• Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Subscribe
  • RSS

F.A.A. Halts Flights From U.S. To Israel For 24 Hours

The Federal Aviation Administration has halted all flights from the U.S. to Israel for 24 hours in response to a rocket attack near Ben Gurion Airport:

Major American airlines stopped flying to Israel on Tuesday after a rocket fell near Ben-Gurion International Airport outside Tel Aviv, and after the Federal Aviation Administration told the carriers not to fly to Tel Aviv for 24 hours.

All three United States carriers with service to Israel – Delta Air Lines, United Airlines and US Airways – said they had temporarily suspended their flights. The move highlighted the impact of the conflict in the Gaza Strip on the Israeli economy at the height of the summer tourism season.

It also came at a time when airlines around the globe appeared to be much more sensitive about the risks of flying over conflict areas, following the downing of a Malaysia Airlines jetliner over eastern Ukraine last week.

For the moment, European airlines are still operating their flights. British Airways, for instance, said it “continues to operate as normal” and is monitoring the situation closely.

Delta suspended its service between Kennedy International Airport and Tel Aviv “until further notice” and did not indicate when it might resume flights. US Airways said that it canceled Tuesday’s flight from Philadelphia and that it was in contact with federal authorities. United canceled its two daily flights from Newark Liberty International Airport on Tuesday.

Delta had a flight in the air on its way to Israel when the decision was made. Flight 468, a Boeing 747 with 273 passengers and 17 crew members aboard, was diverted to Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris after the rocket fell in Yehud, a Tel Aviv suburb just north of the airport. According to Flightradar24.com, the plane was flying over Greece, about two hours from its destination, when it turned around and diverted to Paris.

An Israeli official, speaking on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the matter publicly, said that Israel had had no advance notification by the airlines of their intention to cancel flights. The official insisted that it was safe to fly to Israel.

“If they wanted to hand the terrorists a prize they couldn’t have chosen a better way,” the official said, adding, “If it was safe so far, why would it not be safe now? Nothing has changed. The airport has been there since Day 1.”

Obviously, the F.A.A. would not have taken a step like this if it didn’t consider the threat to be a serious one. Nonetheless, it isn’t going to make Israel very happy. What will be interesting to see is whether this ban goes beyond 24 hours.

Related Posts:

About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May, 2010 and also writes at Below The Beltway. Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. mantis says:

    “If they wanted to hand the terrorists a prize they couldn’t have chosen a better way,”

    Well, they could have invaded Gaza or killed a bunch of kids playing on the beach. But he’s right, nothing will advance the terrorists’ goals more than a few delayed flights.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 8

  2. @mantis:

    Or, you know, Hamas could not have started sending rockets into Israel, murdering Israeli teenagers, and constructing tunnels designed to hide weapons and allow terrorists to sneak into Israel from Gaza undetected.

    Technicalities,, I know.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 10

  3. Tillman says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    murdering Israeli teenagers

    You know that probably wasn’t Hamas, right? Although PM Netanyahu did accuse them of it, sure. Kind of like Iraq having WMDs as of right now.

    constructing tunnels designed to hide weapons and allow terrorists to sneak into Israel from Gaza undetected.

    Well, when you construct a gigantic blockade around an area, hampering normal entrepreneurs by the way (the biggest ever intrusion of government on free enterprise), tunnels look attractive.

    But no, let’s re-litigate the multitudinous tragedies inflicted on one side or the other going back to the 1948 Arab-Israeli war, that’s a useful exercise.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 21 Thumb down 4

  4. Yolo Contendere says:

    @Doug Mataconis: So is Hamas a terrorist organization, or a government? If the former, how are Israel’s actions not collective punishment? If the latter, how is the blockade not an act of war?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 2

  5. Tillman says:

    On the topic at hand, the destructive power of Hamas rockets is debatable. This seems more a reaction to MH17 in Ukraine than anything else. That Israel’s taking it personally (going off the anonymous official’s protests) is another sign of how much Israel is losing the public opinion battle.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1

  6. @Yolo Contendere:

    It’s a terrorist organization.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  7. Matt Bernius says:

    @Tillman:

    You know that probably wasn’t Hamas, right?

