Wednesday, April 06, 2016

The Religion of Colonialism

From  Frontpage Magazine, April 5, 2016, by Daniel Greenfield:

Why you can't "colonize" Palestine.   

At Israeli Apartheid Week, campus haters claim to be fighting “colonialism” by fighting Jews.

Columbia University’s Center for Palestine Studies ["CPS"], dedicated to a country that doesn’t exist and which has produced nothing worth studying except terrorism, features diatribes such as Abdul Rahim al-Shaikh’s Palestine Re-Covered: Reading a Settler Colonial Landscape”. This word salad is a toxic stew of historical revisionism being used to justify the Muslim settler colonization of the indigenous Jewish population.

Colonialism is CPS’ favorite word. When Israeli social workers remove abused children from Muslim homes, that’s colonialism. Israeli farms are a form of environmental “colonialism”. When non-profits aren’t representative enough, it’s the fault of the “Israeli settler-colonial regime.”  If it rains on Thursday, it’s caused by “colonialism,” preferably of the “Israeli Zionist colonial settler regime” variety.

But you can’t colonize colonizers. The Muslim population in Israel is a foreign colonist population. The indigenous Jewish population can resettle its own country, but it can’t colonize it.

Not even if you accuse Jews of being a “super-double-secret settler colonial regime.”

Muslims invaded, conquered and settled Israel. They forced their language and laws on the population. That's the definition of colonialism. You can't colonize and then complain that you're being colonized when the natives take back the power that you stole from them.
There are Muslims in Israel for the same reason that there are Muslims in India. They are the remnants of a Muslim colonial regime that displaced and oppressed the indigenous non-Muslim population.
There are no serious historical arguments to be made against any of this. 

The Muslim conquests and invasions are well-documented. The Muslim settlements fit every historical template of colonialism complete with importing a foreign population and social system that was imposed on the native population. Until they began losing wars to the indigenous Jewish population, the Muslim settlers were not ashamed of their colonial past, they gloried in it. Their historical legacy was based on seizing indigenous sites, appropriating them and renaming them after the new conquerors.

The only reason there’s a debate about the Temple Mount is because Caliph Omar conquered Jerusalem and ordered a mosque built on a holy Jewish site. The only reason there’s a debate about East Jerusalem is because invading Muslim armies seized half the city in 1948, bombed synagogues and ethnically cleansed the Jewish population to achieve an artificial Muslim settler majority. The only Muslim claim to Jerusalem or to any other part of Israel is based purely on the enterprise of colonial violence.

There is no Muslim claim to Israel based on anything other than colonialism, invasion and settlement.
 Israel is littered with Omar mosques, including one built in the courtyard of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, because Islam is a colonial entity whose mosques testify to their invasive origins by celebrating colonialism as their true religion. The faith of Islam is the sworn religion of the sword.
Islam is a religion of colonialism that spread through invasion, settlement and conquest. Its caliphs, from the original invaders, including Omar, to the current Caliph of ISIS, wielded and wield religious authority in the service of the Islamic colonial enterprise.

Allah is the patron deity of colonialism. Jihad is just colonialism in Arabic. Islamic theology is nothing but the manifest destiny of the Muslim conquest of the world, colonial settler enterprises dressed up in the filmy trappings of religion appropriated from the culture of conquered Jewish and Christian minorities. Muslim terrorism is a reactionary colonial response to the liberation movements of the indigenous Jewish population.

Even “Allahu Akbar” did not originate as a religious sentiment. It does not mean “God is Great”, as it is often mistranslated. It was Mohammed’s taunt to the Jews he was ethnically cleansing. His purge of a minority group proved that “Allah was Greater.” Islamic colonialism is used to demonstrate the existence of Allah. And the best way to worship Allah is through the colonialism of the Jihad.
 Islam would not have existed without colonialism. It still can’t exist without it. That is why the violence continues. The only way to end the violence is for Muslims to reject their theology of colonialism.

But instead of taking ownership of their real history, the Muslim settler population evades its guilt through propaganda by claiming to be the victims of colonialism by the indigenous Jewish population. This twisted historical revisionism is backed by bizarre nonsense such as claiming that Jesus was a Palestinian or that the Arabs are descended from the Philistines. The Muslim settlers insist on continuing to celebrate colonialism while claiming to be an indigenous population that was always living in Israel.

