Opportunity knocks for BBC’s Donnison in Bethlehem

The BBC’s Jon Donnison was to be found in Bethlehem on Christmas Eve and – as may be expected – coverage of the Christmas celebrations there could not pass without a degree of political opportunism. 

In the Middle East section of the BBC News website appears a report entitled “Christmas celebrated around the world” which has undergone numerous changes since it first appeared. The report states that:

“The patriarch, who was born in Jordan, led a symbolic procession from Jerusalem’s Old City to the West Bank city, passing through the separation barrier and checkpoint built by the Israelis.”

As usual, no context is provided as to the reasons for the construction of the anti-terrorist fence or the continued need for checkpoints. 

In the short film footage which accompanies the report (also available here and broadcast on BBC TV), Jon Donnison states:

“We understand around 70,000 people will have visited Bethlehem by the end of the day – those numbers actually down on last year, we think, by around 40,000 or so. So some concerns about the economy and tourism here…” 

In some of his other reports for domestic British television, Donnison expanded on that theme, with the following being one of the milder examples: 

“Jon Donnison: Few places do Christmas better than Bethlehem. Palestinian marching bands were up early to start the celebrations. Santa, very much at home here, with no shortage of helpers and all on hand to welcome thousands of Christian pilgrims.

 Tourist: I come from London – Elephant and Castle – and have come to Bethlehem to experience the birth of Jesus Christ all over again.

JD: And Christmas is also big business here – or it should be. But this year not everyone is buying. The Palestinian economy is struggling.

Vera Baboun, Mayor of Bethlehem: Actually Bethlehem is not doing well economically. It suffers from a high rate of unemployment, suffers from the occupation.”

Of course Bethlehem has not been ‘occupied’ for a full seventeen years as it came under the control of the Palestinian Authority on Christmas Eve 1995 as a result of the Oslo Accords, but no correction to that effect is offered by the BBC.

Neither does Donnison bother to point out that one of the immediate effects of last month’s decision by Hamas to fire long-range missiles at Tel Aviv and Jerusalem was a wave of cancellations from tourists planning to visit the region, with some cancelling reservations made for as far ahead as next spring. It is therefore hardly surprising that the Christmas tourism sector should be affected too, although we are unlikely to hear the Mayor of Bethlehem discussing Hamas’ part in reducing tourism to her town.

Neither will Ms. Baboun – or Jon Donnison – elaborate on the fact that incidents such as the one which took place on December 18th in which locals in Hebron attacked a tourist bus with rocks, as well as the recent rise in the number of attacks with stones and Molotov cocktails on drivers in Judea & Samaria in general and the presence of terror cells in the region, are hardly conducive to a thriving tourist industry.  

Rather than doing any real investigative journalism into the ‘shooting themselves in the foot’ attitude of the Palestinian Authority towards its tourism industry, it is much easier to just to tap into existing stereotypes and blame a non-existent ‘occupation’ instead. 

Interestingly though, a recent article in The Independent (of all places!) painted a somewhat less monotone picture of Bethlehem’s economy. 

“After years of financial depression amid violent confrontation with Israel, the West Bank city of Bethlehem is celebrating the beginnings of an economic revival.

The ancient city, built around the Church of the Nativity on Manger Square that marks the grotto where Jesus is believed to have been born, has recently been re-energised by a combination of overseas investment, micro-finance initiatives and a record-breaking tourism rush.”

The phenomenon of Western reporters suddenly flocking to Bethlehem around Christmas time is nothing new. Neither is their repeated use of the ‘season of goodwill’ to paint trite, one-dimensional pictures of Israeli ‘oppression’ of a wonderful multi-culti Palestinian society anything other than tediously predictable, with those messages of course enabled and cultivated by Palestinian Authority PR operations. Such reporting too often puts new meaning into the words of the familiar Christmas carol about the little town of Bethlehem: “How (come) still we see thee lie”. 

Wouldn’t it be refreshing to see the BBC adhere to its remit of increasing its audiences’ knowledge and understanding of the world by just sticking to the subject matter of Christmas celebrations in Bethlehem rather than succumbing to the temptation to broadcast opportunistic political propaganda? 

