Hasbara Industry: Deconstructing Israel’s Propaganda Machine

June 8, 2023

Israeli soldiers arresting and beating a Palestinian man in the occupied West Bank. (Photo: ActiveStills.org)

By Dr. M. Reza Behnam

Tel Aviv is, however, finding it increasingly difficult to whitewash its entrenched apartheid system and ongoing genocide, especially in light of the openly racist policies and practices of the current right-wing regime cobbled together by its legally-plagued prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu.

Most mornings as I prepare for my run, I tune in to BBC News.  Of late, the newscaster has presented, in sober British fashion, the number of Palestinians killed the night before by the Israeli army in its near-nightly raids on homes and refugee camps in the occupied Palestinian Territories.  When I canvass American news sites to learn more, there is no mention of these atrocities.  The airwaves are replete, however, with news of the Russia-Ukraine war and the death of civilians.

What many Americans won’t hear from these “news” sources is that in 2022, the Israeli army killed more than 170 Palestinian civilians, including 30 children, in the West Bank and East Jerusalem; and that since the start of 2023, Israel’s occupation army has already killed 158 Palestinians, including 26 children.

They won’t hear that Israel controls the lives and resources (access to safe clean water) of approximately 7 million Palestinians, and that Palestinian cities, towns, homes, orchards and businesses have been systematically destroyed and repopulated with upwards of 750,000 illegal Jewish squatters (“settlers”).

They won’t hear of the 56 years of Israeli occupation, dispossession, house demolitions, curfews, checkpoints, walls, blockades, permits, night raids, targeted killings, military courts, administrative detention, thousands of political prisoners, tortured Palestinian children, and 56 years of oppression and humiliation.

The ‘Exceptional’ Treatment

What explains the “exceptional” deferential treatment Israel receives, while other human rights violators are condemned or sanctioned by the United States and its allies?

Much of the explanation has to do with Israel’s powerfully effective state-run public relations industry reliant on myths and duplicity.  Since its establishment in 1948, Israel has successfully created a new illogic of its own; an illogic that has made the illegal seem legal, the immoral appear moral and the undemocratic sound democratic.  It has masterfully marketed a number of myths that have become a part of the political and mainstream media narrative.

From the outset, Israel’s Zionist founders cloaked their true goal of creating a “Greater Israel” —a Jewish state not just in Palestine, but in Jordan, southern Lebanon and the Syrian Golan Heights—in heroic terms.

Fabricated history and tropes about the “good” Israelis developing an unpopulated land, creating agrarian miracles in the desert and reclaiming an historic promised land have become deeply embedded.

In reality, Zionists, like Israel’s first prime minister, polish-born David Ben-Gurion, saw the 1948 United Nations General Assembly partition plan for Palestine as the first step toward future expansion.

Israel’s Colonization Plans

Benny Morris in his book, Righteous Victims, writes that Ben-Gurion in a letter to his son in 1937, framed the Zionist plan for colonizing Palestine:  “No Zionist can forego the smallest portion of the Land of Israel.  [A] Jewish state in part [of Palestine] is not an end, but a beginning….through this we increase our power, and every increase in power facilitates getting hold of the country in its entirety.  Establishing a [small] state….will serve as a very potent lever in our historical effort to redeem the whole country.”

That Israel would have to forcibly transfer and remove the indigenous Palestinian population to realize its colonization plans were erased from the Israeli narrative.

As a consequence of its effective disinformation campaign, many Americans have come to believe that Israel is a democratic, progressive and humane state; a small but brave nation defending itself against “foreign” violence and terrorism.

To realize its “Greater Israel” annexation mission, Israel created another fiction to legitimize its war of choice in 1967.   Although the Six-Day War, which began on June 5, 1967, has proved to be a crucial turning point in the modern history of the Middle East, the Israeli myth of vulnerability and “nation under siege” inventions remain largely unchallenged.

Zionist Mythmakers

Fifty-six years ago, the Israeli air force attacked air bases in Egypt, Syria and Jordan, destroying over 80 percent of their warplanes on the ground.  Israeli troops swiftly occupied Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula, the Gaza Strip, the West Bank of Jordan and the Syrian Golan Heights.  According to Israeli government minutes, its attack was not defensive, but a planned preemptive strike.

The Israelis were fully aware of the need to initiate a disinformation campaign alongside their planned first-strike military operations to allay adverse reactions from Washington and other Western powers.

The Israeli myth that the Jewish state was fighting for its physical survival against a more powerful Arab enemy has had a powerful hold on America’s political leaders and the public.  In fact, Arab leaders had no plans to invade Israel and Israel’s leaders knew the war was easily winnable.  The annihilation fallacy has become unassailable dogma in Washington—the “right to defend itself” mantra— has allowed Tel Aviv to continue its illegal annexation of captured Palestinian land.

Zionist mythmakers got busy again in the 1980s.  To counter the criticism it received following its indiscriminate bombing of Lebanon and massacre of Palestinians in the Sabra and Shatila refugee camps in Beirut in 1982, Israel birthed the Hasbara (“explaining” in Hebrew) Project in 1983.

In that year, the American Jewish Congress sponsored a conference in Jerusalem of top executives, journalists and academics from Israel and the United States, to devise a strategy to resell Israel, cement U.S. economic and military support and make it extremely difficult to critique Israel’s actions.

Hasbara established permanent structures in the United States and Israel to influence how the world, especially Americans, would think about Israel and the Middle East in the future. The talking points they developed are recognizable in current rhetoric; among them:  Israel’s strategic importance to the United States; its physical vulnerability; its shared cultural values with the West; and its desire for peace.  Israel now labels its continuing hasbara propaganda “public diplomacy.”

News organizations, journalists, academics, politicians and entertainers have come to expect pressure if they go outside the level of acceptable discourse established by Israel and its supporters.  Alternative narratives that expose Israel’s abuses are dismissed as anti-Israel or given the feared label of anti-Semitic.  Israeli propagandists have made certain to fuse criticism of the regime—anti-Zionism—to anti-Semitism. The anti-Semitic accusation has proven to be a powerful rhetorical device to shield Israel from fault.  It has destroyed careers and reputations.

Challenging Israeli Myths

The late-Helen Thomas, noted journalist; Norman Finkelstein, prominent Jewish intellectual, political scientist and author; and Fatima Mohammed, 2023 graduate of CUNY law school are among those who have been willing to brave the onslaught of criticism they would inevitably face for “daring” to challenge Israeli myths.

Helen Thomas, national icon and senior White House correspondent for UPI, was forced to end her 57-year career in 2010 because she persisted in publicly questioning U.S. support for Israel.  Thomas later remarked, “You cannot criticize Israel in this country and survive.”

In 2007, DePaul University denied tenure to Norman Finkelstein because of his criticism of Israel.  In his books, Finkelstein claimed that anti-Semitism has been used to stifle critics of Israeli policies toward Palestinians, and that the Holocaust is exploited by some Jewish institutions for their own gain and to cover Israel’s illegal occupation of the West Bank and Gaza.  Because his name had been sullied, Finkelstein was never able to teach again.

Fatima Mohammed, in her recent commencement address to fellow graduates, condemned Israel for perpetuating the Nakba (catastrophe); stating that “our silence is no longer acceptable….Palestine can no longer be the exception to our pursuit of justice.”  Predictably, Mohammed faced immediate public condemnation from U.S. politicians and pro-Israel groups, who have accused her of anti-Semitism, and have called for the university to be defunded over her speech.

In December 2008 and January 2009, as before, Israel marshaled its public relations machine.  This time it was to counter the criticism it was receiving for its massive 22-day bombardment of the Gaza Strip, in which 1,398 Palestinians were killed.

The Israel Project

The Israel Project (TIP), a pro-Israel Washington-based group, hired Frank Luntz, a Republican operative and political strategist, to shore up its image.   Luntz conducted an extensive study to determine how to integrate Israel’s narrative into mainstream media.  His findings were reported in a document titled, “The Israel Project’s 2009 Global Language Dictionary.”

Language from Luntz’s primer, with its scripted discourse for Israeli supporters, has seeped into the thinking, vocabulary and comments of American, Israeli and European politicians, academics and mainstream media.

In his 18-Chapter primer, Luntz coaches Israeli supporters on how to tailor answers for different audiences, outlines what Americans want to hear and what words and phrases to use and to be avoided.  It provides guidance on how to challenge statements from and to feign compassion for Palestinians.  Luntz advises to always emphasize Israel’s desire for peace, although he initially states that it does not really want a peaceful solution.

Supporters are enjoined to give the false impression that the so-called “cycle of violence” has been going on for thousands of years, that both sides are equally at fault and that Palestine-Israel catastrophe is beyond their understanding.  He urges advocates to stress Israel’s need for security, emphasizing that Americans will respond favorably if Israeli civilians are portrayed as the innocent victims of Palestinian “terrorism.”

Luntz states that when Americans are told that Iran supports Hezbollah and Hamas, they will be inclined to be more supportive of Israel.  Therefore, when talking about them to repeatedly say “Iran-backed” Hamas and Hezbollah.

On the rare occasions the mainstream media reports on Israel’s abuses, it conforms to the official lexicon outlined in Luntz’s dictionary.  Israel’s army of occupation, for example, is referred to as “defense” or “security” forces, Zionist colonizers, (squatters), are termed “settlers,” Zionist colonies are called “settlements” or “neighborhoods,” Palestinians “attack,” while Israelis merely “retaliate.”

Normalizing the Abnormal

Among the more glaring fabrications is the characterization of the Israel-Palestine quagmire as a “conflict” between two peoples with equal political and military resources and equal claims; when it is, in reality, a conflict between the colonizer, Israel, and the colonized, Palestinians.

For 75 years, Israeli propaganda has allowed it to be the exception—to flout international norms and laws with impunity.  Because of the myths, Israel has been extremely influential in determining U.S. policy in the Middle East. The country’s unremitting and methodical disinformation campaigns from 1948 to the present have allowed Israel to plant the Zionist flag on Palestinian land and in the hearts and minds of Americans.

Tel Aviv is, however, finding it increasingly difficult to whitewash its entrenched apartheid system and ongoing genocide, especially in light of the openly racist policies and practices of the current right-wing regime cobbled together by its legally-plagued prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu.  Israel’s hasbara industry, however, remains undaunted.  TIP folded in 2019 after its funding dried up, but the Democratic Majority for Israel (DMFI) continues to carry on Israel’s hasbara mission.

Israel knows that the narratives it tells itself and the world are apocryphal and the Jewish state, in its present form, is unlawful and unjust.  Hence, in an attempt to make the apocryphal real and the fraudulent legal, Israel continues its ongoing ideological war to normalize the abnormal in Palestine.

– Dr. M. Reza Behnam is a political scientist specializing in the history, politics and governments of the Middle East. He contributed this article to The Palestine Chronicle.

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Normalization possible with Arab regimes, impossible with Arab people

June 7,2023

Source: Al Mayadeen English

By Ahmad Karakira 

Speaking to Al Mayadeen English, Sayed Shibl, Egyptian writer and researcher in political affairs, says Al-Awja crossing operation reflects “the true expression of the collective public opinion of Egyptians.”

No one knows what the Egyptian conscript, martyr Mohammad Salah, had in mind when he carried out the Al-Awja crossing operation on the border with occupied Palestine, where he killed three Israeli soldiers, two days before the anniversary of the 1967 Naksa (Setback).

Perhaps Mohammad was one of the 2000s generation in Egypt, whose parents and grandparents repeatedly told them on different occasions about the defeat of the Arab forces by the Israeli occupation and the loss of Arab lands such as Sinai, the Golan, the West Bank, Gaza, and Al-Quds and lamented the departure of a great Arab leader like Gamal Abdel Nasser, who united the Arab nation, supported the oppressed, and stood in the face of Western imperialism.

Perhaps he was taught that, as Abdel Nasser said, “What was taken by force can only be restored by force” and was reminded that under Operation Badr in 1973, the Egyptian army’s heroic resistance was able to cross the Suez Canal, capture the “Bar Lev Line”, and liberate a part of Sinai.

Maybe the 23-year-old is from this Arab generation that has not yet forgotten the scenes of killing and trail of destruction left behind by the Israeli occupation in its repeated aggressions against the Palestinians in the besieged Gaza Strip for 16 years, and perhaps the images of “Israel” committing the worst massacres against the Lebanese in 2006 were planted in his memory.

But for sure, he was a witness to the daily crimes committed by the occupation forces against the Palestinians who are defending their land, sanctities, and dignity across Palestine.

During the Israeli aggression on Gaza in May 2021, Mohammad wrote on his Facebook page, “Allah stands by Palestine,” in response to a post by Mike Pence saying: “America stands with Israel,” during Seif Al-Quds Battle.

We have the right to consider that the operation carried out by Mohammad Salah against the occupation forces expresses the will of every free and honorable person who rejects the occupation, makes it suffer, takes away its security and its settlers’ comfort, and takes revenge for the oppressed, the blood of the martyrs, and all the prisoners in occupation prisons.

In confirmation of that, Israeli occupation Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu described the operation as “serious and unusual.” The chief of staff of the Israeli occupation forces, Herzi Halevi, admitted that the operation was “a difficult incident,” during which three of the Israeli occupation forces’ “best” soldiers were killed on the border with Egypt.

Israeli media also considered that the Egyptian conscript’s operation, which succeeded despite its simplicity, exposed the complete collapse of the security system of the Israeli occupation army in this particular area, admitting that the results of the operation were indeed difficult, painful, and dealt a blow to occupation forces who suffered a serious failure in preventing “infiltration” into “Israel”.

Read more: Egyptian policeman’s operation part of multifront war: Israeli media

Touching on the latest operation, Sayed Shibl, Egyptian writer and researcher in political affairs, told Al Mayadeen English that Al-Awja crossing operation “is certainly not an individual one, but rather the true expression of the collective public opinion of Egyptians who reject the Israeli presence.”

Shibl said the evidence for this is the amount of support Mohammad Salah received on social media.

“It is very rare to find an Egyptian comment on Facebook that rejects armed action directed against Israel, and if an Egyptian happens to have this anomalous opinion, he will stop it because of how strong the public opinion stands against Zionism,” he indicated.

The Egyptian writer and researcher considered that the importance of the operation “lies in the fact that it came at a time when the Israeli entity feels threatened from all borders, except the western border with Egypt where it feels safe.”

He added that the operation “reinforces the concern of the occupation government and deprives the settlers of any sense of safety.”

“It is a message to the leaders of the entity calling on them to retreat from their aggressive path against the Arab people in occupied Palestine.”

Shibl underlined that what is certain is that there is a message that reached everyone today: normalization is possible with Arab governments, but it is impossible with the Arab people.

Despite the absence of precise figures on the percentage of Egyptians who reject normalization with the Israeli occupation, a 2019-2020 survey conducted by the Arab Center for Research and Policy Studies found that 85% of Egyptians refuse diplomatic recognition of “Israel”, while only 13% support it.

According to Shibl, Egyptians expressed their happiness in public streets, in cafes, and on social media. He noted that despite not witnessing marches or demonstrations due to the security conditions in the country, anyone who lives among ordinary Egyptians during the past few days can touch their joy over the recent operation due to their rejection of the continued Israeli occupation of Arab lands, as well as the longing of Egyptians for acts of resistance, especially if it was carried out by an Egyptian — a factor related to national pride.

Asked whether the timing of Mohammad Salah’s operation might be linked to the 1967 Naksa anniversary, Shibl said, “Maybe it has something to do with the June 5 setback anniversary, or maybe not.”

The Egyptian writer pointed out that it is natural for every young Egyptian under the age of 30 to have a father or uncle who tells them about Egypt’s wars with the Israeli enemy and the martyrs who rose during it, which plants in them “a desire for revenge,” especially since the effects of the 1967 aggression remain apparent in Palestine and Syria, and even in Egypt, under the so-called “Peace Treaty”, which still restricts the full movement of the Egyptian army inside the Sinai Peninsula.

Shibl recalled that in the aftermath of the 2011 revolution, the position of the various political currents was to reject “Israel” and organize demonstrations against its embassy, ​​which culminated in the September 2011 storming of the occupation’s embassy in the Egyptian city of Giza, which led to its evacuation in the summer of the same year.

In conclusion, the Israeli occupation, as usual, will present hundreds of arguments and justifications related to martyr Mohammad Salah, including that he suffers from a psychological disorder or that he does not represent the official Egyptian position on “Israel”, but there is no doubt that the last operation will remain stuck in the minds of the new Egyptian generation.

And who knows, we might see another Mohamed Salah in the coming days.

Read more: Israeli reports say Egyptian border incident premeditated

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‘Israel’ eager to mediate ceasefire in Sudan: What are the reasons?

Apr 28 2023

Source: Al Mayadeen English

By Ahmad Karakira 

The Israeli occupation has several reasons to rush to mediate a ceasefire between the Sudanese army and the Rapid Support forces, the most important of which is establishing its presence in yet another African country bordering the strategic Red Sea.

‘Israel’ eager to mediate ceasefire in Sudan: What are the reasons?

A few days ago, three Israeli occupation Foreign Ministry officials told Axios that “Israel” has offered to host both parties involved in the conflict in Sudan in an effort to reach a cease-fire agreement.

The proposal was handed to Army Chief General Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan and Rapid Support Forces (RSF) head General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, known as Hemedti, as Israeli occupation Foreign Minister Eli Cohen and director general of the Israeli occupation’s Foreign Ministry Ronen Levy remained in direct contact with both Sudanese generals.

According to Cohen and Levy, both Sudanese generals gave the impression that they were considering the proposal in a positive light, adding that US President Joe Biden’s administration was consulted and informed. 

“Since the fighting started in Sudan, Israel has been working in different channels in order to reach a ceasefire. The progress we have made with the two parties is very encouraging. If there will be a way that Israel could help in stopping the war and the violence in Sudan we will be very happy to do it,” Cohen told Axios in a statement.

Read more: No end to war until Al-Burhan surrenders: RSF advisor to Al Mayadeen

Normalization with ‘Israel’ jeopardized by Sudan fighting: Axios

Another report by Axios revealed that the Israeli occupation fears that the ongoing clashes will hinder the formation of a prospected Israeli-allied civilian government, which would jeopardize the normalization agreement between Sudan and the Israeli occupation. 

According to the report, “Israel” has built strong relationships with both Al-Burhan and Dagalo. Before clashes ensued, Israeli officials said they were actively following up on the process of appointing a civilian-led government in Sudan.

During his visit to Khartoum in February, Cohen urged Al-Burhan to proceed with restoring civilian rule, emphasizing that it will be challenging to secure a peace agreement without it, Axios mentioned.

The news website cited Israeli sources as saying that the Israeli occupation Foreign Ministry has been in contact with Al-Burhan over the normalization process, while Dagalo and Mossad have met and discussed “security” and “counterterrorism issues”.

Israeli officials were certain of an agreement to appoint a civilian government in the upcoming days, Axios indicated. However, what transpired was fierce fighting that spread over multiple cities in the country.

The White House has also pushed Israelis to mediate a ceasefire deal between the fighting generals, the report revealed.

But why is “Israel” in a rush to complete the normalization process with Sudan?

Flashback

It all started in 2016 when the Israeli occupation urged the US to allow it to infiltrate into Sudan after the North African country severed diplomatic ties with the Islamic Republic of Iran. Following Saudi Arabia’s lead, Sudan cut diplomatic ties with Iran after the storming of the Saudi Arabian Embassy in Tehran and the consulate building in the city of Mashhad.

In August 2017, then-Sudanese Minister for Investment, Mubarak Fadel Al-Mahdi, spoke for the first time about normalization with the Israeli occupation during an interview with the Sudania24 TV station.

And when General Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan came to power after the resignation of Omar Al-Bashir, he met in February 2020 with Israeli occupation Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Uganda.

Consequently, Khartoum was removed from the US blacklist in December 2020 after 27 years of imposed sanctions.

In January 2021, Sudan formally agreed to normalize relations with “Israel” in a quid pro quo for the United States to remove it from its list of so-called “state sponsors of terrorism”, but ties were never formalized. In April of that year, the North African nation approved a bill abolishing a 1958 boycott of the Israeli occupation.

Finally, Sudan and “Israel” said in February that they agreed to move towards normalizing relations during the first official visit of Israeli occupation Foreign Minister Eli Cohen to Khartoum.

Sudan; a route to transfer arms to Palestinian Resistance

One of the several reasons that the Israeli occupation is racing against time to complete the normalization process with Sudan is to make sure that the North African country does not again become a route to transfer arms to the Palestinian Resistance in the Gaza Strip.

Before severing ties with Iran, Al-Bashir’s administration reportedly supported the Hamas movement politically and allowed it to open an office in Sudan. The Israeli occupation had previously accused Sudan of allowing the passage of arms from several countries to Gaza via its territory.

