In a move that surely would bring charges of severe violations of international law, Israel’s deputy Führer, er foreign minister, Danny Ayalon, suggested (Hebrew) that if Mahmoud Abbas continues his unity talks with Hamas, that the Palestinian Authority would become the “Terror Authority.” He also argued that since Hamas, in conducting these talks, was seeking to strengthen the “infrastructure of terror,” Israel may have to severe its own ties to Gaza’s infrastructure, including its water and power. On top of the siege Israel has imposed since 2006, this would create a humanitarian crisis of immense proportions. Human beings simply cannot live without water, nor is life much above primitive standards without power. One would also anticipate it might further reinforce charges that Israel has engaged in war crimes against Gaza during the 2006 war and continues violating international law by imposing immense suffering on the enclave’s 1.5 million inhabitants.
Among Ayalon’s other ‘acute’ observations is that Mahmoud Abbas’ refusal to schedule peace negotiations with Israel at the Quartet’s request marks the PA as the party rejecting peace (he called them “peace refusers”). He spoke also about relations with Egypt and made the bold–and foolish–claim that peace with Israel would be a national priority no matter which party ruled Egypt. Apparently, he didn’t hear about the cries during a Muslim Brotherhood rally in an Egyptian mosque last Friday, which weren’t terribly polite (putting it mildly) to Israelis or Jews in general. But Ayalon did inform us about the unnerving claim, certainly based on compelling evidence which he for some reason couldn’t provide, that Iran’s Ayatollahs are spreading radical Islam inside Egypt and seeking to establish an Islamist regime there. Given the fierce Sunni-Shiite divide between Egypt and Iran, it’s hard, nay impossible to believe that the Muslim Brotherhood is welcoming Iranian interference in Egypt’s internal affairs. I tell you, that Ayalon is one smart cookie and so learned in the ways of Islam. His brilliance never ceases to amaze me.
On a slightly different subject, I just read that in a meeting with Abbas, the Norwegian foreign minister said that Israel’s refusal to transfer $100-million in Palestinian tax payments held by Israel amounted to “waterboarding” Palestine. A vivid turn of phrase.
Surely your use of the word “fuhrer” to describe Israel’s Foreign Minister is a serious violation of your own comment rules.
(Rule no. 7: comments which abuse the Holocaust and Holocaust terms (‘Judenrein,’ etc.) for propaganda purposes may be deleted. Also, use terms like ‘anti-Semite,’ ‘anti-Israel,’ ‘genocide,’ and ‘Nazi’ VERY carefully as they are quite often misused. Calling the Gaza withdrawal “ethnic cleansing” is incendiary propaganda and not legitimate argument. Terms like “zionazi” are not permitted.”)
Interesting to hear a bit about Ayalon, since I do not know any Hebrew. But please leave the Nazi terminology to history.
Oh please, can we stop the semantic pickiness? Of all things to get upset about when reading this piece, you focus on the use of the word “fuhrer”?
I would think that seeing the completely bonkers Ayalon seeing terrorists under his bed would be more alarming than worrying about Richard’s use of an old word from World War II. Seriously, this guy sounds like he’s in need of a forced retirement; if he were anyone else he’d be considered delusional, but since he’s with the Israeli government, he’s considered normal. This is scary.
Its so much that are bad with Israel these days.
*Proposing of antidemocratic bills, making Israel more authoriatian and according to Peacenow more ‘racist’.
*Trying to establish Israel as a jewish state, thus drifting further away from the democracy they claim to have.
*Violent attacks on Peacenow activists, at the same time a more violent settler clientele.
*The constant israeli expansionism of settlements which just will take Israel further away from the civilized world it says it belongs to because the apartheid that will be more and more established.
*Israel’s constant peace rejectionism
*Israel’s constant threat to palestinians (most lately, the threat to cut off water and electricity, thats collective punishment, the same illegal actions Israel condemn palestinian for when they send rockets).
IDF have also some weeks back got a ‘OK’ to invade Gaza again.
Israel fear palestinian unity as one force becuase thats when Israel will be pressured for real. No more puppet-regimes to Israel. Remember that Hamas was supported in its early stages by Israel to counter the then powerful Fatah/PLO. “Divide and rule”.
*The contant threat to either attack or with the help of a tiredsome western world (and counter to their interest and world economy) to invade Iran. Why? Just to shift attention from israeli crimes and occupation. Also if the war starts, one crucial goal Israel have is to get rid of palestinians once and for all. Either cleansing or demolishing the resistance for good. If some 1400 died during Cast Lead, just imagine what a massacre it would be if another invasion is to realize?
Israel hold through the lobby somewhat the obama administration and therefore the world at ransom. Remember when Israel began to threat Iran some weeks back with a potential attack. US and the puppet EU ministers quickly came with new sanctions on Iran.
EU and US must understand that Israel runs counter to their interest and israeli belligerence is a threat to this world.
Israel must understand that the idea of a ethnic state is doomed to failed. They must understand that the only solution is now one-state solution since Israel have refused two-state solution with their settlements policy.
Also..ít really shows as Richard points out, how little the israeli gov. knows about Islam when it totally neglect sunni/shia divide. It would be interesting how the israeli gov. would present Islam if they were to put out a book.
Another ridiculous claim is that Iran, according to Israel, pretty much runs the world. If something goes bad, its Iran!
Reminds me of the conspiracy hypothesis saying that ‘jews rules the world’.
Sometimes it would be better (for israeli pr/image) if their leaders shut their mouth. Does danny really think it is a good look to threat an occupied people with more collective punishment or showing his lack of knowledge on Islam?
I know little about Ayalon but this threat beggars the imagination. Did he forget about “air”, the stuff people breathe? He was probably in a hurry to a party fund raiser and just abbreviated his comments. So, it will be finally — water, power and air to Gaza. That’s certain to provide some punishment.
Dark humor about a dark and stupid regime and its dark and stupid apparatchik.
How this blog can promote itself being “pro-Israel” is beyond my wildest imagination. As I wrote previously, this is just another Israel basher..
“Israel basher”? Yeah, they’re a dime a dozen. Israel itself sees to it that these bashers multiply like, like, er, Palestinians!
Do you think that peace with Israel will be at the top of the list for any Egyptian regime that takes power? If so, why do believe this to be true? If not, then the article stands as is.
And Ayalon is an outrage to every thinking person.
Tzippi Ben Mordechai says
I must admit the word Führer made me giggle. But only because the similarities are too close. However, as much as I hate Ayalon and I feel for the 1.5 million Pals in Gaza I feel that if this was implemented, and it killed enough Palestinians, then maybe politicians would have to stand away from Israel. The cruelty behind the Gaza siege is that Israel can somehow justify it, but I would love to see the Hasbara claim on cutting 1.5 million people from water (which I’m pretty sure is one of the definitions of genocide).
I know you don’t allow Nazi similarities in your comments so feel free to sensor this. But how do you feel to people claiming the Gaza Strip is similar to a large Warsaw Ghetto? As far as Nazi comparisons, this is the only one that I found could really stick.
Tzippi, I would not compare Gaza with the Warsaw Ghetto if I were you. You will only invite comments like: “The Jews in the ghetto did not fire rockets at the civilian German population”. (Although I am sure that if they had the materials, they would have gladly done so.) Not allowing in pasta or building materials and sufficient medicines, preventing young people from studying abroad, and even shooting farmers and fishermen who come too close to the borders, even that does not come close to what was done in the Warsaw Ghetto. 100,000 people died there because of starvation and illnes, and in addition there were daily transports to Treblinka extermination camp.
The result of calling in the Warsaw Ghetto is only that Israel’s treatment of Gaza, which is horrible enough, is made to look trivial in comparison to the far larger crimes of the Nazis. If crimes only really count if they can be compared to what the Nazis did, oppressors get a lot of leeway!
Tzippi ben Mordechai says
Hey Elisabeth thanks for your reply. I only thought of the comparision after reading an article by Sygmunt Bauman earlier today and I think what he was trying to do was let the Jewish community see the siege of Gaza similar to the walls of the Warsaw Ghetto instead of a security wall. I don’t think anything can take away from the horrors of the Warsaw Ghetto. And you’re right about comparisions making the crimes against the Gazan people less important. I never thought of it from that angle.
As for the Jews bombing the Nazis we did have our own resistance as weak as it was. I’ve heard stories of children sneaking food into the Warsaw Ghetto as well as the uprisings. And correct me if I’m wrong but the Nazis used that to further justify their actions against us.
Elizabeth, I agree with you. The ghettos were part of an overall extermination plan and for some time allowed the illusion that some Jews might survive. There is really no way to compare Israeli policy with the Shoah during the war.
But if you look at the beginning of anti-Semitic policy within Germany, aiming at removing the “Jews” from German territory, there is a certain parallel. Palestians are “welcome to leave…” their homeland, as were the German Jews until 1939/40.
The ghettos became part of the extermination plan. When the first ghettos were formed, they were holding areas for an eventual final solution of some kind, including even “mass transfers”.
There is much similarity between the cordoning off of Gaza and the West Bank and the segregation of Jews from general society as a “health issue” it was said during the forties. It is a fair analogy but perhaps counterproductive when stated outright. I intended much the same by suggesting that Ayalon also threaten to cut off air from Gaza. I hoped the significance of the “joke” would be seen.
Hey David just want to thank you for mentioning the “health issue” reasoning for the segregating Jews from the general public. I had no idea!
Richard Silverstein says
Not sure whether this comment is meant ironically or not. But if so & you are criticizing David, you should realize that he was not supporting the idea of putting Jews in ghettos for “health reasons.” He was merely pointing out similarities (in his mind, though not mine) to segregating Gaza and the West Bank from Israel & the rest of the world.
I wasn’t criticizing David. I really didn’t know the Nazi’s used “health reasons” as a reason for the camps.
Richard Silverstein says
Thanks for clarifying. And of course the Nazis made much of the so called genetic deformities, health abnormalities & aberrant personality traits of Jews.
“Health” was used by Nazis in both its medical sense and as a component of ideology. Jews were often initally segregated into ghettos and camps because, it was said, they represented a health threat to the greater population as carriers of typhus (a much older anti-semitic racist slur.) Jews were also segregated because ideology viewed them as the “bacteria” or microbes of social dissolution. The segregation was never about land, as such.
So segregated, and denied a means of support, the health of the Jewish populations inevitably declined and became a serious health issue, but as a result of segregation not the basis for segregation.
Palestinians are segregated now in the West Bank and Gaza on the basis of the land claims of Zionism, the ideology upon which Israel was founded. I do not know if the ideology makes any claims about physical health of one people over another, the matter of cultural sanitation, as it were. But, as surely as in the European case of the 40’s, the segregation has brought down the standard of living of most Palestinians and has, on its own, generated health issues of significant size. Having now created squalor among Palestinians, Israelis can, like German masters of the ghetto, look upon the living conditions of Palestinians with derision. Israelis say “they are animals” or they are “dirty” and point to the squalor as evidence.
It is a subtle thing to try to dissect out the racism of Zionism from the practical segregation of Palestinians and its consequences. But the racism is there and I have little doubt it is expressed by using medical terms in the context of ideology and ideological terms in the context of medical science. Racism has many faces and some are flattering and some are ugly beyond ugly. This matter of medical health reflects both faces in some sense.
While it is true that Gaza is the world’s largest open-air prison, I get deeply, deeply annoyed when it is compared to anything the Nazis did. And any activist who persists in making comparisons between what the Nazis did (not only to Jews but to Poles, Russians, gypsies and many others) damages the credibility of the entire movement to liberate Palestine.
On the other hand, raving lunatics such as Ayalon and his claims about the PA aren’t doing Israel a whole lot of good, either. They’re ludicrous but not new. Israel has a history of making ludicrous, outrageous claims about Palestine and Palestinians (as well as Egypt and Egyptians, Iran and Iranians, Syria and Syrians, Lebanon and Lebanese…).
Especially in the aftermath of Mahmoud Abbas’ one shining moment in front of the UN when he so eloquently laid out Palestine’s case for statehood, Ayalon’s remarks are worse than odious. Not only are they just plain silly, but they insult Palestinians as well as the world’s intelligence.
delia ruhe says
“Ayalon … Urges Israel to Cut Off Gaza Water, Power”
Is it any wonder that people interpret Israel’s siege and occupation as slow-motion genocide.
Nobody should wonder about it — it is, as it always has been in Israel — unstated policy to diminish Palestinian life and make it finally disappear from the land. Israel simply continues the founding process of possessing land and removing Palestinians. It is one crime committed over decades and decades, inching along administratively toward the one unacceptable goal, with more speedy action during war. It is not mass murder, certainly, but it is aimed at removing Palestinians and their memories forever. There is no other coherent explanation for the totality of Israeli policies, laws, wars and actions. It is not mass murder, but the regime managed some extraordinary administrative measures to isolate and discourage Jews in the years 33-39, prior to war.
That’s exactly how a majority of Jewish holocaust prisoners probably died: the Allies total war’ methodology blocked all of German territory to the brink of starvation, etc… AND EVERYONE IN THAT TERRITORY, INCLUDING PRISONERS. It’s like the evil has no bounds..
@Persian Advocate: Are you saying that 6 million Jews died of starvation, caused by the Allies, rather than in the gas chambers?
Richard Silverstein says
This is WAY OFF TOPIC. If you want to argue about the Holocaust you’ll do it elsewhere.
Richard – do you mean me or do you mean Persian Advocate, who seems to be violating your comment rules by denying the Holocaust? (I notice you haven’t threatened him with moderation for this – your only complaint seems to be that it’s “off-topic”.)
Richard Silverstein says
If you have a problem with another commenter’s comment send me the link & the passage in question & I’ll review it. It’s not yr job to police the comment threads on my behalf & tell us who should be banned. Nor is it your job to provoke arguments that are off topic.
I just read the comment & replied to it. I too don’t agree with Persian Advocate’s statement & said so. All that is necessary is to make yr disagreement known, not to open a whole off topic debate about how Holocaust victims died.
Richard Silverstein says
That is not correct. The majority of Holocaust victims did not die of starvation. They died in gas chambers & crematoria. Besides, I see no reason to make a distinction between one method of murder or another.
Neil Douglas says
“Apparently, he didn’t hear about the cries during a Muslim Brotherhood rally in an Egyptian mosque last Friday, which weren’t terribly polite (putting it mildly) to Israelis or Jews in general.”
That Danny Ayalon is burying his head in the sand, reflects badly on his intelligence. That the potential elected government of Egypt “weren’t terribly polite” about “Jews in general” reflects badly on their ethics.