Hamas-Israel Hostage Deal Only a Pause in Destruction of Gaza

It’s no fun being a sober realist. The fact that Hamas and Israel, the latter due to substantial US pressure, have agreed to a hostage swap (limited to 50 Hamas hostages for 150 Israel hostages, all under 19) and 300 aid trucks a day over a 4 day pause means very little in the trajectory of Israel’s campaign to exterminate Palestinians in Gaza. It’s big significance is as a talking point for each side: for Biden and Israel, to make a low-cost concession and blunt global condemnation; for Hamas, to show willingness to negotiate and get disproportionate hostage exchanges. Below are the terms of the deal as Hamas understands them:

300 trucks a day is only a small dent compared to the needs of the inhabitants of Gaza.

It is also noteworthy that Gaza coverage on Twitter (and many other venues) dropped dramatically after the lack of fuel in Gaza resulted in loss of power and with it, Internet and cell phone service. The flow of images of the horrors in the combat zone fueled international outrage and made it difficult for Israel to defend its position in front of the wider world, not that that mattered much to its ground campaign. The US is too tethered to Israel at the hip to do much more that achieve change in conduct at the margin. Its theoretical great leverage translates into paltry practical influence due to the how Israel has built itself into a kingmaker within the Beltway and has also succeeded in branding criticism of Zionism as anti-semitism.

As former ambassador Alistair Crooke pointed out in his latest interview on Judge Napolitano, Israel’s destruction of hospitals in Gaza alone makes the enclave uninhabitable. You can’t run a medical system for a large population on a long-term basis out of field hospitals. Israel was on the verge of achieving that in North Gaza.

There is little reason to think Israel will stop destroying hospitals. Of course, flattening housing and wrecking infrastructure also advances the end of making Gaza uninhabitable….until it is rebuilt to suit the needs of Israel.

Now admittedly, the entry of aid truck and presumably aid workers will allow for a round of new images of the state of human and habitat destruction in Gaza, so there will likely be another outrage boomlet. But unless Gaza gets enough fuel to restore electricity and the Internet on a sustained basis, Gaza will go dark again, and with it, the opportunity to document Israel’s crimes and use them to maintain and increase international pressure.

The reality is the only parties that can stop the carnage are Arab/Muslim states, by attacking Israel with enough intensity to force Israel to pull substantially out of Gaza to defend other fronts. They have chosen not to and are instead engaging in a campaign of harassment (which by some accounts is escalating; it’s hard to know given disparate actions by different players). They may win the long game by weakening Israel, particularly economically. The Cradle had a must-read account of the impact as of earlier this month. Things can’t have gotten better. Key sections:

Data cited from Israel’s Central Bureau of Statistics reveals a bleak reality – one in three businesses have either shuttered or are operating at 20 percent capacity since Operation Al-Aqsa Flood commenced on 7 October and punched a hole in Israeli national confidence.

More than half of businesses face revenue losses surpassing the 50 percent mark. The southern regions, closest to Gaza, bear the brunt, with two-thirds of businesses either closed or functioning “to a minimum.”

Adding to the crisis, Israel’s Labour ministry reports that 764,000 citizens, close to a fifth of Israel’s workforce, are jobless due to evacuations, school closures mandating childcare responsibilities, or reserve duty call-ups.

On Monday, Bloomberg put numbers to the economic impact of Tel Aviv’s military belligerence: The Gaza war has cost the Israeli economy almost $8 billion to date, with a further $260 million in losses incurred with every day that passes.

There’s a lot more detail, such as on damage to the tech and tourism sectors, and the impact of new reluctance to use Palestinian workers. Another story described how the agriculture sector is in crisis due to the loss of foreign field hands (particularly Thais) and the lack of enough Israelis who are willing and able to step in.

Now one can argue that Israel is small enough that the US (unlike with Ukraine) could support its government budget on a long-term basis. But what kind of society would it be? One with a badly atrophied commercial sector, a bulked-up military, subsisting on foreign welfare?

But even if Israel’s opponents succeed in bleeding Israel into permanent weakness, that is of no help to the Palestinians, who still look set to be killed in catastrophic numbers. Perhaps enough international pressure could eventually be brought on the US to get us to finally pull Israel’s choke chain. But by then, it seems highly likely that Israel will have established facts on the ground in Gaza (deaths plus built environment destruction) for Israel to have decisively won in its aim of removing substantial numbers of Palestinians from Israel permanently.

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  1. Kouros

    It might be a sort of Termopyle for Arabs. The Greeks lost, but then they got united and won at Platea.

    Now the whole world saw the very ugly face of Israeli Zionism, a state and ideology hell bent on eliminating the other from within their midst. No muslim leader can meet with Israelis and talk of normalization of relations for a good number of years, when this “normalization” involves the eradication of millions of Arabs/Muslims.

    Hopefully Israel will become a pariah state. South African apartheid was les vicious and less criminal.

    1. hk

      South African apartheid was aimed at maintaining dominance, not wiping the other side out. That makes it vile, but not quite a “genocide.”. The current situation is intended to wipe out the other side one way or another. This is a real genocide the likes of which have not taken place in a good while.

  2. The Rev Kev

    If Hamas was smart, they would release those hostages at the rate of ten a day but only at the end of each day. As soon as Israel has those hostages back they will once more restart the genocide & ethnic cleansing campaign. But I do that think that this deal is to a large degree more a result of internal Israeli pressures rather than the noodle-lashing of the Biden White House. Ever since the first week there have been brawls between the relatives of those hostages that want them back and the extreme hard-right who have written them off under the Hannibal Doctrine. This came to a head yesterday when the extreme hard-right demanded the death penalty for any captured Hamas soldiers causing a shouting match with the relatives of the hostages who realized that Hamas might then do the same. The pressure on Netanyahu must be getting immense by now.

    And I really get the feeling that the extreme hard-right would be happier if those hostages were all dead already. I do not know if it is because a lot of those hostages are secular Israelis or not but at this stage, if the IDF learned of the location of a hostage I think that they would be much more likely to send in an air-strike rather than a rescue party. All part of the Hannibal doctrine which we have seen proof positive applies to civilians as much as soldiers. Of course it remains to be seen what happens after those hostages get back. What if they say that they were treated well and fairly like previous hostages have done? Will Mossad “lean” on those hostages to shut up? And the war is not over yet. It has been what, five weeks now? So where is the videos of Israeli soldiers raising a flag over Gaza city announcing that it was been completely captured and that there are no more Hamas there? There may be some 15,000 Palestinians dead already but for Israel, there are still some 5,000,000 to go.

