Jerusalem Bombing 91


I pray that the bus stop bomb in Jerusalem today does not herald a return to this kind of terrorism in Israel. Terrorism is always a form of racism because it involves an indiscriminate attack upon a people. Killing and wounding innocent civilians is nothing to be proud of, whoever does it.

It is also the case that of recent years there has been a continuing and measurable shift, in European public opinion in particular, in favour of the Palestinians. There is not a simple cause and effect relationship, but the effective moratorium on this kind of terrorist attack has definitely helped people see beyond atrocity propaganda to a more profound understanding of the situation. International public opinion does ultimately matter. It was not terrorism or violent action or internal political or economic resistance that brought down apartheid. It was not even economic sanctions. It was moral collapse, the difficulty of living with the stigma with which white South Africans came to be viewed in the entire world. And it was the ANC’s de facto abandonment of armed struggle, long before officially renouncing it in 1990, that facilitated that. In short, Gandhi was right.

Of course we still do not know who planted the Jerusalem bomb, and it is disgraceful that Obama has already referred to “Israel’s right of self-defence”, when we have no idea if this was internal or external. Who is America going to exercise its right of self defence against in relation to events in Tucson and Spokane? Until we know something more definite – and unless someone credibly claims responsibility we won’t, as the Israeli authorities deserve no trust at all – the answer to the question cui bono does not point to the Palestinians. Nor does the modus operandi; not a suicide bomb but a bin bomb. I cannot recall Palestinians using that form of attack at any time in the recent past. Which is not to say it was not fanatic and stupid Palestinians, but Obama has no right to presume that. People prepared to plant bombs without injuring themselves are a very much wider field.

Of course, this bomb has received ten times the air time on Western broadcasters as the killing of Palestinian civilians in Gaza yesterday, In fact between the terrible murder of Israeli settlers three weeks ago and this bomb, the Israeli security services have killed nine Palestinian civilians just in the general course of things. But nobody bothers to report that at all. I have commended before The Prickly Pears of Palestine to you as a book which brought home to me the regular and routine nature of Israeli killings of young Palestinians.


91 thoughts on “Jerusalem Bombing

  • CanSpeccy

    "the answer to the question cui bono does not point to the Palestinians"

    Good point.

    The bomb was placed near the bus depot, where poor people, many of them immigrants, congregate, so probably not many Israeli citizens among those hit.

    It's like the London Tube bombing. What terrorist of any ambition aims to kill a bunch of inconsequential commuters? The IRA went for Margaret Thatcher, who they missed only by the merest chance, Airy Neave, Thatcher's Northern Ireland Secretary, who they killed, and Lord Louis Mountbatten, the Queen's cousin who they killed.

    Why would Palestinian terrorists be so much more inept?

    • Dan J.

      'CanSpeccy'

      The IRA then the CIRA went for inconsequential shoppers. There are too many cases to cite, recall Manchester and Omar. Why are commuters inconsequential? I am certain that many people of consequence in private and public life catch planes, trains etc. I don't understand this point. The point of terrorism is to spread terror so targeting civilians going about their business is what terrorists tend to do.

      • CanSpeccy

        "Why are commuters inconsequential?"

        They are inconsequential because they don't make the decisions or influence the decision makers. When the IRA killed war hero Lord Louis Mountbatten, it was a signal to the ruling elite that they were all vulnerable, a message reinforced by the killing of Neave and the attack on Margaret Thatcher.

        Thatcher was not intimidated, but the London bankers were. After the second truck bombing in the City they warned the government that if there was third bombing they'd move to Frankfurt. That did it. The government settled with with IRA.

      • CanSpeccy

        But if you want to terrify the public, to justify a new war, for example, then blowing up some "inconsequential commuters" makes a lot of sense.

        • angrysoba

          "But if you want to terrify the public, to justify a new war, for example, then blowing up some "inconsequential commuters" makes a lot of sense."

          This used to happen all the time on buses in Israel and in cafes and in restaurants. It presumbaly had the same effect of terrorizing the public. Hamas and other groups have recently been firing mortars and rockets from Gaza with the same effect of killing some "inconsequential commuters" – your words. This is also in the same month that some family of Israeli settlers was hacked to death in a brutal Helter Skelter-type murder. The trend clearly seems to be that certain Palestinian groups are stepping up attacks on Israelis for some reason or another. The claim of "false flag" doesn't add any explanation at all so it is most likely (read "definitely") false.

          The question for me is why certain Palestinian groups are trying to provoke a backlash from Israel because it is clear that that is their intention. Could it be that they are trying to draw the attention of a newly revived Arab world?

  • Doug Scorgie

    We have to once again consider a false flag operation; and no I am not a conspiracy freak. There has been recent talk of another plan for a full scale military attack on Gaza that could involve a land assault. The Zionist Israelis want Gaza as part of Greater Israel and they intend to get it one way or another.

