Israel’s crimes against the people of Palestine reveal a record of barbarism and cruelty unmatched in the modern world except for the unrivaled chronical of suffering resulting from murderous wars perpetrated by U.S. imperialism in Korea, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria, Nicaragua, and beyond.
The offspring of the Zionist movement, the state of Israel, has spawned a history of terrorism as vicious as it is pernicious. Settler colonial projects are racist and genocidal. They involve the ethnic cleansing of native populations.
Israel’s history mirrors America’s. Beginning with the first English colony at Jamestown, Virginia in 1607, settlers moved ever westward, bringing disease, forced population transfers, massacres, wars, broken treaties, reservations, and genocide to Native Americans. The European invasion produced a holocaust for indigenous peoples on this continent that has yet to be acknowledged, let alone redressed, by the American government.
In historic Palestine, the colonists were European Zionists who set out to create a Jewish state on a land inhabited by an Arab population. The unrelenting colonization of Palestine was undertaken by a people who claim victimhood. The Nazi holocaust has long been referred to by Zionists as a justification of the creation of a Jewish state as well as a means to prevent criticism of Israel. However, the project of Zionist colonialization predates the Nazi holocaust by more than half a century, preceding the publication of Theodore Herzl’s book The JewishState in 1897. For Zionists, any criticism of Israel is labeled an expression of anti-Semitism, providing a shield for their criminality.
Victimization propaganda is clearly exemplified by Israel’s repeated assertion that it bombs the Gaza Strip as an act of self-defense in response to rockets fired by Hamas, as if the settler state does nothing to provoke the missile barrage.
It does plenty. And it has done so since its vile inception.
The Zionist movement introduced terrorism to the Middle East during its ‘War of Independence’ against the British when the Irgun and Stern paramilitary gangs murdered British commanders, shot British constables, hung captured British soldiers, assassinated a United Nations representative, and bombed crowded Palestinian venues.
The Irgun bombed the King David Hotel in Jerusalem, causing the deaths of 91 people including Arab, British, Jewish, Armenian, Egyptian, Russian, and Greek residents, workers, and visitors on July 22, 1946.
Zionist terrorists belonging to the Stern gang assassinated United Nations representative Count Folke Bernadotte of Sweden on September 17, 1948. Bernadotte was on a mission to mediate the conflict that erupted after the U.N. General Assembly, in a corrupted vote, partitioned Palestine on November 29, 1947 giving 56% of the most fertile land to Jewish settlers and 44% of the land to the indigenous inhabitants of Palestine.
The Irgun and Stern gangs bombed Arab fruit and vegetable markets, busses, coffee shops, and homes slaughtering Palestinians throughout the 1930s. Two notorious right-wing terrorists, Menachem Begin and Yitzhak Shamir, became Prime Ministers of Israel.
The Zionist terror campaign to cleanse indigenous Arabs and Christians from the land they inhabited for centuries developed in three phases. The first phase began before the United Nations partition resolution in 1947. The second phase took place six months prior to the end of the British Mandate and withdrawal of British troops on May 14, 1948. And the third phase commenced with the declaration of the state of Israel on May 14, 1948, when the nascent Jewish state implemented ‘Plan Dalet’ to drive Palestinians from their homeland.
A horrific massacre was carried out by the Irgun gang in the village of Deir Yassin where 107 unarmed men, women, and children were murdered in cold blood on April 9, 1948. Other massacres were perpetrated by Haganah and Palmach troops.
Over 500 Palestinian villages were occupied and depopulated. More than 700,000 Palestinians were forced to flee for their lives in the onslaught. The armies of five Arab countries intervened to stop the rampage of Zionist forces and were defeated. By the end of 1948, a terrible Nakba, or catastrophe, befell the Palestinian people as 78% of historic Palestine was lost.
Israel’s expansionist machinations did not stop there.
David Ben Gurion, Israel’s first Prime Minister unleased the Haganah and Mossad in 1950 to conduct a covert terrorist bombing campaign against Iraqi Jews in order to induce the Jewish community living in Iraq to flee to Israel.
In another infamous act of terrorism, the Palestinian village of Qibya was attacked by Israeli troops who murdered 69 defenseless men, women, and children on October 14, 1953. Leading the attack was Ariel Sharon.
