Another day, another UN school hit by Israeli shelling in Gaza. Israel’s attack this morning killed at least 16 civilians sheltering at the school and wounded dozens. The casualties figures are expected to rise.
Israel and even most of its critics tell us that the civilian casualties are accidental, caused by Israel’s need to wage its war against Hamas in heavily built-up areas of Gaza. Israel is accused of “disproportionality”, or of recklessness, or of inflicting unfortunate collateral damage.
But here’s another possibility: that the people of Gaza, not just Hamas, are the target. That Israel’s generals don’t see much difference between the two.
Israel’s army is “degrading” – or “mowing the lawn”, in even worse military parlance – Gaza’s ability to resist. Not Hamas’ abilities, but Gaza’s. Because the problem lies not with Hamas. Hamas is simply a symptom, of the people of Gaza’s determination to liberate themselves from Israel’s siege.
That is why the power plant was destroyed yesterday. That is why Israel has been starving Gaza for years through its siege, limiting the entry of basic foods and counting the minimum calories people need for bare survival – putting them on a diet, as one senior adviser jokingly termed it. That is why Gaza’s infrastructure is being trashed – the notorious Dahiya doctrine, devised by Israeli generals in 2006 as way to force hostile populations back into the Stone Age, keeping them preoccupied with the essentials of life rather than demanding, or fighting, for their rights.
Israel knows it cannot destroy Hamas’ will to resist without destroying Gaza’s will to resist too. And that is what it looks like we are seeing played out here day-in, day-out. Civilians, it seems, must die to teach Gaza a lesson: you will submit.
“Propaganda by its very nature is an enterprise for perverting the significance of events and of insinuating false intentions…The propagandist will not accuse the enemy of just any misdeed; he will accuse him of the very intention that he himself has and of trying to commit the very crime that he himself is about to commit. He who wants to provoke a war not only proclaims his own peaceful intentions but also accuses the other party of provocation.” – Jacques Ellul, Propaganda: The Formation of Men’s Attitudes, 1965
As Israeli war crimes continue unabated – at the time of this writing, nearly 1100 human beings in the besieged Gaza Strip, the vast majority of whom are civilians, have already been slaughtered by their occupiers; over 6,200 have been wounded – Israeli lies too keep piling up.
Despite what Israeli spokespeople and their dutiful, compliant, and prostrate puppets in the media continue to claim, Hamas was not responsible for the abduction and murder of three Israeli teenagers last month. Hamas did not break the 2012 ceasefire, Israel did. Hamas is not forcing Palestinians to act as “human shields.” Israel is not acting in self-defense when it bombs hospitals, schools, ambulances, mosques, homes, refugee camps, parks, or a zoo. The “terror tunnels” which Israel apparently needs to murder hundreds and hundreds of men, women, and children in order to destroy pose essentially no threat whatsoever to Israeli civilians. The list goes on and on.
Israel’s ongoing massacre cannot continue without a steady barrage of hasbara – what Zionists, in their Orwellian glory, refer to as “public diplomacy,” but which is merely propaganda to justify the indefensible, inexcusable, and unspeakable. That is, the promotion of a 19th century, colonial European ideology of ethnic, religious, and racial superiority, imposed upon an indigenous population through military conquest and a campaign of ethnic cleansing, displacement, dispossession, disenfranchisement, and discrimination.
And yet, though mainstream media outlets are suffused with pro-Israel bias and Israel has legions of willing propagandists trolling the internet to spread Netanyahu’s latest talking points, we have heard – especially as the Palestinian death toll keeps rising – that Israel and its advocates are “losing the media war.” Politico, Mashable, New York Magazine, analyst Juan Cole, and Britain’s Channel 4 have all noted this.
Even the Telegraph‘s detestable, neoconservative “Defence Editor” Con Coughlin is worried for Israel’s image, writing that, “with so much focus on the Palestinian victims of this dreadful conflict, it is hard to see how Israel can turn the propaganda war around in its favour.” Coughlin laments, “I fear the answer is that it cannot.”
Similarly, in a conversation via Twitter with a spokesman at the Israeli Embassy, Washington Post White House correspondent Scott Wilson was fretful that the Israeli slaughter in Gaza might not be “good for Israel – strategically.” For Wilson, as for so many others, Israeli war crimes and crimes against humanity are simply image problems, a matter of PR.
Without its propaganda, Israel cannot sustain the support of its benefactors, whether in the war chests of Congress or the war cries of brainwashed and bloodthirsty communities. Without its lies, Israel can’t survive. This fact is known not only to professional hasbarists like Michael Oren, Dore Gold, and Mark Regev, but – more importantly – is a vital feature of Zionism, inseparable from the ideology itself.
In a little known and rarely-referenced letter written in early 1897, Theodor Herzl, the ostensible founder of political Zionism, made this perfectly clear. During the planning stages of the First Zionist Congress – initially to take place in Munich but eventually held in Basel, Switzerland in late August 1897 – Herzl contacted Willy Bambus, leader of the Berlin Hovevei Zion society (an early Zionist organization committed to Jewish immigration and agricultural settlement in Palestine), for support.
“I want to reach an understanding with the Berlin Zionists,” Herzl wrote from Vienna on January 26, 1897. “[I]n the general Zionist conference that I am planning for next summer, we will grow closer to each other.” The letter is written in German, Herzl’s first language.
Herzl’s dream was big and he knew what he needed to achieve it:
But a project of this sort… has one prior condition: propaganda. First we must have propaganda and afterward establish economic projects… [T]ry to win influence at a Berlin daily newspaper… There is no necessity to immediately give the newspaper a Zionist imprint. On the contrary, because of the cowardly suspicions (to my sorrow, of most of the Jews) of Zionism, it would be wiser to keep things innocent… Perhaps you can… purchase a Zionist paper in Berlin, that will not be outwardly noticed as such.
Friendly media coverage? Feigned innocence and impartiality? Sounds familiar.
“Until now Zionism has been silent,” Herzl wrote Bambus. “We must free its tongue. This is the first order of business.”
Those tongues of Zionism have since wrought over a century of pain and suffering, in name the entitlement and privilege, to the people of Palestine. It is time to drown out the propaganda with truth.
I really wonder what it says about the Guardian or its readers that it publishes an article like this one by Yuli Novak, a former Israeli air force officer. The discourse, even on the left, is still so degraded on the issue of Israel-Palestine that this seems to pass for progressive thought.
I am also appalled that I almost find myself pleased that this former soldier, an insider, is telling us that Israel is acting immorally in its current attack on Gaza. But in doing so she bolsters a patently ridiculous mythology that, for most of its history, Israel had a moral army – the most moral in the world, no less – and that only a decade ago the army agonised over every Palestinian death.
As someone who lived and reported through those years, at the start of the second intifada, I can say with certainty that that is utter nonsense. This was a time when the Israeli chief of staff, Moshe Yaalon, the current defence minister, spoke of “searing” defeat into the Palestinian consciousness.
Let’s not forget that the Israeli army, far from once being driven by moral ideals, began life with an act of mass ethnic cleansing of Palestinians, in 1948. It has been maintaining and expanding the cleansed zone ever since.
What’s so dangerous about these “shooting and crying” articles – I remember an equally silly one a few years back in the Observer by Will Hutton about the “once noble ideal” of the kibbutzim, the racially pure communities Israel built over the ruins of Palestine – is that they lay claim to a golden era, one that, of course, never existed, when Israel’s mission was truly wholesome.
Writers like Novak want Israel to return to an imaginary recent past, ignoring the fact that the present is simply a logical extension of everything that went before. The seeds of the current rampage in Gaza were laid in the decades of Israel’s dispossession of the native population, culminating in the Nakba of 1948. Most of the population of Gaza are refugees from that period – their grievances and rights unaddressed all these many years later.
It is some consolation that people like Novak are waking up to the ugliness of Israel’s national mission: to subdue and displace the native Palestinian people. This is evidence of the self-destructive course Israel is set on. But Novak’s moral high ground is undermined entirely if she wants to claim it was all much prettier a few years ago.
The Ukrainian Civil War took a violent and headline-grabbing international turn for the worst on 17 July following the downing of Flight MH17. Although it appears more and more likely that it was the Ukrainian Army that shot it down and not the anti-Kiev Resistance, pro-Western media has been aggressively pushing the narrative that Russia, specifically President Putin, was involved and has been suppressing evidence to the contrary. It has even gone as far as to infer that “Russian-backed separatists” carried out a “terrorist attack”, further upping the propaganda ante. The reason behind this massive information war is that the US wants to “isolate Russia” and expand NATO into Ukraine, something which it has largely been unable to successfully do up until this point. In fact, it appears as though the US is now readying to play its trump card – granting Ukraine major non-NATO ally status and declaring Russia as a “state sponsor of terrorism”, both of which would in turn advance NATO interests and threateningly force the EU to choose whether its destiny lies with the Atlantic or the Continent.
“Operation: Isolation” before Flight MH17
Prior to the downing of MH17, US-led sanctions against Russia were unsuccessful in isolating Moscow. The EU refused to enact any meaningful sanctions that would endanger its $330 billion yearly trade with Russia, thereby mitigating the US’ economic bullying efforts. In fact, the verbal threat of sanctions was actually beneficial for Russia since it motivated the country to look outside the West for future economic prospects. An historic gas deal with China was signed in May that was worth nearly half a trillion dollars, and in the same month, the Eurasian Economic Union was officially formed. Then, right before 17 July, Putin attended the BRICS conference in Brazil where he met with leaders representing nearly half of the world’s population, and they committed to creating the alternative BRICS Development Bank. Clearly, Russia wasn’t going to be isolated by the West.
