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Exchange Between Bill Moyers and Abraham Foxman of the Anti-Defamation League

Following Bill Moyers' reflections on the events in Gaza on the JOURNAL last week, Anti-Defamation League National Director Abraham Foxman sent him this letter:

Mr. Moyers,

In less than a thousand words, you managed to fit into your January 9 commentary: (1) moral equivalency between Hamas, a radical Islamic terrorist group whose anti-Semitic charter cites the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, and Israel, the only democracy in the Middle East and perhaps America’s greatest ally in the world; (2) historical revisionism, asserting that Canaanites were Arabs; (3) anti-Semitism, declaring that Jews are “genetically coded” for violence; (4) ignorance of the terrorist threat against Israel, claiming that checkpoints, the security fence, and the Gaza operation are tactics of humiliation rather than counter-terrorism; and (5) promotion of an individual, the Norwegian doctor in Gaza, who has publicly expressed support for the September 11 attacks.

I have seen and read serious critiques of Israel’s military campaign in Gaza, and I have disagreed with many of them. Your commentary, however, is different, consisting mostly of intellectually and morally faulty claims that do a great disservice to the PBS audience. It invites not disagreement, but rebuke.

On one point you are correct – “America has officially chosen sides.” And rightly so. Fortunately for our nation, very few of our citizens engage in the same moral equivalency, racism, historical revisionism, and indifference to terrorism as you. If the reverse held, it would not be a country that any decent person would want to live in.

Sincerely,

Abraham H. Foxman
National Director
Anti-Defamation League

In response, Bill Moyers sent Mr. Foxman the following message:

Dear Mr. Foxman:

You made several errors in your letter to me of January 13 and I am writing to correct them.

First, to call someone a racist for lamenting the slaughter of civilians by the Israeli military offensive in Gaza is a slur unworthy of the tragedy unfolding there. Your resort to such a tactic is reprehensible.

Earlier this week it was widely reported that the International Red Cross “was so outraged it broke its usual silence over an attack in which the Israeli army herded a Palestinian family into a building and then shelled it, killing 30 people and leaving the surviving children clinging to the bodies of their dead mothers. The army prevented rescuers from reaching the survivors for four days.”

When American troops committed a similar atrocity in Vietnam, it was called My Lai and Lt. Calley went to prison for it. As the publisher of a large newspaper at the time, I instructed our editorial staff to cover the atrocity fully because Americans should know what our military was doing in our name and with our funding. To say “my country right or wrong” is like saying “my mother drunk or sober.” Patriots owe their country more than that, whether their government and their taxes are supporting atrocities in Vietnam, Iraq, or, in this case, Gaza.

Contrary to your claim, I made no reference whatsoever to “moral equivalency” between Hamas and Israel. That is an old canard often resorted to by propagandists trying to divert attention from facts on the ground, and, it, too, is unworthy of the slaughter in Gaza. Contrary to imputing “moral equivalency” between Hamas and Israel, I said that “Hamas would like to see every Jew in Israel dead.” I said that “a radical stream of Islam now seeks to eliminate Israel from the face of the earth.” And I described the new spate of anti-Semitism across the continent of Europe. I am curious as to why you ignored remarks which clearly counter the notion of “moral equivalency.”

And although I specifically referred to “the rockets from Hamas” falling on Israel and said that “every nation has the right to defend itself, and Israel is no exception,” you nonetheless accuse me of “ignorance of the terrorist threat against Israel.” Once again, you are quite selective in your reading of my essay.

Your claim that “the checkpoints, the security fence and the Gaza operation” [I used the more accurate “onslaught”] are not humiliating of the Palestinians is lamentable. I did not claim that these were, as you write, “tactics of humiliation rather [emphasis mine] than counter-terrorism,” but perhaps it is overly simplistic to think they are one and not the other, when they are both. Also lamentable is your description of my “promotion” of the Norwegian doctor in Gaza when in fact I was simply quoting what he told CBS News: “It’s like Dante’s Inferno. They are bombing one and a half million people in a cage.” The whole world has been able to see for itself what he was talking about, and as one major news organization after another has been reporting, is reeling from the sight.

And, to your claim that I was “declaring Jews are ‘genetically coded’ for violence,” you are mistaken. My comment – obviously not sufficiently precise – was not directed at a specific people but to the fact that the human race has violence in its DNA, as the biblical stories so strongly affirm. I also had in mind the relationship between all the descendents of Abraham who love the same biblical land and come to such grief over it.

From my days in President Johnson’s White House forward, I have defended Israel’s right to defend itself, and still do. But sometimes an honest critic is a government’s best friend, and I am appalled by Israel’s devastation of innocent civilians in this battle, all the more so because, as I said in my column, it is exactly what Hamas wanted to happen. To be so indifferent to that suffering is, sadly, to be as blind in Gaza as Samson.

Sincerely,

Bill Moyers


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Comments

Why is Foxman held to a different standard in terms of the responsibility for making outright career-damaging claims? clearly, this myopic, vile creature's agenda, has so intimidated the subjects of his claims--or the risk thereof (our pathetic congress), that to challenge is inconceivable.

As a former supporter of Israel, I'm simply taking a bottom line approach to the problem: What has Israel done for me lately? It seems that Israel is nothing more than a liability for the USA, demonstrating no tangible benefit to us as an "ally" any more than South Africa was 30 years ago. If the USA ended its support and alliance with Israel we wouldn't be in the cross-hairs of the Muslim world. At some point we have to decide whether the relationship is worth the cost.

@ "wanna be" critic:

You write nothing of substance in your post, but you do assert that I "sound" like someone... tell me, how does the written word "sound" like anything?

You further display your profound stupidity by asserting that "the only Nuremburg trials we need, are here in the US" what pray tell, were you attempting to say? Perhaps that such trials are already extant? That is certainly the meaning of "...are here, in the US."

A fool you are and responding to such is something of a waste of time, however evil/stupid must never pass unchallenged.

Mr. Moyers,

You are a consummate professional.

We are finally standing up to the religious nut-jobs who are trying to ruin our country and to Israel which is trying to sabotage our foreign policy. Great job Bill Moyers.

It is incredulous that Abe Foxman attempts supplant the "offically sponsored position of congress" with that of the opinion of the "People of the United States". It's an attempt to reframe the argument as politically correct in order to shut down debate, and accept his preferred position as given.

It must be said that Palestinians have behaved as all colonised people in history have behaved towards the coloniser: they rebelled in protest. What is so difficult or obscure about that, and why do so evidently well endowed a people as the Israelis resist understanding the most elementary aspects of human behaviour?

Fanciful ideas of Israeli power today as embodied in the politicans of today are at best a postponement, and a bloody one at that, of the inevitable realisation that Apartheid can only work if two peoples accept the notion of separation with inferiority that the strong imposes on the weak.
But, since that is not the case (and has never happened in history), it will always be unlikely that people will cheerfully accept their enslavement. Why are Israelis en masse fooling themselves into thinking that it will work in so small an area and so historically saturated a geography as Palestine's?

Bill Moyers, I want to thank you for coming out of retirement. We need you so badly at this point in time.

This is a comment I copied from a story on Haaretz news that reasonated with me.
"The crux of Israeli propaganda: that the resistance to the occupation is the cause of the occupation, and, if the resistance would only stop, then something good would happen.

What would happen if there was no Arab enemy? What then would be the glue holding the country together?
In a nutshell, why it is unlikely Israel will ever make peace. It can`t. Peace would mean no Israel."
As for Abe Foxman's contortions..
Qui Bono?
No anti-semitism, no terrorized jews in the diaspora, no war... no paycheck.

Pseudospeciation refers to the tendency of members of in-groups to consider members of out-groups to have evolved genetically into different, separate, and inferior species to their own.
The term was first used by Erik Erikson in 1966, according to his biographer, Lawrence J. Friedman (Identity's Architect, p. 442). Dehumanization is one possible outcome of pseudospeciation, as is discrimination and genocide
Themes of dehumanization: scapegoating, ethnic stereotypes and racism
A common theme (or meme) is that of scapegoating, where dehumanizing the target provides a release from guilt for the person that scapegoats them, who typically begins to see themselves as a victim of the dehumanized person, rather than as a potential oppressor.
{Oxford English Dictionary)
In war, the enemy is generally demonized, with ethnic slurs being used to dehumanize them to the point where killing them becomes morally acceptable.

cognitive dissonance
when a person begins to understand that something the person believes to be true is, in fact, not true.
The theory of cognitive dissonance states that contradicting cognitions serve as a driving force that compels the mind to acquire or invent new thoughts or beliefs, or to modify existing beliefs, so as to reduce the amount of dissonance (conflict) between cognitions. Experiments have attempted to quantify this hypothetical drive. Some of these have examined how beliefs often change to match behavior when beliefs and behavior are in conflict.

There is no doubt that the jews that escaped hitler were severly traumatized. There were also others that capitalized on their suffering, and that ideology lives on. Hate was transferred to Palestinians by equating them with Nazis, or denying their history altoghter, just as
you have been crowned "anti-semite".

From a proud American-Jew and dedicated supporter of Israel, a country that I love: Dear Abraham Foxman, fuck you.

Israelis, Go Home.

Leave the Palestinians and their land alone.

Following the mistreatment of your people by the Nazis you all should know better. Thank you.

Thankyou, Mr. Moyers.

"Defamation
Def`a*ma"tion\, n. [OE. diffamacioun, F. diffamation. See Defame.] Act of injuring another's reputation by any slanderous communication, written or oral; the wrong of maliciously injuring the good name of another; slander; detraction; calumny; aspersion."

Who's working for the league again?

The only answer lies in establishing a one state solution where the West Bank, Gaza, Jerusalem, and Israel pre 1967 are merged into one country with equal rights for all inhabitants. Then it will be a true democracy.

Israel the Jewish State is currently about as much of a democracy as South Africa the white state was with apartheid.

The Anti-Defamation League has only two members: the $500,000/yr. Abe Foxman and the partner he is in "league" with, the Devil.

God help Israel when it is overrun by the brutalized Arabs, as it ultimately will be. It's just a matter of time, of which the Arabs have plenty.

To Mr. Moyers

I see your webmaster has removed my reply to "Mr. truth".. how come? Succumb to zionist pressure ! tut tut tut.. is there no where left on the internet where a man can make a free statement in reply to a list of lies (to Mr. truth).. at least remove the lies too if you want to be fair !

Shame !

Given that George Mitchell has been appointed in the Middle East, and his CV includes the experience gained here in Ireland, it might be worth using the IRA as an analogy to highlight questions that are not being asked about Hamas's popularity among the Palestinian people. The majority of the Irish nationalists throughout the troubles may have given lip service to the IRA's goals of "Brits out" and allowed them to justify the violence of their attacks aimed at this outcome; but in the event, the majority are now also quite happy to continue to live under a British rule that recognizes their rights and allows them to go about their business in peace. The question becomes, how did the British lose the fight for the hearts and minds of the northern Irish nationalists for so long - creating the vacuum that the IRA was unfortunately able to exploit? Likewise, I raise a question that I have never seen addressed, which is, how is it that Israel has allowed Hamas to win the hearts and minds of the Palestinians? Because, no doubt, the vast majority of Palestinians wish for what we all wish for - to raise our children in peace and plenty, and to be able to freely seek and obtain that plenty by the strength of our own hand and mind. Israel could have guaranteed these freedoms to all Palestinians from the very start, which would have left little room for the extreme and violent views of Hamas to gain a toehold, at the same time safeguarding the security of all its people. That Hamas has been able to win the hearts and minds of the Gazans, (and no matter how strong it becomes, it is still not synonymous with Palestinians or even with the people of Gaza), it is mainly a testament to the fact that Israel has signally failed - 1) to love and honour its neighbour, 2) to seek the public good of all of the people whose fates lie within its control. That the fates of all Palestinians, both inside and outside the Green Line are utterly within Israeli government control, is beyond doubt. Israel alone has the choice whether to grant or withhold dignity, human rights, land rights, food and water rights, fishing and farming rights, the right to freedom of movement and to seek a livelihood to all or some of the people it controls. But the rights Israel claims the international community must recognise can have no validity if Israel does not recognise and extend the same rights to others.

I applaud Mr Moyers for his strength of resolve to not let pass, the twisted comments by the Anti-defamation league. It is a strategy that I have noted in my own recent discussions on this...it is as if israeli supporters are in a trance and cannot sort out the white elephant in the living room, to use another alcohol correlation...drunk with power to the tune of 10 million or more american dollars per day pouring into the israeli military complex...a lot to defend, so the obvious defense is the trance-like offensive comment that we who have eyes open wide awake must, according to them, be propagandists...wake up from your slumber america...see the correlations, listen to logic, connect the dots...our previously beloved israel is abusing it's power and most of us are silent....

Bravo to Mr. Moyer for standing up to what's right and not be bullied by Foxman.Israel is using anti-semitism everytime someone questions their action. Congress should grow some balls and speak up. Mr. Paul, Mr. Kucenich thank you too.

To Jeff Warner

Very well put.
Regards

Reply to Robert Gould.

Of coarse there is. The PLO, under Arafat's leadership, accepted Israel's existance in stages between 1988 and 1995, and said it was ready for a 2-state solution on 22% of Mandate Palestine (the West Bank and Gaza Strip). This was codified in the Oslo Accord. Rather than follow through, Israel doubled the settler population. And Barak's "generous offer" at Camp David II was not generous at all - Israel kept all the settlements along with the Jordan Vally and all of the holy sites in Jerusalem including the Dome of the Rock, and offered Palestinians little more than "bantustans." And Arafat was demonized.

The Saudi peace inititive of 2002, backed by all 22 Arab nations and renewed several times, offers a 2-state solution based on the Green Line and normal relations between Isarel and all Arab states. This proposal has been ignored by Israel and the U.S.

Now Hamas is in the process of recognizing Israel and accepting a 2-state solution based on the Green Line. All the top Hamas leaders have said as much over the past 2 years. True the Hamas charter is an ugly document. Nevertheless, it is clear that Hamas is changing. But rather than pick-up the openings offered by Hamas, Israel and the U.S. continue to attempt to isolate Hamas.

Conclusion, Palestinians in particular, and Arabs in general, have and are offering peace, but Israel keeps ignoring those offers.

As a Jewish American I want you to know that Foxman is way out of line and does not represent my views, or the views of most Jewish Americans. We are all, like Bill Moyers, outraged at the massacre that Israel brought down on the 1.5 million, unarmed civilians living in the Gaza Strip.

I myself go way beyond Moyers and point out that the rockets that Israel says it was defending itself from, could haver been stopped without a shot - by simply opening the Gaza Crossings. And although I am not a fan of Hamas, we must recognize that Hamas has acted bin an upright manner - it kept the June 19 cease-fire, even though Israel never did because Israel never opened the crossings, until Israel broke the cease-fire on Nov. 4.

Here is a statement from my organization, LA Jews for Peace http://www.lajewsforpeace.org/Essays/Statement-Jan31-09.pdf

No one argues that the Israel-Palistinian conflict is complex and disturbing. On the Israeli side, one hears arguements both for and against Party Line. There is a liberal and conservative platform. Voices from both sides are well documented. My question is, "Is there a moderate Palistinian voice that seeks a compromise with Israel? Is there a moderate Palistinian voice that speaks out against the killing of innocent Israeli citizens?" I don't want to believe that every Palistinian want every Jew in Israel dead?"

CRASH COURSE ON THE ARAB ISRAELI CONFLICT

Here are overlooked facts in the current Middle East situation.

These were compiled by a university professor:

BRIEF FACTS ON THE ISRAELI CONFLICT TODAY

1. Nationhood and Jerusalem. Israel became a nation in 1312 BCE, Two thousand years before the rise of Islam.

2. Arab refugees in Israel began identifying themselves as part of a Palestinian people in 1967, two decades after the establishment of the modern State of Israel.

3. Since the Jewish conquest in 1272 BCE, the Jews have had dominion over the land for one thousand years with a continuous presence in the land for the past 3,300 years.

4. The only Arab dominion since the conquest in 635 CE lasted no more than 22 years.

5. For over 3,300 years, Jerusalem has been the Jewish capital Jerusalem has never been the capital of any Arab or Muslim entity. Even when the Jordanians occupied Jerusalem, they never sought to make it their capital, and Arab leaders did not come to visit.

6. Jerusalem is mentioned over 700 times in Tanach, the Jewish Holy Scriptures. Jerusalem is not mentioned once in the Koran.

7. King David founded the city of Jerusalem. Mohammed never came to Jerusalem.

8. Jews pray facing Jerusalem. Muslims pray with their backs toward Jerusalem.

9. Arab and Jewish Refugees: in 1948 the Arab refugees were encouraged to leave Israel by Arab leaders promising to purge the land of Jews . Sixty-eight percent left without ever seeing an Israeli soldier.

10 The Jewish refugees were forced to flee from Arab lands due to Arab brutality, persecution and pogroms.

11. The number of Arab refugees who left Israel in 1948 is estimated to be around 630,000.The number of Jewish refugees from Arab lands is estimated to be the same.

12. Arab refugees were INTENTIONALLY not absorbed or integrated into the Arab lands to which they fled, despite the vast Arab territory. Out of the 100,000,000 refugees since World War II, theirs is the only refugee group in the world that has never been absorbed or integrated into their own people's lands. Jewish refugees were completely absorbed into Israel , a country no larger than the state of New Jersey.

13. The Arab-Israeli Conflict: the Arabs are represented by at least eight separate nations, not including the Palestinians. There is only one Jewish nation. The Arab nations initiated all five wars and lost. Israel defended itself each time and won.

14. The PLO's Charter still calls for the destruction of the State of Israel. Israel has given the Palestinians most of the West Bank land, autonomy under the Palestinian Authority, and has supplied them.

15. Under Jordanian rule, Jewish holy sites were desecrated and the Jews were denied access to places of worship. Under Israeli rule, all Muslim and Christian sites have been preserved and made accessible to people of all faiths.

16. The UN Record on Israel and the Arabs: of the 175 Security Council resolutions passed before 1990, 97 were directed against Israel.

17. Of the 690 General Assembly resolutions voted on before 1990, 429 were directed against Israel.

18. The UN was silent while 58 Jerusalem Synagogues were destroyed by the Jordanians.

19. The UN was silent while the Jordanians systematically desecrated the ancient Jewish cemetery on the Mount of Olives.

20. The UN was silent while the Jordanians enforced an apartheid-like a policy of preventing Jews from visiting the Temple Mount and the Western Wall.

To Yishai

You say your victims appear to be educated and intelligent, yet you insult them further in your letter, by insulting their intelligence. A few corrections to your “propagandist” message that I am sure was not written by you but by Israeli media groups whose sole job is to hide israel’s crimes and spread venomous lies from their venomous mouths:

- Hamas is not the reason there house is in ruins, it is Israel, it is YOU… Think !!
- By thinking that you can turn the people in Gaza against Hamas is again missing the whole point. The Gazans are Hamas and Hamas is Gazans.. it is like saying to someone you are having fever because your arm is infected.. so let us remove the arm.. I say let us remove the infection who is YOU.. Think.
- You asked how did it not cross your victims mind that one day you would decide “enough is enough” and launch a strike. Well let me remind you that for each rocket fired by Hamas on Palestinian land that you STOLE, Israeli jets went out and struck massive blows at civilian areas.. the media did its best to conceal this. So the principle of “enough is enough” is not valid. You have retaliated 1000 time over before even you launched the war.
- Then you use the term “Israeli towns” and “Israeli citizens”.. WHAT ! When was this you home? You came from thousands of miles away to kick these poor people out of their land and build your ugly settlements on it? Do you think the world will go on believing your stupid story that “God Estate Agency Ltd” has designated this land for you to live in. Did you think that God would want you to come and take Palestinian land and kill and torture these poor people as you do.. just to fulfill your Torah’s instructions. By the very fact that you actually believe this it shows the racist standpoint that you speak from. So the “Jewish” god allows killing of other people in order to bring his “chosen” people to live on their land.. what a load of old nonsense. We live in the 21st century.. Think.
- Let us talk numbers here. In the last seven years of conflict, there has been rockets fired from Gaza onto their own stolen land but the number of Israeli thieves who died is 13 only. Israel in these seven years killed 5 thousand Palestinians and injured thousand others, before the recent major attack on Gaza. Now your Livni (daughter of wanted criminal-documented) says “enough is enough” one would think.. ohh poor Israelis they have been sitting idol al this time and now they have decided to act.. people do not know of the atrocities that you and the thugs who fight with you have been doing far worse than announced by the media to the poor Palestinians.
- I don’t want to make it long but hey, listen: ISRAEL HAS LOST THIS WAR AS WELL AS THE 2006 WAR AND YOU HAVE BEEN KICKED OUT OF SOUTH LEBANON IN 2000. YOU ARMY IS RUBBISH AND YOU ARE COWARDS. THE PICTURE IN CHANGING DESPITE THE MASSIVE EFFORT BY YOUR GOVERNMENT TO SHOW A FALSE PICTURE OF SUPERIORITY AND INVINCIBILITY, YOUR ARMY IS RUBBISH AND ONE DAY THE ARABS WILL GIVE YOU A BIG SURPIRISE.. IT IS COMING.. I just hope you will live to see it.

There is one big fact that is staring everybody in the face and is being overlooked by all. Listen people: Hamas has been firing rockets on its OWN land, NOT on a land that the UN recognises as the land of Israeli of 1948 (albeit still a stolen one from the Arabs). So where is the problem? If want to fire demolish a shed in my back garden why am considered a terrorist? Is israeli thieves from Poland, Georgia, the US or otherwise choose to come and steel Palestinian land and live on it, then they have to expect some kind of welcome from the local people, the ligitimate government of Palestine.. Hamas.

Hamas in their own voices:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i08L09V0_sg

An Open Letter to A citizen Of Gaza:
I Am the Soldier Who Slept In Your Home:
By: Yishai G (reserve soldier)

Hello,

While the world watches the ruins in Gaza, you return to your home
which remains standing. However, I am sure that it is clear to you
that someone was in your home while you were away.

I am that someone.

I spent long hours imagining how you would react when you walked into
your home. How you would feel when you understood that IDF soldiers
had slept on your mattresses and used your blankets to keep warm.

I knew that it would make you angry and sad and that you would feel
this violation of the most intimate areas of your life by those
defined as your enemies, with stinging humiliation. I am convinced
that you hate me with unbridled hatred, and you do not have even the
tiniest desire to hear what I have to say. At the same time, it is
important for me to say the following in the hope that there is even
the minutest chance that you will hear me.

I spent many days in your home. You and your family's presence was
felt in every corner. I saw your family portraits on the wall, and I
thought of my family. I saw your wife's perfume bottles on the
bureau, and I thought of my wife. I saw your children's toys and
their English language schoolbooks. I saw your personal computer and
how you set up the modem and wireless phone next to the screen, just
as I do.

I wanted you to know that despite the immense disorder you found in
your house that was created during a search for explosives and
tunnels (which were indeed found in other homes), we did our best to
treat your possessions with respect. When I moved the computer table,
I disconnected the cables and lay them down neatly on the floor, as I
would do with my own computer. I even covered the computer from dust
with a piece of cloth. I tried to put back the clothes that fell when
we moved the closet although not the same as you would have done, but
at least in such a way that nothing would get lost.

I know that the devastation, the bullet holes in your walls and the
destruction of those homes near you place my descriptions in a
ridiculous light. Still, I need you to understand me, us, and hope
that you will channel your anger and criticism to the right places.
I decided to write you this letter specifically because I stayed in
your home.

I can surmise that you are intelligent and educated and there are
those in your household that are university students. Your children
learn English, and you are connected to the Internet. You are not
ignorant; you know what is going on around you.

Therefore, I am sure you know that Qassam rockets were launched from
your neighborhood into Israeli towns and cities.

How could you see these weekly launches and not think that one day we
would say "enough"?! Did you ever consider that it is perhaps wrong
to launch rockets at innocent civilians trying to lead a normal life,
much like you? How long did you think we would sit back without
reacting?

I can hear you saying "it's not me, it's Hamas". My intuition tells
me you are not their most avid supporter. If you look closely at the
sad reality in which your people live, and you do not try to deceive
yourself or make excuses about "occupation", you must certainly reach
the conclusion that the Hamas is your real enemy.

The reality is so simple, even a seven year old can understand:
Israel withdrew from the Gaza strip, removing military bases and its
citizens from Gush Katif. Nonetheless, we continued to provide you
with electricity, water, and goods (and this I know very well as
during my reserve duty I guarded the border crossings more than once,
and witnessed hundreds of trucks full of goods entering a blockade-
free Gaza every day).

Despite all this, for reasons that cannot be understood and with a
lack of any rational logic, Hamas launched missiles on Israeli towns.
For three years we clenched our teeth and restrained ourselves. In
the end, we could not take it anymore and entered the Gaza strip,
into your neighborhood, in order to remove those who want to kill us.
A reality that is painful but very easy to explain.

As soon as you agree with me that Hamas is your enemy and because of
them, your people are miserable, you will also understand that the
change must come from within. I am acutely aware of the fact that
what I say is easier to write than to do, but I do not see any other
way. You, who are connected to the world and concerned about your
children's education, must lead, together with your friends, a civil
uprising against Hamas.

I swear to you, that if the citizens of Gaza were busy paving roads,
building schools, opening factories and cultural institutions instead
of dwelling in self pity, arms smuggling and nurturing a hatred to
your Israeli neighbors, your homes would not be in ruins right now.
If your leaders were not corrupt and motivated by hatred, your home
would not have been harmed. If someone would have stood up and
shouted that there is no point in launching missiles on innocent
civilians, I would not have to stand in your kitchen as a soldier.
You don't have money, you tell me? You have more than you can imagine.
Even before Hamas took control of Gaza, during the time of Yasser
Arafat, millions if not billions of dollars donated by the world
community to the Palestinians was used for purchasing arms or taken
directly to your leaders bank accounts. Gulf States, the emirates -
your brothers, your flesh and blood, are some of the richest nations
in the world. If there was even a small feeling of solidarity between
Arab nations, if these nations had but the smallest interest in
reconstructing the Palestinian people – your situation would be very
different.

You must be familiar with Singapore. The land mass there is not much
larger than the Gaza strip and it is considered to be the second most
populated country in the world. Yet, Singapore is a successful,
prospering, and well managed country. Why not the same for you?
My friend, I would like to call you by name, but I will not do so
publicly. I want you to know that I am 100% at peace with what my
country did, what my army did, and what I did. However, I feel your
pain. I am sorry for the destruction you are finding in your
neighborhood at this moment. On a personal level, I did what I could
to minimize the damage to your home as much as possible.

In my opinion, we have a lot more in common than you might imagine. I
am a civilian, not a soldier, and in my private life I have nothing
to do with the military. However, I have an obligation to leave my
home, put on a uniform, and protect my family every time we are
attacked. I have no desire to be in your home wearing a uniform again
and I would be more than happy to sit with you as a guest on your
beautiful balcony, drinking sweet tea seasoned with the sage growing
in your garden.

The only person who could make that dream a reality is you. Take
responsibility for yourself, your family, your people, and start to
take control of your destiny. How? I do not know. Maybe there is
something to be learned from the Jewish people who rose up from the
most destructive human tragedy of the 20th century, and instead of
sinking into self-pity, built a flourishing and prospering country.
It is possible, and it is in your hands. I am ready to be there to
provide a shoulder of support and help to you.

But only you can move the wheels of history."
Regards,
Yishai, (Reserve Soldier

Bob,
Perhaps america and the british created Israel for the sole purpose of displacing the Palestinians. These people(the settlers) should have been assimilated into America/Britain instead of being allowed to forcefully displace people and creating this impoverished refugee situation.

The irony, forcefully occupy anothers land and blame the Arab league for it.

The Arab League created the displaced persons in Gaza for the sole purpose of destroying Israel. These people lshould have been assimulated by the Arab states instead of being impoverished and left to live in camps.

What kind of nonsense is that God is an estate agent Who gave the land of Palestine to the jews? When the West is denouncing God and teaching school children that we only came to be by pure chance and are evolving ever since then why are they following the so called Gods will to grant the jews the land of Palestine ?

Abe Foxman is nothing but a fascist apologist and hate monger. He should be arrested. He should be tried for treason. He has committed 100's of crimes yet no one prosecutes him? People were arrested and kicked off planes for reading political books and/or wearing political t-shirts. Yet Foxman can attack ex presidents and one of America's most hallowed journalist insiders... Bill Moyers. Our country is truly under distress. All flags need to hang upside down.

It is ridiculous how people keep saying over and over that "Israel doesnt target civilians". Palestinians are treated no better than animals, they are humiliated everyday by Israeli soldiers and the settlers. There are so many videos on youtube of settlers abusing the Palestinians, even little Israeli children throwing rocks, at the few Palestinian families that live amidst them or have to walk through their neighbourhood. It is apalling. This is the high ground claiming nation(!).

People in this country are complaining about their hard earned tax money going into supporting this single mom who recently gave birth to octuplets, does anybody care that their tax money goes into supporting these atrocities on the Palestinians, and in killing their children? Either we are all inhuman and lack compassion for these people or perhaps ethnic cleansing is the motive behind all this and folks are satisfied with what is going on..Please "israels right to defend itself" argument is stinking old. By that token even Palestinians have a right to self defense. Just say it like it is.

Bill - "Hebrew Bible/Genetically coded" goes right up there with Al Campanis' "blacks lack the buoyancy" to swim... as for your backpedal for having used "imprecise language" - you are a master of linguistic precision - you said precisely what you meant... look, everybody is a little anti-something under the skin, yours just snuck out... and frankly, i much prefer a stereotype that portrays Jews as ass-kickers, as opposed to the bespectacled-intellectuals who walked meekly to the gas chambers and became american woody allens with mothers who kvetch and who secretly run the media and banking industries... plus you should hear what my uncle louie says about you gentiles!
oh, and speaking of "illegal occupations" how would you feel if Native Americans had a charter that called for destroying America and white people (as Hamas has re Israel/Jews), and so the Indians started lobbing rockets at "us" from their reservations? would we respond in some way besides talk? oh, you're right, that doesn't compare, because after all, those darn "Hebrew Bible" reading jews weren't involved in the slaughter of the american indian as we stole their land and hunted them down when they took refuge far away from us in new lands... manifest destiny and all... and only readers of the Hebrew bible are genetically coded for that kind of violence - hey maybe your right - maybe we Jews DID kill the Indians... I mean we kill everybody good and pure... sure, there were only like nine of us in the Old West, but I'm sure we were at the bottom of it somehow... I once saw pictures of Wyatt Earp's Bar Mitzvah... I mean we're the root of every rotten thing... like the Spanish Inquisition... no wait, that was the other guys... Northern Ireland? no... WW One? Two? Korea? Nam? Well, I'm sure we caused all those "cycles of violence" somehow... then again, maybe I'm not being "precise..."

If it was not for that "s**tty little nation"of Israel most of the planet would be at peace. The greatest terrorist nations in the world today are the United States and Israel.

we have a fifth column in america. abe foxman is what
he describes moyers to be.
only 10000000000000 time worse

Abe Foxman critisized George Mitchell, President Obama's special envoy to the Middle East because Mitchell is "too fair" and "meticulously even-handed," and Foxman says he is "not sure the situation requires that kind of approach."

LMAO.....

Dear Mr Moyer,

I have only now learnt about your January commentary. As an Israeli who is himself appalled by the actions of his government in gaza, I am grateful to you for your remarks. The battle to bring peace to our region needs to be fought in the USA as much as in the Middle East, and public comments such as yours are extremely important in this struggle. Please don't let the usual "anti-semitic" slurs of Foxman discourage you. We, Israelis an Palestinians who for so long strive for a better future in the region, need your support and can distinguish between true friends of Peace such as yourself and knee-jerk "friends of Israel" such as Foxman. Thank you!

Reading Foxman makes me feel as if I were back in school in the Communist Bloc. He is the Rush Limbaugh of Zionism, forever making assertions hoping to intimidate to silence whomever he disapproves of. If you challenge his assertions and his hasbara (Hebrew for BS) for him that proves that you are an "anti-Semite." This same "leader" of the ANTI-DEFAMATION LEAGUE not long ago apologized at a Zionist gathering in Israel for not getting involved in fighting "anti-Zionism" because he was too preoccupied fighting Jewish "assimilation" in America. The Founding Fathers of this great nation did not leave freedom to be arbitrarily adjudicated by this rather hysterical man. Instead, they unequivocally gave the right to free speech to everyone, not just Foxman and his ilk, but certainly including Mr. Foxman. So while I find him as appalling as a Red "activist" in his screaming distortions and fabrications attempting to intimidate through slander, I must say that he is not nor will ever be the sole arbiter of our hard won and hard kept freedoms as Americans, whether he likes them or not. Mr. Moyers, you needn't grovel to the likes of him. Instead, promote meaningful dialogue so we can all appreciate the complexities at issue where there is no black or white but many shades of grey.

It is amazing to me, that there is so much confusion over who the terrorists are. Hamas is a terrorist organization that condones and facilitates suicide bombings and will kill every Jew on the planet if they have the chance.
Israel is an energetic democracy with a vibrant press. Israel is a free country that abides by the rule of law. By contrast, if a writer were to go to Gaza or Iran, for instance, and start writing bad words, he might wind up on the news, dead.
Israel allows Christians and Arab Muslims to worship freely, while Hamas wants to see us all at the bottom of the sea. Hamas, supported by Iran, is clear about their goals: they want to wipe out Israel completely, utterly, with finality. But it's not just Israel that Hamas wants to kill; they want to kill all Jews everywhere. Complete genocide

The only real question that exists in this issue is if there is truly God chosen supremacy of one human being over another. The fundamentals of Judaism proclaim that the Jews are divinely superior to all other human beings. As do the fundamentals of Islam proclaim that Moslems are divinely superior to all others. As is the same for Christians. As was the same was for Nazis. Fundamental American values proclaim a definite NO! That All are equal in God's eyes. So why is it here in America that realistic criticism of the Hamas's violence is immediately labeled as justification for killing, while the realistic criticism of Israel’s violence is immediately label hatred, i.e. Anti-semitism? Are we that afraid of biblical wraths to look behind the curtain of the great and wonderful chosen ones, pull the tail of the stampeding holy cow and denounce injustice in all its forms when we see it? The evil genius of most religions is to exploit fear for the sake of fear itself by instilling the fear of ghosts and unknowns and things that don't exist into the hearts and minds of men for the purpose of power and control. But there is also beauty and truth in religions. Blessed are the peace makers, for they will be the children of God. A truth which makes it obvious that neither Israel nor Hamas are God’s chosen ones. Americans should be more in fear of God’s wrath for choosing one holier than thou side over the other holier than thou instead of standing the high ground in the middle denouncing all and every injustice and taking our blows from both sides.

While you are at it, please say a word on behalf of the many Palestinians who are vicitms of disproportionate use of force by Hamas - merely for supporting (just being rumored to have supported) their rival, Fatah. Don't believe it? See http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2009/01/22/MNHV15EHUT.DTL&hw=Hamas+Fatah&sn=002&sc=943 , from a newspaper that can hardly be called a bastion of "right-wing Jews"

This is not to silence criticism of Israeli military, just a request that human rights advocates not forget the many Palestinian victims of Hamas (and Fatah) torture and other forms of intimidation.

To Allan and Jeremy and other Israeli genocide deniers.

Your narrative follows the same twisted format as any cheap holocaust denier.


These are teh indisputable facts:-

1- Israel is in illegal military occupation of foreign lands;
2- Israel stands in contempt of every international law and UN Resolution pertaining to that illegal occupation;
3- Hamas is a creature of Israel
4- Hamas is a democratically elected government of the civilian population being in the Israeli concentration camp of Gaza.
5- Hamas are the owners of land illegally occupied by Israeli squatters;
6- Israel seeks to steal that land by wiping the Palestinian people off the map.

Your lies and distortions are necessary because without them you are unable to justify the crimes against humanity being committed by the Israeli thugs against the civilians of gaza.

I support the views of Sir Gerald Kaufman who stated in the British Parliament that "my grandmother was not murdered in her bed by the Nazis to provide the Israelis an excuse to commit genocide against the PAlestinian people"

Bravo Bill Moyers. bravo Roger and others who are coming forward and showing the strength of character and the fortitude to prevent yet another holocaust.

Bravo again for those Jews who are sick of what Israeli criminals claim to commit against humanity in our name.

How dare any man or woman claim that these horrific crimes committed by Israel are committed in the name of Jews.

No Jew with the self respect and the dignity to call himself a Jew would become associated with these barbaric crimes committed in their name by the world's most criminal, godless state.

Moreover, any American citizen who prides himself on our Constitution rejects everything which that disgusting little state of genocidaires represents.

It is time to dismantle the myth that Palestine belongs to foreigners who support the ideologies of a stone age theology.

Why does Israel and Israeli supporters have such a big propaganda war going on? They have filled the internet with their propaganda content, whenever there is any discussion on this subject they start jumping up and down and passing baseless statistics and "facts". You guys have plundered and looted, got the country that "God wants you to be in", have full support of the worlds superpower, weapons, and WMDs. What are guys so scared of when you even have God on your side? God and the great USofA are your protectors man!

Why then do you still feel the need to start whining at the slightest discussion on this subject? It sounds like a guilty conscious to me. You know that you have wronged, that you are guilty of mistreating the Palestinians. And you try to justify that with all kinds of excuses and stats. You will never be able to live in peace until you acknowledge this, and make amends. Maybe God is not happy with your actions.

We are all Gods children, and he certainly does not approve of the powerful among us treating the weak ones badly, that too in his name.

Dan,
The real history: (I can send you more lessons also if you really want to get educated)
The Tragedy of Palestine

The Balfour Declaration’s commitment to a Jewish national home in the British mandate of Palestine soon came back to haunt Britain and the Arabs. Arabs were outraged by the implication that they were the intruders in Palestine, when in fact at the end of World War II they accounted for about 90% of the population.
While Jewish immigration to Palestine in the 1920’s caused little alarm, the situation escalated markedly with the rise of Nazi persecution in Europe. Large numbers of European Jews flocked to Palestine, inflaming nationalist passions among all Arabs, who feared the creation of a Jewish state in which they would be the losers. Palestinian resistance erupted into a full-scale revolt which lasted from 1936-39. This revolt, which in some respects resembled the intifada of the late 1980s, was the first major outbreak of Palestinian-Zionist hostilities.

Although the strict terms imposed on Transjordan since 1921 prevented Emir Abdullah from establishing official contacts with Palestinian Arabs under the British mandate, he nonetheless gave refuge to Palestinian leaders and political activists. He constantly warned the British against earmarking Arab lands for a Jewish national home and allowing increased Jewish immigration to Palestine. He also intervened at various levels on behalf of the Palestinians, while warning of impending disaster should a diplomatic solution to the problem not be found. His predictions fell on deaf ears, but came true nonetheless.

As the Jewish population in Palestine increased sharply during the 1930s, fighting between Jews and Arabs increased also. Both sides blamed the British, who failed miserably in their attempts to reach a settlement acceptable to all. The conflict was muted by the onset of World War II, during which both sides cooperated with the British. Transjordan’s Arab Legion also joined the side of the Allies, helping the British and the Free French drive the Vichy forces from Syria.

The crisis of Palestine reached a boiling point in the years immediately after the war. With international sympathy firmly behind the Jews in the wake of the Holocaust, Zionist leaders pressured the British to admit thousands of displaced Jews. At the same time, underground Jewish groups such as the Irgun and the renegade Stern Gang initiated a campaign of terrorism against the British. Washing its hands of the whole imbroglio, Britain declared in February 1947 that its mandate over Palestine would end on May 14, 1948. The matter was then addressed by the United Nations, which, after rejecting various plans, voted for the partition of Palestine in November 1947. The plan called for the partition of Palestine into an Arab state and a Jewish state, with al-Quds (Jerusalem) to be placed under UN trusteeship. More than half the territory, including the valuable coastal strip, had been allotted to the Jews, who only owned about 6% of the land. The Arabs were shocked, and conflict was inevitable.

On May 14, 1948, the British terminated their mandate over Palestine, and the Jews immediately proclaimed the independence of the state of Israel. The Soviet Union was the first country to recognize Israel, followed promptly by the United States. The tragedy of Palestine was born.

Hisoty 101.
For over 3,300 years, Jerusalem has been the Jewish capital. Jerusalem has never been the capital of any Arab or Muslim entity. Even when the Jordanians occupied Jerusalem (1948-1967), they never sought to make it their capital, and Arab leaders did not come to visit.

To Thomas mc
Germany did not "belong" to the jews. Israel does.
Israel became a nation about 1300 BCE, two thousand years before the rise of Islam. The people of modern day Israel share the same language and culture shaped by the Jewish heritage and religion passed through generations starting with the founding father Abraham. Since the Jewish conquest in 1272 BCE, the Jews have had dominion over the land for one thousand years with a continuous presence in the land for the past 3,300 years.

Hamas exists to murder Jews, plain and simple, so anyone caught promoting peace with Israel must be an enemy of the Palestinians.

J'lem Post: A Palestinian human rights activist and journalist who used to work for the Israeli human rights organization B'Tselem has been executed by Hamas on charges of "collaboration" with Israel, Palestinians in the Gaza Strip said over the weekend.

They pointed out that Ghanem, who was a field researcher for B'Tselem, had been sentenced to death by a Palestinian Authority court in 2002 after being found guilty of passing on information to Israel that later resulted in the elimination of Fatah gunmen. Ghanem, according to the Palestinians, was among dozens of suspected "collaborators" who were executed by Hamas during Operation Cast Lead.

But hey, don't think it's only the Hamas that wants peacenik Palestinians dead, it's also the Fattah as well. The same guy was found guilty by Yasser Arafat and sentenced to death for doing what the PA should have been doing all along, seeking peaceful measures to bring an end to the conflict. He got a death sentence instead.

to Thomas mc
Zionizm is racism?
Have you ever read tha Hamas Charter?

The principles of the Hamas are stated in their Covenant or Charter, given in full below. Following are highlights.

"Israel will exist and will continue to exist until Islam will obliterate it, just as it obliterated others before it." (The Martyr, Imam Hassan al-Banna, of blessed memory).

"The Islamic Resistance Movement believes that the land of Palestine is an Islamic Waqf consecrated for future Muslim generations until Judgement Day. It, or any part of it, should not be squandered: it, or any part of it, should not be given up. "

"There is no solution for the Palestinian question except through Jihad. Initiatives, proposals and international conferences are all a waste of time and vain endeavors."

"After Palestine, the Zionists aspire to expand from the Nile to the Euphrates. When they will have digested the region they overtook, they will aspire to further expansion, and so on. Their plan is embodied in the "Protocols of the Elders of Zion", and their present conduct is the best proof of what we are saying."

Peggy,
Most Israelis will be more than happy to give back most of the west bank to the Arabs as part of a final peace agreement.
I don't belive they are building any new ones.
If they just "leave" like they did in Gaza, you can expact the same as Gaza.

Zionism is racism, period. There is NO difference between the anti-arab racism of Zionism, than the anti-semitism of Nazi Germany.

Except Germany didn't just move in and steal Germany from the Jews.

Can the pro-Israel crowd explain to me why Israel continues to build settlements in the West Bank? Doesn't seem to be in Israel's best interest if peace and security is Israel's priority.

Thank you Bill Moyers for your consistently accurate and in-depth coverage of events and trends that are not necessarily fashionable. Truth is always hard to swallow for partisans.
Truth will lead us to a more humanitarian and just civilization. The activism of the disenfranchised will create a more benign government for all. It is only those who are now favored and priviledged who would object to a more just political system.
It was stirring to hear the views and hopes of Patricia Williams and Melissa Harris-Lacewell on 1/23/09.
linda s

Mark,MarkPotashnik
shut up. heard enough from your types. Grow up, talk like a mature adult, rather than whining like a school bully, and your media idol the other Bill..O'Rielly.
Please treat others as you would want them to treat you.

This is not about Bill Moyers you idiots, this is about DISPROPORTIONATE use of FORCE BY ISRAEL AND US CULPABILITY. Oh but the Right-wing Jews that have DEFAMED yes DEFAMED Mr. Moyers here, YOU should be ashamed! You talk about groups that defame, you need to take a good hard look at yourself. We need an end to the KILLING, don't you know. GET A LIFE.

why is the left silent on the anti-female apartheid laws in arab/moslem lands? If these laws were directed against Black people those like Moyers would scream bloody murder but because these bigots direct the hateful discriminatory laws against women those on the left like Moyers are silent. Why? Because those like Moyers keep their eyes on the big picture their goal of destroying the 1 democracy in the middle east and the 1 Jewish country in the world...ISRAEL.

Bill Moyers is a classic leftist Jew-hater. He implies that Israel should not return fire against Hamas because Hamas hide among their families. Moyers would like Israel to invent magic bombs that only kill card carrying Hamas members.
Moyers is mute on the many wars going on in afrika, asia etc. Moyers is mute on the anti-female apartheid laws in many arab/moslem lands. WHY? Because moyers is a traditional left wing Jew-hating bigot.

Which Came First
- Arab terrorism or Occupation ?
Major Arab Terrorist Attacks against Israelis Started prior to the 1967 Six-Day War

To Simo,
Where do you get you facts from? Al Jazeera?
Hamas does not represent all Palestinians. It physically seized control of the Gaza Strip in the summer of 2007 in an armed conflict with its opposition, the more moderate Fatah party, led by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, collapsing the unity government.

