The Gaza concentration camp: ancient colonialism through a Nazi filter

Tuesday 2 September 2008 by CEPRID

1 - The Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions (ICAHD) announced on October 11th 2007 that the Israeli government had demolished 18,000 Palestinian houses since the Occupation of the West Bank and Gaza began in 1967. It concludes, “Israeli policies are designed to limit the number of Palestinians living in areas earmarked for settlements or in their vicinity”.

Amnesty International recalled on its web page of March 11th this year, “The Israeli authorities have for many years applied a discriminatory policy of house demolitions, permitting, on the one hand, many tens of Israeli settlements to be built on Occupied Palestinian territory in flagrant violation of international law at the same time as they confiscate Palestinian lands, forbidding the Palestinian population to build and destroying their houses. The cleared land is often used to build illegal Israeli settlements. International law prohibits occupying powers from building settlements for their own citizens on the territories they occupy.”

2 - Thousands of Palestinians with horrible mutilations, unimaginable wounds, bodies burned and disabled for life give the lie to the Israeli government version. They wait to be called as witnesses by an eventual court briefed to try crimes against humanity committed in Palestine, Lebanon and other countries.

That day, given the statistics of victims of Israeli attacks, there was no shortage of witnesses: 12,261 Palestinians have been wounded by the Israeli Occupation army just from the start of the Al Aqsa Intifada of September 29th 2000 up until May 2008. To get a total of the victims of Zionism, a figure very much higher, one would have to add the victims of the first Intifada and those from previous aggression in the form of actual attacks and wars.

The Palestine Centre for Human Rights, based in Gaza, offers abundant information about the long list of human rights violations by Israel in the Occupied Territories, including torture, arbitrary detention, destruction of Palestinian property, attacks on medical teams, extra-judicial executions, attacks on civilians not involved in hostilities and so on. See also data by B’Tselem, the Israeli Information Center for Human Rights, Defence for Children International – Israel Section, Machsom Watch – Women for Human Rights, Physicians for Human Rights – Israel, Rabbis for Human Rights, etc.

Any action by Israel has to be sold to the world as action to preserve the peace, defend the security of Israel, fight against terrorism, strengthen the peace process: Mass marketing know-how applied once again to selling another, different genocide.

"In his 1965 autobiography, Edward Bernays recalls a dinner at his home in 1933, ’where Karl von Weigand, foreign correspondent of the Hearst newspapers, an old hand at interpreting Europe and just returned from Germany, was telling us about Goebbels and his propaganda plans to consolidate Nazi power. Goebbels had shown Weigand his propaganda library, the best Weigand had ever seen. Goebbels, said Weigand, was using my book Crystallizing Public Opinion as a basis for his destructive campaign against the Jews of Germany. This shocked me. ... Obviously the attack on the Jews of Germany was no emotional outburst of the Nazis, but a deliberate, planned campaign.’ " http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edward_Bernays

Ending note: Agustin Velloso answers a doubt of the translator

TS. Simone Weil wrote that the Nazis applied in Europe what the Europeans routinely did in their colonies - genocide, torture, outright theft of land. After all this time, clearly, Zionist crimes against the Palestinians, against the Lebanese, knowingly and deliberately carry the weight not just of Nazi crimes but also those of the French in Algeria, of the Belgians in the Congo of the Dutch in Indonesia, of Portugal in Africa, of the British around the world, of the United States against its native peoples. It seems to me, the Israelis and their allies, the United States and the European Union, are deliberately applying the accumulated weight of that evil so as to destroy, if they have not done so already, the legitimacy of the United Nations system and related international law, and thus facilitate more easily criminal rich-country domination in the name of globalization. So I had a conceptual difficulty translating this article, related to the references to Nazism since, t aken altogether in the current context, Israeli government policies, especially the defiance of the International Court of Justice and the threats of nuclear genocide against the people of Iran, amount to something worse than Nazism.

AV. Pretending that the Holocaust was a unique tragedy is certainly a Zionist propaganda ploy. The slave trade killed many more, likewise the Spanish in the Americas. Concentration camps existed before Hitler. Perhaps the first was at Andersonsville during the US Civil War. In ancient history, it was common practice for the Romans or the Greeks to besiege cities of people they wanted to colonize until the population submitted due to hunger and disease. But still, it is hard to know how to avoid referring to Nazism since, for many people, it is perhaps the most accessible archetype of genocide and repression. The important thing is to understand it is not a thing of the past. And it is also important to show the international community’s responsibility in supporting crimes against humanity committed in the name of Zionism.

translation copyleft toni solo 2008

The author thanks both toni solo and Paulo de Rooij for their comments and suggestions

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