“On the morrow of a persecution in Europe in which they had been the victims of the worst atrocities ever known… the Jews’ immediate reaction to their own experience was to become persecutors in their turn… In 1948, the Jews knew, from personal experience, what they were doing; and it was their supreme tragedy that the lessons learnt by them from their encounter with the Nazi German Gentiles should have been not to eschew but to initiate some of the evil deeds that the Nazis had committed against the Jews”
–Famed British Historian Professor Arnold Toynbee
I wholeheartedly agree with Professor Vasillopulos’s assessment on the hypocrisy, double standard, and marked subjugation of U.S. foreign policy vis a vis Palestine to Israel’s interests and its powerful American lobbies who have unprecedented influence on Congress. Israel’s very creation arose out of western colonialism, first the British who had the audacity to gift a land they did not own, a land under Ottoman rule, to European Jews out of domestic political expediency, followed by America, a government ruled by corporations and special interests, in this case the powerful Jewish lobby. Israel’s ethnic cleansing of 750,000 Palestinians from their land in 1948 – 1949, its total destruction of 450 Palestinian villages, including mosques and churches, was simply accepted by western colonial powers as a necessary consequence of an Arab military onslaught on the small Jewish state, a blatant proven lie as documented by Israel’s own documents. Tragically Israel’s brilliant propaganda, media campaigns and effective political public relations to indoctrinate western population were successful. The Arabs were too incompetent to even understand the use and power of such instruments. Israel’s prowess to influence and determine western public opinion has allowed it to defy all international agreements, laws, U.N. Resolutions, world opinion, even U.S. policy as evidenced by Obama’s forced backtracking on his initial call for Israel’s freezing illegal settlements. Obama’s silence on the Goldstone Report once again shows who runs U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East.
While Israel can tell the world “No”, the Arabs sadly don’t even know the word exists.
In 1949 President Truman was so outraged (the man responsible for Israel’s creation) by the mass expulsion of Palestinian refugees he convened the Lausanne Conference in Switzerland to pressure Israel to stop its ethnic cleansing and accept UN Resolutions 181 (Partition of Palestine) and 194 (right of return of Palestinian refugees).
Israel rejected Truman’s proposal while the Arabs accepted it prompting his envoy Ambassador Mark Etheridge to write Truman: ” Since we gave Israel birth we are blamed for her belligerence and her arrogance and for the cold-bloodedness of her attitude toward refugees…Israel must accept responsibility….her attitude toward refugees is morally reprehensible….Her position as conqueror demanding more does not make for peace.”
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Since then many U.S. politicians have quietly expressed their anger and frustration at Israel’s continued Zionist expansionism in the Holy Land, but none have ever had the courage to stand up to this little nation while in office that manipulates the most powerful nation on earth to pay and die for Israel’s wars from Lebanon, to Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, the Gulf, Afghanistan, and now the deja vu campaign to “bomb, bomb, bomb” Iran.
Yet while we as Arabs and Muslims can reiterate the historical facts regarding the rogue nation of Israel and its chosen method of existence that wholly depends on wars, assassinations, terrorism, mass imprisonment and the wholesale starving siege of Gaza, we should be honest with ourselves and proclaim that Arab political and economic incompetence, paralysis, hypocrisy, backbiting, and self sabotage regarding Palestine is the other side of the coin to decades of Palestinian suffering. Fifty seven Muslim nations, 1.6 Billion Muslims, 50% of the world’s oil wealth, 60% of its gas wealth, trillions of dollars of investment in western governments and institutions, are shamefully paralyzed to face one small nation of 6 million Jews. Western politics revolves around money, media manipulation, myths, lies, and propaganda, something Arabs are well accustomed to in their own nations.
There is no true political, economic, social or media presence for Arabs and Muslims in America. They are silent, fearful, uneducated and inexperienced in living and dealing with America’s culture, tend to herd themselves by ethnic group and fight whether there should be a barrier between men and women in the mosques, or whether Muslim men and women can gather for a lecture, yet allow such women to mingle, work, and go to school with Non-Muslims.
I strongly believe that we as Muslims must blame ourselves for our state of affairs and avoid the usual scapegoating that “powerful forces” such as Israel, the E.U., and America hinder our progress or our justified right to reclaim our lands and resources. Our “intellectuals” have adopted and imitated the western mantra that progress can only come if one abandons religion. Rather than Islam being the problem, Muslims are the problem and Islam is the solution.
That is why as a Muslim I am deeply proud of the Turkish government and the Turkish people for being the sole Muslim nation to publicly repudiate Israel on its slaughter in Gaza. While Arab leaders convene “summits” on Palestine their private agenda is to attack Hamas and Hezbollah, the only two resistance parties in the entire MidEast against Israel. The shame and betrayal of Mahmoud Abbas to withdraw consideration of the Goldstone Report is another hallmark that even Arabs don’t value Arab blood as long as their chairs are protected.
Muslim wealth is bailing out western economies and not benefiting the current confused Muslim generation lost between little faith and overwhelming American cultural influence. Why is our wealth not building schools, hospitals, roads, better roads, working on finding precious water, creating manufacturing jobs, building sewage plants, collecting garbage and using the media to improve our knowledge of Islam, its morals, and goodly behavior. We build towers, buy luxurious toys such as planes, cars, and camels, while neglecting the betterment of human lives. Arab Satellite channels open their programs with readings from the Quran only to follow up with a music video of barely dressed women gyrating their bodies to the most obnoxious simplistic drum beat.
Each of us as Muslims is responsible for learning, implementing, and protecting our faith. Each of us is responsible for ourselves, our families, our neighbors, community, nation, and Ummah. Our silent acceptance of our corrupt till death do we part rulers has led to our failed societies.
We need a renaissance of intellect, of education, scientific and analytical and skills, in fact, a rebirth of a highly motivated Ummah that rejects the status quo and begins the journey to a faith based enlightenment that can only result in our victory against our own demoralizing failures and the ultimate victory of salvation in the hereafter.
I share the pessimism of Muslims around the world that we’re not ripe for a personal and nationalistic revolution, but what’s the alternative? Should Muslim blood saturate the earth to replace our stolen oil before we awaken to our demise?
Either we change, die, or die trying.