Israel set up a blockade of the strip as a reaction and Hamas only intensified its missile campaign on Israel, leading us to the current military operation. The group receives funding from Iran, as does Hezbollah -- the other heavily armed radical Islamist group facing Israel from southern Lebanon. It fought Israel to a draw two summers ago.

I've always found Bill Moyers to be thoughtful, incisive to the point of inconvenience and a humanitarian. The accusations made against him are without warrant and reprehensible. We must remember, 'Assent is what makes democracy possible and dissent is what makes it meaningful.' Mr. Moyers is one of a handful of voices that continues to make democracy meaningful to me. I wish Mr. Foxman would recognize the greatest service one can do for one's people, is to dissent, especially on matters of conscience.

Matt and others who talk about Hamas sending rockets to Israel. Didn't Israel hit gaza in November during the ceasefire? Didn't Israel subject the population of Gaza to humiliation and sieged the whole population because they have elected a governement that is not accepetd by Israel? Israel and the US are not looking for democracy in the Mideast, they are looking for puppets like all the other Arab leaders to perpetuate the same policies in the region. We are condemning a population that have elected a government democratically and we are trying to send a message to the rest of the Arab leaders that reads:"if you do not follow what we have prescribed, that is your destiny" Israel bombs a population, killing civilians and sends a message to all its contributors in the US and elsewhere to tell the cameras that Hamas brought it to itself, that Hamas didn't want to renew the ceasefire agreement, and that they are terrorists. and if confronted, they will accuse you of being anti-Semite. Lets not talk only about when Hamas started sending homemade missiles to Israel, which is wrong, but lets broaden the discussion. Hamas does not believe that the UN, America, or even the arab governments will help the Palestinian cause. All the powers participating in the decision-making for the future of the Palestinians have sold them for their own agendas, be it political, religious, or else.

Mr. Moyers, Thank you very much for speaking the truth.


Try to imagine any other state receiving randomly targeted rockets from a sworn enemy and refraining from violent response. Russia’s foreign minister has urged Israel to end its Gaza campaign because of “the suffering.” Can one imagine how long Russia would keep its bombers on the ground if Georgia fired rockets onto Russian soil? France, as the current head of the EU, deplored “disproportionate use of force.” Is France prepared to hold its fire if Belgium starts lobbing explosives across its border? Would Russia or France tolerate 5,500 missiles exploded on its soil? zation vs. terror

This week's show may as well be nicknamed "Infomercial -Socialism Now." So depressingly scripted and hokey. Are all Moyer's shows like this?!

To "Allan Horowitz", whoever you are

Your post brought a grin to my face.

Of course I deny every single one of your "indisputable facts", as must anybody with average intelligence. How can you claim that Hamas is both "a creation of Israel" and a "democratically elected government of the civilian population"? Are you so blinded by hate that you are unable to think clearly? Or is it simply congenital?

Since I have refuted every single one of these "indisputable facts" in my posts below, I won't bother repeating myself (go and read them - I know they are long and sometimes use big words, but I'll buy you a dictionary if you need. They are worth taking time over).

As to the Genocide claim. Israel has never, ever, ever tried to another nation, not since the destruction of Amalek under King Saul and the prophet Samuel, anyway. As proof, allow me to point out that the world Palestinian population has increased at least six-fold since 1948. If Israel is guilty of Genocide, we are the least-successful genociders in the history of the planet!

The only reason that Israel-bashers like yourself enjoy accusing Israel of Genocide, is because the Jews were themselves the victims of genocide, 65 years ago - and the world did nothing. The easiest way to rid oneself of guilt is to blame the victim of exactly the same crime - irrespective of whether it is true or not (in this case, obviously not).

To Allan and Jeremy and other Israeli genocide deniers.

Your narrative follows the same twisted format as any cheap holocaust denier.


These are teh indisputable facts:-

1- Israel is in illegal military occupation of foreign lands;
2- Israel stands in contempt of every international law and UN Resolution pertaining to that illegal occupation;
3- Hamas is a creature of Israel
4- Hamas is a democratically elected government of the civilian population being in the Israeli concentration camp of Gaza.
5- Hamas are the owners of land illegally occupied by Israeli squatters;
6- Israel seeks to steal that land by wiping the Palestinian people off the map.

Your lies and distortions are necessary because without them you are unable to justify the crimes against humanity being committed by the Israeli thugs against the civilians of gaza.

I support the views of Sir Gerald Kaufman who stated in the British Parliament that "my grandmother was not murdered in her bed by the Nazis to provide the Israelis an excuse to commit genocide against the PAlestinian people"

Bravo Bill Moyers. bravo Roger and others who are coming forward and showing the strength of character and the fortitude to prevent yet another holocaust.

Bravo again for those Jews who are sick of what Israeli criminals claim to commit against humanity in our name.

How dare any man or woman claim that these horrific crimes committed by Israel are committed in the name of Jews.

No Jew with the self respect and the dignity to call himself a Jew would become associated with these barbaric crimes committed in their name by the world's most criminal, godless state.

Moreover, any American citizen who prides himself on our Constitution rejects everything which that disgusting little state of genocidaires represents.

It is time to dismantle the myth that Palestine belongs to foreigners who support the ideologies of a stone age theology.

Jeremy , you are 100% right.I hope all you guys read it!

More History for the Dupes

You claim that the Palestinians are "subjected to the worst conditions of occupation by a barbarous and vicious military force". Well, as far as the inhabitants of Gaza are concerned - I agree with you. They are currently occupied by a Terrorist organization called Hamas, and their actions are truly barbaric - but do not expect to read about them in the Mainstream Media. When a Palestinian tortures, kneecaps and then kills another Palestinian it is simply not newsworthy. However, if it is the Israeli Army to which you refer, please be aware that Israel withdrew ALL of its forces from the Gaza strip three and a half years ago. All of them.

I will just point out that (obviously due to a bad case of nostalgia) Hamas was unhappy with this situation, so they started firing missiles, mortars and even staged cross-border attacks and eventually managed to capture an Israeli soldier - a private. The other soldiers on his patrol were even less fortunate than he (they died). Hamas paraded this soldier (a private) in Gaza city and debased him in the most obscene manner, forcing him to make a speech pleading for his life. The Red Cross have never been allowed to see him and he is kept (so it is said) incommunicado in a deeply-dug underground tunnel (digging tunnels is a favorite Palestinian pastime). So, even though Israel has tried to remove every last soldier from Gaza, there is one there still.

Israel's stated purpose in removing settlements, 10,000 settlers (some of whom had lived there for more than 30 years) and ALL of its army presence was to give the Palestinians autonomy. So that they could govern themselves, and build a society free of all of the occupationist stigma. Jewish businessmen bought the greenhouses from the settler community and gave these established, profitable businesses to the Palestinian Authority, lock, stock and barrel, but they were destroyed and ransacked a few days later. The only buildings that were not dismantled in the former settlements were the few places of worship the Jews left behind, and the Palestinians promised to treat them with respect. Please do a little research and find out how these places of worship were treated, the moment the Army left.

Small industrial areas were built on the borders of the strip, with the hope that joint-venture Israeli-Palestinian businesses could flourish there. Money poured into the strip from the UN, the EU and also from Israel. All that the Palestinians needed to do was to stop firing rockets and mortars, and begin building their communities with a little hope and charity, and Ehud Olmert declared he would do the same to the West Bank. This is the same Ehud Olmert who launched the war, after three years of dashed hopes.

So, bottom line; there are today more than six million Jews who live happily in Israel, their homeland. A very large proportion of them come from or are descended from Jews from Arab lands, whose properties and wealth were forfeit when they emigrated. Another large proportion are believe it or not indigenous - 6th 7th, even 10th generation Jerusalemites, Tiberians, Chevronites, Safedites. Do not for one moment think that the Palestinians will distinguish these "Palestinian" Israelis from the rest should they (heaven forbid) ever seize control - they want this land to be "Judenrein". The Israelis, who against all odds have spent 60 years and three generations building a flourishing democracy in this middle-eastern hell-hole will not leave. They will not "go home" or "go back to Europe", since most Israelis were born here and intend to stay and raise their children in Israel.

Israel still wishes that the Palestinians will produce a charismatic, secular, honest leader. One who can make decisions in the best long-term interest of his people. One that will not say one thing in English and the opposite thing in Arabic. One that will keep his promises. One who will not subscribe to the "Sons of Apes and Pigs" theory of Mosaic Origin, and will oppose Jihad in all its forms.

With such a leader Israel could make peace and perhaps rebuild those greenhouses, together. But for the time being this is just a pipe-dream.

To Roger Martins, Rick and other Dupes

.. who have swallowed the Palestinian narrative hook, line and sinker. Your ignorant comments utterly lack both understanding and historical context. However, I'm a patient person and I'm going to take a little time to explain to you (in words of two syllables or less) the current situation.

You claim that squatters are not civilians and therefore, raining high-explosive rockets and mortars upon their heads is perfectly justifiable. Israel's action to defend its citizens is morally unacceptable and reprehensible. For your information, all of the areas targeted by Hamas are well within the 1967 "Green Line" - that is, the most recognized borders that Israel has. They are even inside the borders stipulated by the 1947 UN partition plan, so it is difficult to see how you can claim otherwise. These areas are NOT under dispute, other than by the most extreme of rejectionists - those that wish to drive every Jew into the Mediterranean Sea. So, Roger, please excuse the Jews for not complying. The inhabitants of Sderot, Netivot, Beer Sheba, Ashkelon, Ashdod, Yavne and all of the other towns terrorized by GRAD missiles, Kassam Missiles and Mortars are all civilians, by any yardstick, and targeting them is a war-crime.

So - how come casualties are so low?

Firstly - it is not because these missiles and mortars are not deadly - they are. Enough people have died or been seriously injured during the last several years to prove that.

The reason is that Israel, as a sovereign state and a democracy responsible for the welfare of its citizens has invested huge sums of money. Legislation enforcing the building of concrete shelters in every new apartment. walk-in bomb-shelters in all the local towns, at every street corner. Early-warning radar and area-wide sirens to give people precious seconds in which to find cover. However, this is NOT a long term solution to enemy bombardment, I think you'll agree.

So - why were Palestinian casualties so high? The reason for this is that the Elected Governors of Gaza, having summarily imprisoned, kneecapped, shot or otherwise dealt with their Fatah opposition, have used standard Iranian guerrilla warfare tactics of deeply embedding themselves inside the innocent population. On day one of the war, all of the "fighters" took off their uniforms and melded into the local population, while still taking pot-shots at Israeli soldiers and firing rockets and mortars. Bomb factories had been deliberately placed in the basements of high-rise buildings - imagine, deliberately placing a powder keg under your relatives! No wonder so many people died. But from the Hamas perspective this is perfectly justfiable since they are all now guaranteed a place in heaven, you see.

Every child and every person not in uniform was thus declared to be civilian by the Palestinian doctors - funny how most of the dead "children" are young boys of the ages 14 through 17. Strange, that.

Israel was perfectly aware that whatever the outcome, the Palestinians would win the subsequent Media blitz. But hopefully, now that the Palestinians have experienced what happens when Israel DOES decide to respond, they will think twice before rocketing and mortaring civilian towns and villages.

Or not. And if not, doubtless Israel will respond with double the force. Until it stops for good.

To Peter Burman

Your complaint of missiles "intentionally fired at civilians" is entirely unsound. What you fail to mention is that the "innocent civilians" are squatting on stolen property belonging to the people who are firing those missiles onto their own properties after having been brutally attacked and removed from their own lands and subjected to the worst conditions of occupation by a barbarous and vicious military force, the likes of which the world has not witnessed since the world was insulted by yet another group of criminals who were tried at Nurembourg for committing precisely the same barbarous acts against another group of people with the same arrogance and the same stupidity as any other common criminal would display in the commission of a crime against humanity.

Because of their faith, Hamas foot soldiers believe Allah will welcome them to Paradise if they are killed by Israel in what they see as their defense of Islam. The Hamas terrorists' extremism goes much further. It would be one thing if they were willing to sacrifice their own lives for their beliefs, but they also are prepared to jeopardize the lives of others as well. That is why they have no reticence about using their fellow Palestinians as shields. If Israel is dissuaded from attacking for fear of killing innocents, Hamas can continue to terrorize Israelis with impunity. If Israel does attack, Hamas will use the death of any noncombatants for propaganda purposes and to rally support.

Well said Mr Moyers. It is long past time the world did something to address the issue of those illegal squatters on the stolen lands of a peaceful people who have been forced to suffer the indignity of occupation by another bigoted regime with a stone age ideology and which fails to observe the minimum standards expected of a modern civilised state.

Bravo

From now on I will turn off PBS whenever Moyers comes on.

It's so easy for Bill Moyers to opine from his comfy lair in NYC, removed from the daily rocket fire that has terrorized Israel for the past 8 years, more than 10,000 missiles, intentionally fired at civilians with the express purpose of terrorizing them. And it's so easy for Mr. Moyers to ignore the fact that Hamas intentionally uses civilians as human shields, knowing the world loves to condemn Israel for civilian deaths. Why would an otherwise intelligent person ignore such important facts?

Mr. Moyers:

You have become an example of why I, a registered Democrat, oppose tax payer funding for PBS and NPR. You have your own political agenda and you try to further it on my dime. Like most ultra-liberals in the media and Universities, you like to support the underdog. You criticize Israel but offer no suggestion for how Israel can stop the attacks against its own civilians. During the Vietnam war, the US was not being attacked by a people sworn to destroy it. Suicide bombers were not blowing themselves up in NYC, nor were snipers shooting at motorists commuting into the city.

To Ken Davis:

The USA is occupied territory, stolen from the Native American Indians, who were killed in a genocidal war and who have never, never been compensated for the land stolen from them. If you applied to yourself the same standard you apply to Israel, you should move back to Europe, where you came from, and leave the Native Americans alone.

Thank you Billy M for reminding me why I do NOT give money to PBS (other than what is taken from me and given to you in the form of taxes). Simply stated; you are a self righteous, love-to-hear-your-own-voice, waste of space on this planet. Do us all a favor and retire in seclusion. Go away.

Get educated people, read real news. An excerpt from democracynow.org:
Israeli professor Neve Gordon is chair of the department of politics and government at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in southern Israel, the region most impacted by the Hamas rockets.

Speaking over the phone from Beersheba, Gordon said: “We just had a rocket about an hour ago not far from our house. My two children have been sleeping in a bomb shelter for the past week. And yet, I think what Israel is doing is outrageous. … The problem is that most Israelis say Israel left the Gaza Strip three years ago and Hamas is still shooting rockets at us. They forget the details. The detail is that Israel maintains sovereignty. The detail is that the Palestinians live in a cage. The detail is that they don’t get basic foodstuff, that they don’t get electricity, that they don’t get water. And when you forget those kinds of details, all you say is, ‘Why are they still shooting at us?’ That’s what the media here has been pumping them with, then you think this war is rational. If you look at what’s been going on in the Gaza Strip in the past three years and you see what Israel has been doing to the Palestinians, you would think that the Palestinian resistance is rational. And that’s what’s missing in the mainstream media here.”

To Donald who believes Hamas is not interested in eliminating every Jew in Israel:
Try reading their charter, which couldn't be more clear: “The Day of Judgement will not come about until Moslems fight the Jews (killing the Jews), when the Jew will hide behind stones and trees. The stones and trees will say O Moslems, O Abdulla, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him. Only the Gharkad tree, (evidently a certain kind of tree) would not do that because it is one of the trees of the Jews.” (related by al­Bukhari and Moslem).

Mr. Moyers,

Your condemnation of Israel's right to defend itself is repugnant. Where was your "interest" and concern when Hamas missiles were falling in Israel for the past eight years? Where is your condemnation of Hamas' brutality, not only toward innocent Israeli civilians, but also to Fatah "collaborators?" Where is your condemnation of Hamas for using human shields with the cynical hope of displaying dead bodies to garner international support. You, sir, have been duped and are no better than those who spread such vicious blood libels. As David Mamet said, "The world was told Jews used this blood in the performance of religious ceremonies. Now, it seems, Jews do not require the blood for baking purposes, they merely delight to spill it on the ground."

No other country in the world would have exercised the amount of restraint that Israel has shown for the past several years without responding.

No innocent Palestinians would be in any danger if the Palestinian Authority took steps to stop terrorism or if the international community, especially the Arab world, had pressured Hamas to stop attacking Israel.

No innocent Palestinians would be in danger if Hamas terrorists did not deliberately hide among them. If the peace-seeking Palestinians prevented the terrorists from living in their midst, Israel would have no reason to come to their neighborhoods.

It is a tragedy whenever innocent lives are lost, and Israelis have consistently expressed their sadness over Arab casualties. By contrast, when innocent Israelis are murdered by terrorists, Hamas holds rallies to celebrate the murders

Mr Moyers,
i applaud you for speaking out. It seems these days everyone is reluctant on doing so due to retaliation, reputation smearing... etc campaigns.
The truth has taken time to come up but now the flood gates are open...

To the corrupt ones, the two-faced ones... you're time's up and even if you hide, you'll be found.

The Awakening.

I'm having a hard time understanding your essay. Are you saying that a sovereign nation should just sit there, do nothing, and allow its citizens to die, because a concrete wall, which is 100% effective in stopping Palestinian children from blowing themselves up in Israel, inconveniences the people who want to blow themselves up? I offer a different opinion: the lack of opportunity to commit acts of suicide bombing can result in saving the lives of Palestinians. Did you think of that possibility? Are you not horrified when the Palestinians strap bombs on developmentally disabled kids and send them in to Israel to blow themselves up, when they haven't the awareness of what they are even doing? Fortunately, the IDF caught at least one of them and managed to disarm the kid and stopped him from dying. Are you not horrified by the types of violent acts committed by Palestinians against other Palestinians?

Are you saying that the Islamic extremists are genetically encoded to do violence? Or did you mean the Jews? Are you saying that people are genetically programmed to violence? If so, then why is it that the Jews are the least violent of people, having been on the receiving end of an -- I can't even find the words for it -- inordinate (extraordinary?) amount of violence for centuries, especially at the hand of the so-called "peaceful" Christians? How does that thinking about the genetic encoding of Islamic people reflect the extraordinary amount of violence against civilians -- even their own people -- committed by Islamic people? And don’t forget the “peaceful” Christians who waged war in a series of crusades against generally “peaceful” (for that time) Islamic people, the results of which still impact on East-West relations to this day. Were they “genetically encoded” to do this violence? Weren’t the two big wars in Europe, and the thousands of smaller ones which preceded them, a result from the “genetically encoded” Christians’ predisposition to do violence?

You don’t seem to have any clue about what is going on in the Middle East. The problems with the Palestinians stem from their inability to get along with each other and form a unified stable government that serves the people. When Israel left Gaza in 2005, immediately after elections, Hamas and al-Fatah went to war against each other. Hamas and al-Fatah are Palestinian groups; Israel has no control over them. This is a big part of the problem: if Israel tries to negotiate with one group, the other will do its best to sabotage any such efforts in their power struggles against each other.

It’s unfortunate that Israel needs to use military force to remove the rocket launchers and the munitions that have been raining down on them from Gaza for the past three years since they left Gaza – to the tune of more than 6,300 rockets. These rockets have been aimed steadily at civilians. The Israeli government sat there and did nothing for three years. I don’t know what that means to you in terms of Jewish violence – or the Jews’ ability to tolerate violence in the hopes that the rest of the world will stand up and say “No!” – but it is clear to me that Israel can’t wait for world opinion to keep its citizens safe.

jeremy wrote:

There is a fundamental difference between Israel and the Hamas. Israel works according to a simple hierarchy of importance, the same as the armies of every western nation; defense of civilian life is paramount.

Shame about the napalm and cluster bombs eh ? If the IDF was concerned about civilians they would not have gone in there in the first place !

Let the Jews who claim to be the chosen race prove their title by choosing the way of non-violence for vindicating their position on earth. Every country is their home including Palestine not by aggression but by loving service.

Thank you, Bill Moyers: Once for not shying away from talking about the atrocities which were committed in Gaza, and again for not being intimidated by Foxman's false accusations.

"I like the dreams of the future better than the history of the past."
Thomas Jefferson

In the physical world, there is no past.
Everything has become something else.

We need to build the future on hope for a better world not the ashes of the past.

There is a folk tale about a tribe of American Indians that rode on their horses backwards because they preferred to see where they had been to where they were going.

The Middle East needs to forget the past and find ways to build a lasting future.
Dave


Mr Moyers,

I want to thank you for the courageous stance you took or I should say FINALLY took on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. It only took you 40 years to get around to telling the truth. I'm a Palestinian-American and watched you over the years and read your books and find it amazing how someone who made a living posing challenging moral questions and always directing leaders and people towards critical self-examination that only now - after 40 year brutal occupation - after another war where Israel has left thousands of dead and injured Palestinians and many more homeless - again, not to mention the torment, oppression and ethnic cleansing in all these years as well - that now all of sudden you find the moral courage to speak up?

I'm just curious to know why now? I am big of fan of your work - and could never understand why a morally upright person such as yourself consistently turned a blind eye to Israeli war crimes? My only conclusion was you didn't want to see a backlash from Jewish contributors who support PBS programming. Reading the comments here and some of the attacks against you elsewhere, I see your fears might be understood but make no mistake they are not morally justified. You have always stood up to the creed of challenging power and speaking truth to power - and whether it's Jewish power, Republicans or whatever stripe they come under, you should have spoken up much sooner.

As a new administration prepares to take office in the United States tomorrow, Gaza in many ways has cast a pall over the inauguration and raises its stakes - for all of us.

Whatever the words uttered tomorrow, they will - with near certainty - touch deeper than had an inauguration address happened before Gaza, four weeks ago.

Moderates - on all sides - must delegitimize those who see terror and horror against the innocent, as a tool.

how many tears...will it take to fulfill the dream of a Jewish and Palestinian homeland?

how many tears?

how many?

Christians Stand for Israel..period ! I would not believe that Israel shoved women & children into homes only to bomb them !You must get your info from Gaza .
if One time I saw a pro-Israel or pro Christian commentary I would kiss the screen !:-)

beautifully said, Bill

Thank you Bill Moyers for choosing to report the truth and stand by it...it's rare to find an objective news outlet here in the states that's willing to call a spade a spade and speak out against injustice.

Thank you

Bill Moyers,
The Jew-haters and Israel-bashers love you.

Have you no shame?

MR. MOYERS: And, to your claim that I was “declaring Jews are ‘genetically coded’ for violence,” you are mistaken. My comment – obviously not sufficiently precise – was not directed at a specific people but to the fact that the human race has violence in its DNA, as the biblical stories so strongly affirm."

CHRIS HEDGES: The myth of human advancement is ironically often kept alive by pacifists in peacetime. This myth is used to feed the aggressiveness and cruelty of those who call for the use of violence to cleanse the world, to borrow a phrase from George W. Bush, of "the evildoers." The danger is not finally pacifism or militarism. It is this latent aggressiveness and cruelty, wedded to the poisonous belief in the possibility of collective moral progress, a belief that defies human history and human nature. The belief that we can use violence to advance the world morally becomes especially dangerous in a crisis when human beings feel, or are made to feel, threatened and afraid. It informs and enlarges our innate human aggression. This is our disease. It is the disease of most Israelis.

This aggressiveness, as Sigmund Freud wrote, "...waits for some provocation or puts itself at the service of some other purpose, whose goal might also have been reached by milder measures. In circumstances that are favorable to it, when the mental counter-forces which ordinarily inhibit it are out of action, it also manifests itself spontaneously and reveals man as a savage beast to whom consideration towards his own kind is something alien."

ENTIRE HEDGES ARTICLE - http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/20090119_peace_is_in_the_eye_of_the_beholder/

Mr. Moyers,

I commend you for standing up to the twisted attacks of Foxman and the ADL on your fair and truthful commentary on the plight of Gaza. It is outrageous that Foxman works so hard to malign anyone who dares to criticize Israel for creating a humanitarian crisis, even when there is such limited coverage of that crisis in the first place.

I encourage you to continue to educate the public in the future and ignore the institutionalized inhumanity of your critics.

If you follow Bill's logic, democratic nations have no recourse against determined, religiously and ideologically motivated opponents who are quite willing to flout international laws and norms (i.e., Hamas, Hezbollah, Al Qeda, et al) Homie don't play that game, Bill!

I once met Mr. Foxman. I said to him that I read a lot of supposed comments on middle eastern affairs and that the vast majority of such c"commentary" seems to be repetitive postings from rabid antisemites. I mentioned that He (Mr. Foxman) seems to drive them to absolute appoplexy Keep up the good work Abe.

Reports are coming in that Hamas is true to form; they are capturing and torturing Fatah members (that is, members of rival Palestinian organizations) and extracting coerced confessions of collaboration with Israel during the war. And then comes the summary death sentence - immediately carried out. In an attempt to protect their members Fatah are claiming that they fought alongside Hamas, something that is known to be false. They are also (unfortunately) stirring things up on the west bank - "Flexing muscles" so to speak - to win a bit of macho palestinian street-cred.

Hamas are also claiming to have killed more than 70 Israeli soldiers and to have captured 3. These claims are patently false - 70 soldiers could not go missing in Israel without a huge public outcry.

This, ladies and gentlemen of the international jury, is what Israel is dealing with. A terror organization that lies, tortures and subjugates its own people and has brought calamity upon innocents on both sides of the border with Gaza.

Please do not believe everything you read about Israeli atrocities - at best they will be exaggerated, at worst, total fabrication. Caveat Emptor, Mister Moyers, Caveat Emptor.

Those who sit safely in their warm homes and offices and have never known the horror of an attack on their way of life are so easily swayed by images of women and children suffering during times of war. I guarantee that if you speak with the immediate family members who lost loved ones on Sept 11, you will probably not find many, if any, who side with Hamas. Hamas deliberately operates among the civilian population and begs for Israeli attacks so they can manipulate world opinion, especially among the ant-Semitic crowds in Europe. Why do you think they launch crude rockets continuously at Israel during a 'cease fire'? They are provoking a response. Why do so many fail to condemn Hamas violence and their cowardly tactics of bringing war to their own people? And the revisionist history about the partition of Palestine is also distressing. And the Arab countries who have consistently looked down on the Palestinians and refuse to really help them other than paying bounties for suicide attacks. What a disgusting charade. Mr. Moyers has donned their cloak. What should Israel do when their citizens cry out for protection from the reign of rockets? What would the U.S. do, or Poland, or any other country similarly attacked over and over? The only way to stop the barrage is to eliminate the source. and that can be done only with overwhelming force. If the Palestinian extremists would give way to reason and repudiate violence and the destruction of Israel, perhaps peace could be achieved. Until that happens, the war will never end.

Re your original comments of January 9 and the subsequent dialogue between Foxman and you:

I believe that your position represents an improvement over previous commentary, particularly in regard to Hamas' genocidal intentions towards Israel and Jews. Nevertheless, your analysis remains flawed, and I cite the following:

1.You made reference to Moses demanding the killing of the enemies but you ignore Mohammed's equally harsh prescription for treatment of non-believers. More to the point, though, you (and many other commentators) ignore the reality that for Jews and Christians, the blood-curdling commands are "dead letters", either ignored or vitiated by further exegesis. When was the last time that Israel or any predominantly Christian nation stoned a woman to death for adultery? For a substantial part of the Arab/Muslim world, however, these primitive rules inform and drive their legal systems. Witness Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan, and others.

2. Hamas' call for the world-wide murder of Jewish children long pre-dated the current Israeli incursion into Gaza. And surely you cannot be unaware of the phenomenon of Muslim clerics, in numerous countries, defaming Jews as "apes" and "pigs" and call for their extermination, men, women, and children.

3. There is no evidence whatever that Israel deliberately targets unequivocaaly civilian areas whereas Hamas, Hizbollah, and Islamic Jihad do engage in such activity and even elevate it to a virtue.

Contrary to popular belief, especially among the anti-Israel cohort, there are many pro-Arab voices in the United states, especially on the University Campus where to be pro-Israel is to court ostracism, derision, and, occasionally, physical violence. But even if the pro-Israel position predominates in the United States, it is more than offset by the near-unanimous hostility towards Israel exhibited by the European media, to say nothing of the media in Africa and Asia.

Thank you for inviting my thoughts.

Thank you, Bill Moyer!

It is time to break the silence. What Foxman is doing is the classic tactic to defend Israel's crimes: make people afraid to criticise Israel because they fear being called anti-Semites.

It is time for that game to end.

It is time to break the silence. For too long, journalists, commentators and politicians have been cowed into fear of every uttering a criticism of Israel.

Time for that to end. Also time to end the Israeli domination of our foreign policy. The only way to end it is campaign finance reform.

Excuse me I did not mean to say; is really not possible to have a rational perspective on this subject I meant to say a rational discussion on this subject.

I have just read through much, but not all of the comments presented here. I know this post is so far down in the scroll that few will be reading this.
I agree with Mr. Moyers moral point of view and think he expresses himself eloquently. Can anyone imagine Mahatma Gandhi or Martin Luther King or Jesus Christ taking an opposing point of view? I believe whole heartily in the first principle of my government, which is that all people (it requires this update to include women) are created equal and all deserve a chance to pursue a decent life for themselves and their families.

If we disregard all of these moral arguments I cannot see what the long-term practical advantage could possibly be for Israel in this invasion. The rockets Hamas fires kill very few Israelis, the ratio between the two sides has always hovered around four to one with the greater death toll on the Palestinian side. Not to minimize anyone’s death, but this low death toll should allow some room for rational contemplation of actions by Israel.

The question should be, are we creating more enemies then we are killing with these attacks? The intelligence reports from Iraq clearly show that our war there has created enemies by the thousands. How can this be different in Palestine? Surly each child killed each home destroyed, each young person facing daily humiliation (or watching their parents face it) creates a new group of angry traumatized people who seek to harm Israel. What would you do in their situation? If you woke up to bob wire, guard towers, new walls being built, checkpoints, imposed food and electrical shortages, and the constant threat of very effective bombing campaigns against you what would be your response? Is firing rockets against the daily visible source of your oppression so unrecognizable as a natural human reaction to the situation Gazans face? If the Jews in the Nazi ghettos had rockets surly someone would have used them. I personally think it is foolish of Hamas but I sit in comfort here in America so how do I know what I would do in the situation. Is it really not possible to have a rational perspective on this issue?

When Tzipi Livni was names a "terrorist " by a reporter in a press conference in Washington, the microphones were shut and the incident did not get any publicity from any TV outlet in the US.

To the contrary when President Bush had his goodbye kiss from an Iraqi reporter , the hit was played constantly on every TV outlet including the major ones.

Seems like Foxman is adamant in insuring that any criticism of Israel and its subjects is a taboo and must be controlled and hushed to eternity .

Now this not a democracy but an utter hypocracy that is doomed to failure, especially in the light of the utter disgust onslaught on Gaza.

Words cannot describe what the state in question have inflicted on the civilians and infrastructure of a people under occupation for 40 brutal years, namely the Palestinians.

This conflict is no longer a conflict between Israelis and Palestinians this is a conflict that affects our humanity and our existence.

Bill Moyers is a hero for speaking honestly about Israel.

Matt, firstly let me agree with you - the pictures are shocking. The destruction, the innocent victims are all enormously disturbing to me, as well as to you.

For eight long years Hamas and other terrorist organizations have been targeting civilians in the surrounding towns and villages. Eight years. Their attacks are largely unsuccessful, although they have caused enough death, injury and damage to make one blanch with fear every time the siren goes off.
For eight years, Israel has largely held back. Yes, over the last several months it has responded - by closing the crossings (you see? Hamas fires a barrage of deadly missiles, so Israel closes a gate). This was not a very effective deterrent, and gave hamas the excuse they needed to declare that they were starving and desperate for medicines. This uneasy situation was the status quo for over six months, until Hamas decided they didn't like Israel closing the gate. They should be allowed to fire rockets indiscriminately and have the gate stay firmly open; to this end, they declared the end to the "Tahadiyeh" (period of calm) and began raining rockets on the towns of Sederot, Ashkelon and Netivot - more than 60 rockets in one day! Imagine - every few minutes another siren goes off, and you have to run for a shelter within 15 seconds.
Israel had no choice but to act. However, as I pointed out earlier today, lessons were learned in Lebanon two years ago. Against this sort of terror, one must defeat ones enemy with overwhelming force. This is what Israel has done.

There is a fundamental difference between Israel and the Hamas. Israel works according to a simple hierarchy of importance, the same as the armies of every western nation; defense of civilian life is paramount. After that, the lives of Israeli soldiers. After that, the lives of other civilians, and finally the lives of your enemy (If your enemy throws down his arms you capture - you don't kill).
To the Hamas, the lives of the fighters are the only lives worth saving. Thus, while Israel has spent billions in building shelters, early-warning systems etc., Hamas has put its bomb factories and munitions dumps underneath mosques and apartment buildings.
This is not an excuse - I am merely pointing out that in order to fight Hamas it was necessary to enter and destroy much that would normally be off-limits. Hamas must bear the responsibility for that - Hamas alone. The alternative (leaving the ammunition dumps alone, allowing them to launch missiles with impunity) was unthinkable.

A few word for Mr. Moyer:

Thanks but no thanks. Humanity does not need your half-way job. If you have got to the conclusion that there was a genocide done in Gaza by Israeli murderers then be a man and stand up to it for the sake of humanity. Don't let some racist zionists put you on defensive. And please be a freeman not a slave of your job and position.

Frankly, I'm shocked by the number of people posting here that agree with Moyers.

I agree completely with Jeremy and others.

Just because Hamas hasn't been especially effective with its rockets doesn't mean their intent isn't to destroy Israel.

How else would you deal with a people who exhibit and act with a continual and undiminished intent to destroy you?

No amount of ceasefires and negotiations will ever result in peace. If Jimmy and Bill and all the others who've tried couldn't make it happen it is because one side doesn't want peace.

That side that doesn't want peace is NOT Israel.

You can lead a horse (Palestinian) to water (peace) but you can't make him drink.

Jeremy and others speak of war time. Why is it then that the only images I see coming out of Gaza are of Israeli forces and dead, injured, cowering Palestinian civilians and emergency response teams?

There is no military force in Gaza. It is a civilian population with a few rogue agents. It seems to me Israel is punishing the whole in order to be certain of the punishment of a few.

It would be like another country bombing and shelling New York City including its hospitals and schools because a few members of some whacko fundamentalist group were shooting primitive homemade rockets nearby.

Bill Moyers' response is so disingenuous that I am finding it hard to believe that people take him seriously.

The article he links to (from the Observer, the Guardian affiliated Sunday paper) is actually an interview with the mother of an Israeli soldier. The article quite clearly shows how Mrs Raanan finds the whole concept of war abhorrent and is shocked by the civilian casualties. The article runs to thousands of words. The only part that Bill Moyers chose to quote is this one incident, which is under investigation, and it certainly did not happen the way it is stated!!!

According to all of the evidence gathered so far, the Palestinians were ordered to evacuate one building. They met a different patrol on their way, who directed them to the building in question, since they were seeking shelter. More than a day later the building (which looked like a warehouse) was attacked with either rockets or shells by what appears to be an entirely different part of the Army. Now look at the original quote:

"Earlier this week it was widely reported that the International Red Cross “was so outraged it broke its usual silence over an attack in which the Israeli army herded a Palestinian family into a building and then shelled it, killing 30 people and leaving the surviving children clinging to the bodies of their dead mothers. The army prevented rescuers from reaching the survivors for four days.”"

See how context matters? This paragraph would have you believe that it was done deliberately, within the space of a few minutes.

There is no way to bring these people back to life. However, the civilians in this case were not targeted deliberately. In the course of a War, even the vaunted IDF cannot keep track of every group of civilians and which building they are currently using for shelter.

Bill
You need to head to the nearest insane asylum.

As a better blogger than you once said, "You are not anti war, you are simply on the other side."

Perfect description.

The tactic of silencing someone by calling them an anti-Semite whenever they question Zionist wrong-doing simply doesn't work anymore.

Ah Expat, there is no need for me to provoke anti-Israel commentary. There was plenty on this thread before I came on the scene.

Yes, there are many ways to view history. The British history of the Mandate period would of course present the British in the best possible light, with all opposition depicted as terrorism. There were plenty of incidents during that time where the British had opportunities to save Jewish refugees, but instead turned them away, condemning the poor victims to violent death. But we both digress.

War is despicable. In wartime, civilian populations suffer. There is no such thing as a "Moral" war - only a war that is justified and in this case there is no doubt: Israel turned the other cheek for more than three years before finally hitting back.

From the outbreak of the war, Ehud Olmert made plain the intention to hit Hamas, but to avoid as much as possible civilian casualties. Israel proceeded on this path to the best of its ability under the most testing of circumstances.

You don't judge a war according to specific incidents - you look at the big view. Mistakes were made, Civilians were hit, even (gasp) reporters were shaken up. Nevertheless in spite of the dreadful cost in human life, Israel and the IDF can hold their heads high and say: The war was justified, and we waged it as honorably as we know how.

Considering that Hamas spent the war raining rockets upon civilian targets, stock-piling weapons in mosques, booby-trapping homes and schools and hiding out under hospitals, this is hardly a claim that they can make.

I pray that this be the last battle in Israel's prolonged fight for its existence. I hope, Expat, that we can at least agree upon this.

I think Mr. Moyers' comment is illegal hate speech and should be prosecuted as such. I am very thankful, that the ADL does its job so effectively!

Mr. Moyers,

For a very long time now, I have felt that America is going to be much worse off when the men and women of your generation leave us.

Your years of experience and ability to see through all of the nationalistic propaganda that pervades most all thought on any subject should be noted by my and future generations.

We, as a people, are losing our ability to actually look at a situation for ourselves, given the information at hand, and make a thoughtful and incisive decision about what is actually going on.

I am not relishing a future in which my country is full of sheep that don't understand how to critically analyze anything in the socio-polical-economic realm. I am fearful for my children's futures in a world such as this.

You continue to be a beacon for those who will listen.

Great Letter Mr.Moyers. It's a relief to see that there are honest and fair people in the world today, like yourself, who have the courage and decency to speak the truth and not be another mouthpiece blindly supporting ignorance. If more of your colleagues followed your footsteps and denounced terror, regardless of who commits it, propaganda would no longer be used to justify death and destruction.

More power to you and to the pursuit of justice and peace

Mr. Moyers, sorry you had to waste time defending against ADL, but it was time well spent. I think the real issue for us Americans is a demand for accountability for the $7 Billion we dump in that hell hole. --Dave

Just when I thought Bill Moyers couldn't get more despicable, he comes out with this mealy-mouthed, completely hypocritical statement, claiming he supports Israel defending itself, but is opposed to "killing innocent people".

And, has no doubt been explained to him many times, any decent person is opposed to killing innocent people. But it is impossible to fight a war without doing so, to some extent. The US killed German and Japanese civilians during WWII. In particular, Hamas arranges to maximize casualties, by fighting out of uniform (a violation of the Geneva Convention), launching attacks from amidst civilians, trapping civilians to use as human shields and refusing to build bunkers or any sort of civilian protection. Civilians serve as useful camoflouge, and the casualties provide bigots like Moyers with a convenient pretext to bash Israel.

So Moyers should save his breath and spare us his crocodile tears over Israel being attacked; the illogical, hypocritical and fallacious rationalizations he hides behind fail to disguise his bias and bigotry.

Furthermore, it's absolutely despicable that tax money coerced from the public, including myself, is used to fund his garbage, and I will be telling Congress and the President so.

So, Jeremy, you are basically saying that it's the Arabs's fault? Israel has done nothing but try to help and the Palestinians are ungrateful terrorists?

The British Mandate was ended after Britain got fed up with Jewish terrorists kidnapping, torturing and killing British troops. You need to be less selective with your revisionist "history".

The UN mandate was not to establish a Jewish state, but to provide a homeland where Jews could live in peace, far from Cossacks and European Nazis. Depriving the natives of their land, rights and dignity was not part of the UN resolution.

And since when has Israel been a staunch supporter of UN resolutions? Oh, only when it suits them.

Might makes right. Jews won the terrorist war of independence against the British, received nukes from America, and can now slaughter Arabs with impunity.

Are you intentionally trying to provoke anti-Israeli commentary? Should I start sending arms to Hamas now?

Mr Moyers nails it again. It's about time someone put Abe in his place. For a person, whi os part of the most racist click of people ever, to point fingers at Moyers for being racist is beyond desperate. What we're seeing here is the beginning of the end to Jewish/Israeli propaganda. People's eyes are opening to the truth of the situation.

And the family members of those who don't survive the "excision" of the tumor should just be grateful they were able to survive?

An earlier poster had it right. When the kids are fighting, you stop the fighting first and sort it out afterwards.

I like the malignant tumor analogy, but you have it backwards.

Hamas is the Malignant Tumor growing inside Palestinian Society. Israel has just performed aggressive surgery to remove as much of the malignancy as possible, and unfortunately has also removed some healthy tissue as well.

Now, with some therapy from Egypt, the USA and the sovereign nations of Europe, there is again hope that Palestinian Society will recover and grow into a vibrant, healthy, productive member of the international community.

Of course, there is always the danger that the malignancy will return.

And now for some history - check this out, for it is unassailable truth. There was never a country called Palestine. There was a British Mandate in Palestine as a result of British interests in the middle-east, which included "Trans-Jordan" - the area now known as the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan.

Britain was committed to creating a Jewish State in Palestine. This state was voted upon and accepted by the United Nations in 1947 (resolution 181, the "partition plan"), as a result of which the nascent state of Israel was almost immediately annihilated by its Arab neighbours who attacked with the intention of killing everyone (the 1948 war of independence).

After the 1948 war, the Gaza Strip was governed by Egypt, so by rights, Gazans should be Egyptians. The Egyptians did not offer the Gazans their own state.
The west bank was governed by Jordan. The Jordanians did not offer the West Bankers their own state.

The Gazans only came under Israeli direct rule in 1967. Israel has offered the Palestinians self-governance in Gaza, as a prelude to their own state.

Israel is not a tumor growing on Palestine. The only nation who has ever offered Palestinians any chance of self-governance is ... Israel.

Go check it out.

Democracy has brought peace to Western Europe for more than 60 years. The USA has transitioned from a segregated society 50 years ago, to one in which an African-American has been elected to the Presidency.

Democracy is not perfect and Israel does not have a perfect Democracy. Nevertheless, it has a strong track-record in creating strong, middle-of-the-road governance and promoting universal values of education, health and welfare. Read Sharansky's "The Case for Democracy - The Power of Freedom to Overcome Tyranny".

During this war, Israeli Arabs demonstrated loudly and vociferously against the actions of the government, with no fear of reprisal. Israeli members of the Knesset were outspoken in their criticism of the Army and the "kitchen Cabinet", accusing the ruling triumvirate of electioneering in the worst possible way (and far worse), knowing that they could speak with impunity.

This level of personal freedom for everyone is unheard of elsewhere in the middle-east. One reason why the western press finds it so easy to criticize Israel is that often, Israel's own internal critics provide them with so much material! Such material is simply not available in (say) the Gaza strip. Can you find any Gazans who are openly critical of Hamas, and the destruction it has brought? Believe me, many such pragmatic Gazans exist - they are far too intimidated to say what they believe. Speaking truth to power is not conducive to longevity, all over the middle east.

Everybody knows that "Israel" is a malignant tumor growing upon Palestine but nobody actually says it.

Moyers is great!

Equating anti-Israelism with anti-semitism is a tried and true propaganda tactic used by Israel and its various fronts. What Israel and the Zionists continuously fail to address is that Hamas and the Palestinians are labelled as "terrorists" simply because they lost and Israel won. If the British had not lost heart during the Protectorate, it is likely that Begin would have finished his days in a jail cell as a convicted terrorist instead of as an occupying murderer of woman and children.

Jeremy wrote that Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East. Perhaps true, but now we see what democracies are really like. So far two democracies have slaughtered and subjugated millions of Arabs in Palestine, Lebanon, and Iraq. It seems that perhaps the Middle East could use two fewer democracies.

Israel, as a Jewish nation, should know better than to herd a people into ghettos and deprive them of health care, food, jobs, and civil rights. The lesson of the Holocaust, "never again", does not mean killing everyone who you think might dislike you. It means protecting yourself. Israel's present policies preclude any hope of the Arabs renouncing the policy of destroying the Israeli state, and rightfully so.

Israel is a terrorist nation hiding behind the veil of democracy and defending its atrocities with cries of "anti-semitism".

Oh, and Arabs are Semites, by the way.

for the record, I am American, male, highly educated, liberal and of jewish extraction, just in case you thought I was Mohammed etc.

Very smart Mr. Moyers. Sad to think that people like to comment on essays that they have not read. I do not agree with you as I am admittedly a partisan, but as I read what you have to say, I cannot find any fault (factual or otherwise) in your carefully chosen words. I look forward to seeing what you have to say in the days ahead. Keep up the good work!

Israel is - truly - the only democracy in the middle east and Israelis receive a modern, western, liberal education. There are as many opinions in Israel as there are Israelis. The Israeli press is liberal and in the main left-wing (go to the Haaretz website if you don't believe me). How then can we explain the broad support the Israeli government received for this action?

