Sunday, 18 February 2018

Zionism Was Hijacked by Judaism

Early Zionism was a promising development.-- it  vowed to make Jerusalem into the new Athens...
Gilad Atzmon on Rosie Charalambous’ Cyprus Digest.
We spoke about Palestine, the Right of Return,  Israel, Judaism, Jewishness and Zionism. I explained why Jewish solidarity is a problematic concept  and why Early Zionism was a promising development.– it  vowed to make Jerusalem into the new Athens. Zionism obviously failed. It was hijacked, initially by Jewishness and later by Judaism.
//www.youtube.com/embed/kwHAfvHpNno?wmode=opaque&enablejsapi=1″,”url”:”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kwHAfvHpNno”,”width”:854,”height”:480,”providerName”:”YouTube”,”thumbnailUrl”:”https://i.ytimg.com/vi/kwHAfvHpNno/hqdefault.jpg”,”resolvedBy”:”youtube”}” data-block-type=”32″>
If they wants to burn it, you want to read it …
cover bit small.jpg
Being in Time – A Post Political Manifesto
Amazon.co.uk  ,  Amazon.com  and   here  (gilad.co.uk). 

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!

Solzhenitsyn’s Damning History of the Jews in Russia – a Review

“The Jews accumulated wealth by cooperating with each other. (p. 31).”
“They made profits by taking the peasants’ grain to the point of impoverishing them (and causing famine), turning it into brandy, and then encouraging drunkenness. (p. 21, 24).”
“Jews forced peasants into lifelong debt and crushing poverty by requiring payment, in cattle and tools, for liquor. (p. 31).”
The translation of Solzhenitsyn’s book appears to have been done without permission from his family, and this might be why this lengthy and detailed review is no longer available on the page of the book on Amazon.com, where it originally appeared.
The book might disappear altogether from Amazon, so if you want to get your Kindle copy, act now. Otherwise you can find it on many sources on the internet.

