Saturday, January 19, 2008

Between Jerusalem and Bondi Beach

Greg Sheridan has an interesting road story in the Australian where he describes his trip to Israel. Three of his observations struck an immediate chord with me. The smallness of Israel; the daily intermingling of Jewish and Islamic life -- with the Islamic life protected; and the casual and universal possession of arms. The miniature size of Israel is almost laughable to those accustomed to the vast, often vacant Australian landscape.

For an Australian it is almost impossible to imagine the smallness of the distances involved. Gilot was routinely fired on by snipers in Bethlehem several years ago, and so, well before the security fence was put up, Gilot had its own system of walls and shields, especially for children's playgrounds. For Gilot to be fired on from Bethlehem is like Sydney's Surry Hills being fired on from Redfern, or Richmond being fired on from the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

The distance from Redfern to Surry Hills is so short you'd walk between them to buy a sandwich. Sheridan was also struck by the sight of Bedouins encamped in Israel. Bedouins! Some of them probably serve in the IDF, too, along with other Israeli Muslims. One of the more interesting sounds of early morning Jerusalem is the sound of the call to prayer from the Al-Aqsa mosque that floats over the capital of Israel. Finally, Sheridan describes the omnipresence of firearms. "On the day I visit, a group of American Jewish teenagers are there as part of a program to acquaint diaspora Jewish youth with their cultural heritage. They are the normal loud-mouthed, good natured, overbearing American kids. The only odd thing about them is that they are accompanied by two security guards, in this case Israeli girls who look barely older than the teenagers they are guarding and carry rifles as tall as themselves."

Halfway through the article I realized that without meaning to, Sheridan was talking about Australia as much as he was about a distant Middle Eastern country: from the gum trees which Israel imported from Down Under to flourish in their swamps, and which give parts of it the aspect of the Aussie countryside to the a description residents of Gush Etzion who have come "even from Australia, even from Bondi Beach." That last reference contains a bit of inside baseball. Bondi is the site of one of the larger Jewish communities in Sydney. Sheridan was talking about the connections between the vast antipodean continent and the cradle of civilization.

The direct extent of that connection is surprisingly small. Census figures suggest that between one and two percent of the Australian population was born in the Middle East. And surprisingly, most of the Arabs who migrated to Australia were non-Muslims:

While the great majority of Arabs in the world are Muslims, most immigrants from the Middle East in Australia are Christians (most Muslim immigrants come from other parts of the world) ... many Arabic speakers in Australia who have migrated from Egypt, Lebanon, Iraq, and Syria belong to various Christian denominations and may describe themselves as, for example, Copts, Maronites, Jacobites (Syrian Orthodox), Chaldeans and Nestorians.

But the Middle East has been on the frontline of Australian foreign policy for more than century. The 10th Australian Light Horse were the first troops to enter Jerusalem during the Great War. And while the rest of the world may worry about Armageddon, Australia behind its dreamy beaches, doesn't fret much. Australians already fought there -- literally -- in 1918.

For Sheridan, the talismanic connection is the gum tree. "In a land of stark, powerful and sometimes bizarre images, as Israel is, perhaps the most ghostly for an Australian are the countless gum trees that populate Israel, the north especially. Israelis brought in the gum trees to drain the swamps. Now they are not so sure whether the fast-growing and thirsty trees are an ecological plus or not. But these exotic Australian settlers in the land of the Bible are now too numerous to eradicate, and too beautiful. Their presence is almost surreal in the much bombed and fought over land of Israel. But the gum trees are friendly, especially to an Australian visitor. It's as if a single ghost gum represents every Australian soldier who ever fell in the Middle East, through all the many decades that Australian soldiers have been fighting and dying there."

It's a long way from Bondi Beach, but maybe not as far as we think.


Blogger Chavo said...

Allright Wretchard, I give up...

What movie is this film clip from????

1/19/2008 05:16:00 PM  
Blogger Wretchard said...

Probably from this movie, The Lighthorsemen.

1/19/2008 05:38:00 PM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

I've talked before about offering the Israeli's their very own country in America, or just giving them Mexico since no one is doing much with that land any way. And then poisoning and nuking what is Israel now, before giving it back to the dreadful Pal's, with all best wishes for a warm and productive future.

I'm going to change that, however, and suggest that we give the Israeli's the interior of Australia, a vast and also sun-burnt place that no one is doing much with.

I like the thought of Australian and Israeli energy together under the sun, having fun and moving forward.

1/19/2008 05:46:00 PM  
Blogger Mastiff said...


As much as I appreciate the sentiment behind your proposal, the British offered us a vast amount of territory in their African possessions (what was then called Uganda, much larger than the modern state of the same name), and we turned them down.

Here's an example of why.

Israel is our home. That's worth fighting for.

The true danger is that Israeli society is being infected by the Leftist violence of postcolonial guilt. The very idea of any other state on the planet giving up over half of the total territory under its control, as Israel did with the Sinai, and then giving up even more, in exchange for empty promises and rockets, would be laughable.

1/19/2008 06:27:00 PM  
Blogger Mastiff said...

Err, Leftist virus, that is.

Though the end effect is quite violent as well.

1/19/2008 06:29:00 PM  
Blogger tckurd said...

I'd always figured we could give them Texas.

The problem is the Dead Sea. Mexico has many dead waterways but it's a different dead.

Do you think they'd go for a climate change? I'm starting to eye Canada and methinkins it would be much safer to have Israel to our north than the current backstabbers.