116 comments on “Opportunity knocks for BBC’s Donnison in Bethlehem

  1. Pingback: Opportunity knocks for BBC’s Donnison in Bethlehem | Blogs about Israel aggregation

      • ” occupied from ” What kind of a construction is that ? But anyway if you have more comprehensible questions I suggest you address them to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, every FO equivalent in the world and the UN.

        • No Richard, let’s try again. You say it is occupied. I want to know from whom it is occupied.

          It’s a simple question – can you answer it?

          • ” from whom is it occupied ” is a nonsense question and any answer to a stupid question will be stupid and I am not going to make the same mistake as Anthony Loewenstein o:))

            So let’s try ” whose was it before “. Erm I think it belonged to Luxembourg. No that’s not right. I know, France. No that’s not right. Maybe Israel. No not’s not right either. Maybe Mongolia. My daughter has just whispered in my ear that that’s not true. it belonged to Nigeria.

            But anyway given the inadmissability of the acquisition of territory through war…..

          • Richard, why are you dodging the question? Is it because you know full well that Judea and Samaria were taken from the Jordanian army, who 19 years previously had illegally marched in, ethnically cleansing and massacring every Jew in sight? Or is it because San Remo confirmed that this was Jewish territory?

            Which?

          • Adam, all of Israel’s settlements built in the territory of the state of Palestine (West Bank, including East Jerusalem, Gaza) are in breach of international humanitarian law and are therefore considered ILLEGAL.

        • Richard, can you explain why, when Bethlehem was under Israeli jurisdiction, it was 60% Christian, whilst now, under Palestinian rule, the Christian population has dwindled to 15%? Do you think this may mirror what is happening in every other Mulsim land in the Middle East – notably Egypt at present, where hundreds of thousands of Christians have fled in the past 12 months alone?

          • Dear Adam, Christians in Bethleem have beel leaving the city ever since Israel confiscated their land to build settlements in violation of international law, and built a Wall on their land directly around the holy city’s houses, five minutes from the Church of Nativity.

            The United Nations even published an entire report describing how Israel’s settlements have destroyed the economy of the Holy City:

            http://unispal.un.org/UNISPAL.NSF/0/31ACA41481360442852575B000452425

            A quick visit in Bethleem would allow you to see how Israel’s Wall, settlements and military checkpoints besiege the Holy City,a nd to discuss with Palestinian Christians of how their lives are being impacted by the occupation.

          • Funny that a celebration a Jew’s birth in a jewish town is used to critisise Jews being anywhere near the place, eh ‘Shoshana’?

          • Funny then, Shoshnat, that the measures you describe only seem to afflict Christians and not Muslims, whose population continues to rapidly expand.

        • Stinklily: There is no State of Palestine, and never has been. Get over it. I’m not repeating myself again regarding the pertinent facts: I have explained twice already in previous posts, and it has become apparent that you are not interested in any factual explanations.

          • Dear Yorkie, may I suggest you read the newspapers? The state of Palestine was officially recognized by more or less the entire international community last month, and now sits at the United Nationsl, not far from Israel.

          • No they weren’t: they are still a people without a state, and until they get back round the negotiating table, they’ll never have one. Which is a shame, because they could have had one at any time since 1947, if their leadership hadn’t been so consistently stupid.

          • Yorkie, the state of Palestine was officially recognized by nearly all governments in the world, including most Western democracies, and now sits at the United Nations.

            You’re delusionnal.

            Hiding your head in the sand will not help bring the peace we need. Real men face reality, they do not hide and refuse to see the truth.

          • You’ve just claimed above that the PA has no real control over any of the West Bank. You can’t have it both ways. So where exactly is your Palestinian state? And which one of us is really delusional?

        • Poor innocent soul..there was never a sovereign known country or state called Palestine nor was there never a nation, people, specific ethnic group of people called Palestinians, untill it was invented a few decades ago by the Arabs to try to deprive the Jews of their unic historic, moral, spiritual and indeed legal rights on that piece of land some by ignorance, by deceit and malice call Palestine. I saw Judea and Samaria and Est-Jerusalem just after the war of Arab aggression of 1967 and I can assure you that Israel helped them out of the middle ages…

          • Michael, are you another of these men who cannot stand facing reality and hide in fear? How can we ever have peace with people who are delusionnal?