Jews had enormous influence in the English and American media at the turn of the century – this is what most people in America and UK were told about Russian Jews (Click for Hi-Res image)
The translator, Columbus Falco, describes the censorship of this book when it appeared in 2002:
“Published in the original Russian in 2002, the book was received with a firestorm of rage and denunciation from the literary and media world, from the Jews, and from almost the entire intelligentsia of the established order in the West…
Immense efforts have been made by the Russian authorities and also by the Western liberal democratic power structure to ignore 200 YEARS TOGETHER, to suppress it as much as possible, and above all to prevent and interdict the book’s translation into foreign languages, most especially into English, which has become essentially the worldwide language of our epoch…
The Russian authorities have to this date refused to allow any official English translation of the book to be published”. (p. 2).
Most of it consists of unremarkable information that can be found in standard, non-censored texts. [For details, see comments.]
Agree with author Solzhenitsyn or not, but recognize the fact that he is no lightweight. Solzhenitsyn goes into considerable detail about many different historical epochs, and clearly has a deep knowledge of the issues that he raises. His approach is balanced. He is sympathetic towards Jews as well as critical of Jews.
The latter evidently does not sit well with many, because it does not comply with the standard Judeocentric narrative, in which Jews are just victims and can do no wrong. Worse yet, a famous writer is bringing sometimes-unflattering information about Jews to light, and this is threatening. Hence the censorship.
Consider the PROPINACJA. The Jews accumulated wealth by cooperating with each other. (p. 31). They made profits by taking the peasants’ grain to the point of impoverishing them (and causing famine), turning it into brandy, and then encouraging drunkenness. (p. 21, 24). Jews forced peasants into lifelong debt and crushing poverty by requiring payment, in cattle and tools, for liquor. (p. 31).
In addition, a system of bribery protected this arrangement. Thus, the Polish magnates were on the “take” of part of the wealth squeezed by Jews out of the peasantry, and, without the Jews and their inventiveness, this system of exploitation could not have functioned, and would have ended. (p. 22). Solzhenitsyn adds that, “…the Jewish business class derived enormous benefit from the helplessness, wastefulness, and impracticality of landowners…” (p. 54).
The Jews kept moving around in order to prevent an accurate count of their numbers—in order to evade taxes. (p. 25). A delegation of Jews travelled to St. Petersburg to try to bribe Russian officials to suppress Derzhavin’s report. (p. 28). In 1824, Tsar Alexander I noticed that Jews were corrupting local inhabitants to the detriment of the treasury and private investors. (p. 32).
Jews were not forced into “parasitic” occupations: They chose them. (p. 31). By the late 19th century (the time of the pogroms), Russian anger had boiled over, focusing on such things as Jews not making their own bread, massive overpricing and profiteering, enriching themselves while impoverishing the muzhik, and taking control of forests, lands, and taverns. (pp. 78-80).Nor is it true that the Jews were kept out of “productive” occupations. To the contrary. A concerted 50-year tsarist effort to turn Jews into farmers attracted few participants (p. 33), and ended in failure. (p. 58). None of the rationalizations for its failure are valid: Other newcomers to Russian agriculture (Mennonites, Bulgarian and German colonists, etc.), facing the same challenges as the Jews, did quite well. (p. 36). Jewish farmers neglected farm work (pp. 34-35), and kept drifting back into selling goods and leasing of their property to others to farm. (pp. 56-57). The century-later efforts by the Communists, to get Jews into farming, fared no better. (p. 208, 251).
Jewish resistance to assimilation is usually framed in terms of the GOY excluding the Jew. It was the other way around. For the first half of the 19th century, rabbis and kahals strenuously resisted enlightenment, including the proffered Russian education to Jews. (p. 38).
Jews have always tended to exaggerate the wrongs they have experienced from others. (p. 42). This applies to such things as double taxation, forced military service, expulsion from villages, etc. (p. 42, 46, 50).
The Jews of the Vilnius (Wilno), Kaunas, and Grodno regions sided with the Russians during the Poles’ ill-fated January 1863 Insurrection. (p. 69). This confirms Polish sources.
We often hear that Communist Jews were “not real Jews”. This nonsense is equivalent to saying that Lenin and other Russian Communists were “not real Russians”—a contrived distinction that Solzhenitsyn refuses to make. (p. 117). [For more, see comments].
One common exculpation for Jews supporting revolutionary movements, and then Communism, is that of the tsarist system preventing Jews from improving their lot. This is nonsense. Once the Jews accepted the Russian education system, their numbers increased, to such a spectacular extent (by about 1870: p. 63, 71), in Russian higher education, that quotas (numerus clausus) had to be imposed upon them. This nowadays-called affirmative action became necessary because Jews were wealthier and thus unfairly advantaged in schooling-related matters. (p. 88).
Hungary is instructive. There, Jewish grievances were the least valid. Hungarian Jews had enjoyed atypical freedoms and a high standard of living, and there had been no pogroms. Yet the 1919 Hungarian Communism was especially dominated by Jews, and was odiously cruel. (pp. 153-154).
One can easily make lists of Jews in high positions in the Soviet Union. Influential Jews commonly occurred at a rate 10 or more times the abundance of Jews in the USSR. (e. g, pp. 143-on, 225-on). [For more, see comments]. Whether or not motivated by “ethnic solidarity”, Jews in authority tended to promote other Jews to high positions. (p. 138).
However, the Jewish role in Communism goes far beyond what is apparent in any such “grocery list”. For instance, consider what some call the Judaization of academia, and its impact on the bloody events of 1917. Solzhenitsyn comments, “The February Revolution was carried out by Russian hands and Russian foolishness. Yet at the same time, its ideology was permeated and dominated by the intransigent hostility to the historical Russian state that ordinary Russians didn’t have, but the Jews had. So the Russian intelligentsia too had adopted this view.” (p. 98).
Now consider the October Revolution. Lenin contended that the Bolshevik success in the revolution had been made possible by the role of the large Jewish intelligentsia in several Russian cities. (p. 119). Furthermore, according to Lenin, the October Revolution was preserved by the actions of Jews against the attempted sabotage by government officials. (p. 128).
 The energy and high intelligence of the Jews made them indispensable. (p. 129, 189). In fact, Solzhenitsyn suggests that Soviet Communism lost its ideological fervor, and began slowly to die of “Russian laziness”, already in the late 1960s, all because the Jews were largely gone. (p. 317).SOME INTERESTING FACTS
Dekulakization was not just an economic measure. It was a tool to uproot peoples and destroy their traditions and culture. For this reason, Stalin’s dictatorship can in no sense be accepted as a nationalist (Russian) phenomenon. (p. 221).
Religious Judaism was never persecuted as intensely by the Communists, in the 1920s and 1930s, as was Russian Orthodox Christianity. (p. 306). High-level Jew Lazar Kaganovich directed the destruction of the Church of the Redeemer. He also wanted to destroy St. Basil’s Cathedral. (p. 223).