    • dreoilin

      I am very suspicious about this and I think 'false flag' is a definite possibility. The Itamar murders did not get satisfactory coverage in European press, according to Israel: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4043490

      and the ship they seized that carried "tons and tons" of arms allegedly coming from Iran, didn't either: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4043203

      I don't think the perpetrator of the Itamar murders is yet known, although it's been assumed (as in this bomb case today) that the perpetrator is Palestinian. Today already, Vice PM Silvan Shalom said on Israel radio that, "there is a possibility that this could also lead to a Cast Lead 2".

      I could be wrong obviously, but I smell a rat.

      (I can't see a feckin thing. I think my screen is too bright.)

      • Germanicus

        Yes, I instantly suspected 'false flag' when I heard about this. The timing is just a little too perfect. Also, placing bombs in bags is not the modus operandi of any Palestinian group I know of, and none has claimed responsibility. I really dont' think we should rule out the possiblity that the bomb was planted by Israeli 'intelligence' in a way which would cause minimum casualties but create the pretext they need (not that they usually need one) to launch yet another war on Gaza. Manufacturing pretexts and doing their best to provoke Palestinians into violent retaliation is an Israeli speciality, and has been for years.

        • Germanicus

          You also make a good point re the Itamar killings. I was suspicious of that one from the start too. The Israelis said the perpetrator was a 'Palestinian' but how could they have possibly known? And again, it would seem odd for a member of a Palestinian faction to enter an Israeli colony armed with only a knife – surely they would have access to firearms? I read somewhere that it was suspected it might have been a very twisted revenge attack by Asian workers who had had a dispute with the family. Again, of course, this is only a theory, but the rush to pin it to 'a Palestinian' – when nobody has been arrested, is suspicious.

          And why did Abbas and Fayed feel the need to condemn the Jerusalem bombing? It has nothing to do with them. It was a bomb in a foreign country, perpetrator unknown. Would any Israeli (let alone Yankee) politician dream of condemning an attack on Palestinians? It just shows that Abbas and Fayed know what their job is – assuring the security of Israelis, not Palestinians. That's what those US and EU bribes are for, after all.

          • dreoilin

            See this:

            "AIPAC Apologizes for Attempt to Cash In On Jerusalem Bombing" http://mitchellplitnick.com/2011/03/23/aipac-apol

            Agree about the Itamar killings by the way. It did seem to have the signs of some sort of personal revenge attack, rather than a "terrorist" one as described by Israel. I still haven't heard of anyone arrested or charged.

          • Germanicus

            Contrast that to the way the IDF normally respond if a Palestinian dares to so much as touch a hair on an Israeli head. They would invade a refugee camp, all guns blazing, arrest any number of people and probably demolish a few houses too. And yet, 3 weeks on, and no action has been taken by the Netanyahu govt? The West Bank, and all the militant groups, are riddled with informers. It seems most unlikely that they could not have fingered the culprit, if a Palestinian had been involved. Still, since the attack has been linked with 'Palestinians' in the minds of many, I suppose it now really doesn't matter, as far as hasbara is concerned, who the actual culprit was.

  • technicolour

    V much like this post. Thank you for holding the middle.

    Otherwise a quality version of 'To Shoot an Elephant' is now officially available on youtube. 'I think the image speaking for itself is very important', says one human rights reporter in Gaza, 'because we read all the time about how there isn't anything, how there isn't any gas, how there isn't any food, how the country is on a drip feed, but to actually see -'
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JXHB2dnd42Q

    And yet, because the crew end up embedded with the heroes of the Gazan ambulance service, for me it remains a film of decency, and hope. At any rate, I ended up feeling that the solution was for both sets of common people to ignore their leaders and the occasional extra-curricular maniac, tear down the wall and invite each other in for tea. But you would have to watch it.

    • dreoilin

      Thanks a mill for posting that link, technicolour. I'm going there now.

      Craig, by the way, you welcomed me back. I came back the next day and would have replied to you, but I couldn't find the right thread. You've been posting like a demon. I hope you and yours are well.

  • somebody

    Israeli jets have made three 'strikes' (as Sky News called them) on Gaza tonight. Pity the terrified little ones as they lie in their beds.

    • Germanicus

      Thanks for the link. The BBC has become unwatchable regarding anything to do with Israel. It's almost as though they have to get their coverage pre-moderated by the Friends of Israel. Maybe they do! Shame, because they do have some great journalists such as Jeremy Bowen, but now they have to tiptoe around Israelis 'sensiitives' to the point of absurdity.

  • Cobblers

    "Terrorism is always a form of racism because it involves an indiscriminate attack upon a people" – Typo? It might be racist if it were discriminating. Indiscriminate = making no distinction between people.

    Of course it was the palestinians, you feckin' eejits.

    • Clark

      Look more closely: "…attack upon A people", ie a race of people.

      You seem unconcerned about investigation, due process, etc. And the bomb was in a bin; not the usual Palestinian method of suicide bombing.

  • nobody

    What pussies. We go right up to the line and then refuse to step over it and say the obvious. Israelis had everything to gain and nothing to lose and with Palestinians refusing provide a reason for their own slaughter it'd pay for the Israelis to do it themselves. Okay, so let's cut to the chase and declare that the likeliest possibility was that the Israelis attacked themselves.

