September 12, 2007

What Did Israel Bomb In Syria? (Update: A Second Osirak?)

The US has confirmed that Israel did overfly Syria and dropped munitions as Syria had accused. The US remained coy about the nature of the strike and its intended target, but the area in which the strike occurred indicates a push back against weapons transfers to Hezbollah:

A US official has confirmed that Israeli warplanes carried out an air strike "deep inside" Syria, escalating tensions between the two countries.

The target of the strike last Thursday remained unclear but Israeli media reported that a shipment of Iranian arms crossing Syria for use by the Iranian-backed Hezbollah militia in Lebanon was attacked. ...

Another theory gaining ground yesterday was that Israel was deliberately attacking the Russian-made Pantsyr air defence system recently bought by Damascus. The sale includes provision for the Pantsyr system to be shipped on to Iran and it is possible the Israeli attack was co-ordinated with America to probe the effectiveness of the system. It is believed that Iran would use the Pantsyr system to defend its nuclear facilities.

The Israelis have so far refused to deny the overflight or the strike, despite Syria's complaint to the UN. That seems to confirm that Israel did something with its military jets over Syrian airspace. They did respond to Turkey, who wanted to know why an Israeli long-range fuel tank got dropped in their territory.

Between the two theories, the attack on Hezbollah lines of communication would seem the most likely. Israel would not risk war with Syria just to test out an air defense system that Iran might get. They would risk war to stop Hezbollah from rearming to the point where they would launch another attack on Israel and provoke another war in the sub-Litani region, and they would have every right to do so.

Under the terms of the UN cease-fire, Hezbollah is supposed to disarm and the only armed force in Lebanon is supposed to be the national army. Any resupply of Hezbollah is a violation of that resolution. Syria's complaint to the UN could backfire, if the Security Council decided to take a closer look at Syria's complicity in arming Hezbollah.

Unlike the last time, Israel appears to have few qualms about acting in its own interest in stopping the arms flow into southern Lebanon. It also has few reservations about the entire world understanding this. Perhaps that may unsettle Bashar Assad most of all.

UPDATE: Is this the second Osirak? The New York Times thinks so (via Hot Air):

One Bush administration official said Israel had recently carried out reconnaissance flights over Syria, taking pictures of possible nuclear installations that Israeli officials believed might have been supplied with material from North Korea. The administration official said Israeli officials believed that North Korea might be unloading some of its nuclear material on Syria.

“The Israelis think North Korea is selling to Iran and Syria what little they have left,” the official said. He said it was unclear whether the Israeli strike had produced any evidence that might validate that belief.

This might be another reason why Syria has objected despite its own violations in arming Hezbollah. If they paid North Korea for that nuclear material, they will be out a considerable sum.


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Comments (65)

Posted by R Cone | September 12, 2007 7:57 AM

You really don't think the Israeli's would risk war to test a new air defense system that Syria has, and that Iran might get to protect their nuclear facilities? That would be the same nuclear facilities that are building a bomb for Iran. The Iran that is committed to wiping Israel off the map. Seems like a cheap way to test the system to me. Syria is hardly in a position to directly confront Israel. All they can do is fight through proxies. Israel gets to test the system and figure out countermeasures before it may have to cross into Iranian airspace and attack the nuclear facilities there. And with any luck they are sharing those findings with the US. Good strategy, me thinks....

Posted by Carl in Jerusalem | September 12, 2007 8:03 AM

Captain Ed,

The New York Times is speculating that Israel hit North Korean 'nuclear material' but I think we hit a chemical weapons facility.

(I linked to my own post rather than the Times story because my post explains why I think the Times is wrong).

Posted by jay | September 12, 2007 8:04 AM

But Syria can't be rearming Hezbollah. Dennis Kucininch says Assad is a man of peace.

Posted by dave | September 12, 2007 8:11 AM

So if a nation is in violation of a UN resolution, the correct response is to bomb that nation. I think Israel is currently in violation of about 27 resolutions. Does that rule go both ways?

Posted by TomB | September 12, 2007 8:12 AM

In an unrelated event, the Gaza rocket attack from a few days ago, with 60 soldiers injured, which on the surface looks like a lucky strike, and a very mute response to it, MAY also suggest presence of more precise rockets from Iran. Ineffectiveness of the Palestinian rockets was becoming an embarrassment and the MSM was using this extensively (bad Israelis killed three children around the rocket launchers, which were not doing any harm to Israelis). I am sure Iran was thinking the same for a long time.

Posted by Jazz | September 12, 2007 8:18 AM

This analysis once again leaves me wondering if Israel could ever do *anything* which would be considered "wrong" or draw any form of criticism in this space. Remind me again, as I'm pressed for time and can't do a search of the site right now... what was your response to Isreal having spies working inside the United States? That's not an accusation, as I really don't remember what you wrote.

Posted by Tom | September 12, 2007 8:22 AM

"Syria's complaint to the UN could backfire". Yeah,sure. Dream on.

Posted by Bennett | September 12, 2007 8:26 AM

"So if a nation is in violation of a UN resolution, the correct response is to bomb that nation. I think Israel is currently in violation of about 27 resolutions. Does that rule go both ways?"

Rule, what rule? The UN has no war making power at all, much less the means. But if the UN had any bombs, I'm sure it would have dropped its entire arsenal on Israel long before now.

Posted by howard lohmuller | September 12, 2007 8:29 AM

Chances are that Israel was establishing a pattern or policy toward Syria and Hezbollah rather than just a warning. Further aggression by Hezbollah would include action by Israel against Syria. Syria needs Iran to survive a war with Israel and Iran has a full plate. Israel has, in the parlance of Poker, raised the bet.

Posted by dave | September 12, 2007 8:31 AM

I was asking that if Israel violates resolutions, if it is appropriate for the affected nation or party to bomb Israel, not the UN.

