FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Israel’s Reversion to Old Colonial Tactics

It is amazing how quickly Israel has learned the elements of colonial staying power.  It is even more amazing how the American media has taken up the cause of racism against the Palestinians.

We can start with how the Israelis, and their lobby headquartered in Washington, have managed to demonize Palestinians, with the result that Israel can undertake a massive slaughter and be barely criticized for it both by our media.   We can begin with Israel’s request to the US government a couple of decades ago to label Hamas as a “Terrorist Group,” which our government happily agreed to do.   Other people in other parts of the world have tried this tactic, with some success, but for the most part such rebels are labeled “insurgents.”

Demonization of those you occupy is an essential first step to allow a colonial power to do what it wishes with the people being occupied.  How else can one explain the lack of meaningful protests by Americans, who have furnished the money and the weapons to the maiming and the slaughter by Israel of thousands of Palestinians in the many wars its Army has conducted against the Palestinians.

It is useful to look back at our own colonial experience to understand what our government is doing to abet this slaughter of innocents.

Our government, back in the early days of our country, made it a point to come to the aid of settlers who wanted to steal land abourezkfrom American Indians.  The government would send soldiers to any area where Indians fought against the settlers.  In fact, the Wounded Knee massacre came about when President Harrison, in 1889, sent troops to South Dakota to “protect” white
settlers from Ghost Dancing Indians.  The government assisted in the scare tactics that had already been used by certain merchants and others by sending more soldiers to our State to calm the fears of white settlers who believed ghost dancers were a major threat to them.   The Republican party was intent on electing two US Senators from South Dakota, so the fears of Indian massacres became an effective tool for the Republican Party to make that come about.

The extra soldiers then set about hunting down Indians who the army believed were ghost dancing and ultimately “threatening” the lives of white settlers.  The troops ordered to gather up Chief Big Foot’s band of Minneconjou Sioux, who were on a mission to Pine Ridge to offer help to the Oglalas based there.  A devastating mistake while trying to disarm the Indians resulted in a massacre of nearly all of Big Foot’s band at a small village called Wounded Knee, the last massacre of Indians in the state’s history.

But the demonization of the Indians in general and ghost dancers in particular enabled the Army to do what they did, much as Israel is doing to demonize Palestinians today.

The demonization has been so effective, assisted by our media, that no media person, and certainly no national politician, has hardly raised an eyebrow at the mass slaughter of Palestinians by Israel during the Gaza campaign.  At the time of this writing Israel has deliberately shelled and bombed Palestinian hospitals, UN shelters where Palestinians run to what they believe is a safe haven.  The photos we see of Gaza cities on television show nothing more than a huge pile of rubble.  It is not clear where those Palestinians will live after Israel has finished its dirty work and leaves Gaza.

It is all part of Israel’s strategy of bombing Gaza’s Palestinians into submission—to show them who is boss, and to prevent any Palestinian from raising his or her hand in protest of the eight year blockade of the strip.  Not even the most greedy and cruel Israelis believe they can kill all the Gazans, so they must satisfy themselves that it is necessary to control them.  There is no thought of ending the occupaton.  That is the lesson the Israeli government has learned from other colonial powers around the world.  The other lesson, that of the Warsaw Ghetto, quite obviously has been forgotten, except for that part that has shown Israel how to control those they occupy.

We have to be doubly sad by watching our President, Barack Obama, who should know better, continue to send weapons, ammunition and money to Israel during this time of mass bloodshed on Israel’s part.

James Abourezk is a former US senator from South Dakota. He is the author of: Advise and Dissent: Memoirs of an ex-Senator.

 

More articles by:

James Abourezk is a former US senator from South Dakota. He is the author of: Advise and Dissent: Memoirs of an ex-Senator.

Weekend Edition
September 21, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Paul Street
Laquan McDonald is Being Tried for His Own Racist Murder
Alexandra Isfahani-Hammond
Hurricane Florence and 9.7 Million Pigs
Nick Pemberton
With or Without Kavanaugh, The United States Is Anti-Choice
Andrew Levine
Israel’s Anti-Semitism Smear Campaign
Jim Kavanagh
“Taxpayer Money” Threatens Medicare-for-All (And Every Other Social Program)
Jonathan Cook
Palestine: The Testbed for Trump’s Plan to Tear up the Rules-Based International Order
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: the Chickenhawks Have Finally Come Back Home to Roost!
David Rosen
As the Capitalist World Turns: From Empire to Imperialism to Globalization?
Jonah Raskin
Green Capitalism Rears Its Head at Global Climate Action Summit
James Munson
On Climate, the Centrists are the Deplorables
Robert Hunziker
Is Paris 2015 Already Underwater?
Arshad Khan
Will Their Ever be Justice for Rohingya Muslims?
Jill Richardson
Why Women Don’t Report Sexual Assault
Dave Clennon
A Victory for Historical Accuracy and the Peace Movement: Not One Emmy for Ken Burns and “The Vietnam War”
W. T. Whitney
US Harasses Cuba Amid Mysterious Circumstances
Nathan Kalman-Lamb
Things That Make Sports Fans Uncomfortable
George Capaccio
Iran: “Snapping Back” Sanctions and the Threat of War
Kenneth Surin
Brexit is Coming, But Which Will It Be?
Louis Proyect
Moore’s “Fahrenheit 11/9”: Entertaining Film, Crappy Politics
Ramzy Baroud
Why Israel Demolishes: Khan Al-Ahmar as Representation of Greater Genocide
Ben Dangl
The Zapatistas’ Dignified Rage: Revolutionary Theories and Anticapitalist Dreams of Subcommandante Marcos
Ron Jacobs
Faith, Madness, or Death
Bill Glahn
Crime Comes Knocking
Terry Heaton
Pat Robertson’s Hurricane “Miracle”
Dave Lindorff
In Montgomery County PA, It’s Often a Jury of White People
Louis Yako
From Citizens to Customers: the Corporate Customer Service Culture in America 
William Boardman
The Shame of Dianne Feinstein, the Courage of Christine Blasey Ford 
Ernie Niemi
Logging and Climate Change: Oregon is Appalachia and Timber is Our Coal
Jessicah Pierre
Nike Says “Believe in Something,” But Can It Sacrifice Something, Too?
Paul Fitzgerald - Elizabeth Gould
Weaponized Dreams? The Curious Case of Robert Moss
Olivia Alperstein
An Environmental 9/11: the EPA’s Gutting of Methane Regulations
Ted Rall
Why Christine Ford vs. Brett Kavanaugh is a Train Wreck You Can’t Look Away From
Lauren Regan
The Day the Valves Turned: Defending the Pipeline Protesters
Ralph Nader
Questions, Questions Where are the Answers?
Binoy Kampmark
Deplatforming Germaine Greer
Raouf Halaby
It Should Not Be A He Said She Said Verdict
Justin Anderson
Don’t Count the Left Out Just Yet
Robert Koehler
The Accusation That Wouldn’t Go Away
Jim Hightower
Amazon is Making Workers Tweet About How Great It is to Work There
Robby Sherwin
Rabbi, Rabbi, Where For Art Thou Rabbi?
Vern Loomis
Has Something Evil This Way Come?
Steve Baggarly
Disarm Trident Walk Ends in Georgia
Graham Peebles
Priorities of the Time: Peace
Michael Doliner
The Department of Demonization
David Yearsley
Bollocks to Brexit: the Plumber Sings
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail