Israel has had a ‘Muslim ban’ from the start

US Politics
on 23 Comments

Israel has had a ‘Muslim ban’ from the start.

Sure, we didn’t say ‘Palestinian ban,’ just like Trump didn’t say ‘Muslims’. But it meant what it meant, and it still does. Just like Trump offered a certain preference for the Christians, we tended to prefer them for cynical alliances. In Lebanon we used this alliance to wreak havoc and massacre Palestinians.

Now we’re even on steroids with these bans. Since 2003 our ‘equal citizens’ can’t even marry someone from those occupied or ‘enemy’ territories or states. That family unification ban , which prevents Palestinian citizens from marrying and uniting with people from West Bank, Gaza and other ‘enemy’ states, was also ostensibly about preventing ‘terror’– just like the Trump ban. But in 2005, then Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, spilled the beans and said it was just about a preserving a ‘Jewish State’. He said “There is no need to hide behind security arguments. There is a need for the existence of a Jewish state”.    

That ban was also ‘temporary’, but we’ve been renewing it, every single year.

We’re experts in bans. We’ve banned Palestinians, who we said didn’t even exist, from returning to their homes, for 7 decades. We just had to. Jewish State, you know.

And yes, we have the ‘Israeli Arabs’ (2/3 of them already define themselves as Palestinians), just like you have your American Muslims. We’ve tried it all, we know exactly what to say when they question our ‘Jewish democracy’. We even have a ministry of Propaganda to take care of that, I kid you not, the Ministry of Hasbara led by Gilad Erdan. Hardly anyone in the world knows this, because we mostly only call it ‘Ministry of Strategic Affairs’ and omit the Hasbara, but it’s official: Ministry of Strategic affairs and Hasbara. You’ll hardly find this mentioning, but when it does appear in the very odd case, ‘Hasbara’ will be translated as ‘public diplomacy’, and Hasbara put in brackets, as here . When you go to the Israeli Government site and look for government offices, in Hebrew it says ‘Ministry of Strategic affairs and Hasbara’, but the English version just says ‘Minister of Strategic affairs.’ How convenient. The world doesn’t need to know.

There’s so much Trump and USA could still learn from us – and they do. We are masters of deception, and we can turn exclusivist nation-states into ‘enlightened democracies’ by the sheer power of our Hasbara propaganda. So Netanyahu congratulates Trump for the wall: “Great success”, “Great idea”. It’s already success because it’s not an ordinary wall, it’s a racist wall, like ours. It’s a great idea because walls are our thing.

And we call the ‘other’ refugees ‘infiltrators’. Actually, our deputy Defense minister Eli Ben Dahan says that “they don’t need to be extended a helping hand or be pulled out of the sea and saved from drowning.”  Yes, he’s an orthodox Jew you see, he knows what Jewish values are.

But now the ‘liberal Zionists’ are protesting against Trump. This doesn’t look good, he’s gone too far. So now J Street, Americans for Peace Now and many other organizations who are ideologically against the Palestinian refugees’ right to return, are shedding crocodile tears. 

And across the Atlantic, the head of the UK Jewish Labour Movement Ella Rose tweets straight from the anti-Trump Ban: “we were all refugees once.” How touching. But other times, Ella Rose is not so soft and kind. When Asa Winstanley exposed the fact last year that Rose had stepped into the JLM outfit straight out from her Public Relations office at the Israeli Embassy , Rose wanted him to “die in a hole” and vowed to use “Krav Maga” –Israeli hand-combat techniques–  to take down Jackie Walker, a leading critic and member of Labour. 

Trump is no wake-up call for ‘liberal Zionists’. They simply exploit the mainstream outrage in order TO BE in the mainstream, in order to whitewash their racism, in order to obscure the fact, that their darling Jewish State is far ahead of Trump in so many ways, and they have been supporting it all along. Maybe they don’t even realize that themselves. And you couldn’t really blame them that much, because, as Israeli former head of Military Intelligence, Major General Shlomo Gazit once said, “The trouble with us Israelis is that we’ve become the victims of our own propaganda.” 

About Jonathan Ofir

Israeli musician, conductor and blogger / writer based in Denmark.

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23 Responses

  1. just
    February 4, 2017, 12:45 pm

    Starkly and brilliantly conveyed. Thank you very much, Jonathan. Your contributions @ Mondoweiss are much appreciated by this writer.

