Why First Nations People Regard Thanksgiving Day as a National Day of Mourning

(And why Alexander Ramsey Should be Posthumously Tried for Crimes Against Humanity)

Global Research, November 28, 2019
Global Research 25 November 2014

“The Sioux (aka Lakota) Indians of Minnesota must be exterminated or driven forever beyond the borders of the state.” – Minnesota Governor Alexander Ramsey

We turkey-celebrating, obese, sports-addicted, shop-until-you-drop, historically-illiterate couch potatoes are all beneficiaries of the acts of our guilty ancestors who may have been unaware perpetrators of the crimes against humanity that occurred during the never-ending, shameful 500 year-long history of genocide, ethnic cleansing, colonizing and occupation of the people and the land that rightfully belonged the aboriginal tribes that had inhabited North, Central and South America for thousands of years before Columbus (who had no clue as to where he was) and his sex-starved sailors disembarked from their stinking ships and started pillaging the land and raping the most nubile female inhabitants back in 1492. (Soon cutting off the hands of  those  who couldn’t bring in their quota of gold from precious metal-less mines.)

Thus started the systematic genocide against the aboriginal, non-white people that led eventually – and perhaps inevitably – to the cruelty and crimes against humanity that enslaved millions of black Africans, many of whom died in chains even before they reached this so-called “promised land”.

In many cases the psychopathic killer-conquistadors that followed Columbus, were initially welcomed, tolerated and even nurtured (a la the mythical First Thanksgiving) – rather than being killed off as the criminal invaders that they were. Trusting the intruders to return their hospitality – in the spirit of the Christian Golden Rule – turned out to have been a huge mistake, for within decades the slaughter began, performed in the name of Christ – with the blessings of the accompanying priests whose mission was to convert the heathen to Christianity  under threat of death.

Most of our European ancestors were greatly enriched by the US Army’s massacres, the occupation and theft of their land, the exploitation of the resources, the colonization and the destruction of their way of life. We pink-skinned progeny have been conditioned to believe way too many myths about our obfuscated history. Thanks to our cunningly censored history books and the myths learned in Sunday School over the ages, we have been led to believe the story about the “nice” Pilgrims who landed at Plymouth Rock in 1620 and who gratefully shared a feast with their new friendly Indian neighbors (who were soon to be driven off their land and annihilated by the Puritan so-called “christians” and others that soon followed).

The disinformation process about the first Thanksgiving (and the successor long week-end that happens every fourth Thursday of November in the US) has been designed to absolve our ancestors of guilt for the cruel bloodbaths that were perpetrated “in their names” by obedient soldiers against the militarily weaker aboriginals, a pattern that has been repeated against many weaker nations all around the world throughout our history.

The following censored-out stories about a few of our so-called “heroes” need to be told in the context of the true history of the American genocide of the First Nations people that happened right here in River City. Those “heroes” include Minnesota’s first two governors and one humiliated Civil War general.

The following quotes and explanatory commentary will expand on the title of this essay.

“The Sioux (aka Lakota) Indians of Minnesota must be exterminated or driven forever beyond the borders of the state.” – Minnesota Governor Alexander Ramsey in a genocidal declaration made on Sept. 9, 1862. Ramsey had made a fortune in real estate because of his dealings selling property to white settlers and businessmen after he himself had negotiated US-Dakota treaties that cheated the Dakota tribes out of their land. (http://sites.mnhs.org/historic-sites/alexander-ramsey-house/history)

“I shall do full justice, but no more.  I do not propose to murder any man, even a savage, who is shown to be innocent.” “I shall probably approve them (the executions of the 303 Dakota warriors) and hang the villains” — Ex-Minnesota Governor, Colonel Henry H. Sibley, whose troops had defeated Chief Little Crow in the Battle of Wood Lake on August 23. Sibley had appointed the five member military tribunal that tried, convicted and sentenced, via death by hanging, 303 Dakota warriors that had been captured in the battle that ended the 6 week US-Dakota War of 1862.. Sibley was commenting on the fate of the convicted warriors, all but 38 of whom had their death sentences commuted by President Lincoln. Many warriors were imprisoned at Camp McClellan, near Davenport, Iowa and more than 1,600 non-combatants were imprisoned at a concentration camp at Fort Snelling over the winter of 1862 – 63. Those that survived the cold, the starvation diets and the diseases were then deported to concentration camps in Nebraska and South Dakota (Pine Ridge). (http://www.minnpost.com/minnesota-history/2012/09/150-years-ago-us-dakota-war-ends-battle-wood-lake)

“The 38 Indians and half-breeds ordered by you for execution were hung yesterday at 10 am. Everything went off quietly.” – Henry Sibley, in a December 27, 1862 telegraph message to President Lincoln. (http://law2.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/dakota/sibley.html)

“There will be no peace in this region by virtue of treaties and Indian faith.  It is my purpose utterly to exterminate the Sioux (aka the Dakota) if I have the power to do so and even if it requires a campaign lasting the whole of next year.  Destroy everything belonging to them and force them out to the plains, unless, as I suggest, you can capture them.  They are to be treated as maniacs or wild beasts, and by no means as people with whom treaties or compromises can be made.” – Civil war Major General John Pope, in a letter to Colonel Sibley, urging an all-out effort to totally exterminate the Dakota, (letter was dated September 28, 1862): The punitive 40 year-old Pope was infamous for his abrasiveness, conceit and loud mouth, with which he alienated his colleagues, his officer staff and his soldiers. Significantly, Pope had recently been summarily relieved of his command of the Union Army of Virginia and demoted to Minnesota after his humiliating defeat by Robert E. Lee at the Second Battle of Manassas just a month earlier (August 31, 1862). (http://www.civilwar.org/battlefields/secondmanassas/second-manassas-history-articles/second-battle-of-manassas.html and

http://usdakotawar.org/history/aftermath#sthash.XxnK8yhx.dpuf)

“As Europeans settled the East coast, they displaced eastern tribes who then migrated to get away from the White civilization, and they, in their turn, displaced weaker local tribes they encountered, and pushed many of those tribes farther from their homelands, as they took over their homelands.

“Westward moving Europeans would give the displaced eastern tribes … guns and gun powder and they would then instigate fights between the newly arrived tribes and the long established tribes in order to force the long established tribes from their homelands; and in doing so, extinguish the long established tribes’ ancestral ties that they had with the land, their ancestors and the spirit world. Evidence of this practice has shown itself time and time again throughout the Americas.

“Around 1750, a displaced East coast band of Ojibwe were pushed into the Dakota’s homeland and they then used French guns and gun powder to force the Dakota from their Mille Lacs Lake homeland.

“This was the strategy the European colonists used to greatly diminish the number of Dakota in their Mille Lacs homeland, which encouraged and made it possible for a French weapons armed, alcohol manipulated band of Ojibwe to violently force the Dakota from their Mille Lacs homeland.”

“Grieved by the loss of their lands, dissatisfied with reservation (aka, concentration camp) life, and ultimately brought to a condition of near starvation, the Dakota people appealed to US Indian agencies (involving ex-Minnesota governors Sibley and Ramsey) without success. The murder of five whites by four young Dakota Indians ignited a bloody uprising in which more than 300 whites and an unknown number of Indians were killed. In the aftermath, 38 Dakota captives were hanged in Mankato (the day after Christmas Day 1862) for ‘voluntary participation in murders and massacres,’ and the Dakota remaining in Minnesota were removed to reservations in Nebraska. Meanwhile, the Ojibwa were relegated to reservations on remnants of their former lands.

“What happened to the Dakota in 1862 and afterward was a grievous crime against humanity. If it had occurred in this present day and age the United Nations and the international community would condemn it and declare it to be ethnocide and genocide. A United Nations world court indictment would be issued and the perpetrators of this ethnocide and genocide would be rounded up, tried, convicted and punished for crimes against humanity.” — Thomas Dahlheimer from his long essay, entitled, A History Of The Dakota People In The Mille Lacs Area (http://www.towahkon.org/Dakotahistory.html)

Gov. Ramsey’s Thanksgiving Proclamation of November 3, 1862:

“WHEREAS, it is meet and in accordance with good and cherished custom of our fathers worthy to be “a statute forever in all our dwellings,” that the people “when they have gathered the fruit of the land,” should “keep a feast unto the Lord,” in commemoration of His goodness, and by a public act of Christian worship, acknowledge their dependence as a community upon Him in whose hands the kingdoms of the earth are but as dust in the balance.

“Therefore I, Alexander Ramsey, Governor of the State of Minnesota, do hereby set apart the twenty-seventh day of the present month of November, as a Day of Thanksgiving to Almighty God for his wonderful mercy towards us–for all the good gifts of His providence–for health and restored domestic peace–and the measure of general prosperity which we enjoy.

“Especially let us recognize His mercy in that He has delivered our borders from the savage enemies who rose up against us, and cast them into the pit they had privily dug for us; that our friends have been rescued from the horrors of captivity, and that our homes and household treasures are now safe from the violence of Indian robbers and assassins.

“And let us praise Him for the continued preservation of the Government of our Fathers, from the assaults of traitors and rebels; for the sublime spirit of patriotism, and courage, and constancy with which He has filled the hearts of its defenders; for the victories won by the valor of our troops; for the glorious share of Minnesota in the struggles and triumphs of the Union cause; for the safety of her sons who have passed through the fire of battle unscathed, and the honorable fame of the gallant dead; for the alacrity and devotion with which our citizens have rushed from their unharvested fields to the standard of the nation; and, above all, for the assurance that their toils, and perils, and wounds, and self-devotion, are not in vain; for the tokens, now manifest, of His will, that, through the blood and sweat of suffering and sacrifice, the nation is to be saved from its great calamity, and the great crime of which it is at once the effect and punishment; and that behind the thunders, and lightnings, and clouds of the tempest, the awful form of Jehovah is visible, descending in fire upon the mount, to renew the broken tablets of the Constitution, and proclaim FREEDOM as the condition and the law of a restored and regenerated Union.

“Given under my hand and the Great Seal of the State, at the City of St. Paul, this third day of November, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-two”.– Alexander Ramsey, Governor of the State of Minnesota

“Since 1970, Native Americans have gathered at noon on Cole’s Hill in Plymouth to commemorate a National Day of Mourning on the US Thanksgiving holiday. Many Native Americans do not celebrate the arrival of the Pilgrims and other European settlers. To them, Thanksgiving Day is a reminder of the genocide of millions of their people, the theft of their lands, and the relentless assault on their culture. Participants in a National Day of Mourning honor Native ancestors and the struggles of Native peoples to survive today. It is a day of remembrance and spiritual connection as well as a protest of the racism and oppression which Native Americans continue to experience.” — Text of a plaque on Cole’s Hill, overlooking Plymouth Rock, Plymouth, MA

Dr Kohls is a retired family physician from Duluth, Minnesota who has been involved in peace, nonviolence and justice issues and often writes about militarism, racism, fascism, imperialism, totalitarianism, economic oppression, anti-environmentalism and other violent, unsustainable, anti-democratic movements.

The Left is from Jerusalem

 

Left is from Jerusalem.jpg

By Gilad Atzmon

We learned yesterday that Roger Hallam, co-founder of Extinction Rebellion (“XR”) apologised after his comments about the Holocaust sparked outrage.

I was curious to find out what it was that Hallam said that led to such indignation. German Green politician Volker Beck accused Mr Hallam on Twitter of “bringing the climate movement into disrepute.” German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said the Nazi genocide was “uniquely inhumane” (can the German foreign minister provide a list of what he considers to have been  ‘humane’ genocides?). Ullstein, Hallam’s German publisher announced it had stopped publication of Hallam’s book on climate change and that it was disassociating itself from his comments.

Judging by the  scale of the histrionics I assumed that Hallam had broken every rule. He must have praised Hitler or perhaps justified or even denied the Holocaust all together.  Apparently, he said nothing at all like that. In an interview with Die Zeit, Hallam stated that the Holocaust was  “just another fuckery in human history.”  The “fact of the matter,” he said, “is, millions of people have been killed in vicious circumstances on a regular basis throughout history.”  He concluded by observing that genocides have occurred repeatedly over the past 500 years and “in fact, you might say it is like a regular event”.

At least on its face, his statements were factually correct, Hallam didn’t deny or diminish anyone’s suffering.  Quite the opposite, he expressed a universal disgust with all forms of oppression and hatred.

What was Hallam’s crime? Apparently, that he spoke both authentically and ethically, and ignored the fact that this form of discourse is extinct within contemporary ‘Left’  and progressive circles.

XR’s Annemarie Botzki tweeted: “We distance ourselves from Roger Hallam’s trivialising and relativising comments about the Holocaust.”  Hallam is being accused of ‘trivializing’ and ‘relativizing’ the holocaust simply by noting the clear and undeniable fact that history has witnessed more than one systematic destruction of one people by another.

