Mad Dogs & Zionists
Monday, October 16, 2023 7:37 PM
I wrote a longish essay in January 2009 commenting on Cast Lead and its big picture implications. The dynamics are the same today. Here is an abbreviated, edited version with the broken links removed...
Mad Dogs and Zionists
Wednesday, January 7, 2009
Please don't confuse 'em with facts or distract 'em from NFL playoffs!
—A recent note from a prep school classmate.
Noel Coward's dig at English colonial society contained in his 1932 ditty “Mad Dogs and Englishmen” was just a lark. I did not know the derivation of the phrase and had assumed it contained a more serious comment upon the British Empire. My criticism of that empire has been pointed, but not comprehensive.
The stupidity—or extreme shortsightedness—of the ruling establishment in Whitehall from 1900 onward is breathtaking. Similar behavior is to be found in the leadership of the quasi-American empire, which commenced about the same time, with the Spanish-American war of 1898.
Aside from British rule in Ireland, I must confess to having a soft spot for that far-flung, multi-cultural empire on which the sun never set. From Cat Cay to Calcutta, from Jamaica to Singapore, from Gibraltar to Cape Town, from Khartoum to Bhutan, from Bermuda to Hong Kong, from the four corners of the globe there was a social and legal continuum which must have been comforting to Europeans passing through such exotic venues.
This was “Europeanization” as my prep school primer, R.R. Palmer's History of the Modern World, accurately termed it. The results were not all bad. One cannot watch the 1937 Frank Capra movie “Lost Horizon” starring Ronald Colman as the idealistic diplomat Robert Conway, without feeling nostalgia for what it may have been like in those palmy days prior to The Second World War.
But now, in the aftermath, when European colonialism is considered outré and morally indefensible, the world is confronted with an aggressive form of neocolonialism in the very backyard of Europe, which makes the old-style colonialism look almost like a garden party.
The neocolonialism in question is a state called Israel, based on an ethnocentric ideology called Zionism. It sprang from Jews in Eastern Europe and Russia in the late 19th century. The “Jewish state” proclaimed in 1948 and legitimized by Moscow, Washington and the UN Security Council—which Moscow and Washington controlled at the time—was created on the backs and bones of the native inhabitants of Palestine.
It was built “not beside but on top of the Palestinian people”, as former Irish Labor Minister Justin Keating devastatingly wrote in the November 2005 issue of The Dubliner magazine. Keating concluded that, “there can be no peace as long as contemporary Israel retains its present form.”
Unlike the European imperialists in days of yore, the Zionist set about, step-by-step, to erase the indigenes and replace them with Jews from anywhere in the wide world, which individuals, according to Zionist mythology, possess all proprietary rights to Palestine.
Meanwhile, we in the West are expected to cheer this enterprise on. If we hesitate, then we must be anti-Semites and reprobates. Does this even make sense? The Semites in the conflict are not the Jews but the native Palestinians. The Jews who have emigrated to Palestine and renamed it Israel are not Semites. They have no ethnic connection to the ancient Hebrews.
Jews in modern-day Israel are predominantly Ashkenazim from Eastern Europe and Russia. Be this as it may, America and Europe have been providing them unlimited support, no matter how unjust and out-of-control the situation becomes.
That fountainhead of “progressive” thought, the New York Times, indicated as much in its editorial “War Over Gaza” of December 30th, 2008: “Israel must defend itself.” No other explanation is provided. The long-standing injured party, the Palestinian Arabs, are to blame. In effect, the natives living under military occupation are at fault for their own slaughter.
“And Hamas must bear responsibility” the New York Times further declared, “for ending a six-month cease-fire this month with a barrage of rocket attacks into Israeli territory.” The NYT is not going out on a limb here. Its editorial conforms to the prevailing outlook in the United States.
The sycophantic editorial reflects a blind belief in propaganda coming from the Cheney/Bush White House, from the future Obama/Emanuel White House, from Capitol Hill, and from 95% of foreign policy think-tanks scattered around Washington. Somehow “progressives” and “conservatives” and all those “moderates” in between are united when it comes to Israel.
Take one example. The talk show blowhard, Rush Limbaugh, and his bête noire, the New York Times, are in total agreement. How odd. Or is it? Why would Limbaugh do anything which might endanger his $50 million-a-year meal-ticket by challenging his deluded acolytes to think twice? It is in Limbaugh’s interest to keep his “conservative” listeners deluded. Likewise, the NYT has a financial interest to pander to its equally deluded, hypocritical “liberal” readership.
Middle East expert Robert Fisk, on the same day as the NYT editorial, threw an outsized monkey wrench into the well-oiled machine of Israel’s establishment enablers—left, right, and center—when inter alia he pointed out:
“...the original, legal owners of the Israeli land on which Hamas rockets are detonating now live in Gaza.... That is why Gaza exists: because the Palestinians who lived in Ashkelon and the field around it...were dispossessed from their lands in 1948 when Israel was created, and ended up on the beaches of Gaza.
“They—or their children and grandchildren and great-grandchildren—are among the one and a half million Palestinians refugees crammed into the cesspool of Gaza, 80% of whose families once lived in what is now Israel.”
As noted, the Gaza strip constitutes the largest open-air concentration camp the world has ever seen. It is a dumping ground for war refugees created by a neocolonial real estate experiment.
Fisk continues: “...watching the news shows, you'd think that history began yesterday, that a bunch of bearded anti-Semitic Islamist lunatics suddenly popped up in the slums of Gaza—a rubbish dump of destitute people of no origin—and began firing missiles into peace-loving, democratic Israel, only to meet with the righteous vengeance of the Israeli air force….
"The existence of Gaza is a permanent reminder of those hundreds of thousands of Palestinians who lost their homes to Israel, who fled or were driven out through fear or Israeli ethnic cleansing 60 years ago....”
The Israeli Army is the most decent and restrained army in the world.
—Ehud Olmert, Prime Minister of Israel, quoted in the IHT, June 23rd, 2006
Let's back up a moment, and see current events in Gaza in some perspective.
The best single article about the Gaza conflict I have seen so far has been “Molten Lead” (03/01/09) by Uri Avnery, the Israeli peace activist. He knows what he is talking about. An immigrant from Germany, he has been around forever, was a friend of Arafat, and makes a number of important points.
For instance, Hamas did not break the cease-fire. Gaza was under siege. The blockade of Gaza by Tel Aviv was an ongoing act of war, so there was no real cease-fire to begin with.
“The blockade on land, on sea and in the air against a million and a half human beings is an act of war, as much as any dropping of bombs or launching of rockets. It paralyzes life in the Gaza Strip: eliminating most sources of employment, pushing hundreds of thousands to the brink of starvation, stopping most hospitals from functioning, disrupting the supply of electricity and water.”
Avnery continues: “Some time ago I wrote that the Gaza blockade was a scientific experiment designed to find out how much one can starve a population and turn its life into hell before they break. This experiment was conducted with the generous help of Europe and the US. Up to now, it did not succeed. Hamas became stronger and the range of the Qassams became longer. The present war is a continuation of the experiment by other means.”
Avnery refers to President Bush as a “blood-soaked moron” and says that the timing of the Gaza blood-bath makes sense, because Bush was sure to support it wholeheartedly during his final days in office. This begs the question, however, when would Bush (or Cheney) not have supported the operation?
For my part, I sometimes wonder if Cheney/Bush gave the “all clear” to attack Gaza as a kind of consolation prize to Tel Aviv for the U.S. not having bombed Iran. The public relations campaign for that proposed insanity was huge. It flowed seamlessly out of the Neoconized White House. The goal was to deconstruct the Middle East and make it over to please Tel Aviv.
Aside from the WMD lie, the Cheney/Bush White House justified its invasion of Iraq in early 2003 by another canard—that of bringing “democracy” to the Middle East. The average complacent American could buy into these multiple cover stories so long as (a) the Iraq war and the so-called "Global War on Terror" (GWOT) were outwardly going smoothly and (b) what was actually happening in various faraway venues remained well hidden from public view.
The White House loudly proclaimed to want “democracy” in Lebanon and Palestine as well as in Iraq. Remember? Bringing democracy to the Middle East was the grand cover story. Seemingly everything could be justified by it.
In Lebanon, allow me to point out that Hezbollah is a legitimate political organization representing a substantial numbers of Lebanese. It sits in Lebanon's parliament. But Hezbollah actively opposes the ongoing Israeli occupation of Lebanese territory in south Lebanon known as the Shebba Farms. So Hezbollah is on the White House hit list. The U.S. has branded it a terrorist organization just like Hamas.
Hezbollah would not even exist if it were not for the repeated invasions and bombardments of Lebanon by Israel starting in 1978. Tel Aviv created Hezbollah, so now it has to deal with it. Somehow that has automatically become America's problem.
Condoleezza Rice spoke breathlessly about “the birth pangs of a new Middle East” when Tel Aviv bombarded Beirut and blanketed a million made-in-America cluster bomblets over the Lebanese countryside in the summer of 2006. This assault apparently had something to do with bringing “democracy” to Lebanon. I have concluded that Condoleezza Rice is untrustworthy and deranged.
When there was an election in the “Palestinian territories” in January 2006—meaning that part of Palestine conquered in the 1967 war and still occupied—the Palestinians voted for Hamas by a large majority, because Fatah had not delivered peace or justice despite its long negotiations with Tel Aviv and Washington during the Oslo “peace process”.
The Oslo flimflam commenced in the aftermath of the first Gulf War in 1991 when H.W. Bush proclaimed a New World Order, and lasted throughout the Bill Clinton/Dennis Ross/Martin Indyk years until the end of 2000 when Dick Cheney took over. The 1993 Oslo Accord was followed by other flimflams, culminating in the Annapolis Conference of November 2007.
Nothing positive has come from any of it. The “peace process” was a charade from the start. Tel Aviv simply expropriated more land from the Palestinians, built a concrete wall higher and longer than the Berlin Wall to encase the West Bank, and subjected Palestinians to harsher conditions, most especially in Gaza, the latter being transformed into a free-fire, killing zone.
So what did the White House do in the aftermath of the Hamas election victory on the West Bank and in Gaza at the start of 2006? The White House immediately set about to destabilize and sabotage the Palestinians so as to punish them for not electing the authorized leadership.
You can read about some of these machinations in, of all places, Vanity Fair. What the White House did is despicable to the nth degree, like so much else undertaken by Cheney/Bush.
Let's get real. Neither Washington nor Tel Aviv has any genuine interest in “democracy” in Palestine, for the simple reason that democracy and justice there would logically spell the end of the Zionist experiment. Why?
Because a democratic solution to the conflict would necessarily involve a return of Palestinian war refugees and their descendants to their villages, homes and land inside what is now designated as “Israel” proper. It would involve equality of rights.
Objectively speaking, all of Israel is occupied territory. The Zionists realize this of course, and act accordingly. This translates into more suppression and aggression inside Israel and wholesale mendacity projected to the world outside.
Working in tandem with Washington, one manufactured crisis in the Middle East must be followed by another. Iraq. Iran. Lebanon. GWOT. Syria. Whatever it takes to distract from the central issue.
None of these circumstances can be addressed honestly by the United States. The current slaughter in Gaza is further proof of that reality. In 1973, Senator William Fulbright, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, stated on CBS's Face The Nation:
“Israel controls the U.S. Senate. The Senate is subservient, much too much. We should be more concerned about the U.S. interests, rather than doing the bidding of Israel. The great majority of the Senate of the U.S.—somewhere around 80%—are completely in support of Israel. Anything Israel wants, Israel gets.”
At at early hour, Mahatma Gandhi spoke out against the madness. In 1938, at a time when the Zionists were working under the cover and protection of the British Empire in Palestine, Gandhi denounced the push to carve a Jewish state from Arab lands as “a crime against humanity”. Further, he stated, “...what is going on in Palestine today cannot be justified by any moral code of conduct.”
A decade later, in August 1947, Gandhi wrote, “...the Jews have erred grievously in seeking to impose themselves on Palestine with the aid of America and Britain and now with the aid of naked terror. Why should they depend on American money for forcing themselves on an unwelcome land? Why should they resort to terrorism to make good their forcible landing in Palestine?”
Can you imagine what Gandhi might say about the present genocide and terror in Gaza perpetrated by the same actors and enablers some 60+ years later? Does one need to be a Mahatma Gandhi to recognize that it is crazy?