    False victimhood is a simple and obvious tactic and you'd have to wonder why more people don't to it more often. Too ashamed I expect. But Israelis are never ashamed, not of nothing. They're the personification of chutzpah – the kind of people who'd kill their parents and then plead for mercy on account of being orphans. Whenever I see an Israeli explaining how they're the victims, my brain now automatically flashes a big 'Shameless Bullshit Artist' sign in front of my eyes. Mark Regev anyone?

    Anyway, they're doing it again are they? Sure of course. One trick ponies and murderous with it.

    • Dan J.

      I am not surprised you sign yourself 'nobody' as this kind of comment is, well, quite racist really. If you were to write, for example, 'The Irish are never ashamed, not of nothing (sic) .. the kind of people who'd kill their parents and then plead for mercy on account of … etc' you could be accused of being racist towards the Irish. I am afraid that these kind of comments are very demeaning.

    • Clark

      Nobody, I have to make much the same remark to you as I did to 'Cobblers': investigation, due process. And please remember the Israeli activists, and the young people that protest against enforced service in the IDF.

    • nobody

      Is that the best you can do boys? Pathetic.

      Racism – I doubt you even know what it is. A self-serving definition of it has been spoonfed to you and that's all that you know. http://churchofnobody.blogspot.com/2008/01/callin

      As for due process and being nice etc. go back to the Presbyterian Ladies college, you nancy. How to spot bullshit artists: they're the one who insist we all follow the rules they just made up. There aren't any rules.

      And Israeli 'activists'? Ha ha ha ha. Between the two descriptions of 'people who achieve a great deal' and 'people who achieve nothing but providing a bullshit figleaf for hasbara arseholes to point at', which of these would be more accurate in describing your so-called 'activists'?

      • Dan J.

        Nobody – you 'doubt' that I know what racism is with good reason, because there is a likelihood that I do know what it is in some respect. It will come in many forms, but one form is the idea that a people, a race, and all the individuals within it, move as one, think as one, have one almost organic connection with one another, a connection that sort of overrides their individual identity, so that anything an individual person says or does has its meaning defined, whatever the individual might have meant, by the existence of the whole 'race'. Thus the statement 'whenever I hear an Israeli say x I think y' is racist in that sense. I had a look at your blog and would say that it is racist in that its ontology is racist, i.e., it is based on the idea that 'races' are the causes in world affairs. I am not even sure that races really exist, I mean REALLY exist, in the same way that genes and atoms exist. And if they don't exist then they cannot cause things unless people believe that they can cause things. Fundamentally, therefore, they are mental constructs that we impose on reality and, ironically, as such, you are guilty of the same type of mistake that you ascribe to your antagonists.

    • nobody

      Ah, the old if-in-doubt-repeat-the-argument technique, eh? Very impressive.
      http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/opinion/ther

      "If people didn't take to the streets in large numbers during Israel's Operation Cast Lead in Gaza, then there isn't a genuine peace camp."

      But never mind him, bloody anti-Semite – three cheers for your blokes in wikipedia! Sure, they didn't make a lick of difference to anything ever but they did give you two opportunities to say 'tut tut' to those who so impolitely criticised Israel. Are you up for a third time lucky? Honestly, I swear I'll be impressed if you restate the same thing three times in a row.

      • mike cobley

        Yeah, Nobody, they've been playing nice….with you. Clearly you're some kind of disrupter troll just out to splatter your zealous kack all over the thread. That or you really are a monomaniacal revenge-eater in which case you can bog off to another forum where the reek of your half-formed rationalisations are more in keeping.

        There – you now have my permission to blurt out some trash about how ALL Israelis are awful, shocking boogiemen.

      • Clark

        Nobody, you are right, your argument is stronger than mine. Since you are more intelligent than me, I shall turn to you for advice; what do you suggest? Should I start hating, or condemning, all Israelis, or all Jews, or what? And how should I regard Gideon Levy, the author of the piece you quoted? Or should I abandon logic, too?

    • nobody

      A troll? Ha ha ha ha, a troll with a blog, like that makes sense.

      Look boys, my problem is that I've ceased being nice to the defenders of Israel. I've just had it up to here with Megaphone hasbara arseholes insisting we all watch what we say because there are-so-too good people in Israel.

      It's possible that you are nice guys who simply don't know any better and are merely doing a spot-on impression of hasbara arseholes. Or you could be the scumbag aforementioned in which case you'll say any goddamn thing and lie like you blink.

      I tell you what, I'll post a link and if you're the former you may go and have your socks knocked off and if you're the latter you can turn purple in rage. Once you're familiar with the talmud you'll never view Israel the same again. Unless you're Jewish of course. http://churchofnobody.blogspot.com/2009/05/dutch-

      Read it, don't read it, I really don't care – this conversation is as dull as dishwater and I'll leave you to it. God knows the defenders of Israel love to get the last word in. Have fun boys.

  • Suhaylsaadi

    This is all the consequence of the lack of a definitive political settlement and that in turn is largely the result of a lack of will and courage on the part of the ruling cadres in the USA. More cynically, I wonder too whether it may be part of a deliberate perpetuation of systematised tension and oppression in the region, a political tension which serves to inhibit the political development of the region as an economic block but rather to maintain it in the position of glorified banana republic. Kings, dictators and a node of constant war – the instrument of necolonialism has many strings to its bow.

