Syria Imposes New Rules of Engagement on Israel

by Sayed Hasan translated for the Saker Blog

May 12, 2018

Source : http://sayed7asan.blogspot.fr/2018/05/la-syrie-impose-de-nouvelles-regles-de.html

On Thursday 10th May 2018, an unprecedented exchange of strikes happened between Israel and Syria. The mainstream media, as well as some “alternative” media like Russia Today, were quick to relay the Israeli army version, according to which the Zionist entity “retaliated” to an “Iranian attack by Revolutionary Guards’ Al-Quds Force” consisting of “twenty rockets” fired at Israeli positions in the occupied Golan, four of which were “intercepted by the Iron Dome” and the others “crashed into Syrian territory”, no damage being recorded in Israel. Israel has reportedly responded to this unprecedented “act of aggression” by a “large-scale operation” that would have destroyed “the entire Iranian infrastructure in Syria”, in order to deter the Islamic Republic from any stray impulse of future strikes.

This narrative takes for granted the postulates, data and myths of the Zionist entity’s propaganda – which imposes permanent military censorship on the Israeli media, exposing any offender to a prison sentence; and reading the international media, one might get the idea that, like American economic sanctions, this censorship is extraterritorial – but none of them can withstand scrutiny.

The aggressor is undoubtedly Israel, who carried out more than a hundred strikes against Syria since the beginning of the conflict. After Duma’s chemical stage attacks, this aggresion intensified with attacks on the Syrian T-4 base on April 9, which killed 7 Iranian Revolutionary Guard. Following the US announcement of withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal, new Israeli strikes targeted Syrian positions on Tuesday (May 8th) in the southern suburbs of Damascus, and Wednesday (May 9th) in Quneitra, in the south of the country. Undeniably, Syria has only responded to yet another aggression, with a firmness that has shaken Israel and forced it out of the muteness to which it usually confines itself.

The Syrian – and not Iranian – response consisted of more than fifty – and not twenty – rockets against four sensitive Israeli military bases in the occupied Golan, which caused material damage and even casualties according to Al-Manar, Hezbollah’s media. These were not reported by the Israeli press because of the draconian military censorship forbidding mentioning Israel’s initial aggression, more than twenty rockets fired on Israel, the identification of their targets and any hint to the damage inflicted, in order to reassure the population inside and allow the vassal Western capitals to shout their sickening refrain of the sacrosanct-right-of-Israel-to-defend-itself. The Lebanese channel Al-Mayadeen specifically identified the military posts struck: 1/ a military technical and electronic reconnaissance center; 2/ border security and intelligence station 9900; 3/ a military center for electronic jamming; 3/ a military spy center for wireless and wired networks; 4/ a transmission station; 5/ an observatory of precision weapons unit ; 6/ a combat heliport; 7/ the headquarters of the Regional Military Command of Brigade 810; 8/ the command center of the military battalion at Hermon; 9/ winter headquarters of a special alpine unit. And as this channel has reported, even Israeli journalists and analysts have expressed doubts about this unconvincing version according to which these massive strikes, unprecedented since 1974 and therefore unexpected, would have proved harmless. Moreover, as Norman Finkelstein pointed out, nothing has changed for Israel’s wars in Gaza from 2008 to 2014 despite the deployment of the “Iron Dome”, only 5% of the – largely primitive – Hamas rockets being intercepted during “Protective Edge”; and one of the best missile defense specialists, Theodore Postol of MIT, has already revealed the chronic deficiencies of this system. It is unlikely that it was able to cope better with the much more sophisticated Russian, Chinese and Iranian rocket launchers that Syria has.

The success of the Israeli strikes, which, according to Israeli War Minister Avigdor Lieberman, almost destroyed “all of Iran’s infrastructure in Syria”, is largely exaggerated: Russian military officials, whose radars have followed this fight in real time, announced that more than half of the 60 missiles fired by 28 Israeli F-15s and F-16s – as well as 10 ground-to-ground missiles – were intercepted. The Syrian army records 3 dead and 2 wounded, a radar station and ammunition depot destroyed and material damage to Syrian anti-aircraft defense units. The latter have already demonstrated their effectiveness against strikes from Tel Aviv, Washington, London and Paris, unlike the mythical “Iron Dome” whose main role is to reassure the Israeli population.

