APPEAL: This blog and my Twitter account are some of the main sources of eyewitness accounts of the horrors perpetrated by Judeo-terrorists against Huwara. I am translating these accounts for my readers; and also providing alternative coverage of the anti-government protests you will not see in western media. PLEASE donate to support this critical journalism. Fill out the Mightycause form in the right sidebar. Click on the Paypal icon to make a gift. If you share my outrage. If you believe in the importance of documenting such crimes, do the right thing and give. And help grow my audience: tell a friend! And if you can do some of this translation, find stories that are important for English language readers and send them to me.
There can be no doubt that Israel’s fascist government poses an existential crisis for the nation. Its legislative agenda echoes that of the Polish and Hungarian far-right, which have essentially taken over their respective societies and imposed a totalitarian system on a captive population. Israel is, without doubt, far along the road to absolute, possibly permanent fascism.
In that sense, Israel’s anti-government protest movement is laudable and the 400,000 Israelis who rallied this past weekend for the ninth week in a row are fighting the good fight. Such a broad movement incorporates many different political factions from right to left. But the thousands of Israeli flags waving throughout the crowds demonstrate that this is not a movement of all the nation’s citizens. Rather, it is by and for Israeli Jews. Palestinian citizens aren’t excluded (except in this egregious case), but they aren’t welcomed, Nor are any of their interests represented. Just like in everyday Israeli politics.
There is too much self-congratulation among the Israelis marching in the streets. Too many Israeli flags. As if Zionist patriotism will save their country. Western media have covered the bare surface of events. Its reporting also has an air of being of the side of the angels. Rooting for the righteous.
Among the protestors, there are a few Palestinian flags. These demonstrators are, in effect, protesting the protestors. They are reminding them that they are deliberately avoiding the 900-pound gorilla in the room:
Then there is the issue of occupation. The majority of protesters still insist on divorcing the future of democracy from the basic question of 57 years of occupation.
Many really don’t see the link. Others divorce the issue for tactical reasons, fearing that they could antagonise potential partners-in-arms.
The solution has been a territorial separation. One big rally takes place every Saturday evening on Habima Square in central Tel Aviv: Israeli flags only, consensual speakers only.
Another begins on Kaplan Street, near the government compound in Tel Aviv. This is where the radical, anti-occupation bloc finds its place.
Under the slogan “There is no democracy with occupation”, movements like Combatants for Peace, Machsom Watch, Peace Now and A Land for All mingle in the huge crowd and connect the current situation to the ongoing occupation.
The self-evident truth about occupation is still seen as a defiant statement. Even when it is accepted, it is not yet internalised.
But no, I’m not talking about Occupation. Though there are far more anti-Occupation placards than Palestinian flags. Opposing the Occupation is a consensus of the Zionist left, which is about as “left” as Hakeem Jeffries or Joe Biden. Occupation is, of course, one of the chief ills of Israeli society. But it is the tip of the iceberg.
The real issue is apartheid. Not just a racist policy of physical separation between Jew and Palestinian. But an ethnocratic regime which privileges Jews and derogates Palestinians. In other words, this movement is not saving democracy, as many of the placards and slogans that were chanted claim. It is saving what these demonstrators are calling “democracy” for themselves. This movement not only has nothing to do with its Palestinian fellow citizens, it has nothing to do with real democracy. It is far from a “state for all its citizens,” the memorable slogan coined (I believe–correct me if I’m wrong) by Azmi Bishara, who was hounded into exile by the Shin Bet.
Ending the Occupation is only the first step in a process that could lead to real democracy. But it would have to be followed by offering full rights and equality to everyone from the river to the sea, which would include Palestinian citizens and those living under Occupation.
The protest movement seeks to save Israel from fascism. While it may be a commendable goal in itself, it doesn’t come close to addressing the real, fundamental issue at the heart of Israel’s disjunction: it is a deeply and fundamentally flawed state. And many of its injustices, inequities, savagery, militarism, corruption and other ills derive from this.