    • CanSpeccy

      The situation in Israel is simply the evolution of the only option perceived by Moshe Dayan in 1967 when he commanded the occupied Palestinian territories:

      "we don't have a solution [for you, the people of the occupied territories], and you will continue living like dogs, and whoever wants will go, and we'll see how this procedure will work out. For now, it works out. Let's say the truth. We want peace. If there is no peace, we will maintain military rule and we will have four to five military compounds on the mountains, and they will sit ten years under the Israeli military regime. Whoever wants to go, will want. It's possible that in five years, there will be 200,000 fewer people, and that's an enormous thing."

      RAFI secretary Shimon Peres retorts, "we could act like Rhodesia, but we need to avoid that. Putting aside our standing in the world, there is a problem for ourselves. We need to consider how to maintain Israel's moral status, and let's not ignore that." To that, Dayan replies, "Ben-Gurion said that whoever approaches the Zionistic problem in the moral aspect is not a Zionist."

      The policy has simply continued long beyond the ten years envisaged and rather than getting rid of the Palestinians of the occupied territories it has resulted in their vast multiplication.

      As for the US, its policy is consistent with Israel's because Israel and the US are subordinate to largely the same elite group.

      My source for Dayan quotes is here: http://volokh.com/posts/1188228025.shtml

  • somebody

    Jonathan Cook writes from within 'the belly of the beast' in Nazareth. He once worked for the UK mainstream media.
    http://dissidentvoice.org/2011/03/disappeared-on-… on a Ukraine Train
    Mossad Snatches Gaza’s Power Plant Boss

    by Jonathan Cook / March 23rd, 2011

    Israel admitted this week that it was behind the abduction of a Gazan engineer who went missing more than a month ago while travelling on a train in the Ukraine.

  • ingo

    Thanks for the link technicolour. Bombs in bins is not what suicide bombers would do, this incident sounds like a remote control job designed for max effect. This should be investigated by an independent agency, ideally, but pigs might fly.
    Thanks also to somebody, with gas reserves only a few miles out to sea, horizontal drilling from Gaza should be able to access their own gas resources and run a more modern CHPower station there.

  • lwtc247

    "European public opinion in particular, in favour of the Palestinians" – Hence the bomb?

  • Germanicus

    Craig,

    I don't know if you're still reading this, but I have a bit of a bone to pick with the 'Guardian'. I have been posting regularly on their CIF site for years. I rarely get posts deleted and am – though I do say so myself – a respected poster there. However, I have had several posts deleted, and ALL my posting now put into premoderation (where the mods have to pre-approve – or not – your posts, which makes them pointless in a fast moving discussion). I suspect this is because I mooted the possibilty – and that's all it is, a possibility – that this could be a false-flag operation.

    In other words, my posts were very similar, in content and tone, to the ones I've made on this site. I really don't see how any reasonable person could find them offensive. But it's been clear to me for a long time that the Graun is running scared of the Friends of Israel. There was a time, about a year ago, when even to mention that organisation was to get your post deleted instantly. Any thoughts Craig?

    • CanSpeccy

      "I mooted the possibilty – and that's all it is, a possibility – that this [Jerusalem bombing] could be a false-flag operation … I really don't see how any reasonable person could find them offensive."

      You don't? LOL.

      When public perception is created through propaganda and manipulation including false flag incidents (a prelude to just about every war) your comment and your whole attitude must be deeply offensive to the folks pulling the strings at the Guardian. Read about the people who control the paper, they're same people who control the BBC, for goodness sake.

      • Germanicus

        But the Graun actually do have some excellent coverage of Palestine – the release of the Palestine Papers for example. It's just in their moderation of the comments section that they seem to lose their nerves, and allow the very organised Isralist trolls (who even have a site called CIF Watch to 'monitor abuse'!!) I wouldn't agree with the other poster than the Graun is a 'zionist rag'. However, they are clearly giving in to the GIYUS and CIF watch gangs (mention either on CIF and you'll be instantly deleted) on the comment pages. Like I said, Israel is the only subject where commenting is always shut down overnight. Why? It's not a particularly sensitive subject in Britain. It's obvious they're afraid – very afraid – of someone, and we all know who they are. I'd be interested to hear Craig's opinion of the Graun, as he is always well informed on such matters, but seems he may be busy today.

  • somebody

    The BBC employ Capita to operate their comment moderation on Have Your Say etc complaints, etc. http://www.bbc.co.uk/pressoffice/pressreleases/st

    The Guardian on 'moderation'. I like the two jokers at the head of the list of 983 comments. http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2010/oct/

    There is another outfit the media in the UK use to manage websites, run moderation (another word for censorship?) but the name escapes me at the moment.

    As usual nothing is as it seem in our illusory democracy..

