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Palestinians Militants Kidnap Three Israeli Teenagers

Three Israeli teenagers were kidnapped by presumed Palestinian militants near Hebron yesterday, while hitchhiking through the West Bank.  The three, one of whom is a dual U.S. citizen, were students at a West Bank yeshiva.  It’s believed they were kidnapped near the Palestinian town, which is a hotbed of hatred and anger at the 500 Israeli settlers living there.

The yeshiva, Makor Chaim, is located in Gush Etzion, and is part of the settlement bloc which Israel is expected to retain should there ever be a peace agreement.  Settlers there are known as more moderate than others living in more remote settlements.  The yeshiva is affiliated with Hasidism, and not the type of radical extremism represented by Od Yosef Chai in Yitzhar.  Though, in truth, these are settlers as well.

A Palestinian militant group which is reputed by Israeli media to be associated with the Sunni-extremist group, ISIS, took credit for the operation.  In a related matter, the NY Times even went so far as to associate ISIS with Al Qaeda, though this seems based on outdated information, not taking into account that Al Qaeda renounced any association with ISIS several months ago.  Isabel Kershner and the Times’ foreign editor apparently don’t keep up on the Islamist playbook.

Several months ago, the IDF executed three members of the Palestinian Islamist group in a cave in the South Hebron Hills.  The kidnapping is supposedly avenging the killings.  Though the army later claimed the militants had been found with weapons and bombs and were prepared for a terror attack, I never saw any evidence of this.  The IDF regularly uses these sorts of unsupported charges to obscure outright assassinations in cold blood.  We know this in cases where there were witnesses or video.  In this case, neither were available.  So given the IDF’s brazen track record for lying, I’m not prepared to accept its version of the killings.

We know that one of the Israeli victims used his cell phone to call 911 the night of the kidnapping.  But he could not speak and, unfortunately, the Israeli police, never known for their competence or diligence, did not start a search  until the following morning after the family reported the disappearance.

Israel was quick to inform the U.S. that one of the victims, Naftali Frenkel, is a dual U.S.-Israeli citizen, thereby implicating us in resolving the crime.  To John Kerry, Netanyahu made the absolutely outrageous claim that the crime was the direct result of Fatah bringing a “terror group” into the PA unity government.  Lost on the clueless prime minister was the fact that the area in which the boys were kidnapped was under Israeli security control.  As Zvi Barel wrote in Haaretz:

The missing teens reside in Area C, which is under full Israeli control, and were most likely kidnapped in that region. How can Abbas be held responsible for what happens in an area under Israeli control?

It would be like, a Palestinian security official complained, blaming him for a Tel Aviv car accident.  Nor is this the way to gain Palestinian cooperation in resolving the crime.

It’s the height of cynicism for Israel to blame anyone but itself (and the kidnappers) for this.  In fact, every time Bibi needs to deflect criticism from a security failure he exploits Palestinians.  This ranges from the Eilat terror attack, for which Sinai Islamists were responsible.  Instead, Bibi blamed a Gaza militant group, launching attacks which killed 30 innocent Gazans.  Now, the Shin Bet’s failure to foil this attack leads to falsely blaming the PA.  Israel can’t send F-16s to bomb the West Bank, as he can Gaza.  But there will be severe repercussions for the civilians of the West Bank.  Collective punishment, illegal under international law, will be the new normal for the next weeks or even months.  This is how Barel sees it:

…There is a creeping suspicion that framing Abbas as responsible for the recent events has another purpose: Justifying a collective punishment against the Palestinian Authority and its citizens. With that goal, Israel will try to construct a legitimate justification for labeling the PA as a terrorist organization…and demand it be boycotted, even by Arab states. It also presents Israel with a good opportunity to “prove” that it was not Israel that derailed the peace process – for how can you negotiate with an authority that has embraced Hamas into its ranks.

This Israeli government’s modus operandi is to bitch and moan to the world and expect that the world will somehow care.  If you are the king of the heap and a global superpower as the U.S. was under Lords Cheney and Bush, that might work.  But when you’re Israel and only think you’re a superpower, it’s not terribly successful.  But that doesn’t stop Bibi from trying.  Apparently, he doesn’t know any other way.  Moderation and civility are not part of his repertoire.

idf arresting palestinian children

This too is kidnapping (Defense for Children International)

The Times reporting of the story included the usual clueless characterizations of life under Occupation.  Here is how Isabel Kershner portrayed the security situation in the West Bank (for Israelis, not Palestinians):

Occasional violence in the West Bank continues to claim victims on both sides, but kidnappings of Israelis have been rare in recent years. Yet the Shin Bet, Israel’s internal security agency, said it had foiled more than 60 plots to abduct Israelis in the West Bank since the start of 2013.

As usual, the report portrays the situation as Israelis see it and has little or no understanding or concern for how Palestinians see it.  “Occasional violence” is how an Israeli perceives the security situation, since Palestinians have engaged in a low level of violence over the past few years.  But for Palestinians living in the West Bank, life is an endless series of violent incidents by Israeli security forces.

Speaking of kidnapping: what do we call the nightly IDF incursions which invade sleeping villages and roust entire families out of their beds as the army searches for God knows what, and often takes away a boy or father who’ve done nothing wrong.  IDF soldiers themselves acknowledge that these actions are often designed not to capture militants, but to keep the population on edge and frightened.  This is kidnapping too.  But not done on a small scale of ones or twos or threes.  This is state-sanctioned kidnapping.

And let’s not forget the hundreds of Palestinian boys who are sitting in Israeli prisons in violation of international law.  Some of them are abused in detention with soldiers cocking their weapons, pretending to kill them.  Kershner isn’t shedding a tear for any of that on behalf of the Palestinians.  She barely has a clue it’s even happening.  It’s what allows to keep churning out pap like this.

Don’t get me wrong.  Kidnapping young boys, whether Israeli or Palestinian, is a low blow.  If anything happens to these boys, the perpetrators should be made to pay the price (though not the summary execution Israeli forces would mete out to them).  But while I’m disgusted by kidnapping boys on a hiking trip, what am I to say of an Israeli general who does virtually the same?  Let’s save some outrage for him as well, shall we?

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{ 87 comments… add one }
  • pea June 14, 2014, 12:13 PM

    Well, there is a bit of a difference though. When Palestinians are detained by Israelis, there’s a record of said detention and some measure of legal recourse. Gilad (16), Naftali (16) and Eyal (19) however, are probably already dead.

    • Richard Silverstein June 14, 2014, 2:50 PM

      @ pea: You mean there’s “legal recourse” when a Border Policeman cocks his weapon & pulls the trigger in the ear of a 13 yr old Palestinian boy who pees in his pants from fear? That sort of legal recourse? Not to mention that the goon will likely receive a promotion rather than a reprimand. And there’s “legal recourse” for the hundreds of children locked in Israeli prisons? I’d call those children kidnapped as well since they’re thrown into adult prisons & treated like criminals rather than the children they are.

      • pea June 14, 2014, 3:41 PM

        And yet I would bet that Gilad, Naftali and Eyal would trade places with said 13 year old Palestinian boy in a heartbeat. And for the record, just for the sake of accuracy, there are currently, as of April 2014, 196 minors in the custody of the Israel Prison Services. 27 are between the ages of 14-16 and 169 are between the ages of 16-18. There hasn’t been a single Palestinian under the age of 14 under IPS custody since August 2013 when there was 1. You can check the figures yourself on the B’Tselem Web site at http://www.btselem.org/statistics/minors_in_custody – now don’t get me wrong, 196 minors held in adult criminal facilities is 196 too many. And I qualified “legal recourse” with the term “some measure.” The parents of any minor under IPS custody at least know where their children are. I can’t say the same for the three Israeli teenagers.

        • Cry me a river, Pea June 14, 2014, 5:47 PM

          Pea: “And yet I would bet that Gilad, Naftali and Eyal would trade places with said 13 year old Palestinian boy in a heartbeat.”

          I would bet that they also rued their decision to take part in this slo-motion colonization of an occupied territory.

          This is a BELLIGERENT OCCUPATION.
          This is an OCCUPIED TERRITORY.

          What on earth is the occupier doing sprinkling its own civilians all over that territory?

