Tom McLaughlin

A former history teacher, Tom is a columnist who lives in Lovell, Maine. His column is published in Maine and New Hampshire newspapers and on numerous web sites. Email: tomthemick@gmail.com

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Living on the Fumes of Greatness


Only men over sixty have ever been subject to the military draft in America. Knowing you could be forced by government to fight in a war focuses one’s attention on what’s happening in the wider world beyond the peaceful shores of the Unites States. Today, however, our military is all volunteer. Fewer than 1% of Americans serve now and that’s been true for decades. If you don’t want to, you don’t have to. Is that a good thing? I’m not so sure.

Americans under sixty have led a remarkably pampered life by world historical standards. They’ve grown up in the most powerful country the world has ever seen and have never been forced to seriously consider how brutal other humans can be when they’re allowed. The vast majority of people who lived out their lives on this planet did so in walled cities or constantly looking over their shoulders as they moved about with weapons close at hand.
Some of us, though, have paid attention to what goes on outside our borders. Some have studied history and have come to understand that the Pax Americana we’ve known all our lives is more the exception than the rule. Most, however, never consider Orwell’s observance that: “People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.” We don’t appreciate how fortunate we are to have been born in late-20th-century America. We still have rough men ready to do violence on our behalf, but we don’t have a government that either appreciates them or knows how to use them properly.
I hate to point this out, but we’re not just getting fat, dumb, and lazy; we’re already here, and have been for some time. Obesity is epidemic. We don’t know much about history, geography, civics, or anything else, and more than 90 million of us have dropped out of the workforce. The evidence is overwhelming that our citizenry is in serious decline. Consequently, so is our nation. More and more of us are dependent on government entitlements and, due to our ignorance of simple arithmetic, we are unaware that those expensive programs are mathematically unsustainable. Bankruptcy looms, but we keep on spending as if it weren’t.
We keep reelecting a government that is a reflection of us. Paradoxically however, opinion polls indicate that we don’t approve of the government for which we keep voting. Why do we continue to reelect congressmen, senators and a president we dislike? Is it because they tell us what we want to hear? Perhaps the lyric in the Sheryl Crow number applies to us: “Lie to me. I promise, I’ll believe,” she sang. How long can this continue though? When I ponder that, something columnist Mark Steyn wrote comes to mind: “Sometimes societies become too stupid to survive.”
Peggy Noonan, former Reagan speechwriter and Wall Street Journal columnist, penned something last week that also haunts me. Commenting about the illegal alien crisis on the Mexican border, she observed: “America is the house that is both falling apart and under new stress. Those living within it, those most upset by what they're seeing, know America has big problems—unemployment, low workforce participation, a rickety physical infrastructure, an unsound culture, poor public education. And of course discord of all sorts… They know America can't pay its bills. They fear we're living on the fumes of greatness. They want us to be strong again.”

“Living on the fumes of greatness.” Yes. That is indeed what we’re doing.
Peggy Noonan

Noonan was describing Americans who do pay attention, who understand history, who know we cannot go on doing what we’re doing. But I’m afraid such people are in the minority now. Remember: 52% of us reelected Barack Obama two years ago in spite of what he did in his first term. The Wednesday morning after that sad election day I was forced to realize that yes, the America in which I grew up has fundamentally changed.
First generation immigrant Dinesh D’Souza just released a movie titled, “America: Imagine The World Without Her.” I haven’t seen it yet, but I know what’s in it. He sees what I see. I have been imagining such a world and it isn’t a pretty one, because I know there are brutal people out there who ponder it gleefully. They smell American decline and they extend their probes further and further to see what they can get away with. How far will that be? I’m afraid to think.

I still choose to believe in spite of mounting evidence to the contrary that it’s not too late, that enough Americans are beginning to understand we simply must turn things around. We have to start this November if we’re to have any hope of resurrecting the America we used to take for granted.

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34 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

One of your best columns, sir. Mil Gracias!

from (SL) Yaqui

7/15/14, 12:08 PM  
Blogger Pajak said...

Well said, Tom!

7/15/14, 7:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Tom, I was drafted in April of '44. That was too late to make the Normandy landing. I thank God for that. But I did see an awful lot of wreckage in western Europe between November of '44 and May of, '45. And that is why I have been politically active. I had hoped that I could help preserve the country as I knew it seventy years ago. Now I doubt that it can be done here. Too many people are riding on the government wagon. Too few understand basic economics.

