From email@example.com Mon Dec 18 12:49:35 2000
Date: Sun, 17 Dec 2000 23:24:40 -0600 (CST)
Organization: South Movement
From: David Muller <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: [southnews] Exposing Israel: A nation of colonialists
Despite the five-decades of occupation in Palestine, the majority of Israelis remain colonialists, and in one way or another, they are all settlers
SEATTLE - Mistakenly, many create the distinction between the Israeli army and Israeli settlers, as if the two are not clearly opposite sides of the same coin.
It is often witnessed that even well-intending human rights groups naively call on the Israeli army to protect the Palestinian population from settlers' assaults, disregarding the fact that Israeli settlements and the Israeli army are both part of Israel's offensive strategy aimed at strengthening the grip of the Jewish state in the Occupied Territories.
Calling upon the occupier (in this case the Israeli army) to protect the occupied in times of conflict, in accordance with the Fourth Geneva Convention, is similar to depending on a wolf to protect a herd of sheep. Since the outbreak of the Palestinian uprising in September 28, both the Israeli army and the Jewish settlers have been working in perfect harmony to suppress the uprising, to inflict harm and to punish the captive and largely unarmed Palestinian population.
Just listen to the news, which hardly fails to point out the joint
cooperation between Israeli army units and settlers.
soldiers kill Palestinian protestors, Jewish settlers open fire at
Israeli army shells a refugee camp, settlers
block the main road leading to it ..,
Army declares Palestinian
land a military zone, settlers rush to expand a settlement
Soldiers prevent Palestinian farmers from reaching their land for
harvest, settlers kill a farmer while harvesting his olive
However, another serious mistake would be committed if we, unthinkingly isolate the brutality of the Israeli army and the murder campaign of the settlers, from the overall Israeli population and their perception of the Occupied Territories, as well as the policies carried out there.
A quick review of the results of October 8, 2000, Gallup poll, carried
out by Israel's largest Hebrew daily newspaper, Ma'ariv, would
diminish the myth that views Israelis as doves, hawks, peace loving,
and settlers. Even the decisive majority of the
pro peace camp
(the so-called Israeli left) has laid back in silence as if they have
nearly accepted the ongoing massacre of Palestinians. The most active
by far was Peace Now, which continues to preach an anti-occupation
Within Israel's Jewish population, only 7 percent thought that the Israeli army is being too heavy handed in ending the violence, according to the Ma'ariv poll. The rest were evenly divided between those who thought the army was too light handed and those who agreed that the army has acted properly.
On the other hand, only 27 percent of the Jewish population in Israel
believes that Ariel Sharon's visit to Al Haram Al Shareif was what
provoked Palestinians anger. The majority simply consider the visit
a basic right. Moreover, 60 percent of those polled believe that Arabs
in Israel should be
transferred outside Israel's borders.
While some tend to blame the violence on a minority group or a particular individual, such as settlers or Ariel Sharon, they overlook the greater picture of Israeli society, which is the central think tank for these colonial fantasies, this racism and military occupation.
It is ludicrous that the Israeli settlers in the West Bank and Gaza
(70 percent from which according to American Palestinian historian
Walid al-Khaldi, are American and Western European Jews) are widely
perceived as victims. Israel's success at creating such a falsehood
was necessary so that the Israeli army could justify its military
actions and its suppression of Palestinians as a mere
retaliation against violence perpetrated by Palestinian
terrorists against Jewish settlers. The settlers, armed to the
teeth of course, also manage to retaliate on their own, often
targeting children, women and defenseless farmers.
Israeli settlements are military forts with a strategic presence, not
religiously significant as many Jews argue, but a military maneuver to
confiscate more land, under the usual excuse that Israel is only
hoping to achieve security for its citizens. If settlements were the
simple and disorganized work of radical Jews, how can one explain that
Jewish settlements in the Occupied Territories have increased by more
than 50 percent since the signing of Oslo in 1993, according to a
Peace Now report on December 4th? Moreover, how can Israel's
peace government explain its decision to earmark around $300
million of next year's budget for settlers, according to the same
source, in a report issued in November?
In a report published by Israels Central Bureau of Statistics on December 11, it is stated that13,000 more Jewish settlers have moved to the Occupied Territories just in the first nine months of the current year. The newcomers will join over 200,000 already residing on stolen Palestinian land. Its beyond a reasonable doubt, that the Israeli settlement agenda is a well-planned scheme, perpetrated, not only by the Israeli government and settlers, but also by Israeli society, who generously funds and strongly backs their governments colonial practices.
Separating the Israeli army's interests and the interests of the settlers is a big fallacy that must be exposed. Furthermore, talking about the occupation army and certain hard-liners in the Israeli government, as if they don't mirror the dominating anti- Palestinian, pro-transfer, and militant sentiment upheld by most Israelis, is another fallacy. In truth, despite the five-decades of occupation in Palestine, the majority of Israelis remain colonialists, and in one way or another, they are all settlers.