- On December 24, Mondoweiss co-editor Adam Horowitz wrote:
- "Israeli military kills 20-year old Gazan for herding
animals too close to buffer zone."
- On December 23, Israeli forces shot and killed Salama
Abu Harhish without warning while herding sheep and goats in Beit Lahya.
Civilized nations don't murder nonviolent civilians in cold blood, this
time leaving a widow and day-old unnamed baby.
- What "democracy" thrives on violence, spurns
peace, and wages preemptive wars like Cast Lead. Besides America, only
Israel, a global menace like its Washington paymaster/partner, together
with Britain the real axis of evil.
- December 28 was Cast Lead's second anniversary, a three
week continuing onslaught. Against Palestine, Israel's wars never end.
The 2008-09 horror evoked memories of Franklin Roosevelt's December 8,
1941 moment, telling a joint session of Congress:
- "Yesterday, December 7,1941 - a date which will
live in infamy - the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately
attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan. The United States
was at peace with that Nation, (and) look(ed) toward maintain(ing it) in
the Pacific....I ask that the Congress declare that....a state of war has
existed between the United States and the Japanese empire."
- Historical analysis exposed America's real intent, its
desire for war, its foreknowledge of the attack, its tracking of the Japanese
fleet across the Pacific but not warning Pearl Harbor's commander to ensure
surprise and public anger, and Roosevelt's imperial aims. Nonetheless,
his powerful words expressed outrage about any nation attacking another
preemptively, even if goaded to do it.
- Electronic Intifada co-founder Ali Abunimah remembered
Cast Lead in his December 27 article headlined, "The Gaza massacre
and the struggle for justice," saying:
- "It was not only a massacre of human bodies, but
of the truth and of justice." Goldstone and other investigations uncovered
irrefutable evidence of high crimes of war and against humanity - willful
- nonviolent men, women and children.
- Also targeted were schools, universities, hospitals,
mosques, industrial and government facilities, police stations, fishing
boats, agriculture and residential homes - all unrelated to military necessity
in violation of fundamental international law.
- Moreover, Israel was guilty of committing the "supreme
international crime" against peace, an Israeli and American specialty
though neither's been held accountable. As a result, justice remains denied,
begging for redress.
- Israel's attack was merciless. "The names of the
dead fill 100 pages, but nothing can fill the void they left in their families....Two
years after the crime, Gaza remains a giant prison....Israel's violence
(continues) like its violence against Palestinians" throughout the
Territories - sustained state terrorism against nonviolent civilians. It's
"the logical outcome of the racism that forms the inseparable core
of Zionist ideology and practice" that claims Israel belongs exclusively
to Jews, no matter how many Palestinians have to die to prove it.
- As a result, peace is consistently avoided, justice denied,
and atrocities continue daily. Cast Lead highlighted Palestinian victimization,
decades of occupation, besieged Gaza, persecuted Israeli Arabs, and the
diaspora population prohibited from returning, a right enshrined in international
- It also exposes a lawless society and bogus democracy,
arousing millions globally to demand justice. Failure insults victims and
the rule of law. Yet international community silence endorses rogue state
lawlessness. Impunity encourages continuity, an endless cycle of persecution,
violence, slaughter and destruction, seeking new pretexts to sustain it
or inventing them when don't exist.
- Israel's Self-Destructive Politics
- Last March 16, Haaretz writer Bradley Burston headlined,
"Israel's Titanic Moment: Does Obama Want Bibi's Head," saying:
- Perhaps after years of trial and error, Hamas finally
knows "the secret of how to bring down the Jewish state: Let the ship
sink itself....One of the curses of endless war, is the tendency to become
one's worst enemy," a skill Israel honed through years of practice,
alienating Jews besides millions of others globally.
- On December 28, Burston headlined, "Israel's government
is turning into a settlement," saying:
- Netanyahu works overtime for it, "letting Avigdor
Lieberman and Arab-hating rabbis run wild, humiliating the United States
in the settlement freeze fiasco, while exacerbating tensions with the Muslim
world." His government thus meets five essential settlement criteria:
- -- it obstructs peace;
- -- denies fault for its absence;
- -- allies with religious extremists at the expense of
secular Israelis, the majority;
- -- alienates allies and angers enemies; and
- -- does anything, even at extreme internal risk, "to
avoid being dislodged."
- Burston denounced Avigdor Lieberman, Foreign Minister
and Deputy Prime Minister, for "drill(ing) new holes directly into
(the) ship of state," a man Newsweek called "Israel's most popular
politician." Interviewing him last October, Lieberman:
- -- called "peace for territory" the wrong approach;
- -- wants half of the 1.5 million Israeli Arabs removed,
believing all represent a fifth column threat; saying they refuse to be
integrated but enjoy "all the advantages of a democratic country,"
the same ones reserved solely for Jews;
- -- calls Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad "exactly
like Hitler;" says "of course" Iran will get a nuclear bomb,
then will "de facto or de jure (occupy) the Gulf countries,"
and Israel, no matter that the Islamic Republic hasn't attacked another
country in over 200 years; by comparison, Israel's entire history is bloodstained,
its politics based on sustained violence;
- -- calls himself "the mainstream;" and
- -- achieving a peace settlement in a year is "impossible."
- On that issue, he's right because Israel spurns it, choosing
violence over diplomacy, democratic values and equal justice. Eventually
it's self-destructive as Burston believes.
- It's no surprise that Haaretz believes "Lieberman
must go," a December 28 editorial calling him "an opportunistic
figure competing in the guise of a diplomat for the leadership of the Israeli
- An earlier article presented a profile of his ultranationalist
extremism, accessed through the following link:
- Haaretz believes that "If Netanyahu expects to be
taken seriously....he must dismiss Lieberman immediately." Israel
needs a legitimate foreign minister, not a fractious lunatic vindicating
Israel's adversaries. Perhaps he should dissolve his coalition and call
new elections, though shuffling the deck won't matter, given the the loyal
opposition's makeup - as belligerent and hard-line as Netanyahu at a time
Israel's Knesset is its most extreme ever.
- Besides an array of extremist passed or proposed legislation,
it sanctions racism and violence, including the December 28 attacks against
Beitin village. Sandwiched between Bet El and Ofra settlements, the main
road between Beitin and Ramallah is closed, forcing residents to travel
30 minutes to the city, not five by the main road.
- On December 28, hundreds protested and were attacked
by Israeli forces, using rubber bullets, pepper spray, and high-velocity
tear gas rounds fired, from close range, directly at protestors as well
as into nearby homes.
- Near Jerusalem, Palestinians protesting against Israel's
Separation Wall were also attacked. Nine arrests were made, including international
activists and an al Quds correspondent. After release, they got several
days to leave the country.
- Further, protestors against occupation and separation
from Al Masara and other villages were assaulted. Together with international
activists, they faced sound and tear gas bombs. Sixteen year old Ali Hamdan
was struck in the chest and injured. Others suffered from inhilation effects.
At Ni'lin's weekly anti-Wall protest, confrontations there occurred, as
well as at Nabi Saleh where one protestor was shot 13 times with rubber
bullets, was seriously injured and hospitalized.
- On December 29, Haaretz writer Amira Hass headlined,
"Israel's Qassam strikes on Gaza," saying:
- Months ago, Israel's Deputy Defense Minister Matan Vilnai
warned of "a bigger shoah (genocide)" if Palestinians fired rockets
in self-defense, responding to Israeli attacks. He now calls Gaza "an
abscess, troublesome pus)" and gets away with it.
- "What was he trying to convey," asked Hass?
"That Israel needs to use radical surgery to fully remove the localized
infection? Vilnai (like other Israeli hard-liners) renounced any Israeli
responsibility for the volatility, placing all the blame on Hamas. 'Instead
of worrying about its own people, Hamas is trying to conquer Jerusalem,'
- In fact, Israeli soldiers "nearly daily fir(e) on
Gaza civilians, regularly wounding (or) killing them." Vilnai, however,
claims "They started it, so we have the right to respond." Yet
in January 1991, as GOC Southern Command, he signed an infamous military
order, revoking exit permits granted years earlier. As a result, Gazans
lost free movement under military closure, a policy deeply hardened today
- "It was Vilnai's signature, not a persistent infection,
that fated the Gaza Strip to be the world's largest and most overcrowded
detention camp. And we, the Israelis, are its wardens," in violation
of fundamental international law, ruthlessly spurned for over six decades.
- A Final Comment
- NGO Monitor (NGOM) is a Jerusalem-based pro-Israeli front
group, disseminating propaganda and hate. It debases legitimate human rights
organizations, independent journalists, other advocates for truth, equity
and justice, and, on Cast Lead's second anniversary, the Goldstone and
other reports exposing Israeli crimes of war and against humanity against
- Calling irrefutable evidence "unsupported allegations
(and) false investigations," it demanded acknowledgement of "the
degree to which (they're) unsupported."
- By backing Israeli lawlessness, NGOM's audacity gives
chutzpah new meaning. Moreover, it's staff defile the dead and injured,
wanton destruction, and human misery. They represent a frontal attack on
truth, decency, and reality of 1.5 million Gazans under suffocating siege,
denied life, liberty, and for many the ability to survive. Punishing repression
and daily assaults are shocking crimes, begging for redress, highlighted
by remembering Cast Lead's slaughter. NGOM forgets and desecrates.
- Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at
firstname.lastname@example.org. Also visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com
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