The Zionist propagandists who preside over the 'opinion' pages of The Australian just love to indulge in schadenfreude. The buggers were cock-a-hoop over two recent cases of Palestinian-on-Palestinian violence in the Gaza Strip and made the most of the opportunity they presented to divert attention away from Israel's routine acts of bastardry, such as shooting up funerals of Palestinians shot at funerals of Palestinians shot defending their land*, or giving Palestinians in urgent need of medical attention the choice of death or turning informer*.
[*Rubber bullets fired at Naalin funeral-goers, ynetnews.com, 5/8/08]
[* 'Tell us who the terrorists are if you want the doctor', independent.co.uk, 4/8/08]
The Australian's Cut & Paste (6/8/08) section led off with the murder in Gaza of deported asylum-seeker Akram al-Masri under the facetious headline The refugee with a well-founded fear of a mango feud. The claim of an Australian refugee advocate that al-Masri had had "problems with Israel and the Palestinian Authority," and that the Howard government had therefore knowingly sent him to his death was juxtaposed with an extract from a Sydney Morning Herald report by Paul McGeough to the effect that al-Masri was really the hapless victim of a feud between two Gazan clans which had its origin in a dispute over the sale of a mango (Refugee was abandoned to Gaza clan warfare, 5/8/08). The implication, of course, was that the Howard government had clean hands. Maybe, but who really knows? But what about Israel? Should it too escape blame? Before deciding, think about this very Zionist experiment:
Flood the Gaza Strip with thousands of refugees expelled from other parts of Palestine (1948), turning it into one of the most overcrowded places on earth; occupy it, not once (1956-7), but twice (1967); steal a third of its land to build fortified playpens for bored American Jews; ruthlessly crush all dissent; sow death and destruction at every turn, decade after decade; strangle its economy; throw into the mix a period of Palestinian Authority misrule (1994-2006); cultivate the PA's collaborationist security services*; level the inmates' homes, schools, factories, workshops, hospitals and greenhouses; tear up their roads; raze their fields and uproot their fruit trees; get out when it becomes too hot to handle (2005); shriek in horror as the inmates dare to elect their own non-collaborationist government (2006); seal the Strip off from the rest of the world with a ring of steel; shoot, shell and strafe its inmates for voting as they saw fit; smirk and feel superior as they seek solace in religion or protection/advantage in the clan. Above all, perform high fives whenever they turn on each other and pat yourself on the head for imagining you're so much more civilized than they.
[*"While the political branches of the Fateh-led PA may have been just passive in the Palestinian struggle for freedom, some of the security forces have been active collaborators with the Israeli occupation, most notably the Preventive Security apparatus, headed by Mohammed Dahlan in the Gaza Strip and Jibril Rajoub in the West Bank. These forces, trained by the CIA, have worked during all years of the Oslo Agreements in tight collaboration with the Israeli security forces, including collaborations in assassinations of Hamas militants." (The Road Map to Nowhere: Israel/Palestine Since 2003, Tanya Reinhart pp 148-149)]
The McGeough extract was followed by one from a rant by the Basil Fawlty of Australian journalism, The Daily Telegraph's Piers Akerman. Piers variously describes the Palestinian refugees, Israel's victims, as a "cancer", a "festering [sore]" and a "canker," Israel, however, the creator and sustainer of the Palestinian refugee wound, is described as a state that has "maintained a non-discrimination policy toward Arabs and people of all faiths within its borders." Piers is as mad as hell (on Israel's behalf) and he's not gonna take it anymore! You see, Israel had gone to considerable time and trouble to expel Palestine's untermenschen back in 1948, but - you wouldn't read about it (except maybe in The Daily Telegraph) - those bloody Arab states "have refused to permit them to settle and integrate into their populations, preferring to see a United Nations-supported permanent 'refugee' state of Palestine festering on the Israeli border and and remaining a canker in international relations." And that, folks, is all anyone expelled from his homeland would want, right? Just to forget and move on - as far away from his alleged homeland as possible, right? Content that it's gone to more deserving folk, right?
But what really gets Piers going is the obverse of this Arab knavery - Israel's merciful provision of "sanctuary for Palestinians fleeing home-grown terror directed against each other." You see, "the bloody infighting between rival terrorist gangs" is just typical and proves, if proof were needed, that Israel is "the only island of security in the middle of the carnage..." Do I really need to elaborate on the irony of Israel letting 181 Palestinian collaborators and/or criminals in, while keeping 4-5 million Palestinian refugees out?
Then came this extract from UK Israel apologist Melanie Phillips of the The Spectator on "the crowning absurdity of the situation... So let's get our head around this: Palestinians committed to the destruction of Israel fled from other Palestinians committed to the destruction of Israel into Israel, which is providing them with sanctuary and medical treatment, while the President of their putative state, who bases his claim against Israel on its alleged [!!!] refusal to admit Palestinian refugees, refused to allow actual Palestinian refugees fleeing Palestinian violence access to that same putative state, while Israel agonises over whether to grant them permanent asylum. Surreal, or what?" Yes, Mel, I reckon you're off with the Salvador Dali-s there.
Time for some old-fashioned realism from Israeli observer Meron Benvenisti: "Members of the [openly collaborationist] Dahlan* clans, who fled under similar circumstances a year ago [in the wake of the Hamas preemptive strike of 2007*] did not want members of the Hilles clan, and they convinced Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Salam Fayyad that the whole business would prove too costly. After all, according to the precedent that they themselves set, every person who escaped from Gaza would receive a grant of $350 a month, in addition to a salary and a rent allowance. PA officials tried to paper over this stinginess on the part of people who are unabashedly embezzling hundreds of millions of dollars of humanitarian aid by bandying such false slogans as 'should we leave Gaza to Hamas?' " (They were not wanted in Ramallah, Haaretz 7/8/08)
[*On Muhammad Dahlan (Abbas' national-security adviser and the CIA's ex-man in Gaza) and Hamas' preemptive strike see my 6/3/08 post Mainsewer Media Clueless in Gaza]
And here's more realism from Paul McGeough: "First under Arafat and then in a power vacuum created by Israel's unilateral withdrawal from Gaza in 2005, the 20-odd leading clans reached the peak of their power - economic and military, social and political... But when the clans came up against an elected Hamas government, something had to give. Last weekend it did. In the first year or so of Islamist control of the occupied territories, the clans bided their time, playing Hamas against Fatah. But when Hamas defeated the Fatah-controlled forces of the President, Mahmoud Abbas, in Gaza last year, the clans began to buckle... In the absence of organised Fatah forces in Gaza, some of the bigger clans have become militia proxies for Abbas' unelected and US-sponsored regime, which operates from the West Bank city of Ramallah... In the absence of the greater Israeli force and left to their own devices by the Fatah-controlled Palestinian Authority, blood feuds and other clan clashes exploded, from 'a handful' in the 1980s to hundreds in 2006 - when at least 90 deaths and hundreds of injuries were recorded... Despite resorting to strong-arm tactics that have provoked negative criticism from human rights watch groups, Hamas is celebrated locally for restoring law and order." (Clans fight to keep it all in the family, Sydney Morning Herald 8/8/08)
Phillips' outrageous propaganda about Israel "agonising over whether to grant them permanent asylum" should be contrasted with this report: "Since human rights groups have recently reported on torture in Gaza, alarms were raised [over Israel's decision to send about 3 dozen Hilles clan members back to Gaza]. The Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI) sent an urgent appeal to the Supreme Court demanding that Israel stop returning the men to Gaza. On Monday morning, the Israeli military announced that it would not send them all to Gaza and that it had persuaded Mr Abbas to allow many of them into the West Bank. So [ACRI] backed off, replaced by two right-wing activists who petitioned the court to stop the transfer of dangerous men across Israel. By day's end, the army had moved 88 of the men on military buses to Jericho. Several dozen others were sent to Gaza, while 16 were still in the hospital. And the rest? Israeli security forces were interrogating them..." (In Gaza, a blurry line between enemies & friends, The New York Times, 5/8/08)
Finally, Cut & Paste readers were offered this little pearl from visiting neocon recruit Ayaan Hirsi Ali in the SMH of 4/8/08: "In a tribal society, life is cruel and terrible." Well, you can be pretty sure that the ex-Somali, ex-Muslim Ali didn't have the land of the 12 tribes in mind when she dropped her pearl of wisdom, but some Israeli scholars sure have. Consider the following: "[Israeli historian Zeev] Sternhell argues that Zionism as a whole was a tribal form of nationalism of 'blood and soil' emphasising religion and ethnicity..." (The Bible & Zionism: Invented Traditions, Archaeology & Post-Colonialism in Israel-Palestine, Nur Masalha, 2007 p 23)
And has the Zionist tribe ever indulged in any Zionist-on-Zionist violence? Read on: "Barnea and Rubenstein state that 'the Hagana archives contain the names of 40 Jews who were killed by Irgun and LEHI (Stern Group) men in the course of their underground work or in the context of settling internal accounts', reviewing the record. This does not include Jews killed by terrorist attacks aimed at others, as in the King David Hotel bombing. The official history of Begin's Irgun described how they drowned a member who they thought might give information to the police, if captured; see Shahak, Begin And Co. The Haganah Special Actions Squad undertook 'punitive actions against informers within the Jewish community' as one of its tasks (Bar-Zohar, Ben-Gurion, p 99). A Haganah prison in Haifa contained a torture chamber for interrogation of Jews suspected of collaboration with the British, the Haifa weekly Hashavua Bair revealed in its 35th anniversary issue (April 1983), in an interview with a high military officer of the Haganah." (The Fateful Triangle: The United States, Israel & the Palestinians, Noam Chomsky, 1983 pp 164-165)