View Poll Results: Are the Israeli refuseniks (conscientious objectors) right or wrong?

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Thread: Are the Israeli refuseniks (conscientious objectors) right or wrong?

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    Are the Israeli refuseniks (conscientious objectors) right or wrong?

    In January 2002, 51 reserve soldiers and officers signed a "Combat Troops' Letter" or "Combatants' Letter" in which they declared their refusal "to fight beyond the 1967 borders in order to dominate, expel, starve and humiliate an entire people."

    "The pilots' letter," published on September 24, 2003, was signed by 27 reserve pilots and former pilots already exempt from reserve duty. One of the signatories was a famous former pilot Brigadier General (res.) Yiftah Spector. In their letter, the pilots stated:

    We, veteran and active pilots alike, who served and still serve the state of Israel for long weeks every year, are opposed to carrying out attack orders that are illegal and immoral of the type the state of Israel has been conducting in the territories. We, who were raised to love the state of Israel and contribute to the Zionist enterprise, refuse to take part in Air Force attacks on civilian population centers. We, for whom the Israel Defense Forces and the Air Force are an inalienable part of ourselves, refuse to continue to harm innocent civilians. These actions are illegal and immoral, and are a direct result of the ongoing occupation which is corrupting all of Israeli society. Perpetuation of the occupation is fatally harming the security of the state of Israel and its moral strength.

    The commando’s letter, dated December 2003, was signed by 13 reservists of Sayeret Matkal, an elite commando unit, serving in the West Bank and Gaza Strip (nine commandos in Sayeret Matkal, 2 soldiers who had been removed from reserve duty because of prior refusals to serve there, and 2 additional combatant soldiers). Their letter, addressed to Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, stated:

    We shall no longer lend a hand in the occupation of the territories. We shall no longer take part in the deprivation of basic human rights from millions of Palestinians. We shall no longer serve as a shield in the crusade of the settlements. We shall no longer corrupt our moral character in missions of oppression. We shall no longer deny our responsibility as soldiers of the Israeli DEFENSE force.

    Source: Refusal to serve in the Israeli military - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Last edited by Onion Eater; 01-15-09 at 06:55 PM.
    Is the following quote reckless in the extreme? Then read my 2008 paper about monetary theory:
    http://www.axiomaticeconomics.com/in...e_collapse.php
    Quote Originally Posted by JP Hochbaum View Post
    No tax raises needed, just have the federal government spend the money into existence.

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    Re: Are the Israeli refuseniks (conscientious objectors) right or wrong?

    Quote Originally Posted by Onion Eater View Post
    What do you mean by "loaded poll?"

    These men took an action and clearly stated in writing why they were taking that action. Ahmed simply asked whether you think that they were right or wrong. All actions are either right or wrong. No?
    I removed the "loaded" part of the reply from Ahmed Shaheen's question, having to do with depraved orders, and just asked for a "right" or "wrong" response.

    Just because it is an uncomfortable question does not mean that it is a loaded question.
    Last edited by Onion Eater; 01-15-09 at 06:54 PM.
    Is the following quote reckless in the extreme? Then read my 2008 paper about monetary theory:
    http://www.axiomaticeconomics.com/in...e_collapse.php
    Quote Originally Posted by JP Hochbaum View Post
    No tax raises needed, just have the federal government spend the money into existence.

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    Re: Are the Israeli refuseniks (conscientious objectors) right or wrong?

    I say they are wrong. Its not a soldiers job to pick which wars he wants to fight in. I definitely do not think too highly of the orthodox jews and other pussies who use their religion or ethnicity to weasel out of military service, they are basically moochers mooching off of everyone else's military service to defend them in what is basically terrorist target capital of the world.

    It doesn't matter if they are conscripted. It is still not a soldiers job to pick which wars they fight in. Seeing how they choose to live in terrorist target capital of the world they are obligated to serve in their nation's military.They do not have to live in Israel,they can leave Israel and denounce their Israeli citizenship. It should be especially really easy for those who have dual citizenship.
    "A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. A murder is less to fear"

    Cicero Marcus Tullius

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    Re: Are the Israeli refuseniks (conscientious objectors) right or wrong?

    Thanks for re-opening the poll !

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    Re: Are the Israeli refuseniks (conscientious objectors) right or wrong?