The study of history benefits from a  comparative approach. Our scholarly understanding of the past expands when we can see, for instance, the equivalence between the ethnic cleansing in Kosovo and the 1948 Palestinian Nakba. Our understanding of Zionism grows when we delve into the parallels between the national socialist aspirations of the early Labour Zionists and  those of German National Socialism that surfaced later. Yet, within the domain of the Holocaust religion such a scholarly comparative approach is regarded as the ultimate heresy. To examine the Holodomor, the Boer War, Stalin’s crimes, Neocon global atrocities, or Israeli War Crimes alongside the Holocaust is perceived by some as the ultimate profanity as it ‘relativises’ that which ‘must’ extend beyond history and reason, namely ‘The Holocaust.’

For Jewish institutions, Holocaust:  ‘Relativisation,’ ‘Trivialization’ and ‘Universalization’ are the ‘ultimate crimes’ as they tend to prevent the crystallization of the Holocaust as a unique chapter in human history. The attempt is made by these institutions to prevent  the application of language that is ‘specific to the holocaust’ to events that are unrelated to it or to Jewish suffering in general.

We are stumbling upon two core elements at the heart of the Holocaust religion.  One is, of course, the primacy of Jewish suffering. The other is the Orwellian attempt to dominate language, terminology, vocabulary and expressions by restricting the usage of certain words so the words themselves serve Jewish identitarian causes.

The great Israeli thinker Yeshayahu Leibowitz noticed as early as the 1970s that the Holocaust was morphing from an event in history into a dogmatic religion. It was he who coined the notion “Holocaust religion.” Leibowitz perceived that, although Jews believe in many different things, Judaism, Bolshevism, Human Rights, Zionism and Anti Zionism: all Jews believe in the Holocaust.  A decade later in 1987, Israeli philosopher Adi Ophir expanded on this shift in Jewish consciousness and identification. In his paper On Sanctifying the Holocaust: An Anti-Theological Treatise, Ophir admitted that “a religious consciousness built around the Holocaust may become the central aspect of a new religion.”

Ophir listed the four commandments of the new religion:

 1. “Thou shalt have no other holocaust.” 

2. “Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image or likeness.”

3. “Thou shalt not take the name in vain.” 

4. “Remember the day of the Holocaust to keep it holy, in memory of the destruction of the Jews of Europe.” 

Ophir’s commandments illuminate these two Judeo Centric core elements of the Holocaust religion. The primacy of Jewish Suffering (1, 2 and 4) and strict lingual restrictions (1,2 &3).

Orwell’s insights into left authoritarianism that made 1984 into a prophetic masterpiece together with Ophir’s thoughts  provide us with the intellectual framework to understand both the Jewish and the Left’s attitude toward the Holocaust. The Left that, at least in the past, attempted to unite us in the name of a universal ethos is now at the forefront of the battle against each of its own core values: the ethical, the universal (equality) and, most important, freedom.

Noticeably, not a single Left politician or thinker stood up for Hallam and his expression of a genuine humanist and universalist outlook. This is tragic but not surprising. It can easily be explained by the concepts of ‘Athens’ and ‘Jerusalem.’  If Athens is the birthplace of philosophy and Jerusalem is the home for Torah and Mitzvoth, then Athens teaches us how to think while Jerusalem produces a set of directives as, for example,  what ‘not to say.’ The Left’s call that was born of an Athenian instinct that was both dialectical and universal has generally been reduced into a Jerusalemite set of ‘commandments’ that are totally removed from truthfulness, authenticity or human nature.

It is this Jerusalemite authoritarian mode that is quintessential to contemporary Left politics and explains why Corbyn’s Labour has expelled its best members for truthful speech. Why is it that Corbyn himself never stood for Ken Livingstone and others who were telling the truth? This systematic failure of Left politics may explain why the promised revolution never materialized.   It also explains why Hallam was stabbed in the back by his allies for telling the truth.

Truth is from Athens but the Left is from Jerusalem.

Kashmir, genocide and the spirit of resistance

 

Kashmir, genocide and the spirit of resistance

Farhan Mujahid Chak

Kashmir, genocide and the spirit of resistance

NGO Genocide Watch has issued a genocide alert on Kashmir [Getty]

Date of publication: 20 August, 2019

Genocide Watch lists Ten Stages of the genocidal process. Now, Kashmir exhibits all those stages, especially when considering India’s current horrendous onslaught on Kashmiri civil liberties, writes Farhan Mujahid Chak.
What is so revolting about tyranny that it stirs the human spirit in such a way, compelling us to resist? Instinctively, the thought of oppression pierces at the very essence of our human condition.

Film, music, art and literature all celebrate those who, with an unconquerable will, struggle against all odds and defy persecution.

Yet, victory is no easy feat.

Throughout history one will find countless substantiations that victory comes from the esprit de résistance. And, prominent English author George Orwell’s evocative short story Animal Farm applauds just that, while reprimanding despotism.

Is it not crystal clear, then, comrades, that all the evils of this life of ours spring from the tyranny of human beings? Only get rid of Man, and the produce of our labour would be our own… What then must we do? Why, work night and day, body and soul, for the overthrow of the human race! That is my message to you, comrades: Rebellion!”For Orwell, subjugation must be resisted, since acquiescence only prolongs suffering; there can be no two-minds about it.

With that thought, consider India’s settler-colonial project and unilateral, illegal and undemocratic revocation of Kashmir’s autonomy by abrogating article 370.

Condemned worldwide, reputable NGO’s such as Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch have all strongly chastised India.

Recently, the United Nations convened an emergency Security Council meeting, the first in over 50 years, on the deteriorating situation in Kashmir calling for respect of relevant UN resolutions.

More pecifically, United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres expressed concern at the ongoing human rights situation and David Haye, the UN’s special rapporteur on freedom of expression described the situation in Kashmir as ‘draconian’.

Yet, most terrifyingly, the renowned NGO Genocide Watch has issued a genocide alert on Kashmir – the first ever. This, in the backdrop of Modi, and other BJP leaders, monstrously using the grotesque term ‘Final Solution’ for Kashmir

Strictly, Genocide Watch lists Ten Stages of the genocidal process. Now, Kashmir exhibits all those stages, especially when considering India’s current horrendous onslaught on Kashmiri civil liberties, terrorising the entire population, cutting off all of their communication, flouting international law and norms, and conducting a litany of human rights abuses.First, an unforgiving binary of ‘us’ versus ‘them,’ labelled ‘classification,’ is disseminated.

