Gaza: Masters of the Goebbels lie
The mainstream narrative of Israel, Palestine and the middle east is a Big Lie, writes Tony Greenstein
We all know who the military Goliath is
Obama and the BBC applaud Israel’s ‘retaliation’,” Ali
Abunimah points out in his timeline to Israel’s latest attack on
Egypt brokered a ceasefire on November 11, only for Israel to
assassinate Hamas military chief Ahmed al-Jabari three days later.
the same situation occurred four years ago when Israel waged a
one-sided war against Gaza that killed 1,400 people, including 400
children. Then Israel used white phosphorous bombs against civilian
targets, including a United Nations school. Although the Israelis
insist they are doing everything in their power to ‘protect
innocent civilians’, as they target residential areas, the actual
logic is that babies and children grow into ‘terrorists’, so it
is better to get them young. Which was, of course, the excuse that
the Nazis used for murdering Jewish children. The numbers are, of
course, different, but the principle remains the same.
just as with Operation Cast Lead, so Israel’s new Operation Pillar
of Defence seeks to cast the victims of the bombing, killing and
destruction as the aggressor, and the perpetrator as the victim. As
Nazi Germany’s propaganda minister, Joseph Goebbels, is alleged to
have stated, “If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it,
people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained
only for such time as the state can shield the people from the
political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus
becomes vitally important for the state to use all of its powers to
repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and
thus by extension the truth is the greatest enemy of the state.”
months Israel has been conducting bombing raids on Gaza and shooting
civilians who stray near the border, as well as the odd fisherman.
Unsurprisingly most of the rockets sent over in retaliation killed
no-one, but were used as the excuse for further aggression.
the BBC with its usual ‘balance’, takes Israel’s propaganda at
face value and portrays the struggle between David and Goliath as the
actions of a sorely provoked Zionist state. But it was always thus.
The victims of colonialism and imperialism have always been the
aggressor in the eyes of this mouthpiece of the British
establishment. Of course, when it comes to Syria, then the BBC
abandons such impartiality and balance and has no compunction about
coming down on one side.
question is, why now? Why do Israel’s leaders act like vampires,
eager to shed yet more Palestinian blood? One reason, though not the
only one, is the holding of elections in Israel in the new year.
Prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu, ‘defence’ minister Ehud Barak
and his fascist foreign minister, Avigdor Lieberman, want to be seen
to be strong. But this is not the whole story. From the Zionist right
and left there is a chorus of approval. Shelly Yachimovich of
Israel’s Labour Party is an equally enthusiastic supporter of
Israel’s latest war.
key reason is that Israel, as a settler colonial state, is incapable
of coming to terms with the indigenous Palestinian population.
Zionism by its very nature is an expansionist ideology and movement.
The idea of ‘two states’, which apologists for imperialism like
the Alliance for Workers’ Liberty never cease to parrot, has only
ever been for foreign consumption. The goal of all Zionist parties is
either the confining of the Palestinians into a series of tiny
Bantustans or, even better, their expulsion over the river Jordan.
Transfer is certainly the goal of the present far-right Israeli
government and it fervently hopes that it will once again have the
means to effect it.
the meantime the only good Palestinian leader is someone like Mahmoud
Abbas, the quisling ‘president’ of the Ramallah canton. Abbas’s
only political purpose is to (eventually) acquiesce in whatever
Israel demands of him, while pretending to oppose it. The problem
with the Hamas leadership in Gaza, despite its reactionary religious
ideology, is that it still retains its independence. The same was
true, to a lesser extent of the former leader of Fatah, Yasser
Arafat, which is why he was murdered by Israel - using radioactive
polonium, it is believed.
imperialism would generally be content for there to be a viable
Palestinian state in which Abbas’s American trained security forces
kept the people under tight control. But Israel’s leaders will not
countenance even the most subservient of Palestinian states. And yet
they know they cannot forever perpetuate a system of apartheid, where
Israel’s Jews rule over a majority of Palestinians (Israeli Jews
now constitute less than 50% of what was mandate Palestine). Hence
‘transfer’ is the preferred option.
the Middle East is not the same as it was before the Arab spring.
Despite closing down many of the tunnels in Rafah between Egypt and
Egyptian president Mohamed Mursi sent his prime minister to Gaza.
This followed the visit of the emir of Qatar, Sheikh Hamad bin
Khalifa Al Thani. This in itself, combined with the prospect of
further visits by international leaders and the gradual recognition
of Palestinian sovereignty, was enough to cause apoplexy amongst
Israel’s leaders, who have maintained a blockade against Gaza for
the past seven years.
oppression of the Palestinians is symbolic of the oppression of Arabs
in the Middle East and undoubtedly it was an astute move by Hamad,
one of the few intelligent Gulf rulers, to visit Gaza. Israel’s
blockade, which itself has been relaxed in certain respects since the
murder of nine Turkish activists on board the Mavi Marmara in 2010,
has become a political liability. The need to reassert the blockade
and make it clear that Gaza is intended to be an open prison, not an
independent state, is vital to Zionist plans. There is also a very
good economic reason: the discovery of gas in the Mediterranean sea
opposite Gaza. Energy independence is something close to Zionist
is unlikely that Israel, even if it invades Gaza, will attempt to
impose the rule of Abbas on the people. Hamas, which Israel helped
create in the 1980s when secular Palestinian nationalism was the main
enemy, is necessary to keep order, not least against the growing
Salafist movement. The primary purpose of the Israel’s attack and
possible invasion of Gaza is to make sure that the Palestinians in
Gaza do not start getting ideas of independence. The present bombing
is there to remind them who is master of the region.
See ‘Gaza tunnel trade squeezed by Egypt “crackdown”’: