I counsel my anti-Zionist friends to make nice to liberal Zionists so that we bring them on board and form a coalition to bust the Israel lobby. Well Max Blumenthal ain’t buying. He spoke yesterday in Pittsburgh. You got to love his “table” line. It’s genius: The liberal Zionist claim that Israel could become an apartheid state is like saying, This table could become a table. It’s like the line feminists used to such great effect: A woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle. From the University of Pittsburgh student paper. Excellent reporting by Andrew Shull on a speech aimed at liberal Zionists:
Blumenthal, speaking for an hour in Posvar Hall to a crowd of about 100 people, argued that liberalism and Zionism are incommensurate ideals. He said Israel, from the launching of its state, was formed to be an ethnic state, a state that favors the ethnic majority.
“It was essentially founded to become an apartheid state,” Blumenthal said.
…He maintained that a two-state solution, favored by most peace seekers on the Israeli left, amounts to segregation, and the liberal ideal of multiculturalism isn’t shared by liberal Zionists.
“That puts them to the right of neo-fascists [in the West],” Blumenthal said.
He said that even far right figures in America and Europe would not adopt the policies the Israeli liberals adopt toward Palestinians.
…Blumenthal also aimed to take down a few key myths he said exist regarding liberal Zionism.
First, he argued that the “golden age” of Israel, the period between its founding and the start of the Six-Day War in 1967, was marred by ethnic cleansing, massacres and a “war of expulsion” precipitated by a pervasive “colonial” mentality.
He pointed to numerous liberal leaders who committed war crimes and expelled Arabs from their homes.
Blumenthal said that while right-wing Zionists are often blamed for the tension between the Israelis and Palestinians, the Israeli right and Israeli left cooperated throughout all of Israeli history.
During this time period, Blumenthal said right-wing Zionists held the attitude that “Secular Zionism is the donkey. They will ride the donkey until they establish a Jewish theocracy.”
Blumenthal also argued that it was a myth that the liberal Zionists were “pro-peace.”
Finally, he brought 40 pages of quotes featuring Israeli liberals saying that “time is running out” before Israel will become an apartheid state.
“That’s like saying this table could become a table,” he said.