    It’s more complex than that. The two main suspects are associated with the Hebron branch of Hama. That said, the Qawasameh Family/Tribe tends to act as independent agents as well — often against the interests of the Gaza Branch of Hamas.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Qawasameh_tribe
    http://blogs.forward.com/jj-goldberg/201172/unruly-hebron-clan-pushes-hamas-and-israel-to/
    http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2014/06/qawasmeh-clan-hebron-hamas-leadership-mahmoud-abbas.html#

    Again, part of the challenge is that organizations like Hamas don’t fit well into our American/Western conceptions of well defined hierarchical institutions.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  8. Yolo Contendere says:

    @Doug Mataconis: So, were you planning on answering the follow-up question?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  9. @Yolo Contendere:

    If there is a war, Hamas started it with not only rocket attacks but also suicide bombers. Indeed, it was the Hamas suicide bombers coming in from Gaza that made the blockade inevitable.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  10. mantis says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    Or, you know, Hamas could not have started sending rockets into Israel, murdering Israeli teenagers, and constructing tunnels designed to hide weapons and allow terrorists to sneak into Israel from Gaza undetected.

    I don’t think you understood my point, though that’s probably my fault. The point is that Hamas, such as it has coherent goals, wants to provoke such reactions from Israel. They aren’t trying to minorly disrupt air travel, they are trying to garner sympathy and support from sympathetic states and Muslims around the world. Their goal, ironically, is similar to Gandhi’s under the British Raj, but they use the exact opposite tactics.

    I in no way meant to blame Israel for justifiably responding to the real and persistent threat, even if I don’t believe it will resolve anything and is little more than the next round in a never-ending whack-a-mole game. And I certainly don’t mean to excuse the actions of Hamas.

    Isreal should not, however, blow up kids playing on beaches. Beyond the horrific human consequence of such a mistake, it will only make the conflict worse. And yes, I hold Israel to a higher standard than I do Hamas, as they are an ally, a democracy, and have far greater military might than their adversaries.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 2

  11. @mantis:

    I seriously doubt that Israel intended to “blow up kids playing on beaches.”

    I have no doubt, though, that Hamas intends to kill civilians every time it fires a rocket.

    That’s the difference in my mind.

    And I say that as someone who has been critical of Israel in the past and is likely to be critical of Israel in the future.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 2

  12. Ron Beasley says:

    I understand that most other airlines have stopped flights into Israel which will hurt since this is the height of the tourist season.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  13. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    BTW, Israel has now found concealed rockets inside two United Nations-run schools, and Hamas has moved its government headquarters into a hospital. Those are war crimes, and that means, as long as they keep refusing to consider cease-fires, those schools and that hospital are valid and legitimate military targets.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 7

  14. anjin-san says:

    @ Jenos Idanian #13

    those schools and that hospital are valid and legitimate military targets.

    Well, this is big news for you. Grab some popcorn and practice making your BOOM BOOM noises.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 2

  15. @Ron Beasley:

    That’s really the bigger issue, the economic impact.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  16. Yolo Contendere says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    If there is a war, Hamas started it with not only rocket attacks but also suicide bombers. Indeed, it was the Hamas suicide bombers coming in from Gaza that made the blockade inevitable.

    So Hamas is government. Got it. So they’re not allowed to respond to an act of war because…?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2

  17. @Yolo Contendere:

    Again if by your logic there is a war, it is a war that Hamas started.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1

  18. Tillman says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    Those are war crimes, and that means, as long as they keep refusing to consider cease-fires, those schools and that hospital are valid and legitimate military targets.

    Ah.

    The logic is straightforward: insofar as Hamas hides weapons in houses (illegitimate), Israel can bomb them as if they were military targets (legitimate). Within this framework, a single function (hiding weapons) out of many existing functions (home, shelter, intimacy, etc) determines the status of an urban site (in our case the house), so that the edifice’s form loses its traditional signification.

    The question “when does it become a legitimate military target?” is merely rhetorical. Its real meaning is: “All houses in Gaza are legitimate targets” since all houses are potentially non-homes.

    All civilians in Gaza are being held hostage by Hamas, which is considered a war crime and a gross violation of international law governing armed conflict. This, then, provides legal and moral justification against the accusation that Israel is the one killing civilians. Presumed human rights violations carried out by Palestinians against Palestinians – taking hostages and human shielding – thus become the legitimization of lethal and indiscriminate violence on the part of the occupying force.

    Hence, the use of human shields is not only a violation. In contemporary asymmetric urban wars, accusing the enemy of using human shields helps validate the claim that the death of “untargeted civilians” is merely collateral damage. When all civilians are potential human shields, when each and every civilian can become a hostage of the enemy, then all enemy civilians become killable.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  19. mantis says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    I seriously doubt that Israel intended to “blow up kids playing on beaches.”

    Me too, which is why I called it a mistake. Immediately following that mistake with an invasion seemed like a mistake to me too, but that now appears to be pretty focused on the tunnels.

    I have no doubt, though, that Hamas intends to kill civilians every time it fires a rocket.

    Indeed, hence my description of “anti-Gandhi” tactics.

    That’s the difference in my mind.

    I don’t dispute that, but the effect is the same on the ground. The Palestinians will not much care that the Israelis didn’t mean to blow up kids on the beach, even if they believe it. The outcome, and reaction, is indifferent to intent.

    Both sides have to quit justifying escalation each time anything happens, or this conflict will never, ever end. I have hope Israel will eventually realize this and lead the way. I have no such hope for Hamas.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  20. @Yolo Contendere:

    Curious, though, are you not even going to condemn the fact that Hamas is hiding its weapons in schools, which is generally considered a war crime?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  21. Yolo Contendere says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    I seriously doubt that Israel intended to “blow up kids playing on beaches.”

    I have no doubt, though, that Hamas intends to kill civilians every time it fires a rocket.

    That’s the difference in my mind.

    So, what’s the substantive difference between intending to kill civilians and expecting to kill civilians? To the dead civilian, that is. Feel free to give thought to the disproportionate efficacy in killing, inverse to what one might expect given the intentions.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  22. Tillman says:

    @Matt Bernius: The link I had there mentioned the Qawasameh. Nothing is ever simple with these people.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  23. @Yolo Contendere:

    So you’re arguing that Israel cannot defend itself because it is better at defending itself, collateral damage notwithstanding and not being excused, than Hamas is at killing the Jews that it quite obviously hates?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 2

  24. Yolo Contendere says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    Again if by your logic there is a war, it is a war that Hamas started.

    By my logic? I’m merely trying to determine whether you view Hamas as a terrorist organization, or as a government, and how you reconcile Israel’s actions given your view. I really don’t care who started it. I care that people are dying.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1

  25. Yolo Contendere says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    Curious, though, are you not even going to condemn the fact that Hamas is hiding its weapons in schools, which is generally considered a war crime?

    I had no idea I was required to condemn them. I do so now. I also condemn Hitler, Stalin, and broccoli.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 2

  26. Yolo Contendere says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    So you’re arguing that Israel cannot defend itself because it is better at defending itself, collateral damage notwithstanding and not being excused, than Hamas is at killing the Jews that it quite obviously hates?

    I am not arguing that at all. So far, I have not argued anything. However, since it seems important to you, I will argue that Israel, because it is vastly better at defending itself, should be somewhat more reticent in its actions. Particularly if it wants hostilities to end. Does it want to still be dealing with this 50 years from now? 100?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  27. @Yolo Contendere:

    And people wouldn’t be dying if Hamas weren’t provoking Israel by sending rockets in or, you know, if Hamas would concede the fact that Israel has a right to exist (something it does not do, unlike the Palestinian Authority)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 3

  28. Matt Bernius says:

    @Tillman,

    I know it was mentioned at the link. But the likely involvement of the Qawasameh makes it difficult to say “it probably wasn’t Hamas.”

    All signs point to the fact that *Hamas in Gaza* wasn’t involved. But the fact is that the Qawasameh are part of the larger, nebulous Hamas entity.

    Which also gets to a bigger issue that complicates and dealings with Hamas — it is at once (a) a political entity, (b) a military/terrorist entity, and (c) an organized crime entity. That said its individual members may only belong to only one of these branches. And in fact not all of its branches belong to all three categories.

    There are historical Western models for dealing with this (see the British negotiations with Sinn Féin). But, its difficult to see how this can happen until there is a harder divide between the political and militant wings of the organization. Unfortunately, its difficult to see how things get to that point while Gaza exists in its current quazi-country state (which gets back to Yolo’s point).

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  29. Yolo Contendere says:

    @Doug Mataconis: So Hamas is responsible for civilians in Gaza dying. Got it. And they provoked Israel by firing rockets, which has nothing to do with the blockade. Got it. So they’re terrorists then?

    Look, since you don’t seem to get what I articulated in my very first post, I’ll change it from a question to a statement. We, and Israel, and anyone else with an interest in the situation, need to decide if Hamas is a terrorist organization or a government, and act accordingly. Conflating the designation depending on the justification needed for actions is not going to solve anything, but merely prolong the suffering.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

  30. JKB says:

    Inadvertently, Hamas has made it imperative that Israel find and destroy all the Hamas rockets. No nation can stand by while terrorists/hostile government targets international air travelers. It is their duty to stop all threats to their airports and civilian air traffic.

    The Obama administration by imposing the flight ban has clarified that the international community considers the threats to international flights to be clear and present danger.

    Any ceasefire that leaves Hamas with the capabilities to attack civilian aircraft without warning cannot be accepted. Not to mention, their missile suppliers, uhm, Iran, will now have to answer to the international community if a civilian airline is hit.

    Oops.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  31. SKI says:

    @Yolo Contendere: Why can’t we deal with the reality that they are both?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  32. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    People here who keep saying that Hamas isn’t directly responsible for the rockets are making excuses for Hamas that Hamas itself isn’t putting forth. They have issued ZERO denials of responsibility for the attacks. Instead, they threaten more attacks and reject calls for ceasefires. They go on their public broadcast channels and encourage people to act as human shields. They issue talking points for social media to play up their “victim” status and deny or minimize their jihadi status.

    And yeah, no one wants to talk about it, but Palestinians were hiding rockets inside UN-run schools. That means that the UN either knew about those rockets, or should have known.

    The last time I mentioned that Hamas has had repeated opportunities to accept a ceasefire and refused, I noted in a less-than-serious tone that that meant they were willing to keep getting attacked by Israel — that is the logical consequence of refusing a ceasefire. But that was not well-received, so I’ve considered a couple of alternate proposals in which I pay respects to the notion of “proportional response.”

    1) For every rocket attack into Israel, Israel will submit a bill to Hamas for A) any property damage the rocket causes and B) the cost of any interceptor rockets fired. For each Israeli injured, Israel will send a bill for that person’s medical care and they will be allowed to sue Hamas for damages. For every Israeli killed, the IDF will be allowed to kill one Hamas operative. For each Hamas infiltrator killed in Israel, Israel will send a bill for all munitions expended in killing them.

    2) Alternately, for each unguided rocket fired into Israel, Israel can fire back one unguided rocket into Gaza. For each infiltrator Hamas sends into Israel, Israel can kill one Hamas operative or official within Gaza.