The famous mobile gas chambers were not invented by the Nazis. They were developed, in 1937, by Isai Davidovich Berg, a leading Jew in the NKVD. (p. 237).
COMMUNISM IS OK—UNTIL IT NO LONGER SERVES JEWISH INTERESTS
Solzhenitsyn notes the irony that, in the West, there was little effective concern about the victims of Communism until it turned on the Jews. He quips,
“15 million peasants were destroyed in the ‘dekulakisation’, 6 million peasants were starved to death in 1932, not even to mention the mass executions and millions who died in the camps, and at the same time it was fine to politely sign agreements with Soviet leaders, to lend them money, to shake their ‘honest hands’, to seek their support, and to boast of all this in front of your parliaments.
But once it was specifically JEWS that became the target, then a spark of sympathy ran through the West and it became clear what sort of regime this was.” (p. 346; Emphasis is Solzhenitsyn’s).
NOWADAYS JEWS DODGE THEIR RESPONSIBILITY AND BLAME THE RUSSIANS
Alexander Solzhenitsyn describes the standard double-standard (one which Poles are all too familiar with), as he describes current Jewish attitudes,
“There are so many such confident voices ready to judge Russia’s many crimes and failings, her inexhaustible guilt towards the Jews—and they so sincerely believe this guilt to be inexhaustible almost all of them believe it! Meanwhile, their own people are coyly cleared of any responsibility for their participation in Cheka shootings, for sinking the barges and their doomed human cargo in the White and Caspian seas, for their role in collectivization, the Ukrainian famine and in all the abominations of the Soviet administration, for their talented zeal in brainwashing the ‘natives’. This is not contrition.” (p. 335).
Of course, Solzhenitsyn is not insinuating that Jews are collectively guilty for Communism. However, Jews should accept collective liability for Communism and its crimes in much the same way that Germans accept collective liability for Nazism and its crimes. (p. 141, 321). Until they do so, this issue of the Zydokomuna (Judeo-Bolshevism) will not go away.
JEWISH INFLUENCE IN COMMUNISM WAS FAR GREATER THAN ANY “GROCERY LIST” OF JEWISH COMMUNISTS
We keep hearing that Jews at no time constituted a majority of the leadership in Communism. This is technically true, but it does not tell the whole story.
To begin with, Jewish Communists were noted for their high intelligence, verbal skills, assertiveness, ideological fervor, etc. (p. 429).
Not surprisingly, few non-Jewish Communist leaders approached the caliber of the Jewish Communist leaders. For example, Lindemann reminds us that, “Jewish or gentilized, Trotsky was a man of unusual talents.” (p. 447). In addition, “Trotsky’s paramount role in the revolution cannot be denied…” (p. 448). This can be generalized, “Other non-Jews might be mentioned but almost certainly do not quite measure up to Trotsky, Zinoviev, Kamenev, Yoffe, Sverdlov, Uritsky, or Radek in visibility inside Russia and abroad, especially not in the crucial years from 1917 to 1921.” (p. 432).
Finally, influential Jews did not have to act alone. In fact, Jews had the skill of influencing non-Jews to think in Jewish ways. Lenin can validly be understood as a “Jewified gentile” (pp. 432-433). The same can be said for the renegade-Pole Dzerzhinsky (p. 442, 446), as well as the Russian Kalinin, who was called by Jewish Bolsheviks “more Jewish than the Jews”. (p. 433).
I. JEWISH COMMUNISTS INFLUENCED NON-JEWS TO GO ALONG WITH THEIR THINKING
Let us elaborate on Feliks Dzerzhinsky. Refer to: The Cheka: Lenin’s Political Police:
Author Leggett describes how Dzerzhinsky grew up in Vilna [Wilno, Vilnius], which he describes as a cosmopolitan city with a strong Jewish element and a focal point of socialist ferment in Tsarist Russia. (p. 34). He adds that, “Dzerzhinsky came under the influence of Martov, future leader of the Menshevik Party, by whom he was introduced into Jewish circles, both proletarian and of the intelligentsia; he made many Jewish friends and zealously learned Yiddish. The Bund—Jewish social democratic workers’ organization in Lithuania, Poland, and Russia, founded in 1897—helped Dzerzhinsky in his political activity, for instance in late 1899. Dzerzhinsky’s close friend and schoolmate in Vilna was Mikhail Goldman…” (pp. 24-25).
The strong Jewish influence very much extended to Dzerzhinsky’s personal life. Leggett continues, “Goldman’s sister, Julia, was for several years Dzerzhinsky’s romantic love…formed a deeply romantic attachment, lasting from 1905 to early 1910, for another Jewish woman, Sabina Feinstein, sister of a prominent SDKPiL member. Very soon afterwards, in November 1910, Dzerzhinsky married Sofia Sigizmundovna nee Mushkat, who was likewise Jewish…” (p. 25).
As if to underscore the fact that Jewish influence in Communism is much greater than just the “grocery list” of Jewish Communists, Leggett writes of “Rosa Luxemburg [Luksemburg], celebrated for her intellectual brilliance and her political passion.” (p. 24). So intoxicated had “Bloody Feliks” (“KRWAWE FELEK”) Dzierzinski become of Luksemburg’s ideas that he actually clashed with Lenin on the resurrection of the Polish state. Only that it was the non-Pole Lenin supporting the restoration of the Polish nation and renegade-Pole Dzerzhinsky opposing it, in accordance with Luxemburg. (pp. 23-24).
Alexander Solzhenitsyn comments,
“The February Revolution was carried out by Russian hands and Russian foolishness. Yet at the same time, its ideology was permeated and dominated by the intransigent hostility to the historical Russian state that ordinary Russians didn’t have, but the Jews had. So the Russian intelligentsia too had adopted this view.” (p. 98).
II. JEWS AS THE “BRAINS” BEHIND THE RUSSIAN REVOLUTION AND THE EARLY SOVIET UNION
See my review of: The Rulers of Russia
III. THE SIGNIFICANCE OF JEWS IN THE RUSSIAN REVOLUTION AS NOTED BY SOME JEWS
See my review of: The new Poland,
IV. DECADES BEFORE THE RUSSIAN REVOLUTION, JEWS HAD PLAYED AN INDISPENSABLE ROLE IN KEEPING REVOLUTIONARY MOVEMENTS GOING IN THE FACE OF ADVERSITY, AND IN MAKING RADICAL MOVEMENTS EVEN MORE RADICAL:
V. COMMUNISM PERMEATED MUCH OF PRE-WWII JEWISH THINKING, NOTABLY IN POLAND
(My Review was Feb 12, 2012)
Moshe Arens wrote: “The years preceding World War II were a time when Socialists throughout the world were preaching the `class struggle’ and `solidarity of the proletariat.’ Many of them, not only avowed Communists, saw the Soviet Union as the pioneer and leader of this `struggle.’ This was also true in Palestine, where the Socialist Zionists had achieved a dominant position in the Jewish community.” (p. 7). The so-called “proletarian” camp included the Socialist Zionists and the non-Socialist Bund. (p. 9). Arens notes: “The Socialist Zionist movements, attached to Marxist ideology…” (p. 44). ZOB leader Anielewicz was a member of Hashomer Hatzair with its “Marxist approach to Zionism”. (p. 113). Hashomer Hatzair and Left Po’alei Zion showed their true colors (pardon the pun) in preferring that the red flag be hoisted over the fighting Ghetto instead of the blue-white Zionist flag. (p. 287).
ZOB leader Hersh Berlinski exhibited undisguised disloyalty to Poland as he said that his support was to the USSR over Poland. (p. 142). As for the Warsaw Ghetto rank-and-file soldiers, Arens refers to them as: “…younger generation, their orthodox Marxist thinking giving rigidity to their arguments.” (p. 106). Who can blame Poles for their reluctance to support the Uprising owing to its taint of Communism? (p. 71; 200-201; 226)
VI. A RATHER CANDID DISCUSSION, ABOUT JEWS IN COMMUNISM, BY LEADING JEWISH COMMUNISTS
VII JEWISH COMMUNISM AS A FORM OF JEWISH NIHILISM
——–
CONCLUSION: Since Jews Take Collective Credit for Their Albert Einsteins and Jonas Salks, Should They Not Also Assume Collective Liability for Jewish Mass-Murderers Such as Genrikh Yagoda and Lazar Kaganovich?

HOW THE MASSIVE OVER-INVOLVEMENT OF JEWS IN COMMUNISM LONG INFLAMED POLISH-JEWISH RELATIONS
The ZYDOKOMUNA (Judeo-Bolshevism) cannot be wished away. In addition, the Jewish share of blame for Communism is not erased just because there were non-Communist Jews. Finally, since Jews regularly call on Poles to “come to terms with the past”, in a collective sense, for the actions of only SOME Poles, the Jews should be held to the same standard.
To learn of the dominance of Jews in the leadership of the early decades of the Soviet Union, please click on, and read my detailed review of, The Jews of the Soviet Union: The History of a National Minority (Cambridge Russian, Soviet and Post-Soviet Studies).
See also THE RULERS OF RUSSIA, by Denis Fahey. (1940). Condon Printing Company, Detroit.
For details on the massive long-term Jewish overrepresentation in the leadership of the Soviet Communist Secret Police (the NKVD), responsible for the murder of millions of innocent people, please click on, and read my detailed review, of Polin: Studies in Polish Jewry, Volume 26: Jews and Ukrainians.
Also see THE JEWISH CENTURY. My Amazon review is dated October 29, 2010.
For a scholarly Russian-language primary source on the Jewish leadership that had dominated the NKVD, please click on, and read my detailed English-language review, of Kto Rukovodil NKVD, 1934-1941: Spravochnik.

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!

Exacerbation of Tensions in Syria: Who Stands to Gain?




Exacerbation of Tensions in Syria: Who Stands to Gain?
PETER KORZUN | 16.02.2018

Exacerbation of Tensions in Syria: Who Stands to Gain?


French President Emmanuel Macron has said he would order airstrikes against Syria if the rumors that its government has used chemical weapons (CW) against civilians are confirmed. Never backed up with any solid evidence, such reports crop up from time to time in the Western media. In some cases the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) has claimed that the traces actually led to the rebels, not the Syrian government. More of the CW stories have been published recently. Why now? A bit of background information can offer some clues.
The situation in Syria has been greatly aggravated. France is not the only actor threatening an incursion. Israel has just attacked some sites in Syria, as well as what it called “Iranian forces in Syria” and said that it would not hesitate to do so again. It hit an Iranian drone and lost an F-16 fighter. A direct confrontation between Israel and Iran is highly likely. Israel has beefed up its defenses at the Syrian border.
The Trump administration, which has taken a hard line on Iran, strongly supports Israel. It says the US will not allow Iran to entrench itself in Syria so close to Israel’s border. A conflict between Israel and Iran will jeopardize US forces all over the Middle East. Iran’s mobile missiles have a range of 2,000 kilometers (1,200 miles), which puts every American base in the region within their reach, including the ones in Qatar, Kuwait, the UAE, and the US Fifth Fleet based in Bahrain. A strike range like that is enough to make the US outposts in Syria and Afghanistan vulnerable as well. Israel is also within the missiles’ reach. Iran’s ballistic missiles are not covered by the 2015 “nuclear deal,” but nonetheless the US has slapped sanctions against Tehran because of its missile program.
Tensions have been cranked up during a time when Russia and its partners in Syria – Turkey and Iran – are making major diplomatic advances. The Syrian National Congress, held in Sochi on Jan. 30, brought together more than 1,500 Syrians to kick-start the national dialog. This new forum has every chance of becoming a platform to unite all those who are taking part in the negotiations in Geneva and Astana. The UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan De Mistura gave due credit to the event.
On Feb. 15, Russian President Vladimir Putin held talks with King Abdullah II of Jordan. The two leaders discussed a number of issues in private. The prospects for a peaceful settlement of the Syrian crisis topped the agenda. In an interview with the Russian government-owned daily newspaper Rossiyskaya Gazeta, the Jordanian king called President Putin his brother.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas visited Moscow on Feb. 12. It was a landmark visit reflecting a major shift from the US to Russia as the chief mediator between Palestine and Israel. The Palestinian leader ousted America from this role after President Trump’s Dec. 6, 2017 announcement of US recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. That decision significantly undermined US credibility in the Middle East. Impressed with Russia’s diplomatic efforts to overhaul the Syrian peace process, Mahmoud Abbas asked Moscow to organize an international peace conference to settle the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.
If Moscow accepts the offered role and manages to make some progress, its influence in the region will skyrocket, dwarfing that of the United States, which has already seen its stature diminished after its failures in Iraq, Afghanistan, and other places. Unlike Moscow, Washington can offer no alternative to the work being done in Astana and Sochi. Its contribution to the stymied Geneva talks is has been modest at best. The humiliation of the US over its Jerusalem policy at the United Nations General Assembly put a spotlight on Washington’s waning clout.
The illegal presence of the US in Syria has become more complicated and fraught with many dangers. The need to fight the Islamic State* became a flimsy pretext after the jihadist group’s defeat. Now the alleged threat coming from Iran is being used to justify US military operations in a faraway country. America is sparing no effort to try to bring back the days when it was the only dominant power in the Middle East. One way to do that is to lead the anti-Iran coalition. The best place to confront Iran and start rolling back its influence is in Syria. France is ready to join Washington in a pinch. Inflaming the Israeli-Iranian standoff serves that purpose, but the main obstacle there is the peace process Russia is spearheading. And the harder Russia works, the more artificially created situations spring up to thwart the achievement of that noble goal.
* Terrorist organization, banned in Russia by court order.

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!

Polish Restitution Law - Holocaust vs. Nakba

mural.png
Reported by Gilad Atzmon
We learned today that the Polish Justice Ministry is reviewing draft legislation regarding the restitution of Jewish property confiscated during and after the Holocaust.
On Wednesday, the World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) expressed concern over the delay of the law. “Elderly Jewish and non-Jewish claimants who have waited over 70 years for justice for their lost property cannot wait any longer,” said Gideon Taylor, the WJRO chair of operations and I wonder how long the ethnically cleansed Palestinian should wait before the Jewish State and the WJRO acknowledge their right to reclaim their land, villages, houses, fields and orchards or shall we just say Palestine?  
One may wonder how is it possible that Jewish institutions are so dedicated to the restitution of Jewish property while being completely dismissive of the exact same right when it comes to the Palestinians. I guess that choseness is a possible answer. Jewish victimhood is to often blind to other victims, especially those who were victimised by the Jewish State.