1/19/2008 06:37:00 PM  
Blogger whiskey_199 said...

The Muslim objection to Israel is not land. Otherwise there would have been a deal decades ago.

The Muslim objection is to Jews period existing. See Buenos Aires Jewish Cultural Center bombing in 1994. By Hezbollah and Iran. Rafsanjani and others currently serving in the Iranian govt are under indictment in Argentina for the same and there is an arrest warrant out for them. Or perhaps Leon Klinghoffer, wheelchair bound but a Jew. Shot dead and dumped overboard on the Achille Lauro. This is the Muslim response to Jews everywhere and anywhere. Israel existing or not will never change it.

The only choice for Jews is to fight back, or wait silently for the knife.

1/19/2008 06:48:00 PM  
Blogger What is "Occupation" said...

I advocate the forced removal of all islamic arabs from all lands except arabia, all iranians from all lands except iran. This would also include turks, pakis & any other black rocker.

Of course there is an exemption, any persons of islamic origin that wishes to stay outside of arabia, iran or pakistan (ect) would have to make a public statement swearing that Mohamed is no better than jesus, ghandi, moses or buddha. The would also have swear fidelity to the state over their faith.

Am I being extreme?


this is a samuel huntington issue whether we agree to listen or not...

Israel is is the problem, not borders

islam is NOT compatible with any other culture if it is NOT in charge...

1/19/2008 07:26:00 PM  
Blogger Fat Man said...

Nahncee: I too have thought about this. I think Tasmania would be a better deal. It is not very populated. There are almost no Aborigines. It is out of they way and an island, so there would be fewer issues with cultural and political autonomy.

The real question would be how many Palestinians would die in the ensuing riots after the Jews left. Also, what would the Arabs blame their problems on then?

In his recent novel "Yiddish Policeman's Union" Michael Chabon imagines a world where Israel is destroyed in 1948 and the remaining Jews are settled around Sitka Alaska.

If you think about it. The Jews in Israel are in a more secure position now than they were through most of the 20th Century.

1/19/2008 07:50:00 PM  
Blogger Fred said...

what is occupation,

Even forswearing would not be enough. Are you familiar with the tactics of jihad called taqiyya and kitman? Yes, al illah says that Muslims are permitted deception and lying to the enemies of Islam in order to advance the jihad.

And that's why it's so hard to trust their word.

As for Israel... well, it's obvious that this has nothing to do with the land. Under Islamic doctrine, no part of the Ummah may be ceded to the infidels without a fight. It's a religious obligation. And they are religiously vowed to killing the Jews (and unbelievers)wherever they may find them.

Anybody taking bets for when the usual anti-Jewish contributors are going to catch on to this thread?

1/19/2008 08:55:00 PM  
Blogger eggplant said...

Mastiff said:

"...the British offered us a vast amount of territory in their African possessions (what was then called Uganda, much larger than the modern state of the same name), and we turned them down...[].. Israel is our home. That's worth fighting for.."

The Jewish leaders made a huge error in chosing to be surrounded by Jew hating religious fanatics. The Jews can never let their guard down or make a major mistake. They can never allow themselves the moment of weakness of being governed by pacifist moonbats (a trap that almost all democracies fall into eventually). To survive, the Jews must maintain a high state of military readiness forever. This is a crazy situation that they have put themselves into.

1/19/2008 09:06:00 PM  
Blogger eggplant said...

Fred said:

"Under Islamic doctrine, no part of the Ummah may be ceded to the infidels without a fight. It's a religious obligation. And they are religiously vowed to killing the Jews (and unbelievers)wherever they may find them."

Spain and Greece (under the Turks) were once under the Ummah. However Jew hating is also a part of Islamic doctrine. Therefore Israel represents a special case.

1/19/2008 09:11:00 PM  
Blogger Fred said...


The Muslim savages are quietly (sometimes not so quietly)working on getting the Iberian Peninsula back. As for Greece, I think they'll try going in the back door through the former Yugoslavia and Albania. They're working on it. Give them time.

1/19/2008 09:44:00 PM  
Blogger Peter Grynch said...

Found on the Net:

Land cannot possibly be the contentious issue as the Arab and Muslim states in the region already have 800 times as much territory as Israel. The Arabs have 50 times the population of Israel. The Arabs have all of the oil reserves of the region. They have 21 states of their own, all varying shades of police states. It's difficult to imagine how one more will bring peace to a region that has known some of the most devastating and costly wars of the last century.

No one talks about the staggering number of Arab Jewish refugees, as many as 1 million, who fled the Muslim world with little more than the clothes on their backs to reach the safety and security of the Jewish state in the last 50 years.

When they vote with their feet, Arabs seem to love Israel. They continue to choose it as a place to live over life in their native countries as they have for the last half-century.

I'd love to hear one of the Arab nationalists explain this phenomenon.

1/19/2008 10:22:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Russia’s military chief of staff, General Yuri Baluyevsky, warned yesterday that Moscow could use nuclear weapons in "preventive strikes in the event of a major threat against Russia or her allies".

Israel, i think, is the target of the threat, coming as it did a day or so after Israeli Minister of Foreign Affairs Tzipi Livni had departed Moscow, having been cold-shouldered by the Russians in her attempt to prepare for next Tuesday's UN meeting on the Iranian nuke issue.

I'm surprised all this hasn't made bigger news.

