The Truth Behind the Israeli Kidnapped Teens Story

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

A picture taken from the southern Israeli Gaza border shows the sun setting over the Gaza strip (JACK GUEZ/AFP/Getty)

The conflict in Gaza continues, and the roots of this summer's violence can, in many ways, be traced to the kidnapping and killing of three Israeli teens in June. Sheera Frenkel, Buzzfeed Middle East correspondent, talks about her reporting that shows the teens were kidnapped by a "splinter" group not formally affiliated with Hamas, the off-and-on negotiations for a ceasefire, and what comes next.


Sheera Frenkel

Comments [114]

Jhon from NYC

Hi Brian, after Hamas just admitted 8/21 to ordering and orchestrating the kidnapping this interview and this interviewee will be remembered as a colossal embarrassment. are you going to retract this and perhaps confront Sheera Frenkel about this or just let it go ?

Aug. 20 2014 03:06 PM
Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretentious Hudson Heights

Shuang from Chicago,

Time to replace your keyboard.

Jul. 31 2014 05:48 AM
Shuang from Chicago

I listend again. And wants to same SHHHHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAMMMMMMMMMMMMMMEEE ON YOU, Brian!!!!!!!!!!!!!!You american is arrogant!

Jul. 31 2014 01:28 AM
Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretentious Hudson Heights

Laila from New York, You said that Vic is 100% correct.

Can you or anyone else produce evidence to support Vic's claim that Hamass did not fire rockets into Israel for a 19 month period - prior the current hostilities?

Maybe you can ask the surviving Boston Marathon bomber for help. You'll get no help from any of the 2005 London transport bombers.

Jul. 30 2014 07:28 PM
Chana in New York from Manhattan

Vic, I'm so impressed by what you wrote. Are you a journalist?

Jul. 30 2014 06:52 PM
Laila from New York

Vic from New York has the facts 100% right. But there are those whose ideology prevents them from seeing the sad truth, even if it's staring them in the face over and over again.

Jul. 30 2014 06:03 PM
Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretentious Hudson Heights

Vic from New York said:

> Then [Israel] violate the 2012 cease fire agreement, which Hamas had honored for 19 months without incident


Are you claiming that Hamass did not fire rockets into Israel for 19 months???

Where did you come up with this "fact"?

Here are stats from Wikipedia. If you have better stats, present them.,_2013,_2014

2013 - 53 rockets, 18 mortars

I will exclude rocket attacks for the 2014 months of July and June.
2014 - 119 rockets, 13 mortars.

Is that what you call "Hamas honored for 19 months without incident"?

Vic, You are entitled to your own opinion, not your own Facts.

Jul. 30 2014 12:56 PM
Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretentious Hudson Heights

The comment that claims that the 3 kidnapped Israeli teens were known to be already dead due to the gunshots heard on the cellphone call by one of the kidnapped teens is simple minded.

If the noise was gunshots, the hope would be that the gunshots were warnings or wounds, not mortal wounds. The battle against Hamass started in earnest AFTER the 3 kidnapped Israeli teens were found dead.

To the claims that the "palestinians" are "poor refugees", with tattered clothes, living in tent cities with tattered fabric walls, with open sewers running in the middle of unpaved dirt roads...

Give me a break.

Watch any video of of Gaza and see multi story buildings, cars, trucks, well fed children, TV and radio stations - and thousands of rockets, tunnels with concrete walls, schools, mosques with tall minerets.

Did anyone watch the Charlie Rose interview with Hamass head Khaleed Mashaal living in Qatar. Mashaal lives in Qatar while his "people" live in Gazastan. Charlie Rose asked Mashaal why he lives in Qatar and not in Gaza, but Mashaal came up with some convoluted explanation.

The Morlock Hamass, living deep underground in bunkers, is willing to fight to the last "palestinian" forced to live on the surface.

Jul. 30 2014 12:23 PM
Matt Jacobs from NYC

People yell that Hamas is morally bankrupt because it isn't fighting like an industrial country would. Palestinians are poor. They don't have standing armies. They fight like the poor--guerrilla warfare, unsophisticated weapons.

The argument about who is right or wrong is completely silly. History always gives the "right" moniker to whomever wins.

War has been constant in these region for over 3000 years. Why bother caring anymore?

Jul. 30 2014 10:58 AM
Mikhel Moskowitz from NJ

Want peace?

Get rid of Hamas AND the influence of the Israeli right wing.

Without both gone, peace will never happen.

Jul. 30 2014 10:54 AM

Reading these comments is just heart-breaking, it is unbelievable that some people do not have the ability to look at themselves objectively, the blind supporters of Israel are no better than Hamas. How many more UN schools have to blow up, how many more lives have to be lost? A life is a life whether they are Israeli or Palestinian they are equal, this is a tragic situation and Israel, Hamas and the U.S. are to blame!!

The bible was written mostly by Jewish men, some parts 300 yrs after Jesus lived and has been manipulated to accommodate political beliefs and land grabs, yet some people cling to these words and think that it gives them a right to murder or kill!? How is that any different from a Jihadist?

What is done is done and can not be undone but this needs to stop now!! Israel has a right to exist, Palestine has a right to exist and not be controlled by Israel, the World needs to ensure that Palestine is rebuilt and a vibrant metropolis.

The Gaza Strip should become international property, it is the Religious Home of the Christians, the Jews and the Muslims, let's build it up like a Disneyland and make it a must see tourist population and the revenue can go to global projects.

If you have two children fighting over the same toy, you take the toy away, that is what should happen with Gaza!

Israel and Palestine need to go into a time out!!

Jul. 30 2014 10:11 AM

This story tries to clarify or understand the proximate cause of most recent clashes. And it has become... a thread with 100 comments, and most of these are tit-for-tat accusations. (Ironically mirroring the tit-for-tat violence).

This is inevitable when (a) Israelis, Palestinians, and internationals do not share a common set of facts and (b) when people reach back into history to make accusations of what came before ["They violated the cease fire in 2007!" As if "they" is defined as the universe of all Israelis and Palestinians, much less whether it's defined by their current political leadership].

In sum, it's a disappointing, unreadable thread of comments.

Jul. 30 2014 09:54 AM
Vic from New York

Sadly "the true story" behind the kidnapping was known by both Israeli and PA police within days of the incident. Both heard tapes of one of the boys phone calls to police and the shots and correctly surmised that the kidnapping had become a homicide.

But Netanyahu cynically exploited the death of these young men to go after his real target, which was Hamas. When Hamas signed on to the unity government the PA required them to agree to PA policies past and present. That included the recognition of Israel from the 93 Oslo Accords and the agreement to a negotiated settlement of the hostilities and a two state solution. So what happens when your "terrorist" organization agrees to a peaceful settlement?

Simple, it starkly reveals that Israel's motives are not based on any "existential threat" to its existence. The Netanyahu government has always declared its intent to ethnically cleanse the Palestinians out of the West Bank and seize more land for settlements.

Hamas was always the target. Look at the timeline. Israel sends troops into the West Bank. They kill 11 Palestinians, 4 of them teenagers. They destroy two homes and cause 3 million in damage on a "rescue" operation, even a full two weeks after they knew the Israeli teens were dead and there was no one to resue. They arrest 800 Hamas sympathizers including those who had been released as part of the peace negotiations. They move missile batteries up to the Gaza boarder along with reserve troops, two weeks before the war begins, even though there is no evidence that Hamas was involved in the kidnapping. Then they violate the 2012 cease fire agreement, which Hamas had honored for 19 months without incident by bombing two locations in Gaza, killing 6 and seriously injuring 5. It was only after this attack that the first rocket was fired at Israel in response to Israel's aerial assault against Gaza. The accusation that Hamas attacked Israel is false and the facts are there to bear this out.

These facts can easily be checked, so for all the listeners who are rightfully concerned about Israel's safety please look them up. They have so far correctly calculated that US politicians, the press and most of the public will be gullible enough to believe propaganda over facts.

This is not Israel defending itself. Look at the history, war on Israel's southern border, three times since 2006, and 100,000 new settlements on their eastern border. Every time there is a peace negotiation, Israel conducts an operation to "arrest militants" as a means to scuttle the talks. When it didn't work this time with their "rescue mission" they decided on all out war and used the death of those three teens as a pretext.

I can never get the images of those dead and dying Palestinian children out of my head. Look at those videos, and then listen to Netanyahu talk about how much Israel values human life. We are witnessing not only the death of innocent children, but the death of truth itself.

Jul. 30 2014 08:23 AM
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY

Just recently in Europe there were many anti-Israel protests that turned into being anti-Semitic. Some of them have included a synagogue and Jewish-owned shop being vandalized in a Paris suburb, signs by protesters in Berlin calling for Jews to be gassed even more, a group of Palestinians and Turks attacking Maccabi Haifa players at a field during a preseason game in Austria, and Jews being denied to go to a restaurant in Amsterdam because of the Palestinian flags there. If none of this are signs of anti-Semitism then I don't know what is. However, this isn't something new and much of this has been before. I have never heard of any Jews attacking anything that is Muslim be it homes or stores let alone mosques in response to Hamas. Also, many of the anti-Israel protests not only aren't for peace, but they even ignore facts as well call for terrorist attacks along with another intifada. If they really wanted it to all stop and have peace, then they would have called for Hamas to stop with the terrorist attacks rather than stand by them.

Jul. 30 2014 03:06 AM
Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretentious Hudson Heights

Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY,

> Let's not forget that the Grand Mufti was deported for treason after WWII for having secret meetings with the Nazis

Here is a Youtube video of the Grand Mufti meeting with Socialist Hitler.

1941 The Grand Mufti meets Hitler

Jul. 30 2014 01:06 AM
Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretentious Hudson Heights

If Israel were "the problem", then Arabs/Muslims would be getting along with their non-Israeli/non-Zionist neighbors... but they're not.

Sunni vs Shiite, Pakistan vs India, Iraq vs Fascist Iran, Iraq vs Kuwait, ISIS, Boko Haram, Muslim Brotherhood, Taliban, Al Qadda, 160,000+ dead in Syria, Libya, Iraq, Afghanistan and more

demonstrate that "the problem" lies elsewhere.

Jul. 30 2014 12:57 AM
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY

Here's a little history lesson for those who still believe that the Jews took over what was once a country known as Palestine. First of all, Palestine was never a country of its own, it was always part of some empire, and when one fell, another just took ever. As a matter of fact, the name Palestine, is actually from the Romans to insult the Jews, not from the Muslims. Not only was Jerusalem never its capitol, but it wasn't even a provincial capitol either. After the Roman Empire fell in 476, the Byzantine Empire took over as others all the way to the British followed, but it was never its own country. Jews can actually trace their routes all the way back to the kingdom of Judea, where their very own religion came from, and this is from the Old Testament that was made long before the Koran even existed. If Jerusalem is really a holy city to the Muslims, then explain why they are facing Mecca when it's the Jews that are facing Jerusalem? BTW, Judaism predates Islam by almost two millennia. Also, Muslims were known for not only conquering other groups, but they even imposed Shariah Law that made others feel like second class citizens to them. There were always Jews living there even after the Roman Diaspora of 135 and Jerusalem has been predominantly Jewish for centuries even when a Muslim empire was ruling them. The Balfour Declaration of 1917 was agreed on by the British to make the land for the Jews. However, the Arabs weren't too happy and made numerous riots against them. Let's not forget that the Grand Mufti was deported for treason after WWII for having secret meetings with the Nazis, while the Jews for joining the British Brigades in showing their loyalty. After the war, it was finally allowed to have more Jews come in after what they have been through with the Holocaust. In 1947, the UN decides to partition the land to help them live better, but the Arabs reject it and attack a cease-fire line to start the very war. The land that was gained by the Jews was land that they won in a war as would any other country that did this, and the same went for what was gained during the Six Day, though the West Bank and Gaza Strip did belong to them originally. Nevertheless, Israel was the only country in the region to have actual communications with the Palestinian refugees, while the of the region left them in the dark. What some never talk about is the 800,000 Jewish refugees from the rest of the region that were actually forced to leave from where they came from with nothing more than the clothes on their backs and the money they had, but I don't hear a right to return for them unlike on the Palestinians where it is allowed for them.

Jul. 30 2014 12:09 AM
BB from Brooklyn

BTW: Did you notice where Charlie Rose was interviewing the leader of Hamas? From Qatar!
That coward isn't even fighting with his people, he fled like the coward that he is to Qatar. This Hamas 'leader' believes so much in his cause that he fled leaving his people behind defenseless and leaderless.
And where is Bibi? In Jerusalem - The capital of Israel.
It's such an abberation of hought to compare these two people.

Palestinians in Gaza need a leader who will recognize ISR's right to breathe and make peace with not [tunnels of] war. hey at the very least deserve a leader who will not abandon them in a time of war.

Jul. 29 2014 11:58 PM
Avi from n j

If a bunch of terrorist surrounded your house, Brian, and were affixing explosives all around it, how mush of your house would you let them blow so as not to harm them?
Israel, under Arik Sharon leadership gave the Palestinians self control. They used it to develop a killing field.
They don’t want peace, they want to send their kids, bomb strapped to kill Jews and Americans.
The massive tunnel system was not built for flowers delivery. It is a plan for mass murder.
If the Palestinians were to use the millions / billions they got from the EU / US to develop,build a civil society, there would not be the here and now - war.
No Israeli in the south can be safe if the tunnels are left in tack. No stopping till all the tunnels are destroyed.

Jul. 29 2014 11:26 PM
zea from Queens

I found this segment so disappointing Brian. People don't all have a short memory. The kidnappings started things off ok.
We had an awful vigilante attack on an Arab teen which for most Jews was harder to tell our children about than the murder of 3 Israeli youths. NOTE that the Israeli assailants have been in prison. There hasn't been a word about the Arab perpetrators.
Now THAT'S a short memory!
Hamas said from the start that though they could not say whether it was Hamas they were blessing it or whatever exact words they used. Israel had to catch their own bad guys and the Palestinian ones.
The tunnels and the rockets , Brian, give plenty of justification for this war and you know it.
So why did you bother with this lame segment?

Jul. 29 2014 11:11 PM

This is a real Tragedy.
for Israel, for the Palestinian People, for the United States, and all the other Countries that have had "a hand" in the creation of this maelstrom.

The unfortunate reality is that we will never see the end of this in our lifetimes, nor our children, or grandchildren.

So, my suggestion is just to let them be. But, not with US taxpayer paid weapons. We could use the money to secure our Mexican Border, and blow up our pesky tunnels.

Jul. 29 2014 11:11 PM
Mr. Bad from NYC

I'd just like to add one thing nobody else has touched on: Israel is not an "ally" of the USA, it is an ally of the "4SALE" US GOV. I would guess that over 50% of the US people do not even care who "wins" in Gaza and 99% of Americans who aren't Right Wing Evangelists waiting for the "Apocalypse" (who believe Jews need to occupy the Holy Land to make it possible for the Messiah to return) are not "allies of Israel".

Israel is just another European Colonial Apartheid state in waiting like South Africa which is controlled primarily by Russian (Euro) emigrants. If not for AIPAC's ($$$) lobbying and the Right Wing Religious wing-nut voting block we would probably support the LOGICAL ALLY, i.e. the Palestinians who have been living in the area for THOUSANDS OF YEARS. Just a reminder, 'Murika, you're politics have been bought and paid for by ZIONI$T DOLLAR$ and RIGHT WING APOCALYPTIC POLITICS. Do you really feel like throwing stones now?

Jul. 29 2014 10:07 PM

The original remarks demonstrated an unfortunate bias. The linguistic choice of the sensational and conclusory term "murder" on the Palestinian side and the neutral "killing" on the Israeli side immediately left me suspect of the rest of the story. As a daily listener it just made me sad.

Jul. 29 2014 09:34 PM

"James Carville: Obama ‘Doesn’t Really Care’ What The American People Think"

LOL, Carville has the number of the lawless little Affirmative Action Punk.

Jul. 29 2014 09:16 PM
Belinda from Highland Park

I just have to say Gary from Newark is awesome. Thank you for speaking the truth. There are NOT two sides to every story.

Jul. 29 2014 06:44 PM
Stan from Harlem

I very much appreciate Brian's open airing of this topic. I attach here an article by J.J. Goldberg outlining the Netanyahu government's manipulation of information regarding the three slain Israeli teenage boys, which was apparently missed by Brian and by Ms. Frankel.

Jul. 29 2014 06:27 PM
Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretentious Hudson Heights


> I know plenty of practicing Jews who vehemently disagree with Israel's policy.

Do you know what happens to practicing Muslims who vehemently disagree with the Taliban or Hamass?

Jul. 29 2014 04:41 PM

henry from MD labeling people anti-semites because we don't blindly support Israel is redick!! I know plenty of practicing Jews who vehemently disagree with Israel's policy.

Jul. 29 2014 04:32 PM
Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretentious Hudson Heights

In 1948 when 5 Arab armies attacked Israel, none of the 5 Arab armies was the army of "palestine"...

Because there was NO "palestine".

Jul. 29 2014 04:28 PM
Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretentious Hudson Heights

160,000+ people have died in Syria.

That's Arabs/Muslims killing Arabs/Muslim.

ISIS beheads Iraqi soldiers who have surrendered.

Taliban kills Afghanis who resist Taliban.

Hamass compels civilians to act as Human Shield so that their deaths can be exploited by Hamass. Meanwhile Hamass hides in spiderholes, bunkers deep under hospitals, mosques and schools.

Google Images "arab nazi salute" to see Hizbullah culture.

Jul. 29 2014 04:10 PM
ivan obregon

Destroying their homes, women and children is Israel's real agenda and we enable it through the inhumanity of this cruelty, ideological racism, political convenience and because our media is as brainwashed as those it brainwashes.

Sickeningly self-deceptive but revealing.......

Jul. 29 2014 04:10 PM
Laila from New York

Mr. Lehrer's show did have one or two callers who were logical about the true situation and empathetic of the plight of Palestinians, but also callers whose ideology prevents them from feeling any empathy and compassion for the beleaguered Palestinian population continuing to be massacred in Gaza. The Israelis are perpetrating war crimes with high-power weapons supplied to them by American taxpayers and America, as well as the rest of the world, is looking on. The broadcast was a few hours ago, but I must voice my utmost dismay at these latest comments. In fact,the depraved actions by Israel are nothing less than genocide. According to their official statements, we can infer that they will not stop until they have killed every man, woman and child in Gaza. Concerning some on who belongs in Palestine,it is clear that it is those who are indigenous to the country, it is the Palestinians. Those people who came in from all corners of the world to steal the land have American, British, Australian, etc. accents. They are a foreign body in the land of Palestine and don't belong there.

Jul. 29 2014 03:45 PM
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY

Even if Hamas didn't do the kidnapping, they still did celebrate on it and even gave candy to their people. However, they did wish that they could have done that. The real reason Bibi wanted to fight back was because he was tired of Hamas firing qassam rockets at them and wanted them to stop. Hamas was given numerous warnings to stop, but refused. Keep in mind that Hamas is firing these rockets from densely populated areas in which if the IDF fires back, they can use it as a PR move to claim that they are targeting civilians when they really aren't. BTW, the IDF sends many leaflets and makes phone calls telling the civilians in Gaza to clear out so that they won't get hit, but Hamas makes them stay where they are and places them into harm's way. All of what Hamas is doing are violations of international law, while Israel is acting well within them. Overall, I'm glad that most of the US does stand with Israel because they would rather stand with civilized population rather than with a barbaric one. If you all really want this to stop, then convince Hamas to end all terrorism and recognize Israel's right to exist as a Jewish state. As a native of Israel and having family living there, I find many of the statements against what Israel does to be appalling. One other thing, the Israeli government does care about their civilians, which is why they made so many bomb shelters for them to take cover in as well as making the iron dome for intercepting most of the rockets coming to them that shows how much they are caring about them and keeping them out of harm's way. Once again, who is caring about their own people and who is not?

Jul. 29 2014 03:33 PM

Why does WNYC feel the need to be a constant apologist for Hamas? Hamas is not interested in human freedom. They are horrible to women, homosexuals, heretics, dissenters (there are no dissenters and there is no free press in Gaza), and they HATE JEWS. It's in their charter and what they tell their own people.

Hamas is no different from Boko Haram, the Taliban, ISIS, and the Grand Ayatollah's regime. They are all intolerant of any form of difference.
See the interview with Charlie Rose and the leader of Hamas:

Hamas sacrifices its own children and digs tunnels to smuggle arms:

Jul. 29 2014 01:46 PM
jgarbuz from Queens


First of all there was no "Palestine" in 1400 BC. It was called Retenu by the Egyptians as well as Canaan.The semitic Canaanites showed up about 3000 BC but Hebrew is the only remaining Canaanite language. The Peleset or "Philistine" pork-eating Indo-Europeans come by sea around 1200 BC and after being defeated by the Egyptians go and settle the coast of Canaan instead. There the Israelites strive with them for centuries until they get penned up in Gaza by King David around 1000 BC and ultimately destroyed and carried off by the Assyrians in 722 BC. The same time that the Assyrians destroy the northern kingdom of Israel and carry off the ten tribes leaving the kingdom of Judah behind. The people in Judah then became the Jews. The territory of the kingdom of Israel in the north is occupied by foreigners from what is today Kurdistan who came to be called Samaritans.

Jul. 29 2014 01:29 PM
shaneeza aziz from Brooklyn

This is lazy reporting. This began with the closing of the rafha crossing by the military gov't in Egypt once the muslim brotherhood was overthrown.

Jul. 29 2014 01:03 PM

@jgarbuz - serious question. how is palestine the homeland of the jews if they migrated there themselves? There were people there before any ancient hebrew showed up, so what is the basis of your land claim? and dont say because your god said so, because that's not proof of anything.