          What, did it expect that the occupied would just roll out the welcome mat and tell those colonists to take whatever they want, please, be our guest?

          • Lou June 14, 2014, 8:59 PM

            @Cry
            ” What, did it expect that the occupied would just roll out the welcome mat and tell those colonists to take whatever they want, please, be our guest?”

            I suppose you could say the same thing about the whole Zionist endeavor in Palestine, beginning with the British military invasion of 1918.

        • Richard Silverstein June 14, 2014, 6:21 PM

          @ pea: Yes, that’s true. But the fact is that Israel has killed 1,400 children since 2000. How many children have Palestinian militants killed? The life of every child is sacred including the three Israeli children. But the fact is that for Israel, the lives of Palestinian children are cheap. And that’s shameful.

          As for how many children are in custody. No minors should be in Israeli prisons. None. Arresting & imprisoning children is a violation of international law. I don’t care if the child is 7, 14 or 18, they shouldn’t be there.

          Tell me how many Israeli children are in Israeli prisons? If the answer is none, then why is that?

          Many, many Palestinian parents don’t learn where there children are after arrest until days or weeks later. THere have been instances in the past few weeks of families not knowing where their child is. The boy in this case was dropped on a road in the middle of the night miles from his home. He could’ve been killed or gotten lost & died.

          The problem with your perspective is that you have no sense of proportionality. The crimes against children are 99% on Israel’s side. Yet you refuse to recognize this.

          • pea June 14, 2014, 6:52 PM

            What in any of my comments made any reference to the 1404 Palestinian children killed in the conflict since 2000? As I have mentioned, just as 196 detained children is 196 too many, so too are 1404 Palestinian casualties. I don’t relish any death! I am well aware of proportionality and perspective. Forgive me if I just feel certain things are wrong regardless. Like you, I agree that “Kidnapping young boys, whether Israeli or Palestinian, is a low blow” and I too am “…disgusted by kidnapping boys on a hiking trip.” I just don’t qualify my sentiment.

          • Lou June 14, 2014, 9:13 PM

            @Richard

            ” But the fact is that Israel has killed 1,400 children since 2000. How many children have Palestinian militants killed?

            Hey now!. How many Palestinian missiles have been fired at Israeli children, but missed the target because of the rockets errant trajectory or because of Israeli civil defense preparations?

            “As for how many children are in custody. No minors should be in Israeli prisons.”

            Doesn’t Israel jail Israeli minors for violent crimes and theft, just like in the United States, and send them to juvenile detention centers?

  • Dana June 14, 2014, 2:12 PM

    hopefully, there can be a prisoner exchange. These teens were, after all, settlers, meaning they could and should be arrested on sight. that is, in an ideal world, where theft, mayhem and torture are considered crime rather than de rigeur behavior of conquerors (might makes right).. Walking on stolen land, arrogantly, is an extreme provocation, and i am not sure why we are supposed to be sympatheirtc to criminals. It’s perfectly legitimate given the extreme persecution of the palestinians to arrest as many of the lawbreakers as possible. I call it arrest, not kindnapping. In the same way israel arrests countless palestinian children, women and men. Hopefully they’ll be able to hide them long enough to get some prisoner exchange going.

    • Charles Barkley June 14, 2014, 5:10 PM

      You are giving comfort to killers with no conscience. I implore you to try to understand why there is no equivalence in what you depict. Not to mention your cynical use of a tragedy to promote your political belief. Truly not appropriate among civilized people. Shame.

      • Richard Silverstein June 14, 2014, 6:35 PM

        @ Charles Barkley: Please do not assume the nickname of real people as your commment handle.

        “Killers with no conscience:” this describes the IDF to a tee and the Border Police even more so. You call the killing of 1,400 Palestinian children “civilized.”

    • Dana June 15, 2014, 1:46 PM

      Charles barkley – the killers with no conscience are the Israelis – look at what they have done for decades!! richard is being rather circumspect in his opinions since he has some hope that humanity may yet prevail among the conquistadors. I am not as circumspect or hopeful about the cause of humanity in that country carved out and stolen from its inhabitants. the past,, they say, is only a prologue, and I expect things to get a whole lot worse before they get better. To think that someone like you could even use the word “civilized” to describe a country ruled by thugs and messianic nutcases . Israel is one of the last places on earth where civilization, as measured by conscience or care for others, can be found. This is country founded on theft, displacement, murder and mayhem. That much is history. Yes, the conquistadors were worse, but in the end, the conscience of all conquerors is made of the same DNA. Israelis should consider themselves extremely lucky that palestinians, a warm people with great forbearance, were their chosen enemies. That, BTW, doesn’t mean that i think the tactics of arresting trespassers (or as you say “kidnap of hitchhikers”) is a good one. Israel can and no doubt will torture and terrorize many perfectly innocent palestinians in their chase after the would-be kidnappers. For that reason, I expect the majority of Palestinians are probably not too keen on such tactics, as collective punishment is all that awaits them in the hands of the conquering conquistadors.

  • Shmuel June 14, 2014, 3:39 PM

    A few corrections:
    1. The kids were not hiking through the WB but rather were hitchhiking home.
    2. Only one of the three kids is a settler, the the other two live in Israel proper.
    3. The school is on kfar etzion in the etzion block, and by Israeli standards not near Hebron. It’s 25 km away, and miles away ideologically from the 500 Hebron settlers.
    4. There is no comparison to convicted Palestinian child criminals who knowingly have thrown stones or worse. The kidnapped kids are studying at a school over the green line which is not a personal crime, but at worst is a crime by Israeli leaders for facilitating the school. Attending the school is no crime by a minor.
    5. Unfortunately there will be no exchange since most appraisals of the situation assume the kids to have been murdered (the assumption being that no one could hold three live hostages without leaving a discernible trail).

    • Richard Silverstein June 14, 2014, 6:32 PM

      @ Shmuel:

      There is no comparison to convicted Palestinian child criminals who knowingly have thrown stones or worse.

      As someone who’s served as a military judge, you should be aware that evidence is often manufactured and that judges almost never believe the accused/victims over the accusers. How can a 14 child do “even worse” than throwing a stone? Do they fire weapons? Explode suicide vests? You’re really justifying arresting minors in violation of international law? So as a lawyer this corpus means nothing to you?

      Not to mention the 1,400 children actually KILLED by Israeli forces. Were those children all guilty to doing ‘even worse’ than stone throwing. We have to look no farther than the soldier who was not prosecuted for killing an innocent Palestinian child who wasn’t involved in stone-throwing at all. Is summary execution now an acceptable form of justice for lawyers like you?

      The kidnapped children are not studying at a school over the Green Line. They are studying at a yeshiva in Occupied Palestine. There’s a difference. The difference is that you refuse to understand the Palestinian perspective and only understand the settler perspective, which you’ve articulated here. And occupying Palestinian land as all settlers do including those in yeshivas, is a crime under international law. It doesn’t justify kidnapping or murder. But it is a crime. I’m not prepared to let settlers off the hook because your formulation of blaming leaders leads to no accountability at all. For example, if leaders are committing a crime by settling the West Bank, are you willing to see them prosecuted in the Hague? I’ll even throw in Palestinian militant leaders who’ve killed Israeli civilians. When I hear you approve such a legal proceeding then I’ll know you’re not arguing in bad faith.

      In Gaza, they held a soldier for five years. The children may be alive, though I fear for them given past history in such cases.

    • LittleBat June 14, 2014, 8:36 PM

      As you say, the youths were hitchhiking – and here is a striking detail. They were “hitch hiking home from school” – at 10pm at night. Very late in the evening. The kidnapping is said to have taken place at 10-30pm. On Ynet New Site their school principal is quoted as saying that: “Gil-Ad and Naftali had left at around ten – they decided to leave early and they spoke to their parents. The rest of the class left on Friday …” There is some story to this. Why be hitch hiking around the West Bank at that hour of the evening? Was there some problem that day, which caused them to leave the rest of their class? Their parents, upon getting a phone call, should have come to pick them up.

    • David June 14, 2014, 10:31 PM

      What” No comparison to Palestinian “child criminals” who have thrown stones??? No comparison? No comparison? These Israelis are in the West Bank illegally. They are illegally stealing land and oppressing indigenous people in their own country. No comparison?? The outright theft of a patrimony, not to mention actual property, the abductions of children in the middle of the night, the five year old led away by six IDF? No comparison?? That remark is insane.

      These “child criminals” are permitted under international law to resist occupation. They are freedom fighters, not criminals as Israel does not extend to the West Bank and therefore Israeli criminal law does not extend except by the conqueror’s fiat. No comparison, indeed. A few stones thrown compared to murder and theft. That’s no comparison. As for the kidnapped kids, they were hiking through an occupied country at their own risk. While four thousand IDF are needed to guard 500 settlers in Hebron, these kids went hitchhiking in an enemy land. It’s a terrible thing, this kidnapping, but what fantasy ever led to feel safe in enemy country. More Israeli hubris. What fantasy? The fantasy that Israel is the benefactor of Palestinians? That Israel has pacified this land? That the control is so complete that nothing can happen? (Go see “Omar”)

      Second — there is no Israel “proper”. There is only Israel “improper.”

      • Adam June 14, 2014, 11:56 PM

        These “child criminals” are permitted under international law to resist occupation.

        Ummm.. What law would that be? I’m quite sure you’re mistaken about that.

        • David June 18, 2014, 11:25 AM

          International law does not outlaw the resistance of a native people to occupation. It recognizes the right to resist.

    • Elisabeth June 15, 2014, 2:40 AM

      Your comment is so shocking, and it seems you don’t even notice that yourself. I wonder now, in how far you yourself got your hands dirty as a military judge. How many “Palestinian child criminals” did you convict?

  • djf June 14, 2014, 7:52 PM

    “It’s the height of cynicism for Israel to blame anyone but itself (and the kidnappers) for this.”

    Richard, this is your ideology in nutshell. It’s all Israel’s fault and you blame the kidnappers as an afterthought.

    • Richard Silverstein June 14, 2014, 10:03 PM

      This is an absolutely, unpardonably false statement. A parentheses is NOT an afterthought. You will retract it or be moderated.

  • Guy June 14, 2014, 10:09 PM

    You are so one sided. Israel killed 1400 children since 2000 and how many they killed? They woe of kill us all if they could. Arabs kidnapped 3 civilians and you try to find excuses for their pure evil? Look around. See what Arabs do to each other.

    • Richard Silverstein June 14, 2014, 10:21 PM

      @ Guy: Israel kills 6 times more Palestinian civilians than Palestinians kill Israeli civilians. But I’m sure the percentage of Israeli children killed is even lower than that (6 to 1).

      “Pure evil?” I’d say that’s a pretty good description of your Arabophobia. That’s a comment rule violation. If you aren’t already moderated you will be now.

      • guy June 15, 2014, 8:49 AM

        and yet – you didn’t mention in your lame raply that there are cicvilians and 2 of them living in israel.

        • Richard Silverstein June 15, 2014, 12:26 PM

          @ guy: I didn’t see you acknowledge in your lame reply that the IDF doesn’t bother to ask whether Palestinians it kills are civilians or militants. It just kills them. When they do, then you can talk. Till then, not so much.

          • guy June 15, 2014, 1:46 PM

            But what about the double standard? I showed how the IDF shooting death, by your lights, two Palestinian boys who only “throwing stones. You expect, moral army like the IDF to investigate and someone will be punished. But when is a terrorist organization – one that sends people to explode on buses or kidnap three boys, who were holding a stone in hand, you raise general statements like “children were killed in 1400″ and the like. I would like to be concrete and specify a position on an abduction. Is that okay?

          • Richard Silverstein June 16, 2014, 12:50 AM

            @ guy: I’ve made crystal clear my “position” on the abduction & there’s no need for me to elaborate further. BTW, you may post comments in Hebrew. It might help me understand your argument better.

  • Linda J June 14, 2014, 10:32 PM

    If you want to understand the evil context of any kidnapping in the area, watch this 2014 Australian documentary:
    http://youtu.be/iqL048x4msM

  • Jafar Siddiqui June 14, 2014, 11:19 PM

    The arrogance of the Israeli and the Blindly pro-Israeli mind in beyond belief.

    They justify the slaughter and genocide of the Palestinians by claiming to be fighting an existential war with “Arabs” although it is the Palestinians who are fighting to stay alive. They justify taking Palestinian properties and lands by claiming a right of Spoils of War while at the same time, they have no problem claiming back the properties stolen by Nazis…also as Spoils of War. They devalue and dehumanize Arabs by saying Arabs kill Arabs as if that were something unique to Arabs…have you ever heard of the massive slaughters and civil wars among Europeans and South Americans some of which continue even today?

    Three kids have been captured/detained/ kidnapped/killed by Palestinians and the whole world needs to be thrown upside down because they are Jews. Meanwhile Palestinian men, women and children are killed as a routine matter by Israelis and it barely makes it to the news and if there is a ruckus, “IDF/Israel will investigate” is as far as it ever gets.

    I guarantee Israelis will be killing Palestinians, injuring them and destroying their properties “to teach the Arabs a lesson” as an excuse for the kidnappings. I also guarantee the same people who are crying and howling over the three Jews, will not even offer a word of remorse for the destruction Israel will be causing.

    I suppose one is expected to “condemn violence on BOTH sides!”, but the sad fact is that there is so much violence emanating from Israelis that the violence by Palestinians seems to pale and disappear in context. How does one condemn violence perpetrated by the oppressed and the occupied?
    Did anyone condemn the violence committed by the Afghans and “the Forces of Democracy” when they were fighting the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan? Did anyone condemn the violence by the Darfurians and the South Sudanese against the forces of Sudan?
    How do you create an atmosphere where it can be justified to condemn violence committed by Palestinians against Israelis?

    Israelis. Go ahead and continue your slaughters of the Palestinians and I am sure sycophants like the US and European countries will help you claim victory for “Peace, democracy and Freedom”. But even the darkest hearts amongst you, know what you are doing is wrong and it is evil.

    • Lou June 15, 2014, 2:16 AM

      @Jafar

      Jafar. You seem to be more interested in the I/P conflict than with the politics of your native Pakistan? Am I wrong?

      • Richard Silverstein June 15, 2014, 12:35 PM

        @ Lou:

        Am I wrong?

        Yes. But not the ways you think.

        This is precisely the sort of comment I detest. It’s no business of yours what Jafar writes about here or where he was born. It doesn’t matter if he’s from Pakistan or Mars. He has every right to comment on the I-P conflict since that’s the subject of this blog. Besides which Jafar is my friend and you don’t use snark against my friends. Watch your step. Another comment like this & you’ll end up moderated.

      • Jafar Siddiqui June 15, 2014, 12:46 PM

        Nice way to distract form the on-going conversation Lou. Your question is as relevant as someone asking you if you are more interested in I/P than in Domestic Violence. This forum is about I/P, not about how the rest ofnthe world is being run or by whom. If and when you wish to doiscuss something else that is on my radar, I’ll be happy to engage you but probably not on this forum

        My heart cries out for the terrible way Israelis treat Palestinians, it cries out for the misery of the Palestinians AND it cries out for the choice of perpetrating Horror as a way of life, that Israel has decided upon. Thus, on this forum, I sometimes voice my thoughts.

        My heart also cries out for the way Pakistan is being run, for the way Muslim fanatics are going on, for the wqay in which the US is destrpying life everywhere in its imperial aspirations. In case oyu wish to read about what I think about any of these and other topics, check out my blog http://www.penjihad.com Yes, you read it right, the word “Jihad” is part of my blog name. go to the website and read my explanation of the term “Jihad”.

  • SimoHurtta June 15, 2014, 1:13 AM

    It is actually a wonder that Israeli Jews can so unharmed walk around West Bank. In many countries if people would be treated like Israelis treat Palestinians, the response would have been much harsher and bloodier.

    The list of recent attacks against Palestinians life and properties is really disturbing and even more disturbing is how the Israeli Jewish “democratic” justice system handles the inspections of these racist attack cases. In most cases the result of “inspections” is OU (“offender unknown” ). And they demand Palestinians to acknowledge Israel as a Jewish state. Some “Jewish” state with a strange “Jewish” justice and moral indeed.

    In a way the Israeli constant demands, that the Palestinian government is responsible for everything what is done in West Bank and Gaza are astonishing. It is strange that the Palestinian government is demanded to guaranty the safety of “wandering Jews” on areas where the population suffers from constant over halve century long harassment caused by Jews and their Jewish state. On the same time the Jewish government seems not to take responsibility in what their side’s members are doing in Israel and occupied areas.

    What would have happened in the 40’s to three German Hitler Judend boys hiking in occupied France or in Warsaw Ghetto? Germans would hardly been so stupid, that they would have allowed their youngsters to go to so obviously dangerous areas where oppressed people are extremely angry and revengeful.

    • pea June 15, 2014, 1:57 AM

      That’s a really good question SimoHurtta! Your comparison between Nazi Germany and Israel might be perfectly apt! So let me see. A similar historical analogy to your scenario occurred on June 10, 1944 when a Waffen-SS officer was being supposedly being held by the Resistance in Oradour-sur-Vayres. The 4th SS Panzer Grenadier Regiment made it’s way to Oradour-sur-Glane, having confused it with nearby Oradour-sur-Vayres (oops!). According to Wikipedia, they “ordered all the townspeople – and anyone who happened to be in or near the town – to assemble in the village square, ostensibly to have their identity papers examined. In addition to the residents of the village, the SS also apprehended six people who did not live there but had the misfortune to be riding their bikes through the village when the Germans arrived.

      All the women and children were locked in the church while the village was looted. Meanwhile, the men were led to six barns and sheds where machine guns were already in place.

      According to the account of a survivor, the soldiers began shooting at them, aiming for their legs so that they would die slowly. Once the victims were no longer able to move, the soldiers covered their bodies with fuel and set the barns on fire. Only six men escaped; one of them was later seen walking down a road heading for the cemetery and was shot dead. In all, 190 men perished.

      The soldiers proceeded to the church and placed an incendiary device there. After it was ignited, women and children tried to escape through the doors and windows of the church, but they were met with machine-gun fire. A total of 247 women and 205 children died in the carnage.”

      That’s 642 people murdered within hours and an entire village razed. So back to your question – If I was French under Nazi occupation and had the opportunity to kidnap 3 German youths, I’d think twice about it given the consequences. And your analogy is otherwise perfectly apt. I am sure that whatever happens to those boys, the IDF will indeed retaliate in a similar manner, murdering hundreds of innocent men, women and children because that’s what the IDF does, right? Exactly the same thing as Nazis would do, right?

      And yes. I am being sarcastic. Your analogy is both horribly offensive and completely inaccurate.

      • SimoHurtta June 15, 2014, 2:34 AM

        Do you Pea understand what means the word youngster? A Waffen SS officer is not a youngster, who can be compared with the Jewish youngsters in question. An IDF officer could be compared. The point was – do not send children to clear and obvious danger zones and end the occupation (then you can play the innocent victim role your people like to play).

        You Israelis have already arrested at least 80 people in occupied areas. What do you Pea think they are and how are they treated? The arrested Palestinians are hostages and they are certainly tortured (like you normally do to them). It would be naive to think, that they are something else and how they are treated. Israel has used massive hostage taking tactics for a long time, lets not be hypocritical. You have many concentration camps and prisons full of them.

        Pea you seem not to understand, that now you Israelis are not in the role of the occupied French or equal to the people of Warsaw Ghetto, you are the OCCUPIERS. Palestinians are the today’s Warsaw Ghetto people.

        • pea June 15, 2014, 5:02 AM

          SimoHurtta wrote: “You have many concentration camps… Palestinians are the today’s Warsaw Ghetto people.”

          I think you need to brush up on your history and on your facts. There is nothing in Israel that remotely resembles in any way shape or form the industrialized murderous ruthlessness of a Nazi concentration camp. There is nothing in the experience of the occupation that resembles in any way shape or form the experience of the Warsaw Ghetto – neither in scope nor in function.

          Elizabeth: It’s not a point of pride that Israel does not resemble the Nazis. The comparison is ludicrous and I only entertain it because certain individuals feel they are being clever making provocative analogies that have no basis in fact or reality.

          • Elisabeth June 15, 2014, 12:27 PM

            I agree with you that comparisons between Nazi Germany and Israel are usually unfitting and unnecessarily hurtful. I would not compare Gaza with the Warsaw ghetto for instance, as the Warsaw ghetto … well I guess you know the history. As I said, it is hard to top the Nazi’s… (But the fact that Gaza doesn’t compare because it is hard to sink THAT low, does not mean that what is done there is not sickening enough on its own.)

            But the analogy Simo-Hurtta made was not so ludicrous. He said: What would have happened in the 40′s to three German Hitler Jugend boys hiking in occupied Europe? German hitchhikers are safe and welcome now in the Netherlands, but the situation would have been different during the war-time occupation. That comparison is not so unreasonable, is it?

            In fact, YOU were the one who started with comparisons of collective punishment in Nazi Germany and Israel, and that is what I reacted to in my comment.

          • Richard Silverstein June 15, 2014, 12:32 PM

            @ pea: Gaza is a ghetto. If you don’t like the Warsaw Ghetto analogy then it’s certainly akin to the Venetian ghetto. It’s actually worse since the Italians didn’t prohibit Jews from leaving or entering the ghetto. You only had to be back by nightfall.

            I wouldn’t brag on the fact that Gaza isn’t as bad as Warsaw. Are you boasting that Israel isn’t (yet) committing actual genocide against Gaza? And doing so on a day when Israel prepares for yet another war against Gaza’s defenseless civilians? All in the name of revenge?

          • Dana June 15, 2014, 1:57 PM

            pea, sorry but there are comparisons to be made. What israel has been and is doing to Gazans is an absolute abomination. They have indeed turned it into a ghetto, not much different than warsaw. The difference being that Israel knows it can’t go to the next level with the Gazans in implementing their preferred ‘solution” (what that “solution” is, why – ask any israeli in the street. just be sure to ask them in hebrew their “rersurrected” language, where, for some reason they are better able to express their true minds).

            The ultimate crime for Gaza is the world. That keeps allowing this atrocity to continue while coddling the torturers. What israel did to gaza in 2008 is a war crime, where the criminals are the vast majority of Israelis, who, like the germans of old, stood by and did nothing, while a few even cheered on – quite overtly – on their killer Praetorians (notice I didn’t say gestapo…..but one could, couldn’t they?)

          • SimoHurtta June 15, 2014, 3:21 PM

            The point of my comment was to underline that Israel is the occupier and the population of Israel has to face the evident consequences which the ruthless occupation performed by them causes. In my first comment I did not compare Nazis and Israel per se. You started that. I only asked what would have happened to three German young boys hiking in occupied France or in Warsaw Ghetto in the 1940’s. Germany was then the occupier, just like Israel is now and has been it for a long time. You can not demand the occupied people to love the people who are the occupiers. Palestinians hate you Israeli Jews at least as much French and Poles hated German occupiers during WW2. Palestinians hate you because that couple of generation long occupation, humiliation and oppression. Not because of your religion.

            Well Pea if 1.5 million Jews would be put in a place like Gaza, a closed encircled Ghetto, I guaranty you would see Gaza what it is in reality. A total disgrace to the occupier = Israel, not to victims = Palestinians. The only valid comparison point to Gaza in recent history is Warsaw Ghetto. Both were/are huge crimes against humanity. Germans have been in a way punished for their crime, Israel’s punishment is still waiting. But it will come some day.

            If you would have to live all your life in West Bank as an Palestinian you certainly would not like to see “Jewish faces” around you. Queuing hours daily on check points, soldiers sexually harassing you, Jewish women and children spitting in your face, settlers destroying your family’s farms and olive trees, soldiers entering violently your house during nights stealing your jewelry and frightening your children etc. That would be your miserable life under the “civilized” Israeli occupation.

            Now Israel has begun to enlist reservist – for what Pea? The industrial scale mass killings and deportations in occupied areas and maybe even in Israel can be near. Anyway the probability for them begins to be great. The Israeli public is mentally prepared to cruel “final solutions”. 2014 is for Israel the year 1939 in …….. What can be said of a country where the regime in secret sterilizes chemically colored sisters in religion, lets their rabbis write books where is they “prove” that killing the babies of the gentiles is allowed, builds concentration camps for colored refugees, celebrates racist marches, tries to burn Arabs and colored immigrants in their homes, spits in the face of Christian priests, smears and tries to arson Mosques and Churches etc (a very long list). That is to what today’s Israel has in many ways developed. And the only defensive excuse for those like you left is, that not all Israeli Jews do not do those things or support such actions. Did you Pea read the list I linked in my first comment? What kind of people do such things and then using all possible ways pretend to be the victims in this absurd “show” we have had to watch and pay for over 50 years.

      • Elisabeth June 15, 2014, 4:03 AM

        The brother of my grandmother was sent to Dachau with the rest of the men of his village (Putten) and 100 farms were burnt down. This was in retaliation for a hit on German officers nearby by the resistance.
        Oradour and Putten (and many more examples in eastern Europe) just illustrate that it is hard to top the Nazi’s in ruthlessness. It is therefore no great accomplishment and source for pride when Israel has not sunk that low yet.
        Coming out better compared to Nazi’s is a pretty low standard!

        • Dana June 15, 2014, 2:08 PM

          Elizabeth, you are right on the face of it to draw that distinction. However, I draw my comparisons based not only on what people do but on what they would like to do if only they thought they could get away with it. It is my opinion that only the world looking on is preventing the israelis from doing far far worse than they have so far. If the world’s attention was diverted for say, a year, I wouldn’t be surprised if the true thuggishness of the country – and it’s all-seeing intelligence services – would resort to tactics not a whole lot different than what was done to other conquered populations in the world. My preferred comparison is the South American Indians under the conquistadors, rather than germany in WWII. The israelis – among themselves – use this analogy and the extermination of the American indians all the time. The way they talk is quite easy to follow – all they really want is to be able to “get away with it” just like America and Spain and Portugal did. In fact, some are even saying – among themselves, as an inside “joke” – that it is only anti-semitism that prevents the world from allowing israel to “get rid of the Palestinian problem” once and for all.

          As i like repeating myself, I’ll point out once again that the israelis have the advantage of being able to hide their true feelings and intentions behind a language that hardly anyone in the world understands. If American jews knew one tenth of what israelis are saying to each other (for a whiff one may need to check out facebook in Hebrew, for example) they would be utterly shocked. but them many American jews kind of suspect things, it’s just they don’t want conformation.

      • Richard Silverstein June 15, 2014, 12:39 PM

        @ pea: That’s terribly ironic as the IDF deploys for yet another war against the Gaza innocents. They won’t kill 642. But they did kill 1,400 during Cast Lead. How’s that for a comparison & bloodbath? How many will they kill in the coming senseless military adventure? 100, 200? And this isn’t sick, senseless violence for purely political motives?

  • cby June 15, 2014, 8:34 AM

    Okay anyone who kidnaps a child, and as two of them are 16 they are legally children, is not called a militant. Also, the palestinians jailed by israelis are terrorists, as opposed to three teenagers trying to get home. And I can also photoshop a thirteen year old kid with an israeli standong over him with a gun. Where do you get your news from, because it sounds like you can’t figure out how to separate facts from lies.

    • Richard Silverstein June 15, 2014, 12:29 PM

      @ cby: So those 196 Palestinian children kidnapped and jailed illegally by Israel are all terrorists? Under what definition? No other democratic country in the world would recognize Israel’s system of military justice as a legitimate, acceptable form of justice. And you say all those convicted under such kangaroo courts are “terrorists?” Sorry, none of us except you & your pro-Israel friends buy it.

      “Photoshop?” Israel’s entire approach to Palestine is a photoshop of reality. The cocoon you live in is a photoshopped pro-Israel world.

  • lally June 15, 2014, 10:08 AM

    “LittleBat June 14, 2014, 8:36 PM
    As you say, the youths were hitchhiking – and here is a striking detail. They were “hitch hiking home from school” – at 10pm at night. Very late in the evening. The kidnapping is said to have taken place at 10-30pm. On Ynet New Site their school principal is quoted as saying that: “Gil-Ad and Naftali had left at around ten – they decided to leave early and they spoke to their parents. The rest of the class left on Friday …”

    Littlebat, the TImes of Israel reports that a man from Beersheba called in to Channel 10 and revealed that he had picked the youths up the night they vanished. Have you (or anyone0 heard anything else about this? This person would be way up on the suspect list if this had happened in the US.

    Additionally other information coming out about the abysmal job the Israeli police have done should cause widespread alarm among those under their “protection”.

    Then we have the prospect of thousands of IDF troops deployed to lay siege to/close down Palestinian towns in the WB.Things can get even more dire and spiral out of control.

    It will be a miracle if no innocent Palestinian lives are lost in this frenzy.

    • LittleBat June 15, 2014, 4:51 PM

      That driver from Beersheba indeed gives a striking testimony. A good account of it is found on the Israel Hayom site. According to this witness two of the boys were hitchhiking, apparently earlier in the day. I wonder what was going on with that group of boys, I think there is an aura of trouble – they might have been in a tear away mood – as teenagers often are.

      I agree with your observation that in an FBI investigation, this person who says he gave them a lift would also be checked out as a suspect. The way that he knew they were going out to the South Hebron Hills, and “warned them of the dangers” is either a helpful genuine account, or a sinister bid for recognition.

      Already Palestinians have been injured during the house raids in Hebron, and it can only get worse.

      Not one shred of evidence about this kidnapping has been made public, and there are no appeals for witnesses, as a police inquiry would have normally done.

    • LittleBat June 15, 2014, 4:52 PM

      http://www.israelhayom.com/site/newsletter_article.php?id=18141
      Here is the link to the news story about the driver.

  • Genie June 15, 2014, 1:40 PM

    At this point, the 3 missing teenagers were *allegedly* abducted/kidnapped; there is no evidence that Palestinians did this.
    1) It is extremely difficult to take off with 3 Jewish teenagers in such a crowed place filled with other Jews, IDF, settlers, etc.
    2) This would not be the first time that Israel has done a ‘false flag’ operation; the timing is rather suspicious: right around the time of the anniversary of the torpedoing of The USS Liberty by Israeli forces and, trying to blame it on Egypt.
    3) Israel’s strategy [in a 'false flag' operation] could be to detract attention from the sinking of The USS Liberty.

    • Marcos June 16, 2014, 3:34 PM

      Is the USS Liberty the best you can do? LOL. It was over 40 years ago
      By the way, Israel did not try to blame it on Egypt. How could Israel do that? The Egyptian Air Force was destroyed by then.
      The. case of the USS Liberty is closed except in the minds of conspiracy theorists and haters.

      • Genie June 16, 2014, 4:29 PM

        @Marcus, you didn’t say what your lats name is, my guess is that it’s: Hasbara.

        Here, go and educate yourself:
        A BBC Documentary: Dead in the Water – The Sinking of the USS Liberty
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WCLSi55vukY

      • Richard Silverstein June 16, 2014, 5:00 PM

        @ Marcos: I don’t want the comment threads to devolve into a debate about the USS Liberty. I’m declaring it off-topic for both you & Genie.

        • Marcos June 16, 2014, 5:05 PM

          @Richard: she started it!

  • Ran June 15, 2014, 1:53 PM

    I’ve always wondered why are you so obsessed with Israel and its supposed wrongdoings. Totally beyond my understanding.
    Just had to ask.

    • Richard Silverstein June 16, 2014, 12:47 AM

      @ Ran: I’ve always wondered why you are so incredibly ignorant of the flaws and injustices of your own country and why they don’t bother you as much as they do the rest of us here. Totally beyond our understanding.

  • Isaac June 15, 2014, 3:07 PM

    You claim the IDF has executed people on claims they were armed and that you saw videos of it. I would very much like to see these as well!
    Could you provide a link please?

    • Richard Silverstein June 16, 2014, 12:44 AM

      Read the blog, bub. THere are scores of examples of it here. Not my job to satisfy your need for links or evidence when I’ve already done the work for you. The IDF regularly executes unarmed Palestinian militants who are wanted & then claims without offering any proof, that they were armed. It’s SOP with the IDF.

