Israel’s Illegitimate Tactics Against Palestinian Armed Resistance vs. Legitimate Global Security Concerns

Israel, a rogue state if ever there was one, pursues its “security” as a Jewish Zionist entity on all of Mandate Palestine through demonizing Palestinian Arabs, whom it has long subjected to a racist campaign that defines their resistance, both violent and non-violent, as anti-Semitism on the one hand and as terrorism on the other.

Thankfully, Israel’s cover for its exploitation of anti-Semitism to serve unconscionable Zionist ends has finally been blown (See Former Mossad agent describes planting claims that critics of Israel are “antisemitic”). However, the connections between pro-Israel organizations and Islamophobia (Palestinian Arabs happen to be mostly Muslim), as well as Israel’s PR campaign to paint Palestinian resistance as terror, are still not widely discussed. Complicating the Palestinian situation is the fact that Israel’s dirty tactics are wedded to legitimate global concerns about terrorism.

Inadvertently playing along with Israel’s designs, Jewish Voice for Peace, for example, is initiating a new campaign called “Deadly Exchange” to challenge “the deadly falsehood that violence against some communities will create security for others.” Its laudable goal in this campaign is to end the US-Israel police partnership, but the underlying premise is that Israel’s “security” claim is as legitimate as the security claim of any other nation, and it is only its method of combating it that is at fault.

Israel paints an ugly picture of Palestinian Arabs, while simultaneously legitimizing vigilante terror by Jews in the West Bank. “The Jews are our misfortune” was the Nazi pronouncement emanating from virulent anti-Semitism that led to disastrous consequences, but the phrase is literally and objectively true in Palestine, where the Zionist Jewish entity is ensconced, actively practicing a brutal settler-colonial regime. Palestinian resistance against Israel is neither driven by anti-Semitism nor by “Islamic” terror. .

The image of the Palestinian Muslim Arab as an anti-Semitic terrorist has been assiduously cultivated by Israel. This image is given credence by the extremist actions Israel itself has provoked Hamas into committing in the past. Since Israel’s assassination of Hamas’s legendary leader Mahmoud Abu-Alhunoud on Nov. 23, 2001 and Hamas’s retaliatory suicide bombings in Haifa and Jerusalem, Israel has conducted (along with Washington and the complicit US media) an all-out assault on Hamas as a militant national movement.

Discrediting the legitimacy of Hamas was all part of Ariel Sharon’s strategy, not only to demolish Hamas, but also to isolate Arafat. So, for example, the Israeli terror attack on a Gaza neighborhood on July 23, 2002 killed seventeen non-combatants (including nine children and Hamas’s leader Salah Shehadeh) and injured 170. That provoked a retaliatory attack by Hamas on the Hebrew University cafeteria on July 31, killing seven and injuring a dozen people.

Israel’s repeated and ongoing provocative acts, especially in judaizing Jerusalem, in propaganda by various far-right groups attempting to violate the status quo at the holy sites, in extrajudicial assassinations of Hamas’s leaders, have all driven Hamas to extremes (in the form of a rash of suicide bombings directed at Israeli civilians) that Hamas is now trying to moderate, targeting instead Israeli police and soldiers rather than innocent civilians.

Not so Israel, which continues to regard even a stone-wielding child or a Palestinian youth with a keyboard and access to the internet as threats to its “security”, a security shamelessly supported by the Palestinian Authority itself – also in the name of “peace” and “law and order”. The very existence of Palestinians is a “demographic threat” to Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state.

The mainstream media hardly ever question the presumption that violence by Palestinians against Israel is anything but a criminal act. Take for example the violent incident that occurred in Jerusalem earlier this year. A Palestinian driving a vehicle in illegally annexed and occupied East Jerusalem plows into and kills several Israeli soldiers and causes collateral injury to others. In reporting on the story, The Guardian includes the following information for the reader with no comment:

“The UN security council joined other world leaders in condemning the attack. ‘The members of the security council condemned in the strongest terms the terrorist attack in Jerusalem.'”

As far as the UN security council is concerned, there are no distinctions to make between such an attack on Israeli police in Jerusalem and a similar attack on police in any other city in the world, never mind the 1978 United Nations General Assembly Resolution reaffirming “the legitimacy of the struggle of peoples for independence, territorial integrity, national unity and liberation from colonial and foreign domination and foreign occupation by all available means, particularly armed struggle.”

Since before the “war on terrorism” in the West even began, the very concept of terrorism has been reduced by Israeli propagandists into an arena whereby Palestinian armed resistance by individuals or Hamas or any other militant Palestinian group is automatically regarded as terror.  In a catch-22, non-violent Palestinian resistance, on the other hand, is dubbed as “incitement to terror”.

The depiction of Palestinian armed resistance as terror prevails despite the fact that there is considerable disagreement on the meaning of “terrorism.” As Tomis Kapitan writes in The Terror of Terrorism,

Any intelligent discussion of terrorism must have some way of identifying the phenomenon under scrutiny. Only then is it possible to devise criteria for describing a given action, agent, or organization as ‘terrorist’, to investigate the causes and objectives of terrorism, and to set parameters for a legitimate response to what some regard as a fundamental challenge to world peace.

In 2011 Waleed al-Meadana, a Palestinian refugee from Jaffa forced to live in Gaza, wrote a piece that was published in Mondoweiss titled, “Thanks, my enemy. I love Palestine.” At the time, he was a 21-year-old Palestinian lecturer at the University College of Applied Sciences (UCASGaza) – I hope he is well and alive today.

In that piece, he expresses the sentiment that Israel’s brutality only makes him love Palestine more. He wrote,

You call me names? You call me ‘terrorist’?!! You step on me; you fuck me; you steal my land; you abduct my child; you rape my wife; you lock up my brother; you kill my father, and you call me a ‘terrorist’?? Is it because every time you strip me naked I scream?? Is it because every time you smash my bones I cry?? Is it because I shed tears for my younger brothers every time they hear your bombs?? Am I a ‘terrorist’??

It is my pleasure then, call me a ‘terrorist’!

Framing Palestinian resistance as terrorism or any other kind of criminal activity makes it easier for Israeli snipers in Palestinian neighborhoods and generally in the West Bank to shoot to kill or maim, as in this instance,

There have been many recent cases of stone-throwing at policemen, who for some reason often come to Isawiyah [a Palestinian neighborhood of Jerusalem] at the end of the school day. In the past few months, some eight local children and teens have been hit in the eye with rubber-coated bullets, arousing suspicions in the village that this is the work of snipers aiming at the eyes… On December 18, a week after his release, Ahmed’s father filed a complaint with the [Israeli] Justice Ministry’s unit for the investigation of police officers. He was informed that they didn’t have an available investigator and that they would call him (which they have yet to do).

Such framing of Palestinian resistance as terror (now aided by new Israeli legislation) also makes it easier for Israeli armed forces to kill Palestinians without fear of prosecution.

“’The new law sends a clear message to our soldiers: When you protect us, we protect you,’ the Deputy Defence Minister said.”

In 2016 alone, more than 1,000 unarmed Palestinians engaged in protests or demonstrations were shot by Israeli forces in the occupied Palestinian territory.

But what we must all keep in mind, especially on this centennial anniversary of the Balfour declaration, is the following ugly truth about the Zionist Jewish entity in Palestine – that Zionism is all about Jewish supremacy:

By the time the Balfour Declaration was finalized, thirty-plus years of Zionist settlement had made clear that the Zionists intended to ethnically cleanse the land for a settler state based on racial superiority; and it was the behind-the-scenes demands of the principal Zionist leaders, notably Chaim Weizmann and Baron Rothschild.  (Thomas Suárez, author of State of Terror: How Terrorism Created Modern Israel)

More articles by:

Rima Najjar is a Palestinian whose father’s side of the family comes from the forcibly depopulated village of Lifta on the western outskirts of Jerusalem. She is an activist, researcher and retired professor of English literature, Al-Quds University, occupied West Bank.

Weekend Edition
March 16, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Michael Uhl
The Tip of the Iceberg: My Lai Fifty Years On
Bruce E. Levine
School Shootings: Who to Listen to Instead of Mainstream Shrinks
Mel Goodman
Caveat Emptor: MSNBC and CNN Use CIA Apologists for False Commentary
Paul Street
The Obama Presidency Gets Some Early High Historiography
Kathy Deacon
Me, My Parents and Red Scares Long Gone
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: Rexless Abandon
Andrew Levine
Good Enemies Are Hard To Find: Therefore Worry
Jim Kavanagh
What to Expect From a Trump / Kim Summit
Ron Jacobs
Trump and His Tariffs
Joshua Frank
Drenched in Crude: It’s an Oil Free For All, But That’s Not a New Thing
Gary Leupp
What If There Was No Collusion?
Matthew Stevenson
Why Vietnam Still Matters: Bernard Fall Dies on the Street Without Joy
Robert Fantina
Bad to Worse: Tillerson, Pompeo and Haspel
Brian Cloughley
Be Prepared, Iran, Because They Want to Destroy You
Richard Moser
What is Organizing?
Scott McLarty
Working Americans Need Independent Politics
Rohullah Naderi
American Gun Violence From an Afghan Perspective
Sharmini Peries - Michael Hudson
Why Trump’s Tariff Travesty Will Not Re-Industrialize the US
Ted Rall
Democrats Should Run on Impeachment
Robert Fisk
Will We Ever See Al Jazeera’s Investigation Into the Israel Lobby?
Kristine Mattis
Superunknown: Scientific Integrity Within the Academic and Media Industrial Complexes
John W. Whitehead
Say No to “Hardening” the Schools with Zero Tolerance Policies and Gun-Toting Cops
Edward Hunt
UN: US Attack On Syrian Civilians Violated International Law
Barbara Nimri Aziz
Iraq Outside History
Wilfred Burchett
Vietnam Will Win: The Long Hard Road
Victor Grossman
Germany: New Faces, Old Policies
Medea Benjamin - Nicolas J. S. Davies
The Iraq Death Toll 15 Years After the US Invasion
Binoy Kampmark
Amazon’s Initiative: Digital Assistants, Home Surveillance and Data
Chuck Collins
Business Leaders Agree: Inequality Hurts The Bottom Line
Jill Richardson
What We Talk About When We Talk About “Free Trade”
Eric Lerner – Jay Arena
A Spark to a Wider Fire: Movement Against Immigrant Detention in New Jersey
Negin Owliaei
Teachers Deserve a Raise: Here’s How to Fund It
Kollibri terre Sonnenblume
What to Do at the End of the World? Interview with Climate Crisis Activist, Kevin Hester
Kevin Proescholdt
Secretary of Interior Ryan Zinke Attacks America’s Wilderness
Franklin Lamb
Syrian War Crimes Tribunals Around the Corner
Beth Porter
Clean Energy is Calling. Will Your Phone Company Answer?
George Ochenski
Zinke on the Hot Seat Again and Again
Lance Olsen
Somebody’s Going to Extremes
Robert Koehler
Breaking the Ice
Pepe Escobar
The Myth of a Neo-Imperial China
Graham Peebles
Time for Political Change and Unity in Ethiopia
Terry Simons
10 American Myths “Refutiated”*
Thomas Knapp
Some Questions from the Edge of Immortality
Louis Proyect
The 2018 Socially Relevant Film Festival
David Yearsley
Keaton’s “The General” and the Pernicious Myths of the Heroic South