    There, does that sound nice and fair and proportional?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 4

  33. T says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    For each Hamas infiltrator killed in Israel, Israel the USA will send a bill for all munitions expended in killing them.

    ftfy

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  34. Tillman says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    People here who keep saying that Hamas isn’t directly responsible for the rockets…

    Did anyone write that? A quick Ctrl+F on “rocket” doesn’t suggest so.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  35. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Tillman: That was in a previous thread, Tillman. Here’s Matt Bernius saying how Hamas was preventing rocket attacks, and “joined the rocket fire late.”

    Here’s Modulo Myself on the same thread:

    If this is true, the rockets probably came from other militant groups in Gaza, and not the de facto government.

    There are other comments in the same vein.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2

  36. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    BTW, here’s a comment from another prior thread:

    The Beat the SandNig Wogs into submission approach Israeli leadership believes in is not going to work – it hasn’t worked in the past and won’t work now. that is pure fantasy.

    Is that language permissible under this site’s TOS?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 5

  37. Yolo Contendere says:

    @SKI:

    Why can’t we deal with the reality that they are both?

    Are you asking rhetorically why we can’t deal with the complexity, or sincerely why we can’t treat them as both, depending on how we would like to respond to them. If the later, go back to my first post. If they are government, then the blockade is an act of war, and Israel can’t very well say the rockets being launched at them are a terrorist threat. It is a governmental action while in a state of war. However, if they are terrorists, then the blockade is collective punishment on the civilian population. Collective punishment is a BAD THING, in fact it is a WAR CRIME. Some might even say it ranks right up there with hiding your weapons in a school.

    Israel obviously wants to have it both ways. But the U.S. can’t. Or shouldn’t, anyway. As it is, we are either taking sides in a war by giving money and military aid, or aiding in a war crime, by giving money and military aid. Now, no one we care about is going to accuse us of either, but we should stop being surprised when some asshole with little to lose does something stupid that ends up costing American lives.

    But that strays from the real point, which is how to end hostilities and end the killing. As Matt B. points out, there are models for this. But we’re not going to get there if Israel’s playing “heads, I win; tails, you lose”. I agree Israel is in a difficult situation. I really hoped Iron Dome was going to allow them to give calm, measured responses. It seems more like it allows them to act with impunity. I don’t think I got my money’s worth.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  38. JKB says:

    @Yolo Contendere:

    Whether Hamas is a government or terrorists is moot now. With the targeting of an international civilian airport, Hamas has committed an international crime. Regardless of that, however, the international community cannot permit Hamas to continue to receive missiles with which to target civilian airports. In point of fact, other nations should join Israel in conducting the blockade. Israel permits the movement of non-blockaded goods that are landed at an Israeli port for inspection. Israel provides concrete for legitimate construction but controls it as it is used by Hamas to construct their tunnels.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  39. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @JKB: With the targeting of an international civilian airport, Hamas has committed an international crime.

    Pardon the language here, but so effing what?

    You’re dealing with rabid antisemites here. The only thing they want to do is talk about how horrible Israel is. They will not acknowledge anything Israel does that makes them look better, and they certainly will not acknowledge anything that Hamas does.

    Hamas has targeted a civilian airport? So what?

    Hamas has targeted Israel’s civilian nuclear power plant, an act explicitly defined by the UN as an act of nuclear terrorism? So what?

    Hamas has ordered civilians to make them human shields for weapons? So what?

    Hamas has used UN schools to conceal its rockets? So what?

    Hamas has moved its government into a hospital? So what?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 7

  40. JKB says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    True, true, but right now, to avoid being shot down over the Ukraine, air flights out of the EU to SE Asia and Australia are diverting over Syria. Now, Hamas is targeting aircraft to the west of that route.

    This is the legacy of the current weakness of American and European foreign policy. But more importantly, it will keep Europeans from their cheap Thai vacations.

