Israel-Palestine: ‘No war, no peace’ apartheid is Bennett’s best case scenario

The Israeli prime minister is first since Golda Meir to propose the racist status quo as a political platform

In March 2015, then Israeli economy minister Naftali Bennett during an election campaign gathering in Kibbutz Kfar Etzion in the Gush Etzion settlement in the West Bank (AFP)

By Meron Rapoport

Published date: 7 September 2021 13:02 UTC 

“There is no diplomatic process with the Palestinians, nor will there be one,” said a source close to Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett last week after his defence minister, Benny Gantz, met with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.Biden-Bennett summit a meeting of wishful thinkers who oppose NetanyahuRead More »

Thus is Bennett’s spiritual world revealed: a world in which Israel, and only Israel, exists, and where the Palestinians will never, under any circumstances, even if they change their positions, be able to attain equality with Israelis and negotiate with them as equals. There is a word for that: racism.

Nearly a decade ago, Bennett entered national politics after serving as director-general of the Yesha Council, the leading settler institution, although he himself was never a settler and doesn’t live beyond the Green Line. In a now-famous interview, he said: “The Palestinian problem is like shrapnel in the butt.” 

Today, his approach has not changed, although as prime minister, he may express himself less bluntly, as he admitted just before taking office in early June.

Bennett expressed this approach in an interview he gave the New York Times ahead of his recent trip to Washington. “This government will not annex, nor establish a Palestinian state, everyone understands that,” he said. “Israel will continue the standard policy of natural growth [of West Bank settlements].” 

In saying this, Bennett became the first Israeli prime minister, with the possible exception of Golda Meir in the years prior to the 1973 war, to propose what amounts to apartheid as a political platform.

Permanent status quo

It is true that the policy of “managing the occupation” is almost as old as the Israeli occupation itself. In February 1973, for example, then-Defence Minister Moshe Dayan said, “We must plan ahead for our actions in the territories [conquered by Israel in June 1967] … so that a situation of ‘no war and no peace’ will not be unbearable for us… Authority for deciding on what happens from Suez to the [Mt] Hermon is in the hands of the Israeli government. We will not idly delineate boundaries for our settlements nor be threatened by smouldering embers.”

But the philosophy Dayan articulated then still exists and every prime minister since, except perhaps Yitzhak Rabin – whose assassination makes it impossible to know whether he meant to break the mould – has adopted it with different variations: “No war, no peace” or, in other words, a continuation of the status quo. Seven months later, the “smouldering embers” that Dayan dismissed had become the firestorm of the October 1973 war, with thousands killed on both sides, forcing Israel to subsequently return the Sinai Peninsula to Egypt. 

Bennett basically said that this status quo of ‘no war, no peace’ is not an interim situation, but rather the permanent situation

But Bennett has gone one step further. Even Dayan called the territories occupied by Israel a “deposit” to be returned in exchange for a peace agreement meeting Israel’s needs. Since the 1990s, Israeli prime ministers have been discussing, at least officially, support for the two-state solution, including Ariel Sharon and even Benjamin Netanyahu, who adopted the Palestinian state idea in his 2009 Bar-Ilan speech. In 2020, he also accepted former US President Donald Trump’s “deal of the century” which included the establishment of a Palestinian state, however crippled and fragmented. 

In his New York Times interview, however, Bennett basically said that this status quo of “no war, no peace” is not an interim situation, but rather the permanent situation to which he aspires.

In this situation, Israel, on the one hand, will continue its military rule over the Palestinians in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, and continue to accord Jewish citizens in the West Bank preferential rights as compared with Palestinians.

On the other hand, Israel will not accord Palestinians civil rights equal to those of their Jewish neighbours as would be necessitated by a partial or full annexation of the West Bank. This approach also has a name – apartheid – and Bennett believes it to be the only one possible.

‘Shrink the conflict’

We don’t know precisely what was said in Bennett’s discussions with President Joe Biden and Secretary of State Antony Blinken, but publicly at least no American reservations were heard about Bennett’s positions. Nor did the Jewish centre-left parties in Israel like Labor and Meretz, which are part of Bennett’s coalition, voice any protest. This is a dangerous precedent.

But it would be overly simplistic to say that the Bennett government will be more rightist or more violent toward the Palestinians. The opposite might be true.How Beita became a model of Palestinian resistance against IsraelRead More »

First of all, Bennett came into office from a position of political weakness. He heads a small party with six Knesset seats out of 120, and most of his coalition members are more leftist than he is – at least for Israel whose Labor Party positions toward the Palestinians would be considered right in Europe.

And there’s more. Bennett himself, along with his coalition partner, Gideon Saar, who had been a senior Likud figure and a leading candidate to replace Netanyahu, has changed his attitude considerably to the Palestinian question.

As the present government was being formed or immediately thereafter, both Bennett and Saar appeared to have relinquished the idea of Greater Israel and/or annexation, partially or wholly, embracing instead the new political concept of “shrinking the conflict”. The term originated with Micah Goodman, an Israeli of American extraction living in a West Bank settlement, whose books on the conflict have become bestsellers.

Goodman argues that the left in Israel has failed to bring an end to the occupation or to establish an independent Palestinian state, whereas the right failed with its idea of Greater Israel. Therefore, instead of talking about ending the conflict or continuing with the status quo, ways should be sought to “shrink the conflict”: to enable the Palestinians to manage their own affairs as independently as possible, while leaving “security” to Israel. After the conflict has been “shrunk,” says Goodman, it will be possible to discuss a permanent solution.

For a decade, Bennett pushed for annexation, but when the UAE and Bahrain signed the Abraham Accords in 2020, he realised it was impossible.

Goodman was an adviser to Saar and is considered to be close to Bennett. His influence was perceptible in an interview Bennett gave before taking office. “My approach is to shrink the conflict,” he said. “Where it is possible to have more crossings, better quality of life, more business, more industry, we will do it.”

For Bennett, this is a considerable shift. When he entered national politics in 2013, Bennett presented a detailed plan for the annexation of Area C, which is 60 percent of the West Bank. Over the years, he criticised Netanyahu and the Israeli army for not being aggressive enough toward the Palestinians and not “decisive” enough with Hamas. 

For a decade, Bennett pushed for annexation, but when the UAE and Bahrain signed the Abraham Accords in 2020, he realised it was impossible. He also understood that a “final resolution” of the conflict by achieving a victory over the Palestinian so crushing that they would relinquish their national aspirations was also impossible. Thus, his adoption of the idea of “shrinking the conflict” is coming from failure and weakness, even if he refuses to admit it.

Israeli right in crisis

Bennett, then, reflects the situation of the Israeli right. On the one hand, he sanctifies the status quo and has no desire or intention of relinquishing the occupation or ending apartheid. On the other hand, the right is gradually losing its faith in its own power to shape the Israeli-Palestinian reality as it sees fit. 

The fall of Netanyahu should be viewed in this context. Under Netanyahu, the right in Israel was united in a coherent, homogeneous bloc. The internal contradictions on the right, which Bennett represents, led to the fragmentation of this bloc and the establishment of a mixed government that contains elements of both right and left, including the United Arab List, an Palestinian-Islamist party headed by Mansour Abbas.Palestinian Authority losing control of West Bank, say insiders and activistsRead More »

Outwardly, all of these changes have not affected the situation on the ground. The occupation, and the settlements, continue. The political discourse in Israel remains stuck, in the best case, or else propounds Bennett’s thesis of “no peace, no war”. Israel is so strong – militarily and economically – that something significant would have to happen in order to threaten its control of the Palestinians and its power in the Middle East as a whole.

But at the same time, one cannot ignore the cracks. The ideological right in Israel is in trouble and the question is how and whether the radical left in Israel, or even more so the Palestinians, can turn that to advantage.

“Where there’s a crack, we have to make it a fissure, and where there’s a fissure, we have to make it a chasm,” a left-wing anti-occupation activist told me. Maybe that approach really will accomplish something.

The forthcoming inevitable battle for Middle-East Peace

May 05, 2021

The forthcoming inevitable battle for Middle-East Peace

by Ghassan Kadi for the Saker Blog

The alleged stray ground-to-air Syrian missile that landed near the nuclear reactor in Dimona Israel carried many messages; both overt and covert.

And, as if the fact that this missile managed to penetrate Israel’s formidable ‘Iron Dome’ was not embarrassing enough for Israel, the official Israeli report alleged that the missile was actually Iranian-made; not Russian as initially perceived by the world.

In other words, the Israeli report is saying that its ‘Iron Dome’ has been easily penetrated by a missile that is 1) not meant to hit ground targets, 2) had already spent its fuel and maneuverability and was literally on a free fall trajectory by gravitation and not propulsion, 3) yet it penetrated the allegedly most advance air defense system in the world, and 4) above all, it was made in Iran; a nation ‘crippled by sanctions and governed by ‘fundamentalist Mullas’.

Seriously, Israel has never before admitted a defense failure that is even close to such similar proportions.

Ironically, almost simultaneously, Iran revealed photos of an American aircraft carrier taken by a drone; not to forget mentioning that Iran also revealed that it has developed kamikaze drones ready to attack any target within their range in the Gulf.

But the Dimona incident alone cannot be seen in isolation of the recent Russian ‘diplomacy’ initiatives in the Middle East. I have deliberately put the word diplomacy under inverted comas, because that Russian version of diplomacy has a side that proves its worth in both traditional diplomatic ways as well as ones that are unorthodox.

Russia has thus far been very tight-lipped about its objectives in the Middle East. My own analysis of it has landed me in hot water with Russian friends and media allies, and I accept their stand. Perhaps they do not want me to ‘spoil the hidden agenda’, but my role as an analyst is not going to stop, and their views, directives, and concerns will not make me feel guilty for expressing my analyses and predictions.

In this portrayal of recent regional political events in the Middle east, I am relying on bits of pieces of information from here and there, but the analysis of it all is based on my own understanding of what makes sense in combining all what is currently taking place. My analysis does not represent the views of any blog, news agency or government. I have expressed similar views earlier, but events keep progressing, and in every step of the way, it seems that my initial prediction about the Russian initiative in the Middle East was accurate. So here is an updated summary of it all with a bit repetition of earlier material for the benefit of first-time readers.

Ever since Russia responded to Syria’s request to offer military aid, Russia responded with accepting the request under certain conditions; conditions that stipulate a Syrian-Israeli peace settlement agreement.

But this wasn’t all. Putin’s Russia is trying to reverse what Kissinger did to Russia some forty years ago when he catapulted the USSR out of Middle East politics and conned Egypt into accepting a unilateral peace deal with Israel in the so-called Camp David Accords.

Ever since then, Russia has been deprived of a role to play in the Middle East, none at all, until Putin sent troops into Syria and thereby changing the status quo not only in the Middle East, but also heralding the end of the single global superpower status of the post USSR USA.

The post-USSR world has seen Russia suffering from huge American-based NATO encroachments in Eastern Europe, and the current impasse in Ukraine is only one aspect of it. Former Warsaw Pact nations have gone full dipole away from Russia and in cahoots with their new-found Western ‘allies’. The Stalin era might have left a bitter taste in the palate of some East European countries, but this was a long time ago, and nations like Poland and Ukraine surely must understand and know who are their historic regional and global allies. With the era of Nazism and Fascism in the dust bin of history that Europe would like to forget, even Germany and France ought to realize that today’s Russia cannot be associated with Stalin’s-USSR any more than today’s Germany and France can be associated with Hitler and Petain.

And, if Poland wants to remained mentally entrenched in the Stalin era and forget about who liberated it from Nazi occupation, it should look further back in history and remember that the partition of Poland in the 19th Century was not only orchestrated by the Russian Czars, but also in collaboration with Prussia and Austria.

As discussed in the previous article, the current animosity of Eastern European nations towards Russia is not something that can be rationally explained and justified.

Back to the Middle East.

Only Russia can broker a peace deal in the Middle East, a deal that includes not only Syria and Israel, but also Iran, Saudi Arabia and Turkey.

The main sticking elements in any such deal are Israel and Turkey, and to a lesser extent Iran.

In the same previous article mentioned above, I predicted a win-win scenario that Russia will broker between Iran and Saudi Arabia; one that guarantees the mutual withdrawal of Iran from Syria and Saudi Arabia from Yemen. As a matter of fact, a few days ago Saudi Crown Prince MBS announced that he wants to have a good relationship with Iran. Is this a sign that this deal is closer than we think? Perhaps not, but I cannot think of any other reason.

Turkey will undoubtedly want a bite of the cherry, and I not sure how will Russia be able to diplomatically appease Erdogan without giving him too much more than what he has taken already. However, his recent stand on Ukraine has put him in deep hot water with Russia and in any future bargains, he will find that his Ukraine venture will be used against him. He has deliberately introduced a bargaining chip that can be used only against himself.

This leaves Israel; how to bring Israel to the negotiating table for a deal that is unlike all previous American-brokered deals.

All American-brokered deals have thus far been based on providing Israel with the lion’s share and the Arab party with very little; especially when it came to making deals with the Palestinian Authority. Furthermore, on top of the political and strategic gains that America delivered to Israel in all of those deals, America ensured that Israel continued to have military superiority and that Arabs would never be able to score a major military victory, even if united.

Despite the October 1973 (ie Yom Kippur War) and what followed it, all the way up to the July 2006 war with Hezbollah, and the humiliations that Israel suffered from all of those military engagements, Israel remains mentally entrenched in the euphoria of the huge Six-Day War win of June 1967 and what ensued afterwards, resulting in what can best be described as the invincible army complex.

Israel will not be prepared to sign a peace agreement with Syria while it believes that it continues to have this military superiority; the power to shape events in its favour. For Israel to change course and become more realistic, it needs either a new generation of political leaders who are more rational, or a reality check; a punishment if you wish.

This is why it is that, inasmuch as the corridors of negotiations are opening up and the tables are being prepared, so are the drums of war.

It is worthy to note here that major reconstructions have not begun in Syria yet. The underlying message here is that perhaps Syria is expecting more carnage, and that reconstruction will have to wait. Why reconstruct twice? In its current state of devastation, Syria has little to lose.

Israel, on the other hand, is in a very vulnerable situation, and the Dimona incident has exposed this gaping hole.

Syria has exercised great restraint in the face of the ongoing Israeli airstrikes. Even though an Israeli jet was downed a few years ago, by-and-large, Syria has remained non-respondent. We do not know exactly what is happening behind the scenes, but it seems that Israel is misreading Syria’s lack of response and seeing weakness, despite information from Russia that such is not the case. Israel will continue to act like the regional bully, refusing to sit at the negotiating table as an equal partner, unless it receives a significant hit.

This hit is not necessarily one that will cause much carnage in Israel such as civilian and military loss of life. Putin will not accept or allow such a level of devastation to be inflicted on Israel. After all, a significant fraction of Israel’s population is originally Russian. Putin, furthermore, is intent on convincing Israel that it is Russia, and not America, that can give Israel real peace with its Arab neighbours.

To this effect, Israel only needs to lose a few fighter-jets, ten, maybe twenty, finding itself unable to defend key military and strategic land targets in order for it to realize that the days of military superiority are gone.

The Dimona incident is a forewarning, but only if Israel wants to read in between the lines. Otherwise, there will be a war in the Middle East, a war that will be intended to be contained and limited to be a punch, a powerful punch, but not a knockout.

With this said, this is the Middle East, a very volatile region, with many volatile heads. A limited war aimed at showing who has muscle may end up spiraling out of control and into something very large. With experience of such unpredictability, Syria is presenting to Israel that a long war will bring more destruction upon Israel than it will on an already destroyed Syria.

What seems certain is that peace initiatives are on the table, but not all parties are yet convinced that they will attend such talks as equal partners before some arms are twisted and statures rattled.

The Assassin’s Creed: Murder As Israeli State Policy

By Jeremy Salt


“If our dreams for Zionism are not to end in the smoke of assassins’ pistols and our labor for its future to produce only a new set of gangsters worthy of Nazi Germany, many like myself will have to reconsider the position we have maintained for so long in the past.” — Winston Churchill, November, 1944, from his address to the House of Commons on the murder of Britain’s Resident Minister in the Middle East, Lord Moyne, by two members of the zionist terrrorist organization, Lehi. [1]
Mohsen Fakhrizadeh Terror df757

Israel’s crimes against Iran in the past decade include the sabotage through the Stuxnet virus of the centrifuges in its nuclear development program,  the killing through missile attack of its militia members in Syria, the sabotage of its Natanz nuclear plant in July this year and the murder in recent years of five of its leading nuclear scientists,  most recently, a few days ago, Mohsen Fakhrizadeh.

Each of these attacks would have been carried out at least with the approval of the US government, if not the active involvement at some level of both the US and its puppet Iranian terrorist organization, the MEK (Mujahedin e-Khalq). In reverse,  Israel would have been closely involved in the US assassination of  Qasim Suleimani in Iraq in January this year.  These murders might be state operations but are no different in their brazen nature,  their illegality and their brutality from hits organised by Mafia gangs.  In the case of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh,  a distinguished physicist,  he was apparently dragged from his car during the attack and finished off in the middle of the road.  The crime was so heinous that even voices usually hostile to Iran (including the New York Times and former CIA director John Brennan) were appalled.

Each of these attacks is a casus belli for war. Two can play at this game, which means that by these attacks, Israel is virtually inviting the assassination of its own political leaders and military commanders, or its senior representatives abroad. That Iran does not strike back, in the same way, is not necessarily a sign that it does not have the capacity to organise such retaliation.  Apart from the criminality and violations of international law that such actions represent,  Iran is never going to strike back at a time of Israel’s choosing.

