Saturday, November 18, 2006

De-Pappefication Now!

1. De-Pappefication:

Published in:
November 13, 2006

Ilan Pappe is an Israeli academic who has made his name by hating Israel
and everything it stands for. In his view, expressed with obsession and a
degree of paranoia, Jewish nationalism, that is to say Zionism, has been
from its outset a deliberate tool for dispossessing the Palestinians; and
therefore it is to be condemned root and branch. He reserves the
Palestinian term of Nakba, meaning catastrophe, for describing what to
Israelis is their war of independence of 1948. To him, Israeli politicians
and soldiers, one and all, are so many murderers. Forests have been
planted only to cover up the past. Houses are b monstrous villas and
palaces for rich American Jewsb . Everything Israeli is ugly, everything
Palestinian is beautiful. One day, he supposes, the Israelis may well
consummate their original crime with something even worse. The only
possible alternative lies in the immediate return of every Palestinian to
his original home, and that will mean the end of the state whose existence
so offends Pappe. This, of course, is exactly the inflexible position
taken by Hamas and the PLO.

The readerb s initial reaction must be one of pity. Poor man! What a
strain it must be to belong to a nation whose members are so
overwhelmingly unbearable that he longs for them to be overpowered by
others. Yet there is more to it than that. Sad and creepy though it is,
Pappeb s anger is open to rational analysis.

The doctrinal element pushing Pappe into anti-Zionism is his prominent
involvement in the Israeli Communist Party, known as Hadash. An outcrop of
pure Stalinism and always a marginal movement, Communism in Israel
rejected Zionism in favour of internationalism, according to which Jews
and Arabs were to form a state together. Events, indeed the whole thrust
of history, have proven this to be a complete illusion, but Pappe remains
one of a minute handful still in its grip.

The further emotional element pushing Pappe towards his hatred of Zionism
is best elucidated by J L Talmon in his profound book, The Myth of the
Nation and the Vision of Revolution. Among the b horribly charged and
tormenting questionsb Talmon asks is why so many Jews have adopted
identities that seemingly allow them to deny their Jewishness. Uncountable
numbers of Jews have followed the example of the Karl Marxes, Trotskys and
Rosa Luxemburgs who sought identities as Communists and revolutionaries in
the hope that this would allow them to merge with those who otherwise
would be their persecutors. Some Communists - like Lazar Kaganovich, and
many in the KGB as well as leaders in the Soviet satellites - set about
the deliberate destruction of the Jewish religion and culture. Talmon
speaks openly of the neurosis and b morbid masochismb motivating such
unhappy people.

In Nazi Germany a few Jews tried to camouflage themselves in a similar
manner. Felix Jacoby opened his Kiel University lectures in 1933 by
comparing Hitler to the Emperor Augustus. Dr Hans-Joachim Schoeps and Max
Naumann even formed a movement of Jews for Hitler. With gallows humour,
other Jews replied that this movementb s slogan was Raus mit Uns, or Out
with Us. In Israel today, Neturei Karta, a sect of ultra-Orthodox Jews,
believes that the Messiah alone should bring about a Jewish state, and
that Israel is therefore an impiety fit for destruction. In New York they
have a branch called Jews Against Zionism, and recently they welcomed
President Ahmedinejad in person there, supporting his call for genocide in
Israel. Pappe is the secular and political version of these sectarians. As
often happens, extremists have come from opposing poles only to reach the
same conclusion.

Zionism, in Pappeb s conventional Marxist view, had nothing to do with the
need for Jews to survive persecution by Europeans or Arabs, but was only a
settler and colonialist movement cynically directed by British
imperialists and their greedy Jewish collaborators. He characterises David
Ben-Gurion, the driving personality in the latter stages of the foundation
of the state of Israel, as someone who always intended to expel
Palestinians from the land. To bring this about, he assembled a body which
Pappe refers to as the Consultancy, but the details of who these people
were, and what they really did, he fails to give us, instead preferring to
conjure an aura of sinister conspiracy. The Israelis were always the
stronger party and knew that they would win out at the end of the British
Mandate in 1948, Pappe says. In contrast, the Palestinians were
defenceless and hardly violent at all, designated victims whose villages
were mercilessly overrun and many of the inhabitants butchered.

A huge literature exists in British, Arab and Israeli archives to reveal
the multiple reasons for the flight of the Palestinians at the time,
ranging from a belief that invading Arab armies were about to rescue them,
and they should move out of harmb s way, to a cultural reflex that they
could not accept Jews in positions of authority, an escapism on the part
of some leaders and delusions of power on the part of others, and of
course fear. Savage things were certainly perpetrated by both sides - C la
guerre comme C la guerre - but Pappe will have none of that, completely
ignoring the context in all its complexity and local variation. His
technique is to list towns and villages as though their capture involved
always and only simple brutality and expulsion. No mention of the Jewish
need to survive in an existential struggle in the aftermath of the
Holocaust; no mention of the 6,000 Jews killed, which was 1 per cent of
the population; no mention of Azzam Pasha of the Arab League promising a
massacre of Jews on the scale of the Mongols; no mention of Arab radio
propaganda and disinformation; no proper account of Arab military
successes, brushing over Arab atrocities and the destruction of Jewish
settlements; no mention of the countervailing expulsion and expropriation
of a million Jews in Arab countries.