However, with the regime change in Egypt and the rise of General Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi as President, the latter ordered the destruction of tunnels between his country and Gaza, through which the Palestinian Resistance reportedly used to receive arms.

In March 2009, the Israeli occupation even targeted a 17-truck convoy in eastern Sudan that reportedly carried weapons to Gaza, and also targeted an arms factory in Khartoum in October 2012.

In March 2014, the Israeli occupation’s navy said it seized a ship loaded with weapons in the Red Sea between Sudan and Eritrea that was allegedly en route from Iran to Gaza.

To further dive into the reason for “Israel’s” eagerness to mediate a ceasefire in Sudan and consequently complete a peace agreement with the North African nation, one should tackle the history of relations between the two sides.

History of Sudanese-Israeli relations

In his book “Israel” And Relations With The Islamic World, Jihad Odeh said that “Israel’s” ties with Sudan began before the latter gained its independence from British occupation in 1956, when an Israeli trade mission comprising 50 people settled in Khartoum in 1951 to buy Sudanese products and goods and send them to “Israel” via Cape Town, South Africa, to avoid anti-smuggling measures taken by the Egyptian authorities in the Suez Port and Port Said.

The book mentioned that Israeli planes often landed at Khartoum airport to refuel and continue their flights, which prompted the Secretary-General of the Arab League at the time to send a memorandum to the British government in February 1951 to inquire about the matter.

Britain, which was ruling Sudan in partnership with Egypt, replied that Israeli planes had the right to use Khartoum Airport under the pretext that Britain and Sudan are not at war with “Israel.”

It was during the era of Abdullah Khalil’s government that the first Israeli intelligence envoy arrived in Sudan, with the consent of the Sudanese government, Odeh revealed in his book.

And as a result of contacts that began in 1954 between Sudanese politicians and “Israel”, a Sudanese figure accompanied by a Sudanese journalist met in a London hotel with a young diplomat working in the Israeli occupation’s embassy in Britain named Mordechai Gazit.

The author said that Sadiq Al-Mahdi, the head of the Umma Party, was in contact with Mossad in 1954, and met along with Mohammad Ahmad Omar, editor-in-Chief of the Nile Newspaper and spokesperson for the Umma Party, with Gazit. 

According to Odeh, the goal of Sudan at that time was to seek the help of “Israel” to win Jewish public opinion in the West to obtain independence, while Gazit wanted to establish commercial relations Between Sudan and “Israel” to reduce the intensity of Arab isolation.

Contacts and meetings between Israeli and Sudanese politicians continued after the latter’s independence in 1956, when then-Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir met with then-head of the Sudanese government Abdullah Khalil in the summer of 1957.

In those discussions between Meir and Khalil, it was agreed to send Israeli agricultural experts and civilian and military advisors to Sudan. It was also agreed that Sudan would allow EL AL planes to land and refuel on their way to South Africa, and that the Mossad would be allowed to build a station in the North African country.

Al Haya newspaper noted that the Mossad was able to establish its station again in Khartoum in 1983 during the era of then-Sudanese President Jaafar Nimeiry after the latter met with Menachem Begin’s Security Minister, Ariel Sharon.

Nimeiry revealed that he began his contacts with “Israel” in 1965 when he was an officer participating in a course on cooperation between Sudan and the US, where he established contacts with Israeli personalities who later visited Sudan in unannounced secret visits, Odeh mentioned in his book. However, when he took power in May 1969, Nimeiry followed Egypt’s footsteps against the Israeli occupation.

Nevertheless, Israeli ties with Nimeiry’s regime re-resurfaced after the Camp David Accords, which he supported, leading Mossad to rebuild its mission in Sudan.

Why Africa and Sudan?

In his book, The Israeli Foreign Policy Toward Africa: The Sudan Case, Amer Khalil Ahmed Amer pointed out that “Israel” has adopted an approach that relies on closer relations with countries surrounding Arab states, and this is evident in the strong relations with these countries at all levels, especially in the field of military and security cooperation, hidden under the cover of trade and economic relations.

In parallel with the expertise that the Israeli occupation provides to these countries, Amer continued, it has gained a foothold in military bases that oversee Arab countries, which represents a clear threat to Arab national security in general.

The occupation can threaten Arab water security and navigation in the Red Sea, due to the advanced position that it gained from establishing strong relations with Eritrea, the author pointed out.

Amer noted that the attempt to control the Red Sea is one of the most important strategic goals of “Israel” in the African continent, adding that the occupation began to establish a presence on the Red Sea in order to use it to achieve its military, economic, and political interests.

To achieve this goal, “Israel” strengthened its relations with Ethiopia in the late sixties and Eritrea after its independence from Ethiopia in 1991; it also built bases in Ethiopia after Moshe Dayan’s visit in 1965.

In addition to its military bases on the Eritrean islands, especially near Bab Al-Mandab, “Israel” built two military bases in Ethiopia near the border between Eritrea and Sudan.

According to Amer, this expansion in the Red Sea region gave “Israel” a strategic depth in Bab Al-Mandab to monitor any Arab military activity in the region.

It is noteworthy that “Israel” has military and intelligence bases for espionage and monitoring on a number of Eritrean islands, including Dahlak, Haleb, and Marsa Fatma, which are located at the southern entrance to the Red Sea, in addition to Zubair Island, which is only 22 km from Yemen, and houses a communications network and radar equipment.

The Israeli presence on these islands also includes special forces, paratrooper units, and airborne forces equipped with modern helicopters and Dolphin-class submarines. Through these bases, “Israel” threatens Yemen’s national security, where it can monitor it and spy on it smoothly, Amer argued.

During his visit to “Israel” in 1996, then-Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki signed an agreement to enhance security and military cooperation that included, in one of its clauses, an Israeli pledge to support Eritrea to confront any attempts by any force to control its strategic islands located at the southern entrance to the Red Sea, and to allow a limited military presence in these islands.

Sudan; a power to the Arab world

According to Amer, Israeli estimates since the beginning of Sudan’s independence indicated that this country should not be allowed to become a force added to the power of the Arab world, because if invested in stable conditions, its resources will make it a threatening force.

During the 1967 War, Sudan became a base for training and sheltering the Egyptian Air Force and ground forces. It also sent its forces to the Canal region during the War of Attrition between 1968 and 1970, as well as during the 1973 October War.

It is noteworthy that following the 1967 Six Day War, Khartoum hosted the Arab League summit held from 29 August to 1 September 1967. There, Arab leaders declared the three no’s: “no peace with Israel, no recognition of Israel, no negotiations with Israel.”

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«إسرائيل» ولعنة الفلسطينيين: سقوط الوهم وبداية الأفول!

السبت 18 شباط 2023

د. عدنان منصور

لم تستطع الحروب ولا العقود التي أعقبت قيام الكيان «الإسرائيلي» عام 1948، أن تمحو من ذاكرة الفلسطينيين والعرب حقيقة دامغة، وهي أنّ الكيان المحتلّ، تأسّس بفعل عامل القوة، والدعم الخارجي، وفرض الأمر الواقع بتواطؤ قوى دولية، أتاح للحركة الصهيونية وتنظيماتها الإرهابية أن تنشئ دولتها على أرض فلسطين بعد مجازر رهيبة ارتكبتها، وقيامها بتطهير عرقي للفلسطينيين، كي تكون فلسطين مقدمة لتحقيق حلم الصهاينة في إنشاء «إسرائيل الكبرى».

لقد تعاطى الصهاينة مع فلسطين على أنها أرض بلا شعب، لشعب بلا أرض، لذا أرادوا تفريغ فلسطين من سكانها، لتصبح خالية لهم، ومن ثم فرض الأمر الواقع «الإسرائيلي» عليها، ليمحوا بعد ذلك الوجود الفلسطيني برمته.

كانت العمليات الإرهابية تعكس نهج وعقيدة وسلوك القادة الصهاينة وعصاباتهم المسلحة، كي يختزلوا شعباً بأكمله، من خلال عمليات تطهير عرقي واسعة النطاق، قامت بها التنظيمات الارهابية الهجانا، وشتيرن، والارغون، أعوام1947 ، و1948، و1949، أدّت الى تمشيط وتدمير المدن والقرى الفلسطينية، التي بلغ عددها وفقاً لمصادر المؤرّخ الإسرائيلي بني موريس ودراسة إسرائيل شاحاك بين 350 و383 قرية ومدينة. علماً انّ عدداً من الباحثين العرب، مثل عبد الجواد صالح ووليد مصطفى أحصوا 472 قرية ومدينة مدمّرة، فيما سلمان أبو ستة، وبعد دراسات وإحصاءات عميقة موثقة قام بها، تعتبر من أهمّ الأبحاث في هذا المجال، أكد على أنّ عدد القرى والمدن المدمرّة بلغ 566 قرية ومدينة.

لقد ظنّ الصهاينة في ذلك الوقت، انّ القوة وحدها تستطيع أن تجعل منهم دولة. وانّ «قوة التقدّم في تاريخ العالم هي للسيف»، «نحن نحارب إذن نحن نكون»، ولولا النصر في دير ياسين، لما كانت دولة إسرائيل»! (مناحيم بيغين رئيس وزراء إسرائيل الأسبق، وزعيم عصابة الارغون الإرهابية قبل إعلان دولة «إسرائيل»)
لقد روّج أقطاب الحركة الصهيونية، وعلى رأسهم ثيودور هرتزل، وإسراييل زانجويل ، لفكرة شوّهت تاريخ فلسطين وواقعها العربي، معتبرين أنها أرض بلا شعب، لشعب بلا أرض، هذا الادّعاء الوهم، لقيَ في ما بعد رواجاً في الأدبيات السياسية للقادة «الإسرائيليين»، ما دفع برئيسة وزراء «إسرائيل» في 8 آذار 1969 لتقول: «كيف يمكن لنا إعادة الأراضي المحتلة؟!

ليس هناك من أحد نعيدها إليه! وبعد حرب حزيران1967، واحتلال الضفة الغربية، صرحت غولدا مائير يوم 15 حزيران 1969 كلّ وقاحة قائلة: «لا يوجد شيء اسمه الفلسطينيون. لم يكن هناك في فلسطين من فلسطينيين حتى يقال إننا طردناهم، وأخذنا البلاد منهم. إذ لم يكن لهؤلاء من وجود».

كان بن غوريون يريد أرضاً خالية من الفلسطينيين، كي يقيم كيانه عليها.لذلك لم يشأ عام 1948 أن يتوسع في ضمّ المزيد من الأراضي رغم مواجهته معارضة عنيفة داخل الكنيست، واتهامه بالتخاذل في عدم ضمّه الضفة الغربية، وذلك خشية وخوف بن غوريون من الديموغرافيا الفلسطينية حيث كان ردّه: «إنه لمن الأفضل تحقيق الدولة اليهودية من دون أرض إسرائيل كلها، بدلاً من أرض «إسرائيل» كلها من دون دولة يهودية.»

كان بن غوريون يدرك جيداً العامل الديموغرافي وخطورته على مستقبل الدولة اليهودية، خاصة أنّ تعداد العرب الفلسطينيين سيفوق مستقبلاً تعداد اليهود. وانّ إقامة دولة ديمقراطية على كامل التراب الفلسطيني، يترتب عنه:

أ ـ إما إشراك الفلسطينيين في الحكم بشكل فاعل ومؤثر بسبب نسبة عددهم الى «الإسرائيليين»، وهذا ما أراد بن غوريون تجنبه، ولو لوقت، تاركاً المجال للأجيال اليهودية القادمة، أن تأخذ المبادرة في تمدّد الاحتلال.
ب ـ وإما طرد الفلسطينيين على الفور. وهذا ما تمّ تنفيذه من خلال خمس موجات عسكرية قامت بها المنظمات الإرهابية «الإسرائيلية»، وفي ما بعد الجيش الذي تشكل من هذه المنظمات التي انضوت تحت لوائه. موجات التطهير العرقي الخمس، وثقها بني موريس في كتابه: «نشأة اللاجئين الفلسطينيين». موجات بدأت من شهر كانون الأول 1947، وصولاً الى شهر تموز 1949، أسفرت عن ارتكاب مجازر رهيبة، وتطهير المدن والقرى، وإفراغها من سكانها.

عقيدة الاحتلال، والتطهير العرقي، وضمّ المزيد من الأراضي عبر عنها موشي ديان بعد حرب حزيران 1967 قائلا: «إن الجيل الماضي أنشأ دولة «إسرائيل»، والجيل الحاضر أحرز ما أحرزه في حرب 1967… فعلى الجيل القادم أن يأخذ المبادرة وينطلق عبر الحدود.»!

بهذا المنطق العدواني التوسعي، أراد «الإسرائيليون» أن يختزلوا وجود الشعب الفلسطيني، وينزعوا تاريخه وحاضره، هويته وعقيدته، جذوره وحضارته، ثقافته وانتماءه. لذلك كان استخدام القوة العسكرية واللجوء الى العمليات الإرهابية غاية «إسرائيل»، لانتزاع فلسطين من ذاكرة الجيل الثاني والثالث الفلسطيني. في الوقت الذي ـ باعتقادهم الوهم ـ سيترسخ فيه «الوجود الإسرائيلي» أكثر فأكثر مع الجيل الثاني والثالث الإسرائيليين وما بعدهما !

لم يكن أمام «إسرائيل» إلا استخدام كافة وسائل القتل والإرهاب، والتخويف لإخضاع المقاومة الفلسطينية. إرهاب وقتل ترسخ في عقول العديد من «الإسرائيليين»، منهم ارمون سوفير الأكاديمي في جامعة حيفا الذي أدلى يوم 10 أيار 2004 بحديث الى صحيفة «جيروزالم بوست» جاء فيه: «فيما لو أردنا ان نبقى على قيد الحياة، يتوجّب علينا ان نقتل ونقتل ونقتل. إن لم نقتل في كلّ وقت وفي كل يوم، سينتهي وجودنا

سياسة القتل والحروب العنصرية الإسرائيلية، واستحضار المحرقة، وجعلها سلوكاً ملازماً للإسرائيليين، أثارها رئيس الكنيست الأسبق أبراهام بورغ في كتابه: بقوله: «إنّ حضور الموت الذي لا يتوقف في حياتنا، المرتبط بحروب «إسرائيل»، لا يؤدّي إلا الى الإكثار من المجازر والدمار والإبادة التي يتلقاها شعبنا. لهذا فإنّ الأموات في هذا البلد لا يرقدون أبداً في سلام. انهم دائماً نشطون، دائماً حاضرون، دائماً ملازمون لوجودنا التعيس، والمحرقة، والحروب، والموت واستحضار للذاكرة الأبدية. لقد ربحنا كلّ الحروب، ومع ذالك نحتفظ بشعور عميق بالخسارة… إنّ الحرب لم تعد استثناء بل أصبحت قانوناً. طريقة عيشنا طريقة حرب مقابل الجميع، أعداء وأصدقاء على السواء.

أمام هذه الحقيقة المحزنة، اننا على يقين أنّ «الإسرائيليين» لا يفهمون إلا لغة القوة. هذه العقلية التي تعكس بداية العنجهية الإسرائيلية في وجه الهزائم العربية، أصبحت المبرّر لأفعال عديدة، ومفاهيم سياسية غير مقبول بها في عالم عادل…»

بعد خمسة وسبعين عاماً من احتلال «إسرائيل» لفلسطين، ورغم امتلاكها ترسانة نووية، وعسكرية تجعل منها واحدة من أكبر القوى العسكرية الضاربة في الشرق الأوسط، بموازنة عسكرية تبلغ 14 مليار دولار، يضاف اليها مساعدة عسكرية سنوية بقيمة 3.5 مليار دولار تقدّمها الولايات المتحدة لها، لم تستطع «إسرائيل» أن تطفئ شعلة المقاومة، ولا ان تلغي حقائق التاريخ، أو تروّض الشعب الفلسطيني، أو تلغي وجوده، وتقضي على إرادته في مقاومة الاحتلال. كما لم تستطع أن توفر لمستوطنيها الأمن والاستقرار، والثقة بمستقبل لن يكون بالتأكيد، إلا لأصحاب الأرض والحقّ، بعد أن قلب المقاومون الفلسطينيون المقاييس، والمعادلات العسكرية والديموغرافية، والعقائدية التي بنى عليها قادة المنظمات الصهيونية منذ تأسيس دولتهم وحتى اليوم.

حساب الوهم «الإسرائيلي» لم يكن في موضعه. فالتآكل بدأ يتفاعل، والانقسام الداخلي، والتمييز العنصري ينخر بشدة المجتمع «الإسرائيلي» في الوقت الذي قلب فيه الجيل الثاني والثالث الفلسطيني المقاييس، وأطاح بالنظريات، والسياسات، والخطط، والحلول المفخخة، التي رسمتها دولة الاحتلال مع حلفائها وعرابيها بحق الفلسطينيين.
منذ 75 عاماً، وأرحام أمهات فلسطين تنجب المقاومين أصحاب الأرض الذين لم يحسب أقطاب الصهاينة حسابهم. هم المقاومون الحقيقيون البواسل. هم هوية فلسطين ووجدانها، ماضيها وحاضرها ومستقبلها. هم الذين سيجعلون العالم كله يشهد على تحرير أرضهم من الغزاة عاجلاً أم آجلاً.

انّ شعباً عظيماً، ومقاومة عنيدة لا نظير لها في العالم كله، فيها خيري علقم، وقوافل الشهداء، حاضرة في كلّ الساحات، تقول بصوت عال للكيان المحتلّ، انّ فلسطين ليست لشذاذ الآفاق، وإنما لشعب متجذر فيها، وها أنا هذا الشعب. المنازلة بيننا لن تتوقف، والإرادة الأقوى هي التي ستنتصر لا محال! إرادة قوافل شهداء الجيل الثاني والثالث الأكثر تعلقاً وثباتاً وإيماناً بفلسطين وشعبها. هو الجيل الثائر الذي يرفع منسوب مقاومته يوماً بعد يوم، والمُصرّ على تبديد الوهم الإسرائيلي، وتصحيح مسار التاريخ.
بعد مضيّ 75 عاماً على الاحتلال، هل لا زال قادة «إسرائيل» الجدد مقتنعين انّ فلسطين كانت أرضاً بلا شعب، لشعب بلا أرض؟! الجواب عند المقاومين الذين عاهدوا الله والأمة على تطهيرها من الاحتلال الصهيوني، في يوم سيسأل فيه الفلسطينيون: ما إسرائيل وما جبل صهيون، كما سأل قوم من قبل، ما عاد وما ثمود…؟

*وزير الخارجية والمغتربين الأسبق

UN Asks ICJ for Legal Opinion on “Israeli” Occupation

 December 31, 2022

By Staff, Agencies

The United Nations General Assembly [UNGA] has adopted a resolution asking the International Court of Justice [ICJ] for its legal opinion on the “Israeli” regime’s occupation of Palestinian territories.

The 193-member assembly voted on the resolution on Friday. Eighty-seven countries voted in favor of the resolution against 26 negative votes cast by the “Israeli” regime, the United States, its oldest and strongest ally, and 24 others, and 53 abstentions.

The “Israeli” regime claimed existence in 1948 after occupying huge swathes of Palestinian territories during a Western-backed war. It occupied more land, namely the West Bank, which includes East al-Quds [Jerusalem], and the Gaza Strip in another such war in 1967.

Ever since, the regime has built hundreds of illegal settlements upon the occupied territories and deployed the most aggressive restraints on Palestinian freedoms there. Tel Aviv withdrew from Gaza in 2005, but has been keeping the coastal territory under an all-out land, aerial, and naval siege since a year after it left the enclave.

Addressing the Assembly’s session before the vote, Palestinian UN envoy Riyad Mansour said the world body was about to weigh in on the resolution one day after the swearing-in of an “Israeli” cabinet led by Benjamin Netanyahu. Mansour reminded that the cabinet – which has been billed as the most extremist one yet in the regime’s history – had promised to expand the illegal settlements.

“We trust that, regardless of your vote today, if you believe in international law and peace, you will uphold the opinion of the International Court of Justice when delivered and you will stand up to” the “Israeli” officials, the envoy said.

The occupying regime’s ambassador to the world body, Gilad Erdan, however, called the United Nations a “morally bankrupt and politicized” body for deciding to go ahead with the vote. Erdan also said any decision by any judicial body that would receive its mandate from such an organization “is completely illegitimate.”

Via the resolution, the General Assembly asked the ICJ to give an advisory opinion on the legal consequences of “Israel’s” “occupation, settlement, and annexation…, including measures aimed at altering the demographic composition, character, and status” of the holy city of al-Quds.