You can have one or the other. You can have your mosques celebrating the conquest and suppression of the indigenous population or your claims of being the indigenous population. But you can’t switch from being the indigenous population to being its conquerors whenever it suits your pseudo-historical narrative. You can’t claim to be the Philistines, the Jews and their Islamic conquerors at the same time.

From its Roman origins, Palestine has always been a colonial fantasy of remaking Israel by erasing its original Jewish identity. The Arab mercenaries who were deployed by the Romans in that original colonial enterprise continued it by becoming self-employed conquerors for their own colonial empire. The name Palestine remains a linguistic settlement for reimagining a country without a people and a past as a blank slate on which the colonial identity of the invaders can be written anew.
That is still the role that the Palestine myth and mythology serves.

Abdul Rahim al-Shaikh complains about “linguistic colonialism”. When Muslims rename the Spring of Elisha, a Jewish biblical figure, Ein as-Sultan in honor of an Islamic colonial ruler, that’s linguistic colonialism. When Jews restore the original indigenous names that Jewish sites held before Muslim colonialism, that’s not colonization. It’s the exact opposite. It’s decolonization.
Promoting mythical claims of a Palestinian state isn’t decolonization, it’s colonization. Or recolonization.

Advocates for “Palestine” are not fighting colonialism, but promoting it. They are advocating for a discredited Muslim settler fantasy and against the indigenous Jewish population of Israel.
Abdul Rahim al-Shaikh complains about “geographic amnesia” among “Palestinians”. There’s no geographic amnesia because you can’t remember what never existed. There’s only paramnesia because there was never a country named Palestine. 

Palestine has no history. It has no people. It has no borders. It has never been anything except a colonial invention. It is a name used by a variety of foreign settlers operating on behalf of colonial empires. 

You can’t colonize Palestine. How can you colonize a colonial myth? You can only decolonize it. 

Every Jewish home built on land formerly under the control of the Caliphs is decolonization and decaliphization. When Jews ascend the Temple Mount, they are also engaging in decolonization and decaliphization. When the liberation forces of the Jewish indigenous population shoot a Jihadist colonist fighting to impose yet another Islamic State on Israel, that too is decolonization and decaliphization.

Resistance to Islamic terrorism is resistance to colonialism. And Jews have the longest history of resisting the Islamic State under its various Caliphs throughout history. Israel is still resisting the colonialist Jihadist plans for the restorations of the Caliphate. Zionism is a machine that kills Islamic colonialism.

The existence of Israel not only means the decolonization of Abdul Rahim al-Shaikh’s imaginary colonial fantasies of “Palestine,” but inspires resistance in peoples struggling against Islamic colonialism throughout the region, from the Copts to the Berbers to secular intellectuals fighting for freedom.

Islamic colonialism has always been defeated, whether at the Gates of Vienna or in the Sinai Desert. Its colonial fantasies are false and will be defeated as many times as it takes, whether in the form of Palestine or ISIS.

Tuesday, April 05, 2016

What's wrong with "Settlements"?

Israel / Palestine

Israel was a Jewish State for 1500 years, until the Roman Empire conquered it 2000 years ago and renamed it “Palestine”. Since then it was ruled by foreigners UNTIL the Jewish people re-established their sovereign rule in 1948, with the same language, laws, customs and religion as 2000 years before.
Jews lived in Palestine continuously since the Roman conquest, and thus have maintained a continuous presence in the region for 3500 years.
The Jews scattered around the globe for 2000 years since the Roman conquest, yearned and prayed to return. Jewish prayer, art, poetry and culture is infused with the love of Israel and the desire to return.

The West Bank

The West Bank” refers to Judea and Samaria, west of the Jordan River and east of the armistice line (“Green Line”) that delineated the Jewish and Arab military forces at the end of the 1948-9 war.
Between 1949-1967, the West Bank was occupied by Jordan. It was the only time in history that Jews were prohibited from living in there. No separate Palestinian State ever existed there, and the “Palestine Liberation Organisation” renounced any claim to it until Israel occupied it in the 1967 war.
The highlands of Judea and Samaria strategically dominate the coastal plains of Israel and provide its water sources. The Jordan Valley is Israel’s only viable line of defence against attacks from the east.

What are “Settlements”?

