Palestine Update 264
Israel is not a state with an army; it’s an army that’s created a state
Each and every day a depressing scenario unfolds in Palestine. Israel’s regime unleashes one illegal measure after another and seeks to enforce it through a variety of repressive military and political mechanisms. When Netanyahu insists that Jewish connection to the land is far older than that of the Palestinians, he is using what critiques call “Race Science’. Apartheid cannot get worse than such formulations. Add to this, the crude exclusion of a lawyer and her infant from a public park last week has generated a legal counter. Human rights groups assert that this, and similar actions, are redolent of the worst days of apartheid South Africa.
In this issue of Palestine Updates, we share excerpts of an interview with Norman Finkelstein where he derides the Palestinians and Israelis alike for their political postures. He reserves strong words for the Palestinian leadership who, he categorizes as, a greed-filled ruling class with little interest but to maximize financial gains from the US deal. The theatrics until then remain a means to squeeze the maximum advantage and leave the people as mere collateral for their machinations. In the meantime Israel will remain what it is and was- a military camp in which some citizens behave as ordinary people and others as militarists. At the end, the largest number of Israeli citizens is army loyalists having served it and absorbed its culture over the years of compulsory service. The exceptions are too few to make the difference much as they make sincere attempts.
————————————————————————————————– Netanyahu uses DNA claim to deny Palestinian Right to Homeland
Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu yesterday tweeted that the Palestinians’ connection to the Land of Israel is nothing compared to the 4,000-year connection that the Jewish people have with the land. He cited a recent article stating that Biblical Philistines had come from Europe, according to DNA uncovered in the coastal city of Ashkelon.
His attempt to delegitimize the Palestinians’ right to their homeland was criticized by many as “race science”, which is often promoted by extreme right-wingers to justify ethno-nationalist policies. Meanwhile, Netanyahu’s son Yair was filmed speaking at an event for devout Christians in Alabama this weekend, trying to erase Palestinians’ identity by saying that they had originally migrated from other parts of the Middle East, as proven by such surnames as those which mean “Egyptian” and “from Aleppo”.
Entry ban at Israeli City Park provokes apartheid warnings
The barring of a lawyer and her infant from a public park last week has triggered a legal battle over whether local authorities in Israel can segregate citizens on a racial basis. Human rights groups have warned that the ban marks a growing trend by local authorities representing the Jewish majority towards explicit separation of public space in ways reminiscent of apartheid South Africa.
An Israeli court will have to decide whether it is reasonable for Afula, a city in the country’s north, to deny non-residents entrance to the main local park, which includes a playground, a small zoo, basketball courts and a running track. The restriction amounts to a ban on Palestinian citizens from surrounding communities using a public resource, according to Adalah, a legal human rights group representing Israel’s Palestinian minority, one in five of the country’s population.
These 1.8 million Palestinian citizens are the remnants of the native population expelled from their lands in 1948 during the creation of Israel – what Palestinians call their Nakba, or catastrophe.
Norman Finkelstein is a prominent American political scientist, activist, professor, and author
(Excerpts from an interview)
DC Insider spoke with Norman Finkelstein, a prominent American political scientist, activist, professor, and author. In Finkelstein’s opinion, the ‘deal of the century’ has been made possible by the Palestinian Authority’s [PA] ongoing greed.
(Norman Finkelstein) “It’s going to succeed; the probability is high, but it won’t succeed in the way that is being advertised. The PA definitely wants the money but is trying to drive a hard bargain so it’ll keep saying ‘no’ and ‘no’ until it figures a way to get the most money. Then, they’ll tell their people that they’re broke and that they have no other choice but to accept the money. It won’t be a formal surrender… They will continue security cooperation with Israel as the U.S. announces that it recognizes Israel’s annexation of the settlement blocs. They don’t want all of the West Bank because Israel doesn’t want the Arabs that come with it.” The PA definitely wants the money but is trying to drive a hard bargain so it’ll keep saying ‘no’ and ‘no’ until it figures a way to get the most money. Then, they’ll tell their people that they’re broke and that they have no other choice but to accept the money. It won’t be a formal surrender…
Finkelstein went on to bash the PA, specifically the President of the State of Palestine and Palestinian National Authority, Mahmoud Abbas, and Secretary-General of the Palestine Liberation Organization’s Executive Committee. “Abbas and the people that he surrounds himself with is a cross between a local mafia and a gang of pimps… That’s all they are. Before, there were elements of inspiration but now, everyone’s just in it for the money. Saeb Erekat is and has always been braindead… He gets to pretend that he’s a foreign minister or whatever he goes by now. They like the power. They enjoy the five-star hotels in D.C. They love to appear on television.
According to Finkelstein, all of the propaganda that has been circulating since the beginning of the new so-called ‘peace plan’ has been leading up to Israel’s definitive goal. “Israel will get the two things that it wants most: formal U.S. acknowledgement of Israeli annexation of the settlement blocs, but more importantly, an open alliance between Israeli and Saudi Arabia… This would be Israel’s greatest victory since Camp David and will ultimately lead to the end of the Arab league.”
“With an open Israeli-Saudi alliance, a large part of the American ruling elite will now support KSA… They will forgive the Khashoggi affair because they, too, want an open Israeli-Saudi alliance against Iran. The Saudis will get what they want – rehabilitation from Washington and all of the democrats that are attacking MbS.” Finkelstein posits that an open alliance with Israel would not only be in the best interest for KSA, but the entire Gulf countries.”They all want an open alliance with Israel. They are not going to initiate a war with Iran or any of its allies in the region. They obviously don’t give a damn about the Palestinians; they probably can’t even spell the word in Arabic.
However, the rest of those states have a smaller incentive than Saudi Arabia. KSA wants both an open alliance with Washington, along with rehabilitation, and the way to do that is by allying with Israel to erase the Khashoggi affair… The other Gulf states don’t have that burden.”
As a prominent Jewish-American activist, Finkelstein has his own distinct views on Israel and the atrocities that it has caused: “Israel will get the two things that it wants most: formal U.S. acknowledgement of Israeli annexation of the settlement blocs, but more importantly, an open alliance between Israeli and Saudi Arabia… This would be Israel’s greatest victory since Camp David and will ultimately lead to the end of the Arab league.”
“Israel is a very ugly place right now and there’s no question about it. For a country that size, it does seem to cause an awful lot of troubles in the world and because it has a very political and pathological diaspora, it causes a lot of damage proportionate to its size…Israel is not a state with an army; it’s an army that’s created a state and there is some element of truth to that. What has always held Israeli society together is the army; the fact that everybody passes through the army which creates a sort of familial bond which creates a whole society that feels like a family. That’s why every Israeli abroad is somewhat of a spy, they never get over the fact that they had served in that army. They feel this tribal responsibility to always be faithfully reporting back to Israel.”