Glenn Greenwald
Politics • Writing • Culture
Is Israel’s War a US War? “Free Speech Advocates” Demand Silencing of Israel’s Critics. Is War w/ Iran Inevitable? & Israeli Media Calls for Restraint
Video Transcript
October 12, 2023
post photo preview

Watch the full episode here: 

placeholder

Podcast: Apple - Spotify 

Rumble App: Apple - Google


Good evening. It's Wednesday, October 11.

Tonight: The war between Israel and Gaza is now in its fifth full day, and each day brings new escalation, new forms of violence, and extreme levels of civilian deaths on both sides of the border. It should not be surprising that virtually the entire political class in Washington sides with Israel – as we documented on Monday night show, support for Israel has been a centerpiece of bipartisan U.S. foreign policy for decades, and numerous politically influential groups in the U.S. feel a strong affinity for Israel for all sorts of political, geostrategic, cultural and religious reasons. 

While this pro-Israel sentiment is not surprising, it is most definitely necessary to discuss this question. To what extent are Israel's wars in general, as well as its new war in particular, also America's wars? Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley said on Sunday, one day after this war began, “This is not just an attack on Israel. This was an attack on America.” Today, her fellow South Carolinian Senator Lindsey Graham, who treats every actual and proposed American war exactly the same way, he vocally cheerleads every last one of them went even further. Then, Governor Haley, in a Fox interview today said “We are in a religious war.” Is this true? When Israel is involved in a war, does it automatically mean that the U.S. is also involved in this new war as a participant? Is it possible as an American citizen to oppose U.S. government involvement in an Israeli war without being guilty of being “pro-Hamas,” similar to the way that Americans who opposed our government's role in the war in Ukraine are called pro-Putin, or how Americans who oppose their government's role in Syria were called pro-Assad, or how those who dissented from any parts of the Bush-Cheney War on Terror were accused of being on the side of the terrorist or pro-al-Qaida? Given the emergence of these kinds of statements from people like Lindsey Graham and Nikki Haley, it is more vital than ever to ask what the proper U.S. role in this war is.

Then: Many media careers have been built over the last several years, very thriving and lucrative media careers based on a professed belief in free speech and opposition to what is called “cancel culture”,” which – we have long heard – has been typically practiced by the left: an attempt to suppress or punish the expression of views they like, dislike and rregardedas dangerous, hateful and likely to incite violence. We're now hearing it, it seems, from the other side. Yesterday, the quite conservative British home secretary, when speaking about pro-Palestinian protests in London, declared the following: “Waving a Palestinian flag or singing a chant advocating freedom for Arabs in the region may be a criminal offense.” Waving the Palestinian flag or chanting about freedom for Arabs in the region – If you do that in the UK, you may be committing a criminal offense. In Canada, the mayor of Toronto accuses pro-Palestinian protesters of having broken the law by failing to obtain necessary protest permits. The same argument Canadian officials invoked last year, to argue that those trucker protests against COVID mandates were also illegal. Oh, they didn't get the right permits. Meanwhile, in the United States, many prominent figures, including ones who have long denounced the evils of censorship and what they call “cancel culture”, meaning punishing private citizens for expressing widely unpopular views, especially when those views are declared to be hateful or inciting of violence, have spent this week compiling the names of students, a list of students at American universities, who signed pro-Palestinian statements and have devoted themselves publicly to pressuring companies, private companies, sometimes successfully, to fire those people for having signed those statements or announcing and committing to the fact that they will refuse ever to hire such people. Is this a violation of their previously stated opposition to censorship and “cancel culture”? Or is there something special and unique about this particular debate when it comes to Israel that renders such threats of criminalization from government officials or campaigns to have people fired for their views uniquely justified? 

And then: The Wall Street Journal on Monday purported to have confirmed that top Iranian officials directly planned and helped organize Saturday's attack on Israel, a claim that has been repeated by numerous presidential candidates and officials, including both Nikki Haley and Lindsey Graham and others as well. This is obviously quite inflammatory claim. Recall that similar claims about Saddam Hussein's participation in planning the 9/11 attack are what led many Americans to support the regime change war against Iraq because they thought Iraq had helped attack the United States. 