I guess the NV & SC primaries are blanking everything out in our stateside media.

But it's a major departure into new territory, I'm afraid.

1/19/2008 10:54:00 PM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

Russia's been huffing and puffing about its nukes since 1955. Given their national crash a number of years ago, and their rapid decline since then, I wonder exactly how many functioning nukes (or the missiles to deliver them) Ivan still has.

Russia hasn't been able to win a war in AFghanistan nor in Chechnya, so why on earth would Israel be afraid of them, especially if Ivan knows that America *does* have functioning everything and would be very very unhappy if our exremely good ally Israel was bombed by a stupid Russian ex-KGB agent.

Stick to radioactive poison, Putin. It's what you're good at. That and selling defective nukes to tin pot dictators who are stupid enough to trust you in a deal.

I refuse to take Russia's posturing or threats seriously, and I can't imagine that the Israeli's would either.

1/19/2008 11:09:00 PM  
Blogger Fidel said...

The film clip is indeed from "The Lighthorsemen". What appears a cavalry charge wasn't one. The Lighthorsemen was a mounted infantry unit. The Lighthorsemen used their bayonets (reckon it was about as long as a "gladius", (WW I bayonets were longer than WW II's) the gladiator's sword, assault on the Turkish position.

Australians have always fought overseas: the Boer War in South Africa; Bersheeba in the Great War; north Africa, Oceania, and Southeast Asia in WW II; Vietnam; Iraq. Quite a people, I must say!

1/20/2008 05:21:00 AM  
Blogger Sgt. Mom said...

To answer chavo's question about what move the clip is from - I do believe it's from The Adventures of Young Indiana Jones - the Daredevils in the Desert episode. I just finished watching it for review; a TV series, but they spent a bomb on locations, extras and effects.

And there was an essay a couple of years ago (Matt Welch, I think!) who jokingly suggested buying Baja California from Mexoco and relocating Israel there, lock stock and barrel. Similiar climates, on the ocean, in the Western hemsiphere, and a hop-skip and a jump away from Los Angeles, New York and Miami.

But the thought of a gefilte-fish taco does take some getting used to.

1/20/2008 05:43:00 AM  
Blogger RWE said...

Eggplant: Note that modern Israel was created just after WWII, and the Jewish leaders no doubt thought that compared to what they experienced in Europe the age-old inter-Semite arguments were mild. And at least one Arab king welcomed them, saying “The Jews will make the desert bloom.” And he was right – and if they had not they probably would not be hated a quarter as much. Israel launches it’s own satellites and builds guidance computers that have been used in U.S. space boosters; the Arabs are as proud as punch of they can build a small rocket that can hit Israel on the other side of the fence.

I recall reading that Hitler initially endorsed a plan to deport all of the Jews of Europe to Madagascar before deciding to just kill them all. I don’t know how this is reconcilable with the Nazi mania for tracking down even the slightest percentage of Jewish heritage and eradicating it.

We have Australian Pines in Florida; there are a few stands of them within a short walk from my house and I am considering replanting one in my yard. There used to be a great many more but cold weather in the mid-80’s killed off the vast majority of them. Others were planted along roads but are now being cut down due to the supposed hazard they present. They do an impressive job of keeping out the underbrush.

1/20/2008 05:53:00 AM  
Blogger What is "Occupation" said...

Israel now has a 2 stage missile that can hit with a nuke anywhere in the world..

did i mention moscow?


did i mention the successful test was at the same moment that Russia was moving ships around the med?

1/20/2008 06:47:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

I hope Israel builds plenty of 'em. The next time the demons decide to send the Hebrews to Hell, the Hebrews can send the demons instead.

1/20/2008 07:19:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

As to preemption, the US has set that bar. The Standard that must reached before offensive action may be taken, by World Power, to secure the safety of itself and its' allies from any possible threat.

Set at a height much lower than Israel and its' WMD status has already obtained. Well beyond the WMD capabilities of either Iraq, Syria or Iran. Those three countries being advocated for preemtive attack by most posters, here at the Club. Two of which have already been attacked, preemptively.

Israel, a three bomb State, is going to take on the Bear?

That would assure its' destruction.

The mussulmen already have 100 warheads, which, as the past Dictator of Pakistan General Zia said in 1986 commenting on Pakistan's nuclear capability,
`It is our right to obtain the technology. And when we acquire this technology, the Islamic world will possess it with us.'

Add to that, Russias' 5,800 warheads, wi"o" advocates a policy for Israel that is a real case of beer muscles.

Israel now can maintain a MAD deterence against the mussulman capacity, but throw in the Bear, and MAD is no longer a viable strategy. Just a Sampson Option.

1/20/2008 08:52:00 AM  
Blogger What is "Occupation" said...

Add to that, Russias' 5,800 warheads, wi"o" advocates a policy for Israel that is a real case of beer muscles.

I advocate the concept that if Russia attacks israel, israel in it's last and dying breath will also use it's nukes to say a final fuck you to those who have tried to obliterate it

russia included

1/20/2008 09:01:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

That's the Sampson Option -- and why the hell not? I mean, it's just MAD, with an Auschwitz Corollary.

1/20/2008 09:17:00 AM  
Blogger Triton'sPolarTiger said...

Nicely put, Buddy.

1/20/2008 09:40:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

But it's not MAD capable against Russia.

Just a trigger for further possible conflict. Outside the global-zone of percolating violence.

The Israeli three Dolphin submarines, not having MAD capacity, against the Russians
Each Dolphin would reportedly be able to carry five modified Sub-Harpoons, with a range of 80 miles, as well as 16 torpedoes

Even assuming that each torpedo was a Popeye Turbo, those carry a 200 kg, 150 kilo ton warhead, with a maximum range of 1,500km, or 930 miles. That is only 48 missiles.
Leaving the Dolphins without any other conventional weaponry.

The Jericho2 missile, there are reportedly 50 of those that are operational.

The Jericho-II is reported to have a range of between 1,500 and 3,500 km, depending on payload weight. It is said to be deployed in underground caves and silos primarily at the Zachariah facility.

Much of the information about the Jericho-II has been gleaned from observation of launches of the Shavit space launch vehicle (SLV). The Shavit is a three-stage, solid-propellant launcher designed to carry payloads up to 250 kg into low earth orbit. It was speculated for some time that the first two stages of the Shavit were the Jericho-II. This was confirmed in 2001 when a spokesman for the Israeli Defense Forces admitted that the "Shavit is Jericho." Shavit launches are conducted from the Palmachim airbase near Tel Aviv. The first launch was in September 1988 and placed a satellite, the Ofeq-1, into orbit. The most recent launch was in June 2001 and placed the Ofeq-5 spy satellite in orbit.

The Jerico3, "Shavit" must be in very limited supply, or the Israeli would not be contracting their current spy satellite launches to India.

Perhaps a dozen, if they only have 50 Jericho2s

Do they expend those an southern Russia, or the mussulmen?

Delivery systems numbers

Shavit is Jericho

The Israeli do not have MAD capacity for both the mussulmen and Russia. They lack the delivery systems to reach Russia with enough throw weight for MAD.

1/20/2008 09:59:00 AM  
Blogger What is "Occupation" said...


you think to much

if israel is attacked by russia

one nuke per capital of every major arab country, plus iran, plus the oil fields, plus a few top 4 russian cities and/or natural gas/oil resources

that leaves several dozen left for other value rich targets...

your forgetting the concept of terror works both ways

1/20/2008 10:08:00 AM  
Blogger What is "Occupation" said...


i wasnt finished

who is to say israel doesnt hit india? thus assuring an indian response to pakistan?

who is to say that if russia hits israel israel doesnt use conventional weapons on Aswan?

No if the Jewish state is facing nuclear genocide, I am quite certain the world will not forget the pain of this in their ass for several thousand years..

MAD is not the issue...

But there will be no mecca or medina, nor any piece of shit dome of the rock...

there will be no middle eastern oil supplies...

there will be (if russia attacked israel) no great bear of the north

it wont be pretty....

but I as a jew, with high sperm count, and lot's of cash, buy me a few fertile nice shiskas to convert, impregnate and start the breeding over again...

after we are not able VOLUME, but ability...

1/20/2008 10:13:00 AM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

If Russia nukes Israel, doesn't that mean it's also nuked Bethlehem and some of the Arab's most precious historial relics?

Therefore, if Bethlehem was in smoking ruins, would Russia be facing both America for nuking our excellent allies AND a bunch of screaming Muslims -- RICH screaming Muslims -- for having taken out some of their rich religious historical sites?

I just can't see it. Israel is not a threat to the Bear, and why would Ivan stir up such a hornet's nest just for the fun of it?

1/20/2008 10:19:00 AM  
Blogger RWE said...

Desert Rat: Israel has contracted out launches to not only India but ….. Russia. Yes, believe it or not, Russia. Israel also partnered with a US firm, Coleman Aerospace, to offer a version of the Shavit to the U.S.

The problem is not the supply of Shavit boosters, but that Israel has a very narrow allowable launch corridor, which severely limits the orbits they can achieve. They can’t launch over any of the surrounding countries, since that would be too provocative, too hazardous, and might even start a war in the event of a launch failure. The launch corridor from Palmachim Air Base runs out over the Mediterranean and is a very narrow strip. The launch corridor defines the orbit that will result unless you have a really honkin’ big booster and can do plane changes. We probably would have no problem with letting them launch from Cape Canaveral, Vandenberg, or even Wallops, but they have not chosen to do that.

The fact that the Shavit is capable of achieving orbit indicates that the Jericho is very probably an ICBM rather than an theater ballistic missile like the Scud or an IRBM. As compared to the Jericho the Shavit has a 3rd stage solid motor with a 92 sec burn time. In the ICBM role the payload would be reduced somewhat over shorter ranges, but they probably could do it.

Also, don’t overlook the possibility of aircraft flying one way missions to deliver nukes.

1/20/2008 10:35:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

As long as we're shooting the breeze on all this, it's worth wondering, what exactly IS Russia but an enormous agglomeration of diverse peoples with diverse interests cast across the vast Eurasian plains and overlorded by a necessarily paranoid & authoritarian city of Moscow?

Whatever Jews were left over after the exchange would be drawn forever back to Israel for the obvious reasons that've stood now for going on four millennia, but who would rebuild Moscow -- and why would they want to?

Point is, there are other elements to this edition of MAD than are obvious at first look.

(hey, Triton --how're them rugrats doin'?)

1/20/2008 12:09:00 PM  
Blogger newscaper said...

I don't understand linking the Russian's statement about preemptive nukes to Israel.

Frankly I think its more related to the prospect of the US putting an ABM battery & radar on their doorstep in Eastern Europe.

FWIW I was all for Reagan putting the IRBMs in Europe, but putting ABMs practically on their border might perhaps actually be too provocative.

1/20/2008 12:16:00 PM  
Blogger eggplant said...

RWE said:

"I recall reading that Hitler initially endorsed a plan to deport all of the Jews of Europe to Madagascar before deciding to just kill them all. I don’t know how this is reconcilable with the Nazi mania for tracking down even the slightest percentage of Jewish heritage and eradicating it."

I have also read the story about the Nazis proposing Madagascar as a Jewish homeland. There's a slight possibility that the Nazis might have been serious about this early in the process of the Holocaust. However I suspect as the Holocaust went into high gear, Madagascar was merely a cover story that potential Jewish victims could tell each other as they noticed their neighbors disappearing.

I urge people to study the history of the Holocaust (there is an extensive literature out there). It's no easy thing to quietly and cost effectively exterminate millions of innocent people while waging war against the rest of the world.

1/20/2008 12:39:00 PM  
Blogger hdgreene said...

The Russian statement has to do with "the near abroad" and Iran giving up their nukes. Russia becomes the protector of Iran if it gives up on its nukes. The protector of everyone else if it doesn't.

If Iran goes for nukes they won't need Russia for a friend. Nor should Russia consider them one -- nor should anyone else in the region, for that matter.

I think now the Arabs want Israel to hang around for a while longer rather than move to the Outback or wherever. Twenty five years ago I was talking to a Jordanian army officer about security in the region and he kept referring to "allies" that Jordan plans and coordinates with. I asked him who the allies were. I was not surprised when he mentioned Israel as an ally.

Islam needs to convince the rest of the world that it can get along with everyone else in it. Genocide in Israel may not convey that message. A truce with Israel might. I would look for a ten to twenty year peace process that likely fails.

The best predictor of the future is the past.

Desert Rat said:

"As to preemption, the US has set that bar. The Standard that must reached before offensive action may be taken, by World Power, to secure the safety of itself and its' allies from any possible threat."

Any possible threat? There is much exaggeration about the American nation.

1/20/2008 12:53:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Cool info, didn't know that about the launch corridor. Did know about Russia, capitialists at heart, now, are they not.

Just seems to me, that the Israel's military capacity is continually over estimated. As exemplified in Lebanon, last go round.

No doubt that they can devastate the mussulmen in the Region, but also are assured of their own destruction if they do.

Those Islamic nukes do exist and also capable of delivery by one way ticket aircraft.
F16s, actually, as the Pakistani have already modified them and the Saudis can. Just a function of money, which they have in spades.

Supporters of Israel should tone down the rhetoric, or see Israel the target of preemption, themselves. They could easily meet the US Standard set in Iraq, or the Israeli Standard set in Syria.

Baiting a bear, one that has delivered 20% of Israel's population, not a wise move.
How many deep cover operatives moved to the Levant in that exodus, one can only guess.

nahncee, depends upon the impact area, how much of the physical infrastructure remains.

The "down time" after a nuclear blast, to fall out and residual radioactivity, a matter of weeks, perhaps months, but not years. As the Hiroshima experience proved, conclusively.

Why would one think that the Eastern Orthodox Christians of Russia would give two hoots about the Muslim sensibilities with regard the mosques in the Levant?

Israel in its' current incarnation would be gone, the mussulmen in ruins across the region.
Leaving the Holy Land to the Christians to secure.

Circles & Cycles.
Scenes that have been seen before.

1/20/2008 01:02:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Well, hd, Iraq posed little threat to the US. None as it turned out, from deployable WMDs.

The same cannot be said of Israel, they are armed up. No doubt of that. Whether they are seen as a threat, a matter of perspective.

That the Jordanians were allied with Israel twentyfive years ago, against the Palistinians of Arabfat, no reason to doubt either, just ten years after those Palistinians attempted to kill King Hussein and sieze the country.

Especially after the Syrians invaded Jordon with 250 tanks in support of the Palistinians, on 18SEP71.

Alliances are fleeting, nations & tribes not having friends or enemies, but interests.
As Ms Rice said of the US 21DEC07
"The United States doesn't have permanent enemies, we're too great a country for that,"

1/20/2008 01:17:00 PM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

Russians have great respect and appreciation of Jews and of Israel. Probably even more so than Americans. Many Russians now make Israel their home and business destination, and many Israelis make Russia their home and business destination.

The threat of using nuclear weapons was aimed squarely at the Muslim world. Russia shares a long border with Muslims to its south, and unlike our Western dimwit politicians and bureaucrats, the Russians understand exactly who they're dealing with.

In Israel the trees Wretchard refers to are called eucalyptus trees.

1/20/2008 01:50:00 PM  
Blogger RWE said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

1/20/2008 02:15:00 PM  
Blogger whiskey_199 said...

Russians always have been, and likely always will be, notorious anti-Semites. Putin (as Wretchard noted), has overtly threatened both Tel Aviv and Washington by his "story" about suitcase nukes being set off in both cities by terrorists.

Of course, that works both ways. And there is always bio-warfare. For a people targeted for extermination by Iran and it's ally Russia, it's a likely development.

Israel is a tiny country physically and demographically and terribly vulnerable to a surprise first strike (as 1973 proved). They can't sustain a long war of attrition or a Pearl Harbor. Thus Israel has always desired peace as much as possible and used deterrent of a strong air force/army and nuclear forces.

That dynamic is gone. Russia has overtly allied itself with Iran and has threatened ... who exactly? Why the only states with appreciable military assets, the US and Israel. [It would certainly not threaten China.] On behalf of Iran.

Israel's only choice is to strike first, hard, and devastatingly against Iran, killing as many Iranians as possible to deter others, and call Russia's bluff by playing the bio-terrorist card. If the alternative is death for all Israelis anyway why not?

Putin and his secret policemen leaders are hard men who made their way by killing people and brutality and the most corrupt and venal politicking. They are merely polite and disciplined versions of Saddam and the only thing such men respect is the credible threat of brute force. Power.

Putin has made the decision to engage in another hot-cold War with the US. Betting on turmoil keeping up oil prices (prolonged turmoil is likely to collapse economic activity and with it oil prices but Putin is a thug not an economist and outside the dealing of violence not very bright). He is unlikely to see the danger that wiping out Israel pre-emptively as Iran's protector will bring. A US pre-emptive response; or massive missile defense and new hot-Cold War with Russia and Muslims against the US, in an environment of world-wide economic collapse.

Israel is just as likely though to sleepwalk into another Holocaust, because the suburban and clueless leadership of Olmert and company don't understand violence and brutality. Which form the main part of human experience, and men like Putin and Ahmadinejad.

1/20/2008 02:26:00 PM  
Blogger eggplant said...

Mətušélaḥ said:

"Russians have great respect and appreciation of Jews and of Israel. Probably even more so than Americans. Many Russians now make Israel their home and business destination, and many Israelis make Russia their home and business destination."

Whiskey_199 replied:

"Russians always have been, and likely always will be, notorious anti-Semites."

Unfortunately Whiskey_199 is correct. Non-Jewish Russians are often anti-Semites (it's a cultural quirk that goes back centuries). Read "Taras Bulba" by Nikolai Gogol (a fun-to-read story) if you want some insight about Russian anti-Semitism. In his earlier comment, Mətušélaḥ confused Russian Jews living in Israel with non-Jewish Russians. Obviously, if all one knows are Jews from Russia then it's easy to believe that Russians respect and appreciation Jews.

Off topic: There is an intelligent article by Victor Davis Hanson over at NRO concerning the election and McCain. The following link gets you there:

1/20/2008 02:44:00 PM  
Blogger RWE said...

Eggplant: I just took a look in a book on the Holocaust I bought a few years back but had not looked at, entitled “The Good Old Days” to see if there is anything on Madagascar. The book was compiled by 3 Germans.

There is not any mention of the Madagascar idea. But the book is remarkable in that it is not a detailed history of the Holocaust but instead is a series or statements and interviews with the perpetrators and bystanders. There are official German Army statements on what was observed as well as postwar statements taken during Allied investigations.

It is chilling in the extreme. The head of the Political Division at Auschwitz said that he only participated in the killing of 3 million people “out of interest in what was best for his family.” The head of Auschwitz, Rudolph Hoss, admits that the graves there were deliberately destroyed so as to prevent anyone from ever knowing how many people were killed there.

Chilling, simply chilling.

1/20/2008 02:47:00 PM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

1/20/2008 02:58:00 PM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...


1/ I lived and live in both worlds. I know what I'm talking about, you don't.

2/ It's not Russians that supplied and are supplying Muzzies with nuclear arms and technology.

3/ Parroting cynical American Imperial propaganda does not make for fact.

4/ Ukrainians are not Russians.

5/ When I say Russians, I mean Russians.

1/20/2008 03:03:00 PM  
Blogger bobal said...

Give them Los Angeles. They'd fix it up. The current residents have ruined it.

1/20/2008 03:09:00 PM  
Blogger braggcreek said...

Canada will take the 6 mill Jews in Israel, the 1.5 mill from France, Britain, Russia, Germany, Ukriane, South Africa, Hungary and Belgium in a heartbeat.

Lots of room interior Sask and Alberta.

If the US doesn't want it's 5.3 mill Jews....we'll take them too.

You'd be wise to keep them tho, more bang for your buck vs muslims.

1/20/2008 03:20:00 PM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

Is that why they built up the Paki nuclear industry? :)

1/20/2008 03:29:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Books: another good one, I have it on my desk right now, reading it when I can tolerate the topic, is "Man's Search for Meaning" by survivor Viktor E. Frankl. It's his story of life in the camps. It's not for the faint of heart.

Okay, to heck with Sask & Alberta, it's too cold for a Mediterranean people. Texas is far better. The coastline from Corpus Christi to the Rio Grande is practically empty and about the same size and shape and climate as Israel, and if they will bring along the IDF, maybe we can successfully secede from DC Hillandbubbaland, take over Mexico, straighten it out & pep it up, stop the drug trade, and all live righteously under the sun ever after, speaking a Yiddish dialect of Spanglish. Oy Yeehaw!

1/20/2008 03:41:00 PM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...


LOL. But speaking of Ladino, check out the tune Una Noche Mas by Yasmin Levy.

1/20/2008 04:04:00 PM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

Give them Los Angeles. They'd fix it up. The current residents have ruined it.

If we gave them Mexico, that would, of course, include Los Angeles since the Mexicans here currently out-number the native-born Americans.

1/20/2008 05:07:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

mat -- wow -- flamenco torch singing, old style. Really strong music --the mandolin, her voice breaking and sobbing -- i want her, now!
(try this, with plenty of bottom --er, bass)

1/20/2008 05:31:00 PM  
Blogger Marzouq the Redneck Muslim said...