In 1956, Israel, supported by the British and the French, attacked Egypt after Gamal Abdel Nasser nationalized the Suez canal. The assailants were forced to cease their attack by an irate President Eisenhower, who vehemently opposed the operation. It was the last time an American president stood up to Israel and the American Zionist lobby.
In 1967, Israel attacked Egypt, Jordan, and Syria in a six-day war that brought defeat and humiliation to Arab armies. Israel conquered the remaining 22% of Palestine, Syria’s Golan Heights, and Egypt’s Sinai desert. Israel annexed the Golan Heights in 1981 and returned the Sinai to Egypt as the result of the Camp David Accords of 1978.
During the war Israel attacked the USS Liberty in international waters near the Sinai, killing 34 American crew members and wounding 171 others. Israel was never held accountable for the attack.
Immediately after the war, Israel launched a settler movement in the newly occupied territories that involved construction of huge Jewish only settlement blocks and bypass roads connecting the colonies. A massive separation wall was constructed on Palestinian land in 2002. Approximately 622,670 settlers live in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem as of 2019, rendering proposals for a two-state solution void of any viable meaning.
In 1972, Israel began an ongoing program of assassinating Palestinian leaders. The extra-judicial executions are part of a terror campaign that included the murder of Yasir Arafat and Khalid al-Wazir of the Palestine Liberation Organization, Wadie Haddad and Abu Ali Mustafa of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, and Kamel Nasser, a Palestinian Christian poet. Israel assassinated the founder of Hamas, Sheikh Ahmed Yassin and his successor, Abdel Aziz al-Rantisi. The Mossad tried and failed to kill Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal in 1997.
In 1973, Egypt and Syria went to war against Israel to recapture land lost in 1967 and were defeated. Both superpowers, the United States and the Soviet Union went on nuclear high alert during the conflict. The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries slapped an oil embargo on the United States as punishment for its support of Israel during the war.
In 1978, Israel invaded South Lebanon in the “Litani River Operation” to drive PLO fighters away from its southern border. Between 1,100 and 2,000 Lebanese and Palestinians were killed and 250,000 displaced by the invasion.
In 1979, Benjamin Netanyahu organized the Jerusalem Conference on International Terrorism. At the conference, Netanyahu, a disciple of Irgun and Stern terrorists Began and Shamir, announced a “war on terror” by which he meant a war on Palestinian resistance fighters who would henceforth be criminalized as “terrorists” justifying preemptive military strikes, assassinations, home demolitions, preventive detention, torture, and suspension of civil and human rights. Known as the “Likud Doctrine”, the “war on terror” would be adopted as the “Bush Doctrine” after 9/11 by neoconservative allies of Israel.
In 1981, Israel bombed a nuclear facility in Iraq. The attack was supported in Congress by Joe Biden who called himself “Israel’s best Catholic friend.”
In 1982, the Israelis invaded Lebanon, leading to an occupation that continued until their army was driven out by Lebanese resistance fighters led by Hezbollah in 2000. An estimated 17,825 Lebanese, Syrians, and Palestinians were killed and 30,203 were wounded during the invasion. In one horrifying incident, Israeli troops commanded by Ariel Sharon surrounded the refugee camps of Sabra and Shatila near Beirut allowing right-wing Christian Phalange militias to enter the camps and massacre 3,500 Palestinian civilians. Photographs of the carnage shocked the world, revealing Israel’s responsibility for the savage crime.
On December 9, 1987, Palestinians revolted against brutal conditions spawned by twenty years of military occupation. The first Palestinian Intifada was met with brutal repression. Israel’s military was ordered to shoot protesters, deliberately break the bones of captured Palestinians with batons and rocks, routinely torture prisoners in Israeli jails, abduct and torture children, and demolish homes.
One of the most notorious massacres of Palestinians was perpetrated by an Israeli settler, Baruch Goldstein on February 26, 1996 in Hebron. Goldstein, an American physician from Brooklyn, New York, walked into the Ibrahimi Mosque and shot 29 Palestinian men and boys to death. He wounded another 125 Muslims worshipers during the rampage. Goldstein was a member of the Jewish Defense League, a para-military organization founded by the fascistic Rabbi Meir Kahane. The city of Hebron remains on military lock down to this day as a handful of Jewish settlers terrorize the Palestinian population.
