Boycotting Matisyahu is Reasonable, Even if You Don’t Agree with It

Liberal Zionists tolerate uncritical Israel supporters because they are family. But we shouldn’t be surprised when others don’t. To be sure, I doubt this Spanish BDS group would have much sympathy for anybody who didn’t endorse the three goals of the BDS movement. But that is their right. Had Matisyahu, who has made political statements in the past in favor of Israel, endorsed a Palestinian state, or justice for the Palestinians, he would not have been cancelled, even with the protest of the Spanish BDS group. But an artist who has politicized his work should not be surprised if he is called out on it.

Via

The Magnes Zionist: Why Boycotting Matisyahu is Reasonable, Even if You Don’t Agree with It.

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I’ve read in many places how antisemitic is Spain. Well…. for being antisemitic, we should have some relevant proportion of Jewish comunities living in Spain, such as, let’s say, Gipsies, Moors or Chinese.

But there aren’t.

And one can’t be racist against some race they don’t even learn to identify.

When we, Spaniards, position ourselves against Zionism, we do the same we did against White, Anglo-Saxon, Christian Supremacists in South Africa during the times of the Apartheid. The same many of us do when we criticise Erdogan and the Turks for the way they treat other minorities, and specially Kurds. The same many of us do when we reject fascists, ultranationalists and supremacists of every kind.

Nothing else.

European Democracy must protect itself from its own suicidal naivety.

They haven’t understood a thing. The hundreds of thousands of patriots (that is what they call themselves), the Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamization of the West ―PEGIDA―, haven’t understood a thing.

I mention them because they are the latest fashion in Germany where they have gathered tens of thousands of protestors in just a few months. But we could also be talking about France’s National Front or, simply, of the wave of comments you will find if you peek into any Spanish internet forum where the words ‘immigration’ or ‘Islam’ are mentioned.

Regrettably, those who rush to the street in counter-protests, normally backed (at least in statements) by the governments, demanding the respect, tolerance and acceptance of other cultures, have understood even less.

via

Respecting the cannibals.

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(…) Because for Europeans, all Islam which is not directly assassinating is “moderate”. It can be as violent as it desires: predicate the mandatory veil for women, half-way or complete; say that women and men should not touch each other; that girls should not learn music; that being gay is bad for health; that all literary or humoristic work which questions the ‘sacred’ must be forbidden; that Koran laws are immutable, divine and must be above each country’s legislation…
An Islamic preacher can say all this and more and will be courted by ministers and presidents which will line up to debate with this ‘moderate Islam’ spokesperson. Many of these preachers would have been thrown into jail in Morocco or Syria for their hate-inspiring discourse, but Europe offered them not only asylum but a tribune, a debate, the position of president of the official Muslims council, the title of Honorary Gentleman and the Queens’ Order.

Yes: Europe has promoted, I don’t know if aware of it or blindly, but in an active and continuous way, a criminal way, the most extreme currents of Islam, financed by Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait and their neighbors thanks to the oil tide. From the government elites to the last mayor, the imams, theologians and preachers have been raised to the rank of representatives of the collectives of Maghrebi, Turkish or Pakistani origins. A rank they never had in their countries of origin, a power which they could only acquire thanks to the complicity of European administrations. By a double path: electing them as representatives and by eliminating any alternative ways these collectives may have had for expressing themselves. (…)

I CAN ONLY AGREE.

“É un mondo difficile…” … yeah… this world of us is hard to understand!

” And the people shouted with a great shout, that the wall fell down flat, so that the people went up into the city, every man straight before him, and they took the city [Jericho]. And they utterly destroyed all that was in the city, both man and woman, young and old, and ox, and sheep, and ass, with the edge of the sword.”  And later the Children of Israel under the leadership of Joshua moved on to  Ai : “And it came to pass, when Israel had made an end of slaying all the inhabitants of Ai in the field, in the wilderness wherein they chased them, and when they were all fallen on the edge of the sword, until they were consumed, that all the Israelites returned unto Ai, and smote it with the edge of the sword.And so it was, that all that fell that day, both of men and women, were twelve thousand, even all the men of Ai. For Joshua drew not his hand back, wherewith he stretched out the spear, until he had utterly destroyed all the inhabitants of Ai.” And then on to Makkedah: “And that day Joshua took Makkedah, and smote it with the edge of the sword, and the king thereof/ He utterly destroyed them, and all the souls that were therein; he let none remain”. 
In fact, among modern historians this description is doubted, and considered an exaggeration by a writer a bit later among our ancestors – presumably someone with a particularly morbid imagination. But in order to hear such skeptical thoughts one needs to get to university. Pupils in Israeli schools are taught to regard the wars and massacres of Joshua as undisputed facts, and as acts committed under the direct command of God Himself.