In Kashmir, the Indian state translates “us” into supporters of their army/occupation forces, and ‘them’ to Kashmiri Muslims. Of course, preventative measures would include fostering universalistic institutions that transcend ethnic/racial divisions and actively promoting inclusion.

In Kashmir, the Indian state translates ‘us’ into supporters of their army/occupation forces, and ‘them’ to Kashmiri Muslims

Yet, this is precisely what the fascist Bhartiya Janata Party does not want. They need to spread the false threat of terror to rationalise their persecution.

Second, symbolisation’ is the process when, combined with visceral hate, symbols are forced upon unwilling members of the purported pariah group: such as the blue scarf for people from the Eastern Zone in Khmer Rouge or Kashmiri Muslims with their distinctive language and apparel being issued ID cards designating them as Muslims.

Third, the genocidal project moves forward by clear ‘discrimination’ in which the dominant group uses law, custom, and political power to deny Kashmiri Muslims basic rights.

It is driven by an exclusionary ideology and legitimises the victimisation of Kashmiri Muslims by labels of such as ‘separatist’ ‘fanatic’ and ‘terrorist.’

Fourth, heightened levels of bias, prejudice and disempowerment lead to the ‘dehumanisation’ stage, which incapacitates the normal human revulsion against murder.

Heightened levels of bias, prejudice and disempowerment lead to the ‘dehumanisation’ stage, which incapacitates the normal human revulsion against murder

At this stage, hate propaganda in print, on hate radios, and in social media is used to vilify the victim group – Kashmiri Muslims. It is even incorporated into Hindutva school textbooks, preparing the way for incitement.

Fifth, the grotesque phenomenon of genocide is always well-planned and requires ‘organisation.’ This is done by the Indian state, that uses Hindutva militias to provide deniability of state responsibility – such as Hindu mobs led by local RSS militants, who may be disguised as the additional 38,000 India soldiers being sent to Kashmir.

Recall, that there are already nearly 700,000 heavily armed Indian Army troops and police that dominate Kashmir. Why send more?

Sixth, extremists need to enhance ‘polarisation’ – in order to drive the groups apart. Hate groups broadcast polarising propaganda. Laws may forbid intermarriage or social interaction.

Hindutva extremists target moderates – from all religions/backgrounds, intimidating and silencing the centre. Moderates from the perpetrators’ own group are most able to stop genocide. For this reason, all those who had previously been dealing with the Indian state are now under arrest, including Farooq Abdullah, Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti.

Seventh, at this ‘preparation’ stage, BJP leaders have, chillingly, spoken about the “Final Solution” which they use as euphemisms to cloak their intentions of genocide and ethnic cleansing.

Eighth, as the stages of genocide advance, ‘persecution’ is heightened. The victim group’s most basic human rights are systematically violated through extrajudicial killings, rape torture and forced displacement.

Death lists are drawn up and property is expropriated. Currently, Kashmiri Muslims are locked down, subject to arbitrary arrest, torture, rape, and murder.

The victim group’s most basic human rights are systematically violated through extrajudicial killings, rape torture and forced displacement

Ninth, ‘extermination’ begins, and quickly becomes the mass killing legally called “genocide.” At this terrifying moment, the armed forces often work with RSS militias to do the killing.

Tenth, the final stage ‘denial’ lasts throughout the entire genocidal process. It is among the surest indicators of the likelihood of genocidal massacres.

The perpetrators of genocide dig up the mass graves, burn the bodies, try to cover up the evidence and intimidate the witnesses. All the while they claim all is normal in Kashmir. In Kashmir, the denial has gone to such laughable levels that Modi and the BJP say their goals are to “bring prosperity and development” and to “end terrorism.”

Most worrisome, India is declaring to the world that they have begun to gradually ease the communications blockade. That is false.

This cowardly rhetoric of disingenuous ‘easing’ of the lockdown is used to deflect international attention. A total internet, land-line and communication ‘blackout’ is ongoing. And, ominously, foreshadows something more sinister forthcoming. That is, the real possibility of genocide in Kashmir.

Yet, amid these awful scenes of death, desolation and despair, Kashmiris have only become emboldened with the spirit of ‘rebellion’.

There is no other choice. Faced with an unruly, unforgiving adversary, all must unite.

Farhan Mujahid Chak is an Associate Professor of Political Science at Qatar University.

نحن وفنزويلا أعمق من الظاهر بكثير

أبريل 4, 2019

ناصر قنديل

– ليس مهماً أن يلعب بعض المسؤولين اللبنانيين سياسة صغيرة في التعامل مع التهديد الذي تعيشه فنزويلا تحت وطأة الاستهداف الأميركي، فهذا على قشرة الأحداث ونتيجة تلاعب بالأبعاد العميقة للمسألة الفنزويلية، وإدخالها في محاور الإرضاء والاسترضاء التي يقيم لها بعض المسؤولين حساباً أكبر من معاني القضايا وحجمها، فالقضية ليست سياسية، ولا هي تموضع على محاور شرقية وغربية بقدر ما هي قضية العلاقة الواحدة بين دول أقامها المستوطنون البيض على حساب السكان الأصليين من حُمر البشرة او سُمر البشرة، ولا تزال نيران الحروب الأهلية التي أشعلوها جمراً تحت الرماد، ولا تنفكّ تبث سخونتها وتقذف حممها عند كلّ اهتزاز في طبقات المجتمع، يشبه انشقاق طبقات الجيولوجيا لقشرة الأرض في حالات البراكين والزلازل.

– في الذاكرة العميقة ليست أميركا و«إسرائيل» إلا كيانين استيطانيين للبيض الوافدين، وقد قاموا بتهجير ومحاولة إبادة السكان الأصليين، أبناء البشرتين الحمراء والسمراء، وليست فنزويلا بالنسبة لواشنطن إلا شبيهاً للبنان وسورية والأردن، بالنسبة لـ «إسرائيل»، أيّ بلاد السكان المنتمين للون بشرة السكان الأصليين ذاتها، الذين تمّ تهجير من بقي منهم إليها بعد حروب الإبادة. فالسكان الحمر في فنزويلا هم أشقاء السكان الحمر الذين هجّرتهم حرب الإبادة التي قامت عليها أميركا، والسكان السمر في لبنان وسورية والأردن هم أشقاء السكان السمر الذين هجرتهم حرب الإبادة التي شنّت في فلسطين.

– مهما حاول الأميركيون تسييس معركتهم مع فنزويلا ومهما قبل بعض الفنزويليين مساعي السياسة للتلاعب بالذاكرة، سيبقى جذر الصراع كامناً في أصل القضية التي بدأت قبل قرون وانتهت بقيام دولة الاستيطان على حساب السكان الأصليين. وستبقى فنزويلا دولة الثقل للسكان الحمر الذين لم تنته الحرب عليهم من المستوطنين البيض، وهي تتجدّد كلما سقط الطلاء الخارجي للخطاب الديمقراطي، فتظهر العنصرية من بين ثنايا الخطاب المأزوم والغاضب، كما هو خطاب الرئيس دونالد ترامب، فينفضح التزييف وتظهر الحقيقة، تماماً كما يحدث عندما تحاول تل أبيب تحويل القضية الفلسطينية إلى قضية سياسية أو يرغب بعض العرب التلاعب بالتاريخ لحساب المصالح الصغيرة فيتوهّمون تخطياً لعمق الصراع بأخذه إلى اللعبة السياسية.

– اقتبس وزير خارجية فنزويلا في اللقاء التضامني مع بلاده الذي عُقد في بيروت، عبارات لرئيسين أميركيين سابقين، ما بعد حرب الاستقلال الأميركية تدعو لبقاء الاستعمار الإسباني على السكان الحمر في أميركا الجنوبية، أو استبداله باستعمار أميركا الشمالية لهم، لأنّ المهمّ أن تبقى سلطة البيض على الحمر. وهذا كان الحال في جنوب أفريقيا بين سلطة الاستعمار البريطاني أو سيطرة المستوطنين البيض. المهمّ أن يكون للبيض سيطرة على السود. وهكذا هي حال «إسرائيل» لا مكان عندها للسكان الأصليين، وإلا فما معنى الإصرار على الطابع اليهودي للدولة؟

– عندما وقف الزعيم الفنزويلي الراحل هوغو شافيز مع فلسطين ومن بعده الرئيس نيكولاس مادورو لم يفعلا سوى البحث عن عمق اللقاء أكثر من قشرة السياسة. وعندما يقف المقاومون في لبنان وسورية وفلسطين مع فنزويلا شافيز ومادورو لا يفعلون سوى البحث عن عمق اللقاء أكثر من قشرة السياسة. وعندما يتلاعب سياسيون عرب ولبنانيون بالصراع مع «إسرائيل» أو بالتعامل مع فنزويلا، فهم يتهرّبون من عمق الصراع ويسبحون على قشرة السياسة.

– كما الصراع مع «إسرائيل» ضارب في جذور فلسطين، وسيشهد محطاته الحاسمة فيها، بين السكان الأصليين والمستوطنين الوافدين، الصراع مع المشروع الاستعماري الأميركي ضارب في جذور المجتمع الأميركي، وسيشهد محطاته الحاسمة فيها بين السكان الأصليين الحمر البشرة والمستوطنين الوافدين، وما تفعله فنزويلا كدولة مقاومة هو ما يفعله ذاته لبنان وسورية كبلدين للمقاومة، الصمود ريثما يتولى السكان الأصليون لحظة الصراع الفاصلة، بمثل ما فعل السود في جنوب أفريقيا.

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1983 Book by Jewish Historians Celebrates Jewish Role in Mass Murder of Russians Under Bolshevism

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Brenton Sanderson

“Trotsky was feted by Jews worldwide as “an avenger of Jewish humiliations under Tsarism, bringing fire and slaughter to their worst enemies.”[A16]

Alain Brossat and Sylvie Klingberg’s Revolutionary Yiddishland: A History of Jewish Radicalism was first published in France in 1983. A revised edition appeared in 2009 and an English translation in 2016. Intended for a mainly Jewish readership, the book is essentially an apologia for Jewish communist militants in Eastern Europe in the early to mid-twentieth century.

Brossat, a Jewish lecturer in philosophy at the University of Paris, and Klingberg, an Israeli sociologist, interviewed dozens of former revolutionaries living in Israel in the early 1980s. In their testimony they recalled “the great scenes” of their lives such as “the Russian Civil War, the building of the USSR, resistance in the camps, the war in Spain, the armed struggle against Nazism, and the formation of socialist states in Eastern Europe.”[A1]

Leon Trotsky, the most famous butcher of then all

While each followed different paths, “the constancy of these militants’ commitment was remarkable, as was the firmness of the ideas and aspirations that underlay it.” Between the two world wars, communist militancy was “the center of gravity of their lives.”[A2]

While communism in Europe in the early- to mid-twentieth century was characterized by economic dysfunction, systematic oppression, summary executions, and the elimination of entire ethnic groups, Brossat and Klingberg wistfully recall it as a time when European Jewry “failed to achieve its hopes, its utopias, its political programs and strategies.”

Instead, the messianic dreams of radical Jews were “broken on the rocks of twentieth-century European history.” A product of their ethnocentric infatuation with the “romance” of Jewish involvement in radical political movements, Revolutionary Yiddishland is Brossat and Klingberg’s hagiographic attempt to resurrect a history that is today “more than lost, being actually denied, even unpronounceable.”

The unstated reason for this omission lies in the determination of Jews to absolve their co-ethnics of any responsibility for the crimes of communism, and to ensure the advent of German National Socialism is always framed in a way that conduces to a simplified narrative of saintly Jewish victimhood and German (and by extension White European) malevolence.

A famous civil war poster which showed what the Tsarist forces believed about Trotsky

Maintaining this narrative is supremely important for the legions of Jewish “diversity” activists and propagandists throughout the West, given the status of “the Holocaust” as the moral and rhetorical foundation of today’s White displacement agenda. Invocation of this narrative is reflexively used to stifle opposition to the Jewish diaspora strategies of mass non-White immigration and multiculturalism.

By contrast, free discussion of the Jewish role in communist crimes undermines Jewish pretentions to moral authority grounded in their self-designated status as history’s preeminent victims. This polarity accounts for the fact that, since 1945, over 150 feature films have been made about “the Holocaust” while the number of films that have been made about the genocide of millions of Eastern Europeans can be counted on one hand — and none have been produced by Hollywood.

The critical importance of suppressing discussion of this unsavory aspect of Jewish history was underscored by Daniel Jonah Goldhagen in his 2013 screed The Devil That Never Dies: The Rise of Global Antisemitism (reviewed here). For Goldhagen, any claim Jews were responsible for the Bolshevik Revolution and its predations is a “calumny,” and morally reprehensible because “If you associate Jews with communism, or worse, hold communism to be a Jewish invention and weapon, every time the theme, let alone the threat, of communism, Marxism, revolution, or the Soviet Union comes up, it also conjures, reinforces, even deepens thinking prejudicially about Jews and the animus against Jews in one’s country.”[A3]

It is therefore imperative the topic remain taboo and discussion of it suppressed — regardless of how many historians (Jewish and non-Jewish) confirm the decisive role Jews played in providing the ideological basis for, and the establishment, governance and administration of, the former communist dictatorships of Central and Eastern Europe.