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!

Guardians of Judea

That which appears as harsh political polarity within the Jewish world is more than often a mere camouflage.
That which appears as harsh political polarity within the Jewish world is more than often a mere camouflage.
In The Wandering Who I argue that Jews appear to disagree on many things but rather often they agree on the most ‘important things’. I contend that that which appears as harsh political polarity within the Jewish world is more than often a mere camouflage.
To learn more read this.
Though it is clear that Jewish hawks and Zionists are collaborating enthusiastically with the so-called ‘progressives’ only rarely do we manage to find evidence of such teamwork. Ahead of the American election we, for instance, were shocked to learn that the so-called solidarity activist Max Blumenthal fabricated a story on the 2012 Benghazi attack on the pages of the Guardian in order to divert attention away from Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s blunders in Libya at the time that his papa Sidney Blumenthal was financially invested in reconstruction and regime change in Libya. Hillary Clinton was delighted by Max’s spin. She wrote to Sidney ‘your son is a Mitzvah.’
This Morning the Guardian of Judea is exposed once again.  Ahead of his Labour kangaroo court trial coming Saturday, notorious AZZ* Tony Greenstein is desperate to list his kosher credentials and actions on behalf of the Hasbara league. Greenstein did it numerous times before. When he was suspended from the Labour Party he bragged about being praised by the ultra Zionist Board of Deputies of British Jews (BOD). This morning Greenstein once again quotes Jamie Slavin of the same BOD. “Whilst his views (Greenstein’s) on the situation in the Middle East are a complete anathema to me, to his credit, he has led the opposition within the PSC to the rising levels of anti-Semitism.” The Ultra Zionists Slavin confirms that which we all know. Greenstein has been working hard to sabotage the Palestinian solidarity movement in the name of his core tribal interests.
Today, thanks to Greenstein, we were delighted to learn that the Guardian Executive Editor Jonathan Freedland was stupid enough to trust Greenstein not to post his personal exchange where they discussed some tribal concerns such as: Paul Eisen, Jeremy Corbyn and yours truly.
All in the family...In the email, Guardian’s Freedland repeats, almost word  for word the BOD’s line of thought.
All in the family…In the email, Guardian’s Freedland repeats, almost word  for word the BOD’s line of thought.
In the email, Guardian’s Freedland repeats, almost word for word the BOD’s line of thought: “despite our obvious disagreements, I have always had respect for the integrity of your position.  I remember your admirable stance on Gilad Atzmon for example.”
Some may wonder what made Freedland trust Greenstein’s integrity considering the latter’s embarrassing unlawful past. Maybe Freedland learned his lesson. I, on my part, am pretty delighted to see that self-identified Jews can fight on pretty much every topic, but so many of them are united around my disastrous impact on their exceptionalist tribal project. I guess that my capacity to unite the Jews is remarkable, I may as well be their king.
I will also use this opportunity to wish Tony Greenstein luck on his hearing this Saturday. I do believe that the Labour party should readmit him immediately. Tony Greenstein is not an anti-Semite. He is a proper kosher merchant as the BOD and Freedland confirm above. The suggestion that Greenstein is an anti-Semite only gives a bad name to anti-semitism.
If  Elias Davidsson wants to burn it, you want to read it …
cover bit small.jpg
Being in Time – A Post Political Manifesto
Amazon.co.uk  ,  Amazon.com  and   here  (gilad.co.uk). 
 *AZZ-Anti Zionist Zionist

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!

February 17th, 7 years after the destruction of Libya by NATO & the USA

Libya: 7 Years since February 17 
https://journal-neo.org/
008534423
On February 17 it will be 7 years since the start of the events in Libya which led to the overthrow of its leader – Muammar Gaddafi. These years have been full of dramatic and often bloody events, which, according to a number of different indices (effective sovereignty, stability, commercial activity etc.), have left the country much worse off.
Since 2014 the country has been in chaotic situation- divided into two sectors, with opposing capitals in Tripoli and Tobruk, each of which have their own government, parliament, and security services. The balance of power between them is changing.
In the last year the area controlled by the National Army, led by Marshal Khalifa Haftar (i.e. the eastern, or Tobruk, sector) has expanded. That sector includes the ‘oil crescent’ (the oil wells and the main ports for oil exports). The Government of National Accord, headed by Fayez al-Sarraj, has an unsteady hold over the country.
For three years the United Nations and a number of neighboring Arab countries have tried, without success, to persuade the two opposing parties to comply with the peace agreement that they signed in Morocco (which called for the creation of unified national transitional state structures, elections to the new parliament etc.) The Shkirat Agreement expired at the end of 2017.
Many experts consider that the negotiators meeting to discuss issues arising from the treaty lack the authority to make any decisions, and the military groups who they represent are heterogenous, each split into a number of camps, divided along regional and tribal lines.
To save the negotiating process, the UN special representative for Libya, Hasan Salam has presented a three-stage plan for the next year. He proposed that the Shkirat Agreement be amended, the Tripoli-based government be restructured, a constitution be drawn up and elections be held in the new parliament.
The question is, how can fair, impartial and democratic elections be held, when there are two governments? And how important are elections to the average Libyan, living in a delicate security situation and suffering from disorder and social and economic problems?
The falling value of the Libyan dinar and annual inflation of 30% are causing a fall in his standard of living. Before the revolution a dinar could be exchanged for three dollars and at its highest level Libyans looked down on the ‘green dollar’ with contempt. Now one dollar can be exchanged in the market for 9 Libyan dinars.
This is genuinely resulting in an increase in prices, as the majority of goods, especially food, are imported. Libyans are faced with the curse of cash shortages, queues in banks, power cuts, deteriorating services etc.
All these problems are the result of the collapse of Libya’s economy and manufacturing sector. According to Mustafa Sanalla, the president of the National Oil Corporation, Libya has lost $180 billion since 2011 because of the actions of various militias in the regions where oil is extracted, refined and transported.
In 2017 Libya received $14 billion from oil sales, three times more than in the previous year. But in 2010, the year before the revolution, oil exports brought approximately $47 billion into the national budget. It is true that recently the amount of ‘black gold’ extracted has increased to 1 million barrels a day, but this is still below the pre-revolution level of 1.6 million barrels a day.
Out of the 150 countries listed in Forbes Magazine’s rating of the ‘Best Countries for Foreign Business’, Libya occupies the last but one position.
As a result of the above situation, people’s attitudes towards the ideals of the February revolution are changing. Today, in Libya’s political and media circles, a clear divide is being observed between so-called ‘Februarists’ and ‘Septemberists’.
The ‘Februarists’ are those who fully support the February 17 revolution, and are convinced that the ‘rebels against a despotic regime’ won a just victory.
Those who support the former Gaddafi regime are known as ‘Septemberists’, as it was the September Revolution that brought Gaddafi to power. The latter camp, shaking their heads in wonder, ask themselves whether it was worth shedding so much blood, losing lives and suffering a huge material loss, merely to end up in Libya’s current fragmented state.
Both of these schools of thought have their own liberal, Islamist, and secular factions. That is why many local political analysts are urging them to find common points of agreement, steer clear of extreme positions, and put the interests of their country above their own selfish political calculations and concerns.
For example, Fatima Hamroush a former minister in Libya’s first post-revolution government, called for the creation of an emergency cabinet made up of politicians with a wide range of affiliations, including former associates of Gaddafi (). That is despite the fact that Dr. Hamroush was at one time a fierce critic of the previous regime.
It appears possible that a political consensus, arrived at in accordance with the law, might be able to fill the current institutional vacuum. But Libyan society is still divided by the powerful shocks it suffered in a war involving NATO and other foreign powers, and during the period of sectarian conflict which followed.
Political circles are pulled apart by disagreement, and are kept hostage by mutual resentments, suspicions and hostilities that have built up over a number of years.
Yury Zinin, Leading Research Fellow at the Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO), exclusively for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook.

