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  • Technorati: graph / links

    American opinion split over Gaza


    by Sunny
    2nd January, 2009 at 8:51 pm    

    Glenn Greenwald points out succintly:

    This Rasmussen Reports poll — the first to survey American public opinion specifically regarding the Israeli attack on Gaza — strongly bolsters the severe disconnect I documented the other day between (a) American public opinion on U.S. policy towards Israel and (b) the consensus views expressed by America’s political leadership. Not only does Rasmussen find that Americans generally “are closely divided over whether the Jewish state should be taking military action against militants in the Gaza Strip” (44-41%, with 15% undecided), but Democratic voters overwhelmingly oppose the Israeli offensive — by a 24-point margin (31-55%). By stark constrast, Republicans, as one would expect (in light of their history of supporting virtually any proposed attack on Arabs and Muslims), overwhelmingly support the Israeli bombing campaign (62-27%).

    Some argue that Obama has filled key positions with politicians who have a history of virtually absolute support for Israeli actions — Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, Rahm Emanuel — because Obama intends to continue, more or less, the Bush policy of blind support for Israel. Others argue the opposite: that those appointments are necessary to vest the Obama administration with the credibility to take a more active role in pushing the Israelis to a negotiated settlement with the Palestinians, and that in particular, Clinton would not have left her Senate seat unless she believed she could finish Bill Clinton’s work and obtain for herself the legacy-building accomplishment of forging an agreement between the Israelis and Palestinians (this morning’s NYT hints at that scenario).

    The debate now is in the hands of US Democrats, and I hope they can push their new President to force Israel to make real progress. I also share Greenwald’s view that its too early to say how Obama will approach the issue. This is why I’m not particularly sympathetic to Ali Abunimah’s constant attacks on Obama as if he has real influence on the issue.


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    Filed in: Current affairs,Middle East






    32 Comments below   |  

    Reactions: Twitter, blogs


    1. Steve M — on 2nd January, 2009 at 10:18 pm  

      I would be pleased to see the USA ‘forcing’ Israel to make real progress towards a negotiated settlement with the Palestinians, even if they make significant concessions on some of the issues.

      To arrive at any settlement at all would require both sides to recognize the rights of the other and this is, up to now, a long way from the stated aims of Hamas. If they can get both sides to sign an agreement and stick to it, then there really would be a chance for peace in the region and Nobel Peace prizes for all involved. It’s a big ‘If’ though. Of course having reached agreement there wouldn’t be much sympathy, from governments at least, for any party on either side that broke its terms.

    2. reader — on 2nd January, 2009 at 11:23 pm  

      I hope they can push their new President to force Israel to make real progress

      - Sunny

      “We called for a military intifada against the enemy. Resistance will continue through suicide missions.”

      “Neither rockets nor suicide operations are absurd, but negotiations are,” he said.

      - Khaled Meshaal, Hamas leader, speaking to Al Jazeera from Damascus on 28 December 2008.

      Sunny will be marching with lots of Hamas supporters tomorrow. It’s the progressive thing to do, apparently.

    3. dave bones — on 3rd January, 2009 at 12:11 am  

      I hope the American people are ready for a lot of pushing.

    4. Steve M — on 3rd January, 2009 at 12:26 am  

      Sunny will be marching with lots of Hamas supporters tomorrow. It’s the progressive thing to do, apparently.

      Sunny has declared that he’s marching on a “No to Hamas, No to the IDF” ticket - basically a pacifist position. Hopefully he’ll form a little epicentre of moderation and sanity. Could be popular amongst the non-brain-dead. (Take care anyway, man)

    5. Jeff — on 3rd January, 2009 at 2:35 am  

      Supporting a people that put bombs on themselves is insane. How in the hell can anyone support homicide bombers ?

      “force Israel to make real progress”

      They are making progress, killing every Muslim terrorist they can find. You do realize the last bastard the Isralies killed he sent his son on a suicide mission ?

    6. blah — on 3rd January, 2009 at 1:53 pm  

      Ah look its Jeff from mosquewatch. Jeff if the Israelis keep bombing mosques wont you be out of a job?

      The US (and UK) publics opinion on these matters has always been largely irrelevant. Look at the Iraq war particularly in relation to UK public opinion.

      Basically the elites decide what they want regardless of public opinion

    7. Sid — on 3rd January, 2009 at 1:57 pm  

      They are making progress, killing every Muslim terrorist they can find. You do realize the last bastard the Isralies killed he sent his son on a suicide mission?

      Come come MosqueWatch Jeff, you don’t have to qualify “Muslim” by adding the word “terrorist” after it. I know exactly where you stand.