In a recent article for the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, journalist Cnaan Liphshiz, while noting that the Goldhagen approach of absolute denial constitutes “a logical strategy” for Jews, admits the facts do “reaffirm in essence” the assessment of those like “promoter of Holocaust denial” Mark Weber who observed that: “Although officially Jews have never made up more than five percent of the country’s total population, they played a highly disproportionate and probably decisive role in the infant Bolshevik regime.”

Liphshiz notes how Russia’s main Jewish museum has, since 2012, “tackled head on the subject of revolutionary Jews” in an exhibition that “underlines unapologetically how and why Jews became central to the revolution.” Knowing that outright denial of the pivotal Jewish role in the Bolshevik revolution and the murderous regimes it spawned is intellectually untenable, a growing number of Jewish historians concede the point, but insist this leading role was morally justified because it was essentially “defensive” in nature.

Thus, while freely admitting Jews had “an outsized role in the revolution,” Boruch Gorin, chairman of Moscow’s Jewish Museum and Tolerance Center, insists that “there were very good reasons for this,” with “anti-Semitism” being foremost among them. For Gorin, the revolution, while offering “Russia’s Jews many opportunities, equal rights and education and a chance to fill the vacuum left by the elite that was forced into exile,” most importantly offered a haven from a “wave of pogroms” in the Ukraine and elsewhere that “some historians call a dress rehearsal for the Holocaust.” According to this conception, a Jew in 1917 “had two choices: revolution or exile.”

Andrew Joyce has explored how Jewish historians and activists have distorted and weaponized the history of “pogroms” in the former Russian Empire. The mythos forged around these events, crystallized in the Russo-Jewish Committee’s propaganda pamphlet The Persecution of the Jews in Russia (1881) and reporting in Jewish-controlled newspapers throughout the West, was pivotal in accelerating the development of modern, international Jewish politics.

This narrative revolves around certain claims: that Jews were oppressed for centuries in Russia; that the Pale of Settlement was a virtual prison; that tsarist authorities actively organized and directed pogroms; that pogroms were genocidal and extremely violent in nature; and that Russians were uncivilized and barbaric savages. Contemporary Jewish historians like Simon Sebag Montefiore continue to credit lurid tales of pogroms where Jews were “massacred in such gleefully ingenious atrocities — disemboweled, dismembered, decapitated; children were cutleted, roasted and eaten in front of raped mothers.”[A4] Joyce notes how the dissemination of such pornographic accounts were key to ensuring “that mass Jewish chain migration to the West went on untroubled and unhindered by nativists. After all, wasn’t the bigoted nativist just a step removed from the rampaging Cossack?”

Uncritically drawing on this bogus narrative, establishment historians typically ascribe the pogroms to irrational manifestations of hate against Jews, tsarist malevolence, the pathological jealousy and primitive barbarity of the Russian mob, and the “blood libel.” The real underlying causes of peasant uprisings against Jews, such as the Jewish monopolization of entire industries (including the sale of liquor to peasants on credit), predatory moneylending, and radical political agitation, are completely ignored, despite tsarist authorities having repeatedly expressed alarm over how “Jews were exploiting the unsophisticated and ignorant rural inhabitants, reducing them to a Jewish serfdom.”[A5] 

Initiatives to move Jews into less socially damaging economic niches, through extending educational opportunities and drafting Jews into the army, were ineffective in altering this basic pattern. With this in mind, even the revolutionary anarchist Mikhail Bakunin concluded that Jews were “an exploiting sect, a blood-sucking people, a unique, devouring parasite tightly and intimately organized … cutting across all the differences in political opinion.”[A6]

In Revolutionary Yiddishland, Brossat and Klingberg posit the “Jewish Bolshevism as morally justified ethnic self-defense” thesis, insisting that “anti-Semitism” was “an insidious poison hovering in the air of the time” that comprised “the sinister background music to the action of the Yiddishland revolutionaries.”[A7] The real causes of anti-Jewish sentiment among the native peasantry are, once again, comprehensively ignored.

Rather than seeing Jewish communist militants as willing agents of ethnically-motivated oppression and mass murder, the authors depict them as noble victims who tragically “linked their fate to the grand narrative of working-class emancipation, fraternity between peoples, socialist egalitarianism” rather than to “a Jewish state solidly established on its ethnic foundations, territorial conquests and realpolitik alliances.”[A8] In other words, they mistakenly held communism rather than Zionism to be best for the Jews.

Determined to absolve their co-ethnics of any culpability for communist crimes, Brossat and Klingberg assure us that the militancy of their informants “was always messianic, optimistic, oriented to the Good — a fundamental and irreducible difference from that of the fascists with which some people have been tempted to compare it, on the pretext that one ‘militant ideal’ is equivalent to any other.”[A9] In other words, tens of millions may have died because of the actions of Jewish communist militants, but their hearts were pure.

Regarding such arguments, Kevin MacDonald observed how Jewish involvement with Bolshevism “is perhaps the most egregious example of Jewish moral particularism in all of history. The horrific consequences of Bolshevism for millions of non-Jewish Soviet citizens do not seem to have been an issue for Jewish leftists — a pattern that continues into the present.”[A10]

Jewish participation in Bolshevism as ethnic revenge

That their motivations were far from pure, and that ethnic animosity and desire for revenge were key factors driving the large-scale Jewish support of, and participation in, communist movements was obvious to the Jewish historian Norman Cantor who made the following observation:

The Bolshevik Revolution and some of its aftermath represented, from one perspective, Jewish revenge. During the heyday of the Cold War, American Jewish publicists spent a lot of time denying that — as 1930s anti-Semites claimed — Jews played a disproportionately important role in Soviet and world Communism. The truth is until the early 1950s Jews did play such a role, and there is nothing to be ashamed of. In time Jews will learn to take pride in the record of the Jewish Communists in the Soviet Union and elsewhere. It was a species of striking back.[A11]

This corresponds with Kevin MacDonald’s assessment in Culture of Critique that the disproportionate participation of Jews in Bolshevik crimes was, in large part, “motivated by revenge against peoples that had historically been anti-Jewish.” One of the (non-Jewish) pioneers of the Dada movement, Hugo Ball, immediately recognized the obvious agenda behind the lopsided Jewish role in the Bolshevik Revolution and resulting Soviet administration.