Even U.S. and some Israeli officials have quickly denied knowledge of any such linkage between Iran and this attack. But some vocal anti-Iran voices, while some are also calling into question the veracity of this report, others have started to beat the drums of war against Iran. It illustrates how there are a lot of influential sectors in American political media circles that crave conflict with Tehran. This raises the question, I think, how many wars with how many different countries is the U.S. supposed to be fighting? The U.S. government is already heavily involved in one dangerous proxy war by using Ukraine to fight against and weaken the world's largest nuclear power, which is Russia. The U.S. is already heavily involved in this new Middle East war in similar ways by feeding Israel the money and weapons to wage this war and has even deployed major aircraft carriers to the region. At the same time, a non-trivial number of influential people in the U.S. see China as the gravest American enemy. And there is open talk in many key circles about how the likelihood of ending up in a hot war with Beijing is very real, especially if they harass or invade Taiwan. Most Americans in positions of influence, including the president, say they would go to war against China if that happened. There are a lot of wars already, serious, dangerous wars against countries with serious militaries. Should Iran a country three times the size of Iraq with a much more sophisticated military, be added to the list of the countries the U.S. is supposed to be considering, not just an enemy, but one that we should be preparing for a possible war against? The Wall Street Journal article made that possibility much more likely by announcing, seemingly with very little proof, that Iran was the key organizer of this attack on Israel. 

Finally, it is a notable paradox that the Israeli media contains many voices urging restraint in how Israel uses military force in Gaza to avenge Saturday's attacks by Hamas. They argue, and we'll show you a couple of representative voices that there is a crucial distinction between Hamas on the one hand and Palestinian civilians on the other. They argued the lives of Gazans, ordinary Palestinians have value, especially given that half of its 2.2 million population is composed of children, people under the age of 18. They further argue that Israel must observe basic humanitarianism and long-standing laws of war to avoid indiscriminately extinguishing massive amounts of innocent Palestinian lives.

This is a view heard, paradoxically, I think, more by the Israeli media than in the U.S. media. So, I think it's worth asking, especially as we examine the latest wreckage and death and destruction in Gaza, whether that argument that some Israelis are making is correct while there are a few people who have done so, there is nobody of any prominence in the United States who is cheering or defending or justifying the horrific atrocities committed by Hamas against Israeli civilians, including children on Saturday. Any decent person, by definition, values innocent civilian life of all kinds, including obviously Israelis, and reacts with horror and disgust when seeing those videos from Israel on Saturday and believes it's always morally reprehensible to deliberately target civilian lives. The question, sadly prompted by our current discourse in the United States, including calls for the complete eradication of Gaza, is whether this basic humanitarian principle that innocent lives have value, whether that applies to Palestinian as well as to Israeli lives. 

For now, welcome to a new episode of System Update, starting right now.

Only for Supporters
To read the rest of this article and access other paid content, you must be a supporter
12
What else you may like…
Videos
Podcasts
Posts
Articles
Watch Tonight's Monologue

Due to a connection issue, our stream was cut short tonight.
You can find the entire episode below.

We apologize for this technical difficulty - thank you so much for your continued support.

00:43:24
Listen to this Article: Reflecting New U.S. Control of TikTok's Censorship, Our Report Criticizing Zelensky Was Deleted

For years, U.S. officials and their media allies accused Russia, China and Iran of tyranny for demanding censorship as a condition for Big Tech access. Now, the U.S. is doing the same to TikTok. Listen below.

Listen to this Article: Reflecting New U.S. Control of TikTok's Censorship, Our Report Criticizing Zelensky Was Deleted
WEEKLY WEIGH-IN: What’s New?

What’s happening in politics that you want to talk about? Are there any burning topics that Glenn needs to cover? Any thoughts you’d like to share?

This post will be pinned to our profile for the remainder of this week, so comment below anytime with your questions, insights, future topic ideas/guest recommendations, etc. Let’s get a conversation going!

Glenn will respond to a few comments here—and may even address some fascinating exchanges on our next supporters-only After Show.

Thank you so much for your continued support through another week of SYSTEM UPDATE with Glenn Greenwald!

🏆Dog-of-the-Week:

Our Dogs*-of-the-Week is the duo, (left to right) Tobi and Kuma, who passionately pace and occasionally sit in the studio while helping Glenn answer our lovely audience-sourced questions.

How Do You Feel About Aaron Bushnell?

Aaron Bushnell engaged in an extreme act of protest—self-immolation—against the Israeli occupation of Gaza and the genocide of the Palestinian people.

Independent of your thoughts on his stance, how do you view this form of protest?

The comment section is open 👇

post photo preview
Looking for Your Feedback on Our Emails

Hey Locals supporters! Just checking to see if our email notifications have gotten out of hand. We want to keep you informed about all things SYSTEM UPDATE—but don’t want to spam you.

Thank you for your help!

post photo preview
post photo preview
SYSTEM UPDATE RECAP: FEB 26-MAR 1
Weekly Recap

Welcome to the SYSTEM UPDATE recap, your weekend digest featuring everything we’ve covered throughout the previous week. 

Prefer to listen to your daily news analysis? Reminder that FULL episodes of SYSTEM UPDATE are available anywhere you listen to podcasts🎙️

Enjoy!

 

MONDAY, FEBRUARY 26 - EPISODE 234

Why Nikki Haley—After Destruction in Her Own State—Refuses to Leave the Race. CIA Use of Ukraine Shows Why US Prolongs the War. Hasan Piker Scandal & the Sickly Left-Liberal Streaming Culture

Full transcript available for paid supporters: HERE

 

WATCH THE EPISODE

Intro (10:46)

Haley Not Dropping Out (21:46)

CIA Playground (42:37)

Trouble in Streamer Paradise (1:03:26)

Ending (1:28:04)

 

TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 27 - EPISODE 235

Media Revives Russia Hysteria for 2024 Election. Is Self-Immolation Always Regarded as Immoral? PLUS: Germany: Still the Most Extremist Country in Europe

Full transcript available for paid supporters: HERE

 

WATCH THE EPISODE

Intro (6:58)

Russiagate 2.0 (13:47)

How Do We Regard Self-Immolation (38:40)

German Authoritarianism on Display (57:36)

Ending (1:23:22)

 

Supporters-Only After Show for Tuesday, February 27

We moved to Locals for our supporters-only, interactive after show, where Glenn shared his thoughts on some burning audience questions:

 

@Jorah

i kinda felt personally attacked when glenn was talking about people forming parasocial relationships with streamers, im way to big a fan of Glenn's lolol

 

@EveBell

Love you, love the shows. I donwish you would cover more of how terrible Trump's Presidency actually was. It seems like many of your viewers support him. I guess I'm saying your coverage is not balanced in my view.

 

Available for paid supporters here

Want to join us every Tuesday and Thursday for this supporter-exclusive, live after show? Become a paid supporter here!

 

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 29 - EPISODE 236

Mass Famine in Gaza as 100 Die at Aid Convoy. Biden Reaffirms Israel Support. Oct. 7 Propaganda Collapses. PLUS: Bari Weiss & TIME Reveal Neocons’ New Self-Victimhood Narrative

Full transcript available for paid supporters: HERE

 

WATCH THE EPISODE

Intro (6:50)

Famine Grows in Gaza (17:42)

Fog of Lies (49:32)

Self-Victimhood Narratives (1:13:11)

Ending (1:43:15)

 

Go to https://www.1775coffee.com/GLENN and use code GLENN for 10% off at checkout on your first order.

 

Supporters-Only After Show for Thursday, February 29

We moved to Locals for our supporters-only, interactive after show, where Glenn shared his thoughts on some burning audience questions:

 

@Michaelariya: 

“Glenn screwed me over by mentioning the show “The Wire” a few Q&As ago. My life has been a blur since. But what an amazing show!”

 

@thefarside

Assuming Biden doesn’t give way as the Democratic nominee do you think he’s cognitively capable of engaging in 3 debates? Or do you think the Democrats would find an excuse to avoid these debates such as claiming the format is unfair or Trump lies too much, etc.?

 

Available for paid supporters here

Want to join us every Tuesday and Thursday for this supporter-exclusive, live after show? Become a paid supporter here!

 

FRIDAY, March 1 - EPISODE 237

Important Court Victory for Non-Violent Jan 6 Protesters. Brazil, Free Speech and Authoritarianism. PLUS: Congressional Hearing on Safety for College Students

Full transcript available for paid supporters on Monday

 

WATCH THE EPISODE

Intro (7:35)

Victory for Jan. 6 Protestors (14:40)

Authoritarianism & Free Speech in Brazil (42:53)

Congressional Hearing on Safetyism (1:18:08)

Ending (1:29:41)

Read full Article
post photo preview
Mass Famine in Gaza as 100 Die at Aid Convoy. Biden Reaffirms Israel Support. Oct. 7 Propaganda Collapses. PLUS: Bari Weiss & TIME Reveal Neocons’ New Self-Victimhood Narrative
Video Transcript

Watch the full episode here: 

placeholder
 

Podcast: Apple - Spotify 

Rumble App: Apple - Google


Good evening. It's Thursday, February 29th, which is Leap Day. 

 Tonight, a mountain of new data proves that a significant portion of the population of Gaza is now at immediate risk of dying of mass famine. One out of every six children in northern Gaza is classified as acute malnutrition and wasting, meaning their bodies have already entered the state of being emaciated. There are now proven reports of children actually dying, of starvation and dehydration, and as aid and hunger groups have been warning that this will happen for weeks, there are now all kinds of very strident warnings coming from aid organizations and nurses who are working in Gaza that they have never seen anything on the scale of a humanitarian disaster this extreme.  

There's no mystery, nor is there any reasonable debate about why this is happening. Israel's Defense Minister, Yoav Gallant, vowed in the first week of the war back in October that Israel intended to impose a full blockade on Gaza. That would, in his words, mean, “no food, no water, no fuel, no electricity.” Well, there has been a minimal amount of humanitarian aid let into Gaza, after that, it is nowhere near close to giving the population of 2.2 million people any chance to survive. Israelis have been physically blocking the entrance of aid convoys for weeks. A scene of extreme desperation unfolded before the world's eyes earlier today, as hungry and desperate Gazans swarmed aid trucks carrying food and other humanitarian necessities. Moments later, dozens were dead and hundreds were seriously injured. While there are conflicting accounts about how many of them actually died and how they died, either through a stampede or by opening fire from the Israeli Defense Forces, some facts are agreed to by both sides, as the New York Times summarized: “Israeli forces opened fire while a crowd was gathered on Thursday near a convoy of trucks carrying desperately needed aid to Gaza City, part of a chaotic scene in which scores of people were killed and injured, according to Gazan health officials and the Israeli military." (February 29, 2024)

Whatever your views are on Israel or on the wisdom of Biden's policy of supporting and arming the Israelis without conditions, we are witnessing mass famine of the kind that is rarely seen in the modern world. That is just a fact. On top of that, Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin testified in Congress today where he said that 25,000 Gazan women and children have been killed by Israel since October 7. That's 25,000 women and children killed in and in Gaza. 

Even if you want to assume that every adult male who was killed was a Hamas operative—and that's obviously an absurd assumption—that would still mean that roughly 80% of those Palestinians killed in Gaza by airstrikes and the Israeli ground invasion since October 7, 80% of those killed are innocent civilians. Roughly 70% of the civilian infrastructure in Gaza is permanently destroyed. And for those who believe it is important to note such things, Israel claims that the indiscriminate and widespread famine and killing now heading into its sixth full month—not between two militaries, but between one military that's among the most sophisticated in the world, backed by the world's largest and most powerful superpower in world history, the United States, against a basically defenseless population composed almost overwhelmingly of women and children—Israel argues that it is all justified by the October 7 attack, in which Hamas militants killed 700 Israeli civilians, and that is the number that they killed, 700. 

