237 Comments

Agree with this and thank you for saying it.

But this is much harder to achieve than Bukele’s task because he has local public opinion on his side. Most citizens hate MS13 and want it gone.

Do most Palestinians hate Hamas and want it gone? Hamas did after all win the only democratic election in gaza history. And with half the population below age 18, propagandized and suffering there whole lives, I shudder to think of what the “values” of even the admittedly-innocent median citizen of gaza are. They certainly hate the Jews more than Hamas. The “more moderate” government in the West Bank still has the Martyr’s fund!

If, similar to Bukele, the regular gazan was cheering on a Hamas crackdown, as reasonable people like us agree they SHOULD, things would be easier.

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Sadly, sometimes really awful, murderous governments have genuine popular support. Hitler, though he was always a tyrant and a murderer, was quite popular with the German people until roughly a generation after his death. Particularly after his conquest of France.

This doesn't change the fact that not only did he have to be stopped, but, had decisive action been taken earlier, such as during the Munich Betrayal; or to go back earlier, had the Treaty of Versailles not been such a soft, toothless agreement; or had the British, French, and Americans pressed to exterminate the Bolshies in the late '10s and early '20s, hundreds of millions of people would've avoided death, torture, mutilation, and enslavement.

It's the same here. We're paying the price for spending three decades trying to treat Russia and Iran like normal countries (make no mistake, Hamas is now a wholly-owned subsidiary of the IRGC, and the obfuscations by this by Washington and Jerusalem are just an effort to try and keep the war contained to one front, which will almost assuredly fail), and we'll likely pay an even worse price for our even stupider fifty-year effort to treat Red China like a normal country.

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Exactly. Both Nazi Germany and Hamas are genocidal governments, and both can only be confronted through total war until their unilateral surrender.

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Elections based on one person, one vote, one time problematize the term "democratic election."

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But I doubt you disagree with me. Is there evidence the median gazan hates hamas and wants it gone? I wish it were true, but I haven’t seen a reason to believe it.

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https://www.washingtoninstitute.org/policy-analysis/polls-show-majority-gazans-were-against-breaking-ceasefire-hamas-and-hezbollah#:~:text=Overall%2C%2057%25%20of%20Gazans%20express,who%20support%20Fatah%20(64%25).

Support for Hamas is about 50/50, but support for even more radical organizations is actually higher.

Although 70% supported the Palestinian Authority taking over from Hamas.

So mostly "we want a free, independent Palestine based on Islamist principles, and Israel to be gone, but we don't want to suffer or die for that to happen."

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Its highly probable that Gazans regard Islam as a moral ideals but are inconsistent. Hamas is consistent. Hamas is _morally_ responsible for Israeli attacks on Gazan civilians. Israel is only physically responsible. But the greatest responsibility are those who evade identifying religion, all religion, religion in principle as the basic cause of a very long history of Mideast wars. Religionists reject reason to settle disputes. Force is the only alternative. Apart from their hatred of Jews, consistent Moslems hate Israel for its Western culture.

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Your guess and mine—still guesses. Kinda like American labor unions and the NLRB, one-way trip. Now put up the Hamas slate along with its political competition every so often (and maybe re-certification of unions in the USA) for election by secret ballot and you just might have something.

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Bukele's task also didn't involve a ton of collateral damage. He was lucky that gang members there advertise their affiliation with tattoos, so they were easy to separate from the population.

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Sanctions are based on similar logic - Sanctions make life of citizens of a sanctioned country hard, it makes their quality of life worse and that would lead to loss of support for the government and a new regime can take its place which is favorable to our interests and sanctions can be lifted. However, in almost all cases opposite thing happens. The normal people suffering from sanctions rally behind their government as a mark of solidarity like how it happened in Russia. Nationalism is irrational, people might accept worse quality of life and suffering for the nation and their leader. Prolonged siege of Gaza might do the same, Israel will risk having an extremely hostile population with larger proportion of them turning into militants. Israel should just launch a ground invasion and cripple Hamas instead of adopting a sanctions like approach -aka siege.

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What if the sanctions regime were to connect the sanctions more directly to the actions of the leadership? E.g. water and electricity turn on every morning, but they turn off as soon as Hamas fires a rocket.

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Oct 12, 2023·edited Oct 12, 2023

Same reason there's no anonymous suggestion box at work for which employee should be fired for poor performance.

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Hadn't come across that idea before. I'll put it in the suggestion box though haha.

However, help me see the analogy here please? The sanctions (on/off) aren't being connected to missile strikes for the same reason there's no suggestion box to fire co workers?

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Oct 14, 2023·edited Oct 14, 2023

Incentives believed to be operative in any such scheme may not, in fact, be the only ones, or even the main ones, governing actual behavior when placed before different people with different motivations and different senses of right and wrong. Remember during the Iraq War when American forces were paying cash money for information as to who and where the bad guys were and could be found? Turns out Iraqis were taking the reward money and identifying their family, business, or personal enemies as targets for elimination by the American soldiers.

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I'm still not following. Are you suggesting that Hamas would fire rockets to make the sanctions worse? I think that's pretty likely; clearly they are willing to inflict pretty much any horror on people in Gaza if it helps even a little bit with propaganda against Israel.

But I think that scenario would at least provide a good tit for tat situation where pressure was put on Hamas leadership (at least the Hamas leadership within Gaza) and its actors by residents of Gaza. Probably mostly would just be the status quo, with periods of quiet followed by attacks, but I'm just missing how it's analogous to a suggestion box at work on who to fire.

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The idea that utilitarianism would support the siege is laughable. Hundreds of thousands will become homeless, thousands will die, tens of thousands will be injured. The siege is unlikely to meaningful improve government in the future such that future generations will counter these effects. Suppose 3000 people died in Israel in this attack. 3000 deaths every few decades plus the fear of the entire population does not outweigh what will happen to the Gazans. That’s not to say Israel should do nothing, but nobody should pretend this is about maximizing utility or anything like that. This is politics and revenge.

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This seems nuts to me. For one, Israel is currently blocking checkpoints so Gazans can't escape. For another, the harms to Israel of Hamas attacks are a vanishing scintilla compared to the harms of forcefully displacing literally millions of people. Fewer Israelis die of terrorism per-capita than Americans die of gun violence, yet we wouldn't displace many millions of people to stop gun control.

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I think Richard's point is that Israel should not block checkpoints and let Gazans escape, and that displacing literally millions of people is actually good for those people.

I am not sold on Richard's point. I used to support a two-state solution but I now I think Egypt/Jordanian option, some kind of Puerto Rico / Hong Kong solution, or some kind of "denazification" like that was done in Germany and Japan after the war (or Xinjiang, but let's not copy the CCP; what the US did in Germany/Japan seems better) is really the only way forward. Letting Palestinians emigrate is good, it helps them and relieves pressure on overcrowded Gaza and eases the situation, but trying to kick them all is immoral and bad.

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Oct 13, 2023·edited Oct 13, 2023

How about the (forced) Gazan emigrants' children (or their children's children) are given priority for admission as immigrants and future Israeli citizens to New South Israel (previously Gaza) after the Palestinian diaspora and the land has been reclaimed, settled, and society rebuilt to modern liberal standards?

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Very hard to implement this kind of decades-long plan, ethnic cleansing is impractical and immoral and would lead to a loss of Western support. Israel is too moral and too concerned with popular opinion to do it. It’s not viable.

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" Israel is too moral." Lol. LMAO even. Just google Deir Yassin and then google what happened to the guy who led that terrorist group. Spoiler alert: he was elected Irsaeli Prime minister.

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Who? Shamir was out of the country at the time. Begin was the head of the Irgun at the time, yes. In 1948. Many years ago.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deir_Yassin_massacre#Day_of_the_attack

"According to Lapidot, the Irgun high command, including Menachem Begin, objected and the troops were specifically ordered not to kill women, children, or prisoners."

"Menachem Begin, leader of the Irgun at the time of the attack, though not present at the village, wrote in 1977:" Begin believed the village was some sort of strategic threat, and wasn't there and wouldn't have supported what happened.

You know that the Irgun also fought the Haganah (which later became the IDF) and had to demiliatarize and abolish itself in exchange for its members joining the IDF and not being prosecuted, right?

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Suggest you read and consider carefully Freddie deBoer's Oct 16, 2023 Substack "Goliath, Who Aspires to be David." As far as I can make out, the only alternative to purposeful "ethnic cleansing" of (so-called) Palestinians in the area is the de facto ethnic cleansing of Jews from the state of Israel, given time and demographics. Blood (ethnic identity) is going to be spilled one way or another: the ends desired, not necessarily the particular means used to achieve them, should determine how to proceed.

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I think that Israel will win the demographic war. Israeli Jewish TFR is stable at about 3, Palestinian TFR is dropping quickly and is almost at 3 already. Israel has eugenic fertility, Palestine has dysgenic fertility. Israel will embrace embryo screening.

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Oct 16, 2023·edited Oct 16, 2023

https://twitter.com/RichardHanania/status/1713013937875366364

Once Israel's average IQ exceeds 150 and their GDP/capita exceeds $1B/yr, they will be able to defeat Hamas with minimal or no damage to civilians.

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It's an incredibly stupid article, in which he writes:

"Despite the conflict, Israeli citizens are actually remarkably safe from violence compared to most of the countries on the globe."

The reason we're talking about this is because Hamas just massacred a thousand civilians, including raping women while shooting their babies. The argument from the 'peace' camp has always been that Israel should just chill out because they don't really suffer that much, apparently some people are still going with that one. Now I guess it's "It could be worse, you could be the Congo'.

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Agree, Freddie's a tiny bit tone-deaf on the "safety" thing, considering recent events. The part I found germane is his prescription for "peace" in the region. While implicitly promising utopia, it actually delivers a death sentence (again!) to the Jewish people while retaining the fig leaf existence of the state of Israel. Nice work, Freddie.

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Using your purely utilitarian calculus, couldn't Hamas's recent tactics also be justified -perhaps even more justified than a siege of Gaza.

One way the conflict to end is for Palestinians to leave, but the other is for Israelis to go. Which group is titled more towards max exodus depends on quality of life (the push factor) but also willingness of other countries to admit émigrés (the pull factor). You seem to claim that currently it is more feasible to bring about Palestinian mass exodus, and this should be achieved through increasing the push and pull factors via a harsh siege along with pressuring the world to take Palestinians.

But there are very few countries that want to accept Palestinians. And for obvious reasons - low human capital, mostly fanatics. Given the terrorism concerns, many of these countries especially in the (increasingly anti-Muslim immigration) West are unlikely to yield to the pressure.

Conversely there are many countries that would be willing to take Israelis, because of their high human capital, cultural and family ties to most of the West, and out of a sense of moral obligation linked to the history of Jewish persecution. So the pull factor for Israeli exodus is much stronger than for Palestinian exodus, and it seems unlikely even with diplomatic pressure that this difference can be made up

As you note, the Palestinian offensive capabilities are only getting stronger. To create a mass exodus they don't need to cause mass death. They only need cause enough terror to prompt a few to leave for the safety of the West. Which in turn could cause a feedback loop amidst a climate of sustained fear, whereby more leave partly anticipating others leaving, and so not wanting to one of the last left. The barbarians of Hamas have shown themselves willing to offset their limited military skill with heightened cruelty to create maximal terror. So they are capable of creating a considerable push factor for Israeli exodus, which will only grow considerably in the next few years as their capabilities increase.

Therefore, given the Palestinians' already considerable and growing ability to create a strong push factor, combined with the far stronger pull factor for Israeli exodus - a pull factor that will remain far stronger than for Palestinians regardless of diplomatic pressure - the purely utilitarian case for Hamas amping up their tactics seems just as strong, if not stronger, as the case for a siege.

Now, given I am not a pure utilitarian, I do not think there is an ethical case for Hamas's sadistic targeting of civilians. But curious whether you think the logic of pure utilitarianism would rule it out?

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Oct 13, 2023·edited Oct 13, 2023

Also, Israeli Arabs have the same per capita GDP as Greece. There is nothing comparable in any oil-free Arab region. You really think Jews leaving the region would make Arabs better off? How well do you think the regime that replaces Israel will be run? Would the Islamocommunists stop there, or not try to also overthrow the Gulf Monarchies?

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Oct 13, 2023·edited Oct 13, 2023

Jordan has a pro-West and pro-Israel monarchy. Egypt is not doing well. Lebanon is really not doing well and is collapsing. Is that a joke? Lebanon has a similar proportion of arable land, natural gas resources, and tourism potential. It's collapsing.

The Palestinians would be governed by whatever third-wordlist communists got rid of Israel.

Turkey which has huge inflation is completely different than an oil-free non-monarchy (non-Maghrebian) Arab Muslim country, much higher average levels of human capita, not even close (and Turkey has many other advantages like proximity to Europe and high levels of secularism). I'm not aware of any adoption studies on Turks vs Arabs. PISA is a very rough measure (Russian-Israelis do worse than Russians in Russia!) but you can see a huge difference.

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deletedOct 13, 2023·edited Oct 13, 2023
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By the real GDP, Lebanon and Jordan are at $4.1, Palestine, Egypt are $3.7, and Israeli Arabs are at something like $20 like Greece. It's not my fault that the shekel is so strong, it's because Israel actually produces stuff people want to buy.

Lebanese civil war was not caused by Israel (Israel was one of my participants, it started earlier), look at Lebanon now. You blame for that?

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My understanding is that the Palestinian territories Israel removed from Egypt & Jordan in 1967 wound up better off than their source countries, although I learned that before Hamas came to power.

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This difficulty with your clever plan for convincing the Israelis to emigrate is that the "enemy" gets to vote on every battle plan. It's a bit like the mice who got together to figure out how to warn themselves that the cat was on the prowl. One young mouse suggested they tie a bell around the cat's neck. This was greeted with enthusiasm until an old mouse asked, "And who will bell the cat?"

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Oct 13, 2023·edited Oct 13, 2023

Hamas' tactics won't result in this kind of exodus. Israel has nuclear weapons. Utilitarians want to avoid nuclear war, which is necessary to destroy Israel.

If Hamas successfully kicked the Israelis, from a pure utilitarian perspective this would be the worst precedent in the history of humanity, and would incentivize tons of crap like this to happen in the future. Camp of the Saints would go from a crazy paranoid far-right fear to something that would happen in real life. It would legitimize the garbage "anti-colonial" third-worldist rhetoric like never before. If we just accepted the destruction of Israel, we (and "we" here means 1 contrarian utilitarian and a million leftists) would accept the US and Europe being overrun by random Africans who go on welfare.

Israeli exodus would also be terrible, Israel has a high fertility rate including among highly educated people. It has super high levels of human capital per capita (probably up there with Singapore for the highest in the world), this is unique, and might not be preserved if Israelis moved to the West. It would be a huge loss to the world if high IQ Israelis stopped having more kids than high IQ Americans and Europeans.

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Anti-colonial rhetoric leads not just to Canada and the United States being over-run with Africans. It leads to indigenous people "taking all the 1492 land back" and ruling as a privileged oligarchy. They would ethnically cleanse the continent of all settlers and their descendants, including the afore-mentioned Africans. Even descendants of African slaves don't belong here, according to Tuck and Yang, "Decolonization is not a metaphor." This is what they read in schools of education, which is why the teachers and schools are so f*cked up.

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HAMAS just isn't nearly strong enough to defeat Israel or drive the Israelis out, however much they might fantasize about it.

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Israel has effectively already won, given the power differential but can't engage in population expulsions because of human rights concerns and looking like a complete rogue state. This perpetual conflict is never going to end with a two-state solution or anything resembling meaningful peace so long as Gaza remains unoccupied by the Israelis. Western liberals have been the biggest obstacle to peace by preventing Israel from concluding the conflict and fooling themselves and the world into thinking it can be resolved by diplomacy like N Ireland.

Needless to say, all the Arab and Muslim countries that pay lip service to the Palestinian cause won't be letting in any more Palestinians. Egypt will eventually let them into the Sinai after striking a deal with the West that states that the refugees won't be staying, and will instead be going to Europe and North America which was essentially the Hazony/Likud fantasy plan for years.

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Oct 12, 2023·edited Oct 12, 2023

I'd take exiled Palestinians from Gaza over the hordes of 3rd world peasantry currently on tap at the USA's southern border. How about 4 or 8 or even 12 Palestinians to each burg/town/city in the USA for, say, 10 years before they gain freedom of movement. During that period, Israel pays for their upkeep until they become gainfully employed. After 10 years, they're declared fully assimilated and become US citizens with all the rights and responsibilities thereof.

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Woah, hold up there. The average Palestinian is not a high IQ Christian like RH. They are slightly dumber than Mexicans and a whole lot more Muslim.

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Oct 12, 2023·edited Oct 12, 2023

Don't sweat the 1st generation, we'll own their kids. They'll shuck the crap their parents are forcing on them in no time flat. And if the diaspora is dumber than rocks, all the better. Less competition for our own American rubes. Keep in mind that 2 million Gazans is a significant number when up against 10 million Israelis. But against 340 million Americans (et al), drop in the bucket. Win-win-win.

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Send them to Minneapolis so their grocery stores can be robbed by George Floyd, and they will vote Republican. They aren't too keen on gender ideology either.

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I’m sure when they’re offered some thousands by some of the Jewish billionaires behind transgender then they will become your worst nightmare on things Transgender.

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Dec 14, 2023·edited Dec 14, 2023

To clarify I was trolling

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And we have arrived at the true basis of the conflict from the Israeli perspective..

It's all about racial stereotyping in the end huh .

Shame on you.

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If you don't understand population-level variation in cognitive and behavioural traits you have no place talking about current affairs. It's like not knowing about the law of supply or demand, or being unable to describe the difference between legislative and executive functions of government. It simply means that all your opinions are useless. Shame on you.

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No, you're wrong. If average IQ among Palestinians is less than the average of Mexicans, then a randomly drawn sample of Palestinians admitted as immigrants will be less intelligent than a random sample of Mexican immigrants. There is no stereotyping there any more than saying Manchurians are, on average, taller than people from Hong Kong. So 20 random Manchurians will be taller than 20 random Hong Kongers, on average. (All the Chinese orthopedic surgeons I knew were from Manchuria even though back then Hong Kongers vastly exceeded the number of Manchurians in my city generally.)

Now if you want to dispute that average IQ among Palestinians is indeed lower than among Mexicans, fine. That's either true or not. If it's not true, then it's just wrong. It's still not stereotyping. It's only stereotyping if you will not even look at an individual Palestinian job candidate because you assume that his IQ has to be lower than the Mexican you just hired, no matter what evidence to the contrary he provides about himself.

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Aren’t you stereotyping Israelis?

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Woah, hold up there.

Can you not park your bigotry at the door?

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Justin Amash is a Palestinian Christian. Palestinian Christians are descendants of Jews who converted in the era 100-500 CE and then subsequently intermarried with crusaders and waves of Greek and Armenian immigrants. They have also been through positive selection for intelligence in a manner analogous to, but not as marked as, Ashkenazi Jews.

By contrast, the Palestinian Arab majority have substantial descent from Arabian-peninsular Arabs (dumb) and sub-saharan Africans (dumber). They have been through extensive selection for dumbness because of the sharply dysgenic nature of Muslim society, on top of a whole lot of cousin marriage. And the icing on the cake is that they are Muslims. I know it's cringe and 2005 to say this, but Muslims are bad news. You don't want them. America, because of its sheer physical distance from the Muslim world, has been receiving almost exclusively elite Muslim immigration. Europe gets normal Muslims, and they are just a pain, at best. In selecting Palestinian immigrants, the best way would be for Razib Khan to whip up a genetic test, but the truth is - as is usually the case - you can pretty much eyeball it based on skin colour.

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They are mostly from a Christian background (including Amash and Hanania and Bukele), and there is huge selection.

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Many of those Palestinians in Canada were out howling support for Hamas earlier this week. Not so sure we want any more.

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deletedOct 13, 2023·edited Oct 13, 2023
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'Demonstrations' started while Hamas was literally live streaming themselves killing grannies. Israel hadn't even done anything yet except try to stop this bronze age orgy of sadistic violence. And they weren't really demonstrations, they were celebrations because these people are so dumb and twisted they couldn't even think two days ahead to what would happen in Gaza. Muslims are bad news, if you are blessed to live in a country that doesn't have them, keep it that way.

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You're welcome to them. They can't come to Canada because Hamas is outlawed as a terrorist organization which it is illegal to voice support for. That didn't stop noisy demonstrations in our cities celebrating the killing of Israelis on Saturday. They did so say that what Hamas did was good and Allah is great. So did many of your politicians. Were you deaf? Some of our minor politicians and lots of university Leftists were thrilled with them, too.

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"Denmark decided to give asylum for 321 Palestinians in 1992. Government records show that 64% of them were convicted for a serious crime in the following period (1992-2019), and some 80% were receiving welfare. Of their 999 children, so far 34% are convicted criminals. I don't see why any good country would willingly repeat this experience." E. Kirkegaard. As Richard Hanania is a paid subscriber of EK's substack, he+you might want to update. I'd much prefer more Mexicans in my country.

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Actually it's not a choice between Gazans and peasants. You'll get more than you want of both.

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Oct 13, 2023·edited Oct 13, 2023

Last I heard, we're hard at work building a big, beautiful wall without ANY doors in it. Perhaps the Gazans know something of walls and their (de)construction and could lend us a hand...

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"During that period, Israel pays for their upkeep"

Is this satire?

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Nope—you wanna play, you gotta pay. Be way cheaper all around than the current scheme (for all concerned).

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Hi Richard, I recently learned that you are Palestinian. Do you have any connection to Palestinians living in the region (family, etc)? And does your background have any impact on how you think about this conflict?

Most professional commentators would be saying "AS AN ACTUAL PALESTINIAN...." at every opportunity, but I've noticed that you don't do this. So I was just curious. (No pressure to answer if you don't want to get too personal.)

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Richard is Christian. Palestinian Christians are generally not too friendly to Israel, but seem to be doing much better in Israel than in the Muslim world (and Richard is a utilitarian). Israel has 140K Arab Christians, and the West Bank have about 50K. So there are more people like Richard in Israel than in Palestine.

Anyway, I don't think Richard is a big fan of standpoint epistemology. But he is a big fan of another Palestinian, namely Nayib Bukele.

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Palestinian Christians are a population that has an honest bone to pick with both Hamas and Israel.

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No argument there. I'm a big fan of Israel, but their treatment of Palestinian Christians has been far from perfect. Still, it really means something that Israel has 3x as many Palestinian Christians as Palestine has (and 0.4x as many Muslims).

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Big fan of Deir Yassin? USS Liberty?

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Oct 16, 2023·edited Oct 16, 2023

Two events with a total of 135 casualties? No.

And come on, even the more recent of these events was in freaking 1967. Over 56 years ago. Are you not a big fan of Germany in 2001 because of the Holocaust (assuming you're just a Buchanan-type paleocon and not a Holocaust denier or pro-Holocaust or some such)? Are you not a big fan of the US because of Dresden? Vietnam? My Lai was more recent than the USS Liberty.

Many worse things we have done with way higher death tolls? Invading Iraq and Afghanistan? Overthrowing Gadaffi? I love America and I'm a huge fan of it but we've done many things far far worse and far more recently than Deir Yessin and the USS Liberty. Come on.

I don't believe that the attack on the USS Liberty was deliberate - Israel would have a strong incentive *not to* do such a thing. There are people who thought it was Egyptian and then noticed it was American in the middle, and some people thought it was an Egyptian ship flying a US flag and pretending to be American. There was a war going on at the time and Israel was shooting everything in sight. It seems like an act of gross negligence. Given the alliance the US would have a strong incentive to want survivors to shut up and push it under a rug, so that's not at all good Bayesian evidence of a conspiracy.

I don't at all want to get into a stupid debate about what happened in 1967 though, and even if the worst allegations are 100% true and Israel did attack the USS Liberty on purpose, the death of 34 American sailors 56 years ago would be trivial compared to everything Israel has done. The existence of a high TFR country with high TFR among educated people and tons of Ashkenazim has just been a fantastic thing for the world. Tons of Israelis found unicorns in both the US and Israel. Getting COVID boosters fast and showing us that it was possible saved many many more than 34 American lives. Compared to all of the great things Israel has done and the number of lifesaving etc technologies they have made that have saved American lives and how they have now helped us with a massive anti-wokening ... Surely this alone https://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4720893,00.html outweighs the USS Liberty. Israel hacked ISIS laptops. Israel hacks Iran and helps with nuclear nonproliferation. Israel cooperates with the US on cyber and missile defense. The list goes on. Ramaswamy is right - the US-Israel alliance is good for both America and Israel.

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Palestinian Christians are considered a model minority in Israel, similar to Chinese and Indians in America

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Oct 13, 2023·edited Oct 13, 2023

They are a highly educated minority that gets shit from everyone and is stuck between everyone. They have a huge diaspora, and they have emigrated to all sorts of places. They are also (unfortunately) overrepresented in communistic and leftist movements, but somewhat understandably as those movements are friendlier to them.

Reminds you of anyone? ;)

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I think his family is ethnically Palestinian, religiously Christian, and lived in Jordan before immigrating to America.

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Huh, how did they end up living in Jordan, I wonder?

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A big fraction of the Jordanian population is Palestinian, but it's ruled by Bedouins. A lot of anti-Israel groups were based there until kicked out during Black September.

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There’s a large difference between “diaspora” Palestinians and those that remain in “Palestine” (i.e. Israel and the West Bank + Gaza)

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Fuck off Hanania. Europe is not your dump for latest brown horde that got itself into some military conflict. We will not take 2 million orcs from Gaza and support them, there's zero utility to it. We still struggle with all the trouble 1,5 million of Syrians caused after arriving in 2015. Those people are not our problem, we wash our hands of what happens to them.

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The 1.5 million Syrians were at most 20% of the immigrants into Europe after the 2015 immigration crisis based on statistics I've read. Most were from Africa (e.g., Eritrea and North Africa), Pakistan, Iraq, etc.

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“Israel has tried the path of seeking to ensure that Gazans suffer as little as possible for the actions of their government.”

Lol now you’re just trolling.

Anyway, the Israeli government is not, at least last I checked, allowing Gazans to leave, but forcing them to stay, so that belies the notion of them being motivated by utilitarianism rather than collective punishment. I happen to agree that allowing/encouraging Palestinians to self-ethnically cleanse themselves from the region is probably the least bad outcome, but more because I don’t think Israel will ever assent to an (or two) independent Palestinian state(s), even if the Palestinians all embraced Gandhiesque pacifism. A growing plurality are committed to preventing such a thing by their religious beliefs. The humanitarian way of dealing with it would be to bribe them to leave (should be cheap since they’re dirt poor; many would probably jump at the offer of citizenship abroad) rather than your preferred method of bombing/starving them until the remainder leave. But it’s worth noting it’ll ultimately probably have to be most/all of the population. The ones who stay behind will be the most radical, so partial depopulation won’t lead to better government in Gaza. Same will ultimately have to happen in the West Bank too of course, since the settlers aren’t going anywhere and no contiguous West Bank state could be formed anymore.

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Richard’s correct that Israeli policy is usually as kind as can be toward Palestinians given the circumstances. That doesn’t mean that every conscript with a rifle is kind. And the radical settlers are out of control.

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lol, how many Palestinian children did Germany bomb following the Munich attack? Israel's many mass bombing campaigns are obviously not "as kind as can be">

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In the last Israel-Gaza war, the average number of Palestinian fatalities (including combatants) per Israeli air strike was 0.25.

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The average number of fatalities per black person's fired bullets is probably about 0.10, but it doesn't stop them from having a far higher homicide rate than races with more accurate shooting.

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These strikes bring down multistory buildings. IAF does a good job of minimizing casualties.

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A very quick Google is telling me 1200 killed in Israeli airstrikes in the past few days. They could probably minimize a bit more if they really cared to. fwiw I take the basic America First position of "not our problem" no matter what the ultimate consequence of this war is, but pretending that Israel is a non-aggressor is so absurd, from the founding of their state to the present day. Israel's attacks have always exceeded those of the Palestinians whose lands they occupy.

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That’s just nuts.

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Oct 14, 2023·edited Oct 14, 2023

Not at all. I wrote a long response but lost it. Won’t write it all out again. I’ll throw out some key points and I’ll elaborate on whichever you challenge.

Most West Bank checkpoints and the barrier were put up to prevent terror attacks during the second intifada. They succeeded.

Israel and Egypt blockaded Gaza after Hamas came to power, rejected the peace process, and attacked Israeli civilians and military.

Most West Bank fatalities are combatants.

Israel doesn’t demolish random Palestinians’ homes.

Settlers can’t steal Palestinians’ private property.

Israel hasn’t approved new “outpost” settlements in decades and demolishes those that are built without approval.

Israel prosecutes soldiers and settlers who target civilians, and IDF has killed settlers to stop their terror attacks.

IDF rules of engagement conform to the Geneva conventions and are heavily emphasized by officers and enforced by military courts.

The Al Aqsa/Temple Mount, holiest place in Judaism and third holiest in Islam, is administered by the Islamic Waqf overseen by the Jordanian monarchy and is mostly closed to Jews. Police enter for reasonable operational purposes.

Israel has historically banned far right/kahanist Jewish parties, though unfortunately Otzma wasn’t banned and is now in Netanyahu’s extremist government.

Israeli Arabs have equal rights and are represented in every arena of power and influence. And the pro-Israel-leaning Arab minorities are very well integrated.

Israel has negotiated multiple two state solutions in good faith.

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Msg from a colleague on the ground in Gaza “Our UNRWA colleagues in Gaza are being murdered by American-made bombs dropped by Israeli fighter jets. UN schools and hospitals are being targeted by Israel, once again. Hundreds of thousands of civilian lives are at risk in the open-air prison called Gaza.

Nobody supports or defends Hamas' murderous sevagery (at least, not here), but nobody should ever condone the Israeli decades-long aggression against international law, UN resolutions, and plain human decency.”

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Well worth the paper it's printed on.

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I think that welfare transfers from Jews to Arabs pay off the Nakba every 5-10 years.

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The double standard seen in regards to how Israel is expected to act has been frankly absurd. If any other western country were bombed tomorrow we’d all understand in a heartbeat that the government will do whatever it takes to prevent future threats and that tragic civilian casualties are a result of the aggressors who attacked us. Here it’s framed as “collective punishment,” which no one seemed to have a problem with when Russian citizens had half their services pull out of the country + crippling sanctions in an effort to convince them to overthrow their government. In that scenario we at least saw Russian civilians who were protesting the actions of Putin, but after a deadly terror attack on Israel? Huge swaths of the western left feel the need to condemn Israel but not Hamas, and no real resistance towards Hamas has been noted in Gaza. The elephant in the room is that a large portion of Palestinian people are probably radicalized more than anyone is willing to admit, and that’s probably why Egypt is so unwilling to take in refugees. Just an awful case all around but the amount of false moral equivalence and “both sides need to de-escalate” rhetoric is just puzzling.

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"Huge swaths of the western left feel the need to condemn Israel but not Hamas, and no real resistance towards Hamas has been noted in Gaza. "

There wasn't much resistance to Stalin that was visible to the outside world. What could a Palestinian in Gaza who dislikes Hamas do?

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The kindest thing to do to Palestinians would not be to expel them, but to impose civilized modernity on them for their own good. This is what the Spanish did to the Aztecs, what the English did to the Scottish during the Highland Clearances / Scottish Industrial Revolution, what America did to post-war Japan, and what China is doing in Xinjiang. Fundamentally, the problem with Palestinian society is that they've had no real productive economy, and have lived off Western handouts. This inevitably leads to feralization, in which a society is oriented around dominance hierarchies instead of competence hierarchies. If Gazans are expelled, they'll just become radicalized economic dependents somewhere else. If they are reeducated and assigned productive work, everyone will be better off. "The peace of all things is in the tranquility of order."

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Attempts to do this have been a crapshoot in the past. For every Japan and South Korea there are ten Afghanistans. "You can't impose civilization by force" isn't true 100% of the time, but it's a good general rule. Especially since the places where it was successful are places that were already most of the way there anyway, like Japan.

I also seriously question that the indigenous people of Mexico were significantly better off under the Spanish, who basically replaced dying as human sacrifices with being worked to death as slaves. Ditto with Xinjiang, which seems more like a standard genocide than a genuine civilization attempt.

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The failure of Afghanistan is due to the fact that we tried "cargo cult modernization", in which we held elections, passed around handouts, and offered seminars on Duchamp's urinal sculpture. What I am proposing would involve none of those things, at least until societal modernization is complete. (The cargo cult version of modernization is precisely what led to the installation of the popularly-elected Hamas government in Gaza.) Actual modernization would involve prohibiting cousin marriage (whose elimination by the Catholic Church in early medieval Europe has been shown to have led to the reduction of tribalism), promotion of new ideals glorifying work and productivity, de-Islamicization, and employing the population in manufacturing. None of these were tried in Afghanistan.

With regards to the the hacienda system, I think you're misinformed. The obligations of peons to the hacienda generally did not exceed those of European peasants under the manorial system. With regards to Uyghers, I think you're also misinformed. For example, China aggressively benefits Uyghers with affirmative action at top universities (to the dismay of most Han Chinese, mind you) in order to incentivize assimilation.

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Wow, so now we have a notion of benign colonialism. How did we get here exactly?

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From the truth. Sorry if you don't like colonialism.

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Sorry if anyone likes colonialism

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Marxist-Leninism is the absolute opposite of civilized modernity. Nor is fighting against Islamist terrorism a priority for the CCP, given their friendliness with the vast majority of the world's most malignant Islamist regims, such as the Pakis, the Talibs, and the IRGC. The coverage of the recent massacre on Chinese TV has been pro-Hamas for precisely this reason.

It's just boilerplate racist eliminationism against foreigners, combined with the usual depraved methods and beliefs of Leninist socialists.

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I don't like Marxism-Leninism either; I'm a libertarian. But it is a form of civilized modernity, albeit a rather dystopian one. The CCP's attitude towards Islamist terrorism is "jihadism for thee but not for me". After the rising tide of Saudi-funded Islamism in Xinjiang led to brutal violence against Han Chinese, and resulting outrage among the Chinese masses against what they saw as unfair lenience towards Muslims, the Chinese government employed immense resources to successfully eradicate Islamism in Xinjiang. You don't need to be a Communist to learn some things from this.

I would also note that reeducation camps were also how the CCP eradicated their opium epidemic. This is, as far as I know, the only historical instance of mass drug addiction being defeated, and I find it unlikely that America's struggle with opioid addiction and gangsterism will ever be solved without similar measures.

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They didn't do shit to eradicate the opium epidemic! The CCP is the world's single biggest pusher of fentanyl by some fucking distance!

https://www.politico.com/news/2022/02/07/fentanyl-china-war-on-drugs-00005920

Nor was Saudi-funded Islamism the source of their crackdown on Xinjiang. They've been cracking down on them since their conquest of the province under Stalin and Mao, and have implemented and are implementing similar policies against all non-Han minorities. It's just they're being most severe on the ones most foreign.

The CCP is a lawless gangster republic and it's genuinely disgusting that you, or anyone else, would defend anything they do. Always shoot Commies. And enough times to make sure.

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There's not much of an opioid epidemic... in China. Fentanyl is a problem for America.

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The CCP is the sole meaningful manufacturer of fentanyl precursors. Their involvement in the international drug trade is not the work of "rogue elements" or whatever other bullshit line they give. They are dealing dangerous drugs to the US with the idea of destabilizing our society, and it's working. There have already been tens of thousands of Americans who have died of fentanyl overdoses.

They're no better than the Mexi cartels. Fuck, they're considerably worse, given that they've murdered tens of millions more people and have access to nuclear weapons.

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I think the aim is making money.

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Why not move to Gaza for a month or do (of course not now), experience living in apartheid first hand and then writing something more than a spherical horse in a vacuum navel gazing 1000 word essay?

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Go live in gaza for a day and tell us what you think

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Why don't you tell us what it's like? If you know.

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The knock against utilitarianism is not just interpersonal comparisons, but also its utter inability to actually compute the consequences.

You have absolutely zero ability to predict the entrance of, say, Iran into a conflict, which can lead to WWIII--in case of Israel continuing to behave in a morally vile manner towards Gaza.

This situation is much worse now precisely because Israel made “utilitarian” computations in ethnically cleansing Palestinians in 1947-1948 (which is full of Jews shooting Palestinian villagers after immobilization, bombing random houses which killed women and children, randomly spraying with bullets boys and so on. Israel couldn’t have gotten away with its ethnic cleansing with today’s social media)

There is actually a good reason why only weird academics are attempting to be consistent utilitarians -- it just doesn’t work.

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What makes you so sure that the situation is worse because of what Israel did in 1947-1948? Some people say that if Israel had actually carried out ethnic cleansing and kicked the Palestinians, rather than just kicking some out of Lod and Ramla, it would be better off now. If Israel had lost of course, what would have happened to the Jews is far worse than what could have ever happened to the Palestinians.

Could the US have gotten away with fighting WWII with modern social media?

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They “kicked out” (by killing innocents and advertising the killing and then killing again while executing the ethnic cleansing plan) more than 700k Palestinians in more than 500 villages and from cities as well. This was an actual plan, “Plan D”, that they executed.

Maybe you’re cavalier about ethnic cleansing but that’s the kind of stuff that the US bombed Yugoslavia for. It’s what the nazi cattle wagons were for.

And yes, maybe the US should not have bombed Dresden in revenge either -- but that’s neither here nor there because the Israelis started executing the ethnic cleansing before any Arab states invaded.

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I know Plan Dalet, it involved some expulsions from strategic expulsions, but no ethnic cleansing.

Yes, the war started in November 1947 with the UNGA vote, the Arab states didn't invade until 1948 (they did do stuff before of course...).

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It was ethnic cleansing. 700k Palestinians out of 900k in Israel didn’t go on a holiday-- they run from Jews bombing their houses and then putting mines in the ruble (for the express reason of stopping them from coming back). They run from Jews picking male prisoners (anyone over 10 years old) and randomly shooting them.

It was ethnic cleansing.

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Who says this anyway? Ilan Pappe? Evidence for the mines thing? Yes there were some random killings (and plenty on the other side).

Anyway, "ethnic cleansing" is some label.

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“The occupation is not for permanent stay but for the destruction of the village, mining of the rubble and the junctures nearby “

This is from the order of the Golani Brigade for the second attack on Sa’sa.

This is in the IDF archives.

“Ethnic cleansing” is the policy of one group to systematically eliminate another group from a territory, on the basis of religious, ethnic or national origin.

It’s not yet genocide — but it’s still a crime against humanity punishable in international law.

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I think Israel should gracefully shutdown. They should pack up and leave. It's a country founded through conquest, but in the 20th century, when we were supposed to have moved past such things. Really, just reading about the Nakba makes me think the state of Israel is illegitimate. It's just completely fucked that they realized they would have to do that, and then went and did it, instead of reconsidering.

You can kinda cut some slack for countries founded in this way but longer ago, as fact is, back then, there wasn't a widespread realization that doing this is wrong, but this happened right after WW II.

Possibly one of the more depressing facts about humanity is that the primary victims of the Holocaust pretty much learned nothing from it, looking at the rhetoric coming from top officials:

> Gallant said that he had ordered “a complete siege of the Gaza Strip,” which is home to 2.2 million Palestinians, nearly half of them children. “There will be no electricity, no food, no fuel, everything is closed,” he said. “We are fighting human animals, and we act accordingly.”

> Netanyahu: The weak crumble, are slaughtered and are erased from history while the strong, for good or for ill, survive. The strong are respected, and alliances are made with the strong, and in the end peace is made with the strong.

This is genuinely close to Nazi rhetoric, no exaggeration. Israel is not a civilization. Shut it down!

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Most Israelis are refugees from Muslim countries. Will they get a "right of return"?

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The Jewish people have lived in the region for more than 3500 years. Why is the world happy with Pakistan but not Israel? It was created at roughly the same time for similar reasons, but the Jews also are the only people who the world wants abolished.

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95% of Jews have almost no meaningful connection to Israel pre 1900, stop being silly. Israel should exist because it’s a successful first world country and a beautiful place, not because some hocus pocus voodoo book from the Iron Age says so.

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The Jews are not going to be abolished without Israel, that's very melodramatic. Fact is, when a country is founded through the displacement of nearly a million people, it is illegitimate. They could have chosen to play it differently, but they didn't, and they shouldn't get away with doing something like that in the 20th century.

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Pakistan displaced millions of Hindus and Sikhs.

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The price of that is that no one thinks of Pakistan as being civilized. Perhaps a happy medium would be for the developed nations to cut Israel loose. Though of course, are the developed nations truly so civilized? Looking at the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, and the destruction of Libya, I'm leaning towards "No". Perhaps Netanyahu is correct in saying might makes right.

But really, that doesn't make me accept Israel, it just makes me think every extant government is illegitimate.

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You know nothing about history. The Jews accepted the 1947 UN partition plan. The Arabs didn't. This plan gave most of the fertile land to the Arabs and the desert and some of the coast areas to the Jews.

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You know, in a sane world, the refusal of the Arabs would just have stopped this project. Israel could only have been founded collaboratively, and if you're not getting collaboration, then that's it, you stop. You don't, instead, pull a Nakba.

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The partition gave a ton more land to the Jews than they previously had at the expense of the Arabs. Why is it some indictment on the Arabs that they refused?

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You don’t accept Israel despite clearly documented evidence that there has been an Israel in the region for 3500 years?

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Come on, everyone is talking about the state that was founded in 1948, that didn't exist before then, unless you want to go to Biblical times, but that's like if the Italians started citing the Roman Empire to claim dominion over Europe.

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Gaza was occupied by Egypt and the West Bank by Jordan after 48. The country which confined Palestinians to Gaza is Egypt.

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But somehow, countries who did it before the 20th century are OK?

The Zionists supported the partition. The displacement happened AFTER there was a violent rejection.

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Of course they supported the partition. It was completely in their favor.

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Oct 16, 2023·edited Oct 16, 2023

They got a slim majority of the land, but a slim minority of the arable land. The partition had a special arrangement to send a bunch of extra tax money from the Jewish state to the Arab state to compensate for any lost tax revenue, and an economic/customs union.

Look here https://avalon.law.yale.edu/20th_century/res181.asp . The plan called for "Preserving freedom of transit and visit for all residents and citizens of the other State in Palestine and the City of Jerusalem, subject to considerations of national security, provided that each State shall control residence within its borders." So yes, the Yishuv actually accepted "Open Borders for Israel" for Palestinians (in modern language, no green card, but yes visa-free travel).

The Jewish state had a narrow Jewish majority, while the Arab state was overwhelmingly Arab. The whole area was something like 1/3 Jewish. But tons of Jews were moving to Israel in those years, and within a decade Jews would have constituted a majority or very close to it of the whole area anyway (and again, lots of Jews means economic productivity and more tax revenue for the Arab state). Holocaust survivors moving there from Europe, and Jews from the Muslim/Arab world which was full of Arab nationalism and Nazi antisemitism (many of these countries were full of pro-Nazi Arab nationalism, the Arab nationalists were aligned with the Nazis and supported them, while the Zionists were aligned with the British and fought on the Allied side in WWII).

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Oct 12, 2023·edited Oct 12, 2023

Happy with Pakistan? Not this boy. Making majorities out of minorities seems generally fraught.

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I agree, but how many people have you ever seen asking for Pakistan to be ended, and then ask yourself how many times have you seen people asking for Israel to be ended.

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Pakistan is not a culturally western offspring which we bankroll. The money we give to pakistan is just there to keep the Muslim hardliners at bay, not to secure its existence. I have a certain disdain for this "well, everyone else is doing it" argument for expedient atrocity in the service of state building. Israel is our particular business because they want our business, simply put.

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I ask the same questions, how many people call for the abolition of Pakistan? How many people call for the abolition of Israel?

You know the truth, but for some inexplicable reason it’s always the Jews that are persecuted.

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I just told you the distinction. One country is secured by us for its existence, the other is paid off to put metropolitan leaders in power. Calling for the abolition of pakistan is meaningless, like calling for the abolition of north korea. The special scrutiny given to Israel is directly proportional to its proximity to the West geopolitically speaking.

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People just want to cut ties with Israel, but because of the Fitzcarraldo nature of Israel, this would be tantamount to ending Israel. Ending Pakistan could only be done through conquest, it's not really the same thing.

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A dozen countries founded or restored immediately after WWII ethnically cleansed their territory. Most notably Poland, Pakistan and India.

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Oh and every MENA country except Morocco ethnically cleansed its Jews

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Certainly they learned from the Holocaust: that they weren't safe without their own country.

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Israel and its supporters get a vote on that suggestion. I suspect they vote No.

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I think that Hamas is far closer to Nazi rhetoric. I don't know exactly what Israel conquered, they seem to have got their independence from the United Kingdom.

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Both American and Israeli non-Orthodox Ashkenazim lean left and Mizrahim and Orthodox lean right. The difference is their proportions. 90% of American Jews are Ashkenazim while 60% of Israeli Jews are Mizrahim. And Orthodox are 10% of American Jewry and 20% of Israeli.

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I think Israeli Jews are closer to half half (and among newborns it’s maybe 60% Ashkenazi and increasing because of the Haredim).

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Interesting perspective. Thoughts from others? Is not a Jew a Jew?

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Both American and Israeli non-Orthodox Ashkenazim lean left and Mizrahim and Orthodox lean right. The difference is their proportions. 90% of American Jews are Ashkenazim while 60% of Israeli Jews are Mizrahim.

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Native Americans were so thoroughly defeated & destroyed that they ceased to pose any threat to us. The US government kept fighting them rather than trying to make up for the past with them until that point. You just saw that Hamas is still a threat, so there's no way a government in that situation would make nice with them.

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I’m honest enough to admit that many Germans hated the West and the Jews for Versailles and Dresden, and I don’t blame them. Understandable is not just.

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Most Palestinians don't live in the Gaza Strip, the West Bank has a considerably larger population.

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I agree Germany was left in a good place after WW2. I hope the Palestinians do great as well. But they need to be Nazified first.

“The Jews” were big doves in Germany (remember how anti militaristic Einstein was even before WW1) and massively overrepresented among communists, and among the loudest and most influential voiced in the US and UK calling for Dresden. I hate Nazism but this idea that the Nazis just went and genocided Jews for no reason. Of course the Nazis were totally wrong that the Jews were conspiring to destroy Germany. But the idea that Nazi actions had nothing to do with real trends and problematic anti nationalistic / communist behavior that existed among the Jewish population (in Germany, elsewhere in Europe, in America, etc) is not true. The overrepresentation of Jews among communists was a legitimate grievance they had against “the Jews” (it’s a legitimate reason to want fewer Jews in your country, it should be balanced against other concerns like the high human capital of Jews), of course they took it out a crazy insane genocide targeting all Jews, not just the communistic ones.

Nazis were awful and they accused Jews of all sorts of false conspiracy theories, and attributed the bad behavior of some minority of Jews to all Jews, but these conspiracies were based on a kernel of truth.

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I just read a Public article that stated Netanyahu supported Hamas to create political divisions between Hamas and the PA in order to sabotage any momentum for a two-state solution.

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This is nonsense. Netanyahu doesn't have near enough dictatorial power to survive the next election. Golda Meir had to fall on her sword for the Yom Kippur War, and that wasn't nearly as disastrous as this.

Putin got away with his own false-flag terrorism because he just killed a bunch of slum dwellers, was running against the Commies, and Russia had barely any tradition of representative governance.

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I believe this is a reference to the past, well before the political blowback likely to hit him, back when Fatah was considered a much bigger problem.

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It’s not a false flag, it’s been publicly admitted. See the Haaretz article.

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