    Quote Originally Posted by jamesrage View Post
    I say they are wrong. Its not a soldiers job to pick which wars he wants to fight in. I definitely do not think too highly of the orthodox jews and other pussies who use their religion or ethnicity to weasel out of military service, they are basically moochers mooching off of everyone else's military service to defend them in what is basically terrorist target capital of the world.
    Every human being must weigh the moral consequences and implication of their actions whether a soldier, public servant, military commander, politician or private citizen. In a fundamental way, it is the place of a solider to consider what wars to fight. If given an order completely immoral, completely contrary to humanity and completely without purpose he is morally obligated to disobey it.
    There are cases where the general consensus is that a soldier’s refusal to obey orders is the only ethical course of action. I don’t think that many would use the argument that it is not a soldier’s place to question orders when presented with a case study such a guard in Auschwitz ordered to drop the gas canisters into a shower full of children. (I am not calling the Israelis Nazis, merely asserting that there are in fact instances when one has a moral obligation to disobey orders… I wish I didn’t have to say that explicitly, but I know the charge would be raised…) Was a soldier who refused to take part in the Nazi wars of aggression morally wrong? I think not. Did he fail his duties as a solider? By the Nazi state’s standards to be sure. But was doing so required to maintain his duties as a human being? I think so. And doesn’t a soldier’s moral duty as a human being come before his duties to the government? I think most people would say so. I find it interesting that the letter's author describes their refusal as their responsibility as soldiers of Israel.
    Ethically the question hinges upon whether or not Israel is committing moral atrocities. Are these strikes in fact, as the soldier asserts, depriving millions of Palestinians of their basic human rights? Are they missions of “oppression?” I think people’s partisan opinions are fairly entrenched on these questions. And so people’s opinion as to whether the refusenicks are right or wrong will divide based on their opinion of the nature of the Israeli operations in question rather than the supposed place of a soldier.
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    Re: Are the Israeli refuseniks (conscientious objectors) right or wrong?

    Quote Originally Posted by faminedynasty View Post
    Every human being must weigh the moral consequences and implication of their actions whether a soldier, public servant, military commander, politician or private citizen. In a fundamental way, it is the place of a solider to consider what wars to fight. If given an order completely immoral, completely contrary to humanity and completely without purpose he is morally obligated to disobey it.
    They are also morally obligated to uphold the oath that they took. They are also duty bound to defend their country. Sometimes the good of the many outweigh the good of the few.
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    Re: Are the Israeli refuseniks (conscientious objectors) right or wrong?

    Quote Originally Posted by faminedynasty View Post
    Every human being must weigh the moral consequences and implication of their actions whether a soldier, public servant, military commander, politician or private citizen. In a fundamental way, it is the place of a solider to consider what wars to fight. If given an order completely immoral, completely contrary to humanity and completely without purpose he is morally obligated to disobey it.
    There are cases where the general consensus is that a soldier’s refusal to obey orders is the only ethical course of action. I don’t think that many would use the argument that it is not a soldier’s place to question orders when presented with a case study such a guard in Auschwitz ordered to drop the gas canisters into a shower full of children. (I am not calling the Israelis Nazis, merely asserting that there are in fact instances when one has a moral obligation to disobey orders… I wish I didn’t have to say that explicitly, but I know the charge would be raised…) Was a soldier who refused to take part in the Nazi wars of aggression morally wrong? I think not. Did he fail his duties as a solider? By the Nazi state’s standards to be sure. But was doing so required to maintain his duties as a human being? I think so. And doesn’t a soldier’s moral duty as a human being come before his duties to the government? I think most people would say so. I find it interesting that the letter's author describes their refusal as their responsibility as soldiers of Israel.
    Ethically the question hinges upon whether or not Israel is committing moral atrocities. Are these strikes in fact, as the soldier asserts, depriving millions of Palestinians of their basic human rights? Are they missions of “oppression?” I think people’s partisan opinions are fairly entrenched on these questions. And so people’s opinion as to whether the refusenicks are right or wrong will divide based on their opinion of the nature of the Israeli operations in question rather than the supposed place of a soldier.
    It is not a soldier's job to decide those things and the situation in Nazi Germany and whats happening today with Israel/Palestinian situation are no way comparable. Gassing people to death is no comparable to invading another country that keeps attacking yours. Those soldiers are trying to use what ever pathetic pussy punk ass excuse they can to weasel out of military service. If they didn't want to serve they should have renounced their citizenship and left Israel for another country. They should go to Lebanon,or Palestine,after all those are just poor innocent people who never did anything to Israel as they claim.
    "A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. A murder is less to fear"

    Cicero Marcus Tullius

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    Re: Are the Israeli refuseniks (conscientious objectors) right or wrong?

    Quote Originally Posted by jamesrage View Post
    Those soldiers are trying to use what ever pathetic pussy punk ass excuse they can to weasel out of military service. If they didn't want to serve they should have renounced their citizenship and left Israel for another country.
    Whether they are right or wrong, I don't think that the "refuseniks" are cowards. As you yourself point out, if they are simply afraid of military service they could renounce their citizenship. The fact that they don't, and risk imprisonment and ostricism demonstrates that this is a commitment based on what they percieve to be moral grounds.
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    Re: Are the Israeli refuseniks (conscientious objectors) right or wrong?

    Quote Originally Posted by faminedynasty View Post
    Whether they are right or wrong, I don't think that the "refuseniks" are cowards. As you yourself point out, if they are simply afraid of military service they could renounce their citizenship. The fact that they don't, and risk imprisonment and ostricism demonstrates that this is a commitment based on what they percieve to be moral grounds.
    They fact they didn't renounce their citizenship and leave military service just proves that they do not want to leave Israel. They just want to be moochers like all the other cowards like the orthodox jews and others who hide behind their religion or ethnicity to weasel out of military service.
    "A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. A murder is less to fear"

    Cicero Marcus Tullius

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    Re: Are the Israeli refuseniks (conscientious objectors) right or wrong?

    Quote Originally Posted by jamesrage View Post
    Those soldiers are trying to use what ever pathetic pussy punk ass excuse they can to weasel out of military service.
    Cowardice cannot be the issue for the pilots because Hamas does not have anti-aircraft guns or missiles. Flying bombing missions over Gaza is no more dangerous than flying a shuttle out of LAX.

    Also, these are high-ranking officers who have served for decades. These aren't privates who deserted the first time they came under fire. The pilots are the elite of the IDF, as are the commandos, who wrote, "We shall no longer corrupt our moral character in missions of oppression." Those aren't the words of cowards - they're throwing away decades-long careers to make a moral stand.

    Using phrases like "pathetic pussy punk ass" is really not appropriate when discussing a Brigadier General like Yiftah Spector who has served his country for his entire life, including bombing a nuclear reactor in Iraq - a country with a LOT of anti-aircraft guns.

    The signatories of the pilots' letter are:

    Brigadier General Yiftah Spector, Colonel Yigal Shohat,
    Colonel Ran, Lieutenant Colonel Yoel Piterberg, Lieutenant Colonel
    David Yisraeli,Lieutenant Colonel Adam Netzer, Lieutenant Colonel
    Avner Ra'anan, Lieutenant Colonel Gideon Shaham, Major Haggai Tamir,
    Major Amir Massad, Major Gideon Dror, Major David Marcus, Major
    Professor Motti Peri, Major Yotam, Major Zeev Reshef, Major Reuven,
    Captain Assaf, Captain Tomer, Captain Ron, Captain Yonatan, Captain
    Allon, Captain Amnon

    Of the highest ranking one, Yiftah Spector, we read:

    "The most outstanding name among those who signed is that
    of Yiftah Spector, a Brigadier General in the reserves. Spector is a
    mythological pilot in the Air Force, who commanded squadrons and
    bases, participated in the bombing of the nuclear reactor in Iraq,
    and was a candidate for corps commander. Young pilots are raised on
    battle stories about Spector and on books that he himself wrote. He
    still flies in the Air Force as a trainer in the reserves for the
    flight school."


    Also, we read:

    "According to those who signed the letter, 'gray refusal' is already
    widespread in the Air Force, and includes even pilots in the standing
    army. There are dozens of pilots who refuse to participate in
    assassinations, but get out of them quietly in private arrangements
    with the commander of the squadron."


    Source: Israeli Brigadier General Yiftah Spector and A Few Good Men : LA IMC

    Quote Originally Posted by jamesrage View Post
    They fact they didn't renounce their citizenship and leave military service just proves that they do not want to leave Israel. They just want to be moochers like all the other cowards like the orthodox jews and others who hide behind their religion or ethnicity to weasel out of military service.
    No. Actually the fact they didn't renounce their citizenship and leave military service just proves that they want to change Israel - change it back to being the moral country it was when they first joined the military decades before.

    This is also why the commandos capitalized the word "defense" in Israeli Defense Force.

    Quote Originally Posted by Onion Eater View Post
    "We shall no longer deny our responsibility as soldiers of the Israeli DEFENSE force."
    They want to change the IDF back to a defensive force.
    Last edited by Onion Eater; 01-16-09 at 02:59 PM.
    Is the following quote reckless in the extreme? Then read my 2008 paper about monetary theory:
    http://www.axiomaticeconomics.com/in...e_collapse.php
    Quote Originally Posted by JP Hochbaum View Post
    No tax raises needed, just have the federal government spend the money into existence.

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