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Monday, October 23, 2006


Ethnic cleansing comes (further) out of the closet in Israel


It's official: Avigdor Lieberman, the leader of the far-right, racist Yisrael Beitenu party, will be joining the Israeli Cabinet. As Saree Makdisi put it on CounterPunch earlier this year:

Lieberman's party believes what all Israelis believe: that Israel is a Jewish state. Unlike the more respectable Israeli parties, however, Lieberman's party is willing to add that since Israel is a Jewish state, non-Jews are not welcome. Even if they were born there.
That is to say, Lieberman and his party call openly for the "transfer" (expulsion) of non-Jewish Israelis from the borders of Israel. And while ethnic cleansing has been the policy and practice of the state of Israel since its founding (and even before), rarely has it been so openly defended and advocated as it is by Yisrael Beitenu. A party which is now joining the U.S.-backed, U.S.-funded Israeli government.

And, just as the Democrats in the United States, the "loyal opposition" in Israel is more "loyal" than "opposition":

The Labor Party, with 19 seats, was divided over Lieberman's addition to the government and some lawmakers have vowed to fight it.

But some said Labor would eventually assent to Lieberman joining the government rather than drop out of the coalition.
As for the "loyal opposition" in the United States, even trial balloons of opposition to this latest development in Israel are highly unlikely.

Update: Two strong recommendations:

On Friday, the entire Flashpoints show was given over to a discussion and then a speech by Ali Abunimah of Electronic Intifada, discussing his new book, One Country (a discussion of the "one-state" solution for Israel-Palestine). Very enlightening.

Equally enlightening, a lengthy article by Seth Ackerman in the latest issue of Extra!, the magazine of FAIR. The article, entitled "Nixed Signals," is about the reality of Hamas versus the picture ("sworn to the destruction of Israel") presented in the Western media. Very much worth reading.

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