    • Germanicus

      There is no doubt that the Graun treat any article tagged with 'Israel' with extra special care. Normally, the blogs close overnight and the moderators are extra swift to delete posts. Anything referring to the FofI, GIYUS, CIF watch or the fact that certain pro-Israel posters seem to get a huge amount of 'recommends' within seconds for even their crappier posts, will result in instant deletion, and possible relegation to the sin bin. A while ago no less a personage than the Ediitor of CIF used to come below the line to participate in discussions, peddling inane pro-Israel opinions. I think he stopped this after numerous complaints from readers though.

      So it's clear the Graun are scared of someone or something… it's clear who that is, but you dare not speak of it on CIF!

    • Germanicus

      Well, clearly someone did just that yesterday.

      Though who that 'someone' is remains very much an open question. If you can name any examples of active Palestinian militant groups using this tactic, could you let us know?

      • angrysoba

        Using what tactic? Bombing busy areas where lots of civilians convene? Plenty. If you look at this list of suicide bombings you'll see that this was a very typical target of Hamas and Islamic Jihad putting the lie to the idea that they would choose to go after the Israeli equivalent of a Mountbatten or a Thatcher.
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Palestinian_

        Now you may point out that they are all suicide bombings and claim it is not a tactic of Hamas or Islamic Jihad to blow things up unless they blow themselves up at the same time. Yet, this is not always the case as this attempt to blow up a school bus shows:
        http://tinyurl.com/5vp4uch

        • angrysoba

          And in fact there are numerous other bombings as well as suicide bombings in which Hamas or Islamic Jihad have been either implicated or have claimed responsibility:
          http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/Terro

          Why would they do it? What would they have to gain? Who knows? All that can be said for certain is that whether Hamas or Islamic Jihad have been able to benefit from this behaviour they continue to do it. There really is no point in seeing "false flag" as the most likely cause even though it tends for many posters here to be the default setting.

          • dreoilin

            "Hamas has good reasons to believe that Israel is the one heating up the southern front"

            From Mondoweiss: March 25, 2011

            An unusual report at Haaretz, by Amos Harel and Avi Issacharoff titled, "Hamas not likely behind Jerusalem bombing", begins with an intriguing introduction:

            "Despite the escalation, Hamas does not seem to want large-scale clashes yet. The organization actually has good reasons to believe that Israel is the one heating up the southern front."

            It's certainly crossed my mind, but it didn't occur to me I would read this in the mainstream press. Here are some smidgens from the article:

            "Is there a direct connection among the recent string of security incidents — the murder in Itamar, the escalation around the Gaza Strip, the Grad rockets on Be'er Sheva and the terror attack in Jerusalem? That was one of the questions occupying defense and government officials on Wednesday…..Wednesday's bombing in Jerusalem was limited in scope. A suicide bomber was not involved, and the bomb was relatively small. The pattern is different than the one Hamas used during previous waves of terror……The bombing may have been a local initiative. As of last night, no terrorist group had claimed responsibility for it or even praised the perpetrators."

            The report includes an overview of the initial escalation of violence:

            "It began with a bombardment a few weeks ago that disrupted the transfer of a large amount of money from Egypt to the Gaza Strip, continued with the interrogation of engineer and Hamas member Dirar Abu Sisi in Israel, and ended with last week's bombing of a Hamas training base in which two Hamas militants were killed. It is noteworthy that Hamas has not fired at Israel over the past two days, even after four Palestinian civilians were killed by errant IDF mortar fire on Tuesday."

            This morning I received an email alert in response to this article. Is it my imagination or is the discourse changing by leaps and bounds?

            "I heard that also live today from Israel on KPFA's 8:00 am show about 16min into the show. So you can hear it for yourself. But even more astonishing the killing of the settlement family of 5. The interviewed said it was done by a Thai worker because he was not paid for his services. All on this same program."
            http://mondoweiss.net/2011/03/hamas-has-good-reas

            —————-

            Angrysoba,
            Whatever about people here mentioning "false flag" as a possibility, you, on the other hand, seem to happily swallow whatever Obama or Netanyahu tells you, without as much as a blink. I take it you are aware that Netanyahu announced that the Israeli Gov't is meeting the attack in Itamar with a round of retaliatory settlement expansions in occupied territory. Illegal settlement expansions. And this without as much as the arrest of a suspect for the murders. It also seems plain from what you have written above that you think you already know who carried out the bombing in Jerusalem, although even Haaretz acknowledges that nobody has claimed responsibility.

          • angrysoba

            "Whatever about people here mentioning "false flag" as a possibility [sic], you, on the other hand, seem to happily swallow whatever Obama or Netanyahu tells you, without as much as a blink."

            I haven't spoken to either of them recently. Or listened to their speeches or read any of their words recently on this subject (the Jerusalem bomb).

            "I take it you are aware that Netanyahu announced that the Israeli Gov't is meeting the attack in Itamar with a round of retaliatory settlement expansions in occupied territory. Illegal settlement expansions. And this without as much as the arrest of a suspect for the murders."

            And?

          • angrysoba

            "It also seems plain from what you have written above that you think you already know who carried out the bombing in Jerusalem, although even Haaretz acknowledges that nobody has claimed responsibility."