          • Funny then, that your “state of Palestine” wasn’t so called when the Jordanian army occupied Judea and Samaria and Jerusalem, having expelled every last Jew.

      • Here we see an interesting example of how pro-settler zealots, who feel marginalized in Israel, liken the slightest criticism of Israeli policy to Israel-bashing.

        Their agressiveness is a useful reminder that they have little in common with the real Israel, a democracy committed to peace and freedom of expression where such marginals cannot fit.

    • From Hague law:

      “Territory is considered occupied when it is actually placed under the authority of the hostile army. The occupation extends only to the territory where such authority has been established and can be exercised”

      Bethlehem is under the control and authority of the PA.

          • The PA control NOTHING and NOWHERE except as sub contractors of The State of Israel, such sub contract that can be revoked, modified or ignored as the Israelis please. Ask the citizens of Jenin, Nablus, Jericho and indeed Bethlehem.

          • No Penny not by my opinion by my experience. I have had the pleasure of being in Jericho when the IDF were rampaging through this ” PA controlled” city and experienced my ability to go there being at the whim of The State of Israel, several times.

          • Penny, the PA controls parts of Bethleem only. The rest is under the control of theIsraeli army and the Israeli Civil Administration, who let settlers build setttlements in violation of itnernational law inside the Bethleem governorate.

        • Yes Penny Bethlehem is under the subcontracted administrative jurisdiction of the PA. Much like Amersham is under the sub contracted administriaative jurisdiction of Chiltern District Council. But under the control of The State of Israel.

          • The notion of ‘subcontracted’ is entirely your own, Richard.

            But humor me – how is Amersham ‘subcontracted’ to Chiltern District Council?

          • Penny the government of the UK devolved certain administrative powers to Chiltern District Council.It retains these powers so long as it doesn’t piss off the UK gvt over much. If it does these ” powers ” will be modified or taken away. The IDF will be sent in to get everything back to ” where they think it should be ”

            The PA is just a kinda municipal authority under the overall control of the State of Israel.

          • Richard

            So you cannot answer the question? Have you any idea how local government works?

            You still haven’t explained how a town council is subcontracted to a District council – which, as a ‘district’ must have an overarching ‘county’ level.

          • Penny it is an analogy. Analogy’s are rarely if ever on all fours. I am merely saying that the authority in the west bank is the State of Israel. As the IDF officer responsible for the Jordan Valley said….” I am the law here ” That there is de facto one state between the river and the sea. I can live with that I am a real zionist. If it is to be one state so be it. I don’t have to live there. But let us not bullshit each other and pretend that there is presently any authority between the river and the sea other than The State of Israel. The State of Israel has the responsibility for what ever happens there.

          • Analogies may not always be on all fours, Richard, but they aren’t usually legless.

            You’ve moved away from Bethlehem and onto West Bank. You are now invoking the supposed comment of a member of the IDF. To what purpose? Even if this comment were true – so what? Would anyone believe a Captain in the British forces if he claimed he was ‘the law’ in Iraq?

        • Israel took possession of East-Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria in a defensive war against Arab aggression. Those regions did not belong to any sovereign, known or recognized country. A history tour of the League of Nations will teach you people to whom those regions really and legally belong..even Napoleon wanted to re-construct the Jewish state as early as 1799! Then of course there were no Fakestinians around..

          • Dear Michael, the acquisition of territory by way of force was historically recognised as a lawful method for acquiring sovereignty, but has been illegal in international law at least since the entry into force of the United Nations Charter., which Israel ratified in 1948.

            The principle that acquisition of land by force or gaining of sovereignty by occupation are illegal as verified in the Hague Regulations of 1907, the Geneva Conventions of 1949, and finally the Geneva Convention Protocols I of 1977.

      • No Pennylan, the state of Palestine is currently occupied by the Israeli army.

