Israel: The End of the Dream

My Catbird Seat October 27, 2012 9
Israel: The End of the Dream

From "Exodus" to the apartheid state

by

Antiwar.com

When I was very young, I thrilled to the strains of "Exodus" – the music that accompanied the popular movie depicting the Israeli fight for independence. I played it over and over, every night, falling asleep to its crashing chords of defiance and deliverance. But it wasn’t just the music. As I grew older I was enamored of the Israeli narrative: a nation of exiles who forged for themselves a place that could be called home. For a somewhat alienated teen-ager, such as myself, who didn’t feel at home anywhere, the Israelis represented the outsider triumphant, a long-persecuted people who, in spite of everything, had carved out a place for themselves in the world.

This is the image that burned itself into my brain, and, like many Americans, Jews and non-Jews alike, I felt a bond with the Israeli people that could almost be called spiritual. Today, however – almost fifty years later – I have quite a different view of the Jewish state. Not even the musical score written by Ferrante and Teicher can erase the reality of a nation that systematically oppresses its Palestinian helots, a ruthless Sparta armed to the teeth (courtesy of my tax dollars) that is now engaged in a propaganda campaign designed to drag the United States into yet another unnecessary and horrifically destructive war in the Middle East.

I have been pointing to the growing danger of religious and political extremism in Israel for years. Now the evidence is pouring in, confirming my diagnosis in every particular. First, the recent announcement that Israel’s largest party, Likud – the party of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu – is merging with Yisrael Beiteinu, a right-wing ultra-nationalist party founded by Avigdor Lieberman, a former bar bouncer who immigrated from Russia in 1978 and is now Israel’s foreign minister.

Lieberman was a member of the Likud youth group while studying international relations and political science at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, where he was known for brawling with rival Arab student groups. According to Ha’aretz, at one point he was a member of the extremist Kach party of Rabbi Meir Kahane, now banned as a terrorist organization in Israel and listed as such by the US State Department. He denies this, but the only manner in which his views differ from the virulently racist and nationalist Kahanists is his relative secularism: for example, he wants the state-subsidized Haredim (Orthodox religious scholars) to be conscripted into the army, like everyone else.

Lieberman rose quickly through the ranks of Likud, eventually becoming Netanyahu’s chief of staff, but split to form his own party when the Wye River memorandum granting Palestinians some basic rights was signed by his boss.

From the beginning his party has been the voice of Russian Jews who emigrated in the wake of the Soviet Union’s collapse and felt alienated from Israeli society. The party fielded its first list of candidates to the Knesset in 1999 on a platform that included depriving Israeli Arabs of their citizenship. When the Labor party leadership nominated an Israeli Arab to the post of minister of science and technology, Yisrael Beiteinu deputies in the Knesset declared the Zionist state was in danger of losing its Jewish character.

Condemned as racists, the party nevertheless prospered, steadily increasing its share of the vote and its fraction in the Knesset. Their plan is to annex most of the West Bank, demand a loyalty oath from Israeli Arabs – and strip citizenship from those who refuse. They want to narrow the terms of the Law of Return – which guarantees citizenship to any and all Jews who emigrate to Israel – by restricting aliyah to born Jews and Orthodox converts: converts to Progressive and Reform Judaism need not apply.

Yisrael Beiteinu has been the loudest voice calling for war with Iran, and Lieberman – who once called for bombing the Aswan dam – revels in the role of warmonger. When he entered the government in 2006, it was on the condition of his appointment to a new cabinet position: Minister of strategic affairs, a post created to counter the alleged threat from Iran.

After the 2009 elections, the party emerged as the third largest in the nation, and entered a coalition government with Likud: Netanyahu made him Foreign Minister. Lieberman links the peace process with the Palestinians to the Iranian nuclear issue and says the former cannot continue as long as the latter is unresolved. He supports the settlement movement – although the settler types, intensely religious, disapprove of his party’s secularism – and had a memorable clash with Hillary Clinton over the issue. According to Lieberman, the Bush administration had agreed to allow the settlements, but Hillary wasn’t buying it.

He wants to execute members of the Knesset who meet with Hamas: faced with criticism from Israeli Arabs and the liberal wing of the Labor party, the thuggish Lieberman vowed that once he and his party take power "we’ll take care of you." With the rising tide of ultra-nationalist extremism in Israel, that day may not be far.

Which brings us to the second exhibit of evidence: a recent poll that shows the frightening dominance of racist and ultra-nationalist trends in Israeli society. The headline in Ha’aretz says it all: "Most Israeli Jews would support an apartheid regime in Israel." The paper reports:

"The majority of the Jewish public, 59 percent, wants preference for Jews over Arabs in admission to jobs in government ministries. Almost half the Jews, 49 percent, want the state to treat Jewish citizens better than Arab ones; 42 percent don’t want to live in the same building with Arabs and 42 percent don’t want their children in the same class with Arab children."

The bullied have become the bullies.

According to the survey, "a sweeping 74 percent majority is in favor of separate roads for Israelis and Palestinians in the West Bank." Even more ominously, "Almost half – 47 percent – want part of Israel’s Arab population to be transferred to the Palestinian Authority." In short, they favor ethnic cleansing. Among the disgusting details of this comprehensive scientific poll is this interesting tidbit:

"Most of the Jewish public (58 percent) already believes Israel practices apartheid against Arabs. Only 31 percent think such a system is not in force here."

When American critics of Israeli government policies describe it as an "apartheid state" they are simply agreeing with the views of the majority of Israelis, who know apartheid when they see it – and live it. Yet this designation is regularly cited by Israel’s American amen corner as prima facie evidence of "anti-Semitism." By this standard, 58 percent of the Israeli public can now be classified as anti-Semites.

The surge of openly racist passions has fueled increasing violence against the Arab minority: recently a crowd of hundreds of football hooligans – of the type that, in Europe, are often the shock troops of neo-Nazi parties – shouting "Death to Arabs!" swept through the streets of Jerusalem, beating any Arab they could find. The police did nothing to stop them, and, as far as I can tell, none have been arrested.

The Israel of today is not the Israel of "Exodus." It is not the Israel of the democratic egalitarian Labor tradition, symbolized by the kibbutz: it is, in fact, no longer the only democracy in the region – it is, instead, an increasingly tribalist and anti-democratic state, a militaristic society dominated by ethnic and religious exclusivism, and a dangerously expansionist one to boot.

In championing Israel’s cause, Mitt Romney and his Republican cohorts continually refer to our alliance with the Jewish state as reflective of American values, contrasting this with the "realist" view which subordinates values to interests. This may have been true in the early days of the Zionist enterprise, but it is far from true today: indeed, Israel is taking a path which can only end in the dark abyss of tribalism, religious fundamentalism – and war.

It is, for me, a sickening process to observe from afar – because I still remember my youthful vision of a benevolent Promised Land, and a people whose oppression made them sensitive to the oppression of others. I remember the strains of "Exodus" ringing in my ears, as I fell asleep to the sound of yearning and triumph over evil.

NOTES IN THE MARGIN

A lot of what I write in this space is prefigured on Twitter, and I urge you to join me there, where we can have a real dialogue. Go here to sign on my Twitter feed.

Original source:  Antiwar.com


Justin Raimondo is the editorial director of Antiwar.com.  He is the author of An Enemy of the State: The Life of Murray N. Rothbard (Prometheus Books, 2000), Reclaiming the American Right: The Lost Legacy of the Conservative Movement (ISI, 2008), and Into the Bosnian Quagmire: The Case Against U.S. Intervention in the Balkans (1996). He is a contributing editor for The American Conservative, a senior fellow at the Randolph Bourne Institute, and an adjunct scholar with the Ludwig von Mises Institute. He writes frequently for Chronicles: A Magazine of American Culture.

Read more by Justin Raimondo

9 Comments »

  1. richard cardulla October 27, 2012 at 11:55 pm - Reply

    Israel keeps bragging that it the only Democratic country in the region.  I am sure that the murderous Atila the Hun would have been elected by the Huns.  It is happening in israel with these new Israeli Huns, but this time armed with nuclear bombs and with the US in tow.

  2. Shachalnur October 28, 2012 at 1:54 am - Reply

    You woke up late,since it's inception it was neccesary for Israel to accomodate Zionism with judaism.

     

    They succeded in creating a new religion,"Chosenite Holocaustianity".

     

    I'm a jew ,lived in Israel in the 80's ,you could see this coming from miles away.