Even more pointedly; Every Israeli soldier has parents, girlfriends, wives, and often children. Do you think they gladly send their loved ones to battle, to enter booby-trapped buildings or be shot by sniper fire, dismembered by mortars or even kidnapped by Hamas? Where does this broad support come from?

Three years ago, Israel unilaterally uprooted settlers, dismantled settlements (at the insistence of the Palestinians) and removed every last soldier from every last inch of the Gaza strip. This was not easy - in some cases, people had been living in the same home for 35 years and there was much ground-roots opposition. Nevertheless, the democratically elected government decided to give Peace the best chance it could. The result? The Palestinians first voted a Terrorist organization to lead it (Hamas), one that called for the destruction of Israel. This terrorist organization proceeded to murder all of its opposition in the Gaza strip (where was the UN security council then?). During all this time (actually, for more than eight straight years) Hamas was bombarding the towns and villages around the Gaza strip with mortars, home-made rockets and even cross-border attacks More than 6000 rocket attacks in all. Last month, Hamas unilaterally ended a six-month period of calm, and launched hundreds of rockets at civilians in Sderot, Netivot, Ashkelon and the surrounding towns and villages (Security Council - where were you?).

The infrastructure Hamas built for this war of terror was embedded deeply inside the civilian population centers. Bomb factories under buildings. Weapon stores under mosques. Booby-trapped schools (all of this is documented and videos are on youtube. I'm not making this up). Bigger, better, longer-range missiles were being smuggled into Gaza via underground tunnels with entrances deep inside the town of Rafiach. All of this infrastructure would have to be destroyed if a subsequent peace was to hold, but the destruction would be immense.

Reluctantly, VERY reluctantly, Israel went to war to defend its borders. However, Israel learned a profound lesson in Lebanon two years ago. If you go to war you must win overwhelmingly, otherwise the other side will claim victory. The failure to "win" the second Lebanese war put wind in the sails of all of the most extreme Palestinian terrorist organizations. There could be no ambivalence about the outcome.

In spite of the need for overwhelming victory, Israel proceeded in the most humane way imaginable, e.g., notifying householders that the factory or weapon-store under their building was about to be destroyed. Hamas responded by standing in the doorways and insisting that all the women and children ascend to the roof, acting as "human shields". Israel developed a tactic of chasing these innocents away with a "knock on the roof", a non-explosive missile that caused a lot of noise, dust and panic. This behavior is unique in the history of warfare.

Now that the war is over Israel is once again castigated and vilified, often with banal, meaningless expressions such as "the numbers speak for themselves". Nobody cares about the history. Nobody recognizes that there has been no Israeli presence in Gaza for more than three years, during which time attacks upon civilians have risen to obscene levels. Nobody notices that while Israel has spent the last eight years defending and protecting its citizens with bomb-proof shelters, fortified schools and kindergartens and early-warning systems Hamas has been deliberately hiding behind the innocent civilian population of Gaza, putting them in harm's way and cynically using children in their war of terror.

Thank you Mr. Moyers. It is truly pathetic when people can blindly support the biggest terrorist on planet earth, Israel. Receiving billions of dollars and loads of ammunition, Israel has proven itself to be by far the greatest war-monger the world has ever seen. Now I know that my words are harsh but this is the truth and I am sick and tired of Israel acting like an innocent little girl whenever they come into contact with the Palestinians. Israel's existence is only due to the fact that the Powers felt it necessary to "give back" to the Jewish community by giving into Zionist demands. For the past 20 some odd days, the world has bear witness to Israel quenching its thirst from the blood of innocent women, children and the elderly. Now I am not anti-semetic but I STRONGLY OPPOSE ZIONISM. It is so sad to see how our tax dollars are directly funding this massacre by Israel and will continue to do so. I have no faith in Obama whatsoever in bringing change in Washington. If anything, the biggest change would be: STOP THE FUNDING OF ISRAEL. All he does is reiterate how he will fix the economy and make new jobs, it's all bull. The biggest step in getting out of the economic hellhole is stop funding the terrorist state of Israel and start implementing all those billions of dollars back into U.S. markets.
The world has turned its back on this present day genocide and we will see the detrimental repercussions for a very very long time. Again, Mr. Moyers thank you for speaking up.

John Kane,

I think it is you who are simplistic. If Mexico were to shoot rockets into San Diego, civilians in San Diego could flee. Where do Palenstinian civilians have to go? It's like shooting fish in a barrel. Israel has them blocked in on all sides except for the sea. They put up barriers and don't allow food or other access.

I support Israel's right to exist and wish it could end peacefully. But I have to admit to being horrified and disgusted at their current tactics. They have gone from victim to bully and have learned the tactics of their former aggressors all too well. In this case, they have become their enemy.

Israel believes that Hamas's political and military goals justifies slaughtering non-combatants.

Is any state that is willing to inflict collective punishment against women and children for the actions of a few irrational militants worthy of our support?

Ira Chester,

Israel is not mortally threatened by the Palestinians. Take a deep breath. The Palestinians had nothing to do with the Holocaust.

"Never again" should apply to all human beings everywhere, not just to your tribe.

There has never been a period of the Israel-Palestine conflict in which Israeli casualties remotely approached the level of Palestinian casualties.

In this current conflict, the tally is about 1400 Palestinians, and 13 Israelis. Of those, over 400 Palestinian children dead, and 0 Israeli children dead.

How many children need to die, Ira, before you will feel safe?

I feel deep cultural connection with the Jewish culture, both through the common roots of our Judeo-Christian civilization and through the cultural imprint of six centuries of coexistence of Jews and Poles in my country of birth. I feel a bond with the Jewish intellectual tradition and rational view of the world, and I see the Western culture as an integration of influences including the important Jewish component in everything from science, through philosophy, to arts.

For those reasons, and a multitude of other reasons, I care for the safety and survival of Israel as the home of the Jews.

Having said that, I am seriously worried by the current Israeli policies and politics. To me, they are shortsighted, and seriously detrimental to the long-term fate of Israel. The current Israeli government seems to seek tactical goals (pacification of Gaza, consolidation of West Bank settlement gains), while apparently losing track of the fact that a just peace for Israel requires an international support from the US, Israel's Arab neighbors including the Palestinians, and the rest of the world. I feel that by its actions in Gaza and their effect on the overall situation in the West Bank and the region, Israel is squandering the good will it built by its alliance with the West during the Cold War.

Recent claims of anti-semitism by strident Israel defenders like Foxman, Wurtzel and Dershovitz are really doing it a disfavor, because they trivialize anti-semitism. By lowering the level of the discussion, they stand in the way of developing a just solution. They also discredit the voices of many Jews who voice similar opposition to current Israeli policies.

Ultimately, what is happening now is that the rest of the world, including the US, wants the conflict to end. If Israel and its allies are not perceived as seeking a just and finite solution, they will be marginalized. The tenor of the comments on this site, and the political attitudes around the world, and in the US, are the signs of such concern.

For Israel's sake I pray that it finds a voice that proves its seriousness in seeking the just peace, and readiness to pay its price. I personally feel that the West including the US should support such peace to a highest degree: with security guarantees to both sides, economic and military help, and maybe even peacekeeping force.

New thinking is required, since the old thinking failed to yield the solution. Israel needs to take the initiative or be marginalized. Time is running out.

Dear Mr. Moyer,

You have my full support and admiration for the important work that you do to keep our democracy alive. Please continue to do what you do. Please shine the light where all other outlets fear to go. This intimidation and threats from the pro-Israel lobby has led America far off course from our values. Your reporting helps us, America, to look at ourself, and see our own flaws so that we can correct them. As Orwell stated, "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act."

Charge on sir. We are with you.

Nazim

Dear Mr. Moyer,

You have my full support and admiration for the important work that you do to keep our democracy alive. Please continue to do what you do. Please shine the light where all other outlets fear to go. This intimidation and threats from the pro-Israel lobby has led America far off course from our values. Your reporting helps us, America, to look at ourself, and see our own flaws so that we can correct them. As Orwell stated, "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act."

Charge on sir. We are with you.

Nazim

Shame on you Mr. Moyers. You have tarnished the beacon of truth that was once PBS.

How can you promote such racist hyperbolic propaganda to your viewers?

Thanks, Mr. Moyers, for your excellent report on the Gaza tragedy. Opinions such as yours provide Americans much needed perspectives on the P-I conflict.

Although I don't necessarily agree with everything you said in your Gaza piece, I have no doubt about your intelligent, compassion, and professionalism. It is programs like yours that make me proud of being a supporter of PBS.

Mr. Foxman's distorted letter is disgusting. Fortunately, after the disaster of the Iraq war, more and more Americans now see the dangers of name calling and intimidating tactics, and they overwhelmingly reject these tactics.

As Orwell best stated it:

"In times of universal deceit, speaking the truth is a revolutionary act."

Keep it up, Mr. Moyer. We are with you.

Nazim

Well if the Israelis where white, and the Palestinians black; who would God let win?

Keep up the good work Bill. Keep the faith. You are not alone. Let us maintain our conciences and stand up for our beliefs. You are a credit to fair-minded Christians who are grappling with these difficult issues and following up on them - trying to come to some clarity. Thanks for being a stand up guy.

Remember this
If the Arabs would lay down their arms we would have Peace.
If Israel would lay down their arma there wold no longer be an Israel.

Think about that when you spout your anti-Israel and racism against the Jewish people. Read the comments sent in and you can see the antisemites very clearly in their remarks. In their eyes palestinian civilians are more important than israeli civilians. To you I say visit your nearest Holocaust Museum and learn the meaning of NEVER AGAIN!

The history between the Israelis and the Palestinians IS important, but it's a lot like two siblings arguing over a fight.

"Well he did this!"
"But he did that!"
"But then he did this!"

Anyone with kids knows the important part is getting them to stop fighting rather than figuring out who started it.

Thanks for adding to the growing anti-semitism in the world, Mr. Moyers.
Basically, it boils down to = Israel should not be a state. Is that what you are saying? Because any state has a right and responsibility to defend it's citizens - and if the enemy hides among it's innocent population, then it's a very difficult situation. I really get sick reading the comments here. So much of history has been forgotten.

Mr. Moyers:

I suspect that like many people who posted to this blog, I have been a long time financial supporter of PBS and of you. PBS and Bill Moyers have always been a shining beacon of truth and reason in a news cycle that depends on volume to be heard, not reason.

When a friend forwarded an e-mail that talked about the "God-soaked violence" remark, my first thought was "This can't be true and must have been taken out of context." But, when I found an actual transcript of your show, the email was right and I was wrong. And, your protestation of the phrase being "not sufficiently precise" rings hollow. You know that words matter, they have meaning, and this was not used in a casual conversation with a friend. You are too intelligent to make the claim that you did not realize what you were saying.

If you look beyond the exact phrases in your piece and look at the overall tone, you will see that it is clear you opinion is that Israel is the aggressor against the lowly Palestinians and the Israelis are indiscriminately killing everyone in their path.

You must know that the intention of Hamas is to kill civilians - women and children. What is a suicide bomber except someone directly targeting civilians? What would you do when Hamas terrorists launch mortar shells from schools? Video does not lie, and there are plenty of movies of this exact thing happening. If you shell the schools, you are condemned as a baby-killer. If you do nothing, the terrorist of Hamas will continue to use schoolchildren as human shields. Damned if you do, damned if you don't.

I don't think you are a racist or an Anti-Semite, but I do think you have believed too much of your own propaganda.

What would you do if the Mexican government was launching rockets into San Diego? What would you have the US government do if these same rockets were being launched from inside schools and civilian areas? Would you do nothing, or would you do what Israel did, advise people to leave the area before you start attacking?

Your bias was, unfortunately, all too evident. You have every right to your opinion, but not to my support. We will withdraw our support of PBS because it is the only means of protest we have. It is apparent you are not open to opposing opinions.

I am only a normal teenager, but I think about those who are imprisoned in Gaza and can't go anywhere. It's like a bear is fighting against a baby.

Thank you Mr. Moyers for your rebuttal of Mr. Foxman's comments. I should like to point out that while Mr. Foxman talks about "moral equivalency" his own credentials regarding morality are deficient. As chairperson of the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) he has refused to unambiguously acknowledge the genocide of Armenians by Turkey around 1915, and hypocritically lobbies against Armenian Genocide recognition by the U.S. Congress. Mr. Foxman is not qualified do discuss morality.

That's right, Mr. Moyers, tell the real truth. I'm glad someone in the media is doing so.

I wish more Americans understand the ramifications of our unconditional support of ALL Israeli policy.

We send billions to Israel in aid and most Americans would probably rather see that money spent here. The fact is they are not privy to that information. We have a crumbling infrastructure meanwhile Israel gets all this aid and has the luxury of single-payer-universal healthcare.

It's time we cut the cord and moved on. Israel can defend herself. America should get out of the Middle-East all together. Or at the very least let people like Bill Moyers speak the TRUTH.

It was recently pointed put in a comment by Rabbi Arthur Waskow related to "Who broke the ceasefire between Israeli and the Hamas" that from the time of the start of the ceasefire until Nov. 4, there had been 20 rockets and 18 mortars fired into Israel from Gaza and these were from small terrorist groups. This finding was in a report from the Israeli Intelligence. On Nov. 4th, the Israelis dropped bombs to stymie whatr they thought was an impending attempt by Hamas to abduct Israeli soldiers, killing several Palestinians. That is when Hamas started to send a flurry of rockets into Israeli. So it appears that the ceasefire was first broken by Israel, and it would be much m,ore honest if those supporting the Israeli attack would acknowledge this fact.

Dear Rev. Moyers,
I use your clerical title to remind readers that you are a person who has done theological study -- though sometimes, as a fellow clergy person I'm not sure if it carries any clout. I think you did the best possible job with the topic of Gaza. After reading some of the comments on this blog I would simply say, thank God for you -- not only for your compassion but for your intelligence and education on the topic. I've been reading for years on this and visited Israel AND the W. Bank last year. Going there, meeting with ICAHD and B'tselem, among others, makes all the difference. If people would read something to really understand I would reccommend Anna Baltzer's "Witness in Palestine" and Ilan Pappe's "The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine." Both authors are Jewish: Baltzer, American and Pappe born in Israel and a foremost historian at Haifa U. until his truth-telling forced him out. Both have websites and can be googled.
Once again, Mr Moyers, thank you for being the best thing on TV!
Branwen Cook

What would we do without Bill Moyers? Hopefully, slide into the sea before we cause any more damage, since America can never match him for intelligent journalism.

Dear Mr. Moyer,

You are the only independent voice on television and for that you are a treasury to this country. Your service in shining light on issues that others will not cover is greatly appreciate. Your righteousness on the murderous Gaza operation by Israel has made me a stronger supporter of your show and your views.

Keep up the great work that you do.

Nazim

Stay courageous, Mr. Moyers. One who speaks truth to wide scale oppression is bound to take a hit. Stay firm. Turn to your base - we, the people. Be comforted in Truth and Justice. We will support you. I support you. I thank you.

Mr. Moyers,

Thanks for your most diplomatic depiction of the Israeli attrocities in Gaza.

One man's terrorist is another's freedom fighter. In this case, it is Israel who is the terrorist. It's actions speak for themselves. War Crimes, Crimes agains humanity, attrocity all come to mind here.

I don't have the answer other than condemning both sides for their bad behavior. But, on the scale of who is the worst, it is Israel by a long shot.

In the end, it would probably sort itself out if the US Government were not "Israeli Occupied Territory".

Why does Hamas fire rockets at Israel? Even a noodlenoggin knows the answer to that one. It’s because Israel is illegally occupying their land, building illegal walls, denying them their democratic rights to govern, funding operations through Fatah that are intent on destroying them, practicing Apartheid in both the West Bank and in Israel proper, etc. That’s an easy one. In other words, anyone who supports Israel’s foray into Gaza on the grounds that it is defending itself is, by the same logic, also supporting Hamas’s right to defend Palestinians from illegal occupation. Checkmate. The arguments of the Israeli supporters are entirely self defeating.

Oddly enough, I took your "genetically coded" statement exactly as you intended it, as a description/commentary of the human race in general.

I would never approve of the destruction of Israel but at the same time, I cannot approve of what Israil is currently doing in Gaza. It is wrong and I'm sorry you can't see the simple truth in the first three words in this sentence, Mr. Foxman.

If Israel cannot proceed with a particular military maneuver without killing as many civilians as soldiers, then morality demands that it find another way. The excuses Israel gives for its killing of civilians is bogus. Yes, it is morally wrong for the Palestinians to target Israeli civilians with rocket. By the same token, when there’s a building with a dozen civilians – women and children – and a few Palestinian soldiers inside, it is morally wrong for Israel to bomb the entire building, killing everyone. In such a case, Israel must find another way. To excuse Israel for such a despicable act is, by the same token, to support the rocket firing of the Palestinians. Both are wrong. Both must sustain devastating criticism by the world community. If a soldier is holding a child up as a shield, it is morally wrong to shoot your bullet through the head of the child in order to kill the soldier. You must find another way. No excuses.

Bill, you continue to have my support.

Far too often discussions about these kinds of important and painful issues devolve into name calling and wild accusations. We need to discuss things as they are and then try on untangle this mess.

Thank you Mr. Moyers for refusing to allow to your critics' to silence you. You are a great patriot and a great inspiration. Thank you.

Israel has not sabotaged US foreign policy, they have appropriated it, commandeered it, and otherwise taken it. This is a good strategy for them if the US lets them do it. Israel and USA are two different countires in two very different parts of the world. They each have interests and things that make them weak and strong. Certainly Israel's interests are not the USA's interests and US worker funding Israel may certainly be disadvantageous to the health and welfare of US workers. It is one thing for private concerns to fund Israel and for them to receive a just portion of foreign directed aid money. It is another for their President to telephone the USA and tell the government officials how to vote. But every opportunity is utilized, as it should be. The strategy is does the USA allow itself to be so thoroughly utilized? Another link between the two countries is the military-industrial complex. These monies are spent on military technology, not spent on health and welfare of the American people. What is the point of having plentiful super-tech military if it is used to surveille citizens who can go bankrupt due to healthcare cost during illness?

What else could Israel do? Simple. Allow the Palestinians to bring to the conference table the fact that the Palestinian refugees from the 1948 war have the right to return to Israel, the fact that the Israeli settlements in the West Band are illegal, the fact that the wall being built by Israel on West Bank land is illegal, the fact that the Israeli settlements in East Jerusalem are illegal, and the fact that the collective punishment of 1.5 million Palestinian Gazans by Israel is illegal. All these issues have already been decided upon by the World Court in the Hague. Common human decency requires that Israel acknowledge these facts at the negotiating table. Instead, Israel, backed by the US, has required negotiations without acknowledgement of these facts – effectively spitting in the face of the Palestinians and expelling itself from the world civilized community. The U.S. should set the format of the negotiations, so that these and all other pertinent facts be recognized in the negotiations. Why is this the solution? Because doing so would provide the Palestinians with a very important alternative to violence. Very simple indeed.

Mr. Moyers shows himself to be woefully ignorant of the situation in Israel. Then he compounds his ignorance with indisputable nazi-esque anti-semitism.

So, whose orders will you say you were following at the new Nuremburg trials?

This country is finally starting to wake up. We are finally standing up to the religious nut-jobs who are trying to ruin our country and to Israel which is trying to sabotage our foreign policy. Great job Bill Moyers. We love u

Thank you Bill Moyers for decent journalistic integrity so lacking in the corporate media.

Foxman is a complete and utter thug. The intellectual depth of his argument style ends with the "Hitler" line.

I've 'known' Bill Moyers (through his reporting) for many, many years. Anyone accusing Mr. Moyers of being anything other than completely upright, fair and compassionate has simply not done any homework. He's a sterling human being and a thorough professional.

I stand in utter admiration of you Mr Moyers, as one of the few Americans who has the courage and conviction ot speak the truth and not be swayed by discrimitory and morally lacking organisations such as the ADL. I hope you continue your honest reporting.

There is no adequate justification for killing hundreds of women and children. No group or nation should be given a pass in that regard. No God would want his followers to do this in his name.

I am surprised that almost every Jewish commenter has branded Moyers and anyone else who speaks up against this massacre associated with their so-called "defense" an anti-Semite. Rather than say that they support the Israeli government's position, and therefore accept the deaths of hundreds of women and children as "collateral damage," they play the victim where there is nobody victimizing them. As another said--this practice of calling anyone who disagrees with them an "anti-semite" only reduces support for their people. If I felt that ALL Jewish people believed that the killing of all these innocents was justified, then I WOULD be an anti-semite. Thankfully there are many voices from the Jewish people themselves who are equally disgusted with the actions of the Israeli government, AND the U. S. support of this tragedy.

Since world war 2, Israel pushed very hard to eternelize the jewish suffering in the minds of future generations, and to profit from that to create a side of guilt in any one who attempt to criticize Israel. Many people,nations, ethnic groups and individuals suffered horrors and atrocities throughout history but none had managed to remain a helpless victim forever in the eyes of the world. Israel is far from being innocent and weak, today it has become the oppressor and the guilty just as much as the radical terrorist in the other side who deserve what they get, but the innocent civilians must not be punished for the actions of the radical Hamas who dream about reincarnating the Islamic empire and spreading Islam, which is for itself a very dangerous project if it becomes reality, we will face the possibility of losing freedom for which we fought for ages with blood and reason to realize. Must Israel use its military might, let it be focused on those who wish to rule the world with an ideology of superstition.

Mr Moyers,

Thank you for your fearlessness in the face of so much opposition. There is no right or wrong answer to this conflict, and only open and honest debate can bring about resolutions. The pro-israel faction does such a destructively effective job at squelching all debate on this issue that it sickens me all the more when I watch the atrocities occurring in the Palestinian camps. Thank you for being seemingly the last courageous journalist in this country

Mr. Moyers,

Your words are inspiration and this is the reason why I turn to you for commentary. For Abraham Foxman to even suggest that you are a racist and anti-Semitic is both appalling and disgraceful. It just goes to show how obtuse people can be when religion comes into play. Again, thank you for opening up the truth.

Sincerely,

- Will

I want to thank you, Mr. Moyers.

Your honesty, courage, and commitment to justice are an inspiration sorely needed in times like these.

Thanks for sharing this interchange. I'm currently reading the Mearsheimer and Walt book, The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy. Mr. Foxman's critique of your commentary follows exactly the pattern they have identified. You have your "facts" wrong. (Actually, you don't, but they don't support the propaganda you're supposed to believe.) You are with Israel (and a good person who will be praised and rewarded) or against them and either an anti-semite or a self-hating Jew. You will be treated accordingly by some very powerful and influential individuals and groups. Is your job safe? Can they convince your sponsors to withdraw their funding?

The Bush administration did the same thing in stifling any opposition to the Iraqi War. (Remember Joseph Wilson and Valerie Plame as but one example?) The combined silencing tactic of attacking and labeling opponents, "example setting" for any others that might step out of line and a very effective and coordinated propaganda campaign has worked successfully for a number of years.