Crazy Country: From Canaan to Spain.

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Sometimes I feel we insist in being smthg different than ants… while history and politicians keep telling us the opposite. 

Islamist deceptions… according to brilliant Khaled Diab.

But does centuries-old Islam, the world’s second largest religion, really need self-appointed defenders to shield it from “insult”, when the Qur’an itself welcomes doubt, questioning and even ridicule?

And why do these self-appointed defenders of the faith contradict the example of the prophet they claim to emulate? For instance, Muhammad pardoned one of his scribes, Abdullah Ibn Saad, even after he claimed that the Qur’an was invented and Muhammad was a false prophet.

These examples highlight how Islamism, rather than providing the solution, as it claims, is actually built on an illusion.

Islamist discourse, on the whole, holds that the reason for the Muslim world’s decline is its deviation from Islamic law and values. That explains why Hassan al-Banna, despite his attempts to inject some elements of modernity into traditional Islamic thought, fixated on questions of morality and Shari’a. One of his ideological descendants, Sayyid Qutb, went so far as to invent the dangerous idea that Muslims were living a period of modern “Jahiliyyah” (pre-Islamic ignorance).

But by misdiagnosing the malaise afflicting society, Islamists have prescribed totally the wrong medicine, with severe and debilitating side effects.

Any objective, dispassionate reading of Islamic history reveals that Islam’s former glory was actually built on a largely secular foundation. In addition, the start of its decline coincided with the victory of rigid dogma and orthodoxy – represented by the likes of the “father of Salafism” Ibn Taymiyyah in the 14th century – over reason and intellect.

Muhammad himself never established anything resembling what we would call an “Islamic state” today. His secular-sounding Constitution of Medina actually defines Jews, Christians and pagans – i.e. every member of Medina’s society – as being full and equal members of the Ummah.

via Islamism is the illusion

 The Chronikler

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Dunno how many times my arab friends were shocked to know that Al-Andalus splendor came from those periods of relaxed morals, advance of science, poetry, philosophy, and respect to others, specially to jews, as happened with Ibn Maymun, or the Nagdelas, before both were killed or kicked away by integrists.

How to explain to them that those famous street lamps of Cordoba were considered an excess by those same defenders of virtue who finally sacked and destroyed Madinat az-Zahra and Madinat Az-Zahira… and the splendrous caliphate with it.

How to make them understand that when they close their view to a single book they are insulting God’s present of intelligence?

How to make them notice that when they drank from our science in a secular way, they were able to multiply its achievements for all men?

I confess that I feel myself unable to adopt islam’s view of life.  Even on its softer ways of practice. Its core teaching lacks essential elements that found and settle my christian belief.

So, many will say that I don’t know what I am talking about, as I am not entitled to judge on the matter.

But that’s not the issue. My issue is that muslims aren’t doing any good behaving in this totalitarian way. Not to them, nor to us, nor to the future mankind. 

Because since always, this has been a weakness and a step back. For them,….same as it was for us, of course.

Deffinitely, the Arab world needs many more Khaled Diabs.

(BEWARE: BLOODY GRAPHIC CONTENT) … Homo hominis lupus est.

outlandish – I only ask of god – YouTube.

Following the happenings in Syrian war, I received information quite confirmed, apparently, of how syrian rebels are killing, beheading and even roasting heads of prisoners and enemies

(http://www.syrianews.cc/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/fsa-grill-officers-original.jpg)

… immediately came to my mind that video with the child beheading a policeman, (http://www.veracitynow.com/images/syria_beheading_330x228.jpg)

and thousands of many pictures and images of dead people and war victims, shown in detail as an obscene progression by the rebels  https://www.facebook.com/crimesagainsthumanity13/photos_stream

(honestly I haven’t seen the pro-regime side exhibiting corpses (and they got equally innocent civillian victims to mourn as well)  in such a way, which, in my opinion is far more respectful to the person they are trying to honour).

It almost made me vomit. But I kept saying to myself that war is war, and my grandparents had to see the same in 1936 in Spain, while the rest of the world has seen it too, since always. even this, my first thought was that of “how primitive, how wild, how inhumane are this people… how can they…” then I remembered it was not the first time I had seen war brutality represented by beheading and other war crimes. 