Observing the make-up of the first Bolshevik Executive Committee (four out of six of whom were Jewish), he noted that “it would be strange if these men, who make decisions about expropriation and terror, did not feel old racial resentments against the Orthodox and pogrommatic Russia.”[A12]

Leading Jewish communists, like founder of the Mensheviks Yuli Martov, who became a close associate of Lenin and Trotsky, made a point of recalling his childhood experiences of Russian and Ukrainian anti-Semitism. The 1881 Odessa pogrom was his “first taste of primitive Russian anti-Semitism,” and Martov was “shaken to the depths of his being by the pogromist barbarity of Tsarist Russia.”

The event left a “permanent mark on his impressionable mind,” and he later underlined the connection between this experience and his subsequent revolutionary career, posing the question: “Would I have become what I became if the Russian reality had not imprinted her coarse fingers on my plastic, youthful soul in that memorable night and carefully planted under the cover of that burning pity which she aroused in my childlike heart, the seeds of a redeeming hatred?”[A13]

While Trotsky, the architect of the Bolshevik insurrection and creator of the Red Army, claimed his Jewish origins and Jewish interests did not guide his attraction to Bolshevism, his biographer Joshua Rubenstein disagrees, noting that he “was a Jew in spite of himself,” who “gravitated to Jews wherever he lived,” and “never abided physical attacks on Jews, and often intervened to denounce such violence and organize a defense.”[A14] As leader of the Red Army during the Civil War, Trotsky “had to deal with the anti-Semitic attitudes among the population,” and “successfully recruited Jews for the Red Army because they were eager to avenge pogrom attacks.”[A15]

At the same time, he “voiced his concern over the high number of Jews in the Cheka, knowing that their presence could only provoke hatred towards Jews as a group.” Trotsky was feted by Jews worldwide as “an avenger of Jewish humiliations under Tsarism, bringing fire and slaughter to their worst enemies.”[A16]

Ethnic revenge was also a motivation for Lazar Kaganovich, the Jewish member of the Politburo who presided over the forced famine that took the lives of millions of Ukrainian peasants and the mass deportation of “anti-Semitic” Cossacks to Siberia in the 1930s. Kaganovich had “battled the chauvinistic and anti-Semitic Black Hundreds, especially strong in Kyiv, both before and after the 1911 Beilis affair, the Russian version of the Dreyfus affair.”[A17]

The assassination of the Russian Prime Minister Stolypin in the same year resulted in the Black Hundreds attempting “to whip up a pogrom.” In response, the “Bolsheviks took measures to protect themselves and to rebuff this threat,” and “Kaganovich only joined the party after these momentous events.” He studied Lenin’s works at this time, and the Bolshevik leader’s article “Stolypin and Revolution” which depicted Stolypin as “an organizer of Black Hundred gangs and anti-Semitic pogroms” made a “big impression” on him.[A18]

Kaganovich later became known as the “butcher of the Ukrainians.” As Soviet leader in the Ukraine he received reports documenting “widespread dissatisfaction among workers fuelled by high unemployment, with widespread anti-Semitism, with workers and peasants denouncing the ‘dominance of red nobility of Yids.’” Kaganovich played a “highly visible” role in suppressing this “nationalist deviation” in 1925–28, and later oversaw the forced collectivization of 1932–33, conceived as part of an “assault on the Ukrainian nationalist intelligentsia.”

The country was sealed off and all food supplies and livestock were confiscated with Kaganovich leading “expeditions into the countryside with brigades of OGPU troopers” who used “the gun, the lynch mob and the Gulag system to break the villages.”[A19] The secret police, led by Genrikh Yagoda (also Jewish) exterminated all “anti-party elements.” Furious that insufficient Ukrainians were being shot, Kaganovich set a quota of 10,000 executions a week. Eighty percent of Ukrainian intellectuals were shot. During the winter of 1932–33, 25,000 Ukrainians per day were being shot or left to die of starvation.[A20]

The Bolsheviks mounted murderous campaigns against entire ethnic groups. The Soviet government killed at least 30 million people, most in the first 25 years of the regime’s existence during the height of Jewish power. The Jewish intellectual, G.A. Landau, writing in 1923, was stunned by the “cruelty, sadism, and violence” of Jewish functionaries in the Red Army and secret police “who yesterday did not know how to use a gun” but who “are now found among the executioners and cutthroats.”[A21]

I.M. Bikerman was similarly shocked at the “disproportionate and immeasurably fervent Jewish participation in the torment of half-dead Russia by the Bolsheviks.”[A22] In response to attempts by Jews to disassociate their ethnicity from such figures, the Jewish intellectual I.A. Bromberg noted the cognitive dissonance in the Jewish “passion for seeking out and extolling the Jews famous in various fields of cultural life,” and especially “the shameless circus around the name of Einstein,” while simultaneously distancing themselves from Jewish communist criminals. D.S. Pasmanik agreed, noting how “Ethnic Jews not only do not denounce an Einstein or an Ehrlich; they do not even reject the baptized Heine and Boerne. And this means they have no right to disavow Trotsky and Zinoviev.”[A23]


Source: The Unz Review

‘They have punished the victims’: Hebron struggles 25 years after Ibrahimi mosque massacre

zzat Karaki, centre, demonstrating with Youth Against Settlements for the reopening of Shuhada Street on 22 February 2019 (MEE/Megan Giovannetti)

The repercussions of the attack are still felt keenly by Palestinians in Hebron, who have seen their rights eroded and their formerly bustling city centre turn into a ghost town

By 

in

Hebron, occupied West Bank

“Since the massacre, everything changed.”

Jamal Fakhoury, 40, struggles to find the right words to describe his hometown.

With a furrowed brow and damp eyes, he utters: “Every day it’s a difficult life for Hebron.”

Fakhoury is reflecting on the Ibrahimi mosque massacre – the 25th anniversary is on Monday – and its impact on the southern occupied West Bank city.

On 25 February 1994, a Jewish-American settler named Baruch Goldstein opened fire on Palestinian worshippers inside the Ibrahimi mosque – also known as the Tomb of the Patriarchs – in the centre of the Old City of Hebron.

We are not humans at all. We are numbers

– Izzat Karaki, activist with Youth Against Settlements

Goldstein killed 29 men in an instant, and injured well over 100 more. Six other Palestinians were killed by Israeli security forces in the ensuing chaos.

Although it is the biggest city in the West Bank, Hebron’s residents are interconnected in almost every way through its cultural and family structures. Nearly every citizen has ties to the Ibrahimi mosque massacre through some relative, friend or neighbour.

“A settler from the US came and killed Palestinians,” Izzat Karaki, a 29-year-old activist with the Palestinian-led group Youth Against Settlements (YAS), said exasperatedly. “And after that they punish us, the victims.”

Beyond mourning for the lives lost, the attack has also affected the people of Hebron – and its generations to come – in a profound and structural way.

Full of life

“Before the massacre, I felt something like peace in the old city,” Fakhoury recalls.

He is from the Old City and still resides there, just around the corner from Shuhada Street and the mosque.

Along some two kilometres, Shuhada Street is tightly packed with shops sitting below several-storey high homes. The road leads directly to the Ibrahimi mosque and once stood as the heart of the Old City.

Munir, 65, owns a shop directly across from the mosque that remains open to this day. He likes to show laminated pictures to passing tourists of the bustling Shuhada Street back in its heyday, brimming with cars and people.

Munir shows a photo of Shuhada Street in the days before the massacre, back when the road was the bustling centre of Hebron (MEE/Megan Giovannetti)
Munir shows a photo of Shuhada Street in the days before the massacre, back when the road was the bustling centre of Hebron (MEE/Megan Giovannetti)

He does point out that the First Intifada, which started in 1988, only ended in 1993, five months before the massacre. “The six years of the Intifada were really not a normal time,” he said, pointing out that the area around the mosque “was part of the ‘playground’ where the Intifada took place”.

But, he explains, “before, this area was full of life”.

“We used to have four people working in this place,” Munir continues, showing the shop where he is standing. “Today, it is me alone and I am also taking care of two stores which belong to my neighbours.”

Collective punishment

“After the massacre, the mosque was closed for six months, and they [Israeli forces] closed Shuhada Street,” Karaki tells MEE.

For nearly three months, Karaki said, Palestinian residents of Hebron lived under an Israeli-imposed curfew while military checkpoints were built in the Old City – checkpoints that are still present today.

The aftermath of the Ibrahimi mosque massacre Hebron on 25 February 1994 (AFP)
The aftermath of the Ibrahimi mosque massacre Hebron on 25 February 1994 (AFP)

When the Tomb of the Patriarchs and the surrounding area was reopened to the public, the religious site had now been divided into two – a synagogue on one side, a mosque on the other.

Palestinians were no longer allowed to drive cars in the area, Munir says, and the number of Israeli soldiers and cameras around the Ibrahimi mosque dramatically increased.

The post-massacre changes made to the city were in a lot of ways a preface to the dramatic transformation that the Hebron Protocol was to create three years later.

The 1997 agreement between the Israeli government and the Palestine Liberation Organisation divided the city into two areas: Palestinian Authority-controlled H1 and Israeli military-controlled H2.

In H2, making up nearly 20 percent of Hebron, some 40,000 Palestinians currently live under Israeli military law, while the 800 Israeli settlers in H2 are ruled by Israeli civil law.

“Animals here have rights more than us,” Karaki exclaims. “Any cat, any dog can go to Shuhada Street. But me? I cannot.”

“Why? What did I do? We are not human at all.”

In the wake of the Hebron Protocol, shops were permanently closed in H2, and many Palestinians were driven out of their homes, many of whom “by military order”, Karaki explains.

The harsh living conditions and restricted freedom of living and movement in H2 drove many Palestinians out – turning the bustling city centre into a ghost town.

“We are talking about 1,827 shops closed and 140 apartments empty,” Karaki adds.

There are currently 20 permanent checkpoints inside the city of Hebron, dominating Palestinians’ lives with curfews and indiscriminate closures.

It is now necessary to go through two separate checkpoints just to enter the Ibrahimi mosque.

“When I go to my home every day they check my ID,” Fakhoury says, “I wait 20 minutes behind the checkpoint near the mosque.”

“If you don’t have your ID you are not allowed to get in or to pass through the checkpoint,” Karaki concurs. “We are not humans at all. We are numbers.”

Monitoring group expelled

The massacre led to the creation of the Temporary International Presence in Hebron (TIPH), an international organisation meant to monitor the situation in the city and document violations of international law and human rights.

In its 22-year-long presence, TIPH filed more than 40,000 incident reports – many of which Karaki says the Palestinians Authority can take to the International Criminal Court.

Jamal Fakhoury waits in line at one of 20 Israeli army checkpoints in H2 (MEE/Megan Giovannetti)
Jamal Fakhoury waits in line at one of 20 Israeli army checkpoints in H2 (MEE/Megan Giovannetti)

But last month, the Israeli administration refused to renew TIPH’s mandate, forcing it out of the city.

Fakhoury, like many Palestinians in the Old City, enjoyed TIPH and felt safe with its monitors’ presence.

“I think it will be difficult now with no one watching the problems,” Fakhoury says. He fears things “will get worse, because the Israeli government doesn’t like to tell people what is happening here”.

There are currently four Israeli settlements inside the city of Hebron – Avraham Avino, Beit Romano, Tel Rumeida, Beit Hadassah – all established well before the 1994 massacre.

But since the expulsion of Palestinian from H2, it has become easier for Israelis to occupy Palestinians homes.

“Usually settlers focus on the empty houses,” Karaki explains. “Where there is an empty house, they occupy it and change it from a Palestinian (home) to a settlement.”

With TIPH gone, Palestinians fear that they will witness an increase in both settlement expansion and settler violence.

“When I go to my home I need to protect myself, protect my home,” Karaki says.

Citing the Fourth Geneva Convention as an example, he says: “On paper, soldiers are here to protect me like they protect settlers. But unfortunately, we see something different.”

Hope for the future?

YAS has stepped in recently to fill in the void left by TIPH. Its activists walk around the Old City most mornings, monitoring settler activity and protecting Palestinian children on their walk to school.

On Friday, YAS organised its 10th annual “Open Shuhada Street” demonstration to denounce the ongoing situation in Hebron – just like every year in the past quarter century. Israeli forces reportedly fired tear gas and rubber-coated steel bullets at demonstrators, injuring at least two Palestinians, including a 13-year-old boy.

“Here, nothing changes,” Munir says. “It’s the same year after year after year.”

But despite the grim circumstances, Karaki says it is important for him as an activist to keep fighting with a purpose.

“Often people are shocked when I say if there is a tomorrow, there is hope,” he says.

But his optimism is dampened by what he and all Palestinians in Hebron have witnessed for years.

“Usually when tomorrow comes, it only gets worse.”

This article is available in French on Middle East Eye French edition.

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