        Please come to Bethleem – enter through Rachel’s Tomb checkpoint, you will see Israeli soldiers patrolling between Palestinian houses.

        • Stinklily: There is no State of Palestine, and never has been. Get over it. I’m not repeating myself again regarding the pertinent facts: I have explained twice already in previous posts, and it has become apparent that you are not interested in any factual explanations.

          • Dear Yorkie, please read the press. The state of Palestine was officially recognized by more or less the entire international community last months, and sits at the UN. I think it’s time you get a grasp at reality. Denial and delusion cannot help us have peace.

          • No they weren’t: they are still a people without a state, and until they get back round the negotiating table, they’ll never have one. Which is a shame, because they could have had one at any time since 1947, if their leadership hadn’t been so consistently stupid.

          • Dear Daphne, the Holy City of Christ is known among Christians and Jews as Bethlehem, Bethleem, Bayt Laḥm, Bēt Laḥm, בֵּית לֶחֶם Bēṯ Leḥem, Bet Leḥem, Βηθλεὲμ, Vithleém… Pilgrims come from all over the world to attend the Christmas mass, during which the different names of the city are spelled for all to rejoice and reflect on the universality of faith – another proof of God’s love for all of us, including you.

      • Pennylan, your ignorance of international law is embarrassing.

        The state of Palestine is occupied by the Israeli army. Tsahal, COGAT and the Israeli Civil Administration rule over 60% of the West Bank and over East Jerusalem, and they have imposed a blockade on the Gaza Strip.

    • There is a major Israeli checkpoint five minutes from the Church of Nativity, and Israel built its Wall meters from the houses of Palestinian Christians.

    • Let’s make it clear: this website is run by pro-settler zealots who liken the slightest criticism of Israeli policy to Israel-bashing, and who react aggressively against any Jew or Israeli who disagrees with them. But who cares? No one reads what they write but their mom.

    • Let us not forget that pro-settler zealots who liken the slightest criticism of Israeli policy to Israel-bashing, are nothing like Israel, a democracy where people can debate while showing respect for each other. Many people here are rude, agressive and uneducated, in total contradiction with the Israeli and Jewish culture of intellectual excellence. This is really sad but in the end, does it matter? Not really. No one reads their prose anyway.

  2. “Vera Baboun, Mayor of Bethlehem”. Surely the English translation of the Arabic is spelled “Baboon.”

    • “locals in Hebron attacked a tourist bus with rocks”

      This was not a tourist bus, it was a settler bus driving to the settlements built by Israel in the territory of the state of Palestine.

      • Stinklily: There is no State of Palestine, and never has been. Get over it. I’m not repeating myself again regarding the pertinent facts: I have explained twice already in previous posts, and it has become apparent that you are not interested in any factual explanations.

        • Dear Yorkie, the state of Palestine was acknowleged by more or less the entire international community last month, and now sits at the UN, like Israel. May I suggest you ask Santa Claus to bring you newspapers so you can follow what’s going on in the world?

          • No they weren’t: they are still a people without a state, and until they get back round the negotiating table, they’ll never have one. Which is a shame, because they could have had one at any time since 1947, if their leadership hadn’t been so consistently stupid.

          • Yorkie, you’re hiding your head in the sand, which is embarrassing. Palestine was recognized as a state last month and niow sits at the UN. Get over it and start working for peace. Crying like a child in a corner will not help us get peace. Be a man!

          • Stinklily: PEOPLE sit at the UN. Not tracts of land. In order to have a state, one has to have land. The Palestinians are a people with no real state – only a ‘virtual’ state.

          • Yorkie, the state of Palestine now has ambassadors in nearly all countries in the world, pretty much like Israel. It’s time to open your eyes and face reality, rather than hide your face in the sand. It’s time to rise upto the opportunity of peace, in line with the two-state solution to which Israel committed with the Road Map.

    • Daphne, I wish you would go and pray in Bethleem’s Nativity Church, and then have to wait with your car for three hours at the Israeli military checkpoint like Palestinians and Christian visitors do. It may help open your heart to reality on the ground.