            No. It is clear from what I have written above that I know no one has claimed responsibility and it is clear from what I have written above that I simply think it more likely that a Palestinian group was responsible for the bombing than Israel was. It is also clear that plenty of commenters here have been going beyond simple speculation but making baseless accusations that it was definitely Israel who planted the bomb. This is just daft. I said before that it is the default position of many who comment here to think a bombing of Israelis or Americans must be a "false flag". I think this is because they have a lot of emotional investment in the idea that Israelis and Americans are rotten and evil so they think that having a wishful thinking hypothesis is as good as having evidence or any good reason whatsoever.

          • Suhaylsaadi

            Well, whoever did it, it's more blood and hell and it suits only those whose power rests on blood and hell forming the concourse of politics in that region. I see that a peaceful Scottish Bible scholar who was standing in a 'phone booth nearby was killed in the attack: More human misery. I reiterate the tediously obvious, that Palesine-Israel requires a definitive political land settlement. In the absence of that, this type of blood and hell will continue: bombs on buses, rockets, aircraft, blockades, walls, sonic booms, fundamentalisms of all kinds, illegal settlement expansions, the whole damned pantechnicon of idiocy that 'The Holy Land' has become. Oh, where is the Stupor Mundi?!! Btw, good to see you back, angrysoba! How are you?
            http://www.heraldscotland.com/news/home-news/trib

          • dreoilin

            Oh by the way, please list for me the names of the "plenty" of commentators here who, "have been going beyond simple speculation but [sic] making baseless accusations that it was definitely Israel who planted the bomb".
            It looks like I must have missed several of them.

          • angrysoba

            Nobody and CanSpeccy. That's plenty. And for those with a default false flag stance, lwtc, mark golding, doug scorgie, seos 73 etc…

          • dreoilin

            I only asked for those who had, according to you, said "it was definitely Israel who planted the bomb". I don't call two "plenty".
            If you accept that false flag ops exist, then I wouldn't be too surprised at any two people being convinced that in a given case, that's what it was.

          • dreoilin

            And? And these are the murders which you blithely referred to above in these terms:

            "Hamas has indeed been firing rockets again into Israel after Israeli attacks on Hamas positions which comes after the murder of the settler family"

            It's pointless to sneer about what you see as the "default position" of others (which is a distortion of what has been posted here about a *possible* false flag operation) when you clearly have a default position of your own. And that's to blame Palestinians first, even when there is no evidence.

            Leaving all that aside, were you affected by the quake and tsunami?

          • angrysoba

            "It's pointless to sneer about what you see as the "default position" of others (which is a distortion of what has been posted here about a *possible* false flag operation) when you clearly have a default position of your own. And that's to blame Palestinians first, even when there is no evidence."

            This makes no sense at all. If you are saying that there is a possibility of this being a "false flag" then you are tacitly conceding that a Palestinian group is ostensibly more likely to do it and Israel's government is ostensibly less likely to do it.

            My "default position" is to regard the most likely explanation as… well… the most likely explanation. The "false flag" speculators are the ones who, even by their own terms, believe the ostensibly less likely explanation is the most likely explanation.

          • angrysoba

            Oh! And while Hamas, Islamic Jihad and Hizbullah are denying responsibility themselves they apparently see the bombings as "a natural response to Israeli crimes" according to this Jerusalem Post article:
            http://www.jpost.com/MiddleEast/Article.aspx?id=2

            I am in agreement with Hamas that a Palestinian group of some variety is responsible even if I am blaming them for it and Hamas are giving credit for it.

          • dreoilin

            It makes perfect sense. I said I was talking about the murders at Itamar, which you had effectively already attributed to a Palestinian, although it has been suggested more than once that they were done by a Thai worker because he was not paid his wages. That is why I said, "It's pointless to sneer about what you see as the "default position" of others … when you clearly have a default position of your own. And that's to blame Palestinians first"

          • angrysoba

            "I said I was talking about the murders at Itamar, which you had effectively already attributed to a Palestinian"

            Yes, I have heard that rumour that it was a Thai worker. Is there any foundation at all to this story? This is a serious question; I'm not being facetious.

          • angrysoba

            Dreoilin: ""It's pointless to sneer about what you see as the "default position" of others … when you clearly have a default position of your own. And that's to blame Palestinians first" "

            It would be hypocritical if I had a problem with default positions per se. I do not. You are right that I have default positions myself. But not all default positions are the same. If I see a weeping Virgin Mary statue then my default position is that there must be some rational or scientific explanation for it. My default position isn't that it is a miracle. I only give this as an example to show that my problem is not with "default positions" themselves.

          • angrysoba

            Now, my default position might be to "blame Palestinians first" (or at least a Palestinian – not all Palestinians) when I hear of a murder of a family of Israeli settlers but I put it to you that that is an assumption that people across Israel, the West Bank and Gaza made too. There's nothing outlandish about it at all. It's also an assumption many made about it with the implication that the settler family had it coming to them. It would be pointless to deny that dreoilin.

          • angrysoba

            Let's look here:

            "The Hamas movement accused the Palestinian Authority's security apparatus of arresting three of its activists near Qalqilya and Jenin.