But I keep on praying to the Heavenly Father. "If my people will humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked way, then I will hear from Heaven, and forgive their sin and heal their land."
2nd Chronicles 7:14

Harvey

7/16/14, 7:49 AM  
Blogger George Fogg said...

I saw the movie "America" and am reading the book presently. Dinesh is right on and as one from outside he sees things that we have overlooked. He has studied history much more than even a history major here would and he points out the ludicrous stance we have taken. We deserve to fail, not because our leadership is so bad but because the voters are so bad they have chosen so poorly those now lead us. We are headed toward a place most of us will not want to be but I think we are too stupid to make the changes in time to stop this grand catastrophe.

7/16/14, 12:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What garbage. And what a simpletons view..my god. What are you...twelve?

Ask the rest of the world if they would miss America. Our imperialistic war mongering is loved by all I'm sure.
America? Sorry but no. The United States corporation is what we live in and are subject to. But being such a history buff you knew that, right? This hasn't been America for a long time.

America would never let a dual citizen sit in its congress and help make its laws. America would never institute an income tax and central banking system. America would never claim false flag attacks as excuse for war. America doesn't spy on its own. The United States corporation would do and does these things.

Ask the thousands of families we have murdered via drone how special America is...

Grow up. Seriously. Maybe spend your time re- learning "history".

And what war did you serve in again? Hahaha...what a joke..

7/17/14, 7:52 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How should one describe the U.S.-Israeli relationship? “Co-conspirators”? “Co-dependents”? “Frenemies”? “The corporate media in the United States and other western nations ignore, minimize or tell outright lies about the ongoing massacre” of Palestinians, but surely the Israeli media would do the same for the U.S. How about “Co-enablers in War Crimes”?

“Israelis in Sderot sit on a hilltop and watch bombs fall on homes, schools and hospitals that have now killed at least 185 people.”

Of all the partners in international crime in existence right now, the United States and Israel are the worst. Along with their less powerful cohorts like Saudi Arabia they have instigated occupations and carnage on a mass scale. Yet while one hand washes the other, it isn’t always clear who controls whom. Israel uses the political and economic muscle of its supporters to keep American politicians in line, but it also doesn’t have to work very hard to find a receptive ear in Washington.

After killing American citizen Anwar al-Awlaki in 2011, the Obama administration refused to disclose the legal rationale for the assassination. Fortunately, Freedom of Information Act lawsuits brought by the New York Times and the American Civil Liberties Union revealed that Israel’s war crimes were used as pretexts for American wrong doing.

A Department of Justice memorandum written by David Barron, now an Obama-appointed federal judge, legitimizes extra judicial killings on the grounds that Israel does the same thing. A 2006 Israeli Supreme Court decision ruled that targeted assassination of hundreds of Palestinians were legal and did not violate international law.

Actions by foreign governments are rarely used to justify American policy decisions. On any other subject Obama claims that the United States is exceptional and must be not just a leader in the world, but THE leader in the world. Apparently, claims of exceptionality end when it comes to explaining away state sponsored terror.

“A 2006 Israeli Supreme Court decision ruled that targeted assassination of hundreds of Palestinians were legal and did not violate international law.”

Israel becomes the convenient excuse for American criminality but it also acts like this country’s worst enemy. Israel has been caught spying on the United States numerous times. It killed 34 sailors when it attacked the USS Liberty in 1967, murdered United States citizens Rachel Corrie and Furkan Dolgan and uses the threat of electoral defeat to keep American politicians in line. None of these outrages ever damage Israel’s ability to get its way in Washington. Even local and state legislators around the country are loath to stray from the Zionist party line.

Yet Israel is also the tool for American imperialism. Its purported need for security is used as an excuse to destroy the Iranian economy with sanctions, or anything else which also serves U.S. imperial interests. The two countries are true “frenemies,” dependent upon one another while also engaging in high level dysfunction.

Right now Israel is getting its way in Gaza as it kills men, women and children with impunity. The story is the same. Israelis in Sderot sit on a hilltop and watch bombs fall on homes, schools and hospitals that have now killed at least 185 people. Only one Israeli was killed by the Hamas rockets which Americans are told are a threat to Israel’s existence.

The corporate media in the United States and other western nations ignore, minimize or tell outright lies about the ongoing massacre. In the most egregious example, ABC news used video showing destruction in Gaza and claimed the footage came from Israel.

“The Palestinians only have the right to be killed.”

7/17/14, 8:11 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Quoting George Orwell? Seriously? Oh, the irony!