    1. JohnnyGL

      I think you’re correct. I suspect part of the reason israeli society seems so on edge is the realization that the IDF isn’t all that interested in protecting israeli citizens. It’s much more about control and dominance.

      1. podcastkid

        Yep. Patience training (or for negotiation) is required for a number of professions. One can see it’s lacking wherever the right gains power these days around the world. The internet gives instant answer-gratification, fake answers included. At the same time it would have you believe the desire to learn the serious truth isn’t all that important in this particular era. As far as I can see entities like NewsGuard want nothing but fake answers out there, a revamping of reality some think will kill the aforementioned desire. Strange though, however bad things had gotten, many, many humans valued getting the Gaza story straight [like Vietnam, I remember; and internet technology re this situation ended up helping!]. Miracle true, but some results will remain in the tangible realm.

  3. cnchal

    The choke chain runs the other way. Since the “globalists” sit at the top of the economic heap they could induce an instantaneous world wide depression with a capital strike . Now, where would Biden be if that happened?

    Fifteen to twenty thousand dead Palestinians so far and another million, nine hundred and eighty five thousand to go, then off to the West Bank for moar is the trajectory. Peace in the desert will be achieved eventually on the globalist’s terms.

    1. Lambert Strether

      The only way that your “choke chain” comment makes sense to me is if “‘globalist'” (your quotes) is a euphemism for (capitalist) Jews, since in general, global capital is doing very well for itself right now. Therefore, there’s no reason for capitalists qua capitalists to stage a strike. Since this euphemism is both analytically false and politically destructive, please clarify your usage of the term.

      1. cnchal

        Yes, my use of the word globalist in this context is a substitute for the word Jew.

        I have seen no condemnation of the atrocities currently occurring from the (capitalist) Jews and Yves post alludes to this choke chain analogy with this paragraph.

        The US is too tethered to Israel at the hip to do much more that achieve change in conduct at the margin. Its theoretical great leverage translates into paltry practical influence due to the how Israel has built itself into a kingmaker within the Beltway and has also succeeded in branding criticism of Zionism as anti-semitism.

        What would the US pulling on the choke chain be? Stop sending weapons? Stop sending cash? A sternly word letter pleading for Israel to stop the genocide? Navigating a battleship into an Israeli port with guns aimed at the Knesset?

        A capital strike could take several forms and it would not take much to rattle the confidence fairy sending the “west” into an economic depression leading to loss of confidence worldwide. A sharp selloff in the stawk market by the (capitalist) Jew’s cashing in their chips could get the ball rolling.

        1. Lambert Strether

          > Yes, my use of the word globalist in this context is a substitute for the word Jew.

          Your statement is anti-semitic. We can’t have that here. We’re not entertaining it. (It’s also just analytically terrible and destructive, positing as it does that the first loyalty of capitalists is not to capital, absurd on its face.)

          Go away.

          And that goes for anyone else with the same view.

          UPDATE And if anyone’s thinking of sneaking this false construct through using artful language, don’t even try it. Our moderators are good at doping out things like that, and we’ll whack you, too.

  4. LawnDart

    Well, some industries in Israel are doing very well:

    Israeli arms sales doubled in a decade, hit new record of $12.5 billion in 2022

    Annual Israeli arms sales reached a new record in 2022, for the second consecutive year, amounting to double the number of exports compared to around a decade ago, according to Defense Ministry figures released Wednesday.


    And there’s this:

    Chris Hedges: Israel Shutting Down Gaza Human Lab

    Israeli weapons and surveillance technologies are cementing a supranational corporate totalitarianism, enslaving populations in ways past totalitarian regimes could only imagine.

    Israel is the 10th biggest arms dealer on the planet and has sold its technology and weapons to an estimated 130 nations, including military dictatorships in Asia and Latin America.


  5. Alex

    I don’t think it’s fair to mention the strikes on hospitals without mentioning the tunnels that have now been exposed and the videos of hostages dragged into the hospitals

    Also, I wonder what is your definition of hostage if you write “50 Hamas hostages for 150 Israel hostages.” Are you sure that every single one is an innocent person who is detained unlawfully? Or do you consider any Palestinian detained by Israel a hostage by definition, no matter what they have done?

    1. nippersdad

      Strikes on hospitals are a war crime under the Geneva Conventions. The ONLY way they lose that designation is if they are repurposed to be used as headquarters for military purposes, something that everyone associated with them has vehemently denied. I would like to see some links for new tunnels exposed or hostages being “dragged” into them as well. That all sounds like propaganda in light of what has actually been reported.

      And, finally, reports of detainment of Palestinians for things like throwing rocks at tanks have been rife for years. Odds are you do not end up with over ten thousand political prisoners unless there is an ongoing strategy of intimidation going on, something that seems more than likely given Israel’s priors. And, the hostage swap specifically says that it will be looking at women and children, youngest first.

      Yeah, they are hostages. Kids should not be in a prison, and you should know better than to have tried that on.

      1. Alex

        I’ve posted links to videos below responding to Lambert.

        I’ve also checked who is supposed to be released from Israeli prisons. Al-Jazeera says that most of them are indeed detained for stone-throwing, while others are accused of violent crimes (https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2023/11/22/israel-hamas-deal-which-captives-palestinian-prisoners-could-be-freed). Haaretz says that these violent crimes include “hurling firebombs, arson, and possession of firearms or explosives”

        I’m not an expert in juvenile justice, so I have no opinion on whether kids should or should not be in a prison, but the fact is most countries (the US, UK, Russia) have various facilities for detaining offending teenagers, so Israel is by no means unique

        1. nippersdad

          If you are making no distinction between juvenile detention facilities and prisons then they are in prisons.

          From your article:

          “Save the Children reported in July that the children in Israeli detention are subjected to abuse. The nature of the abuse ranges from sexual violence to physical and psychological abuse. The report added that some are deprived of food, water and sleep.”

          Who wouldn’t want to burn that place down? There is no defense for what Israel is doing.

          1. Alex

            How is this related to my point above? It was about calling the detainees hostages. Their treatment is irrelevant to that, these things are completely orthogonal to each other (there can be well-treated hostages, well-treated prisoners, mistreated hostages and mistreated prisoners).

            The abuse probably happens, but it’s as (ir)relevant to my point as the atrocities perpetrated by Hamas on October 7.

