The Fatal Fallacy of “Objectivity”

Seldom a day goes by that I am not reminded of how much easier life would be if we all just applied ourselves to the simple (enjoyable, even) task of recognizing the benefits of siding with the “winning team” and took comfort from the false sense of privilege and entitlement that comes with championing the status-quo. On more than one occasion, I’ve been encouraged to tone down the “rage” element in my writing, concentrating instead on jotting down my thoughts on current affairs in the hopes of one day seeing them in a “real” magazine. But in order to realize this non-ambition of mine, I will have to be sure to maintain a tone of cool “objectivity” and stick to topics that will better guarantee my smooth passage into “nice” society among people who avoid words like “atrocity” when they don’t apply to Tibetan monks or Darfur refugees.

And when the subject of the conflict in the Middle East is broached, I should manage a discreet and “knowing” little sigh, having recognized the signal to return to the much more pressing topics of the day like gay marriage or this year’s Oscar nominees. Unluckily for me, I have no intention of being a “fair and impartial” observer of anything — least of all injustice. After all, “objectivity” in the political context usually functions as passivity and an inability (or unwillingness) to confront power, which is never “objective” about anything. Truth, on the other hand, can never be underestimated, however much its detractors protest the unwelcome incursion of inconvenient facts into their power-serving narratives, using subterfuge and fraudulent notions of “objectivity” to defend the indefensible. Worst of all, truth provides the basis for courage, and without courage, power cannot be confronted.

Indeed there is no shortage of facts that could lead one to conclude that the unmitigated tragedy that is unfolding right now in Gaza is anything but a singular act of violence and state terror perpetrated by a heavily armed and funded military power against a defenseless and imprisoned population — as opposed to a two-sided, evenly matched conflict between equal powers as our fact-filtering media takes great pains to imply, even insisting in some cases that small, fertilizer-based Qassam rockets launched over a prison wall pose a credible threat to Israel’s continuing existence as a political and geographical entity.

But for now, I will leave the heavy lifting required to properly analyze the unfolding and escalating atrocities being inflicted upon the people of Gaza in the capable hands of all the worthy scholars and activists who provide a much better service to the cause of justice than I ever will. In fact, I will be the first to admit that I lack the brainpower to truly grasp the scope and complexity of this horror, or the imagination to fully appreciate the depraved ingenuity of its architects. In many ways, I am even thankful that I don’t have the faculties necessary to truly comprehend the levels of fear and despair every Palestinian is experiencing right now, as their homes are being rubbled, their children slaughtered, and their dignity and honor defiled by the monsters who wear the Israeli army uniform.

These seemingly endless reserves of contempt (not to mention, bewilderment) I am learning to live with are no match, either, for how the Palestinians (and Israelis of conscience) are feeling towards the leaders who robbed these soldiers of every last shred of their humanity in the first place. Nor do I have the stamina to endure even for a day the frustrations and humiliations the Israelis relentlessly inflict upon Palestinians in the “best” of times, whether it’s through direct intimidation, harassment, or just as brutally, all those punishing bureaucratic procedures like checkpoints and constant demands for documentation, the interminable waiting, the endless lines . . . We can only interpret the ever-changing and maliciously implemented rules Palestinians in the Occupied Territories have to submit to, even as they are being denied a human being’s most basic, fundamental needs like going to work, visiting nearby friends and relatives, or seeking medical services, as constant reminders that they are not merely prisoners, but a contained “livestock” herd facing the same fate as farm animals suspected of posing the risk of contagion to “human” populations.

I don’t have the expertise, so to speak, (or even the bandwidth) to list every “minor” act of cruelty that is inflicted upon the Palestinians as collective punishment every day for the crime of not being Jewish in the “”Holy Land.” Comparing this system of state brutality against an ethnic “other” to Apartheid is a euphemistic understatement. Holocaust is a more accurate term, but this holocaust, unlike its more famous predecessor with a capital ‘H’, has continued unabated for sixty years and intensifies every passing day, while we wring our hands and mumble some platitude about the failures of both sides to seek more peaceful means towards ending the conflict. Implicit in this simplistic view of the situation is the notion that total submission to Israel’s continuing occupation of Palestinian land and its brutal control over every aspect of Palestinian life is the only course of “action” Palestinians should pursue if “peace” is to be achieved.

Let’s not forget, though, that “peace” in this context is a subterfuge term to describe the abject capitulation to the enhanced measures of domination that is incumbent upon Palestinians to submit to, with little or no regard to their rights to self-defense. What well-meaning hand wringers most conveniently overlook as they lament over the wrongs inflicted on and by both sides (in the name of “objectivity”, of course) is the seldom discussed fact that Israel had already violated the terms of its illusory “ceasefire” with Hamas when it implemented its deadly blockade of Gaza six months earlier — an internationally recognized violation of its responsibilities as an occupying power — and an obvious attempt to provoke a cross “border” assault by Hamas militants in order to justify its own brute measures of “containing” its unwanted and slaughter-ready “livestock” population. Never mind, either, that Israeli soldiers murdered six Palestinians during this so-called ceasefire in November 2008, citing the victims’ affiliation to Hamas as a justification for this slaughter.

Again, the “objectivity” our society’s privileged sector insists is integral to our understanding of the conflict merely stands as tragic testament to the American media/military/entertainment complex’s success in shaping public discourse to serve the needs of wealth and power, providing an exclusive, cushy forum from which war criminals can air their grievances 24/7.

For those who don’t enjoy the luxury of inhaling the fine cigar aroma of the nation’s op-ed pages and get their “news” first hand from the mortar shells raining down on their homes, “objectivity” is merely an other rhetorical ploy to bring them in line with Tel-Aviv and Washington’s larger aims of expanding their sphere of dominance in an oil rich region.

We shouldn’t be surprised at the scale and scope of this tragedy since it goes back decades with the slow destruction of the economy, infrastructure, institutions and overall sustainability of the occupied territories, the fragmentation of Palestinian land into isolated and locked down Bantustans disconnected from the surrounding economies of its neighbors. So far Israel has achieved its intended goal of creating a failed non-state almost wholly dependent on the scant food aid “allowed” in at the whim and mercy of its jailers. Adding insult to injury, these starvation measures are lauded in the media as “humanitarian” interventions, carried out under the auspices of an International law-abiding nation, going that extra mile to observe the protocols of the Geneva Conventions.

Worse even, this deliberate dismantling of Palestinian society and the institutions that sustain it has been carried out with the full cooperation of the so-called “International Community.” Even among Arab leaders in the region, corrupt politicians offer their complicit support to the genocide through discreet diplomatic channels. In the meantime, the criminals we have elevated to levels of leadership stand united in condemning the Palestinians for the least resistance to their worsening plight, while condoning Israel’s war crimes as acts of “self defense.” I could go on, but I know I haven’t even begun to scratch the surface.

I will also be the first to admit that I am neither burdened by history or displacement, but merely a casual observer with the remote control easily within reach. And to my shame, I don’t hesitate to use it. It’s hard enough to fathom any of the atrocities going on in the world on any given day, let alone imagine one that is endless, deliberately worsening, and with the intended goal of provoking a humanitarian crisis. It is no longer possible to deny the fact that Israel’s long standing strategy is to derail the prospect for peace with the Palestinians altogether in the belief that a viable, democratic Palestinian state would only impede its ultimate geopolitical aims of further expanding its ill-gained and legally unrecognized borders. For all its talk of “peace” and “coexistence”, Israel’s road maps only lead to more enhanced measures of forced expulsion of the human shaped potholes its artillery tanks absorb along the otherwise smooth paths leading to its targets of annihilation.

If I only knew how to compartmentalize my empathy (and yes, my sense of outrage) into neat little packages to be doled out on a “time and place” basis. And again, only to those who “deserve” it most, based on their proximity to high profile advocates like Bono and the Dalai Lama. Or at least conform visually to our standards of “victims” like those wizened, semi-comatose African babies whose blighted existence can never be expressed through acts of defiance or resistance, but rather compliancy and helplessness in the face of “unavoidable” tragedy. We in the West approve of these kinds of victims because they pose no threat. On the contrary, they remind us how “good we have it” and provide countless opportunities to throw a celebrity-studded shindig in their honor. For the bargain basement price of what it would cost to feed and educate an African child well into adulthood, we can pick one up as the ultimate red carpet accessory. Conveniently, we read only gratitude for our beneficence in those terrified, staring eyes, rather than see a mirror upon which are own depravities are reflected. When Palestinians are reduced to this state, perhaps then we can spare a thought to their predicament.

As the images of terrorized and slaughtered children make their way out of Gaza through some of the more unfiltered media portals, the endless litany of absurdities dribbling from the mouths of Israeli government officials and their faithful scribes in the US media in the meantime, have become as blood chillingly surreal as any government radio broadcast in Rwanda during another genocide the world just happened to tune into between sit-coms and commercials for suppositories and teeth whiteners.

In the face of this ceaseless barrage of misinformation, we can only exercise our own right to self-defense against these relentless assaults to our intelligence and integrity before we become casualties ourselves. After all, when we choose to put our humanity on hold by adhering to some self-serving notion of “objectivity” in the face of avoidable tragedy, doesn’t that count as a death of sorts?

(With special thanks to Carl Kandutsch and Zeljko Cipris)

Jennifer Matsui is a freelance writer living in Tokyo. She can be reached at: Read other articles by Jennifer.

50 comments on this article so far ...

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  1. bozh said on January 12th, 2009 at 9:45am #

    almost all that msm spouts may be best labeled “casuistic” (specious).
    eg, 90% of the desruction of palestine and means to destroy more of it is equated by the casuists with a wish israel be destroyed and no means to carry that out.

    i fervently wish israel be destroyed; granting the right of the israeli children and their parents to remain in palestine if they wish.
    as we know, israel had been utterly destoyed once before by canaanites and assyrians, as revenge for what hebrews have allegedly done to canaanites centuries before utter evanscence of the northern kingdom, israel.
    the new, and worse israel than the one btw 3000 and 2728, will also be destroyed or its people must become humans once again. danke

  2. rg the lg said on January 12th, 2009 at 10:32am #

    Numbing down and dumbing down … the creation of a society that knows nothing.

    Locally I published something in the local on-line rag. SEE: The title is Unintended consequences … only I am NOT so sure they are unintended!

    RG the LG

  3. hasbara ritchie said on January 12th, 2009 at 2:36pm #

    Yeah course they did ritchie

  4. Brian Koontz said on January 12th, 2009 at 2:41pm #

    One of the problems with Zionism is it’s chances for success.

    The Americans exterminated the native population, and got away with it – there was virtually no external repercussion. So if Zionism succeeds in exterminating or driving out the Palestinians, who’s to say that they’ll have any problems as a result? As we speak the “natural allies” of the Palestinians, the Arab states in the region, are doing very little to help.

    The levers of power in the world are controlled by those who play power politics. They analyze the Israeli/Palestinian situation and either side with the Israelis, or remain “neutral”.

    Those who side with the Palestinians lack control of resources and thus can’t *do* much about their allegiance.

    Many people on the “left” suppose that the problem is the media – that if only the truth was known the world would be different. That’s a red herring – people who want to know the truth know it and those who don’t want to know can always find ways to avoid or circumvent truth. Watching the mainstream media is not a matter of being duped – it’s a matter of intentional ignorance – a kind of strategic self-psychological and self-functional ploy. One can’t talk about or think about the devil if one “doesn’t know about him”. Fox News isn’t for the ignorant – it’s for those people who want to be protected from understanding the world. Once one understands the world, one is obligated to act on that understanding. That’s a burden most are unwilling to shoulder.

    It’s not a matter of access to truth – it’s a matter of access to power. The people with the morality are the same people without the resources to implement that morality. The people whose only functional goal is to accumulate wealth are the same people who have that wealth and thus are able to use it to gain even more wealth. Hence their allegiance to Zionism.

    This fool’s errand, this wild goose chase, this method of serving power by means of the notion of access to truth being the problem in the world is vastly more harmful than the mainstream media itself. It allows “moral” people to simply speak the truth, and think they are doing something worthwhile.

    The real issue is not access to truth, but access to a WILLINGNESS and functional effort to accept and pursue truth, a willingness to understand the world, to act on the world, to destroy the elite, to do whatever it takes to save the world. Simply taking a Fox News viewer and force-feeding them reality does absolutely nothing because it doesn’t address the reason they are watching Fox News in the first place.

    So rather than congratulate oneself due to an ability to speak the truth, how about reserve that congratulations for when one converts a human being from one unwilling to better the world to one who does what it takes to do so.

  5. Emma said on January 12th, 2009 at 3:04pm #

    Thank you Jennifer for writing this article. I agree with everything that you say. No amount of explanation, protests or objectivity by all the pro-Israeli supporters who are sahmefully trying to deny the stark truth can change the facts. Is not it amazing, as soon as someone tells the truth, these Zionist bloggers rush to obliterate the truth and try to put their own version across. But as they say, Truth speaks louder than words, and you cannot suppress it for ever. The whole world is now seeing what lies, hypocrisy and barbarity the Zionsist are inflicting on these helpless refugees in the name of self-defence. I feel sickened when I see their prime minister, foreign minister and army personnel with their bland, dull, emotionless faces repeating the same rehearsed words like a parrot justifying their slaughter of the innocent.

    But you cannot hide your lies anymore. The whole world is watching with horror what brutalities you are capable of. You may not realise it, but as history has shown, evil does not last for ever. Nazism was overcome and Zionism may also be coming to and end very soon. I had no views on Israelis before, but now I hate evrything that you are doing, and pary to God to bring your fall very soon.

  6. Emma said on January 12th, 2009 at 3:09pm #

    Hi Brian,

    I agree with you, and I now intend to joing some grass-root organisations to change the world. I do believe that it is through self-aware and locally active organsiation we can gather mass and give the power back to people instead of handing it over to a few politicians who are always letting us down.

  7. Deadbeat said on January 12th, 2009 at 4:01pm #

    Zionism will be defeated. I think Brian you are painting a took bleak an outlook. The rests of the world is aware that Israel broke the ceasefire and that Hamas (who are and represents the Palestinians) is valiantly resisting the Israeli onslaught.

    The onslaught is so severe that it is becoming too obvious to hide even with all the propaganda. Obama’s selling out to Zionism will cripple his ability to really jumpstart the U.S. economy as his benefactors demand increasing aid to Israel via the high military budgets and the transfer to weapons. With $8 trillion already spent on the banks, 3 trillion on the War on Iraq and with 80% of the U.S. budget going to military spending — past and present — it is crowding out any possibility of any redistribution and spending on social needs.

    Because Obama will be constrained in his ability to repair the economy he will call for more “sacrifice” from the American people. That will be a tough sell since especially as unemployment continues to rise. As the economic pain continues people will begin to put the pieces together.

    The real issue facing the Left is will they boldly challenge U.S. Zionism or will they continue their obfuscation. We are now seeing Naomi Klein call for a boycott of Israel. “Pro-Israel” supporters on the Left better make themselves aware that don’t address Israel now the RIGHT will and it could get very ugly especially with the declining economy.

    There is another concern that I would like to raise. While I see Klein’s call to boycott Israel as a positive, a boycott of Israel will narrow the focus only to Israel and avoid the focus on Zionism which has a huge influence upon the U.S. political economy. Zionism is the basis now for maintaining large military and war spending as the U.S. fights a “War on Terror”. Tackling Zionism means ending the bogus “War on Terror” and eliminating the basis for the huge military spending. Zionism is filling the void left open from the Cold War justifications after it ended.

    Many U.S. citizens, as they unfortunately become more economically stressed, will eventually piece things together.

  8. Gideon said on January 12th, 2009 at 5:29pm #

    Do you think that an injured person cares if it was a low tech rocket or a high tech smart bomb and what the launcher had for lunch ?

    If you ever lived in a crime neighborhood and did not know if you can get back to your home alive, you would have only two choices: leave or fight back. Should you decide to stay and fight, do you really care about the childhood experiences of your attacker or what did he have for lunch today?

    Come on tell us how you really feel! Is any uniform soldier a “monster”?

    Have you ever seen a domestic animal being slaughtered? May be you should, before you are accused of word abuse.

    What occupied territories?
    Are you talking about the same Gaza Israel left two years ago?

    When did Hamas brutal take over power in Gaza and regime repressive of any dissident opinions (street executions of Fatah members), women rights or any respect of Gazan human rights, start to represent Palestinian society?

    Please PAY ATTENTION! If you use the word occupation multiple time it still will not change the fact that Israel left Gaza two years ago. Snap out of it!

    Peace in Arab – Israeli conflict is: live and let live. just like the one between Israel and Egypt and Jordan. No bombs across the fence.

    As someone who is unburden by neither knowledge, wisdom, history or experience your words play does not have a leg to stand on. I understand you know some words.

    Here is one for you: PERFIDY

    Jennifer, please do some home work and get back to us.

  9. Kim Petersen said on January 12th, 2009 at 6:15pm #

    Excellent article Jennifer!

  10. HR said on January 12th, 2009 at 6:33pm #

    Excellent article, all Zionist whining notwithstanding.

  11. Jack said on January 12th, 2009 at 8:53pm #


    You imply, subtly and with tact, that leftist silence on Zionism, and its consequences, will result in backlash against Jews, since we see now unfolding the conflation of “Jew” with “Israeli State and Supporting Citizenry.”

    I think you’re right. It’s already starting; pay attention to the usual hammerskin and stormfronter tools, the David Dukesters, the predictably Jewhating conservative old guard in Europe and the States.

    Jews and Jewish possessions are currently being targeted, by vandalizers and petty harassers, in Turkey and Europe.

    To which I imagine, the ADL thugs, and their ilk, will kindly respond with some species of, “Well, see, we have to defend ourselves.”

    Never commenting, as is their wont, on the larger schema of point, counterpoint, action, reaction.

    Because they can’t. Judaism itself is exclusivist. It’s primary axiom is simple: “We Are Chosen, ‘The Nations’ Hate Us For It.” That’s nothing new, when it comes to religion, or the claimants to the throne of cultural supremacy. Christian fundamentalists *and* liberals, especially of the American triumphalist variety, deal in the same worldview, replacing the cultural-ethnic nation (Jews) with the cultural-religious “Body of Christ.” Sometimes they do “good” things with that faith in self-defining exceptionalism (feeding the poor, even from baser motives of cultural supremacy, still results, at the minimum, in people who have something to eat, if only for one night out of seven).

    Often, they do not. Americans make a damnable culture out of this “sense of life,” this exceptionalism.

    The problem, for Jews facing the extended consequeces of Israeli governmental policy, in the States, in Europe, in the Middle East, is that there’s little room to differentiate between everyday Judaic exceptionalism (Chosen By God, already) and the hypermoxie Israeli colonial version of the same. Not because they are one and the same.

    Because: Zionism is incomprehensible without Judaic exceptionalism, in much the same way that American exceptionalism is essential to understanding American imperial overreach.

    Judaism, of course, is entirely comprehensible without any kind or type of Zionism, as American citizenship and residency is entirely separable, in individuals, from the predominant American political and religious culture.

    If leftists, resisters and dissidents aren’t willing to confront the specifics and particulars of the Judaic exceptionalism which underpins Zionism, and the crimes of Zionists – others will probably do the confronting, and on their own terms.

    Terms very unfavorable to people who just happen to be Jews, one might imagine and have cause to fear.

    A Jewish person, as a person, has every right to exist. As does a lesbian mother, a Palestinian child, a Bantu poet or a Mohawk traditionalist. This we insist, with our leftism. This is why we oppose the binding slaveries of the world’s multiplicity of fascisms.

    The question we have to ask, I think, is do these rights really apply to “ethnic groups”? Do Jews have rights superior to non-Jews? Do Israelis have rights which exceed, in potency, those of Palestinians?

    Too often, we play into the narrative which favors the exceptionalist outlook. We argue the “rights of Palestinians,” against the obvious crimes of those who rule Israel. We argue the ethnic group, and not the suffering persons, the individuals.

    In doing so, we validate the logic of those we oppose. Because their claims are ethnic and ethno-religious. They are the claims of racial exclusivity. By responding with, “..but, the Palestianians also…” we are in effect and fact declaring, “Yes, your group is a valid group, to which we counter our equally valid group.”

    But “ours” has no cash, no cache, no guns and very little butter. When we play into their worldview, they win – because theirs is in fact well armed, well financed, well patronized, well protected, well insulated and well propagandized.

    Their group is legitimate, in short. “Ours,” not so much.

    And from this, the rage grows. And from this, the lines are drawn sharper, until some new group or another decides to even the score and kill themselves some Jews, some members of the Hated Group.

    We would do well, I think (and I do not sermonize, here), to focus on persons. The persons who are victims, the persons who advocate exceptionalism, the persons who sit on the boards which profit from war, the persons who run the generally malign states and petty economic tyrannies.

    We would do well, I think, to mark their names in our long memory.

    And then, to name them. Not in the secret back rooms of fascist power and fear.

    In public. Sooner, then later. Before we cede the initiative of opposition to the stormfronters and (for now, still poor) fascists-in-waiting



  12. Max Shields said on January 12th, 2009 at 9:37pm #

    Yes, boycott Israel. That is the only way.

    Jack keep your eye on the ball: BOYCOTT ZIONIST ISRAEL.

  13. Jack said on January 12th, 2009 at 10:17pm #


    I understand the emotional urge to boycott the Israeli state, and companies doing business with its ruling class.

    Boycotts and divestment mean jack squat, though – when the intended target (the Israeli state, in this incidence) thrives on direct government to government transfer of wealth and material, as well as the willing complicity of neighboring tyrannies equally dependent on American largesse.

    …When the transferring government has been whitewashed, for the time being, by President Hope and Change.

    It’s a noble sentiment, but I doubt it will amount to much of anything but good feelings of proud opposition. Then, shortly after no one is paying attention to our noble squawking, we can have all the joys and pleasures of the all too predicatable arterial sclerosis which afflicts inside-the-system attempts to reason and joust with people quite willing to get their power on.

    No thank you, to all that. If some ruling party hack wants to neuter me, he doesn’t get to do it with dialogue and debate about the proper levels of investment and divestment, about the damage done to the productivity of this or that set of captive labor corvee, in the short and long term.

    He’s going to have to capture me, imprison me and do the dirty work of actually cutting my gonads from my aging flesh.

    And more to the point, really: what good is your dollar, right now? While the media-military-entertainment-banking combines concentrate their wealth further, and lock up their own investments in the safer markets, what damage are you going to be doing to Disney, Johnson and Johnson or the currently self-destructing Starbucks? Why waste your time withholding what they’re already taking direct to the veins from Uncle Sam, at negative interest.

    And here’s what they get out of the deal: free press, and a chance to strike a pose about corporate responsibility and the virtues of free markets.

    Here’s what you get: good feelings about the good fight, and plenty more dead Palestinians.

    Is my critique a solution, though? Of course not. I just don’t think we should fight according to the rules, is all. That’s why we keep losing. And boycotting Israel is fighting by the rules, first and forement because Israel is not South Africa. The South Africans did not Afrikaaner millionaires doing network clatching from the front of nearly every newscast and roundtable. The South Africans didn’t have a Veep who double declared his eternal friendship with South Africa as South African tanks rolled into one or more bantustans. The US corporate press is an Israeli and Uncle Sam defined and dominated battlefield. One or two wins, in that theater, won’t alter the tacit agreement to cede to ruling parties (in the States, Israel, Europe) the ground *and* the initiative.

    If a bully wants to beat on you, wants to pick all the attending third parties, wants to choose the playground in which you’ll get your lumps and bruises, the manner of your dress, and the rope with which to tie your hands – do you agree to his terms?

    I hope your answer is a resouding “no.”

    By all means, boycott businesses doing blood time with Israel’s current overlords. But don’t count on fewer colonial subjects doing the alchemical transmutaton – by way of the magical treatment of phosphorus and saltpeter – from living flesh, to corpse in the red dirt of death.



  14. catherine898 said on January 13th, 2009 at 1:37am #

    gay marriage can be accepted is really a turning point for the life of LGBT. Actually, divorce may also happen to straight people. “As to love, we should cherish it and love the one you love..” it is what we all bisexual get after the discussion at the bisexual club of . Anyway, making the law of marriage and divorce more complete is good thing for us LBGT. Thanks for giving us more right and making things easier for us.

  15. AEAZ said on January 13th, 2009 at 4:54am #

    Jack you are a hero of the highest order – I hold you up beside Gideon as a dycotemy of true words against devisive spin. Keep up the good fight and if you ever need a wingman, I would be privledged to offer my services 🙂

  16. Suthiano said on January 13th, 2009 at 12:29pm #

    The people who run the server have sabotoged the site as well.

  17. Deadbeat said on January 13th, 2009 at 12:34pm #


    You can reach me at moc.liamgnull@0001taebdaed

  18. Michael Hureaux said on January 13th, 2009 at 12:40pm #

    Jennifer, I’ve enjoyed your take no prisoner writing about this mess for a couple of years now. Don’t ever quit laying it out. You help a lot of us stay on point. abrazos—m. hureaux, Seattle

  19. bozh said on January 13th, 2009 at 1:11pm #

    gideon, to me, talks stupidly intentionally. i say this because he is a human being and can see the beam in his own eyes.
    such as the fact that palestine is occupied and, moreover, dissected and shredded while gaza is not only separated from their ancient habitat but is walled and its coast patrolled by warships.

    just the thought that a people cld control other people’s border in that fashion wld be repugnant and the fact that israel indeed does that represents a casus belli.

  20. chandra said on January 13th, 2009 at 1:11pm #

    Beautiful and correct.

  21. bozh said on January 13th, 2009 at 1:39pm #

    i too may have lost a few comments.

    in order to be able break the rules (and whatever that may mean to you) with impunity as the ruling classes in US and israel do, one must make their cia, army, congress, fbi our army, cia….

    once one has power equal or greater than the plutos and assuming that the plutos wld continue its opperesion of us or violence against us, we then employ boycotts, strikes, and violence against them. etc.

    unfortunately, cia, army, etc., is firmly controled by the plutos. so, th eonly way may be in establishing a strong party which wld be able to put someof our people in the army, cia..
    by complaining, criticizing which have been used for at least ten td years, not much can be achieved.

    once a person has tasted power, it is like an opiate; that person wld not give it up. and c.and s. america had proven they will kill to maintain their power. thnx

  22. Tree said on January 13th, 2009 at 2:01pm #

    I believe anyone can add a website to their name when they post a comment, I don’t think that’s up to the editors.
    Weird things happen all the time to my comments; not sure if it’s the editors or the server but I’m certainly willing to think the best of the editors.

  23. Garrett said on January 13th, 2009 at 3:56pm #

    “If you use the word occupation multiple time it still will not change the fact that Israel left Gaza two years ago.”

    Saying that does not change the fact that Israel is an occupying/controling force that withholds electricity, food, water, etc. And slaughters at least 100 Palestinians for every 1 Israeli who is killed.

  24. Andy Best said on January 13th, 2009 at 8:13pm #

    Thanks for this article, Jennifer.

    Replies like the one from Gideon are very instructive.

    It takes a high level of ignorance and disinformation to suggest that the situations with Gaza and Egypt, in relation to Israel, are the same.

  25. dk said on January 13th, 2009 at 11:51pm #

    franklin lambs article on this site addresses some of jennifers heartfelt and very valid concerns.the resistance grows.israel’s on the wrong side of history,joined by the usa.

  26. Gideon said on January 14th, 2009 at 1:39am #

    In the context of the Arab – Israeli conflict.

    If the Arabs put down their weapons today, there would be no more
    v iolence.

    If the Israelis put down their weapons today, there would be no more

  27. AEAZ - A. Myers said on January 14th, 2009 at 4:36am #

    Gideon – Israel should not even exist in the first place, your ideologies raise up nation against nation.
    Shabnam – I love your comments, which are always true, I hope you get to the bottom of the omissions. My name is A. Myers and AEAZ is anti-elitist / anti-zionist.

    Logically you can almost guarantee that all atrocities, war and manipulations come from a power / financial motivation covered in a religious overtone. The big banking dynasties of this millennium are behind all of them it seems. We find the evidence of this in the outcomes of each manipulation; the general populous are lambs to the slaughter in this. We are a blood sacrifice for an ultimate aim of total control. The more hate sown between Jews, Hindus, Muslims and Christians the better. The more one nation rises against another the closer we get to worldwide conflict, the bankers and arms peddlers win again because they supply all sides. The more the worldwide economy collapses the better a single currency will sound. These truths are leaving the arena of theory and entering the realms of fact.

    Using any terms around zionist ideologies, people falsely equate anti-zionism with anti-semitism (more spin). What I mean when I mention zionist ideologies is not Jews (as many Hassidic Jews are abhorrent of these ideologies) but every strata of society, neo-cons, mormons, jehovahs witnesses, christians, muslims, hindus, freemasons – ALL the upper echelons of religions, finance and politics are infested with racist, zionistic idealogies.

    To decide that all Jews are Zionists is to do exactly what they want you to do – they are laughing at you because you are now exactly the same as them, a racists thug! Many Jews are against Zionist ideologies, I am a gentile researcher who has seen much evidence of this.

    anti elitist / anti zionist

  28. mandla said on January 14th, 2009 at 6:34am #

    In the context of the Arab-Israeli conflict:

    imagine the Arabs and Israelis having to swap roles and the Arabs inflicting the same kind of disproportionate violence on Israelis …..

    You cannot discuss and mediate violence outside the moral-ethical value system. Jews have always claimed a better and superior moral-ethical value system and when judged against their own system they fail dismally.

  29. Jennifer Matsui said on January 14th, 2009 at 6:49am #

    Dear Gideon,

    Here is an image of sun dried tomato paste.

    A jar of shrivelled fruit might be impressed by your ability to recite meaningless slogans, but your human audience could hardly care less.

  30. AEAZ - A. Myers said on January 14th, 2009 at 7:31am #

    Nice1 Jen – brilliant article btw

  31. Jennifer Matsui said on January 14th, 2009 at 7:43am #

    Thanks AEAZ, I’m enjoying your comments as well.

    Maybe DV could make the jar of sundried tomatoes a regular feature for all insipid, off-topic sloganeering and the like. No one would have to delete or moderate comments, just move them to thread that features an image of shrivelled fruit products. It’s a win-win situation all around.

  32. AEAZ - A. Myers said on January 14th, 2009 at 7:59am #

    Good thinking, there are a few of them on the site sadly – maybe they could be highlighted in sundried tomato paste colour so that we do not waste our time reading their drivel.

  33. AEAZ - A. Myers said on January 14th, 2009 at 8:31am #

    Jennifer – have you had comments removed before?

  34. bozh said on January 14th, 2009 at 8:51am #

    to talk about the value of one people and avoid talking about the value of other people is, to me, a misvalue. thnx

  35. bozh said on January 14th, 2009 at 9:00am #

    if jahweh, the hebrew ‘god’ wanted peace in canaanitic regions he/she/it wldn’t have punished hebrews by herding them in an impoverished and tiny land.
    if jahweh (read mad hebrew priests) wanted peace and happiness for his/her/its cultists, it wld have given hebrews at least a continent of their own; preferably a planet of their own light years away.

  36. Jack said on January 14th, 2009 at 11:58am #


    You wrote:

    “You cannot discuss and mediate violence outside the moral-ethical value system. Jews have always claimed a better and superior moral-ethical value system and when judged against their own system they fail dismally.”

    Agree, completely.

    Israel has violated it’s own “motherhood” position. If the various Palestinian resistance groups, and the larger Palestinian population, can establish a *known* “motherhood” position, and force the Israeli state to continuously violate it’s own ethical claims, in an attempt to undermine the moral authority of the Palestinian resistance to occupation, the Palestinian people (as a community, and as persons) will have the opportunity to alter the nature of the conflict itself.

    Gandhi’s genius, by way of commentary, was not that he was a pacifist (although this was useful stance to take against the Raj and the Brits), but that he forced the Brits to undermine their own claims to moral and cultural supremacy, nearly every time they opposed acts of Indian resistance.

    For a greater explanation of “motherhood,” see:

    With no endorsement of Obama implied or intended.



  37. bozh said on January 14th, 2009 at 12:58pm #

    please read the torah and learn about hebraic or judaic ‘values’. many of their ‘values’ are criminal and can be compared with nazi ‘values’

  38. Jack said on January 14th, 2009 at 1:15pm #


    Bronze age Torah laws are not read literally by the majority of Jewish congregations. Hindus and Muslims can also manage to take the Gita and the Quran and not end up Hindutva or Salafi.

  39. bozh said on January 14th, 2009 at 1:42pm #

    it won’t do to switch the talk from values to torahic laws nor how ‘jews’ of the day interpret them.
    we are or were talking about ‘jewish’ ‘values’. and, moreover, how they were applied or used against the goyim.
    remember, that by just speaking of chinese values or the values of euros with judaic faith or cult one wld be swimming in supremacistic waters.

    i’ve had it with msm asserting how our (western) ‘values’ are so superior to eastern values. now people posit (tho tacitly; being afraid to say so explicitly) how valuable ‘jewish’ values are.
    how/why is one missing the obvious: whenever one puts up another, one perforce puts dwn that other.

    a star as is put up; bns are evaluated as less worthy. it can be also easily learned that in every nation there are an endless misvalues. i don’t think i need to enumerate them as they have been pricking us in both eyes for millennia.

    i also suggest that 98% of amers and ‘jews’ interpret these laws as per what they have been doing to palestinians for a century now.
    haven’t 98% of amers just voted for more punishemnt of palestinians.
    how many amer ‘jews’ have voted for obama? 99-100%.
    and thus for more slaughter. some interpretations, laws, and values.
    but i think you are religious people? thnx

  40. Michael Dawson said on January 14th, 2009 at 3:09pm #

    Bozh, 98 percent of Americans did not and would not vote to endorse Israel’s ongoing war crimes. 98 percent of Congresspersons did. Big and telling difference. An excellent indicator of how sick our supposedly representative political system is…

    Genuine debate and referral to the people cannot be permitted on Israel. The status quo would not fly under those conditions. Kind of like health care, etc. “Off the table.” “Irresponsible.” Etc.

  41. bozh said on January 14th, 2009 at 3:56pm #

    michael dawson,
    i have stated numerous times that guilt for crimes can be stratified.
    so, i wld say. that up 90% of amesr are less guilty than the rest. and of the 10% that are more guilty, ?2-3% deserve at least jail terms.
    and i strongly believe that vast numbers of amers are not an exception nor exceptional when it comes to the evaluation of numerous mistruths as truths.

    beyond this i can’t say any more. let science (anthropology, sociology, humanism) dwell into culpabilty of the 98% of the people who voted for crimianals. thnx

  42. kalidas said on January 14th, 2009 at 5:48pm #

    Jack, you are aware of what “Hindu Kush “means?
    Tell us what Islam means to all the Buddhists and Hindus of Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Bangladesh and soon to be Kashmir(?) That is , if you can find any.
    To equate Hindutva which is mostly ranting and raving talk, as opposed to the actual elimination of tens of millions of Hindus and Buddhists by the Mohammadans, is an insult and propaganda by omission, of the highest order.

  43. Jack said on January 14th, 2009 at 7:42pm #


    I didn’t equate Hinduism and Islam; I compared Hindutva (fundamenatlism) with Salafism (fundamentalism). I compared fundamentalisms, to illustrate how the text can be understood independent of individual interpretation. Hindu cosmology, in the hands of a Chopra, is inoffensive platitudinization. In the hands of Hindutva fanatics, quite another monster.

    And I don’t deal in sweeping categories, even as an atheist, to condemn all Islam, or Christianity, or Judaism, or Hindu metaphysics, because some one or another person argues this or that normative interpretation.

    Which, I guess, allows me to reiterate my point, in reply to bozh: texts are subject to interpretation. A humane yeshiva student, steeped in humanism and fellowship, will read the Torah and discover one meaning, and a cause to oppose Israeli aggression. The same text, in the hands of a Kahanist or “greater Israel” Likudnik, might find a re-expression of the older, brutal Bronze Age rules, and a rabbinical fatwa to murder as many Palestinians as possible.