Out of innumerable cases along recent history, as during USSR and Nazi confrontation, Japanese occupation in China or Philippines, the Holocaust,  and many others, some images came to my mind…  images of extremes, …  straight to Cambodia’s civil war, and the further repression of the Khmer Rouge, which brang out memories of hell on earth really hard to match;  (http://i.telegraph.co.uk/multimedia/archive/01375/cambodia_1375709c.jpg)

Images of Mexican narcos beheading people by the dozens (I won’t reproduce here) as signs of territorial power in their gang fights, … images of african tribes in ethnical wars with episodes (recent) of cannibalism based on tribal wars…

But also WWII,…on the allied side and the japanese… how the Pacific campaign also achieved levels of brutality and cruelty that led many men to fall in the same lack of respect for human life, seeing ur enemy as a piece of flesh, even dressed of some kind of supposed morality:

(http://b-29s-over-korea.com/Japanese_Kamikaze/images/POW-BEHEADING.jpg)

…and not only in the “bad guys” side:

(http://b-29s-over-korea.com/Japanese_Kamikaze/images/Beheaded-Japanese.jpg) / (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:JapaneseheadBurma1945.jpg)

Even my own countrymen experienced such level of degradation during our north african campaigns (my grandfather fought there) against the Berber tribes that fought against our colonial pressence and that of the french. It was normal for berbers to leave the beheaded and dismembered bodies of the spanish soldiers they caught, most often with their own test¡cles and penis half swallowed, as an advert to other spanish troops. What makes us think that a man is different to another because of his origin when things go crazy? This is what spanissh soldiers learnt to do while Francisco Franco earned his stars as youngest general in Europe:

(http://imagenes.publico-estaticos.es/resources/archivos/2012/9/21/1348247718288legionarios.jpg) / (http://pictures2.todocoleccion.net/tc/2010/07/03/20268435.jpg) / (http://www.rayosycentellas.net/fotohistoria/wp-content/uploads/2009/03/cabezascortadasmoros1.jpg)

… I could only imagine what would have been feeling my grandfather seeing all that.

He never told about that war or the Civil War. There’s no pics of him in uniform. Nothing. I think I can understand why. There was no honour for those who have some conscience of what it is to be human. Only those who are not, liked to exhibit it.

Some years later, sons and brothers of these killed moroccans could be fighting for Franco against the Republic in the Civil War, and these episodes were repeated again on spanish bodies. They were mostly based in vengeance by moors and used as a weapon to create terror by Nationalists.  As usual, it was ignited, promoted, orchestrated and applauded by Franco’s Generals. And blamed on the savage moors, of course.

And finally… it was impossible not to get back to the best war photographer that I ever met.

He was maybe the first who took off all the supposed glory of combat and revolutions,  all the smell of courage and good values,… and showed all the human misery and its raw, atavic side.

His name was Francisco de Goya y Lucientes. And no one like him reflected for a long time the disasters of war. He lived during the Napoleonic occupation of Spain (War of Independence for us, spaniards… Peninsula War for you, anglosaxons).

He had no doubt in reflecting human degradation on both sides, the supposed civilised invaders, and the supposed unarmed victims of that invasion,  common spanish folks… and that era of illustration and enlightment, of codification and human rights, didn’t escape to the chop-chop machine as a way to impress the enemy and increase the load of hate and disrespect. 

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Because just one thing is clear: it doesn’t matter who you are, where you come from, or what’s ur own circumstances. There’s always a common origin for it. There’s common lines and common lacks.

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And it’s within us.  Humans. We are like that wherever we are from. Let’s not forget.

And even after all this crap… let’s keep trying not to loose hope.

At least those like me that felt as vomiting while watching and discarding pics for this bloody post.

A Clear Way …. and maybe a too obvious one… except for Arabs?

 

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(PIC: Spanish transition towards democracy… ALL the relevant political parties even minoritary ones, together with labour unions, demonstrating in favour of freedom, democracy and a Constitution that had basically equal space for them all.)

‘Renounce Violence’: A Clear Way for Egypt’s Parties | mideastposts.com.

Our transition in Spain was for sure conditioned by the civil war we suffered between 1936 and 1939… it was necessary to kill each other mercilessly for 3 years, and live later under an also merciless dictatorship for other 40 more, to make spaniards understand the value of consensus and respect… From the death of Franco till the first democratic elections, we spent 3 years legalising political parties, building a long-lasting constitution that covered all political grounds and left space for everyone setting common limits and rights for every political option… too much asking for arabs? :-/

RE: Arab World: Al-Andalus: Fall or Reconquista?

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In response to:

http://globalvoicesonline.org/2013/01/03/arab-world-al-andalus-fall-or-reconquista/

In year 711 an army crossed towards north the straits of Gibraltar. 7 years later, most of my land was under control of north african berbers led by arabs, who expanded mostly using their strength , ther military wisdom and advantage over the primitive goths, and specially the lack of union among ruling goth nobles at the time. It was as easy as taking a matured apple, and these goth rulers were easily conviced to join the newcoming power (and that, at the time, meant one had to convert if your ruler does, according to the rule “cuius regio eius religio”).

Those who didn’t convert and decided to remain christians were soon known as “mossarabs” (from must’arib) and were displaced from the city centres to the suburbs, banned to get access to high culture learning, to serve in the army, to dress like the rest of society mixing with them, or to achieve any task of social relevance. Jews had better treatment historically than spanish christians. Those spaniards who converted, usually called “muladis” spent those 8 centuries claiming for a higher weight in the decission taking. This was their land, after all, but they were socially under arabs and berbers, that is… under strangers. This led to multiple revolts and history accounts are full of examples of them. There is even cases of re-conversion to christianism as a reaction to smthg that was considered an unfair rule. Al-Andalus meant that a foreign language was imposed, same as a foreign alphabet, measurement units, justice practices, food traditions, clothing rules, etc,…and most of it was like a pill swallowed together with the subtile drinking of religion.

Spaniards were not so open to that feeling of fightng for religion until they suffered the religious “re-conquest” led by the Al-murabitum, the Almuwahhid and others, who introduced in Spain a model to follow. The same model that aimed the Crusades. Fanatical Religious Holy War.

It was no ther than the same kind of fanatism on both sides. While christians created diverse “holy” figures of “moor-slayers” altering deeply the spirit and the core values of their religion, muslims crossed again Gibraltar heading up north, after the death of Al-Mansur, to gather again the “daifa” kingdoms while destroying all the splendor of Qurtuba, levelling down Madinat Az-Zahra.

They forced the expulsion of open minded wise men as Ibn Raschid, and The Rambam (Ibn Maimun, or Maimónides, the jewish) together with every other religious minority (mossarabs were expulsed north, just to vanish in history as they were rejected there too for being too arabized)…. and we can spend hours and pages talking about this history.

Arabs and berbers left a lot in our culture. We lived together in this land for 800 years, They took much of our roman engineering for watering and improved its use for agriculture, they advanced on science and study while we were in darkness and our religious fanatism grew. We learnt from arabs, and we really admire that part of our own essence as a country. But we never took religion with the pack. The process of “reconquista” was slow and irregular. Many times it was normal to find soldiers from both religions fighting together on each side of the battlefield. Many times it was a good business to accept taxes (parias) of gold payed by andalusians to the kings of the north to keep peace alive. But the final retake of their land was smthg that had to happen. Simply because those leading the andalusian society were not spanish, but arabs and berbers. Their language was not spanish and derivating from our latin or german or celtic or iberian roots. Everything they brought came from the south, from the land of the dark-faced men (“maurus”, in latin… and from there, “moro”… moorish).

From the very first time it was not a spanish thing at all. The andalusian way was that of importing here the arab and berber way of life. And it could take 800 years for spaniards to retake full control over their whole land, but it had to happen from the very first day.

Any outsider has succeeded in changing us so deeply except maybe romans. Romans were more practical than arabs. They were politheists. When they conquered a new land, they adopted the local beliefs as part of their collection, and the local nobility as roman citizens, giving them equal rights. They were flexible and more open to integrate spanish celts and iberians in their social scheme. Goths who came after Rome were not as that. They didn’t share power or made spaniards feel that they all belonged to a same kind. They lost easily the popular support when arabs came.

Arabs were more successful than goths as they were far more advanced, and their cultural load was far more intensive… but still, they kept the same mistake. Al-Andalus was not a spanish self-creation. It was a project that came from outside leaving out everything that could link to smthg that we could call “spanish identity”. Arabisation was an advantage for Al-andalus if we compare science and general cultural advance with the rest of european countries,… but same as happened with other regions in Europe… soon or later we will always react and reject the “ethnic and cultural invader”.

All this happens when “outsiders” impose, violently or not, their ways. So …accept things as they are: We Spaniards love and respect our heritage, our cultural background and the deep footstep that arabs left in this land. But anything else.

We are who we are. And we never accepted anyone telling us that we were less than them. Last who tried was Napoleon and we gave french the hardest occupation they faced by far. Hitler didn’t dare to try repeating the same mistake. Or the allies after WWII…

To those who talk about “Retaking Al-Andalus” I say… this is Spain.

This is our land. You can try again your luck. You can talk loud abt covering us in cultural advance and prosperity. About making us regain the pride of belonging to the Ummah… about reswitching the street lights of Qurtuba… you can keep talking.

You will never succeed. It will only succeed if it’s a spanish thing.

With our people ruling.

Using our language (our 5 languages).

With our deeply rooted traditions.

It will only succeed if it’s OUR decission and OUR change.

If not, it may take us 800 years or 8000.. but that project called Al-Andalus instead of España, will fail again..