War is peace
Freedom is slavery
Ignorance is strength

That's a more appropriate orwell quote for you.


7/18/14, 7:51 AM  
Blogger Tom McLaughlin said...

To your mind, only Palestinians have a right to rocket their neighbors as long as they're Jews, right?

And only the left has the right to quote Orwell. I wonder what he would say about that?

7/18/14, 8:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ugh, your argument is soo tired and insulting..Rocket attacks had killed ZERO people. ZERO. Israel has an air force and military that had killed nearly 200 as of yesterday. Come on..Innocent little kids blown up by missiles and bombs. To try and compare the two in terms of military capability is a bs pathetic argument. And the whole world is waking up to it, so...You do know that Israeli's are not semitic people right?

It isn't about jews or arabs or religion. Zionism is morally bankrupt and uses Judaism as a front. To me, any religion claiming to be "chosen'certainly would not be murdering innocent women and children and engaging in apartheid. That's a no brainer. How you choose to back this while claiming to follow jesus is absurd.

And the "left"? Sorry, but I do not play that two party paradigm game. There is no greater threat to this country than the sham two party game--yet you gleefully back it! In fact, encourage it! Despite it being the antithesis of what was intended!! haha..The divide and conquer puppet show! Woo Hoo! Wait till November it'll all be better after you vote for another big banker backed shill. No matter each "candidate" is owned by the same interests! just play pretend!

by the way, Orwell would NOT be backing it. He would NOT be backing this country AT ALL nor ISRAEL. If you knew anything about him at all you'd know that though..

7/18/14, 12:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Orwell predicted this nightmare we currently live in in 1984.

He saw it coming.

And the irony here is that you side with "Big Brother" and argue for this nightmare we live in!

You like living in a surveillance state with perpetual war run by a select few who oppress through lies and propaganda. Unbelievable!

You and Orwell could NOT see the world any different!
egooyea
DO you have a clue about him or his life? clearly not.
Then you go on to quote him!

7/18/14, 12:43 PM  
OpenID bc64a9f8-765e-11e3-8683-000bcdcb2996 said...

Gee Tom, some "anonymous" critic may have a point(finally). Perhaps
you might consider references to "Atlas Shrugged" instead. Maybe "Bleak House".
Granted, they weren't written for a child's comprehension,(why I generally refer to Brothers Grimm, Aesop's Fables, etc.) so it's thinly veiled references to current events of the time aren't quite as useful as Orwell's often mis-explained "work".
CaptDMO

7/18/14, 1:02 PM  
OpenID bc64a9f8-765e-11e3-8683-000bcdcb2996 said...

(cont.)
I suspect Dostoyevsky, Tolstoy, John Toole, or Mamet are off the table.

7/18/14, 1:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rockets, huh? Rockets that haven't killed a single soul since this slaughter was staged. Rockets...did it ever occur to you to think where these rockets come from? Israel has Gaza under lock and key--- and have a firm grip on what is allowed into Gaza. Mossad has a motto ----by way of deception thou shalt do war....start connecting dots......Rockets....may as well be throwing nerd footballs...

"Israeli troops and tanks are engaged in fierce fighting in Gaza following the launch of a military ground operation on Thursday night with the initial aim of destroying Hamas tunnels that could be used to launch attacks on Israel.

In a night of sustained bombardment as well as fighting on the ground, Israel suffered its first military casualty of the 11-day war. The dead soldier – named as Eitan Barak, 20 – was possibly killed by so-called friendly fire in the north of Gaza. Two others were injured.

The Palestinian death toll since the start of the conflict passed 274, including at least 28 who were killed overnight, according to health officials in Gaza, with more than 2,000 injured. Israel launched air strikes against more than 100 targets overnight. Unrwa, the UN agency for Palestinian refugees, said the number of displaced Gazans had almost doubled in the past 24 hours with more than 40,000 seeking sanctuary with the UN."

7/19/14, 10:07 AM  
OpenID bc64a9f8-765e-11e3-8683-000bcdcb2996 said...

"Rockets....may as well be throwing nerd footballs"
NEVER wound a king.
But Machiavelli's off the table too.

"Unrwa, the UN agency for Palestinian refugees, said...."
Gee, sorry about aiding and comforting those with missiles in our "humanitarian" UN schools "for the children..."

7/19/14, 12:57 PM  
Blogger Tom McLaughlin said...

Ever wonder why then, do Hamas and Hezbollah continue to send rockets into Israel so often?