      • I wish you’d stop trolling and derailing threads… Is there a deity or persuasion that could guarantee me that?

          • “Kindly stop trolling”, can I pray for that?
            Which religions proffer such succour?
            “Nat”, your day of judgement will come, anew, just as it had for your previous handles.
            Dies irae, indeed!

          • Dear 101, your agressivity saddens me. I will pray God for you. May He open your heart to love and fraternity.

          • Spare me, “Nat”.
            God frowns on trolls, did ya’ know that?
            Secondly, I’m now ever more curious as to who your paymasters are:
            “Aggresivity” is not English!
            Couldn’t your trainers have first enlisted you in some remedial English courses?
            Don’t tell me: you’re Indonesian! zero language comprehension or grammar, but 100% trolling for sale.
            Don’t reply, to confirm.
            At least allay our worries: is the salary good?

          • Dear Commentary, this is a public forum and everyone is welcome, as long as you are polite and courteous. If you disagree with this basic rule, please go post somewhere else.

          • Dear Adam, how can you write that “the idea of Jews praying in a Church” is ridiculous?

            Christians go and pray in synagogues, Jews go and pray in churches – after all we share the same God. Christians will attend the Bar Mitvah of Jewish friends, they will go and pray at the Kotel, while Jews will attend masses when their Christian friends get married. This is called tolerance.

            I sincerely wish you can travel to Israel someday and see how Jews, Christians and Muslims live together and invite each other to celebrate their religious festivals.

          • This is not the venue for your trolling, “Nat”. This is someone’s blog, you’re effectively abusing(albeit, unsuccessfully, since, for all the money heaped on you for this — you’re remarkably dim).
            Though you ought to know even this, revolting troll that you are — that Jews are Halakhically forbidden from praying in or visiting Churches.
            You truly are a piece of work. Don’t traipse into territory where you need to actually think; Stick to the cut-n-paste routines, it’s much more your style.

            http://www.askmoses.com/en/article/255,2400/Am-I-allowed-to-enter-a-church-or-mosque.html

          • Dear Commentary, are you one of these extremists who reject dialogue with our Christian and Muslim brothers and sisters?

            I wish you would come and visit Israel, and see how people invite each other at their religious festivals. You need to open your heart.

          • “Nat”,
            Are you once again claiming you’re Israeli?
            Careful now, we have a list of your lies, to run up against any future ones.
            Still, nice to see you admit that Jews are not allowed to utilize churches for supplication.
            Now, be gone, trolling scum!

        • Dear Daphne, the Holy City of Christ is known among Christians and Jews as Bethlehem, Bethleem, Bayt Laḥm, Bēt Laḥm, בֵּית לֶחֶם Bēṯ Leḥem, Bet Leḥem, Βηθλεὲμ, Vithleém… Pilgrims come from all over the world to attend the Christmas mass, during which the different names of the city are spelled for all to rejoice and reflect on the universality of faith – another proof of God’s love for all of us, including you.

          • How benevolent of you Shoshnat. Still, anything to ignore the flight of Christians from increasingly Islamist Palestinian society. As for Jews, with 97% of Palestinians expressing racistantisemitic views, (Pew Research Centre), they obviously have no chance.

  3. A Duvidl carol seems proportionate:

    To the tune of “While Shephersd watched their Flocks by Night.”

    While Fatah loaded Glocks by night
    And aimed at Manger Square,
    Hamas fired Scuds from Khan Younis
    And shot them dead from there.

    DS Al Coda

  4. Armbach, I suppose you campaign tirelessly for the return of Prussia, the Sudetenland and Alsace to Germany – all taken as a result of war.

    Poor Germans. And as for your insinuation that Judea and Samaria belonged to the Palestinian Arabs, you simply reveal your complete indoctrination in falsehoods and historical revisionism.

  5. Adam Prussia wasn’t taken as a result of war, Prussia took as a result of war. In the beginning there was Brandenburg.Its capital was Berlin. The Brandenburg Gate, geddit ?Frederick the great expanded Brandenburg into Brandenburg -Prussia., which came to be known simply as Prussia. Prussia united the Germanic states through war,the crucial moment being the Prussian/ Austrian battle of Sedan. So we had Germany.

    That was then this is now. In those days it was legal to acquire territory through war or at least the world had a comme ci comme ca attitude to it. Are you saying Israel’s sensibilities are stuck in these lawless times ? That the world’s sensibilities have evolved but Israel is stuck in the dark ages ?

    The Sudetenland wasn’t taken from Germany as a result of war. The attempt to take the Sudetanland from the then Czechoslovakia by war failed. Alsace pinged around through war.

    • Armbach, you really are in a parallel universe. At the end of the Second World War, the allied powers, the victors, agreed to take what had been internationally recognized borders, and change them. The Germans lost huge swathes land. The Sudentenland WAS taken as a result of war (ie the Germans losing it).

      You are someone who simply dances around issues when cornered. Thus you refuse to acknowledge the glaringly obvious that

      1. The PA administers Bethlehem, not Israel.
      2. The Christian population has plummeted with te rise of Palestinian power
      3. Judea and Samaria are DISPUTED territories, but not occupied, as they were never Palestinian Arab in the first place – at any time – ever.
      4. That San Remo entitles Jews to live in Judea and Samaria.
      5. That your great grievance about checkpoints only exists because of Palestinian terrorism, and that every time they have been removed, there has been a sharp upturn of Palestinian terror attacks targeting Jewish civilians.

      In short Armbach, you’re a fake.

      • 1 The Pa administers Bethlehem it doesn’t control it.

        2 ” The Christian population of Bethlehem has plummeted with the rise of Palestinian power ” There is no such thing as Palestinian power..

        3 ” Judea and Samaria ” are disputed territories not occupied …..” That is not the view of the FO , the FO equivalents of every country in the world, and the UN. With all due respect Adam I don’t think your opinion on this carries a great deal of counter weight so I will go with that of the highly paid international lawyers that advises the FO’s of the world.

        4 San Remo does not entitle Jews or anyone else to live in ” Judea and Samaria”. Not that it would bother me if it did. I think people should be able to live anywhere they want. I am a real Zionist.

        5 The grievance isn’t mine.

        The Sudetenland was sovereign Czech territory. It was occupied by Germany and such occupation came to an end.In any event the Geneva Conventions post date WW2. The world got slightly, but crucially more civilised. Are you telling me that the sensibilities of The State of Israel are lagging behind those of the civilised world ?

      • 1. The PA administers Bethlehem but does not control it as the territory of the state of Palestine has been occupied by the Israeli army since 1967.

        2. The Christian population has plummeted because of Israel’s settlements built on the land of the Holy City in violation of international law, and because of Israel’s Wall and military checkpoints built right around the houses, destroying trade (see the UN report on how Israel’s settlements have destroyed the economy of Bethleem:

        http://unispal.un.org/UNISPAL.NSF/0/31ACA41481360442852575B000452425).

        3. The West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and Gaza are part of the STATE OF PALESTINE. Israeli settlements in the state of Palestine are a violation of international humanitarian law (article 49 al.6 of the Fourth Geneva Convention) and are therefore considered illegal.

        The 1920 San Remo conference’s text is OBSOLETE as it runs contrary to the UN Charter which Israel ratified in 1920. San Remo was attended by all colonialist powers at the time, and the principles they agreed upon violate human rights law and international humanitarian law, in particular peoples’ right to self-determination.

        5. The International Court of Justice ruled that the route of Israel’s wall, with its associated permit regime and military checkpoints, is ILLEGAL as the Wall was not built along the Green Line that delimitates Israel from the state of Palestine, but partly inside the territory of that state.

        • Only one question, you ignoramus:
          How could Israel have ratified the UN Charter, in 1920, when the UN was founded in 1945?
          “Nat”, this just isn’t your day… You’ll still get paid though, right?

    • That the world’s sensibilities have evolved but Israel is stuck in the dark ages ?
      You’re a vile piece of excrement, and before you complain how I insult your sensibilities I’m going to tell you why.
      Since you want to be the spokesman here for the most barbaric, backward, mindset that human beings have displayed, you might as well know that we here recognise it all too well.