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!

Examining ‘Ten Myths about Israel’, by Ilan Pappe

 This review of the book “Ten Myths About Israel’ by Ilan Pappe will appear in the Winter 2018 ISSUES, the quarterly journal of the American Council for Judaism. The book is published by Verso
The Middle East remains a subject of increasing examination and debate.  The prospects for peace between Israelis and Palestinians seem to be receding.  Early in 2018, Israel’s ruling Likud Party unanimously endorsed a resolution calling for the annexation of West Bank settlements.  This decision marked the latest step by Likud to distance itself from the internationally backed idea of establishing an independent Palestinian state as part of a future peace agreement. Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan declared:  “We are telling the world that it doesn’t matter what the nations  of the world say.  The time has come to express our biblical right to the land.”
Much of the world’s understanding of the conflicting claims to historic Palestine is confused.  We have heard over the years of “an Israeli narrative” and a “Palestinian narrative.”  There have been too few efforts to understand what really has happened in this region, and to arrive at some agreement about where myth ends and facts begin.  In this book, written on the 50th anniversary of Israel’s  occupation of the West  Bank and East Jerusalem, Professor Ilan Pappe, an Israeli historian now teaching at the University of Exeter in  the United Kingdom,  examines the most contested ideas concerning the origins and identity of the contemporary state of Israel.
The “ten myths” that Pappe explores reinforce the regional status quo.  He explores the claim that Palestine was an empty land at the time of the Balfour Declaration, as well as the formation of Zionism and its role in the early decades of nation building.  He asks whether the Palestinians voluntarily left their homeland in 1948, and whether June 1967 was a war of “no choice.” Turning to the myths surrounding the failures of the Camp David Accords and the official reasons for the attacks on Gaza, he explains why the two state solution, in his view, is no longer viable.
Historical Disinformation
“As the example of the Israel-Palestine conflict shows,” writes Pappe, “historical disinformation, even of the most recent past, can do tremendous harm.  This willful misunderstanding of history can promote oppression and protect a regime of colonization and occupation.  It is not surprising, therefore, that policies of disinformation continue to the present and play an important part in perpetuating the conflict…The Zionist historical account of how the disputed land became the state of Israel is based on a cluster of myths that subtly cast doubt on the Palestinians’ moral right to the land…This book challenges these myths, which appear in the public domain as indisputable truths.  These statements are, to my eyes, distortions and fabrications that can—and must—be refuted through a closer examination of the historical record.”
The author begins by admitting that, “This is not a balanced book; it is yet another attempt to redress the balance of power on behalf of the colonized, occupied and oppressed Palestinians in the land of Israel and Palestine. It would be a real bonus if advocates of Zionism or loyal supporters of Israel were also willing to engage with the arguments herein.  After all, the book is written by an Israeli Jew who cares about his own society as much as he does the Palestinian one.  Refuting mythologies that sustain injustice should be of benefit to everyone living in the country or wishing to live there.  It forms a basis on which all its inhabitants might enjoy the great achievements that only one privileged group currently has access to.”
The first myth which is confronted is the Zionist claim that Palestine was an empty land.  There is a consensus among scholars that it was the Romans who gave the land the name “Palestine.” During the period of Roman and, later, Byzantine, rule it was an imperial province.  Various Muslim empires aspired to control it, since it was home to the second holiest place in Islam and was also fertile and in a strategic location.  The Ottoman period began in 1517 and lasted 400 years.  When the Ottomans arrived, they found a society that was mostly Sunni Muslim  and rural, with small urban elites who spoke Arabic.  Less than 5 per cent of the population was Jewish and probably 10 to 15 per cent Christian.
Jewish Population of 2 to 5 Per Cent
Historian Yonatan Mendel notes that, “The exact percentage of Jews prior to the rise of Zionism is unknown.  However, it probably ranged from 2 to 5 per cent.  According to Ottoman records, a total population of 462,465 resided in 1878 in what is today Israel/Palestine.  Of this number, 403,795 (87 per cent) were Muslim, 43,659 (10 per cent) were Christian and 15,011 (3 per cent) were Jewish.”
Those who receive their information from official Israeli sources, Pappe shows, would come away with the view that, “Sixteenth-century Palestine… was mainly Jewish  and the commercial lifeblood of the region was concentrated in the Jewish communities.”  According to the Website of the Israeli Foreign Ministry, Pappe points out, “By 1800, Palestine had become a desert…Every passing year the land became more barren, deforestation increased and farmland turned to desert.  Promoted through an official state website this fabricated picture is unprecedented.”
Many Israeli scholars have challenged this false narrative, among them David Grossman (the demographer not the novelist), Amnon Cohen and Yehoushua Ben-Arieh.  Their research shows that, over the centuries, Palestine, rather than being a desert, was a thriving Arab society.  Yet, Pappe reports, “Outside of Israel, in particular in the United States, the assumption that the promised land was empty, desolate, and barren before the arrival of Zionism is still alive and kicking…Palestine began to develop as a nation long before the arrival of the Zionist movement. In the hands of energetic local rulers such as Daher al-Umar (1690-1775), the towns of Haifa, Shefamr, Tiberias, and Acre were renovated and re-energized. The coastal network of ports and towns boomed through its trade connections with Europe, while the inner plains traded inland with nearby regions.  The very opposite of a desert.”
Sizeable Population
At the end of the 19th century, Palestine had a sizeable population, of which only a small percentage was Jewish.  Those Jews who did live in Palestine at this time were opposed to the ideas promoted  by Zionism.  Contrary to the notion of Palestine being an “empty land,” Pappe shows that, “It was part of a rich and fertile eastern Mediterranean world that in the 19th century underwent processes of modernization and nationalization.  It was not a desert waiting to come into bloom;  it was a pastoral country  on the verge of entering the 20th century as a modern society, with all the benefits and ills of such a transformation.  Its colonization by the Zionist movement turned this process into a disaster for the majority of the native people living there.”
The second myth considered is that, “The Jews Were a People Without a Land.” Asking whether the Jewish settlers who arrived in Palestine could be considered “a people,” Pappe cites Shlomo Sand’s “The Invention of the Jewish People,” which shows that the Christian world, in its own interest, adopted the idea of the Jews as a nation that must one day return to the holy land.  This return, in their view, would be part of the divine scheme for the end of the world, along with the resurrection of the dead and the second coming of the Messiah.
The theological upheavals of the Reformation beginning in the 16th century produced a clear association, particularly among Protestants, between the idea of the end of the millennium and the conversion of the Jews and their return to Palestine.  Thomas Brightman, a 16th century English clergyman, wrote, “Shall they return to Jerusalem again?  There is nothing more certain:  the prophets do everywhere confirm it and beat about it.”  Brightman wished the Jews either to convert to Christianity or leave Europe.  A hundred years later, Henry Oldenburg, a German theologian, wrote:  “If the occasion presents itself amid changes to which human affairs are liable, the Jews may even raise their empire anew, and…God may elect them a second time.”
A Christian Project of Colonization
“Zionism,” writes Pappe, “was therefore a Christian project of colonization before it became a Jewish one… A powerful theological and imperial movement emerged that would put the return of the Jews to Palestine at the heart of a strategic plan to take over Palestine and turn it into a Christian entity… This dangerous blend of religious fervor and and reformist zeal…would lead to the Balfour Declaration of 1917.”
An important advocate of a Jewish return to Palestine in England in the 19th century was Lord  Shaftesbury (1801-85), a leading politician and reformer, who campaigned actively for a Jewish homeland in Palestine.  His arguments for a greater British presence in Palestine were both religious and strategic.  As Pappe reports, “Lord Shaftesbury convinced the Anglican bishopric center and cathedral in Jerusalem to provide the early funding for this project.  This would probably not have happened at all had Shaftesbury not succeeded in recruiting his father in law, Britain’s foreign minister and later prime minister, Lord Palmerston, to the cause.”
In 1839, Shaftesbury wrote a 30-page article in The London Quarterly Review in which he predicted a new era for the Jews:  “…the Jews must be encouraged to return in yet greater number and become once more the husbandman of Judea and Galilee…though admittedly a stiff-necked people and sunk in moral degradation, obduracy, and ignorance of the Gospel, (they are) not only worthy of salvation but also vital to Christianity’s hope and salvation.”
There has been much speculation, Pappe points out, about whether the Jews who settled in Palestine as Zionists were really the descendants of the Jews who had been exiled 2,000 years ago.  Arthur Koestler (1905-83) wrote “The Thirteenth Tribe” (1976)  in which he advanced the theory that the Jewish settlers were descended from the Khazars, a Turkish  nation of the Caucasus which converted to Judaism in the 8th century and was later forced to move westward.  Israeli scientists have ever since tried to prove that there is a  genetic connection between the Jews of Roman Palestine and those of present-day Palestine.  That debate continues today.
Israel’s Claim to Represent all Jews
“It is not the claims of 19th century Zionism, it is not the historical accuracy of those claims that matters,” argues Pappe.  “What matters is not whether the present Jews in Israel are the authentic descendants of those who lived in the Roman era, but rather the state of Israel’s insistence that it represents all the Jews in the world and that everything it does is for their sake and on their behalf.  Until 1967, this claim was very helpful for the state of Israel.  Jews around the world, particularly in the United States, became its main supporters whenever its policies were questioned.  In many respects, this is still the case in the U.S. today.  However, even there, as well as in other Jewish communities, this clear association is nowadays challenged.”
In making the case that Jews were a nation belonging to Palestine, and therefore should be helped to return to it, Pappe notes, “They had to rely on British officials and, later, military power.  Jews and the world at large did not seem to be convinced that the Jews were a people without a land.  Shaftesbury, Finn, Balfour, and Lloyd George liked the idea because it helped Britain gain a foothold in Palestine.  This became immaterial after the British took Palestine by force and then had to decide from a new starting point whether the land was Jewish or Palestinian—a question it could never properly answer, and therefore had to leave to others to resolve after 30 years of frustrating rule.”
Of particular interest is the chapter dealing with the myth that, “Zionism is Judaism.”  In fact, Zionism was originally a minority opinion among Jews.  “Since its inception in the mid-19th century,” writes Pappe, “Zionism was only one, inessential expression of Jewish cultural life. It was born out of two impulses among Jewish communities in Central and Eastern Europe.  The first was a search for safety within a society that refused to integrate Jews as equals and that occasionally persecuted them… The second impulse was a wish to emulate other new national movements mushrooming in Europe at the time… Those Jews who sought to transform Judaism from a religion into a nation were not unique among the many ethnic and religious groups within the two crumbling empires—the Austro-Hungarian and the Ottoman—who wished to redefine themselves as nations.”