Speaking of resolutions, if Israel would have complied with Resolution 425 immediately instead of waiting 20 tears to do so, Hezbollah would not even exist.

Posted by Bennett | September 12, 2007 8:44 AM

"I was asking that if Israel violates resolutions, if it is appropriate for the affected nation or party to bomb Israel, not the UN."

Perhaps Syria will see it your way. You can hope.

Probably not, though. These days, Syria prefers to do its Jew killing through proxies. Preserves deniability and all that.

Posted by unclesmrgol | September 12, 2007 9:35 AM

dave said,

Speaking of resolutions, if Israel would have complied with Resolution 425 immediately instead of waiting 20 tears to do so, Hezbollah would not even exist.

If a bunch of bandits launched a series of raids from Mexico into the United States, and the Mexican government was unwilling or unable to prevent the incursions, wouldn't the United States be justified in following the bandits into Mexico and doing what was necessary to prevent their reentry into our country?

My answer is yes, even if the UN decried the invasion and demanded that the US withdraw. The analogue to this was the frequent incursion of terrorists from Lebanon into Israel. Israel responded as its security interests dictated.

One of the halmarks of a sovereign nation is its sole ability (and obligation) to secure for its citizens security. As a consequence, a sovereign nation is responsible for any armed forces originating from its borders.

It's why the United States no longer issues letters of Marque and Reprisal (you can't control a privateer as effectively as your navy). It's also why Lebanon was attacked, and why Iran might well be attacked. If you can't control the flow of fighters over your borders, you don't deserve to be a sovereign nation.

In the case of Lebanon, the central government was ineffective in controlling its borders; anarchy reigned. Israel protected its borders, just as I would expect the United States to protect its borders. How that is done would be the attacked country's decision, and relying upon demonstrably toothless United Nations (which has stepped aside over and over when combatants clash) is certainly in no one's best interest other than that of the terrorists.

Syria and Israel have a cease fire; they are still in a state of war. Syria has attacked Israel before; as dave points out, they might do it again. I don't think they will.

Posted by Neo | September 12, 2007 9:42 AM

Israel believes that North Korea has been supplying Syria and Iran with nuclear materials, a Washington defense official told the New York Times. “The Israelis think North Korea is selling to Iran and Syria what little they have left,” he said.


Meanwhile on Wednesday the Nazareth-based Israeli Arab newspaper The Assennara cited anonymous Israeli sources as saying that Israeli jets "bombed a Syrian-Iranian missile base in northern Syria that was financed by Iran... It appears that the base was completely destroyed."

Posted by pk | September 12, 2007 10:04 AM

hey dave:

we have a new policy/rule/law. every day we ignore a certain rule/regulation/resoloution.

the ones about not bombing nukes in syria were the ones in effect that day.

you gotta keep current.

didn't you get the memo?


Posted by dave | September 12, 2007 10:25 AM

“The analogue to this was the frequent incursion of terrorists from Lebanon into Israel.”

Tell me about the “frequent incursions”. Give me examples. In reality, the ceasefire was largely honored by the PLO. Usrael was simply waiting for an excuse:

“Yasir Arafat, head of the P.L.O., ‘can't possibly control all those guerrillas and hold the cease-fire,’ said one American official. ‘The Israelis will never find a better moment. If they could bloody the P.L.O. now and Syrian forces, too, they could win themselves several years of peace with the Arabs’…’It's got to look credible to the Americans that the Israeli attack was justified by what the P.L.O. does,’ one official said. He and others noted that over the next month, the mud will dry in southern Lebanon, diminishing one of the risks in attacking.”
The New York Times
March 5, 1982, Friday, Late City Final Edition
BYLINE: By HEDRICK SMITH, Special to the New York Times
SECTION: Section A; Page 1, Column 5; Foreign Desk

USrael was itching to invade. They got their pretext with the assassination in Paris. So do I think the US would be justified in invading Mexico and occupying it for 20 years if a Mexican assassinated a US diplomat? No. I tend to think the threshold for fighting a war that will result in thousands of deaths should be a little higher. Maybe I’m just a bleadingheart pacifist. Let’s turn it around. If me and some of my friends go to China and kill a diplomat there, is China justified in invading the US and occupying it for 20 years? If that happened, I would expect plenty of “terrorist” groups to spring up in the US to fight the Chinese.

Posted by dave | September 12, 2007 10:31 AM

"I would expect plenty of “terrorist” groups to spring up in the US to fight the Chinese"

Maybe one of these US groups fighting the Chinese would be Christian, in which case the Chinese could demonize Christianity as en evil, terrorist religion.

Posted by Bennett | September 12, 2007 10:51 AM

Am I the only one who finds Dave's comments completely incomprehensible?

I thought at first he wanted the UN to bomb Israel and then he said no he wants Syria to be able to do it. Now he's talking about something called "Usrael" and how he and his buddies are going to kill a diplomat in China and then the Chinese are going to invade the US and Christians will become evil terrorists.

Why drag China into this? It's busy with the Olympics, Dave. Give the Chinese a break. Maybe after the Olympics, then they'll have time for an invasion. Do your diplomat killing after the Olympics, not before.

And the correct term for "Christian" is infidel. Jews and Crusaders are infidels.

Posted by Rita | September 12, 2007 11:13 AM

Dave, wasn't WWI started with a mere diplomat,
(albeit an Archduke)getting assassinated?No ceasefire has EVER been honored by the PLO because
the PLO can use other fronts to launch attacks.
Hamas, for example.Or Hezbollah.So your suggestion
that the PLO is the innocent party is,on its face,
risible.As far as Mexico sending bandits,they did.
As far as the US government responding,we sent General BlackJack Pershing down to track down the
threat.In essence,wars have started for lesser reasons..try a book about the Opium Wars.

Posted by swabjockey05 | September 12, 2007 11:14 AM


Sometimes the shyster has a "sockpuppet" posting under his screen name "dave". Probably his "life partner" or some such rot. In spite of the fact that he sometimes sounds confused, he is not as deranged as he sounds. He (and his sockpuppet commie pal) yearns for the violent overthrow of our government. He'll say anything that could profit that motive.

I just hope he keeps posting. I'm getting closer to finding his rathole each day. Meanwhile, guys like you and flenser are a hoot. One can almost hear the slapping sounds as the verbal blows fall about his pumpkin head and shoulders…You are much more witty than the “studied” and clever shyster. Very nice job, shipmate.

Posted by Immolate | September 12, 2007 11:17 AM

Fear of international sanction or regional sanction is not what keeps anyone from bombing Israel. In fact, Israel has been bombed and attacked and invaded countless times since WWII with no fear shown by the aggressors of repercussion from the rest of the world.

What keeps countries like Syria from testing Israel's resolve is simply that--Israel's resolve. They will meet any state aggression with a powerful response. Countries like Russia or China that might be able to overwhelm Israel's defenses are deterred by the certainty of US retaliation.

So the reality, dave, is that the UN is both toothless (and disinterested) in protecting Israel and toothless in tempering Israel as they have become an organization whose only purpose is to channel anti-semetic bigotry from across the planet into a cohesive, jew-hating message.

So if you want to bomb Israel, dave, go for it. Nobody will try to stop you except the Israelis and the US. You'll have far more cheerleaders than your opposition for those few brief moments before you assume room temperature.

Posted by swabjockey05 | September 12, 2007 11:47 AM

Immolate. Good points. But at least one of your suggestions will never happen. The shyster is incredibly cowardly. He’d never work up the courage to actually risk his 6 figure salary…or his stock options much less his worthless neck. He admitted long ago that he is too much of a coward to do anything other than rabble rouse by banging away on his computer screen while touching himself.

Truly unfortunate. The few "brave" commies are much quicker to assume room temperature. The cowering, cowardly ones are much more difficult to find.

Posted by RPL | September 12, 2007 11:48 AM


Several months ago, it was reported that an Iranian general had "gone missing" in Turkey. He had flown from Tehran to Damascus, and then took a side trip to Turkey for some shopping/recreation. There was rampant speculation about whether he had been kidnapped or defected, and whether it was Israel or the US/Allies that had been responsible.

First, Israel has some sort of a defense treaty with Turkey that was signed in the mid-to late 1990's. I'm pretty sure it's still in effect. The use of a helicopter would require either in-flight refueling or landing somewhere safe to re-gas. Like Turkey, just over the border from Syria.

If my memory is correct, this was the guy who was responsible for Iran's nuke program, and would have been in a position to know where all of the resources were, as well as potential timetables for usage or coming on line. I don't know how long it would take to plan and rehearse this type of a mission, but my guess is that it's not something that's done on the fly. Regarding the Turks, maybe they didn't think that the Israelis would be careless and leave material where it could be found, and are rasing a stink just for show. Just a few thoughts.

Posted by ajacksonian | September 12, 2007 12:05 PM

I can think of a few places that Israel would be inerested in... the state of the Syrian WMD facilities like the phosphate processing plant in Homs or the dual capability Al Safira SCUD and chemical weapons site or underground Tal Snan site or the Furqlus depot for general military readiness or Khan Abu Shamat SCUD site or the Palmyra plant for initial phosphate ore separation or the Cerin plant amidst that military district or the nearly impossible to locate al-Baida site.

But then Syria has been working for a few decades to get in an asymmetrical force capability. Their conventional purchases are just the least part of their outlook.

Posted by jerry | September 12, 2007 12:21 PM

This is going to be sort of a Hermanesque post. It is only tangentially related to topic at hand but I find it more productive to talk about what causes are trolls to froth at the mouth every time the subject of Israel or the Jews comes up. I do not intent to engage them in debate but I am going to be very amused by their response if they rise to the occasion or fall for the bait.

This kind of thread brings out the new neo-Nazis who form the mainstay of the nutroots left.. This movement, which claims to be the cutting edge of the so-called progressive movement, eschews all the symbols of their predecessors from the Third Reich and even projects their own Nazism onto their opponents in a weird post modern sort of way. It even attracts what Debbie Schlussel calls “suicide Jews” who find it more important to be seen as part of the progressive movement then to acknowledge the threat it poses to them.

The new neo-Nazi movement was energized, some would say created, by Edward Said, Late Professor of Comparative Literature at Columbia University, when he published his nonsensical Orientalism, which was little more then an attack on the scholarship of Bernard Lewis who just happens to be Jewish.. More then anything else Said elevated the Palestinians to the forefront of Progressive causes and has led to the erosion of leftwing support for Israel over the years. In the process Said falsified his own biography just like his intellectual mentor Paul De Man, who was a member of the Belgian Nazi party during the WWII, to disguise his true intent, i.e., the hatred of Jews. Schooled by De Man, Said knew how to wrap up Nazi ideology as cultural transmitted by De Man in progressive language. Given that Nazism itself is really just another form of socialism this was not a difficult task. Orientalism and the beautification of Palestinians gave anti-Semites a progressive cover that allowed Jew haters on left to become respectable. The movement has been attracting adherents in increasing numbers as the new neo-Nazis have been able to subvert and take over progressive dominated organizations. They have now reached the point for gaining control of one of America’s two major political parties.

W hat this all means is that we can expect an increasing level of attacks on Jews in general as the cause of all our problems in the Middle East. The cultural subtext of their message is if we only just accommodate Islam and kill all the Jews we can live in peace and happiness. Anti-Semitism is a social pathology that is attractive to sociopaths like dave.

Posted by dave | September 12, 2007 12:44 PM

You say that wars start from small beginnings. I disagree, and think that most wars are planned well ahead of time, and merely wait for the right pretext. But I do not really want to discuss that specifically. When you say, "In essence,wars have started for lesser reasons.", you seem to be saying that "that's just human nature, that's the way it's always been, etc". But are you really saying that we should just accept it? A war starts which kills over 10,000 because some diplomat got killed, but that's just the way it is, so stop whining?
First of all, I do not believe that war is part of human nature. Societies can exist without war. And even if it was part of human nature, is it right to just accept it? In most cases with people on the right, it is usually much more than that. People here are already drueling over the possibility of another war, excitedly talking about who or what got bombed, typing with one hand because the other one is occupied. It's pathetic.
Should we take the same position with regard to rape? It's been around forever, it's part of human nature, let's not oppose it or try to stop it, let's just enjoy it? Not me.

Jerry, you're insane.

Posted by naftali | September 12, 2007 1:02 PM

Dave's comments underline the importance of having a good paradigm, a good frame from which to look at data.

Dave's comments make perfect sense if you understand that he hates Jews. And that is all that needs to be said about him. Gd knows, I've spent too much time saying more to him, although I must say the time I've spent talking to a brick wall was much more enlightening. It might seems crazy, but the brick wall actually listens better and responds to what I was saying--but that was probably the small echo.

But if one must respond to him, I'd recommend bitter irony and comedy as his expense. Just one man's opinion here.

Posted by swabjockey05 | September 12, 2007 1:07 PM

Wow. Is the shyster wily or what? Once again I agree with 90% of what he's babbling on about...

Unfortunately, there's always the other 10% -- that's usually the part where he starts making actual recommendations/suggestions for how "we" get out of the mess that the rightwing nuts have gotten "us" into...

Of course in the shyster's utopia, there is no war. We're all in a peaceful, non competitive world. Everyone's needs are met. Nobody "wants" anything. So there is no need for war.

…and no, the little shyster won't be giving up his 6 figure salary...or his stock options anytime soon. He's not a hypocrite though. He says he'll give his up as soon as you give up yours (by force if necessary). And yes, we will need someone like the shyster to be "in charge". That's the only way this whole thing will work...otherwise, us selfish, greedy minions will keep going to war and killing each other...does that about cover it?

Posted by jerry | September 12, 2007 1:08 PM


To the insane and sociopathic normality seems like aberration.

Posted by flenser | September 12, 2007 1:12 PM

Dave reminds me of that Star Trek episode, "The Doomsday Machine".

The Soviet Union and Communism may be dead and gone, but the attack drones they programmed continue to operate.

Posted by swabjockey05 | September 12, 2007 1:14 PM


I remember your great “shyster rebuttal” comments on a different thread. I enjoyed reading them. Thanks. ROCK!

Posted by naftali | September 12, 2007 1:18 PM


Right on. Get in touch with your "inner Groucho". It will just confuse them and make them angry. The only reason Margaret Dumont kept coming back, besides the fact the she was under contract, was that she never truly understood the jokes.

Remember, we're dealing with Margaret Dumont. So have at it lad!

Posted by Derek | September 12, 2007 1:19 PM

"Speaking of resolutions, if Israel would have complied with Resolution 425 immediately instead of waiting 20 tears to do so, Hezbollah would not even exist."

Pass the Koolaid Dave.

No, seriously, pass the effing koolaid. I'd rather chug 80 glasses than listen to your bile.

Posted by onlineanalyst | September 12, 2007 1:27 PM

Cute, Dave. US-rael? Not a typo but a political statement of where you stand?

Posted by Carol Herman | September 12, 2007 1:36 PM

Most of you are actually familiar with Israel's problems. Their "left" contains Marx. Their "right" contains religious nutters. And, their population mix contains arabs. 1/5 of Israel's population is made up of arabs. And, Druze. You can't walk down the streets, in Israel, without having this jumping out at you.

Which is one of the reasons Ben Gurion could not choose the American political system. The other? Since the Brits controlled, he learned about parliament at his mother's knee. So to speak.

But what Ben Gurion did, was a build a safe-haven for Jews. And, that's why ALL the parties have "central committees." These bypass the arrangements we are familiar with, here: DISTRICTS. Even if they get shaped in convoluted ways.

Politics is POWER.

All over the world.

And, the other problem is that most journalists, sadly enough, choose writing as a form of rehabilitation for their beliefs. What religion? Marx. Simple as that. And, when you grow rich, and ride around in limosines, you still stay true to your faith. Fate. And, faith. Almost like looking at the ugliest couple in the world; married.

In Israel, (each day I go and read the Jerusalem Post and Ha'Aretz), the journalists are screaming mad. They can't seem to get the IDF to spew secrets.

So the first you heard of the IDF overflights, was that Isreal mistook "airspace" and dropped a few containers of NO JAM, on russia's recent expensive anti-aircraft batteries.

Since then? Assad's made "make believe" moves that his soldiers are gonna climb up the hill and re-take the Golan. As in Golan Heights. Not the Golan that the New Jersey, governor, McGreevey, screwed.

And, Bush has been very quiet.

Condi doesn't drape white panties on her head, from State, and come out waving her fingers, or her head, at Olmert.

Something's BIG, here.

Oh, and Pataeus gave those lemmings in congress every opportunity to spit at him. They went at it, thinking their back in Vietnam days, I guess?

Some idiots can't be taught a thing.

Here? The nukes in syria are superficially claimed to be coming from north korea (leftovers). And, iran. Funding. A-huh. No WMD's from Saddam. Because the UN couldn't find even traces that were deposited on the road beds, as this crap was hauled into syria.

Playing dumb. Being dumb. Go ahead. Choose.

Because our President didn't give a single "tell." And, anyone crazy enough to play poker with him deserves to lose their money and their clothes.

Something's up.

Bush ain't coasting.

Of course, he makes Fred Thompson look swift of feet.

Not that I care. Democracy means you'll never have a huge approval rating to win. But all you need is a little bit over 50%.

What's made this 50% a dangerous equation, though, is that the Bonkeys know how to steal 10%. You think only Hsu worked for "nothing?"

When huge sums of money come shooting out, like water through a high pressure fire hose; you'd be surprised what it can do.

That money is a life line in congress. Our interests ARE NOT!

But at some point, just spreading your legs wide, so you're not sloshing in shit, is the price you pay for greed. And, stupidity. EVENTUALLY.

We're only first going into this theater, now.

My guess? Hillary's being set up to take a noisy fall. No, she doesn't lose her seat. Heck, New Yorkers send the worst crap to congress. They're famous for it. Ever hear of Adam Clayton Powell? Check it out. Wall to wall whoring. And, thefts. When you hear about "hands across the aisle," all that means is that grifters are aiming for wallets.

Bush absolutely knows what's in the pot. What's in his hand. And, what there is to lose.

I think by the time he leaves office, his reputation grows to the highest stature. While congress? It's just a toilet. With or without "hand singles."

Lawyers, by the way, can take all sorts of stuff; and with the moral compass of a piece of dreck like Arlen Spector; make it seem like you can get away with it all. Can ya?

Posted by Carol Herman | September 12, 2007 1:42 PM

TomB tries to portray Israelis as victims. (Yes, there's a small group that always sails for the ambulances.) But that's not the whole.

Israelis are tough.

You see "60 injured?" As soon as most ambulances arrived at the hospital, the "injured" got up, and got sent home. Bandaid material.

One soldier? Yes. But in car accidents, which are very frequent in Israel, one serious injury, and nobody dead, would be considered a MIRACLE.

Yes. Some parents ran to the base and demanded that their children come home! NOW! (Just like during the Second Lebanese War, there was an outcry from Jewish mothers. That not enough food trucks reached the front.)

Ah, see? I know Jewish mothers! Had one. Am one. And, you don't fool around with our kids' sandwiches.

But I also know bullshit when I see it flung.

Israelis are very tough. Not a bunch of fighters with glass chins.

Alas, like in most democracies, these days, the perveyors of filth are the media. Well? What would journalists do for day jobs, if they couldn't slime braver men? Well? How many hamburger flipping jobs do you think exists in a country full of Jewish Mothers?

Hey, kids. You better come home hungry. Boy, does that ever have a familiar ring.

Posted by naftali | September 12, 2007 2:07 PM


Thank you once again.

Posted by dave | September 12, 2007 2:07 PM

"Pass the Koolaid Dave."

You deny that the rise of Hezbollah was connected to the Israeli invasion? Are you kidding?

"Hezbollah was founded in 1982 in response to the Israeli invasion of Lebanon..."

"It was formed primarily to offer resistance to the Israeli occupation."

"Formed in 1982 in response to the Israeli invasion of Lebanon..."

"Hezbollah’s formation was a direct response to Israel’s 1982 invasion of Lebanon..."

"Hezbollah was founded in 1982 in response to the Israeli invasion of Lebanon.",2933,203277,00.html

Are my links too leftist?
If Israel had not attacked, or had complied with Resolution 425 and withdrawn immediately, Hezbollah would not exist. How can you not understand that? Occupation results in resistance (aka terrorism). It has always been and always will be.

Posted by swabjockey05 | September 12, 2007 2:14 PM

Occupation = Terrorism

The syster is RIGHT AGAIN. How 'bout the "La Raza" boys in California? Can't wait until they start blowing stuff up. And the rest of your commie pals? Maybe they're being "occupied" too? C'mon shyster. Let's throw down.

Posted by dave | September 12, 2007 2:24 PM

OK Jerry, I will respond.
I do not hate Jews or Americans. I hate the many, many of the actions that the Israeli and US leadership have taken over the last 70 years. This has nothing to do with the US or Israeli public. I had a Jewish friend as a kid, and I knew another Jewish woman a while back that I hated. My mother in law is Jewish, and I like her. I like some Americans, and dislike others. I like most actions of the present Venezuelan government, but dislike some as well.

As you can see, I tend to evaluate people as individuals, and I evaluate governments based on their actions, not on their ethnicity or religion. I think it was wrong for the Germans to massacre Jews, and I think it was wrong for the Jews to ethnically cleanse Palestine. If the US and Israeli governments stop trying to control and rule other countries through direct occupation or puppet governments and start living as though they were but two nations in a world of nearly 200 other nations, then I would like them both. Try as hard as you can to understand.

I cannot understand what you are saying.

Posted by Tom W. | September 12, 2007 2:26 PM

Fox reported yesterday that the State Department has concluded that diplomacy with Iran has failed, and the only option left is military action. If State is preparing for war, you can bet it's going to happen.

Germany has told the U.S. that it won't support any more sanctions against Iran because they're hurting the Germany economy, and the Germans privately want us to take out the mullahs anyway. Thanks, Europe, for your reliable gutlessness.

We're either going to blockade Iran or use an aerial campaign to destroy their offensive military capabilities. I think we're leaning toward the second option, since a blockade would leave Iran able to continue threatening Israel and interfering in Iraq and Lebanon. Also, we've retrofitted the B-2 stealth bomber to carry either 80 Joint Direct Attack Munitions (JDAMs) or two 30,000-lb. Massive Ordnance Penetrators (MOPS), bunker busters that can cut through 200 feet of solid concrete.

The Iranians are begging to be smashed. It's time we fulfill their desires.

Not only will we be eliminating a major state sponsor of terrorism, as a bonus we'll get to hear lots of high-pitched wailing from people like Dave, which will cheer us all up.

Oh, and one more thing:

Go Israel!

Posted by dave | September 12, 2007 2:39 PM

Tom W:
" aerial campaign to destroy [Iran's] offensive military capabilities"

That seems logical, considering that Iran has not waged an offensive war for 1,000 years.

Posted by jerry | September 12, 2007 2:40 PM


Since this is the internet and it is not uncommon for members of your side of the political spectrum to respond to an obvious fact or begin a post by saying things like “ I am a Republican..." and then go on to read the scrip; or my mother-in-law is Jewish and then go on to attack Jews, I am very skeptical of you actually having a Jewish wife or any wife for that matter. Someone will have to independently validate it before I will believe it. I suppose she could be a progressive suicide Jew, you know, the kind that still backed Stalin when he sold them out to the Nazis in the summer of 1939.

Being well read you must know that Adolf Eichmann grew up among Jews; went over to their homes for Passover; and even spoke Yiddish. Having a Jewish friend or two didn't make much of a difference in end to Obersturmfuehrer Eichmann now did it?

Posted by unclesmrgol | September 12, 2007 2:44 PM


wiki United_Nations_Security_Council_Resolution_425

After all, that is the wikipedia article backing your assertion on Resolution 425...

Then follow the links entitled "Coastal Road massacre", "string of attacks", and "Operation Litani". These should give you everything you asked for from me. If you had done this simple research beforehand, you wouldn't look so unprepared.

As for "itching", that's one way putting the desire to enforce security for one's citizens.

dave, Israel has certainly done things which I don't agree with either, but they've grown up somewhat over the past 35 years or so -- they are much more careful about not targeting noncombatant civilians and respecting their rights. Sadly, their adversaries have not done the same. If Hezbollah or Hamas targetted only IDF forces or settlers with firearms, they'd have my sympathy; since they target noncombatant civilians (just like the AQ guys in Iraq), they don't.

Posted by Spiritualized | September 12, 2007 3:10 PM

'dave' said:

"I think it was wrong for the Germans to massacre Jews, and I think it was wrong for the Jews to ethnically cleanse Palestine."

Firstly, your attempt at moral equivalence sickens me to my very core. Comparing the deliberate slaughter of six million people to a non-existent "ethnic cleansing." It's particularly ironic in this case because the Arabs of British Mandated "Palestine" were actively engaged in the Final Solution:

"The Mufti was one of the initiators of the systematic extermination of European Jewry and had been a collaborator and adviser of Eichmann and Himmler in the execution of this plan... He was one of Eichmann’s best friends and had constantly incited him to accelerate the extermination measures. I heard him say, accompanied by Eichmann, he had visited incognito the gas chambers of Auschwitz." - Dieter Wisliceny, Eichmann's Deputy

Secondly, there has never been a nation called "Palestine," ergo by definition there cannot ever have been an "ethnic cleansing" of said country.

Thirdly, the Arab population in Israel, Gaza and Judea/Samaria has increased exponentially since Israel's re-establishment in 1948. In fact the Arab population increased in those areas precisely as a result of Israel's existence. So at best you're liar, or simply ignorant of history. At worst you're willingly regurgitating anti-Semitic propaganda.

Posted by dave | September 12, 2007 3:11 PM

My wife is not Jewish. My mother in law is a foster mother.
I tried to explain myself, and got the expected response. I give up. You win. I hate Jews.

Yes, I made a mistake. I thought 425 came after the '82 invasion, not the '78 invasion. There's too many Israeli invasions to keep them straight. So, initially, I should have said this:

"Speaking of resolutions, if Israel would have complied with Resolution 425 within 4 years instead of invading again in 1982, then Hezbollah would not even exist."

It was the 1982 invasion that gave rise to Hezbollah. When I said, "In reality, the ceasefire was largely honored by the PLO", I was speaking of the ceasefire for the year before the 1982 invasion. During this year, the PLO largely honored the ceasefire. There was peace for a year, and Israel invaded anyway (or, more accurately, they invaded because of it - the dreaded "peace offensive").
The ceasefire started the year before:

"Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization both agreed today to a cease-fire in their two-week war of attrition in Lebanon, halting at least temporarily the most costly cross-border violence in more than three years."
The Washington Post
July 25, 1981, Saturday, Final Edition
Israel and PLO Agree to Cease-Fire;
Hostilities Halted in Lebanon As Israel, PLO Accept Truce
BYLINE: By William Claiborne, Washington Post Foreign Service
SECTION: First Section; A1

"As for "itching", that's one way putting the desire to enforce security for one's citizens."

This is "itching":
"The Iranians are begging to be smashed. It's time we fulfill their desires...Go Israel!"

"they are much more careful about not targeting noncombatant civilians"

That's not what mainstream human rights organizations say:

I know, you say the hrw is anti-Semetic. So what is your source for saying that Israel is careful about not targeting civilians, the IDF? Is that really a good source for that info?

Posted by Spiritualized | September 12, 2007 3:16 PM

'dave' said:

"If Israel had not attacked, or had complied with Resolution 425 and withdrawn immediately, Hezbollah would not exist. How can you not understand that? Occupation results in resistance (aka terrorism). It has always been and always will be."

Israel is not occupying Lebanon, therefore according to your rules Hezbollah should disband immediately.

Oh, and Israel is resisting the Islamic occupation of the Middle East.

Posted by dave | September 12, 2007 3:19 PM

"non-existent 'ethnic cleansing.'"

So it is the ultimate crime to deny the Holocaust, but to deny the ethnic cleansing of Palestine is fine. Fair enough.

Posted by Spiritualized | September 12, 2007 3:20 PM

'dave' said

"I know, you say the hrw is anti-Semetic. So what is your source for saying that Israel is careful about not targeting civilians, the IDF? Is that really a good source for that info?"

Islamic terrorists hide behind there own family members, they also do not wear uniforms.

Thus there is no possible way for Terrorist Rights Watch to determine who is "civilian." Especially days or weeks after a particular event.

Posted by Spiritualized | September 12, 2007 3:26 PM

'dave' said:

"So it is the ultimate crime to deny the Holocaust, but to deny the ethnic cleansing of Palestine is fine. Fair enough."

There is no "Palestine."

Jewish population of Europe post-WW2 - massive decrease.

Arab population of Israel post-1948, Gaza, Judea/Samaria - massive increase.

Are you able to spot the subtle difference?

Posted by unclesmrgol | September 12, 2007 3:29 PM


In your post, you ascribed the "itching" as coming from the Israeli and US governments, not a CQ poster named Tom W.

Tom W., are you a representative of either the US or Israeli governments? If you are, were you speaking off the record or on?

With regard to being more careful, I compare civilian casualties and upheavals from current Israeli operations with those from the 1948 and 1967 wars. In the two mentioned wars, Isreali forces deliberately targeted civilians. I don't see that now, although Israeli tactics (such as firing missiles at cars in civilian areas) occasionally cause loss of innocent life.

Again, the Palestinians have my sympathy, but it stops short when they target innocent civilians. Ditto for the Israelis.

Posted by dave | September 12, 2007 3:55 PM

"Israel is not occupying Lebanon..."
Shebaa Farms. And besides, it is quite clear that if Hezbollah disarms, Israel will re-occupy Lebanon with 3 days.

"Islamic terrorists hide behind there own family members..."
From HRW:
"No Evidence of Widespread Hezbollah ‘Shielding’"

Israels use of human shileds is widespread, however. See full report on this page, plus related:

" ascribed the "itching" as coming from the Israeli and US governments..."

I referenced this article:
"The Israelis will never find a better moment. If they could bloody the P.L.O. now and Syrian forces, too, they could win themselves several years of peace with the to look credible"

They are talking about invading when there is already peace. They are just waiting for the "mud to dry" (paraphrase). I have read much more about Usrael intentions at this point in time, but I cannot reference them now. They were itching.

Targeting civilians:
I agree that targeting civilians is not justified, such as Hamas suicide bombings in the past. (That said, there is also collective responsibility, IMO. I feel partly responsible for the killing that my government does, although that responsiblity does not warrant my death. Israeli citizens are even more responsible, because they cannot claim ignorance as they know the reality of the situation. Still, targeting them is unjustified.) Using innacurate missiles, however, is not targeting civilians if they are still being used as accurately as possible. If innacurate weapons automatically means civilians are being targeted, then much of the Allied bombing in WWII was terrorism. Hezbollah has never targeted civlians, either with their suicide bombing or their missiles. They have always honored the April Understanding. They only send their missiles once Lebanese civilians start getting targeted. Even then, there is evidence that they are still trying to hit IDF positions.

Posted by jerry | September 12, 2007 4:27 PM


Thanks for your candor. So your involvement with Jews is about as close as Eichmann's. Your are counterpoint comes down to "some of my best friends are..." A common tactic of both old fashion southern white racists and anti-Semites everywhere.

Posted by naftali | September 12, 2007 6:12 PM


It's me, your ol' buddy Naftali. Just curious, do you believe there is some kind on Zionist conspiracy that somehow magically effects the lives and thoughts of world leaders to work against their own best interests?

Well, it doesn't matter if you do or don't, because I'm throwing that Zionist magic your way.

Every broken shoelace, every time you trip and stub your toe, every time you have to wait too long at a traffic light, everything that could possibly happen to annoy you--that's Zionist magic. It's on you right now. It rains and you forgot to bring and umbrella, that's how we do it. So brace yourself.

I'll be saying the super ultra secret Zionist magic words right after I finish posting this. Even if you're a sock puppet, even if your name isn't Dave, it doesn't matter for the Super Secret Magic Zionist magic words.

It will be especially effective when you argue and you think you're being logical, but everyone else hears crazy hate-filled ramblings, that's our super secret Zionist magic.

Here we go.

Posted by Del Dolemonte | September 12, 2007 7:04 PM

dave said:

"So if a nation is in violation of a UN resolution, the correct response is to bomb that nation. I think Israel is currently in violation of about 27 resolutions. Does that rule go both ways?"

Thanks for proving to us what a JOKE the UN is. 4 of those UN resolutions against Israel were issued when the Beatles were still making records. And 11 of those all had to do with a single subject (demanding that Israel abide by the Geneva COnvention). The fact that none have ever been enforced shows how ridiculous and corrupt the UN is.

By the way, Turkey has almost as many UN "Resolutions" against it as Israel does. But since the elites in Europe and now America hate Israel so much, they're the pariah of the world.

Posted by patrick neid | September 12, 2007 7:50 PM

Whatever Israel did, I'm glad they did it. In fact a lot more of it would be even more appreciated.

I'll say it again. I believe we are in a war for our cultural/economic survival. As such I think we should target the generals in this 21st century war. That means the leadership of Syria, Iran, Hamas, Hezbollah, Al Sadr to name a few. Save the infrastructure bombing as a last resort.

As for UN resolutions I could care less. Those went by the boards when the war started.

Posted by Bennett | September 12, 2007 8:19 PM

Itching? What is this itching? I recommend Benadryl.

Anyway, I think it appropriate in this thread to wish each and all:


If I could, dave, I would send you a jar of honey in celebration of the New Year.

Shanah Tovah!

Posted by Eric | September 12, 2007 8:28 PM

I find Dave’s comments to be theatrical. That seems to be the new methodology of the left – theatrics.

I’ve been more inclined to believe that the Israeli over-flight of Syria was to test the defensive systems of the new Russian Missals. Iran does have copies of these. It’s not proven, but of course it’s true. Here is an article:

It also has an article concerning two additional carrier groups en-route to Persian Gulf. To put that in perspective, that’s the same as moving two Russian Air Forces into the Persian Gulf (in addition to what is already there.)

Posted by Eric | September 12, 2007 8:53 PM

I don't think Jerry is insane. I think he makes a valid point.

