Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Absurd Dershowitz

The Zionist counterattack against the Walt-Mearsheimer paper on the Israel Lobby has already begun. There are so many things to say I don't know where to begin, so I thought I'd focus today on one simple point. From the worst newspaper in the United States, the New York Sun:

"A professor at Harvard Law School, Alan Dershowitz, whom the authors call an 'apologist' for Israel, said he found much of the paper to be 'trash.' He said, 'It could have been written by Pat Buchanan, by David Duke, Noam Chomsky, and some of the less intelligent members of Hamas. An intelligent member of Hamas would not have made these mistakes.'
Those mistakes for Mr. Dershowitz include, for example, the assertion that 'There is no question, for example, that many Al Qaeda leaders, including bin Laden, are motivated by Israel's presence in Jerusalem and the plight of the Palestinians,' which Mr. Dershowitz says 'is just absurd.'"

Absurd? From bin Laden's late September 2001 interview (or here or here), one of the last things we've heard from him which can be regarded as authentic (my emphasis):

"I have already said that I am not involved in the 11 September attacks in the United States. As a Muslim, I try my best to avoid telling a lie. I had no knowledge of these attacks, nor do I consider the killing of innocent women, children and other humans as an appreciable act. Islam strictly forbids causing harm to innocent women, children and other people. Such a practice is forbidden even in the course of a battle. It is the United States, which is perpetrating every maltreatment on women, children and common people of other faiths, particularly the followers of Islam. All that is going on in Palestine for the last 11 months is sufficient to call the wrath of God upon the United States and Israel. There is also a warning for those Muslim countries, which witnessed all these as a silent spectator. What had earlier been done to the innocent people of Iraq, Chechnya and Bosnia? Only one conclusion could be derived from the indifference of the United States and the West to these acts of terror and the patronage of the tyrants by these powers that America is an anti-Islamic power and it is patronizing the anti-Islamic forces. Its friendship with the Muslim countries is just a show, rather deceit. By enticing or intimidating these countries, the United States is forcing them to play a role of its choice. Put a glance all around and you will see that the slaves of the United States are either rulers or enemies of Muslims."

From an interview from May 1998 (my emphasis):

"America has no religion that can deter her from exterminating whole peoples. Your position against Muslims in Palestine is despicable and disgraceful. America has no shame. ... We believe that the worst thieves in the world today and the worst terrorists are the Americans. Nothing could stop you except perhaps retaliation in kind. We do not have to differentiate between military or civilian. As far as we are concerned, they are all targets, and this is what the fatwah says ... . The fatwah is general (comprehensive) and it includes all those who participate in, or help the Jewish occupiers in killing Muslims."

From an interview, probably the last authentic one - later interviews have 'bin Laden' taking credit for September 11, something the real bin Laden never did - from October 2001 (my emphasis):

"Q: Sheikh, I see that most of your answers are about Palestine and the Palestinian cause. In the beginning, your focus on killing the unfaithful and the Jews ... and you specified then that the Americans should be sent out of the Arabian Peninsula. Now you're turning your attention to Palestine first and the Arabian Peninsula second. What's your comment?
BIN LADEN: Jihad is a duty to liberate Al-Aqsa, and to help the powerless in Palestine, Iraq and Lebanon and in every Muslim country. There is no doubt that the liberation of the Arabian Peninsula from infidels is a duty as well. But it is not right to say that Osama put the Palestinian issue first. I have given speeches in which I encourage Muslims to boycott America economically. I said Americans take our money and give it to Israel to kill our children in Palestine. I established a front a few years ago named The Islamic Front for Jihad against the Jews and the Crusaders. Sometimes we find the right elements to push for one cause more than the other. Last year's blessed intifada helped us to push more for the Palestinian issue. This push helps the other cause. Attacking America helps the cause of Palestine and vice versa. No conflict between the two; on the contrary, one serves the other."

and (my emphasis):

"We are in a decisive battle with the Jews and those who support them from the crusaders and the Zionists. We won't hesitate to kill the Israelis who occupied our land and kill our children and women day and night. And every person who will side with them should blame themselves only. Now how we will get out of the tunnel, that is the [unintelligible] of the other side. We were attacked, and our duty is to remove this attack. As far as the Jews are concerned, the prophet has announced that we will fight them under this name, on this land. America forced itself and its people in this [unintelligible] more than 53 years ago. It recognized Israel and supported its creation financially. In 1973, under Nixon, it supported Israel with men, weapons and ammunition from Washington all the way to Tel Aviv. This support helped change the course of history. It is the Muslim's duty to fight. ..."

It has always been completely clear that one of the main complaints of bin Laden has been the American and Israeli war against the Palestinians. Another major complaint has been infidel occupation of Islamic holy places, including Jerusalem. There is no possible way that anyone aware of bin Laden's attitudes can fail to notice that he is obsessed with the plight of the Palestinians, and obsessed with Israeli occupation of Jerusalem. It is Dershowitz who is absurd.