    I just wrote this in reply to Mayhem who was claiming “hypocrisy” on another thread just today:

    …”Israel has been ‘banning’ (killing and ethnically cleansing) Palestinians from Palestine for nigh on a century. …” – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/recent-comments/#sthash.LrW2CPrd.dpuf

    They also ban people of all colors, nationalities, and religions IF they ever whispered about or sought peace and justice for the Palestinian people.

    What truly frightens/angers me is that the US appears to be trying (and succeeding) to emulate Israel. This administration is not content to be only collaborators/enablers with Israel’s crimes against humanity and the Palestinians of Palestine as all previous ones in my lifetime have been.

    (Pardon my grammar. I’m too outraged by the current state of affairs to do a rewrite)

    • Jonathan Ofir
      February 4, 2017, 3:00 pm

      Thanks Just ;-)

    • Citizen
      February 4, 2017, 4:28 pm

      “What truly frightens/angers me is that the US appears to be trying (and succeeding) to emulate Israel.” Yes, exactly. Very depressing.

      • JLewisDickerson
        February 4, 2017, 9:05 pm

        Talking Heads – Once In A Lifetime (Full Length Version) (1980/ 2013) (HD)

        RE: “What truly frightens/angers me is that the US appears to be trying (and succeeding) to emulate Israel.” ~ just

        #NotNormal
        RESIST ! ! !

        • To order “RESIST” bumper strips – http://www.commondreams.org/resist

  2. John O
    February 4, 2017, 2:14 pm

    We live in interesting times now.

    Trump has already shown – bigly – that he thinks he can treat presidents and prime ministers the way he treated all the people who had the misfortune to try to do business with him. He will be no different with Israel. He has already stated that he’s gonna solve the I/P question, and has appointed a two-bit property developer whose dad (would that it were his father-in-law) did jail time, and who has bankrolled illegal settlements, to make it so. To balance things out, his other main adviser is a genuine anti-Semite whose main aim in life is to smash the current system just to see what happens.

    You can pretty much guarantee that Trump’s “solution” will be so bad, even Netanyahu will turn a whiter shade of pale at it, and maybe – especially if he’s under indictment for corruption – have to throw in the towel, leaving Lieberman, Bennett, or Shaked, or some other barking mad racist, to finally lead Israel over the cliff into Hokusai-size great waves of self-destruction.

    Just sayin’.

  3. Bandolero
    February 4, 2017, 5:11 pm

    I just wonder whether liberals in the US would like if Iran would do what 72 professors from Iran’s prestigious Sharif University of Technology just proposed their government to do:

    The academics suggested that the Iranian administration issue two-week tourist visas for US citizens upon arrival at airports over the next 90 days, allowing them to “travel to Iran and closely experience the hospitality of the peace-seeking Iranians and Muslims.”

    http://presstv.ir/Detail/2017/02/04/509107/Iran-US-travel-ban-Sharif-University-Donald-Trump

    I think the fact that Press TV is reporting this means that some people in the higher Iranian echolons are just contemplating to do it. I think the contrast to US and Israeli policies could hardly be starker if Iran does this.

  4. catalan
    February 4, 2017, 5:57 pm

    “higher Iranian echolons are just contemplating to do it. -”
    Bandolero, If Iran were to allow visa free travel for US citizens, I doubt that their hospitality industry would be able to deal with the veritable flood of tourists. No doubt millions of American women would pick up their leggings, tight jeans and colorful shirts in order to display them in the cheerful atmosphere of Tehran. Kind of like, a Coppengagen vacation but cheaper. Meanwhile, American men would be extremely interested in learning more about the mores and manners of a religious autocracy run by a group of pious men. This would be a genius move from Iran! Paris, Madrid and Rome would lose all their tourist money.

    • Mooser
      February 4, 2017, 8:22 pm

      ,” I am aware of my own ignorance, which is limitless Let’s say that I am an idiot, so what? Is life a competition about who is less of an idiot. I do feel like a total idiot most of the time” “catalan”

      Amazing how much education a guy can get in 24 hours.

    • talknic
      February 4, 2017, 9:16 pm

      Seems catalan can’t seem to help but be deceitful. It’s so Ziotypical

      @ catalan February 4, 2017, 5:57 pm

      ” If Iran were to allow visa free travel for US citizens

      A Tourist Visa is not ‘visa free’.