The very presence of Iranian military bases and / or large Iranian contingents in Syria is a fable: Iran has only a modest presence (essentially composed of military advisers, indeed from the body of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards), unlike Hezbollah or Russia. Robert Fisk points out that “an Israeli statement that the Iranians had missiles in Syria was surely made in concert with the Trump administration”, that the Iranian forces in Syria are “far fewer than the West imagines” and that all Israeli statements should be reported with the utmost circumspection. Any objective reporting on these events should resemble that of Robert Fisk: “The latest overnight Israeli air strikes, supposedly at Iranian forces in Syria after a supposed Iranian rocket attack on Israeli forces in Golan – and it’s important to use the “supposed” and not take all this at face value – must have been known to the Americans in advance.” Indeed, these so-called unexpected attacks had been announced for days by the Israeli army, which had already conducted a so-called “preemptive strike” – rather a provocation – on May 8.

The “red line” that this alleged Iranian presence would pose to Israel is belied by the fact that Tel Aviv has, since the beginning of the conflict, been steadily slowing the progress of the Syrian Arab Army and, using various pretexts (delivery of arms to Hezbollah, response to actual or suspected gunfire from the Golan Heights, etc.), assisting armed terrorist groups in any way possible: weapons, intelligence, airstrikes coordinated with ground offensives, medical care, etc. Israel, the only country in the world that officially does not fear anything (and indeed has nothing to fear) from ISIS, Al-Qaeda and the like, has seen the situation in Syria turn from a dream – see a myriad of terrorist groups tear down the only anti-Israeli Arab regime, back of the Resistance Axis, and bleed Hezbollah – into a nightmare – to face Hezbollah, Syrian and Iran forces more battle-hardened and powerful than ever, and allied with the Palestinian Resistance, Iraq and Yemen, as well as Russia –, is only continuing its destabilizing work under new pretexts, and more directly: Hassan Nasrallah, the Secretary General of Hezbollah, had announced that after the defeat of proxies in Syria, their sponsors could either give up or intervene more and more openly.

Iran, whose opposition to the racist and colonialist project of Israel has been a principle and even a dogma since the triumph of the Islamic Revolution in 1979, is not easily provoked into an ill-thought reaction, and has always preferred to act with patience for long-term objectives – let us remember its restraint after the massacre of Iranian diplomats in Afghanistan in 1998. The goal of Iran is not to carry out a simple reprisal operation to avenge his officers and soldiers deliberately (or accidentally, as was the case in Quneitra in January 2015) killed by Israel, but to work for the complete liberation of Palestine by putting an end to the illegitimate “Zionist regime”, just like the Apartheid regime in South Africa, which, by the way, collapsed after its military defeat in Angola and Namibia against Cuban mulattoes, then viewed with as much racism as Israeli Jewish supremacism considers ArabushimAs Hassan Nasrallah pointed out, Israel’s direct aggression against Iranian forces in Syria is a major turning point in the history of the Israeli-Arab – or rather, Israeli-Arab-Persian – conflict, and Israel must now get ready to confront the Iranian forces directly – whether in Syria, occupied Palestine or even elsewhere. Moreover, when the Iranian missiles enter the scene, they are launched from the territory of the Islamic Republic and with undeniable success, as shown by the strikes against ISIS at Deir-Ez-Zor on June 18, 2017, in retaliation for terrorist attacks in Tehran.

As we can see, the reality cannot be more different from the fable that has been propagated by the majority of the media. “Journalists” who tamely take over Israel’s talking points turn into IDF propaganda outlets and mere agents of Netanyahu’s “diplomacy of lies”. Israel is indeed constantly lying to the world – and, increasingly, to its own people. And when its reckless actions have disastrous repercussions, it publishes hasty and contradictory communiqués in which it presents itself both as a victim and as a hawkish punisher, while also claiming, through Lieberman and via Russia, to have no intention of stepping into an escalation and hoping things will stop there – proclaiming the success of its retaliatory strikes is also a way to say it does not want/need to go any further. The international media contented itself with repeating these statements immediately after the first attacks, without any critical distance. Rational actors like Iran, Syria and Hezbollah – or Russia – are not in such a hurry to speak out and confirm or deny other’s claims, leaving their opponents getting entangled in their lies, and trusting in the primacy of the battlefield that becomes more favorable to them day by day. Moreover, the fact that a bitter setback for Israel, which literally reverses the strategic situation, is transformed into a military success by Zionist and Atlantist propaganda, and combined with Israeli protests of non-belligerency, can only confirm the Resistance Axis in its choices.

