May last year a reader took strong exception to my use of the word “genocide” to describe the Israeli policies towards Palestinian Arabs since 1948 (the original post and comments where the word arose are here) — comparable to the policies of whites towards American and Australian aboriginal peoples in earlier generations. My use of the word was carefully chosen to conform to the Geneva Convention and UN definitions of this term that emerged out of the many atrocities of World War 2.
Article II of the Genocide Convention defines the international crime of genocide in relevant part as follows:
In the present Convention, genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group as such:
(a) Killing members of the group;
(b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;
(c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part
Anyone who finds the use of the word “genocide” extreme or in any sense racist I would invite to read / view and think through two recent web articles / videos:
A second by British Jewish MP Gerald Kaufman who said:
“My grandmother was ill in bed when the Nazis came to her home town of Staszow. A German soldier shot her dead in her bed,” said Kaufman, who added that he had friends and family in Israel and had been there “more times than I can count.”
“My grandmother did not die to provide cover for Israeli soldiers murdering Palestinian grandmothers in Gaza.”
. . . .
He said the claim that many of the Palestinian victims were militants
“was the reply of the Nazi” and added: “I suppose the Jews fighting for their lives in the Warsaw ghetto could have been dismissed as militants.”
and that the Israeli government has
“ruthlessly and cynically exploiting the continuing guilt from gentiles over the slaughter of Jews in the Holocaust as justification for their murder of Palestinians.”
Successive Israeli governments (left and right wing) have all consistently pursued the goals of Zionist founding fathers in expanding their “living space” to eventual biblical proportions (since 1967 this has been done with the ongoing creep and expulsions of Palestinians from their West Bank homes to make way for Jewish “settlements”) and to declare the indigenous inhabitants a non-people. (Edward Said nailed it when he showed that antisemitism has since WW2 flipped and bifurcated into Jews unrealistically good, Arabs — the other semitic wing — unrealistically bad). The Israeli beseiging and blockading of Gaza, along with continual terrorizing low flying (with sonic boom) war planes over the population, not to mention regular bombings called “targeted killings” that more often than not killed more than their so-called intended targets, and rejections of Hama offers to end rocket attacks in return for a lifting of this blockade, have not managed to cower the Palestinians — they still prefer to die standing on their feet than live crawling on their knees before those who expelled them to that barren overcrowded Gaza strip.
And the myth of vulnerable David facing ever present threats of total extermination from swarthy Goliaths is continually recycled. I hope in future to cite the evidence that shatters this myth as so falsely applied to the wars of 1948 and 1967 — evidence that few American in particular have had opportunities to see.