      You like to use the opportunity when an Israeli strike kills a Palestinian child to try and make those here feel guilty. But you have less care or compassion for that child as you have no criticism for those who place that child in the danger they do. You support their struggle to eliminate the State of Israel, and you don;t care how many innocents are killed in that quest for LAND.

      Israel actually occupies 0.01% of all Arab lands, and two thirds of that is extreme desert. Yet Israel has shown that it is possible to make that land green, despite constant wars and conflicts. They put those who you support to shame.

      A note from history – the Jews that built Israel have still not known peace since the world decided to ‘move on’ as you put it. How much care and compassion did the foul Muslim extremists extend to these Jews when all they wanted to do was build a home that would not be dependant on the whims of the nation they occupied.

      If you think your mindset is ever going to be considered any differently here you’re fooling yourself. You are the lowest of the low, and until such time as your kind extends human traits worthy of consideration then you are nothing in my estimation more than vermin, and the world is better off without you.

      The fact that the Islamic lobby holds so much sway in getting immoral politicians to back their agenda is no evidence of rectitude or ethics. So don’t preach to us how to regard it. Far as I’m concerned you and your kind can rot in the hell of your making, You foul excuses for human beings.

      Hope it’s clear to you now dickhead!

      • But fortunately, the world’s sensibilities are still…sensible.

        Richard seems not to see the distinction between land taken in an act of aggressive war and land taken in self-defence. West Bank was further complicated by the ‘weight of title’, that is – if Jordan took this land in an act of aggressive war, and Israel took it when defending itself, Israel has the better ‘weight of title’.

        But in any case, withdrawal from such land simply – and ethically – cannot happen without a peace agreement being in place. To do so is simply to infer that a) there is no consequence to waging war on your neighbour and b) to leave ‘war’ as a continued option for the primary aggressor.

        • “Richard seems not to see the distinction between land taken in an act of aggressive war and land taken in self-defence.”

          Dear Pennylan, your ignorance of international law is embarrassing.

          Conquest, the acquisition of territory by way of force, was historically recognised as a lawful method for acquiring sovereignty, but has been illegal in international law at least since the entry into force of the United Nations Charter in 1948.

          Israel ratified the UN Charter, which is binding to all its members.

          It does not matter whether the territory was “taken in an act of aggressive war and land taken in self-defence”, because this is purely subjective – Israelis will say they acted in self-defense, Palestinians will say Israel acted agressively.

          • The observations noted are not mine

            See:Judge Stephen Schwebel, ( “What Weight to Conquest” Justice in international Law.

        • Yers, and Israel waqs fighting a war of self defence against a genocidal racist series of armies and terrorists.

          • “a genocidal racist series of armies and terrorists”

            Your post is embarrassing… Dear Adam, I hope that one day you will come to Israel and discover how tolerant and open-minded Israelis are, despite the hardship of life in an area of the world where peace is not a given.

            I hope you can come and pray at the Kotel. It will help you open your heart, free yourself, get rid of all the hatred and frustration, and understand how important it is to love and to respect each other despite our differences. This is something that people we have learnt in Israel more than anywhere else, thanks to the rich diversity of Jewish communities which have helped Israel thrive over the past decades. I hope you can open your heart to love.

      • You seem not to be able to engage without being potty mouthed rude. You make a whole host of assertions about me that you don’t evidence and which are simply not true. Bye bye.

      • Dear Teddy, this is a public forum, open to all as long as you rrespect each other. Insulting people is NOT acceptable. Please conform to the rules of courtesy, or go post somewhere else.

          • Dear Adam, this is a public forum, open to all as long as you rrespect each other. Insulting people is NOT acceptable. Please conform to the rules of courtesy, or go post somewhere else.

          • Let us not forget that pro-settler zealots feel marginalized in Israel, and that as a result, some of them have gone nuts.They will react agressively to anyone who confronts them with the truth, and they will liken the slightest criticism of Israeli policy to Israel-bashing. Their despair and frustration with life, and their impending sense of doom as they know they are bound to fail, seem to make them unable to enjoy life in Israel and to share the joys and pains of the Jewish people in its quest for peace and stability. This is really sad.