All while this was happening, the US kept trying to find a backdoor way for incorporating Kiev’s armed forces into NATO, and it found it through its local lackey, Poland. A plan was concocted by Ukraine to create a joint brigade between it, Lithuania, and Poland, with Poland being the key NATO partner involved (Lithuania on its own is almost insignificant in international and military affairs of any kind). The importance here is that Kiev has been institutionalizing the relationship it has with its new strategic partner, Poland, also inviting its former overlord and mercenary-in-arms into the east to assist with “creating new jobs” (read: plundering) in Donbass. What is happening here is that even if the West was unsuccessful in isolating Russia, it could at the very least move as much of its influence eastward to the Russian frontier as it can in order to enact maximum pressure on Moscow.
The “Terrorist” Label and Shadow NATO
Almost immediately after it happened, the MH17 catastrophe was seized upon by Western political opportunists as valuable capital for their geostrategic game. As was mentioned in the first paragraph, pro-Western media outlets immediately laid the blame squarely at Putin’s feet, and this wasn’t coincidental. The objective in doing so has been to generate enough anti-Russian sentiment in Europe so as to justify mutually disadvantageous sanctions (more so for the socially and politically fractured EU, many of whose members are still in recession, than for the economically resolute Russia). The EU, and especially Germany, will only “shoot itself in the kneecaps” as either an emotional or forced response, as to do so under any normal circumstances would be absolutely unreasonable.
Thus, the “terrorist” label entered the discourse.
It has now become popular for Western opinion makers to repeat the Kiev slur that the anti-coup Resistance are “terrorists”, emphasizing that they are “Russian-backed” and “supported by Putin”. It doesn’t matter that none of this is true – what is important is that it is repeated as loudly and as often as can be. The result is to acclimate the public into believing that Russia under Putin is a pariah state, much as Newsweek magazine tried to convince their audience with its last hate piece. Poroshenko has taken things even further, likening MH17 to Lockerbie and 9/11 and trying to get Donetsk and Lugansk’s governments on the international terrorist list.
It is only a short leap of “logic” to see the connection between Russia and Putin as terrorist sponsors and the US’ designation of state-sponsor-of-terrorism status onto the country. Such a step would lead to immediate US sanctions and intense pressure on the EU to cut off its major non-energy trade contacts with Russia and fiendishly move towards diversifying away from Russian gas (to say nothing of killing the South Stream project). The US will only take this extreme step if it is sure that it has more influence over Europe than Russia does and that Europe can be convinced to sacrifice its economic well-being for ideological and political reasons (which is not that far-off of a possibility for such an indoctrinated leadership).
Just as before the tragedy, it must be noted that the US is still pursuing the goal of shadow NATO integration with Ukraine parallel to isolating Russia. It is reported that it may be on the cusp of granting Ukraine major non-NATO ally status and even providing pinpoint precision intelligence for attacking anti-Kiev SAM sites. This could rapidly creep into something much more, per the Libya model, especially since US military advisors will be on the ground. Thus, in one fell swoop, by evoking the “terrorist” label, the US can ‘kill two birds with one stone’ – guilt/force the EU into “isolating Russia” (thereby isolating and harming itself as well) and swallow Ukraine into Shadow NATO.
The US has plainly demonstrated that it is salivating for a Cold War redux with Russia, and once more, Europe is caught in the middle. It is completely contrary to any of its interests for it to participate in this needless and aggressive geopolitical struggle, but as the EU seems wont to do nowadays, it may easily get sucked into it out of misguided ideological and political reasons dictated by the US. In fact, it may have little choice: the US could unilaterally declare Russia as a state sponsor of terrorism and then force the EU, whose largest export market is the US and with whom it is negotiating the Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (which European political elite naively believe will benefit them), into acquiescing to its military occupier’s demands. This wouldn’t “isolate” Russia, which has already made a strong push into the non-Western world since April, as much as it would isolate the EU, but ironically, this may even work in Washington’s favor by crippling its friendly economic rival and keeping it under its thumb for at least another decade.
Moreover, Russia as a “state sponsor of terrorism” would create a clear dividing line between the West and Russia and could give a renewed hybrid purpose to NATO. Whereas in the Cold War it was an anti-Russian organization and then in the “Global War on Terror” it nominally became an anti-terrorist organization, it may soon carry the new hybrid mission of containing a “terrorist-supporting” Russia. This would also provide enhanced justification to European populations for the deployment of even more US and NATO personnel in Eastern Europe, as well as deeper and faster Shadow NATO integration for Ukraine, Georgia, and Moldova, thereby laying the framework for a Western battering ram into Russia’s Near Abroad. All of this would rightfully alarm Russia, which would then defensively ramp up its multivector cooperation with ‘The Rest’ and BRICS. This would be especially so for its prized strategic partner and fellow Western target, China, potentially creating an eventual de-facto alliance between the two giants out of shared security concerns and transforming the Eurasian strategic landscape.
According to the Congressional Budget Office, “Israel is the largest cumulative recipient of U.S. foreign assistance since World War II. To date, the United States has provided Israel $121 billion (current, or non-inflation-adjusted, dollars) in bilateral assistance. Almost all U.S. bilateral aid to Israel is in the form of military assistance, although in the past Israel also received significant economic assistance.” Other special benefits also flow to the Israeli military. Each year, the U.S. pays for about 20 percent of Israel’s overall military spending, and the total places Israel as the 16th largest military spender in the world. “In 2007, the Bush Administration and the Israeli government agreed to a 10-year, $30 billion military aid package for the period from FY2009 to FY2018.” Obama has renewed that pledge.
The U.S. routinely supports Israel’s policies and avoids condemning Israel for its rights violations against Palestinians. It may never have done so. This week, for example, the U.S. cast the sole vote against the U.N. Human Rights Council Resolution concerning the Occupied Palestinian Territory. The vote was 29-1. A link to the full text of the resolution is here. (The texts vary slightly in different reports.)
Because the U.S. government has made itself virtually one with Israel, we must ask the question: What exactly is the U.S. supporting when it supports Israel? One cannot arrive at answers to this question without examining Israel’s history. One may make a start by reading Theodor Herzl’s 1896 pamphlet “The Jewish State”, a visionary tract. This provides insight into the goals of Herzl and his assumptions behind colonizing Palestine. How the colonization actually worked out has not been as he planned. Israel continues to be a problematic state, an expansionary state, and what is worse, a dangerous nuclear power state. Wikipedia has a number of articles on the history. This one provides a start. One thing the U.S. supports when it supports Israel is what Israel is doing in Gaza at this moment.
Murray Rothbard has a highly readable and valuable account of the history up to 1967.
Although America has stood in theory as a melting pot and a country that favored the assimilation of many peoples from all over the world, and in practice was against Black Nationalism, the U.S. government has supported Jewish Nationalism in Israel. It has supported a society that could only support such a state by being exclusionary and segregated, or even ethnically cleansed. The philosophy behind that state rested on Herzl’s assumptions, which in my view were deeply flawed. He simply ignored the native population of Palestine. He simply asserted that Jews were a people one people, that assimilation was out of the question and that a Jewish State was a solution to anti-Semitism. All of these assertions are questionable. He declared that “Palestine is our ever-memorable historic home.” Can any people or ethnic group of today return to the place where their ancestors originated with the idea of displacing its current residents and making their own State? No one would approve of such an idea. Anyway, this “historic home” idea was really not true of all Jews after 1,800 years had passed and Jews had had many, many homes in many lands. It was an appeal to a subset of Jews who wanted to emigrate and maintain their culture with others of their kind. Nor could this idea justify a Jewish State governing Palestine and its then current Arab inhabitants. But in addition Herzl’s philosophy in practice assumed a much more militant and exclusionary form as new generations appeared after him. In particular, David Ben-Gurion was an exponent of power and force.
Israel is a brutal state as the latest excesses of destruction and killing of innocent Palestinians in Gaza show. That’s what the U.S. supports.
Michael S. Rozeff [send him mail] is a retired Professor of Finance living in East Amherst, New York.
Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah on Friday praised the Palestinian resistance defending Gaza from Israel’s ongoing assault on the besieged strip, saying that Israel was failing in its war and headed on a path of suicide.
“Gaza today is holding funeral processions for its martyrs, and has achieved victory in resistance,” Nasrallah said in a rare live appearance from a complex in Beirut’s southern suburbs to mark the annual Jerusalem Day.
“When we reach day 18 [of the Israeli assault] and the Zionists together with the world are incapable of achieving any goal in Gaza, it means the resistance has achieved victory in Gaza.”
“[Former defense minister] Ehud Barak … had said in any future war waged by Israel in Gaza will lead to a very quick and decisive victory.”
“Gaza today is responding and saying ‘You the cowardly people who hide behind warplanes and kill children, if you confront our heroes you will be defeated and your army will be defeated’,” Nasrallah said.
“I say to the Zionists, You in Gaza are working within the circle of failure. Don’t go beyond Gaza to the circle of suicide,” Nasrallah added.
Over 800 Palestinians, the overwhelming majority of them civilians, have been killed since Israel launched its terror campaign against Gaza on July 8.
“The Israeli army didn’t go to war as an army which is fighting. It went as an army which kills children. This is the army we knew in Lebanon,” Nasrallah said.
“We must salute the souls of the martyrs of Gaza and the wounded of Gaza and the mujaheddin and heroes of Gaza and the people of Gaza who are standing with steadfastness on this day,” he added.
Palestinian fighters in Gaza have vowed to press on with the war until Israel ends its eight-year-long land, air and sea blockade of the strip, which prevents the movement of people and goods, including the importation of basic necessities and medicine.
Nasrallah said those demands were just.
“The siege means death on a daily basis for the people of Gaza, not for 18 days but for years. I must repeat, there must be political, media, financial, material support and support with arms,” he said.
“We must remind everyone here, Iran and Syria together with the resistance in Lebanon, and especially Hezbollah in accordance with its capabilities, for many long years never spared any efforts in supporting the Palestinian resistance — politically, on media, morally, financially, from material angles, weapons, logistical support and expertise.”
Nasrallah also said despite all the attempts by Israel to divide Palestinians and force them to abandon their cause, they remained strong willed to return to their land.
“Despite all their pain and suffering and wounds and massacres and all the factors of despair and frustration, they did not surrender and they did not forget,” Nasrallah said.
“Palestinian people in and out of Palestine and in refugee camps, despite harsh living conditions and incentives for emigrating to Canada and Australia and Europe in order to fragment and divide this Palestinian human body, despite all this the Palestinians held on to their land and cause and farms and fields, and they rejected to surrender and to bow down.”
Does Israel Really Want Peace?
Ever since Israel started bombing Gaza on July 7, Israeli propaganda mills, with support from the Western media, are working overtime to justify the attack. The justifications are not new, though. They repeat the ‘Hamas-as-terrorist’ narrative and that the attack is nothing but “self-defence”. The Americans and most European nations endorse this “right to self-defence” of Israel, and deflect any meaningful international pressure to stop the violence it’s unleashing on the people of Gaza. Critics of this violence are often painted as “biased” or even anti-Semites. Let’s take a look at their key arguments one by one.
Did Hamas trigger the Israeli attack?
No, it didn’t. Well before the abduction of the three Israeli boys on June 12 and their subsequent murder, relations between the two sides were tense. Almost a month prior to the kidnapping, on May 15 to be precisely, two Palestinian boys were shot dead in Ramallah, which the international mainstream media still refuse to discuss. Soon after the Jewish kids went missing, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said it’s a Hamas act, though till date no evidence is provided to substantiate the claim. Subsequently, Netanyahu ordered a “rescue operation” in West Bank that saw the Israeli troops killing at least six Palestinians, carrying out mass arrests, including those released from prison in 2011, demolishing houses, etc. And then a Palestinian boy was burnt alive by Jewish extremists. It’s after all these that Hamas started firing rockets into Israel, which the latter used as a pretext to start its latest attack on Palestinians.
Hamas wants Israel’s destruction
Think twice. Hamas wants an independent Palestinian state. Hamas emerged out of the failure of the PLO in securing nationhood for the Palestinian people after decades of struggle. True, it’s a politico-military movement, but don’t miss the fact that Hamas is resisting the continuing occupation of Palestinian territories by Israel. Despite this, Hamas has a number of times expressed willingness to reach long-term ceasefire and peace agreements with Israel. The best example is the incumbent unity government in West Bank. The government, formed after a reconciliation agreement between Hamas and the Fatah party in April, has Hamas’ recognition. President Mahmoud Abbas had said the unity government would recognise Israel and respect the past agreements between the two sides. The government had even continued its military cooperation with IDF. Israel, however, rejected all these overtures and started attacking Hamas after the kids went missing.
Israel has the right to defend itself
Well, according to international law, as lawyer Noura Erakat argued in Jadaliyya, Israel doesn’t have the right to self-defence against occupied Palestinian territory. One can argue that it ended its occupation of Gaza in 2005, so it has the right to self-defence against rockets from Gaza. But effectively, what Israel has won after disengaging from Gaza is a licence to massacre Gazans. What Israel is now doing to Gaza will not come under any definition of self-defence. It has attacked Gaza thrice since Ariel Sharon pulled out troops and settlements from the strip in early 2005. In the first attack, in 2008-09, Israel killed around 1,500 Palestinians and systematically destroyed the public infrastructure in the strip. The New Yorker says 14% of the buildings in Gaza were partially or completely destroyed, including 21,000 homes, 700 factories, 16 hospitals, 38 primary health centres and 288 schools. In the second attack, in 2012, Israel killed around 150 Palestinians in a week. The current attack is already into the third week, and has killed more than 700 Palestinians, with a huge majority being civilians including a big chunk of kids. Is this self-defence or genocide?
Israel is going to wars because of Hamas
Who said so? Not even the idea of Hamas was born when Israel attacked Lebanon in 1978, and then again in 1982. At that time, the Israeli leadership said they were attacking the PLO and wanted to destroy the PLO’s military infrastructure. And then they went on attacking the Lebanese people. They do the same thing now. Israel always wanted one or the other excuse to continue its aggression. Even if Hamas demilitarises itself now, there’s no guarantee that Israel will stop attacking the Palestinian people. Look at the West Bank. There are no weapons in there. Hamas is not in power. Did Israel stop its military bullying in the West Bank? It didn’t. Instead it expanded its military presence, encouraged more Jewish settlements, grabbed more Palestinian land turned the Palestinian Authority in Ramallah into a paper government. This is what Israel does when resistance recedes.
Does Israel want peace?
Its own recent actions suggest otherwise. The frequent invasions of Gaza, the continuing settlements and the subjugation of the Palestinian people in the West Bank, disregard for international law and organisations and the absolute rejection of discussions on the border of a future Palestinian state all point to Israel’s not-so-secret strategy to deal with the Palestinians militarily than agreeing to peace with them. Israel knows that it will have to make some compromises to reach even a pro-Israeli peace agreement. It doesn’t want to do that. It doesn’t want to end the occupation of West Bank, it doesn’t want to pull out the Jewish settlements from Palestinian territories, it doesn’t want to give the land it grabbed back to the Palestinians, it doesn’t want to discuss the status of Jerusalem and it doesn’t want to talk about the Palestinian refugees’ right to return. This is what wise people call Zionist colonialism, and it explains why Israel is attacking Gaza again and again.
Is Hamas a terrorist outfit?
Hamas is fighting for one of the most disadvantaged peoples of the post-War world. They represent the victims, not the aggressor. To be sure, it has attacked the Israeli civilians and is firing rockets into Israel. But if violence against civilians is the yardstick to call Hamas ‘terrorists’ what would you call the state of Israel, given the number of civilians dead in its wars and invasions since its inception? Look at the ongoing Gaza attack. The UN says more than 75 per cent of the Palestinian casualties are civilians, including at least 140 children. Is someone around the corner calling Israel a terrorist nation?
Is Stanly Johny biased?
You are asking the wrong question. The right question is which side you are on, with the bombers or with the bombed? Yes, I am with the bombed.
Stanly Johny is an Indian journalist. He can be contacted at email@example.com
During the past two weeks, a horrified world has witnessed accelerating Israeli war crimes in Gaza. Those crimes are enabled by the United States, Israel’s biggest backer on the world stage.
Why does the US support Israel? Because Americans have been robbed of the freedom to think and speak freely about Zionism.
The United States of America is supposed to be a bastion of free expression. The courts have ruled that even the most lurid and depraved words and pictures are entitled to Constitutional protection.
Yet in the self-styled Land of the Free, an “apartheid wall of censorship” blocks the free expression of anti-Zionist arguments.
This censorship is not directly imposed by the government. The real enemy of free speech is the Zionist Power Configuration (ZPC).
In his book The Power of Israel in the United States, professor James Petras identified the ZPC as the source of that power. The ZPC is led by AIPAC, the most powerful lobby in America. It includes the 51 Major American Jewish Organizations, which are backed by only about one half million of America’s six million Jews. That is less than 10% of the total. But as Petras says, “what a half million!” He adds that “the 51′s hundreds of thousands of activists are strategically placed in institutions, as well as geographically, with a centralized command capable of mobilizing money, media attention and political leverage in any priority, political, cultural or social arena.”
This extremely well-financed mob of 500,000 pro-Israel fanatics can be counted on to make life miserable for anyone guilty of expressing an anti-Zionist opinion, or allowing one to be expressed. I know this from repeated personal experience.
For example, I recently gave an interview on WWUH, a radio station based at the University of Hartford, Connecticut. (You can listen by conducting an internet search for “WWUH 9/11 Wake-Up Call.”)
During the interview, I expressed the same views, and cited the same facts, that are featured in my opinion columns at Press TV. I presented empirical evidence that Israel and its American supporters orchestrated 9/11 in order to trick the USA into destroying or destabilizing “seven countries in five years” – as General Wesley Clark revealed. Those seven countries were the ones blocking Israel’s quest for regional domination.
I also explained why Zionism is morally indefensible and ultimately doomed, but persists by controlling the USA’s Middle East policy.
Predictably, a backlash from the ZPC ensued. A complaint was lodged against WWUH and copied to the University. According to the complaint, I had delivered “an anti-Zionist sermon” and my words were “biased.”
The implication: Americans must never hear anything but the pro-Zionist sermons the mainstream media continually inflicts on them. Alternative views are forbidden.
The University of Connecticut knows that the ZPC is tightly organized and financed by hundreds of millionaires and a considerable number of billionaires. Zionist complaints like the one targeting my interview come with an implied threat to withhold funding from the University if it continues to allow the free expression of anti-Zionist views.
Such Zionist censorship is a pervasive feature of American university life. While teaching at the University of Wisconsin-Madison I was twice attacked by the legions of the ZPC. The second time, in 2006, after I appeared on Fox News arguing that 9/11 was an inside job, the University lost more than $500,000 in canceled contributions in less than 24 hours. I am currently unemployable in the American academy because any university that hired me would face this kind of financial attack from the Zionists.
It isn’t just the universities that are terrorized by Zionist censorship. The American media, too, is punished on the rare occasions that it diverges even slightly from the pro-Israel party line. A newspaper, magazine, or broadcast outlet that allows an anti-Zionist voice to be heard will be slammed with a barrage of complaints, and perhaps be hit in the pocketbook with an advertising boycott, from the ZPC.
Politicians are censored even more tightly. Whenever an American statesman stands up for the US rather than Israel – as in the cases of William Fulbright, Paul Findley, James Abourezk, Cynthia McKinney, James Trafficant, and many others – they are hounded out of office by the ZPC.
