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Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Uri Avnery - Supporter of 'Peace' and the Palestinian Police Statelet

Why the Zionist 'Left' Are the Most Dedicated Supporters of Arab Dictatorships

In most countries, the Left of the political spectrum is normally opposed to dictatorships and the apparatus of the police state. Of course exceptions need to be made for the lingering fondness of Stalinism for autocracy, but in general the Left stands for democracy, workers' rights and internationalism and the Right will invade anything and kill anyone to preserve the rights of capital to exploit wherever and whenever it wants.

The Zionist 'peace movement', including the doyen of the fight against Occupation, Uri Avnery, are an exception. This is a 'left' that supported co-operative structures in order to fulfill the goals of colonialism more efficiently.
As I wrote 2 years ago the Zionist left has fulfilled its historical mission, which was to divert Jewish workers away from socialism and towards Zionism. Today it is a fossil, a relic left on the shore for the sake of old times.

When the Zionist left protests the loyalty oath of the Netanyahu/ Lieberman coalition, it does so because it fears that in the developing witch-hunt it too may be caught out for not being loyal enough.
Loyalty oaths, military rule, torture, arbitrary imprisonment, land confiscation - you name it and there's nothing the Zionist Right has done that the Zionist Left didn't do better.

F
or the Zionist left 'peace' was a primary goal. Not the peace of international co-operation and the free movement of workers in the Middle East, as even the European Union has managed to achieve. The common struggle against imperialism was the last thing they had on their minds. Instead the desired goal was the peace of the graveyard, the peace of a Mubarak which freed them to attack the north of Israel and colonise the West Bank.

Internationalism was never a principle for the Zionist left. On the contrary, founded on the basis of a
Jewish only racist state, where being Jewish was the most important characteristic, internationalism and solidarity between workers was secondary to the needs of the Israeli state. And if workers in the Arab countries saw Zionism as a hostile colonial entity then those workers were merely deluded, and being Arabs or Moslems, were the products of a backward culture. This was the response, incidentally, of the Zionist left, who led the Zionist Organisation and the Jewish Agency in Palestine up till 1948. The opposition of the Palestinian Arab workers to Zionism was attributed to their leaders, the feudal effendis. It had nothing to do with being driven off the land by Kibbutzim under the watchful eye of British bayonets. It had nothing to do with the open alliance between British imperialism and Zionism. It was merely the product of the Arabs' backward and 'anti-semitic' nature.

It is because the Zionist left never believed in joint work with the Arab workers, whom they derided as simpletons, that Histadrut and the Israeli Labour Party Mapai coined the term 'from class to nation'. Because they vigorously opposed joint work with the Arab workers, they redefined the very concept of class. Indeed they had superceded and transcended it. Class struggle was merely a milestone on the road to national unity. The Arabs were defined as the enemy class, the mere representatives of feudal Arabs who were united only by their anti-Semitism.

It was thus natural that the Zionist left sought, from the very start an alliance with Arab despots. Gold Meir in 1947 made the journey to see King Abdullah in Transjordan (see Avi Shlaim's 'Collusion Across the Jordan'). Shimon Peres, who was described as an 'indefatigable intriguer' by Yitzhak Rabin and who at one time was seen as to the 'left' of Rabin, was also the instigator of the Oslo Accords. He it was who was responsible for the process whereby Arabs were turned into their own policemen, better to enforce the Occupation.

No more devout supporters of Arab repression were there than the Labour Zionists and no more ardent supporters of the link with US imperialism were there than these 'left' Zionists.
Indeed the main complaint against Begin and Sharon was that they were endangering the 'special relationship' that Israel and the USA have. Whereas Netanyahu told Obama to back off from ideas of a settlement freeze, and with the support of Congress and the neo-Cons won that battle, Labour might have backed down. This has resulted in the obscenity that not only the 'Right' of Zionism - the Lieberman's and Netanyahu's supporting Mubarak, but Peres going out of his way to praise this mass murderer and torturer.

It is natural if one is to insert oneself in the Middle East as the United State's surrogate that the masses are going to oppose you. It is therefore also natural that Arab dictatorships were seen as the only way of cementing the rule of imperialism in the region.
Despite its laughable claims to be the 'only democracy in the Middle East' (despite not giving half those under its rule a vote) it is Israel which has, as the Jewish Chronicle puts it, trembled at the thought of all those nice, friendly, pro-US Arab dictators, falling one by one. And this is true not just of the hypocrites of the Israeli Labour Party and Meretz, but also of even the most consistent sections of the Zionist peace camp, Gush Shalom led by Uri Avneri.

Below is an excellent article by
Tikva Honig-Parnass, an Israeli anti-Zionist, laying bare much of the above. In particular her article demonstrates that Uri Avnery, for long the one remaining Zionist who was consistent in his opposition to settlement and occupation, could not defy the logic of his own position. There is no greater supporter of the Palestinian Police State than Uri Avnery.


Tony Greenstein

Support of the Israeli Peace Camp for the Autocratic Palestinian Regime

Tikva Honig-Parnass

The Zionist left has always supported US imperialism and its autocratic Arab allies, claiming that US policy seeks to enforce peace and democracy in the Middle East. This claim has likewise been the pretext for their support of the PA police state in the making. However, Uri Avnery's embrace of Abu Mazen and Salam Fayyad’s oppressive regime lays bare an appalling fact: the genuine Palestinian national movement has no partner, even within the most radical wing of Israel's so-called "peace camp.”

Introduction

Academics and publicists from the Zionist left have persistently distorted the notion of democracy when insisting on applying it to the political regime in Israel. Despite the fact that some admit the "stains in Israel's democracy,” they support the definition of Israel as a "Jewish state," which implies the structural discrimination and marginalization of the indigenous Palestinian population. They usually cling to the misleading argument that the preference of Jews does not violate the equality of individual citizenship rights held by the Palestinians in Israel. This hypocritical stance of the self-proclaimed "liberals" has been largely sustained by the prevailing political culture, which they themselves actively helped create: namely, the state-centered culture portrayed by the late sociologist Baruch Kimmerling as "semi-fascist". Accordingly, the values of individual human rights, the essence of democracy, are perceived as subservient to state security.

Shlomo Avineri, professor of political science has well represented the role of the intellectual on the Zionist left in granting "scientific" confirmation to the definition of the Zionist settler state as "democracy." For example, he depicts the Law of Return – which is central to the Apartheid nature of the Israeli legal infrastructure as just an "immigration law," no different from immigration laws in other democratic states such as the US and Norway' 1.