It's to provoke a response by Israel. Those terrorists want Israel to kill their civilians so TV cameras can film crying Palestinians.

It's all for anti-Israel propaganda and people like you get sucked in every time.

7/19/14, 1:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mossad's motto---"by way of deception thou shalt do war"

Mossad is built on lies and deception. Do you ever apply critical thinking? Ever?

How many Palestinians call themselves your congressman? None huh. How many israeli's can claim that? Oh, dozens? Hmmmm...maybe that would be influential? Maybe....?

How many media outlets are run by palestinains gain tom?

Anti israeli propaganda huh. With all I just mentioned that's your excuse. Anti israeli propaganda. Wow....
Please explain how that works in such a Zionist dominated country as ours....

7/20/14, 10:28 AM  
Blogger Tom McLaughlin said...

We're talking about Hamas here. Hamas is an Iranian puppet. Iran promised over and over the "wipe Israel off the map. Israel is defending itself from ultimate destruction.

I suggest you do some critical thinking of your own.

7/20/14, 1:08 PM  
OpenID bc64a9f8-765e-11e3-8683-000bcdcb2996 said...

Wait! "Iran" promised....?
Muslims have "promised" all KINDS of things to infidels, and apostates, over the last....well, ever.
There's a "special clause" in the instruction manual about that.
CaptDMO

7/21/14, 7:35 AM  
OpenID bc64a9f8-765e-11e3-8683-000bcdcb2996 said...

Hey, how did it come to be that Persia changed it's name to Iran?
What does Iran MEAN anyway?
(OK,OK feigned ignorance)
I wonder what "Palestine" is doing to drive those "different" Hamas folk out of the country?
Don't they want a "special day" to celebrate like St. Patrick's Day?
CaptDMO

7/21/14, 7:41 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My god man are you daft? The ultimate destruction? By non explosive rockets ? Wake the f@&$ up. It's all lies!,

The facts and reality are laid bare for all to see. Ignorance is no excuse. Neither is blind obedience to lies and propaganda.

Keep digging that hole. I feel so sorry for you. Especially as a Christian.

( keep avoiding the AIPAC issue too. Wouldn't want o engage an actual issue would you? No big deal that we let citizens of another country decide our laws, especially foreign policy. Makes sense, right?
And objective of course)

7/21/14, 8:01 AM  
Blogger Tom McLaughlin said...

Go Israel! This Christian is cheering for you.

7/21/14, 8:12 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

And there you have it folks--The "Christian" is now cheerleading genocide!! Cheerleading the targeting of civilians--women and children! Nothing like a good ol' slaughter to warm that Christian heart, huh?

How terribly sad. I truly truly feel sorry for you and the rest who have been duped by lies and refuse to see the light...You do realize what's going right now in gaza? Hello!! If so, write us all an essay on how Israel's actions reflect a christian morality. I will wait..


------
Dearest friends,

The last night was extreme. The "ground invasion" of Gaza resulted in scores and carloads with maimed, torn apart, bleeding, shivering, dying - all sorts of injured Palestinians, all ages, all civilians, all innocent.

The heroes in the ambulances and in all of Gaza's hospitals are working 12-24 hour shifts, grey from fatigue and inhuman workloads (without payment all in Shifa for the last 4 months), they care, triage, try to understand the incomprehensible chaos of bodies, sizes, limbs, walking, not walking, breathing, not breathing, bleeding, not bleeding humans. HUMANS!

Now, once more treated like animals by "the most moral army in the world" (sic!).

My respect for the wounded is endless, in their contained determination in the midst of pain, agony and shock; my admiration for the staff and volunteers is endless, my closeness to the Palestinian "sumud" gives me strength, although in glimpses I just want to scream, hold someone tight, cry, smell the skin and hair of the warm child, covered in blood, protect ourselves in an endless embrace - but we cannot afford that, nor can they.

Ashy grey faces - Oh NO! Not one more load of tens of maimed and bleeding, we still have lakes of blood on the floor in the ER, piles of dripping, blood-soaked bandages to clear out - oh - the cleaners, everywhere, swiftly shovelling the blood and discarded tissues, hair, clothes,cannulas - the leftovers from death - all taken away ... to be prepared again, to be repeated all over. More then 100 cases came to Shifa in the last 24 hrs. Enough for a large well trained hospital with everything, but here - almost nothing: no electricity, water, disposables, drugs, OR-tables, instruments, monitors - all rusted and as if taken from museums of yesterday's hospitals. But they do not complain, these heroes. They get on with it, like warriors, head on, enormously resolute.

And as I write these words to you, alone, on a bed, my tears flow, the warm but useless tears of pain and grief, of anger and fear. This is not happening!

An then, just now, the orchestra of the Israeli war-machine starts its gruesome symphony again, just now: salvos of artillery from the navy boats just down on the shores, the roaring F16, the sickening drones (Arabic 'Zennanis', the hummers), and the cluttering Apaches. So much made in and paid by the US.

Mr. Obama - do you have a heart?

I invite you - spend one night - just one night - with us in Shifa. Disguised as a cleaner, maybe.

I am convinced, 100%, it would change history.

Nobody with a heart AND power could ever walk away from a night in Shifa without being determined to end the slaughter of the Palestinian people.

But the heartless and merciless have done their calculations and planned another "dahyia" onslaught on Gaza.

The rivers of blood will keep running the coming night. I can hear they have tuned their instruments of death.

Please. Do what you can. This, THIS cannot continue.



Mads Gilbert MD PhD
Professor and Clinical Head
Clinic of Emergency Medicine
University Hospital of North No

7/21/14, 12:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Alimuddin Usmani interviews Gilad Atzmon

#PalestineUnderAttack

Alimuddin Usmani: After "Cast lead" in 2009 and "Pillar of defense" in 2012, the Israeli army has launched operation "Protective edge" in July, 2014 against Gaza. What is the purpose of these repeated large scale military operations?

Gilad Atzmon: It is important to note that Israel hasn't won a single military battle since 1973. True, it has killed many Arabs, but it hasn't managed to achieve any of its military objectives.

Israel’s military domination has been sustained by the power of deterrence. The strategy was to force Arabs to avoid conflict by threatening that they could lose everything. This week has shown that this trick won't work anymore. Palestinian resistance has sprung back to life. Israel can not solve its problems by military means. The situation is desperate for the Israelis. They have started to realize that they are stuck within a political, ideological and cultural stalemate. Israel is unable to conjure an image of a resolution. There is no prospect of future for the Jewish State.

Furthermore, the Jewish left's blatant lie that the ‘occupation is the problem’ has been exposed this week as we witness Israeli Arab citizens chased by Jewish mobs. As we know, the right-wing call for mass expulsion of all Arabs from Israeli territory is becoming increasingly popular within Israel. This brutal ‘solution’ is totally consistent with Jewish supremacist culture and ideology. After all, Jews, and I mean both Zionists and anti, like to operate within a Jews only environment. But can Israel rid itself of the Palestinians. This is exactly what the Right wing parties within the coalition promise to do.

Back to your question; since the military cannot provide the answers and the politicians cannot produce an image of a solution, the military is used as a firemen's brigade. It supplies short lived victories. The IDF is buying time, it cannot deliver a victory because military objectives cannot even be articulated. The IDF pounds Gaza with missiles, it kills whatever it suspects might be dangerous (a lot of kids, elders and women). But as time goes by, the military options are shrinking and to a certain extent, are not viable any more.

The German military theorist, Carl von Clausewitz suggested in the 19th century that “war is the continuation of politics by other means.” In the case of Israel what we see instead is the reverse of Clausewitz’ idea: Israeli politics is the continuation of the Jewish need for a conflict.

Alimuddin Usmani: Haaretz’ writer Gideon Levy wrote that Israel doesn't want peace and that "Rejectionism is embedded in Israel's most primal beliefs. There, at the deepest level, lies the concept that this land is destined for the Jews alone." What is your opinion on this?

http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/israel-peace-conference/1.601112

Gilad Atzmon: I am delighted to see that more and more people including my bitterest opponents now agree with me that there is something deeply troubling in Jewish culture and ID politics. Haaretz wrote an editorial a few days ago stating that “Israel must undergo a cultural revolution” (http://www.haaretz.com/opinion/.premium-1.603451). My bitterest Palestinian opponent, Ali Abunimah, who just recently denounced me for focusing on Jewish culture, seems to have adopted my philosophy. He now points to the morbid racism inherent in Jewish culture and politics.

And now, after praising myself and my ‘prophetic qualities,’ let me address the question. In Hebrew, the word 'Shalom' doesn’t mean peace, harmony or reconciliation. It means ‘security for the Jews.’ In other words, Israel does not have a proper word for peace or reconciliation. Hence it is not surprising that Israel is not a partner in peace. It can’t even contemplate the concept.

