The December issue of Le Monde diplomatique features "A Different Future in Different Circumstances": articles on the future of Palestine and Israel. In one article, former Lebanese finance minister George Corm offers a "dissident view": to obey international law, return stolen land, and pay compensation.  This is in line with the reputation of Le Monde diplomatique, known for articles that are "long, thoughtful, scholarly, and opinionated, usually from an uncompromising leftist position."  Writing in Le Monde diplomatique on Israeli society, Haaretz' Akiva Eldar comes from a leftist position, but it is a compromised position. 
Eldar is puzzled by the deficit of protest over the appointment of Avigdor Lieberman, a far-right winger, as deputy prime minister in Israel. Eldar asks, "What has happened to Israeli society that it is producing racist leaders such as Lieberman and, more importantly, why is it only happening now, almost 60 years after the state of Israel was established?"
Given that the violent realization of Israel has its roots in the racist ideology of Zionism and given that Israel was set up as a Jewish state, one wonders what other kind of leaders would be expected from a racist state.
But it is not just the apparent apathy to the leadership that surprises Eldar; he wonders:
why some Israelis can accept such atrocities as the destruction of an entire Palestinian family in the Gaza Strip while other Israelis, despite 40 years of occupation, still take to the streets to protest against such injustices as the bombing of Beit Hanoun.
The massacres are nothing new. Israel was founded in the blood of many massacres of Palestinians. Considering how non-Mizrahi Jews and their lineage came to be in Israel, it is a rather sad commentary that so few Jews take to the streets to demonstrate against the atrocities meted out by their kinsfolk to Palestinians.
Eldar's omission is telling. The existential conflict was manufactured by Zionists long before an Israeli state was recognized.  A "homogenous population" is a euphemism for "Jews only." In this Jewish society, the Palestinians are regarded as and treated as "human dust."
Eldar writes that Israeli Jews were inculcated. "The emphasis in education was on loyalty to the state [instead of loyalty to humanity], the Arab-Israeli conflict [instead of loyalty to the unity and love of fellow humans], anti-semitism [while practicing the same] and military service [instead of loyalty to the cause of peace and justice].
Eldar does acknowledge the racism intrinsic to Israeli society. He acknowledges the supremacism in Israeli education that depicts Arabs as "inferior beings with no national identity, thirsting for Jewish blood" and also views "goyim" negatively. Israelis may be victims of their own regime's propaganda and disinformation, but does that absolve them of blame for their crimes against humanity anymore than Germans who were indoctrinated by the Nazi regime?
recognizes the "simplistic messages" born out of the Jewish victimhood,
such as the long-forgotten "never again." The tragic irony is that the
people who base themselves in such messaging are the same people who so
basely undermine their own victimhood.
Eldar sees this. He writes, "It may be difficult for a nation that forgets its past to establish its present identity." If the identity of Israeli Jewish society is based in the WWII Holocaust, then this identity was forgotten from its inception since Israel is a state born through inflicting a holocaust on the indigenous Palestinians.
By ontologically rooting people in a past holocaust, present-day holocausts can be obfuscated and denied -- even by the victims-cum-perpetrators. This is the ultimate tragedy of wartime victimization: humanity was taught it must always oppose the perpetration of evil against any section of humanity; yet, contemporary history reveals that the past victims of evil can too conveniently forget and become the next perpetrators of evil against a section of humanity.
It is not enough for progressivist media and progressives to acknowledge the great injustice inflicted against the Palestinians; it is not enough to call for a cessation of the atrocities. Progressivist media and progressives must not compromise on denouncing the zionist oppression, demanding justice, and defending the legitimate rights of Palestinians -- including the right to compensation and regaining what was unjustly taken from them.
Kim Petersen, Co-Editor of Dissident Voice, lives on the outskirts of Seoul in southern Korea. He can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
 George Corm, "Palestine: land with interest," Translated by Robert Corner. Le Monde diplomatique, December 2006.
 "Le Monde diplomatique," Wikipedia.
 Akiva Eldar, "What has happened to Israeli society?" Translated by Barbara Wilson. Le Monde diplomatique, December 2006.
"I've been very distressed in my visit to the Holy Land; it reminded me so much of what happened to us blacks in South Africa. I have seen the humiliation of the Palestinians at checkpoints and roadblocks, suffering like us when young white police officers prevented us from moving about...The current divestment effort is the first, though certainly not the only, necessary move in that direction." (Archbishop Desmond Tutu, The Guardian, April 29, 2002)
Nov. 29, 2006, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution ran the following
op-ed, by John Dugard, a South African former anti-apartheid leader.
He is currently the Special Rapporteur on Palestine to the United Nations
Human Rights Council. He not only compares Israeli policies to apartheid,
but says that in many ways Israeli policies are worse than South African
The late Professor Israel Shahak, a Holocaust survivor and chairman of the Israeli League for Human and Civil Rights, summed it up accurately in his statement: "It is my considered opinion that the state of Israel is a racist state in the full meaning of this term. In this state, people are discriminated against, in the most permanent and legal way and in the most important areas of life, only because of their origin. This racist discrimination began in Zionism and is carried today mainly in co-operation with the institutions of the Zionist movement." (Quote taken from "The Racist Nature of Zionism and of the Zionist State of Israel", an article published in Pi-Ha'aton, the weekly newspaper of the students of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, Nov. 5, 1975.)
Derek Tozer, an Israeli thinker, stated: "The official policy of the government (of Israel) is unequivocal. Arabs, like the Jews in Nazi Germany, are officially 'class B' citizens, a fact which is recorded on their identity cards."
The predicament of Israel's roughly 1.2 million Arab citizens is evident, as the 2003 Israeli State Committee of Inquiry made clear: "They suffer systemic discrimination in employment, housing and education, and lack of equal access to state resources."
Israel's "Nationality and Entering to Israel Law", passed by the cabinet in 2002, and reaffirmed annually by the Knesset, and recently, May 2006, reaffirmed by a wide margin in the Knesset, denies any Arab Israeli citizen the right to reside in Israel with his/her spouse if they marry a Palestinian. Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch have condemned the law as racist, and Israel-based B’Tselem human rights group, claims that it contravenes the Israeli Basic Law.
is the true nature of Israeli democracy, as practiced against its own Arab
citizens and Palestinians under occupation.
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