Tuesday, September 6, 2016

The Raw Deal Podcasts # 3: Occupation and Apartheid

Michael Lumish



The Raw Deal:

Heya guys,

this is Michael Lumish coming at you from Oakland California in the san francisco bay area, the land of crack whores, dungeness crab, and pretty much everything else that is non-kosher.

Y'know, I recently received a letter from an old and dear and Jewish college friend of mine who I was endeavoring to coax into a friendly conversation about the never-ending, entirely unjust, koranically-based, Arab-Muslim aggression against the Jews in the Middle East, if not the Jews more generally.

She seems a bit reluctant to get into that conversation and I certainly understand why. She's an attorney and this is an exceedingly sensitive topic and she can certainly not afford to put herself into a position wherein she loses clients through running her mouth off about it.

I understand, believe me.

Yet in her letter, which was 95 percent concerned with old college days, she concludes as follows:

Quote I know that Israel is an occupying country and that apartheid is unsustainable. I can't imagine how they develop the trust they need to put everything at risk by opening their borders. I can't imagine how much longer American Jews will support the current untenable situation.

I believe that Israel is probably the smartest country in the world. I know that they can figure out the right answer. They just have to want it badly enough. And they have to do so soon. Unquote

I would like to say that I was shocked to read the words quote occupying country unqote and quote apartheid unqote coming out of the keyboard of that proud progressive Zionist friend of mine from back in the day, but I am not.

The Arabs, with a little earlier Soviet help, have done an absolutely terrific job of advancing the Big Lie and I have no idea how I will respond to this old friend’s letter. 

If I take her to task she’ll get defensive and back off, but I need to let her know that these notions that she’s carrying around like luggage are not only false, but entirely counterproductive to the well-being of the Jewish state of Israel as well as the Jewish people.

If Israel is illegally or illegitimately quote unquote occupying Israel or Judea and Samaria or what, at the behest of Jordan, westerners insist upon calling the West Bank, than the Jews have no case.

If what my old college buddy thinks is true, that Israel is an apartheid power occupying someone else’s land, than we have no case.

How is it possible from a moral or ethical perspective to defend such a thing?

If what my old friend thinks is true than all Israeli Jews can do is hang it up and get lost.

It wouldn’t matter if every single Israeli from the garbage men to the Knesset members had the IQ of Albert Einstein because if what my friend says is true then there is no escaping from the deep immorality of the very existence of the Jewish state of Israel on someone else’s land.

The implication would have to be that Israel is, in fact, a racist colonial settler state that must be dismantled whether anyone likes it or not – which is, of course, the very goal of the people who have managed over the course of many decades to convince my friend of the truthfulness of these outrageously false and, in fact, highly immoral claims.

Israel – which is to say, the Jews of the Middle East - illegally occupy nothing.

There are no people on the planet with a better case for consolidating their national homeland then the Jewish people. We’ve lived on that land for over 3,500 years for chrissake.

Long, long, long before there was any such place as London or Paris or Berlin or Washington DC, there was Jerusalem and it was crawling with crazed Jews. 

Unless a troop of Jebusites come marching out of the desert, there are no other people on the planet who can make a case for indigeneity other than the Jewish people.

The Arabs are not indigenous to Judea. The Arabs are indigenous to the Arabian peninsula and, in fact, represent the most brutally successful imperial project in world history, even surpassing that of the Romans, yet they deceitfully pass themselves off as perfectly innocent victims.

They aren’t.

Furthermore, of course, Israel is emphatically NOT an apartheid state.

Arabs vote and hold seats in the Knesset. Arabs and Jews share hospitals and universities and hotels and restaurants and all manner of public spaces within Israel.

So how the hell can this possibly be apartheid?

Anyone familiar with the conflict knows that the apartheid slander came out of the 2001 Durban Conference in which enemies of the Jewish people suggested in the documentation coming out of that thing that Israel is an apartheid, racist state.

It isn’t and my friend needs to know that.

In fact, Israel is the only country in that part of the world that is NOT apartheid.

All the Arab-Muslim states, each and every one, practice both gender and ethnic apartheid. 

They make no apologies for it and never get called on it to begin with.

Yet I cannot even live in Jordan or Saudi Arabia as a Jew… not that I would want to, of course, but nonetheless.

And this, ultimately, is the problem with progressive-left Zionism whether coming out of J Street or Meretz. 

They begin their end of the conversation from a position of unjustified guilt.

They honestly believe that the Jews stole Judea from its rightful owner, the Palestinian-Arabs.

This may be consistent with the so-called Palestinian Narrative, but the Palestinian narrative is grounded in fiction.

Israel has actual history on its side, at least 3,500 years of it.

21 comments:

  1. Maybe you could ask your friend how did she come to hold these opinions. Is it something that she concluded after careful study and consideration, or is it just something that "everybody knows". Or more likely a part of the package that you have to believe in to be a part of the left in good standing (aka Party Line).

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    1. I think you are on to something, but I would leave out the last part for now. It doesn't seem to me that she could possibly have studied the matter in any serious way or she could no have said what she said.

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    2. She's a highly intelligent and caring woman, but in this case my suspicion, indeed, is osmosis.

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  2. Guilt may be part of it. There is also the progressive belief system at work. That is more a religion than the attachment to Judaism. True Blue Progressives are the same as any Fundamentalist, always on the lookout for breaches of the faith, acting as if their answer will save us from ourselves. In that context, Israel simply fits into the matrix of things that are evil.

    Of course, the audacity of ignorance is breathtaking, even among those that act like they know. Many do not realize the depravity of the people they trust as standing for the oppressed.

    They should read Tom Lantos's article on the Durban antisemitic hatefest, and how it came to be.

    http://www.humanrightsvoices.org/site/articles/?a=568

    How many anti-Israel voices know that Arafat was a billionaire, or about Pallywood? How easily they are misled by people with ulterior motives. They don't even comprehend how they, too, are in the crosshairs. They are afraid to acknowledge the abuses for fear of being called racist by their peers, or the actual racists, who use the situation as a shield.

    What a strange world we are living in.

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    1. I can't even believe that this nonsense has taken root within my living memory.

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    2. Pallywood is interesting.

      It's cognitive warfare.

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    3. It may be cognitive warfare, but it is also an illustration of how easily people can be duped and misled.

      Ironically, many of the people affected love to spout about the very things they actually are misinformed about.

      "Catch the Jew" was quite in tune with this phenomenon.

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  3. I'll make this short. Your friend is telling you she is ignorant, and not just a little. Do you want to do something about that? What?

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    1. Well, there's not a whole lot that I can do about it.

      I'll respond in a few days, but whatever I say I will definitely take a light touch on the matter.

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    2. You could invite her to feel free to peruse your fine blogspot. There is a wealth of information on, for example, Heritage Theft, and links to good sources of information which contradict and undermine her assertions.

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  4. It's a funny word in't it? In Afrikaans it's pronounced apart-tate. Or apart-hate. But I have mentioned here before, I dislike analogies. They are inaccurate and lazy. Be that as it may most of Africa is by one measure or another 'apartheid'. It's simply a matter of who you're talking about and whether you personally object to it. Nigeria is a good example of Southern Ibo Christians being legally excluded from certain jobs. Mali, Senegal, Guinea all legally prohibit non Muslims from certain places in society. Similarly non Muslims in Egypt are legally second class citizens. To say nothing of non-person-hood of 'palestinians' in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria and Iraq. By law.

    One of the blind spots that westerners have when dwelling on this funny word is that the RSA's history, it's cultural DNA is little different conceptually from the notion of any nation that was at some time subject to European encroachment and colonialism and that the experience of the (so called) indigenous population (because there are in fact many ethnicities of black Africans in the RSA who history goes back no further than the Dutch. The Xhosa aren't indigenous for instance. They arrives at the same time as the Dutch to take advantage of the local peoples the same as anyone else. Be that as it may. The history of this mythological black experience there is a page out of what the Europeans did to/with the Native Americans; pushed them off their land, put them in reservations, and hoped they'd shut up and go away. It's the same as the European domination of Mexico, Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, Chile and Peru. It's the same even in Cuba.

    A little factoid here. Many of the illegal Mexican in the US are not of white European descent. They are Oaxacan. Many don't speak Spanish, they are not ethnically "Mexican" and they are legally excluded from most of the rights and privileges accorded Mexicans IN Mexico. Similarly in Brazil, Brazilians of white European ethnicity are accorded more rights. Along this line Brazilian census law slots people by skin color. ONLY by color. Sounds pretty horrendously racist to me, no? Or you could look at Uruguay which is 95% white European. The native population was.....well let's not talk about that.

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  5. Point being there is discrimination and there is law and there is reality. Those are not always the same thing.

    In pre 1994 RSA there were two classes of apartheid; the 'big kind' and the 'little kind'. The little or petty apartheid was in most ways even more insidious - outlawing mixed race marriages for example. Blacks couldn't start businesses or move freely in the country. They could not have a white employee. They were not allowed to form trade unions. They could not attend most schools or universities. They were legally prohibited from purchasing certain liquors and foodstuffs. And then there were the ordinary Jim Crow type laws about restaurants and public facilities, beaches, and so on. And make no mistake. This was not a situation where people would happily flaunt the law when it suited them. Or, if you lived in a small town everyone ignored the law. That did not happen because if you were caught, even if you were white - you would be in big trouble. Go to jail trouble.

    Also part and parcel with all of this was a national prohibition on vice, homosexuality, gambling, abortion. In country TV didn't exist until the mid 1970's by design.

    But the bigger issue, the "Big Apartheid" was something entirely different. It entailed the forced physical relocation of millions of blacks and takeover of their land. It's easy to think that there's some correlation to the Nakba but there isn't. This was not in war. This was in peace. This was enacted by law, deliberately, carefully.


    Is any of this resonating with what people imagine the 'palestinian' experience is? Because it's not the same thing at all. The problem with throwing words like apartheid around is that you have to know WTF you're talking about.

    I don't know IF there are any workable analogies for the 'palestinians'. They don't want to be Israelis and they don't want to be Not-Israelis. They're not an occupied people and they're not a people at all. They're a class of people, an underclass in some ways but a class. Do they want to be autonomous? I'm not sure most people care. Maybe yes maybe no. Do they want to live where they live the way they want? They tell you no. They want what someone over in the next town has. To live in that person's home. In a culture that prides itself on being based on 'honor' and jealousy that starts to make more sense. In any case in the RSA the blacks wanted rights. First and foremost rights. The 'palestinians' have rights. But they seem unclear on what that gives them and/or what responsibilities those rights entail.

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    1. The current problem with throwing around words like "apartheid" (and many other words, e.g., racist) is that you clearly DON'T have to know what you're talking about, but simply need to show passion for your position.

      Thank you, Trudy, again for providing an informed look into the wider world.

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  6. http://shilohmusings.blogspot.com/2016/09/boo-hoo-palestine-by-pat-condell.html

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  7. Ask what would be an appropriate response to the Palestinian village of Budrus becoming a launching pad for mortars aimed at Ben Gurion Airport. Point out that any launching spots will be deeply embedded in civilian infrastructure resulting in massive casualties if Israel takes any counter-measures and how the international community reacted when that happened in Gaza.

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    1. It depends on how far you want to take the analogy. If 'palestinians' are but more external population injected into Israel but who are on the losing end of their own attempt at killing off the Jews and ethnically cleansing the land then the misfortunes they experience are their own. In the US the native tribes were only subdued in subjugation. A hundred thirty years on, it might be au courrant to think that somehow if they never stopped fighting they'd be better off today than they are, but that's just a wild guess and probably not accurate. The 'palestinians' can continue to fight forever. It will probably not make the least difference for them now in terms of achieving any of their stated long term goals. They're not the black Africans in Rhodesia outnumbering the whites 20:1. They're never going to succeed through sheer inertia.

      The only useful response should be a domestic one, a civil one, directed at the Israeli people. Not the Arabs not the EU or UN or the US or the BBC. The only useful response should be to ordinary Israelis explaining what happened and how it will be addressed in the future. In my view the key existential threat they present to Israel is the Israelis own fumbling cumbersome reaction to it as if it is an existential threat.

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    2. Two things. One, I am not making an analogy. I am stating that total withdrawal from the disputed territories could literally turn villages like Budrus into launchpads for mortars at targets like Ben Gurion Airport. If Mike's interlocutor believes that "occupation" must end because it is evil, then she is morally obligated to consider the consequences of ending it. If she tries to weasel out of that by saying that launching mortars from evacuated territories would justify an Israeli response, we could point out that the international community showed its stripes during the Gaza War and thus that contention is a fantasy.

      Second. "They're not the black Africans in Rhodesia outnumbering the whites 20:1"

      That doesn't mean they can't fool the West into believing that they are. To prevent that, we need a message beyond the one aimed at a domestic audience. We need to somehow push that message through the skulls of everyone in the EU, US and BBC. As to the Arabs, building a coalition to rein the Mullahs of Iran won't hurt either.

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    3. As far as borders negating violence is concerned, I would ask what you would do with ANY foreign power, legitimate or not that did that. What if Lebanon decided one missile a day lobbed somewhere was something they needed to do. 2? 20? And so on. What would YOUR threshold be? What DO you respond to? In the long Lebanon war for example, Israeli strategic objectives were unclear. What were they trying to accomplish? To me it seemed a weird blend of tactical holding action with a low-energy semi-state building effort none of which was entirely successful. Why pretend, after all, that war is not war? Why not simply fight back, flatten the hell out of them and leave? If we compare the situation of the long emergency in Lebanon with the long emergency of Gaza - what is the difference? The IDF comes in once in a while to 'mow the grass' and then they bug out. Whether they stay for a hour, a day a week or a month or 18 years makes no which never mind to the outside world. Again, my response would be to the Israelis themselves, the ones targeted. "We will strike back, 10x harder (or whatever) but we're not going to make the least effort to get them to change their views directly. Next month we'll do the same thing, and so on. We're here to protect you as best we can but this is tough neighborhood.' And make no mistake what I'm proposing some would call terrorism anyway. A rocket flies in you lob a howitzer shell at an apartment house, at random. No aiming, no deliberation, no delay. Boom. Your whole family's dead, sucks to be you today. But don't go overboard. Don't go 'disproportionate'. One rocket - 2 or 3 back at most. Put the fear of terrorism in them. Make them sweat.

      And in the sense I alluded to Rhodesia I mean in reality. In practice. The Arabs are never ever ever ever going to overrun the Jews by sheer numbers alone. They only plausible way that could ever happen would entail the utter and complete destruction of their society. What do I mean? I mean on THE day, at THE hour this mythical 'palestinian' state is declared every single Arab nation on earth will round up every single 'palestinian' living there and kick them out of the country. That day. Grab your shit, hit the bricks. And do you know what will happen? It will create the single greatest disruption to them in their entire made up history. Can you imagine the chaos that would ensure if all of a sudden all the people who UNRWA has declared is a 'refugee' decided to hop over to the People's Free Democratic Islamic Republic of 'palestine'? All of a sudden, anointing 5 or 6 or 8 million of them with honorary 'palestinian' victimhood won't seem like a good idea. They're not going to march into the teeth of force in Israel to escape that. They're going to sit in squalor complaining the world needs to give them another handout. They will complain to Hamas they will complain to the PLO they will complain to the UN, the EU anyone who will listen. But no one is going to help them. Oh there will be the usual noise and people screaming it's the Jews' fault. But so what?

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    4. If you take a wider deeper view though you're really talking about a full press propaganda disinformation campaign aimed at shaking the moral view OF those respective countries. The KGB defector Yuri Bezmenov, whoe died many years ago, had some presentations that have been put in YouTube where he explains how the KGB operates to do this. He puts a fairly precise boundary on it - 16-20 years of effort to begin to break a society from the inside out. You need a planning horizon of 16-20 years. YEARS. Why? Because you can't lecture people, you can't educate them. You have to change them organically the same way that universities have been changed. You have to move slowly and deliberately and you have to be willing to lose for long periods of time.

      Again I'll draw examples from Rhodesia and the RSA. In the RSA, the ANC was run by, paid for, trained and staffed by the KGB. Overtly. It's top people were all brought to the 3CP and trained in what to do. It took from the late 1960's to the late 1980's to accomplish. And while they were doing that, some of the same people were engaged in Soviet lead ethnic cleansing of Muslims in next door Zambia - the very same people who are all friends now in the struggle against the west and the Jews. In Rhodesia, more of the same. ZANU/ZAPF lead by Mugabe and others were hands on lead by the KGB. All they had to do was give them a push and the 330,000 whites ruling over millions of blacks would fall. By the way. Ian Smith proposed shared rule with the black as early as 1969 and again in 1974. The KGB lead rebels turned them down flat. All or nothing.

      Again and again we see the same thing playing out - in Mozambique - where the war with Portugal cost a hundred thousand people but the 'Marxist Revolution' was 5x times worse. In the end the Soviets lost that one. On other other side of Africa in Angola, the Soviets, Cubans and Angolan communists fought the South African Army & US backed forces to a semi-draw. The communists chalked that up for a win but couldn't hold on to it and now Angola and Mozambique are two of the fastest growing economies in Africa. It took 20 years though to get there. In both cases it took a deliberate plan to poison the minds of people against the communists. It took years of undermining them, to ensure the next generation wanted nothing to do with them.

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    5. That is what I mean by a domestic response.

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  8. Some further questions for your interlocutor:

    What is the basis for the Palestinians' right to Etzion?

    Does Jordan's 1949 conquest create confer such a right? What provision of the UN Charter gives the UN's institution the power to confer their blessing on such conquest? Or does the "inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory" through war only apply to Jews?

    How "occupied" are the Palestinians? International law provides two components in its definition of occupation. One is the presence of troops controlling the territory, this is "boots on the ground." The second is the inability of the legitimate government to function. The first component is at most partially fulfilled, as the IDF exercises the right to pursue into Area A at will, but maintains no permanent presence in Area A. The second component completely does not exist as the PA exercises jurisdiction over more than 90% of the Arab population in the disputed territories.

    You might retort, "But the checkpoints!" However, that does not constitute occupation. San Marino is completely surrounded by Italy, meaning that if Italy were to decide to do so, then San Marinans would not be able to leave their miniscule country. Does this mean that Italy occupies San Marino? By any definition of occupation in which Israel's checkpoints, which incidentally frustrate innumerable attempted terror attacks, constitute occupation of Area A, Italy occupies San Marino.

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