7/21/14, 12:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Alimuddin Usmani: Criticism of the Talmud is widespread, especially on the internet. The Anti-Defamation League issued a report in 2003 explaining that critics of the Talmud use erroneous translations or erroneous quotations in order to distort it's meaning. What is your response to the ADL?

http://archive.adl.org/presrele/asus_12/the_talmud.pdf

Gilad Atzmon: The ADL argument is just a projection of common Jewish tactics- it is Jews and Israelis who mistranslate and quote out of context a la Dominique Vidal in order to divert attention from the problems inherent in Jewish culture, the Jewish State and the Talmud. The ADL article exemplifies this method. Instead of addressing the argument it simply shows that the Talmud also includes some ethical preaching.

However, I must add that I do not see the Talmud as the core problem. My study of Jewish history reveals that it isn’t the rabbinical Jews and the followers of the Talmud who have engaged in genocidal crimes. It was actually the Bolshevik Jews who were ‘Stalin's Willing Executioners’ as Yuri Selzkin describes them in his phenomenal book, 'The Jewish Century.' It was the revolutionary Jews who burned and murdered Christians in the name of the 'world proletariat’ while fighting within the Yiddish speaking ‘International Brigade’ (Spain 1936). It was the Left Zionists who expelled the Palestinians in 1948 in what is now known as the Nakba. I think that we have enough evidence to suggest that from a Jewish perspectives the previous century was a ‘Century of Nakbas.' Those ‘progressive’ Jews didn’t follow the Talmud, on the contrary, they believed themselves to be anti-religious, atheist and ‘working class.' Someone mentioned to me recently that for some reason these Jewish atheist revolutionaries always burn churches, they never burn synagogues. Is this a coincidence?

7/21/14, 12:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We live in a country that is utterly pro Zionist. From AIPAC to our media outlets. So, to think we are getting fair and accurate reporting from Gaza? please....I have some ocean-view property to sell you in Vermont too! haha

--------------
British deputy prime minister Nick Clegg accused Israel of a “deliberately disproportionate” response to Hamas. That would would be a war crime if true.

Channel 4′s Jon Snow asked an Israeli spokesman all those same questions everyone else would like to, including why in the world Israel is bombing hospitals and old people’s homes and whether there is something wrong with their equipment or whether they have simply decided to commit war crimes if that is what it takes. Compare Snow’s actual journalism with any anchor on US network news and it is American journalism that stands shamed.

7/21/14, 2:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

◾Gaza (along with the West Bank and East Jerusalem) is occupied Palestinian territory under international law, determined by the vast majority of the world, as well as the highest court in the world, the UN’s International Court of Justice. Gaza cannot commit aggression against Israel, since Israel is in constant and continual commission of illegal aggression against Palestine by occupying it (illegally and sadistically blockading it and frequently committing terrorism against its civilians, including by targeting them with chemical weapons provided by US taxpayers – see “Rain of Fire” by Human Rights Watch). As documented by Amnesty Int’l, Human Rights Watch, and many others, Israel intentionally targets and murders civilians, including children, en masse.
◾Israel also kidnaps and tortures children, including by keeping them in outdoor cages, over night, in winter.
◾But, even ignoring international law and that Gaza is under illegal Israeli occupation, Gaza did not initiate this current round of violence; Israel did:
◾Western/US/Israeli propaganda says the violence started with the kidnapping and killing of three Israeli youths on June 12th. That is a lie:
◾On May 20th, the Israeli government murdered 2 unarmed Palestinian teens, one on video, and wounded a third.
◾The firing of pathetic scrap metal rockets from impoverished Gaza, which have killed no one, were in fact launched in response to earlier Israeli bombings, killings, assassinations, and arrests of Palestinians, including children.
◾Since the year 2000, Israel has killed 1,500 Palestinian children, while Palestinians have killed 132 Israeli children. That means Israel has killed over 1,000% percent more Palestinian children than vice versa.
◾As documented by the Washington DC based non-Profit, The Jerusalem Fund, Israel breaks far more ceasefires than Palestine – this includes firing of the Palestinian scrap metal rockets.
◾For example, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and many other human rights organizations reported that in Israel’s 2009 Gaza Massacre, Israel killed about 450 children, and it was Israel, they documented, that broke the ceasefire. (In that massacre, Israel killed overall from 1,400 to 7,000 Palestinians, almost all civilians, while 13 Israelis were killed, several from friendly fire.)
◾According to a landmark, comprehensive study of all of Israel’s wars, by Zeev Maoz, Professor of Political Science at the University of California, Davis, former head of the Graduate School of Government and Policy and of the Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies at Tel Aviv University, and former academic director of the M.A. Program at the Israeli Defense Forces’ National Defense College:
◾“. most of the wars in which Israel was involved were the result of deliberate Israeli aggressive design . None of these wars – with the possible exception of the 1948 War of independence – was what Israel refers to as Milhemet Ein Berah (war of necessity). They were all wars of choice . ” – Defending the Holy Land, pg. 35, (bold added)
◾“I review a number of peace-related opportunities ranging from the Zionist-Hashemite collusion in 1947 through the collapse of the Oslo Process in 2000. In all those cases I find that Israeli decision makers – who had been willing to embark upon bold and daring military adventures – were extremely reluctant to make even the smallest concessions for peace . I also find in many cases Israel was engaged in systematic violations of agreements and tacit understandings between itself and its neighbors.” – Defending the Holy Land, pg. 40
◾Israel has violated more UN resolutions than any other country. That includes Iraq under Hussein.