Palestinians want East al-Quds  [Jerusalem] as the capital of their future state, while the occupying regime lays claim to the entirety of the city as its so-called “capital.”

Ever since occupying the West Bank, the “Israeli” regime has been trying to manipulate al-Quds’ status quo through various measures, including by enforcing restrictions on the Palestinians’ right to worship at the al-Aqsa Mosque’s compound – Islam’s third-holiest site – which is located in al-Quds’ Old City.

The regime’s military, however, regularly provides protection for its illegal settlers’ tours of the holy site as means of hurting the religious sentiments of the Palestinians and their fellow Muslims around the world.

On Thursday, the Palestinian Wafa news agency cited the official heading the Islamic organization that runs the compound’s affairs as saying that a record number of “Israeli” settlers, namely 48,238, had stormed the Muslim holy site in 2022.

According to Azzam Khatib, director of the Islamic Waqf Department, the “Israeli” extremists have been resorting to provocative conduct while storming the compound, including performing Jewish rituals at the site and raising the occupying regime’s flag there.

UN Votes to Take “Israeli” Occupation of Palestine to Hague Int’l Court

November 12, 2022

By Staff, Agencies

The United Nations General Assembly voted 98-17 to seek an advisory opinion from the International Court of Justice on the illegality of the “Israeli” entity’s occupation of Palestinian territories on the grounds that it can be considered de facto annexation.

This resolution specifically asked the ICJ for an opinion on the status of al-Quds [Jerusalem]. The city is one of the most volatile and contentious points of discord between “Israelis” and Palestinians.

The “Israeli” entity, the United States, Canada and Australia were among those who opposed the ICJ referral when the UNGA Fourth Committee held its preliminary vote on Friday in New York.

The issue now moves to the UNGA plenum for final approval.

“There is no authority that can declare that the Jewish nation is an occupier in its homeland,” the “Israeli” entity’s ambassador to the UN Gilad Erdan tweeted defiantly after the vote.

Erdan wrote that he had warned the UN nations that an appeal to the ICJ at The Hague was the “last nail in the burial coffin” of “Israeli”-Palestinian reconciliation. “Unilateral measures” such as an ICJ appeal “will be met with unilateral measures.”

At issue is the question of whether after 56 years, the “Israeli” entity’s hold on territories it captured from Jordan Egypt and Syria in the defensive 1967 Six-Day War, can be considered tantamount to de facto annexation and thus illegal under international law.

The international community does not recognize “Israeli” “sovereignty” in al-Quds [Jerusalem] and only the US accepts the entity’s annexation of the Golan.

The “Israeli” entity withdrew from Gaza, but the international community still holds that its under “Israeli” occupation due to the “Israeli” Occupation Forces’ [IOF’s] control of much of its borders.

An ICJ opinion on the matter is non-binding, but it would help codify into international law the Palestinian insistence that all that pre-1967 territory, should be within the final boundaries of its future state.

At Friday’s meeting, the US and the “Israeli” entity charged that the resolution was an attempt to bypass a negotiated resolution to the conflict with the Palestinians and as such ran counter to past UN resolutions including at the Security Council which called for such talks.

“The Palestinian’s have rejected every single peace initiative, and now they embroil an external body with the excuse that the conflict has not been resolved but the only reason why it has not been resolved is because of their rejectionism,” Erdan said. “They claim that they are ready to negotiate, but what they fail to mention is that they are only ready to do so if they are guaranteed 100 percent of their demands before they even sit down at the negotiating table,” Erdan explained.

“Exploiting a UN organ by enlisting the UN’s politicized anti-‘Israel’ majority for the purpose of forcing your demands instead of negotiating, is clearly a unilateral step,” he added.

The United States Representative Andrew Weinstein said that the “failure” in such resolutions “to acknowledge the shared history of the Haram al-Sharif [Temple Mount], a site sacred to both Jews and Muslims, is perhaps the clearest demonstration that they are intended only to denigrate ‘Israel’, not to help achieve peace.”

After the vote, the Palestinian Authority Ambassador Riyad Mansour thanked all the nations that endorsed and supported the resolutions.

“Nothing justifies standing with ‘Israeli’ annexation and occupation,” Mansour said, noting that these actions went against the UN Charter.

“This occupation needs to end,” Mansour said.

The request for an ICJ advisory opinion, submitted for the first time this year, was tacked onto a pre-existing annual resolution called “‘Israeli’ practices affecting the human rights of the Palestinian people.”

The text of the resolution was read out by Namibia and Cuba.

A number of nations objected to the inclusion of the ICJ resolution in an already existing text rather than as a stand-alone item, noting that the matter had been pushed through quickly with little time for review.

The resolution asks the ICJ to advise on “the legal consequences arising from the ongoing violations by Israel of the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination from its prolonged occupation, settlement and annexation of the Palestinian territory occupied since 1967.”

This includes, the resolution stated, “measures aimed at altering the demographic composition, character and status of the Holy City of Jerusalem and from its adoption of related discriminatory legislation and measures.”

In addition, the resolution asked the ICJ to explain how Israel’s policies and practices “affect the legal status of the occupation” and what are the “legal consequences that arise for all states the UN from this status.”

Among the nations that opposed the text were Austria, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Germany, Guatemala, Hungary, Italy, Liberia, Lithuania, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, and Palau.

Many European countries abstained including Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, Finland, France, Greece, Latvia, Lichtenstein, Netherlands, Norway, Romania, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

Ukraine, Ireland and Poland were among those countries that supported the ICJ referral.

This is the second such ICJ referral. In 2004 the ICJ issued an advisory opinion against the “Israeli” entity’s security barrier, explaining that its construction in east al-Quds [Jerusalem] and the West Bank was illegal.

Palestinian Martyred after Injuring 5 Israeli Settlers in Car-Ramming Operation

 October 30, 2022

Israeli occupation forces have killed another Palestinian following a car-ramming operation that left five settlers injured near the city of Jericho in the occupied West Bank.

The Palestinian Information Center, quoting Israeli media, said following the Sunday attack the Israeli occupation forces fatally shot the Palestinian man who was driving the car south of Jericho.

The Palestinian news agency also cited Israeli media as identifying the driver as as 49-year-old Barkat Odeh from the town of al-Eizariya near East al-Quds.

Israeli medical said the five injured Israelis are in their 20s and suffered different injuries following the incident.

The reported attack came amid heavily intensified Israeli raids throughout the West Bank in search of alleged Palestinian gunmen responsible for a spate of deadly attacks on Israeli occupation forces by Palestinian resistance forces – which began in March.

More than 100 Palestinians have so far been killed during the Israeli regime’s brutal crackdown on West Bank’s native residents.

On Saturday, four Israelis and a Palestinian were injured in a gun attack near an Israeli checkpoint in the occupied West Bank city of al-Khalil, also known as Hebron.

The Palestinian man was reportedly martyred by the occupying forces. Local news outlets cited Tel Aviv’s army as saying that the unidentified fighter “shot live fire” at the checkpoint in al-Khalil, also home to a community of radical Israeli settlers.

“Soldiers are conducting searches in the area” for additional suspects, the occupying army said. The Palestinian Red Crescent also announced that the Palestinian victim was receiving treatment at a local hospital.

The Israeli regime occupied and annexed the West Bank, including East al-Quds, in a heavily-Western-backed war of aggression in 1967.

Ever since, it has dotted the territory with hundreds of illegal settlements that have come to house hundreds of thousands of Zionist settlers that immigrated to occupied Palestine – mostly from Europe and the US.

Source: Agencies (edited by Al-Manar English Website)

MARVEL HEADS REVEALED TO BE CLOSELY CONNECTED TO ISRAELI INTELLIGENCE

SEPTEMBER 23RD, 2022

Source

By Jessica Buxbaum

Earlier this month, activists and comic book fans alike were in uproar over Marvel Studios’ announcement that Israeli actress Shira Haas will play Zionist superhero Sabra in the upcoming Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) film Captain America: New World Order. Many Palestine advocates accused Marvel’s decision to add Sabra to the MCU as exalting Israeli abuse and war crimes.

“By glorifying the Israeli army & police, Marvel is promoting Israel’s violence against Palestinians & enabling the continued oppression of millions of Palestinians living under Israel’s authoritarian military rule,” the Institute for Middle East Understanding wrote in a tweet.

Following the backlash, Marvel said in a statement to Variety that it will take a “new approach” to the character, in a perceived attempt to placate criticisms.

Yet vows to reimagine the Sabra character, a former spy for the Israeli intelligence agency Mossad, may come across as disingenuous, especially when, upon closer examination, Marvel appears closely connected to the Israeli government and its main intelligence agency Mossad.

MARVEL AND ISRAEL’S DEEPENING RELATIONSHIP

Many individuals who have held or still maintain roles at Marvel are associated with the Israeli military, Israeli intelligence and Zionist institutions that uphold apartheid. For instance, Isaac Perlmutter, the current chairman of Marvel Entertainment who served on Marvel Comics’ board of directors until 1995, grew up in 1948-occupied Palestine (or modern-day Israel) and served in the Israeli military during the 1967 Six-Day War. Avi Arad, the CEO of Marvel Entertainment, also grew up in modern-day Israel and served in the Israeli army during the Six-Day War.

Along with his wife, Laura, Perlmutter oversees a foundation that contributes to several pro-Israel causes such as the Anti-Defamation LeagueFriends of the Israel Defense Forces, the America-Israel Friendship League, the Jewish Federation of Palm Beach County in Florida, and the Jewish Agency for Israel. The Laura and Isaac Perlmutter Foundation has also supported the Hebrew University and Israel’s Technion Institute of Technology.

The Perlmutters are also heavily linked to the Trump family. In 2016, their organization donated $25,000 to the Eric Trump Foundation. According to Open Secrets, a campaign finance tracker, in 2016, Laura Perlmutter donated $5,400 to former President Donald Trump’s campaign and nearly $450,000 to the Trump Victory Committee, a joint fundraising initiative by the Trump campaign and the Republican National Committee. The couple then gave more than $1 million to the Trump Victory Committee in 2019 and 2020 and contributed another $11,200 to Trump’s reelection campaign in 2019.

President Trump shakes hand with Isaac “Ike” Perlmutter, an Israeli-American billionaire and the CEO of Marvel on April 27, 2017. Andrew Harnik | AP

Isaac Perlmutter donated $5 million in 2016 to the Great America PAC, a super political action committee (PAC) supporting Trump. The couple also contributed $10.5 million in 2020 to American First Action, a PAC supporting Trump. In addition, Both Perlmutters have backed several state and federal Republican entities and candidates over the years. The hefty donations did not go unnoticed, earning Isaac a spot in shaping policies at the Department of Veteran Affairs during Trump’s time in office, according to an investigation by ProPublica.

Early Marvel Comics’ investors Carl Icahn and Ronald Perelman are also tied to both Israel and Trump. Icahn donated $5,400 to Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign and was subsequently named Trump’s special adviser

Both Perelman and Icahn were revealed as potential donors to former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s campaign ahead of the 2007 primary elections. Perelman’s foundation has also contributed to several pro-Israel organizations, including the Chabad Lubavitch’s social services agency, Machne Israel, and the Jewish National Fund, which is a leading organization in establishing illegal Israeli settlements and displacing Palestinians.

Perelman also donated $125,000 to Trump’s Victory Committee in 2017 and is reportedly friends with Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner. He was also listed in convicted sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein’s address book.

Film producer Amy Pascal, who plays a key role in coordinating the collaboration between Sony Pictures and Marvel Studios, a subsidiary of Marvel Entertainment, is a known Israel lobbyist. Leaked Sony emails reveal Pascal received email updates on the security situation in Israel from the now-defunct, right-wing advocacy group, The Israel Project.

She also received emails from Creative Community for Peace, an organization fighting the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement in the entertainment industry. In 2014, Pascal and her husband also received an email invitation to attend a private event about the situation in Israel with the Israeli Consul General of Los Angeles, David Siegel, and president and CEO of the Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles, Jay Sanderson.

Israeli propaganda has become deeply entrenched in Hollywood, in part because of many prominent entertainment oligarchs’ pro-Israel beliefs, as well as the global success of Israeli television series like “Shtisel” and “Fauda”. The latter television show glamorized the Israeli army, specifically the Mista’arvim unit, an undercover military wing designed to infiltrate Palestinian communities.

Israeli actress Gal Gadot’s casting as Wonder Woman also helped normalize Israel on the world stage, especially given her pride in serving in the Israeli military. Now Haas, who is set to play Sabra, is poised to be another example of Hollywood normalizing the apartheid state. Haas has been involved with pro-Israel organization, StandWithUs, participating in a StandWithUs Facebook live to talk about her success. StandWithUs presents itself as an educational resource on Israel, but the organization is responsible for silencing the Palestinian narrative in schools and blacklisting pro-Palestine voices on campuses. Haas also served in the Israeli military’s theater.

The Mossad works with the U.S. entertainment industry to promote an attractive image of Israel abroad. SPYLEGENDS – an agency made up of former Mossad spies and other ex-security officials – was established in 2021 to advise Hollywood on spy films. The Mossad has also openly welcomed the slew of thrillers showcasing the intelligence agency as sleek and prestigious in an effort to boost recruitment.

MARVEL’S LINKS TO US MILITARISM AND INTELLIGENCE

Marvel’s nationalist sentiment does not end with Israel. Cloaked in mesmerizing cinematography and flashy special effects, the American company has also been instrumental in promoting U.S. militarism with its comic book universe.

In “Captain America: The First Avenger”, the U.S. army allowed Marvel Studios to film at Camp Edward, a military training site. The 2003 “Hulk” film also benefited from access to military bases and loaned military equipment. “Iron Man” and its sequel created iconic scenes by borrowing the military’s weaponry as well. These Marvel movies — along with “Captain America: Winter Soldier” and “Captain Marvel” — received funding from the U.S. Department of Defense to help build their blockbuster enterprise.

The military’s support, however, came with a price. The Pentagon approved the scripts for “Hulk” and “Iron Man”, cutting out unfavorable references to the military, such as their experimentation on humans and dropping herbicides on South East Asia during the Vietnam War.

With the “Captain America” franchise, the army supported the Marvel movie, seeing it as “building resiliency” and considering the Captain America character to hold values of a modern U.S. soldier. “Captain Marvel” was the Air Force public relations department’s dream. The film’s release coincided with an Air Force recruitment campaign, using feminism as a way to sugar coat “Captain Marvel’s” obvious militarism. The recruitment effort clearly worked with the Air Force seeing the highest number of female applicants to the Air Force Academy in five years.

With Marvel’s U.S. military propaganda in full swing, it seems the studio is now turning its focus to Israeli nationalism. Whether Sabra will don an Israeli-flag-inspired suit remains to be seen, but what is apparent is Marvel’s close relationship with Israel and the U.S. military is manufacturing a fantasy world dripping in real-world imperialism.

Egypt demands ‘Israel’ to verify credibility of 1967 war reports

10 Jul 2022

Source: Agencies

By Al Mayadeen English 

Media outlets are circulating news about Egyptian graves west of Al-Quds, which date back to the 1967 war, and Egypt wants to know more.

Egypt demands ‘Israel’ to verify credibility of 1967 war reports

The Egyptian Foreign Ministry assigned the Egyptian Embassy in “Tel Aviv” to investigate the truth about the mass grave of Egyptian soldiers unraveled recently west of occupied Al-Quds.

The Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced that the Egyptian Embassy in “Tel Aviv” has been assigned to communicate with the Israeli occupation authorities to investigate the truth behind what is being circulated in the media regarding the discovery of a mass grave that holds the bodies of Egyptian soldiers killed in the October 1967 war and to keep the Ministry updated. 

The Ministry also demanded a prompt investigation to verify the credibility of what is being circulated. 

A statement issued by the Egyptian Foreign Ministry read that in response to a question about reports that came up in Israeli media in relation to historical facts that occurred in the 1967 war, the spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Ahmed Hafez, stated that the Egyptian Embassy in “Tel Aviv” was assigned to communicate with the Israeli occupation authorities to investigate the truth.

In the past two days, the Israeli journalist Yossi Melman, an expert in security affairs, and who writes for the Israeli newspapers Yedioth Ahronoth and Haaretz, revealed that “Egyptian soldiers who were burned alive in the 1967 war were buried in mass graves that do not bear any signs, in a clear violation of the laws of war and with no mention of their killing,” with estimates pointing that the number could amount to tens of killed soldiers. 

Haaretz reported that there is a mass grave containing the bodies of 80 Egyptian soldiers, 20 of who were burnt alive, and whose killing was not announced during the 1967 war.

According to Melman, 25 Egyptian soldiers were burned alive after Israeli forces shelled them using phosphorous bombs, while other Egyptian soldiers were killed in the crossfire, bringing the total number of deaths to 80.

The 1967 war broke out between the Israeli occupation, on the one hand, and Iraq, Egypt, Syria, and Jordan, on the other, on June 5, 1967. This war lasted for six days and ended with “Israel” occupying Sinai, the Gaza Strip, the West Bank, and the Golan.

Algeria: 60 years of endless support for the Palestinian cause

July 5, 2022

Source: Al Mayadeen Net + Agencies

By Ahmad Karakira 

Algeria has always demonstrated unconditional support for the country of Palestine and the Palestinian cause, which dates back to fighting “Israel” and helping Egypt claim back Sinai in the 1973 October War.

Algeria’s unconditional support for the Palestinian cause

On July 5, 1962, after 132 years of French colonialism, Algeria declared its independence. The Evian agreements of March 18, 1962, ended the war between France and the Algerian National Liberation Army (ALN), and a referendum of self-determination took place on the first of July, 1962.

The results of the referendum came in favor of transferring power from the French to the Algerian authorities on July 3, ending decades of occupation, settler colonialism, and massacres.

The date – July 5 – was deliberately chosen by the Algerian government in reference to July 5, 1830, when the city of Algiers was occupied by France.

The seven-year war between the French occupier and the Algerian resistance left around one million Algerian martyrs on the path of Algeria’s freedom and liberation.

Endless stories about heroic epic battles by the Algerian resistance against Western colonialism can be recounted on the 60th anniversary of Algeria’s independence.

However, this piece aims to shed light on Algeria’s endless support for Palestine, the Palestinian cause, and fellow Arab states against all forms of oppression and occupation since the north African country gained its liberation through resistance.

“We are with Palestinians, be they the oppressed or the oppressors”

To begin with, Palestinians supported the Algerian Revolution from 1954-1962 and showed solidarity through organizing fundraisers for Algeria.

Despite some Arab states shamefully signing normalization agreements with the Israeli occupation in exchange for some benefits, Algeria has strongly opposed such deals, considering normalization with the occupation as a betrayal to the Arabs and the Palestinian cause.

In the early 1970s, former Algerian President Houari Boumediene said his famous phrase, “We are with Palestinians, be they the oppressed or the oppressors.”

It is noteworthy that similar to the official Algerian stance on Palestine, Algerians, according to the Center for Middle Eastern Studies, oppose normalizing ties with the Israeli occupation with a 99% rate.

One would wonder about the secret behind Algeria’s unconditional support for the Palestinian cause.

Historically, Algeria has always been advocating the Palestinian cause and supporting fellow Arab states against the Israeli occupation.

In fact, after only five years of gaining its liberation from the French occupation, Algeria supported the Arab allies against “Israel” by sending troops and aircrafts to fight alongside the Arab states in the 1967 Six-Day War.

The Algerian army also played an important role during the 1973 October war.

Significantly, when Egypt signed the Camp David Agreement and established ties with the Israeli occupation, Algeria severed its ties with Egypt.

In addition, Algeria established close relations with the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), providing it with weapons, training its fighters during the 70s, and helping the PLO obtain observer status in the UN in 1974.

After the former US President Donald Trump’s administration, the UAE, and “Israel” revealed the so-called “Abraham Accords” in August, current Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune stressed his country’s deep commitment to the Palestinian cause, affirming that Algeria deems Palestine as a sacred cause.

Algiers also harshly criticized the normalizing states (the UAE, Bahrain, Morocco, and Sudan). It also paid the price for its anti-normalization stance, as the US acknowledged the Moroccan sovereignty over Western Sahara after years of unresolved disputes and unachievable status.

In trying to understand the reason behind Algeria’s official and popular support for the Palestinian cause, Sami Hamdi, the Editor-in-Chief of the International Interest magazine, explained that “Algerians feel a deep resonance with the Palestinians who have been colonized for some 82 years and believe that whatever the difficulties, resistance will eventually succeed.”

In the same context, TRT had quoted Jalel Harchaoui, a Senior Fellow at the Geneva-based Global Initiative Against Transnational Organized Crime, as saying that Algeria’s “somewhat exceptional history makes resistance against colonial powers writ large a narrative crucially central to the Algerian state as we know it.”

Algeria’s participation in the 1973 October War

Aiming to restore the lands that “Israel” occupied during the 1967 Six-Day War – Sinai in Egypt and the Golan Heights in Syria – on October 6, 1973, Cairo and Damascus launched an attack on the Zionist entity. The war coincided with the holy month of Ramadan.

During that time, Algeria played a significant role in providing Egypt and Syria with Soviet weapons and bringing in troops to the Egyptian front to fight the Israeli occupation, despite its then-instable economic situation as a result of the pre-independence era of French colonialism.

In fact, then-Algerian President Houari Boumedienne reportedly flew to Moscow to secure military aid for the Egyptians and the Syrians.

In a reiteration of its role in supporting anti-colonialist movements, Algeria sent more than 2,100 troops, 815 non-commissioned officers, and 192 officers to Sinai. It also sent 96 tanks and over 50 fighters and bomber aircraft to Egypt, according to the Egyptian authorities.

Algiers also participated in the oil embargo imposed by the Arab members of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) on the US over its support of the Israeli occupation during the war, which led to significant price hikes around the world.

On October 17, Arab oil producers decided to increase the price of oil by 17% and cut oil production by 5%, vowing to “maintain the same rate of reduction each month thereafter until the Israeli forces are fully withdrawn from all Arab territories occupied during the June 1967 War, and the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people are restored.”

Sharon underestimated the power of Algerian forces

In the context of the 1973 October War, the former Chief of Staff of the Israeli occupation forces, David Eliezer, acknowledged in his released diaries that “Israel” lost this war as a result of the arrogance of then-Major General Ariel Sharon, who underestimated the power of the Algerian forces and thought that they wouldn’t stand a chance against the IOF forces, thinking that they would flee as soon as they set their eyes on Israeli tanks.

Eliezer said that 900 IOF soldiers were killed and 172 tanks were destroyed in just one day during the war.

On his part, the former Israeli Security Minister Moshe Dayan revealed that all the intelligence information showed that Algerians did not have weapons capable of intercepting the Israeli forces.

Dayan also said the Israelis received intelligence about a state of division between the Egyptians and the Algerians. The Israelis were surprised by the Algerian forces downing a giant US Lockheed C-5 Galaxy aircraft by a missile, which frightened the US Staff and frustrated the Nixon administration.

The former Israeli minister said the Egyptian forces deceived the Israeli forces, making them believe that the strategic Al-Adabiya port was not fortified enough. However, the Algerian forces were in charge of protecting the port.

One cannot but hail the role of Algeria in supporting the Palestinian cause and anti-colonial liberation movements, whether on the official or popular level. Despite the geographical distances separating Palestine from Algeria, Algerians believe that the two countries share the same pain, torture, grief, sorrow, and hopefully the same liberation to be achieved in the near future.

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A Forgotten Anniversary

June 12, 2022

Source

By Jimmie Moglia

It is a property of the past to sink into oblivion, and of unpleasant truths to fade into evanescence. To such past belongs the attack on the USS Liberty.

When to the session of sweet silent thought I summon up remembrance of things past, Israel’s 1967 war of Middle East invasion is/was for me but a negligible blip compared to other important personal events. Such as my getting ready to read the thesis for my degree in Electronic Engineering, in Genova, Italy.

Therefore, without particular consciousness I submitted to the sentences of the official media without examining the authority of the judge.

My first doubts arose not long later when I decided to visit the Eastern Orthodox Saint Catherine’s Monastery, located on the Sinai Peninsula at the very foot of Mt. Sinai. It could then only be reached from Tel Aviv via Sharm-el-Sheikh and a bus trip.

On welcoming the tourists on the bus the guide announced with pride that the Sinai was “now and forever an unalienable part of Israel.” I found the declaration irrelevant, if not odd, but I consider that moment as the beginning of my associated historical interest.

The official US line is that, on Jun 8, 1967, the Israelis mistakenly attacked by air, and torpedoed by sea, an unarmed US intelligence ship, killing 34 sailors and wounding 171 others. 2022 marks the 55th anniversary of that attack.

Following are some details of the ship, of the episode and of its aftermath. For, similar to occasions that perhaps we all have felt, a detail that uncalled-for returns to mind, rekindles fuller memories of a larger connected event, not otherwise spontaneously recalled. The detail is the inspired arrogance of the Israeli guide I mentioned. More in general, I think that the attack on the Liberty dramatically demonstrates the nature of who exercises actual power in the United States.

As in most cases involving Israel, any attempt to give a factual account of an event, fails in its promised impartiality. For in the corrupted currents of the world, the very terms ‘Jew’ or ‘Jewish,’ unless associated with praise or deference, taint their utterer with a halo of anti-Semitism.

That is, there is no neutral use of the words. The issue is very old and well explained, for example, by Jewish writer Joshua Trachtenberg in his book “The Devil and the Jews.” Where he documents how there has been a propensity at large, dating back to medieval times, to ascribe a legendary element of a biblical and obscure nature to the word ‘Jew’. That propensity has sunk into what Jung called “collective unconsciousness.”

I should also add that two men observing the same object will describe it differently, according to the point of view from which either beholds it. In the eyes of one it shall be a fair prospect, to the other a barren waste, and neither may see right. Wherefore, truth being the legitimate object of history, it is better that she should be sought-for by many than by few. Lest, for want of seekers, among the mists of prejudice and the false lights of interest, she is lost altogether.

The Liberty was first launched at the end of WW2 in Oregon and named then “Simmons Victor.” It belonged to a fleet of cargo carriers quickly built (one every 10 weeks), to replace the losses to submarine attacks during WW2.

Reconverted into a spy ship in 1964, she was renamed “Liberty”. On May 24, 1967, she was dispatched from the Ivory Coast to the Eastern Mediterranean, to monitor radio signals from both Egyptians and Israeli sources, as tensions grew between Israel and the Arab world.

While it is now acknowledged that Israel started the 1967 war, the only and univocal information channels of the time told the public that Egypt attacked and that Israel “had the right to defend itself” – a sentence now imprinted in the US collective mind, and repeated every time when Israel mounts an aggression, carpet bombs Gaza, demolishes Palestinian homes, builds Jewish “settlements” in Palestinian land, erects walls to keep the Palestinians out of the way, and kills Palestinians at large.

In May 1967, McNamara, the famous defense secretary, rendered infamous for his role in the Vietnam war, had informed Israel’s foreign minister that American intelligence showed Egypt did not plan to attack. And Johnson, then US president, had feebly called on Israel not to start a war. A call with as much effect as the “concern” of succeeding US presidents, whenever Palestinians are dispossessed of their lands and new massive Jewish colonial settlements are established on Palestinian land.

1967, in my view, is a historical milestone for the US and its vassalage to Zionist interests – for previous administrations were or seemed to be somewhat more reserved.

For example and for a time, the Jews hailed Roosevelt as a modern-day Moses, until some of his actions and unofficial records surfaced from the archives. Vice President Henry Wallace annotated in his diary a discussion between Roosevelt and Churchill (May 1943), on how to settle the “Jewish question.”

The notes say, “The President approved a plan to ‘spread the Jews thin’ all over the world. He said he had tried this experiment in the Meriweather County in Georgia (where he lived in the 1920s,) by adding only four or five Jewish families at each place. He claimed that the local population would have no objection if there were no more than that.” This was enough for the Jewish community at large to label Roosevelt a ‘traitor.’

In 1948 Truman recognized Israel but did not sell arms to the Jewish state. And in 1956, when Israel seized the Sinai Peninsula and the Suez Canal, Eisenhower threatened intervention and a halt to all foreign aid, if Israel did not withdraw.

But by 1960, President Kennedy had well understood Jewish power and its influence on domestic policies – he delivered sophisticated armaments and strengthened relations with Israel.

Johnson equaled or bettered Kennedy. After Kennedy’s assassination he said to an Israeli diplomat, “You have lost a very great friend, but you have found a better one.” And he chose and appointed a full cadre of Jewish and pro-Israel advisers to the White House.

On Jun 8, 1967, reconnaissance flights over the Liberty, sailing about 15 miles off the Egyptian coast, began at 5.15 AM, the next round at 8.50 AM and several other Israeli planes and jets circled the ship until 12.45 PM.

At 1.30 PM three Israeli Mirage jets began the attack. Completely taken by surprise, Liberty’s skipper William McGonagle ordered the only two 0.50 mm guns manned and fired – they were quickly taken out by the jets and the gunners pulverized before they could fire the first shots, however ineffective could the shots be anyway.

The attacks continued, one every 45 seconds, as the jets strafed the ship and circled back for another round. They hit with cannon and rockets. Then they aimed at the engine room below the smoke stack. Next came Napalm bombs that turned the deck into an inferno.

Six minutes into the attack, the Liberty, with whatever communication resources were left, radioed for help to the Sixth fleet located further west. “Any station, any station, this is Rockstar, we are under attack.” The operator on the aircraft carrier Saratoga could not understand the message. On the Liberty they changed transmitter. After some interminable minutes Saratoga replied “Roger” and Liberty screamed, “We are under attack and need immediate assistance.”

But now the Saratoga operator asked for the identification code. The Liberty’s operator, with cannon from three jets strafing the ship, had to retrieve the code from a book, and finally Saratoga replied reassuringly, “Authentication is correct. I am standing by for further traffic.”

Meanwhile, before the air attack began, the Liberty’s radar operator had spotted three unidentified ships approaching fast, and alerted the captain. In the confusion and carnage that followed, as the dead and wounded piled on deck, no one thought of the approaching ships. Now Captain McGonagle saw through his binoculars that the three boats, maneuvering in attack formation, were Israelis. Up to that moment he and everybody else thought that the attackers were Egyptians.

In the meantime the original mast with the US flag had been hit – and the Liberty sailors raised a new larger American flag.

The forward torpedo boat opened fire on the defenseless ship. This would provide cover for the attacking boats to get close and launch their torpedoes. Though crippled himself and with a crippled ship operating with one engine, McGonagle attempted evasive maneuvers. Of the 5 torpedoes launched by the Israelis, one hit – creating a gash 24 ft high and 39 ft wide. The Liberty listed by 8 degrees; the entire intelligence section was instantly flooded trapping and killing 20 people.

Now the torpedo boats halted fire while remaining at less than 800 yards from the Liberty. Still shocked, amazed and in disbelief, the Liberty signaled repeatedly with a hand-held Aldis lamp, “US Naval Ship.” “

Do you need any help?” signaled the Israelis. A response that, in the circumstances, was almost adding insult to injury. “No” signaled back the Liberty.

The torpedo boats had not yet departed when two oncoming Israeli helicopters circled the ship. Fearful of more attacks, McGonagle had the international flag hoisted signaling “Not Under Command.”

At 6.40 PM another Israeli helicopter arrived and dropped a bag containing a business card from the US Naval Attaché at the US Embassy in Tel Aviv, Ernest Castle. On the back of the card there was a hand-written question, “Have you any casualties?” Which seemed another insult added to injury. The Liberty’s deck was a wreck, still strewn with blood and some dead sailors… impossible to miss.

How about the call for help from the Sixth Fleet? After the signal was authenticated, the Saratoga launched some fighter jets but, moments later they were unexpectedly and inexplicably recalled, waiting for the arrival of another aircraft carrier, the America.

Eventually, the planes from the America took off and the squadron leader, while reassuring the Liberty radio operator, asked a logical question, “We are on the way, who is the enemy?” Good question. For the sailors on the Liberty, as well as Captain McGonagle could not as yet believe their eyes that the enemies were the Israelis.

At that moment, 4.14 PM, both the Saratoga and the America received a message from the US Embassy in Tel Aviv, as follows, “Israeli aircraft erroneously attacked US ship. Israel sends apologies and wants to know which other US ships are near the war zone.” The US carriers immediately recalled all air strikes.

The first US ship to reach the Liberty to carry away the dead and wounded arrived at 6.40 AM the next day. It took three days for the crippled vessel to arrive at Malta. 20 corpses had remained unreachable in the area hit by the torpedo, drenching the ship with a smell of death.

The plan was to repair the Liberty, enabling her return to the US. It was the beginning of a tortuous public relations battle.

While the ship was still en route to Malta, some White House advisers in Washington suggested sinking it, to avoid or minimize embarrassment.

In Malta, a large tarpaulin-looking cover hid the gash caused by the torpedoes. All crewmembers, injured and uninjured were ordered, under threat of punishment, not to answer any questions from the press.

Meantime in the US, the Administration struggled to find what to say or do. The US press was jubilant about Israel’s victory in the Six Day War. The Jews organized a rally in Washington to celebrate it. Placards said “Moses led us out of the land of Egypt, now Moshe Dayan has led us back.” Jewish White House aids Levinson and Wattenberg, in a memo to the President, suggested that he express his full support for Israel. David Ginsburg, a president’s friend and leader of the Jewish community even wrote the encomiastic speech that the President would later deliver at the rally.

In the jubilation for Israel’s victory, the Liberty affair appeared a minor incident. The press completely bought the idea that the Israeli attack was an error. Senator Jacob Javits, stated, “With Israel we know it was a mistake, a miscalculation could take place in any place in the world.” Incidentally, Jacob Javits is the same senator who pushed through immigration reforms intended to make Americans of European descent a minority. Today any restraint is gone. The message that Europeans and Americans of European descent should become a disposable minority has almost become mainstream.

In the meantime, Egypt had accepted the cease-fire, but Israel had opened another front in Syria, to occupy the Golan Heights. As for the Liberty, the main interest of the media was not the attack, the dead and the wounded, but why the Navy had a ship in the area. Which shows how often trifles excite an exuberance of interest, while the core of an event receives lesser or little attention.

The first official White House explanation said it was a scientific research ship doing its job, but this did not satisfy the press. If so, why not inform the Israelis of the ship’s presence?

The administration then concocted an even more unbelievable story. The Liberty was verifying if communications exchanged by bouncing signals off the moon were reliable. In scope and absurdity, the explanation parallels the answer given by the head of NIST (National Institute of Research and Technology), Shyam Sunder, while presenting the official NIST report on 9/11.

During the conference, a physics teacher, David Chandler, had clearly demonstrated with a video, that building 7 had fallen at the acceleration of gravity, the signature of a controlled demolition. Unable to challenge the basics of physics, the director said, “Gravity is the force that keeps the universe together.” (I am not making it up)

As the number of reported Liberty casualties mounted, one reporter, during a press meeting, asked what was the President’s reaction. The Whitehouse spokesman replied that the President was “deeply grieved.”

In the meantime, Israel claimed that the Liberty, when spotted, appeared to escape at high speed toward Egypt, flew no flag and looked like an Egyptian cargo ship, the “El Queseir”, which was actually half the size of the Liberty and designed to carry 400 men and 40 horses.

Though almost incredible today, the Liberty attack stirred little interest or controversy at the time. But we must remember the moment, filled with enthusiasm about Israel’s victory, which, thanks to the Jewish sponsored massive celebrations, made it almost appear as an American victory. And, more ominously, the moment was filled with concerns about the mounting problems in Vietnam.

Besides, the dead and wounded of the Liberty were less than the price paid in one day by America, in life and limb, to ‘defend democracy’ in Vietnam.

The New York Times called the attack one of the “many mistakes that invariably occur in war…. the Israeli, flushed with victory made an error in identification… accident rather than design snuffed out (sic) the lives of some and caused injuries to others of the Liberty’s crew.”

One other striking aspect of the aftermath was the almost total lack of concern for the victims, whose reported number increased each day, while many sailors faced catastrophic injuries and a life of disability, impairment and pain. Proving how everything, on this side of the grave, is regarded rather in consequence of the habit of valuing it, than from any opinion that it deserved value. For the relative indifference to the victims is proof of the relative indifference to their value.

The main objective (inside the White House and notably with Johnson and McNamara), was not to antagonize Israel, along with the fear of not appearing sufficiently pro-Israel with the cadre of Israeli-firsters that comprised advisers, consultants, aids and secretaries within the Administration.

There were multiple meetings and exchanges between Jewish members of White House and the Israeli Embassy in Washington. Cynically, some suggested that the attack on the Liberty could help weaken the accusations of American support for Israel, and gain some credibility with the Arabs.

It was now clear that the Administration had (or for that matter has) no leverage with the Jewish state. The US had urged Israel not to launch a war. Just 20 days before the attack, Johnson had affirmed America’s commitment to the “political independence and territorial integrity of all Middle Eastern nations.” Israel itself had claimed that it had no territorial ambitions. The reader can decide for himself on the value or worth of those words.

But in the fevered exchanges with the Israeli US embassy, the Administration achieved one ‘success.’ Namely, the Israeli embassy agreed to tone down and backdate an official statement, ready to be released, essentially accusing the US of being responsible for the attack on the Liberty.

The Israeli ambassador had suggested to Tel Aviv to at least hold responsible some of the attackers – suggestion fiercely rejected by Israel. The official Israeli court inquiry was, expectedly, a joke. So, for that matter, was the official inquiry conducted in the US, which mainly centered on discrepancies in the timing of the attacks as reported by the surviving sailors called to depose.

The final transcript mirrors the shallowness of the investigation. Many officers said the court seemed afraid of uncovering information that could prove that Israel deliberately attacked the Liberty. A sailor, Scott, photographed the first reconnaissance plane in the morning of the attack. He thought he had given the court a critical piece of information, but the court was uninterested. They dismissed his testimony stating that reconnaissance flights began much later. Declassified Israeli records show that the plane photographed by Scott, was indeed the first to conduct a reconnaissance flight. Nor the American government even asked Israel to let its pilots, torpedo boat skippers or commanders, testify in the US Court.

In the end, the “conspiracy theorists” of this tragic event are, officially, those who do not believe that the attack on the Liberty was a mistake. In this regard, it was almost a return to the future of 9/11 – when 19 fumbling Arabs scored a checkmate on America, and displayed unbelievable acrobatic maneuvering skills in piloting jumbo jets for the first time in their life.

In 1980 Israel paid 6 m$ to the families of the Liberty’s dead and wounded (in 3 yearly installments of 2 m$/each). This is a fraction of a fraction of what constitutes America’s yearly payments to Israel.

The final telling episode involves the wounded skipper of the Liberty, William McGonagle. He received the Medal of Honor for bravery, but Johnson refused to give it to him in person, which is the tradition – “so as not to offend the Jews”. An Admiral commented, “I am surprised they didn’t just hand it to him under the 14th Street Bridge.”

On June 8, 1997, McGonagle met the remaining survivors of the Liberty at the Arlington Cemetery. Through the years he had been publicly silent, though he did not believe in the error of identification. In what was to be his last and only related public address, he told the survivors, “It’s about time that the State of Israel and the US Government tell what happened to the crewmembers of the Liberty and the American people.” He died less than two years later.

The first terrorist attack and burning of a TWA plane on the ground occurred in 1970, when it became clear that Israel would not return the lands illegally occupied in the 1967 war.

That was the beginning of hijackings, terrorist attacks, murders, Intifadas, genocides in Gaza and Lebanon, wars and more wars. During the 1980s the new Israel’s Oded-Yinon Plan called for a greater Israel, from the Nile to the Euphrates. In the late 1990s came the call for a “New Pearl Harbor,” by the worthy husband of the equally worthy wife, Victoria Nudelman. In 2001 we had the “New Pearl Harbor”, followed by the destruction of Iraq, Libya, Syria, and countless other wars against sundry “terrorists.”

As far as we can know, the plan for a Greater Israel has not been canceled. During his administration, Obama declared that peace with the Palestinians should be achieved on the basis of returning to Palestine the lands occupied in 1967. Next day, uninvited, the Prime Minister of Israel, flew to Washington to deliver a counter-speech to the joint audience of Congress and the Senate. He received 29 standing ovations.

And how about Jewish influence? Here is a famous quote from the Los Angeles Times from Joel Stein, “I don’t care if Americans think we’re running the news media, Hollywood, Wall Street or the government. I just care that we get to keep running them.”

Jumping to current times, less known is the remarkable connection between Ukraine and the plans of Ihor Kolomoisky, governor (or now perhaps ex-governor of Ukraine’s Dnipropetrovsk province and citizen of Israel, Ukraine and Cyprus.) Allegedly he is currently in Israel.

Kolomoisky was a key in organizing the Odessa massacre on 2 May 2014, with his private army, the 1st Dnipro Battalion. He also hired the son of US Vice-President Joe Biden, R. Hunter Biden, plus Secretary of State John Kerry’s support committee chairman, Devon Archer, as board members of his gas holding companies.

Though some related information can be found online, Kolomoisky’s plan is/was to turn Ukraine into a ‘second Israel,’ based on alleged historic claims by Ashkenazi Jews and their more or less mythical Khazarian (Ukranian) kingdom. Allegedly, Kolomoisky has spent millions to recruit right-wing Ukrainian nationalists and neo-Nazis from other parts of Europe to fight against the Russian-speaking majority in the Donbass region of eastern Ukraine, and elsewhere.

Still a puzzle is the current paradoxical situation of a Ukrainian Jewish leadership linked, via an undeniable relationship, with allegedly the most militant and determined openly-Nazi section of the Ukrainian militias. Considering that Ukraine has a long history of anti-Semitism, dating at least from the treaty of Perejeslav of 1654 between the Cossacks of the legendary hetman Bohdan and the Tzar Alexis. Who, Khmelnytsky, masterminded rebellions against Jews, hated tax collectors and usurers for sundry landlords and peasant victims.

A more recent legacy of anti-Semitism is connected with the Great Ukrainian Famine of 1932-1933 led by Lazar Kaganovich, one of the Jewish Bolshevik leaders of the revolution.

Not long ago I interviewed a Ukrainian Jewish family that immigrated to America during the last years of the Soviet Union. Although I could not distinguish or identify them as Jewish, they reported being negatively commented-on by sundry passers-by who recognized them as Jewish (in Kyev).

Without entering into refined speculation behind what can be found on various media, including Israeli media, it is interesting and perhaps meaningful that the Russian leadership has been recently less cautious than usual in airing related unconventional views on the subject. Such as Hitler having Jewish blood (Lavrov) or the historic Bolshevik leadership being 95% Jewish (Putin)

In the circumstances, that the Jewish Ukrainian administration has obvious close ties with a militia that historically embodies anti-Semitism defies – I think – any rational explanation.

All in all there is as much mystery in the current Ukrainian government-military arrangement as there still is in the events surrounding the attack on the USS Liberty.

To conclude, I attempted to relate the main events of the attack on the Liberty, the related opinions of some among the victims of the attack, and of some among the managers of its aftermath. To the best of my knowledge the information is correct.

I think that much injustice has been done, and much justice left undone by the parties involved after the attack on the Liberty. Just as the Western dome of power currently exerts equal and preposterous injustice in the treatment of Russia’s “Special Military Operation,” for the benefit and befuddling of those forming the base of the pyramid of subordination.

However, I am equally aware that when truth intrudes uncalled, and brings unpleasant memories in her train, the passes of the intellect are barred against her by prejudice and passion. If sometimes, she forces her way by undisputable evidence, she seldom keeps possession of her conquests, but is ejected by some favored enemy or, at best, obtains only a nominal sovereignty, without influence and without authority.

‘Israel’s’ Self-destruction Mechanism

June 11, 2022

By Staff | Ynet

Former director of the Zionist spy agency, Mossad, Tamir Pardo wrote in an analysis piece published by Ynet that there is much talk about the dangers ‘Israel’ is facing.

In the article entitled “Stopping the Clock on ‘Israel’s’ Self-destruction Mechanism,” Pardo said: “Some say Iran is the greatest threat, while others claim it is the Palestinians who pose a larger risk to our existence. But in my view, we ourselves are the greatest danger this ‘nation’ is faced with because of our tendency for self-destruction, which we have perfected over the recent years.”

Just like in days of old when faced with the Roman occupation, brother will kill brother, spilling blood across the land. The Roman legions stood by and waited patiently for the Jews to almost complete the work for them. We must stop this before the point of no return…, he urged his audience.

“Now we are polarized from within and our enemies are once more patiently waiting for an opportune moment to destroy us.”

After four consecutive election cycles, he went on to say, a new government was formed that had mustered a scant parliamentary majority, but those who have been ousted from power after 12 years refuse to recognize its legitimacy. They even refuse to address the prime minister by his title. The author also elaborated on his topic:

When a leader of a massive Knesset faction refuses to make even such a symbolic gesture, this shakes the foundations of our ‘democracy.’

That same opposition also boycotts each and every of the opposite side’s legislations. All oppositions can and must oppose government initiatives, but the current opposing bloc in the Knesset votes against laws vital to national security, public interest, and even its own ideology in violation of the basic social contract upon which the ‘democratic’ system is predicated.

Public discourse in ‘Israel’ is characterized by a lack of tolerance and by verbal abuse toward anyone holding a differing worldview.

The Knesset has shown itself to be a negative example of proper conduct and its behavior has seeped into ‘Israeli’ society.

Since 1967, ‘Israel’ has had no defined borders. In the 55 years that have passed since the Six-Day War, ‘Israeli’ governments, left and right, refused to annex the West Bank and the Gaza Strip into ‘Israeli’ territory.

Today, three generations of ‘Israelis’ have never known a different reality. We lack a strategy and cannot define the ‘state’ we hope to see in centuries to come.

No politician has been willing to state a goal for ‘Israel.’ Most just roll their eyes and avoid having to make a decision. None want to take the responsibility for territorial concessions, but all understand that annexation of the West Bank would lead to the demise of the Zionist dream…

Any Zionist can understand that without a Jewish majority, there can be no Jewish ‘state,’ as Pardo refers to it. “Nowadays, there are Jews who prescribe to the Zionist idea between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean and those who do not.”

The Hebrew word for border can be used to mean the physical boundary around a ‘country,’ but also the moral boundaries of normal behavior.

Intolerance of opposing views, violence in all its forms and sidelining of the gatekeepers of our ‘democracy’ are just part of the manifestations of our lack of boundaries, borne from avoiding the critical conundrum we all face: What kind of ‘Israel’ do we want to see and what are its borders?

Robert Inlakesh: How Israel’s 1967 war paved the way for the turmoil in today’s Middle East

On the anniversary of the Six-Day War, RT looks at how the conflict shaped the region

5 Jun, 2022

Robert Inlakesh: How Israel’s 1967 war paved the way for the turmoil in today's Middle East
FILE PHOTO. Israeli Centurion tank corps prepare for battle during the Six-Day War. © Getty Images / Three Lions
Robert Inlakesh is a political analyst, journalist and documentary filmmaker currently based in London, UK. He has reported from and lived in the occupied Palestinian territories and currently works with Quds News. Director of ‘Steal of the Century: Trump’s Palestine-Israel Catastrophe’. 

On the 5th of June, 1967, a conflict which lasted only six days would go on to re-shape the entire Middle East, overthrow secular Arab Nationalism and unite Tel Aviv with Washington. All of which would pave the way for Israel to be handed carte blanche by the world’s most powerful country and prompt a US policy that would go on to tear the entire region to pieces.

The Six-Day War of 1967 is often misconstrued in popular Western discourse as having represented a victory for liberal democracy.

Often presented as a battle between good and evil, the Jewish David and Arab Goliath, the real story of the third Arab-Israeli war was one of a shrewd, but brutal, political power play on the part of Israel.

One that for better, or for worse, caused a re-structuring of Middle Eastern resistance to the West, as well as of the US-led bloc’s policy in the region. 

Israel based its argument for what it deemed a necessary and “pre-emptive war” on Cairo’s decision to amass its military forces in the Sinai Peninsula, and Egyptian President Gamal Abdul-Nasser’s announcement that he would close the Gulf of Aqaba. These events were enough to convince many that Tel Aviv genuinely feared a military offensive coordinated by President Nasser, with the participation of Syria. Damascus had also re-enforced its military presence near the border, with Soviet backing.

The reality was, however, that Egypt was engaged in a grueling war in Yemen, deploying three quarters of its military into the country and had lost nearly 10,000 men in the process. It was so catastrophic for Nasser that the intervention there was later referred to by historians as “Egypt’s Vietnam.” The Egyptian president clearly wasn’t ready to confront Israel and had amassed his troops in the Sinai as a show of force, in order to save face at a time when he faced pushback over the other conflict. 

As for the closure of the Gulf of Aqaba, Nasser never properly followed through on blocking the Straits of Tiran and despite the rhetoric, they were never closed for much more than a day.

Come June 5, 1967, Israel launched ‘Operation Focus’, an aerial attack which wiped out the near entirety of Egypt’s air force in a matter of minutes, ensuring what would become an overwhelming victory for the Israelis. Prior to the war, the assessment previously offered to Israel, by US President Lyndon Johnson, was that US intelligence believed that the United Arab Republic (Egypt) would not attack, and that if it did, Israel would “whip the hell out of them.”

Leonid Brezhnev, then leader of the Soviet Union, had stated in a brief, prior to the Six-Day War of 1967, that Israel had received huge amounts of armaments from the West. Brezhnev went on to express his government’s fear that the weakening of Arab nations could lead to the collapse of the anti-Colonialist movement in the Middle East. Following the war, Egypt, Jordan, Syria and Palestine had been decisively defeated. However, it didn’t stop the anti-Colonialist movement in the Middle East, but instead paved the way for its reformation.

The US was thrilled with Israel’s defeat of its Arab neighbors and considered the war to have served its own interests in putting Nasser in his place and weakening Soviet allies. Washington now valued Israel as an essential part of its Cold War strategy against the USSR. What ensued was the inevitable tightening of the Israel-US relationship, which paved the way for the alliance we see today. Israel had earned its place amongst Western Nations and would go on to aid in implementing the subsequent “Kissinger Doctrine” that the US would employ in the Middle East. 

The 1967 victory was a stunning one for Israel, cementing its place in the region, but it also represented a catastrophe for the Arabs, known as the “Naksa” (Setback). Over 300,000 Palestinians had been forced from their homeland, as Israel occupied the entirety of historic Palestine, in addition to the Egyptian Sinai Peninsula and the Syrian Golan Heights. Furthermore, the war had largely defeated secular Arab Nationalism and represented a death blow to the Egyptian President’s brand of it, known as Nasserism. 

Up until that point, the most popular political ideologies in the Middle East had been Arab Nationalism, Socialist Pan-Arabism and Communism. The Egyptian President, who would die of a heart attack a few years later in 1970, was the primary influencer of Arab revolutionaries that existed in the region. With the perceived failure of Arab Nationalism, there would then emerge a number of competitor ideologies with which Arab movements and leaders would choose to fight their enemies. The most prominent of which would later become revolutionary Islamism, something that Nasser had actually helped to suppress, as it manifested itself in the form of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood. 

As for Palestine, the future negotiations for Palestinian statehood would go on to be based upon reclaiming the 22 percent of the country – the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza Strip – that Israel occupied during the 1967 war. Israel would emerge as major power that would primarily serve a US agenda in the region and could act at that point, seemingly, with impunity against its enemies. 

Today, over 1,000 Palestinians are being forced out of their homes, as Israeli forces bulldoze a collection of West Bank villages known as Masafer Yatta. This is the single largest act of ethnic cleansing, ordered by Tel Aviv against Palestinians, since the 1967 war. The position that the US began to take in 1967, unconditional support for Israel, hasn’t changed and the country’s utility for Washington’s agenda in the region, and its powerful lobby in America, means its human rights violations are ignored. 

Therefore, 55 years after the Six-Day War, there is no barrier to Tel Aviv’s behaviour, and it seems to have a free pass to deal with its enemies in whatever manner it chooses, even if that ends up contradicting US policy.

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.

Related

Norman Finkelstein : Russia has the historical right to invade Ukraine (updated with transcript)

May 15, 2022

The Debrief with Briahna Joy Gray, April 8, 2022.

Source: http://www.normanfinkelstein.com/norman-finkelstein-on-ideology-in-the-classroom-and-ukraine-the-debrief-with-briahna-joy-gray/

Transcript:

Question: How much of a similarity maybe do you see between the kind of… the Israeli occupation of Palestine and the way some people handle some of the reactionary and right-wing elements in the Palestinian defense and opposition, versus how some of the left is talking about the Ukraine defense and the Azov battalions… Do you think there’s a comparison? And I’ll just leave the question at that. Thanks.

Norman Finkelstein: Well I have to ask Briahna’s permission to go in a digression…

Briahna: Absolutely.

Norman Finkelstein : Okay. On the question of the Ukraine, the thing that’s troubled me about the public conversation of the Ukraine or hysteria —it’s not even a conversation, it’s hysteria about the Ukraine— is the following: those who are not totally immersed in the mainstream propaganda, some of the people you’ve had on your program and people who are not especially of the left, they have no particular left-wing allegiance, like John Mearsheimer at University of Chicago, or before he passed away Stephen F. Cohen who predicted that if you keep up with this NATO expansion in the Ukraine, there’s going to be a war. He said that in Democracy Now in 2014, and he was right. And other people, Professor Chomsky. I would include in that group several others, and they’ll all say the following thing:

Number one, the Russians were promised that there would be no NATO expansion to the East, that was the quid pro quo for the reunification of Germany after the decomposition of the Soviet Union. The Russians were promised that but the West went ahead. We’re talking about the 1990s: the promises were given, but the West then went ahead and started to expand NATO once, as John Mearsheimer likes to put it there was the first tranche, then the second tranche of expansion… Then NATO starts expanding in Georgia and in the Ukraine. The Soviet Union says it’s a red line.

To stop this, the Soviet Union offers a perfectly reasonable resolution: just neutralize Ukraine like we neutralized Austria after World War II, neither aligned with an Eastern bloc nor aligned with a Western bloc. That seemed to me perfectly reasonable. And the people I mentioned, Mearsheimer, Cohen passed away since but Professor Chomsky and a number of others, they’ll all agree on the reasonableness of Putin’s demands.

And then the reasonableness of those demands, those demands have to, as Briahna says in her paper and as she said this evening, they have to always be seen in context. So what’s the context? The context is the Soviet Union, the former Russia, it lost… the estimates are about 30 million people during World War II. The United States which, if you watch American movies, you would think the US won World War II, it lost about two hundred thousand people. The UK was the second candidate for winning World War II, they lost about four hundred thousand people. The Soviet Union lost 30 million people. Even those who didn’t take courses in the hard sciences can reckon the difference between several hundred thousand and thirty million. Now that’s not an ancient memory for the Russians. If you… I remember Stephen F. Cohen saying “when I grew up in little America —he was from Kentucky— we used to celebrate…” I forgot what was called here Victory Day, V-something, he said “but you know now as adults we don’t celebrate that anymore in the United States, Victory in World War II”, he said, but Russia, he said, they still celebrate V-Day, they still celebrate it. I live in the Coney Island section of Brooklyn. A large part is Russian Jews, a large part is Russian Jews. You go out in May, you go out on the V-Day, and you can see that Russians up to 80 and 90 year olds, they’re wearing medals, they’re medals from World War II. That memory is alive.

And now there’s this Ukraine, where Nazis are playing an outsized role. I’m not saying they’re a majority, but in the political and military life, they play an outsized —disproportionate let’s call it— role. This Ukraine where Nazis are playing an outsized role, are aligned with a formidable military bloc called NATO, NATO keeps advancing and advancing and advancing, closing on Russia, trying to suffocate it… And beginning around 2016, under Trump, begins to arm the Ukraine, pouring in weapons, engaging in military exercises with NATO, behaving very provocatively. And then the Foreign Minister Lavrov finally says we’ve reached the boiling point.

Now everything I just told you, Professor Chomsky, John Mearsheimer and others will acknowledge it. The mainstream press won’t even acknowledge that but people who call themselves just, legitimately call themselves dissidents, although Mearsheimer wouldn’t call himself a dissident, he just calls himself a realist. Nice guy, I consider him a friend, I like him. They’ll acknowledge all that. But then they say the invasion was criminal. Criminal invasion, criminal, criminal, criminal. And my question which I’ve constantly been putting in correspondence is a very simple one: if you agree that for 20 years—more than 20 years, more than two decades—, Russia has tried to engage in diplomacy; if you agree that the Russian demand to neutralize Ukraine —not occupy it, not determine its government, its form of economy, just neutralize it like Austria after World War II—, if you agree that was a legitimate demand; if you agree that the West was expanding and expanding NATO; if you agree that Ukraine de facto had become a member of NATO, weapons pouring in, engaging in military exercises in NATO; and if you agree… You know, Russia lost 30 million people during World War II because of the Nazi invasion, so there’s a legitimate concern by Russia with all of these —if you excuse my language— Nazis floating around in the Ukraine, then the simple question is: What was Russia to do?

I’m not saying I agree with the invasion, I’m not saying it went right, but I think one thing: the invasion showed… you know what the one thing the invasion showed, Briahna, was that Russia is kind of weak militarily, which is why all the more they may have been fearful of a NATO-backed Ukraine filled with Nazis, and probably at some point positioning nuclear missiles on its border. And I think 30 million, 30 million people… Listen to this: I think 30 million people is 30 million arguments in favor of Russia. Now I’m not going to say, because I’m not a general and I’m not a diplomat, so I’m not going… I’m not a military strategist so I’m not going to say it was the wisest thing to do. I’m not going to say it was the most prudent thing to do. But I will say —and I’m not afraid to say it because it would dishonor the memory of my parents if i didn’t say it—, I will say that they had the right to do it. And I’m not taking that back. They had the right to do it. They had if I can call it the historic right to do it. 30 million people (killed during WW2), and now you’re starting again, you’re starting again. No, no, you know I can’t go for it, I can’t go for those who acknowledge the legitimacy of the arguments made by Putin but then call the invasion criminal. I don’t see that.

Now you could say the way they executed it may have had criminal elements. However I don’t know… Well, you went to Harvard Law School, I don’t know if you studied the laws of war, but the laws of war make a very big distinction between ‘jus ad bellum’ and ‘jus in bello’, namely whether the launching of the war was legitimate or whether it was an act of aggression versus the way you conduct the war, ‘jus in bello’. Maybe the conduct, targeting of civilians and so forth, that probably violates the laws of war, but that’s a separate issue under law from “did they have the right to attack”. I think they did. I’m not going to back off from that.

You know, these are for me… even at my age, these are acts of deference to the suffering of my parents. My parents felt a very deep love for the Russian people, because they felt the Russian people understood war. They understood what my parents went through [in the Warsaw Ghetto & Auschwitz] during World War II, so there was a very deep affection… My father even, at the end of his life, he learned fluent Russian because neighborhood is all Russian. And you know, Polish to Russian is not a huge leap but also he liked the Russian people. So in my family growing up, the worst curse (insult)… there were two curses, two curses: curse number one was “parasite”. You have to work. My parents had a very… they had a work ethic. Believe me, I could have lived without the idea of pleasure, it didn’t exist in my house: you had to work. And the second word, the second curse, the second epithet was “traitor”. A traitor. And I know my parents would regard me as a traitor if I denounced what the Russians were doing now. How they’re doing it, as they say, probably there are violations and maybe egregious violations of the laws of war, we’ll have to wait to see the evidence, but their right to protect their homeland from this relentless juggernaut, this relentless pressing on their throats, when there was such an easy way to resolve it…

You know, if you read War and peace, and I suspect you did because you’re quite a gifted writer, obviously you were a reader…

Briahna: I confess, there was a copy on my shelf that I have started many times, but I haven’t… I’ve never finished it.

Norman Finkelstein: I’m surprised… In any case, War and peace is about the invasion of Russia, the war of 1812, and Tolstoy, the centerpiece of War and peace is the great battle of Borodino, and he describes it in this kind of terrifying detail. In the battle of Borodino, 25 000 Russians were killed, or maybe it was all together 25 000, I can’t remember, I think was 25 000 Russians were killed. Why do I mention it? So for Russians the seminal event of the 19th century was the war of 1812 and the invasion of Russia. For the 20th century, it’s World War II, and just in the battle of Leningrad, just Leningrad, not Saint-Petersburg, just Leningrad, a million Russians were killed. There was cannibalism! This is serious, World War II for the Russians. And you want me to just forget about that? That’s just a trivial fact? A trivial fact? No! Now you’ll ask yourself: in all the coverage that you’ve heard about your Russian attack on Ukraine, all the coverage you’ve read and listened to, how many times have you heard that 30 million Russians were killed during World War II? How many times?

Briahna Very infrequently. It’s never stated in this context.

Norman Finkelstein: Absolutely. And Stephen F. Cohen… You know, he was my Professor at Princeton and for a while he was my advisor. He… I didn’t know him well and at the end we had a falling down over my whole dissertation catastrophe, debacle, but Cohen had a genuine affection for the Russian people. He did. He loved the Russians. He loved the Russian people. And so when he begins his presentation… There is a Youtube of him debating the former US Ambassador, Mc Faul I think, Michael Mc Faul. How does he begin? He begins with how Russians remember the V-day. You know, that’s the starting point for me, it’s a starting point.

http://www.twitter.com/caitoz/status/1525620613980643328

Now you might say well, doesn’t your whole argument then justify what Israel does because of what happened to Jews during World War II? It’s an interesting question because the most moving, the most moving speech in support of the founding of the State of Israel, by far the most moving speech, you know who it was given by at the UN? It was given by the Soviet foreign minister Gromyko. And he said it was another act of generosity. Remember I mentioned to you earlier the boy’s act of generosity where he looks past what Trichka says about Black people, and as a student I thought it was a very generous act. So now the Russians lost 30 million people in World War II, but Gromyko says the suffering of the Jews, it was different, it was horrible. Here is a Russian saying that. And he said if a binational State is not possible, they earned their right to a State. So I say I applied the same standard. Now the way Israel carried out its right to establish a State by expelling the indigenous population, appropriating their land and creating havoc and misery for generation after generation, decade after decade, no I’m not going there. But yes I do believe… in recent correspondence with some friends I use the expression “I think Russia has the historic right to protect itself”, not by violating somebody else’s right to self-determination but neutralization, I think that’s legitimate.

