I was reading an article in the "Atheist Revolution" blog and I came across this snippet:

When I encounter a parent telling her children about Santa Claus, I may find it unfortunate that someone would lie to one's own child merely for entertainment purposes. The potential for harm here seems trivially small. I cannot say the same for the Muslim parent instructing his son in the virtues of martyrdom or the Christian who tells her daughter that her Jewish friends will go to hell because they have not been "saved."

Could we not add something like the following to the last sentence:

...or the jew who tells his kids that he's "chosen" and has a covenant with god that entitles him and his "people" to the land of Israel, and then uses that as justification for a bloody occupation of Palestine.

The one-year anniversary of Operation Cast Lead is approaching (Dec. 27th) and I think we should take a look at where we've come since then. The Goldstone Report: buried. Settlements: expanding. Palestinian house demolitions: continuing.

As atheists, we should be appalled whenever religion is used to justify actions that result in suffering or death. We do not seem to hesitate to speak out when a child dies because a Christian Scientist eschewed Western medicine in favor of prayer. We do not seem to hesitate to speak out when a Muslim nutjob finds motivation in his religion to grab some firearms and gun down some people. Why are we silent when an ethnic group uses a story about chosen people and covenants in The Big Book of Jewish Fairy Tales (aka, the Old Testament) to justify what is looking more and more like a slow, methodical ethnic cleansing campaign? Why do the Jews need to have Jerusalem all to themselves? Why is it so important to them to have a Jewish majority that they'll turn Gaza into a prison camp and The West Bank into Swiss cheese where the Palestinians are forced to live on smaller and smaller plots of land and endure more and more restrictions on their movement? If this were being done to a Jewish population they'd be screaming about a second holocaust.

The bottom line is that all three major religions are guilty of many modern-day atrocities and have a great deal of blood on their metaphorical hands. Why do we only bewail the actions of two of those three major religions?

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As I understand it the Nakba began in late 1947 shortly after the Civil War began and predated the Arab League countries' invasion by about 6 months, thus being a cause for the 1948 war as well as an effect. I'm aware the Arab League was supportive to the Palestinians before that date, though. At the same time I doubt anyone would accept a partition of their territory they deem unfair.

By the way, I had the same discussion 10 or 15 years ago with a married couple (a French Jew and a French-Lebanese woman - her mother was a Palestinian refugee in 48) and their opinion was that this mess could have been avoided had the UN offered the near-useless Negev to the Arabs.
This is the problem I have with your post and that of many Israeli supporters. They want to talk about the past, but NOT so as to avoid repeating it. They appear to me to want to insure the past coninues into the future. The present future I see for Israel is NOT a pleasant one. Frankly, it is no long term future at all. Recall Robin Williams funny (to Americans) but not so funny for Israelis, great line. "Six million Jews surrounded by three hundred million hostile Arabs. The name 'Custer' mean anything to you people?" Israel's nukes are good for nothing in a war, as I hope you agree. They serve as a deterrent to prevent a war, but once a war commences, with Arabs already having nukes as well (You think the Pakistanis won't lend their Arab neighbors a few if Israel detonates one on Arab soil?), they are utterly wothless EXCEPT to bring about "The End of Days," as many crazy christians hope will be the case. I understand there are no easy or pleasant solutions but the status quo is, IMHO, a ticking time bomb with Israel's name on it, no one else's. You are outnumbered and as I suspect you know, the numbers game is going to continue to get worse for Israel, never better. Do YOU happen to have a solution? I'd love to hear it.
Wow. Israel is an independent state, and as the earth continues to shrink thanks to technology, its location becomes less relevant. If you are using that as an excuse for why 5 million Jews can't live where they live, you aren't making a very compelling argument.
Is that all you got?

Not to mention, Israel is on the edge of the Arab Muslim world and not surrounded by it.
Nate, there is a history of Jewish persecution. There are web sites that are set up where almost every post is about the evils of Jews (not just religion, but Jewish control, etc.).
It is normal for Jews to have our backs up. And to be in defensive mode.
I saw the Darfur and Congo threads. Hardly gets attention. Now I know one reason is Israel seems to be held to a higher standard than the Muslim world for example. But I also think the far Left has a problem identifying victims. It is assumed that the person with the less going for them, is the victim by the Far Left, and this attracts people to take the anti-Israeli route. And some go further and start talking about the boogey Jew (Jewish control).
Nate, there is a history of Jewish persecution.