Heck, the Mormons have land already set aside for the Hebrews. Problem is already solved, land already purchased.

Mexico does sound like a good idea though.

Nahncee, I replied on the MAS thread.

Salaam eleikum Y'all!

1/20/2008 05:47:00 PM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

Thanks, Buddy.

From that linked page you provided, Yasmin Levy sings:

I Was Born in Alamo

I have no place
And I have no landscapes
I have no homeland.

With my cold fingers I make a fire
and with my heart I sing to you
The chords of my heart are crying.

1/20/2008 06:14:00 PM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

Marzouq - what's your take on MAS? Is he really trying to overthrow Shariah law and if so, why?

Would he turn in his uncle if said uncle was brewing bombs in the basement?

How far would a Muslim like MAS take a commitment to Western lifestyle and justice?

And who is the "we" he says that he's speaking for?

1/20/2008 06:44:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

mat -- i saw that -- the Alamo ref -- the gal is way ahead of us -- the first three lines are heartbreaking, in light of what Andalusian Jews have had to cope with over the last few centuries. Anyway check the video "La Alegria" to see her in close and a little bit on fire -- make sure you got a cold shower nearby tho.

1/20/2008 07:03:00 PM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

Captured at the Tower of David, Jerusalem.

1/20/2008 09:06:00 PM  
Blogger eggplant said...

RWE said:

"I just took a look in a book on the Holocaust I bought a few years back but had not looked at, entitled “The Good Old Days” to see if there is anything on Madagascar.... There is not any mention of the Madagascar idea."

I looked in my copy of "The Holocaust, The Jewish Tragedy" by Martin Gilbert. The Madagascar subterfuge was described twice in Gilbert's book. On pg. 155 of the paperback version, the Madagascar story was used to lure Polish Jews from hiding so they could be murdered by Einsatzgruppen. The deception was again described by Gilbert on pg. 429 where the commandant at Treblinka used the Madagascar deception on inmates to discourage them from escaping.

RWE also said:

"The head of Auschwitz, Rudolph Hoss, admits that the graves there were deliberately destroyed so as to prevent anyone from ever knowing how many people were killed there."

Hoess wrote an autobiography titled "Commandant of Auschwitz" while he was waiting to be hanged for crimes against humanity. His book is interesting but one needs to be skeptical while reading it (Hoess was after all a condemned Nazi awaiting execution). Nobody really knows exactly how many people were murdered in Auschwitz (millions of victims were cremated and their ashes scattered). Years ago while touring Auschwitz, I was shown the gallows that my guide claimed was used to hang Hoess (this might have been a tale for gullible tourists).

1/20/2008 09:07:00 PM  
Blogger Gary Rosen said...

"I recall reading that Hitler initially endorsed a plan to deport all of the Jews of Europe to Madagascar before deciding to just kill them all. I don’t know how this is reconcilable with the Nazi mania for tracking down even the slightest percentage of Jewish heritage and eradicating it."

One might consider the possibility that the Nazis changed their plan in order to mollify their Arab allies in WWII. The mufti al-Husseini, the Palestinians wartime leader and founder of the PLO, was certainly aware of the death camps and there are reports he even visited one. When a plan was afoot to ransom some Jewish children to save them from the death camps, he pleaded with his friend Himmler to keep them in eastern Europe under "active control".

1/20/2008 09:41:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Site dedicated to the words of the preface of the "helping" book written by psychiatrist and survivor Viktor E. Frankl. Good words about what it means to come into contact with one's last essential essence.

1/20/2008 10:02:00 PM  
Blogger DoubleTapper said...

Or we could all publicly recognize and endorse the right of the Jewish people to their homeland. With Jerusalem as it's capitol.

Anyone want to try and move ME?

1/21/2008 01:12:00 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

"But the thought of a gefilte-fish taco does take some getting used to."

Okay, look...I love the Jewish people as much as the next guy. Ditto for the Mexicans, who probably have an equally fascinating history and culture.

But I have to say at this point that if Jews were ever to be resettled anywhere in or near Mexico, I would pressure my congressman to insist on a firm wall of separation between Jewish and Mexican cuisine. It seems like a moral imperative.


1/21/2008 10:38:00 AM  
Blogger Marzouq the Redneck Muslim said...


I am not sure, have not had time to research them. They may be legit and do not want to live in a despotic theocracy.

The site I saw MAS posting on run by a some one who seems so afraid it is causing her to hate. It is causing her to make foolish blanket statements about Islam. She is very emotional. Notice how she reacted to the "honor killing" in Texas. Hell, It made me sick and I would have no qualms about stringing the "father" up. But... we have a system of justice to deal with him, fortunately it will be Texas justice.

The reason Muslims have a problem voicing their true feelings about the criminals using Islam as a means to gain control of the ummah in non Muslim lands is fear of retaliation. This is why I post. There have been a few Muslim demonstrations against the militant jihadists, even in Iraq. We have to be careful. The old saying, "descretion is the better part of valor" is applicable.

Here is something else to consider. Who knows how many Muslims who love America are working with Law Enforcement to keep America safe? Why have no IED's gone off in America? Why no new beltway snipers? There have only been a few incidents of whacked out fools calling themselves Muslims performing "lone wolf" actions. The news has been supressed for the most part because of fear of backlash. Remember, the function of Law Enforcement is to keep the peace.