“Settlements” refers to Jewish communities in the West Bank, which was occupied by Jordan from 1949-1967, then by Israel since 1967.
After 1967, such communities were re-established in strategic locations like the Tel Aviv – Jerusalem corridor, which had repeatedly seen heavy Arab-Jewish hostilities. Others constitute a revival of Jewish communities where they had flourished for hundreds or thousands of years, sometimes dating back to biblical times.
The Settlements today house about a half-million people, mainly in five blocs: all within a few kilometres of the Green Line, and representing about 7% of the area of the West Bank.

Legal Position

Jewish connection to the land runs long and deep, and the Jewish People have better title to the land than any other people.
In 1924, after World War 1, The League of Nations assigned administration of the region, including the West Bank, to Britain under its Mandate for Palestine, to foster the establishment of a national home for the Jewish people. The Mandatory borders are permanent and irrevocable under international law.
The Green Line is an armistice line, not a recognised border. It has no legal force under international law, and doesn’t correspond to any prior administrative border. The parties to the Armistice Agreement formally acknowledged that any future borders are subject to negotiated agreement between them.
The Fourth Geneva Convention’s Article 49(6) has been grossly misinterpreted to be a prohibition against the occupying power’s citizens. In fact, it’s a set of injunctions to prevent forcible deportations and mass transfers of peoples as perpetrated by the Nazis. It doesn’t prevent civilians voluntarily moving to occupied territory. No Jewish Israelis in the West Bank were transferred there, and many didn’t even move there - they were born there!
Jordan’s belligerent occupation of the West Bank in 1949 was illegal. In 1967, Israel ended this illegal occupation in a war of self-defence, by taking control of the territory. Thus Israel has the strongest claim of sovereign title to the West Bank.

Ethnic Cleansing?

The Palestinian-Authority demand for a freeze on “settlement activity” as a pre-condition for peace negotiations is a violation of the Oslo Accords.
It is also a violation of human rights to demand ethnic cleansing of an area. Why should a Jew be forbidden to live somewhere simply because he is Jewish?
If a new Arab State is to be established in the region, why shouldn’t Jews live side by side with Muslims, Christians and others, in peace and security, just as they do in Israel?

Monday, April 04, 2016

China and Israel consider a free-trade zone

From Times of Israel, 29 March 2016, by Raphael Ahren:

China and Israel agreed to enter negotiations over the establishment of a free-trade zone, Chinese Vice Premier Liu Yandong announced Tuesday in Jerusalem.

President Rivlin with Chinese Vice Premier Liu Yandong in Jerusalem, March 29, 2016 (Mark Neiman/GPO)
President Rivlin with Chinese Vice Premier Liu Yandong in Jerusalem, March 29, 2016 (Mark Neiman/GPO)
Liu is currently visiting Israel to co-host the second meeting of the China-Israel Joint Committee on Innovation Cooperation.

 “China is Israel’s third-biggest trading partner and I believe there is great potential,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said, standing next to Liu at the event’s launch in the Foreign Ministry. “China agreeing to start negotiations over a free-trade agreement is a significant statement and we’re ready to start immediately.”
Jerusalem and Beijing are working together on a wide range of fields, though especially in the area of innovation, the prime minister said, predicting that in less than a decade the Sino-Israeli cooperation will “astonish the world.”
Liu said her visit to Israel was mainly focused on the future. “The Chinese economy has entered a new stage. We’re under pressure but we are still the engine of the global economy.”
Over the next five years, Beijing aims to strengthen transportation infrastructure, telecommunications and nuclear technology,” she explained. “Our hope that more Israeli entrepreneurs will undertake projects in China.”
Earlier on Tuesday, Liu met with President Reuven Rivlin. “China is playing a great role and you have a lot of influence in the Middle East, and while we may from time to time not agree on everything, we are pleased to strengthen the relationship and the understanding between us,” Rivlin said.
The Chinese vice premier responded by saying her government has always attached “great importance” to the bilateral relationship, “and we appreciate your contribution to the friendship between our nations.”
During her visit to Israel she intends to sign agreements on education, culture, science and technology, healthcare, and a range of other fields. “Israel is an important country in the Middle East with its own distinct features and China takes Israel very seriously,” she said.
In the framework of Tuesday’s innovation conference, Israel and China were set to sign a 10-year multiple entry visa agreement this week, making the Jewish state only the third country to have such an arrangement with Beijing.
“So far, China has 10-year multiple entry visa agreements only with the US and with Canada, so the agreement to be signed this week is a tremendous achievement for Israeli diplomacy,” said Hagai Shagrir, the director of the Foreign Ministry’s Northeast Asia department.
The deal, to be signed by Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely and her Chinese counterpart, will allow Israeli businesspeople and tourists to enter China multiple times with the same visa, which will be valid for a decade. The same will apply for Chinese citizens visiting Israel, an arrangement which Jerusalem hopes will help increase tourism.
“This will dramatically change the travel habits of of both peoples,” Shagrir said. Currently, about 30,000 Chinese citizens visit Israel each year, a number Israel hopes to raise to 100,000 within less than three years, Shagrir said.

Latvia must come to terms with its past

From JPost, 22 March 2016, by EFRAIM ZUROFF:

Last Wednesday, I was in Riga to monitor and protest against a march by Latvian SS veterans and their supporters through the center of the Latvian capital, to mark the date (March 16) that both Latvian Waffen-SS units fought side by side with Nazi troops against the Soviet Red Army.

This is an annual event, which seeks to honor these soldiers who are portrayed by their supporters and sympathizers as “freedom fighters” who fought to achieve Latvian independence, and whose sacrifices on the battlefield against the Soviets in World War II helped pave the way for Latvia to regain its sovereignty. (The country has been independent during the years 1918-1940, was occupied by the Soviets in June 1940 and a year later invaded by the Nazis. In 1944, the Soviets ended the Nazi occupation and Latvia was incorporated into the Soviet Union until the breakup of the latter in 1991.) This theme was expressed in the route of the march from one of Riga’s largest churches to the Freedom Monument, which throughout the Soviet occupations was the symbol of Latvian aspirations for independence, and the ceremonial honor guard of young Latvians with flags of today’s democratic Latvia awaiting their arrival to lay wreaths at the monument.

The problem is, however, that nothing could be farther from the truth.

The Latvians’ desire to fight against the Soviets and prevent a second Communist occupation was understandable, but their choice of partners was morally and practically deeply flawed. By joining the Latvian Legion, which was part of the Waffen-SS, their service was spent fighting for a victory of the most genocidal regime in human history, and even worse was totally for naught.

The Nazis, in fact, had absolutely no intention of granting Latvia, or any of the Baltic countries, independence.

Thus ironically, it is only because Germany was defeated in World War II, that Latvian sovereignty could ultimately be restored.

Thus two of our arguments against the march are that those who fought together with the Nazis should not be regarded as national heroes, nor can they be considered freedom fighters, since there was no basis whatsoever to assume that serving in military units which fought under the Nazis’ command would bring about Latvian independence.

Even worse is the fact that quite a few of the Latvians who joined the Legion had previously served in the local security police units, which played a major role in the mass murder not only of their Jewish fellow Latvian citizens, but also of many thousands of Jews from Germany and Austria who were deported to Riga by the Nazis to be murdered there. In addition, some of the men who served in the notorious Arajs Kommando death squad were sent to Minsk to assist in the annihilation of the 100,000 Jews incarcerated in the local ghetto. Needless to say, such crimes should automatically disqualify such persons from any honors or recognition.

There were only seven veterans who marched to the Freedom Monument, others are no doubt alive, but unable to attend for reasons of health and/or logistics. There were, however, about 1,000 people who came out to honor the Legionnaires, and additional tens of thousands who no doubt identify with them all over Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia, as well as throughout post-Communist Eastern Europe. They reject the accepted narrative of World War II and the Holocaust, and have yet to even begin to seriously confront the role of their own nationals in the annihilation of their Jewish communities.

The current threat posed by Russia’s belligerent foreign policy and Moscow’s highly exaggerated accusations that the Baltic states are reverting to fascism only reinforce their fear of another Russian occupation and strengthen their resolve to focus on their own victimhood at Soviet hands.

So much so in fact that the Latvian authorities foolishly barred the entry of several German protesters who sought to demonstrate peacefully against the march, and even arrested five of them.

In addition, those who were able to arrive at the demonstration were consigned to a spot some 200 meters away from the march, where they could not be seen by the marchers.

The time has come for the new democracies of Eastern Europe to start facing the historical truth, and for the European Union to finally make clear that hiding Holocaust crimes by locals and falsely equating Communism with Nazism are not acceptable.

As hard as this might be at this point for Eastern Europeans to accept, such developments are likely to have a much more constructive effect on their societies, than the acceptance in the West of the false narrative that they have been trying to peddle for the last quarter of a century.