Yoav Kish, a member of the Knesset quoted by Al-Manar, stressed that regardless of the author of the strikes and their results – that censorship forbade from mentioning –, it was a major shift in the history of the wars of Israel, which is being attacked from Syria. Indeed, the Golan military installations are now directly targeted as a result of Israeli aggressions, and not just the Israeli air force, which has already seen its finest – the F-16 – be shot down on February 10, 2018. The journalists and Israeli analysts also pointed out the psychological and economic repercussions of this incident, with more than 20,000 Golan settlers having had to hastily find their way back to the shelters in the middle of the night (how much will they be at the next escalation?), and the beginning of the summer period having been ushered in by a wave of hotel reservation deletions due to fears of a war between Israel and Iran. The Zionist entity, which unabashedly inflicts the greatest loss and damage to the Palestinians and its neighbors, is severely shaken by the slightest losses, unbearable for Israeli society.

The accusation against Iran is explained by essential factors (the inherent racism of Israeli society and its Prime Minister, who more willingly believe in a dangerousness of Persian Iran than in that of Arab Syria) and circumstantial – a refusal to assume the consequences of the suicidal policy of the Netanyahu government, which led him to a direct confrontation with the entire Resistance Axis, not to say with Russia. And most importantly, Israel wants to capitalize on Trump’s withdrawal from the Iranian nuclear deal to advance its main obsession, much older than the Syrian crisis, namely Tehran’s ballistic program, which it wants the West to end with, exploiting the perennial nuclear pretext – let us remind that the manufacture, possession and use of nuclear weapons are unlawful in Islamaccording to Imam Khomeini and Ali Khamenei, supreme authorities in Iran. Netanyahu has made it clear that a war with Iran is inevitable, and that it would be better to happen now than later. Since 2005, he vainly strives for the United States to launch it for him, but no negotiation, sanction or aggression will ever deter Iran from its course. And just as the Israeli strikes on April 9, which were supposed to encourage Washington, London and Paris to conduct severe strikes on Syria, ended in a bitter failure, Israel only worsened its own situation yet again and finds itself alone in the face of the disastrous consequences of its actions, to the extent of the blind arrogance that triggered them.

What about Russia? Netanyahu’s presence in Moscow for the commemoration of the 73rd anniversary of the USSR’s victory against Nazism, and reports that Russia would not deliver the S-300s to Syria, must not mislead us. Russia has invested far too much in Syria to allow anyone – be it Washington, Tel Aviv, Riyadh or Ankara – to reduce its efforts to nothing. Moscow said it would no longer tolerate Western strikes against Syria in case of a new chemical weapons masquerade, and that it is ready to provide Damascus not necessarily with the S-300 anti-aircraft system, but, according to Sergei Lavrov, with “whatever is required to help the Syrian army to deter aggression.” The current Syrian defense systems have already proven their worth – Including the Pantsir, which is much more suited to the needs of the Syrian army –, and allow to envision the day when Israel loses its only advantage, namely the air supremacy – that already was to no avail in 2006 against Hezbollah or 2014 against Gaza –, without which its supposedly “invincible” ragtag army would literally crumble. Israel’s use of ground-to-ground missiles for the first time, and the concentration of attacks on Syrian anti-aircraft defenses – IDF released the video of the destruction of a Pantsir S-1 system, probably inactive – proves that it is well aware of its limitations.

It is obvious that Israeli aggressions against Syria will be increasingly costly, both for the Israeli air force and for its internal military bases and population, because of the determination of Syria and its allies (Hezbollah and Iran) to respond to any aggression, of their experience and new capabilities, and of their successes on the ground. The Resistance Axis – of which Russia is not a part – is now able to face Israel directly on its own, with a united front and without fear of escalation. As for Israel, already overwhelmed by the peaceful demonstrations in Gaza that must culminate on May 15, it is not ready for war against a single member of the Resistance Axis, let alone against several of them simultaneously. The new equation imposed by the Syrian army on May 10 is more fearsome for Israel than the prospect of the loss of another F-16, as Damascus has shown its determination to wage war on enemy territory, and to strike the Zionist entity in its depth.

