Monday, December 17, 2012

MJ Rosenberg: "Jerusalem is Palestinian"

Like an aging carnival barker, unemployed blogger MJ Rosenberg needs to keep his articles as shocking as possible in order to get anyone to pay attention to him. This latest round is about his favorite punching bag, the settlements, as if you really thought it was going to be about anything else. As veteran readers may know, Rosenberg always says the same things, so let's focus on the most important section in this fixing. He starts by setting a record on "Great Anti-Zionist Strawmen," not to mention hints of a Zionist Occupied Government:
"It has long been clear that the label "pro-Israel" is almost always misapplied. When the lobby or its friends in the media call a politician "pro-Israel" they mean that he supports everything Israel does, without question, no matter what he may think privately. Those who dare to issue public criticism are almost surely going to be punished. If they are politicians, they will be threatened with the loss of campaign funding. Those threats may not be uttered directly, but will be conveyed by calls from a politician's top donors."
I know that Rosenberg doesn't bother to back up his statements with facts, and he hasn't in a long time, but I'm curious to know exactly what he means when he says "the lobby or its friends in the media." When has the media (mainstream, not Jewish) ever called anyone "pro-Israel?" And who is "the lobby?" If we say AIPAC, then AIPAC had President Obama at their policy conference after he criticized Israel about any number of things. I think that Rosenberg keeps his terms vague so that way he can't be proven wrong. Which politicians have been "threatened" for daring to be "publicly critical?" And who threatened them? And if a politician's top donors choose not to support politicians who criticize Israel, why is that any business of Rosenberg's? Is he still pretending to care about Israel, trying to save it from itself? Because if so, that ship has definitely sailed and he proves it in this article.

He then tells a personal (read: unverified) story about Carl Levin being chewed out by a New York Times columnist named William Safire. A Google search about this incident reveals, you guessed it, nothing except for more articles by or referencing MJ Rosenberg. Apparently he already told this story back in 2011 so I guess the recycling of material begins qiuckly.

He then moves on Diana Feinstein, who criticized Israel's building of settlements in the E1 and yet miraculously has not been pulled out of the Potomac River yet. And here's where he gets strawmany again:
"She understands that building Jewish apartment houses and shopping malls in E1 would kill the two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict by cutting Ramallah and Bethlehem off from East Jerusalem and from each other."
 Really? Oh, except that it's not true. Let's take a look at the map:

Bethlehem is not on the map, it's south of Ma'ale Adumim. Ramallah is to the east. E1 does not cut off those two cities from each other, nor does it cut them off from East Jerusalem. It does secure Israel's hold on both Ma'ale Adumim and Jerusalem, which is why MJ Rosenberg doesn't like it. But that doesn't give him the right to his own facts.

The building of these scary Jewish houses in E1 doesn't kill the two-state solution. That's obvious to anyone with eyes who doesn't do great anti-Zionist strawmen. His Palestinian friends' love of violence will kill the two state solution. But the Huffington Post doesn't like criticism of the Palestinians, so that doesn't get any attention.

Now here's where the good stuff comes in (emphasis mine):
"There can be no Palestinian state if Palestinian territory is divided into three little cantons -- the northern West Bank, the southern West Bank and Gaza -- all walled off from the historic Palestinian (and Jewish) capital of Jerusalem."
I'm an atheist, and I don't care what happens to Jerusalem in the end of this situation.

But I'm also rational, and I care about the truth.

There is nothing Palestinian about Jerusalem.

Nothing. Not one thing.

Not one brick, not one house, not one street, not one mosque, nothing about Jerusalem is Palestinian.

Muslim, yes. There are parts of Jerusalem that are Muslim and have been Muslim for a long time.

But Palestinian? No. There has never been a Palestinian Arab political entity, even according to the Palestinian Arabs themselves. There has never been a Palestinian state and there has never been any Arab (or Palestinian) entity that has had Jerusalem as its capital.

For Rosenberg to say that Jerusalem is Palestinian is simply a lie. A lie based on Palestinian propaganda and utterly devoid of any kind of historical fact.

Now that we have that cleared up, let's move on. He claims that because American politicians aren't lining up to bash Israel over E1 (possibly because Israel told them it would happen), it must be because 'the lobby' is 'enforcing the silence.' Yeah.

He then returns to the same old tired arguments that "Israel hurts American interests." Emphasis is mine again:
" Besides, and most important, his [Netanyahu's] actions -- and making the United States support them -- isolates us, virtually eliminates our credibility in the vital Muslim and Arab world, and endangers our interests (including our military and civilian personnel throughout the Middle East)."
Okay, a question that springs to mind: How is Netanyahu making America support his actions? Rosenberg just spent the whole article whining about America didn't criticize the E1 plan enough. So now not criticizing is the same thing as supporting? By that logic, we support a whole variety of terrible things including genocide in Sudan and mass starvation in Mali. Yet for some reason those things don't deserve Rosenberg's attention. But let's not get distracted; I would really like to know how Netanyahu makes America support what he does. I'm guessing the answer will sound suspiciously close to something that might be posted on Stormfront.

Second, if the Muslim and Arab world really want to find things to criticize about America, they can start with our support for Saudi Arabia and the Mubarak regime, as well as other dictators like Gaddafi and Saddam Hussein that we kept propped up until suddenly we decided to fight them. I would think that helping oppress 30 million Egyptians would eliminate America's credibility more than some shopping malls outside Jerusalem, but I guess even at the height of the "Arab Spring" bashing anyone who isn't Israel doesn't pay MJR's bills.

Let's not forget Syria either. I follow Syrian activists that tweet, and I can't even tell you how many times I've seen them say something along the lines of "America, you aren't helping us, and we will remember that." Heck! When I was in New Zealand a lot of people didn't like America because of our foreign policy, and that's New Zealand! The ugly truth is that if people want to hate America and kill Americans, they will find a reason and an excuse. So it's pretty disingenuous for Rosenberg to imply that if only we do what he wants this one time everything will be hunky dory. Let's finish up as he reiterates:
"Worst of all, if we don't start playing fair in the Middle East, that whole explosive situation is again going to blow back and explode on our own shores. Doesn't any of that matter to those sworn to defend America?"
Yes, I agree. Let's start "playing fair" with the following steps:

1. Either don't supporting any dictators or support all of them. That means removing all aid from Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, and of course the Palestinian Authority.
2. Either get involved with all Arab uprisings or none of them. That means bombing Syria and helping the FSA overthrow Assad.
3. Either sanction all Islamist theocracies that deny human rights to their own people or none of them. That means sanctioning the aforementioned dictatorships in #1.
4. Either criticize all our allies when they do something wrong or none of them. That means either not criticized Israel or criticizing Turkey for their oppression of the Kurds and Armenian Genocide, not to mention all the aforementioned Arab allies.

This may come as a bit of a shock to MJ Rosenberg, but the Middle East is bigger than just what lies between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea. But he doesn't get paid to comment on anything that doesn't involve Jewish people.

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