            1. nippersdad

              Dude, under the Geneva Conventions all prisoners are required to be treated with respect; thus far the hostages released have all given Hamas credit for having done so. All of this has happened on occupied territory in which Israel has no legal right to defense under international law, even as the occupied have the right to resort to military means to achieve self determination.

              Then there is the question of how many of those atrocities were committed by Israel, itself, under the Hannibal directive; estimates are as high as eighty percent. Then you get into how many of those targets were legitimate military targets, and under those rules even the kibbutzim are considered to be military assets.

              Just because Israel has acted with impunity for at least seventy years now does not make any of this irrelevant now. People have been taking notes, and your case will be very hard to make.

        2. nippersdad

          Also, too, lest it has escaped your notice, the UN has declared in several of its’ resolutions that Israel is an occupier. Under the laws of war an occupier does not have the right of defense in occupied territories even as the occupied have the right to offensive measures in pursuit of self determination. Who is Israel to unilaterally determine who may or may not throw rocks at tanks in admittedly occupied territories, arrest kids with impunity and then molest them while under their care?

          You either have the rule of law or you do not. Clearly Israel does not, and as I said before, there is no possible defense for what Israel is doing in lands that it occupies illegally.

        3. Kouros

          How many Israeli settlers armed with military assault rifles, and throwing fire bombs and killing Palestinians in West Bank linger in Israeli jails?

          None!? By this measure then, all of the Palestinians lingering in prisons without charge and convictions as well as those convicted are innocent.

          1. Alex

            Some of them definitely are imprisoned, like the perpetrators of the horrible Duma arson attack who are imprisoned for life. I’m not a big fan of the settlers and I’m sure that the state doesn’t do enough to stop their violence, but the answer to your question is certainly not zero.

            On the other hand, there are exactly zero Hamas fighters who have been imprisoned by Hamas for their attacks against Israelis.

            1. Kouros

              7 Setlers over 7000 palestinians? That is not justice.

              The ones that started the cycle of injustice were Israelis, with the Nakba. Gazans are imprisoned, with no control over their lives and future. Would you condemn those escaping from Sobibor for killing some Germans during that escape?

              1. nippersdad

                He is not seeing the parallels between the Warsaw uprising and Gaza, between the French resistance and Hamas.

                If political Zionists want to play all of that out again, they shouldn’t be surprised if they end up with the same reputations as those that made present day international law necessary.

            2. lyman alpha blob

              The state doesn’t do anything to stop the settler’s violence from what I can tell, and instead actively encourages the settlements because the US has their back. The US may make its little complaints from time to time – “settlements on other people’s property are bad, mkay” – but that is clearly just a fig leaf since Israel has never suffered any consequences for going against supposed US wishes. Uncle Sugar even sent some aircraft carrier groups over to assist with the genocide.

              Israel is acting unconscionably and has been for decades, and Palestine has a right to defend itself, so why on earth would they jail their own military?!?

        4. Librarian Guy

          Israel detains children as young as 11 or 12 for not informing on their parents or family members, indefinitely. And I believe that what is said above, that they are subject to ongoing violence in the prison or sexual abuse is also true. In 2018 when I was attending the National Education Association’s Representative Assembly from all 50 states, D.C., Puerto Rico, etc. in the Twin Cities, with about 1,800 voting, someone got a motion onto the floor to denounce Israel’s detention of children (since we teach youth). It won in my delegation, California, but when put onto the floor of course the majority of Red States shot it down. Child abuse and slavery is one among the many abuses Zionist apartheid not only practices, but flaunts as part of its “defense.”

    2. lambert strether

      I’m not perhaps au courant on the putative hospital tunnels/Hamas HQ and so a link would very useful. Thanks!

      1. The Rev Kev

        I saw a video where the Israelis said that it proved that there were tunnels under that hospital. A bunch of their soldiers were gathered around an open tunnel but when the camera panned away, that tunnel entrance looked to be one or two hundred yards from the hospital building itself. The word ‘lame’ immediately came to mind.

        1. JohnnyGL

          This has felt like the final release of the Mueller report. There wasn’t really any ‘there’ there.

        1. Yves Smith Post author

          Israel had earlier claimed it was an HQ then tried pretending they’d never said that. Oh, and quickly looking at the UN and other sites. they are over the top adamant that hospitals are to be kept safe. Even if suspected of harboring military activities, the attacker must do everything to spare civilians and even then attack only proportionately to the presumed threat.

          1. nippersdad

            “…they are over the top adamant that hospitals are to be kept safe. Even if suspected of harboring military activities,…”

            Yep. Scott Ritter loses no opportunity to go through a long check list of things like attacking hospitals and other public buildings under the rules of war. The idea that a couple of people dragged into a hospital by Hamas directly brings up the rules of proportionality, and when you are talking about thousands of civilians in residence the stray two Hamas militants that show up are not even a consideration.

              1. lyman alpha blob

                They mentioned that on the Duran the other day as well, but I don’t think they gave a source for that info, so thank you for the link.

          2. Alex

            Well, this is an entirely different question whether the Hamas infrastructure found in/under the hospital and the activity of Hamas in the hospitals justifies the strikes. The tunnels haven’t been explored fully yet for obvious reasons, so I’d wait a bit before jumping to conclusions.

            My point was that not mentioning all that while discussing the attacks on hospitals would give the reader a very one-sided picture. One can argue whether the level of Hamas activity actually justifies the strikes but dragging hostages against their will into the hospital – or into the tunnels via the hospital – is NOT okay

            1. nippersdad

              “One can argue whether the level of Hamas activity actually justifies the strikes but dragging hostages against their will into the hospital – or into the tunnels via the hospital – is NOT okay”

              Well, actually…

              “Article 51(5)(b) AP I requires an “all or nothing” assessment of proportionality. Its violation automatically leads to a breach of the obligation. The fact that manifest disproportionality constitutes a war crime further demonstrates this “all-or-nothing” aspect. Weighing the elements in the balance is certainly delicate, but the consequence of the violation is pre-determined. Either the rule is respected because the incidental effects are legally justified, or the rule is violated because the anticipated harm is disproportionate to the expected advantage to be gained.”

              “The rule of proportionality requires that the anticipated incidental loss of human life and damage to civilian objects should not be excessive in relation to the concrete and direct military advantage expected from the destruction of a military objective. ”


              …them’s the rules. If you want to be in compliance with international law you gots to follow the rules or you subject yourself to accusations of war crimes and subsequent tribunals.

              How you feel about it doesn’t even enter the calculation.

            2. Thomas The Obscure

              Interesting how you use only presentist arguments for all your propositions, bereft of any of the historical sense that provides in this case the all important context – especially as to why those naughty Palestinian juvenile delinquents may be imprisoned for throwing rocks and lit articles at IDF soldiers, Apartheid police and armed settlers. Yet when it comes to tunnels, suddenly we must not be presentist and must extend for context not into history, but into a possible future.
              Be that as it may, the Electronic Intifada has quite successfully analysed the main IDF video of a drone entering the now infamous tunnel entrance near the hospital… the IDF editors did not quite stabilise the switch to ‘inside the tunnel’ where the drone suddenly begins ambulating, rather like a human in a completely different tunnel.

              The context of a long history of occupation is everything in this conflict; to isolate events so as to justify why you believe it fair that Israel imprisons Palestinian children is the worst kind of sophistry.

              1. samm

                “He found that he was ever more empty, ever heavier; he no longer moved without infinite fatigue. His body, after so many struggles, became entirely opaque, and those who looked at it, it gave the peaceful impression of sleep, though it had not ceased to be awake.”

                – Thomas The Obscure

    3. vao

      Are you sure that every single one is an innocent person who is detained unlawfully?

      All of them have been detained perfectly lawfully.

      The Israeli law on “the Internment of Unlawful Combatants” allows the Israeli military to apprehend, interrogate (without the presence of a lawyer), and incarcerate for renewable periods of 6 months (based on secret “evidence” that is not disclosed to the accused or judges) any person for whom the military has “reasonable cause” to estimate that he or she “has participated either directly or indirectly in hostile acts against the State of Israel or is a member of a force perpetrating hostile acts against the State of Israel” and whose release “would harm national security”.

      Those Palestinian children who will be freed in that hostage exchange had been arrested and interned based on that law — basically a statutory Guantanamo.

      1. vao

        I have been a bit overboard with the last paragraph. Many of the prisoners to be released by Israel might have been under “administrative detention” rather than “interned as unlawful combatant”, but that does not make their situation much better. Fundamentally, it means they are in jail, many for years, without being charged or trialled, on the basis of “secret security grounds that the defendant and their lawyer cannot review”. There is also the possibility to detain Palestinians for three weeks without grounds — an option typically applied to Palestinians coming to work in Israel.

        As I said, statutory Guantanamo — all legal.

        1. nippersdad

          More on “Administrative detention” from the New York Times:

          “As of this week, the total number of what Addameer calls Palestinian political prisoners in Israel — including people from Gaza, the West Bank and Israel — was 7,000, up from about 5,000 before Oct. 7, according to Addameer. That includes more than 2,000 people held in “administrative detention,” meaning they are being held indefinitely without charges, it said.”

          “Rights groups have long warned that Palestinian detainees are held without due process and face abuse and even torture. Military Court Watch, a nonprofit legal group, said last year that
          of the 100 Palestinian children detained by Israeli forces that it had interviewed, 74% reported physical abuse, and 42% said they were put in solitary confinement.”


          I don’t think you went in the least overboard. That is exactly what they are doing.

    4. ChrisPacific

      …and the videos of hostages dragged into the hospitals

      Out of curiosity, if one or more of the hostages taken by Hamas was seriously injured or unwell and required hospital grade care, what would you have them do?

      Authenticity arguments aside, there are lots of reasons why hostages might be found in proximity to a hospital that don’t amount to ‘Hamas is using it as a base for military operations.’

    5. vidimi

      Just a couple of weeks ago, Israel kidnapped the palistinian resistance idol Aheb Tamimi from the West Bank, after kidnapping her father earlier. Are people from the West Bank among the hostages who will be released?

      On the other note, Israel has systematically and methodically targetted all of Gaza’s hospitals. They also haven’t released a shred of evidence that the tunnel that they built under Al Shifa was used by Hamas, not that that would justify their approach of murdering nurses, doctors and patients, and killing premature babies in their incubators.

    6. Late Introvert

      And now put this thread in the Library of Congress, thank you very much commentariat for the most surgical and delectable take-down of the stand-in for the day.

  6. caucus99percenter

    Back in July, the Dutch king Willem-Alexander formally apologized for the Netherlands’ role in slavery:


    I ask myself, what was the point? At the very first test — Europe’s response to deliberate mass killing in Gaza — European governing elites all show their principles, or lack thereof, are the same as ever and they haven’t really learned a damned thing.

    1. Carolinian

      Thank you. The need for absolution was perhaps more honestly put on a cash basis by the Catholic church when they were selling indulgences. In our own PR era actions no longer speak louder than words until they do. Then it’s time to switch to “don’t play the blame game.”

  7. nippersdad

    The best thing that one could possibly say about all of this is that maybe the US has finally found its’ Suez Moment. We didn’t merely go out there to find monsters, we went out there and created them. That really does just need to end.

    1. Carolinian

      So if it’s a Suez moment then who is playing Eisenhower? Maybe it’s a French Revolution moment when the masses–world wide–have had enough of our proxy war against them called capitalism and its handmaid imperialism.

      1. hk

        Well, I’m pretty sure Anthony Eden loudly yelled “name me one world leader who wants to be Eisenhower…”

  8. Joe Well

    I keep wondering how any of the founders of Israel, or any of the Israelis since, thought they could just displace the Palestinians and not have it be an existential security threat and an original sin that undermined their legitimacy as a country.

    What I’ve realized is: It’s very hard for me as an American to get my head around the Palestinians’ attachment to their land, resulting from centuries to millennia of generational habitation. I suppose it is hard, too, for the Israelis, overwhelmingly immigrants or the children or grandchildren of immigrants.

    You even see it expressed often in comments by Americans: why don’t the Palestinians just emigrate? Not realizing this would be cultural genocide.

    And of course the Israelis *think* they don’t have to understand it because of their mythmaking about being the real indigenous inhabitants of the land. Kind of an Elizabeth Warren/Ancestry.com view of identity (except that even per DNA, the Palestinians are the real people of that land).

    1. vao

      I keep wondering how any of the founders of Israel, or any of the Israelis since, thought they could just displace the Palestinians and not have it be an existential security threat

      Ben Gourion, Zev Jabotinski, Chaim Weizmann, Moshe Dayan, and other founders of Israel were acutely aware of that issue, and wrote and talked about it in unvarnished terms.