    In any case, if it becomes to dangerous to fly from Europe to Asia, except via America, that will be a significant legacy and blow to the EU economy. On the later, wait until winter and that natural gas from Russia via the Ukraine have, uhm, difficulties.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 3

  41. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @JKB: Geez, we chased them all away. I feel almost guilty…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

  42. wr says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13: Hint to Jenos: “Anti-semite” does not actually mean “opposed to the policies of the current government of Israel.”

    Maybe you’ll meet a Jew someday and you can ask for yourself. But for now, please take my word as a tribesman in good standing.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  43. anjin-san says:

    @ Jenos

    You’re dealing with rabid antisemites here.

    Ah, so we are RAAAAAAACISTS!

    Congratulations, you are now officially a parody of yourself. When a parody is based on such dull material as yours, it is truly a sorry spectacle.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  44. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @wr: Thank you for your kind words, but I’ve met a considerable number of Jews, and look forward to meeting more. I’ve even attended Jewish services on occasion.

    But since you’re feeling in a generous mood, perhaps you could offer a more precise term for those people who hold Israel to an impossible moral standard, while refusing to acknowledge the utterly reprehensible and inexcusable conduct of Israel’s enemies in this case? What sort of term would better encapsulate this disgusting double standard?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 3

  45. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @anjin-san: (shrug) I thought everyone had left, like on the Vargas thread. But I’ll make you the same offer — if you have a term you prefer to describe this bigoted double standard, let’s hear it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 3

  46. mantis says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    But since you’re feeling in a generous mood, perhaps you could offer a more precise term for those people who hold Israel to an impossible moral standard, while refusing to acknowledge the utterly reprehensible and inexcusable conduct of Israel’s enemies in this case?

    How about strawmen? Rabid strawmen?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  47. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @mantis: Fine, you’re a rabid strawmen. Happy now?

    And a coward, too, who ran away from the Vargas thread when you accused me of “making shit up” when I was quoting Vargas’ own words.

    Oh, and here’s a freebie for you: Israel just bombed a Gaza hospital.

    Said hospital was being used as a command post, bunker, and rocket-launching site, but still… HOSPITAL!!!!!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

  48. anjin-san says:

    @ Jenos

    I thought everyone had left

    I have no doubt that you have found yourself alone, wondering why everyone left, on countless occasions in your life.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  49. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @anjin-san: You really have a sad little tell, annie. When you lift my comments out of context to make a snide little remark, you are admitting you have absolutely nothing of substance to add any more (assuming you had anything to say in the first place).

    You need a new schtick, schmuck.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

  50. anjin-san says:

    perhaps you could offer a more precise term for those people who hold Israel to an impossible moral standard

    Golly gee, that is an easy one. I would call them US taxpayers who provide Israel with the weapons it is using, and pick up the tab in general. It’s not unreasonable for people to expect some accountability when they are paying for something.

    an impossible moral standard

    Personally, I am holding Israel to a high moral standard. Now that is difficult to meet, but it is hardly impossible.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  51. anjin-san says:

    @ Jenos

    Turnabout is fair play. If you can’t take it, remember to bring some hankies next time.

    annie

    Right. Why don’t you run along and find some other 13 year olds to hang out with? You can make up all the silly names you want then.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  52. anjin-san says:

    When you lift my comments out of context

    Dude, your comments always have more or less the same context. It’s “I’m not very bright, and the one thing I am really good at is annoying people.”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  53. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @anjin-san: Golly gee, that is an easy one. I would call them US taxpayers who provide Israel with the weapons it is using, and pick up the tab in general. It’s not unreasonable for people to expect some accountability when they are paying for something.

    Annie, you’re dealing with a conflict that has one side:

    1) Refusing to even consider any ceasefire.

    2) Orders civilians to serve as human shields.

    3) Uses schools and hospitals as military bases.

    4) Proudly commits acts of international terrorism (attacking an international airport) and nuclear terrorism (attacking a nuclear power plant).

    5) Sends infiltrators into Israel to slaughter civilians.

    –among other atrocities.

