Tuesday, 10 March 2009

Columbia University divestment movement riles the pro-Israel crowd

Joshua Gleis, a visiting scholar at the Arnold A. Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies, complains about the The Hypocrisy of Columbia’s Israeli Divestment Campaign in an article for the Columbia Spectator, the newspaper of Barack Obama's old college in New York, where a boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) campaign has taken off on campus organised by the Columbia Palestine Forum.

Far from denying Israel's abuse of human rights his main argument seems to be that Israel is not the only country that acts in such a manner:
"Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Syria, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Sudan, the Palestinian Authority—these are just a handful of governments that have worse human rights records than Israel"
Well, we can all argue about which country has the worse record, but it's nice to see the zionists referring to the PA as a country - although in its present form it's more like a bantustan of apartheid-era South Africa. Interestingly half of the states he cites are in fact allies of the freedom-loving US Empire.

His other argument conforms to the normal line of oppressors - the Palestinians have brought it all on themselves, by electing Hamas! Well so much for democracy. I would have expected residents of the land of the free to know better.

Gleis's problem with the democratic mandate given to Hamas is that they are a bunch of 'terrorists'. Really? So fighting back,'by any means necessary' to quote the African-American leader, against injustice and oppression is terrorism? I for one have always supported the right of the slave to kill the slave owner. But what a cheek for a supporter of a state that uses massive terror against a civilian population on a daily basis to talk about 'terror'.

This is what Israeli state terrorism looks like
- a Palestinian melted by white phosphorus

He goes on to claim that Israel is the only 'Free' country in the region . He needs to rephrase that if he wants to get to the truth of the matter. It is 'free' for Jewish people not Arabs. And among the Jewish people, some are more free than others - the discrimination against 'non-European' Jews has been long documented, but is conveniently ignored by the writer.

In truth Arab 'citizens' of Israel are the but of institutionalised racism in the so-called 'Jewish State' that increasing numbers of Jews are coming to see as a liability not a haven as originally intended. For a more realistic perspective on Israeli 'democracy' see the case of Rasmiya Saadi and her family reported on this blog: Racist Israeli police beat pregnant Palestinian woman and kids, or the actions of the misnamed Israeli Defence Forces in Gaza highlighted in this story: Israeli 'soldiers' leave faeces and urine in the Gazan homes they didn't destroy.

He concludes with the observation that "Israel - like the United States - is not perfect by any means, but let’s keep things in perspective; it is fighting an adversary that is astute and cunning and that will stop at nothing to see its goals reached". Quite rightly the Palestinians will stop at nothing to get their land back and will not be defeated. The only extent to which the US and Israel are alike I suppose is the fact that you could argue both states are built on stolen land - the difference, however, is that there are very few Native Americans left to fightback to regain their land - they were exterminated. Thankfully this is not the case in historic Palestine.

Again I make no apologies for referring pro-Israeli people who still find it difficult to break from their zionist ideology, to Dan Mayer's article: Socialism or Zionism: a tale of two grandads.

Zionism is a dead end, get over it. One secular state for all religions and people in Palestine is the only way to peace and justice.

It's simple Joshua - no justice, no peace.

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