    2. Vicky Cookies

      Land-based ideologies make much more sense when one is directly dependent upon the fruits of the land for subsistence. The economic aspect aside, the emotional significance of a homeland which likely arises from it also has some of its roots in conceptions of family, life, death, and their meaning.

      Chief Joseph of the Nez Perces describes his father’s death in 1871:

      “My father sent for me. I saw he was dying. I took his hand in mine. He said: “My son, my body is returning to my mother earth, and my spirit is going very soon to see the Great spirit Chief. When I am gone, think of your country. You are the chief of these people. They look to you to guide them. Always remember that your father never sold his country. You must stop your ears whenever you are asked to sign a treaty selling your home. A few years more, and white men will be all around you. They have their eyes on this land. My son, never forget my dying words. This country holds your father’s body. Never sell the bones of your father and mother.” I pressed my father’s hand and told him I would protect his grave with my life. My father smiled and passed away to the spirit-land.
      I buried him in that beautiful valley of winding waters. I love that land more than all the rest of the world. A man who would not love his father’s grave is worse than a wild animal.”

      Also, interestingly, Theodor Herzl, in Der Judenstaat, apparently didn’t like the Palestinian climate, and preferred Patagonia. A short chapter in the book is entitled “Palestine or Argentina”.

    3. Shane

      “why don’t the Palestinians just emigrate?

      How would they do that? No exit allowed by sea. Can’t cross into Egypt. No airport, no money and no ability to enter Israel. They are supposed to starve to death, or hurl themself against the sides of the cage until dead or killed.

  9. rjs

    there’s a two day OPEC meeting going on at the same time, where the hardliners want to cut off oil to supporters of Israel…

    let’s see where the ceasefire goes after the OPEC meeting ends…

  10. Lexx

    I need stronger words to describe cultural madness, where the maddest of all are in charge. I’ve been sitting here rolling around several in my mind for their flavor, but none quite satisfy. Maybe just some kind of noise of disgust, all the expletives squeezed out as a fart that lingers indefinitely and follows you everywhere you go. ‘What is that smell?!’

    Okay, so that’s what they’re going to do with some of the hostages… allegedly. It looks good in the press… what coverage there is… and Hamas and Mad King Bibi come off as reasonable rather than looney tunes. Let’s see if they follow through rather than using any pretext at all for calling off the exchange.

    I wonder how this deal is going down amongst the rank and file? A bunch of jihadists have just been told to ‘hold up there, HQ has been chatting with the IDF… we’re going to take a little break. Smoke ’em if ya got ’em.’

  11. Aurelien

    I actually don’t think that further images of destruction from Gaza would have changed very much. Compassion fatigue sets in after a while, and in any case I think the political and diplomatic damage is now essentially done, and the scenes will not be forgotten. From what I can tell, the US is using its remaining political capital in an attempt to stop the war spreading, rather than in a vain effort to halt the bombing.

    But I don’t think that means that Israel has “won.” Indeed, not only is there the question of the Hamas fighters, and the effective impossibility of “controlling” Gaza in the short term, but if hundreds of thousands are forced to flee Gaza or pushed out, or both, this is going to create a humanitarian crisis the like of which the world has rarely seen in modern times, and the Israelis will not be able to dictate how the media cover it.

    1. Yves Smith Post author

      I do not understand your last paragraph. For starters, I never said anything that dimly approaches concluding that Israel had won, but that there’s no force in evidence to prevent Israel from achieving a long-standing strategic objective, of removing the Palestinian population from Gaza.

      Pretty much everyone agrees that Israel is not likely to achieve its stated aim of destroying Hamas. However, it most decidedly is succeeding and in the absence of an unexpected countervailing development, will succeed in ethnic cleansing of Palestinians in Gaza, to the degree that the label genocide is not at all hyperbolic.

      The neighbors are well aware of the death toll in Gaza, the fact that it is almost certainly well understated due to inability to count bodies buried unde the rubble, and the clear Israeli objective do to more of the same. They have said they are not taking refugees (save it looks like a few of the injured). There is not going to be a “forced to flee” scenario. They will continue to be killed in place, if not by shelling, then as the UN has warned, by disease. dehydration, and potentially exposure now that the nights are getting cold.

      As to the earlier part of your assessment, I disagree strongly. Coverage of Gaza dropped dramatically in the Western press when there were no new stories due to the loss of connectivity in Gaza, like detail on the destruction of yet another hospital, deaths of more medical personnel and reporters, and “last moment/last video” before death by Israel on Twitter to feed it. Having lived through the Vietnam war, the pretty much daily televised reports, regularly of the carnage (this when the major networks were deferential) was absolutely essential to keeping the war front and center as an issue in America.

      1. i just dont like the gravy

        I like your comparison to the media during the Vietnam era.

        Makes me wonder what the long-term looks like on the US domestic front. I predict most that care will forget in 6 months. The genocide will still be going on, mind you.

        We have been conditioned by TikToks and Hollywood and all sorts of technorubbish to forget. Look what happened to the Ukrainians. Americans will forget about Palestine too. It’s what they do.

        1. Yves Smith Post author

          I forgot to mention: what the TV coverage did over time was convert many one-time supporters of the war to opponents or at least fence-sitters. I recall (being natively contrary) as a kid arguing with some other early teens against the war. At the time, I lived in the Midwest, which tends to be conservative and a late adopter of trends. Obviously I don’t recall a lot of details, but the justifications seemed to be fighting Commies/domino theory and Supporting Our Country.

          Admittedly, the Kent State shooting, a strictly domestic event, also had an impact.

          In the US, it”s not hard to see continuing coverage of the brutality towards Gazans weakening Israel support. Look at outlets you’d expect to be staunch allies like the BBC starting to push back. Admittedly, targeting journos is likely playing a role in that.

          1. KLG

            Exactly my memories, too. We watched Walter Cronkite every night at 6:30. On Thursday IIRC the weekly casualties were reported. American deaths ranged up to 200 in a bad week; imagine that today. North Vietnamese casualties were always much, much higher, often more than 1,000. I remember asking my father, who was a Navy veteran of the Korean War, how North Vietnam could keep up for years at those losses. I was 10-11-12 as LBJ and his Best and Brightest put a half-million Americans in SE Asia. I think he just shook his head. But the adults were all-in on the war to beat the Commies. I distinctly remember being told that the South Vietnamese government asked us to “come and help them.” My nascent bullshit meter pegged at 11. And I remember no sympathy for the victims at Kent State, when I was in the ninth grade. None at all. The cover photo of the young woman in anguish over the dead young man face down in the street stuck with me. Forever. James Michener called her the “Girl with the Delacroix Face” in his book on Kent State.

