Israelis wallowing in ignorance; US not far behind

 

How infinitely sad to see common sense, historical accuracy, (all  easily verifiable in an internet age) to see israeli propaganda gobbled up by the corporate press and in the highest echelons of Canadian and American governments.

Israel is the victim! It’s those awful Palestinians who hate us and are shooting missiles into our country! What do you want us to do? We have a right to defend ourselves in this war!

War?

F-16, Apache helicopters, armoured vehicles, caterpillars, drones paid for by the US in contravention of international law  and now missiles lobbed into a densely packed civilian populace with nowhere to go. Israel controls air space, land crossings and access to the sea.

War? You must be kidding

A few years ago the great Israeli journalist Amira Hass  who lives in the West Bank was beside herself wringing her hands asking fellow Israelis, “Why don’t you see? This is 15 minutes away.Get off your beach chairs in Tel Aviv and watch authentic jewish values being trashed.

And now another US blessed assault on Gaza.Hass this week (Nov.19) writes in Haaretz:

By supporting Israel’s offensive on Gaza, Western leaders have given the Israelis carte blanche to do what they’re best at: Wallow in their sense of victimhood and ignore Palestinian suffering.

 One of Israel’s tremendous propaganda victories is that it has been accepted as a victim of the Palestinians, both in the view of the Israeli public and that of Western leaders who hasten to speak of Israel’s right to defend itself. The propaganda is so effective that only the Palestinian rockets at the south of Israel, and now at Tel Aviv, are counted in the round of hostilities. The rockets, or damage to the holiest of holies – a military jeep – are always seen as a starting point, and together with the terrifying siren, as if taken from a World War II movie, build the meta-narrative of the victim entitled to defend itself.

Every day, indeed every moment, this meta-narrative allows Israel to add another link to the chain of dispossession of a nation as old as the state itself, 

But these threads are not the entire fabric of life. The resistance to the threads that we, the Israelis, endlessly spin is also part of the fabric of life for Palestinians. The word resistance has been debased to mean the very masculine competition of whose missile will explode furthest away (a competition among Palestinian organizations, and between them and the established Israeli army ). It does not invalidate the fact that, in essence, resistance to the injustice inherent in Israeli domination is an inseparable part of life for each and every Palestinian.

The foreign and international development ministries in the West and in the United States knowingly collaborate with the mendacious representation of Israel as victim, if only because every week they receive reports from their representatives in the West Bank and Gaza Strip about yet another link of dispossession and oppression that Israel has added to the chain, or because their own taxpayers’ money make up for some of the humanitarian disasters, large and small, inflicted by Israel.

Wallowing in ignorance

We haven’t heard masses of Tel Aviv and southern residents warning the stewards of the state about the ramifications of this destruction on the civilian population. The Israelis cheerfully wallow in their ignorance. This information and other similar facts are available and accessible to anyone who’s really interested. But Israelis choose not to know. This willed ignorance is a foundation stone in the building of Israel’s sense of victimization. But ignorance is ignorance: The fact that Israelis don’t want to know what they are doing as an occupying power doesn’t negate their deeds or Palestinian resistance.

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1 Comment »

  1. 1
    wmgrace Says:

    I’ve learned from this blog, and the New Catholic Times over the years, that when issues arise around the Arab-Israeli question there are many, clear and balanced pro-Israeli voices that can be counted upon to provide an objective and resourceful perspective. This can benefit both the Israelis and the Palestinians. As mentioned above, Amira Hass has Israel’s long-term interest at heart and she has some good advice for the Netanyahu government.

    Roger Cohen, I believe, has a realistic and objective take (not unlike Amira Hass’) on the situation in Gaza. He suggests that Israel’s military solutions have always led to more resistant strains of political problems for Israel to deal with. And that “until Israel gives up the dream that the Palestinians should just disappear”, no progress can be made. He writes:

    “The Middle East has opened up. young Arabs are thinking about their own societies. Israel, stuck in the patterns of the past, has another option: Testing Palestinian good will rather than punishing Palestinian bad faith. Under Netanyahu, it has not even been tried. Until it does the endings will be bad.” – NYT November 19th 2012.


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