    And you’re spewing ALL your indignation on the other side. Even for you, that’s an appalling double standard.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 3

  54. mantis says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    Fine, you’re a rabid strawmen. Happy now?

    You might want to learn what that term means.

    And a coward, too, who ran away from the Vargas thread when you accused me of “making shit up” when I was quoting Vargas’ own words.

    I was busy, and responding to you is very low on my list of priorities. In any case, I thought you were referencing an earlier article by Vargas where he mentions carrying two documents when he travels, the Constitution and his Phillipines passport. I had not seen the tweet you referenced in which he writes “ID,” and assumed you made it up, as you so often do (just like how you invent positions for others, like in this thread). Any person with a functioning brain would know Vargas does not actually consider the Constitution to be a form of personal ID, and probably was saving character space, using “ID” instead of “documents” because of Twitter’s character limits. But carry on with your silly crusade.

    It is amusing that you would call me a coward for not revisiting the thread, considering you always disappear once other commenters destroy your pathetic “arguments.” I guess you would be good at spotting cowardice; it’s your key character trait.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  55. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @mantis: So, basically, to put a nail in that thread’s coffin:

    Vargas said something stupid. I quoted him accurately. You assumed that I was making it up and declared that as a fact without bothering to check. I proved you wrong. You were too busy to be bothered to even acknowledge the error, and consider it so insignificant to own up to or bother to keep it from happening again. That about it?

    Now, to the topic at hand… in this current conflict, as before several times, Israel has repeatedly acted in a far more moral, ethical, and responsible fashion than Hamas. And even Hamas admits, tacitly, that Israel is morally superior.

    Here’s how it works: Hamas uses schools and hospitals for military operations. Setting aside international law that explicitly lists this as war crimes, they do this for a very pragmatic reason: they know that this will give Israel pause in attacking those military positions. Part of the reason for this is that Israel does not want to kill or injure innocents.

    Conversely, Israel does not use hospitals or schools for military operations. Again, setting aside international law, they do this for pragmatic reasons: they know this will not give Hamas pause. Hamas would gleefully attack Israeli schools and hospitals.

    A key element of Hamas’ strategy is depending on Israel’s morality. Another key element is their rejecting any moral or ethical restraints. One of Hamas’ more recent battle cries is that “we love death more than you love life.”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

  56. wr says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13: “But since you’re feeling in a generous mood, perhaps you could offer a more precise term for those people who hold Israel to an impossible moral standard, while refusing to acknowledge the utterly reprehensible and inexcusable conduct of Israel’s enemies in this case? What sort of term would better encapsulate this disgusting double standard?”

    Well, since I’ve never come across anyone who holds those opinions, short of the occasional fringe-nuts — the equivalent of Larouche followers — I’ve never had to come up with a term for them.

    But if you are looking for a word that means “people who believe the Israeli government should not act like apartheid South Africa,” well, most of the people I know who feel that way simply call themselves Jews.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  57. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @wr: But if you are looking for a word that means “people who believe the Israeli government should not act like apartheid South Africa,” well, most of the people I know who feel that way simply call themselves Jews.

    One would think that a “tribesman” wouldn’t fall for the blood libel that Israel is an “apartheid” state. But then, you really are that stupid.

    Almost one-quarter of Israel’s population is Arabic.

    There are no “homelands” for those Israeli citizens.

    They are not required to serve in the IDF, but are welcomed.

    A full 10% of the Knesset is Arab.

    Compare their rights in Israel vs. those rights of Jews in the Palestinian-controlled territories.

    That’s a trick question. There are no Jews living in Palestinian-controlled territories. They’ve been rendered Judenrein beyond Hitler’s fondest dreams.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 3

  58. mantis says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    Vargas said something stupid. I quoted him accurately.

    Yes, while applying zero critical thinking, typically.

    You assumed that I was making it up and declared that as a fact without bothering to check.

    Yes, my bad. You do make shit up all the time though, like on this thread, attributing absurd positions to people they do not express.