The Resistance Axis will soon have its eyes fixed on the occupied Golan, that Syria has never given up liberating by armed struggle – a right conferred by international law itself, this territory being recognized as Syrian by all the international community: any Syrian operation there is a legal and legitimate act of resistance against Israel’s 1967 aggression in and subsequent occupation, even without further provocation. As early as May 2013, Hassan Nasrallah announced Hezbollah’s participation in the opening of a new frontline in Golan. In March 2017, the Golan Liberation Brigade was formed by Iraqi Hezbollah, Harakat al-Nujaba, a movement backed by Iran and involved in the liberation of Iraq and Syria from ISIS. Today, Syrian strikes in the occupied Golan unquestionably open up a new chapter in the history of the Israeli-Arab wars, in which Israel will increasingly be forced into a defensive position. Are we going to see the IDF building a wall on the border of the occupied Golan to hinder any future invasion, as is already the case on the Lebanese-Israeli border to prevent Hezbollah’s promised incursion into the Galilee? Anyway, the next war against Israel will drastically change the map of the Middle East.

 

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Then They Came for Tony Greenstein

February 19, 2018  /  Gilad Atzmon

Then they came for Tony Greenstein ...

Then they came for Tony Greenstein …

by Gilad Atzmon

Following the outrageous expulsion of AZZ extraordinaire Tony Greenstein from the Labour Party, the equally vindictive Labour Against The Witchhunt (LAW) published this embarrassing tweet:

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According to LAW’s logic, Greenstein should have been vindicated due to the fact that he is:

1.       a Jew

2.       a Rabbi’s son

3.       an offshoot of holocaust survivors

The above tweet is no doubt a glimpse into the morbid universe of Jewish privilege. If Greenstein’s line of defence is built upon him being Jewish, a Rabbi’s son and blood relation to Holocaust survivors where does it leave the rest of the British working class. How many John Smiths can hide behind the blood of their Jewish mother, their rabbi papa or their holocaust  credentials?

As if the situation isn’t funny enough, the banal minds at LAW  decided to quote Martin Niemoller’s “First they came for….”

Considering Greenstein being a dedicated witchunter approved by the ultra Zionist BOD and Jonathan Freedland, Guardian of Judea’s prime hasbara merchant, Niemoller’s poem needed a bit of a tweak which I was happy to provide:    

First Tony Greenstein came for Israel Shamir, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not Israel

Then Tony came for Deir Yassin Remembered, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not from Deir Yassin

Then Tony came for  Richard FalkJohn Mearsheimer,  Samir Abbed RabboMakram Khoury MachoulAlison WierNahida IzzatNorman Finkelstein,  Ken O’KeefeOren Ben DorPaul EisenGreta Berlin, Lauren Booth, Laura Stuart, Gabi WeberIan Donovan, Gerry Downing and Socialist Unity and  many others.

And I did not speak out because this confirmed everything I had to say about the corrosive impact of the Jewish solidarity spin.

Then they came for Tony Greenstein — everybody was laughing with satisfaction except myself because I pretend to be an empathic goy…   

 

Norman Finkelstein Slams Chuck Schumer for Pushing Trump to Declare Jerusalem Israel’s Capital

 

Watch

“If you look at Schumer’s money, he gets it mostly from conservative, right-wing Jews and from Wall Street, the same sources of income as Trump.

Posted January 15, 2018

AMY GOODMAN: Before we get to speak more extensively about Gaza, I wanted to quickly ask you what you felt the motivation was for President Trump recognizing Jerusalem as the capital, saying he’d move the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv, the massive response in the United Nations after he announced this recognition, the overwhelming vote against the United States, and the United States threatening people who voted against them.NORMAN FINKELSTEIN: Well, it’s a little complicated question, how U.S.-Israeli policy works. But in general, you could say, when major U.S. national interests are at stake, the Israel lobby has very little power. We saw that, for example, during the negotiations over the agreement with Iran. That was a major U.S. international interest. The lobby was dead set against it. Netanyahu was dead set against it. But the agreement went through. And many of Israel’s strongest supporters—Dianne Feinstein, Nancy Pelosi, the whole gang—they supported the agreement.

But when a major U.S. interest is not at stake, the lobby is quite powerful. So you take, in this particular case, it was clear the Saudis, which is a U.S. major interest, didn’t care what the U.S. did with Jerusalem. They gave the green light: “If you want to give it to Israel, that’s fine with us. We don’t care.” So, no U.S. natural interest is at stake, and so Trump does what anybody does: He rewards his donors. In this case, it was Sheldon Adelson, the casino billionaire, who was strongly supporting the U.S. recognition of Jerusalem as the undivided capital of Israel.

But we have to bear in mind, it wasn’t just Trump. You know, sometimes the media wants to pile up on Trump. And they forget it’s not just Trump. Charles Schumer, the current Senate minority leader, Schumer was constantly attacking Trump, right after he got elected: “Why aren’t you recognizing Jerusalem as the undivided capital?” When Trump did recognize it, Schumer, Charles Schumer, he said, “He did it because of me. I was the one that urged him to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.” So that’s the Senate minority leader speaking. And for the same reason—if you look at Schumer’s money, he gets it mostly from conservative, right-wing Jews and from Wall Street, the same sources of income as Trump, the same streams of income.

And on these questions, a lot of the Democrats, including Schumer—or especially Schumer, I should say—are worse than Trump. So, for example, after the Mavi Marmara incident in 2010, when Israel killed the passengers aboard the humanitarian vessel, the Mavi Marmara, killed 10 passengers, Charles Schumer, he went before a group of Orthodox Jews, and he said, “The people of Gaza voted for Hamas. They voted for Hamas, and therefore economic strangulation is the way to go.” Now, bear in mind what that means. We’re talking about a population, more than half of which are children, who are living under a medieval siege. And what he’s effectively saying is we should continue starving them, until they vote or get rid of Hamas. Now, what do you say about something like that?

You know, Charles Schumer, he went to my high school, as did, incidentally, Bernie Sanders. I didn’t know him. He was, I think, four years ahead of me. I knew his sister pretty well, Fran. Extremely bright. You know, even now, looking back almost a half-century, she still stands vividly in my memory. Extremely bright young woman. They were decent, actually. Chuck’s—as he was called Chuck—his father was an exterminator. You know, that’s really rising. It was an impressive show. He’s an extremely bright guy. He was valedictorian of his class, and he was way ahead of everybody else, as was Fran, you know? But what they turned into, what can you say? He grew up in Kings Highway in Brooklyn, right near where Bernie grew up, by the way. I passed the house every day, because I bicycled to the pool. What do you say about a person who recommends starving children? That’s what he did.

AMY GOODMAN: We’re going to—

NORMAN FINKELSTEIN: You know, he’s a moral monster. And you have to face up to that fact. He’s a moral monster. And yet everybody wants to dump on Trump. What about people like Schumer?

AMY GOODMAN: Well, we’re going to break, and when we come back, we’re going to talk about the situation you’re describing in Gaza. Your new book, Gaza: An Inquest into Its Martyrdom. We’re speaking with author and scholar Norman Finkelstein. The book has just been published. Stay with us.

  • Norman Finkelstein: author and scholar. His new book, titled Gaza: An Inquest into Its Martyrdom, has just been published. He is the author of many other books, including The Holocaust Industry: Reflections on the Exploitation of Human Suffering and Knowing Too Much: Why the American Jewish Romance with Israel Is Coming to an End.

This article was originally published by Democracy Now! –

Dr Norman Finkelstein The Coming Collapse of Zionism in America

 

Published on 20 Dec 2017

Norman Finkelstein, a Jew, gets it. Why can’t all Jews ‘get it.?’ Why have the Jews let the political Zionists usurp their religion and cause so much human misery? If the Jews are allegedly so smart, and if the Jews are so ‘god-like’ why don’t they see that this murderous Talmud ideology is suicidal for them? Why can’t the Jews control their own evil bastard offspring? When will all the Jews rejoin humanity?
When the hell is Judaism going to grow up and mature into human adults? The time to do this is running out.

I have never expected to agree with Dershowitz

By Gilad Atzmon

In this video, Alan Dershowitz, the ethnic cleansing enthusiast, speaks against  Antifa and AltLeft’s hooliganism. His argument is, indeed valid! It is worth watching.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b40Wlv8YvsQ  

However,  let us not forget that Dershowitz is far from being a supporter of freedom of speech or the 1st amendment. Dershowitz has worked hard to silence many intellectual careers. He obliterated  Norman Finkelstein’s academic career. He struggled  to stop both  my music  as well as  literary careers mounting pressure on America’s leading scholars, humanists and intellectual institutes.

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So you ask yourself why Dershowitz opposes the Antifa?

It is probably not because he cares for America. The Antifa is funded  by George Soros and Dershowitz regards Soros as an enemy of Israel and Zionism.  At the end of the day, every crucial political debate is always reduced into a Jewish internal dispute. I guess that Dershowitz believes that it is better to keep the fight within  the shtetl.

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To understand  Dershowitz and other ID political tactics read  Being In Time: A Post Political  Amazon.co.ukAmazon.com and gilad.co.uk.   

