Stephen LendmanMore About: Israel - Palestine
Promoting War, Spurning Peace
by Stephen Lendman
US and Israeli agendas need enemies. Both pursue rogue state policies.
They defy international laws and conventions, applying rule of law standards to others, not themselves. Their interests alone matter, no matter the toll on others.
When enemies don't exist, they're invented. Fear stirs public angst. Major media scoundrels spread it. Propaganda substitutes for truth and full disclosure.
America's had no enemies since WW II. Israel's had none since the 1973 Yom Kippur war. However, you'd never know it from regular spurious claims. Haaretz writer Amos Harel reported the latest in his February 2 article titled, "Some 200,000 missiles aimed consistently at Israel, top IDF officer says," saying:
Military Intelligence chief General Aviv Kochavi alleged "a more hostile, more Islamic, more sensitive Middle East, one more attune to public sentiment, less controlled by the regimes, and less susceptible to international influence," despite no evidence whatever proving it.
In fact, clear evidence suggests the opposite. Since regional uprisings began a year ago, some names and faces changed, nothing else. Policies remain the same. Regime abuses and indifference to public need continue in Egypt, Tunisia, Yemen, Bahrain, and elsewhere, despite public anger and calls for change.
Kochavi stoked fear with lies, alleging 200,000 missiles target Israel. Iran, Syria, Hezbollah and Hamas are blamed.
Iran's alleged nuclear threat further escalates tensions, despite no evidence one exists. Nonetheless, he said, if Ayatollah Khomenei "issues a command to achieve a first nuclear explosive device, we estimate it would take another year before that's achieved."
On February 1, IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz made similar accusations. He emphasized heightened regional threats and said Iran's nuclear program must be stopped.
Calling it a "global problem and a regional problem," he left unaddressed its legal peaceful purpose in contrast to Israel's nuclear proliferation agenda.
He lied saying "There is no doubt that Iran is seeking military nuclear capability." Israel's had one for decades. It's nuclear armed and dangerous.
In his 1997 book titled, "Open Secrets: Israeli Foreign and Nuclear Policies"," Israel Shahak said "Israel (is) clearly prepar(ing) itself to seek overtly a hegemony over the entire Middle East (with no) hesitati(on) to use for the purpose all means available, including nuclear weapons."
Moreover, its longstanding policy dictates responding robustly if attacked, including with nuclear weapons. America has the same standard. Both are aggressive. As a result, world peace hangs in the balance. They and rogue partners threaten it, not Iran, Syria, Hezbollah or Hamas.
Nonetheless, strategy includes spewing lies to blame victims. According to Gantz, other Gulf states worry about Iran's alleged nuclear program. Moreover, he claimed:
"(W)e must not forget one basic thing: Israel is the only country in the world which someone is calling for its destruction and which someone is building the tools to do so. This is something that cannot be ignored."
Spuriously suggesting Iran, Gantz said "The world and the region must continue to isolate" the Islamic Republic, despite no threat whatever from its leaders. Nonetheless, he added:
"It is correct to continue economic pressure and sanctions, from which we are starting to see signs of achievement and progress in terms of what is going on in Iran. It is correct to act and continue to disrupt processes associated with the development of the Iranian nuclear project and to work to enhance oversight over what is happening."
Only Iran's leaders "will decide at the end of the day if it will give up on a military nuclear capability. But determined and consistent action will (lead) to this strategic insight."
Gantz and other Israeli officials know Iran's nuclear program is entirely peaceful and legal. In contrast, Israel defies NPT (Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty) provisions. It never signed the treaty. Iran did in 1968 and abides fully with its standards. Israel operates lawlessly like its Washington paymaster/partner.
Gantz also manufactured other "threats," saying:
"Gaza and Lebanon are some of the largest munitions depots I know. (They) enter from Iran, Syria, and unfortunately even Russia continues to send arms to this day, where in Syria it is not clear who will control and operate them later."
"The Middle East is the most armed region in the world, and the bad news is that we are the target of these arms. And we need to remember this."
In fact, Israel's been unthreatened for decades. It alone threatens others and wages strategic wars against Gaza, Lebanon, and potentially against Syria and Iran. Mainstream reporting ignores it.
It also lets Israeli President Shimon Peres spew lies about Iran's "evil" leaders. Like other Israeli officials, he spuriously claimed Tehran's nuclear program threatens Israel. He called it "ours and the world's central problem at this time." He accused Iran of pursuing regional and "even global hegemony." In fact, Israel and America alone share that distinction.
Nonetheless, he said "Nuclear weapons mustn't be allowed to fall into the hands of Iran's Ayatollah regime." He called its religious leaders the "most morally corrupt regime in the world." Again, only Israeli and American political ones top the world's rogue list.
Peres proved it by ruling out no options against Iran, saying "It is the duty of the international community to prevent evil and nuclear (weapons) from coming together. That is the obligations of most of the leaders of the free world, one which they must meet."
Iran "funds, trains, and guides terrorists to spread terror and murder across the globe," he claimed. Proving it's another matter because saying so is baseless. He added more saying "the current Iranian leadership offers the future only destruction. It threatens human rights and the peace of nations."
Now age 88, Peres served in various political posts for decades, including prime minister from April - June 1977, again from 1984 - 1986, and most recently in 1995 and 1996. Now he's president, a largely ceremonial post.
In fact, he acts at the behest and discretion of Israeli ministers and other top officials. Israeli presidents don't make policy.
Nonetheless, their comments are widely reported on issues of war and peace and state security, no matter how duplicitous, untrue and hateful. Peres had lots of practice. His recent comments show it. He echoes official policies.
They've been unchecked for decades. No one challenges them, including major media scoundrels promoting the worst ones. As a result, world peace hangs in the balance. The threat's too grave to ignore.
A Final Comment
On January 25, American Conservative contributor Noah Millman headlined, "Is Israel a Failed State?" His article reviewed Gershom Gorenberg's new book titled, "The Unmaking of Israel."
What's "exceptional" about it, said Millman, is Gorenberg's framing. It discussed decisions made during and after the 1967 war. Occupation and repression followed. Progressively, Israel became "unmade."
Expanded settlements and other rogue policies corrupted democratic values. However, Israel's fall from grace began from inception. Ben-Gurion endorsed force, violence, and marginalizing non-Jews as policy.
Occupation intensified conflict. International law's spurned. As a result, Israel's settlement enterprise and other rogue policies "undermined the Israeli state top to bottom." Secrecy and corruption followed.
Decades of lawlessness reflect what Israelis "should have grown out of when they acquired the power and responsibility of a state." Instead, pursuing wrong over right "doesn't just undermine the" immorality of injustice, but it provides evidence that the "Zionis(t project) failed in what was arguably its primary objective."
Gorenberg wrote his book mainly for Jews. Instead of pursuing peace, Israel chose conflict. It persists aggressively against non-threatening targets.
Gorenberg's an Orthodox left-leaning Jew. He also espouses Zionism, but not Israel's version. He said its "goal was a sovereign, independent Jewish state in the historic land of Israel, as a means to the moral and spiritual rebirth of the Jewish nation."
Historical inaccuracies and stealing Palestine aside, Gorenberg deplores violence and repression. Pursuing them belie Zionist ideals, he believes, though others view its early days much differently.
Either way, he sees greater trouble ahead unless future Israeli leaders change course. So far, prospects at best are dim.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at email@example.com.
Also visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.