    I proved you wrong. You were too busy to be bothered to even acknowledge the error, and consider it so insignificant to own up to or bother to keep it from happening again.

    No, I just spent very little time on blogs for several days. It’s not a priority for me. Since you brought it up, though, I reviewed the thread and acknowledged it right here. I don’t know how you could possibly know I won’t “bother to keep it from happening again,” without the ability to see into the future, but when has ignorance ever stopped you from making assertions?

    That about it?

    Pot, meet kettle.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  59. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    Let me elaborate: here’s a list of living conditions, in descending order of preference.

    Arab in Israel



    Black in apartheid South Africa.





    Jew in Nazi-occupied Europe.
    Jew in Palestinian-controlled territory.

    (In Europe, at least, there was an active underground movement that protected Jews.)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

  60. mantis says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    One would think that a “tribesman” wouldn’t fall for the blood libel that Israel is an “apartheid” state.

    Another term you clearly do not understand.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  61. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @mantis: So, “critical thinking” is taking what someone says and then “fixing” it for them, and it’s biased and dishonest to just repeat their words verbatim.

    Maybe you ought to go back and spend more time away from commenting.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  62. mantis says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    And where do Palestinians living in the Palestinian territories fall on that list?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  63. mantis says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    So, “critical thinking” is taking what someone says and then “fixing” it for them, and it’s biased and dishonest to just repeat their words verbatim.

    I didn’t say it was biased and dishonest, just simple-minded and uncharitable, as well as deliberately ignorant of the constraints of the medium. I suppose you just take everything everyone says literally, all the time. One must get really tired of talking to you, since you apparently can’t understand idiom, humor, or slang.

    Maybe you ought to go back and spend more time away from commenting.

    Yeah, I’ll start taking advice from the likes of you.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  64. mantis says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    There are no Jews living in Palestinian-controlled territories

    How many whites lived in the Homelands of Apartheid South Africa? One does not live in the prison to which one exiles the undesirables. It’s very unwise.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  65. Tillman says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    Part of the reason for this is that Israel does not want to kill or injure innocents.

    They’re doing a horrible job then. Or, to phrase it closer to how you would, Hamas is doing a terrible job exploiting Israel’s moral superiority.

    My problem with your moral argument is you’re taking an intentional stance about things: Israel does not want to kill civilians, while Hamas does, so Hamas is morally evil. This ignores the reality on the ground, which can be evaluated better with a consequential stance. Israel has killed 200+ civilians so far, while Hamas has killed (charitably) 4. I think recent Israeli death tolls include soldiers, and are somewhere around, what, 20? (I honestly don’t know, I stopped checking the Israel vs. Hamas death toll once the 700 number from the Syrian civil war came out yesterday.) The point is, when you have a guy who doesn’t want to kill people but has killed scores, and a guy who wants to kill everyone but only manages under 10, you tend to think the latter is an unstable psychopath but the former is a mass murderer.

    This doesn’t even get into the circumstances surrounding the blockade or the recent history of the conflict, none of which make Israel look better (or Hamas, but no one likes them).

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  66. Tillman says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13: Are we really going to call “not re-visiting a thread” cowardice now? Because you never got back to me about your semantic quibble in another post now off the front page. That wasn’t due to cowardice, I suspect?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  67. Tillman says:

    I know the news is still talking about the FAA’s and [insert equivalent European agency]‘s decision to suspend flights for a day, but no one has said whether the ban has been renewed for longer or not.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  68. mantis says:

    @Tillman:

    Are we really going to call “not re-visiting a thread” cowardice now?

    Indeed, he has not come back to this thread, still on the front page, to respond to the many counterarguments and questions directed at him. Cowardice?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  69. mantis says:

    @Tillman:

    The FAA renewed the ban for another 24 hours.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  70. anjin-san says:

    @ Tillman

    This is what you get for not paying more careful attention to Jenos…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0