by Stephen Lendman
Israel is a racist police state. Zionist ideology espouses Jewish superiority, specialness, and uniqueness. It claims Jews are God's "chosen people."
It's uncomfortably close to Nazi Aryan dogma. Master race notions are troubling. They reflect racist extremism. Israel is a prime example.
It calls itself a democratic Jewish state. Democracy is nowhere in sight. Jews alone have rights. Increasing numbers have limited ones. Neoliberal harshness denies them.
Arab citizens have few rights. Bedouin Arab citizens and Occupied Palestinians have none. Israel has various Judaization plans. They feature ethnic cleansing.
David Ben-Gurion's Plan Dalet preceded Israel's War of Independence. It called for:
"Mounting operations against enemy population centres located inside or near our defensive system in order to prevent them from being used as bases by an active armed force. These operations can be divided into the following categories:
"Destruction of villages - setting fire to, blowing up, and planting mines in the debris - especially those population centres which are difficult to control continuously."
"Mounting search and control operations according to the following guidelines: encirclement of the village and conducting a search inside it."
"In the event of resistance, the armed force must be destroyed and the population must be expelled outside the borders of the state."
Ben-Gurion mandated ethnic cleansing. "I don't see anything immoral in it," he claimed. Bloodbath slaughter followed.
It took six months. Around 800,000 Palestinians were ethnically cleansed. Many thousands were ruthlessly slaughtered. Hundreds of Palestinian villages were destroyed.
So were 11 urban neighborhoods in Jerusalem, Tel-Aviv, Haifa, and other cities. On May 15, 1948, Israel was established.
Minutes after midnight, Harry Truman was the first world leader to extend recognition. Months earlier, he met secretly with Chaim Weizmann. He became Israel's first president.
Truman pledged support for a future Jewish state. It's grown politically, militarily and financially.
It's done so at the expense of long-suffering Palestinians. They call 1948 the Nabka. It represents ethnic cleansing writ large.
Survivors remember Deir Yassin. Other Palestinian villages were targeted the same way. Wholesale slaughter and mass displacement followed.
On April 9, 1948, Israeli soldiers entered Deir Yassin. They did so violently. They machine-gunned houses randomly. Many inside were slaughtered.
Remaining villagers were assembled. They were murdered in cold blood. Children and infants were treated like adults.
The elderly and infirm were shown no mercy. Women were raped before being killed. Estimates place the death toll at around 120.
An eyewitness said:
"I was (there) when the Jews attacked. (They) closed on the village amid exchanges of fire with us."
"Once they entered the village, fighting became very heavy in the eastern side and later it spread to other parts, to the quarry, to the village center until it reached the western edge."
"The Jews used all sorts of automatic weapons, tanks, missiles, cannons. They enter(ed) houses and kill(ed) women and children indiscriminately. The (village) youths...fought bravely."
Ensuing fighting killed dozens more. Many other villages were attacked the same way. Ethnic cleansing involved mass slaughter and displacement. It's standard Israeli practice.
Israel seeks maximum land. It wants the fewest number of Arabs remaining. In December 1947, Palestinians outnumbered Jews more than two to one. David Ben-Gurion ordered them removed, saying:
"Every attack has to end with occupation, destruction and expulsion."
He meant slaughter, displace, and depopulate. Erase a proud history. Replace it with a Jewish one.
Current Israeli policy remains the same. Genocide slowed to gradual slaughter and displacement. It continues unabated.
The Kuala Lumpur War Crimes Commission (KLWCC) is an important initiative. On November 25, it found Israel guilty of crimes against humanity and genocide.
It did so for slaughtering thousands of Beirut Sabra and Shatila refugee camp Palestinians. Then Israeli Defense Minister Ariel Sharon was in charge.
He ordered the slaughter. He let Phalangist fascists do his dirty work. Palestinian civilians were massacred in cold blood.
Women were raped multiple times before being killed. Children were murdered like adults.
Whole families were shot, stabbed, bludgeoned to death, or buried dead or alive under homes. Some were tortured before dying. Bodies were decapitated.
Corpses were charred and violated. Eyes were gouged out. Faces were unrecognizable. Sharon maliciously planned it.
He called it "ridding the world of the center of international terrorism." Orwell couldn't have said it better. No one to this day was punished.
