A few days ago, Benjamin Netanyahu condensed the history of the Zionist state of Israel into one sentence: “These European countries should be ashamed of themselves. Have they learned nothing from history? … They are enabling a fanatic terrorist state to develop nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles, thereby bringing disaster to themselves and upon everyone else.”
The Israeli Prime Minister, of course, wasn’t referring to his own nuclear-armed state, but to Iran. His criticism was aimed at six more European countries which joined “Britain, France and Germany last weekend in backing the new, so-called Instex financial barter mechanism,which is intended to help Iran circumvent US sanctions.” Netanyahu was, apparently, “furious”.
Clearly, Netnayhau himself has either not understood history, or is deliberately ignoring the fact that Israel is a “fanatic terrorist state” which has been allowed “to develop nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles” and has, ever since its creation on stolen Palestinian land in 1948, brought “disaster” to itself “and everyone else” in the Middle East and beyond. It was deliberately intended by the author of The Jewish State to be an “outpost of civilisation against barbarism” and was always resented by the indigenous population and surrounding countries. Violence was inevitable from the day that early Jewish settlers destroyed the Zionist myth that Palestine was “a land without a people for a people without a land” by pointing out that, in fact, it did indeed have a thriving population, and was not the empty land that Zionist propaganda claimed.
Israel was built upon the terrorism of groups such as the Irgun and Stern Gang. In December 1947, alone, for example, the terrorists of Irgun killed at least 80 people – 78 Palestinians and two British policemen – in bombings and shootings across Palestine. Hundreds more were killed in the following few months in the run-up to Israel’s “declaration of independence” in mid-May 1948.
Terror attacks continued thereafter as more than 750,000 Palestinians were ethnically cleansed from their land, their homes and farms were destroyed and settlers took their place in the nascent state. At least 530 Palestinian villages have been wiped off the face of the earth by Israel since then. Its destruction of Palestinian property continues apace, with homes, villages and businesses demolished either as collective punishment – a war crime – or because the owners have been unable to obtain the necessary building licence. Palestinians are rarely, if ever, given permission by the so-called Israeli civil administration – there’s nothing civil about it, in any sense of the word; it is run by the military – to build in the occupied Palestinian territories.
Israeli control over the Palestinians living under its brutal military occupation is imposed by the sort of infrastructure – real or imagined – that democracies condemn as they demonise countries like North Korea, China and, yes, Iran. Israel’s undercover security officials, kangaroo courts, travel restrictions, indefinite detention without trial – indeed, without even the formality of charges – and summary executions are all part of everyday life for Palestinians in the occupied West Bank. Those in the Gaza Strip, which is still occupied by Israel according to international law, are under a 13-year siege and face frequent military incursions. Hundreds of Palestinians protesting against this injustice have been shot and killed by Israeli army snipers on the nominal border between the coastal enclave and Israel; thousands more have been wounded, many with life-changing injuries.
In short, Israel is a rogue state – a terrorist state – by any stretch of the imagination, and it has been allowed by its Western sponsors, including the countries Netanyahu has railed against in his latest outburst, not only to act with impunity in its violations of international laws and conventions, but also to develop nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles. Like its main sponsor, the US, Israel refuses to allow inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency to see its nuclear installations.
Netanyahu’s succinct sentence has, therefore, exposed his own, and the West’s, hypocrisy as he sought again to divert attention from his own legal and political problems. Facing corruption and fraud indictments at home, and unable to get support to form a new government, he is trying desperately to convince the Israeli electorate that he is the only “strong man” capable of taking on and defeating the “threat” from Iran. His previous efforts have included, to nobody’s great surprise, more murderous violence against the Palestinians. The provocative murder of a senior Palestinian official last month had the desired result of rockets being fired from Gaza in response, to which the so-called “Israel Defence Forces” – which grew out of the aforementioned terrorist groups – could then “respond” with devastating effect, killing and maiming yet more Palestinian civilians.
Shamefully, the West allows Netanyahu and Israel to get away with this because politicians across Europe and the US have swallowed the Zionist narrative hook, line and campaign dollar. As long as votes can be depended upon in domestic elections, then Israel can do what it wants. Its well-funded lobby groups in capitals around the world do the rest.
The beleaguered Israeli Prime Minister may well have done us all a service by condensing the back story of the Zionist state into one sentence, no matter how unintentionally. It makes it even easier to point out how much of a rogue state Israel really is, despite the efforts of its propagandists to convince us otherwise. I never thought that I would ever write this, but thank you Mr Netanyahu. For once, you have been surprisingly honest.
The views expressed in this article belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Middle East Monitor.