No wonder Israel's compared to South Africa in the bad old days.
Thus, in a recent interview, the leftwing British film director Ken Loach explains why he's such an inveterate foe of Israel and so staunch a supporter of BDS:
"It began some years ago when I was involved in putting on a play called ‘Perdition’. It was a play about Zionism in the Second World War and the deal that was done between some Zionists and the Nazis. It shed a whole new light on the creation of Israel and the politics of Zionism. I became aware then, and gradually in the following years, that the foundation of Israel was based on a crime against the Palestinians.Other crimes have followed since then....
There is oppression all around the world but what makes the Israel-Palestine conflict special is a number of things. First of all, Israel presents itself to the world as a democracy. A country just like every Western state. It presents itself in this way while it is in fact committing crimes against humanity. It has produced a State which is divided along racial lines, like apartheid South Africa. It is also supported militarily and financially by Europe and the US. So there is a massive hypocrisy going on; we are supporting a country that claims to be a democracy, we’re supporting it in every way, and yet, it is involved in these crimes against humanity.
.... When you are confronted by such crimes you have to respond as a human being, regardless of if you are an artist, a VIP or whatever. First of all you have to respond and do what you can to bring this to people’s attention. A boycott is a tactic. It is effective against Israel because Israel presents itself as a cultural beacon. It is therefore very susceptible to cultural boycott. We should not have anything to do with projects that are supported by the State of Israel.... We target it because you cannot just stand by and watch people live their lives in refugee camps forever...."That argument has as many holes as as a slattern's stockings, of course (and conveniently sidesteps the fact that in contrast to Israel, which although cash-strapped and overwhelmed with the task of integrating Holocaust survivors also successfully integrated the Jewish refugees from the Arab world following the War of Independence, that same Arab world despite its riches failed to attempt to integrate the Palestinian refugees, deliberately using them ever since as pawns) but is being widely applauded and touted by the usual suspects.
Here, incidentally, is a great graphic regarding those Jewish refugees and the consequent judenrein nature of the Arab Middle East (hat tip: reader Ian, citing its appearance on the Point of No Return blog here):
And what's the significance of Israel-bashers citing time and again the plight of the Palestinians in their refugee camps?
That's why, in recognition of a noble common cause, Zionists of all stripes should applaud the prominent leftwing Aussie Zionist Philip Mendes when, breaking ranks with his fellow political Leftists and attracting obloquy from them as a result, he unequivocally and persistently points out:
".... there is little doubt that a Greater Palestine is the ultimate political objective of the international Campaign for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions against Israel...."
What other nation state in the world, other than the sliver of a sovereign country that the Jews get to call their own, is subject to similar attempts at delegitimisation and eradication, eradication not merely of its current regime but of its very existence?
As to what the Palestinians themselves really really want, here's what the noted Israeli Arabist Dr Mordechai Kedar has to say on the matter (the video opens with familiar footage, but stay with it):
Not for nothing did Christian scholar Dexter Van Zile, in his recent admirable rebuke to the BDS-obsessed UK Methodists liken boycotting Israel to "an international ghetto bench" (such as found at universities in pre-war Poland); not for nothing did he observe that
"The violence endured by Christians and other religious minorities in Muslim-majority the Middle East, North Africa, and Asia... might shed some light as to why Jews are so persistent in the defense of their state. Jews know better than many Christians (at least those in the West) what happens to defenseless minorities in Muslim-majority settings."\
"In essence, it boils down to that obsession with Israel which permeates nearly every academic institution. A pathological infatuation which latches onto any crank so long as he has something bad to say about Israel. It doesn’t matter if it’s a Holocaust denier like Israel Shamir – the House of Lords will warmly receive him. Nobody cares if it’s someone as offensive as George Galloway – the Oxford Union will still invite him. Who gives a damn if they’re an apologist for suicide bombers? Azzam Tamimi continues to hop from campus to campus spouting hatred.
But what should we learn from all this? Well KCL, I have some advice for you. When you plan similar events in the future, invite some real academics.
Nutters, racists and conspiracy theorists are not the kind of people you should associate with. If you want real debate about the Middle East, let’s hear two narratives. It’s time for a change in how we discuss Israel. Get a critic of Israel to discuss a contentious topic with a well-known defender of Israel. That would go down well. That’s real debate. Not the rubbish about Mossad death rays which you get from Richard and his friends."So says Oxford undergraduate Jonathan Hunter, who as we saw here flummoxed George Galloway by having an Israeli flag up his jumper, and is UK campus director of StandWithUs International.
And of course the Israel-demonising Left never acknowledge Israel's humanitarian endeavours including this...
But let the last word go to Professor Denis MacEoin, an avowed liberal who has made many excellent blogposts regarding the hypocrisy and aims of the anti-Israel movement.
On academic boycott, he has observed:
"Left-wing academics call for a boycott of Israeli universities, despite the fact that Israeli universities operate a policy that allows entry to all races and religions, do not accept government censorship, encourage open debate, and are not used as centres for Zionist propaganda. They do not seek to boycott Arab universities that forbid entry to Jews, or Iranian universities that are closed to the Baha'is, the country's largest religious minority, Egyptian universities that are (according to a report by Human Rights Watch) drowning in censorship, Muslim universities in Saudi Arabia and elsewhere where the very idea of open debate is anathema, Chinese universities that control what students can and cannot learn and what teachers can and cannot teach, or any of the genuine human rights abuses affecting higher education worldwide. Only Israel. Only Israeli institutions. Only Israeli academics who refuse to condemn their own country.
....But it seems that sympathy for nationalist aspirations ends when it comes to the Jews. Only the Jews, it seems, have no right to build a nation state on their ancestral and religious homeland. Only the Jews are to be condemned to wander the earth for ever, persecuted, driven from land to land as the mood takes one territory or another. Hooray for the IRA and their bold struggle for a united Ireland, hooray for ETA and the claims of the Basques, hooray for the Tamil Tigers and the Tamil people, above all, hooray for Hamas and Hizbullah and their noble endeavours to take back all the lands that ever belonged to them, historically or mythically, it doesn't matter which. But to oblivion with the Jews for even daring to create a national home where they might be safe from persecution. Let's march with banners that say 'We're all Hizbullah now', condemning Zionism as the greatest evil that ever walked the earth.
So everyone is allowed to have a state except the Jews. If you will take care to read their literature, you will see that the Palestinians do not just want a state of their own. They want the Jews out. Every last one of them, from every inch of Israel. If the Jews won't leave, they will kill them. They will leave no trace of them, their synagogues, their kibbutzim, their hopes, their aspirations, their love for their Holy Land. And all those people-supporting left-wingers and liberals out there shake hands with that aspiration, saying Israel has no right to exist, denouncing the very idea of Zionism as fascist and evil, endorsing the idea that the Jews are behind every conspiracy, that Zionists control the media, tell the US how to frame its foreign policy, and are the masterminds behind the global economy.
If you think that, or half of that, or a quarter, let me explain something to you, very calmly, very quietly, and in short words. You may think you are a liberal, but you are not. You may think you are an internationalist, but you are not. You may think you are a socialist, but you are not. You are an anti-Semite. Think it through. How much of your anti-Israel rhetoric would Adolf Hitler have found hard to stomach? How would the notion that Jews alone of all the earth's peoples have no right to govern themselves or to protect themselves from those who seek to kill them run in the far reaches of the far right? How would the Palestinian aspiration to commit a second Holocaust play in the degenerate middens of totalitarian fascism?"