Palestine, Syria, ID Politics and the West

July 30, 2017  /  Gilad Atzmon

Interview by Dina Y. Sulaeman – Indonesia Center for Middle East Studies

http://ic-mes.org/politics/interview-with-gilad-atzmon/

Dina: In your book, “The Wandering Who”, you wrote extensively  about Jewish identity politics. Is ‘identity politics’ special for Jews?

Gilad: No, not at all. In my new book, ‘Being in Time – A Post Political Manifesto,’ I present a universal approach to identity politics.

Jewish identity politics is a model for identity politics in general. In the west, we have witnessed the evolution of gay ID politics, black ID politics and so on. ID politics operates to teach people to speak and think ‘as a’;  ‘as a black’, ‘as a lesbian’, ‘as a feminist’, ‘as a Muslim’, etc. It is an attempt to break apart all the established and traditional social structures. Why? Because, the Jewish elite is fearful of the old structures, they tend to believe that anti-Semitism is rooted in the established edifice and in working people being united. The Frankfurt School and thinkers like Wilhelm Reich managed to revolutionise society– in the name of ‘progress,’ we are now divided and detached from our ‘reactionary’ roots.  But it is devastating that the left has been united against working people forging a cohesive identity… this is very strange because the left is supposed to look after the working people and unite and inspire them to action. The left in the west is disturbed by the fact that the working people always vote for the flag, for the right, for the nationalist, for Trump, for Hitler and so on. Accordingly, modern ID politics is a project that developed out of this unique intellectual and political bond between the left and Jewish intelligencia. The Jews are better at ID politics than any other group for an obvious reason. For the  gay, the black, the Muslim, the feminist or the lesbian, ID politicsis a new thing.  Jews have been doing itfor 3000 years — Jewish culture is identity politics.

It would be reasonable to argue that ID politics is an attempt to Jewify (as opposed to Judify)  the entire social order. It has been a project that has caused some devastating cultural, social and political impacts.

Dina: So, there are differences between the  ‘Jew’ and ‘Judaic’ thing.  In your book, you said that the problem, in Palestine for instance,  isJewishness rather than  Zionism. Can you explain it?

Gilad: It is confusing. Jewishness is the belief that the Jews are somehow special, chosen, privileged and should enjoy and celebrate their privilege. Not all Jews subscribe to this idea, but many of them do. Even the Jewish anti-Zionist will say, ‘listen to us, we can say something that you (goyim, gentiles) can’t, we as the Jews in the movement,  give you a ‘kosher stamp.’ They are  basically claiming that ‘we are privileged’.  Even Jewish anti-Zionists subscribe to hard corechoseness. Norman Finkelstein, whom I admire intellectually, used  to say, I can say it because my mother was in a concentration camp.  What about you Dina? Your mother wasn’t in Auschwitz, can you still think or express your thoughts ? Or support Palestine? Or do you have to send your mother to Auschwitz before you make a judgment on Israel or other aspects of Jewish power? Choseness is, unfortunately, embedded in Jewish thinking.

Zionism is just one symptom of Jewish choseness. Interestingly enough, and this is my first time I have said this in an interview, some people, including some of my best friends, say that ‘Judaism was hijacked by Zionism.’  I say NO.  It is the other way around — Zionism was hijacked by Jewishness and eventually Judaism.

Zionism was initially an anti-Jewish movement. Zionism started in  the late 19th century. It proclaimed that Diaspora Jews were an ugly parasitic identity; they didn’twork, they didn’tfarm, they were traders and bankers, capitalists, usurers, exploiters and so on, ..but this wasn’t entirely their fault. It had happened because Jews  didn’t  have a land of their own. “Once we settle in Palestine, all of that will change.”  And, indeed, they went to Palestine and for two weeks they worked on the land and built factories.  But then they found out that the Palestinians were cheaper [labour] and they all became Jews again.   It is amazing that Zionism was a secular movement that promised to ‘civilise’ the Jew. But then ideological Zionism was hijacked by Jewish exceptionalism and later by Judaic choseness. While early Zionism operated to defeat choseness, Israel and Zionism have little to offer but chosenism.