            "The report of five murdered Israelis is not enough to punish someone," said Hamas Spokesperson Sami Abu Zuhri, adding, "However; we in Hamas completely support the resistance against settlers who murder and use crime and terror against the Palestinian people under the auspices of the Israeli occupation soldiers." "

          • angrysoba

            "Gaza residents from the southern city of Rafah hit the streets Saturday to celebrate the terror attack in the West Bank settlement of Itamar where five family members were murdered in their sleep, including three children.

            Residents handed out candy and sweets, one resident saying the joy "is a natural response to the harm settlers inflict on the Palestinian residents in the West Bank.""
            http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4041106

            So again we see that some groups of Palestinians will be quick to implicate other Palestinians although you are right that they don't "blame" them. They give them credit. This seems to be incontrovertible.

          • dreoilin

            Far from incontrovertible, that story about "residents hitting the streets and handing out candy and sweets" has already been thoroughly investigated and debunked. It's in my Twitter stream and if I can find it I'll come back and give you the URL.

          • angrysoba

            Okay, thanks. And news on the Thai worker who is apparently accused of the Fogel murder would also be useful.

            Now, whether the "handing out sweets" thing is true or not my main point was that Hamas and Islamic Jihad's "default position" is that this was carried out by a Palestinian as a "natural response" to Israel's behaviour. This is what I was calling incontrovertible.

          • dreoilin

            I didn't say it was hypocritical. My concern is that you take your default position from bastards like Mark Regev. And now I've had enough. I don't want to carry this on all day.

          • angrysoba

            Who? Mark Regev? Nothing to do with me.

            "And now I've had enough. I don't want to carry this on all day. "

            You've hardly got your feet wet. Don't expect me not to reply when you accuse me of simply mouthing the same words spoken by Obama, Netanyahu and Mark Regev.

    • Dan J.

      I agree with this guy. There is a certain lack of insight in some of these comments.

      • angrysoba

        "Who's this anonymous cunt Angrysoba, anyhow. "

        Why, I'm Angrysoba, naturally. Not exactly rocket science is it?

        And, speaking of rocket science, Hamas has indeed been firing rockets again into Israel after Israeli attacks on Hamas positions which comes after the murder of the settler family: http://tinyurl.com/4rtcmjr

        I have no idea why anyone would think that putting a bomb in a phone box by a bus station would be beyond the imagination of Hamas or another Palestinian group. Particularly as the area where the bomb went off had been the scene of another Palestinian attack:
        http://www.jpost.com/NationalNews/Article.aspx?id

    • CanSpeccy

      "If you can name any examples …"

      'soba's not into facts or arguments, just the ad hominem.

      He's probably not even a real person. Just one of the multiple identities of some otherwise unemployable philosophy graduate working with that multiple personality software provided by Crap Sunshine, Obarmy's Disinformation Tsar.

  • Ishmael

    Israeli security services routinely practice bombing
    Buses. At this time the public have no idea. I cannot find anything regarding PLO Involvement.

    It has happened before with full government knowledge. Even if the Israeli government openly admitted it was responsible and invited those condemning it to do something about it I am sure absolutely nothing would be done.

    The financial markets are one big crime scene. Who is doing anything about that. It’s not getting better, it’s getting worse, kicking the can down the road solves nothing

  • Stuart

    Angrysoba.

    Terrorists do blow bins up but normally to target a specific group of people but sometimes yes, just to blow people up. It may of course have been an accidental explosion a suicide bomber leaving a body belt in a bin after getting cold feet or awaiting a pick up to transport it somewhere else. But it may also possibly be a false flag op to blow up a few immigrant workers politically non descript in an area likely not to cause collateral damage. It could also be a criminal act by a rival bus company owner wanting to kill off the competition literally.
    So let’s not speculate too hard. All I know is that the Israeli will use it as an excuse to bomb, blast and burn poor children and non combatants with phosphorous if it happened in Libya the Western powers would bomb the artillery and blow the Israeli planes from the skies. But I forgot America and the UK need rich Jewish bankers and media barons in there pockets to fund election and peddle propaganda.

  • Courtenay Barnett

    When the issue arises in the Western media I find that there is much emphasis of resultant consequences and a stark failure to focus of the root causes of the conflict. May I rely on an extract from the 'Angry Arab news service' blog to make a point:-

    "Posted by As'ad AbuKhalil at 10:04 AM …Nakbah denial institutionalized by law in the Zionist usurping entity
    "Israel's parliament passed a measure on Tuesday enabling the denial of state funding to institutions that question the country's existence as a Jewish state, in a move criticized as targeting an Arab minority. The so-called Nakba Law, using the Arabic word for "catastrophe" which is how many Palestinians regard the founding of Israel, passed by a vote of 37 to 25 after an angry debate among right and left-wing lawmakers."

  • Courtenay Barnett

    Where do we find any major Western newspaper focusing or reporting on the events of the Nakba? The orginal point of Palestinian disclocation, removal, forceful exclusion from the land they had been in occupation of? Viewed in this way – then the next question must be – where is there any Western balance in response to the on-going violation of the 1967 borders by Israel and the refusal to stop building settlements?

