Monday, June 08, 2009

Palestine’s Holocaust

A thump of the tail to the Wege for a link to this op-ed piece in Haaretz:

For 42 years we have been occupying, oppressing and stealing lands that are not ours. To be free in our land do we need to become thieving Cossacks, uprooters of trees, burners of fields and harassers of women, the elderly and the very young? "We have this land, we have it," goes the song, but what should have been said is "We have the power, we have it, we have the money, we have it, and we are allowed, we are," to starve an entire population, imprison it and annihilate it using air strikes, cluster bombs and white phosphorous. Because we are the lords of the land and God has chosen us to rule. For the shame of it.

From the same piece:

Time has passed and many heirs to Kahane have arisen - not only among a greedy and savage multitude but also among "the public's chosen representatives" in the Knesset and government. The latter are busy preparing blatantly racist laws and sending armed police to thwart Palestinian-initiated international cultural events because the regime believes the Arabs of the Land of Israel, the native Palestinians, are not worthy of being called human beings. According to the writers of these laws, the Arabs are certainly not entitled to human rights, not to mention a cultural and intellectual life, and never mind property, land and a home, because thousands of years ago God promised this land to Abraham and his seed.

Most regrettably and disgracefully, everything that Lord Rothschild [in a letter stating why he did not support the establishment of a Jewish state in Palestine] predicted is coming to pass in our time. In our blackest dreams and in the hardest times since the struggle to establish the state, we never imagined that those who call themselves disciples of Ze'ev Jabotinsky would impose terror and fear here using deranged racist legislation. We never imagined that they would use the destruction of the court system to try to prevent any possibility of achieving social justice and a humane attitude. This is something essential in every democratic society toward every man, woman and child, irrespective of origin, race, religion and sex.

I have raised the issue of genocide in the Israeli treatment of Palestinians before, and has taken some heat for it. But take what the author of the opinion above, Shulamit Alini, says about the actions of the Israeli government, and then compare it with the two elements of genocide as contemplated by the man who invented the term, Raphael Lemkin:

“Genocide has two phases: one, destruction of the national pattern of the oppressed group; the other, the imposition of the national pattern of the oppressor. This imposition, in turn, may be made upon the oppressed population which is allowed to remain, or upon the territory alone, after removal of the population and colonization of the area by the oppressor’s own nationals.”

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