Zionism= Racism and Religious Discrimination
"We're involved here, in a struggle for the existence of the State of Israel as the state of the Jews, as opposed to those who want to force us to be a state of all its citizens." "We are not just a state of all its citizens."-- Limor Livnat, Education Minister, Israel
A state grounded in racism is wrong, obviously. Using religion as the intellectual basis for racism is absurd. Yet while decrying the spectre of Islamic democracies the American religious right is stealthily working to realize it's vision of our nation as a Christian state. This same dangerous faction, known as Dominionists/Christian Reconstructionists supports the state of Israel, an state which supports discrimination based on religion in Israel proper as well as in the territories it illegaly occupies.
Three decades ago Winston Churchill's grandson asked Ariel Sharon how Israel should deal with the Palestinians. "We'll make a pastrami sandwich out of them," he replied. "We'll insert a strip of Jewish settlements in between the Palestinians, and then another strip of Jewish settlements right across the West Bank, so that in twenty-five years' time, neither the United Nations nor the United States, nobody, will be able to tear it apart."
3.5 million Palestinian people in the territory Israel controls cannot vote, yet the Israeli people colonizing and occupying Gaza and the West Bank can vote. living beside them can.
It's a unitary state controlled by one dominant national group, which leaves the other national group disenfranchised and subject to laws "for natives only", which for the purposes of respectability and international law are known as laws of "belligerent occupation". The convenience of this model of binationalism is that it can be applied over a long period of time, meanwhile debating the threat of the "one state" and the advantages of the "two states", without doing a thing.
Finding the actions of a state repellent and criminal is different from painting individuals with a wide brush, typing them in one way or another. When the subject of Israel comes up it is a common technique for the nation's proponents to claim anti-semitism; thereby shifting the debate from the state's historical record of actions which is roundly indefensible to charges of racism against Jewish people, an easy technique to change the tack of a conversation. "Anti-Semitism vs. Anti-Zionism - A Practical Manual" by Uri Avnery offers some perspective on this. As will "No, anti-Zionism is not anti-semitism" by Brian Klug.
"Fear of being slandered as "anti-Semites" means we are abetting terrible deeds in the Middle East"
I came across the following about Orthodox Jews protesting the very state of Israel:
If you happened to be passing by the Israeli Consulate yesterday afternoon you most surely would have been shocked by the unusual sight that greeted your eyes: a group of over 10,000 Orthodox Jews who were protesting against the actual existence of the state of Israel. Behind them hung large posters showing the beating of Orthodox Jews by Israeli police while they were protesting the desecration of antiquated Jewish cemeteries which are in the path of a planned highway expansion.
The shocking sight didn't stop there. When you studied their signs and looked at the picture posters a shocking new world was revealed. Tens of thousands of religious Jews are protesting in the streets of Jerusalem against the state of Israel stating that the state of Israel, according to the Torah (that is the Jewish teachings) is illegitimate. They state that since the time that God sent the Jews into exile with the destruction of the temple two thousand years ago the Jews were forbidden to have their own state and that the whole concept of Zionism and the creation of the state of Israel was formed by irreligious Jews contrary to the Torah and the opinion of almost all of the Rabbinical leaders of Judaism worldwide.
True Torah Jews Against Zionism
Jews not Zionism
Neturei Karta- Orthodox Jews against Zionism
I am not a psychologist, but I think that everyone who lives with the contradictions of Zionism condemns himself to protracted madness. It's impossible to live like this. It's impossible to live with such a tremendous wrong. It's impossible to live with such conflicting moral criteria. When I see not only the settlements and the occupation and the suppression, but now also the insane wall that the Israelis are trying to hide behind, I have to conclude that there is something very deep here in our attitude to the indigenous people of this land that drives us out of our minds.
There is something gigantic here that doesn't allow us truly to recognize the Palestinians, that doesn't allow us to make peace with them. And that something has to do with the fact that even before the return of the land and the houses and the money, the settlers' first act of expiation toward the natives of this land must be to restore to them their dignity, their memory, their justness.
An Islamic state marginalizing and occupying a non-Muslim people would be vilified. A Christain state that seeks to convert or marginalize non-Christians is a frightening prospect. But the state of Israel can marginalize non-Jews within it's borders while occupying the West Bank and Gaza with impunity, defying the UN for 38 years. And it is OK.
"Our sufferings have granted us immunity papers, as it were . . . After what all those dirty goyim have done to us, none of them is entitled to preach morality to us. We, on the other hand, have carte blanche, because we were victims and have suffered so much. Once a victim, always a victim, and victimhood entitles its owners to a moral exemption."-- satire by the novelist Amos Oz
All discrimination is wrong. People are people. There are no moral exceptions. Welcome to the twenty-first century; the last hundred years showed us the full measure of our species inhumanity. Shouldn't we have learned by now?
I'll leave you with a quote from Desmond Tutu.
My heart aches. I say, why are our memories so short? Have our Jewish sisters and brothers forgotten their humiliation? Have they forgotten the collective punishment, the home demolitions, in their own history so soon? Have they turned their backs on their profound and noble religious traditions? Have they forgotten that God cares deeply about the downtrodden? Israel will never get true security and safety through oppressing another people. A true peace can ultimately be built only on justice.
But you know as well as I do that, somehow, the Israeli government is placed on a pedestal, and to criticise it is to be immediately dubbed anti-semitic, as if the Palestinians were not semitic. I am not even anti-white, despite the madness of that group. And how did it come about that Israel was collaborating with the South African apartheid government on security measures? People are scared in this country, to say wrong is wrong because the Jewish lobby is powerful--very powerful. Well, so what? For goodness sake, this is God's world! We live in a moral universe. The apartheid government was very powerful, but today it no longer exists.
Injustice and oppression will never prevail. Those who are powerful have to remember the litmus test that God gives to the powerful: what is your treatment of the poor, the hungry, the voiceless? And on the basis of that, God passes judgment.
This piece was first posted, in a shorter form, at American Samizdat