    Characterizing all of the Torah as the evil work of ethically suspect Jews, as bad or false ethics (or whatever), clouds discernment, and obscures the differences between origin and aim.

    But, I suspect you were really just looking for an excuse to whine about evil Muslims and all the evil things they do to pure and godly [insert Christian, Jew, Hindu, Buddhist, et cetera].



  44. AEAZ - A. Myers said on January 15th, 2009 at 2:40am #

    There is no such thing as an evil Muslim, Jew, Hindu, Christian, Hare Krishna, Mormon, or Zoroastrian, in its true form all religions speak of the same unity. Zionism has split all religions and people in two, causing the fundamentalist to declare – ‘I am right and you are wrong’.
    Evil resides in fundamentalist, zionistic ideologies. All upper sections of society have these ideologies, whether its politics, religion or finance.
    The controllers of this world infest the people with these views and tell the people only what they want us to hear, ie: this is a justified conflict blah, blah, blah.
    I call all people to put down weapons and see the manipulation you are under, zionists will have you fighting until there are few enough people to control, all the while getting rich (via AIPAC) on this hell.

  45. Nikos said on January 15th, 2009 at 7:00am #

    Although, there are serious reasons explaining why USA promotes its interests by maintaining Israel as a regional superpower.
    I believe that the damage USA suffers with regards to its reputation is by far exceeding any advantages gained from supporting this country actions. Safely assuming that the damage done to USA reputation is recognised by American foreign policy, why should they maintain their practices so openly;
    The only thing I can think of with my limited knowledge is that at this point of time they don’t care.
    In order for USA to maintain its status as the only empire in the world, This country and any other empire historically must not only have military superiority over all the other nations but also should be able to produce and inspire new ideas to the majority of people worldwide.

    The latter has ceased to exist quite some time now and in my opinion the situation is well known to foreign policy makers. The transition to a new status past America has already began for good or worse and USA governments (especially Bush administration) tend to maintain the status quo for as long as possible not for the benefit of the USA and the American people but for the few Architects who have estimated they would gain more with the current status for as long as it can stay.

    Without the consent of the majority of the people recognising USA as the sole dominant origin influencing the rest of the world this trend is unable to hide its brutal face like assisting the genocide of Palestinians.

  46. bozh said on January 15th, 2009 at 9:26am #

    main and by far most basic zionist idea is theft of land. naturally then, thieving means use of violence or warfare.
    zionists, both the ashkenazic and nonashkenazic, are divided on how much they wan’t to take by warfare, etc., in ME.

    on the other hand, americanism, while differing little from ashkenaziism, was of one mind how much land it was to take by warfare; namely, all of it.
    canada was not taken, because the mouthful was too large and defended by two empires.

  47. Max Shields said on January 15th, 2009 at 9:33am #


    Up until very recently I would have completely agreed with you and still think there is some truth to the idea that the Empire requires the foothold that Israel provides.

    But I don’t think it is your run-of-the-mill plutocrat that controls the Congress. regarding foreign policy and particularly in ME. This is Zionism/AIPAC at work. It has a grip on this faux democracy. Because we have never really had a democracy, but rather a plutocracy with representation which can be easily gamed for a price, the system has been usurped by Zionism. Zionism is fanaticism incarnate; the rebirth of Hitler’s Nazis.

    The US Empire has a history which makes it an easy target for the Zionists. But because the Empire is in decline, the Zionists seem to have taken a stronger hold of the levers of power.

    Will this last? Will the decline of the US Empire be the Zionists’ last stand? Will there be a massive backlash against the Zionists here and abroad?

    Eventually, but when I’m uncertain.

  48. Concrete man said on January 16th, 2009 at 3:55pm #

    Great article. However, let’s dump all the Nazi and Holocaust analogies. WWII period is the most distorted period in history. One: Hitler was not so bad as compared to the “Allied” forces; two: There was no extermination plan, there were no homocidal gas chambers, and Six Million Jews were not “murdered”. Germar Rudolph’s book Dissecting the Holocaust (he is now in prison for questioning Jewish Supremacy) puts the number of Jews that died in the total theater of war at half a million.

    On another point, the root cause of this Iraeli bloodlust is documented in Michael Hoffman’s book, Judaism Discovered. People should read this book if they want to understand the root cause of Zionist aggression instead of just whacking at the branches.

  49. Concrete man said on January 17th, 2009 at 6:20pm #


  50. Maximilian Forte said on February 5th, 2009 at 9:04pm #

    Jennifer’s article is brilliant, many thanks for writing this. It comes especially at a time when academics are being immobilized out of fear that if they take a stand, they will be seen as having lost their “objectivity.” It’s an odd perversion of a term: Marx thought of his work as objective and scientific. The perversion is this: that an analysis cannot be deemed objective, if the stance it leads to is not a neutral one. It is muddled thought, hence the perverse misunderstandings of objectivity, which are best suited for monks and eunuchs.

    Jack, there is no either/or when it comes to boycotts. Boycotts are one strategy, which do not impede anyone from adopting other strategies as well. It’s not an exclusive strategy, and for many people it is the very most they can do, not the least. Let’s not disempower them by promoting the idea that anything they do, short of strapping on an explosive vest, is useless. Discouraging prospective actors…that is also playing by the rules of the system. Let’s not aim for theoretical purity, and instead let’s get busy.