imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Calendar Publish RSS
Features
latest news
best of news
syndication
commentary


KILLRADIO

VozMob

ABCF LA

A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List

LAAMN List




IMC Network:

Original Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech

Surviving Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: canada: quebec east asia: japan europe: athens barcelona belgium bristol brussels cyprus germany grenoble ireland istanbul lille linksunten nantes netherlands norway portugal united kingdom latin america: argentina cmi brasil rosario oceania: aotearoa united states: austin big muddy binghamton boston chicago columbus la michigan nyc portland rochester saint louis san diego san francisco bay area santa cruz, ca tennessee urbana-champaign worcester west asia: palestine process: fbi/legal updates process & imc docs projects: radio satellite tv
printable version - js reader version - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

Israel’s Indiscriminate Onslaughts

by ONATHAN COOK Tuesday, Jul. 25, 2006 at 10:57 AM

Targeting Civilians As Deliberate Strategy

The expressions of shock that Lebanese civilians are taking the brunt of Israel’s onslaught -- and the unwillingness in some quarters of the media to report the fact -- reflects a poor understanding of Israel’s historical use of violence. Since its birth six decades ago, Israel has always been officially “going after the terrorists”, but its actions have invariably harmed civilians in an indiscriminate manner.

The roll call of dishonor is long indeed, but its highlights include: the massacre of some 200 civilians in Tantura, as well as large-scale massacres in at least a dozen other Palestinian villages, during the 1948 war that established Israel; Ariel Sharon’s attack on the village of Qibya in 1953 that killed 70 Palestinians; the Kfar Qassem massacre inside Israel when 49 farm workers were gunned down at an improvised army checkpoint; a massacre in the same year in the refugee camp of Khan Yunis, in Gaza, in which more than 250 civilians were killed; attacks on dozens of Palestinian, Egyptian and Syrian villages during the 1967 war; the killing of six unarmed Arab citizens of Israel in 1976; the massacre of hundreds of Palestinian civilians in the Lebanese refugee camps of Sabra and Chatilla in 1982; the unremitting use of lethal force by the army against unarmed Palestinians, often women and children, during the first intifada of 1987-93; the aerial bombardment of Qana in south Lebanon in 1996 that killed more than 100 civilians; and the endless “collateral damage” of Palestinian civilians during the second intifada, including a half-ton bomb that killed a husband and wide and their seven children a week ago.

The true reasons for these deaths are concealed from credulous observers by Israel’s use of language. When it says it is destroying the “infrastructure of terror”, Israel means it is crushing all Arab resistance to its territorial ambitions in the region. The “infrastructure” includes most Arab men, women and children because they continue to support -- against Israel’s wishes -- their peoples’ rights to self-determination without interference from the Israeli army.

In this sense, and others, there is very little difference between what Israel is doing in Gaza to overturn the democratic wishes of the Palestinian electorate and what it is doing in Lebanon to smash any hopes of a democratic future for its northern neighbor. In Gaza, it wants Hamas destroyed because Hamas is prepared to counter Israel’s unilateral policies with its own unilateral agenda; and in Lebanon, Israel wants Hizbullah obliterated because it is the only force capable, possibly, of preventing a repeat of Israel’s long invasion and occupation of the 1980s and 1990s.

By rounding up the Palestinian cabinet, Israel is not destroying terror, it is clipping the political wings of Hamas, those in its leadership who are quickly learning the arts of government and searching for a space in which they can negotiate with Israel. Through its rejectionist behavior, Israel is only confirming the doubts of those in the Hamas military wing who argue Israel always acts in bad faith.

Similarly in Lebanon, Israel is holding Hizbullah less to account with its attacks than the Lebanese people and their government, despite the latter’s transparently shaky grip on the country. Israel’s military strikes polarize opinion in Lebanon, weaken Fouad Siniora and his ministers, and threaten to push Lebanon over the brink into another civil war.

Israel is keen to talk about “changing the balance of power” in Gaza and Lebanon, implying that it is trying to strengthen the “democrats” against the “terrorists”. But this impression is entirely false. Israeli actions are destroying what little balance of power exists in Gaza and Lebanon so that the two areas become ungovernable.

In Gaza, Israel has been engineering a debilitating struggle for power between Fatah and Hamas, while in Lebanon whatever hollow shell of national unity has existed till now is in danger of cracking under the strain of the Israeli onslaught.

Superficially at least, this seems self-destructive behavior on Israel’s part, given that it has also been striving to detect the fingerprints of outside actors in Gaza and Lebanon.

In the case of Gaza, Israel points to Syria as a safe haven for the exiled Hamas leader Khaled Meshal, to Hizbullah and Iran as sponsors of Hamas “terror” and even to a new al-Qaeda presence. In the case of Lebanon, Israel additionally identifies the strong ties between Hizbullah and Damascus and Tehran.

So why would Israel want Lebanon and Gaza to be ravaged by factional fighting of the kind that might make them more vulnerable to this kind of unwelcome interference from outside?

A history lesson or two helps clarify Israel’s reasoning.

In the occupied Palestinian territories, Hamas was born during the upheavals of the first intifada and encouraged by Israel as a counterweight to the unifying secular Palestinian nationalism of Yasser Arafat.

In Lebanon, the Shiite militia Hizbullah was the inevitable byproduct of Israel’s occupation of the south and its establishment of a mostly Christian proxy militia, the South Lebanon Army, against the Muslim majority.

In both cases it is clear Israel hoped that, by Islamizing its opponents in these regional conflicts, it would delegitimize them in the eyes of Western allies and that it could cultivate sectarianism as a way to further weaken the social cohesiveness of its neighbors.

Recently Israel has encouraged the slide deeper into Islamic extremism through its policies of unilateralism and its refusal to negotiate.

The same set of policies is being continued now in the Palestinian territories and Lebanon: the shattering of these two societies will only deepen the trend toward radical Islam. Islamic movements not only offer the best hope of local resistance to Israel for these weakened societies but they also offer a parallel social infrastructure of health care and welfare services as state institutions collapse.

There is immediate advantage for Israel in this outcome. With secular society crushed and Islamic resistance movements filling the void, Israel will be able to reinforce the impression of many in the West that Israel is on the front line of global “war of terror” being waged by a single implacable enemy, Islam. Israel’s ability to persuade the world that this war is being waged against the whole “civilized” Judeo-Christian West will be made that bit easier.

As a result, Israel may be able to drag its paymaster, the United States, deeper into the mire of the Middle East as a junior partner rather than as an honest broker, giving Israel cover while it carves up yet more Palestinian land for annexation, puts further pressure on the Palestinians to leave their homeland, and destabilizes its regional enemies so that they are powerless to offer protest or resistance.

For some time President Bush has found himself in no position to criticize Israeli actions when Tel Aviv claims to be doing no more to the Palestinians than the US is doing to the Iraqis. The US is handcuffing itself to Israel’s even more extreme version of the “war on terror”, and the consequences will be dire not just for the Palestinians or the region, but for all of us.



Jonathan Cook is a writer and journalist based in Nazareth, Israel. His book, “Blood and Religion: The Unmasking of the Jewish and Democratic State” is published by Pluto Press. His website is www.jkcook.net

Report this post as:

LATEST COMMENTS ABOUT THIS ARTICLE
Listed below are the 10 latest comments of 5 posted about this article.
These comments are anonymously submitted by the website visitors.
TITLE AUTHOR DATE
End Zionist Terror Gabe Tuesday, Jul. 25, 2006 at 12:49 PM

Local News

GUIDE TO REBEL CITY LOS ANGELES AVAILABLE A12 5:39PM

lausd whistle blower A10 11:58PM

Website Upgrade A10 3:02AM

Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images A04 1:02PM

UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light A02 11:58AM

Change Links April 2018 A01 11:27AM

Nuclear Shutdown News March 2018 M31 6:57PM

Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018! M29 7:00PM

Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018! M29 6:38PM

Spring 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! M19 2:02PM

Anti-Eviction Mapping Project Shows Shocking Eviction Trends in L.A. M16 5:40PM

Steve Mnuchin video at UCLA released M15 12:34AM

Actress and Philanthropist Tanna Frederick Hosts Project Save Our Surf Beach Clean Ups M06 12:10PM

After Being Told He's 'Full of Sh*t' at School Event, Mnuchin Demands UCLA Suppress Video M02 11:44AM

Resolution of the Rent Strike in Boyle Heights M01 6:28PM

What Big Brother Knows About You and What You Can Do About It M01 3:30PM

Step Up As LAPD Chief Charlie Beck Steps Down F14 2:44PM

Our House Grief Support Center Hosts 9th Annual Run For Hope, April 29 F13 12:51PM

Don’t let this LA County Probation Department overhaul proposal sit on the shelf F13 11:04AM

Echo Park Residents Sue LA Over Controversial Development F12 8:51AM

Former Signal Hill police officer pleads guilty in road-rage incident in Irvine F09 10:25PM

Calif. Police Accused of 'Collusion' With Neo-Nazis After Release of Court Documents F09 7:14PM

Center for the Study of Political Graphics exhibit on Police Abuse posters F07 9:50AM

City Agrees to Settle Lawsuit Claiming Pasadena Police Officer Had His Sister Falsely Arre F04 3:17PM

Professor's Study Highlights Health Risks of Urban Oil Drilling F04 12:42PM

Claims paid involving Pasadena Police Department 2014 to present F04 10:52AM

Pasadenans - get your license plate reader records from police F03 11:11PM

LA Times Homicide Report F03 1:57PM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

What does the Quran Say About Islamic Dress?? A21 4:15PM

Biodiversité ou la nature privatisée A20 11:22AM

The Market is a Universal Totalitarian Religion A20 7:14AM

Book Available about Hispanics and US Civil War by National Park Service A19 5:52PM

The Shortwave Report 04/20/18 Listen Globally! A19 4:01PM

The Republican 'Prolife' Party Is the Party of War, Execution, and Bear Cub Murder A19 11:48AM

Neurogenèse involutive A18 9:21AM

Paraphysique de la dictature étatique A16 10:13AM

Book Review: "The New Bonapartists" A16 3:45AM

The West Must Take the First Steps to Russia A14 12:25PM

Théorie générale de la révolution ou hommage à feu Mikhaïl Bakounine A14 3:30AM

The Shortwave Report 04/13/18 Listen Globally! A12 3:50PM

“Lost in a Dream” Singing Competition Winner to Be Chosen on April 15 for ,000 Prize! A12 3:48PM

The World Dependent on Central Banks A12 4:43AM

Ohio Governor Race: Dennis Kucinich & Richard Cordray Run Against Mike DeWine A11 9:40PM

March 2018 Honduras Coup Again Update A10 10:52PM

Apologie du zadisme insurrectionnel A10 3:33PM

ICE contract with license plate reader company A10 1:14PM

Palimpseste sisyphéen A09 11:23PM

Black Portraiture(S) IV: The Color of Silence...Cuba No...Cambridge Yes A09 5:32AM

Prohibiting Micro-Second Betting on the Exchanges A09 4:18AM

Prosecutors treat Muslims harsher than non-Muslims for the same crimes A08 10:33PM

Amy Goodman interview on cell phone safety A08 10:29PM

Mesa, Arizona police officer kills unarmed white man A08 9:50PM

Israeli leaders should be prosecuted for war crimes A08 9:48PM

Paraphysique de l'autorité A08 12:11AM

Two Podcasts on fbi corruption A06 10:13PM

Fbi assassins assault & try to kill DAVID ATKINS A06 7:29PM

More Breaking News...
© 2000-2018 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy