Saturday, October 18, 2014

Israel's Bloodstained Hands

Israel's Bloodstained Hands

by Stephen Lendman

British MP George Galloway is right calling Israel "an illegal, savage and barbarous state."

It "has more (UN) censures against it than the rest of the countries in the world put together…"

It "refuses to abide by resolutions and continues to illegally grab land and persecute their rightful owners…"

It "uses its military to blockade and murder the people of Gaza."

He retracts not one word he said. He continues "forcefully condemning Israel."

"It remains the case that there is a worldwide boycott of Israel, its goods, its services, its academics," he said.

"I hope the citizens of Bradford will join me in refusing to treat with the advocates of this hateful and oppressive regime and truly make Bradford an Israel-free zone."

A previous article discussed Galloway's outspokenness. His forthrightness. On all major world and national issues. Especially ones mattering most.

He's passionately anti-war. Anti-Zionist. Anti-extrajudicial viciousness. He's unapologetic about his views. He forthrightly supports Palestinian rights. He's done so for decades.

He declared his West Bradford district an "Israel-free zone." Israelis aren't wanted here, he stressed.

"We don't want any Israeli goods. We don't want any Israeli services. We don't want any Israeli academics coming to the university or the college," he said.

"We don't even want any Israeli tourists to come to Bradford, even if any of them had thought of doing so."

For weeks, it was unclear how Britain's Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) would respond. On October 15, it said Galloway won't be prosecuted for declaring West Bradford an "Israeli-free zone."

Complaints followed his comments. CPS dismissed hate crime allegations.

"This has been an extremely expensive waste of police and CPS time forced on them by ultra-Zionists who were pursuing a vendetta against me," Galloway said.

He's committed to telling it like it is on Israel. Daily examples attest to its barbarity. In the past 14 days alone, it rampaged ruthlessly through multiple Palestinian West Bank communities.

Conducting 55 lawless invasions. Terrorizing families. Traumatizing children. Kidnapping 51 Palestinians. Including six children.

It refuses to abide by agreed on Operation Protective Edge ceasefire terms. Gaza remains blockaded.

On October 14, two truckloads of agricultural products were set to ship to West Bank locations.

Doing so would have been the first time since July 2007. Israel blocked their exit. Sweet potatoes and dates returned to Gaza. At a cost of tens of thousands of shekels to shippers.

Despite meetings between Israeli and Palestinian officials, agricultural marketing procedures from Gaza to West Bank locations weren't published.

Blocked produce can't be re-refrigerated. Farmers must sell what they can locally. Remaining amounts are destroyed.

On October 22, Israeli and Palestinian agricultural coordinators along with private sector representatives will meet on resolving Gaza-to-West Bank shipments.

Palestinians want guidelines published. They want shipments allowed free passage. It's unclear if Israel will allow materials into Gaza for reconstruction.

It routinely blocked them earlier. It may do so or greatly restrict them now. Virtually nothing in Gaza changed since both sides agreed on ceasefire terms weeks earlier.

Perhaps little will going forward. Rogue states operate this way. Israel and America exceed all others in harshness. Ruthlessness. Barbarity. Genocidal high crimes against peace.

On Friday, the Electronic Intifada discussed a "confidential briefing…confirm(ing) that the UN has agreed to become the chief enforcer of Israel's ongoing siege of Gaza."

"Under the guise of reconstruction, ((it'll) be monitoring and gathering private information about Palestinian households to be passed onto Israel, which will have a veto over which families get aid" in amounts for sure too little to matter.

Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah said only half the $5.4 billion pledged in Cairo at most will be allocated for Gazan reconstruction.

Remaining funds are for unspecified PA use. Assuring massive corruption. Grand theft. Business as usual. Gazans left largely high and dry.

It remains to be seen if pledges translate into donations. Israel has final say on Gaza rebuilding. 

PA officials are convenient proxies. Enforcers. Betraying their own people in the process.

Days earlier, Oxfam said Cairo pledges "will languish in bank accounts for decades before it reaches people, unless longstanding Israeli restrictions on imports are lifted." 

"(U)nder current restrictions and rate of imports, it could take more than 50 years to build the 89,000 new homes, 226 new schools, as well as the health facilities, factories and water and sanitation infrastructure that people in Gaza need," Oxfam added.

Responsible import policy is nowhere in sight. Nor exporting permission so Gazans can sell produce and other goods abroad and to West Bank communities.

It bears repeating. Nothing whatever changed. Business as usual continues. Palestinians are at Israel's mercy. They're prisoners on their own land. Gazans most of all. 

Israeli soldiers continue attacking their fishermen despite pledging not to do so. Live fire targets peaceful protesters. Palestinian children are murdered in cold blood.

Extremist settlers attack Palestinians with impunity. They cut, uproot and burn olive trees. They attack farmers in their fields. Children at play.

They set an Aqraba town mosque ablaze. They commit punishable crimes regularly with impunity. Israeli security forces do nothing to stop them.

Israeli soldiers and police operate extrajudicially. They brutalize Palestinians for not being Jews. For praying to the wrong God. For wanting to live free in peace on their own land in their own country.

For wanting what they justifiably deserve. Clashes followed Israel's refusal to permit under-age 50 Palestinian worshipers from praying in the Al-Aqsa Mosque. Islam's third holiest site.

Thousands had to pray in East Jerusalem streets, allies and at police checkpoints. Attempting to cross risked being shot.

Ex-patriot Israeli historian Ilan Pappe and political activist/reseacher Samer Jaber call ethnic cleansing Israel's real peace policy. It's been this way for decades. 

It's more ruthless now than earlier. Palestinians are denied fundamental rights. Peace is a convenient illusion.

Israel wants maximum land and minimum Arabs. Palestinians are forcibly displaced. 

Following the 1947-48 Nabka, fast-growing pine trees were used "to cover up the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians," said Pappe and Jaber.

They hide "ruin(ed) (or) destroyed Palestinian villages and neighborhoods which had been evicted by force in 1948."

They were later called Israel's "green lungs." Forming "an ecological carpet covering a once barren land."

Mount Carmel National Park near Haifa is the largest project. It erased Palestinian life and society around for centuries.

Notable villages disappeared. They no longer exist. They're not found on any maps. Israeli policy continued after 1948. 

When it occupied West Bank land and East Jerusalem. Pine tree strategy reemerged. Doing so covered up destroyed villages.

"(T)he 'green lung' of Canada Park appeared as a recreational ground hiding the inhumanity of" village depopulations, said Pappe and Jaber.

"Covering ethnic cleansing with pine trees is probably the most cynical method employed by Israel in its quest to take over as much of Palestine as possible with as few Palestinians in it as possible."

It's longstanding policy "since Zionism appeared on the land of Palestine. Another means…was renaming Palestinian villages as Jewish settlements..."

Israel's principle occupation strategy is colonization. Continuing it requires popular support. It's "viewed by mainstream Israelis as normal and necessary," said Pappe and Jaber.

It denies a historical injustice. It's an essential Zionist objective. It sabotages "hope for peace and reconciliation."

It risks future Palestinian statehood. With virtually no sovereignty or viability. At the same time, Israeli Arab citizens are second-class at best.

Israeli hardliners call them fifth column threats. Israel's ethnic cleansing strategy is different "domestically and externally." 

"It is based on the need to 'preserve Jewish identity' to the Israeli public and abroad as 'Israel’s need for security.' "

Other ethnic cleansing methods include Israel's Separation Wall. Its control of internal and international borders.

It's Kafkaesque matrix of control. Including land theft, settlements, agricultural crop destruction, checkpoints, Jews only bypass roads, curfews, closures, military zones, no-go ones, off-limits commercial and tourist areas, ghettoization, zoning, home demolitions, building permit policy, travel restrictions and overall denial of fundamental civil and human rights.

Persecution lets Israel control Palestinians with minimum cost, Pappe and Jaber explained.

Denying diaspora Palestinians their legal right to return reflects ethnic cleansing by other means.

Doing so "has nothing to do with questions of absorption or the country's capacity, but with their nationality," said Pappe and Jaber. 

"Israel is a country where citizenship has no relation to a person's nationality. Judaism is a religion which became a nation though the Zionist project which produced Israel." 

"Consequently, Jewish-Israelis belong to the Jewish nation, and Arab-Palestinians are minorities." 

"Any Jew in the world can become a citizen of Israel while a Palestinian who knows no other home is a resident with unequal rights or no citizenship at all." 

Gazans suffer most of all. Mostly out of sight and mind. Inside the world's largest open-air prison. Trapped when Israel attacks at its discretion.

Committing naked aggression unaccountably. Murdering Palestinians in cold blood. 

Doing it because Western powers do nothing to stop it. They support Israel's genocidal high crimes against peace.

Washington provides billions of dollars in annual aid. Mostly military. Arming Israel's killing machine. Used for mass murder and destruction. Over-and-over again.

Israeli policy hasn't changed since 1947/48. It remains cruel. Malicious. Ruthless. Lawless. 

"(F)ar more effective than some" other regional and global ethnic cleansers, Pappe and Jaber explained.

It continues ravaging Palestinians mercilessly. Barbarically. Sadistically. Unaccountably. Liberation remains a distant dream.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

Visit his blog site at 

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