The Jewish fundamentalist settler movement comprises ultra-nationalist groups such as Gush Emunim founded by Rabbi Moshe Levinger, an unapologetic Arab killer, who believe it is their duty to “redeem,” meaning steal, the “Promised Land” for “God’s Chosen People.” Gush is one of the most violent settler groups in the West Bank. The history of armed settler violence is extreme. Settlers routinely gun down Palestinians, firebomb their homes, cut down their olive and citrus trees, some over 100 years old and considered sacred, and steal Palestinian land.
On April 18, 1996, Israeli troops shelled a United Nations compound in Southern Lebanon killing 106 Lebanese civilians, half of whom were children. The dead were among 800 civilians who took shelter from an Israeli bombardment of their towns and villages. The Qana massacre was ordered by Prime Minister Shimon Peres, who accused Hezbollah of using civilians as human shields, a persistent Israeli lie meant to excuse the murder of civilians.
On September 28, 2000, Ariel Sharon provoked a massive revolt by invading the Haram al-Sharif compound which houses Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem, surrounded by hundreds of armed police. The Al-Aqsa Intifada was the second Palestinian uprising fought to win freedom from Israel’s malicious occupation.
In 2002, Ariel Sharon waged war to destroy the Oslo peace process, obliterate the Palestinian Authority, and crush the Al-Aqsa Intifada in the West Bank and Gaza. The Israeli military targeted Palestinian security forces and conducted massacres in Bethlehem, Nablus, Ramallah, and Jenin refugee camp. The atrocities were supported by George W. Bush.
In 2003, right-wing pro-Israel neoconservative zealots in Washington carried out their plans for war in Iraq by decimated an independent Arab nation supportive of Palestinian independence as part of a fraudulent “War on Terrorism.” The fragmentation of Iraq was supervised by U.S. viceroy Paul Bremmer, whose directives followed the blueprint advocated in the Yinon thesis, a policy document that advocated the breakup of Arab countries posing a threat to Israeli hegemony. Over one million Iraqis died as the result of the U.S. destruction of Iraq. The dirty war in Syria is the latest application of the Yinon thesis.
In 2003, Rachel Corrie, a young American peace activist was deliberately crushed to death by an Israeli army bulldozer as she tried to block the demolition of a Palestinian home in Gaza. Rachel belonged to the International Solidarity Movement, a pacifist organization that opposes the occupation of Palestine. Another youthful ISM peace activist from Britain, Thomas Hurndall, was shot to death by an Israeli sniper as he tried to escort Palestinian children to safety during an Israeli siege in Gaza.
On July 12, 2006, Israel launched a war against Hezbollah that involved the terror bombing of Southern Lebanon and Beirut, causing 1,109 deaths, 4,399 injuries, and 1 million displaced persons with devastating damage to buildings, homes and infrastructure, an Israeli specialty.
With the victory of Hamas in Palestinian national elections held in 2006, Israel imposed a near-starvation blockage on Gaza in 2007, blocking land, sea, and air transportation to the coastal enclave. Gaza, with a population of 2 million Palestinians, 45% of whom are under the age of 14 years, is the largest open-air prison in the world. It is also the poorest, with its inhabitants facing hunger and darkness. The blockade was imposed after the United States attempted to provoke a Palestinian civil war between Hamas and the Palestinian Authority. In the fighting, Hamas took control of the Gaza Strip and the PA exerted authority on behalf of Israel over enclaves in the West Bank.
Not content with starving and humiliating the people of Gaza, Israel launched a series of military campaigns designed to annihilate resistance in the strip.
All of which were genocidal attacks on a captive population conducted under the pretext of fighting Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine. Thousands of Palestinians were killed, injured, crippled, disfigured, and driven from their homes. The infrastructure of Gaza was destroyed and its people only survived because of an elaborate tunnel system built by Hamas that supplemented the small amount of aid allowed into the strip. Egypt’s dictatorial President Sisi attempted to flood the tunnel system at Israel’s behest in 2015.
In 2011, Israel began relentlessly bombing Syria acting as a jihadist air force in the U.S. dirty war against the Assad government. Israel has also provided medical treatment for jihadist fighters.
