Israel Forum Watch; 24-Hour Vilification, Apologetics and Hate from a Fanatically Pro-Israel Viewpoint

Monday, June 04, 2007

40 Years of Occupation: 1967-2007.

Forty years of Israeli occupation of the Palestinian West Bank and Gaza Strip is an obvious time to revisit the past and speculate on future directions. There will be plenty of attention from others on Israels illegal occupation itself, as well as the details such as land confiscations, house demolitions, expulsions, political prisoners, checkpoints, and of course, the settlement enterprise.

But I want to look at something a little different. Something that has been working away quietly in the background, significantly enabling Israel’s control of the Palestinian population and it’s attacks on Palestinian attempts at national liberation. An insidious and destructive phenomenon that rarely gets the attention it deserves – Israels network of informants, more commonly (interestingly) discussed in terms of the Palestinian side of the equation - ‘collaboration’. This is the work of the Shabak (AKA ISA). It’s an extension of the work that the Zionist movement adopted in the pre-state period, taking advantage of petty criminals, petty disputes and general Palestinian heterogeneity to collect crucial information, identify targets, exacerbate differences and recruit allies.

There has been some recent attention to the issue, and several books. One of the most recent is by Israeli historian Hillel Cohen, ‘Good Arabs’ (only in Hebrew currently), which examines collaboration by Palestinian Israelis under military rule in Israel.. An earlier book, ‘Army of Shadows looked at the pre-state period. The first account by a Palestinian that touched on this subject was Fouzi el-Asmar’s To be an Arab in Israel'.

Also coming soon is Shira Robinsons book based on her PhD thesis, 'Occupied Citizens in a Liberal State: Palestinians Under Military Rule and the Colonial Formation of Israeli Society, 1948-1966'.

Most deal with the situation of the Palestinians inside Israel. A similar story waits to be told about the extensive spy networks set up in the OT’s post June 1967. Israel applied the lessons it learned in the first 20 years in Israel, to the Palestinians of the West Bank and Gaza Strip. When the full details eventually emerge, it will undoubtedly look something like, possibly even worse than, the Stasi of the former East Germany. Focussing on the occupation ignores this other salient feature of the OTs – that they are also a secret police state, a veritable ‘ShabakLand’, where Palestinians have to consider whom amongst their family and friends may be Shabak informers.

The techniques for recruiting informers has changed little except that in the Israeli controlled OTs, Shabak agents found even more fertile ground for coercion. Access to jobs, permits for travel and medical treatment were productive tools, not to mention torture and blackmail. A study in 2004 by New Profile titled ‘Child Recruitment in Israel’ (PDF) stands out for its’ identification of the Shabaks' practice of recruiting Palestinian child informants by torture and threats against the childs’ family.

Killings at the hands of the Israeli military obviously garner more attention, but the recruitment of informants by the occupation forces are also breaches of the Geneva Conventions. They also represent a very dark and little known side of the 40 year subjugation of the Palestinian people.

Saturday, June 02, 2007

1967: "Wasted Victory"?

As we approach the 40 years of Israeli occupation, our forum fanatics turn their attention to how it all went so wrong, stimulated by this story in The Economist. In their own special way, of course.

Israel's victory was wasted. Let's look at an alternative scenario here:
1967 victory, Arabs are incouraged to run away from the evil Joos ........... they run away, Judea and Samaria are annexed, Gaza is annexed, the Temple Mount is turned into a historical/archeological site atracting millions of tourists every year, there are no Arabs to start intifadas or terrorism insde the country, ………... Sounds good? Yes it does.
So why is this not the case then? Because the whole situation was mishandled to the core by the retards and traitors on the left, who put our enemies interests before ours.” – Kettlewhistle

OK, so a failure of total ethnic cleansing – that's the chance that was "wasted"!!

A regular who likes to present him/herself as the ‘moderate’ face of Zionist fanaticism, finds the logic attractive,

“Sometimes, during weak moments, especially lately, I actually think you are right. I mean, no matter what Israel does, the Arabs and their allies, the so called humanists vilify and demonize it. So Israel may as well live up to the expectations of the polemicist accusers.....
However, I don't think that Israel would have been allowed to get away with what you suggest.” – Reffo

Yep, the moral constraint on ethnic cleansing from the moderate Zionist perspective is that you may not “get away with that”.

But that’s a bit too much rectitude for the hard-core fanatics,

“Your type of attitude is what I call the Jewish version of the Stockholm syndrome……..In 1967 we won a battle. Instead of building on it, and bringing peace to this country, the Leftists lost us the war, and put us on the path of Arabization.” – KW.

Hmmm, nasty that “Arabization”. Miscegenation anyone?

However, it hits the mark with our ‘moderate’, quickly defending himself against the charge of being one of those who may have supported some kind if evil co-existence involving an abandonment of the settlement enterprise,

“C'mon Kettle, this post was uncalled for. You know very well that the attitude that you attribute to me is way off the mark. Just read my ad nauseum interchanges with the likes of Takeo, Sumud, Michael and many others. I am certainly not one who advocates turning the other cheek but I also know what is practical and I also know that anyone who goes completely overboard in ignoring morality ends up with more than they bargained for” - Reffo

Then to top it off, a typically bizarre rant from on of the ‘Senior’ forum fanatics,

“They hate you and want you dead and they always will, no matter what. No point in arguing the point. You could be teaching algebra to dogs for all the good it would do. They want you dead. The Palestinians officially want you dead, their friends in the west want you dead.” – Mediocre

Fanatical and paranoid. Don’t be surprised when the 50th year of Israeli occupation rolls by.