I'm in favor of strong a strong relationship with Israel. I think that those that oppose Israel are wrong and that Israel is maligned unfairly (as is the US.)

If the rest of the world grows to hate America for its friendship with Israel -- then so be it.

Posted by Only One Cannoli | September 12, 2007 9:18 PM

well, I found out all I need to know about dave.

"I am rooting for the US to lose as quickly as possible." - dave


Posted by Eric | September 12, 2007 9:41 PM

You misspelled Neurasthenia and you also misused the word.

By the way, truce. I'm drinking too.

Posted by dave | September 12, 2007 10:48 PM

About targeting civilians:
I just saw a Gallup poll that asks people in different countries about attacks in which civilians are targets. Here are the percentages of those who think such attacks are “completely justified”:
US 6%
Saudi Arabia 4%
Lebanon 2%
Iran 2%
Please don’t freak out about who wrote the article. The poll was done by Gallup. (Yes, Jerry, Gallup is anti-Semitic).

This result echoes one done by PIPA. They asked the following of both Iranians and Americans:
“Some people think that bombing and other types of attacks intentionally aimed at civilians are sometimes justified while others think that this kind of violence is never justified. Do you personally feel that such attacks are often justified, sometimes justified, rarely justified, or never justified?”
Here are the results:
Often justified 5
Sometimes justified 19
Rarely justified 27
Never justified 46
Often justified 3
Sometimes justified 8
Rarely justified 5
Never justified 80
(Yes, Jerry, PIPA is anti-Semitic).

Terror Free Tomorrows asked almost the identical question to three more Muslim countries: “Some people think that suicide bombing and other forms of violence against civilian targets are justified in order to defend Islam from its enemies. Other people believe that, no matter what the reason, this kind of violence is never justified. Do you personally feel that this kind of violence is often justified to defend Islam, sometimes justified, rarely justified or never justified?”
Often justified 6
Sometimes justified 6
Rarely justified 7
Never justified 81
Often justified 5
Sometimes justified 6
Rarely justified 5
Never justified 81
Often justified 1
Sometimes justified 4
Rarely justified 13
Never justified 74

Out of the US, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Indonesia, Pakistan, and Bangladesh, it seems as though the US has the largest support level for terrorism amongst the population. Isn’t that weird?

Posted by Thomas | September 13, 2007 3:11 AM

Thank you an interesting article.And I must agree with dave that he has some good points.I dont believe that Israel has a perfect record-it is occupying a lot of palestinian land which it should give up(IMHO) and help in the formation of an independant state of palestine.The palestine people are really suffering in their own land and the discontent is feeding terrorism throughout the world.Osama is using it to gain recruits.But that said does any arab state really care about the palestinian state - I doubt it.This is where I agree with dave.But I dont agree with pacifism and the hope that man is good.Once the palestine state is formed with welldefined borders then its inhabitants are well advised to stay within them.If they keep sending sucide bombers from there ,then it will be state aggression and the state of israel has every right to respond with force.But I doubt it,I think the people of palestine would just get on with it.They will have too much to loose otherwise.It is a fact that syria and iran wants to wipe israel off the map.U have to accept that.And a nuclear armed mullah is dangerous.And I like the israeli approach of good human intelligence work(they kidnapped the nuclear official from turkey,they recently kidnapped a hamas terrorist from inside hamas controlled territory dressed as shepherds) and precison air strikes.And I believe it is a model that america is well adviced to take seriously instead of putting soldiers on the ground for months and years exposing them to needless risk.And this iraq war will be lost-not by the brave american soldiers but by the contractors who are selling them down the drain.America is still in denial and goes about life as usual-for example congress has not declared war.If that had happened it would have been considered treason to start islamic mullah schools in america.See u are already grinning and shaking your heads -that is precisely my point.Nobody is serious.This is war. In world war 2 would anyone have allowed the nazis to start german schools in new york? If the germans want to learn german they should go to nazi germany,that would have been the popular opinion.But then saudi arabia and pakistan are "friends".This lack of a clear resolve and an idiotic leadership will do america in.Someone like Winston Churchill is needed,not a holiday taking bumbling Dubya(Latest -opec/apec etc etc).In the meantime china has cut down its holding of us treasuries,oil prices are at all time highs giving more money to the mullahs and russia and worse (for america) they are not wasting their money-they are investing in hard assets which will give them even more money,the dollar is in free fall,americans are still spending like crazy (august consumer spending rose),food prices are soaring but the inflation numbers are tame (WTF-oh the cpi doesnt include food and energy prices,the us government thinks they are not important for consumers).And to top it all the fed is going to cut rates.My point is ,these economic problems will have an impact on both nearterm and longterm foreign policy-america might not be in a position to dictate terms when it is taking on 25 Billion (yes with a capital B) dollars of debt per DAY.Case in point in a recent spat with china ,the chinese government threatned the nuclear option of dollar sales.This could be the precursor of things to come.

Link to article abt chinese nuclear option

Posted by dave | September 13, 2007 7:43 AM

I have been looking more at the Gallup World Poll site I referenced above. For anyone intested in what opinions really are in other countries, especially Muslim ones, I think you would be very surprised to read the info on that site:

For example, the issue of disarming Hezbollah came up on his thread. Guess what percentage of Lebanese *Christians* want Hezbollah to disarm?

Posted by swabjockey05 | September 13, 2007 10:13 AM

...soooo you never heard a La Raza thug cry about “occupation”…?

{NOT referring to a job picking fruit…}

Posted by Eric | September 13, 2007 5:25 PM

Dave -- let's be clear. I for one don't care about the opinions of other countries. I find that they are usually wrong, and we are usually right. Also, despite you ridiculous polling date, fact remains, the US acts legally with UN approval. Terrorist do not. That means our actions are legal. Theirs are illegal. Also, we go out of our way not to harm civilians. They go out of their way to do harm to civilians.

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