Patterico's Pontifications

11/6/2023

Barack Obama Continues to Disappoint, but Bernard Sanders Gets It (Kind of) Right

Filed under: General — JVW @ 12:02 pm



[guest post by JVW]

In a sad but unsurprising development at the end of last week, former President Barack Obama crawled out from under his massive piles of post-Presidency cash to deliver one of his typically unwelcome smug and self-righteous assessments of world events. Speaking in front of a friendly crowd at his Obama Foundation Democracy Forum, the 44th President outlined the barbaric depredations of the Hamas terrorists, but then in his usual manner started to equivocate, criticizing (as transcribed by me):

[. . .] an Israeli response that has thus far resulted in the displacement of over one million people; the death of at least 9000 Palestinian civilians, thousands of them also children; the cut-off of water and food [and] electricity to a captive population which threatens to create an even greater humanitarian crisis. And all of this is taking place against the backdrop of decades of failure to achieve a durable peace for both Israelis and Palestinians, one that is based upon genuine security for Israel, a recognition of its right to exist, and a peace that is based on an end of the occupation and the creation of a viable state and self-determination for the Palestinian people.

A man whose Administration was noted for its antipathy towards the only democracy in the Middle East draws a tendentious comparison between a terrorist attack on unarmed civilians at a music festival followed up by the slaughter of entire families in their homes, and the rooting out of those same terrorists who cynically surround themselves with women, children, the elderly, the sick and infirm in order to use them as human shields, who were given nearly two weeks to evacuate what was clearly going to be the theater of battle. This is the grossly-overrated dilettante that we all remember, celebrated as a deep thinker no matter how shallow and superficial his utterances truly are.

I noticed two things in Mr. Obama’s speech. First, like the vast majority of the progressive wing of his party, his support for Israel’s right to defend itself came with very strict limits which makes the matter all but impossible in practice, and it took him fewer than 30 days to determine that Israel had gone far enough. Second, he openly admits that “the ensuing debate [. . .] has laid bare generational divides” and that:

[E]ven here, within our Obama Foundation family, we’ve had to sort through our anguish, our outrage, our fears and our differences on the issues. I had a conversation with a group of you around this issue, and you were passionate and pushed me around some of the public statements I’d made.

And there you have it: the young leftwing activists who are filling jobs at the Obama Foundation once they finish their studies in Anti-colonialism and Social Justice and Critical Race Theory are demanding that the former President trim his sails to the ill winds of modern Third Worldsim and its attendant idea that poor and backward states are so only because they are being oppressed and exploited by rich and organized states — certainly not because they have a ridiculous and self-defeating political culture.

The next day the Oracle of Hyde Park appeared on the podcast “Pod Save America” which is run by his insufferable former aides and further set himself in the “hey, Israel, stop moping over the heinous attack and make peace already, will ya?” school of left-wing thought. Jim Geraghty provides a full quote of Mr. Obama’s deep musings:

If there’s any chance of us being able to act constructively to do something, it will require an admission of complexity, and maintaining what on the surface may seem contradictory ideas that what Hamas did was horrific, and there’s no justification for it. And what is also true that the occupation and what’s happening to Palestinians is unbearable. And what is also true is that there is a history of the Jewish people that may be dismissed unless your grandparents, or your great-grandparents, or your uncle or your aunt tell you stories about the madness of anti-Semitism. And what is true is that there are people, right now, who are dying, who have nothing to do with what Hamas did. And what is true, right — I mean, we can go on for a while. And the problem with the social media and trying TikTok activism, and trying to debate this on that, is you can’t speak the truth. You can pretend to speak the truth. You can speak one side of the truth. And in some cases you can try to maintain your moral innocence. But that won’t solve the problem. And so, if you want to solve the problem, then you have to take in the whole truth, and you then have to admit nobody’s hands are clean — that all of us are complicit to some degree. I look back at this, and I think, ‘what could I have done during my presidency to move this forward? As hard as I tried, I’ve got the scars to prove it. But there’s a part of me that is still saying ‘well, was there something else I could have done?’ That’s the conversation we should be having. Not just looking backwards, but looking forwards. And that can’t happen if we are confining ourselves to our outrage. I would rather see you out there, talking to people, including people who you disagree with — if you genuinely want to change this, then you’ve got to figure out how to speak to somebody on the other side and listen to them, and understand what they are talking about, and not dismiss it. Because you can’t save that child without their help. Not in this situation. [Emphasis added by Geraghty.]

Just listen to that piffle and parse it for the pompous gasbaggery that it truly is. Here are some key quotes that struck me (and not in a good way):

* it will require an admission of complexity – Yes, because all of us truly do believe there are easy and simple solutions to these problems at our fingertips.

* what Hamas did was horrific, and there’s no justification for it – I had hoped that was directed towards the young activists employed in his foundation who are no doubt justifying Hamas’s actions in the context of “Palestinian oppression,” and would not be followed with an unspoken “but. . . .” Alas, I would be disappointed by what came immediately after.

* the occupation and what’s happening to Palestinians is unbearable – What “occupation” is he referring to, both in that clause and in his remarks to his foundation staff quoted the day before? There have not been any Israelis living in Gaza since 2005. He’s likely droning on about the West Bank, but it seems to me that the spoils of war dictate that neither Jordan nor Palestine has any more legitimate claim to that land than Spain has to Guam, no matter what the Arab League and their allies insist.

* and the problem with the social media and trying TikTok activism, and trying to debate this on that, is you can’t speak the truth – This is Barack Obama at his worst: the preening moralist who believes that he and only he has the perspicacity to look behind the sloganeering and the grandstanding and discern the truth, which he then graciously shares with us ordinary schlubs, bound as we are to our narrow-mindedness. This is the trait of Barack Obama which I have always loathed the most.

* there’s a part of me that is still saying “well, was there something else I could have done?” – Gee, sir, maybe you could have avoided cluelessness with Egypt, bad choices in Libya, dithering in Syria, abject stuipidity in Iraq, and weird yet pointless obsequiousness towards Iran. Just for starters.

Anyway, Jim Geraghty takes the former President to the woodshed in his commentary, poking holes in the assumptions and pretenses that President Prom Queen constructed in lieu of cogent argument, and pointing out that Mr. Obama’s words are an implicit rebuke to his former Vice-President who is now managing this crisis. So read it if you get the chance.

Oddly enough, not every tiresome lefty has jumped aboard the anti-Israel bandwagon this week. NRO reports on a surprising supporter of Israel’s right to eradicate a neighborhing terrorist group bent on slaughtering Israeli citizens:

Senator Bernie Sanders said Sunday that progressives’ call for a cease-fire in the Israel-Hamas conflict is unrealistic, declaring “Hamas has got to go.”

[. . .]

“I don’t know how you can have a permanent cease-fire with an organization like Hamas, which is dedicated to turmoil and chaos and destroying the state of Israel,” Sanders, the independent Vermont senator who caucuses with Democrats and is one of the Senate’s most liberal members, countered during an appearance on CNN Sunday. “I think what the Arab countries in the region understand is that Hamas has got to go.”

Now perhaps it is only a matter of time before Sen. Sanders too determines that Israel has gone far enough and that they should pack it in and call it a day, but it is refreshing to see that he has managed to last longer than the last two Democrat Presidents and a large chunk of his party’s leadership, including his young acolytes who hold elective office. Yes, the Vermont Social Democrat is a Jew by heritage, but he has long insisted that he is non-observant and he otherwise has not been known as a staunch defender of Israel. And it should be noted, as it is being pointed out in various left-wing circles, that the Green Mountain Marxist did express great reservations about the death toll among civilians in Gaza and chided Israel for not being more careful to distinguish between “militants” and civilians which suggests that he is unsurprisingly in over his head where combat issues are concerned. But I do award him a fair amount of credit for being willing to acknowledge that peace in the region simply will not be possible as long as Hamas is a key player in Palestine. Let’s hope that he doesn’t waffle on this important point, unlike the angry young activists who clearly dominate the organizational energy on the progressive side, and a cowardly and ineffective White House who can’t seem to say no to them.

– JVW

39 Responses to “Barack Obama Continues to Disappoint, but Bernard Sanders Gets It (Kind of) Right”

  1. I’ll tell you, folks: I don’t miss Barack Obama one damn bit.

    JVW (1ad43e)

  2. I am surprised by Bernie Sanders as well, JVW. Thank you for this post.

    felipe (5e2a04)

  3. I added a post-publication parenthetical “Kind of” to the title of the post, seeing as how I’m not fully enamored of Sen. Sanders’ position here (as I explain in the post).

    JVW (1ad43e)

  4. Over at Powerline, Steve Hayward has a great quote which summarizes the perfidy of Barack Obama far better than I could:

    There’s a great book yet to be written about the full scope of destruction purposely wrought by Barack Obama’s presidency. Many of the deepest divisions and identity-based hatreds of the moment accelerated markedly during his two terms, and he usually inflamed them deliberately, but always subtly, so as not to leave clear fingerprints.

    His post also includes a Twitter link to a remarkable speech given by the leader of Germany’s Green Party (yes, you read that right), declaring that Israel’s security is directly related to Germany’s security, that Germany has a “special relationship” with Israel stemming from Germany’s “historic responsibility” to the Jewish people, calling out the hatred that German Jews are currently experiencing at home, and challenging German “Muslim associations” to be forthright and unmistakable in calling out antisemitism and terrorism. It’s a pity that Barack Obama doesn’t have as much intellectual fortitude.

    JVW (1ad43e)

  5. Obama said no one’s hands are clean, which might, strictly speaking, be true, but he’s only aiming those words at the pro-Israel side. And mostly Israel’s errors have been of bad judgment, and sometimes also ignoring the problems that security measures create. The worst thing that Israel did, however was something that Obama, or his coterie, considers right, but it was wrong: Installing Yasir Arafat as a dictator because the Arab League had declared him so, and of being willing to make peace with anyone, no matter how evil (it cannot, but it shouldn’t try)

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/a-refusenik-in-a-country-at-war-israel-hamas-palestinians-gaza-9d4a146e

    If there is one crime against the Palestinians to which Israel should plead guilty,” Mr. Sharansky says, “it is the Oslo Agreement” — the peace accord Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization signed in 1993.

    Mr. Sharansky abhors Oslo. Still regarded in some circles as the touchstone of Israeli-Palestinian compromise, the agreement handed control of Palestinian land to Yasser Arafat’s Palestinian Authority in the belief that he would be able to subdue Hamas. “I’m not against compromises with the Palestinians,” Mr. Sharansky says. “I’ve said I’m for a two-state solution from the moment I came to Israel. I want Palestinians to have the same rights as I, but they should never have an opportunity to destroy me.”

    At Oslo, he says, Israel foisted “a ruthless dictator on the Palestinians. We told them, “Like it or not, he will be your leader.’ With [Bill] Clinton and all the free world, we gave Arafat the power to destroy all the beginnings of freedom of the Palestinian people and helped build a generation of haters.” Mr. Sharansky says it’s “absolutely ridiculous” that a “fifth generation” of Palestinians lives in refugee camps, but he says “their leaders are to blame. And the free world, that gives money to these leaders—a lot of money.”

    The PLO is still recognized as the sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people” completely apart from any election.

    https://www.cbsnews.com/news/face-the-nation-full-transcript-11-05-2023/

    MARGARET BRENNAN: Understood, but I want – I’m asking about – about your – let me ask you, though, about your government because there is a serious conversation being had by American diplomats about the Palestinian Authority taking on a role of governing in Gaza as well.

    So, talk to me about that because we just heard, you know, that you have a financial problem right now, in part because the Israeli government is withholding some of the tax revenues and claiming they’re doing it because Palestinian Authority hasn’t condemned Hamas adequately in those October 7th attacks. So, do you want to clear the air and clearly condemn the attack in (ph) Hamas today?