Meanwhile, the Biden administration remains absolutely steadfast in its support for Israel, repeatedly isolating our country on the world stage in order to block resolutions at the U.N., resolutions that are supported by most countries on the planet that call for a cease-fire. Biden, who has spent his career as one of Washington's most unyielding and vocal supporters of Israel, has vowed that the U.S. will continue to fund and arm Israel's military and its war without conditions until the very end. Biden remains adamant in his view, even though by all accounts, his own reelection in 2024 is threatened by growing anger over this policy among key Democratic voting blocs. On Tuesday, a campaign led by Arab Muslims and young voters in Michigan succeeded beyond anyone's wildest dreams. More than 100,000 Democratic Party voters went to the polls to vote “uncommitted” rather than for Joe Biden, as a signal of their willingness to abstain in November over Biden's support for this Israeli war. 

As all of this unfolds, the true extent of the war propaganda that sustains American support for this war is finally being revealed. Some of the most horrific stories that circulated in the weeks and months, even about what happened in Israel on October 7—things like 40 Israeli babies being beheaded, babies murdered by being baked in ovens, obviously recalling the Holocaust, babies cut out of their pregnant mother's wombs—have been affirmatively debunked. Those things did not happen. They've been proven as lies, as so often happens when we are fed stories designed to view the newest enemy as subhuman savages whose death we should not mourn but rather celebrate. 

The New York Times, in particular, faces a real and serious journalistic scandal surrounding its highly influential December 28 article that purported to confirm the use of mass rape by Hamas on October 7. Wars are so horrific, and the attack on core humanity so severe, that governments know that the only way their populations will tolerate them for as long as those governments want, is that people become convinced that the targets of the war are people who deserve suffering, largely because they are something less than human: hey're subhuman, or savages, or so singularly primitive that not only them but their children and culture and population deserve to be destroyed. All war propaganda at its core is designed to provoke that belief in us and a lot of that propaganda typically ends up being debunked as the war proceeds. That is most definitely the case for a lot of the propaganda surrounding October 7. 

Then: speaking of war propaganda, there were two major journalistic events this week in the U.S. designed to fortify a narrative that we've been covering from the start, namely, that American Jews, once safe in the United States, are now a uniquely endangered and vulnerable victim group. Time Magazine, which is now owned by a fanatical supporter of Israel who is a billionaire, published an article by Harvard law professor and longtime Israel supporter, Noah Feldman, arguing that the United States is now subsumed in what it calls “the new antisemitism.” Meanwhile, another fanatical and very prominent, wealthy and influential Israel supporter, Bari Weiss, was invited to give a speech on the State of World Jewry at the 92nd Street Y, in Manhattan, just weeks after they canceled another scheduled speech by the Pulitzer Prize-winning author Viet Thanh Nguyen due to his criticism of Israel. In that speech, Weiss also announced a new victimhood narrative for American Jews, while also advocating the classic neocon worldview that demands that the United States either fight or finance multiple foreign wars, knowing that is a mentality that, of course, will lead to injustice by having the U.S. continue to finance and arm Israel's military and all of its wars. 

This mentality has become more dominant than ever, despite its self-victimizing claims that those who believe this are relegated to the dangerous fringes of society and somehow silence, yet we hear from them continuously and all in the most influential venues and because of how dominant this worldview has become, we think it is highly worth considering. We know this topic is polarizing and divisive to a lot of people, but there's just no question that the war in Gaza has become something unlike what we really have seen, certainly in the 21st century, and it's just not something it can be avoided because some people prefer that we do, or some people disagree with us on our perspective. We do our best to show you the truth, our sources for them, the documentation for it, in the hopes that you will evaluate it objectively regardless of your view, and then decide for yourself that, ultimately, it is our job not to tell you what you want to hear or to flatter all your views, but to cover the things that we think most need coverage.

For now, welcome to a new episode of System Update, starting right now.

Only for Supporters
To read the rest of this article and access other paid content, you must be a supporter
Read full Article
post photo preview
Media Revives Russia Hysteria for 2024 Election. Is Self-Immolation Always Regarded as Immoral? PLUS: Germany: Still the Most Extremist Country in Europe
Video Transcript

Watch the full episode here: 

placeholder
 

Podcast: Apple - Spotify 

Rumble App: Apple - Google 


Good evening. It's Tuesday, February 27

Tonight: In case you didn't get enough of Russiagate hysteria during the 2016 presidential campaign when Trump's alleged collusion with the Kremlin was the dominant storyline of the Clinton campaign's attack, and in case you still didn't get enough of it during the entire first Trump presidential term—when talk of pee-pee tapes and dossiers and Russian blackmail and Robert Mueller was the leading story in the United States for years —and in case you still weren't satiated by the tsunami of Russian talk leading up to the 2020 election, when Democrats and their allies in the CIA and corporate media actually succeeded in getting reporting about Joe Biden censored by Big Tech, by falsely labeling it “Russian disinformation,” don't worry, there's a lot more coming as we head into the 2024 election. 

Earlier this week, the grand dame of Washington media, NBC News and MSNBC, Andrea Mitchell, who is also a former wife of former Federal Reserve Chair Alan Greenspan, announced that the 51 former intelligence officials who warned of “Russian disinformation” in the lead up to the 2020 election, now feel “vindicated,” in her words, despite the fact that the claim they made that the Hunter Biden laptop was Russian disinformation is every bit as much of a lie now as it was then. Somehow they feel “vindicated.” That is because major media outlets are explicitly preparing to label everything they dislike in this election year, from criticisms of Joe Biden to questioning the war in Ukraine and everything in between as “Russian disinformation.” 

With apologies to one of the world's greatest animals, these media operatives are like a dog who finds a toy they love and then refuses to release it from its mouth no matter what. Since 2016, they have been attempting to regain control of American discourse and politics by calling everyone a “Kremlin agent” and all dissent “Russian disinformation.” Amazingly enough, despite how tired and stale it is, they are clearly preparing for this to be their primary tactic to prop up Joe Biden and ensure that he is reelected and that the glorious war in Ukraine continues eternally. They unveiled it this week and we will show you all of that. 

Then: on Sunday, a 25-year-old member of the United States Air Force, Aaron Bushnell, went to the Israeli embassy in Washington and set himself on fire while chanting pro-Palestinian slogans such as Free Palestine. In recordings and posts he left before doing so, Bushnell made very clear that he was engaging in this as an act of protest against U.S. support for Israel's destruction of Gaza. All of this led to a rather predictable form of discourse, with Israel supporters clearly understanding the danger to their cause of a U.S. service member sacrificing his own life in protest of U.S. support for Israel, insisting that the man was just mentally ill and that nothing about his act should be admired or celebrated, in fact, should be scorned and hated. But is it really possible to separate one's views of this act of self-immolation from one's view of the underlying cause and whose name it was done? One might think from this that anyone who engages in setting themselves on fire for a cause is always disparaged as mentally ill. But that is simply not true. The U.S. has a long history of venerating such acts and expressing admiration for people who do this provided the cause is right. So, is there anyone condemning this self-immolation now because they believe that the act is inherently immoral, or is it just cover for their opposition to the underlying cause of stopping Israel's destruction of Gaza? It's really worth taking a look at. 

Finally, Germany's history in the 20th century is rather shameful and horrific, to put that mildly. Few people will say this more loudly or eagerly than Germans themselves. Not only do they engage in extreme self-denunciation of their history and self-actualization as a people, but they also insist that they are now going to do everything possible to compensate for what they regard as their shameful past. Yet so often, this embarrassment about their own history results not in what you might think it should—humility or moderation or restraint—but instead in its opposite. Some of the most unhinged extremism on the planet emanates from German officials. Indeed, one could easily make the case that Germany is, despite all this history, or more accurately, because of it, still the most extremist nation in all of Europe. We will examine how and why. 

For now, welcome to a new episode of System Update, starting right now. 

Only for Supporters
To read the rest of this article and access other paid content, you must be a supporter
Read full Article
See More
Available on mobile and TV devices
google store google store app store app store
google store google store app tv store app tv store amazon store amazon store roku store roku store
Powered by Locals