I appreciate and understand that. The religious group I come from(referred to by the Third Reich as Bibelforscher) was violently persecuted in Hitler's Germany for refusing to salute him and support his regime. Thousands were placed in concentration camps and hundreds were executed. Hundreds more died from the conditions in the camps. I know that members of my former faith at times offered support to their fellow Jewish prisoners and I know that they received the same in kind. I've read firsthand accounts of this from secular sources. I've visited the Holocaust Museum in Washington, D.C. twice. I'm familiar with the suffering of the Jewish people just for being themselves- for simply being born Jewish. I know that this persecution, though the most horrific in recent history, was not unique. I also respect that you must present information that supports your point of view. You could be expected to do nothing less. What I object to is the poisoning of the discourse about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict with unsubstantiated accusations of anti-Semitism against those critical of of the state of Israel's actions. As fellow freethinkers, we should respect one another more than that. We can surely see the distinction between ignorant bigotry against a group and sincere criticism of the military actions of a nation.
Again, I criticize Israel for the settlements and I'm not anti-semitic. There is a fine line though, and you should be able to see it. Go to David Duke's site, and he'll give the same arguments many here give when it comes to a reason to hate Jews, and at least he admits he does.
My point is that many go out of their way to criticize Israel and leave other conflicts alone. I am suspect about these people.
"My point is that many go out of their way to criticize Israel and leave other conflicts alone. I am suspect about these people."

What is the topic of this thread? Jews getting a free pass. You are free to disagree, but your above comment is an attempt to change the subject. Pro-Israelis are pretty good at starting their own multiple discussion threads on Amazon all arguing the same thing. No law against it but there is definitely a "pot calling the kettle black" quality about your "concerns." You want to start a "Christians getting a free pass" discussion thread," I'm pretty sure it will not be censored. I am all in favor of "Never forget." I am all in favor of "Never allow it to happen again." I need to make clear that my "Never allow it to happen again," applies to all people, not just the Jews. Pro-Israelis tend not to see it that way. They can do anything they want to Palestinians because of horrific events that happened sixty five to seventy years ago. That is the "free pass" I am unwilling to give them. I have been Isreal's "dupe" for quite long enough. Thanks for helping me see the light.
I don't buy much of what you are saying when it comes to you changing your position. That is my opinion, and I'm pretty good at judging these things.
Secondly, this is a why do Jews get a free pass, and it is really about Judaism, not Israel as pointed out by many people here.
So really discussing Israel is off topic if you want to get technical.
And no, Israel doesn't do whatever they want to the Palestinian people, so either you are ignorant of the IP situation or a liar. It is one or the other.
David Duke may use many of the same arguments we use to criticize Israel as a pretext to hate Jews. However, we are not David Duke. It's unfair to use the charge of anti-Semitism against legitimate critics of Israel. David Duke used to wear a bedsheet, who knows maybe he still does. Does that mean kids wearing bedsheets to dress up as ghosts are Klan members?
Well said, Nate. There is not only Jewish persecution/hatred/anti-Semitism, although these are real problems and need to be made better. What many Jews fail to acknowledge, is that there is ALSO a Jewish persecution COMPLEX, which is also a problem. "Either be with me or against me but if you are luke warm I vomit you out of my mouth." Anyone who says ("pretends to say" according to this way of thinking) that they do not really care to try to wade through three thousand years of recriminations back and forth, but would rather try to focus on a SOLUTION to the hatred and genocide, is cast out as a traitor to the cause. It doesn't make sense to me, but I assure you, my experience on the Amazon thread caused me to look at the Middle East in a new light with a LOT less sympathy for Israel. The Palestinians who posted there get maybe thirty percent of the credit for that. Seventy percent goes to hate-filled pro-Israelis. I'll bet just about anything (How does $.25 sound) that in response to Atheist Jew's opposition to further settlements, he has been called a "Self-hating Jew" or worse.
I've never been called a self hating Jew. Too bad you had that experience at Amazon. I've been on many boards myself, and the Israeli position is a sound legitimate one. I suggest you view my videos on the subject, and try arguing from there.
I want to also add that the reason why Israeli supporters talk about the past so much is because of the usual Palestinian position which is that Israel should not exist, and we will never acknowledge it exists. When arguing against that position, history is needed to be brought up, and I can also see why the Israeli side is fed up with justifying the fact. Israel does exist, and it is like arguing against someone who says the USA shouldn't exist and doesn't acknowledge its existence. Of course, insults could happen in that situation.
The lack of attention to Darfur & Congo is because we don't have a large population of Somalis or people from the Congo in the US. On the other hand, we have the largest population of Jews outside of Israel. Jewish Americans have the right of return to Israel. This interest is drummed up by AIPAC, Zionists & Christian Fundies who support Israel because they want to convert the Israelis to Christianity.

Here's the deal, if it were Israelis living in Gaza and there was a State of Palestine behaving the was Israel is, I would be in Israel's corner. It's not an issue of like. I don't have a special "love" for Palestinians. Many of us who criticize Israel don't "love" the Palestinians. However, we do love fairness. Frankly, "It is assumed that the person with the less going for them, is the victim" is pretty much the definition of a victim. If I were in Israel, I would prefer to live among the Israelis because they are culturally similar, but also they can eat & drink on a regular basis.

Palestinians are deprived of food & water & physical movement & of their livelihoods. Blame the other Arab nations all you want for agreements they made with Israel to keep "peace", blame Hamas. However, Israel has the upper hand in all of this. Actually, the US does, but never mind, we keep sending Israel $. I understand completely that the Israelis want to defend themselves, that's completely natural. However, when Palestinians do that it's considered terrorism.

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