Briahna: So I want to ask you this because you know it wouldn’t be right for me to put this question to Ro Khanna and not put this question to you. You are speaking so compellingly about the kind of moral valences of who’s entitled to feeling insecure as a nation, who’s entitled because of the historical cost it has paid to defend itself and to defend whatever you want to call it, you know, democracy in fascism, all of these kinds of words, has paid in terms of the number of human lives and kind of an unmatched price, and I think that’s…

Norman Finkelstein: The Chinese lost about 26 million to the Japanese, so it was close.

Briahna: It’s close but still… And yet when I was talking to Ro Khanna and he was saying well, ultimately he’s arguing on the other side that America is 100% right, Russia’s 100% wrong and this is a just war regardless of the substance. I would push him on this idea, of even if you believe it to be just kind of morally, the act I’m going to have to as a leftist is pushback against the idea that the preemptiveness of the war is okay, and that war is a solution. It is something that we should be tacitly or implicitly condoning. And I wonder what you make of that question.

Norman Finkelstein: Look, Briahna, not to flatter you but you always ask the right questions, and that’s why I was careful in what I said. You referred to the pre-emptiveness. Russia tried for 22 years. That’s giving a lot of time to diplomacy! 22 years is a lot of time!

And the question is: at what point, at what point does Russia get to act? When there are nuclear-tipped missiles on its border? Is that when it gets to act? I don’t agree with that. I think of course you have to give maximum time to see if diplomacy is going to work, absolutely…

Briahna: And then you start fighting? And then you send in troops? Because Norm, this is the… whether or not you believe…

Norman Finkelstein: I’m very happy, I’m very happy to take to heart your question. And that leads me again with the same question that I returned to you and I’ve returned to all of my correspondents over the past six weeks. If it’s clear that all the negotiations are in bad faith, if it’s clear that Ukraine had become de facto a member of NATO, what was Russia supposed to do? You say “don’t send in troops”. Fine. I come from a family that was completely anti-war. My mother used to say “better a hundred years of evolution than one year of revolution”. She had enough of war. I have no problem with your recoiling at the process. But what I’m saying is what was Russia supposed to do?

Briahna: What I’m asking is how you distinguish between your feelings that this is a moral war, this is a justified act, fine, and someone like Ro Khanna’s belief that US intervention, continued support of NATO, Western powers, sending weapons into Ukraine, arming the Azov battalion, is as he puts it a just war. The fact that you are both making these arguments, regardless… I’m not making an equivalent between the value of your arguments but obviously Ro Khanna thinks what he thinks and my point to him was you using vague terms like “just war” is exactly what’s allowed the kind of jingoistic parade to lead us into so many other incursions. So how principally do you distinguish? I understand your feeling and I understand the historical citations and the loss of life that leads you to the conclusions that you’ve been led to, but someone on the other side will say the same thing, someone else said “Well Marshall well this is how many Ukrainians have suffered and this is…”

Norman Finkelstein: But you’re canceling, if I may use that word, you’re canceling the context. You see I began my whole discussion with you, not with the position of Biden or the position of lunatics like Judy Woodruff, you know, and PBS. I said my quarrel is with people on the left who agree with all of my context but then make the leap and say it’s a criminal invasion. And I say to Professor Meirsheimer, Professor Chomsky and many others who acknowledge everything I just said, I say then what was… if you agree with everything I said, what was Putin supposed to do? I don’t see what he was supposed to do. I’m lost. It’s an impasse. I don’t see what…

Briahna: You were making a reference earlier to laws of war and rules before, i don’t know about it, I’ve never studied the laws of war, but it does seem to me that a line is drawn between… and I know that people are going to say something can be constructively war and you know. But in terms of an actual invasion and boots on the ground or missile strikes or things like that, the thing that Russia has to do even if it disadvantages them strategically in some ways is to wait until the other person hits first.

Norman Finkelstein: I don’t agree with that. I would say, as in any case, you have to demonstrate its last resort, and therefore you do have to demonstrate…

Briahna: How do you do that? Because that’s the question, how do you make sure that this is not just the same kind of…

Norman Finkelstein: I’m going to give you a historical analogy, probably the details which you’re unfamiliar with, but just allow me to just sketch it out. So in 1967, Israel launches a war, it occupies the West Bank, Gaza, Syrian Golan heights, and then it occupies this huge area, the Egyptian Sinai. And after the 67 war, about three years later, when Anwar Sadat comes into power, he says “I’m willing to sign a peace treaty with Israel but they have to return the territory they acquired during the 67 war”, because that’s the law : under international law, it’s inadmissible to acquire territory by war. Israel acquired the territory during the june 67 war, so these territories belong to Egypt. Israel says no, we’re not leaving the Sinai. Sadat says “Look, I’m offering you a peace treaty, I’m offering you peace, just return what’s not yours, the Egyptian Sinai”. Israel says no. Then Israel starts creating facts in the ground in the Sinai, it starts building settlements, those same settlements you’re familiar with in the West Bank. And then it announces in 1972 it’s going to rebuild what’s called the old jewish city of Carmel. Egypt says you’re not going to do that. You’re crossing a red line. Egypt says if you don’t stop this we’re going to attack, we’re going to attack. Everybody ignores Egypt because Arabs don’t know how to fight wars. The Arabs were nicknamed after 67, the term of abuse for an Arab was they were “monkeys”, they called them monkeys. They don’t know how to fight wars. Okay? And then come october 1973. Guess what: Sadat attacks. And the Israelis were so shocked they thought the whole thing was over, they called it… Moshe Dayan who was the Defense minister at the time, or the Foreign minister I can’t remember which, I think Defense minister at the time, he says… he made this panicky phone call, he said it’s the end of the third temple. This is it, we’re finished. Well it wasn’t the end of the third temple but it was a significant, heavy loss to Israel, they lost between two and three thousand soldiers, which is the largest number except for the war in 1948.

Now here’s the point: the point is no country in the world, none, including the United States, no country in the world condemned Sadat for aggression, none. And you know, for Israel it was a close call, or it seemed to be. In retrospect it turned out not to me, but it seemed to be a close call. Nobody condemned Egypt. Why? One, its demand was legitimate. Return the Sinai, it’s not yours, it’s our territory. Number two: Sadat tried negotiations for six years. And number three, as hard as he tried to negotiate, Israelis kept provoking and provoking and provoking until they announced rebuilding the old jewish city of Carmel. And Sadat says it’s over and then plans with Syria the attack which happens, what’s called the Yom Kippur war, the october war in 1973.

So now fast forward to Putin: the man was reasonable (neutralize Ukraine), negotiates over 20 years to fighting over this NATO expansion in the East, and then they start provoking them even more, they start pouring weapons into the Ukraine, they start carrying on joint military exercises between Ukraine and NATO. And then all of these swarmy Nazis start to surface. No I’m not saying Nazis control the government but they play an outsized role in the government, in the military. And I don’t see what’s the difference between what Putin did and what Sadat did. I don’t see the difference. I think it was the same thing, and nobody condemns Sadat for aggression. No one.

Briahna: But I’m asking I think a different question. I’m really not interested in litigating any given case mostly because I don’t know what the hell any of these things are about, so like I don’t really… I’m not going to say whether this war is just, that’s for other people to determine. What I do know is that everyone is making that argument on all kinds of sides, including people I know I don’t disagree with. And so many wars have been started with the argument that it is a just war for x, y and z reasons, and it’s okay to act despite there not having been a direct act of aggression against the allegedly aggrieved party. And so all I’m asking is to give some thought to how one would articulate a standard that can’t be so easily abused.

Norman Finkelstein: You know, Rihanna, I agree, it’s like once you grow up in life, you discover that life is very little about principles: it’s mostly about judgment. Principles get you not very far. I remember I got this lesson from Professor Chomsky, as he always puts it in his very lucid, simple terms. He said to me once: “Norman, we all know it’s wrong to lie, but if a rapist knocks in your door and asks “Is your daughter in the bedroom”, there’s a clash of principles there obviously. And so at the end of the day, what is required is not the application of an abstract principle but the faculty of judgment. When principles clash, you have to exercise judgment. You then have to look at particulars, the specifics.

Briahna: Excuse me, I appreciate that, which is probably why, you know, this is the limit, this is the limit of it for me and I’ll… I’m happy to take more questions from people who I’m sure know much more about the particulars. Although your last statement about, you know, principles versus judgment, and you know, the rapist at your door, does make me, it does make me tempted to ask you about what you think about the slap. […]

[If you want to know what Norman Finkelstein thinks about Will Smith’s slap at the Oscars, and other more serious issues, check the full podcast].

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France’s ‘robust’ ties with “Israel” keep Georges Abdallah in prison

April 25 2022

Source: Agencies + Al Mayadeen Net

By Ahmad Karakira 

The French government claims it respects human rights and condemns the Israeli annexation of Palestinian territories, yet it shakes hands with “Israel”, turning a blind eye to all its crimes.

France’s ‘robust’ ties with “Israel” keep Georges Abdallah in prison

Incumbent President Emmanuel Macron is elected President for a second term, winning 58% of the voter turnout.

Macron and his far-right opponent Marine Le Pen had led the polls during the first round of the French presidential elections with a slight lead for Macron, who won 28.1-29.7%, around 5% more than Le Pen’s 23.3-24.7%.

The other candidates, Jean-Luc Melenchon, Eric Zemmour, Valerie Pecresse, and Yannick Jadot received 20.1%, 7.2%, 5%, and 4.4%, respectively.

The President has garnered support from several opponents, mainly left candidate Jean-Luc Melenchon, who came in third place and called on his supporters and the French public to pivot away from the extremist.

“We know who we will never vote for… Not a single vote must go to Mrs. Le Pen,” Melenchon said at his party headquarters in Paris, though he did not explicitly ask his supporters to back the incumbent President.

Another boost for the President also came from his other opponents. Communist Party candidate Fabien Roussel, Socialist Anne Hidalgo, Yannick Jadot of the Greens, and right-wing Republican candidate Valerie Pecresse said they would vote for him to prevent the far-right leader from coming to power.

Only fellow far-right candidate Eric Zemmour urged his supporters to vote for Marine Le Pen on April 24.

“I don’t make a mistake over who my opponents are. I call on my voters to vote for Marine Le Pen,” Zemmour told supporters following his elimination from the electoral race.

In parallel to the presidential election battle between Macron and Le Pen, the main question remains: What will the results hold for Palestine in light of the strong French-Israeli relations?

“Robust” relationship with “Israel”

France was one of the very first countries to establish diplomatic ties with the Israeli occupation on May 11, 1949.

The French Foreign Ministry brags on its website that Paris has established a “robust” relationship with “Israel”, “marked by constant commitment to its existence and security” and contribution to its military power.

Along with “Israel” and Britain, France attacked Egypt in October 1956 in what was called the Tripartite Aggression against Egypt after then-President Gamal Abdel Nasser nationalized the Suez Canal.

But following the Six-Day War on Egypt in 1967, which saw “Israel” occupying the West Bank, Gaza Strip, the Sinai Peninsula, and the Golan Heights, France adopted the United Nations Resolution 242 that calls on “Israel” to withdraw “from territories occupied.”

Ever since, France’s official policy is a combination of supporting the Israeli occupation’s so-called “right to exist and right to security,” supporting the two-state solution, and allegedly condemning “Israel’s” unlawful and illegal policy of settlement-building in occupied Palestinian territories.

The French Ministry of Foreign considers that “the annexation of Palestinian territories, whatever the scope, would be a violation of international law, and particularly the prohibition of acquisition of territories by force.”

According to the Ministry, the annexation of Palestinian territories “would aggravate tensions and seriously compromise the two-state solution, and would be contrary to the interests of both Israelis and Palestinians, as well as Europeans and the wider the international community.”

It also claimed that annexation “could not go unanswered or be without consequence for the EU’s relations with Israel.”

Despite France’s claims of respecting international law, during the May 2021 Israeli aggression on the Gaza Strip, French Interior Minister, Gerald Darminin, announced a ban on protests in solidarity with Palestine.

The Paris police also issued a decree deeming such demonstrations illegal, claiming that they could lead to “risky elements aimed at provoking violent confrontations with the police.” 

In addition, French President Emmanuel Macron stressed during a phone call on May 14 with then-Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu his “unwavering attachment” to “Israel’s” security and condemned the Palestinian Resistance.

Economic collaboration

According to the French Ministry of Foreign, “The bilateral relationship between France and Israel is also supported by the presence in Israel of a large French community (150,000 people), while France is home to Europe’s largest Jewish community.”

France is “Israel’s” 12th largest supplier and 10th largest customer.

In 2017, approximately 100 French companies established themselves in “Israel”, creating 5,530 jobs and generating an estimated €534 million in revenue.

According to Bank of France data, the stock of French foreign direct investment (FDI) in “Israel” reached €2.9 billion at the end of 2017, representing a 6% annual increase since 2012.

Scientific & technical cooperation

France is “Israel’s” fifth-largest scientific and technological research partner. Academic collaboration, including the joint laboratory of INSERM Nice and the Technion-“Israel” Institute of Technology in Haifa, and the exchange of young researchers underpin this collaboration.

The French-Israeli High Council for Research and Scientific and Technological Cooperation has ensured this cooperation since 2003.

Secret military agreements

A research article called France and the Israeli occupation: talking the talk, but not walking the walk? revealed that “in the 1950s, France was the main supplier of military equipment to Israel through a number of secret deals that included aircraft, tanks, and ammunition.”

“It also played a crucial role in Israel’s acquisition of nuclear capabilities through the provision of know-how, material and technology,” the article added.

“In a secret agreement signed in 1956, France committed to helping Israel build a nuclear reactor and to providing uranium,” the research article mentioned.

In the same context, US military historian Warner Farr had highlighted that “cooperation was so close that Israel worked with France on the pre-production design of early Mirage jet aircraft, designed to be capable of delivering nuclear bombs.”

Farr revealed that “French experts secretly built the Israel reactor underground at Dimona, in the Negev (Naqab) desert… Hundreds of French engineers and technicians filled Beersheba (Beer Al-Sabe), the biggest town in the Negev (Naqab).”  

Longest-serving political prisoner in Europe

When mentioning the strong ties linking France with the Israeli occupation, we can’t but shed light on the just cause of Georges Ibrahim Abdallah, former leader of the Marxist-Leninist Lebanese Armed Revolutionary Factions (LARF). Abdallah is accused of establishing the LARF.

Georges Abdallah at the heart of the French presidential elections

The LARF fought to stop the Israeli invasion of Lebanon and targeted several senior US and Israeli figures involved in the war. All the LARF members were released except for Abdallah.

The Factions have also claimed responsibility for the operations in response to the Israeli occupation of Palestine.

Abdallah has been imprisoned in southwestern France since 1984, despite completing the minimum term of his sentence in 1999.

He was sentenced to life in prison in 1987 for his alleged involvement in the 1982 killing of US military attaché Charles Ray and Israeli diplomat Yakov Barsimentov in Paris, as well as in an assassination attempt on Robert O. Homme, a US consul in Strasbourg. 

The revolutionary never responded to the list of accusations and considered that the French judicial system is “despicably” taking the resistance action out of context.

It had been possible to release Abdallah in 1999, but French authorities denied his nine parole requests.

In November 2003, the entity that grants parole in the city of Pau – where Abdallah is detained – gave the green light to one of Abdallah’s release requests. 

Why hasn’t he been released yet?

However, then-French Minister of Justice Dominique Perben appealed the decision, describing the case as “extremely serious”, which kept Abdallah in prison, and his file was transferred to another court.

Abdallah’s May 2009 request for release on parole was rejected by a Paris appeals court that claimed the prisoner was “a resolute and pitiless militant” who might resume his “combat” again in Lebanon, citing a 2008 French law.

A Paris judge approved Abdallah’s release on Thursday, January 10, 2013, and set the date of his extradition to Beirut on Monday, January 14.

However, the decision was delayed due to a government appeal. White House Spokesperson Victoria Nuland at the time, had declared that the US – “Israel’s” biggest ally – was still discussing with the French government how to stop the decision.

A Wikileaks document about former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton‘s leaked emails revealed that between January 10-14, she sent an email to former French Minister of Foreign Laurent Fabius, saying that “although the French Government has no legal authority to overturn the Court of Appeal’s January 10 decision, we hope French officials might find another basis to challenge the decision’s legality.”

In other words, the US ordered the French government to stomp over its legal system and over the principle of separation of powers.

Hillary Clinton’s email to French Minister of Foreign Laurent Fabius regarding Georges Abdallah

Abdallah’s lawyer, Jean-Louis Chalanset, told French media that the Lebanese authorities have repeatedly said they were ready to receive Georges Abdallah in Lebanon, where he is perceived as a political prisoner.

Chalanset said a decision to release the defendant would be political before being judicial. He believes that keeping him incarcerated is a “lack of courage” and “subservience” from Paris.

Over the years, leftist MPs and human rights organizations such as the Human Rights League (LDH) and even the French intelligence chief called for Abdallah’s release.

Melenchon supports Georges Abdallah

In relation to the French presidential election, leftist leader Jean-Luc Mélenchon has expressed, on many occasions, his solidarity with Georges Abdallah’s cause.

According to the Collective for the Liberation of Georges Ibrahim Abdallah, Mélenchon’s party – La France Insoumise (LFI) – regularly participates in the protests demanding the immediate release of the Lebanese revolutionary.

In parallel, Mélenchon’s campaign had said he is ready to back sanctions against the Israeli occupation over its illegal settlements in the occupied West Bank and its imposed blockade on the Gaza Strip.

The leftist leader had pledged to cancel the so-called “Circulaire Alliot-Marie” French Ministry of Justice memorandum instructing prosecutors to crack down on BDS movement activists. On the other hand, French President Emmanuel Macron stressed in 2017 that “the French state condemns BDS and all boycotts.”

“I must be clear that this will continue if I am elected president,” he added during an interview with Beur FM radio.

How does Abdallah spend his time in detention?

In detention, Abdallah spends his time as a revolutionary political prisoner reading books and newspapers in five languages, writing political statements and analyses about imperialism, capitalism and colonialism, as well as replying to solidarity letters from across the world.

The Lebanese revolutionary exchanges letters with Palestinian prisoners and initiates hunger strikes in support of other prisoners, the latest of which was on April 16 in demand of the release of Sibel Balac and Gokhan Yildirim from Turkish prisons.

  • Georges Abdallah’s letter announcing a hunger strike in support of Sibel Balac and Gokhan Yildirim in Turkish prisons

His latest views

In France, Abdallah considers that popular revolts and movements of the popular masses like the Yellow Vests are partially challenging capitalism.

According to Tom Martin of the Palestinian Prisoners’ Solidarity Network, Samidoun, Abdallah sees with a good eye the unwavering resistance of the Palestinian people and the Lebanese people in the face of imperialism and Zionism. Nevertheless, he thinks that resistance organizations must intensify their actions and aim for a radical, clear anti-Zionism and anti-imperialist program.

In his only statement in regard to the war in Ukraine, Abdallah underlined the hypocrisy of the imperialist camp, notably by turning a blind eye to the presence of neo-Nazi Ukrainian battalions, while criminalizing pro-Palestinian movements.

He believes that the Ukrainian people are victims and that the solution to this crisis would only depend on their efforts that should be away from all imperialist forces.

عن سماح إدريس مجدداً.. نفتقدك هذه اللحظات

2022 السبت16 نيسان

المصدر: الميادين.نت

رشاد أبو شاور 

لماذا يا صديقي نفقد كبارنا الآن، ونحن أحوج ما نكون إليهم. وقضايانا، وفي مقدمتها فلسطين، في حاجة إليهم؟

أعطى سماح إدريس كثيراً في عمره القصير نسبياً، وترك رحيله صدمة وحسرة في قلوب كل من عرفوه، ورافقوه، واتفقوا معه، أو خالفوه أحياناً، كثيراً أو قليلاً، فهو اتَّسَم بالصدق، والنزاهة، والأمانة، والوضوح، والثبات.

لا أُخفي أنني أكتب وأنا مرتبك، بل عاجز عن ترتيب أفكاري، ففي رأسي تدوّي عبارة ذلك الصديق البيروتي.

قبل تلقّي نبأ رحيله، كنت اتصلت بأحد الأصدقاء في بيروت لأطمئن على وضعه، فجاءني صوت الصديق حزيناً: المرض تفشّى في كل بدنه، يا صديقي!

عرفت عندئذ ما هو ذلك المرض، فداهمتني نوبة حزن وإحباط، لكنني منيّت النفس بأنه “سينفد” من هذا المرض اللعين الشرس!

لكن المثقف والكاتب والناشر المقاوم والميداني رحل، فلقد خذله جسده في معركته مع ذلك المرض اللئيم، على الرغم من أن سماحاً ظلّ يقاوم حتى وهو يتلقى العلاج، وهذا يتجلّى في افتتاحية “الآداب” الإلكترونية الوداعية – الوصية، والعهد والوعد.

لا أُخفي أنني أكتب وأنا مرتبك، بل عاجز عن ترتيب أفكاري، ففي رأسي تدوّي عبارة ذلك الصديق البيروتي: لماذا يا صديقي نفقد كبارنا الآن، ونحن أحوج ما نكون إليهم. وقضايانا، وفي مقدمتها فلسطين، في حاجة إليهم؟!

فُجِع الفلسطينيون، مثقفين، ومواطنين مقاومين، برحيل سماح إدريس، كواحد من أبرز كتّابهم، ومثقفيهم، ومقاوميهم الكبار، وأبّنوه بحزن وحسرة وشعور فاجع بالفقدان، داخل فلسطين، وفي الشتات القريب والشتات البعيد.

كنت على تواصل في ندوة عبر الزُّوم مع الأهل في مخيم الدهيشة، جار مدينة بيت لحم، مساء الـ29 من شهر تشرين الثاني/نوفمبر، فافتُتحت الندوة بالوقوف دقيقة وتلاوة الفاتحة على روح الكاتب العربي الكبير المقاوم سميح إدريس، مع آخر شهيد سقط في منطقة بيت لحم، وضجّت القاعة بالتصفيق.. وارتجلت أنا كلاماً أردته لائقاً بسماح، وبأسرة سماح، بوالد سماح ووالدته، وبشقيقتي سماح، وبأسرة آل إدريس…

أنا واثق بأن بعض شوارع فلسطين سيحمل اسم سماح إدريس، فشعب فلسطين وفيّ ولن ينسى رفاق الطريق. ولعلّي أتذكر هنا، في هذا المقام، أن واحداً من أوائل الفدائيين الشهداء الفلسطينيين بعد هزيمة حزيران/يونيو 67 في معارك الأغوار، فاجأنا بأنه يحمل اسم “سهيل إدريس”، وأذكر أن هذا الأمر دفع الدكتور سهيل، رحمه الله، إلى الاستفسار عن هذا الفدائي، ومعرفة كل شيء عنه، وعن ثقافته. وكنت يومها برفقة صديقي الشاعر أحمد دحبور، عندما نقلنا المعلومة إلى الدكتور سهيل.

وُلِدَ سماح لأبوين عروبيين تقدميين ديمقراطيين، حملا باستمرار راية فلسطين، وبشّرا بحتمية تحريرها بالمقاومة، ولم ييأسا عند وقوع هزيمة حزيران/يونيو، بل جعلا مجلة “الآداب” منبراً لأدب المقاومة، وثقافة المقاومة، وشجعا المبدعين العرب على الكتابة الملتزمة ثقافةَ المقاومة رداً على الهزيمة المرّة في حزيران/يونيو 67.

سماح إدريس وُلِدَ لأسرة حملت مشروعاً ثقافياً قومياً منذ أسس المعلم سهيل إدريس مجلة “الآداب” عام 1953. ومع رفيقة عمره السيدة عايدة مطرجي إدريس واصلا مشوارهما المُشرّف، والذي أغنى المشهد الثقافي العربي، وساهم في تحديثه، بالترافق مع التزام هموم الأمة من محيطها إلى خليجها؛ من ثورة الجزائر إلى ثورة عدن؛ من إدانة سياسة الأحلاف إلى فضح العدوان الثلاثي على مصر؛ من تأميم قناة السويس إلى بناء السد العالي؛ من وحدة مصر وسوريا إلى إدانة الانفصال عام 1961 وتجريمه…

في أسرة بنت عالياً “دار الآداب” للنشر لتعزز دور ثقافة مجلة “الآداب”، وُلد سماح إدريس، وانطلق في فضاء حر، بتربية ديمقراطية حقّة بنت شخصيته.. وأطلقتها لتشق طريقها في نهل العلم والمعرفة والثقافة التي تمضي في آفاق لا حدود تنغلق في وجهها، أو تحدّ قدراتها.

رحل المعلم سهيل إدريس، فتقدَّم سماح وأخذ دوره مواصلا رسالة “الآداب”. وحين أغلقت أبواب الرقابة الحدود في وجه “الآداب”، واستشرت محاولات الترويض، انتقل سماح بـ”الآداب” إلى زمن التكنولوجيا، فأصدر “الآداب” إلكترونياً، واجتذب اقلاما مبدعة شابة – ولم يُدِر الظهر لمن رافقوا “الآداب” في زمن الأب المعلم، وأنا منهم – فكتب إلي وإلى آخرين، طالباً أن نشارك في قصصنا ومقالاتنا، وبهذا كسر الحدود التي أُغلقت، وملأ فضاء الوطن العربي على الرغم من الحدود المفتعلة، والرقابة الضيّقة الأفق. وهكذا وصلت “الآداب” الإلكترونية إلى أقصى الأرض في حلّة أنيقة حديثة، وبأقلام تنمّ عن مواهب، وبتجدد يمضي بـ”الآداب” إلى آفاق فسيحة.

عندما دُعيت إلى تقديم ندوة في “المنتدى العربي” في عمّان، بعنوان “هل يمكن تجديد الناصرية؟”، يوم الـ28 من أيلول/سبتمبر 2021، في ذكرى رحيل القائد جمال عبد الناصر، وضعت أمامي كتاب أخي وصديقي ورفيقي سماح، “المثقف العربي والسلطة: بحث في روايات التجربة الناصرية”، وكنت قرأت الكتاب وأنا في تونس بعد أن أهدانيه سماح، وكتب كلمة ذات معنى عميق استعدته من جديد: إلى الأخ والصديق الروائي والقصّاص الفلسطيني العربي.. كيف نكون ناصريين حقاً؟ وديمقراطيين حقّاً أيضاً؟ مع حبي واحترامي. وتوقيعه، بتاريخ 7.5.93.

كان السؤال: كيف نكون ناصريين حقّاً، وديمقراطيين حقاً، حضر في تلك المحاضرة، وحضر سماح صاحب السؤال، والكتاب الغني بحثاً وإبداعاً، والصادر عن منشورات “الآداب” في عام 1992.. وهذا يعني أن سماحاً كان في حدود الثلاثين من عمره آنذاك!

عملياً، ناقش سماح بعمق أزمة الناصرية في العلاقة بالمثقفين، من اختلفوا، ومن نافقوا، ومن خلال أعمالهم الروائية، وأيضاً وضع محددات لدور المثقف العربي، وما يحميه من السقوط في شراك السلطة، أي سلطة، في الماضي والحاضر و… المستقبل.

هذا الكتاب حضر معي في تلك الندوة التي تحدثت فيها عن أهمية تجديد الناصرية، لا بتقديسها والولاء لقائدها الراحل جمال عبد الناصر، لكن بنقدها، والوقوف أمام سلبياتها، وعدم المجاملة والتغطية على أمراضها وأسباب هزيمة حزيران/يونيو 67.

سماح المفكر المقاوم، الروائي الذي انتقل برواياته وقصصه إلى “عوالم” الشباب والفتيان، وذهب إليهم في المخيمات والأحياء الشعبية، مخاطباً العقول، موقظاً الوعي، فاتحاً البصائر على ما ينتظرهم، مُمتعاً ككاتب، مُدهشاً كحكّاء بارع.

سماح الغني الحضور مُترجماً، وناسج الصداقات عالمياً، وهو يخوض معركة “المقاطعة” مع شرفاء مقاومين، عربياً وعالمياً، مُساهماً ببسالة في فضح جوهر الكيان الصهيوني.

حمل سماح بين جنبيه حكمة الكبار- لِنَقُلْ: من الشيخ سهيل إدريس، والوالدة عايدة – والشبّان الذين انتمى إليهم عمراً وعقلاً، فكتب أعمالاً روائية رائعة تتقدمها “خلف الأبواب المقفلة”، والتي بعد أن قرأتها وأخبرته بقراءتي لها، سألني: هل أعجبتك؟

أجبته: يا سماح.. أنت تكتب عن شبّان لا نعرف عنهم سوى القليل، لأنك منهم. صحيح أنك تكتب لهم، لكنك تكتب عنهم، وعن هواجسهم، ومشاغلهم. لذا، فأنت تعرّفنا بهم، وتساهم في تمكيننا من الاقتراب منهم، فضلاً عن أنك روائي بحق…

سماح كان مَرِحاً، جذّاباً، مؤثراً، بعيداً عن الحقد، محاوراً عنيداً، يعمل طوال الوقت، لا في المكاتب، لكن مع الناس، مع الفتيان، وفي التجمعات، والأفعال المقاومة، لأنه عرف دوره وحدده والتزمه: مقاوماً في الميدان، وليس منظّراً يرسل كلماته عبر البريد الإلكتروني، وفي صفحات الصحف والمجلات، لكن عبر الانخراط ميدانياً.. في معركة الثقافة الجادة المنتمية، وفي مواجهة التطبيع، وشحذ الهمم في نشر ثقافة المقاطعة والمقاومة وفي تعميقها.

كتب سماح افتتاحية غاضبة عن “حثالات” الخراب في لبنان، وثبّت خّط “الآداب”، المجلّة، ودار النشر، كأنما كان يترك وصية وعهداً.

في افتتاحية “الآداب”، بتاريخ 29ـ7ـ2021، يفضح من يفسدون الحياة في لبنان، ويعيّشون بيروت وأخواتها في العتمة، والحاجة إلى البنزين والمازوت، المُستجدين للحماية، ومن يرهنون كرامات الوطن ومصيره، ويبيعونه بأثمان بخسة.. وينهبون ثرواته، ويصرخ بهم علّهم يتعلمون فيرتدعون، وهو عارف بأنهم لن يتغيّروا كـ”حثالات”.

ولأنه يعرفهم جيداً، ويحتقرهم جداً، يكتب: مع حثالة سارقة قاتلة وحقيرة كهذه، قد لا تبدو للكلمة التغييرية المستقلة سطوة. حتى إحراج هذه الحثالة قد لا يحصل.. ببساطة لأن لا أخلاق ولا قيم لها كي تشعر بأي إحراج!

فكيف إذا كانت تلك الكلمة تواجه اكتساحاً متنامياً لإعلام مقايضة الكهرباء والماء والمكيّف والمازوت والبنزين… ببيع كل المبادئ الأخلاقية والقومية والوطنية والتقدمية؟

لكن، هل من باع ذلك كله حصل على الرفاه الموعود؟ اسألوا مصر السادات ما بعد “كامب ديفيد”!

وفي زمن “الحثالات”، المطبّعين واللصوص، وباعة الدم والضمير، ومغرقي الفضاء والورق بإعلام التخدير والتزوير وتغييب الوعي، فسماح المؤمن بقيم حملها بثبات، يكتب وهو يواجه المرض الذي فتك بجسده، بكل يقين، وبكبرياء، معاهداً.. وواعداً، باسمه، وبمن سيواصل رسالة “الآداب” من بعده:

ومع ذلك، فنحن لا نملك مهنة غير الكتابة والنشر المستقلَّيْن، وسنواصل هذه المهنة، مهما صعبت الظروف، ومهما تعثرنا، أو تأخرنا، أو كبونا.

وسنكون إلى جانب كل من يعمل، بكّد وتفانٍ، وحب، على الخلاص من سارقي أحلام شعبنا في الحياة الكريمة الحُرّة.

هذه وصية سماح، وهذه مدرسة “الآداب” التي أنجبته، وتربّى ونشأ على قيمها، وهذا هو المسار الذي ستواصله “الآداب”…

يثق سماح بمن بقوا بعده، بمن صانوا “الآداب” المجلة، و”الآداب” دار النشر، بشقيقته الناشرة المعروفة، عربياً وعالمياً، رنا إدريس، ومعها شقيقته رائدة، وبحضور الأم عايدة التي تبارك آل إدريس الذين أنجبوا جيلاً ثالثاً يكبر برعاية “روح” الأسرة، وقيمها، وثقافتها، وتراثها…

لروحك السلام، أيها المقاوم المثقف والمفكّر الميداني، سماح إدريس.

سيبقى اسمك مرفوعاً في الميادين، ومع رايات فلسطين، وفي أناشيد المقاومين ووعودهم في كل بلاد العرب، وملهما لكل المثقفين الصادقين والشرفاء والمستقلين حقاً.

إن الآراء المذكورة في هذه المقالة لا تعبّر بالضرورة عن رأي الميادين وإنما تعبّر عن رأي صاحبها حصراً

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‘After Syria, Ukraine is part two of World War III’: Senior Analyst

March 17, 2022

In a recent episode of his YouTube political talk program ’60 minutes’, senior Lebanese political analyst Nasser Qandil argued that ‘the Ukraine war is part two of World War III’, after ‘part one in Syria had ended in a clear victory for Russia’.

Source: Nasser Qandil (YouTube)

Description:
Date: March 7, 2022

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Transcript:

Nasser Qandil:

I wish to talk about a number of points regarding the Ukraine war, because we – as always –aim at deepening and consolidating the understanding, awareness, and perception of all those watching us, and helping them to receive the means (that raise their) awareness and not (imposing) our own outcome, meaning they can use the tools, premises, and introductions (we present) to reach different conclusions – and this is an achievement that’s way more important than (merely) dictating to them the outcome (of analyses) and saying (that’s the whole thing) and ‘full stop’ (i.e. you don’t need to think any further). Therefore, our mission in this program is to increase the knowledge (of viewers), and not only to use (the knowledge) we have or that which people have (in our discussions).

The first conclusion I wish to consolidate with you, my dear viewers, is that this war is the largest war after World War II. I personally tried to check through history before adopting this conclusion, (looking into) the Korean war, the Vietnam war, the Invasion of Iraq, the Invasion of Afghanistan, the wars of Israel in our region (the Middle East) since 1967 including the October War we fought (against Israel) as Arabs, and the Israeli invasion of Lebanon; this whole outcome makes me confidently say, bearing responsibility for my words, that this is the world’s largest war after World War II, and I’ll explain why.

The first point is that the initiator of this war is Russia, while all the other wars had (another) common (factor). We haven’t witnessed a war – except for a limited number like the October War for example, like initiatives (by forces) opposing the American (hegemony) project and its extensions and alliances, the majority – 99% of the wars witnessed after World War II were wars of domination and control carried out by the US. Therefore, we are before a war, the first characteristic of which is the transfer of the military initiative in decision-making. This shift moved from a side that was the only one taking the initiative, and which has, for seventy years, taken the lead at the global level, which is the US, (that recently) withdrew from Afghanistan and (began) avoiding to take part in wars and (began) gathering its shreds and shrapnel from places it got involved in with the aim of incurring the least amount of (further) losses, and in an attempt to strike settlement (agreements), (while) on the other hand we have the rise of a side that has started – since more than 10 years within a limited (pace) – speaking about the South Ossetian war in 2008, the Crimean Peninsula war in 2014, the huge position (Russia took) in Syria in 2015, and (the part it took) in Kazakhstan in 2021. However, now (this war) is President Putin’s largest war – Russia’s largest war after this calm ascent (of Russia), and the parallel decline of American power.

Here, we can’t look at the war from the (aspect of) geography alone. Before going into the geographical (aspect), it’s a fundamental and essential issue yes. But (first) we’re talking about a descending arc of a state, which is the US arc (of power), and an ascending Russian arc – an arc that represents this rise of Asia as a whole, and can be seen in Eastern countries in different manifestations, even if there weren’t a precise and accurate coordination and approach between Russia, Iran, and China – because there are many who would try to dig up some cracks and holes within this presentation; we are not talking about congruence of approaches. Even in the Syrian war, China didn’t take the position that Iran took; Russia took time until it took (its) position (to support Syria,) but it eventually did and paid the price for it and reaped its fruits. Consequently, it’s not necessary to speak about congruence, yet there’s an Asian rise (of power) that no one can argue about, a rise that shakes American hegemony. No one can say that the rise of Iran is not evident, and that this rise (of power) didn’t lead to the erosion of America’s position and grip on the heart of Asia and especially in our region (the Middle East). (In addition,) China’s rise worries America and the entire West, and Russia’s rise is now evident in the military sphere and through this huge, massive qualitative step, which (helped) form this ascending Russian arc that expresses this rise of Asia, (a Russian arc) that is sometimes ahead of the (Asian arc) such that it enjoys a higher degree of courage in its decision-making, (all of this) while the descending American arc (lies on the other side)…here we talk about the second characteristic of this war, which makes it one of the world’s most important wars after World War II, which is that it’s taking place in Europe.

All other wars – in the view of the West that led the world, (the West being) the US and Europe – were on the peripheries and in third world countries. I mean, check (the history) of all the (previous) wars – it (will help) explain to us why this revival of racist thought is being seen in (the attitudes) of journalists and analysts through unintended slips of tongue sometimes, (because) maybe if they thought a little about it they’d be ashamed (of what they were saying). However, this war is actually in Europe, and not in a third world country.

Therefore, for the first time since World War II – although the Yugoslavian war was in Europe, it was a war carried out by the US and western Europe to destroy what’s left of the Soviet legacy, to pave the way for a tight grip on the entire geography, economy, and politics of Europe. Now, this is the first war to knock Europe’s door, meaning that Russia is fighting a war and it’s on the European door. This is the second factor.

The third factor – I want to draw attention to the necessity of investigation, to reread information about Ukraine. Here, I’ll provide the main points to help (the viewer) get (the idea of) what we’re talking about. There’s a chain called ‘The European Bridge’ of five major European states, historically speaking: Spain, France, Germany, Poland, and Ukraine. Ukraine, in terms of (geographical) area equals (the area of) France plus a bit, (and it equals) Germany + Holland + Belgium + Switzerland (all together) in (its geographical) area. Ukraine’s population equals the population of France and equals the population of both Poland and Romania added together. The rest of the Eastern European countries became fragments – after the dissolution of Czechoslovakia – the rest, such as Lithuania, Estonia and Hungary are actually micro-states compared to the size of Ukraine. We’re speaking about 45 million people, meaning twice the number of Iraq’s (population) back when the war started (there). We’re speaking about an area of (about) 600,000 km², which is Syria’s size multiplied by three times and a half, and Lebanon’s size multiplied by 60. We are speaking about the second (most important) state in the Soviet Union after Russia, in terms of size, population, army, technical qualifications of its (various) generations, its colleges, participation in food and technical production, its position in terms of nuclear weapons.

So, we’re not speaking about Iraq, the besieged, disintegrated, weak Iraq that suffers from internal crises, that is not supported by any (external) side, and which is this far (from Europe) – if (in) Iraq, the US army’s entrance to the capital, Baghdad, took 20 days while they were at their peak of advancement, and so even if it takes the Russian army 200 days to enter Kyiv, they will still be considered as making (good) progress – (this approach) allows us to read the situation correctly. Ukraine – this is Ukraine, of course in Ukrainian history there’s a connection between it and Russia; Ukraine is to a large extent (considered as a) mini-Russia. Originally, Russia initiated from Kyiv, the Russian Empire was founded in Kyiv and then moved to Moscow. Therefore, there are efforts for reaching parity, or emulation and competition (between them). Ukraine believes – those who know the traditional Soviet environment (can relate), when we used to visit the Soviet Union, none would introduce themselves by their original nationality and point out that they’re not Russian, except for the Ukrainians; they use to say ‘I’m not Russian’. And I’m speaking about communists, he’d be an official whose mission is to negotiate with us and talk about issues. So, (we can notice that) Ukraine has a sense of competition, with the European background, and a dimension that is related to the way Ukraine was formed – which is a group of (mixed) ethnicities, and if you look at its geography you can notice that parts of it didn’t belong to Ukraine and Stalin later joined many of them to Ukraine: a part of Moldova, a part of Poland, in addition to the Crimean Peninsula that was originally Russian.

Anyway, Lenin and Stalin had a bias for Ukraine and a special interest in satisfying this Ukrainian pride and reassuring them that (Ukraine) is of an important and special status. Therefore, it has always been – I use a metaphor sometimes, I’d say that Ukraine’s (relation) with Russia is like Queen Elizabeth and Lady Diana, in which Queen Elizabeth represents the throne, history (of England), etc., and Lady Diana is the sweet, lovely, popular, (lady) that (represents) elegance, youth, and beauty etc. Therefore, Ukraine, in the eyes of the Soviet Union and the West – Brzezinski said in the 80s or 1978 that ‘Russia without Ukraine is a great state, and a very great one, yet without Ukraine, Russia ceases to be an Empire’.

So, we must know what we are speaking about, and why am I saying these words. It is to say that the conclusion is that Putin – this is his war, (the war) that he had been preparing for since at least 2014, because the 2014 war when he annexed the Crimean Peninsula and joined it to Russia, it was the first Ukrainian war for President Putin. (Furthermore,) since 2008, when he entered South Ossetia, he wasn’t aiming at Georgia; look at the (world) map, you’ll see Georgia’s size compared to Ukraine, it can’t even be compared to it! The fight is over Ukraine, the same way Syria was (of great importance) in the Middle East; the one who controls Syria will have control over the (whole Middle East) region and the world through it, (now,) the one who controls Ukraine will have control over Europe and the world through it.

Therefore, the first point we must break free from in our thinking and debate, is talking about the duration of the war; who said Putin wishes to end it in a short period of time? Why put a formula that says that one of the signs of success is the speed in which the achievement is done? It’s not a rule at all! This war might be (intentionally) designed to be a long one, so that a new world system could be built upon its ramifications, developments, and (resulting) frameworks.

It’s a war that cannot end without (reaching) a Russian-American-European settlement. Who’s Zelenskyy? What (kind of) position and power does he have (compared to Russia’s power)? What can he offer in any kind of negotiations? And what kind of decision does he get to make in negotiations? Therefore, it’s a Russian-American war. Europe became part of it. And if Europe had made the decision of not being a part of it, the whole thing would’ve ended through a Russian-European settlement. Therefore, the US used all its capabilities to make Europe a part of it, but that’s not a permanent condition. Today the fight is over Europe; to what extent can Europe remain part of this war?

Therefore, we are before part two of World War III. If Syria was the first episode, then Ukraine is the second episode. The first episode ended – if we are speaking internationally – it ended with a clear victory for Russia. Now we are before the second episode.

Misconceptions

 

BY GILAD ATZMON

Jerusalem 1973

 Ashraf Marwan is a controversial figure within Israel’s intelligence community. Some regard him as Israel’s best ever Arab spy, others see him as an Egyptian spymaster who misled the Israeli military ahead of the 1973 war that was a military  disaster for the Jewish state.  In June 2007, Marwan ‘fell’  from the balcony of his London house. His wife and many commentators accused the Mossad of the assassination.

 

Marwan was born in 1944 to an influential Egyptian family. At the age of 21 he married  Mona Nasser, president Gamal Abdel Nasser’s second daughter and secured his place in the corridors of power in 1960s Cairo.

 

Following its humiliating defeat in the 1967 war, Egypt started to prepare its military to take back the Sinai peninsula.  Marwan was privy to Egypt’s best-kept secrets; its war plans, detailed accounts of military exercises, original documentation of Egypt’s arms deals with the Soviet Union and other countries, military tactics, the minutes from meetings of the high command, transcripts of Sadat’s private conversations with world leaders, etc. All of that allowed him to provide Israel with invaluable information about the coming war. 

 The intelligence that Marwan provided to the Mossad made its way to the desks of Israeli political and military leaders and shaped Israel’s so- called post ‘67 strategic ‘concept’ – the belief that Egypt’s Sadat wouldn’t launch a war against Israel unless his minimum requirements were fulfilled. Without long-range attack aircraft and long range Scud missiles, Israel was made to believe, Egypt could not overcome Israeli air superiority and would not launch a war.

 The reports that Marwan provided to Israel contained precious information that, although accurate, systematically contributed to Israel’s misconceptions about Egypt’s aspirations, plans and capabilities.

 In April 1973, Marwan persuaded the Mossad that Egypt planned an attack on Israel in mid-May. As a result, Israel raised its military to red alert, but that May war never happened. In late September, Marwan once again convinced the Mossad of an Egyptian plan for an attack, but this time the Mossad had lost its credibility and until the last minute, the IDF military chiefs treated Marwan’s information with suspicion. They basically ignored him.

 A few hours before it began, Marwan provided the Mossad with a final warning that a war was about to launch. Late on the 5th of October 1973,  Tzvi Zamir, the head of the  Mossad, met Marwan in London and learned that a war would start the following  day at 6pm. The war did indeed start the next day, four hours earlier than predicted. The 1973 war is considered by Israel to be its most humiliating and scandalous military blunder. Israel was totally unprepared. IDF battalions on the frontline were exposed to a full-on Egyptian and Syrian assault. They were wiped out within hours. Some rightly argue that it is only because the Egyptian and Syrian armies had limited plans in terms of territorial gains that Israel survived this war militarily and exists to this day. Most Israeli military commentators agree that it was not the IDF generals who saved the country but the foot soldiers on the ground who fought heroically with their backs to the wall.  

 

General Eli Zeira, then Director of Israeli military intelligence is regarded as a major contributor to the 1973 military blunder. Zeira claims that it was Marwan’s  earlier misleading information that led to  Israel’s ‘misconception’ of Egypt’s true intentions. Zeira argues that Marwan was a ‘double agent’ or more rightly, a skilful Egyptian spymaster,  who brilliantly managed to deceive  the Israelis into a delusional ‘misconception’ of the conflict. Those who believe that Marwan was assassinated by the Mossad tend to accept General Zeira’s opinion.

 

Kyiv 2022

 For months and months America, Britain and NATO warned the Ukrainians that Russia was planning a war. The Americans in particular have made it clear that they were privy to information, that although it couldn’t be  shared with the general public, indicated that  Putin was planning an imminent attack.  Naturally, not many people bought into these repeated American warnings: by now American and British intelligence have been involved in too many blunders and spectacular lies (among them phantasmic WMD in Iraq and chemical attacks in Syria)  that no one, including the Ukrainians, has taken these military institutions seriously. It was also evident  that, even more than Ukraine or Russia wanted or needed a military conflict, it was  Washington and London  that  desired one. Ukraine has become an energy hub following the discovery of large reserves of gas and oil within its territory. The West saw it as an alternative to Russia as the major gas supplier to Europe.

 

As happened with Marwan in 1973, someone ‘helped’ the Pentagon to build a ‘concept’ of an ‘imaginary Russian campaign.’ In American’s  delusional war plan, Putin would capture Ukraine’s Russian speaking regions in the East and might also attempt to seize some ground in the south to create a land  passage  to Crimea. This war would have come to an end within a short time as its military objectives were limited. Ukraine would accept the Russian territorial gains  as it would allow Ukraine to rid itself of its most problematic and contested regions. Russia would be condemned but, in this scenario, when peace prevails, Ukraine would be able to join the EU and maybe even NATO and most important, become Europe’s  prime energy supplier. 

 

This ‘concept’ of a war may well have been  induced by a Putin / Marwan figure. It misled the Americans and the Brits to build a completely wrong strategic and geopolitical vision. The Ukrainian military was foolish enough to follow the Pentagon’s intelligence scenario and deployed its elite units to the East. Those units prepared themselves for an express war on some disputed but defined territories.  But that wasn’t the war that  happened. Instead what transpired was tragic for Ukraine and its military. Just before the 24 February Russian invasion, it became clear that Russia had extended its military drills to Belarus. Days later, Russia launched its military campaign.  Russia’s main effort was launched from Belarus and it was aimed at the Ukrainian capital Kyiv not the Eastern regions as predicted. In a simple move, the Russian Army basically managed to cut off most of the Ukrainian Army  far from the capital and with no supply routes or logistical support from the West. 

 

By attacking Ukraine from Belarus, the Russians copied Hitler’s Belgium manoeuvre. In 1940 the French waited for the German Panzers on the vastly fortified Maginot Line. But the Germans bypassed the Maginot Line and went into France through Belgium and headed straight to France’s soft belly and Paris. That left the French military stranded at the Maginot line and exposed from the rear as the enemy was then behind them. It would have helped if American, British and Ukrainian generals had spent some time learning military history or even watching some relevant  Youtube history channel documentaries.

 

Why did these military leaders badly misjudge Putin’s plans and Russian strategic objectives? As happened with Marwan in 1973, someone or something planted into American, British and Ukrainian decision makers a complete misconception of Russian intentions. This blunder has caused a total disaster for Ukraine, its people, its military and the  integrity of its land.  It was their complete shock at the Russian decision to invade Ukraine  from Belarus  that led the West into panic and rapid escalation in sanctions and language.  For the West the situation is hopeless. Even if NATO would have liked to support the Ukrainian forces; it literally can’t. The European nations who promised to supply military equipment to the Ukrainian army can’t do so as the Ukrainian army is cut off in the East. If you  don’t believe this, ask a simple question.  How was it possible that the 60 km Russian convoy was stopped, standing still like sitting ducks for 10 days without being attacked? The answer is simple. The Ukrainian army is unable to  engage in a concentrated military effort. It is limited in its capacity to  attack Russian logistics and it certainly cannot launch a counter attack. Misconception comes with a price, especially when your leaders engage in relentless  warmongering. Yet, as in Israel 1973, in Ukraine in 2022 it isn’t the generals or the mini oligarch -actor/president who can save the situation. It is the resilient heroic  fighters on the ground. They don’t seem to give up and fight to their last drop of blood.     

 

Moscow 2022

 The Russian military ‘achieved’ its goals in just two days: it cut out the Ukrainian army and dismantled its ability to defend the country, let alone secure the area around the  capital. The Ukrainian air force lost its control over Ukraine’s skies on the first day. Command centres around the country were destroyed. Despite these losses, despite its clear military superiority, the Russians haven’t won the war, far from it, a decisive victory isn’t on the horizon.

 

The Russian war planners fell into the same trap as their counterparts in NATO and Ukraine.  They also held a delusional misconception of Ukraine.  The Russians overestimated the support they would find amongst the population and Ukraine’s political class. They grossly underestimated the Ukrainians’ will to defend their land.  They underestimated the Western reaction to their campaign. They grossly underestimated the world animosity towards Russia, its leaders, its Israeli/Russian oligarchs. They couldn’t envisage the present solidarity with the Ukrainians and their resistance. They certainly couldn’t see Zelensky, the actor, morphing into a Che Guevara character: in their eyes and for good reason, he was seen as a comical character and a political puppet. The modernist old fashioned Russian generals didn’t understand that in a world shaped by Tik Tok and Zuckerbergs, all it takes for a male actor who was dancing  in high heeled shoes to become an iconic ‘freedom fighter’ is simply a  matter of makeup and costume.

 

The Russian were  mistaken on most fronts. But being clumsy, heavy, miscalculated and delusional is not new to Russia, it may even be engraved in the Russian operational mode. Throughout its history Russia was caught sluggish and dysfunctional in battles against enemies who were superior technologically, tactically and spiritually. Remember that at one point the Soviets almost lost their capital to the 3rd Reich. Their allies (USA and Britain)  betrayed them,  but despite that, it was the USSR that  won the big war and chased the defeated German army all the way from Stalingrad to Berlin. The Russians are somehow resilient, or at least used to be.

 

I Misconceive Therefore I am

 Being trapped in misconception is probably inherent to the human condition. Projecting our own faults on others is often the means by which we bring disasters on ourselves. But in 2022, the Ashraf Marwans do not stop at just manipulating  leaders or generals. In the world we happen to find ourselves in, the incessant  duplicity is designed to enslave  us all.  We are repeatedly trained to be tormented by ‘global disasters’ from ‘Climate’, to ‘Covid’ to ‘Russia’ to Energy, to the Economy and back again. We are kept in a state of constant collective hysteria, united against our (global) ‘public enemy’ at the time. Unsurprisingly, this ‘universal’ panic mode is set to make the rich richer. 

It seems to me as if those who detected  the deep propagandist misconception that that was pushed by Fauci, Bill Gates and Bourla also tend to be suspicious  about the continuum between Biden (the father and the son), Johnson and  Zelensky. 

 

It is not a matter of Left or Right, it isn’t a matter of education or cognitive ability. It is a clear division between Jerusalem and Athens that is now dividing us and may as well leading us into a global civil war. Jerusalem within that context (as defined by Leo Strauss), is the city of revelation. It sustains itself by maintaining tyranny of correctness, legalism (Torah and Mitzvoth). Athens, on the contrary,  is the birthplace of  (Western) philosophy. It is all about skepticism, the ability to think for yourself. While Chomsky and Dershowitz  tell you what to say – what is right and who is wrong, Kant and Heidegger teach you how to figure out things by yourself. 

 To survive  the Marwans and defeat misconceptions, scepticism isn’t  just a tool, it is an existential necessity. Yet such scepticism is almost impossible to maintain, it entails constant regression and a consistent questioning of your most elementary thoughts and findings.  

 

Jerusalem is winning, at least at the moment, and for obvious reasons. It is easier to train people to act like sheep and be politically correct than to encourage people to think for themselves and allow for unpredictable results. Accordingly, the survival of the skeptic is a lone war that resembles heroic insurgency, it is a guerrilla battle.      

 ‘

Maybe it is time to accept that the true meaning of globalisation is the acceptance that  there is no refuge, no safe haven, no escape. Even when you see it all, the lies, the propaganda, the tyranny of correctness, Jerusalem and the decline of the West as we know it, you are still locked together with the rest of humanity in a vessel spiralling down to impact. 

السعودية: تكفير وإرهاب من

الخميس 6 يناير 2022

 شوقي عواضة

لم يكن نشوء الكيان السّعودي أقلّ دمويّةً وإرهابيّةً من قيام أميركا التي قامت على أنقاض الهنود الحمر ولا أقلّ إجراماً من نشوء الكيان الصّهيوني الذي قام على أجساد الفلسطينيين، بل كان أكثر إرهاباً وإجراماً وقتلاً وتمثيلاً وتنكيلاً بالبشر. وما يميّزه عن الكيانين الأميركي «والإسرائيلي» يجعله أكثر خطورةً على الأمّة حيث أنّ آل سعود المنحدرين من أصلٍ يهوديٍّ يعود لجدّهم مردخاي بن ابراهام بن موشي الدونمي من يهود الدونمة وفق ما أثبته الكاتب الشّهيد ناصر السعيد في كتابه «تاريخ آل سعود». وعليه فإنّ هؤلاء اليهود الذين أسّسوا الكيان السّعودي بدعمٍ بريطاني تكمن خطورته في الحقائق التّاريخية الآتية:

أولا ـ تبنّيهم للهوية العربيّة وهم يهود في الأصل واتخاذ الإسلام ستاراً للحكم وقيام كيانهم الوظيفي والحليف للكيان الصّهيوني.

ُثانياـ اغتصابهم لشبه الجزيرة العربيّة بدعم بريطانيا التي دعمت قيام الكيان الصّهيوني الذي اغتصب فلسطين.

ثالثا ـ قيام الكيان السّعودي على الغزوات وارتكاب المذابح والمجازر بحقّ القبائل العربيّة كما حصل في فلسطين من غزواتٍ ومذابحَ على يد عصابات الهاغاناه وشتيرن وغيرها.

رابعا ـ ضرب واستهداف كلّ عناصر القوّة في الأمّة لا سيما تيّارات المقاومة وتشتيتها وتحويل مسار الصّراع مع الكيان الصّهيوني إلى صراعاتٍ وحروبٍ داخل الأمة.

عبر التاريخ أثبت الكيان السعودي بكلّ ملوكه وحكّامه الذين توالوا على الحكم هذه الحقائق. فالسعوديّة التي استدرجت الرئيس جمال عبد النّاصر للحرب في اليمن لم تكن مهمّتها سوى إشغال الرئيس المصري عن استكمال المواجهة مع العدو الصّهيوني

وثائق الدور السعودي في حرب يونيو

فقد كشفت وثائق للمخابرات الأميركيّة والبريطانيّة و»الإسرائيليّة» نشرت مؤخّراً عن حقائق هامّة تتعلّق بدورٍ خطيرٍ قام به الملك فيصل بالتنسيق مع أميركا قبل حرب 1967 للتآمر على عبد النّاصر وهزيمته، وكشفت عن اتصالاتٍ سرّيةٍ أجراها السعوديون بالإسرائيليين بهدف دعمهم مباشرة أو من خلال واشنطن لضرب عبد الناصر وتحجيم دوره القومي، وفرض الهزيمة المعنويّة عليه بعد الهزيمة العسكريّة عام 1967 وهو ما جرى فعلياً…

كذلك الأمر اليوم أعادت السّعودية نفس السيناريو من خلال ما يسمّى بالرّبيع العربي لاستنزاف سورية قلعة المقاومة وحصنها وإشغال المقاومة بعد انتصاري 2000 و2006 ومحاولة تفتيت قدراتها لكنّها فشلت وأسقط مشروعها، ومحاولة استعادة العراق من محور المقاومة، والسّيطرة على اليمن الذي أذلّ طواغيت آل سعود وحلفائهم. لم تتغيّر مسلكية آل سعود منذ نشوء كيانهم الوظيفي حتى اليوم وهذا ليس تحليلاً ولا توقعاً بل وقائع تاريخيّة موثّقة عبّر عنها الزّعيم الراحل :جمال عبد النّاصر في محطاتٍ كثيرةٍ. فمن خطاب له في الثالث والعشرين من كانون الأول/ ديسمبر عام 1962 قال

سقط لنا 136 ضابطاً وعسكريّاً جزمة كلّ واحد منهم أشرف من تاج الملك سعود والملك حسين

وفي الثّاني والعشرين من تموز/ يوليو من العام نفسه كشف عبد الناصر عن التّعاون بين الاستعمار والنظام السّعودي قائلاً «لاحظنا في السنة الأخيرة تعاوناً مطلقاً بين الرجعية العربيّة وقوى الاستعمار ويوجد تعاونٌ وتضامنٌ بينهم في العمل ضدّ القومية العربيّة وقوى الثّورة والتّحرر العربي. صفقات السّلاح التي تستهدف العرب ولا تستهدف عدو العرب».

أمّا عن قضية فلسطين وآل سعود فكان للزعيم عبد الناصر رأي يقول

«أنا لا أتصوّر بأيّ حال من الأحوال أن المملكة السعودية تستطيع أن تحارب في فلسطين وفيها قاعدة أميركية وفيها قاعدة بريطانيّة.

لم تكن مواقف الرئيس جمال عبد الناصر حينها طائفيّةً ولا مذهبيةً ولا عشائريةً أو عنصريّةً وهو العربي الذي عمّد عروبته بالدّم، وهو المسلم الذي تقدّم لمقاومة المحتلّ الصهيوني لأرض فلسطين، وهو السني الذي ثار في وجه الظالمين والمستبدّين وفي مقدمتهم آل سعود.

تلك المواقف لم تكن إلا تعبيراً عن واقعٍ وحقيقة دامغة كشفت دور آل سعود ومؤامراتهم على الأمّة. وما قاله الأمين العام لحزب الله السيّد حسن نصر الله في خطابه الأخير في ذكرى الشّهيدين قاسم سليماني وأبي مهدي المهندس هو نفس الحقيقة التي عبّر عنها الرئيس عبد الناصر منذ أكثر من خمسين عاماً، ولا يزال نفس الكيان يتآمر على الأمة ولكي لا يعطي البعض صبغةً طائفيةً أو مذهبيّة لكلام السّيد نصر الله نقول لهم راجعوا مواقف الرّئيس عبد الناصر التي ردّ عليها آل سعود بتكفيره في الثالث والعشرين من كانون الأول/ ديسمبر من عام 1962 حيث نشرت صحيفة «عكاظ» السّعودية على صفحتها الأولى وبالخط العريض فتوى لفقهاء البلاط الملكي تقول (جمال عبد الناصر كافر بالإجماع) عنوان يختصر عقليّة الكيان السّعودي وحكّامه المستعربين الذين لم ولن يتغيّروا. اليوم يكفّرون الشّرفاء ويتهمونهم بالإرهاب وكلّ ذلك لن يغيّر من حقيقة تقول بأنّ الكيان السعودي الذي قام على المذابح والقتل هو أصل الإرهاب وليس أقلّ خطورة من إرهاب العدو الصّهيوني، وأنّ الوهابيّة التي غزت بدواعشها دمشق وبغداد لا تقلّ عدوانية عن عصابات الهاغاناه وشتيرن، وان شيوخ الوهابيّة هم كفقهاء التلمود، وأنّ كيانكم السرطاني سيزول كما سيزول الكيان الصّهيوني والآتي من الأيام سيُنبّئ بذلك.

الفيلم الوثائقي “جمال عبد الناصر- الأسطورة والزعيم

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