Seething with anger and fear

Israel/Palestine
on 21 Comments

A news item posted on Facebook from an Israeli TV station is keeping me awake this Christmas night. I have just shared a posting from the activist Jeff Halper about the Christian town of Bethlehem. I thought that his appeal for the international community to interfere to stop the madness of Israel’s occupation is strengthened by the addition of my formally Moslem voice to his formally Jewish one. I have a Hindu friend who will be happy to add his as well. Perhaps this will snowball into something meaningful.

But my feeble attempt is rendered totally insignificant by the news item causing my insomnia. The report is about real madness; vicious, murderous and ultimately state-sponsored collective insanity. And it has echoes of madness that no one denies in retrospect. And yet the Channel 10 TV reported psychosis at a settlers’ wedding party in the OPTs is, at the end, tolerated, financed and even sponsored by the very same world forces that have made pogroms an evil thing of the past and the blood libel that underlay it such an evil accusation that even thinking of it makes me shudder in shame. I will be labeled anti-Semitic and a terrorist for bringing the subject up in the new context of the crimes of the settlers and the occupation.

Yes, the thought is incoherent even to me. So let me see if I can ferret its basic elements for myself and perhaps for the reader: First here is the blood libel that watching the TV report brought to mind: European Christians in those dark times and savage locales accused the Jews in their Shtetles of abducting and murdering Christian children to use their blood in preparing the Matzoth for their holiday celebrations. Somehow the murders were believed to gladden the evil Jews in their vile celebrations. It was taken for granted that ‘their religion requires it.’ So far all of that is in the past and we all have recovered from the madness of such invented evil rumors.

Fast forward to the present with a new set of beliefs, started, fueled and maintained in the very same Western culture with daily reminders in the form of news reports: Moslems in general, Arabs among them in particular and especially Palestinian Arab Moslems, cannot go about their daily lives without murderous terror acts against the civilized world. The context in which they commit their terror is that of their daily lives but particularly to celebrate special occasions and prepare their children and youth for ascension to heaven as Shaheeds. After all, ‘their religion requires it.’ And whom can such aggressors commit their violence against but the truest representatives of Western culture in the region, Israel! Two birds with the same stone: practicing modern anti-Semitism while making up for the West’s past anti-Semitism. How else can the West pay up for its Holocaust crime against the Jews? German material compensations are not enough. It needs to pay up with sociocultural and political favors as well.

But the picture is still incomplete and incoherent. How does the video at the base of my muddled thoughts fit with all of this? Yes, that is it; it doesn’t. That is the problem. I want to say something that is so disturbing to Western ears that I have to find someone else to say it for me. The late prof. Yeshayahu Leibowitz said it by coining the term Zio-Nazism but he was too civilized to use the expletives that come to mind. Thank God for Google! Yes, my friend Gideon Levy has said it for me. Here it is

Religious ultranationalism, which hides behind the worn-out name “religious Zionism,” … [w]ith negligible contributions to society, the economy, culture, science, literature and art; with a common denominator based mostly on messianic, religious, racist beliefs and a hatred of the other, especially the Arab; with a fictitious love of the land, isolation from the world and a folkloric religion, all wrapped in gooey kitsch; without practical vision; with a hollow spiritual leadership that bases its power on incitement to hatred and approval of bloodshed; at the focal points of violence and breeding grounds of corruption, and with insufferable arrogance this movement has exploited the vacuum, the horrible apathy that has spread in secular society, and climbed its way up to the high reaches of power.

Yes, Gideon says what I am thinking. He is sounding out the right alarm. The extremists are taking over the country. But I am still unsatisfied with the sign-off; I still search for the exact closing note that keeps ringing in my ear from within.

I keep searching and find this: 

Judaism Israel-style has taken on the trappings of the Nazis Blut und Boden (“Blood and Soil”). But not just blood as the Nazis conceived it, that is, a form of ethnic purity and bloodlines, but actual blood. … What does this video show if not Jews seething for blood? The blood of Palestinians? What will we expect to see next? Snuff videos of Eshbal and his fellow terrorists actually stabbing Palestinian babies to death? Perhaps drinking their blood? Where does it end?

Yes, in that last line Richard Silverstein said what was on my mind. Thanks, Richard, for the clarity. Yes, they will drink blood. We have seen it all before. We saw the same religious fanatics eat the liver of their enemies. Yes, ISIS and these guys are one and the same and ‘their religion requires it.’ And, yes, the West started it all way back with the anti-Semitic pogroms. Even now it funds and arms both.

Yes I am damn upset!

About Hatim Kanaaneh

Dr. Hatim Kanaaneh is a Palestinian doctor who has worked for over 35 years to bring medical care to Palestinians in Galilee, against a culture of anti-Arab discrimination. He is the author of the book A Doctor in Galilee: The Life and Struggle of a Palestinian in Israel. His collection of short stories entitled Chief Complaint was released by Just World Books in the spring of 2015.

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21 Responses

  1. Eva Smagacz
    December 28, 2015, 7:39 pm

    Dr. Kanaaneh, are you still at the anger stage? I am well pass it. My screaming at the news, at the politicians, at the smugness of people who ask me why am I obsessing with “Jews” is so last decade.

    I don’t do anger any more.

    I am pass sadness as well. I used to cry when I saw what has come to pass in Greater Israel. I used to cry when bombs were raining down on Gaza. I am well pass it.

    I don’t do sadness any more.

    The emotion that I am gripped by is fear. Raw, rocking back and forth, petrified, staring at the abyss fear. The descent of Israel into a state of the nation gripped by self propelling and self propagating psychosis is fast and its relentless on its path. And there is nothing to stop it. This is a one way runaway train to genocide, and I can see it clear as day: Every step necessary to reach the point of no return is already either happened or is happening now:

    This is borrowed (abridged and annotated) from Stanton 1998:


    Genocide is a process that develops in eight stages that are predictable but not inexorable. At each stage, preventive measures can stop it. The process is not linear. Logically, later stages must be preceded by earlier stages. But all stages continue to operate throughout the process.

    1. CLASSIFICATION: Categories to distinguish people into “us and them” by ethnicity, race, religion, or nationality: Palestinian and Jew, Muslim and Jew,
    Check.

    2. SYMBOLIZATION: We give names or other symbols to the classifications and apply the symbols to members of groups. Jarmulka and headscarf. Yellow car number plates versus Blue car number plates. Identity card saying one is Jew, or Muslim, or Christian.
    Check

    3. DEHUMANIZATION: One group denies the humanity of the other group. Members of it are equated with animals (not having soul, unlike Jews), vermin(like snakes), insects (like cockroaches)or diseases.
    Check

    4. ORGANIZATION: Genocide is always organized, usually by the state, often using militias to provide deniability of state responsibility for genocidal killings: Settlers – recently encouraged to carry arms.
    Check

    5. POLARIZATION: Extremists drive the groups apart. Hate groups broadcast polarizing propaganda. Laws may forbid intermarriage or social interaction. Extremist terrorism targets moderates, intimidating and silencing the center.
    Check. Check. Check and Check.

    6. PREPARATION: Victims are identified and separated out because of their ethnic or religious identity. Death lists are drawn up. Victims property is expropriated. They are often segregated into ghettoes, deported into concentration camps, or confined to a famine-struck region and starved.
    CHECK

    7. EXTERMINATION begins, and quickly becomes the mass killing legally called “genocide.” It is “extermination” to the killers because they do not believe their victims to be fully human.

    8. DENIAL is the eighth stage that always follows a genocide. They deny that they committed any crimes, and often blame what happened on the victims.

    What I am praying for is that the feeding of hate frenzy that is increasingly obvious even to the outsiders will result in mass expulsion and ethnic cleansing of non-Jews from Greater Israel rather than their extermination, althougth there is enough ammunition and arms (and knives!) in the hands of Settlers (militia and military) to do the job.

    I am well aware that the hate like that will not spare Jews from their killers. They will be bad Jews, self hating Jews, lefties Jews, Pal lover Jews, Pal hiding Jews aplenty to keep slaughter going a bit longer.

    I’m petrified.

    Because we already know that genocides will happen again and again. and there is one about to explode right in front of our eyes.

    • Annie Robbins
      December 28, 2015, 7:52 pm

      Dr. Kanaaneh, are you still at the anger stage? I am well pass it. My screaming at the news, at the politicians, at the smugness of people who ask me why am I obsessing with “Jews” is so last decade….What I am praying for is that the feeding of hate frenzy that is increasingly obvious even to the outsiders will result in mass expulsion and ethnic cleansing of non-Jews from Greater Israel rather than their extermination

      so last decade for you perhaps. but it’s not my business to suggest a palestinian, especially one living there through this madness, that their emotions are so last decade. nor would i tell them i am praying for their “mass expulsion and ethnic cleansing”.