Defenseless civilians were attacked. Slaughter was like shooting fish in a barrel. Phalangist fascists took full advantage.
Bodies were strewn everywhere. Many were mutilated. Some were buried in shallow graves and sand piles.
Around 18,000 died. Robert Fisk called what happened "one of the most shocking war crimes of the 20th century."
Kuala Lumpur's War Crimes Tribunal justifiably called what happened genocide. Israel began committing it in 1948. Its slow-motion version continues today.
The 1948 Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crimes of Genocide calls it "acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group." It's defined as follows:
"(a) Killing members of the group;
(b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;
(c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;
(d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group;
(e) Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group."
The Convention calls for trying culpable parties in "a competent tribunal of the State in the territory of which the act was committed, or by such international penal tribunal as may have jurisdiction with respect to those Contracting Parties which shall have accepted its jurisdiction."
Israel remains unaccountable for decades of genocidal acts. KLWCT has no enforcement authority. It's symbolically important. Perhaps more initiatives will follow.
KLWCT charged the State of Israel and Amos Yaron. He's a retired Israeli general. Robert Fisk called him "the Israeli military commander in Beirut when Lebanese Phalangist militiamen entered the refugee camps and slaughtered (thousands) of Palestinian refugees."
"He ordered flares to be dropped over the camps, at the request of the Phalange, and Israeli soldiers blocked the exits to prevent civilians from leaving the area."
Human Rights Watch said he "serv(ed) as an IDF division commander during Israel's invasion of Lebanon in 1982. His actions and omissions facilitated the massacre in the camps."
"By all accounts, the perpetrators of this indiscriminate slaughter were members of the Phalange militia, a Lebanese force that was armed by and closely allied to Israel since the outbreak of Lebanon's civil war in 1975, but the killings were carried out in an area under IDF control."
Yaron directed operations. He did so "on the roof of a multi-story building located some 200 meters southwest of the Shatila camp."
Current Israeli Judaization master plans include slow-motion genocide. Cast Lead, Pillar of Cloud, and similar operations reflect it. So does ruthless ethnic cleansing.
In February 2012, UN Special Rapporteur on the right to adequate housing, Raquel Rolnik, commented after visiting Israel and Occupied Palestine, saying:
"From the Galilee and the Negev to East Jerusalem and the West Bank, the Israeli authorities promote a territorial development model that excludes, discriminates against and displaces minorities, particularly affecting Palestinian communities."
"Throughout my visit, I received repeated complaints regarding lack of housing, threats of demolitions and evictions, overcrowding, the disproportional number of demolitions affecting Palestinian communities side by side with the accelerated development of predominantly Jewish settlements."
"The policies adopted by Israeli authorities severely restrict Palestinians from building legally through various means."
"Among others, Israel has not provided Palestinians with the necessary planning framework to ensure that their basic housing and infrastructure needs are met."
"Currently, tens of thousands of Palestinians are estimated to be at risk of their homes being demolished due to unregulated building."
Israel wants maximum Judaization. Master Plan 2020 reflects it.
It's titled "Demography, Geopolitics, and the Future of Israel's Capital: Jerusalem's Proposed Master Plan."
It follows Gen-Gurion's judicial writ, saying:
"We must bring Jews to eastern Jerusalem at any cost. We must settle tens of thousands of Jews in a brief time."
"Jews will agree to settle in eastern Jerusalem even in shacks. We cannot await the construction of orderly neighborhoods. The essential thing is that Jews will be there."
He wanted maximum Jews and minimum Arabs. Various Israeli master plans call for accommodating Jews at the expense of Arabs.
Israel wants Jerusalem transformed from a multi-cultural, multi-religious city into a predominantly Jewish one.
Ideally it wants it entirely Judaized. It wants Arabs ethnically cleaned.
It wants them excluded from all valued Judea and Samaria areas. It wants irreversible facts on the ground established.
A previous article addressed ethnically cleansing tens of thousands of Bedouin Arab Israeli citizens. Begin-Prawer Plan legislation authorizes it.
It passed its first Knesset reading. Two more are required. It may become law before yearend. The Association for Civil Rights in Israel calls enactment "a dark day for human rights in Israel."
It reflects Nakba 2.0. Up to 100,000 Bedouins are at risk. Around 40,000 are initially targeted. On November 30, global protests challenged it.
At issue is massive ethnic cleansing. It's doing it on a scale not seen since 1948. Israeli authorities are trampling on the rights of their own citizens.
It's a version of Yigal Allon's post-Six Day War plan. It called for
permanent militarized occupation. It mandated "maximum land
with minimum Arabs."
Dispossessing Palestinians from areas Israel wants exclusively
for Jews was prioritized. So was annexing all valued parts of
Judea and Samaria. These policies remain unchanged.
Israel wants unchallenged control of Greater Jerusalem. It claims the international city as its exclusive capital.
Master plans call for increasing settlement construction, permanent militarized occupation, land and resource theft, free-firing zones, commercial development, tourist sites, nature reserves, no-go areas, Jews-only roads, checkpoints, other barriers, and maximum exclusive Judaization.
Netanyahu considers settlement expansions Israel's divine right. Despite weekend protests, he vowed to advance bedouin ethnic cleansing.
He praised security force violence. He called thousands of peaceful protesters "offenders." He said he'll "treat (them) to the fullest extent of the law and will not tolerate such disturbances."
He called peaceful demonstrations violent and lawless. "We have - and will have - no tolerance for those who break the law," he said.
"Attempts by a loud and violent minority to deny a better future to a large and broad population are grave."
He wants ethnic cleansing on a massive scale. He wants Arabs removed for exclusive Jewish development. Doing so violates international law.
It constitutes slow-motion genocide. Fourth Geneva prohibits forced displacements. The Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court calls doing it a crime against humanity.
Netanyahu lied claiming it advances "a better future for all residents of the Negev." He wants up to 100,000 Bedouin Israeli citizens forcibly removed.
Major General (res.) Doron Almog heads Netanyahu's Economic and Community Development of the Negev Bedouin. He issued a statement, saying:
"The government of Israel regrets that extremists, many of whom are not Bedouin, chose to divert the open debate about a purely social and humanitarian cause into a confrontation, falsely linked to the Palestinian issue."
He called those involved "alien interests." He claimed they have no "sincere concern for the Bedouin."
On Friday, London's Guardian published a letter signed by 50 celebrities. It headlined "UK must protest at Bedouin expulsion."
US media scoundrels virtually ignore it. Noted artists, musicians, actors, playwrights, film directors, authors, independent journalists, and others denounced it.
They called massive forced Bedouin displacement "systematic discrimination and separation." Bedouin Arabs overwhelmingly reject it. They denounced it. So do many human rights groups.
According to letter signatories, Britain's government "raised concerns 'at the highest levels.' "
"Yet such statements ring hollow when the UK government continues to export arms to Israel and continues its ties with the Israeli government and industry."
"It is time for the UK government to make its relationship with Israel conditional on respect for human rights and international law and take concrete action to hold Israel to account."
It's long past time to hold Israel accountable for decades of crimes of war, against humanity and genocide.
It's time culpable officials were prosecuted, convicted and imprisoned. It's time Palestinians, bedouins and other Israeli Arab citizens got long denied justice.
A Final Comment
Haaretz editors are right calling planned Galilee Judaization "racism." Too bad they don't address this and other vital issues affecting Palestinians more often. Israeli crimes have many forms.
Palestinians endure them daily. They live in a virtual war zone. Israeli security forces target their communities multiple times daily.
Land theft is official Israeli policy. So is mass incarceration for wanting to live free like Jews. Self-defense is called terrorism.
Haaretz editors called for "scrapp(ing)" Begin-Prawer "immediately." Galilee territory is part of Israel.
Its residents are Israeli citizens. Arabs and Jews "must be treated as such," they said.
"A state that encourages members of one people to settle in any region, while at the same time imposing harsh restrictions on the growth of the other, is acting in a racist manner. There is no other way to describe such behavior."
"What is in desperate need of reinforcement is the egalitarian, non-racist, nondiscriminatory character of the state."
Development and other policies should benefit all citizens. Failure to include Arabs reflects racism. It's official Israeli policy. It's longstanding. It demands universal condemnation.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
His new book is titled "Banker Occupation: Waging Financial War on Humanity."
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.
Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.
It airs Fridays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.