      ” I doubt that their hospitality industry would be able to deal with the veritable flood of tourists. No doubt millions of American women would pick up their leggings, tight jeans and colorful shirts in order to display them in the cheerful atmosphere of Tehran”

      There’s nothing but unnecessary fear stopping them now https://iran.travisa.com/

    • Bandolero
      February 4, 2017, 11:31 pm

      catalan

      “No doubt millions of American women would pick up their leggings, tight jeans and colorful shirts in order to display them in the cheerful atmosphere of Tehran.”

      Yes, I hope so many would do that, though I doubt it would be millions. But what next? What would happen if lot’s of “American women would pick up their leggings, tight jeans and colorful shirt” and then find out that many Iranian women dress even more sexy, with smaller leggins, tighter jeans and more colorful shirts?

      I think that would be a very good exercise in destroying prejudices.

  5. Atlantaiconoclast
    February 4, 2017, 10:21 pm

    Please stop equating Trump’s future wall with Israel’s wall. One will be built on legal boundaries, the other cuts through another people’s land.

    • RoHa
      February 4, 2017, 11:50 pm

      The Israeli wall is to keep out people who have a right to Palestine.

      Trump’s wall is to keep our people who have no right to the USA.

    • Jonathan Ofir
      February 5, 2017, 5:22 am

      Oh yes there are no doubt differences, Atlantaiconoclast. I don’t know whether you meant that as a strengthening of my point, or a countering of it.

      In case it was the latter, I would just say that I wrote: “So Netanyahu congratulates Trump for the wall: “Great success”, “Great idea”. It’s already success because it’s not an ordinary wall, it’s a racist wall, like ours. It’s a great idea because walls are our thing.”

      This is a rather euphemistic. First, we know that about 700 miles of the roughly 1.900 mile US southern order are already fenced, so it’s not only ‘his wall’. But ‘his wall’ is inevitably tied to the rather ridiculous claim that Mexico should pay for it. So it’s a wall of racist incitement. That’s how I mean it.

      Now the “wall” that Netanyahu alludes to in his tweet, on the southern border, is not really a wall but rather a fence. When I referred to ‘racist wall’ I was mostly alluding to another wall, the wall that most people would think of – the ‘separation barrier’ of the West Bank, 85% of which is built on Palestinian territory and hence de-facto annexing vast territories (hence illegal by 2004 ICJ Advisory Opinion). But even if one were to refer to the southern fence, there’s the racist aspect too: In 2013 PM Netanyahu said “the decision was taken to secure Israel’s Jewish and democratic character, but that refugees would still be allowed to seek entry.” Others in his government have complained about the ‘Jewish character’ threat (like Ben Dahan whom I quoted), and the view of refugees endangering the ‘Jewish character’ has been shared by MOST ISRAELIS already in 2011 polls http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4008290,00.html

      Amongst the Ultra-Orthodox, the view was shared by 93%.

  6. RoHa
    February 5, 2017, 1:00 am

    “There is a need for the existence of a Jewish state”.

    No there isn’t.

    • echinococcus
      February 5, 2017, 5:51 am

      There is a need…

      Yeah, the usual language barrier. Don’t you just love how their personal needs and urges become everyone’s problem? Betcha he used to say “there is a need to go to the bathroom”.

  7. Al2Sultan
    February 5, 2017, 8:59 am

    Israel was set up as the nation state of the jewish people. It is a haven from a world that has on multiple occasions committed genocide against us. There are 22 Muslim Arab nations I believe. Only one tiny jewish state. But the author seems to not care that Jews are banned from living and praying and owning property in most Arab countries. Israel is a jewish state and proudly and openly proclaims it so. It will defend this tiny piece of earth from those who want to turn it into another Arab Muslim only/majority state. The only propaganda is the one emanating from site like this that tries to hide behind human rights to deny Jews their own rights.