      • Isaac June 16, 2014, 1:07 AM

        “scores of examples”?
        I am sorry Icouldn’t ffind one.
        You say they execute unarmed men in caves, and then claim they were armed.
        you also clamied there are numerous videos.
        This is a very serious accusation, and as such it should be dealt with, and brought to light!
        I am not looking to “satisfy my needs for links”.
        “The IDF regularly executes unarmed Palestinian militants who are wanted & then claims without offering any proof, that they were armed” – you are doing the same thing. You have your claims, no proof what so ever.

        Mr Silverstein, a human’s life is worth more than compaining about it on the blog. it there’s a video of this incident, so help me god I would run with it all the way to the Bibi’s office.

  • lally June 15, 2014, 8:56 PM

    Thanks LittleBat. Your information helps to fill out the picture.

    BTW, the driver from Beersheba would have been immediately questioned by local police…it doesn’t take the FBI involvement to ramp up investigations. Unfortunately, Israel’s investigation methods leave much to be desired as they apparently assign guilt prior to gathering and processing evidence. I am astounded that there are no appeals for witnesses. I wonder if there is even the capability to conduct a professional investigation keeping in mind the need to build a sound legal case.

    At this point, rumors on social media would probably be more reliable than official pronouncements from the frothing madman at the helm of the GOI. Your observation that the kids could have been rebelling is a good one. When/where did they meet up with the older guy? How many hours were they hanging around with thumbs out for a ride?
    Too many pieces to this puzzle just hanging out there in limbo.

    I fear you are correct about the situation getting worse in as far as the Palestinian population is concerned. Dread grows as matters drag on.

  • poirefrais June 15, 2014, 9:00 PM

    Thank you for posting this, Richard.
    In the U.S. and elsewhere, child kidnappings, sadly, keep happening. I hope these young people are safe and no harm will come to them, and the facts will come to light, quickly.
    It is odious to subject innocent people to unwarranted mistreatment.

    I agree with Genie’s comment. Manipulation, false statements and manufactured ‘evidence’, make Israel’s assertions less than credible.

    • Marcos June 16, 2014, 5:03 PM

      It seems to me that your second paragraph contradicts your first

      Just out of curiosity, please play out your theory that Israel staged this event. What happens next? What would the fallout of all the journalism covering the story? This would indeed be a huge hoax, no?

  • pea June 16, 2014, 8:20 AM

    So many comments, where do I begin? Many of you who responded to me made presumptions about my political orientation. You trotted out examples of injustices meted out to Palestinians as if I agree with them or something, which I don’t. Both Elizabeth and SimoHurtta claimed I was the first to introduce Nazi analogies – which is ridiculous. I simply responded to SimoHurtta’s question about Hitler Youth hitch hiking in occupied Europe and what would happen if they’d get kidnapped. He made the comparison – and just in case it wasn’t clear enough, Dana painted a picture of Israel just chomping at the bit in the hopes of exercising a final solution against the Palestinians.

    I’ll say to you Elizabeth and Dana what I said to Richard – given the choice, any Jew in the Warsaw Ghetto during WWII would gladly trade places with a Palestinian in Gaza today. Or the West Bank. I am an Israeli and I speak Hebrew and while it’s not unheard of to hear extremists say stupid things about killing Arabs, for the most part, hardly anyone is talking about that – certainly not anyone in the corridors of power, the intelligentsia, most of the leadership, the IDF officer corps or in the Judiciary etc. Israelis are possessed of a diversity of opinions, some of which are ugly, most of which are normal and some of which are beautiful and tender – just like in any other country. Anyone that thinks that a Palestinian Holocaust is imminent, is merely projecting their demonization of Israel and has no idea what this country is really like. That’s really all I have to say on that topic. Goidwin demands no further discussion.

    The whole point of my comment really is that some actions, like kidnapping teenaged school boys, are simply unacceptable regardless of the context or the perspective. There’s just no excuse for that sort of thing. Saying that doesn’t mean that I seek to diminish crimes committed against Palestinians. Not at all. It’s simply a manifestation of the humanity that I presume we all share. It’s not that complicated!

    • Genie June 16, 2014, 4:43 PM

      @pea
      “given the choice, any Jew in the Warsaw Ghetto during WWII would gladly trade places with a Palestinian in Gaza today. Or the West Bank.”

      And you know this how?

      I wrote about about the issue of exclusivity rights to suffering:
      Measure for Measure

      Who has suffered the most?
      Asks the rose, in its last days
      Of bloom, ice crystals clinging–
      Also wondering, where is that
      Ruler which measureth pain’s
      Primacy, to whom no one else
      Can lay claim. ‘Tis a narrow margin,
      Errors forbidden! …the ghosts of
      Hollow skulls, emptied of brain
      Tissue long ago, lay heavy
      On memories of body parts
      Mangled together, pieces
      Resembling life before wars’
      Emptiness; displayed in museums,
      Yellowed photographs on display–
      Nauseated walls recoil in horror
      As they search for that ruler
      Whose measurement can’t be
      Questioned: Who, has suffered
      The most? Lay claim now!
      Hands grab its elusive grip
      As gun salutes echo the
      Rose’s quest before it’s
      Too late to find the answer.

      http://palestinerose.wordpress.com/2013/12/10/measure-for-measure/

  • Jafar Siddiqui June 16, 2014, 9:51 AM

    Sorry to disagree with you Pea, but I have to.
    Israel launched it invasion of Gaza (“Cast Lead”) after Palestinians killed on…just ONE…Israeli, a minister. After that invasion that took well over a thyousand Palestinian lives (I know, they don’t amount to much), Tzipi Levi said, “Arabs should learn that when you attack Israel, we go mad!” (not an exact quote).

    When the Gaza invasion was launched, the chief Rabbi of the Israeli “Defense” Forces (Rontzki?) issued a memo commanding all Israeli soldiers to kill every man, woman and child in their path. Not satisfied with that, he issued a second memo saying anyone who did not do so, would be damned to Hell. Neither the Israeli military chief, nor any top politicians that I know of, condemned or rejected or even complained about this religious edict and Rontzki retired hono0rably when his term expired.

    You might also want to read up on the Convention on Genocide (http://www.hrweb.org/legal/genocide.html) to see how Israel fits the bill against the Palestinians. True, Israel is not doing what the Nazis did…not exactly. There are no gas chambers or death camps although there are concentration camps…Gaza is the largest concentration Camp in history and Israel by its stated, official policy is “strangling the residents of Gaza in order to make them rise against Hamas”. Nevertheless, what Israel is doing to Palestinians does not leave many other items off the Nazis list of their “Final Solution”. In case you have never heard this term being bandied about in Israel, you might want to revisit the statements of Lieberman and many other Right-Wing, anti-Arab Hawks in Israel. You will learn how many ways one can say “Final Solution” without using those words. Maybe you already know.

    • pea June 16, 2014, 10:23 AM

      Jafar, Rehavam Ze’evi, Israel’s tourism minister, was assassinated in 2001. Operation “Cast Lead” took place in 2008.

      Rontzki said “In times of war, whoever doesn’t fight with all his heart and soul is damned – if he keeps his sword from bloodshed, if he shows mercy toward his enemy when no mercy should be shown.” This was at a Torah scroll dedication ceremony at a Yeshivah in honor of Yosef Fink, one of two yeshiva students kidnapped and murdered by Hezbollah in 1986. He said this in November of 2009, well after Cast Lead.

      As for Israel’s “Genocide” against the Palestinians, after 66 years of such “Genocide” the Palestinian population under Israeli authority has increased 5 fold. I repeat, any Jew, Gypsy, Homosexual, mentally handicapped individual or enemy of the Reich under Nazi control during the Holocaust would gladly trade places with any Palestinian under Israeli control today. Any resident of Auschwitz would gladly trade places with any resident of Gaza. Your statements are, with all due respect, both historically inaccurate and factually ludicrous.

      And again, I am not here to defend Israel’s actions in Gaza. I am certainly not here to defend Avigdor Lieberman, or Tzipi Livni (not Levi) or any Israeli politician or Rabbi. I am simply here to make an expression of the humanity that we all share.

