Academic journal article Nebula

Roadmap to Genocide

Academic journal article Nebula

Roadmap to Genocide

Article excerpt

Having lived for three years under Israeli military occupation in Palestine (1981-1984), I have been convinced that the daily violence and especially the contempt with which Israelis treat Palestinians meant that Israel intended ultimately to drive out and/or exterminate the indigenous people. This conviction has grown stronger over the years until now, as I watch the terrible fate of thousands of refugees in Gaza and the West Bank--people who have been driven in successive waves of massacre and land confiscation into ever smaller areas of the original land of Palestine--I am convinced that the state of Israel was designed from the beginning to exclude the original Arab inhabitants. Furthermore, it seems to me that discussions of the problem are useless if they begin with the assumption that we are dealing with two groups who are just having trouble accommodating themselves to sharing the same small piece of land, instead of seeing the conflict as a phase of massacre and ethnic cleansing in an ongoing process of genocide. If we look carefully at the genocide of the Native Americans, we see a parallel history: whole tribes driven farther and farther away from their original habitat, deprived of their use of the land, corralled into ever smaller and more remote "Reservations," starved, hunted down, and finally exterminated. On the ticking clock of the cycle of total annihilation, the Palestinian people are approaching their Wounded Knee.

Unless we realize that Israel is engaged in genocide, all talk of a "peace process" merely screens the reality, and enables the genocide to continue. To give a contemporary example, either Condoleezza Rice is being disingenuous, or she is ignorant of the real Israeli agenda when she questions Israeli denial of entry to Palestinian-Americans (Merriman 2006). If Rice really understood the Israeli agenda, she would not need to ask. Worried that the Palestinian Arabs will soon outnumber Israeli Jews, Israel is using all methods to decrease the number of Arabs in the country, even refusing entry to Palestinians who returned to the country after the Oslo agreement to help build a Palestinian state side-by-side with Israel.

One of the Palestinians now excluded from the right to live in his native Palestine is Sam Bahour. His article "We Can't Go Home Again" was posted on the Electronic Intifada and published in the NY Times, October 7, 2006. Bahour went back to live in his grandfather's house in El-Bireh and to build up a telecommunications business worth US$100 million which now employs more than 2,000 Palestinians. For thirteen years he has managed to reside in the West Bank by going out to renew his visa every three months while getting an M.B.A. degree from Tel Aviv University, developing a 10 million dollar shopping mall, and starting a family. "Last month an Israeli soldier stamped my American passport with a one-month visa and wrote "last permit" on it in Arabic, Hebrew and English." Bahour reports that in the last six years, more than 70,000 people have applied for permission to immigrate to the West Bank and Gaza to join family. "Their applications," he says, "have either been denied or, like mine, languish" (Bahour 2000).

According to Israel Shahak, however, there will never be a Palestinian state. In Jewish History, Jewish Religion (2002) Shahak says Palestinians need not worry about being offered a "Bantustan" as long as Israel remains a "Jewish state" since Israel can never grant real sovereignty or autonomy to non-Jews within the land of Israel as long as it remains an exclusively Jewish state (Shahak 2002, 101).

Keeping such successful and highly desirable citizens as Sam Bahour out of Israel cannot be justified on grounds of "security," and can only be understood as part of the ethnic cleansing in which Israel has been engaged since 1948. This ethnic cleansing no longer needs to be kept secret because Israel enjoys unquestioning support from the US, the world's only superpower. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.