    8. marvin — on 3rd January, 2009 at 2:06 pm  

      Can somebody tell me the Democrat position on Iran? People have said Obama is a hawk on Iran, anybody know more?

      The left wing Haaretz have an opinion piece that will no doubt get people raging; Israel must prepare to turn its military might from Gaza to Iran

    9. persephone — on 3rd January, 2009 at 2:09 pm  

      @ 7

      Are the bombs special terrorist only seeking missiles then?

      I suppose its only the terrorists that are being starved too?

      They must have very clever warfare

    10. marvin — on 3rd January, 2009 at 2:11 pm  

      Sid, what do you reckon on this?

    11. persephone — on 3rd January, 2009 at 2:22 pm  

      correction I meant @5 not @7

    12. Sid — on 3rd January, 2009 at 2:28 pm  

      marvin

      So again, as with Iraq, supporters of Israel seem to demonstrating mission creep. Is this arial bombardment of Gaza and the potential ground attack a retaliation of the rockets fired into South Israel by Hamas or is it because the real mission is to “destroy the terrorists” who lead the people of Gaza with little regard for civilian casualities?

      Do you want to add anything else now, or do you want to wait until the opportunity arrives later? Perhaps Mosquewatch Jeff can help you out on that.

    13. Steve M — on 3rd January, 2009 at 2:34 pm  

      I haven’t heard Israeli officials talk of ‘retaliation’. I’ve heard them talk of ‘weakening Hamas’ and ‘stopping missiles’.

      Do you want to add anything else now, or do you want to wait until the opportunity arrives later? Perhaps Mosquewatch Jeff can help you out on that.

      Meow, meow!

    14. Sid — on 3rd January, 2009 at 2:38 pm  

      ‘weakening Hamas’ and ’stopping missiles’

      Nice elastic terms aren’t they?

    15. Sid — on 3rd January, 2009 at 2:42 pm  

      I notice the anti-Muslim bigot MosqueWatch Jeff has the legend “I stand with Israel” emblazoned on his site.

      GuiltByAssociation Avenue is a two-way street, right Steve M?

    16. Steve M — on 3rd January, 2009 at 3:01 pm  

      Nice elastic terms aren’t they?

      The more elastic the better really.

      GuiltByAssociation Avenue is a two-way street, right Steve M?

      I think I’ll get a t-shirt with “I’m a Pickled Politician” on it. That’ll teach you. :-)

    17. The Queen of Fiddlesticks — on 3rd January, 2009 at 3:25 pm  

      sid,
      Maybe marvin won’t, but I would like to add this.
      http://www.mesi.org.uk/FromNews.aspx

      I don’t know who jeff is, but how is this turning anti-muslim now?
      why is it so hard to admit Hamas is a terrorist/extremist group?
      Tell me you haven’t seen clips from Hamas TV? Tell me how anyone is to negotiate with them?

      Is this arial bombardment of Gaza and the potential ground attack a retaliation of the rockets fired into South Israel by Hamas or is it because the real mission is to “destroy the terrorists” who lead the people of Gaza with little regard for civilian casualities?

      what is the difference between those two questions?
      The answer to both is yes.
      I am wondering now … everyone keeps talking about the people in gaza starving etc …due to Israels actions. What about Egypt? and the coast line? why can’t supplies get in? or do they?

    18. marvin — on 3rd January, 2009 at 3:51 pm  

      On Jeff’s website he asks Muslims to pay a special tax “to keep us safe from Islamic terrorism”. Which sounds like the jiza that the clerical fascists talk of. How odd.

    19. Sid — on 3rd January, 2009 at 3:57 pm  

      He supported the invasion of Iraq, the indiscrminate and disproportionate targetting of Gazan civilians *and* he has a pathological hatred of Muslims. Odder still.

    20. marvin — on 3rd January, 2009 at 4:04 pm  

      The BNP, the National Front, and the Daily Mail all were opposed to the war in Iraq. What’s your point? You seem to have flipped over something. Your making points about guilt by association but I’m not sure why.

      Pathological haters of Jews are opposed to Israeli airstrikes on Hamas. As are decent well intentioned and compassionate people. I am fully aware that those protesting the Gaza strikes are a diverse bunch. I personally do not people in to brackets like you seem to think I do. Please do not lump me in with the idiots, I’ll refrain from doing the same to you.

    21. Sid — on 3rd January, 2009 at 4:11 pm  

      The BNP, the National Front, and the Daily Mail all were opposed to the war in Iraq. What’s your point?

      Non-sequitur in the first sentence there.

      What’s the BNP, National Front or the Daily Mail got to do with people like Jeff MosqueWatch or people like him who have a pathological hatred of Muslims *and* “Stand with Israel”?