Now, in wake of the popular uprising in Egypt that threatens the other dictatorial regimes across the Middle East, Shlomo Avinery has come up with a new insight on the imperative commitment of democrats to fight against an autocratic regime. He expressly argues that a peace treaty – which ensures the "security" of Israel – is a top "moral" value that justifies the past support of Mubarak's totalitarian "internal" regime:
"Recently, we here were presented with a rather problematic choice: Do we support democracy, or do we support the Israeli interest in maintaining security and stability? When a moral value (democracy ) is thus posited against realpolitik (stability and security), it is easy to lapse into the argument that Peace is not only a political, military and security arrangement; it is also a moral value. The fact that for 30 years not a single Israeli or Egyptian soldier was killed in hostile activities on our common border, [...] is not only a strategic achievement, but a moral achievement of the highest order, credit for which goes to political leaders on both sides."
In his effort to justify the alliance with Mubarak and belittle his brutal oppression of the Egyptian people, Avineri makes a most bizarre comparison:
"Just as it is permissible to praise former Prime Minister Menachem Begin for achieving peace with Egypt, without agreeing with many of his views it is permissible to praise former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak for his determination, sometimes under great pressure, to preserve the peace initiated by his predecessor Anwar Sadat. That is not support for a despot; it's support for the moral content of peace."
The lip service paid to "Israel's interest in democracy in Egypt" is soon wiped out by the summary of his main message to Israelis – and, indirectly, to Egyptians as well: "But Egypt's internal regime is the business of its own citizens, and we would do well not to try to advise them whom to elect and whom not to elect. In any event, the moral aspect of peace, which is based on the principle of preserving human life and its quality of life, must be a guide to us, as to Egyptian society that has now embarked on a new path".

Avineri's indifference toward Mubarak’s despotic regime (and any regime that would replace his) because of Israel's interests in peace with Egypt, is merely the expression of US imperial strategy in the Middle East (and elsewhere), to which Israel is a lesser partner. This strategy consists of supporting even the most brutal oppressive regimes as long as they sustain their submission to US interests. A recent article by Noam Chomsky deals with, among other things, US concerns about the "shock wave throughout the region set in motion by the uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt that drove out western-backed dictators." He reminds us of what he has been emphasizing for a long time: "Washington and its allies keep to the well established principle that democracy is acceptable only insofar as it conforms to strategic and economic objectives [..]The nature of any regime it backs in the Arab world is secondary to control. Subjects are ignored until they break their chains." 2

This is the true meaning of the "morality" that Prof. Avineri attributes to "maintaining security and stability" through peace with Egypt. He should know better the role of this "peace" in sustaining US and Israeli interests by fortifying the "moderate block" of the despotic Arab states. Their joint aim is to eliminate "secular nationalism," including the national rights of the Palestinian people. Mubarak's Egypt fully complied with Israel and the US in blocking a peace agreement that would recognize these rights, as has long since been known.

Shlomo Avineri's doctrine of privileging Israel's "security" over "internal" democracy, in the case of Egypt, has usually been adopted by leftist Zionists in regard to the Palestinian Authority, albeit without admitting it explicitly. It was Labor PM Ytzhak Rabin who justified Israeli "concessions" in the Oslo Accords on the grounds that the Accords would bring about a collaborative Palestinian Authority that would repress resistance "without [the shackles] of [Israel's] Supreme Court and [the human rights organization] B’tselem." And indeed, the Zionist left has embraced the autocratic regime that has developed under the PA, which thus granted the PA recognition as an "appropriate" partner for peace. This support for the oppressive and collaborationist PA has been shared by even the most militant wing of the Israeli peace camp. The release of the Al Jazeera documents, and Uri Avineri's response to them, have contributed the ultimate proof of this shameful support. These documents revealed the full compliance of the Palestinian leadership with US-Israeli demands, as well as their collaboration with the latter’s schemes to do away with the national Palestinian movement. 3

Gush Shalom, founded and led by Uri Avnery, responded to the Al Jazeera papers in its weekly statement in Haaretz of January 28, 2011, saying: "The Al Jazeera Disclosures prove: The Palestinians have no partner for peace."

Indeed, the "Palestine Papers" confirm in every detail that, during the last decade, Israeli governments have objected to any potential plan for peace settlement, while simultaneously entrenching the occupation regime in the '67 conquered territories. The papers disclose what was known to anyone who refused to take part in welcoming the charade of the peace process or to believe that it would lead to a peace settlement that would fulfill the Palestinians’ national aspirations. Uri Avney has played a significant role in creating and sustaining this baseless belief, which he shared with the intellectual elite and activists among the Zionist left. However, Avnery's positions have had a significant influence on genuine peace-seekers in Israel and abroad, due to his determined and persistent struggle against the '67 occupation and the atrocities committed in the occupied territories by Israeli authorities.

Avnery's optimistic message has relied on what he calls the "realism" of Arafat and the Palestinian leadership that ascended to power after his death; namely, their readiness for partial concessions to Israeli demands in the framework of the two-state solution which, however, don’t violate the basic national rights of the Palestinian people. Moreover, Avnery has constantly assured the public, both in Israel and abroad, that the concessions made by Abu Mazen are accepted by the majority of the Palestinians who recognize the Oslo-created Palestinian Authority as their representative. He never challenged the legitimacy of the PA leadership even after the victory of Hamas in the 2006 democratic elections, which the PA ignored and which brought about the separation from the Gaza Strip.

The revelations of the Al Jazeera papers, as well as Avnery's long response to them, highlight his the absolute loyalty to the the PA, whose betrayal of the Palestinian cause was well documented. I'll first briefly discuss a number of Al Jazeera revelations that prove the strong collaboration between the Palestinian leadership and Israel-US dictates, both in regards to the negotiations process and the Palestinian authocratic regime. After reporting on the dismayed reactions of Palestinians in response to these revelations, I'll present Avnery'slong response to the Al Jazeera papers in his January 29 article. In this article, he emphasizes his continued support of the collaborative Palestinian leadership and their "twostate solution" as disclosed in the papers. A review of his November 2010 article, in which he exprsses his admiration for the PA police regime, confirms the betrayal committed by both the PA and the leader of Israel's peace camp.

A Selective Summary of Al Jazeera Documents

Al Jazeera’s revelations point to the total capitulation of the Palestinian leaders, both those who led the negotiations (Abu Mazen and Saeb Erekat) and those who orchestrated the construction of a "police state" under Salam Fayyad's government. These detailed accounts narrate the secretly negotiated surrender of every one of Palestinians’ core rights under international law – including, among others, the PA's willingness to concede all of East Jerusalem, the settlements around Jerusalem except Har Homa, and the blocks of settlements that cut the West bank into encircled enclaves.

The PA’s betrayal, however, extends far beyond the realm of territorial concessions. The Palestinian leadership has explicitly compromised on the two fundamental principles adopted and upheld by the Palestinian national movement: first, the Right of Return of the approximately five million refugees to their homeland; and second, the refusal to recognize Israel as a Jewish state – the central premise of Zionism as embodied in the settler colonial state of Israel. 4

In explicitly recognizing the Jewish state, the current Palestinian leadership has turned their backs on the very perception that guided the Palestinian national struggle for entire decades: namely, that Zionism and the settler colonial state of Israel sought to abolish the Palestinian national movement; to commit the "sociocide" of the Palestinian people in all of historic Palestine; and, when possible, to drive their expulsion.

The recognition of Israel as a Jewish state also signifies the official abandonment of the Palestinians within Israel to their systematic discrimination and oppression as individuals and as a national collective. Moreover, it delegitimizes the democratic struggle undertaken to turn Israel into a state for all its citizens, allowing it to be continually defined as the state of the Jewish people alone.

The PA’s compromises on the Right of Return and the Jewish State are fully in accordance with Israel-US’s persistent attempts to fragment the Palestinian people. By the same token, the PA has been actively plotting with them against the legitimately constituted unity government with Hamas in Gaza. Senior PA officials deliberately suppressed Palestinian popular resistance in Gaza, and even called for Israel to once again "occupy" the border crossing between Gaza and Egypt after the border wall was blown up by Hamas activists in January 2008. 5

Revelations from the Wikileaks cables already underlined the US, Egyptian, Israeli, and Palestinian "cooperation" with Israel’s war crimes in Gaza, both before and during the “Operation Cast Lead” massacre (and, in the case of the US, a pre-knowledge of the humanitarian crisis that would develop before the attack even commenced). As shown by the Al Jazeera papers, the PA continued their collaboration with their three partners in their attempts to push the United Nations Human Rights Council to delay a vote on the Goldstone Report, the fact-finding probe of these war crimes. The documents reveal the PA-Israel collaboration in targeting resistance and in the repressive actions of the PA security forces, trained under General Dayton in the service of the occupation. 6

Angry Palestinian Reactions

The shock and anger expressed by Palestinian public figures was not late to appear. An article by Karma Nabulsi in the Guardian of 23/1/11 conveyed the growing disgust at the "outrageous role of the PA and US and Britain in creating a security Bantustan, and the ruin of our civic and political space … [Moreover], the claim they were acting in good faith is absolutely shattered by the publication of these documents [...] Whatever one’s political leanings, no one, not the Americans, the British, the UN, and especially not these Palestinian officials, can claim that the whole racket is anything other than a brutal process of subjugating an entire people." 7

Mahdi Abdul Hadi, the director of the Jerusalem think-tank Passia says, "It is now much clearer to Palestinians that they are living in a prison and that the PA leaders are there only to negotiate the terms of our imprisonment." 8

Palestinian public opinion leaders call to put an end to the Oslo leadership and to renew the Palestinian Liberation movement – which would encompass the entire Palestinian people, including the Palestinian citizens of Israel. Asad Ghanem, a professor of politics at Haifa University, says: "With politics stifled inside the occupied territories, it is crucial that outside Palestinian leaders step in to redefine the Palestinian national movement, including Palestinians such as himself who live inside Israel and groups in Diaspora." 9

Uri Avnery, however, was deaf to these voices. As said, he remained loyal to his traditional absolute support of the collaborative Oslo leadership and disregarded the Palestinians' call for its downfall.

Uri Avnery's Support for the PA Police Regime

A week after the release of the Palestinian Papers, Uri Avnery responded to their revelations in an article called "The Al Jazeera Scandal." 10

Avnery ignores the rage expressed by Palestinians at the PA’s betrayal of their people and their oppression carried out in collaboration with Israel and the US. Instead, he concentrates only on the concessions made in the "peace negotiations." These, according to him, "caused furious reactions and stirred up an intense controversy in the Arab world” (my italics).

However, he misleadingly claims that this controversy was only about trivial topics: "But what was the clash about? Not about the position of the Palestinian negotiators, not about the strategy of Mahmoud Abbas and his colleagues, its basic assumptions, its pros and cons." Ignoring or belittling the Palestinian public reactions permits Avnery to direct his main attack on the Al Jazeera network, which he presumes was shared by the Palestinian masses in the West Bank: "On Al Jazeera the Palestinian leaders were wrongly accused "of treason and worse" Hence " in Ramallah, the Aljazeera offices were attacked by pro-Abbas crowds." On the other hand, he claims, the reaction of the Palestinian leaders themselves to Al Jazeera’s accusations lacked any bravery: "Saeb Erakat, the Palestinian chief negotiator and others did not have the courage to admit publicly that they indeed agreed 'in secret' to the concessions disclosed by Al Jazeera. They seemed to be saying in public that such concessions would amount to betrayal."

Depicting these concessions as betrayal "is nonsense," says Avnery. Moreover, "For anyone involved in any way with Israeli-Palestinian peace-making, there was nothing really surprising in these disclosures. " They confirmed that the Palestinian negotiators were following the very concessions made by Arafat himself in Oslo in order to achieve a peace agreement with Israel. Avnery proudly mentions his visit to Tunisia (before the PLO leadership was allowed to return to the '67 occupied territories and form the Palestinian Authority) when he heard from Arafat himself the details of the peace agreement which he would accept. A few years later, says Avnery, Gush Shalom published a draft peace agreement based on Arafat's positions: "As anyone can see on our website, it was very similar to the recent proposals of the Palestinian side as disclosed in the Aljazeera papers" (my italics). These proposals, says Avnery, "should be at the center of the public discussion".

Avnery's call for a debate that would focus on the negotiators' positions alone, while ignoring Al Jazeera’s revelations regarding the PA’s totalitarian regime, is rather futile. It is precisely this regime and its brutal repression of its people that enabled its leaders to make such capitulations to Israel-US demands. Moreover, the "new" discussion suggested by Avnery has been taking place for many years. Hundreds if not thousands of critical works have been published on the Palestinian surrender in Oslo and thereafter, as well as on Avnery's own political positions, which supported them.11 Unlike Avnery’s own analyses, these critical publications did realize the connection between the Israel/US version of a twostates solution and the kind of a Palestinian regime that would support such a "peace solution" at all.

No doubt Avnery is familiar with the plentiful information on the oppressive PA regime that has been published in recent years by senior political analysts and research centers. A study by Aisling Byrne of the Conflicts Forum in Beirut. based on this information, lays bare the disastrous dimensions of the "police state in the making" enforced by US and Israel: 12 Says Byrne:
"[General] Dayton is a political actor who essentially is overseeing and facilitating a process of political cleansing in the West Bank, the consequences of which for the Palestinian national project, for political reconciliation between Fatah and Hamas, and for political engagement and prospects for peace are damaging, if not disastrous…. "
Dayton has been clear about his aim: to reduce the 'IDF footprint' in the West Bank by developing Palestinian capabilities and 'proven abilities'; that is, capacity-building and training of the Palestinian security forces (“paramilitaries”, as the Wall Street Journal describes them); turning them, as he explained, into the “new men of Palestine13

Dayton’s ‘capacity-building’ initiatives are facilitating the creation of an autocratic and totalitarian ‘state’ led by Mahmoud Abbas and Salam Fayyad: political debate is almost nonexistent, criticism not allowed, and the extent of collusion between the Abu Mazen/Salam Fayyad government and their security forces with Israel is so extensive that both the Palestinian public and members of the security forces themselves are beginning to question and criticize “what they see as the PNA’s attempt to increase repression and curtail freedoms.” 14

A recent report in the British newspaper, the Mail on Sunday, exposed “the horrific torture of hundreds of people by Palestinian security forces in the West Bank [which] is being funded by British taxpayers”.15 The report documents how 'not only are PA forces carrying out torture … but that the authority [also] ignores judges’ orders to release political detainees' 16

' …. One Palestinian commentator described the new recruits as being 'saturated with ideological ideas against the resistance'.
'This is how', he explains, the PLO army has been molded to be the security forces that … protect Israeli settlements … and protect the Israeli army from Palestinians and all forms of resistance.'

"This process of creating ‘new Palestinians,’" says Byrne, "has complimented the political metamorphosis of the Palestinian Authority.' A high-ranking Israeli defense officer explained to leading Israeli journalist, Nahum Barnea [of Yediot Ahronot] in early October 2009 : 'the Palestinian Authority changed right in front of our eyes … The Fayyad government was formed [and] it was clear that they wanted to give Hamas a fight. We began to meet with the heads of the [Palestinian] security organizations”. …. At the top of our agenda we put law and order in the cities and the war on Hamas... We were surprised by the intensity of their willingness to cooperate.” 17
[..]'A key turning point', the Officer explained, 'was the intensification of American involvement. … We learned the lessons that the Americans learned from the fighting in Iraq. You take one place, Jenin for example, you crush terror there, you put a strong police force there and move on. We started with Jenin… At first, it failed. Fayyad said, let’s try again. We tried again, and it caught. We needed a lot of patience … The greatest achievement was that the moderates defeated the extremists”.

'The extent of collusion', explains Palestinian analyst Ramzy Baroud, 'illustrates how the Palestinian Authority functions more than ever before as a subcontractor for the IDF, the Shin Bet security service and the Civil Administration'18

Avnery's hair-raising and utterly misleading portrayal of his allies in the PA is presented in his article of 4 November 2010, a year after the horrid facts were published in foreign and Israeli newspapers. 19

Avnery glorifies Salam Fayyad, the Prime Minister of the Palestinian government that runs the autocratic regime in the West Bank:

"It is impossible not to like Fayyad. He radiates decency, seriousness and a sense of responsibility. He invites trust…In the confrontation between Fatah and Hamas, he does not belong to either of the two rival blocs…. Fayyad believes, so it seems, that the Palestinians’ only chance to achieve their national goals is by non-violent means, in close cooperation with the US."

Avnery depicts this belief as a version of Zionist labor "pragmatism" led by Ben Gurion: "This is reminiscent of the classic Zionist strategy under David Ben-Gurion. In Zionist parlance, this was called 'creating facts on the ground'. He plans to build the Palestinian national institutions and create a robust economic base, and by the end of 2011, to declare the State of Palestine.'
Avnery is thrilled at the sight of "statehood" which takes the form of Palestinian security forces, trained by General Keith Dayton, the US Security Coordinator for the Palestinians since 2005. "Anyone who has seen them knows that this is for all practical purposes a regular army. On Land Day demonstration, the Palestinian soldiers, with their helmets and khaki uniforms, were deployed on the hill, while the Israeli soldiers, similarly attired, were deployed below. That was in Area C, [60 % of the West bank] which according to the Oslo Accords is under Israeli military control. Both armies used the same American jeeps, just differently colored."
What a cynical scene! A staged gesture by the Occupier allows a military unit of the occupied to parade in an area that is under Israel's full control on the day the Palestinian people commemorate the unabashed ongoing robbery of Palestinian lands both in Israel proper and the West Bank. And a famous Israeli peace struggler watches on with admiration?

The Zionist left has always supported US imperialism and its autocratic Arab allies, claiming that US policy seeks to enforce peace and democracy in the Middle East. This claim has likewise been the pretext for their support of the PA police state in the making. However, Uri Avnery's embrace of Abu Mazen and Salam Fayyad’s oppressive regime lays bare an appalling fact: the genuine Palestinian national movement has no partner, even within the most radical wing of Israel's so-called "peace camp.”

1 See Avineri's support of the law which requires all newly naturalized citizens to take an oath of loyalty to the Jewish state Shlomo Avinery: A Substantive Oath of Allegiance, Haaretz 25.07.2010

2 Noam Comsky, "It's not radical Islam that worries the US –it's independenc" guardian.co.uk, Friday 4 February 2011

3 The entire Palestine Papers archive is being made available online on the Al Jazeera English website: http://english.aljazeera.net/palestinepapers/.

4 http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/jan/24/palestinian-negotiators-jewish-state-papers

5 Ali Abunimah" Cutting off a vital connection, Electronic Intifada " 25 January 2011

6 The Electronic Intifada, 26 January 2011

7 http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/jan/23/middle-east-peace-process-over-palestinians

8 see Jonathan Cook: Can the Palestinian Authority survive?http://www.israeli-occupation.org/2011-01- 31/jonathan-cook-can-the-palestinian-authority-survive.

9 Jonatan Cook, Ibid

10 Avnery columns' archive ,29 January 2011

11 See for example Steven Friedman and Virginia Tilley, Taken for a Ride by the Israeli Left., In Electronic Intifada, 27 January 2007m( A Response to Uri Avnery"What Makes Sammy Run, 30, Decenber, 2006 12 Aisling Byrne,"Businessmen Posing as Revolutionaries :General Dayton and the “New Palestinian Breed” ,A Conflict Forum Monograph at Beirut , November 2009 www.conflictsforum.org. In a paper presented in a Conference named "The Development of neo-colonial structures under the guise of ‘state-building’ , the Centre for Development Studies, Bir Zeit University and Ghent University, September 2010, Aisling Byrne added both update information and analysis to the 2009 monograph. The final version of her paper- "Building a Police State in Palestine" was published in Foreign Policy,January18, 2011 http://mideast.foreignpolicy.com/posts/2011

13 Palestinian Support Wanes for American-Trained Forces, Charles Levinson, Wall Street Journal, 15 October 2009. See also Lieutenant General Keith Dayton, Michael Stein Address on US Middle East Policy, Program of the SOREF Symposium, Washington Institute for Near East Policy, 7 May 2009;

14 Palestinian Security Sector Governance: The View of Civil Society in Nablus, Spotlight No. 1, Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces, May 2009 and Palestinian Support Wanes for American-Trained Forces, Charles Levinson, Wall Street Journal, 15 October 2009

15 Financed by the British taxpayer, brutal torturers of the West Bank, David Rose, Mail on Sunday, 31 January 2009 (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1133032/Financed-British-taxpayer-brutaltorturers- West-Bank.html#

16 The new political and security job for the duo – Fayyad-Dayton, Yousef Shali, Al Aser On-line Magazine, 6 July 2009

17 Anatomy of a Victory, Nahum Barnea, Yedioth Ahronoth, 9 October 2009

18 Abbas and the Goldstone Report: Our Shame is Complete, Ramzy Baroud, The Palestine Chronicle, 15 October 2009

19 "Fayyad's Big Gamble", November 4 2010

18 comments:

Zeev Raphael said...

What a sad spectacle to observe on part of our miserably small Left attacking the other... might we not learn from History?:

"... No class or group or party in Germany could escape its share of responsibility for the abandonment of the democratic Republic and the advent of Adolf Hitler. The cardinal error of the Germans who opposed Nazism was their failure to unite against it. At the crest of their popular strength, in July 1932, the National Socialists had attained but 37 per cent of the vote. But the 63 percent who expressed their opposition to Hitler were much too divided and shortsighted to combine against a common danger which they must have known would overwhelm them unless they united, however temporarily, to stamp it out..."
William Shirer “The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich” Crest Book 1962, page 259.
Zeev Raphael, Haifa

Mick Hall said...

A very powerful article, so according to Avnery, Salam Fayyad will declare a Palestinian state by the end of this year. For me this smacks of Gerry Adams claim about a Republic by 2016.

Zeev said...

You are inviting comments,-
but are sluggish uploading them...
Cheers,
Zeev

Tony Greenstein said...

I'm sorry for my sluggishness but....

The point that is being made is not some sectarian point scoring against another section of the left nor the crass Stalinist smear that the SPD and social democrats were 'social fascists'. It is entirely different, namely that the Zionist 'left' is not a genuine left at all.

You don't need my word on it Ze'ev. Read, if you haven't done so, Zeev Sternhall's Founding Myths of Israel. This was a 'left' which was opposed to class struggle against capital, because it was in alliance with it in the Zionist Organisation.

It was a Zionist left which deliberately refused to engage in joint work with Palestinian workers, insisting that they accede to Zionism, which meant dispossession. The campaign for Jewish Labour was a campaign against Arab Labour. No socialist movement or party in the West campaigned against uniting with migrant or indigenous labour.

In other words Labour/Socialist Zionism was a form of settler labourism which had peculiar features in pre-state Palestine in that it actually built the state itself. Indeed it was Labour Zionism which was in alliance with the very fascists you talk of including up till 1935 Zeev Jabotinsky's fascists of the Revisionist movement.

And of course Labour Zionism was in alliance with Begin's Gahal after 1967 and again with Shamir after 1984 (from memory) and of course subsequently. Indeed it was the Israeli Labour Party under Barak, and with the full support of Histadrut and its Chairman Ofer Eini which fully supported it, that went into coalition with Netanyahu and Liebermann.

The rest is history.

Erez said...

more intelligent than usual, but naieve.

The ability to remove the opression in the midlle east, is not by defying it symbolically, or even removing it by violence - the aftermath of which usually made of worse opression.easy to see In Hamas rule, or in the fact the Military officials rule Egypt since the 50's and today as well, without Mubarak.

Even if the US would just cease to exist and take Israel with her, Palestinians would not be free, until they would be able to establish democratic civil norms, and a healthy economy, and give up or at least deminish the importance of their Hamula family stracture' give up UNRWA, that keeps them refugees.These are long processes, that need a relevant atomosphere to flourish in.

If You compare regimes: Arabs with Israeli citizenship, direct occupation by Israel , PA or HAMAS rule, Israeli citizenship and tha PA are the most suitable ones.

Zionist left is correct in cooperating with Fayad and his efforts to prevent Palestinians from working for Israeli idustries in the territories, or buying their products, which is different of course, from BDS. And his efforts in creating civil society structure, and state-like oragnizations.

though being correct about overuse of power by PA police, Hamas are not "nice guys", they are armed terrorists, with a strong alternative against democracy and Palestinian nationality altoghether - political Islam.
What would You do with that ?

Palestinian solidarity would not grow if their leadership sells them to someone else every year or two - Israeli, Iranian, Us or Arab.
or if they build their very new (historically) nationality on the negation of another - Zionism.


so what do you offer ?
not ideals - realistic processes please.
violent overthrow ?
more bloodshed and violence ?
and afterwards ?

Us, the people who live in the middle east, have our doubts in accepting advices from YOu, citizen of Great Britain, who calls itself the first Democracy in the modern world, while being the biggest Empire all over the world, sanctioning Jewish refugees from entering Palestine during the holocaust, preventing from survivors to make Aliya, supports Arab oil-and-weapon interests, and turn Jew and Arabs against each other. And today, Joining US in Military regimes in Iraq and Afganistan. IDF's supposed war crimes are low below your Armi's "sorry we killed ten of citizens just this day but you will forgive us cause we are really big, strong and try to do good" (US allows 36 lives as collatoral damage per one terrorist)

Tony Greenstein said...

This is such a ramble. More like a drunken spider than rational thought. So some quick comments:

i. I never use the word 'terrorist' because it depends from what vantage point you stand. Begin and co. were terrorists pre-1948 but they saw themselves as freedom fighters. Yesterday's 'terrorist' (Kenyatta, Mandela etc.) became world statesmen, so it is just a childish calling of names.

ii. I think I've made clear my views on Political Islam and Hamas on this blog. But calling Hamas names or making them the epicentre of evil is just childish. Hamas exist because Israel concentrated its firepower on the secular Palestinian left, to the extent that it actually helped in the creation of Hamas. The West, israel and US, have consciously sought to bolster political Islam in order that they could defeat an indigenous left and also in order to sectarianise the opposition, as the US did in Iraq.

3. Talk of Palestinians establishing 'democratic civil norms, and a healthy economy,' is absurd under occupation. I don't think you understand what an occupatio nis Erez, the checkpoints, the humiliations, the naked theft of land, the beating of demonstrators. To talk of civic norms in this situation is madness.

4. Incidentally don't Zionists love the Bar Kochba Zealots? What were they but the Hamasniks of 2 millenia ago?

5. Likewise to talk of 'deminish the importance of their Hamula family stracture' give up UNRWA, that keeps them refugees.These are long processes, that need a relevant atomosphere to flourish in.' are mere words without meaning. The anti-Semites used to say of the Jews that first they should give up their archaic practices and then they can enjoy the right to vote etc. This was the debate between Otto Bauer and Karl Marx and the latter argued, quite correctly, that oppression preserved the feudal aspects of Judaism. Likewise with the Palestinians so talk of a new 'atmosphere' is naive at best.

6. I don't know what suitable regimes might mean. I do know that apologists for Apartheid pointed to the surrounding Black regimes as an excuse for South African apartheid and apologists for Israeli apartheid do likewise.

7. But yes the PA is most 'suitable' to Israel. A police state based on torture and oppression is most suitable for Zionism. Of course it has next to no support among Palestinians but that is Israeli democracy (since everyone knows that Abbas can't move his little finger without getting Israeli security clearance first).

8. Of course the Zionist left is correct in supporting Fayad and the PA. From the point of view of Zionism but it has nothign to do with being on the Left, which was my point, hence why the Zionist 'left' is no left at all.

9. I have never said that Hamas are 'nice'. My criticisms of them are stronger and more to the point than yours but I want the Hamas leaders to face a Palestinian firing squad not an Israeli inspired death.

10. Violence is sometimes necessary to dispose of oppressors as the Libyan masses know only too well. And in Egypt and Tunisia we may yet see more violence. After all the Nazis weren't removed by holding peaceful demonstrations. Likewise Israel and Zionism won't be removed other than by being prepared to use both violence where necessary and social revolution. So far the Arab masses haven't overthrown the social system in the Arab East.

Tony Greenstein said...

11. Yes Britain ran the world's biggest Empire. But unlike you Erez I have always opposed its adventures. I supported the Argentinians in the Malvinas and I supported the Irish Republicans against the British Army. When you do the same with the Palestinians I'll take your words as more than hypocritical cant. After all Zionism did a deal with the Empire and was sponsored by it for 40 years, from the Balfour Declaration onwards. They eventually fought, but thieves often fall out.

12. The British stopped Jewish refugees entering Palestine because the Arabs opposed Jewish immigration, not because they were anti-Semitic but because those who settled displaced them. What was really criminal was the opposition of Zionism to ALL attempts to rescue Jews that did not involve Palestine, including covering up the news of the extermination for 3 months, until November 1942 at the request of the US State Dept.

That was real collaboration as was the opposition of Wise and the American Zionists to the setting up of the War Refugee Board.

Mick Hall said...

Tony,

Points well made.

Zeev, Haifa said...

Tony,
I think we may be talking at cross-purposes.
Your original article was clearly addressed at UriAvnery: “Supporter of 'Peace' and the Palestinian Police Statelet”
You even included a photo of Uri. And THAT is what I had in mind when I lamented “our miserably small Left attacking each other”.
Your answer, Tony, now relates to “Labour/Socialist Zionism”, - which I think you will agree, is an entirely different kettle of fish.
In short, what I wanted to have said is that the Left that is opposed to the ongoing occupation, and to the crazy settlement enterprise, should cooperate. Even if they may have ideological difference on other matters.
Would you not agree?
Best wishes,
Zeev, Haifa

Tony Greenstein said...

Zeev,

Yes my original article was directed at Uri Avneri certainly, but I include him in the overall camp of the Zionist left. I think that is a fair description.

My major point was not so much to criticise Uri Avnery but the positions of the left-Zionist camp as a whole.

This idea that 'peace' consists of a peace treaty between states is wholly wrong. It doesn't confirm peace but can, as Egypt demonstrates, be a recipe for repression. Egypt was undoubtedly one of the worst police states with torture being endemic and a secret police that was all encompassing (& also a very large state in terms of the Marxist definition of bodies of armed men).

It's like in Ireland and the Good Friday agreement. It hasn't dealt with the underlying problems and therefore is a patchwork solution that will in the end give way as the key problem, the division of Ireland has not been addressed.

So too in Israel/Palestine. The underlying dispossession and the establishment of a 'Jewish' State in place of the indigenous population are the key problems. When the rest of the world abandoned ethnically pure racial states Israel became just such an entity. To have a state but not have a nationality for that State, but with one 'nation' - the Jewish nation - having precedence, even though many/most of them don't actually live there is an abomination.

And it is this, which left Zionism has totally supported which has led to the predominance of Lieberman and the Right in Israel. The Zionist left has never done any reckoning as to why it has shrivelled, where it has gone wrong etc.

My disagreement with those who want 2 states in order to be rid of the Palestinians and assuage their demographic concerns is profound. They are no less racist than Liebermann and Dov Lior and indeed have paved the way for the latter. The Zionist Left was always a hypocritical phenomenon. It talked to foreign audiences about unity of the workers but decried it in Israel. They supported equality and shrieked about 'anti-Semitism' whilst their Histadrut factories refused to employ Arabs.

Today we seen the consequences of their belief that Zionism and socialism were not incompatible. And to achieve the separation of Arabs and Jews they will support a vicious and nasty police statelet that Israel ands the US have effectively created.

No the Zionist Left is not a left and its desire for peace is really a desire for a repressive state that will prevent any further opposition to Israel and its expansionist/Zionist goals. Whether that is peace is another matter entirely.

Erez said...

You almost got us, but there the old tony out - lies, distorting facts, encouragement of violence and all the rest.

2 states, is the most acceptable solution by tha Majority of Palestinians and Jews that live here.
Do You actually want us to give it up because You in Britain don't like it ?
How low and rude can You go ?

Risking nothing, You encourage violence I will suffer from, or be protected by harsh violence - both are wrong, and can be prevented,
unless You aid with your blog to all extrimists.
Unlike You, Zionist left is against violence.

You speak of the occupation ?
You speak like russian nihilists - "take the tzar out, and nothing else matters."
But it did matter.
they(and the world) got Red Tsarism instead.

Your statement about hitler makes You a full antisemitic (anti Jewish AND anti Arab)

Unlike You, a lot of palestinians doesn't want to take out Israel or Zionism. they want to be free, and live democratic life.

Even BDS founders accept Fayad iniative as progressive, but nothing is good enough for You, less than massacre of thousands of Zionists.

The 'good life' after the violent revulotion doesn't spring of its own, it needs roots, that just exist nowhere in your opinions.

What leadership of both peoples would support and legitimize a solution ?
what economical infrastructure ?
What global order ?

side questions, in the path to eliminate phisically millions of Jews in Israel.

Our blood will be on your hands two...

Tony Greenstein said...

'You almost got us,'

Yes it wasn't difficult. Fortunately Hasbarah came to the rescue!

But I digress. '2 states, is the most acceptable solution by tha Majority of Palestinians and Jews that live here.'

Ah yes, that old formula 2 states, which of course means different things to different people. To Israel it means, well, a few Reservations amongst the settlements and a place to 'transfer' Israel's 1.5 million Arabs. And to the PA it means a recognised place to torture and imprison and executie its opponents, whilst fulfilling their role as Israeli sub-contractors.

And the Palestinians? Most have given up long ago any belief in such a solution. Because one thing is for sure. There ain't gonna be no 2 States solution. There may be a mini-Bantustan and Israel, but that's as good as it gets.

