Search This Blog

Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Zionism: The explosion hidden inside the UN Apartheid report on Palestine

Jonathan Ofir

The UN-commissioned report on Israeli Apartheid that was shelved last week (two days after it appeared), is no doubt explosive. The very idea that Israel is guilty of the crime of Apartheid, one of the two gravest crimes against humanity (second only to Genocide), is, in itself, one that should give everyone pause.

But there is another explosion in the report.

Israel and its patrons have desperately sought to shelve a discussion about Zionism as a racist ideology. The Apartheid report brings it back to the front.

The report renders invalid all those apologetic 'warnings' of Apartheid that have been part of mainstream Israeli and American leadership rhetoric for years now (for instance, John Kerry, 2014). The report's implication is that Apartheid is not something that is soon to arrive or has just arrived; it is something that has been there all along, from the very birth of the state — in the "State's essentially racist character."

The report is bound to open up a debate about the foundation of the State of Israel, as well as the ideology that has informed it all along - Zionism. The discussion is bound to roll back to another shelved document - the UN Resolution 3379 (1975), which equates Zionism with racism.

The report states that Apartheid exists not only in the West Bank right now, but implies that it exists elsewhere, and has from the start. In fact, the Israeli Left's notions of 'separation from the Palestinians' - whether titled 'Peace plan' (as in Isaac Herzog's 10-point and 10-year plan) or conveyed by slightly more overtly racist scare campaigns for 'separation' by 'liberal' Generals - arguably falls squarely into the exact language of Apartheid. For Apartheid is Afrikaans for 'separateness', as racial segregation and institutionalized racial discrimination.

The 1967 occupation and the 'demographic threat' of all the Palestinians in that occupied territory do not pose the imminence of Apartheid - no, it already exists. What the occupation does threaten to do, is endanger Israel's PR: It will becomes more difficult for Israel to veil the Apartheid as a mere 'temporary' exigency, if the occupation is not 'temporary'.

Veiling Israeli Apartheid as 'democracy' was one the very first of the acts of Israel, as noted in the report, in the chapter titled 'Demographic engineering' (p. 31):

The first general policy of Israel has been one of demographic engineering, in order to establish and maintain an overwhelming Jewish majority in Israel. As in any racial democracy, such a majority allows the trappings of democracy — democratic elections, a strong legislature — without threatening any loss of hegemony by the dominant racial group. In Israeli discourse, this mission is expressed in terms of the so-called "demographic threat", an openly racist reference to Palestinian population growth or the return of Palestinian refugees.
And what ideology has informed and rationalized these practices? Zionism.

Read more

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...