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Israel is guilty of occupation, apartheid and colonialism,

Discussion in 'Middle Eastern Politics' started by WANT_FREE, Feb 26, 2007.

  1. WANT_FREE

    WANT_FREE New Member

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    Special Rapporteur for Human Rights in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, John Dugard, has issued a harshly critical report on Israel's human rights record in regards to its treatment of the Palestinians in the occupied Palestinian territories of East Jerusalem, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.

    "The international community, speaking through the United Nations, has identified three regimes as inimical to human rights - colonialism, apartheid and foreign occupation," Dugard says. In his 24-page report, which will be presented to the United Nations General Assembly for debate on 15 March 2006, the South African lawyer accuses Israel of all three.

    Occupation

    Israel is clearly guilty of occupying another nation. Dugard also refutes Israel's claim that, since its 'disengagement' in 2005, it is no longer occupying the Gaza Strip. Israel controls all the borders, air space and sea space surrounding the Strip, in addition to carrying out numerous military incursions and air strikes into the Strip, thereby continuing to be the occupying power.

    Apartheid

    Furthermore, Dugard says Israel's discriminatory practises towards Palestinians amount to apartheid. He says in his report: "Discrimination against Palestinians occurs in many fields. Moreover, the 1973 International Convention on the Suppression and Punishment of the Crime of Apartheid appears to be violated by many practices, particularly those denying freedom of movement to Palestinians."

    Dugard harshly criticises Israel's system of checkpoints and barriers across the occupied West Bank, which makes freedom of movement and trade impossible. In particular, he criticises the arbitrary nature of the restrictions. "there is a secret list with some 180,000 names of security risks who may not pass through a checkpoint," Dugard says, "but no notice is served on such a person on this list until he arrives at a checkpoint"; this means "it is left to Palestinians to find out by trial and error whether they will be allowed to pass through a checkpoint on a particular day". As a result, "an arbitrary and capricious regime prevails."

    Dugard warns Israel that, "In apartheid South Africa, a similar system designed to restrict the free movement of blacks - the notorious “pass laws” - created more anger and hostility to the apartheid regime than any other measure. Israel would do well to learn from this experience."

    Dugard singles out Israel's illegal separation wall as one of Israel's most apartheid-like tool. He says, "It has become abundantly clear that the Wall and checkpoints are principally aimed at advancing the safety, convenience and comfort of settlers."

    In regards to Jerusalem and the wall, Dugard says: "The 75 km Wall being built in East Jerusalem is an instrument of social engineering designed to achieve the Judaization of Jerusalem by reducing the number of Palestinians in the city. The Wall is being built through Palestinian neighbourhoods, separating Palestinians from Palestinians, in a manner that cannot conceivably be justified on security grounds."

    Dugard depicts in particular the absurd plight of the inhabitants of Ar-Ram neighbourhood of northeast Jerusalem: "Some 60,000 people live in the suburb of ar-Ram just outside the municipal boundary of Jerusalem. About half of the residents are Jerusalemites who left Jerusalem because of the restrictions placed on Palestinians’ building houses in the city. They are completely dependent on Jerusalem for work, education and hospitals. Yet now they are surrounded by the Wall and cut off from Jerusalem. To get to work, school or hospital they must travel a circuitous route of several kilometres and pass through the international terminal-like checkpoint at Qalandiya, and they may only do this if they have the correct permit. A journey that previously took them minutes is now extended into hours."

    Colonialism

    He also accuses Israel of carrying out illegal, colonial practises, saying, "The Occupied Palestinian Territory is the only instance of a developing country that is denied the right of self-determination and oppressed by a Western-affiliated State." He singles out the illegal Israeli settlements in the West Bank as a new form of colonialism. Furthermore, noting that Israel has appropriated agricultural land and water resources in the West Bank for its own use, Dugard says that, "This aspect of Israel’s exploitation of the West Bank appears to be a form of colonialism of the kind declared to be a denial of fundamental human rights and contrary to the Charter of the United Nations as recalled in the General Assembly’s Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples of 1960 (Resolution 1514 XV)." He suggests the case be referred to the International Court of Justice.

    War crimes

    Dugard accuses both Israeli military personnel and Palestinian militants of war crimes, pointing out that the state of Israel has the greater responsibility: "Persons responsible for committing war crimes by the firing of shells and rockets into civilian areas without any apparent military advantage should be apprehended or prosecuted. This applies to Palestinians who fire Qassam rockets into Israel; and more so to members of the IDF who have committed such crimes on a much greater scale. While individual criminal accountability is important, the responsibility of the State of Israel for the violation of peremptory norms of international law in its actions against the Palestinian people should not be overlooked."

    While condemning the Palestinian launching of homemade Qassam rockets into Israel, Dugard says, "Israel’s response has been grossly disproportionate and indiscriminate and resulted in the commission of multiple war crimes."

    As for Israel's policy of demolishing residential buildings in the Gaza Strip suspected of housing weapons, preceded by a warning issued over the telephone shortly before the air strike, Dugard describes this act as a " policy of terrorism by telephone." In regards to the Palestinians' collective act of gathering on the roof of a targeted building in a form of 'human shield', Dugard says, "Voluntary, collective action of this kind can at most be categorized as an act of civil disobedience against the occupying Power."

    Dugard describes the imprisonment of the Gaza Strip's 1.4 million inhabitants behind Israeli-controlled borders as "a controlled strangulation that apparently falls within the generous limits of international toleration."

    The UN rapporteur also describes the racist attacks carried out by some Israeli settlers against Palestinians. "Undoubtedly the most aggravated settler behaviour occurs in Hebron," Dugard says, "where Palestinian schoolchildren are assaulted and humiliated on their way to schools, shopkeepers are beaten and residents live in fear of settler terror." Dugard adds that, despite rulings by Israel's High Court of Justice that it is the duty of the Israeli military to protect Palestinian farmers from settlers, "there is still evidence that the IDF turns a blind eye to settler violence and, on occasion, collaborates with the settlers in harassing and humiliating Palestinians."

    In regards to Israel's policy of extrajudicial killing, or targeted assassinations, of 'terrorists' wanted by the state of Israel, Dugard describes this practise as "the death penalty on a wide scale through the back door ".

    Palestine, a test for the West

    Dugard concludes that the case of human rights violations in the occupied Palestinian territory has come to resemble a 'test' for the West, by which its commitment to human rights is to be judged. He recognises that numerous other nations in the developing world suppress human rights, but Israel is the only "Western-affiliated regime" allowed to get away with it. Dugard warns, "If the West fails this test, it can hardly expect the developing world to address human rights violations seriously in its own countries, and the West appears to be failing this test." ​
     
  2. palerider

    palerider Well-Known Member

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    Occupying? Are you serious? Tell me, doyou remember how was it that Israel came to find themselves on that land in the first place?

    And arabs living in Israel, have more rights than they would have living in their respective countries.

    The author is clearly no more than an anti semite.
     
  3. Lilly Marlene

    Lilly Marlene New Member

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    palerider -

    To oppose the State of Israel does not make one an antisemite.
    The justification commonly provided as to why that land should be taken for the Jewish State is a religious one, from the Old Testament of the Bible.
    Yet please recall that the founder of that whole idea of the modern Jewish State (Theodore Hertzl) was himself an atheist. As a matter of fact, his first choice was to found the State of Israel on a portion of Africa.

    Very religious Orthodox Jews are strenuously opposed to the State of Israel, on the grounds that their Torah forbids them to establish a State using human might 'like the nations do'. They are enjoined repeatedly in their scriptures to wait on the Lord to establish it.
    Yet,
    the founders of the State of Israel - as well as those who administer the State today - routinely submit that they have the right to that land on religious grounds.

    Look forward to exploring this further, later.
     
  4. palerider

    palerider Well-Known Member

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    If I remember my Old Testament, God often used and influenced governments to establish a place for his people.

    And opposing the state of israel doesn't make one "not" an anti semite either. This author's reasons label him an anti semite as clearly as if he were wearing a sandwitch sign.
     
  5. Lilly Marlene

    Lilly Marlene New Member

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    Sure, agreed. But the people themselves are strictly enjoined - as I wrote - not to use might to establish a state, following the Diaspora.

    Well that may be.
    But I do know this: once I understood that the State of Israel actually goes against God's specific commands to Jews ...
    then for me, the whole house of cards began to fall, as regards US policy in the mideast.
     
  6. palerider

    palerider Well-Known Member

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    Once again, in the Old Testament, God often told the jews that he had "handed over" a parcel of land to them but left it to them to conquer the inhabitants. Often instructing them to kill the inhabitants to the last child and to kill their animals as well.

    I would be interested in seeing the verses from the Hebrew texts upon which youhve based your understanding that the state of Israel goes against God's specific commands to the Jews.

    Genisis 15:18: "In the same day the Lord made a covenant with Abraham, saying, Unto thy seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates."

    This would encompass not only the present borders of Israel, but lebanon, syria, iraq, jordan, and a sizeable piece of north west saudi arabia.
     
  7. Lilly Marlene

    Lilly Marlene New Member

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    Yes, I can find them to post here.
    Please realize I am speaking specifically of verses dealing with the time after the Diaspora, which occurred in 70 AD.

    I have a deadline on Wednesday and will not be able to post much anymore til after that.

    But I guarantee to you that these commands exist and they are unequivocal.

    In the meantime while I am away, please do a search for "Neturei Karta" and they might even have them on their site.

    I hope you all have a good week til next I visit here,
    Lilly
     
  8. palerider

    palerider Well-Known Member

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    There was nothing in the Torah in 70AD that hadn't been there for hundreds and hundreds of years. Perhaps there were different interpretations, and some interpretations leaned towards not using force to create a state, but that would simply be the interpretation of an individual (and followers). Not to be confused with what the Torah does or does not forbid.

    Neturei Karta is a small group that believes that the nation of Israel can only be reunited after the return of the Messiah. The Messiah returned over 2000 years ago and if you are a student of scriptures, groups such as Neturei Karta are among those jews who will hail the antichrist as the Messiah. If you are relying on these people to help you form your opinion on the justification for the State of Israel, you have chosen the wrong group.
     
  9. Lilly Marlene

    Lilly Marlene New Member

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    I'm afraid it is not a matter of interpretation at all. The meaning of the passages is unequivocal.

    Christ didn't unite the nation of Israel; there was no need to because they had not been "dispersed" yet when He was on earth. The reason the Neturei Karta "believes that the nation of Israel [must wait on God to unite it]" ...is because that is what their scriptures say.

    If the gauge you are using involves belief in Jesus as the Messiah, then the secular atheists who founded the State of Israel are just as much "the wrong group" as the Neturei Karta.

    The justifications usually summoned for the state of Israel seem to be these two:

    1. Because God gave that land to the Israelites in the Jewish Scriptures ("Old Testament").
    and
    2. Because of the Holocaust.

    Neither one of those justify the State of Israel upon closer examination.
     
  10. palerider

    palerider Well-Known Member

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    Then bring them here. I have to say that if the basis of my argument was based on passages that were unequivocal; so powerful, in fact, that they caused me to withdraw my support for an entire nation, they would not be so remote from my mind that they would require "looking up".

    If you are referring to scripture that warns against gaining a nation by might before the messiah comes, then those scriptures have been supersceeded. But like I said, I am interested in seeing the scriptures that are unequivocal.

    Again, if you are a student of scriptures, the next one who will unite Israel is the antichrist who will be hailed by misled groups as the messiah.

    Again, I don't refuse to support actions that I want to happen just because they aren't happening for the reasons that I have for supporting them.
     
  11. Lilly Marlene

    Lilly Marlene New Member

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    Palerider -
    Please read at the link below ... I *think* the verses were in there; if not I'll have some time this weekend to find them. There is a whole site devoted to examining them (and no I did not commit them to memory) but as I said on the other thread I'm rushing this morning so later I'll find them.

    You don't have to read the whole thing, you can start at "Exile and Redemption".

    See:

    http://www.nkusa.org/AboutUs/Zionism/index.cfm
     
  12. palerider

    palerider Well-Known Member

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    I have read the whole thing. There is no "unequivocal" passage from the Torah that would deny the state of Israel. Their entire position is based on the fact that they believe that Elijah did not return and therefore Jesus could not be the messiah.

    If you are a student of scriptures, the last prophecy with regard to the re-establishment of Israel is found in the old testament is found in the book of Malachi. Chapter 4 verses 5 amd 6 to be specific:

    "See, I will send you the prophet Elijah before that great and dreadful day of the LORD comes. He will turn the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers; or else I will come and strike the land with a curse."

    The entire positon of Neturei-Karta is based on the idea that Elijah did not return. If you are a student of scripture however (are you?) if you look in the New Testament at Matthew 17:10-13, Jesus says:

    Jesus replied, "To be sure, Elijah comes and will restore all things. But I tell you, Elijah has already come, and they did not recognize him, but have done to him everything they wished. In the same way the Son of Man is going to suffer at their hands."

    The prophecy in Malachi cautions that either Elijah will reunite Israel of a curse will be laid upon the land. Well, they didn't recognize him and rather than being reunited, they were cursed.

    If you study scriptures, the next appearance of Elijah is fortold in Revelations. Chapter 11 verses 3-6. The two olive trees are Elijah and Moses.

    If you are going to claim that scripture has led you to withdraw your support for the state of Israel, then you are bound to consider all scripture. If you just don't like Israel and convienently use some scripture to support your position but disregard scripture than foils it, then that action speaks for itself.
     
  13. Lilly Marlene

    Lilly Marlene New Member

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    "...then that action speaks for itself."

    Care to elaborate ? Is this supposed to suggest that I am being disingenuous here ? If so, please just come out and say that that is what you think.

    I have not read the whole Bible and in answer to your question, no I'm not a Scripture scholar.
    However,
    I do know that there are several passages which ARE unequivocal about this matter because I've seen them.
    Just because they were not presented on that particular website does not mean they don't exist.

    I will find them just as soon as I have adequate free time, so please adopt a wait-and-see attitude; you'll be glad you did.

    As far as "not liking Israel", I used to be one of the people who supported Israel very stoutly and I still do donate to an orphanage there and a feeding program. But no, I do not appreciate the actions of the regime in Israel and because of the obvious atheism, indifferentism, or agnosticism of most of the leaders I am not inclined to support the religious justification.

    More on this soon,
    Lilly
     
  14. palerider

    palerider Well-Known Member

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    And yet, you are willing to withdraw your support of Israel based on some passages that may or may not even exist in the Torah and if they do, then they may or may not have been taken completely out of context.

    I continue to wait..........

    You don't appreciate the fact that they must either defend themselves or submit to the billion arabs that surround them and wish them dead to the last child? Exactly what would you have them do?
     
  15. inbadfaith

    inbadfaith New Member

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    Dear palerider,

    I am curious as to why you feel the need to resort to ad hominem attacks. You could perhaps begin with a more substantial defence, ie. the human rights violations being a side effect in providing security for vulnerable Israeli civilians. That would be a good start.

    Clearly, Lilly Marlene and palerider miss WANT_FREE's objective in his post; to shed light on the human rights violations within the OPT….. not to incite interpretation of religious texts, as I am sure they are not theologians.

    Of course I understand that religion is variable when we discuss the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, but surely this discussion has gone astray... Stick to the facts and the reports, as I am sure we have all heard the curt replies once too many times.

    Call everyone you want an anti-Semite (which apparently, for palerider, seems to include the UN, simply on the basis of its criticism of the state of Israel), but human rights violations still remain human rights violations, no matter how eloquently you reinterpret them.

    If one were to call for the destruction of the state of Israel, yeah, that is anti Semitic. But it seems that now, a mere criticism of the Israeli state makes a person an anti-Semite.

    The argument is utterly incoherent and evades the issue. , If that is the only comeback it has, I don’t think it makes Israel look very good.
     
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