Saturday, January 14, 2012

The 'invented people' stand little chance

By Robert Fisk
Saturday 14 January 2012

"His statement that the Palestinians were an "invented people" marked about the lowest point in the Republican-Christian Right-Likudist/Israel relationship. So deep has this pact now become that you can deny the existence of an entire people if you want to become US president. It's time, surely, to take a look at this extraordinary movement, to remind ourselves – since US "statesmen" cannot – just what its implications really are....

"The Lubavitcher Rebbe [sic] was famous for his vehement opposition to even the tiniest withdrawal from any territory ever held by the Israel Defence Forces, even in the framework of full peace," Rachlevsky wrote. "The most prominent emissaries of the Lubavitcher Rebbe – the great rabbi, as Netanyahu termed him at the United Nations – included Baruch Goldstein, perpetrator of the 1994 Hebron massacre, and Yitzhak Ginsburg, the rabbi of Yitzhar, he of the radical book Baruch the Man (which celebrates the massacre)." The rabbi, Rachlevsky continued, believed that in the land of the messiah, there is no room for Arabs. Newt was right on track, it seems. "Thus racism entered Netanyahu's speech at the United Nations – not 'merely' against Islam, but also against Arabs.".....

This support has now coalesced with the Republican Party against Obama – whose grovelling to Netanyahu has won him no new friends – so that over recent years, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is routinely used to attack the Democrats. Having once been sustained by the progressive left, Israel now draws its principal support from right-wing conservatism of a particularly unpleasant kind. Christian evangelicals believe that all Jews will die if they do not convert to Christianity on the coming of the Messiah. And right-wing racists in Europe – the most prominent of them being Dutch – are welcome in Israel, while the likes of Noam Chomsky and Norman Finkelstein are not.

Not a word about this from the would-be Republican candidates and their followers these past few days. Governor Rick Perry has long accused Obama of "appeasement" in the Middle East, and former New York mayor Ed Koch has never withdrawn his claim that Obama "threw Israel under the bus". Mitt Romney has said that he wants "to increase military and intelligence co-ordination with Israel" – as if the US hasn't been handing out aircraft and billions of dollars to Israel for decades. What chance do an "invented people" have against this?"

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