      • pea June 16, 2014, 10:33 AM

        …and for the record, Yosef Fink was serving with the IDF in Lebanon when he was captured and murdered. His body and that of Rachamim Elsheikh who was captured at the same time, were only returned to Israel in 1996, 10 years after their murder. I didn’t mean to imply that Fink was a Yeshivah student at the time of his capture – he was a combatant and subject to capture, although his murder was certainly a violation of International law.

      • Richard Silverstein June 16, 2014, 5:09 PM

        @ Pea: Isn’t it curious that within 3 minutes of each other 2 separate pro-Israel commenters managed to come up with the same exact quotation from a very long document? Hmm. Makes you wonder, doesn’t it. Curious too that neither commenter bothered to quote the really disgusting genocidal portions of Rontzki’s booklet. Like this:

        “When you show mercy to a cruel enemy you are being cruel to pure and honest soldiers. These are not games at the amusement park where sportsmanship teaches one to make concessions. This is a war on murderers.”

        “[There is] a biblical ban on surrendering a single millimeter of it [the Land of Israel] to gentiles, though all sorts of impure distortions and foolishness of autonomy, enclaves and other national weaknesses. We will not abandon it to the hands of another nation, not a finger, not a nail of it.”

        “The Palestinians claim they deserve a state here, when in reality there was never a Palestinian or Arab state within the borders of our country.” (Quote from Aviner.)

        “A comparison [between Palestinians and the Biblical Philistines] is possible because the Philistines of the past were not natives and had invaded from a foreign land … They invaded the Land of Israel, a land that did not belong to them and claimed political ownership over our country … Today the problem is the same. The Palestinians claim they deserve a state here, when in reality there was never a Palestinian or Arab state within the borders of our country. Moreover, most of them are new and came here close to the time of the War of Independence.”

        “When you show mercy to a cruel enemy, you are being cruel to pure and honest soldiers. This is terribly immoral. These are not games at the amusement park where sportsmanship teaches one to make concessions. This is a war on murderers. ‘A la guerre comme a la guerre.’ ”

        I am absolutely uninterested in hearing arguments like yours which claim that because Israel hasn’t yet committed genocide against the Palestinians that this somehow is exculpatory considering the policies Israel IS following toward them. You argue that the relatively benign policies compared to the Nazis are somehow are plus because after all, it could be worse. Nope. That doesn’t apss for reasonable argument here. Saying that a Gaza resident would gladly trade places with a Ghetto resident is an offensive statement. I’m not asking any Palestinian which they would prefer. They demand to be treated like human beings & they’re not. This is a grave violation of international law for which Israel will be held accountable. Just because those eventually tried & found guilty for this crime aren’t hung as war criminal or genocidaires is nothing to brag about.

        I have no interest in getting into arguments about whether Israel is better, worse or the same as the Nazis. It’s a dead end.

        • pea June 16, 2014, 6:24 PM

          Lou got his quote from Jewschool. I got mine from MidEast Monitor. I know what you’re implying by your suggestion, and you know what you’re implying and you may feel free to believe what you want to believe. I brought up Rontzki because Jafar misquoted him and got the date wrong. Just as I have no interest in defending Avigdor Lieberman, or Benjamin Netanyahu, I certainly have no interest in defending Rontzki either. And like you I am pro-Israel and a Zionist and I too “…have no interest in getting into arguments about whether Israel is better, worse or the same as the Nazis.” Your commentors keep bringing it up despite the fact that it’s completely irrelevant to the underlying post. I wasn’t bragging or seeking to exculpate Israel. The main thrust of everything I have said here was in order to appeal to people’s humanity. That’s it. Nothing too outrageous here. Can’t one feel human empathy and concern about the fate of a some kidnapped teenagers without ideology getting in the way?

          • Lou June 16, 2014, 9:09 PM

            @Richard

            Why does ‘your friend’ Jafar Siddiqi, get to violate comment rules #2 and #3?

            BTW. My link contains the entire Rontski pamphlet and includes all the ‘disgusting genocidal’ quotes you cited.

        • Genie June 16, 2014, 7:45 PM

          @Richard Silverstein
          “the relatively benign policies compared to the Nazis are somehow are plus because after all, it could be worse.”

          Relatively benign?
          Richard, I could not even eat dinner after reading this; it haunted me and I lost all appetite.
          It’s disturbing to the core of my being and, if you speak like this again I will no longer be commenting here ever again.

          I don’t usually ‘wear my heart on my sleeves’ and be this direct about how I felt after reading what you said, however, I am making an exception and letting you know I found this appalling and felt physically ill from the strong emotions it brought up within me. Due to this being a post about the missing teenagers, I won’t elaborate on why this is so offensive to me other than saying: does the name Kastner ring a bell?
          http://www.amazon.ca/51-Documents-Zionist-Collaboration-Nazis/dp/1569804338

          Zionists began their murderous rampages against humanity so they could make sure they ended up with a large part of Palestine way before 1948. ‘Nough said, for as Shakespeare said:
          “When my outward action doth demonstrate
          The native act and figure of my heart
          In compliment extern, ’tis not long after
          But I will wear my heart upon my sleeve
          For daws to peck at. I am not what I am.”

      • Jafar Siddiqui June 17, 2014, 11:06 AM

        Pea: I stand corrected on SOME details but not in the response.
        One point you made was on how rare it is for Israeli leaders to call for mass murder and as an example I told you about Lieberman who, if he had been so repugnant to Israeli “values” (whatever those may be), would not have been allowed to hold public office, let alone such high public office. While we are on the topic of murders, I find it rather disgusting when people, even you, talk about Israeli Jews being “Murdered” while Palestinians killed (Murdered?) by Israeli settlers and forces are not even worth speaking about because they are of course, “Terrorists”.

        The Torah is a large document, do you not think Rontzki could have found a different way of expressing how Israel should be protected unless he was actually calling for the genocidal slaughter? The pamphlet was distributed among Israeli soldiers DURING the Cast Lead invasion (27 December 2008 to 18 January 2009), clearly calling for the slaughter of ALL civilians as was done to the Philistines. Before that, in 2007 Former Chief rabbi Mordechai Eliyahu asserted that ALL Palestinians were guilty of attacks on Israelis and thus ALL should be subjected to carpet-bombing.
        Okay, I’ll agree that the words, “women and children” were not used, but isn’t that dancing a fine tap-dance around reality?

        You are right, any inmate of a Nazi concentration camp would be grateful for the luxury of being a Palestinian under Israeli occupation or in Israel. But is that not a bankrupted response? You are comparing how much better Palestinians are with how the Nazis were? That is about the lowest standard of “goodness” that anyone can ever dredge up.

        You may reject the definition of “Genocide” but that in fact, is what it is, by standards accepted and embraced by the whole of the “Civilised” world…one that Israel clamours to be part of. The Convention on Genocide was passed by the UN in 1948 (Read it please http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genocide_Convention), it was campaigned for by a Jewish lawyer and the terms defining Genocide are listed clearly…an increase in population does NOT negate the fact that genocide is being perpetrated by Israel. Interestingly enough, while it has been signed by 146 nations, Israel has not yet signed on to it. I suppose that is a point in Israel’s favor because it is honest enough to not be seen as hypocritical…signing while continuing Genocide.

        I don’t know what it might take for a Holocaust to be fulfilled against the Palestinians (how would you define what Israel is doing to Palestinians except a Shoah in slo-mo?), but it is worth remembering that nobody believed Germany would ever launch its Shoah, precisely because Germany was “A civilized nation”

        • pea June 17, 2014, 12:36 PM

          [Comment deleted: I told you I found this entire analogy of who would rather be a Palestinian in Gaza under siege to be repugnant. That means I don't like it and don't want you to expand upon it further. YOu decide that you have to continue anyway. Next time, pay attention to what I say.]

          • Jafar Siddiqui June 17, 2014, 2:19 PM

            According to the source I looked at, Israel had not signed to Convention on Genocide, okay, so they have but what of it? Israel is STILL committing genocide according to the definitions of the Convention. That should be enough of “any reasonable or legal standard” for folks who care.
            I will not continue on the game of who will be happy to trade their miseries with the miseries of the Palestinians. I have also attributed nothing to you, you said it all yourself. As for demonizing, Israel is doing a great job demonizing itself in the eyes of the world (sycophants excepting), it needs no help from me. Finally, Justice for Palestinians? I don’t expect it in the next two lifetimes, not if Israelis, Uncle Sam and corrupted Palestinian leaders have anything to do with it.
            Rather than start to call each other names like you seem to be doing, I believe we are at an end to our exchanges.

          • Lou June 17, 2014, 9:29 PM

            @Jafar

            Both Israel and the United States are signers of the Convention on Genocide.
            In 2000, both these countries signed the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, but withdrew their signatures to the Rome Statute in 2002. Thus, both countries remain signers to the Convention on Genocide.

          • Richard Silverstein June 17, 2014, 10:24 PM

            @ Lou: Israel has a history of dishonoring most agreements it signs involving its relations with the Palestinians. Let’s see if it continues honoring this one.

            Please do not use different nicknames when posting. Pick one and stick with it so people know who you are. If you keep changing it no one will be able to do that.

          • pea June 18, 2014, 9:18 AM

            It’s your blog Richard. Do what you like. Besides, what you wrote was “I have no interest in getting into arguments about whether Israel is better, worse or the same as the Nazis.” – I removed Nazis from the equation. You decided to arbitrarily change the rules (See? I do pay attention) – still you could have simply expunged that part and left the rest, but whatever. You can even leave up factually inaccurate comments from others. That’s ok – Your blog, your rules.

  • Lou June 16, 2014, 10:26 AM

    @Jafar

    ” (Rontzki?) issued a memo commanding all Israeli soldiers to kill every man, woman and child in their path. ”

    Ronski never said any such thing. Proof please.

    Rontzki’s words, “In times of war, whoever doesn’t fight with all his heart and soul is damned – if he keeps his sword from bloodshed, if he shows mercy toward his enemy when no mercy should be shown.”

    Here is the pamphlet he wrote, courtesy of Yesh Din.

    http://jewschool.com/2009/02/03/15042/military-staff-rabbi-incites-israeli-soldiers-to-revenge/

    • Jafar Siddiqui June 17, 2014, 11:07 AM

      Please read my response to Pea above

      • L June 17, 2014, 9:45 PM

        @Jafar

        A Pakistani ‘insider’ wrote on piece that reveals the British Muslim community’s obsession with the Jews.

        http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/mehdi-hasan/anti-semitism-british-muslim-community_b_2922013.html?utm_hp_ref=uk

        It sounds as if the British Muslim community to which he referring are the Pakistanis. Is this an accurate report?

        • Richard Silverstein June 17, 2014, 10:22 PM

          @ L: That’s one of the most idiotic pieces I’ve read in some time. And it “reveals” nothing of what you claim. Because one dim-witted British Muslim Lord speaks like an anti-Semitic nitwit means all of UK Muslims are anti-Semites? Really? Gimme a break. By that logic, because I support Palestinian rights that must mean all Jews do, right?

          • Lou June 18, 2014, 3:46 AM

            No Richard.

            The article is not about Lord Ahmed’s disgraceful fall. The main premise of the article is, “…as a community, we do have a ‘Jewish problem’.”

            A simple message delivered from a respected journalist
            Dismissing that message as ‘idiotic’, doesn’t refute the author’s claims.

        • Jafar Siddiqui June 17, 2014, 11:30 PM

          L. I am sure he is telling the truth about his friend and I am sure there are many Muslims who hold “The Jews” responsible for all sorts of ills. To take this fact and extrapolate this into all of Europe’s Muslim communities being Anti-Semitic is nothing less than a stretch of a drug-fuelled imagination that the “Judeo-Christian Civilization” so love to hang on to.

          On the other hand there are entire Synagogues and Jewish organizations that seem to thrive on inforrming people that Muslims and Islam are an existential threat to Jews…and yes to the US and tyhe West as well. It is almost a daily occurrence but I have yet to see anyone call THIS for the bigoted, Islamophobic position that it clearly is. Our politicians do it and they get more points, our security services (military, FBI, Police) do it and they get larger funding and promotions while we Muslims get the jackboot.

          The trouble is that sensible, naive Jews hear about statements like the one in the article (your link) and they sincerely believe all Muslim must hate all Jews. The same media that love to promote this fear and hate forget to share news that is uplifting and shows how Jews and Muslims get along, help each other and love each other (http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2013/dec/20/bradford-synagogue-saved-muslims-jews?CMP=fb_gu)…that does not sell well in a paranoia-ridden society. I have yet to receive a note from the fearful members of the Jewish communities about a “piece that reveals the British Muslim community’s BROTHERHOOD with the Jews.”, to borrow from your own phraseology.

          • Lou June 18, 2014, 3:57 AM

            @Jafar

            ” I have yet to see anyone call THIS for the bigoted, Islamophobic position that it clearly is”.

            Yes you have, Jafar.
            Nearly every leftist or anti-Zionist, or anti-Israel group, along with their websites, including Richard’s, decry Islamophobia at every turn.

            How many times has Richard attacked Pamela Geller and her ilk?
            As for synagogues preaching Islamophobia, I’m afraid you’ll have to cite a source.

            BTW, the author make clear that not all Muslims hate Jews and that the Bradford synagogue is not representative of the feeling of the British Muslim community.

          • Jafar Siddiqui June 18, 2014, 8:29 AM

            Lou,
            Unless there is a persuasive comment, I plan to stay away from this thread because we are so farr off-topic that we may as well be discussing waether on Mars. However, it is completely predcitable; as soon as a subject of Muslims, Islam, Palestinians or I/P starts, someone trots out their Muslim/Islam demons, others join in and before you know it, Muslims and Islam are being tried in public court.

            Just look at oyur own comments. First you bring in Pakistan and my views on that topic, then you ask if British Pakistani “have a Jewish problem” based on what I can only term as someone who is seeking limelight and approval by bashing Muslims. What do either of those items, true or not, have to do with three missing Jews who may be kidnapped or killed by Palestinains of the mysterious Jewish driver?

            Look at Mehdi Hasan’s article. Yes, I know he said, “we’re not all anti-Semites”, but only after he had devoted the entire article fo Muslims hating Jews, what is a reader to conclude but that the message from the headline and other statements within the article, are a accurate as a general rule?
            What is dismaying is how eagerly people like yourself, pick up on the “Anti-Semitism is a Muslim problem” when, if you were to substitute “Muslim” references with “Jews” or “Christians”, you would have much the same article.

            Finally, you seem to be so ready to defend world Jewry that oyu did not read my previous response fully. I did not say Synangoues preach Islamophobia, I said, “Synagogues and Jewish organizations that seem to thrive on inforrming people that Muslims and Islam are an existential threat to Jews”, there IS a difference. Synagogues have hosted Islamophobic speakers and organizations who inform people that Muslims are the great Anti-Semitic threat and when they do allow such speakers and events, they ARE very much, in the busimness of promoting Islamophobia. Need examples? do a websearch of Geert Wilders and see how many Synagogues have brought him in or, allowed him in to spread his poison. Of course, you may not think he is Islamophobic because your citing anti-Islamophobia as being much the domain of, “Nearly every leftist or anti-Zionist, or anti-Israel group” informs me that to you, anti-Islamophobia is an anti-Zionist or, anti-Israel passion.

  • Oui June 17, 2014, 12:12 PM

    Did ISIS kidnap the three Israeli youth?

    These Sunni groups are now fighting with ISIS in Anbar province.

    Islamic Resistance Movement: Hamas of Iraq (Arabic حماس العراق) is a Sunni militia group based in Iraq, which broke off from the 1920 Revolution Brigade on March 18, 2007.

    See also Stanford U. mapping militant organizations – here.

  • ARISTONMENHYDOR June 18, 2014, 8:52 AM

    The hasbara here is like treacle. Like the schmutz that collects under the joints in my toes.

    • Elisabeth June 19, 2014, 12:05 AM

      Your name is very apt then: ‘But the best is the water’. To wash all that dirt away.

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