    HUSAM ZOMLOT: No, I want to clear the record. First of all, the Palestinian authority is not what represents the Palestinian people. It’s the PLO. It’s the Palestine Liberation Organization. I represented the PLO in Washington. Now I represent the PLO in – in – in London. The PA does not have external arms. The sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people is the PLO.

    [Note from JVW – Fixed some of the formatting so that this reads more cleanly. Thanks as always to Sammy Finkelman for the elucidating comment.]

    Sammy Finkelman (7a85f9)

  6. I don’t know what you call it when outsiders pick the leader(s) of a group of people and especially what you call it when the leaders it picks are people who obtained their positions by force and violence.

    Terrorist groups, or even former terrorists groups, should not A contestants in elections, not even in Ireland.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  7. While acknowledging that Israel has an obligation to observe international conventions and compacts even while waging war against Hamas, Herr Habeck pointedly asks why so few observers expect Hamas to observe the same standards, and why they are excused for their gross war crimes. Every member of The Squad should be required to watch his speech.

    JVW (1ad43e)

  8. Obama: it will require an admission of complexity, and maintaining what on the surface may seem contradictory ideas that what Hamas did was horrific, and there’s no justification for it. And what is also true that the occupation and what’s happening to Palestinians is unbearable.

    It is not unbearable and what is difficult to bear has entirely been caused by the attacs on Israel and its people. For twenty years they got along.

    Nothing from Obama about Israel being more righteous than its enemies, something that must be acknowledged in order for there to be peace; nothing about the self-righteousness of the anti-Israel side, which is not even fazed by mass murder; and nothing about who is for war and who is for peace, who wants to be an enemy and who does not, who must confess wrongdoing and who is willing to do this anyway.

    Sammy Finkelman (7a85f9)

  9. @1

    I’ll tell you, folks: I don’t miss Barack Obama one damn bit.

    JVW (1ad43e) — 11/6/2023 @ 12:02 pm

    I’ll say, that the Obama years has done more harm to our country than anything Trump or some other GOP administration could ever do.

    That man, single handedly destroyed the administrative state and DOJ/FBI that fostered acceptance to Antifa/BLM riots. Which also, in turn, gave rise to wokism and DEI’ism.

    whembly (5f7596)

  10. JVW (1ad43e) — 11/6/2023 @ 12:59 pm

    Herr Habeck pointedly asks why so few observers expect Hamas to observe the same standards, and why they are excused for their gross war crimes.

    New York Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan could have called this sort of thing “the soft bigotry of low expectations.”

    Only he was talking about not being expected to do well in school and he like.

    People who don’t expect Hamas not to commit war crimes already show they know who is good and who is evil.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  11. an Israeli response that has thus far resulted in the displacement of over one million people;

    True, and what is his alternative?

    the death of at least 9000 Palestinian civilians,

    Wrong: That figure, includes armed men.

    thousands of them also children;

    Is Hamas wanted to avoid that, it could. A lot of it is caused by miscalculation.

    https://newsrnd.com/news/2023-11-05-netanyahu–sinwar-is-like-a-little-hitler-in-a-bunker–his-people-interest-him-as-the-garlic-peel—voila!-news.Bk74Z8S76.html

    Galant: We will reach Sinwar and eliminate him, at the end of the war there will be no Hamas in Gaza/AMM

    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told reporters on Sunday that the leader of Hamas’ military wing, Yahya Sinwar, was “behaving like a little Hitler in a bunker.” “Sinwar doesn’t care about his people and behaves like a little Hitler in a bunker. His people are as interesting to him as the garlic peel.”

    This was against the background of Hamas’ efforts to prevent the passage of the civilian population from the intensive battle zones in the northern Gaza Strip to the humanitarian buffer zone in the southern Gaza Strip. A political source added that the Hamas leadership in general and Sinwar in particular “don’t care about the public or the destruction in Gaza. He is ready for all of Gaza to be destroyed.”

    More from Obama:

    the cut-off of water and food [and] electricity to a captive population which threatens to create an even greater humanitarian crisis.

    That is probably the most humanitarian thing that could be done.

    And all of this is taking place against the backdrop of decades of failure to achieve a durable peace for both Israelis and Palestinians, one that is based upon genuine security for Israel, a recognition of its right to exist, and a peace that is based on an end of the occupation and the creation of a viable state and self-determination for the Palestinian people.

    No, what it needs to be based on is an end to the vilification of Israel and to self-righteousness that n is not stopped by murder – and most nations go the other way. Issues like statehood are secondary. He’s trying to solve the wrong problem.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  12. That man, single handedly destroyed the administrative state and DOJ/FBI that fostered acceptance to Antifa/BLM riots. Which also, in turn, gave rise to wokism and DEI’ism.

    I might quibble slightly with you on the cause-and-effect — I think that it was wokism and DEI initiatives which gave rise to antifa and BLM riots, not the other way around — but I agree wholeheartedly with the thrust of your comment, whembly. And, in his usual slimy manner, Barack Obama waited nearly three full years after leaving the White House to criticize wokeness and cancel culture. You know, just so that he could plausibly claim that he had registered his unease with it.

    JVW (1ad43e)

  13. Palestinian death toll passes 10,000 and is now recruiting tool for hamas. Muslims around the world now want to join hamas in the fight against Israel and U.S. The rule of unintended consequences as egypt and jordan try and keep a lid on those wanting to join the fight.

    asset (2036a9)

  14. @13

    Palestinian death toll passes 10,000 and is now recruiting tool for hamas. Muslims around the world now want to join hamas in the fight against Israel and U.S. The rule of unintended consequences as egypt and jordan try and keep a lid on those wanting to join the fight.

    asset (2036a9) — 11/6/2023 @ 1:47 pm

    …and?

    What are you implying?

    whembly (5f7596)

  15. @12 JVW (1ad43e) — 11/6/2023 @ 1:41 pm
    Eh… it may be a chicken = egg thing, but remember, I lived 15 minutes away from Ferguson during the Michael Brown riots.

    It seemed to me, that was *the* pivotal moment with the media and Obama administration doing their damnest to inflame racial relations.

    I wasn’t really well aware of DEI/CRT being mainstream until early in the Trump administration… but, I may be misremembering this timeline.

    My over-arching point, which it seems we agree on, is that Barak Obama’s transformative Presidency had set this country back in a lot of ways.

    whembly (5f7596)

  16. Those barbarians only see Western standards of civilization as weaknesses to be exploited.

    nk (d8887a)

  17. “Barack thought I was too white and I thought he was too black,” Ndesandjo [Obama’s brother] said. “He was an American searching for his African roots, I was a Kenyan, I’m an American but I was living in Kenya, searching for my white roots.” https://www.politico.com/story/2013/12/obama-brother-mark-obama-ndesandjo-autobiography-101323

    I think that, too, and I think that’s always been Obama’s problem.

    nk (d8887a)

  18. #10 Sammy – Michael Gerson came up with the phrase “soft bigotry of low expectations, and George W. Bush used it in a speech. But I agree with you that it applies here.
    https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/soft_bigotry_of_low_expectations

    (If I recall corrrectly, Moynihan did come up with a related phrase, “defining deviancy down”.)

    Jim Miller (9f5c90)

  19. I wonder if Obama considers his own hands bloody since he gave Iran pallets of cash which certainly helped fund Hamas.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  20. Obv. just my opinion, I don’t think Obama made things more divisive, but I think he made divisiveness that already existed in some communities more visible. And while that’s uncomfortable and obviously caused a temporary level of chaos, it’s more healthy in the long run than just shoving it down all the time. Europe goes with the shove it down theory and they’ve ended up with a society that is seriously divided by race, ethnicity, and religion in a way that we mostly aren’t.

    Nic (896fdf)

  21. Probably apropos of somehing or other:

    “Be it so. This burning of widows is your custom; prepare the funeral pile. But my nation has also a custom. When men burn women alive we hang them, and confiscate all their property. My carpenters shall therefore erect gibbets on which to hang all concerned when the widow is consumed. Let us all act according to national customs.[To Hindu priests complaining to him about the prohibition of Sati religious funeral practice of burning widows alive on her husband’s funeral pyre.]”
    ― Charles James Napier

    How about there’s a baseline that society must impose or none of us will be able to live with each other?

    nk (8f0712)

  22. I never got the impression that Obama brought much wisdom to a problem. His mission was to be the anti-Bush whether it made sense to be or not. He could deliver a speech but he could never really get beyond his base assumptions and be bigger than the moment. Of course, he was demonized by the Right and caused the existential panic which now grips the GOP. Birtherism remains a low point of who we should be.

    But what of Israel? I’m still waiting for those critical of Israel and Netanyahu to explain what was the proper response to have when 1,400 citizens are butchered….some in horrible ways….and another 200+ kidnapped. Releasing Hamas terrorists from prison and giving up land just rewards evil behavior. A cease fire does not addresses Israel’s insecurity…or justice.

    Still, how many civilians should Israel kill to target one or a handful of Hamas terrorists? It may be true that they try to minimize collateral damage but the imagery from Gaza shows immense collateral damage. It’s fair to blame Hamas for using human shields….it’s fair to blame Israel for devaluing those shields.

    I’m not going to pretend that there is an easy solution here. Israel is obliged to destroy as many weapons caches as it can find….and to start to deactivate the tunnel system that the terrorist rats use to scurry about….and kill Hamas leadership. October 7th demands no less. But will the heavy-handed tactics just create the next generation of Gazan grievance and hatred? It’s given the arab world more fuel for the fire. I would like more wisdom….I just don’t see it ever coming from Obama’s smugness….

    AJ_Liberty (e7bebd)

  23. Well said, J.
    I can agree that no one’s hands in the Middle East are clean, but I reject any form of complicity.
    I can also agree that Obama’s Middle East foreign policy was a shambles. Obama is complicit, not the rest of us, so his shifting the guilt from himself to all Americans is not only dishonest, it’s contemptible.

    I keep going back to the parallels with Russia-Ukraine. If Russia stops its warring ways, then there will be peace. Similarly with Israel-Palestine. If Palestine stops its River-to-Sea policy and enters good faith negotiations, the so-called cycle of violence is over.

    Also contemptible is Obama’s implicit assumption that the 9,000 Palestinians killed were civilians.

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d)

  24. Did bombing Japan create the next generation of kamikazes? Need to destroy the islamist mindset. Prove it is backwards and doomed to fail. That’s the only way forward.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  25. I wasn’t really well aware of DEI/CRT being mainstream until early in the Trump administration… but, I may be misremembering this timeline.

    I really became aware of DEI (back then I don’t think they used the “E” and “I,” they were just referred to as “Diversity Offices”) back during the Great Recession, circa 2009. I remember reading an item which reported that the University of California, San Diego — one of our country’s premier public research institutions — had been forced to lay off teaching staff, including some tenure-track positions, due to budget cutbacks, yet had more than doubled its Office of Diversity (from something like eight people to twenty people) during that same period, including adding two or three additional senior-level staff. That is what first clued me in to what the higher education cartel’s true priorities were, and it most emphatically was not education.

    JVW (1ad43e)

  26. Palestinian death toll passes 10,000 and is now recruiting tool for hamas. Muslims around the world now want to join hamas in the fight against Israel and U.S.

    That tired canard has run its course long ago. Remember how we underwent a surge in Iraq circa 2007 and managed to bring things under control (at least until Obama lost interest and withdrew virtually all of our troops) without creating new generations of terrorists? Remember when we had to go back in and wipe out ISIS and ISIL, and somehow managed to do that without creating new generations of terrorists?

    The real story is that the way to create terrorists is by ignoring their provocations, thus leading young Muslims to believe that we are too weak to confront their vile actions. This is exactly what happened when we abandoned Iraq and turned it into a fertile recruitment area for ISIS/ISIL. When putative terrorists are made fully aware that the life of a terrorist is short and pointless, they tend to decide that perhaps there are other ways.

    JVW (1ad43e)

  27. @26 Run its course. Really? (DU) Indiana crashes her car into school thinking it was a jewish school. The more palestinian children are dug out of the bomb crater dead or alive more not less of this will occur. This is why democrat party pushes hard for gun control in muslim community.

    asset (ab4c76)

  28. Upon arrival, officers say they found Ruba Almaghtheh, 34, who had backed her car into the building while several adults and children were inside. Police labeled Almaghtheh a “terrorist” according to Fox 59.

    Reminds me of the kamikaze pilot who flew 37 missions. He had the willingness but did not quite grasp the concept.

    Absent explosives, backing a car into a building is in the category of “women drivers” jokes. “Old people” jokes too.

    nk (8f0712)

  29. At the debate will any nbc host ask Nikky Haley who wares higher heels her or ron desatan?

    asset (ac00cd)

  30. An older jewish man dies in fight with palestinian protester in ca. For those who disagreed when I said yesterday that hostilities in this country would only get worse. No shooting yet.

    asset (40ba39)

  31. Asset,
    the “older Jewish man” was attacked and hot in the head with a weapon causing his death. That’s called murder. Try not obfuscating what actually happened.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  32. @31 Police say they don’t know yet what happened looking for video. We will see.

    asset (40ba39)

  33. Mr. Kessler wasn’t “hot in the head with a weapon”, but it looks like he was pushed, falling backward, hitting the back of his head on the pavement.

    An autopsy determined Kessler died as a result of a blunt force head injury and ruled the manner of death a homicide, according to Ventura County Chief Medical Examiner Christopher Young. However, Young said the manner of death doesn’t necessarily point to criminal intent, only that the “death occurred at the hands of another person or the actions of another person contributed to the death of a person.”
    […]
    Fryhoff said his deputies are investigating the case as a homicide and have not determined whether it will be treated as a hate crime.

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d)

  34. @30 ‘Mr. Kessler wasn’t “hot in the head with a weapon”, but it looks like he was pushed, falling backward, hitting the back of his head on the pavement.’

    They are looking for video, but witnesses say he was hit with a megaphone causing him to fall and hit his head on the pavement. If used with intent, yes it is a weapon.

    Also reported is that while 69 year old Kessler lied on the ground bleeding, the anti-Israel protests continued. The person of interest did take a moment to call 911.

    lloyd (62e5df)

  35. The LA Times article that Paul Montagu linked to said that there are conflicting reports from witnesses as to what happened, and that even though the autopsy seems to indicate that it was the head injury from the fall which killed Mr. Kessler, there are also some marks on his face consistent with having sustained a blow there too. It’s a developing story.

    JVW (1ad43e)

  36. If you look at the photos and video, you will see a pro-Palestinian woman is there helping treat Mr. Kessler.
    I have a feeling she is a medical professional, and I think back to Dana’s post over the weekend with that sweet older man putting blessings on the posters of the hostages.
    We do have our problems here, but I don’t believe it would be easy for a Palestinian woman to care for an Israeli Jew in Gaza and this woman gives me hope

    https://ktla.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/4/2023/11/injruy.png

    steveg (3fbfdf)

  37. Don’t know if she is a medical professional, but she at least acts like a human being which is more than you can say for a lot of “Free Palestine” protestors.

    JRH (bd8efe)

  38. the man who hit Mr. Kessler with a megaphone and caused him to fall as a result also intervened because he got more than he bargained for. It is a possibility people assaulting other people out of hate may easily overlook.

    Sammy Finkelman (b434ee)

  39. Barack Obama contrived to avoid disillusioning the people who believed in the Michael Brown “hands up” lie.

    But he didn’t endorse it either.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)


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