And what's worse, I've forgotten my manners! It used to be the British upper classes who dwelt on such things, but Erez is a cultured gentleman. 'How low and rude can You go?

Oh much ruder when Zionists are about, let me assure you!

But I forget. 'Risking nothing, You encourage violence I will suffer from, or be protected by harsh violence - both are wrong, and can be prevented,'.

Not true of course. I encourage no violence, I merely act in solidarity, which is the main complaint. And I endanger Erez by all account. Now strange as it may seem, I'm not that concerned about Erez, who is probably a fine guy who lives in someone else's country and more to the point supports all the essential components of the EXISTING violence.

So OPPOSING violence against the Palestinians, the demolitions of villages (Al Arahkab in the Negev was demolished I believe for the 12th time last week. Does Erez consider this, or the 10,000 Administrative Prisoners or the creation of a Palestinian Police Statelet of any concern? Who knows. Like the whites of South Africa he uses a bogus opposition to violence to justify both violence and apartheid style discrimination.

Tony Greenstein said...

But I forget. 'Unlike You, Zionist left is against violence.' Err quite. Now which war did that 'left' oppose? Let me see - the Nakbah in 1948? Good gracious no, they invented the myth that the Arabs ran away and the Israelis ran after them to persuade them to come back!

No that was the 'War of Independence'. Well how about the 1956 Suez War, a result of the nationalisation of the British-French owned Suez Canal. Surely this was one war that the left-Zionists opposed? Well no. it was the Israeli Labour Party under Ben Gurion which plotted at Sevres how best to justify it. And Mapam? Surely our Marxist Zionists were opposed? Well no actually, they demonstrated against the withdrawal.

Of course the 1967 and 1973 wars were supported by left Zionism buw how about the 1982 invasion of Lebanon and the war in 1996? Again I'm afraid the 'left' Zionists supported both wars, until it became too hot to handle and then, and only then, opposed it. Whereas when it came to the attack on Gaza in 2008/9 they supported it throughout.

So the sad truth is that 'left' Zionism not only has an appalling record of supporting war and violence, but as in the case of 1948 actually led it and even after 1948 provided the leadership of the Israeli armed forces.

But I forget. I am a 'red Czarist' and so the nonesense continues from our last remaining 'left Zionist'. Because of course the Israeli Labour Party went into Netanyahu's coalition to tame Avigdor Lieberman and ended up with a split, with 5 of its MKs going native with Netanyahu and yes Liebermann. And that is the real record of the ILP.

So whereas in 1948 the ILP gained 50 seats, in the next election it will be lucky to gain 8, with Meretz lucky to gain 1 or 2. Such is the fate of left Zionism but of course Erez doesn't have a clue why this hideous statist monster from the past has declined to insignificance.

And what is his alternative? The usual ad hominem. So I am 'a full antisemitic (anti Jewish AND anti Arab)'. Poor confused Erez, still I guess that is better than a half-full anti-Semite!

Most Palestinians in Israel want to live as equals with Israel Jews and not suffer discrimination and a status of, at best, tolerated guest. They don't want policies of Jewish land or the demographic fears of Zionism. But that is what a Jewish state means and Erez displays no sign of understanding this.

So like the good Boer Trecker, the desire for a democratic secular state is translated into 'a massacre of thousands of Zionists.'

Not that Erez can point to anything I've said which supports any massacre, but hey, who cares. We are talking Zionist propaganda, even if Erez is not the most subtle practitioner around.

Of course by the time he has whipped himself up into a frenzy this becomes the 'path to eliminate phisically millions of Jews in Israel.' So supporting Palestinian liberation is actually a call to murder millions of Jews in Israel. Well actually that is the settler mentality because whites in South Africa said precisely the same. Black liberation meant the murder of whites so Erez is not saying anything new. And the disappearance of apartheid is death for its proponents. Because their whole identity is bound up with Zionism.

And naturally it will be nothing to do with them! 'Our blood will be on your hands two...' So at the same time as Israel is bombing and killing with impunity in Gaza, as they did earlier this week with a deadly air attack, those who oppose such behaviour are responsible for 'our blood' [translate as 'Jewish blood'].

And Erez wonders why I don't take 'left' Zionism and 2 states seriously?

Erez said...

yes, flawed as ever.
Do you think that by yelling written words so sound more convincing ?

well, not at all.

The Muslims situation in Britain is by far worse than Arabs in the Jewish state of Israel. They are poorer and have less rights, but only the Jewish people can't have a national state, right ?

'the desire for a democratic secular state' - supported by whom ? puffed British Blog writers or actual Jews and Arabs ?

What is your Model ?
Britain - who repressed immigrants while exploiting them, yet, allowing them to practice radical Islamic schools ?

Denmark - which is social-Democratic indeed, secular and prosperous, but can't really handle Muslim immigration.

All the social-democratic countries of Scandinavia are also very national. I wonder why ?

Maybe because peoples practice democracy better on national bases ?


that is antisemitism, no matter how You call it.

"As if" of an intellectual like yourself, knows that Britain ruled the entire area before the establishment of all national states in the middle east.
Only one came out democratic - Israel.
Why is that ?
The support of British imperialism to Zionism ?
doesn't make sense. The imperialism supported then and today, mainly, oil interests, E.G Arab Elites. while sometimes, changing sides to limited support to Zionism, as a counterweight to Arab aspirations.
In fact, the only reason Russia supported the establishment of Israel at the time, was the assumption that Zionism opposed British imperial interests.
Britain Engineered the entire conflict in the area, to its own interests.

Now we have to clean up your crap, while You seat in your comfortable home, threatened by no one, writing your words of incitement.

all your semi-enlightened statements are morality of intention at best.
Not morality of responsibility.
And read Weber if You don't know what that means.

Tony Greenstein said...

But my dear Erez, 'tis you what is doing the yelling about anti-semitism and such nonsense.

Apparently 'The Muslims situation in Britain is by far worse than Arabs in the Jewish state of Israel. They are poorer and have less rights...'

It's a good thing not to write about things you have no knowledge about. Yes there is racism against Muslims in Britain, which some of us fight and condemn. But the situation of Arabs in Israel is incomparably worse.

At least I'm not aware of any 'unrecognised' villages or districts of Muslims being demolished to make way for trees like El Arakhab in the Negev and many other villages. Muslims have British citizenship, which in turn makes them a UK national alongside all other Britons - Black, White etc.

There is no Israeli nationality. Just a Jewish and about 300 plus other nationalities. But the only one that matters is the Jewish nationality because Israel is a Jewish state, hence 93% of the land is 'national' i.e. Jewish national land.

20-30 years ago, racism against Black and East African Asians was as bad as it is now against Muslims. What happened? We fought it, beat the National Front and the fascists and the State introduced, in order to defuse tensions, a Race Relations Act in 1976, which has been amended many times subsequently.