By the way, searching extremist sites all over the internet will find a common thread of "lone wolf" action among all of them from jihadis, gansta's to white supremacists.

The difficulty is in building trust. How can anyone trust a Muslim who is taught by his scripture not to trust a Christian or Jew, much less an unbeliever? Jesus son of Mary (peace be upon Him)is mentioned a lot in the Quran and it puzzles me that Muslims do not read his words along with Muhammad's (peace be upon Him). Since Muhammad never quoted Jesus, it seems to me the scriptures of the Christians and Jews should be studied along with the Quran.

In order for Islam to survive it must reform. It is a generational process and it is bloody. It is just as bloody as the history of Europe during the Christian Reformation. What makes this reformation so scary is technology and the ability of a super empowered individual to kill us all.

Dang. I have waxed serious. Not usually my style.

Salaam eleikum!

1/21/2008 04:44:00 PM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

Dang. I have waxed serious. Not usually my style.

Best thing you've ever written. You should post more of this sort of analysis.

I think I'm going to disagree with you on whether or not American Muslim are working with the law. When you say that the function of law enforcement is to "keep the peace" that's a Middle Eastern Arab way of seeing things. We are accustomed to Arabs putting the word "peace" over and above every other concept, including freedom and justice, when to Americans "peace" can very easily mean "status quo" and "stick in the mud".

The function of law enforcement here is to kill or arrest the bad guys, and very often the good guys will use publicity to do that. They'll put out an alert on a bad guy or put his picture on the 6:00 news so that everyone knows to look for him, too.

If "normal Muslims" were helping law enforcement, I don't see why that couldn't be publicized along with promises to keep their identities secret. We do that here fairly frequently, with the witness protection program being a prime example.

The fact that there has been absolutely NO publicity seven years later and that CAIR and its sympathizers are still claiming harassment on the part of the cops and FBI suggests to me that "normal Muslims" are NOT turning in their jihadist relatives.

The lone wolves and the froot loops are out there undoubtedly but I have to think that the reason they haven't been successful again is that (1) they're very stupid and incompetent, (2) Real Americans are watching for them and turning them in, and (3) the cops and the FBI are watching for them, too, because no one wants another 9/11 on his shift.

1/21/2008 06:47:00 PM  
Blogger Peter Grynch said...

Okay. Since the politicians have proven totally incapable of dealing with the crisis in the Middle East, I’ve decided to settle the conflict myself. While I’m at it, I’ll also take care of that “global warming” phenomenon which had Al Gore so worried in the last election. As an added benefit, I intend to break OPEC’s stranglehold, restart the American economy, reduce the national debt without raising taxes, and revive the nuclear power industry. As an encore, I will eliminate Osama Bin Laden. All’s that is needed is a little outside-the-box thinking.

My plan is simple:
1) Give the Arctic National Wildlife Reserve (ANWR) to the Israelis in exchange for their present territory and assist them in relocating. Why not? We’re not doing anything with it. Why not get some use out of it? I think ANWR and the country of Israel are about the same size, but if they’re not, the Federal government can confiscate Ted Turner’s ranch and throw that in as a deal sweetener. Liberal tree huggers don’t believe in property rights anyway. Can you say “eminent domain”? Ted gets to keep Jane Fonda and the buffalo.

2) The Israelis can drill for oil and drive down the world oil price, breaking OPEC’s power and cutting off the major source of terrorist funding. Lower oil prices would stimulate the American economy and ensure a healthy economic recovery. Any remaining suicide bombers would be forced to approach the country of Israel over the frozen tundra, where they would be easy prey for polar bears.

3) Take what is currently the country of Israel and relocate the Yucca Mountain High Level Nuclear Waste Repository there. This would make the Nevada voters happy, and revive the nuclear power industry. If the waste repository ever sprung a leak, no harm done. The contamination would be sitting in the middle of a vast wasteland. It’s not like they have a water table to get contaminated. In a worst-case scenario, leaking radiation may kill a few camels, but if this happens the Israelis would be happy to replace them with caribou from their thriving herds. The U. S. Government can charge other nations a fee for storing their waste in our new, unlimited repository. This would provide a new revenue stream for the government, reducing the national debt.

4) Now that the long-term waste storage problem has been solved, the nuclear power industry would revitalize and flourish. Electricity prices would drop, further stimulating the American and World economies. Since nuclear power is environmentally friendly and emits no carbon dioxide, there would be a drastic reduction in greenhouse gas production. This would put an end to global warming.

5) Give the terrorist group Hamas their own country in the so-called “occupied territories”, they’ve earned it, and supply them with lots of conventional weapons. Secretly tell them that Osama Bin Laden has converted to Judaism, and actually is wearing a yamulcah under that silly turban. Give them a few commercial airliners. Let nature take its course. Why waste all that hostility?

See? And you thought these problems were hard! Next week I’ll be resolving the abortion debate, improving the American educational system, simplifying the tax code, and reviving the space program.

1/22/2008 07:58:00 AM  
Blogger Marzouq the Redneck Muslim said...


I am betting American Muslims see how liberty and justice are a higher priority than the "peace" of living as a slave under a theocratic despot.

I worry that I may be bullshitted. This is why I am such a conflicted Muslim.

peter grynch,

ROTFLMAO! But... as I said, the Mormons have the land set aside for the Hebrews.

Salaam eleikum Y'all!

1/22/2008 04:40:00 PM  

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