Nevertheless, the government is under pressure from its own people to deal a devastating counter-blow, not necessarily against individuals but against Israeli infrastructure such as the port at Haifa.  Each of these provocations pushes Iran closer to the edge, as intended by Israel.  The repeated refusal of the government to respond is being criticised in Iran as a sign of weakness,  as the more Israel gets away with the more it will try to get away with. At the same time, even though Israel is responsible, an Iranian reprisal would trigger off a large-scale military response by Israel and full-scale war that no one in their right mind would want. It is a further sign of the moral void at their centre that Netanyahu and many of the fanatics around him do want such a war and are prepared to drop bombs on live nuclear reactors to achieve their aims

The general view seems to be that Israel did this so Biden would not be able to sign back on to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) nuclear agreement from which Trump withdrew the US in 2018. That may be so, but Netanyahu might have calculated that this latest savagery would be the final spark igniting the war he has wanted for years.  Either of these outcomes would suit him.

There are always parallels in history and for Israel’s attempts to provoke an open war with Iran, one parallel would be Israel’s attempts to draw Egypt’s President Gamal Abd al Nasser into war in 1967.  This was no ‘preemptive’ war but another war of choice.  1948 was the first, because only through war could the zionists seize  Palestine, at least most of it.  1967 was the second,  launched to destroy Egypt’s armed forces, to destroy Nasser’s Arab world leadership, and to occupy the rest of Palestine. 

It was strikingly successful. All Palestine ended up under occupation and the Egyptian military was shattered.  Nasir’s pan Arab leadership was not destroyed but gravely weakened by Egypt’s failure to see the war coming and defend itself.

Just as Israel has been trying to draw Iran into the open through the assassination of its scientists and the sabotage of its nuclear plants,  so in the year before the 1967 war it set out to draw Nasser into the open through provocations along the Syrian armistice line.  These took the form of incursions by armored tractors into the DMZ, triggering off shelling by the Syrian army and then air attacks by Israel.  

Although Israel was determined to destroy any Arab nationalist government and to destroy Arab nationalism itself, the main target of these provocations was Nasser.  He was the foremost Arab champion and Israel wanted him where it could get at him.  It knew that sooner or he would have to respond to its provocations on the Syrian front by taking action on the Egyptian front.

When Israel shot down six Syrian planes in April 1967, the ball started to roll.  Israeli politicians talked of going further than ever before, of teaching Syria a lesson, and even of invading Syria and occupying Damascus, 15 years ahead of its invasion of Lebanon and occupation of Beirut. 

By the second week of May, war was regarded as inevitable.  Nasser moved troops and tanks into Sinai and called for the withdrawal of the UN Emergency Force (UNEF) from the armistice line.  Although Israel was the aggressor in the 1956  war, UNEF forces were inside Egypt because Israel refused to accept them on its side of the armistice line, and as usual, it got its way. 

On May 22 Nasser closed the Straits of Tiran, the entrance point to the Gulf of Aqaba, but without actually blocking them to Israeli shipping.  Under pressure,  however,  to stand up to the Israelis,  he had moved the final piece on the board that set the stage for war. 

Israel repeated the rhetoric of 1948.  İt was again being threatened with extermination and annihilation at the hands of an Arab ‘ring of steel.’ In fact,  it knew, and so did the CIA, that it would easily defeat any Arab army or combination of Arab armies.  Behind the panic deliberately set in motion among the Israeli population,  the generals could not wait to get going.   They vowed to be on the banks of the Suez Canal within a week. This was an opportunity  – one they had created – that Israel could not afford to miss. The military would deliver a knockout blow: according to Yigal Allon, “There is not the slightest doubt about the outcome of this war and each of its stages.”

And so it turned out to be.  On the Arab side, there is not the slightest doubt that Nasser did not want war. His threats were those of the Arab champion and his intended audience the Arab world,  but behind the scenes, he was looking for a way out of the crisis into which he had been maneuvered. An Egyptian delegation led by  Vice-President Zakaria Muhi Al-Din was due to fly into Washington on June 7 for talks to begin the following day on bringing the crisis to an end. On June 5, with the window of the opportunity for war about to close,  Israel attacked.

There is symmetry in all of these wars. Israel plays the role of the victim even while preparing to attack.  In 1948 Chaim Weizmann talked of extermination while assuring the Americans behind the scenes that the Arab armies counted for nothing. Israel’s arrogance was checked in the first week of the 1973 war, with humiliation at the hands of Hizbullah waiting in 2000 and 2006.  Yet if there is a learning curve Israel does not see it, an example of what long ago US Senator J. William Fulbright called the “arrogance of power.”

Israel applies the same tactics at the micro as well as the macro level.  On the West Bank and Gaza, it murders and massacres, and when there is a Palestinian response it has its rationale for more crushing blows.  On the West Bank, this usually takes the form of enlarging settlements or building new ones. 

From the Zionist point of view, this has been a good year.  Following the establishment of diplomatic relations with Israel by the UAE and Bahrain, the UAE has gone as far as blocking entry visas to the citizens of a dozen Muslim countries while allowing Israelis visa-free entry.  Talks in Saudi Arabia between Netanyahu and Muhammad bin Salman – apparently arranged without the knowledge of the king – open the way to the establishment of diplomatic relations, although for the time being this is not expected.  MBS can give Israel most of what it wants without needing to come into the open, and as the nominal custodian of the two holy places such a move would enrage Muslims around the world,  with explosive consequences possible at the time of the hajj.

Israel’s strategic advances also include the commercial,  military, and strategic relationship it is establishing in the eastern Mediterranean with Greece and the Greek government of southern Cyprus, which has already allowed Israeli military units to train on the island because of the similarity of the topography to southern Lebanon. Successfully playing off fears of Iran in the Gulf,  Israel plays off Greek rivalry with Turkey in the eastern Mediterranean.  

Able to attack from the very centre of the central Arab lands – occupied Palestine – Israel is now steadily moving into a position that will eventually enable it to threaten Arab states and Iran from the periphery, from the gulf in the southwest and from the northeastern corner of the Mediterranean.  It has pushed these doors open and on the basis of all its past behavior, it will keep pushing until it gets what it wants.

The assassination of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh has antecedents dating back to the barrel bomb murders in Palestinian markets in the 1930s, the assassination of Lord Moyne in Cairo on November 6,  1944,  the blowing up of the King David Hotel in 1946, the assassination of Count Folke Bernadotte in 1948  and the massacres and destruction that have marked the zionist presence in the Middle East ever since.  Whether the enemy is a state, an organization, or an individual,  the enemy must be destroyed.   The standing refusal of the international ‘community’ to punish Israel for any of these crimes only encourages the zionist state to go still further.

Speaking to the House of Commons after the murder of Lord Moyne, Churchill, a strong advocate of Zionism all along,  remarked that “If there to be any hope of a peaceful and successful future for Zionism  these wicked activities must cease and those responsible for  them must be destroyed root and branch.” [2] These wicked activities have never ceased, those responsible for them have never been destroyed root and branch, the smoke of the assassins’ pistols now hangs over an entire region and Zionism has produced generations of criminals fully worthy of Nazi Germany.    

No state can endlessly endure Israel’s provocations. Iran and Hizbullah are playing the long game, compared to Netanyahu’s greed for instant satisfaction but at some point, there will be a limit to what they can endure and then there will be war,  possibly if not probably the most devastating in the modern history of the Middle East.  What will the international ‘community’ say then? It will be far too late to regret that it should have done something to stop Israel earlier.


[1] Catrina Stewart ‘Sir Winston Churchill: Zionist hero,’ Independent, November 3, 2012[2] ‘Palestine (Terrorist Activities) in the House of Commons at 12am on 17th November, 1944.’  For more on Commons debate on the murder of Lord Moyne,  see also  Churchill assured the House that the Zionists had lost a good friend in Lord Moyne.  According to Yitzhak Shamir, however, one of the architects of the murder, and a terrorist who later became an Israeli Prime Minister (like Menahim  Begin), Moyne was an anti-semite who did not believe in a Jewish nation or a Jewish people.  See Joanna Seidel ‘Yitzhak Shamir: why we killed Lord Moyne,’ Times of Israel, July 5, 2012. 

On anniversary of the liberation of Quneitra , the return of the occupied Syrian Golan inevitable


By Rawaa  Ghanam 

 Friday, 26 June 2020 18:29

The 26th of June , 1974 marks a day of pride for Syrians across country for in that day the Israeli occupation of the southern city of Quneitra was brought to an end..

 Forty-six years have passed since the anniversary of the liberation of Quneitra from the Israeli occupation and  raising of the national flag in the city ,  the Syrians confirm their insistence more than ever to continue their struggle till  the liberation of the occupied Syrian  Golan and every  inch of Syrian land, whether from terrorism or the occupational forces which support it.