Israel has no anti-discrimination bodies, no race relations Act or equivalent. It did pass a piece of window dressing legislation when Rabbi Meir Kahane was elected as the first Jewish Nazi MK. But that legislation excluded discrimination based on religion! Which was the whole point of having it in the first place. And to add insult to injury Kahane also voted in favour of it, because racism to him and his rabbinical successors (Dov Lior, Yitzhak Shapira etc.) is god given.

So now you know why the situation Israel, with its loyalty oaths for non-Jews and Arabs, with its plans to 'transfer' Israel's Arabs into any second 'state' that is established (read the Palestine Papers if you don't believe me, is far far worse, effectively akin to the pre-1939 period of Nazi Germany.

You seem to be worked up Erez about 'radical Islamic schools'. What about radical Jewish ones? regardless I'm opposed to ALL religious schooling.

Yes Sweden and Denmark and the Netherlands are undergoing bouts of anti-Islamic racism. And people are fighting it. But in Israel you have a fascist Foreign Minister who is forever devising schemes to disenfranchise and target Muslims. It is on a wholly different level, although it is interesting that all the most racist European politicians - Gert Wilders, Michal Kaminiski etc. etc. - are the most devoted supporters of Israel. Not forgetting Berlosconi of course, who is in coalition with neo-fascists. Can't imagine what they sees in Israel!!

Erez says that the support of British imperialism to Zionism 'doesn't make sense'.

Really? It certainly made sense in 1917 when the Balfour Declaration was issued and it made sense to Col. Orde Wingate when he led the counter-insurgency fight against the Arab Uprising 1936-9, alongside those dedicated 'anti-imperialists' in the Kibbutzim!

The rest of your guff Erez is barely worth mentioning.

Erez said...

not supporting any of the shitty nonsence you write about, You do mention two interesting points in time: the Balfour declaration - 1917, had many reasons:
Pinchas Rottenburg politics, ex-Russian SR member (and the executioner of the traitor Gapon),a ministers in the unstable regime of karensky in revolutionary Russia, encouraged Britain to draft every ex-Russian Jewish man at fighting age on british soil, at the great war, and creation of the Jewish legions - his turn towards Zionism.
It served British interests well by getting their legal mandate, control of the suetz canal, and otherwise.

The declaration itself is vage - it doesn't define borders, and enables mroe than one 'National Home' in Palestine, it contradicts other commitments to Arabs, but its improtance is its acceptance in the mandate itself - unlike the mc'mahon letters.

'The wind shifted', and Britain moved more and more away from Zionism, to a conflict-managment and counterweight policy, with a slant in favor of the new Arab elites they put in power and their oil.

Orde Wingate did not represent Britain in his actions, but indeed, it did crash the Arab uprising violently, that their economy and inner solidarity were hurt bad. So bad, that even after 10 years, they weren't ready to fight The Jews, even with a great advantage in people and firepower.
It did affect Britain politically to publish the "white book" that
killed the Zionist hope of establishing Israel before the coming disasters - now known as the Shoah.

WE would never know for sure, but probably If not for the Arab uprising, the Nakba would have never happened.

Israel might have been established Earlier, much smaller, with a paritatic system between Jews and Arabs, and less victims in the Shoah.
And believe me, I would sign that.

Anyhow, the saying about Imperial support for Zionism... very fluctual... not exactly based on facts.

Zionism advocated for modern economy and wide access to resources, Imperial oil interests demanded otherwise, hence the political structure in the Arab world, who starts to shake only in our time.

as for your other nonsence, haven't the Jewish people suffered enough ?

read Zeev Raphael first comment again, he is right.

Tony Greenstein said...

This is just windbaggery, completel nonsense.

i. The Balfour Declaration was the considered outcome of the Lloyd George war cabinet. It couldn't approve the Mandate because the latter didn't occur for 3 more years! And the Treat of San Sevres after that. Suggest you read Leonard Stein's Balour Declaration for the details (he's a Zionist!).

2. The reasons for the Balfour Declaration are more substantial and ephemeral than you make out but I'll leave you to read up on it. Suffice to say Ber Borochov, leader of the 'Marxist' Zionists supported the US and British.

3. Balfour was an anti-Semite who had introduced, as Home Secretary, the Aliens Act in 1905 to keep Jewish refugees from Czarist Russia out. Another example of Zionism and anti-Semitism merging.

4. Wingate was certainly supported by the British at the time, hence he was promoted to General before dying in Burma in 1941. He was one of many of the British establishment who combined anti-Semitism with support for Zionism.

5. There is no one Jewish people and Israel represents the most atavistic of Jews today, with their Nazi rabbis who believe that 'Jewish' blood is more precious than the non-Jewish variety.

6. So the question 'have the Jews not suffered enough' is particularly stupid. It can be said of many people. Those who survive haven't suffered, those who die probably have. But historically Jews were oppressors of the peasants as money lenders, tax stewards etc. and every so often the peasants rose up in a blind fury and massacred them. That was the way of feudalism and it makes no sense to say that Jews have a record of only suffering. They both oppressed and suffered.

7. The White Paper of 1939 was irrelevant to the holocaust. No one pretended, certainy not Weizmann and Ben Gurion, who both wrote off Europe's Jews, that Zionism offered any solution to the masses of Europe. The only solution was a mass campaign to open the gates of the world to the Jews and organise as such.

8. It is a lasting tragedy that organised Jewry had by then effectively been taken over by the Zionist movement who saw in the holocaust a 'beneficial disaster' (Shabtai Teveth's assessment in the biography of Ben Gurion with which I totally agree).

9. In campaigning SOLELY for Jews to come to Palestine, in opposing rescue elsewhere and not fighting to open the gates of the West and USA, the Zionist movement sealed the fate of Europe's Jews and then did their best to minimise the fear of what was happening, including outright suppression of the exterminations whilst they happend. Hungary being extremely well documented, other places less well so.

10. In short Zionism was an utter disaster for Jews in Europe and ever since Zionism has been using the holocaust and besmirching the memory of its victims to support the massacres and dispossession of the Palestinians.

This is the real shit you won't face up to Erez

Chantal said...

Congratulations, Tony, for explaining the "Peace" advocated by Uri Avnery and the Zionist left, and for having the last word in your exchange with Zeev Raphael, the standard blind and deaf Zionist Israeli. I am neither left or right, have no religion, I am not British, but I agree entirely with your Jewish anti-Zionism, your support for the Palestinian people who have suffered the Zionist invasion, especially after the evil Balfour Declaration which triggered the events culminating in the fabrication of the "Jewish State" in 1948. Let us hope for a new Intifada, following the events in the region, especially in Egypt whose "Friend of Israel" (Hosni) has disappeared, hopefully for good.