    What would you have the Palestinians do – if peaceful resistance gets them nowhere – is violent retaliation, as with Israeli brutalisation of Palestinian civilians not a perfectly understandable human response?

    There are two sides to this coin of terrorism.

    • ingo

      Well put Courtney, were indeed do we hear condemnation by the jewish diaspora of unspeakable cruelty metted out, why is it the the Britsh Borad of jews, a moderate body by their own description, has never criticised or spoken out against the attrocities and lacvk of human rights attributed to Palestinians?

      Who in the jewish community says 'Not in our name'?
      Lets assume Cast lead 2 will happen, what would we do in Palestinians position? start targeting airports and aircrafts again?
      The moment Hamas and Fatah speak as one, always seen as a reasoned obstacle to Israeli peacemaking, imho it never was, nIsrael decides to turn its back, act obstenate on the high seas, and punishes those Palestininas surrounding their jewish outposts on the westbank.

      • ingo

        Hamas has fired rockets, but Gaza has been left in limbo, whilst Israel does its worst to frustrate Gaza's existence, the abduction of the only power plant engineer shows this vividly. Anything that makes Gaza more self sufficient is opposed by Israel, it would mean loosing strings and levers.
        Whatever will happen next between Israel and its neighbours will have some decisive major influence on the whole of the middle east. Unless som e very wise heads turn the emphasis towards mutual existence, away from biblical dominance and usurpation of others, a major flagration seems almost inevitable, sadly.
        I would have liked to have believed Willy Brandt , his hope to end the North south divide and the middle east problems with it, but it looks like polarisation will steer us into flagration.
        I also believe that the 'Arab revolution' will spread to western countries, it is an economic flaw of globalisation, inequality and free market controls that has landed us with this have's and have nots scenario.

        My tip of the day, forget the lawn and wasted moss killers, grow vegetables.

  • Seos73

    Craig. Is it really beyond the realm of possibility to consider that this, and most other such so-called suicide bombings, are the work of Israeli intelligence. If more people would allow for discussion on this idea I think much of the confusion around the Middle East conflict would be dispelled.

    • Clark

      Seos73. (1) This was not called a suicide bombing. (2) By saying "so-called suicide bombings", what are you suggesting?

  • somebody

    24 Mar 2011 FREE GAZA MOVEMENT IN IRELAND CONDEMNS TONIGHT’S INCURSION AND ONGOING ISRAELI ATTACKS ON GAZA
    Responding to tonight’s apparent Israeli incursion of northern Gaza and yesterday’s deadly Israeli air strikes against Gaza city, the Free Gaza Movement in Ireland called for an immediate end to the violence and for an Israeli withdrawal from the Gaza Strip. Ten people were killed including 7-year-old an 11-year-old boys, members of the Al-Helou family. It is understood that many other Palestinians, including children, were severely injured in the air strikes by F16 aircraft and by Israeli shell fire.

  • somebody

    contd.
    Twenty-five Irish politicians, public figures and activists will sail to Gaza in late May on an Irish-owned ship as part of an international aid flotilla, ‘Freedom Flotilla 2', which is organised by the same coalition that put together the flotilla attacked on 31 May last year by Israeli http://irishshiptogaza.org/?p=426

  • somebody

    I repeat – the Guardian IS a Zionist rag.

    From medialens

    When has the Guardian EVER covered a victim of Israeli terrorism in such depth?
    Posted by Hidari on March 25, 2011, 10:27 am

    No disrespect to Mary Gardner or her family, but the whole article (not a small one) is essentially a long obituary.

    When has the Guardian EVER covered a Palestinian civilian death in such detail and with such obvious sympathy?
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/mar/24/jerus

    • Germanicus

      In fairness though, the victim was British, which explains the level of attention given it by the Graun. I don't think they would have written an entire article had the victim been Israeli.

  • mark_golding

    Good post Craig – thank-you

    Sorry but I have grown somewhat cynical about bomb attacks that act as precursors for change – Please remember the King David Hotel bombing – Irgun men, disguised as Arabs, except for Gideon, the leader, who was dressed as one of the hotel's distinctive Sudanese waiters, (not tennis players in sports gear!) would enter the hotel through a basement service entrance carrying high explosives concealed in milk cans. The Haganah **was** involved despite denials. Twenty-eight British civilians were killed and still today Binyamin Netanyahu, then chairman of Likud and Leader of the Opposition in the Knesset, and now PM describes the bombing as, "a legitimate act with a military target."

    The book 'Understanding Terrorism: Challenges, Perspectives, and Issues ' suggests this attack provided a model for 20th [and 21st century] false-flag terrorist attacks and the evidence I have collected over a number of years really does suggest that.

    • angrysoba

      "Twenty-eight British civilians were killed and still today Binyamin Netanyahu, then chairman of Likud and Leader of the Opposition in the Knesset, and now PM describes the bombing as, "a legitimate act with a military target." "

      Eh? How was Netanyahu the leader of the opposition in the Knesset at the time of the King David Hotel? This happened in 1946.

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