There is a problem with certain interpretations of Judaism. I do accept that some  orthodox  interpretations of Judaism may defy supremacy. But I’ve yet to come across any Judaic perception that I can accept as ethicalor universal. Judaism is not a universal precept:

  1. It’s tribal. It does not refer to  “us” as humanity, it is, instead, all about  “us” the Jews.
  2. There are no ethics in Judaism. In Islam or Christianity, you are expected to  take action based upon belief such as’ jihad,’ you purify yourself. In Judaism‘ethics’ is replaced by ‘commandments’ and ‘mitzvoth’, you follow rules to do this and that, and rules not to do that and this. You are not supposed to make an independent judgement. They tell you, “don’t kill, don’t steal.” Human beings do not need to to be told not to kill, theyknow it’s ethically wrong. In Jerusalem, regulations replace ethics!

Dina: but then when we say that the root of the Palestinian problem is Jewishness (not Zionism), they will call us anti-Jew or anti Semites.

Gilad: It is not nice, but this is a tactic that has been used to silence the discussion. However, we are not talking here about individual  people, we are referring to ideology and we are supposed to be able to criticize ideology. But, as we can see, some Jews don’t want us to do that, and for an obvious reason!

Do you have identity politics here in Indonesia?

Dina: well..yes… We have some Muslim groups that keep saying that the muslims are oppressed by the Chinese and the Christians; they accused the government of being pro-Chinese/Christian.

Gilad: I’m not familiar with Indonesian society and politics, but you just confirmedwhat I have been saying –identity politics is always used as an attempt to weaken the hegemonical structure.

As a nation, we enjoy  the ability to mobilise  as one people. It doesn’t matter if you are Muslim, Christian, or Hindu, we are together, caring for each other, because we share the same land, and our most important values as a country are health, education, and work (production, manufacturing). If I speak instead ‘as a Muslim,’  ‘as a Christian,’  ‘as a woman,’  ‘as a lesbian,’ I contribute to the breaking of society into sectors. The most interesting thing about the sectorial break is that each sector is a cosmopolitan one. If I define myself as a Muslim identitarian then the border of my identity is not the physical border of Indonesia, it extends to Malaysia, the Middle East, the Balkans and even Europe and the United States. If I define myself as a gay, the border also transcends  beyond my country. This is exactly how Jewish identity operates. Jews, as we know,  are not attached to any piece of geography, it is a cosmopolitan  identity.  Zionism initially attempted to defy Jewish cosmopolitanism.

In America, for instance, I speak about the patriots vs. the identitarians, the patriots who see themselves primarily as Americans. So you can be black, you can be gay, you can be a Jew, but you say: I’m an American who happens to be black, I’m an American who happens to be a Jew, I’m an American who happens to be gay. But the identitarians  see themselves primarily as sectarians:   I’m a gay who lives in America, I’m a Muslim who lives in America.  And it’s a very big difference. Because if you are primarily gay, your primary interest is in promoting gay rights and gay interests, for example, to have a dedicated hospital for AIDS. If you are black, you want to see special budget allocations for black people and their needs. But for patriots, whoever they are, the most important thing is a new factory so that we, as a collective (gays, black, Jews, women etc) , have a good reason to wake up in the morning and go to work.

Dina: So in your view, nationalism is very important, right?

Gilad: If global capitalism is a problem, and I thinkit is, then, national socialism may be the answer. What I mean by national socialism is localism combined with equality. I don’t mean racism, I’m anti racist. I am also opposed to tyranny. I would say that my vision of national socialism is similar to that of George Orwell. It is patriotic yet humanitarian: anti racist and anti tyrannical.

Dina: Now I want to talk about Syria with you. Do you think the Syrian conflict distracted public opinion towards Palestine?

Gilad: It did, this is a very clear observation. The crisis in Syria is a hideousdisaster and it has definitely distracted attention from Palestine, and who benefits from that? Israel, of course. This is why it shouldn’t surprise us that the major players in the creation of this crisis were Israel and its supportive Jewish Lobbies. And it shouldn’t surprise us that Israel and the Jewish Lobby are now changing sides. In the beginning they supported Al Nusra, now they seem to be with the Russians. Turkey has switched sides too, they still don’t like Assad but they prefer Assad to having a Kurdish State on their eastern border . So we are dealing with a level of deadly global opportunism. Many within the the pro-Palestinian activist network  are also changing sides, they were anti Assad initially and are now pro Assad.

The Palestinian leaderswere not very politic here. The Assad regime was very supportive of Palestine. Hafez, Bashar’s father, fully supported Hamas. It was devastating  to see how quickly Hamas decided to oppose Assad. I understand why it happened… Qatar, the Saudis, the Sunni alliance, the Muslim Brotherhood. I don’t like to criticize Palestinians and their politics  but they were not very clever here.

Dina: ok last question, what is the future of Palestine?

Gilad: I don’t think that we are moving toward a peace negotiation, a peace plan or an orchestrated reconciliation. When people talk about two states, what they really mean is two Jewish states. But I believe that within the next 20-30 years we will see a Palestinian majority on the land. It’s a just a matter of time. Here I agree with Abbas. Everybody likes to hate Abbas. But Abbas understands that time is on the side of the Palestinians. For Abbas demography is the one and only Palestinian bomb.

Dina: So you don’t agree with jihad?

Gilad: I didn’t say I am against jihad. If Palestinians resist, they will always get my support. They live in hell and I will always support them. This is my role. But I’m not in position to advocate a solution or push a political or military mantra. I see myself as a (Hebrew speaking) Palestinian,  but I don’t live there. I cannot urge people to get themselves killed while I live comfortably in London. I cannot tell them to sit and wait either. It is not my role. My job as an intellectual is to try to explain what is happening. Abbas says that if we engage in active war, they [the Israelis] will throw us all out, they will kill us, they have no mercy, and he is absolutely right. So, we just have to sit and wait;  this land will be Palestine from river to the sea.

Dina: do you refer to  demography?

Gilad:  Absolutely!

Jewish Community Center Gets $200,000 Grant After Bomb Threat Called in By a Jew

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New expansion to the Jewish Community Center of Rochester, NY

[ Ed. note – Last month a Jewish Israeli-American was arrested and charged with phoning in bomb threats to a number of Jewish Community Centers in America. One of those he is accused of threatening is that in Rochester, New York–known as the Louis S. Wolk JCC of Greater Rochester.

Michael Kaydar, 19, was arrested in Israel on March 23. It was immediately reported that he is Jewish. Three days later, on March 26, an announcement was made that the Rochester JCC has been awarded a $200,000 state grant to “strengthen the security of their facility.” The announcement was made by a New York State Assembly member–who expressed satisfaction that an arrest had been made in the case, but who, in discussing the matter, seems to have made no mention of Kaydar’s identity or the fact that he is Jewish.

The JCC in Rochester is reported to have received not one but two bomb threats in the space of a week. Kaydar is apparently believed to have been behind both of them. Worth mentioning also is that since his arrest, Kaydar has appealed for sympathy on the grounds that he has a “brain tumor.”

So let’s see…a Jewish Israeli calls in a bomb threat to a Jewish Community Center in Rochester, New York. Then the center gets a $200,000 state grant to beef up its security, presumably on the grounds that there is this dreadful danger from rising anti-Semitism. And the Jew who made the phone call is largely forgiven on the grounds that he has a “brain tumor.” It’s quite a racket, is it not? Maybe Norman Finkelstein should write a sequel to his book, The Holocaust Industry.

And oh yes, it’s not as if the Rochester JCC direly needed the money. The facility recently completed a 26,000 square foot expansion that includes an Olympic pool, a two-floor fitness center, an outdoor splash park, juice bar, and a wellness center. Cost of the expansion: $17 million.

Below is an article by the NBC affiliate in Rochester about the community center’s awarding of the state grant. ]

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Assemblyman Morelle Announces $200,000 for Security Improvements to JCC of Rochester

On Sunday, Assembly Majority Leader Joseph Morelle announced that $200,000 in capital grant funding has been secured for the Jewish Community Center of Rochester as they continue to work towards improving their security infrastructure following the recent bomb threats.

This information comes from a press release sent by Assemblyman Morelle’s Office.

They say that the capital grant funding has been made available through the State Assembly.

“In response to the threats made against the JCC of Rochester our community joined together to resoundingly reject and condemn these disturbing acts of violence and hate,” said Morelle according to a release from his Office. “The apprehension of the individual responsible for these cowardly crimes proves that those who seek to spread hate and divide us will never win. However, we must remain vigilant and take the necessary steps to ensure the safety of our Jewish community and its institutions. That is why I am proud to have secured $200,000 in funding that will enable the JCC of Rochester to strengthen the security of their facility and provide a renewed peace of mind for their members and visitors.”

Assembly Majority Leader Morelle was joined by Arnie Sohinki, who is the Executive Director of the JCC of Rochester, as well as members of the Board at Sunday’s announcement. Brighton Town Supervisor Bill Moehle was also present.

WHEC TV

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