      • Eva Smagacz
        December 29, 2015, 8:04 am

        Annie, you are right of course, it was 3 am when I wrote it, and I didn’t put it well. Far from implying that Dr. Kanaaneh is not entitled to his feelings, I was referring to my flow of feelings: how ( people process adverse reactions: in order: anger, sadness, followed by fear and guilt) the plight of Palestinians affected me.
        I was paying complement to Dr. Kanaaneh’s resilience, and I hope he understood it as such.

        When I said praying, I meant hoped for a least bad outcome. After outlying my fear that Israeli Society is moving towards
        ” final solution to a Palestinian question” and it is step away from step 7 of Stanton’s Step of Extermination. What would you have me hope for? What would you have me pray for? Did you read Dr. Kanaaneh’s piece? Do you understand what reality downs on him? Do you realise what he cannot make himself say, and so he borrows other people’s words to say?
        Recently, one Palestinian family, Dawabsheb, was burned alive in their home. In November 2013, family with five children, from village of Sinjil in West Bank escaped. On a scale of population, ethnic cleansing is escape from burning building, while genocide is being burned in the building.
        I am sorry that you are so angered by my wishes and prayers for Palestinians to be delivered from evil. I have always admired Dr. Kanaaneh’s intellect and clarity of thinking. I hope he understands me better than you did, even if I write in shorthand.

      • MHughes976
        December 29, 2015, 11:30 am

        I understand your feelings, Eva – however. I’m not quite as pessimistic as you. The war-dancing settlers do sometimes perpetrate real violence but they are in some ways a theatrical troupe, characters in a pantomime in which the shocked and respectable also feature. It’s a double act and both major characters matter. From the shockers we see the true intention, which is ethic cleansing, from the shocked we see the intended means, which is to pile on the frustration and misery without ever allowing the shockers, the Mr. Kurtzes, to bring things to a climax. The plan has to be to achieve population transfer by means that can be presented as consensual – this time there have to be ‘compensation’ and a few ceremonial handshakes. However, it may well just fail to work: the requisite resources may never be assembled. The piled-on misery may never be quite enough.

      • Emory Riddle
        December 29, 2015, 11:32 am

        “And, yes, the West started it all way back with the anti-Semitic pogroms”.

        Sheesh.

        Even the Palestinians being murdered and oppressed by the Zionists have to present the Zionists as victims and not responsible for their own actions.

      • Mooser
        December 29, 2015, 12:11 pm

        It’s very, very hard to keep a positive or optimistic attitude on IP all the time.

      • Annie Robbins
        December 29, 2015, 2:16 pm

        i’m not angry with you eva. i merely pointed out how one might perceive your sentiments expressed in the middle of the night. thanks for the further clarification. when i get really low i think about how people way in the future will likely look back on history and perceive this era. unlike you i have every confidence palestinians will survive, remain and thrive. i don’t know how, but another outcome seems inconceivable. in the face of unbearable pain and oppression their nature of sumud thrives. so when it seems most dark, just remember that. it’s not for us to give up visions of their eventual freedom on their own land as they fight these battles.

        and in many ways this is a very hopeful time. since the beginning of the century and the advent of advanced technology available for the masses, it’s extraordinary how fast solidarity with palestine is growing. just hang in there.

    • Kris
      December 28, 2015, 9:20 pm

      At least 60,000 of these horrifying Jewish “settlers” are from the U.S., where the majority of Jews not only support Israel no matter what, but also exercise huge power in the the media and the government. That is why the slow-motion holocaust of the Palestinians has been allowed to continue uninterrupted since 1948.

      I am afraid that once there is a big enough distraction on the world scene, these Jewish “settlers,” hopped up on their malign religious fantasies, will slaughter the Palestinians as fast as they possibly can. And then, when we see the rivers of blood and all the dead Palestinian bodies, there will be plenty of U.S. government spokespeople explaining why it was the fault of the Palestinians, and praising Israel for launching an “investigation” that will go nowhere at all.

      Your genocide checklist is so chilling, and so accurate.

    • Misterioso
      December 29, 2015, 3:55 pm

      “The descent of Israel into a state of the nation gripped by self propelling and self propagating psychosis is fast and its relentless on its path. And there is nothing to stop it.”

      How could it have been otherwise?

      The racist, fascistic entity known as “Israel” was brought into being through overwhelming armed might, several massacres, intimidation, mass rape (see Benny Morris) and the carefully planned ethnic cleansing of the indigenous Palestinian Arabs by alien thieves, thugs, mass murderers, liars, and poseurs in collusion with their political friends abroad. It is an historical anachronism and will prove to be a blip. The good news is that people around the world, including Americans and righteous Jews everywhere, are quickly wising up to Zionism’s Frankenstein and the monstrous crimes it has committed and continues to commit.