    • eljay
      February 5, 2017, 12:17 pm

      || Al2Sultan: Israel was set up as the nation state of the jewish people. … ||

      Jewish is fundamentally a religion-based identity. A “Jewish State” is a religion-supremacist construct. No state has a right to exist as a supremacist state of any kind.

      || … There are 22 Muslim Arab nations I believe. Only one tiny jewish state. … ||

      And there’s the classic Zionist “Murderers exist so it’s OK to rape” justification.

      || … But the author seems to not care that Jews are banned from living and praying and owning property in most Arab countries. … ||

      The injustices committed against Jews do not justify injustices committed by Jews. Jews are not entitled to do unto others acts of injustice and immorality they would not have others do unto them.

      || … The only propaganda is the one emanating from site like this that tries to hide behind human rights to deny Jews their own rights. ||

      The choice to be/come Jewish does not comprise a “right” to a religion-supremacist (and colonialist) state.

    • Mooser
      February 5, 2017, 3:07 pm

      “Israel was set up as the nation state of the jewish people. It is a haven from a world”

      There is no such thing as a “haven from the world” any more. Hasn’t been for over two centuries.

      And I don’t care how many “Arab nations” there are, Jews have better things to do than re-fight the Crusades. Maybe we should concentrate on something else. Any idea what it might be?

    • Mooser
      February 5, 2017, 3:17 pm

      .” It will defend this tiny piece of earth from those who want to turn it into another Arab Muslim only/majority state.”

      What’s the minimum number of Zionist Jews who can accomplish this? Better think about that.
      Support for Zionism will only continue to “fall away” (pace “Hophmi”) and support from Jews outside of “Israel” will, and is, turning to opposition, and an unwillingness to have Judaism harmed further by the Zionist Project. And even Sheldon Adelson can’t live forever. (okay, not sure about that)

      And the number of Jews is in any case, pretty limited by biology. Or will Clomid, Lupron, and Repronex get their own place on the Seder plate?

    • talknic
      February 5, 2017, 6:00 pm

      @ Al2Sultan February 5, 2017, 8:59 am

      “Israel was set up as the nation state of the jewish people”

      It was a money making enterprise set up in 1897 to colonize Palestine http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/articles/8632-jewish-colonial-trust-the-judische-colonialbank. Loaning money, at interest, specifically to poor Jewish folk to put themselves and their families on the front lines.

      ” It is a haven from a world that has on multiple occasions committed genocide against us. “

      Yet the leaders of the Zionist Federation didn’t bother to migrate to Palestine, gain legitimate citizenship, buy land and settle anywhere in the Jewish People’s alleged Historical Homeland when they could have. They missed the opportunity and every other opportunity offered them for the simple reason that they were and still are greedy and their vile colonial pyramid scheme is reliant on acquiring more and more territory to sell to gullible Jewish folk

      “There are 22 Muslim Arab nations I believe. Only one tiny jewish state”

      So what? None of the Arab states are illegally assisting their citizens to illegally settle in other folk’s territories, nor are they illegally claiming territories beyond their borders as their own. Israel is.

      “But the author seems to not care that Jews are banned from living and praying and owning property in most Arab countries”

      You’re yabbering at the wrong people. Go whine to the Israeli Government who has renewed Israeli emergency law banning Israelis from entering the territories of hostile states every year since 1948.

      ” Israel is a jewish state and proudly and openly proclaims it so.”

      Some 20% is NOT Jewish and were the non-Jewish Israelis dispossessed by Israel allowed to return, there’d be even more non-Jews, (tho not enough to make a majority, by 1950’s the migration of Jews to Israel far surpassed the non non-Jewish Israeli population with RoR )

      ” It will defend this tiny piece of earth from those who want to turn it into another Arab Muslim only/majority state”

      The Arab Peace Initiative and the Palestinian recognition of Israel since 1988 shows you to be spouting ZioCrap !

      ” The only propaganda is the one emanating from site like this that tries to hide behind human rights to deny Jews their own rights”

      More ZioCrap. Adhering to International Law and the UN Charter would GIVE Israelis, Jewish and non-Jewish, their human rights

    • andrew r
      February 5, 2017, 9:19 pm

      It is a haven from a world that has on multiple occasions committed genocide against us.

      This is one of those claims about Israel that doesn’t hold up to rational examination. During the Cold War, Israel failed the Jews of Argentina in a huge way – Jewish Argentinians were 1/10 those killed in the “Dirty War” while Israel sold weapons to the Galtieri regime. I’d say this article engages in apologetics, but it’s still damning enough:

      In the midst of the struggle between left and right, the Jews were accused by the right wing of supporting the left wing. Even though the Jewish community as a whole had no policy on this issue, the basis for these accusations could clearly be found in the anti-Semitism of the Catholic church, which repeated itself in the years 1976-1983 when the military rulers adopted an aggressive policy against leftist activists and Jews. The official reason for the persecutions was their membership in the above leftist underground organizations, although there were more than a few incidents in which detainees were tortured for no reason other than their being Jewish. In this political reality of a military regime that operated under an uncompromising policy and in blatant violation of human rights, the Israeli embassy and Jewish Agency offices had no recourse but to assist Jews who were detained and arrested on the one hand, and to cooperate with the military regime in realizing economic goals on the other. (…)

      The subject of the junta’s violation of human rights was laid out in the extensive and professional report of the National Commission on the Disappearance of Persons (CONADEP).45 The regime persecuted members of the left and fought its opponents in every way possible, including execution and torture of detainees in military camps and police prisons. There was a high ratio of young Jews among the desaparecidos and detainees. The humiliating treatment they received was extreme, particularly in the military camps, since anti-democratic, anti-Semitic, and Nazi tendencies were the rule among the leadership and junior officers.46 However, it should be emphasized that this negative attitude was individualistic, and was not the case for the Jewish collective as a whole. (…)

      From Israel’s perspective, the foreign trade between the two countries served both parts of the Jewish people, that which resided in Zion and that in the diaspora. Conditioning the continuation of the economic ties in general and the military ties in particular on the release of the detainees would not have served the purpose since Israel was not the only or the largest supplier, and its place would have been filled by other suppliers, such as France, for instance.79 Journalist Marcel Zohar, in his unequivocally harsh criticism, claimed that Israel preferred to preserve the friendship over saving Jews. In exchange for this friendship, Israel made a profit of one billion dollars from arms deals over the entire period of the military junta regime.80 Israel claimed that giving up the economic profit would have been folly since this in itself would not have solved the problems of the Jews in Argentina. Furthermore, it would have hurt Israel’s economy, causing a financial and economic loss as well as a blow to the country’s political and social strength.

      http://www.jcpa.org/jpsr/jpsr-mualem-s04.htm

      It could well be that Israel would have suffered economically cutting all ties with Argentina, but it only shows that historically Israel has fallen way short of the haven for persecuted Jews that its supporters would sell it as. This is a bonafide example of Israel collaborating with a regime actively hostile to its own Jewish nationals. So really, Israel has proven worthless in fighting anything other than enemies of the Zionist project itself.

    • RoHa
      February 5, 2017, 11:26 pm

      “Israel was set up as the nation state of the jewish people.”

      There was no need for such a state. And it was completely wrong to set up this state in a territory already occupied by other people, and to drive out many of those native occupants.

      “It is a haven from a world that has on multiple occasions committed genocide against us. ”

      And yet Jews in Australia are safer than Jews in Israel!

      “There are 22 Muslim Arab nations I believe. Only one tiny jewish state. ”

      And the relevance of this?

      http://mondoweiss.net/2013/05/why-palestine-different/#comment-566070

      ” But the author seems to not care that Jews are banned from living and praying and owning property in most Arab countries.”

      A direct result of the activities of the Zionists in dispossessing the Palestinians.

      ” The only propaganda is the one emanating from site like this that tries to hide behind human rights to deny Jews their own rights.”

      Jews have no more rights than any other human beings.

    • diasp0ra
      February 6, 2017, 6:10 am

      @Al2Sultan

      There is one little detail you conveniently left out of this: Israel was not created in a vacuum, the ethnic cleansing and dispossession of an entire people was needed to create it, and to sustain it today.

      There can be 6786876 Arab countries for all it matters, Palestinian and Arab are not interchangeable. Arabs are not a monolith. My house is my house even if my cousins own 70 houses each.

      Your attempt to conflate Zionism, Israel and Judaism is incredibly transparent. Nobody is denying “Jews their own rights”. Nobody has a right to dispossess others. If Zionists want a state of their own, I don’t care, go establish it as long as it’s not at my expense or any other innocents.

      By the way, two wrongs don’t make a right. I also condemn Arab states for their discriminatory actions against Jewish people (notice, not Israelis).

      I hope that the ethnocentric bubble you live in pops one day, and we can all share a state with the same rights not based on outmoded concepts of ethnic purity.

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