     

    Israel is on the verge of commiting suicide and will drag (a big part of )the world down with them ,like Martin van Creveld warned.  

    • Debbie
      Debbie October 30, 2012 at 11:40 am - Reply

      True. @ Shachalnur

      Karl Jung extends his and Freud's work with the individual mind to incorporate a "Collective Conscienceless" which operates on what has since become known as "Group think" and the psychology of large masses of people, and in essence, explains what has made Jewry and Jews the tightly knitted, psychotic folk they are today. 

       

      Chinese?  Japanese? 

      The same principle of "Collective Consciousness" can be used to explain and predict large number social behavior in groups, such as  religious, political or cultural groups, and even, with some degree of accurate, tribal or family groups.  It is based upon, of course, what behaviorists call, "social modeling," i.e, newborns and learners taking models of behavior and absorbing knowledge and belief from their immediate social (cultural) surroundings, the people among their family and neighbors with whom they inter-course and from whom they learn.  

       

      Sort of what Gilad Atzmon is talking about when he says  "…with so many people all brought up and educated believing the same thing, you do not really need a conspiracy."

       

      Basically, Freud, Jung and Horney were merely formalizing in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries what Jewish mothers had known for millenia.

       

      One must make the time to read, if necessary for, good reading will bear fruit which will free up and provide more time for doing and eliminate all that otherwise wasted time trying to figure out what is happening and why it is happening that way.

  3. Hank October 28, 2012 at 3:03 am - Reply

    These criminals exagerated the 'holocaust' for obvious reasons, like 911.

     

    My question is, ''what is going to happen when the Germans realise that for two generations they have been slandered and vilified. what are we going to do about the perpetrators of 911. ''The truth will out.'' 

  4. Rosemerry October 28, 2012 at 4:49 am - Reply

     What I find infuriating is the constant criticism and demonising of Arabs and Muslims by Israel and the "international community", as well as the attacks and invasions by the belligerent USA and Israel, yet any criticism of any Israeli policy  or any Jew for any reason eg banksters is called antisemitism, not allowed ever.

     

    Despite the actions of the leaders and followers we see in Israel and the USA which are enough to turn anybody against  pro-israeli behaviour, people are expected to rally behaind "poor little threatened Israel" with its nukes and Qualitative Military Edge and never disagree with any deed done by any Jew in the world. .

  5. Patty October 28, 2012 at 5:20 am - Reply

    I ,too, have out grown the theme from Exudus, memories of Ann Frank, and Dauchau, for Israel has adopted the "Nazi"way with the Palestinians.

     

    Throw the bums out along with those in the U.S. who support Israel!

  6. Mikael October 28, 2012 at 5:53 am - Reply

    This is the fundamental of the downfall of the current state called Israel, when a nation even I remember with pride and glory, just before the Lebanon war opened my eyes and since then, I dont know where she is going.  

     

    This is a path I saw years ago, the utter lunacy in their policy, how people can partisipate in this is beyond logic and moral. May be its guilt, that makes thmn insane, behave in ways inhuman. To behave like that, they have to be dehumanised. This dehumanising have been the rhetoric in Israel for so long, so storng, for decades they have pounded our world with selfimposed Paranoia and Religious Insanity. And the blatant forgery of histroy, is also so institutionalized, that penetrated that mebrane over time. I am afraid, Israel will suffer under their new regime, I am afraid the people will pay.  Is this anti semetism?   peace

  7. DL. October 28, 2012 at 5:58 am - Reply

    Same here, Mr. Raimondo…in fact, I loved Israel so much back then that I actually tried to convert to Judaism so I could move there when I got out of hgh school (and rooted like hell for them during the 6 day war…back then I really did hate Arabs!)…but my Jewish friends told me don't convert–Jews in Israel would still treat me like a goyim.
    Now? I despise what Israel is doing to the Palestinians and Palestinian and Messianic Jewish Christians there, their apartheid, their control of the US and most of all, their anti-Christ Talmud!

  8. Anthony Clifton October 29, 2012 at 12:51 am - Reply

    Gog & Magog "Jews" cannot be Israel, will never be israel  – because "jews" are not israelites…  

     

    Just because the synagogue of  MONEYCHANGER so-called "JEWS" print currency doesn't mean the truth is on holiday and talmudvision is not the lie factory.  

     

     

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