      There are currently 1.75 billion Muslims worldwide and in 25 years there will be three billion. There will be about 600 million Arabs, including around ten million Palestinians between the River and the Sea, as well as about 150 million Turks and the same number of Iranians. Where do America’s long term geopolitical and economic interests lie? Certainly not with the entity known as “Israel,” an increasingly heavy millstone around America’s neck and a useless “ally.”

  2. Annie Robbins
    December 28, 2015, 7:44 pm

    excellent JSIL = ISIS connection

    We have seen it all before. We saw the same religious fanatics eat the liver of their enemies. Yes, ISIS and these guys are one and the same and ‘their religion requires it.’ And, yes, the West started it all way back with the anti-Semitic pogroms. Even now it funds and arms both.

    • edwards
      December 30, 2015, 11:20 am

      Annie – I always admire your opinions. Is it right to equate physical mistreatment of adult civilians (e.g. beheading) with *symbolic* endorsement of an act so extreme (holocausting the baby) that no-one is circulating videos of it?

      When ISIS posts baby-slaughter videos I’ll feel differently, but for now I put the dancing Israelis in a separate category of evil-doer. Do you disagree?

      • Annie Robbins
        December 30, 2015, 11:45 am

        I always admire your opinions

        thanks. what’s the difference between endorsement and “*symbolic* endorsement”? and what do you mean by “an act so extreme .. that no-one is circulating videos of it? ”

        this jewish terrorism, whose adherents chants for a holy war and the genocide of palestinians (this is not a one time thing, see video here: http://mondoweiss.net/2014/11/lynched-jewish-extremists ), whose rabbis write books approving of killing little babies, who murder in the dark of night — all driven by some mad biblical fever — do i put them in a different “evil-doer” category than isis? not really.

        the only part of hatim’s blockquote i question is “the West started it all way back with the anti-Semitic pogroms”, i’m not so sure about that. this sort of fanatical biblical fever (and the rituals that accompany it) likely was around in one form or another before a ‘west’ even entered into the picture.

        i think the celebratory ritualistic stuff we’re seeing in these videos represents the lowest common denominator of mankind.

      • Annie Robbins
        December 30, 2015, 12:02 pm

        and another thing, if this sort of primitive death ritual was being played out at a wedding party in yemen, iraq, afghanistan, or syria, the US would think nothing of bombing the whole lot of them and our countrymen (rtwg patriots)would be cheering about it. do you disagree?

  3. Kay24
    December 28, 2015, 9:40 pm

    That was sick and evil. This video should have been shown in the US media, but then no zionist owner will approve of that. There is an ingrained hatred, viciousness, and thirst for the blood of Palestinians, even babies, that is inherent in the actions of these Jewish extremists, that is frightening. They lead the murders, carry weapons supplied by the Israeli government, kill at pleasure, and are protected very well by their government. They come across as insane and rabid. As long as their government keeps supporting and protecting them, we will see the murders of Palestinian babies, women, and men, continue. It seems the hasbara gets silent when these videos are linked in these articles, and cannot deny the evil that thrives in stolen lands.

  4. oldgeezer
    December 28, 2015, 11:02 pm

    If a nation could be psychotic it’s name would be Israel.

    No doubt someone will be along shortly to claim these fanatics don’t represent the true face of Israel. They do though as those not involved turn a blind eye and allow it to operate grow and fester.

    The most one sees is a few meaningless words out of a pols mouth while these criminals carry out their sick crimes often under government protection.

    I fail to see any point that would redeem Israel. It is beyond the pale.