Jul. 29 2014 12:38 PM

@jgarbuz - lol, yeah sure ok buddy. whatever you say. History says the jews murdered their way to Canaan and after getting the powers of the world to grant you access to palestine, the jews yet again are murdering their way through palestine. Nothing has changed in 5000+ years. Religion is the enemy of peace. Especially yours. ciao

oh and this "Your knowledge of our Torah and Jewish law is obviously very second hand and incorrect."

That is correct. I am not of your tribe and dont subscribe to mental illness

Jul. 29 2014 12:36 PM

@jgarbuz - lol, yeah sure ok buddy. whatever you say. History says the jews murdered their way to Canaan and after getting the powers of the world to grant you access to palestine, the jews yet again are murdering their way through palestine. Nothing has changed in 5000+ years. Religion is the enemy of peace. Especially yours. ciao

Jul. 29 2014 12:35 PM
jgarbuz from Queens


You can argue with me all you want, but I will defeat your arguments every time because I have solid truth and you have fantasies that change all the time. You say the Jews should claim land in Germany and then you say Iraq and then you will say Brooklyn, whatever. Jews claim nobody else's land except their own. Jews are just guests everywhere except in their only homeland, Eretz Yisrael. There the Arabs are our guests.

Jul. 29 2014 12:17 PM
MRS Good from NY

@Mr. Bad from NYC

Your link to a video showing the outlier fringe right movement in Isr. is shocking and disturbing, for sure.

Do also be kind enough to link to the Left wing, Pro-Peace videos when linking to these right wing nationalists.

Unlike any Arab nation, ISR is a Democracy with elections with R/L parties in the knesset.
Some parties in the Israeli Knesset are ARAB parties - go figure!

Jul. 29 2014 12:16 PM
jgarbuz from Queens


Israel is not the homeland of the semites. It's the homeland of the Jews. And a Jew is a person born to a Jewish mother or otherwise defined by the orthodox Rabbinate in Israel. The other semites have plenty of lands of their own, over 3 million square miles. And the ten commandments does not say "Thou Shalt Not Kill." That is a very incorrect translation. In Hebrew it says "Lo Tirzakh" which means "Don't Murder." Your knowledge of our Torah and Jewish law is obviously very second hand and incorrect.

Jul. 29 2014 12:09 PM

@jgarbuz - no sense arguing with you. You are last century. Keep spewing non truths. Semites by the way include palestinians. look it up. so unless someone is against all the semitic peoples, stop calling anyone who disagrees with israel's fascist and nazi agenda in it's genocidal "war. Additionally, your people LOST the land so long ago any "claim" to this land is laughable. By the way, you conveniently IGNORED by postings that references proverb 28 which says never fight forever over ancestor property lines (the cause of much trouble) and the fact that in order for the jewish people to get the land in the first place they had to murder their way there. THOU SHALL NOT KILL (except when its over land). jgarbuz, you are hereby put on notice, stop telling biaed lies.

Jul. 29 2014 12:02 PM
henry from md

To all the antisemitic foamers and spouters: this isn't just a local Israel Hamas war. All Muslim Arab lands are in revolt,against themselves, against everyone else; in the Middle East, in Africa, starting in Europe, perhaps coming here.

Islam inspired troops have conquered more lands than anyone since the Huns and the British Empire. Iran's Mullahs are behind the present Gaza war, sending weapons, masterminding strategy, scheming to rule over the Middle East. Soon Hezbollah and the West Bank will be boiling up. With Israel gone, this radical Muslim frenzy will find other shores. Prepare your guest rooms, friends or foes alike.

Jul. 29 2014 11:59 AM
Mr. Bad from NYC

Israel's genocide cheerleaders:

Israelis in Tel Aviv chanting, “There’s no school tomorrow, there’s no children left in Gaza! Oleh!”:

Jul. 29 2014 11:56 AM
jgarbuz from Queens


The League of Nations had over 50 countries as members, including a few new Arab states that were formed after the defeat of the Ottomans. The League of Nations ADOPTED the British Balfour Declaration, which was purely a British policy statement, and turned it into INTERNATIONAL LAW! The "Jewish National Home in Palestine where Jews were given the full right to resettle all "wastelands" and "state lands" and any lands the Jewish Agency would be able to buy from Arab landoweners, who were only too happy to sell. Since wastelands and state lands together constituted 70% of Palestine west of the Jordan river, and since the Jews were able to buy 21% of the arable land from the Arabs, hence that gave Jews the right to settle on 76% of the land with no legal problems. In fact even today 80% of all Jews living in Israel live on the lands purchased from the Arabs or on wastelands and state lands in accordance to the provisions of the original Mandate. The Arabs in the Galilee actually still own half of the private lands in Israel. Tel Aviv was built in 1909 on sand dunes. Most towns in Israel were built either on empty lands or purchased lands. The Arabs who left in 1948 actually owned very little real estate The Jews who were forced out of the Arab countries owned four times as much which they left behind.

Jul. 29 2014 11:52 AM

Illfg, I agree Israel should have been formed in Germany but the truth of it is Europe did not want the Jews there, for the very reason that they would do what they are doing to Palestine.

Palestine and the Arab nations weren't organized, didn't have oil at this point and were very weak at this time. It is an absolute ATROCITY what has happened, when will Palestine gain retribution for the ethnic cleansing that has been happening since Israel was formed?

Jul. 29 2014 11:37 AM

You say the English have no right to Irish land but then look to English imperial power to legitimize the takeover of Palestine? Come on, that doesn't even hold up for two seconds.

Jul. 29 2014 11:35 AM

Oh...I forgot one thing. So, the UN, the US, G-d, Abraham, and anybody else you want to throw in did not just walk in and say to the Arabs they had to leave, the Jews are coming in. There was a war. In 1948. It was the Jews against the Brits, the Arabs against the Jews. And Israel won. Then there was the 6day war--Israel against a bunch of Arab states. Again, Israel won. Then there was the Yom Kipper War--same thing--a bunch of Arab states against Israel. And Israel won the war.

Question: How many other states have given up land to those they conquered in a war? How many other states have blindly opened up their borders to people with guns and bombs who want to kill them? How many hundreds of Jews, including American/European/Israeli Jews, have been kills by the Palestinians?

Question: If you were given the opportunity to have your own state in 1948, like the Palestinians in 1948, which they refused in 1948, why are you calling yourself "Occupied"?

Jul. 29 2014 11:32 AM
jgarbuz from Queens


Like most anti-semites you've got it backwards. It's the Arabs who use the "might makes right" argument. They have n claim to Jewish land. Did the English have a claim to Irish land? The Arabs didn't ask permission. They occupied our homeland. By contrast the Jews went to the League of Nations in 1919 and asked for their homeland back, and the League of Nations in 1922 said "okay." Jews can come back and resettlle the "Jewish National Home." The Jews did not come with an army. They came back as peaceful settlers. But the Arabs attacked them again and again throughout the 1920s and 1930s until all out war came in 1947 and the Arab lost despite heavy odds in their favor. So the Jews are their under international law, but defend their rights with miltary means when the Arabs continue to attack, just as in 1948.

Jul. 29 2014 11:28 AM
jgarbuz from Queens


Only Jews and to a lesser extent Christians (because Jesus was a Jew) have a right to the Land of Israel, and Arabs are purely occupiers. Longstanding occupiers, but occupiers nonetheless. They came from Arabia with the Arabic language and a religion founded by an Arab and they bow low towards Mecca. SO why are they in Jerusalem? Are there any Jews in Mecca or Medina? If not, why are there Arabs in Jerusalem. Because some Arab claims he flew in one night? I don't know why Arabs chose to occupy our tiny country since they have occupied so many other lands such as Kurdish land, Egyptian land, Berber lands and so on. But Jews have liberated a part of their historic homeland and not one inch will be given back to the Arab occupiers and their spawn.

Jul. 29 2014 11:22 AM

It's ironic that when the Jews own "slave morality" is used against them they completely disregard it. They used these morals against Egyptians, Romans, non-Jewish capitalists and everyone in-between but now when it is their turn to be held to their own standard they throw it under the bus and talk about might makes right. This really exposes the last two thousand years of Judeo-Christian "ethics" as a complete farce. Monotheism was a hustle from day one. Well, perhaps Akhenaten was operating in earnest in which case monotheism has been a hustle since day two. Either way Europeans need to clear this moral fog that grows mildew on their civilization and return to a pagan but secular morality.

Jul. 29 2014 11:15 AM

@jgarbuz - actually the jews should be fighting for the land once known as Ur. thats where abraham was from. Maybe israel should be in iraq?

Jul. 29 2014 11:12 AM

jgarbuz from Queens, WOW! Your ignorance, anger and hatred is very impressive! It is this kind of hubris that caused 9/11, I want to live in a peaceful, prosperous world, from what you're implying only the Jews have this right, the hell with the rest of us. People are people, we are all equal, regardless of our color, religion and socio- economic background.

It is also this ideology that caused the holocaust in the first place, have you ever wondered what the Jews did to incite such hatred in the Germans?

You need to check yourself before you wreck yourself!!

Jul. 29 2014 11:12 AM

@jgarbuz from Queens - hence why with your last comment, i say religion is mental illness. You would put people in an oven why claiming when it was done to your people it was evil. over land. land your people lost thousands of years ago. the only reason why christians support israel is because they think it means according to the bible that it is a sign that jesus is coming back soon. All you religious people need therapy, only then will you realize the misery religion has caused the world. Jewish were expelled from palestine a long time ago. rome owned it once, my parents are italian. i should start a movement that says Italy deserves palestine/israel, its just ridiculous jgarbuz and evilness.

Jul. 29 2014 11:11 AM

@jgarbuz from Queens - since you are a clown i will help you understand. No one has a right to land. Populations over take populations all the time. boundaries, nations, etc change all throughout history. America was formed on the same violence Judea was formed and just about ANY OTHER LAND. Is it right? no. that includes israel difference here is that by forming israel, your peoples were guarenteeing constant war. And now your people are just as bad as the german nazis. the irony is rich.

Jul. 29 2014 11:08 AM
jgarbuz from Queens


I'd put them all into the ovens and then break out the candy for all those "martyrs" whose fathers and brothers would now be able to get their 70 virgins in Muhammad's version of Paradise..

Jul. 29 2014 11:06 AM
Lisa from Brooklyn

I'm going to comment on the segment prior to this one where Brian asked the question: How many civilian deaths can be allowed to protect against potential deaths of your own?--referring to the current Gaza conflict. I want to remind listeners of a few facts stated on NPR previously that were not introduced into today's programming: (1) Hamas sent missiles into Israel first and began the current conflict. So far, Hamas has broken all three humanitarian cease-fires, firing rockets into Israel first to restart the conflict. Today, a PA authority called for a 24h ceasefire that was then withdrawn by an Hamas spokesperson. (2) Israel discovered the tunnels built by Hamas because a group of armed Gaza militants were spotted coming up out of the ground into a southern Israeli village, which led to the current ground attack with more tunnels discovered. (3) Hamas built a military infrastructure in high civilian areas of Gaza. Israel has warned areas where bombing is intended for civilians to flee. NPR and other news media have reported on this. (4) Israel has set up a care site for injured Gazans on their border, reported by NPR. (5) Regarding the journalist who opposed Netanyahu's report that the Palestinians who abducted the three Jewish teenagers, I'm curious as to her sources, which is a more typical journalist approach in reporting news, rather than a personal view. Did the journalist have the same access to intelligence as Netanyahu that she reviewed with other more credible sources? How did she determine they were more credible? Could she disclose these sources to Brian's listeners? Does this same journalist also disavow Obama's claim that Russian militants shot down the Malaysian aircraft over Ukraine? Does she have the same capacity to discredit the CIA as she does Israeli intelligence? I noticed that she was a former NPR reporter. Why former? (6) To the original question: No one should die in war, ever. Except when a country is attacked. How many civilians did the US kill in Iraq, Afghanistan, Germany, Japan, Vietnam? Did the US establish a quota for when they went too far on civilian deaths and withdrew, despite the risk for further attacks by the Taliban, Japan....

Jul. 29 2014 10:57 AM

We live in the new world now where facts don't matter, and images are everything people care about.

Palestinians started to shoot rockets into Israel on the very day Israel left Gaza. That's why the blocade was imposed.

But who cares or remembers?

Jul. 29 2014 10:54 AM

@jgarbuz from Queens - and maybe put them in some ovens? your hatred proves that the "reformation" of a jewish state in Palestine was a terrible idea and we should immediately cut all ties with israel, including the money flow, petition the UN to classify israel as a roge nation with nukes. War crimes, genocide, religious hatred. Sounds alot like nazi germany. Remember jews and palestinians share fraternal dna, so its family killing family over pie in the sky BS and land.

Jul. 29 2014 10:54 AM
jgarbuz from Queens

I could care less about what "the world thinks" or all the Arab Pallywood propaganda films they can turn out, which are legion. The Land of Israel is not "Palestine" but Jewish sovereign territory and all who reside on it who cannot abide by it must be taken out, voluntarily or involuntarily. If the Jewish state of Israel has no right to exist, what gives the US, or Canada or Australia or New Zealand or Argentina the right to exist? They are all populated by European settlers. Anyone who denies Jewish rights to Israel denies "American" rights to "America." America is a name given to these continents by Europeans, and not by the indigenous natives. "Palestine" was the name given by Greco-Roman Europeans not by the Israelites nor the Canaanites before them.

Jul. 29 2014 10:54 AM

@jgarbuz from Queens - you are crazy and your land claim is bullshit, pardon my french. your own bible says the abraham who was from Ur, (Sumeria-modern day iraq) was told by the guy in the sky to go to the land that was in fact inhabited by the Canannites. From day 1 the land was taken from people because of religion. The fact that there was a hebrew nation there at one time, two times, etc is irrelevant. YOU CAN NOT OWN LAND. try putting it in your pocket? Take it with you? This is a war of religion, which in my opinion classifies as mental illness. When the jews did not have any substantial presense there for 2000 years, what makes you think there is any legitimate claim there? Oh thats right, more pie in the sky BS, proverbs 28 "28 Never move an old property line that your ancestors established."

Your arguement holds not water.

Jul. 29 2014 10:48 AM
Mr. Bad from NYC

@ Elaine from Baltimore

Are you implying that Israel only closed it's own ports? Israel is enforcing a NAVAL BLOCKADE OF GAZA. An act of war. They haven't just "shut their borders". They are engaged in a continuing war against Hamas and this latest "False Flag" event provided them another opportunity to torpedo any chance of a peaceful resolution via the 2 state solution.

FACT: Netanyahu and most senior officials in his administration are on the record as AGAINST the 2 state solution.

Why does the US gov support and protect Israeli war mongers/criminals who kill civilians in order to derail a peace negotiation that the US gov supposedly supports? For as long as I can remember the Likud government has been openly mocking the 2 state process as "impossible without Palestinian unity". All of the sudden we get a UNIFIED PALESTINIAN GOVERNMENT and an Israeli "FALSE FLAG" attack follows soon anyone out there so dim they can't see who the bad guy is here?

It boggles the mind.

Jul. 29 2014 10:47 AM

jgarbuz from Queens, Israel is ABSOLUTELY NOT Jewish Land, Israel is Palestine, all the way back to the bible Palestine existed Israel did not exist until 1948, when the newly formed United Nations designated that Israel would exist.

Imagine if the UN came into your home and said you and your family are now going to have to live in the bathroom and this new family will live the life of Riley in the rest of your house, me tinks you would have a problem with this!

Israel controls the amount of water, the amount of food, the amount of freedom that the Palestinian people have, Israel prospers while Palestine starves that is an outrageous atrocity, the truth is the truth and no amount of rhetoric will ever change history.

That being said what Hamas does is inexcusable, there are three sides to every story Yours, Mine and the Truth, nothing will change until Israel plays nice and shares the wealth with Palestine.

I for one have had enough of these Puppets we call Presidents and Prime Ministers playing "Game of Thrones" when will "We the People" realize that all of this is just a distraction to keep us occupied while the very few gain wealth, power and control. Read "War is a Racket" by Smedley Butler, he spells everything out, this was printed in 1935 and since then Corporations have just become more insidious and "too big to fail."

At the end of the day human beings all want the same thing water, food, shelter, education and a safe place for their family to live. If Palestinians had a better quality of life organizations like Hamas would not exist!

Jul. 29 2014 10:47 AM
April from Manhattan

I'm proud of Brian for letting a pro Palestinian man validly rant at him, though I almost thoroughly agree with that man. Congress votes 100% for Israel. How much do they pay them? The reason that's forbidden to discuss is the stereotype about Jews and money. Forget that. I emailed the prez last night to tell him I'm fed up when we're only UN vote - to protect Israel from war crimes? The world is angry at Israel and America, did you notice how the man above jumbled those words? I'm not an Israeli. I'm less and less pro Israel. People in Gaza are living in prison. Watch Five Broken Cameras on Netlix or youtube! Five cameras belonging to a Palestinian man were smashed or shot by the IDF, in the latter case saving his life. Other Palestinians are not as lucky. Usually on TV we see from Israel looking at the land it wants to claim. People throw stones, police shoot rubber bullets. In the film, 5BC, you see the IDF casually shoot palestinians. It makes me angry when Egypt takes over our embassy and those invading carry a dual American/Israeli flag. Got to NYRB/The Failure of the American Jewish Establishment. And NYRB/The American Jewish Cocoon.

Jul. 29 2014 10:42 AM

@ jgarbuz "Hamas is an Arab NAZI organization", LOL! that is the most ignorrant statement ever made. Israel is the new nazi germany and the palestinians are the jews of europe during ww2. The oppressed are now the oppressors.

tell us again how israel had a right to form in the first place? Colonial powers ruling palestine did not serve the indigenous peoples will. For 2000 years the people who lived in PALESTINE have stayed there and they are the same people there today, minus the occupying force.

Jul. 29 2014 10:39 AM
jgarbuz from Queens


The Land of Israel does not belong to Arab collaborators who married Arabs and became Muslims and call themselves "Palestinians." The Land of Israel (Eretz Yisrael) is the tribal homeland of the Jewish nation and NOT to those collaborators who helped the Arabs occupy our homeland. Even though the Arab countries threw out ALL of their Jews, we Jews allowed millions of Arabs to remain on Jewish soil But if they want to continue war against the Jewish nation, we have the right to expel them in a second Naqba that will make the first look like a girl scout hike by comparison.

Jul. 29 2014 10:39 AM
Elaine from Baltimore

Again, the blockade was imposed AFTER Hamas violently overtook Gaza from Fatah. If a sworn enemy vowed to your destruction was YOUR neighbor, would you want to impose restrictions on their borders? Even WITH the restrictions, Hamas had succeeded in building an elaborate terror tunnel infrastracture that has cost Gazans over $90 millions dollars. That money COULD have been spent better, don't you think?

Israel has a record of exchanging land for peace, witness the Sinai. Israel was oil independent but gave back this land for peace with Egypt. What record does Hamas have?

Jul. 29 2014 10:33 AM

The concept of giving part of palestine to the jewish people to create the state of israel was a super bad idea that should not have happened. Removing people from their homes at gunpoint because some countries far away felt bad about the holocaust has caused non stop violence, death and sadness. Wouldnt it have been better to give the jewish people a part of germany instead? Why put this misery on the arabs living in palestine when it was hitler and germany that tried to exterminate an entire race? shouldnt "israel" been formed in germany?

The blood is on the hands of england, france and america.

Jul. 29 2014 10:33 AM
jgarbuz from Queens

Hamas is an Arab NAZI organization that has to be treated like Berlin and Hitler in his bunker. My father was at the Battle of Berlin in 1945 and stormed it, and Israel SHALL do the same and destroy the lair of the Hamas/Nazi party and pulverize it beyond any hope of resurrection.

Jul. 29 2014 10:33 AM
Mr. Bad from NYC

A blockade is an act of War under international law. Netanyahu claims no country would tolerate rockets being fired into their territory but it's also true that no government would tolerate a blockade of their ports, much less one that has been in existence for 7 YEARS (since 2007). Netanyahu is on the record as OPPOSING the 2 state solution, he is not interested in peace. Hamas politicians have repeatedly stated that the section of the Hamas charter calling for the destruction of Israel is null and void but the charter cannot be changed for political reasons. The constant refrain that Hamas will only settle for Israel's destruction is pointless misdirection. The radicals are not in Hamas but in Likud.

This is nothing less than a genocidal war against Palestinians by ultra Zionist Israeli's. The pitiful attempts to fight back (with Qassam rockets/fireworks) against the Israeli occupation of the Palestinians are characterized as "terrorism" by western media sources yet they have NO choice because the US Security Council VETO BARS ALL INTERNATIONAL ATTEMPTS TO BRING ISRAEL TO HEEL. It's a sick, sad situation that the US government bears almost as much responsibility for as Likud.

Jul. 29 2014 10:30 AM
Paul B. from New York, NY

If you use Hamas' own math from the Gilad Shalit prison exchange: One Israeli life is worth 1,027 Palestinians.

Jul. 29 2014 10:29 AM
Ed from Larchmont

You can't let things through because Hamas will use the resources to attack Israel.

Jul. 29 2014 10:29 AM
sean from new york

I would like to make there points.

First, there is a great deal of talk about the fact that Hamas does not recognize Israel's right to exist. As I understand it, this is taken largely (if not exclusively) from the fact that the founding charter makes such a claim. Such a document is of limited relevance. But more importantly, Netanyahu's Likud party fails to recognize a Palestinian claim to a state.

Second, it is farcical to pretend as the United States media does that Netanyahu is an honest broker. Israel may have claims and an argument to make, but that man is a liar and impediment to any peace process. Indeed, video shows that he tanked the Oslo peace process and views the United States as a puppet. This needs to be spoken to within the context of reality. As we now see, Hamas did not kidnap and murder those three boys; as we now know, Israel knew they were dead for weeks before they announced it. This incursion was preconceived.

Third, and relatedly, rocket attacks had virtually ceased (from Hamas) over the last 2 years. While perhaps not wholly discontinued, they were dramatically reduced (on the orders of Hamas who has been suffering from isolation and lack of resources). But, at the same time, the terms of the cease fire were violated by Israel near 100 times (with raids and assaults in Gaza).

Make your own conclusions but be fair and don't fail to speak the truth for fear of reprisal.

Jul. 29 2014 10:29 AM
ivan obregon

This is not a war but deliberate human extermination, displacement and inhuman.....terrorism; the complicity of our government, the american media and, disgracefully, even this show, reveals the extent of the dehumanization and the degree of rationalization racism goes to justify genocide and extinguish the right of Palestine to ever.... also human beings.

Jul. 29 2014 10:29 AM
jgarbuz from Queens


Israel is the most democratic state in the world, but the Arabs don't appreciate democracy. Show me a truly democratic state anywhere in the world. If the Arabs don't appreciate Israeli democracy there are 21 non-democratic Arab states for them to emigrate to.

Jul. 29 2014 10:28 AM

@Chris from New York, lol, you cant argue about Israel with jgarbuz. He is a supporter. You cant bring up anything that criticizes Israel with a supporter. They will talk and talk and talk. Facts are irrelevant.

Jul. 29 2014 10:28 AM
Guy from NYC

Geesh Brian, afraid to cut off your guests today? That last lady just repeated nonsense over and over again. Time better spent listening to people who bring something to the table.

Jul. 29 2014 10:27 AM
Ed from Larchmont

It looks like the forces of Islam are making an all out attack on Israel: they've said they wanted to remove Israel, and they are going to make on large attempt.

Jul. 29 2014 10:27 AM

1. Israel built the walls to stop the suicide bombers from blowing up buses & stores
2. Why isn't Egypt criticized for not letting in the Palestinians
3. Had Israel ignored the terrorists's tunnels they would have murdered Israeli citizens.
4. Israel pulled out of Gaza under PM Ariel Sharon in the hopes for peace leaving them a beautiful land to utilize, nothing was done except plans to attack & wipe out Israel. Money was used to buy weapons and build tunnels not for the good of their own people.

Jul. 29 2014 10:26 AM
jgarbuz from Queens

The US has full control of the sea around and air over Puerto Rico too. SO what? Puerto Ricans can't vote for US president or Congess in Puerto Rico. Arab citizens of Israel can vote for knesset, and the Arabs who live in the liberated territories cannot, but can vote of their own terrorist leaders. The only difference is that Puerto Rico is not trying to deny the right of the US to exist, nor trying to wipe it out.

Jul. 29 2014 10:26 AM
Monica Byrne from Bklyn

I protest Israel's actions, but we must recognize that Hamas is accountable.
Even though I have been against the occupation, and annexation of land by Israel, Israel only gained control of these territories defending itself in aggressive wars.

Israel does not just take military action without being violently provoked first.

I believe in a 2 state solution, but it has been rejected by Arabs, later Palestinians, since 1948.

I want peace, and I think Israel should take the higher road, but how do you negotiate peace, or even detante with people who refute your right to exist, and wish for your destruction?

The more people sustain bombings, the less willing to turn the other cheek people become.

This is why Israel grew from a strong, but liberal and progressive country to the conservative hawkish one it is now.

The profound amount of antisemetism coming out of this war, and the number of people who can't distinguish between a people and it's government is stunning.

Jul. 29 2014 10:26 AM
jgarbuz from Queens

The US has full control of the sea around and air over Puerto Rico too. SO what? Puerto Ricans can't vote for US president or Congess in Puerto Rico. Arab citizens of Israel can vote for knesset, and the Arabs who live in the liberated territories cannot, but can vote of their own terrorist leaders. The only difference is that Puerto Rico is not trying to deny the right of the US to exist, nor trying to wipe it out.

Jul. 29 2014 10:25 AM
Chris from New York


You're a racist and should be ashamed of your steadfast backing of the apartheid state. Israel locked down all the borders with Gaza and prevented trade.

Israel is killing children, bombing hospitals and refusing to let innocent people flee as refugees from a war zone. They're trapped in there like a turkey shoot.

WNYC and all the other New York media are guilty of manipulating this topic through twisted words and rationalizations. They know who butters their bread - wealthy Jewish donors. It's sickening.

Jul. 29 2014 10:25 AM

@hamish, brian LEHRER. duh!

Jul. 29 2014 10:24 AM

According to genetics studies, palestinians and jews share the exact same fraternal dna. Religion has divided peoples who are brothers and sisters. maybe it's time we start talking about how religion is actually a mental illness and start the process or eliminating religion from the world?

Additionally, palestinians are the people who have been living there for thousands of years. when a group of people with zero claim to land come over and by force remove those indigenous people, thy will fight back.

Israel shouldn't have been formed. It's declaration of independence was a guarantee of constant war until the Israelis eliminate all the palestinians. It's genocide under the guise of defending it's peoples. Hitler said that prior to his occupation of lands he felt his people deserved.

Anyway you slice it America shares the same history with native indians. Hence why we support an illegal country that is committing war crimes. Time to end US monetary aid to israel.

Jul. 29 2014 10:22 AM
Elaine from Baltimore

The "siege" imposed on Gaza did not happen randomly. THere was NO restriction when Israel withdrew. SHall I repeat this to your listeners, esp that guy who called in? Only AFTER Hamas, a terrorist group sworn to Israel's destruction, was voted in by the Gaza population was this imposed. What would YOU do if they were your neighbors?

Jul. 29 2014 10:22 AM
jgarbuz from Queens

Israel is Jewish land, whether the rest of "the world" agree or not, just as Apache land is Apache land whether the rest of the world agrees or not. The Arabs are the ones who occupied the Jewish homeland and kept Jews out. I as a Jew could care less what "the world" thinks of us or our whether or not they think that tiny strip of land is Jewish land or Arab land. I know it as Jewish land and the League of Nations said so in 1922 also. We Jews liberated our homeland and will not give it back to Arabs no matter what insane and crazy things they do or say.

Jul. 29 2014 10:20 AM
john from office

Why is it we never see a dead Hamas fighter?? Only Gaza babies bleeding. Because it is all propaganda floks. Play it up for the cameras people!!

Hamas wants dead babies for the western press to photograph.

Hamas need better spokemen, who don't shoot at the camera.

Jul. 29 2014 10:20 AM

"Israel would say...."

If there are "two sides to this story", why does Brian only promote the Israeli version, and it's left entirely to callers to offer some small measure of balance?

Jul. 29 2014 10:19 AM
Elaine from baltimore

I really don't get this discussion. Hamas' charter calls for the destruction of Israel. Period. Israel has every right to destroy the elaborate infrastructure Hamas has built over the last 12 years. TO built this has cost the Gaza $90 million, so much for allowing goods to flow into Gaza. That money COULD have been spent on building the Gaza economy.

Jul. 29 2014 10:19 AM

Egypt blocks Gaza because the US pays them too.

Jul. 29 2014 10:19 AM
jgarbuz from Queens

Israel is Jewish land, whether the rest of "the world" agree or not, just as Apache land is Apache land whether the rest of the world agrees or not. The Arabs are the ones who occupied the Jewish homeland and kept Jews out.

Jul. 29 2014 10:18 AM
MichaelB from Morningside Heights

Netanyanhu wants to destroy Hamas?? And what does Hamas want to do? Play checkers with Israelis???

Jul. 29 2014 10:16 AM
jgarbuz from Queens

Gaza is an ancient city and could be as prosperous as Singapore if it were inhabited by Jews or Chinese or other people more interested in making a living and a good life rather than dying to get into paradise as martyrs. Israel gave Gaza every opportunity to become free and prosperous, but the "Palestinians" elected Hamas and chose what they call "resistance." Geronimo also chose resistance but he eventually surrendered when resistance proved futile.

Jul. 29 2014 10:15 AM
Mr. Bad from NYC

WOW, Mr. Bad right again and again and again... where are our JIDF friends this morning?

posted on Jul. 21 2014 10:16 AM

@ Brian

Netanyahu feels very threatened by the peace process! For as long as I can remember Likud has complained, vociferously, that there was no way forward for the 2 state solution because no peace settlement was possible without a Hamas/Fatah rapprochement. All of the sudden it happened so Binny knew he had to start a war ASAP!

Jul. 29 2014 10:14 AM

Far from being a mistake, the Israeli govt, led by Netanyahu, deliberately misled and inflamed the public in order to start a murderous war Israel has long wanted and planned for.
The only people who did not recognize from the start that Netanyahu’s statements were war-mongering lies are people whose view of the Middle East is completely corrupted by bias.
As for your question, How many murders of innocent civilians are morally justified to prevent the murders of some of your own innocent civilians:
Don’t you see that Palestinians are asking exactly the same question?
That Israel has killed countless Palestinian civilians going back to 1948, not just in deliberate combat and terrorism, but by driving people out of their homes and then occupying increasing territories with a brutality that amounts to mass murder?

Jul. 29 2014 10:14 AM
Elaine from baltimore

Since Hamas' stated objective is the destruction of Israel, isn't the appropriate response the destruction of Hamas? Wouldn't random missile strikes on Palestinian cities be proportionate to Hamas rocket attacks on Israel, which includes it's largest cities?

Jul. 29 2014 10:13 AM
MichaelB from Morningside Heights

I heard a Palestinian spokesman interviewed on BBC radio last week. I don't think he was directly associated with Hamas.

Towards the end of the interview he speculated that perhaps Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had arranged for the 3 Israeli teenagers to be kidnapped and killed to incite the entire conflagration!

And then he went on to condone the kidnapping of the 3 Israeli teens, justifying it because 2 of them were in the military.

Pressed by the BBC journalist about his statements, he stuck by them. No slip of the tongue here.

Mind you, he was not some "man on the street" -- he was a spokesman for Palestinians.

The cliche of moral relativism is that it takes 2 to tangle (tango?), a trite piece of wisdom designed to make the speaker feel good about his/her moral high ground.

But what is never said is that it also takes 2 to cooperate! Try to make peace with lunatics like the Palestinian spokesman cited above. Good luck with THAT strategy.

Jul. 29 2014 10:12 AM
paul from harlem

the question is insulting

Jul. 29 2014 10:12 AM
Orla from NYC

I would say there's bias implicit in your question. It presupposes Israel would be safe if it blocked the existing tunnels. There will be new tunnels as Palestinians react to intolerable living conditions. Israel can never be safe while the Palestinians are kept as virtual prisoners with 40% unemployment and no access to outside markets.

Jul. 29 2014 10:10 AM
blacksocialist from BKbaby

the non-truth from nyc - and Israel is a racist apartheid rogue country, that was intimately associated with the racist apartheid nation of s. africa... additionally, the Israeli state was aware of the deaths of the 3 teens almost immediately following their kidnapping. the rogue Israeli state put a gag order on the media so they could enact their terrorist assault on the people of gaza.... Lehrer you are such a hack

Jul. 29 2014 10:09 AM

The killing of the teens was not the instigation for the current crisis in Gaza. Hamas had been firing rockets into Israel weeks before it was reported, at least in the American press. Only when Israel decided to retaliate to protect itself did the crisis get reported.

Jul. 29 2014 10:08 AM
jgarbuz from Queens

Israel has the right to do what the US did to Japan and German in WWII, to destroy fanatical and non-compromising enemies. As for Gaza, terrorists were coming from Gaza in the 1950s and killing Israelis so this is nothing new. I lived in Beersheba and worked in Sderot in the 1980s when 25,000 Gazans came into Israel every day to work or get free health care, and went home by bus at night. There was a checkpoint but no walls and no actual border. Everything began to change due to the intifada that began in December 1987.

This conflict has little to do with the kidnappings and killings of kids. This is an existential war between the Jews and the Arabs who call themselves Palestinians and one side or the other has to give in. Otherwise the war goes on for centuries more.

Jul. 29 2014 10:07 AM
Here from There

Hatfields and McCoys? - 100+ years
Balkan wars - thousands of years

Haven't they proved that fighting is not the solution?

Jul. 29 2014 10:07 AM
paul from harlem

until palestinians resist hamas.

Jul. 29 2014 10:06 AM
john from office

Brian we firebombed entire cities in Japan and Germany killing hundreds of thousands. Stop trying to make this about morals, when it has to do with survival of a people. Israel would be wiped out and millions killed if they were to lose to their enemies. Look at Syria and Iraq, they treat other muslims like cattles to the slaughter, imagine what they would do to Jews.

You should be ashamed.

Jul. 29 2014 10:06 AM

The Israelis and Hamas already have a formula for the tradeoff between lives or deaths from each side. In 2011 they swapped one prisoner for 1000 or so. They each seem to have an idea of how much they each value each other's lives.

Jul. 29 2014 10:06 AM
Joyce from NYC

I think the question is phrased wrong.

The Israel initiative right now is not killing some to prevent the killing of others -- it is WAR. Over 1,500 rockets have been launched. THAT'S WAR. The response must be whatever is necessary to stop the rockets.

The US bombed Hiroshima. England bombed German civilians.

Gaza has chosen WAR. These are the consequences.

Jul. 29 2014 10:06 AM
Jake S

Well I'm sure the comments on this one will be reasonable and thought out.

Jul. 29 2014 10:05 AM
Ilan from Brighton

The occupying force is not killing citizens incidentally, they are actively targetting schools and hospitals power plant, the premise of your question is off.

Jul. 29 2014 10:04 AM
savitra from manhattan

i find myself wondering, what do i mean when i say something is "unacceptable"? do i mean that i think it is awful and horrible, i am extra angry, upset or sad, but i will return to my day and go about my business as usual? because that sounds a lot like accepting something.

Jul. 29 2014 10:04 AM
You Can't Handle the Truth from NYC

"The Truth"? Title suggests there has been an effort for a cover up?

rockets thrown from Gaza into ISR by Hamas -
Tunnels into Isr from Gaza.
Hamas sing human shields.
Hamas launching rockets from Mosques and schools and hospitals.
The Truth? Hamas is classified as a terrorist organization getting finding from Iran.

Jul. 29 2014 10:04 AM
Zev from Teaneck

If this operation didn't happen, Israel would not have discovered the terror tunnels and Hamas would have been able to carry out its massive massacre of Israelis this Rosh Hashana.

Jul. 29 2014 10:03 AM

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