Redefinition of Judaism
The early Zionists put forward two new ideas:  the redefinition of Judaism as a national movement and the need to colonize Palestine.  These ideas became more popular after a brutal wave of pogroms in Russia in 1881, which transformed them into a political program propagated by a movement called “The Lovers of Zion,” who sent a few enthusiastic young Jews to build the first new colonies in Palestine in 1882.  This first phase of Zionism culminated with the works and actions of Theodor Herzl, a journalist and an atheist with no connection to Jewish religious life.  He came to the conclusion that widespread anti-Semitism made assimilation impossible and that a Jewish state in Palestine was the best solution for the “Jewish Problem.”
While such ideas gained some support in countries such as Russia, where Jews were second-class citizens, Pappe writes that, “As these early Zionist ideas were aired among Jewish communities in countries such as Germany and the United States, prominent rabbis and leading figures in those communities rejected the new approach. religious leaders dismissed Zionism as a form of secularization and modernization, while secular Jews feared that the new ideas would raise questions about the Jews’ loyalty to their own nation-states and would thus increase anti-Semitism.”
Reform Judaism rejected the Zionist idea and proclaimed that Judaism was a religion of universal values, not a nationality. Later, it reconciled itself to the Zionist idea. The older Reform philosophy, Pappe declares, has been kept alive by the American Council for Judaism. He writes: “When the Reformists first encountered Zionism, they vehemently rejected the idea of redefining Judaism as nationalism and the creation of a Jewish state in Palestine. However, their anti-Zionist stance shifted after the creation of the state of Israel in 1948. In the second half of the 20th century, the majority among them created a new Reform movement in the U.S… However, a large number of Jews left the new movement and set up the American Council for Judaism (ACJ), which reminded the world… that Zionism was still a minority view among Jews, and remained loyal to the old Reformist notions about Zionism.”
In 1869, Reform Jews in the U.S. made the point that, “The messianic aim of Israel (I.e., the Jewish people) is not the restoration of a Jewish state under a descendant of David, involving a second separation from the nation’s of earth, but the Union of the children of God in the confession of the unity of God, so as to realize the unity of all national creatures and their call to moral sanctification.”
No Longer A Nation But A Religious Community
In 1885, another Reform group, meeting in Pittsburgh, declared: “We consider ourselves no longer a nation, but a religious community, and we therefore expect neither a return to Palestine, nor a sacrificial worship under the sons of Aaron, nor the restoration of any laws concerning the Jewish state.”
In 1897, the same year as the first Zionist conference was convened in Basel, Switzerland, a socialist Jewish movement was born in Russia, the Bund. Bund members believed that a socialist revolution would be a far better solution to the problems of Jews in Europe than Zionism. Even after the Holocaust, Bundists were convinced that Jews should seek a place in societies that cherish human and civil rights, and did not see a Jewish nation state as a panacea.
Another critique of Zionism came from Orthodox Jews. Pappe notes that, “When Zionism made its first appearance in Europe, many traditional rabbis in fact forbade their followers from having anything to do with Zionist activists. They viewed Zionism as meddling with God’s will to retain the Jews in exile until the coming of the Messiah… The great Hasidic German Rabbi Dzikover… said that Zionism asks him to replace centuries of Jewish wisdom and law for a rag, soil and a song (I.e., a flag, a land and an anthem).”
The Zionists not only sought to colonize Palestine but, as Pappe shows, “…it also hoped to secularize the Jewish people, to invent the ‘new Jew’ in antithesis to the religious Orthodox Jews of Europe… The Orthodox Jew was ridiculed by the Zionists, and was viewed as someone who could only be redeemed through hard work in Palestine… The role of the Bible within Jewish life offered one further clear difference between Judaism and Zionism… the Bible provided ‘the myth for our right over the land.’ It was in the Bible that they read stories about Hebrew farmers, shepherds, kings, and wars, which they appropriated as describing the ancient golden era of their nation’s birth. Returning to the land meant coming back to become farmers , shepherds and kings. Thus, they found themselves faced with a challenging paradox, for they wanted both to secularize Jewish life and to use the Bible as a publication for colonizing Palestine. In other words, though they did not believe in God, He had nonetheless promised them Palestine.”
Palestine Was Not Empty
Another myth which Pappe confronts is, “Zionism Is Not Colonialism.” When the first Zionist settlers arrived in 1882, the land of Palestine was not empty. In fact, he writes, “This fact was known to the Zionist leaders even before the first Jewish settlers arrived. A delegation sent to Palestine by the early Zionist organizations reported back to their colleagues: ‘The bride is beautiful, but married to another man.’ Nevertheless, when they first arrived, the early settlers were surprised to encounter the locals whom they regarded as invaders and strangers. In their view, the native Palestinians had usurped their homeland. They were told by their leaders that the locals were not natives, that they had no rights to the land. Instead, they were a problem that had to, and could, be resolved.”
None of this, Pappe argues, was unique because “Zionism was a settler colonial movement, similar to the movements of Europeans who had colonized the two Americas, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand… Settler colonialism is motivated by a desire to take over land in a foreign country, while classical colonialism covets the natural resources in its new geographic possession… The problem was that the new ‘homelands’ were already inhabited by other people. In response, the settler communities argued that the new land was theirs by divine or moral right, even if, in cases other than Zionism, they did not claim to have lived there thousands of years ago. In many cases, the accepted method for overcoming such obstacles was the genocide of the indigenous locals.”
From the beginning, Palestinian resistance was depicted as motivated by hate for Jews. The diaries of the early Zionists tell a different story, They are filled with anecdotes revealing how the settlers were well received by the Palestinians, who offered them shelter and in many cases taught them how to cultivate the land. “Only when it became clear that the settlers had not come to live alongside the native population, but in place of it, did the Palestinian resistance begin,” writes Pappe. “And when that resistance started, it quickly took the form of every other anti-colonialist struggle.”
Shared Representation
In 1928, the Palestinian leadership, notwithstanding the wishes of the majority of their people, consented to allow the Jewish settlers equal representation in the future bodies of the state. The Zionist leadership was in favor of the idea only as long as it believed the Palestinians would reject it. Shared representation was the opposite of what the Zionists wanted. When the proposal was accepted by the Palestinians, it was rejected by the Zionists. This led to the riots of 1929. Even in 1947, when Britain decided to refer the question to the United Nations, the Palestinians suggested with other Arab states, a unitary state to replace the Mandate in Palestine, with equal rights for Jews and Arabs. This the Zionists rejected.
In Pappe’s view, “One can depict Zionism as a settler colonial movement and the Palestinian national movement as an anticolonial one…. By 1945, Zionism had attracted more than half a million settlers to a country whose population was about 2 million… The settlers’ only way of expanding their hold on the land…and of ensuring an exclusive demographic majority was to remove the natives from their homeland… Palestine is not entirely Jewish demographically, and although Israel controls all of it politically by various means, the state of Israel is still colonizing—building new settlements in the Galilee, the Negev, and the West Bank…”
The Israeli government has long promoted the idea that the Palestinians voluntarily left their homeland in 1948. It has promoted the idea that Palestinians fled their villages of their own accord or on orders from Arab armies that wanted them out of the way. There was no obligation on Israel, therefore, to let Palestinians return since, according to this argument, their displacement was not Israel’s responsibility. Any “infiltrators” who tried to go back were criminals. In the late 1980’s, Israel’s so-called “new historians,” notably Benny Morris, examined newly opened Israeli archives and found no evidence that the refugees fled on orders from Arab leaders, but had done so mostly out of terror, after hearing reports of massacres carried out by Israeli soldiers in villages such as Deir Yassin, where Jewish militiamen killed over 100 Palestinian civilians.
Transferring The Palestinians
This idea that the Palestinians left voluntarily is another of the “myths” Pappe confronts. He writes that, “The Zionist leadership and ideologues could not envision a successful implementation of their project without getting rid of the native population, either through agreement or by force. More recently, after years of denial, Zionist historians such as Anita Shapira have accepted that their heroes, the leaders of the Zionist movement, seriously contemplated transferring the Palestinians.”
In 1937, David Ben-Gurion told the Zionist assembly, “In many parts of the country, it will not be possible to settle without transferring the Arab fellahin… With compulsory transfer we would have a vast area for settlement… I support compulsory transfer. I don’t see anything immoral in it.”
In his book “The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine,” Pappe examines the development of a master plan for the massive expulsion on the Palestinians. Officially, the Israeli government maintains the claim that Palestinians became refugees because their leaders told them to leave. “But,” he writes, “there was no such call—it is a myth created by the Israeli foreign ministry… What is clear is that the ethnic cleansing of the Palestinians can in no way be justified as a ‘punishment’ for their rejecting a U.N. peace plan that was devised without any consultation with the Palestinians themselves.”
Israel’s master plan, Plan D, which had been prepared alongside the high command of the Haganah, the main Jewish military wing, included the following clear references to the methods to be employed in the process of cleansing the population: “Destruction of villages (setting fire to, blowing up, and planting mines in the debris), especially those population centers which are difficult to control continuously. Mounting search and control operations according to the following guidelines: encirclement of the village and conducting a search inside it. In the event of resistance, the armed force must be destroyed and the population must be expelled outside the borders of the state.”
War Crime
Pappe declares that, “From the present vantage point, there is no escape from defining the Israeli actions in the Palestinian countryside as a war crime… The crime committed by the leadership of the Zionist movement, which became the government of Israel, was that of ethnic cleansing. This is not mere rhetoric, but an indictment with far-reaching political, legal and moral obligations. The definition of the crime was clarified in the aftermath of the 1990’s civil war in the Balkans: ethnic cleansing is any action by one ethnic group meant to drive out another ethnic group with the purpose of transforming a mixed ethnic region into a pure one. Such an action amounts to ethnic cleansing regardless of the means employed to obtain it—from persuasion and threats to expulsions and mass killings.”
It is important to remember, Pappe points out, that, “There are Jews in Israel who have absorbed all these lessons. Not all Jews are indifferent to or ignorant of the Nakba. Those who are not are currently a small minority, but one which makes its presence felt, demonstrating that at least some Jewish citizens are not deaf to the cries, pain, and devastation of those killed, raped, or wounded throughout 1948.”
Other myths confronted by the author include: “The June 1967 War Was A War of ‘No Choice,” “Israel Is The Only Democracy In The Middle Esst,” “The Oslo Mythologies,” “The Gaza Mythologies,” and “The Two-States Solution Is The Only Way Forward.”
In the case of the 1967 war, the accepted narrative is that the 1967 war forced Israel to occupy the West Bank and the Gaza Strip and keep it in custody until the Palestinians were prepared to make peace. Many think that the 1967 war was one in which Israel was resisting attack and occupied the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza in self-defense. The fact is that it was Israel which launched the first strike against Egypt in 1967. Prime Minister Menachem Begin later said: “In June 1967 we again had a choice. The Egyptian Army concentration in the Sinai approaches do not prove that Nasser was really about to attack us. We must be honest with ourselves. We decided to attack them.”
Zionist Aim Before 1948
In reality, Pappe believes, “…the takeover of the West Bank in particular, with its ancient biblical sights, was a Zionist aim even before 1948 and it fitted the logic of the Zionist project as a whole. This logic can be summarized as the wish to take over as much of Palestine as possible with as few Palestinians as possible… After the occupation, the new ruler confined the Palestinians of the West Bank and Gaza Strip in an impossible limbo: they were neither refugees nor citizens—they were, and still are, citizenless inhabitants. They were inmates, and in many respects still are, of a huge prison in which they have no civil, and human rights and no impact on their future. The world tolerates this situation because Israel claims —and the claim was never challenged until recently—that the situation is temporary…Israel is still incarcerating a third generation of Palestinians…and depicting these mega-prisons as temporary…”
With regard to Israel’s claim to be the only “democracy” in the Middle East, Pappe points to the fact that, even before 1967, Palestinians, who represented 20% of Israel’s citizens, lived under “military rule based on draconian British Mandatory emergency regulations that denied… any basic human or civil rights. Local military governors were the absolute rulers of the lives of these citizens: they could devise special laws for them, destroy their houses and livelihoods and send them to jail whenever they felt like it. Only in the late 1950’s did a strong Jewish opposition to these abuses emerge, which eventually eased the pressure on the Palestinian citizens.”
The state of “military terror” under which Palestinians lived, notes Pappe, is “exemplified by the Kafr Qasim massacre in October 1956, when, on the eve of the Sinai operation, 49 Palestinian citizens were killed by the Israeli army. The authorities alleged that they were late returning home from work in the fields when a curfew had been imposed on the village. This was not the real reason, however. Later proofs show that Israel had seriously considered the expulsion of Palestinians from the whole area called Wadi Ara and the Triangle in which the village sat… These two areas… were annexed to Israel under the terms of the 1949 armistice agreement with Jordan… Additional territory was always welcomed by Israel, but an increase in the Palestinian population was not… Operation ‘Hafarfert’ (mole) was the code name of a set of proposals for the expulsion of the Palestinians when a new war broke out… Many scholars today now think that the 1956 massacre was a practice run to see if the people in the area could be intimidated to leave.”
Law of Return
Israel’s Law of Return grants automatic citizenship to every Jew in the world, wherever he or she was born. In Pappe’s view, “This law…is a flagrantly undemocratic one, for it was accompanied by a total rejection of the Palestinian right of return—recognized internationally by the U.N. General Assembly Resolution 194 of 1948. This rejection refuses to allow the Palestinian citizens of Israel to unite with immediate family members or with those who were expelled in 1948. Denying people the right to return to their homeland, and at the same time offering the right to others who have no connection to the land is a model of undemocratic process.”
Other aspects of life in Israel, Pappe shows, makes the claim to “democracy” questionable. Since 1948, Palestinian municipalities have received far less funding than their Jewish counterparts. The most affluent Palestinian community, the village of Me’ilva in the upper Galilee, is still worse off than the poorest Jewish development town in the Negev. At the same time, more than 90 per cent of the land is owned by the Jewish National Fund (JNF). Landowners are not allowed to engage in transactions with non-Jewish citizens and public land is prioritized for the use of national projects, which means that new Jewish settlements are being built while there are hardly any new Palestinian settlements. The biggest Palestinian city, Nazareth, despite the tripling of its population since 1948, has not expanded one square kilometer, whereas the development town built above it, Upper Nazareth, has tripled in size, on land expropriated from Palestinian landowners.
“Imagine,” writes Pappe, “if in the UK or the U.S., Jewish citizens, or Catholics for that matter, were barred by law from living in certain villages, neighborhoods, or maybe whole towns? How can such a situation be reconciled with the notion of democracy?… [Israel] cannot by any stretch of the imagination, be assumed to be a democracy.” When it comes to Palestinians living in the occupied territories, he declares, “the humiliation of millions of Palestinians is a daily routine, ‘the only democracy in the Middle East’ behaves as a dictatorship of the worst kind.”
Unlawful Killings and Torture
Amnesty International annually documents the nature of the occupation. Its 2015 report provided this assessment: “In the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, Israeli forces committed unlawful killings of Palestinian civilians, including children, and detained thousands of Palestinians who protested against or otherwise opposed Israel’s continuing military occupation, holding hundreds in administrative detention. Torture and other ill treatment remained rife and were committed with impunity. The authorities continued to promote illegal settlements in the West Bank and severely restricted Palestinians’ freedom of movement… The authorities continued to demolish Palestinian homes on the West Bank and inside Israel, particularly in Bedouin villages in the Negev/Naqab region, forcibly evicting their residents.”
On September 13, 1993, Israel and the PLO signed a declaration of principles, known as the Oslo Accord. Pappe argues that “…we should acknowledge that the Oslo process was not a fair and equal pursuit of peace, but a compromise agreed to by a defeated, colonized people. As a result, the Palestinians were forced to seek solutions that went against their interests and endangered their very existence. The same argument can be made about the debates concerning the ‘two-state solution’ that was offered in Oslo. This offer should be seen for what it is: partition under a different wording. Even in this scenario…Israel would not only decide how much territory it was going to concede but also what would happen in the territory it left behind.”
In the original Accords there was an Israeli promise that the three issues that trouble the Palestinians most—the fate of Jerusalem, the refugees, and the Jewish settlements—would be negotiated when the interim period of five years came to a successful end. This process, however, was stalled by the assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin in 1995, followed by the victory of Likud, headed by Benjamin Netanyahu in 1996. Netanyahu opposed the Oslo Accords and the process came to a halt.
Camp David
Later, under Ehud Barak, Israel’s final offer was made at Camp David in 2000. Israel proposed a small Palestinian state with a capital in Abu Dis, but without significant dismantling of any settlements and no hope for the return of the refugees. The negotiations collapsed. “After 1995,” writes Pappe, “the impact of the Oslo Accord as a factor that ruined Palestinian society, rather than bringing peace, became painfully clear… the Accord became a discourse of peace that had no relevance to the reality on the ground. During the period of the talks—between 1996 and 1999—more settlements were built, and more collective punishments were inflicted on the Palestinians. Even if you believed in the two-state solution in 1999, a tour of either the West Bank or the Gaza Strip would have convinced you of the words of the Israeli scholar, Meron Benvenisti, who wrote that Israel had created irreversible facts on the ground: the two-state solution was killed by Israel.”
Looking to the future, Pappe believes that the declaration that, “The two states solution is the only way forward” is yet another myth. He notes that, “Any criticism of this myth is often branded as anti-Semitism. However, in many ways the opposite is true: there is a connection between the new anti-Semitism and the myth itself. The two-states solution is based on the idea that a Jewish state is the best solution for the Jewish problem; that is, Jews should live in Palestine rather than anywhere else. This notion is also close to the hearts of anti-Semites. The two-states solution, indirectly one should say, is based on the assumption that Israel and Judaism are the same. Thus, Israel insists that what it does, it does in the name of Judaism, and when its actions are rejected by people around the world the criticism is not only directed toward Israel but also towards Judaism… It seems that nothing is going to stop Israel now from completing its colonization of the West Bank and continuing its siege on Gaza.”
What will happen as Israel abandons the two-state solution remains a subject of much speculation. It is important for the world, and in particular for Jews, to understand what has occurred in Palestine in historical terms. Pappe puts it in this perspective: “After World War ll, Zionism was allowed to become a colonialist project at a time when colonialism was being rejected by the civilized world because the creation of a Jewish state offered Europe, and West Germany in particular, an easy way out of the worst excesses of anti-Semitism ever seen. Israel was the first to declare its recognition of ‘a new Germany’—in return it received a lot of money, but also, far more importantly a carte blanche to turn the whole of Palestine into Israel. Zionism offered itself as the solution to anti-Semitism, but became the main reason for its continued presence.”
A Just Solution
A just solution to the dilemma of Palestine will, Pappe concludes, only be achieved if we stop treating the mythologies he sets forth as truths: “Palestine was not empty and the Jewish people had homelands; Palestine was colonized, not ‘redeemed’; and its people were dispossessed in 1948, rather than leaving voluntarily. Colonized people, even under the U.N. Charter, have the right to struggle for their liberation…and the successful ending to such a struggle lies in the creation of a democratic state that includes all of its inhabitants.”
Since Ilan Pappe completed his book, Israel has moved even further away from a two state solution. The ruling Likud Party’s central committee, early in 2018, endorsed a resolution calling for the annexation of the West Bank settlements. Prime Minister Netanyahu no longer speaks of the establishment of a Palestinian state. The very idea of a Palestinian state ever coming into existence is rejected by Israel’s current government.
To understand how we have come to this point, and to consider how, in the face of the latest developments, we can look forward to a more hopeful future, this important book by Ilan Pappe is essential reading. Abandoning myths and confronting reality is an important first step forward

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!