it by dint of yumminess. Don’t forget the little piggy that had roast beef, the little piggy that had none (or tofu, it’s the same thing isn’t it?).
Dr. Tuttle asks a direct question on a puzzling state of affairs. The incredible made credible, the inexplicable explicated.
“While it’s relatively easy to bemoan and blame corrupt politicians, greedy bankers, and sociopathic decision makers in the military-industrial complex for our woes, the obvious and undeniable fact is that these leaders and power brokers are, inevitably, an accurate mirror of the consciousness of we the people. Attempting to improve the quality of our leaders without improving the quality of ourselves is an exercise in futility.”
The vast majority of physicians eat meat, but that circumstance is changing rapidly as more homo sapiens arrive at the epiphany that convinces former meat-eaters to eschew body-parts, to realize that we’re on the way to a day when homo sapiens refrain from wiping out entire ecosystems at a time. Ecosystems have died out in five previous extinction events, creating your own such event is not something to brag about. So, what do each of those events hold in common? Carbon dioxide induced glass house effect. Sustainable lifestyles not tied to fossil fuels do not fuel the greenhouse effect.
In closing, let’s see what the doctor ordered. I found the following in WebMD, the largest pile in the waiting room.
“But if your vegetarian co-worker is noshing greasy veggie burgers and fries every day for lunch, is he likely to be healthier than you, who always orders the grilled salmon? Definitely not!” — WebMD
The WebMD article does not mention that the salmon is culled from an increasingly threatened ecosystem. It probably did not want to end up on the patient’s or physician’s plate in the first place.
The persons most affected by a decision are always the last to be informed of that decision. The Palestinians are the persons most affected by Trump’s nod to Netanyahu. But:
Jerusalem has always been the capital of Palestine.
“There’s no such thing as a Palestinian,” said Mark Levin on Monday, while broadcasting from Israel. “They’re Arabs. I’m sorry, they can call themselves Palestinians, or Palestinian Arabs – I don’t even know what that means.”
By 2020 there will be more Palestinians than Israelis inhabiting the same geography. Israel didn’t even exist before May 14, 1948.
“The May 19 Metro article ‘Judge: Terror suspect’s words can be used at trial’ stated that a terrorism suspect’s parents “immigrated from Palestine.” Last I heard, there has been no peace accord between Israel and the Palestinian Authority resulting in a country called Palestine. For people who immigrated after 1948, it is factually incorrect to state that they “immigrated from Palestine.” Herbert Chubin, Bethesda
In 1948 700,000 unarmed Palestinians were driven by well armed soldiers into a diaspora that continues to this day. Palestinians only possessed arms inherited upon the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire — pretty much all the armaments they have today.
De facto Israel is America’s 51st State, or at least its second District. Puerto Rico is a territorial island inhabited by a people with skin too brown for racist tastes. The Israeli ideal appears to be Northern European, fair of skin and akin to the skin favored by most empires.
Where do the Palestinians stand in Trump’s estimation? Well, what grabs his attention? Trump is as decisive as he is incompetent. POTUS 45 is every bit as racist and corrupt as POTI 12, by any ethical measure. Each president denies the racism behind their actions. Trump envies Netanyahu’s wall and Israeli engineering firms bid for Trump’s dream barrier. Ethiopian Jews try to attain Aliya but can’t get past detention centers. Both blame Islam: Radical Islamic Terrorism but ignore White Supremacists’ terror aimed at Muslims and the survivors of slavery: America’s Black population.
Netanyahu uses his intelligence, and the intelligence at his disposal, to remain in office. Trump doesn’t have enough intelligence to function as an adult. He knows what corrupts absolutely and he grooms it. He’s far closer to a Caligula than any previous President.
I doubt that Trump could find Jerusalem on a world globe, but he has Fox and Friends to cover that from behind their coffee table. They have his ears and the dark matter between those ears. F&F spur him on to spurt his soul-deadening tweets, his talking points.
The last two empires to make global choices for Palestine have been English-speaking realms with world-counquering ambitions. In 1948 the former imperious spoke the Queen’s English. They passed the baton to the next imperial deciders, the ones who speak English American style.
The United States had already ethnically cleansed indigenous Americans who stood in their way since the arrival of Columbus (notable racist) to today. The 50 states carved into North America arrived by dint of legally sanctioned genocide. Manifest Destiny squeezed life blood from sea to shining sea — State by flagged-star State.
History is always written by the conquerer. Of course “mistakes were made,” but their monotheistic God did favor the features of the Northern Europe didn’t he? Jesus, Mary and The Father depicted with European features and a skin lightened by many cloudy days.
Let’s take a look at how the English speakers ordained the ancient land of Palestine, home for three aspects of a monochromatic God in situ. Each find a place in respective scriptural scripts for the characters at play.
The sons and daughters of Ishmael find themselves at the crosshairs. 1.8 billion gentle worshipers are either “Radical Islamists” or they support “Radical Islamic Terrorism” because they honor the Quran. Is that beyond all possibility in 2017? No, homo sapiens are ever capable of reaching to any depth of depravity to attain greater depravity. Venture capital is always available to fund decadence, be you a Drumpf or a Caligula.
Children as young as 12 enter the Israeli prison system if they throw a single rock, or an IDF soldier merely states that the youth threw a stone.
Were it not for the United States of America (and the Marshall Islands) the Palestinians would already have a homeland, one recognized by the world community.
This is the second segment in a continuing dialogue between an Israeli (Mike) and an American (Bill) — it is an ongoing email conversation, dialogue text is copied verbatim. The first segment appeared here as Palestine/Israel/Palestine.
July 29, 2017 (Mike to Bill)
Was talking to my wife this morning on what I was trying to explain and her comment was that it is impossible to have a dialogue with people that believe they are victims. In our neck of the woods that would definitely mean what children are taught in kindergarten and school. Then I suppose to compound this we have families marrying first cousins to keep family control of their wealth. This has indeed caused some deterioration in IQ and introduced birth defects that are not helpful specially when no pre-natal screening is available. Or as in the case of America religion doesn’t allow veterans to get pain relief by using marijuana extracts that are specially formulated for pain without the buzz. In Israel they are very successful at isolating parts of hemp and marijuana to deal with many health problems that “normal” medicine cannot help. Actually talking to you has created a sort of introspection that wasn’t around before.
If you can’t solve problems what are you supposed to do? Maybe there is a higher power and karma was created to interact on a planet that was like the locked room game. Maybe we are looking at things the wrong way?
Sorry for all the posts but it is like a ball of wool unravelling before your eyes.
Sunday in Israel is a normal day so enjoy yours
July 30, 2017 (Bill to Mike)
I have indeed followed coverage on Sergeant Azaria. Hebron is a hell on Earth, particularly for the Palestinians who still live there. I watched a John Pilger documentary “Palestine is still the issue” on this town, filmed about a generation ago now. Shuhada Street is fenced right up against Palestinian homes. Looking through caged windows they get to see settlers, soldiers and holy land tourists glaring, shouting, tossing things, punching into doorways. Surreally dystopian. Shuhada was Hebron’s main street.
I listen for mention of Palestine on a range of news media, but virtually nothing outside official government channels is reported. I listen to any number of pitches for holy land tours. How can any of them not mention a word about the Apartheid Wall. The independent street artist Banksy does a good job though. There is that.
Imagine being evicted from you house in the Palestine of 1948, then being occupied where you sought refuge in 1967, then to have your house in the occupied territories rehabbed or razed by a tsunami of settlers. How about children looking through a fence to see settler children playing in a yard they once played in, to read “Gas all Arabs” graffiti everywhere, having your bedroom door broken down at 2:00 in the morning by IDF soldiers and then brought in for questioning, wetting your pants in the process.
Despite all that humiliation, their population will soon outnumber non-Palestinians in what was formerly a colony of the British Empire. Despite regular bombing, the population density in Gaza only increases. There are no places to hide and invoking the all-explaining five letters H A M A S does not justify it. Would you not resist?
Here’s my question for a Sunday — What’s the truth on white-phosphorous bombs on Gaza?
But I still wish you, and all you hold dear, the very best in these rapidly approaching days of August, be they august or not.
July 30, 2017 (Mike to Bill):
Hi Bill – there is some truth in what you say but a bit one-sided. I used to know Hebron pretty well and if you are interested let me tell you about my monthly stints in Hebron when I happened to be there. My recollections are sharp but the when is a bit muddled. In 1929 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1929_Hebron_massacre I have an interesting story. The first time I was in Hebron we were encamped on a hill near Hebron. We were waiting to go out on patrol – the weather was amazingly good. One of the soldiers told us that his grand-father and grand-mother was one of the few Jews to manage to escape the massacre. Fast forward to 1967 and one day a convoy of cars from the West Bank pulled up outside his parent’s house on aSaturday morning when the whole family was at home. One of the Arab guys introduced himself and explained that his grand-father had rented out their home the left in Hebron and brought him the rent in Jordanian Dinars. Seems his grand-parents helped the soldier’s family to escape. Some history (I didn’t know a lot written here) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hebron in Israel the land deeds are kept in the Tabu office – Tabu is a Turkish word and written is who owned what and when. For example Tel-Romeda next to the very large Jewish cemetery. One of the most intelligent people I loved to have coffee with actually two – one was a rabbi that lived in a caravan home there as the land was owned by Jews and his next door neighbour a very smart guy that owned a shoe shop in town. The rabbi was murdered but the other guy – his family owned the Jewish cemetery and often we would sit on the wal drinking coffee and we would joke about what is he supposed to do with the land as the 99 year lease had expired a long time ago. At my time the mayor of Hebron Jabori – had a grand-child that converted to Judaism and married a French woman (arranged) in Jerusalem. He later became quite a famous rabbi. There were Israelis that married Arab women and had to live in Israel as they could have been in danger. Lots of Arab men married Jewish women. Love is love.
In Tel-Aviv you cannot tell who is who anymore. Back to Hebron. I was once the sergeant in charge of the Patriarch’s tomb. Of course prayers was a problem with different rooms at different times and being a bit naïve I started to become blonde. Early morning prayers were conducted with the Arabs in the big hall and the Jews were allowed to use a small room with a connecting door to the big room until 7am. Of course both sides drove me crazy by opening the door before7am and anything else they could do to make my life miserable. They were all like kids. So one morning I visited the local hardware store and bought a hasp and staple plus medium sized lock and a few screws and a screw driver. That night I installed the hardware and waited for the morning. The lock was by the way on the Arab side because there was more light there. Next morning both sides of the door started talking to each other and complained about me to the military governor no less. He came over and I couldn’t believe my eyes the Arabs and the Jews were kneeling on the floor with little brushes and were collecting the wood dust (I couldn’t see any) from the floor. So when they decided they had it all I had to remove the hardware and with prayers in bot Arabic and Hebrew these crazy people so called replaced the dust with some glue. I was severely reprimanded for destroying the door and they all grudgingly agreed to drop this serious – whatever it was. Now forgive me for telling you in my mind the people there deserve each other and would be heart-broken if either side upped and left. Another thing when I was street patrol sometimes young girls would invite us to tea (not coffee) and they would sit inside the garden gate and we sat on the pavement. That is how I prefer to remember Hebron not the throwing Molotov cocktails at our jeeps nor some of the Jews that thought they owned the place. But Bill there is not only one side to this story. Once there was no wall and my daughter’s bus was blown up twice (no 16 in Jerusalem) both times she walked instead. How many time times I had to go and look for my daughter at the hospital as I didn’t know she walked home. Israel specially asked the Jordan king to stay out of the war – but he shelled Jerusalem. Anyway in 1948 he invaded the place.
So much more but I think I may have lost you J
The following response originally appeared in a comment thread here.
August 3, 2017 (Bill to Mike):
…your firsthand personal experience in Hebron is of great interest to me and I look forward to hearing more. To every extent possible I try to follow this maxim: listen to “the other” before formulating a response, mull the other’s words before responding, then speak truth as you know it. I do not often succeed, but the maxim is still wise.
In my opinion, Wikipedia is better at topics that are not “hot button” ones, ones that do not serve agendas. Here is a single example:
type in “Hasbara” and you are not taken to a page titled “Hasbara.” Rather, you are taken to a page titled “Public diplomacy of Israel.” Before that it was “Public diplomacy in Israel.” Before that it was “Public diplomacy — Israel.” Why does it not take you to a page titled “Hasbara”?
This is a developing dialogue, additional conversations will appear in a future post.
Longtime racist Jefferson Beauregard Sessions is failing Donald, our first orange president. JBS faced the sycophant’s dilemma when he recused himself from certain Senate hearings — how do you cover your ass while performing a scaramooch?
DJT only has eyes for himself and the adoring eyes of his sycophants. Every moment of his life spent on a loving consideration for his own countenance, his mirror mythologically faithful. Is it his fate to starve in a chamber oval? Famous fingers turning everything to gold?
W set a low bar for his predecessors, while his intellectual curiosity appeared slight the guy actually read the printed word. Mr. Orange’s intellectual curiosity celebrates the perpetuation of ignorance in the ultimate bully pulpit. We have a president who is functionally illiterate.
Awakening to nightmare is daily doom. I take solace in the company of my peers, thank you kind readers 🙂
The document, an internal announcement to the civil rights
division, seeks current lawyers interested in working for
a new project on “investigations and possible litigation
related to intentional race-based discrimination in college
and university admissions.”
45 is the original birther. Obama called him out at a White House Correspondents’ Dinner — history may note this as the event that ignited the movement for orange-rights.
Did you know that elected officials take an oath to protect the Constitution upon assuming public office? Amendments to that constitution serve to redress imbalances, to make it a living document. But not to originalists like Antonin Scalia, his apprentice Neil Gorsuch et al.
Originalism codifies raciesm in perpetuity. All men white and male propertied in land and propertied in slaves are created equal. Inalienable white-right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
Equal protection under the law did not exist before the constitution was deliberately amended to include that right. The bookshelf containing the holy writ and relicts read by originalists is very short.
You’re probably one of those animal-rights freaks too, are you?
The American version of slavery defined slavehood as extending into perpetuity. Once a slave, or the progeny of a slave, a branding for life.