Frank van der Linde, a Dutch political-social activist who spent a long time in Israel and has dozens of friends in the country, is the face of the BDS campaign in the Netherlands. In a special interview to Yedioth Ahronoth, he explains why he doesn’t recognize Israel as a state, dismisses claims of hypocrisy in light of the other injustices taking place in the world, and says he supports the rights of both Palestinian and Jewish refugees.
Epigenetic changes often serve to biologically prepare offspring for an environment similar to that of the parents, Yehuda explains. In this case, however, the needs of the fetus seem to have trumped that goal. With low levels of cortisol and high levels of the enzyme that breaks it down, many descendants of Holocaust survivors would be ill adapted to survive starvation themselves. In fact, that stress hormone profile might make them more susceptible to PTSD (below, yellow); previous studies have indeed suggested that the offspring of Holocaust survivors are more vulnerable to the effects of stress and are more likely to experience symptoms of PTSD. These descendants may also be at risk for age-related metabolic syndromes, including obesity, hypertension and insulin resistance, particularly in an environment of plenty.
The framework agreement the U.S. and its international partners reached with Iran that blocks Tehran’s pathways to building a nuclear bomb is barely a week old and yet the usual suspects have already denounced it as a “bad deal.” Sound Familiar?
Many people in the seven European Union nations surveyed express negative views about minority groups in their country. In particular, negative attitudes toward Roma (sometimes also known as Gypsies) are common, while many also give Muslims unfavorable ratings. Negative attitudes toward Jews are less pervasive, although substantial minorities express an unfavorable opinion about Jews as well, especially in Greece where nearly half the public hold this view. Negative sentiments about all three groups are consistently more common among people on the ideological right.
…And here’s a colorful illustration of the symbiotic relationship between the GOP and Netanyahu’s Likud. The Republican Party’s greatest patron is casino mogul Sheldon Adelson, who spent somewhere between $100 and $150 million trying to unseat Barack Obama in 2012. And who is Benjamin Netanyahu’s greatest patron? None other than Sheldon Adelson, who a few years ago created a free daily newspaper, Israel Hayom, whose primary purpose is to blanket the country with news favorable to Netanyahu.
I find this image hopeful because it gives me compassion for people who commit acts of sadistic violence. I deeply sympathize with the Gazans AND completely identify with this wearer. I know from sadism. Don’t we all? Who didn’t feel a thrill watching the Death Star blow up or Agent Smith disintegrate? I have felt the exquisite joy of inflicting punishment upon my deserving pets, children and wives. When Dirty Harry says, “Make my day” he means, “give me the opportunity to free myself from the behavioral constraints of my prefrontal cortex and let me indulge (for once) my basest instinct for violence. Let me be an animal for just a few seconds.” I remember the fun, during the first gulf war of hearing the FedEx parody, “the b-52 bomber, when it absolutely, positively has to be destroyed overnight.”
Seeing this shirt and identifying with it reminds me of my inner violent oppressor and thus makes other perps less monstrous and me feel more humanely toward them. Voltaire mocked, ‘Tout comprendre, c’est tout pardonner.’ “To understand all is to forgive all”. I agree but with delight. The guy in this image is no more a natural born killer than me. He, like the Gazans whose lives he so damaged, is just another poor slob born into circumstances not of his making, having reactions he can not possibly understand and subject a massively sophisticated campaign to harden his heart and awaken his inner Voldemort. The kind of campaign we’d hope civilized societies would eschew. Nonetheless there he/we is.
This image gives me hope b/c the sentiment it expresses is clear, unambiguous and easily recognizable. It makes a fabulous target at which to aim the best angels of my nature.