As history, the book is worthless. In interviews Pappe regularly explains:
b We do [historiography] because of ideological reasons, not because we
are truth seekers.b For him, as a Marxist and anti-nationalist, b there
is no such thing as truth, only a collection of narrativesb . To
substantiate his particular ideological narrative, Pappe puts the worst
possible interpretation on any Jewish deed or word, while validating
anything said or done by Palestinians. For evidence of Israeli
monstrosity, he relies on quotations from his own previous works or from
Palestinian polemicists, and above all on the oral testimonies of
Palestinian refugees. Over half a century of military and ideological
conflict has passed since their exodus, but Pappe declares his faith that
whatever they now say is true. This might all seem too pathological to
matter much, but Arab and Muslim extremists are making huge efforts to
contest the legitimacy of Israel, and many of their allies on the
international Left will lean on Pappe for purposes of b pilgeringb and b
fiskingb .

The final element contributing to Pappeb s mindset lies in the sphere of
psychology and fashion. Contemporary intellectuals have long been
accustomed to glorying in an adversarial stance towards their own society,
preening themselves as men of nobler spirits than the dull indifferent
masses around them, and isolated not because they are foolish but because
they are brave. It is a form of snobbery - moral snobbery - which is why
intellectuals of this kind are so widely resented.

There is a fatal contradiction at the heart of Pappeb s advocacy of the
immediate return of all Palestinian refugees as the necessary condition of
peace. If Israelis are really as vicious as Pappe presents them, then
Palestinians could not possibly want to live among them. Are Palestinians
to return only to wipe out Israelis or to be wiped out themselves? Poor
Palestinians, poor Israelis, to be mobilised for such fates. And should
Hamas, the PLO or President Ahmadinejad make good on threats to eliminate
Israel, there will not be time to rescue Pappe from the consequences of
his moral snobbery and his Marxism, or to discover whether he really
applauds his own Raus mit Uns demise.

David Pryce-Jones

David Pryce-Jones was educated at Eton College, and then read history at
Magdalen College, Oxford. He has published nine novels and nine books of
non-fiction, including The Closed Circle and The War that Never Was, about
the end of the Soviet empire. He is a senior editor of National Review in
New York.

2. These are the people George Soros wants to bankroll:

Jewish pro-Palestinian in hot water for 'Satanic' Israel jibe

Simon Rocker,
Jewish Chronicle,
November 16, 2006

The head of Jews for Justice for Palestinians has dissociated the group
from claims by one of its activists that Israel is a "Satanic state."

Deborah Fink posted the comment on an anti-Zionist weblog, writing:
"Israel does not deserve to be called 'The Jewish state.' It should be
called 'The Satanic state.' I really don't see the point [of] doing
anything else other than boycott it in every possible way."

But Dan Judelson, elected last month as JfJfP chair, told the JC that
Ms Fink's remarks were "incompatible" with her responsibilities within
the group . which include the role of recruitment officer.

The matter would be discussed at its monthly meeting on Sunday.

"Deborah Fink is not a member of the newly elected executive committee
of JfJfP," he stated. "As such, she speaks only for herself." He said
she had confirmed that she had posted the remarks online.

JfJfP organises and supports protests against Israeli policy towards
the Palestinians and was behind an advertisement in The Times signed by
more than 300 British Jews denouncing Israeli actions in Gaza.

3. The Kapo Elf:

4. The Commonality of Totalitarians:

5. Baruch Dayan Ha-emet:

6. Tony & Tacky
November 17, 2006; Page W15
MONSTER MASH: Idaho State University boasts that its faculty are
"committed to integrating diversity concepts into their individual
s initial reaction must bed tormenting questionsb one of pity. Poor man!
What a strain
it must be to belong to a nation whose members are so
overwhelmingly unbearable that he longs for them to be
overpowered by others. Yet there is more to it than that. Sad and
creepy though it is, Pappebcourses." Teachers seem less tolerant of
diverse views among their
colleagues, however. We refer to the shunning of Jeffrey Meldrum, a
tenured professor of anatomy who, AP reports, has trouble even getting
another scientist to have coffee with him. His sin? Mr. Meldrum believes
in Bigfoot, the folkloric ape-man of the back woods. This has gotten the
professor face time as an expert on the Discovery Channel. Even so, the
charge of "pseudo-academics" sounds fair. Would that it were heard more on
a thousand other campuses.

7. Affirmative Racism:
Racism by any other name

By Jonah Goldberg

8. Lying about Rachel Corrie:

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