In 2018, Palestinians launched the “Great March of Return” to reclaim land stolen from them in 1948 and 1967 and to demand an end to the siege in Gaza. Israel brutally repressed peaceful demonstrators by murdering 267 Palestinians and injuring 20,000 to 30,000 others. Some protesters are crippled for life. Others had limbs amputated. The Gandhian approach to civil disobedience can only work if an oppressor has a moral conscience. Israel has none.
In 2021, Israeli operatives killed Iran’s top nuclear scientist, Mohsen Fakhrizadeh. Israel fears that its nuclear monopoly would be broken if Iran developed the capacity to produce nuclear weapons, neutralizing its ability to attack Arab and Muslim countries at will.
Israel’s murderous past proved to be an ominous prelude to what lie ahead.
In May 2021, Israel escalated ethnic cleansing of Palestinians living in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of East Jerusalem, sent its police into the Al-Aqsa Mosque to smash Muslims who protested the evictions of families from their homes, perpetrated genocidal bombings of Gaza in response to rockets fired by Hamas protesting the Al-Aqsa assault, and unleased rabid mobs of right-wing Jewish extremists and armed settlers against Palestinians living in Israeli cities.
Israel committed atrocities by bombing Gaza’s civilian population and destroying infrastructure needed to sustain life. To hide its crimes, Israel bombed Al Jazeera and Associated Press media outlets in Gaza, and declared the strip a “closed military zone” off limits to journalists. The deliberate destruction of Gaza’s farms and infrastructure precipitated a humanitarian crisis as residents are without water, electricity, sanitation, adequate food, and medicine.
Entire families were eradicated in Gaza by Israeli air strikes. Dozens of men, women, and children have been buried alive under the rubble of collapsed apartment buildings.
Imposing a starvation blockade and bombing a defenseless population are crimes against humanity and war crimes. The attacks are savage and sadistic. Israel’s strategic aim is to cripple Hamas and make Gaza uninhabitable. Inflicting collective punishment on a captive population is genocide.
Israel’s war on the Palestinian people is abetted by the United States. Joe Biden’s late calls for a “cease fire” were a rhetorical deception meant to provide Israel with an opportunity to attack Hamas and punish the people of Gaza.
During the Israeli bombardment, 265 Palestinians were murdered in Gaza, including 63 children. Over 72,000 Gazans have been displaced from their homes. Israeli occupation forces shot 10 Palestinian protesters dead in the West Bank. In Israel, 12 Israelis and 2 migrant workers were killed by Hamas missiles.
Palestinians have responded with protest marches and a general strike across the West Bank, Israeli cities, and the Gaza Strip unifying resistance to occupation. Massive pro-Palestinian solidarity protests have taken place in Australia, Bangladesh, Britain, Canada, Chile, France, Jordan, Italy, Germany, Kenya, Morocco, New Zealand, Sudan, South Africa, Switzerland, Pakistan, Tunisia, Turkey, and beyond.
In the United States, protesters took to the streets of Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, New York, Philadelphia, Dearborn, Des Moines, Indianapolis, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle and Washington in solidarity with Palestine.
The message is clear. Millions of people are disgusted by the racist brutality of the Israeli terror state and angrily demand “freedom for Palestine.”
The butchers who run the terror state of Israel and their enablers in Washington have isolated themselves around the world. The U.S. empire is unsustainable. The cost in lives and treasure is too great to endure. Its people will no longer tolerate endless wars, particularly in the Middle East.
In an unprecedented move, members of Congress led by Bernie Sanders are questioning military aid to Israel considering the assault on Gaza. Minnesota representative Betty McCollum introduced a bill designed to restrict military aid to Israel used to violate Palestinian human rights in April 2021, a month prior to the latest Zionist atrocities.
Israel is wedded to imperialism. When America’s empire is finally compelled to stop supporting the apartheid state, Israel will suffer an existential catastrophe, because it has no other friends in the world.
The Zionist project in Israel is a chronicle of relentless barbarity and deceit. Zionism’s core ideology is racist and genocidal. The Zionist state is an apartheid state, a pariah state, a terror state. It is condemned by its own heinous philosophy to provoke contempt and revulsion. The apartheid terror state will not survive the historical reckoning that awaits it.