Mr. Foxman's critique of your commentary shows why we haven't been able to have a real dialogue either in Congress or in our culture about Israel's policies. Please let us know if the ADL or any of its friends take any other action against you.

The good news is that the silence is breaking now and the propaganda (a tool of all governments and special interests) is being exposed. I have always supported Israel's right to exist. But I'm not proud of what my government has done in Iraq or its complicity in the Gaza massacre. Both actions have gone way over the line. I am definitely awake and NOT silent. I've been writing my elected leaders, including Rice, Pelosi and Reid, and will continue to do so.

Bill Moyers, I respect you so much. You are a person of dignity and integrity and intelligence, and we are so lucky to have the benefit of your journalism. Abe Foxman is a demagogue and a bully. Criticism of Israel is not anti-semitism. Zionism is Apartheid, pure and simple, and it is bad for the Jewish people and bad for humanity.

Hello Bill et al,

I am always surprised by how American discourse seems to place very little value on the middle ground. Obviously this is an extremely polarizing issue that is in no way mitigated using terms and phrases like: "genetically coded for violence", anti-semitic, racism and "indifference to terrorism".

Clearly there is plenty of blame to go around but where are the solutions? If anything is clear the solutions are not: military offensives, fences, rockets, suicide bombings and inflammatory rhetoric.

Jack Crompton

Not a fan of Noam Choamsky's Marxism but he sometimes has good criticisms of the power elite and its propaganda:

"The ADL has virtually abandoned its earlier role as a civil rights organization, becoming 'one of the main pillars' of Israeli propaganda in the U.S., as the Israeli press casually describes it, engaged in surveillance, blacklisting, compilation of FBI-style files circulated to adherents for the purpose of defamation, angry public responses to criticism of Israeli actions, and so on. These efforts, buttressed by insinuations of anti-Semitism or direct accusations, are intended to deflect or undermine opposition to Israeli policies, including Israel's refusal, with U.S. support, to move towards a general political settlement."

Well said Bill. I have had more than one run in with this me motivated anti defamation league and its strong arm Militia Watchdog in past years.

While their writing skills border on excellence their subject matter seems in many cases to be an agenda that at times borders on un-American. I applaud your agenda crushing reply

wdd

Mr. Moyers -- I do not always agree with you, but that is one of the biggest reason our family watches your program. It is all too easy to bias one's opinion when you only listen to whom with which you are already on the same page.,

You should expect an onslaught from Pro-Israeli groups over your commentary. They've done a terrific job at brainwashing us Americans to see only one side of the story.

Do not let your voice go unheard. Men like Abe Foxman, someone whom I consider wholeheartedly unamerican, will stop at nothing to manipulate public opinion as it is the only way he can keep his country. Without the United States, all is lost for their cause. The cost to our own citizenry is completely inconsequential and irrelevant in their eyes.

Thank you Mr. Moyers for your excellent coverage. It is reassuring to finally hear balanced reporting on this issue. "Self defense" may justify action on the part of Israel...but it does not justify ANY action taken. The concept of "antisemitism" is thrown around as if it makes the nation of Israel immune to all criticism. Not all criticism of Israel is of an "antisemitic" nature. Please do not let those who carelessly throw this term around hinder your journalistic integrity.

In your letter to the ADL, you mention 3 points.
1. The checkpoints and security fence. These may be "humiliating," but they are saving lives. Israel has begun decreasing the number of checkpoints in the West Bank. This welcome development can continue if Israelis are allowed to live in peace.

2. Quoting a Norwegian physician, Mads Gilbert. He is not an impartial observer. If you compare the Gaza operation ( NOT onslaught) to operations by the Allies in World War II and to operations in the Serbian War by the Allies, there is a much lower civilian casualty rate. Although Israel has fewer losses, the rockets are deliberately aimed at civilians and not at soldiers. The observer in question is as honest as Hamas in measuring civilian losses, has attacked the US and Israel, and criticized the group Doctors without Borders for aiding both Palestinians and Israelis.

3. Your statement did sound as is the Jews alone were coded for violence. You defense reminds me of Jimmy Carter stating his book erred in suggesting that Palestinians were justified in terror attacks upon Israelis. Why does the awkward statement always have an anti-Semitic undertone?

Finally, the herding of Palestinian civilians into a building only to be bombed sounds either like a Palestinian propaganda piece or a terrible mistake by Israel. This is the only army that stops its operations to allow aid to civilians and calls to warn them before an IAF strike to move. I am not surprised that this would be presented by a journalist who failed to ask Rev. Jeremiah Wright more about antiAmerican statements and his embrace of anti-Semitic Louis Farrakhan. PBS is the only station to allow a documentary about Nazi atrocities without using the word "Jew." They also refused to air a documentary about Radical Islam. In the future, I am not contibuting to PBS, watching PBS, or watching Bill Moyers.

"NN recently broadcast an oral report from one of their senior reporters who, despite Israel's attempt to prevent media access to Gaza, had made his way into southern Gaza via Egypt. He reported that there was great fear among the people of Gaza, but the only destruction he reported was massive bombing of the Egypt-Gaza border...."

Don't waste the time of this feedback forum with this kind of BS.

At very least, you could show us the respect of posting comments that don't fly in the face of reality and common sense. It is widely-accepted as fact--like death and taxes--that Israel has wreaked havoc and destruction on the civilian population of Gaza. There is no debate over that fact. Add to that fact the various comments pertaining to strategy we hear from pro-Zionists in the media(whose views are probably congruent with those of the Olmert, Barak, and the Knesset), and it becomes a near-certainty that the killing of Palestinian civilians was deliberate.

Dear Mr. Moyers,
After reading the posts here of all those rabid Jews-haters,or as they are now called --anti-Zionists, drawn to you like flies to fire, I fully agree with prof. Landes in his assessment of you.
I have stopped watching you a while back and now it is high time for me to sever completely my support for PBS.

Mr. Moyers,

Have you ever interviewed Arundhati Roy?

Here is a film using her words juxtaposed with images and music. It is called, appropriately "We":

http://www.weroy.org/watch.shtml

We is a fast-paced 64 minute documentary that covers the world politics of power, war, corporations, deception and exploitation.

It visualizes the words of Arundhati Roy, specifically her famous Come September speech, where she spoke on such things as the war on terror, corporate globalization, justice and the growing civil unrest.

It's witty, moving, alarming and quite a lesson in modern history.

As a Holocaust scholar I recognize Moyers' rhetoric as being straight out of Mein Kampf, and his subsequent clarification as misrepresenting the context of his words. I also recognize the difference between good and evil. Moyers, in addition to exposing an evil ideology, has his facts wrong. Israel is not "waging war on an entire population." Unlike any other country, Israel takes the risk of robo-calling apartment buildings where terrorists hide to warn innocents to get out before an attack. No other country, when civilians respond to those warnings by going up to the roof to be martyrs, shifts tactics to drop non-explosive devices on those roofs to clear the civilians out first. In this war Israel has the same clear moral superiority that the Allies had in WW2. She deserves the support of the world in trying to end the terrorism against her, not the slander of racial theorists like Moyers.

Mr. Moyers, thank you so much for your courage to stand up. Our politicians and main medias are spineless and so afraid of being called "you are Anti-Semi!" A hint of criticism against Israel is crashed by ADF and AIPAC. The open discussion on Israel/Palestinian gone to wayside way too long. US has been an enabler for the carnage and sufferings of Palestinians. Enormous lobby(money)power on GOP and DEM has contributed in advancing only the interest of Israel for so long. Although I deeply sympathize Jews for their incredible struggles throughout history, but even-handed approach is desperately required to achieve peace in the Middle East including to prevent terrorist attacks against US and its citizens.

The question is not: "what would we do if Canada shot missiles over the border at us...would we not attack them and defend our families?" No, the question is: "what would we do if Canada took our land and homes, wiped out any historical evidence that they exisited and forced us to live in a ghetto cut off to the outside world...would we sit meekly by and have our destiny dictated to us by Canada?"
I think the Israeli Professor Ilan Pappe (Exeter University) offers us useful history in order to understand the conflict: Part I:
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-2378048083114640496&ei=LJhlSanAEJyyrQL6_ozhDg&hl=en

Part II:
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-1045070103971656266&hl=en

Part III:
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=9069594734659501057&hl=en

Part IV:
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=3343805094273077232&hl=en


When you have time, the acclaimed movie (winner of many awards including
Best Documentary): Occupation 101:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-2451908450811690589&ei=waxlSb7SHI6cqALgzqndBw&q=occupation+101&hl=en&dur=3

PBS will be losing a lot of supporters.

The bottom line is this: When anyone refers to the Jews as being genetically coded for violence as Mr. Moyers has, that person is, in fact, biased and prejudicial and loses all credibility in evaluating the political crisis in the Middle East. End of story.

Abraham Foxman was one of my teachers. He was one of the teachers of my generation of Jews who were brought up as children learning that every human life is sacred. That the actions of thejackboots were immoral and incomprehensible.
That all minorities were to be respected as the children of God, that every human being was to be respected and to be accorded dignity. That justice demanded equality and respect for all of its citizens. That it was our job as human beings to be out there standing up for the weak and the defenseless.
Am I right? Isn't that what the Anti-Defamation League stood for?
Isn't that what they taught our generation?
I still believe in those lessons.

Mr. Moyer's response was absolutely correct in his response.

There is no denying that many in the Jewish community believe that they are above criticism:

"Israel may have the right to put others on trial, but certainly no one has the right to put the Jewish people and the State of Israel on trial."

Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, 25 March, 2001 quoted in BBC News Online.

The bottom line is this: When anyone refers to the Jews as being genetically coded for violence as Mr. Moyers has, that person IS in fact biased and prejudicial and loses all credibility in evaluating the political crisis in the Middle East. End of story.

During the inquisition any opinion different from the church's was labeled a heresy.
Foxman, one of the the grand inquisitors of our times uses "antisemitism " to silence any opposing view.
But just like "heresy" and "communism" these tactics will eventually go away.
Thank you Mr. Moyer. Your integrity and professionalism will remain as an example for the new generations of journalist and reporters to follow.

Out of 1000 killed in Gaza 350 turned out be children! I cried and prayed for Israel today to come to its sensors! Oh, Adonai…save the children from the killers!

Abe Foxman says: "Fortunately for our nation, very few of our citizens engage in the same moral equivalency, racism..." Abe is a slippery fellow. One moment our nation is supporting Israel because we are not racists. The next we Americans are oppressing blacks and Jews at every opportunity providing him a plush job campaigning against that bias. I guess his outlook is very much situationally dependent.

Your coverage is very fair, though I'd say it does not go far enough to show the whole story. But for merely being fair and presenting some of the other side of the story you are condemned. When I learned that I could read a more critical treatment of Israel from their press I began to realize that our press is in general anything but free or courageous. Rather it is tightly controlled for nefarious purposes.

I have grown tired of hearing accusations of anti-semetism fly whenever comments that are critical of Israel are made. The groundbreaking (albeit mild) criticism of Israel in the American media and outrage by the international community over Israel's unspeakable brutality over the last few weeks is well-deserved and has nothing to do with feelings--good or bad--toward the prevailing religion of the state. Perhaps those making such accusations have forgotten that there are many Jews around the world--some of them Israelis--who are harshly critical of Israel's actions against the Palestinians and Lebanese. Are we to believe that those Jews are anti-semites as well?

To anyone willing to scream "anti-semetism" in response to criticism of Israel, I offer you this food for thought: people around the world know all too well the history and the facts surrounding the Israel-Palestine conflict, and slowly but surely, we Americans are emerging from the de-facto media blackout that kept us oblivious to these facts for six decades. No matter how hard the Israelis try to paint the picture, the world will never view their actions against the people of Gaza as those of an innocent nation defending itself from an aggressor, much less an aggressor who attacks without cause. More importantly though, anger toward Israel is growing around the world and trying to suppress it with the label of "anti-semite" will not work. Instead, it may serve only to link the brutalities committed by Israel to the Jewish faith itself and, I fear, transfer the world's anger at Israel to the followers of the Jewish faith. I submit that it would serve you well to do all you can to dissociate the great faith of Judaism from the actions of Israel.

Israelis draw comfort from Barack Obama's words, "If rockets were falling where my two daughters sleep, I would do everything in order to stop that." Would his calculation be any different if he thought that the places where little Israeli girls sleep today were once occupied by little Palestinian girls--until they and their fathers and mothers were told to get out of their homes in Sderot, Ashkelon and Beersheba or they would be killed by the new occupants.

As a Jewish American, I am tired of being disgraced by the Israeli murderers and their braindead US apologists. Unfortunately nearly all discussants, even those correctly condemning the Israeli slaughter, presume the conflict between Israel and its neighbors as a given. We have seen this conflict in the past and present ... all the more reason not to assume it as the foundation for building a future.

Once we drop the bizarre framing that Israel and the Islamic nations must be at each others throats, the answers start to become obvious. What should Israel do? Stop whining and start acting like moral human beings already!!! Initiate constructive projects!!! Open cooperative resource developments, educational institutions, business centers, all the facilities of productive society, which the region sorely needs. Israel's only path forward is constructive co-development with its neighbors, not endless viciousness.

I was very disappointed to read the too numerous criticisms of the Israeli actions in Gaza. lsrael has tried over the years to achieve peace. Hamas has not.
How would your listeners like it if Haiti were taken over by Iranians (or Venezuela, or any of the many countries that dislike US policies) and use it to fire missles into Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina? I'm sure we would just sit back and let our people die.

Dear Bill

THANKYOU THANKYOU !

You are voice in the wilderness and we need more you.

The disgusting whining morally bankrupt apologists who go on about how bad it is while kids are being vaporised and burnt to death sickens me. Even more so because I know the new president will be just as spineless as the last.

keep up the good work

Peter

To Bill Moyers:
Oh please. Do you really expect anyone to believe that what you wrote about genetically coded violence was simply "not sufficiently precise" rather than the blatant prejudice it really was? To now claim that you were not talking about the Jews in particular but the human race in general is utter nonsense. Lying about what you actually wrote makes the situation even worse. This is what you wrote, quoted directly from the transcript:

"What we are seeing in Gaza is the latest battle in the oldest family quarrel on record. Open your Bible: the sons of the patriarch Abraham become Arab and Jew. Go to the Book of Deuteronomy. When the ancient Israelites entered Canaan their leaders urged violence against its inhabitants. The very Moses who had brought down the commandment "Thou shalt not kill" now proclaimed, "You must destroy completely all the places where the nations have served their gods. You must tear down their altars, smash their pillars, cut down their sacred poles, set fire to the carved images of their gods, and wipe out their name from that place."
So God-soaked violence became genetically coded."

Chris Malsano writes:

Here's hoping that a silver lining to this disaster is a reconsideration of one-sided U.S. support for everything Israel does.

I wish I could also see the silver lining you describe. Our elected officials (including Obama) are so petrified of the AIPAC (the Israel lobby) that they'll probably continue to give Israel a blank check until Israel nukes Boston... and even then, our "leaders" will probably say: "Thank you sir, may I have another?"

Dear Mr. Moyers,

I find it best to never jump into the middle of a dog fight, for surely you will get bit if you do.

And think you better get the shots, for those who would kill others are surely rabid.

=
MJA

i would strongly suggest that, in fact, Bill Moyers was too soft in his commentary on Israel and Gaza. What has been sorely missing from all of these discussions and observations, is context. For over 40 years Israel has occupied the West Bank and Gaza, in violation of International law. i have personally spent considerable time in most of occupied Palestine, and no country or people should have to endure the daily humiliation,
degradation, and immoral treatment like that being perpetrated upon the Palestinian people by Israel.
When i am asked to explain or justify the Palestinian suicide bombers, or the rockets fired by Hamas into Israel, my response is this. If America had been subjected to the same tactics and conditions for over 40 years by another country, that Israel has subjected the Palestinian people to, the American people would rise up and use any means available to fight against that atrocity, so why not the Palestinian people?

Bill Moyers,

You're right, he's wrong. The sad thing is that the Israeli press discusses these issues much more openly, and represents a wider spectrum of opinion, than does the self-censored US press which seems to be afraid of jackals like Foxman.

First off, kudos to Moyers for standing up to that intellectual thug Abe Foxman.

Apparently commenter B.T. Mendelsohn does not know how to read. He or she claims that Foxman does not accuse Moyers of racism/anti-Semitism, when Foxman's third point is a clear accusation of anti-Semitism (i.e. "you managed to fit into your January 9 commentary...(3) anti-Semitism, declaring that Jews are 'genetically coded' for violence." I think that Moyers' appeal to the Bible in attempting to partially explain the roots of violence in the Mideast is pointless and misguided because this is at heart a secular conflict that started relatively recently in the broad sweep of history, but obviously the charge made by Foxman is completely baseless and a diversion from the issue at hand. There's no evidence whatsoever in the commentary in question that Moyers harbors any sort of hatred of Jews.

Also, Mendelsohn's "questioning" of the extent of the destruction in Gaza is tendentious in the extreme. Every single organization with personnel on the ground or connections inside Gaza is reporting appalling levels of death and destruction there: the UN, the Red Cross, international and regional human rights organizations, etc. etc. I don't know how much more reporting on the humanitarian catastrophe in Gaza needs to occur before the reality of this information manages to find its way into Mendelsohn's consciousness.

Finally, while Israel's aim may not be the completion of a genocide against the Palestinians in the occupied territories, it has determined since the occupation began to maintain the Palestinians in a permanent state of subjugation and neo-colonial dependency. Israeli officials have even stated this goal openly on a number of occasions. This is why it's completely laughable when apologists for Israel whine about how there's never a "peace partner" on the Palestinian side, but the fact is that they've never been interested in a genuine, equitable peace themselves. Peace doesn't have to wait "a century or two." Everyone knows what a solution to this conflict looks like, but the political will and courage to make it happen is missing, especially here in the U.S. Here's hoping that a silver lining to this disaster is a reconsideration of one-sided U.S. support for everything Israel does.

By international law, the occupying power does not have the right to defend itself against the people it is controlling. The occupying power is in fact supposed to protect them. The way an occupying power can protect its own people is by removing them from harm's way or by stopping the occupation. The people who are occupied have the right to defend themselves against an illegal occupation. There is NO balanced or neutral perspective on this. It is one-sidedly in favour of the victims, the Palestinians. Israel must stop the occupation and obey international and humanitarian law. And the USA and Canada must stop abetting this criminal behaviour by Israel.

When Palestine becomes an independent state, then the conflict would be between two "equal" states and Israel would have the right to defend itself. The siege and blockade of Gaza would be considered an act of war against Palestine. And Palestine would have the right to defend itself. It really isn't all that complicated.

It appears to those who study it that the U.S. is well beyond its optimal carrying capacity for humans, hence their opposition to immigration. Immigration tends to flow towards places of greater (perceived) opportunity, so if the borders are opened, flow into the U.S. will continue until it has the same opportunity as the country on earth having the least. The next time you make comments that seem pro-immigration you would be doing us a great service if you would present this argument and explain rigorously either why this line of reasoning is wrong, or why you feel it is good policy to impoverish us.

This incident represents who the Israelis really are, as opposed to the carefully nurtured image in the media:

"The International Red Cross was so outraged it broke its usual silence over an attack in which the Israeli army herded a Palestinian family into a building and then shelled it, killing 30 people and leaving the surviving children clinging to the bodies of their dead mothers. The army prevented rescuers from reaching the survivors for four days."

Children left to starve, clinging to the bodies of their dead mothers. The Israelis deny the essential humanity of the Palestinians. They, above all, should know where that attitude leads.

Thank you, Mr. Moyers. I cannot tell you how angry I feel at my elected officials for being so servile to the likes of the ADF and AIPAC. It is sickening to watch the slaughter of civilians continue with the blessing of my government.
Jeremiah Wright was speaking the truth when he pointed out that 9-11 was our chickens coming home to roost; I shudder to think of the horrible things which will happen to my country, thanks to our blind support of this murderous Israeli regime.

ISRAEL STOP THE KILLING!!!

Max the Jews were kicked out by the Romans after the destruction of the second temple and the defeat of the bar kokhba revolt. It had nothing to do with the Arabs. The remaining population of the Roman province converted to Roman Paganism, then became Christian under Constantine, which is why you have a christian population among the Palestinians. Then long after this the Arab Muslims invaded. You've got your sequence of a events messed up.

Great to hear some sanity on the seige and killings....focus on these and other current episodes always leaves the real issue of the last 60+ years out of sight...and this recent invasion PERFECTLY serves the end-game of the leadership there that doesn't want to have to give any decent lands up by ensuring that the cycle will perpetuate and the status quo continues until the "reservation" is the size of a postage stamp.

Mr. Moyers:

First of all, your reply to the ADL surprised me because of the phrase "call someone a racist"; nowhere in Foxman's letter does he use the word "racist" and nowhere in it does he accuse you of anything, not even anti-Semitic. His letter takes issue with your opinion, not your character.

In addition, I question your sources of information on the situation in Gaza. For several reasons I am suspicious that images we see may be exaggerating how widespread is the destruction.

CNN recently broadcast an oral report from one of their senior reporters who, despite Israel's attempt to prevent media access to Gaza, had made his way into southern Gaza via Egypt. He reported that there was great fear among the people of Gaza, but the only destruction he reported was massive bombing of the Egypt-Gaza border in an effort to close the tunnels presumably used for smuggling arms to Hamas. Unfortunately, he could not get closer to where actual fighting was ongoing because Israeli forces had succeeded in splitting Gaza into north and south parts. It was not possible for him to get into the north. While his oral report was being aired, CNN showed video of explosions and casualties in the Gaza north. I had seen those videos on CNN before, and knew that they were not consistent with the oral report, but someone without that knowledge would be given the impression that they were about the report they were hearing.

I recall a past occasion when there was extensive coverage of some sort of disaster in a city where I had friends. I contacted them to see if they were okay. They told me that the destruction was only in a very limited area of the city, and that life was normal in the rest of the city. I would have never guessed that from the media coverage.

The images that we see are those that either have been taken from within Israel or those provided by Arab media. I am suspicious that the latter may be biased.

In your reply, you wrote that Foxman’s claimed that “the checkpoints, the security fence and the Gaza operation ... are not humiliating of the Palestinians.” But Foxman did not deny that the tactics were not humiliating (which I know they are) but only that it wasn’t their purpose. His exact words accuse you of saying they "are tactics of humiliation rather than counter-terrorism." In other words, he said your commentary failed to distinguish between legitimate defensive measures and their regrettable side effects.

I am not disputing the argument that Israel’s actions are reinforcing the enmity of the world wide Arab and Moslem population and making a lasting peace more difficult. I do reject the argument that Israel’s aim is genocide, wiping out the entire Palestinian Arab people. That is totally inconsistent with Judaism and with Zionist doctrine. Don’t forget that Israel allowed Arabs in Israel to be citizens and have representation in their government. However, I expect the war that started with the U.N.’s partition of Palestine replacing Britain’s mandate to rule the former province of the Ottoman Empire will continue until both populations become so weary of continued mayhem that they prevent violations of cease fires by all extremists on both sides who oppose the two-state solution. In the similar dispute over land between Irish Catholics and Protestants, that took centuries to accomplish. The current clash started only about 100 years ago with clashes between Palestinian Arabs and Palestinian Jews (Zionists) who were purchasing land and evicting the tenant farmers. It likely will take another century or two for Palestinian Arabs to reach that point, assuming Israel is not pushed into the sea before then (as Hamas doctrine seeks.)

Great piece!
Schama: ´The American character..freedom, ingenuity and justice; versus..racism will never go away. What Jackson said about the Cherokee, "Uh-oh, they´ve actually fulfilled their side of the bargain only to well. But we need Georgia, because gold has been discovered." America is at a cross-roads. Even one Muslim economist said that America´s and Western Capitalism has died.

Yes indeed, America is at a cross-roads!

Mr. Moyer. I have great respect for your perspective and willingness to speak. You are a national treasure!

Thank you Mr. Moyers for your courage and insight. Please keep it up. Majority of informed citizens in US and around the world are behind you! And the sound of their voice is getting louder and louder. Hopefully, it will eventually reach to US politicians on both sides who are timid at this time.

The wanton, mass murder of innocent civilians to invoke public fear as a means to strike back at a political group seems like a pretty clear description of a terrorist act.

I heard Mr. Moyers and totally understood his original message as well as his follow-up response. It strikes me that he is saying exactly what the majority in the world are probably thinking. Israel's response has been a grave error. How long will it take them to recognize this? It's taken the U.S. what seems like forever to come to grips with the Iraq folly. You'd think Israel would have learned from this recent debacle.

I listened today, Friday, January 16, to your response to the comments made by listeners about your program on the Gaza conflict (1/9/09). Regretfully, your position on this issue is misguided and misinformed and may even be inflamatory.
You accuse Israel of waging war on a population. If this were the case there would have been hundreds of thousands of civilian deaths among this population, one of the densest in the world. Israel conducts this war in the most humane way possible (assuming a war can be humane) under very difficult circumstances, where the terrorists hide among the population, in mosques, private homes, schools and hospitals. In wars like these civilian casualties cannot be avoided. Errors do happen, even Israeli soldiers were killed by their own fire. But to call this "waging war on a population" is utterly wrong, based on lack of understanding of the circumstances, and as I said before, misinformed and even inflamatory.
I repeat the question many have asked you before: What would you demand from your government if you and your family were under rocket fire for years? What would the US do if San Diego were showered with rockets from Tijuana for years? Tijuana would be wiped off the earth!!!

I have sadly come to the conclusion that Bill Moyers has no integrity and is unwilling to directly answer the points raised by Abe Foxman of the ADL. Furthermore, his statements about what he really meant about Jewish genetic code are a laughable attempt to deny what he was clearly stating. It is obvious that a self-righteous Moyers cannot confront his own demons of hatred and prejudice.

I will no longer watch Bill Moyers since he clearly has no journalist integrity and I will also no longer donate to PBS.

To those who have criticized the views of the ADL and Abe Foxman on this website, I respectfully ask:

What are you going to do about it? What leverage do you have over that organization? After all, over the years the ADL has proven itself to be nearly immune from criticism of its views on the Palestinian - Israeli conflict.

Like the Energizer Bunny, the ADL just keeps going and going and going. Until recently.

You see, the ADL has been under immense pressure over its denial of the Armenian genocide and work with Turkey.

As a result, a dozen cities in Massachusetts as well as the Massachusetts Municipal Association have cut relations with ADL programs such as "No Place for Hate."

They all saw through the ADL's hypocrisy and wanted nothing to do with the ADL. That's real progress.

It's all explained on www.NoPlaceforDenial.com. Take a particular look at its "History of Lobbying" and "News Archive" links.

In other words, if you want to prove that the ADL is hypocritical, and if you want to prove to others that the ADL is not the human rights organization it claims to be, you can do so by joining a *proven* campaign at that website.

Talk it up. Send the link to friends.

Hypocrisy is part and parcel of *every* issue the ADL takes on.

Therefore, if you fight the ADL successfully on one issue, you will have an effect on all of the ADL's positions. Makes sense, doesn't it?

Again, www.NoPlaceForDenial.com.

Mr. Moyers,
Thank you so much for the reflections on the events in Gaza. Well said.
I think Israel MUST be highly criticized and certainly politically and economically punished for the extreme use of power in such event, specially and knowingly that the civilian Palestinian population was at stake in such event. My questions to the israeli government and supporters of this actions:
How is Israel planning to solve the long term problem they have created in their own country, in Palestine, and with the respectable Muslim and Jewish world?
Does Israel believe, really, that these actions will bring peace between Palestine, the Arab countries, and the jewish communities world wide?

Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East? What about Iraq? If you don't count that installed puppet regime as a democracy, you aren't playing the game, Abe.

We spent over 4200 lives and hundreds of billions of dollars (and counting) to eliminate and occupy one of Israel's oil-rich enemies and replace Saddam's dictatorship with a so-called democracy. Rather than play along with the "fledgling democracy" line, Abe doesn't even have the courtesy to adjust his canned Israel-first rhetoric?

Speaking of Iraq, I'd like to thank our "greatest ally in the world" for refuting the faulty WMD intelligence and doing their best to discourage us from entering that quagmire instead of cheering us on... oh wait... well, at least now that we've checked Iraq at great expense, the Middle East is free of nuclear weapons... oh wait... Israel has them... but only if Iran gets nukes will it cause an "arms race in the region."

Abe is also taking the pro-Israel (shock) wording when referring to the Israeli "barrier" (neutral term) that's a "fence" (pro-Israel term) in some areas and a very imposing "wall" (pro-Palestine term) in others.

For someone who's quick to defame and slander as anti-Semitic and racist anyone who uses the "wrong" word (in his eyes), he knows exactly what he is doing by saying "fence" instead of "barrier."

Abe's exaggerated name-calling and constant cries of anti-Semitism appears to generate more defamation from his fingertips than the original material to which he was applying his "anti-defamation."

As implied by some of the comments here, I'm sure Moyers is such an ignorant anti-Semite he forgot to discriminate against his full-show guest, Simon Schama, after finding out he is Jewish. Perhaps it is the name-callers who are blinded by their love of Israel and inability to have an objective/neutral or mildly critical view who are the ignorant ones? Maybe those with blind faith that a nation of "the Chosen People" can make no mistakes and do no wrong are the ones lying to themselves?

Does it occur to anyone that it might not be in America's best interest to put the interests of the Israeli government (not even the Israeli people) at the top of our agenda? Why can't the US be totally neutral and stop supplying both sides with weapons and money (though in a lop-sided way, we do fund both sides)? What do we gain from such a wonderful ally? Corporate welfare to our military industrial complex when we give Israel money to buy our weapons? The animosity of the Arab world when Israel uses those weapons (in violation of our agreement, not that we enforce it) in offensive missions of occupation? The ire of Bin Laden and others who view our support of Israel as a justification for terror on our soil? Is this permanent entangling alliance worth it?

Dear Mr. Moyers,
I watched your original essay and your response this week. I cannot understand why there is still any controversy over the current operation.

The death toll is a crude but significant measure of what is happening in Gaza. That roughly 100 Palestinians have died for every Israeli is shocking. Even if 90% of the dead were terrorists, which they are not, it would still be too great a civilian casualty.

Mr. Foxman from the Anti-Defamation League has used tired old talking points about anti-Semitism that do not further the discussion whatsoever. The threat from Hamas is real, but to justify the deaths of hundreds of caged civilians can not be justified. Furthermore, like you pointed out, this is only helping the extremists on both sides of the border and not doing anything for Israel's long term security.

It will be a sad day in America if you decide to leave the ignorant masses to their own devices and stop holding us all accountable. I hope that day does not come too soon.

Before Gaza, Israel appeared to be a brilliant people, an advancer of humanity. The attack on the civilians in Gaza has illustrated the lowest barbarism - on a par with, or lower than, the Cheney-Bush cro-magnon conventions. A world court should denounce your acts. Israel's activities in Gaza are so cruel as to be isolated from anything human, not even your statehood. As an American I am ashamed of the US politicians who support your blood lust. I grieve with the Jewish people around the world who protested. I grieve with them for ALL that has been lost. You give me hope.

Bravo, for telling it like it is on the Gaza-Israeli conflict! Foxman and the Israeli Lobby try and tar those who dare criticize Israel as antisemite. You are just the latest in a growing number of voices calling out for a more responsible and just Israel. You're in good company with Jimmy Carter, Walt & Mearsheimer authors of the Israel Lobby and others as being tarred as anti-semites. The ADL is the Israel Lobby's attack machine targeting anyone who dares debate or criticize Israel's policies. It appears that only ones that can do that and get away with it is J-Street. Since they are Jewish, it's hard to brand them antisemites. Although small like David, J-Street is a good counter to the Israel Lobby Goliath.

In his analysis, Bill Moyers is simply holding the mirror of history in front of us. We can look into that mirror and learn from it. Or, we can chose to break the mirror. Israel and its supporters now are choosing to break the mirror. A thousand shattered pieces will still be reflecting their faces.


What Bill Moyers has stated can be seen as representative of the anguish and the struggle of millions of civilized people around the globe as they attempt to comprehend how a state like Israel, which considers itself the beacon of democracy in the Middle East, can committ such heinous crimes in Gaza.

Does anyone in Israel seriously think they can resolve their issues by targetting and killing hundreds of women and children? By creating more orphans and widows and widowers? By starving people to submission? By bombing and demolishing hundreds of buildings? By banning impartial reporting? By labling the opponents of such barbarism with the abused, generic word "antisemetic"? Has Israel lost its mind?

It is simply unconscionable that in this day and age, educated, affluent, and powerful people sitting in the comfort of their homes in London and New York blindly endorse mass murder in the name of supporting the "Jewish State".

Bill, you have the courage we all need - to stand up for the innocent who have no one like you.

Let us settle the conflict in the world court...those who do war crimes should do the TIME!

Mr. Moyers:

The Israeli Palestinian conflict is very much like the American Indian Wars. Israel was established in 1948 by a few Jewish terrorists in a conquest to claim control of Palestine. The British yielded and Palestinians lost their homes and lands to Jewish settlers from other parts of the world. Over the years, Palestinians and Israelis have fought for control. Israelis with American support have always had the upper hand just like American settlers who moved onto Indian (native American) land. Of course there were wars, and the weakest nation lost, while the stronger nation claimed they were wronged by wild Indians or terrorist Palestinians. Those Israelis who kill thousands of Palestinians for every Israeli killed, act with the same disregard for other cultures and human life as the American Indian fighters. This is a racist fact of our human existence. American Indians fought for survival just as Palestinians do. Some American Indians were criminals, but men, women and children in the Indian nations were punished by death or life in prison camps or reservations. In the end, more Americans were criminals in this genocide than all of the American Indians that once lived in the US or its territories. Israel should be sanctioned by the world for their crimes against humanity. Hiding behind accusations of antisemitism against their critics will not make Israel right. Israeli's and their misinformed American supporters need to come to terms with their own history and actions. Might does not make right. Being right once in your life does not make you right forever. A good parent does not guarantee a good child. Israel has been behaving like a spoiled child for far too long.

Thank God for Bill Moyers. I plan my Friday evenings around watching PBS and try not to miss the Journal. In regard to the Gaza situation, every morning when I hear the news about what went on there the previous day, I want to cry or scream and cuss. It is a horrendous situation that most US media will not deal with in a fair and balanced way resulting in pure ignorance on the part of the American public. It is very sad. When will this hostage situation end?

Thank you so much, Mr Moyers, for your bravery in speaking out in the face of the deafening silence in the US media over the civilian tragedy in Gaza. I deplore the denigration of your simple illumination of the suffering of ordinary Gazans as anti-Semitism. I have long respected your ability to be both realistic and honest in your reporting and thank you for continuing to carry that torch. All the best,

Again I'm grateful to Mr. Moyers. A little known fact is that I ,as many other Israeli ex-patriots,left Israel to live overseas as a reaction to our opposition to Israel's occupation of Palastine. Specifically to Mr. Foxman letter : 1. This is a typical "support Israel at any cost" American Jewish Lobby reaction. At least Mr Moyers is in good company with Pres. Carter. 2. Hamas
was founded & supported by Israel in 1987 as a rival to the PLO. 3. What we see in Gaza now is the result of Sharon's misguided "unilateral" separation of Israel from Gaza in 2006 that left them under complete siege & blockade.4. Lets remember who is the Occupier (iSRAEL) and who is the Occupiee (Palastine). 5. For almost 10 years since the Oslo accord and the Road map Israel continues to expand the settlements in the West Bank to a point of no return 6. The "left" pro-peace movement ( Gush Shalom etc ) is silenced by local media and propaganda of the militant "right" wing ( Kadima, Likud etc).
For this & other similar reasons an objective critic as Mr. Moyers is welcomed. I hope similar views will find their way to the new Administration in Washington. Israel needs tough approach from the US to divert her from the current suicidal course.

Thank you, Bill Moyers, for your dedication to good journalism. We can't afford to have people like Foxman bully us into a sustaining a foreign policy that is not good for the US, the Palestinians or for Israel. Using the words "anti-semitic" in cases of a difference in political views is despicable and has left us fearful of talking frankly and honestly about a region that is in deep trouble. We cannot continue a one-sided policy -- the losers will not only be the Palestinians and the Israelis--but the US as well.
Thank you again for your work and your excellent coverage.

Dear Mr. Moyers,
Unfortunately I missed last week's broadcast, but after hearing viewer comments am moved to ask: What did Israel do to promote peace during the previous six-month cease-fire? It appears only that the constraints of the Gazan ghettos became tighter, settlers encroached further, and freedoms for Palestinians were increasingly denied. Is the Israeli's plan here to keep seesawing between stalling peace efforts in order to provoke anger, and then using that as an excuse to slowly but surely eliminate the chance for coexistence through just enough military devastation to avoid serious consequence to itself? Also, to the comment below about humanitarian supplies, it was reported that humanitarian supplies were allowed in to the area for three hours a couple of days before the UN installment was destroyed. This can not be deemed an exoneration. Thank you for courage, and for continuing to present intelligent and compassionate viewpoints on your broadcasts.

The marketing of Israel. Reach and Penetration. Like the Pork on Orwell's Farm, they have become what they once abhored, despised and loathed.

With Bob Simon on 60 Mins, I don't think a 2-state solution is possible anymore. I'm not sure it was even before the settlements. This is the umteenth such uprising since the Balfour Declaration 100 yrs ago. I agree with the general assessment that the Israelis have become bullies and the situation is not unlike apartheid. I don't see further association with them in any respect as in our national interest and I think the world has appeased them long enough. We should withdraw our aid, our ambassador and our recognition, and add them to the list of rogue states. Tho they may have got away with this till now, I have no doubt that without outside aid or protection Israel would cease to exist in short order. While the Jews must accept that Zionism and the immigration of millions of Jews is the root cause of the problem, Western countries need to see that they were wrong in precipitating that settlement and recognizing the Jewish state, so I would offer the parties a solution to the 1948 and 1967 wars in the formation of a new UN mandate for Palestine, which ought easily to pass, and to which I think it would be fairly easy to get Lebanon and Jordan, which have sizable numbers of refugees, to join. Under this administration the question of property rights should be addressed tho it will not be easy to solve, but I do think that further violence can be avoided with the cooperation and commitment of the US and other Arab states to this plan, and a strong commitment to shutting down the camps, and restraining the theocrats who have thrived in this environment.

Thank you, Bill Moyers, for standing up to powerful propagandists like Foxman who, as you say, reveals that he is as reprehensible as are Bush and Cheney who have encouraged if not orchestrated the slaughter in Gaza along with the Israeli leadership.
For many years I stopped contributing to PBS because there was no one with the courage and wisdom to stand up to the endless and ruthless crimes of the Israeli state as they continue in their project of removing non Jews from the former Palestine, in addition to their attacks on other Arabs and Moslems.

(Unfortunately you seem forced to repeat some of the propaganda yourself about Hamas. They have been demonized by Bush and Cheney and by the Israelis because unlike Fatah, they have not bent to the will of the Israelis.)

Thank you for your courage and (sadly) your lone voice.

Ronald,
New York

Reading the accusatory blasts from Mr. Foxman against Mr. Moyers sensitive and fair commentaries remind me of the propaganda produced by murderous dictators of the past. Regretfully, Hamas has stated that they wish to eradicate Israel. Israel has not made a similar statement against the Palastinians; sadly, Israel is ACTUALLY eradicating Palistine. In reality, the formerly oppressed have indeed become oppressors.

War against an entire people? Then why do they klet humanitaian supplies in? If they wanted to make war on the whol epeople they could easily bomb everything. That woudl be easy. Bu tthey carefully select targets and often do not attack when innocents are around.

About that genetic comment--

I'll tell you what I thought of. I thought of Tom Paine. After enough heads rolled in the French Revolution, ol' Tom decided he wanted religion back. But, he said, not that ol' time religion.

The Old Testament ought never be read, as God tells the Jews to murder whole peoples. God couldn't possibly have done so, thought ol' Tom, so clearly someone must be making that up for their own purposes. Better let that one lie.

Ol' Tom was an equal opportunity disser, however. He had other reasons no one ought ever read the New Testament. The virgin birth, for example.

Anyway, for what it's worth, that's what I immediately thought of and, well, I figured I'd just mention it.

Boy, I sure do hope I don't get someone's undies in a twist, but, it's not as if ol' Tom Paine was a *real* American or anything. I mean, by the time the guy was done kicking up a fuss, he was practically stateless...!

Thank You Mr.Moyers. You are the reason why we support PBS and why we still keep our TV.

Dear Mr. Moyers:

I have followed your career over the years and remain captivated by your insight and wisdom. Your response to Mr. Foxman was right on target. We need more people of prominence to speak out. The GWB administration only exacerbated the middle east situation after ignoring it for most of his two terms.

Thank you. You have done a great social and moral service for America today; most of us feel as if Israel has taken over our government.

Thank you Mr. Moyers you lend credence to those of US who have been silenced by the MSM. I had been debating my membership in Thirteen but now see that it is more important than ever.

Great piece, Bill.

As WH Auden wrote in September 1, 1939:

"Those to whom evil is done
Do evil in return."

Israel and the Palestinians have had 60 years to come to terms. They never will.

Both sides insist on a never-ending cycle of violence fed by the bottomless well of infantile rage ably demonstrated by those like Foxman.

It's time for us in the US to finally say "To Hell with both sides!" and wash our hands of it like Europe largely has.

We too many problems here to take on Israel's in perpetuity. Enough is enough.

Thank you for being the objective voice of reason. Journalists nowadays unfotunately are too scared to do their job. They try to be always politically correct.
How sad for democracy and how shameful for America

There was a time when the ADL was highly regarded and performed a valuable service in combating anti-Semitism in this country. Sadly, that important work now takes a backseat to shilling for Israel.

I have read through the transcripts of Moyers's presentation and he almost did a good job. Unfortunately, he resorted half-truths, heresay, and yes, moral-equivalency between terrorism and self-defense.

And for all of those who criticise Israel's actions I ask you: where were you for the last 8yrs when Israel was being attacked repeatedly by Hamas? Were you outraged then? Was Moyer's? I think not. Just goes show, Jewish blood is still very cheap.

I would like to join the many others here, thanking you for your courage and your principled stand. Our MSM has allowed itself to be bound and gagged; standing by silent in the face of the terrible injustice going on in Gaza. I have been a lifelong supporter and cheerleader for Israel, but what appears to be happening over there now is unbearable and unforgivable. If only a part of what we hear is true, Israel, like the NeoCons, has clearly abandoned its own core values in order to seek out violent and self-defeating methods that will never actually deliver any kind of security.

Your comments were fair and balanced and a bit of light in these dark days. Hopefully, you will continue to do more of the same.

Mr. Foxman demonstrates once again with his latest response in the comments that his only response to Mr. Moyers' fact-based criticism of Israel's conduct is ad-hominum attacks. Just look at all of them! It's stunning!

Of course he does not choose to address the facts of the war itself, in which more than 1000 Palestinians are killed to less than 15 Israelis, in which schools and hospitals are carelessly shelled, in which emaciated children are taken from their destroyed houses clinging to their lifeless mothers. He does not address the human suffering at all, but resorts to name-calling and slander. The typical response of someone espousing a position clearly not grounded in facts, but ideology.

Thank you Mr. Moyers for your immense courage in standing up to the legions of censors of criticisms of Israel, of which Mr. Foxman exemplifies.

George Washington in his farewll address warned against "a passionate attachment of one Nation for another" for it can "produce a variety of evils":

Observe good faith and justice towards all Nations; cultivate peace and harmony with all. Religion and Morality enjoin this conduct; and can it be, that good policy does not equally enjoin it? It will be worthy of a free, enlightened, and, at no distant period, a great Nation, to give to mankind the magnanimous and too novel example of a people always guided by an exalted justice and benevolence. Who can doubt, that, in the course of time and things, the fruits of such a plan would richly repay any temporary advantages, which might be lost by a steady adherence to it ? Can it be, that Providence has not connected the permanent felicity of a Nation with its Virtue? The experiment, at least, is recommended by every sentiment which ennobles human nature. Alas! is it rendered impossible by its vices ?

32 In the execution of such a plan, nothing is more essential, than that permanent, inveterate antipathies against particular Nations, and passionate attachments for others, should be excluded; and that, in place of them, just and amicable feelings towards all should be cultivated. The Nation, which indulges towards another an habitual hatred, or an habitual fondness, is in some degree a slave. It is a slave to its animosity or to its affection, either of which is sufficient to lead it astray from its duty and its interest. Antipathy in one nation against another disposes each more readily to offer insult and injury, to lay hold of slight causes of umbrage, and to be haughty and intractable, when accidental or trifling occasions of dispute occur. Hence frequent collisions, obstinate, envenomed, and bloody contests. The Nation, prompted by ill-will and resentment, sometimes impels to war the Government, contrary to the best calculations of policy. The Government sometimes participates in the national propensity, and adopts through passion what reason would reject; at other times, it makes the animosity of the nation subservient to projects of hostility instigated by pride, ambition, and other sinister and pernicious motives. The peace often, sometimes perhaps the liberty, of Nations has been the victim.

33 So likewise, a passionate attachment of one Nation for another produces a variety of evils. Sympathy for the favorite Nation, facilitating the illusion of an imaginary common interest, in cases where no real common interest exists, and infusing into one the enmities of the other, betrays the former into a participation in the quarrels and wars of the latter, without adequate inducement or justification. It leads also to concessions to the favorite Nation of privileges denied to others, which is apt doubly to injure the Nation making the concessions; by unnecessarily parting with what ought to have been retained; and by exciting jealousy, ill-will, and a disposition to retaliate, in the parties from whom equal privileges are withheld. And it gives to ambitious, corrupted, or deluded citizens, (who devote themselves to the favorite nation,) facility to betray or sacrifice the interests of their own country, without odium, sometimes even with popularity; gilding, with the appearances of a virtuous sense of obligation, a commendable deference for public opinion, or a laudable zeal for public good, the base or foolish compliances of ambition, corruption, or infatuation.

34 As avenues to foreign influence in innumerable ways, such attachments are particularly alarming to the truly enlightened and independent Patriot. How many opportunities do they afford to tamper with domestic factions, to practise the arts of seduction, to mislead public opinion, to influence or awe the Public Councils! Such an attachment of a small or weak, towards a great and powerful nation, dooms the former to be the satellite of the latter.

35 Against the insidious wiles of foreign influence (I conjure you to believe me, fellow-citizens,) the jealousy of a free people ought to be constantly awake; since history and experience prove, that foreign influence is one of the most baneful foes of Republican Government. But that jealousy, to be useful, must be impartial; else it becomes the instrument of the very influence to be avoided, instead of a defence against it. Excessive partiality for one foreign nation, and excessive dislike of another, cause those whom they actuate to see danger only on one side, and serve to veil and even second the arts of influence on the other. Real patriots, who may resist the intrigues of the favorite, are liable to become suspected and odious; while its tools and dupes usurp the applause and confidence of the people, to surrender their interests.

36 The great rule of conduct for us, in regard to foreign nations, is, in extending our commercial relations, to have with them as little political connexion as possible. So far as we have already formed engagements, let them be fulfilled with perfect good faith. Here let us stop.

Mr. Moyers,

We are saddened by your response to our concerns. It shows a stubborn unwillingness to recognize the inflammatory content of your remarks. By invoking Genesis and Deuteronomy followed by the reference to “God-soaked violence” being “genetically coded,” you expressed a classic anti-Jewish animus.

We believe such an anti-Semitic reference should be exposed. Blaming linguistic imprecision simply does not excuse it.

Sincerely,
Abraham H. Foxman
National Director
Anti-Defamation League

Mr. Moyers. Thank you for your willingness to speak up in the face of bullying. The notion that any and all critic is a standing hindrance to same politics. And the failure of same politics leads us to precisely the sort of violence we now witness. Hamas shelling of Israel is inexcusable. the Israeli response has been indiscriminate and disproportionate.

Mr. Moyers,

I'm proud of your stand for truth! Kudos,
cheers, whistles, clapping. I wish you would have someone from the Jewish Voice for Truth on. There are many in Israel whose voices are not heard by Americans. They are the future of that troubled land, and they are calling for justice and peace for everyone.

The Mr. Moyers response to Mr. Foxman was right on target. Quoting the
Norwegian doctor what he told CBS News: “It’s like Dante’s Inferno. They
are bombing one and a half million people in a cage,” is very true and correct.
When over thousand are killed, over two thousand wounded, total,
destruction with no place to go or escape of “cage in an Inferno” that amounts to
massacre no person should turn blind eye or claim any justification!

Mr. Moyers:

Having just returned from Ramallah after staying there two weeks and traveling around the West Bank, I can say that not only has Israel's war on Gaza not defeated Hamas, it has weakened Mahmoud Abbas, who is referred to by Palestinians of all political stripes, faiths and political ideologies including feminists and secularists as a "puppet." I personally witnessed Gen. Dayton's trained security forces in Ramallah suppressing any display of support for Hamas at street demonstrations in Ramallah. These security forces that take orders from Dayton and Israel beat up Palestinian women from Hamas for demonstration! This action on the part of Palestinian security forces just enrages Palestinians who believe that they have the right to political expression.

This war is shaking up Fatah in Ramallah; it is pushing younger activists to force the leadership to take tougher stances vis a vis negotiations with Israel, which is perhaps not a bad thing, given that Abbas has gotten nothing for non-violence and dealing with Israel and the U.S. and is seen as akin to Hosni Mubarak or the Jordanian regime--as not having legitimacy but being "there" due to U.S. financing of security and military forces around him.

If Americans cannot learn from the U.S. media how to understand Israel as well as the Palestinians in a less Israeli-centric way, we will not be able to assess for ourselves whether our government's support for Israel is in our national interests. If we cannot openly criticize Israeli actions and policies due to being smeared as "anti-Semitic," then our democracy is not functioning. And that is particularly dangerous, given that much of the death in Gaza today is being funded by the U.S. with the entire world aware of this fact. Thus, I commend you on your reporting and support your standing up to Mr. Foxman's mischaracterizations and smears.


Just like Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton were good in using the RACE card, the ADL and other Israeli defenders are using the aanti-semetice card. Ironically, these tactic makes more and more people anti-semetic.

To Mr. Moyers--

I have a criticism from a different point of view. While it is undeniable that Hamas is a terrorist organization with numerous atrocities against civilians to its discredit, you make far too sweeping a statement when you say that Hamas wants to see every Jew in Israel dead. From what I have read, Hamas wants the destruction of Israel as a Jewish state, but that is not the same thing--they wish to see Islamic rule reinstituted (under which non-Muslims could live as second class citizens) and while this is obviously unacceptable, even for many Palestinians, it isn't the same thing as saying they favor a total genocide.

Hamas has plenty of real crimes to its "credit" and there is no need to manufacture any. I get the impression that some Israel critics in the US feel they are under so much pressure from accusations of antisemitism that they go out of their way to demonstrate their evenhandedness by making the shrillest possible condemnations of Hamas.

Dear Mr Moyers
Despite being an American living in London, I have made an effort to keep in touch with your media activities.
You have always been wise, balanced and kind.
Your analysis of the Gaza and Palestinian tragedy is not only spot on, but it is a view shared by almost everyone outside of America.
Sadly, Americans have very limited media and foreign exposure as well as trusting our leaders too much.
We are financing Israel's whole society and its wars on innocent people.
It is time for the American taxpayers to cut aid, reprocessed free oil and arms' shipments to Israel.
Israel is the only country we completely subsidize though we give Egypt and Jordan hefty amounts to continue our rendition torture programs.
Why is Israel not
standing on its own?
Since AIPAC is an agent for a foreign country, it should have its tax exemption revoked.
I would not comment on the JDL's Foxman. He was so rude, confrontational and distorted your whole presentation.

To elaborate on my previous comment:

If an Armenian-American human rights leader turned out to be a Holocaust denier, would anyone give him the time of day?

Abe Foxman is a Jewish human rights leader who denies the Armenian Genocide. Yet, for some reason, he's deemed to have moral credibility.

Mr. Moyers,

Thank you for standing up to Abe Foxman.

He's ostensibly the leader of a human rights group, the "Anti-Defamation League". Yet, as others have mentioned above, he selectively denies the Armenian genocide in the interest of advancing Israeli foreign relations with Turkey. Which confirms that, for him, the only people who deserve human rights are Jews -- not Armenians, not Palestinian Christians, not Lebanese, and certainly not Palestinian Muslims.

Foxman is an ethnocentric charlatan lacking any moral credibility, and he's not worthy of a response (but I'm looking forward to yours anyway).

Bill should do a program on Abe Foxman, outlining how he demonized Jimmy Carter, Walt, Mearsheimer, and now Moyers.

He should show how Foxman works to get professors who criticize Israel kicked off campuses all across America. Here's a New York Times article that might be a nice starting point:

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/01/14/magazine/14foxman.t.html

Mr. Moyers,

You don't need to defend yourself in this matter. Your piece was honest and candid and necessary.

You need to go on the offense and expose these nutjobs (Abe Foxman and Alan Dershowitz) for what they really are.

Keep up the good work!

Mr Moyers:

Thank you for standing up to the attempt to silence you. Mr. Foxman's letter is abhorrent. His statements that you are "intellectually and morally" deficient and deserving of "rebuke" along with stating you have an "indifference to terrorism" and inferring that no "decent person would want to live" in a country that followed your ideas was throwing all the mud in his satchel at you. Rather than discussing the horrors that Israel is causing, he wants to call you names and shut you up. Good for you not to be cowed.

Two other comments. the Israeli ambassador and others have said that the deaths of the 1,200 (including 400 children) or so Gazian people killed by Israeil fire are the fault of Hamas. This rationale will allow them to continue to murder these people with impunity since Israel is not responsible for the slaughter.

Mr. Foxman statement that Israel is "perhaps America’s greatest ally in the world;" is an oft repeated canard. Allies help one another; Israel hurts America. It is best described as "America's greatest burden."

We send it billions of dollars each year and send other billions to countries like Egypt so they will keep peace with Israel. I'd really like to know what Israel has ever done for America that it deserves to be called an ally. I do know it has a special relationship to America. When it killed 34 American sailors by attacking the American warship USS Liberty our President and Congress refused to investigating that attack for fear of offending it.


Mr. Foxman should be the last one to complain about anything involving human rights, a subject he clearly does not understand.

His organization, the ADL, has consistently denied the factuality of the Armenian genocide and colluded with a major human rights violator, Turkey, to stop the U.S. Congress from recognizing that genocide.

And yet the ADL claims to be a civil rights and human rights organization? Oh, please. This is too ridiculous for words.

For proof, please visit www.NOPLACEFORDENIAL.COM. Click on News Archive, Timeline, and History of Lobbying (the latter will be a real eye-opener). The national ADL is not the only party guilty of such hypocrisy. Among other kindred ADL groups, the American Jewish Committee is, sadly, even worse than the ADL.

One wishes that Bill Moyers would cover this issue on his program.
It is an area that has been largely ignored by the mainstream media for reasons that I think are rather obvious.

Thanks for your commentary, Bill.

As a Jew myself, I couldn't be more dismayed how Israel has been so self-defeating recently, from the Lebanon invasion to the clear war crimes currently being committed in Gaza.

We are told that the point of this attack has been to punish Hamas, yet they grow stronger. We are told the point is to bring to heel the terrorists who rocket our cities in Israel, yet more and more Arabs are radicalized -- and emboldened, as you can tell from the rockets now coming in from Lebanon (Israel's most recent lost war) and the drowning out of Fatah in the West Bank.

The world watches as civilians are maimed and killed and the conflict just gets worse and worse.

On every measure this war in Gaza is a failure.

Israel at one time favored Hamas over the PLO, who also had a charter calling for the end of the State of Israel. An Israeli war was brought to Lebanon to destroy the PLO. No the evolution of the PLO is Israel's "partner for peace" in the West Bank. The alternative to this siege is simple and obvious: Talk. AND, for Israel, be willing to recognize that compromises must be made, borders must be open so the population can live. That would go a lot further in stopping the "shooting" than burning hospitals with phosphorus bombs.

Abe Foxman gilds the lily, acclaiming Israel as perhaps "America’s greatest ally in the world."

Not even close, pal. Try looking to your neighbors.

Canada does more trade with the United States than Israel can ever dream, they share similar values, attend the same churches, and their trade isn't restricted to missiles, guns and welfare handouts courtesy of the American taxpayer.

Canada doesn't go around terrorizing third parties so that the world becomes fuelled with hatred for Uncle Sam.

If Israel is America's best friend, then it's no accident that America is going to hell in a neoconservative hand-basket, because Israel is operating like a psychopath and indeed justifying their war crimes as if the Warsaw Ghetto was good policy and the uprising there now revised as "terrorism."

Killing is killing is killing, and America needs to keep an arms length from any more of it, especially when it's being perpetrated by Israel.

True conservatism says you accept responsibility for your own actions, and you pay the piper.

This is Israel's war, this is Israel's war crime, and Israel needs to stand on it's own. America doesn't need any part of it.

Abe Foxman knows all of this. That's why he implores America to stand by, because criminals always want to share the docket with dupes, scapegoats and accomplices.

Max,

Couple of points. During the Great Famine (the pejorative use of Great)Ireland was a net EXPORTER of food during the 5 years. Money was the problem. There was enough food.

Secondly, since you brought it up, you should return the British Isle to the Italians, since they "owned" it during the reign of Ancient Rome. So, move on out...

The IRA are freedom fighters, just like the Israeli's, but the Palestinians are, well, freedom fighters too? Or are the IRA, Israeli's and Palestinians all terrorists? You can't pick and choose.

Anyhoo, I don't believe you're Irish for a second. In fact, I believe you are a clever HASBARA member.

I want the killing to stop.

I am writing to endorse Moyers' reply to Abraham H. Foxman. My only doubt about Moyers' earlier position involved "the genetic coding of violence" which he clarified in this reply to say, that is a flaw shared by all of humanity. Foxman did some clever sniping while ignoring the present asymmetrical military situation.

Like the Bush administration with its midnight changes to federal regulation, the extreme Israeli leadership seems to be insuring that peace is impossible before Obama takes office. The invoking of My Lai is apt, but many atrocities are now conducted before a world audience thanks to newer technologies. I'm ashamed I can't name the members of the heroic helicopter gunship crew who terminated the My Lai murders. Where are their equivalents in the IDF? They might prevent Samson from pulling down the entire edifice on the occupants, including innocent Israelis. Respect for Israel and its so-called "right to exist" is eroding with every shell and missile they fire in Gaza.

Note: The United States is broken financially and Israel is in a poor position to recruit other sponsors.

I have been reading obsessively about the situation in Gaza. I read foreign news papers, Al Jazerra- English, Israeli newspapers and occasionally I watch our own sadly biased media. I think I have as clear of a picture as one can have from the US (thanks to the Internet).

Having said that your report was spot on. It was accurate, the tone was accurate, the words were well chosen and given the climate in the US it was courageous and honest journalism. I expect and receive nothing less from you.

The letter you received from Mr. Foxman was simply an attempt to shout you down. I saw no legitimate criticism, but I did see talking points and outright smears.

Your response was professional and addressed each issue with the proper tone and showed restraint.

Thank you ... again.

Your viewers depend on you for professional journalism and we receive it every time.

Doesn't Israel have nuclear weapons courtesy of the U.S. ?

If they were to use them against Palestine, other Arab nations would come to their defense pushing the Middle East and the U.S. into a fiery armageddon no country could survive.

Not a pretty scenario but George and Condeleeza don't really care. Both are leaving office in a week with Obama to clean up another mess of the "W" kind he's synonymous with.

Peace,
Cosmic

I cannot, I do not have more words to add over the once already said here by your audience.

Mr Moyers, every Friday in our home we watch with great attention your WELL presented show, the best political TV program in the USA

THANK "you" very much

Patricio

Dear Bill Moyers,
I watched your show last Friday, and loved your stories about the state of the labor unions, as well as earmarks in the U.S.
However, I was very dismayed to see your very biased report against Isriel's decision to go to war with the terrorist organization Hammas. Isriel has suffered attack after attack by Palestine and the West Bank, for decades.
In Isriel, multiple sucicide bombings by Muslim extreemists from Palestine & the West Bank have become so bad, that they are a daily occurence. Isriel has been trying for many years to live in peace with these people.
They have tried negotiation after negotiation, treaty after treaty... and yet, the response from their Arab/Muslim neighbors is always the same; terrorism and war. Isriel has the right to defend itself from these unceasing attacks. Isalmic fanatics in Palestine and the West Bank (as you yourself have said) want nothing less than to extermenate every Jew on Earth. When Japan bombed Pearl Horbor, we went to war with them. This is no different. As for Isralie settlements on the West Bank and in Palestine...those lands belong to the Jews by right. Before they were invaded and conqoured
by the Roman Empire (centuries before the birth of Christ), Israel consisted of its present territory, as well as what is now the West Bank and Palestine. Then when the Roman empire finally fell, after centuries of occupation, the people of Israel enjoyed only short period of time before they were again invaded and conqored.
This time, by the Arabs.
The Arabs absorbed Israel into their own countries, and slaughtered as many Jews as possible. Most of the surviving Jews fled to other places; like Europe.
They wanderd without a home for centuries.
Unwelcomed, persecuted, and hunted. It was not until after the end of WWII that the Israelies finally got their land back. Unfortunatly, it wasn't long before they lost what is now called Palestine, and the West Bank. I heard you talk about the spilling of innocent blood by the Israelie government in their present war against Hammas, in your show last week.
Yet you said little of the decades of provocation by Palaestine & the West Bank which led to this.
Israel is only defending itself. If we lived as the Isralies do, suffereing unprovoked attack after attack, suicide bombers who delebritly target civillians on a daily baisis.. would you think it wrong for the U.S. to go to war with them?
Before you make any conclusions, let me say, that I am not a conservative; I am not Isralie or Jewish, nor do I even believe in God.
I have been a fan of yours for quite some time.
I watch your show every Friday, and am currently reading your book "Bill Moyers On America".
I was very dissapointed when the powers that be had you kicked off of NOW, and shortened it to only half an hour. I thought that you and David Broncacio made a great team on NOW; and even wrote a letter to PBS to complain about this. But I think that you are absolutly wrong about Israel.
I am Irish, and I can relate to what the Iralies have suffered, and continued to suffer.
We too, were invaded and counqured by another country (England). We too, have been victims of genocide (the British trying to use the great potato famine of the 1800s to starve us all to death, for example), oppresion, and predudice that followed us even to the New World.
And we too have had to wait many centuries for our freedom.
England invaded and conqoured Ireland in the 5th century AD, and we didn't get our land and freedom back until after WWII; when the U.S. demanded that England get out of our home, and reccognise our right to be an independant country. And even then, we only got two-thirds of our land back.
Northern Ireland is still controlled by England.
The Irish Republicn Army is still fighting for Northern Ireland's freedom (of course the English call them "terrorists"), just as the Jewish/Isralie people are continuing their own fight.
I have seen your slightly biased reporting regarding Palestine and the West Bank before, and hope that you will come to change you mind; or at least, to report on the Isralie/West Bank/Palestine conflict more balenced in the future. However, even though we may disagree about Isriel...you still have my a great deal of my respect, both in your role as a reporter, and as an activist. If only the U.S. had more reporters like you, who were not afraid to investigate issues the gorvernment and big buisness whould rather that the public remain ignorant of. In the mean time, I'm going to finnish reading your book.
Sincerly, a fellow trouble-maker.

Thank you Bill Moyers for speaking out about the injustice and imbalance of the conflict in Gaza. And I thank you for defending yourself and your position. You are a journalist, and you have a duty to expose and discuss the truth. If you allow yourself to be made unable to speak out, then journalism will suffer.

Bravo. Admirable piece. I wish there were more gutsy journalists in the North America...

Mr. Moyers is obviously advocating that the Israelis implement an ggressive program of assassination aimed at individual Hamas leaders. Am I correct Bill ?

Dear Mr. Moyers,
I caught my breath when I watched your comments concerning the Gaza situation. I had not heard anyone else even hint that Israel may be "overdoing" their defense except Jon Stewart, and he does fake news. I have been saddened by the actions of Israel, much like our own actions, they and we begin to resemble the enemies we fight, even outdoing them in the sheer volume of death we cause. This is definitely not "an eye for an eye." Thank you for words of compassionate truth, and for letting me know that I'm not alone in thinking that too much is too much.

Bill Moyers,
I admire your courage to "tell it like it is".
I am very sad to see the Israelis resort to such extreme and inhumane tactics. I have no problem with them defending themselves but I do have a problem with their "excessive force" against unarmed civilians.
Excessive force is a criminal charge in most civilized states.
We have set a dangerous precedence with our attack on Iraq. Preemptive death and destruction could very well lead to the extinction of human beings.
Our greatest threat is self-destruct.
People need to resolve problems not make them worse. "Those who live by the sword; die by the sword" is a known truism.
The solution to the problems in the Middle East is to recognize the needs of all of the Middle East people and rebuild their societies and their lives through cooperation and respect for human life.
Dave

Mr. Moyers, You will always be remembered as THE voice of reason in the world for me. You are our family's lighthouse in the fog of war, corruption, greed and the decline of the environment. Your show is the one show that we have always counted on to be fair, thorough and true. Thank you for having the courage to stand up to the hypocrites and the lobby groups. You give us hope, always!

Hamas is continuously tagged as a terrorist group, a label that too often is used to discredit any group fighting for independence or for human rights. Maybe we should ask who or what is Hamas. Hamas won in a democratic election because Fatah is corrupt and a whore to Israel. It is in Israel’s interest to prevent Hamas from developing Gaza’s economy. The truce was supposed to result in some relief from the more than 2-year siege. The Israeli Defense Force website indicated that the truce was working but it was in Israel’s interest to break the truce. Oxford professor Avi Shlaim, Professor Norman Finkelstein and others have confirmed this.

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is not an equal one. Israel's existence is not now nor ever been in jeopardy. Israel has enormous military and financial support courtesy of the US taxpayers, as well as diplomatic, media, and moral support. Israel has a nuclear arsenal that is never acknowledged nor denied. The foreign aid Israel gets is more than that given to any other country. Israel’s leaders, past and present, have confirmed its goal to take over all of Palestine and one method is ethnic cleansing.

Palestine has no voice anywhere. The Palestinians have no army, air force, navy, Apache helicopters, missiles, nuclear weapons, white phosporus, DIME or other secret weapons, or enormous aid from the US; they only have crummy rockets that have caused very little damage and few casualties. The disparity in casualties is so enormous that Israel’s claims of being threatened are ludicrous. Israeli historians like Ilan Pappe, former Israelis soldiers and journalists have attested to the barbarity of Israel's occupation. It is Israel that is confiscating Palestinian land and water, and denying the most basic needs for life. The Palestinians, as with the Vietnamese, don't need our approval to resist occupation.
Sincerely,
Barbara Evans

Thank you is not enough for your words regarding this Gaza tragedy. I weep at Israel's narrow vision, of sending soldiers into civilians homes, of claiming it's all in self-defence.
But I can't say it as eloquently as you said it last night. I kept saying aloud, Thank you Bill, thank you Bill... as you spoke.

Adele
America's media has sold out. Israel has won no matter what they do.
I am a Jewish ally, but not when they slaughter innocent Palestinians.

Mr. Moyers,
The quality and depth of your understanding of the topic are evident. The humane quality of your coverage, and the courage you exhibit in challenging "received opinion" are admirable.
Unfortunately, many choose not to listen carefully, and I pity them for it.
I don't recall who said that, "When the sun of culture is low, even pygmies cast long shadows." It was never truer...

Thank you, Bill Moyers. What is missing from this discussion (and many others) however, is the fact that the natives of Palestine did not agree to the partitioning of their own historic homeland by foreign powers in the first place; have endured terrorism, genocide and displacement so that the state of Israel could be fabricated; and are the ones being "wiped off the map."

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