7/21/14, 5:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

◾Obama requested more military aid for Israel than any president ever.
◾Israeli settlement building in Palestine is a war crime under international law. Under Obama, Israeli settlement building is up over 130%.
◾For about 40 years, there has been an international consensus that Israel must stop colonizing territory outside its 1967 borders. The consensus has been blocked by the United States, in isolation from the international community (much like the USA’s isolated, strong support for South African Apartheid). Every year there is a UN vote on the issue, and every year it goes about 165 to 2, the world against the US and Israel. This continues under Obama. All human rights groups support the consensus, as does Hamas, the Arab League, Iran, the Organization of the Islamic Conference… Virtually everyone, except the US and Israel. (More details on this page.)
◾Palestinians are brutalized, repressed and impoverished by Israel. To get a quick visual understanding of the difference between Gaza and Israel, take a look at the images of people and cities being wantonly pummeled by Israeli terrorism when you search the word “Gaza“, and the images of opulence, wealth and luxury that come up when you search “Tel Aviv“.
◾Israel has an illegal stash of hundreds of nuclear weapons.
◾Israel, whose government intentionally targets, tortures, and murders civilians, including children, including with chemical weapons, and whose government uses Palestinian civilians as human shields, and whose government is the last entity on Earth carrying out old-style ethnic cleansing and colonization of foreign countries, is the single biggest recipient of US aid, at over three billion dollars a year and huge amounts of lethal weaponry such as attack helicopters and white phosphorous chemical explosives.
◾To reiterate, Obama requested more military aid for Israel than any president ever. This is not because Obama and the USA love Jewish people. Obama was recently an accomplice in a literal neo-Nazi-led coup d’etat in Ukraine, and is currently fully supporting the junta-integrated Ukrainian government, which is staffed with several neo-Nazis in high ministries, and which uses neo-Nazi paramilitaries to carry out massacres (and possibly genocide) against people resistant to the junta. The actual reason the US supports Israel is discussed below.
◾As Amnesty International has noted, all aid to Israel is illegal under international (and US) law, because Israel is a consistent violator of human rights.


Amnesty International also noted that Israel’s 2009 massacre of Gaza would not have been possible without the illegal funding (money and weapons) and support Israel gets from the USA.

7/21/14, 5:07 PM  
OpenID bc64a9f8-765e-11e3-8683-000bcdcb2996 said...

Hmmmm an amusing interpretation, cut and paste from WHERE exactly?
I think it would actually stand up, for a while, at Wikipedia.
Give it a shot "anonymous".

CaptDMO

7/21/14, 10:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Interpretation? Try facts.
Uncomfortable facts for a country that is lied to, constantly, about israel. What do you expect when you let citizens of another country sit in your govt.

Facts All US Citizens Need to Know About Israel and Palestine
Posted on July 12, 2014 by Robert Barsocchini
http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2014/07/facts-us-citizens-need-know-israel-palestine.html


The thing is-- the jig is up. Tom's defense of these war crimes and crimes against humanity are themselves don't hold any water in light of reality and the facts.