      Anyway, I’m off to the march to meet up with friends and show my solidarity with the civilians of Gaza who have to pay the price of Guilt By Association. ;-)

    22. Leon — on 3rd January, 2009 at 5:36 pm  

      I’ve heard them talk of ‘weakening Hamas’ and ’stopping missiles’.

      And what do you think in reality that means?

      Israel has supremely more power (economically, politically and military) than Hamas or any Palestinian group and the ability to use it as they please. Such is the luxury of being a client state of the US…

    23. blah — on 3rd January, 2009 at 6:08 pm  

      Some interesting comments from Roseanne Barr

      “I said Israel will attack any boat carrying doctors and medical supplies,” Barr wrote on her blog, adding that, “Israel is a NAZI state. The Jewish Soul is being tortured in Israel.”

      The Emmy-award winning actress, who has courted controversy in the past, also condemned Israel’s counter-terror operation against Hamas, asserting that, “The destruction of the Jews in Israel has been assured with this inhuman attack on civilians in Gaza.”

      In her post, Barr likened Hamas to “street gangs” in the Los Angeles neighborhood of Watts, saying that Israel’s military campaign is the “equivalent to Los Angeles attacking and launching war on the people of Watts to kill ‘the Bloods’ and ‘the Crips.’”

      http://www.normanfinkelstein.com/article.php?pg=11&ar=2332

    24. Don — on 3rd January, 2009 at 6:35 pm  

      Some interesting comments from Roseanne Barr

      What? Everybody who has so far posted on this topic has made more interesting comments worthy of consideration than Roseanne Barr. Including yourself.

    25. Refresh — on 3rd January, 2009 at 7:02 pm  

      Roseanne Barr’s blog is very interesting:

      http://www.roseanneworld.com/blog/

      ‘when you stop to think about madoff:
      he bankrupted some of the biggest contributors to Israel’s military rampage, and that is actually good for the world!’

    26. Leon — on 3rd January, 2009 at 7:28 pm  

      Jesus she’s brave! She must have it really made to risk her career like this…

    27. marvin — on 4th January, 2009 at 2:16 pm  

      Roseanne Bar and Annie Lenox, those world renowned political commentators!

      FFS. “Brave” is not the word Leon.

      /Must be Mossad

    28. Jeff — on 5th January, 2009 at 11:31 pm  

      marvin ,

      It was a poll. A question for people too answer. Don’t be so anal.

    29. Atef — on 10th January, 2009 at 7:46 am  

      9 January 2009: Children make up more than half of Gaza’s 1.5 million inhabitants, and as such have found themselves in the firing line since Israel began its offensive against Hamas. Using unprecedented force, the Israeli army has launched raid after raid against the tiny, overcrowded territory, with the inevitable consequence that children have figured heavily among the casualty numbers. According to UN figures, more than 250 children have been killed and 1,080 wounded — about a third of the total casualties — since the offensive began on December 27.
      source the british guardians

    30. Atef — on 10th January, 2009 at 7:47 am  

      http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/gallery/2009/jan/09/gaza-human-rights?picture=341550348

    31. Sadiq — on 11th January, 2009 at 5:52 pm  

      When Israel barks, America wags it’s big tail!
      The blind support of the American establishment, not necessarily the American people, to the Israeli babaric, genocidal and totally irresponsible massacre of civilian lives in Gaza Strip, is to say the least, mind-boggling.
      I cannot understand how a so-called vivilized nation will condone such a thing!

    32. mark hope — on 10th February, 2009 at 1:34 am  

      From the beginning, the Israel occupation in Palestine on 1948 is a big mistake because they do that by killing thousand of Palestinians on 1948 and continued on 1982 in Lebanon. And now, Israel invading Gaza.Israel in invading Gaza not only destroy UN school and warehouses, but they also use white phosporus in their invasion.Human Rights Watch said that White phosphorus has a significant, incidental, incendiary effect that can severely burn people and set structures, fields, and other civilian objects in the vicinity on fire. Human Right Watch statement proves to the world that what the israel do in Gaza is not a self defence but a form of GENOCIDE to the moslem and christian who live in Gaza. Are you willing your tax that you paid used to kill them? If that so, then united states of america is the same as osama bin laden, a true TERRORIST. For your information,the american government always obey what the israel government want. Like when the America attack Iraq who causes more than 3000 innocent American soldiers die,they do that in order the get rid of Saddam who is one the Israel biggest enemy. Are all American are just do nothing but only see the patriotic American soldiers die only to protect Israel, not the American citizen. If that so then perhaps it is true that America is Israel slave who will do anything to please their master. Now is the time for ALL AMERICAN CITIZEN to show that we, America is ARE FREEDOM COUNTRY from Israel and not under control of Israel.

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