The day of victory over the Zionist enemy and the restoration of Quneitra to the bosom of the homeland on  June  26th 1974 is the day on which that late president  Hafez al-Assad, raised the nation’s flag in the sky of the liberated city after it had been liberated by the Syrian Arab Army from the Israeli enemy thanks to the heroism and sacrifices of the army personnel and the resilience of the Syrian people during the October Liberation War.This victory proved a basic fact – Syria’s inalienable and legitimate right to fully restore the occupied Syrian  Golan.

In spite of the policies of Judaization and repression practiced by the occupation authorities during their  brutal Zionist aggression on  Quneitra  and the aggressive destruction of the city in order to erase the national identity of  the Golan,  yet  the Golan challenged these policies and remained steadfast in the face of the occupation.

Citizens of the Golan  affirm strongly their adherence  to their homeland Syria and  reject  the “Israeli identity”, expressing determination  to liberate  the Golan and return  to the homeland.

The Syrians in general and the Syrian citizens of  Quneitra governorate and  in the occupied Syrian  Golan in particular  recall  proudly June 26th moments of victory over the Zionist enemy and the liberation of Quneitra city  , while  they are more confident of  their ability to confront the colonial and terrorist conspiracies  against Syria to undermine its  firm resistant stances in the region.

The released Syrian captive Sidqi Al-Maqt confirmed to  SANA correspondent in Quneitra   the continuation  of resistance and struggle against the Israeli occupation till the liberation of the entire occupied Syrian  Golan and  the rejection of  all arbitrary measures practiced by the occupation authorities aimed at Judaizing the Golan.

Al-Maqt expressed his confidence in the liberation of the occupied Syrian Golan  thanks to  the Syrian Arab Army .He was sure that the national flag will once again fly in its skies.

He  stressed  that the anniversary  of raising of  the national flag in the  city of Quneitra will increase the Syrians determination to continue the struggle to restore the entire occupied  Syrian Golan.

With the commemoration of the liberation of Quneitra from the Zionist occupation, the Syrians confirm day after day that the return of the Golan is a non-negotiable matter , and  that land is the subject of dignity above all and that the steadfastness of Syrian  people and their rejection of the Zionist measures are the best evidence of the inability of the occupation to undermine the will of the resistance and steadfastness  against  the usurper and that the will of the peoples is invincible.

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السيد نصر الله… وسيلة المقاومة والصمود (1)‏

د. جمال زهران

تعتبر المقاومة فكراً وممارسة، هي الرصيد الاستراتيجي لهذه الأمة العربية التي تتعرّض لمهانات غير مسبوقة تاريخياً من ذلك الاستعمار الأميركي الجديد المؤيّد أوروبياً من رموز الاستعمار القديم. فلو تصوّرنا أننا فقدنا القدرة على المقاومة بعد انتهاء حرب أكتوبر/ تشرين الأول 1973، فما هي الصورة التي كان يمكن أن تكون عليها أمتنا العربية؟ فبعد أن تمّ استبعاد مصر بعقد اتفاقيتي كامب ديفيد ثم المعاهدة المصرية الإسرائيلية، وتقييد إرادتها إلى حين، وتكبيل قدرتها على الحركة على الساحتين العربية والإقليمية، وكذلك الساحة الدولية، وتمّ إسكان مصر في مربع التبعية للاستعمار الأميركي والرجعية العربية، بعد كلّ ذلك، اتجه المشروع الصهيو/ أميركي، إلى تصفية المقاومة الفلسطينية في لبنان، وإحداث الفتنة في الصفوف المختلفة، فوقعت الحرب الأهلية اللبنانية، وتمّ إخراج المقاومة الفلسطينية إلى تونس، ليتمّ الاستفراد الصهيوني بلبنان، ووصل الأمر إلى احتلال «إسرائيل» للجنوب اللبناني وحتى بيروت، لضرب الوجود السوري في لبنان. وتلاحمت الرجعية العربية مع المشروع الصهيو أميركي، لضرب الجبهة الشمالية (سورية ولبنان) معاً ومرة واحدة.

في هذا الإطار، تولدت المقاومة العربية في لبنان بقيادة حزب الله، لتتولى مسؤولية التحرير اللبناني من الاحتلال الصهيوني، وعودة لبنان المستقلّ لامتلاك إرادته في الإصرار على عدم التسليم لـ «إسرائيل» وأميركا، وعدم التطبيع مع هذا الكيان الصهيوني مثلما سبق أن وقعت مصر اتفاقيات التطبيع مع «إسرائيل» برعاية أميركية، والثمن الفادح هو استبعاد مصر من المشهد العربي، ففقدت مصر فعاليتها، وانعدم دورها الإقليمي. واستطاعت المقاومة العربية في لبنان بقيادة حزب الله، أن تجبر «إسرائيل» على الخروج من العاصمة اللبنانية (بيروت)، ومن كلّ الجنوب اللبناني، تجرّ أذيال الهزيمة المفجعة التي تجاوزت حرب أكتوبر، لتكون المعركة الكبرى بعد حرب أكتوبر/ تشرين الأول وانتصاراتها العظيمة، بدون أيّ قيد أو شرط. واستطاعت المقاومة أن تضع شروطاً جديدة، وقواعد جديدة للتجاور مع «فلسطين المحتلة»، وأصبحت «إسرائيل» مقيّدة بإرادة المقاومة التي فرضت نفسها على الساحة اللبنانية والعربية؛ الأمر الذي أصبحت المقاومة منذ ذلك الحين، 25 مايو/ أيار 2000، وفي ذكرى العيد العشرينيّ لانتصارها، الرصيد الاستراتيجي للإرادة العربية الجديدة.

وما من شك أنه لولا تولّد هذه المقاومة، في ذلك الحين، وبعد انتصارات أكتوبر/ تشرين الأول 1973، لاستمرت حرب أكتوبر/ تشرين الأول هي آخر الحروب بالفعل، وآخر الهزائم للكيان الصهيوني، وربما سيطرت «إسرائيل» على كلّ لبنان وكلّ سورية، وانتقلت للعراق – لا قدّر الله – لتحقق حلمها في إنشاء الدولة اليهودية من النيل – بعد أن تمّ تأميم مصر وإقامة السفارة الصهيونية على نيل مصر في الجيزة على كوبري الجامعة – إلى الفرات في العراق، ولتحققت الهيمنة الإسرائيلية إلى أن يشاء الله. لذلك استطاعت الأمة أن تنجب حزب الله، بقيادة السيد حسن نصر الله، ليفرض المعادلات الجديدة في المنطقة العربية، ويفتح فصلاً جديداً في مدرسة الصراع العربي الصهيوني، وتاريخ القضية الفلسطينية، يؤكد استمرار الإرادة العربية والمقاومة العروبية، وأنّ الأمة بها مخزونها العروبي بكلّ مكوناته، في الصمود.

ومن دون إغراق في تحليل الوقائع التاريخية، وما حدث في العراق ابتداءً من حرب غير مبرّرة مع إيران الثورة من (1980 – 1988)، في الوقت ذاته الذي احتلت فيه «إسرائيل» لبنان، واشتعال الحرب الأهلية! ثم قيام صدام حسين بغزو الكويت من دون مبرّرات في 2 أغسطس/ آب 1990، إلى أن تمّ تحرير الكويت بإرادة دولية، ثم قيام أميركا بغزو واحتلال العراق في 22 مارس/ آذار 2003، ثم سقطت بغداد في 9 أبريل/ نيسان 2003، فإنّ الدرس هو استمرار المشروع الصهيو أميركي في التآمر على الأمة العربية وتفتيتها.

وكان الدور على سورية في خضمّ «الثورات» العربية في تونس ومصر، وكانت النتيجة هي دمار واسع لسورية، ولولا مثلث الداخل السوري (الرئيس بشار الأسد – الجيش – الشعب)، لانهارت سورية، وكذا لولا المقاومة اللبنانية الجسورة بقيادة حزب الله وأمينه العام السيد حسن نصر الله، ودعم إيران، لسقطت سورية كما سقطت بغداد. ومن هنا لا بدّ أن ندرك أنّ المقاومة هي أداة للتوازن الإقليمي، وهي التي حالت دون سقوط لبنان وسورية، ليتأكد وجود محور المقاومة بانتصاراته المتتالية.

ومَن يذهب إلى بيروت، لا بدّ له أن يزور قرية «ميليتا» التي تتعرّف من خلال الجولة الكاملة فيها سيرة المعارك مع العدو الصهيوني حتى تحرير الجنوب اللبناني، وإعطاء الكيان الصهيوني درساً لم ينسه ولن ينساه.

وربما سعت «إسرائيل»، لمحو هذا الانتصار من الذاكرة العربية بعدوانها المستمرّ ولمدة (33) يوماً، في يوليو/ تموز 2006، على بيروت، ولم تستطع تحقيق أيّ انتصار، بل خرجت من هذه المعركة أمام بسالة المقاومة العربية في لبنان، وخسرت المعركة، لتعترف «إسرائيل» للأبد، أن المقاومة العربية اللبنانية ولدت لتبقى وتستمرّ، وتفرض قواعد جديدة، ولا يمكن كسر إرادتها. أما ما يحدث الآن في لبنان، وصدور قرار قيصر الأميركي لإسقاط لبنان وسورية، فإنّ حديث السيد حسن نصر الله الأخير، يستحقّ وقفة، فهو من أقوى ما سمعت من السيد، ولهذا مقال مقبل…

*أستاذ العلوم السياسية والعلاقات الدولية، والأمين العام المساعد للتجمع العربي الإسلامي لدعم خيار المقاومة، ورئيس الجمعية العربية للعلوم السياسية.

حارس القدس هيلاريون كبوجي مقاومة المطران كبوجي العنيدة كالعبير الملتهب

آمنة بدر الدين الحلبي

احتدمت الأحداث في مسلسل «حارس القدس» والذي يجسد مسيرة سيادة المطران كبوجي بمقاومته العنيدة المشتعلة بالثورة، وكأنها العبير الملتهب على الأرض المقدسة لإثبات الحق لأصحاب الأرض منذ النكبة في عام 1948 وصولاً إلى النكسة في عام 1967 التي هزّت القلوب المتقدة، وزلزلت الأرض من تحت أقدام الشرفاء الوطنيين في العالم العربي، وانتشرت رائحة الموت من كل زقاق وشارع، من كل بيت ودكان، من كل قلب وروح، وملأت دقائق الأثير حتى وصلت الحواس.

وانتفض سيادة المطران هيلاريون كبوجي رافعاً الصوت عالياً في وجه الاحتلال «الاسرائيلي» «دعوني أدافع عن رعيتي وأدفن الشهداء قبل أن يهاجمكم الطاعون» لم يصدق ما آلت إليه نكسة حزيران في 1967 ولم يستوعب ما حصل في ستة أيام متتالية، من قتل وتدمير وتهويد، وأشلاء متناثرة هنا وهناك. لم يصدق أن المدينة المقدّسة اغتُصِبت، وانتهكت وداستها أقدام الاحتلال، وفي قرارة نفسه عاش الألم، وسعى لمساعدة كل محتاج وفقير، وإلى ترميم كل بيت تهدّم سواء كان لمسلمين أو مسيحيين، لأن في دمه يجري العرق السوري، العرق المقاوم العنيد في وجه أيّ محتل يريد أن يغتصب أرضه، والإنسان السوري الذي مقت الطائفية والعنصرية والمذهبية.

جسّد تلك الشخصية بتؤدة الفنان المبدع رشيد عساف بكل ما يملك من قوة على الإبحار في شخصية سيادة المطران كبوجي، جسّدها شكلاً وروحاً وأخلاقاً وسعياً دؤوباً لاستعادة الحق والوقوف في وجه الظلم والطغيان، في وجه عدو غاشم لا يفهم إلا لغة الدمار والاحتلال وسرقة الأرض، واغتصاب العرض.

رغم الحزن الذي انتاب المطران كبوجي وتصريحه الذي هزّ الوجدان حين قال: «حرب 1967 كانت نقطة تحوّل في حياتي، وضيّعت سنين عمري، وأصبحت أكثر سواداً في تاريخ العرب، لأن أحلام الناس وآمالهم آلت للضياع».

أجل ضاعت على مذبح الإنسانية أمام احتلال لا يفهم إلا لغة القهر والتسلط واغتصاب الأرض والعرض، فما كان من سعادة المطران كبوجي إلا السعي الحثيث لمقاومة الاحتلال بشتى الوسائل الإعلامية والثقافية، من فلسطين إلى لبنان وصولاً بسورية حاملاً هموم الفلسطينيين مسيحيين ومسلمين وسعى لمساندة المقاومة، بل وانخرط في دعمها في الداخل والخارج لإعادة الحق المغتصب الذي سرقه احتلال «اسرائيلي» لا يرحم، وشرد آلاف الأطفال والنساء والشيوخ.

لكنه لم ينسَ همومه العائلية ووالدته الحنونة التي قضت عمرها في سبيل رعاية العائلة، وكان يزورها باستمرار ليقبل يديها ويباركها، ويقرأ في حضرتها الشعر الجميل للشاعر الفلسطيني يوسف الخطيب، رحمه الله.. شاعر الأّنفة والعزة والكبرياء.

وأنا الذي وطني ارتحال الشمس

ملء الأرض

لكني بلا وطن

مَن ذا يصدّقني؟؟ مَن ذا يصدقني

أبليت نعلي في الرمال وفي الجرود

أدقُّ أبواباً وتدفعني

من أنتَ

من عربِ الخليل

وعما تبحث عن ثرى حراً

وعن سكني

هلاّ أقمتَ بنا

أقمتُ هنا فما يُشقيك؟؟؟

همٌ ليس يَبرحني

ماذا، جرحُ الروح

لم أفهم عذابك كيف تفهمني

وأنا الذي وطني ارتحال الشمس

ملء الأرض

لكني بلا وطن

مَن ذا يصدّقني؟؟ مَن ذا يصدّقني؟؟

الشاعر يوسف الخطيب والد المخرج المبدع باسل الخطيب الذي قدّم لنا أروع سيرة ذاتية لسيادة المطران كبوجي روحاً ونفساً وعملاً ومقاومة عنيدة، في صور تعجُّ بآلام الفلسطينيين وآمالهم، ودخل بالمسلسل إلى أدق التفاصيل في حياة سيادة المطران كبوجي، وكان اختياره للفنان المبدع رشيد عساف رائعاً، حيث جسّد شخصية مميزة في المقاومة الشرسة، وشخصية عنيدة، مقدامة لا تخاف في الحق لومة لائم، ماضية في الدفاع عن الحق المغتصب، حاملة هموم الشعب بأكمله إنسانياً واجتماعياً وأخلاقياً وثقافياً.

كنت أمام لوحة حقيقة في تعابير وجه الفنان رشيد عساف وانفعالاته، وفي إقدامه وإصراره على استرجاع الأرض المقدّسة وحماية أهلها من نير الظلم والطغيان.

سيادة المطران كبوجي كان راعياً حقيقياً لرعيته، وساعياً في طريق الفلاح لاستعادة الحق المغتصب، وتبيان للعالم أجمع ما فعله الاحتلال «الإسرائيلي» من تشويه ديني، وكذب اجتماعي، ونفاق أخلاقي، وسرقة لكل أنواع الثقافة الفلسطينية، وأوضح لنا بشاعة الاحتلال على الحواجز حين أراد الحاجز تفتيشه رفض بكل ما بوسعه، لكنه قوبل بكلام سوقيّ لا يفهم معنى القداسة، حين قال له أحد الجنود الإسرائيليين… «في المرة القادمة لو كان المسيح يقود السيارة لفتّشتها».

أي حقد أعمى سكن في قلوبهم؟ أي حقد عشعش في أرواحهم الميتة، أي شرٍّ تربوا عليه، أية وقاحة تعاملوا بها مع قداسة المطران كبوجي، لكن الحق الذي حمله سيادة المطران كبوجي كان مثل الشمس يُستضاء به، حرّكته الآلام المسكونة في أعماق ذاته الروحية، والآمال في النصر المؤزر، واستعادة الحق المسلوب من أيدي احتلال غاشم.

اغتصبوا البيوت، وقتلوا الأطفال والنساء، واعتقلوا الشباب، وقاموا بمجازر لا تُعدّ ولا تُحصى، أية أخلاق جلبوا معهم للأرض المقدسة؟ أية بشاعة نثروها في الأرض المقدسة؟ أية أرواح سلبوها من أمهاتها؟ وغدت النساء إما ثكالى أو أرامل أو في سجون الاحتلال، أي مال سرقوه من الضعفاء والمساكين؟ حتى المطرانية لم تسلم من أياديهم القذرة!!!

أما سيادة المطران كبوجي فكان ينسج أثوابه من نول ذاته، ويتحد مع روحه حين يسمع أجراس الكنائس تعانق آذان المساجد بألحان لا مثيل لها، وكأن تراتيل الحياة تجتاح سماء الأرض المقدسة.

وازداد ألمه برحيل الرئيس جمال عبد الناصر عام 1970، وأمر بتنكيس الأعلام السوداء حزناً على رحيله، ورفع القداديس وعزفت أجراس الكنائس حزناً على رحيل أبو خالد، وارتفعت الصلوات في المساجد.

واستمرّ النضال من الداخل والخارج سعياً لحياة كريمة وعادلة للفلسطينيين لأن الصمت والانعزال مساهمة في الخطيئة، لذلك حسم خياراته كنتيجة حتمية أمام الإذلال والاضطهاد، أمام كابوس الاحتلال ووحشيته القذرة، لأن الصمت لم يعد مجدياً، والحياد نوع من التواطؤ، معتبراً حياة الكاهن الكاثوليكي «إميليو توريز» ومسيرته رمزاً للحرية حين قال «لو كان المسيح حياً لانضمّ إلى الثورة».