  5. Ossinev
    December 29, 2015, 7:08 am

    @Eva Smagacz
    “What I am praying for is that the feeding of hate frenzy that is increasingly obvious even to the outsiders will result in mass expulsion and ethnic cleansing of non-Jews from Greater Israel rather than their extermination, althougth there is enough ammunition and arms (and knives!) in the hands of Settlers (militia and military) to do the job”
    1.What precisely in your eyes is “Greater Israel”. Is there a”Lesser Israel”
    2.Where will this mass expulsion be to – Jordan ? Lebanon ? Egypt ?. I am sure they would be delighted and simply open their borders without a fight.
    3. Logistics ie commuter trains / buses / cattle trains all heading towards closed borders and avoiding settler only roads or railway lines
    4. What about all those Jewish Israelis who share your sentiments regarding your peoples ongoing crimes including the ex military chiefs , the ex Mossad chiefs and not least what remains of the “left”. Will they be incarcerated or expelled to keep them quiet.
    5. What if the” expulsees” objected to the expulsion – ie resistance. Remember there would no longer be a token Palestinian Authority to keep them in check
    4. Your Settlers are well armed it is true but their heroics and antics against defenceless Palestinians so far have been ignored or actively supported by the IOF. When faced with people who are actively fighting back they would s..t themselves, grab their children and second passports and hi tail it back to their native lands. Especially the Americans.”Do the Job” I don`t think so.
    5.It is 2015 coming on 2016. Not 1943,not 1948,not 1967 not 1992. The world has moved on hugely in terms of live news streaming . The “expulsion” and “ethnic cleansing” you refer to would be live on TV – even the bent and bought US media would not be able to suppress it.

    In short yes there is a runaway train but it is hurtling towards a single state in what was Palestine. Initially it will be an apartheid state then as with South Africa and, with even the good old US of A eventually on board, there will be world wide boycotts and eventually a single democratic state. Significant numbers of Israelis and especially the more recent aliyah rats will leave the sinking ship and head for Florida where they can rekindle their eternal victimhood status in the comfort of their beachside apartments.

    The full scale expulsion,full scale ethnic cleansing,full scale relocations with or without financial compensation have no doubt been seriously discussed in Israeli Government circles particularly amongst the looniest of the loony right but they are and will remain no more than pipe dreams.

    • RoHa
      December 29, 2015, 6:27 pm

      Pssst! Ossinev.

      You write “your sentiments regarding your peoples ongoing crimes” and “Your Settlers”.

      But you are addressing Eva. She lives in Britain, and has Polish ancestors. She might even be, or have been, Polish herself. I don’t think she is Israeli.

      • MHughes976
        December 30, 2015, 5:24 am

        And would be wholly unfair to Eva to suggest, if the phrase ‘your settlers’ makes that suggestion, that the settlers, of all people in this world, are hers in the sense of commanding even a shred of her sympathy. Moose quite rightly says that it’s difficult to be optimistic all the time about the future of Palestine and as the waves of pessimism strike one finds various awful scenarios competing in one’s imagination. Eva is saying that the terrific suffering of population transfer is at least not as bad as massacre. Theo by contrast thinks in effect that the motto ‘live free or die’ should be followed in all its literal and terrifying horror.
        That said, Ossinev makes a perfectly fair point about the immense difficulties faced by ethnic transfer plans. It’s quite true that receiving states all round the wide world would be reluctant. But they would co-operate if offered enough money.

      • gamal
        December 30, 2015, 8:41 am

        “wholly unfair to Eva”

        “Moose quite rightly says”

        “Theo by contrast thinks”

        “Ossinev makes a perfectly fair point”

        ” population transfer ”

        “ethnic transfer”

        (i was holding out for “population cleansing” or anything with “expulsive” in it but there was no third para, trust me you have said enough)

        at what point in this process do you think it would sensible to consult with a Palestinian?

        “as the waves of pessimism strike one finds various awful scenarios competing in one’s imagination. ”

        “suffering of population transfer is at least not as bad as massacre”.

        “the motto ‘live free or die’ should be followed in all its literal and terrifying horror.”

        why should anyone be bound by your cowardice?

        by the way in this context “population transfer” is a gaff.

      • RoHa
        December 30, 2015, 5:22 pm

        “at what point in this process do you think it would sensible to consult with a Palestinian? ”

        I think history has shown the answer to that question.

  6. MHughes976
    December 30, 2015, 2:21 pm

    ‘Live free or die’ is horrifying if it implies many deaths – what else can many deaths, women and children included – even if necessary for a greater purpose – be?
    I would consult Palestinians if I thought to judge them – my demurrals when confronted with Theo’s judgements were because I thought he was judging rashly. I’m glad in any event to be taking part in a forum open to Palestinian and to Western voices, but I intend to express my opposition to Zionism and support for the outraged rights of Palestinians in my own way.
    Population transfer is in the logic of Zionism and it is a wicked idea, hiding behind the sham of negotiations, that should be recognised and opposed. But I’ve said that before in several comments and there’s no point in vain repetition.
    You seem to have taken against me, gamal, which I regret. I will reply to you further if I think you make any substantial points, otherwise not and not for a while in any event. My business here is to oppose Zionism. There I go repeating myself again.

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