            1. elissa3

              About Kent State. Among college students I maintain that it was a radicalizing event. As a junior at a superficially “conservative” school, I can affirm that it changed a lot of minds and created an army of activists. The message that many got was this: ‘they can kill us, even on our safe college campuses’.

              Yeah, the war went on for almost five years, but I want to believe that there was a lasting change in the consciousness of a lot of my peers. And there is the fact that the PTB were extremely reluctant to engage in large scale wars that involved USA soldiers for several decades.

        2. mrsyk

          We’re getting bombarded with disaster after disaster. Did anyone wake up this morning and wonder about the welfare of East Palestine? Lahaina? Signal overload, white noise

          1. Yves Smith Post author

            Sorry, not the same. East Palestine was a one-off event and the news was all AFTER the occurrence. It’s likely to happen again given bad regs but that’s a different matter.

            Gaza is entirely different, ongoing slaughter that could and should be stopped.

            1. mrsyk

              Sorry, my comment reflects my inability to hold focus on the carnage in our wake amidst the looming disasters on the horizon. n=1, but I don’t think I’m alone. It was in reply to “Americans will forget….” And it’s not that I forget. My bandwidth is overloaded.

              Humanitarian disasters come in lots of different colors and move at different speeds. East Palestine may appear to be of a much smaller scale, but I disagree that it was a one-off event.
              Anyway, I completely agree that the slaughter in Gaza could and should be stopped, as well as the slaughter that will surely follow as the violence spreads. Can we (everyone) step back from this cliff? I’m having my doubts.

      2. Aurelien

        I lived through the Vietnam War as well, and it was covered in some depth in the European media for as long as US forces were present, and as long as there were individual significant events happening, like the Tet Offensive, as well as stories about corruption and brutality. Once US forces left, these stories tailed off to almost nothing, until the last days of the war. If you want a better comparator, it would be the siege of Sarajevo in Bosnia from 1992-5. Although there was total media access and a massive NGO and political campaign which prefigured in many respects what we saw in Ukraine, reporting of the siege dropped off quite quickly, because it was fundamentally the same thing all the time: artillery, mortar and sniper fire into the city. In most cases like this, you get as “S” curve effect, where initial surprise and even disbelief gives rise to rapidly increasing anger, and associated protests, before flattening off. I think we are roughly at that point now, where further media coverage, although it will continue to be damaging, will largely confirm what people already think.

        For the rest, I don’t necessarily disagree with you: I was rather thinking of those who are (in my view) naive enough to suppose that this Israeli government could be influenced by international public opinion. That said, and as gruesome as it may be to discuss, I suspect the logistics of somehow removing the Palestinian population from Gaza and then securing it, whether by killing, displacement or both, as well as the second-order consequences, will be more difficult than Israel imagines, and may also provoke reactions and consequences that at the moment we can’t foresee.

        1. Yves Smith Post author

          Sorry, I still must disagree. The Vietnam War was not your war once the French left Indochina. And you did not see US coverage in Europe.

          Per my comment above, a key element is the impact of media on the behavior of the supplier/funder of the campaign. And I think it will also make a difference in maintaining unity among the Muslim states.

          I think Israel will be able to continue, and if anything increase the intensity of its shelling, when the Internet is dark. What is to stop them? The Muslim states won’t embargo and they won’t go to war save at a harassment level….which is enough to cause all sorts of problems but not prevent the Gaza operations from continuing. And the US is solidly behind Israel.

          And fatalities from not-immediately military means, as in disease and dehydration, will start accelerating soon. A million deaths in Gaza strikes me as entirely plausible.

          1. Michaelmas

            Yves S: And the US is solidly behind Israel.

            That may not remain the case and, whether it does or doesn’t, that may not matter as much as Americans think.

            [1] The US — elements of the Blob, anyway — is starting to get cold feet as it wakes up to the fact that Netanyahu and Tel Aviv are trying to drag-push the US into a war with Iran. Moreover, the media coverage will continue and, as with the Vietnam war, US military support for Israel will grow increasingly unpopular among the American general population.

            Nevertheless, whether with or without the US….

            [2] Netanyahu is all in on this war as his chance to — if he can’t save his political career — go down as a Churchill-type figure in Israeli history by being the leader who pushed through a Final Solution for the ‘Palestinian problem.’

            Israelis are mostly all in with him, unfortunately.

            Yves: A million deaths in Gaza strikes me as entirely plausible.

            Unfortunately. If that’s the result, it will have consequences in terms of all sorts of nightmarish future world-historical possibilities opening up. A Palestine refugee might look at all those deaths from disease, for instance, and, if they happened to be a talented microbiologist, think about what could be done along those lines to the Israelis in return. I would really rather that precedent not be established in my lifetime, thank you.

            1. Not Qualified to Comment

              Yves S: And the US is solidly behind Israel.

              Just as it was solidly behind the Ukraine, not very long ago.

              Yes Israel has one of Congress’s nuts in its hand on the way Ukraine doesn’t, but the general population of the US has (I hope) its other nut in their hands and might soon start squeezing.

              1. Yves Smith Post author

                The Israel Lobby can and has primaried Congressional candidates, and uses that at a threat. This generally assures their loss, since they blow a lot of money in primaries. They (and billionaire allies) have succeeded getting the BDS movement branded as anti-semitism. There is a Federal anti-boycott law which is clearly an anti-BDS law (see Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anti-BDS_laws). See other efforts to suppress anti-Israel speech:

                A billionaire real estate tycoon in the United States is rallying support for a high-dollar media crusade to boost Israel’s image and demonise the Hamas armed group amid global pro-Palestinian solidarity protests.

                The media campaign — called Facts for Peace — is seeking million-dollar donations from dozens of the world’s biggest names in media, finance and technology, according to an email seen by news website Semafor…

                Some of the individuals, such as investor Bill Ackman, have publicly threatened to blacklist pro-Palestine students who are critical of Israel. On October 10, Ackman wrote on X, formerly Twitter, that he and other business executives wanted Ivy League universities to disclose the names of students who are part of organisations that signed open letters criticising Israeli policies in Gaza.


                And the general population does not have influence in DC. Please see Tom Ferguson’s Golden Rule. US politics is driven by money, not popular votes. We would not have the policies we do if average voters mattered. Policies like taxing the rich, ending the wars, strengthening Social Security and Medicare, have had solid majorities (or at worst clear top plurality status with polls that have slanted questions/question ordering) for decades.

      3. Kouros

        Who controls the border crossing to Egypt? Israel? Egypt? Both? I don’t know. But if there are Israeli troops at the crossing, why is Hamas not removing them and force Israel to bomb any humanitarian aid coming to help the ever more crowded Southern Gaza?

        Germany has shown that killing millions takes lots of time, resources and engineering. Israel doesn’t have what it needs (it has what it takes, the will and desire) in order to eradicate all Palestinians from Gaza.

        Palestinians will be counting their dead very carefully. Let’s see what happens when/if the tally reaches 100,000.

    2. vao

      I actually don’t think that further images of destruction from Gaza would have changed very much.

      Fatigue with images of wanton destruction of urban areas may well set in, but the images may change dramatically.

      No more clean water, food rations reduced to a minimum, energy supplies gone, medical infrastructure destroyed, dwellings in ruin as Autumn progresses: the unavoidable consequence will be increasing numbers of skeleton-like figures with caved-in eyes slumped in the streets of Gaza, next to piles of emaciated corpses.

      The parallel with infamous historical precedents will be way too blatant for the Israeli PR. In essence, Israel cannot deliberately carry out a genocide without having to deal with the exact consequences of a genocide. And to avoid that gruesome scene, Israel must stop the destruction and let all the necessary help in sufficient quantity go in — which negates the objective of eradicating the Palestinian presence in Gaza.

  12. KD

    In the short-term, the prospects for Gazans is very bleak, and in the long-term, I guess we are all dead. However, there are some aspects of this conflict which change the equation dynamically:

    1.) Part of the US/Israeli alliance was based on Israel’s force capabilities as demonstrated in the Six Day War in 1967 and the Yom Kippur War in 1973. Israel demonstrated that it was capable of defeating multiple adversaries on its own in a regional war through conventional means. Part of the US investment in Israel was based on a calculus that Israel could hold its own conventionally against its neighbors, so the US was not in a situation where it was going to have to relocate carrier groups and marines to the region to bolster Israeli forces in a regional war, and it would have access to ports and potential troop staging grounds if it needed to conduct operations in the ME.

    It is clear from what is happening now that whatever Israel’s capabilities, the capabilities of its neighbors have come a long way, and a commitment to Israel going forward will mean a commitment of the US armed forces to the defense of Israel. [People are complaining about Anti-Semitism now, imagine when Lamar and Jose start coming home in body bags fighting to support this or future Israeli governments.]

    This means going forward that there is very little strategic value to the US from its relationship with Israel. Yes, AIPAC and the Evangelicals and all that matter, but the security and strategic foundation of the special relationship is no longer sound, and the US commitment could very quickly shift overnight.

    2.) Israel has a demographic/fundamentalist problem in that its demographics are skewing increasingly toward a religious fundamentalist population and this will drive its domestic politics. In addition, the public statements of Israeli officials which many have argued express genocidal intent, and the indiscriminate bombings of civilian infrastructure, as well as MSM reporting on the lies of the IDF regarding this conduct has horrified the world. Israel has completely lost the information war even among its “allies,” and is constitutionally incapable of presenting itself in a way that could win the info war. It is clear that younger, secular Jews are going to be increasingly turned off by what Israel has become, and when there is a generational shift, organizations like AIPAC or the ADL are going to have a problem maintaining the status quo, because Israel going forward is going to look more and more like the Boer settlers. By its actions, Israel has ceded any claim to political legitimacy in the global community, and it is going to be harder and harder for Israel to maintain its level of support even in the US.

    3.) Broaching the topic of the good Israel, or the “good Israel” if you prefer, Israel has a very vibrant and innovative high tech industry, and a lot of the accoutrements of a prosperous Western country. It is highly likely that most of the talent involved in those segments of the economy will leave permanently (being smart and aware of the Israel’s security vulnerabilities), and that boiling off will make Israeli politics even more toxic from the perspective of the West, and Israel increasingly dependent economically on the kindness of strangers.

    4.) Israel is completely dependent on the US for economic and military support, and that dependency will only increase, while any benefit to the US will only diminish rapidly. As Israel transforms itself into the “new South Africa” in the international community, the reputational damage to the US will only increase. At some point, the US will balk, and it is hard to see how Israel as it is currently constituted will survive. A two state solution, if you roll back the settlements might work, and a one state solution, e.g. a non-Jewish state with a Palestinian majority, might work. It is hard to see how Greater Israel can pan out long-term. Further, if the Israeli die-hards get their way on the “Palestinian Question,” its only a matter of time before they look to their neighbors to expand further, so at some point, their neighbors are going to have to figure out a way to strangle the baby before it grows up to be a monster, while it is still focused on the Palestinians. Maybe that time is not now, but the greatest factor mitigating against a regional war is probably the US support (China and Russia are prepared to say the right things, but neither appear to be seeking the regional role played by the former Soviet Union, you can just look at the complexities of the Russian involvement with Assad viz. Israel). For reasons addressed above (and remember, the US domestic political scene is anything but stable right now), that support could waiver, and if it does, Greater Israel would find itself biting off more than it could chew.

    1. Kouros

      I think you are greately insulting the Boer Settlers and the South African Apartheid when you compare Israel with them. As many South African leaders have expressed in the past, Palestinians’ situation under Israeli occupation is much worse…

    2. hk

      One might say that Russia has more leverage (and a potentially more helpful role) than USSR did (except in 1948, maybe) because it has maintained decent, or even good, relationship with both sides. From the perspective that views Israel’s role vis a vis Palestinians as evil, this is not a good thing, but the unfortunate thing is that no one will actually militarily defeat Israel and forcibly impose a “just” solution, but go no further (whatever that “just” solution is.). For what is worth, Russia (and China) can credibly mediate while the West cannot. And whatever the outcome will be, the only “just” (and sustainable) path to get there has to be “diplomatic” (I’ll count democratization of Israel-Palestine as a “diplomatic” process because I still think someone has to mediate from the outside if it is at all achievable.)

  13. john

    If you have a conscience, you will never forget what you have seen…ever…especially if you have AlJazeera on 24/7…I have no idea what the MSM is showing…probably nothing…as they have no conscience and its simply impossible to watch such staged and one-sided gibberish and to them, everything started on October 7.

    1. elissa3

      Very true. Other than Aljazeera, I have seen images from Gaza that I cannot unsee, though I wish I could. These may have the same impact of the naked Vietnamese girl running in terror towards the camera. Although not in the country at the time, on seeing that photo, I felt a profound disgust at being considered a USA citizen. I imagine that I was not alone.

  14. Alice X

    The last paragraph should read?

    But even [if] Israel’s opponents succeed in bleeding Israel into permanent weakness, that is of no help to the Palestinians…

  15. Feral Finster

    “Now one can argue that Israel is small enough that the US (unlike with Ukraine) could support its government budget on a long-term basis. But what kind of society would it be? One with a badly atrophied commercial sector, a bulked-up military, subsisting on foreign welfare?”.

    Nobody in Washington or Israel cares.

  16. TMartin

    In the past armies sometimes would call for a temporary truce so they could bury their dead and tend to the wounded. The right wing Israelis are not humanitarians.

  17. Susan the other

    We have a very high threshold for atrocity. This is one for history and should mark a turning point. It looks as if Israel is doing mercenary work for the US and the UK, both of whom are very interested in developing the energy off Gazas shore. More than interested because for each of us it is, as they say, existential. There should have been a way on the decades long road coming to this desperate point that we could have said, “let’s talk” without feeling powerless. The UN has been a complete failure. Other nations sort of circled above like so many vultures. Only power speaks. Before our eyes, as we watch this unbelievable horror, Israel itself is committing suicide. It will never be the same again. And I’m not too sure about us either.

  18. marku52

    At least one “positive” out of this horror is that no diplomat from the Rest Of World will ever again stand for being lectured about “human rights” by the West, and most of all the US.

    The lecturing diplomat would be lucky not to get tarred and feathered (or whatever the local version thereof)

  19. David in Friday Harbor

    I have to agree with Yves that what we are seeing is “narrative-management” theater. The genocide in Gaza fell-off the lead stories on the Guardian and NYTimes websites for the past week or so. Unsurprising as these publications have become so laughably MI-5 and Blob adjacent (I still depend on them for headlines). They can remember how television flipped public opinion about the Vietnam war, and learned the lessons well how the total suppression of news about the destruction of Mosul and Raqqa via indiscriminate shelling by U.S. forces in 2017 led to nary a peep from the masses.

    Tuesday’s “hostage deal” appears to be nothing but a face-saving political exercise to shore-up a foundering Biden in return for his support through next year for continuing the genocide after a brief pause. Since his likely successor has proven himself to be even less scrupulous about the ethnic cleansing and genocide of Palestinians, this is clearly just a bridge to November 2024.

    The right wing cabal of AIPAC and Revelations/Rapture Christian fundamentalists will likely keep pumping resources into Israel at the expense of the U.S. economy indefinitely. Ironically, the State of Israel was founded by European Ashkenazi settlers who hoped to finally feel “safe” after a century-and-a-half of murderous European antisemitism. Many of their descendants must be asking themselves how that is working out.

    The real question is the one asked by Kit Klarenberg’s reporting in The Cradle. Do the politically ascendent American ultra-orthodox and Mizrahi underclasses contribute enough to the Israeli economy to justify the erasure of the Palestinian people? Or will the economically productive European Ashkenazi begin to pack their suitcases and decamp for somewhere truly “safe” like America?

    As with every previous settler-apartheid enterprise (i.e. French Algeria, Rhodesia, South Africa), this can only end when the internal contradictions cause an economic and moral collapse of the society from within.

  20. Alan Roxdale

    The reality is the only parties that can stop the carnage are Arab/Muslim states, by attacking Israel with enough intensity to force Israel to pull substantially out of Gaza to defend other fronts.

    That is far from the Arab state’s only option. They can, I suspect will be forced to, issue sanctions on oil for Israel, and its supporting states, i.e. the entire West. That will tighten the screws far more than an army mobilization.

    1. Yves Smith Post author

      Experts have said the tunnels are deep enough to survive bunker-busting bombs. However, it is not at all clear how many of the tunnels are at that deep level, how well connected they are (as in are they a continuous network that goes all the way to Egypt?) and whether most of the Hamas supplies are that far down. For instance, it’s possible that most of the deep tunnels survived but the strike balkanized their connections to each other.

      1. Vladimir

        How long did it take to build the tunnel network and how much did it cost?
        Do tunnels have exits into hospitals and other civilian infrastructure objects?

  21. Victor Sciamarelli

    What do you do with a rotting fish? You let it rot. Israel is losing the propaganda war and its dragging the US down with it. And it means, in the eyes of most of the world, the US is the rogue elephant in the room. Thus, imo Russia, China, and the regional powers like Turkey and Iran do not want the war to spread.
    Two points to add which I think were not mentioned in the article and comments.
    First, It’s my understanding US law requires the government to monitor the weapons it provides to ensure they will not be used to commit war crimes. There’s some wiggle room but not here. War crimes have already been committed in Gaza and the US continues its support for Israel. This puts Biden and other US officials on the hook as war criminals for aiding and abetting Israel’s crimes. It also means the Congress has a responsibility to act.
    Second, the propaganda of John Kirby is instructive: iteration of a parallel but misleading message. The crucial and fundamental fact is Israel’s illegal military occupation of the Palestinians. The fundamental fact of Israel and US propaganda is the illegal occupation doesn’t exist; the area is administered and the territory disputed. Thus, never the aggressor on the internal population, Israel becomes the victim from outside forces and the US insists Israel has a right to defend itself.
    The illegal occupation should be mentioned no less often than Israel’s denial of it.

  22. john

    In the 70’s there was “koreagate”, where a few congressmen were bribed and persuaded by Korea agents and businessmen to get their “votes” and influence…then there was Taiwangate, same thing, a few congressmen and major congressional investigations were started leading to charges and some resignations. Today, 99.9% of the US government, Federal and even state, is under the influence of a foreign (israeli) lobby, incredibly unconstitutional and illegal, and it nobody says a damn thing. Its absolutely mind boggling. The biggest sham democracy in history…

  23. NNPaul

    How is the fact that the Israeli government has been holding (just as a regular ongoing policy) at least 150 minors and women (that apparently they have determined pose no threat) not a significant part of the coverage of this event?

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