July 18, 2006

Cohen Blames Israel

You are an abomination. You are a mistake. You should have been aborted before birth, and now that you have been born, you deserve every beating you've gotten since, merely for daring to exist.

Or at least that seems to summarize Richard Cohen's feelings toward the Jews of Israel, while he can scarcely find a word to condemn Hezbollah, Hamas, or the other Islamists intent on Israeli genocide. Of course, don't take my word for it, when his will do:

The greatest mistake Israel could make at the moment is to forget that Israel itself is a mistake. It is an honest mistake, a well-intentioned mistake, a mistake for which no one is culpable, but the idea of creating a nation of European Jews in an area of Arab Muslims (and some Christians) has produced a century of warfare and terrorism of the sort we are seeing now. Israel fights Hezbollah in the north and Hamas in the south, but its most formidable enemy is history itself.

This is why the Israeli-Arab war, now transformed into the Israeli-Muslim war (Iran is not an Arab state), persists and widens. It is why the conflict mutates and festers. It is why Israel is now fighting an organization, Hezbollah, that did not exist 30 years ago and why Hezbollah is being supported by a nation, Iran, that was once a tacit ally of Israel's. The underlying, subterranean hatred of the Jewish state in the Islamic world just keeps bubbling to the surface. The leaders of Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan and some other Arab countries may condemn Hezbollah, but I doubt the proverbial man in their street shares that view.

There is no point in condemning Hezbollah. Zealots are not amenable to reason. And there's not much point, either, in condemning Hamas. It is a fetid, anti-Semitic outfit whose organizing principle is hatred of Israel. There is, though, a point in cautioning Israel to exercise restraint -- not for the sake of its enemies but for itself. Whatever happens, Israel must not use its military might to win back what it has already chosen to lose...

That is as much of Cohen's "curl up and die" message to Israel as I felt like holding forth, though you are certainly well within your rights to read the whole thing if you must.

Sadly, Cohen's grasp of history is shown to be almost as weak as that of Iran's Holocaust-denying President Ahmadinejad.

Cohen rails against "the idea of creating a nation of European Jews in an area of Arab Muslims," in a land where Jews predated the very existence of Islam by more than two millennia. It was only during the first two centuries AD that the Jews were forced from their ancestral homes in Israel and into slavery around the world, and it wasn't until after then that Muslims usurped Israeli lands.

Cohen makes another asinine statement unsupported by the history he claims to be on the side of, when he states, "Whatever happens, Israel must not use its military might to win back what it has already chosen to lose..."


If history has taught us anything about Islam, it is that Islam—a religion that dutifully separates the world into Dar al Islam (the House of Submission [to Allah]) and Dar al Harb (the House of War)—the only thing Muslim culture understands or respects is brute force. From Vienna to Tours to modern day wars along Islam's current borders, this lesson is repeated down through history to the present day.

Only overwhelming force and the crushing defeats it has visited upon its enemies have kept Israel alive thus far. Every retreat, every pullback, has led to more aggression from its neighbors.

Displaying a most selective grasp of history, he excretes a post almost Greenwaldian in its dishonesty.

"It is best," Cohen concludes, "for Israel to hunker down."

Forces that hunker down can never win wars, and at best they may merely survive. Israel deserves something far more than the mere survival Cohen is willing to grant them.

Posted by Confederate Yankee at July 18, 2006 01:02 AM | TrackBack

This is one of the most amazingly defeatest columns I have ever seen. Cohen's actually endorsing the President of Iran's position that the State of Israel should never have existed. Next thing you know he will be suggesting that we make room for the Jews of Israel in the Nevada desert.

Unbelievable, simply unbelievable.

Posted by: Redhand at July 18, 2006 06:11 AM

The problem is that both Cohen and CY are right and are wrong. It was very short sighted and incredibly euro-centric (based probably somewhat on the guilt over letting the holocaust occur) to establish a Jewish state on grounds that are considered holy by at least 3 major religions(Islam, Jewish, Christianity) that have a history of animosity towards each other and not foresee there would be alot of unrest. However, obviously the solution Cohen suggest is wrong as it is not acceptable to back up or surrender in order to merely to survive. That isn't a strategy that would enable long term planning for a country.

CY's arguement that the Jews were there first until they were kicked out is hypocritical as I don't see him running down to his local court house to sign over the deed to his house to the first Native American he can find. To argue that the Jewish people have a claim to land lost 1800 years ago is kinda silly.

And of course, what is a CY post without at least one stereotype, "the only thing Muslim culture understands or respects is brute force." Congrats. You just provided the trial defense for any of the soldiers accused of murder, rape, prison abuses, etc. It is the only thing Muslims understand. I can't imagine how you aren't embarassed by that statement.

Posted by: matt a at July 18, 2006 07:39 AM

OK, so what Muslims really respect is, in Osama's words, "the strong horse". Strong horse, brute force - six of one, a half dozen of the other.

Posted by: Tim at July 18, 2006 08:00 AM
And of course, what is a CY post without at least one stereotype, "the only thing Muslim culture understands or respects is brute force." Congrats. You just provided the trial defense for any of the soldiers accused of murder, rape, prison abuses, etc. It is the only thing Muslims understand. I can't imagine how you aren't embarassed by that statement.

Once again, matt a shows himself incapable of logical thought or historical honesty.

The nearly 1,400 year history of Islamic expansion and contraction has been one almost purely of violence. From the Battle of Badr onward to the present wars around the globe, Islam has been ruled by the sword. Islam recognizes only Dar al Islam and Dar al Harb as I accurately stated. matt a claims that what I said about Muslim culture only understanding or respecting brute force was a stereotype, and yet, he provides no evidence that what I said was inaccurate. Certainly, while individual Muslims and Muslim communities can assimilate to a certain extent into other cultures, that is not the rule, as over a thousand years of history conclusively proves. Islam is a religion of conquest, and its borders have always been at war as it seeks to subjugate other cultures. Those are the simple facts that matt a would rather ignore than face.

Certainly, liberals will bring up the fact that Christianity has had many bloody deeds performed in its name, but here is the key difference: when Christians murder in the name of their religion, they are going against the teaching of Jesus Christ. When Muslims murder in the name of Mohammed, they are fulfilling their prophet’s commands.

Matt a’s assertion that recognizing Islam for what it is somehow justifies atrocities against Muslims is equally preposterous. We have our own moral code far superior to theirs, and we judge our soldiers according to our higher legal and moral standards, not Islam’s. American soldiers are charged for the murders they perform. They are charges for the rapes they commit and they are charged for abusing prisoners according to our higher standards.

If anyone should be embarrassed about anything, it should be matt a’s for his ignorance of the bloody and very real history of Islam, and his attempt to imply that recognizing what they are somehow justifies stooping to their level.

Posted by: Confederate Yankee at July 18, 2006 08:12 AM

The only thing I can say is, Amen. Excellent Post CY.

Posted by: Old Soldier at July 18, 2006 08:36 AM

technical issue - I find it very difficult to post a comment on this site. The website wasn't accessible most of yesterday (to me) and half the time I get errors on submission even though they show up. I posted a response to CY but it didn't show up. Happens alot.

CY - still can't stand facing yourself in the mirror, eh? Logical thought and historical honesty? If that is what religious bigotry is called I'm guilty. I never claimed that Islam didn't have a violent past. But so what? Wasn't my point. Show me a nation or major religion today that doesn't have a violent past?

I don't need to provide evidence of absolute absurdity. I guess these guys ( shouldn't be complaining, its the only thing they understand, right? If what you say is true that the ONLY thing Muslim culture understands is brute force, then why did we go into Iraq to "free" them from the only thing they understood or respected, a brutal dictator? Why should we have expected to be welcomed with open arms and flowers if Muslims only respected brute force? By your claim, Iraq must have been the MODEL Islam country. Gas thousands of your own people? Just another day in Islam....Heck, Muslims should have been trying to get into Iraq...

Your comments on historical honesty and then white-washing Christian violent past as "bloody deeds" is just pathetic. Christian violence spans over 1000 years as well. Medieval Crusades over 200 years. Smaller crusades after that another 500 years. Reconquista lasted off and on for 700 years. The European Wars of Religion. The Spanish Inquistion. The Church of England's prosecution of Puritans. Much of the colonization was done in order to further Christianity which was subjugating other cultures. Lets not forget the current war with Iraq where GWB has said he is doing God's will...

I'm not embarassed of not knowing Islam's bloody history as I'm not a Muslim but I'm not the one on some self-delusional moral superiority complex that stated Muslims only understand brute force basically de-humanizing them or in your words, "stooping to their level". Its one thing to not know something, its another to make an absurd generalization that degrades and de-humanizes an entire religion. That's embarassing.

Liberal. Oh no, another stereotype. Who'd had thunk it? SOP-Can't argue the facts, attack the messenger. Keep it up, it lets all your readers know when you don't have anything productive to say anymore on the subject.

Posted by: matt a at July 19, 2006 09:58 AM

Okay, I know I should just stay silent; but "matt" is so wrong that I cannot. Here's my two cents:

"maat" is not a "Liberal" in the classic sense of the word. He is just against anything GWB is for...

He's a troll with a leftist, angst-ridden view that "Angry White Men" are to blame for everything that's wrong in the world.

Attempting to justify attacks on civilians because their land was occupied in a UN-sponsored plan in the late 1940s puts the lie to his own remarks:

"CY's arguement that the Jews were there first until they were kicked out is hypocritical as I don't see him running down to his local court house to sign over the deed to his house to the first Native American he can find. To argue that the Jewish people have a claim to land lost 1800 years ago is kinda silly."

The Holocaust provides a very real justification for "Europeans" (I assume he was being funny since the UN, even in 1948, contained countries outside of Europe) restoring what Europeans (i.e., the Roman Empire, the UN of its day) took away.

Wars happen. Violence (or the threat of it) does solve things. It's not the way we "civilized people" act with each other; but the only absolutely certain method of obtaining peace is to always surrender...

That certain people want to take away the rights and freedoms of others is not new. The right of a nation to respond to attacks from inside and outside its borders is well-established.

"matt" is just wrong...

Posted by: jtb-in-texas at July 19, 2006 02:39 PM

It is this simply, the violence in the middle east would cease if the terrorists laid down their arms. Conversely, if the Israeli's laid down their arms the terrorists would begin the next Holocaust.

Also, Matt, the difference between Christianity and Islam is that Christianity has had a reformation, Islam has not. If you cannot see that Islamists the world over are at war with Western Cultures across the globe, or better yet, all non muslims, then you are and will continue to be clueless. The reality is, if Islam ultimately wins this WWIII, they will kill lefties like you first.

Wake up.

Posted by: Robb at July 19, 2006 11:00 PM

Where to start...I'll again ignore the stereo-typing...
jtb - I never blamed "Angry White Men" for anything. I agree with GWB on quite a few things. I think you are violently agreeing with me. I said that establishing Israel was Euro-centric (in essence to "give back" what the europeans gave). If it had been American-centric, we would have established Israel probably on an island in the South Pacific (similiarly to how we herded Native Americans on to reservations sometimes thousands of miles from their native lands). Again, I was just pointing out the hyprocracy of the argument, "they had it first so they should get it back" WRT our own history of land aquisition. I never said that nations don't have the right to defend themselves. I said in the beginning that Cohen was wrong that Israel should hunker down.

Robb - So violence in the ME would cease if the terrorists laid down their arms? I'm sure the Kurds, Shite and Sunni's (among others) would disagree with you. Again, I never said Israel should lay down its arms. As far as Christian reformation goes, I'd say the jury is still out. The majority of all the (major) wars we fought in this century (WWI/II, Korean, Vietnam, IraqI/II) have had Christian themes (good and bad) embedded in them. The Nazi's were God's choosen race and Jews were the problem, We were fighting the Godless communists in Korea and Vietnam and of course IraqII we are in GWB's words, Doing God's will.

IMO Muslims are fighting back against Western Culture, Democracy being the chief target. GWB's policy that stability will be achieved when Democracy is everywhere is what alot of people are revolting against. Its basically the perception that their govt is bad, ours is better. Of course our flavor of democracy is the seperation of church and state, where as Islamic govts incorporates the 2 together. Forcing our version of democracy on them is in their mind, attack on their religion as well. Even when democracy is established, it is not bringing the stability promised, thus the term "Arab democracy" has cropped up. Under Islamic law, factions/terrorist organizations were curtailed and not allowed to act out or restricted in what they could do. Under Arab democracy, these factions (Hezbolah, Hamas, etc) have become legitimized and act without fear because the support of the people, not the clergy/religious leaders is all they need to remain in power. I don't disagree that this is a growing problem yet the answer, "kill them all" is more of a bumper sticker slogan than a real solution to the problem.

Posted by: matt a at July 20, 2006 08:39 AM

I feel Israel does not have a right to exist at least in terms of an apartheid state. Why should anyone subject themselves to 2nd class citizenship?

Here are some of the Zionist voices of peace and accomodation. And btw, the bulk of my anger is over the fact that support of and influence by Israel is helping destroy my freedoms in the US by the creation of a police state based on the Israeli model. That truly sucks.

And just to get an idea of how insidious the forces trying to hide the truth are, comments as benign as this get blocked or deleted at pro-Zionist sites all the time as they call for the murder of all the Arabs/Muslims who resist (Israpundit, Atlas Shrugs, LA Jewish Journal Forum, etc, etc, etc...) You'd think if the Zionist felt their argument was that strong, they'd allow it to stand on its own merits. Instead, it's like the Mossad motto, "By deception shall you do war."

For those claiming all the irrational hatred comes from the Arab/Muslim side, look at these gems. Take note especially of the admissions of theft.

David Ben Gurion (the first Israeli Prime Minister): "If I were an Arab leader, I would never sign an agreement with Israel. It is normal; we have taken their country. It is true God promised it to us, but how could that interest them? Our God is not theirs. There has been Anti - Semitism, the Nazis, Hitler, Auschwitz, but was that their fault ? They see but one thing: we have come and we have stolen their country. Why would they accept that?" Quoted by Nahum Goldmann in Le Paraddoxe Juif (The Jewish Paradox), pp121.

[note: bulk of quotes had to be deleted because of blocking software - wouldn't even allow me to leave the link]

Posted by: LanceThruster at July 20, 2006 01:27 PM

Could someone please tell me exactly why Zionism has the right to exist in Israel? Why is Israel considered a "Jewish" state when Zionism is "secular?" And why is it that if it is said that "Israel" should have never existed, why is that considered anti Jewish rather than anti Zionist?

I wish to understand.

Ras X

Posted by: Ras X at July 20, 2006 02:57 PM

Well,if we're going to have "dumb argument day" I'll give you an answer and go one better, Ras X.

You ask why the Jews have a special right to exist in Israel. They don't!

But they have a far better claim to Israel than Muslims have a claim Saudi Arabia. The simple fact is, Jews existed in Saudi Arabia long before Mohammed was a twinkle in his daddy's eye.

So, are you up for a trade?

Or are you just genocidal?

Posted by: Confederate Yankee at July 20, 2006 03:08 PM

C-Yankee - So that makes it OK for the Israelis to steal Palestine because they could have stolen back Saudi Arabia if they wanted? Talk about a "dumb" argument.

And merely inhabiting the region is a far cry from displacing the inhabitants and creating an apartheid state. It is in no way a democracy as claimed because by definition, the two-tiered status negates any sort of popular voice. Separate but unequal is just more colonial BS that civilized countries tried to move away from. It appears Jewish Israelis are too afraid to live as good neighbors by actually BEING good neighbors. I think it speaks of a larger cultural character flaw.

Posted by: LanceThruster at July 20, 2006 04:48 PM