وعاد الأمل يشقّ ضلوع الصدر في حرب 1973 آملا بالنصر المؤزر وعودة الأرض المقدسة، ولم تعُد!! بل ازداد الطغيان وكأنه القدر الذي أرخى سدوله على الفلسطينيين، وحتّم عليهم السير على خطى سيادة المطران لأن الخطر لا يزول إلا بزوال الاحتلال. هكذا قال لهم «الخطر هو الذي اختارنا وهذا قدرنا ولن نهرب من قدرنا».

“The Lost Lesson from the Arab-Israeli Struggle” by Dr. Rizk Elias…


Tuesday, 05 November 2019

==The October Liberation War confirmed the validity of the theory that the late President Hafez al-Assad adopted in preparing for the war…

==President Bashar al-Assad has placed the issue of the liberation of Golan at the forefront of the national priorities.

A 525 page long and eight chapter book titled “The Lost Lesson from the Arab-Israeli Struggle, written by Dr. Rizk Elias” has been recently published by the Syrian Ministry of Culture – the Syrian General Book Organization.

Through his field participation in the Arab-Israeli wars and his history as an army officer, the author tries to summarize the events of this struggle during the last century, using the wars that took place from 1948 to 1982 to explain lessons of both sides in each of these wars, as well as the reasons for the failure of the peace process which began in Madrid in 1991, stressing that the lesson of a just and comprehensive peace is still missing. For those reasons, Dr. Rizk Elias’ book could be considered as an important source to politicians and military men who are interested in the Arab-Israeli struggle from its inception to date. The writer dedicated his book to all those who have worked and still work to achieve a just and comprehensive peace and to find an end to the Arab-Israeli struggle, which has passed over a century.


Introducing his book which includes all about the Arab-Israeli wars and the negotiations between Syria and Israel, Dr. Rizk Elias said that he tries to show the influence of geography and politics in the decisions of wars and peace, the impact of the process of building power and the theory of its use, as well as the military balance between the two sides and the attempts of both  parties to evaluate the results of each round of  the conflict and to learn lessons from it in order to prepare for a coming war or to resort to a peaceful settlement. Therefore, “I resorted in the first chapter of the book to describe the  geographical and topographical characterizations of the theater of the war, while in the subsequent chapters, I tried to deal with  the successive wars which took place from 1948 to  1982” Dr. Elias added. In the last chapter, I talked about the peace process between Syria and Israel, which began at the Madrid conference in 1991 and the reasons for its failure, only to help the reader to form a comprehensive idea about the Arab-Israeli struggle which has not been ended yet, neither in war or peace. “My previous position as a staff officer in the General Command of the Syrian Army and Armed Forces, and then an adviser to the Minister of Defense as well as my participations in the Arab – Israeli wars from the 1967 war and my experience as a teacher of these subjects at the Higher Military Academy in Damascus, and my contribution as a member of the peace process between Syria and Syria have all helped me in the delicate job to write this book” he said.

Dr. Elias confirmed that the Zionist ideology which was based on immigration and settlement has begun to decline after the October war, the 1973 Lebanon war, the Palestinian uprising in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, and the liberation of the Lebanese resistance to south Lebanon in 2000 and the Second Lebanon War in 2006. Israel was forced to dismantle its settlements in the Sinai and the Gaza Strip. It also was forced to withdraw its forces from Lebanon after its arrival to the outskirts of Beirut as well as that Its scheme to establish a Palestinian state in Jordan has finally fell. The Israelis have resorted during the past few years to the idea of strategic defense and to build fortified walls in Gaza, the West Bank, the Lebanese borders and the occupied Golan Heights.

According to the writer, «Israel» now believes that arming the forces of the resistance axis consisting of Syria, Iran, Hezbollah and Palestinian organizations poses an existential danger to its existence, because such an armament can cause precise injuries in all vital targets in the depth of Israel as it has the powers and the means that enable them to break in through the barriers and walls built by Israel along the borders.

Chapters of the book:

The first chapter deals with some of the geographical characteristics of the theater of war in Palestine and the occupied Syrian Golan Heights including the boundaries of the Mandate and the armistice lines, and the topographical landmarks in Palestine and the Syrian Golan Heights.

The second chapter talks about the Arab-Israeli war in 1948, while the third talks about the tripartite aggression «British, French and Israeli» on Egypt in 1956.  In the fourth chapter, the writer explained all about the Israeli aggression against Egypt, Jordan and Syria in 1967. In the fifth chapter, the writer discussed the process that occurred in Syria to rebuild the Syrian armed forces before the liberation 1973 war and the first war of attrition (1968-1973).

In the sixth chapter, the writer talks about the October liberation war on the Syrian and Egyptian fronts, and the second war of attrition on the Syrian front (1973-1974), while Chapter seven deals with Syria’s approach to build a strategic balance with Israel and to confront the Israeli invasion of Lebanon in 1982. The last chapter of the book deals with the peace process between Syria and Israel and the reasons for its failure.

The mission of liberation:

In the fifth chapter, the author talks about the features of the theory of the late President Hafez al-Assad to liberate the occupied Golan Heights and the rest of other occupied Arab territories.Image result for hafez assad

“Anyone who reads the speech of president Hafez al-Assad at the tenth extraordinary National Congress of the Arab Socialist Baath Party, which was held in early November 1970, touches the concern he had had to liberate the territories occupied by Israel in its aggression in 1967; a concern that remained his concern for a long time.” The writer said. People who were close to him knew that on the anniversary of the occupation of the Golan, which occurs on the tenth of June of each year, president Assad devoted all his day to evaluate what Syria had achieved on the road to liberate the Golan.

Also in his speech at the conference which was held several days before the establishment of the Corrective Movement in 1970, president Hafez al-Assad laid out his vision on how to liberate the Golan and the occupied Arab territories. He had worked according to this vision for thirty years until his death, that vision which is still valid to rationalize our steps in the struggle to liberate our territoriy.

The writer reviewed the clear and integrated vision of the late president Hafez al-Assad, explaining how it was interrelated in the domestic, Arab and international politics and also in the field of the battle for the accomplishment of the liberation mission.

The October War of Liberation

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After examining the details of the October liberation war, Dr. Rizk Elias listed in the sixth chapter the most important positive results of this war in 1973, including the moral victory not only of the fighters who participated in it, but also of the Arab Man who suffered frustration as a result of the June 1967 defeat. To liberate part of the occupied territories, this war showed the importance of Arab solidarity and its effectiveness and forced the enemy to treat the Palestinian issue as an issue of people rather than refugees. The October war also caused a major jolt in the psycho-political structure of the Israeli society, and strengthened the position of Arabs in the field of the international political action.

This war has also confirmed through practical experience the validity of the theory on which President Hafez al-Assad had based to prepare for the war and to conduct it.  It proved that Arab soldiers had appeared during the battle in their true image; brave and able to use modern war machines, love their nation and sacrifice for it, showing moral energy in the war. There was scientific evidence of unity of the Arab nation in the will, feelings, desires, hopes and goals, and its enormous military, human and economic energy capable of achieving victory if used correctly. There was great importance of incorporating the political and military battles. Late President Hafez al-Assad stressed that fact by saying: « we cannot, in any way, separate our political battle from our military battle, because the first came as a result of the second, and is associated with it. “We have achieved with our steadfastness in the military battle glorious results which shattered all the myths woven by the enemy around him” he concluded. “We are also able with steadfastness, self-confidence and strong cohesion at the home front, along with our solid cohesion with the Arab nation, to achieve success in the political battle either to achieve the goals for which we fought, or by saying a big “NO” if we were faced by manipulation or evasive or evasion of the implementation of the Security Council resolution as we understand. »

The Peace Process:

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Dr. Rizk Elias revealed in Chapter eight which talks about the “peace process and the reasons for its failure”, the statement of late President Hafez al-Assad on 9 September 1992 in a meeting with a delegation of citizens of the Golan who came to visit Damascus: «In the past we have said that we want peace, and today we are saying that we want a comprehensive peace that preserves our dignity and is accepted by our people, and does not require any retreat from our national rights, and will in no way harm the dignity and pride of our nation. If others agree, this kind of peace can then be achieved.”

On August 1, 1993, on the occasion of the Syrian Arab Army Day, the late President al-Assad gave a clear indication of how serious Syria is in its attempts to achieve peace: “We are in the battle of peace and we are fighting it as seriously as we are in the military wars.

The book also reviewed President Bashar al-Assad’s position on the peace process. The president placed the question of the occupied land in the Golan Heights at the forefront of the national priorities. “Our main concern is to liberate our occupied land. “Land and sovereignty are an issue of dignity” he said. We have been clear in our positions since the beginning of the peace process in Madrid in 1991, contrary to the Israeli policy, which was characterized by fluctuation at times, and putting obstacles”, president Bashar al-Assad said in his Constitutional oath speech in front of the People’s Assembly (the parliament) on July, 17, 2000.

In the same speech, President al-Assad stressed that we must work as quickly as possible to liberate the Golan without compromising the land. “We are in a hurry for peace because it is our choice, and the Syrian Arab people a peace-loving people throughout history, but we are not ready, by any means, to abandon any part of our land, or to let our sovereignty to be touched » he said.

President al-Assad called on the United States of America to play a neutral, impartial and effective role to implement the resolutions of international legitimacy. In a later speech, President Bashar al-Assad called on Russia and the European Union to play a more active role.

In another speech, President al-Assad referred to the peace-loving nature of the Syrian people by saying: Peace is an ideology for the Syrian people and not just a political act. If you go back to the history of Syria for hundreds and thousands of years, you will find that it has no history of aggression. The real struggle between us and the Israelis is between those who start wars and those who prevent it ».

President al-Assad also explained the contrast between the terms “Syria’s conditions” and “Syria’s rights” by saying: “There is no such a thing as” Syria’s conditions” but there is something called” “Syria’s rights”. “There are international conditions that correspond to the Syrian and Arab rights in general. Israel stands in the face of restoration of the Syrian rights and, at the same time, in the face of the international conditions ».

Referring to Syria’s strategy of steadfastness and liberation and its ability to confront the Israeli aggression, President al-Assad said: «Syria does not seek to ignite the war, but if imposed a war on Syria, will defend itself, and is able to do so. It may be able for anyone to control the beginning of the war, but he will never be able to control its end or its results. The Arab side, and we are at the forefront of it, who possess the decision to end the war; how, where and what how it ends ».

The decisions of the tenth regional conference of the Arab Socialist Baath Party which was held between June 6 and 9, 2005, underlined the peaceful approach taken by the President in his official statements and positions. The first recommendation taken by that conference stressed the need of liberating the occupied Syrian Golan to the line of the fourth of June 1967».

Also, The Charter of the National Progressive Front issued on 12 October 2004 affirmed the commitment of the Front to a peaceful approach in its international policy according to the principles of the international legitimacy and the UN decisions relating to the Arab – Israeli struggle on the basis of justice, rights, international law and finding peaceful resolutions to conflicts.»


Adapted by Haifaa Mafalani

إسرائيل لا تثق بجيشها البرّي: «حرب 73 ستكون نزهة»!

إسرائيل لا تثق بجيشها البرّي: «حرب 73 ستكون نزهة»!

غولان: وضع سلاح البر سيء جداً، وقائد ذراع البر لا يعمل (أ ف ب )

 علي حيدر

 السبت 9 شباط 2019

لم يعد الحديث عن عدم جاهزية سلاح البر في جيش العدو مجرد تقدير أو تحذير من لجان متخصصة أو من مفوض شكاوى الجنود. بل أتى من قلب المؤسسة العسكرية ومن قيادتها العليا. في وثيقة سرية قدمها نائب رئيس الأركان السابق اللواء يائير غولان، كان الأخير صريحاً إلى حد الإقرار بعدم ثقة القيادة العليا بالجيش البري، والتحذير مما ينتظر الجبهة الداخلية من سيناريوات لم تشهدها طوال تاريخها في كل الحروب التي خاضتها في مواجهة الجيوش العربية.

لم يعد بإمكان المؤسسة الإسرائيلية بكافة عناوينها، التغطية على هذه الحقيقة المؤلمة بالنسبة لكل إسرائيلي محتل، جندياً كان أو مستوطناً، خصوصاً أن من قدمها هو من القيادة العسكرية العليا، وكان أحد المرشحين لخلافة رئيس الأركان السابق غادي آيزنكوت في منصبه. ومما أضفى على الوثيقة المزيد من الصدقية أيضاً أنها لم تستند إلى تقديرات نظرية، بل إلى تجارب عملانية أيضاً، الأمر الذي رفع من مستوى الخطورة لدى قادة تل أبيب – حتى لو تمت التغطية على ذلك – خصوصاً أن هذا الواقع يمهد لمزيد من النكسات والهزائم التي ستكون مفاعيلها أشد خطورة على وجودها وأمنها.

أكد اللواء غولان أن انعدام الثقة بقدرات سلاح البر، والخوف من الخسائر، أديا إلى عدم تنفيذ اجتياح بري خلال العدوان على قطاع غزة في العام 2014، في ما سمي بـ«الجرف الصامد». وأشار إلى أن «انعدام الثقة بسلاح البر انتقل إلى الشبان، وألحق هذا الأمر ضرراً لا يمكن إصلاحه من حيث ثقة الضباط بأنفسهم وبقدرتهم على الانتصار». في المقابل، اعتبر رئيس معهد القدس للأبحاث الاستراتيجية، أفرايم عنبر، أن «الخشية هذه موجودة منذ سنوات طويلة وكما يبدو منذ أيام حرب لبنان الثانية» (حرب تموز 2006)، مشيراً إلى أنه «ليس عبثاً تم إهمال سلاح البر لمصلحة قدرات السايبر وسلاح الجو».

لكن المشكلة الكبرى بالنسبة لإسرائيل، تكمن في الخطورة الكبرى التي ستواجهها انطلاقاً من أن «الضربة التي ستوجه إلى الجبهة الداخلية ستكون (في الحرب المقبلة) أكبر مما تحتمله، وأن إخفاق حرب يوم الغفران (حرب تشرين العام 1973) سيكون «نزهة» قياساً بالضربة التي ستوجه إلى الجبهة الداخلية»، بحسب غولان. في المقابل، رأى قائد سلاح البر السابق اللواء غاي تسور، أنه «إذا نظرنا إلى المستقبل، وبموجب إدراكنا لطبيعة الحرب المقبلة في لبنان، فعلينا تعزيز ثقة صناع القرار بسلاح البر».

ويعود منشأ هذه الخطورة، بحسب منطق غولان، من أن «سلاح الجو لن يتمكن من وقف آلاف الصواريخ في الحرب المقبلة، وبالتالي سيكون من الضروري دخول القوات البرية إلى أراضي العدو ووقف إطلاق الصواريخ. وإلا فإن الجبهة الداخلية ستتلقى ضربات صاروخية سيكون من الصعب عليها تحملها»، «والوضع سيشكل صدمة للجمهور». يتلاقى هذا «التحذير» أيضاً مع ما سبق أن أقر به الرئيس السابق لأركان جيش العدو غادي آيزنكوت عشية رأس السنة العبرية في أيلول الماضي، بأن سلاح الجو غير قادر على الانتصار في الحرب، وأن «الانتصار سيأتي حصراً عبر عمل القوات البرية».

لكن المشكلة أن هناك قدراً من التسليم الضمني بأن سلاح البر في جيش العدو، عاجز عن تحقيق أي حسم عسكري، فضلاً عن الكلفة الباهظة التي سيتلقاها. ومن هنا تنبع عدم ثقة القيادة العليا به، وهو ما وصفه غولان في الوثيقة، بأنه «مفهوم كارثي» وأن «وضع سلاح البر سيء جداً، وقائد ذراع البر لا يعمل…». ويضيف أيضاً أن «مشكلة القيادة العليا للجيش الإسرائيلي تكمن في الوعي، وهذه القيادة فعلاً لا تعتمد على سلاح البر… وحتى الاستثمارات المالية الكبيرة في سلاح البر لن تفيد». وهكذا يتضح فعلياً أن إسرائيل عالقة بين «خيار جوي عقيم وغزو بري متعذر» 

(«الأخبار»، 10 أيلول 2018 ).

يادلين مشكّكاً: إلى أي مدى يمكن أن يصل الهجوم البري؟ إلى بيروت؟ شمال لبنان؟ العراق؟

كل ذلك توالى بعد محاولات المؤسستين العسكرية والسياسية التشكيك بتقارير مفوض شكاوى الجنود في الجيش اللواء يتسحاق بريك، الذي أكد عدم جاهزية الجيش للحرب. لكن انكشاف وثيقة غولان أطاح بكل هذه الجهود الدعائية.

في المقابل، تدرك تل أبيب خطورة الصورة التي تتشكل في وعي أعداء إسرائيل حول عدم جاهزية سلاح البر. وتدرك أيضاً القدرات الصاروخية الهائلة التي يمتلكها محور المقاومة، والقادر من خلالها على دك الجبهة الداخلية، وهو ما وفَّر ردعاً استراتيجياً في مقابل القوة النارية والتدميرية الهائلة لجيش العدو. وانعكاس كل ذلك على معادلات الردع المتبادل، وعلى المدى الذي يمكن أن يبلغه أعداء إسرائيل في حال نشوب أي مواجهة كبرى.

أياً كانت المساعي التي تبذلها القيادة الإسرائيلية لتبديل صورة جيشها بنظر جمهورها وبنظر أعدائها، فإنها من الناحية العملية لم تعد تثق بجيشها في مواجهة قوى المقاومة، وباتت أمام حقيقتين لخّصهما رئيس الاستخبارات العسكرية السابق، اللواء عاموس يادلين. الأولى عبّر عنها بالقول: «أنا لا أوافق على الادعاء أن العملية البرية ستوقف إطلاق الصواريخ. إلى أي مسافة ستصل العملية البرية؟ حتى بيروت؟ حتى شمال لبنان؟ إلى غرب العراق؟». وهو أراد بذلك الإشارة إلى أن هذا التمدد الإسرائيلي المفترض لن يوقف أيضاً دك الجبهة الداخلية بالصواريخ. والثانية، أن «ذراع البر في الجيش الإسرائيلي يمثّل شعب إسرائيل الذي لا يريد إرسال جنوده إلى هجوم بريّ في الحرب المقبلة». وهي الحقيقة الأكثر إيلاماً وحضوراً في وعي قادة تل أبيب على المستويين السياسي والأمني.

The Yom Kippur Syndrome

September 18, 2018  /  Gilad Atzmon


A message to Jews from Gilad Atzmon

When the Yom Kippur War broke out 45 years ago I was ten years old.  I recall a lot of fear all around me. Israel was my home and it was about to be wiped out. This is what I believed at the time, and this is what everyone around me repeated. We were all certainly caught unprepared.

My father was called up by the Air Force in the early hours of Yom Kippur (October 6th 1973). We didn’t hear from him for a few weeks. We didn’t know whether he was alive. In fact, we had good reason to believe he wasn’t. We were very worried.  For the adults around me, the first days of the war were a reminder of the Shoah. Israeli leaders, Golda Meir and Moshe Dayan as well as the top Israeli military command appeared perplexed and hesitant on TV. Their message was: ‘the future isn’t clear, we may even witness the destruction of the 3rd temple.’

Years later, when I became an avid reader of history and military texts, it became clear to me that the collective Shoah dread into which we immersed ourselves was a manifestation of Jewish pre traumatic stress disorder (Pre TSD). We were tormented by a phantasmic fear. Neither the Syrians nor the Egyptian armies had plans to ‘destroy Israel,’ wipe out the Jewish state or ‘throw the Jews into the sea’. Their military objectives were, in fact, very limited. Neither the Egyptians nor the Syrians wished to expand their military ground operation beyond a few miles into the Sinai and the Golan Heights. Both Arab armies were dependent on Soviet ground to air missiles that severely limited Israeli air superiority above the battlefield. The Soviet missile umbrella provided about 10 miles of anti air cover and the Arab armies had no intent to proceed beyond that ‘safe’ zone.

It took me years to grasp that Israel’s panic during the first few days of the war led to some serious military blunders (such as the IDF’s disastrous counter offensive on the 8th of October). This panic was fuelled by projection.  Believing that the Arabs were ‘about to throw the Jews into the sea’, Israeli generals and cabinet members reacted irrationally and wasted their limited reserve forces in a  counter offensive that failed and cost many Israeli lives.

But why did the Israelis believe that the Arabs were about to throw them into the sea? Why did they assume the Arab armies were murderous or possibly genocidal? Why did PM Golda Meir and Defense Minister Moshe Dayan believe that the ‘3rd temple’ was about to be annihilated?  Simple, because the Israelis were and still are driven by lethal inclinations towards their neighbours. It was the Israelis who literally pushed the Palestinians into the sea in 1948 into the sea. Israelis were panicking because they were projecting their own symptoms onto the Arabs. 

In ‘The Wandering Who’ I elaborate on projection in the context of Jewish ‘pre traumatic stress.’ The principle is simple. The more murderous and sinister one is, the more fearful one becomes of others. Humans tend to attribute their own reasoning and symptoms onto others. Accordingly, the more menacing one is, the more sinister one believes the other to be.

Israelis consistently attribute their own racist and barbarian symptoms onto the Palestinians. The possibility that a Palestinian or an Arab would be as merciless as the IDF causes real and total panic for the Israeli. The thought that the Palestinians, for instance, would want to displace a quarter of Israeli citizens and massacre Israelis as the IDF has done to Gaza numerous times must evoke terror amongst Israelis and for a good reason.

But this state of collective anxiety is not unique to Israelis; it is embedded in Jewish culture. Basically, Jews are tormented by anti Semitism because they assume that their own ‘goy hatred’ is echoed by ‘Jew hatred’ from their gentile neighbours. As Martin Heidegger noted in the 1930s, the Jews opposed in the Nazis the racism which they recognized from themselves. Heidegger wrote in his Black Notebooks: the Jewish people, with their talent for calculation, were so vehemently opposed to the Nazi’s racial theories because

“they themselves have lived according to the race principle for longest.”

In 1973 Israel believed that that the Arabs were out to eradicate them because this is exactly what the Israelis would have liked to do to the Arabs.

The Syndrome

Projection is just one aspect of the Yom Kippur war. I guess that, at least from a philosophical perspective, the most interesting aspect of the 73 War was that it marked a sudden switch from Judeo centric manic ‘hubris’ to melancholia, apathy and depression.

Following their outstanding 1967 military victory, the Israelis developed an arrogant disrespectful attitude toward Arabs and their military capability. Israeli intelligence predicted that it would take years for Arab armies to recover. The Israeli military didn’t believe that the Arab soldier had the ability to fight, let alone score a victory.

But on 6 October 1973, the Israelis had a devastating surprise. This time the Arab soldier was very different. The Israeli military strategy that was built on air superiority and fast ground maneuvers supported by tanks was crushed in only a few hours. The Egyptians and Syrians helped by new Soviet antitank and ground to air missiles managed to dismantle Israeli’s might. In the first days of the war Israel suffered heavy casualties and, as mentioned above, the Israeli leadership and high command were in a state of despair. This type of crisis wasn’t new to the Jews. It is consistently symptomatic of Jewish culture to be ‘surprised’ and overwhelmed by the Goyim’s fierce resilience.

The Israeli military fiasco at the first stage of the war was a repetition of a tragic syndrome that is as old as the Jews themselves. Jewish hubris that is driven by a strong sense of choseness and that repeatedly leads to horrific consequences is what I call ‘The Yom Kippur Syndrome.’  The syndrome can be defined as a repeated chain of events that drive Jewish societies towards an extreme irrational sense of pride, arrogance, self-confidence and blindness toward others and the tragedy that inevitably follows.

On October 6th, the Israelis realised that they had grossly underestimated their enemies.  But it wasn’t the first time such a mistake occurred in Jewish history. Every Jewish disaster is, to a certain extent, a repetition of the Yom Kippur Syndrome. In 1920s Berlin the Jewish elite boasted of its power. Some rich Jews were convinced that Germany and its capital were Jewish occupied territories. At the time, a few German Jews dominated banking and influenced Germany’s politics and media. In addition, the Frankfurt School as well as other Jewish school of thoughts were openly dedicated to the cultural uprooting of Germans, all in the name of, ‘progress,’ ‘working class politics,’ phenomenology and cultural Marxism. Then, almost from nowhere, as far as German Jews were concerned, a tidal wave of resentment appeared. And the rest is known.

But was there really a sudden shift in German consciousness? Should German ‘anti Semitism’ have come as a surprise? Not at all. All necessary signs had been present for some time. In fact, Early Zionists such as Herzl and Nordau correctly predicted the inevitable rise of European anti Jewish sentiments. But Jewish hubris prevented Berlin’s Jewish elite from evaluating the growing opposition around them. The Yom Kippur Syndrome.

The same could be said of the Jewish Lobby, AIPAC, Friends of Israel clubs in Britain, the BOD, the three British Jewish papers that, in the name of British Jewry, declared war on Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party.  These Jewish lobbies and institutions that relentlessly seek influence over Western foreign affairs and the Labour Party in particular: do they grasp the level of resentment and the potential disaster they are bringing on their fellow Jews?

Can the Jew recover from the Yom Kippur Syndrome? Can the Jew somehow detect resentment as it grows and amend his or her ways?  All it takes is drifting away from choseness. But once stripped of choseness what is left of the Jew or for the Jew?

This may be the most devastating question and the true meaning of the existential Yom Kippur Syndrome; there is no Jewish collective ideological escape for the Jew. Zionism failed to provide the goods and the so called ‘anti Zionists’ have done little other than form their own racially exclusive enclaves of chosenness within the so called ‘Left over.’

The only escape route from the Yom Kippur Syndrome is personal and individual. Try leaving the tribe late in the night, crawl under the ghetto fence, dig a tunnel under the ‘separation wall’ if necessary and then once on land of the free, proceed quietly and modestly towards the humane and the universal.

Good luck

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