Even presidents are vulnerable. Many analysts believe that Jimmy Carter was made a one-term president by the ZPC due to his attempts to force peace on Israel. Some even argue that John F. Kennedy was removed from office in part because he had staked his life on an attempt to prevent Israel from obtaining nuclear weapons.
Even gatherings of American Muslims are subject to Zionist censorship. Last week when Obama hosted a White House Ramadan iftar (fast-breaking dinner) for Muslims he also invited Israeli Ambassador Ron Dermer, a notorious racist who recently said the child-killing Israeli military should get the Nobel Peace Prize. Obama stubbornly intoned the Orwellian mantra “Israel has the right to defend itself” and clearly was not prepared to listen to the views of his Muslim guests.
Shortly after the Ron Dermer fiasco at the White House, I myself was viciously attacked by a Zionist Jew at a Ramadan iftar in Madison, Wisconsin. The Zionist started a conversation about “Israel’s right to defend itself” and proclaimed that Hamas was a terrorist group. When I responded by gently explaining some of the facts about the conflict, the Zionist iftar-infiltrator had a fit and repeatedly called me a Nazi. Then he lodged a complaint with the organizer of the iftar.
Apparently the Muslim-majority perspective cannot be voiced anywhere in America – not even at a Muslim celebration! It seems that every group in America – every civic group, church group, NGO, nonprofit, and even the Muslim groups – are infiltrated by the Zionist thought police, who are dedicated to preventing the American people from hearing any version of events except their own.
Why are the Zionists so desperate to suppress free thought and free debate about the Middle East? The answer is obvious: The Zionist position is indefensible. If Americans knew the horrors that the Zionists have inflicted not only on Palestine, but also on the United States – including the cold-blooded murder of almost 3,000 Americans on September 11th, 2001 – the bloody Zionist experiment would face its final reckoning.
Hamas has hit Palestine’s bloodthirsty occupier where it could hurt real bad — in the soft under-belly that is Ben Gurion airport. The Resistance has achieved this by lobbing a rocket too close for comfort and causing air carriers in the United States and Europe to halt flights to Tel Aviv after warnings from governmental agencies concerned about passenger safety.
“The carriers are making the right call,” said Robert Mann, an airline consultant in Port Washington, New York. “They are ultimately legally responsible for their operations and thus, they have to be at least as cautious and in many cases more cautious than any guideline that they are given.”
Reuters reported that Israeli officials, including Prime Minister Netanyahu, called for US airlines to resume flights to Israel. “There is no need for US carriers to suspend flights and reward terrorism,” said a statement from Israel’s Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz.
But a senior Obama administration official said: “We’re not going to overrule the FAA, period… when a rocket lands a mile from that airport, that kind of trips their wire.”
Strictly speaking Ben Gurion airport, near Tel Aviv, belongs to the Palestinians anyway. It was formerly Lydda airport; and Lydda, a major town in its own right during the British mandate, was designated Palestinian in the 1947 UN Partition. In July 1948 Israeli terrorist troops seized Lydda, shot up the town and drove out the population as part of their ethnic cleansing programme. In the process they massacred 426 men, women, and children. 176 of them were slaughtered in the town’s main mosque. See here for the lurid details.
Those who survived were forced to walk into exile in the scalding July heat leaving a trail of bodies — men, women and children — along the way. Israeli troops carried away 1,800 truck loads of loot. Jewish immigrants then flooded in and Lydda was given a Hebrew name, Lod.
So Israel has no real right to Lydda/Lod/Ben Gurion airport — it was stolen in a terror raid, as was so much else. It’s Israeli terror that has been rewarded all these years by airline flights.
Today the airport handles over 14 million passengers a year and is the international gateway to Israel. Hamas’s thrust at Ben Gurion may be just a prick. But they only have to lob one more rocket into the vicinity and and it becomes a serious belly wound. Most visitor traffic from abroad would dry up.
Before Israel’s flag-wavers get all hot under the collar, let’s consider what happened to Gaza’s airport. The Oslo II Agreement of 1995 provided for one to be constructed. The Yasser Arafat International airport was built with funding from Japan, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Spain, Germany and Morocco, and cost $86 million. Arafat and US President Clinton attended the opening in 1998. Owned and operated by the Palestinian Authority it was capable of handling 700,000 passengers a year.
In December 2001 Israel destroyed the radar station and control tower, and cut the runway.
The only usable airstrip in Gaza today is a small airfield at Gush Katif, which is only suitable for short take-off and landing aircraft. The Israeli air blockade prevents it being used.
After this and all the other economic outrages committed against the Palestinians, Hamas will taste sweet revenge it they succeed in shutting down traffic through Ben Gurion and causing grief to Israel’s tourist trade and other business.
The self-defense forces of the Donetsk People’s Republic reported the elimination of two enemy’s block posts in the area of Donetsk in the first half of July. According to their Minister of Defense Igor Strelkov, one of them was defended by people in NATO combat fatigue who were foreign passport holders.
It’s not only the hired personnel of Western private military contractors who do their job by killing for money. There are also people who go to Ukraine to get pleasure and are ready to pay for it.
Stan Patton, soldier of fortune, Blackwater, shares a quotation in his Twitter saying what the prices are: a shot of howitzers – $ 100 from the tank – $ 200, a shot in the village is priced at U.S. $ 350…
The Kiev regime converts the battle area into an entertainment place – firing range for blood thirsty foreign tourists, the government is even involved in advertising business. The clients don’t hide their passion for this kind of fun and even show it off. Here are some of them: Mikael Skillt is a Swedish sniper, with seven years’ experience in the Swedish Army and the Swedish National Guard. He is currently fighting with the Azov Battalion, a pro-Ukrainian volunteer armed group in eastern Ukraine. He is known to be dangerous to the rebels: reportedly there is a bounty of nearly $7,000 (£4,090; 5,150 euros) on his head. Don. Francesco Fontana – one of several hundred Western adventurers who flew to Ukraine and said in his video that he always dreamed to have a chance to kill people without responsibility.
Italian IL Giornale correspondent Fausto Biloslavo writes that foreigners are welcome to join the battalion of Azov established by Ukrainian homosexual MP Oleg Lyashko. There are volunteers from Italy, Sweden. Finland, Norway, France and Baltic States. International rabble gets on Ukraine thanks to the skillful recruiter – 46-year-old Frenchman Gaston Besson. He advertises on the Internet with an offer to take part in the bloody ‘safari’ in Ukraine. “We invite you to join a battalion of Azov. No payment. We are ready to meet you in Kiev. From you I need information about your family and social situation. Let us know if you are ready to participate in the battles themselves, or will train young soldiers. Upon arrival in Kiev, you will get the contact number of our English-speaking employee. Sleeping, eating, and so on – on our base in the south-east,” – said the ad. A native of Mexico, he served in the French commando and special forces in Southeast Asia. Member of three coups and two wars. Laos, Burma, Suriname… In 1991, the same mercenary killed Serbs in Croatia, then – in Bosnia.
“People come from many different countries. Finland, Norway, Sweden, England, France, Italy… We do not take the fanatics and extremists. We need people with military experience, professionals. We are not for NATO or for the European Union; we have no interest in politics. Every day I get about 15 letters from those who want to come to Ukraine to fight. We all understand that there is a war, and every day you can be hurt or killed,” – says Gaston Besson.
The U.S. attracts these masters of dirty work to all the hot spots – Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria. The presence of American advisers in Ukraine is accompanied by the appearance of foreign mercenaries and the south-east part of the country.
Gaston says he is not a mercenary, or even a secret agent. He is not hiding. He sees himself as a revolutionary and an idealist having gone through two war and the uprisings in Croatia, Bosnia, Burma, Laos and Surinam. It’s his experience in former Yugoslavia that is important. It gives clue to what is done and why in Ukraine. Twenty years ago Yugoslavia was partitioned.
Back then, the Sunday Mirror did the same thing its Italian colleagues do today. Some advertisements of a tourist company were published and repeated in neo-fascist outlets and on theInternet. The hunting tours were arranged by British mercenaries with combat experience in Croatia. They were reported to launch branches in Munich and Zagreb and the business was flourishing.
Europeans were offered to hunt civilians in Serbian Krajina and Croatia. The price was $3000 (1995). Hunters were offered bullet-proof jackets, ammunition and rifles with optical guidance. Hunters – ‘international brigades of Croatian army’ guaranteed security. Rape and plundering were offered for special pay. The clients were mainly ethnic Croats from Australia, Germany, Canada, Switzerland and Austria, as well as European felons and Neo-Nazi. Gaston Besson started his business and combat experience there to continue to do what he likes most in Ukraine now.
What do these war dogs need? The Croatian army and the Ukrainian military don’t put them on the payroll. But in Croatia the ‘international brigades warriors’ got booty making many of them rich in no time. In 1994 the war was raging. German police was involved in investigations trying to find out how come this had nothings before the war all of a sudden started to buy land, equity, establish companies employing European neo-fascists. It was an open secret: plundering and arms trade and drug dealings.
What did Croats need mercenaries for? They almost made no contribution as fighters. They were needed for the very same thing the Ukrainian regime needs them now. Hunting and shooting does bring in certain profit. But it’s not the main thing. They protect the officials from accusations of being involved in genocide. The government can say the regular armed forces are not involved in plundering and expulsions. 20 years ago European politicians approached Former Croatian Foreign Minister Mate Granić with demands to stop ethnic cleansing and providing the people with opportunity to get back home. Back then he smiled and said that the responsibility lied with «private» people from Europe who were not members of regular military.
The late Dr. Tony Martin’s diligent research had been provoked by several events with faculty members in the educational institutions where he taught. The tactics they tried using to silence the focus of his lessons only motivated him even more.