Wednesday, 24 May 2017

Because he is Jewish, Israel’s Nazi –like Deputy Speaker, Bezalel Smotrich, will not be removed from the Knesset

MK Bezalel Smotrich at the Knesset, December 2016. Emil Salman
Bezalel Smotrich is, even in Zionist or Israeli terms, a bigot, but in Israel being an anti-Arab bigot is no great matter.  The fact that he is also a Jewish Nazi is of no relevance.  In July last year, the Knesset passed legislation, The Expulsion Law [see After Stormy Debate, Knesset Approves Law Allowing Ouster of Lawmakers] which allowed for the expulsion of members who are guilty of incitement to racism.  However although the legislation does not say so, it is clearly understood that the law only applies to Arabs.  That is also understandable – Israel is after all a Jewish state.
Smotrich's beast parade
As the article below explains, Bezalel Smotrich, a member of the Habayit HaYehudi (Jewish Home) party, which is a member of the governing coalition, has a long record.  From organising a ‘beast parade’ of donkeys and other animals, as a parody of Jerusalem’s Gay Pride demonstration to supporting the present practice in Israeli hospitals that Jewish women have the right to a maternity ward that doesn’t contain Arabs.’ 'Israeli maternity wards segregate Jewish, Arab mothers'
Of course you have to understand that his wife ‘“is truly no racist, but after giving birth she wants to rest rather than have a hafla” — a mass feast often accompanied by music and dancing — “like the Arabs have after their births.” He went on to say that “It’s natural that my wife wouldn’t want to lie down [in a bed] next to a woman who just gave birth to a baby who might want to murder her baby twenty years from now.” adding that “Arabs are my enemies and that’s why I don’t enjoy being next to them.”
Smotrich at the illegal Amona outpost

Smotrich’s non-racist wife (because Zionists have a different definition of racism from most normal human beings) ‘Revital, later told Channel 10 that she had “kicked an Arab obstetrician out of the [delivery] room. I want Jewish hands to touch my baby, and I wasn’t comfortable lying in the same room with an Arab woman.” Lawmaker backs segregated Jewish, Arab maternity wards
Fortunately Bezalel’s remarks are not according to Israel’s anti-racism laws racist because all discrimination on the grounds of religion is automatically not racist!  Except when it comes to Arabs.
However Smotrich has outdone himself with his latest remarks calling for the lessons of Joshua (the wiping out of the inhabitants of Jericho, yea even including their children) to be applied to the Palestinians of the West Bank.  However, as in the case of his aforementioned remarks, there is nothing illegal about them, even though he is advocating what the Nazis did to the Jews because they too are based on religion.
Of course there are some people in Britain, not least the Labour Party, who believe that any 
comparisons between Israel, Zionism and the Nazis is anti-Semitic.  Indeed the new International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of anti-Semitism defines comparisons between Israel and the Nazis as anti-Semitic.
The Zionists beginning with Herzl have been hostile to Armenian attempts to remember their holocaust
Shami Chakrabarti, in her Report on Racism and Anti-Semitism demonstrated that she didn’t have a clue as to why people compare Israel’s actions with the Nazis.  Clue:  Israel bases its legitimacy on the Holocaust and accuses its opponents variously of anti-Semitism, being Nazis, Kapos, traitors etc. despite the fact that Israel, as an ethno-religious state bars an uncanny similarity to Nazi Germany prior to 1941.
In day -to-day political debate, it is always incendiary to compare the actions of Jewish people or  ins titutions anywhere in the world to those of Hitler or the Nazis or to the perpetration of the Holocaust. Indeed such remarks can only be intended to be incendiary rather  than persuasive.  

According to Chakrabarti’s idiotic recommendation as to what constitutes anti-Semitism and the IHRAA definition of anti-Semitism, Israel’s Ha’aretz newspaper and Professor Blatman who wrote the article are guilty of ‘anti-Semitism’.
Of course in the real world most people will understand that advocating the genocide of an ethnic group or people is, almost by definition, Nazi like and those who tolerate such racism, which is what the Israeli government and the Labour Zionist opposition are equally guilty of is complicity in Nazi-like behaviour

Those who, like the Jewish Labour Movement and Israel’s emissary in the Labour Party, Jeremy Newmark, cry ‘anti-Semitism’ whenever Israel is criticised, are guilty of complicity in the Nazi like behaviour of the Bezalel Smotrichs of this world.

Tony Greenstein

The Israeli Lawmaker Heralding Genocide Against Palestinians

Deputy Speaker Bezalel Smotrich's admiration for the biblical genocidaire Joshua bin Nun leads him to adopt values that resemble those of the German SS

Daniel Blatman May 23, 2017 9:28 AM

Tomer Persico quoted remarks that MK Bezalel Smotrich (Habayit Hayehudi) made recently at a conference of religious Zionists, where he presented his plan to offer the Palestinians three options: leave the territories, continue to live there with second-class status, or continue resisting, in which case “the Israel Defense Forces will know what to do.” These are chilling words that are liable to lead Israel into committing the horrific crime of genocide.

It’s hard to believe that an elected representative of a party in the governing coalition could raise the option of genocide if the Palestinians don’t accept the terms he’s willing to offer them: either emigration, or life under an apartheid regime based on principles of Jewish law, which would be even worse than the one that existed in South Africa. Smotrich, a deputy speaker of the Knesset, is the most senior government figure to date to say unabashedly that the option of genocide is on the table if the Palestinians don’t agree to our terms – and it’s clear they won’t agree.

Smotrich relies on the biblical Book of Joshua as his model. Researchers of genocide in the ancient world have already determined that the Book of Joshua is an important document for examining the characteristics of genocide in the ancient world. Some of its components differed from the genocides of the 20th century, but the Book of Joshua describes actions that were explicitly defined as genocide in the 1948 UN Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide. The convention defines anyone who commits such acts as someone who committed crimes against humanity and must therefore be put on trial.

This is how the Book of Joshua describes the conquest of the city of Ai (Joshua 8:24-29): “And it came to pass, when Israel had made an end of slaying all the inhabitants of Ai in the field, even in the wilderness wherein they pursued them, and they were all fallen by the edge of the sword, until they were consumed, that all Israel returned unto Ai, and smote it with the edge of the sword. ... So Joshua burnt Ai, and made it a heap forever, even a desolation, unto this day. And the king of Ai he hanged on a tree until the eventide; and at the going down of the sun Joshua commanded, and they took his carcass down from the tree, and cast it at the entrance of the gate of the city, and raised thereon a great heap of stones, unto this day.”

The 1995 massacre in Srebrenica, an atrocity slightly less terrible than the biblical one, was defined as genocide by the United Nations. Article 2 of the genocide convention states that “genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group.” These acts include “killing members of the group”; “causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group”; “deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part”; and “imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group.”

Had the conquest of Ai taken place today, Joshua bin Nun would have been brought to court in handcuffs and tried on charges of genocide. And that’s Smotrich’s model.

Article 3 of the convention states that punishable actions related to genocide include genocide, conspiracy to commit genocide, “direct and public incitement to commit genocide” and “complicity in genocide.” It would be interesting to hear what an expert in international law would say about Smotrich’s remarks.

Smotrich’s admiration for the biblical genocidaire Joshua bin Nun leads him to adopt values that resemble those of the German SS. Naturally, he didn’t take the trouble to make such comparisons, since someone who supports genocide doesn’t try to understand the worldview of the genocidaires who preceded him.

From God's mouth to Himmler's ears
Smotrich's hero, Heinrich Himmler with Reynhardt Heydrich

This is how God explains to Joshua why Israel was defeated in one of its battles against the enemy (Joshua 7:11-12): “Israel hath sinned; yea, they have even transgressed My covenant which I commanded them; yea, they have even taken of the devoted thing; and have also stolen, and dissembled also, and they have even put it among their own stuff. Therefore the children of Israel cannot stand before their enemies, they turn their backs before their enemies, because they are become accursed; I will not be with you any more, except ye destroy the accursed from among you.”

Or in other words, conquest and annihilation must be carried out according to precise instructions from God. When Israel violates these instructions by seizing property and looting without permission, they are punished.

The similarity between the biblical text and what Heinrich Himmler said to senior SS officers in Poznan in October 1943 is chilling. Here is what Himmler said: “I am referring here to the evacuation of the Jews, the extermination of the Jewish people. ... The wealth they possessed we took from them. I gave a strict order ... that this wealth will of course be turned over to the Reich in its entirety. We have taken none of it for ourselves. Individuals who have erred will be punished in accordance with the order given by me at the start, threatening that anyone who takes as much as a single Mark of this money is a dead man.”

In every genocide, the supreme authority insists on order and discipline from those responsible for carrying it out, in accordance with criteria which he sets. Members of the SS were convinced they were men of integrity, with clean hands, who didn’t loot their victims’ property. Does Smotrich believe the ethics of the Book of Joshua could serve as an example for how the Palestinians should be treated today?

Smotrich has a reputation as a racist and a homophobe. Now it turns out that he also potentially supports mass murder. In any enlightened society, one can find people like this in dubious pubs, in Munich or Mississippi, that are frequented by skinheads tattooed with swastikas. But in Israel, the person saying this is a representative of the state.

One obviously can’t expect Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to do anything about this. But the real danger to Israel comes from the hundreds of Knesset members and public figures from other parties – including Likud, Yesh Atid and even Zionist Union – who understand quite well where Smotrich and his colleagues in the Habayit Hayehudi party are dragging the state, but are afraid to stand up, form a united front with the Israeli left and tell the public the truth: Smotrichism, like Hitlerism, Stalinism and Maoism before them, is an ideology that leads to the perpetration of genocide.

If those who understand this don’t rise up and eliminate this danger now, this will be the tragic end of the Palestinian people. But it will also be the end of the vision of a sovereign Jewish existence in Israel.

Prof. Blatman is a historian of the Holocaust and genocide at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. 

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