Joined: 20 Jul 2006 Posts: 29 Location: Cambridge, MA (USA)
Posted: Tue Jul 25, 2006 1:20 am Post subject: Who Is ""?
To Gingerpale -- since you asked "who is BG," and suggested all those delightful possibilities, none of which, alas, is correct, I decided to join some others and "introduce" myself in a post under the "Feeling Slightly Guilty" thread of this forum. (As you will see, I am generally benign!). _________________ -- BG
Joined: 28 Oct 2005 Posts: 118 Location: Haifa, Israel
Posted: Tue Jul 25, 2006 7:38 am Post subject:
I'm going to post on this subject one last time and then I'm going on an extended break.
Donna, thank you for clarifying what you meant. I agree with you re the evacuation from Lebanon; it seems as though it could have been accomplished faster and better than it was. Once things quiet down here, I hope you and other posters would consider a visit to Israel and other countries in the region. The perspective you get by actually being here and talking to people is something you'll never get just from the media, no matter how many sources you read and watch.
Susan, I'm sure you mean well but I think you could have done a better job stating your case. For one, you mention the Lebanese death toll, which is hard to confirm (I've read all sorts of numbers in various non-Israeli sources) and which includes non-civilian deaths - and no one knows how many of those there are. Simona and I are not blind and we can get plenty of non-filtered information here in Israel. We know that the death toll on the other side of the border is higher and that the lives of good and decent people have been lost. That is a tragedy. I'm not even going to get into the argument of what is or isn't justified or proportionate because I think this subject is bad for these boards, even to the limited extent to which we have taken it. However, you should understand that the subjective experience of living in fear and being under fire - which I am and you are not - is a terrible one no matter where you live. I think that is what Simona was getting at and that you completely missed her point.
Again, I have no desire to post on this subject any more, and I find my interest in posting on other topics just isn't there. I appreciate everyone's interest and your concern for those involved. I hope to be back, discussing less contentious issues, when things return to normal. Peace to all of you.
If I failed to make my argument well (and I think I have), Ill clarify here. My goal was not to be well-meaning but not to be mean either. My goals were to 1. Defend the opinions of those people who live far from this current conflict (the one between Israel and Lebanon, not the one in this forum), 2. To Call Simona on the fact that she criticized others for seeing this conflict in a filtered way, and then did the same thing as those she criticized, and 3. to make the case (you were right, Zoe that it was not well made in my last post) that one does not necessarily have to live close to a place to have a valid opinion about what goes on there.
Now, I dont think what Simona wrote was bad. It was just inconsistent. I actually think that everyone sees and interprets things through the filter of their current circumstance and their own past experience and I think this is inevitable. I did not mean well when I called Simona on the fact that she described this conflict through her filter, rendering it factually inaccurate. You, Zoe agreed with the point I made that Lebanon has so far paid a heavier toll in lost lives than Israel has so you do in fact disagree with Simonas comment that its the same. I do not consider Simonas nationality in the truth or falsehood of her statements nor do I think it would be fair for anyone to judge the value of what I say by mine. Maybe Simona was getting at the idea that no matter if you live in Lebanon or Israel you feel a horrible sense of being under attack. This I cannot deny. But it is misleading to sum up the experience by saying its the same in Israel and in Lebanon. You did not go into but you did mention the proportion of Israels response to the Hezbollah attack but it seems to me you realize that the response is far greater. Now my main affirmation is this: Certainly the complexity that Simona referred to bears out here. In Israel people have many varied and nuanced opinions about what is happening right now. This means there is not only one Israeli opinion, there is no way to say that the Israeli opinion is right while Australian or US American or Italian opinions are wrong. The reason why I wrote what I wrote in the first place can be summed up like this: I may be wrong in what Im about to say but I interpreted an undertone of exclusion based on nationality (if you are Israeli, your opinion counts and if youre not, it doesnt) in your and Simonas posts. I hope I misinterpreted that and hope that maybe the undertone was due to the fact this is an extremely tense moment for a lot of people, which gives way to passionate discussion.
I think you should reread Zoe's post. Maybe mine too . Zoe and me, we agree on everything, ON OPEN FORUM. Just read . As she said, she doesn't want to continue this subject, and I do understand her. I'll do the same after this last one. I don't feel ( I can't speak in her name) I have to justify myself or my country.
As to the "filtered "facts:
1. The number of injured people in Lebanon is higher , for many reasons, ( I didn't mention numbers in my post, nor that it's equal, so I don't really see on what you base your accusations, but never mind)
a. the number you mentioned ( in Lebanon) comprises civilians AND armed Hizbollah forces, To give the whole number is a well known PR trick, and your comments proves it works.
b. the israeli number you mention includes only civilians. There are of course also the fallen soldiers, but we are bad in PR, so we don't add them up to the civilians. So you don't know about them ( That's our moral filter..)
c. Still, we know that there are more civilians killed in Labanon, though , mind you, it's not a competition, it's a war. One reason for is that the nice Hizbollah armed guys have their barracks in the middle of the civilian population, so, unfortunately, there are casualties. There are ONLY this much casualties because , as much as possible, we try to bomb only the Hizbollah infrastructure. We are not always successfull, I know, the army is aware, and it's tragic.
d. Israel has already been attacked since the beginning of the war with thousand of missiles. The relatively low number of casualties is because for ten days people stay day and night in shelters, and 80% of the population from the northern part of Israel has fled their homes and live in the center and south.
e. What do you know about Hizbollah and it's activities against Israel, now and since 1982 Susan? Try Google, you can find there plenty of nformation. I don't think either me or you are in a position to affirm what is or is not an appropiate or proportional response to those who want to exterminate you, and are not afrait to tell it on TV, open court.
F. Everybody is entiltled to his/her opinion. It count as far as any opinion counts, in theory.
Like Zoe, I don't think I will add any post on this subject. I'm ready to any kind of comment, criticism, opinions etc on PM ar mail.
Now, let's go back and cook something nice, something we can all enjoy.
No more war.
P.S. Gingerpale, you have nothing to appologize for.
Jerusalem Post is part of the Ha'Aretz daily and it's liberal, independent and leftist ( news wise) journal. You can trust it.
Well, I never intended to provoke hostility, but to engage in honest (non-self-censoring) debate. This has been a disappointing experience. Maybe this isnt the place for honest debate if its about such a painful topic. Maybe its too soon to talk about this honestly. There are two things that I can honestly say I agree with Simona about: Being in favor of an open forum (but this entails respectful and honest debate) and
F. Everybody is entitled to his/her opinion. It count as far as any opinion counts, in theory.
This will be my last post about this as well, but isnt it sad that we cant get along unless we talk about something safe like cuisine?
Joined: 29 Sep 2004 Posts: 2498 Location: Los Angeles, California, USA
Posted: Tue Jul 25, 2006 11:11 pm Post subject:
Susan- I'm really saddened by this too. The prospects for any lasting peace don't seem good when even people of goodwill can't discuss this without taking offense or taking offense being willing to listen to other ideas nevertheless. I also wish the right to grieve for all the dead and injured civilians was respected. It's horrible to hear civilians sealed off and then shelled being dismissed as "unfortunate" just as it would be to show no more concern for civilians being bombed in their busses as they go about their lives . Now I understand that 4 UN observers have also been killed.
It's all a breakdown in civilization and I wish there were more signs that people involved were more invested in the solution than retribution. Ironic, that this is the cradle of civilization that started with things like the Code of Hammurabi. If only, in all this time since Hammurabi, we had found a better way than the one that leaves so many blind and toothless. _________________ God writes a lot of comedy... the trouble is, he's stuck with so many bad actors who don't know how to play funny. -- Garrison Keillor
We all hold an interest in all the worlds suffering. Any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind." Any forum where we can discuss options, weigh consequences and question convention is precious to us all. The truth is universal. The truth will set us free.
The truth is we need more chocolate.
Last edited by sweetbabyjames on Thu Aug 10, 2006 10:01 pm; edited 1 time in total
Joined: 15 Dec 2004 Posts: 583 Location: Anniston Alabama USA
Posted: Tue Aug 01, 2006 12:04 am Post subject:
I do believe that the WILL of politicians, citizens and the military in every country could prevent war from ever taking place again. Of course - that leaves the corporations out of the loop, because it is almost always in most coporate best interest to have a war going on somewhere. No matter who is attacking or being attacked.
Hasn't history proved that war is part of civilization? War is a fact of life, the sooner you realize that, the easier it is to honor those contries with hard-working citizens and political leaders who put money into defense, weapons, reasearch, etc. Of course, Israel and America are the two leaders in that sense.
Now, I don't like war, and modern form of war with high-tech weapons on one side and disproportionate casualty rates is disturbing. America and Isreal again, having the high-tech weapons.
War no longer seems fair because one side has advanced weapons and soldiers can fight safely behind computer screans on one side.
This to me is a problem. But I don't blame America or Israel for having been smart enough to develop these weapons. _________________ ' She says, 'I am the glamorous type.' I said, 'So what?'
hugs 'specially at this time... _________________ "I've never accepted the external appearance of things as the whole truth. The world is much more elaborate than the nerves of our eye can tell us." - James Gleeson
Oh Madame S., each one of those quotes makes me say "Exactly!"
What in the world would STOP war? I want a list a long list of THOSE suggestions! I am afraid that Sarape (in a past post somewhere) is correct, that war is inevitable. Not good or worthwhile or even close to sane, but inevitable.
Here's a quote that could point the way to less war: "The highest result of education is tolerance." Helen Keller
I had to smile at the quote you included from comedian Paul Rodriquez: "I think war might be God's way of teaching us geography." For years I've had a big world map on the wall next to the TV, so I can jump up during the news and pinpoint the horror...
Last edited by gingerpale on Thu Aug 31, 2006 5:44 am; edited 1 time in total
Joined: 30 Sep 2004 Posts: 1654 Location: Penrith (where jacarandas remind me of change), New South Wales, Australia
Posted: Thu Aug 10, 2006 10:37 pm Post subject:
ah, ginger dear..'tolerance'...
was there not an "International Year of Tolerance"?...1995 I doth believe..
ummmmmmmmmmmmmm there's something about that word, that imo, smacks of "well aren't you the lucky one...someone such as me deigns to tolerate you."
I've been known to say, on occasion, I'd rather be hated than tolerated....
now, if we introduce the word "acceptance"...ah, now we might be getting closer....
perhaps accepting that the world isn't necessarily going to spin along to one's own screenplay of how life should/ought to be...
accept that life is change
accept that there will be those vastly different from how you see the world...
accept that life is challenging
accept that life is life in all its diversity
accept that we are all interconnected
'n then there's the whole gig of what to do with destruction...'n those of us who destroy...'n hate...'n so on....
there has been, in our papers, a story of a gang rape in Sydney...horrific...I wonder what has lead that group of young men to do this..how have they thought that this was ok...a fun thing to do...
accept that humanity is still, for the most part, in kindergarten..
we cannot go back to the swamps and begin again....we are an ongoing process....we are family....the challenge of BEing family....each of us interconnected...THAT is the big challenge...imo
hugs to the family _________________ "I've never accepted the external appearance of things as the whole truth. The world is much more elaborate than the nerves of our eye can tell us." - James Gleeson
Joined: 08 Aug 2006 Posts: 136 Location: France, Bordeaux
Posted: Fri Aug 25, 2006 10:33 am Post subject:
I hope the recent cease-fire and UN decision to send troops will make some degree of difference in Lebanon. I am aware of my country's reputation for being biaised, but remeber our then prime minister Lionel Jospin was the only official voice who had once the courage to say that Hezbollah was a terrorist organization. Well, he was stoned (litteraly) for that, and politically vilified. When all is said and done, Israel is a country fighting for its survival, surrounded by hotile nations who, for some of them, have clearly said their aim is to push the "Jews" back into the sea, and preferably kill them first.
Anyone ever wondered how come a nation built by a ragtag bunch of Holocaust survivors on a patch of sand has been able to become the only Democratic state in that region, while all those rich muslim nations around have let the Palestinians refugees rot in camps for 40 years ? They are supposedly their brothers, and alms to the poor are an obligation of every good muslim... Maybe it's more practical to keep a good number of poor, hopeless, homeless youths, available for endoctrination and turning them into fanatics in the name of God... Pour money into arms, instead of schools, sanitation, education... and what the world sees is a well-fed Israeli soldier shooting at a scrawny stone-throwing kid...
That said, I do firmly believe that Palestinians should have their own nation, that Israel has a right to exist and defend itself, and that Lebanon should be freed from outside influence. Let Syria mind its own business...
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