7/22/14, 7:41 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Gilad Atzmon, a Jew, has great insight about israel. Check his website out. Refreshing perspective. Not lies and propaganda.
--------

By Gilad Atzmon

In his speech to the nation Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu acknowledged yesterday that the war on Gaza is a battle for the existence of the Jewish State. Netanyahu is correct. And Israel cannot win this battle; it cannot even define what a victory might entail. Surely the battle is not about the tunnels or the militants’ underground operation, the tunnels are just weapons of resistance rather than the resistance itself. The Hamas and Gaza militants lured Israel into a battle zone in which it could never succeed and Hamas set the conditions, chose the ground and has written the terms required to conclude this cycle of violence.

For ten days Netanyahu did all he could to prevent an IDF ground operation. He was facing the reality that Israel lacks a military answer to Palestinian resistance. Netanyahu knew that a defeat on the ground would eradicate the little that remains of IDF’s power of deterrence.

Five days ago, Israel, at least in the eyes of its supporters, held the upper ground. It saw it citizens subject to an endless barrage of rockets, yet it showed relative restraint, killing Palestinian civilians only from afar, which served to convey an imaginary image of strength. But that has changed rapidly since Israel launched its ground operation. Israel is now, once again, involved in colossal war crimes against a civilian population and worse, at least strategically, its elite infantry commandos are being eradicated in a face-to-face street battle in Gaza. In spite of clear Israeli technological superiority and firepower, the Palestinian militants are winning the battle on the ground and they have even managed to move the battle to Israeli territory. In addition, the barrage of rockets on Tel Aviv doesn’t seem to stop.

IDF’s defeat in Gaza leaves the Jewish State with no hope. The moral is simple. If you insist on living on someone else’s land, military might is an essential ingredient to discourage the dispossessed from acting to reclaim their rights. The level of IDF casualties and the number of bodies of Israeli elite soldiers returning home in coffins send a clear message to both Israelis and Palestinians. Israeli military superiority belongs to the past. There is no future for the Jews-only-State in Palestine; they may have to try somewhere else.

http://www.gilad.co.uk/writings/the-end-of-israel.html

7/22/14, 7:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In reply to your post on the PPH website re: Gaza and Israel

Yes indeed! All of our "news" corporations are owned by Palestinians! And what about that Palestinian equivalent to AIPAC!?

Unfortunately your post reads like a half-wits guide to Israel and Gaza.

When you stop and realize the power and influence they have over information then its hard to keep believing such bs lies as 'human shields' and the rest of the desperate non-sense you try and pass of as truth.

The only idiots are the ones spouting bs like this post. The rest of the world, literally, can see the truth. We are the only, the only, country siding with Israel. The only lone "no" vote belongs to us at the UN.

I realize you believe what you've written. But sorry, it aint true..

Maybe if you Israeli cheerleaders (and by default cheerleaders of murder, theft and lies) engaged in some critical thinking or took a step back to consider the influence of this little "country" on the once mighty USA you'd wake up a little...

This pathetic parroting of Zionist lies about hamas and Palestine is now being scrutinized under a new light---you may want to reconsider before its too late..

7/31/14, 11:22 AM  
Blogger Tom McLaughlin said...

"This pathetic parroting of Zionist lies about hamas and Palestine is now being scrutinized under a new light---you may want to reconsider before its too late..."

Ahh, another threat. Who do you represent? The Caliphate?

Kiss my ass.

7/31/14, 7:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Threat? Not at all.
But maybe you want to be on the right side of history. That's what I meant. There is still a chance to come out looking like a civilized human being rather than a brainwashed zombie.

You have nothing but lies backing your assertions, which are nothing more than regurgitation of corporate media bs. This isn't rocket science--look who controls the information and start connecting dots. Very simple really.

Obviously by reverting to sophomoric behavior--"kiss my ass"--you are revealing that you really do know you are wrong---yet you can't admit it. Hence the frustration and anger.

Which is why you never engage in trying to refute the facts I bombard you with---says it all really. You've got nothing.

8/1/14, 5:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Studies show that US news is extremely Israeli-centric. The main bureaus for CNN, AP, Time, etc. are located in Israel and are often staffed by Israelis. The son of the NY Times bureau chief is in the Israeli army; "pundit" Jeffrey Goldberg served in the Israeli military; Wolf Blitzer worked for the Israel lobby, and numerous other journalists in the region have personal family ties to the Israeli military."

http://www.ifamericansknew.org/media/bias.html

Youre a tough guy, huh tom? Kiss your ass, huh?
Hahaha.......

I will pray for you and all of those like you at church this weekend. I will ask Jesus to forgive you for supporting this slaughter. And betraying him...

8/2/14, 9:22 AM  

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