          • Enjoying talking to yourself there, “Nat”?
            While you’re in your delirious state, do answer: who’s paying you to troll here?

      • “Israel actually occupies 0.01% of all Arab lands”

        Can you pleaselet us know where this fact comes from?

      • “Israel actually occupies 0.01% of all Arab lands”

        The only relevant fact here is that Israel occupies the territory of its neighbour, the state of Palestine (West Bank, East Jerusalem, Gaza) and builds settlements in it in violation of international humanitarian law (article 49 al. 6 of the Fourth Geneva Convention).

        • Stinklily: There is no State of Palestine, and never has been. Get over it. I’m not repeating myself again regarding the pertinent facts: I have explained twice already in previous posts, and it has become apparent that you are not interested in any factual explanations.

          • Dear Yorkie, the state of Palestine now sits at the UN and was acknowledged by more or less the entire international community last month. May I suggest you read the press?

          • Nat – shoshana – I couldn’t care less whether you think there is a state of “Palestine” or not – it never existed before, not at Israel’s founduing, nor historically, and is a construct of an antisemitic camapaign – there were no calls for a separate Palestinian Arab state until after 1967. Which “Palestine”do you speak of? Hamas run Gaza or Fatah run PA?

          • No they weren’t: they are still a people without a state, and until they get back round the negotiating table, they’ll never have one. Which is a shame, because they could have had one at any time since 1947, if their leadership hadn’t been so consistently stupid.

          • Adam, Yorkie, you’re delusionnal… the state of Palestine was officially recognized and now sits at the UN. This is rather good news, it’s another small step on the road to peace, in line with the two-state solution which Israel remains committed to.

            I feel so sad for you… What happened? Why this hatred, aggressiveness and intolerance?

            I wish you would travel to Israel and discover how people can thrive despite of their differences or even, I’d say, thanks to these differences. Tolerance is something every Israeli knows about – the Jewish state was built and thriveddespite the fact that Israelis originally came back to Israel from different nations, speaking different languages and having different customs. They turned these differences into an asset.

            Filling your heart with hate and intolerance will not work it will only damage your own soul.

            Please come to Israel, see how tolerant and open-minded people are in the Jewish state and… learn how to open your heart to others and to respect everyone, including our neighbours.

          • “Palestine” is not a state!

            “You can’t be a Real Country unless you have a beer and an airline. It helps if you have some kind of a football team, or some nuclear weapons, but at the very least you need a beer.”

            Frank Zappa, American musician

          • Stinky: the only people I hate per se are idiot trolls like yourself. I have great patience with those who genuinely have learning difficulties, but none at all for those who make a profession out of pretending to have such disabilities. Especially when you attempt to mask your own hatred with sickly sweetness. But in fairness to you, I understand one can’t polish a turd: one can only roll it in glitter, so I guess you have no other viable option.
            Palestine does not sit at the UN: Palestinians do. And since on anything other than a personal basis they have no land, they are currently the owners of a virtual state only.
            And thanks for the invite to Israel, but I have been visiting there very regularly, for both business and pleasure, for the last 30 years or more, so I don’t need the likes of you teaching me how to suck eggs.
            And while we’re at it, ‘delusional’ contains only one N.

          • shoshanat, the sexually and religiously confused troll, the agressiveness comes from the Jew haters who infest the media, and their accomplices like you, who admire Palestinian antisemitism and racism. The Pew Research Centre found that 97% of Palestinians hold antisemitic views, whilst the Palestinian Authority is led by Abbas, your hero at the UN, who also happens to be a Holocaust denier and friend of every despot around the globe. Oh, and he heads up an organization which delights in killing Jews, names streets after Jew killers, and presides over an official media which vomits forth an endless stream of Jew hating invective from Jew hating imams and Jew hating Palestinian officials for the consumption of Jew hating trolls.

            You are despicable and should be thoroughly ashamed of yourself, you piece of garbage.

  6. Nat/shoshana, don’t you dare claim to speak for Israelis – the vast majority of whom despise your racist stance.

Comments are closed.