Saturday, February 6, 2010

Perhimpunan Perdana Bersama Ulamak Palestin




Assalamualaikum

Perhimpunan Perdana Bersama Ulamak Palestin

Hari:
Sabtu

Tarikh:
6 Februari 2010

Masa:
2.30pm-5.30pm

Tempat:
Auditorium Masjid Wilayah Jln Duta KL

Semua dijemput, bawalah keluarga bersama.
Datanglah beramai-ramai!
Ayuh, kita suburkan jihad di jalan Allah!!!
Al-Quds masih terjajah!!!

Butiran lanjut sila hubungi:

Dr Syed, aktivis Haluan
013 2044818


Zionism Laid Bare

By KATHLEEN CHRISTISON

The essential point of M. Shahid Alam’s book, Israeli Exceptionalism: The Destabilizing Logic of Zionism, comes clear upon opening the book to the inscription in the frontispiece. From the Persian poet and philosopher Rumi, the quote reads, “You have the light, but you have no humanity. Seek humanity, for that is the goal.” Alam, professor of economics at Northeastern University in Boston and a CounterPunch contributor, follows this with an explicit statement of his aims in the first paragraph of the preface. Asking and answering the obvious question, “Why is an economist writing a book on the geopolitics of Zionism?” he says that he “could have written a book about the economics of Zionism, the Israeli economy, or the economy of the West Bank and Gaza, but how would any of that have helped me to understand the cold logic and the deep passions that have driven Zionism?”

Until recent years, the notion that Zionism was a benign, indeed a humanitarian, political movement designed for the noble purpose of creating a homeland and refuge for the world’s stateless, persecuted Jews was a virtually universal assumption. In the last few years, particularly since the start of the al-Aqsa intifada in 2000, as Israel’s harsh oppression of the Palestinians has become more widely known, a great many Israelis and friends of Israel have begun to distance themselves from and criticize Israel’s occupation policies, but they remain strong Zionists and have been at pains to propound the view that Zionism began well and has only lately been corrupted by the occupation. Alam demonstrates clearly, through voluminous evidence and a carefully argued analysis, that Zionism was never benign, never good—that from the very beginning, it operated according to a “cold logic” and, per Rumi, had “no humanity.” Except perhaps for Jews, which is where Israel’s and Zionism’s exceptionalism comes in.

Alam argues convincingly that Zionism was a coldly cynical movement from its beginnings in the nineteenth century. Not only did the founders of Zionism know that the land on which they set their sights was not an empty land, but they set out specifically to establish an “exclusionary colonialism” that had no room for the Palestinians who lived there or for any non-Jews, and they did this in ways that justified, and induced the West to accept, the displacement of the Palestinian population that stood in their way. With a simple wisdom that still escapes most analysts of Israel and Zionism, Alam writes that a “homeless nationalism,” as Zionism was for more than half a century until the state of Israel was established in 1948, “of necessity is a charter for conquest and—if it is exclusionary — for ethnic cleansing.”

How has Zionism been able to put itself forward as exceptional and get away with it, winning Western support for the establishment of an exclusionary state and in the process for the deliberate dispossession of the native population? Alam lays out three principal ways by which Zionism has framed its claims of exceptionalism in order to justify itself and gain world, particularly Western, support. First, the Jewish assumption of chosenness rests on the notion that Jews have a divine right to the land, a mandate granted by God to the Jewish people and only to them. This divine election gives the homeless, long-persecuted Jews the historical and legal basis by which to nullify the rights of Palestinians not so divinely mandated and ultimately to expel them from the land. Second, Israel’s often remarkable achievements in state-building have won Western support and provided a further justification for the displacement of “inferior” Palestinians by “superior” Jews. Finally, Zionism has put Jews forward as having a uniquely tragic history and as a uniquely vulnerable country, giving Israel a special rationale for protecting itself against supposedly unique threats to its existence and in consequence for ignoring the dictates of international law. Against the Jews’ tragedy, whatever pain Palestinians may feel at being displaced appears minor.

The ethnic cleansing of the Palestinians that came as the result of Zionism’s need for an exclusivist homeland was no unfortunate consequence, and indeed had long been foreseen by Zionist thinkers and the Western leaders who supported them. Alam quotes early Zionists, including Theodore Herzl, who talked repeatedly of persuading the Palestinians “to trek,” or “fold their tents,” or “silently steal away.” In later years, the Zionists spoke of forcible “transfer” of the Palestinians. In the 1930s, David Ben-Gurion expressed his strong support for compulsory transfer, crowing that “Jewish power” was growing to the point that the Jewish community in Palestine would soon be strong enough to carry out ethnic cleansing on a large scale (as it ultimately did). In fact, the Zionists knew from the start that there would be no persuading the Palestinians simply to leave voluntarily and that violent conquest would be necessary to implant the Zionist state.

The British knew this as well. Zionist supporter Winston Churchill wrote as early as 1919 that the Zionists “take it for granted that the local population will be cleared out to suit their convenience.” In a blunt affirmation of the calculated nature of Zionist plans and Western support for them, British Foreign Secretary Arthur Balfour, like Churchill another early supporter and also author of the 1917 Balfour Declaration, which promised British support for the establishment of a Jewish homeland in Palestine, wrote that Zionism “is rooted in age-long traditions, in present needs, in future hopes, of far profounder import than the desires and prejudices of the 700,000 Arabs who now inhabit that ancient land.” It would be hard to find a more blatant one-sided falsity.

Alam traces in detail the progression of Zionist planning, beginning with the deliberate creation in the nineteenth century of an ethnic identity for Jews who shared only a religion and had none of the attributes of nationhood—neither a land, nor a common language or culture, nor arguably a common gene pool. Here Alam covers briefly the ground trod in detail by Israeli historian Shlomo Sand, whose book The Invention of the Jewish People, appearing in English just months before Alam’s book, shattered the myths surrounding Zionism’s claim to nationhood and to an exclusive right to Palestine. But Alam goes further, describing the Zionist campaign to create a surrogate “mother country” that, in the absence of a Jewish nation, would sponsor the Zionists’ colonization of Palestine and support its national project. Having gained British support for its enterprise, Zionism then set about building a rationale for displacing the Palestinian Arabs who were native to Palestine (who, incidentally, did indeed possess the attributes of a nation but lay in the path of a growing Jewish, Western-supported military machine). Zionist propaganda then and later deliberately spread the notion that Palestinians were not “a people,” had no attachment to the land and no national aspirations, and in the face of the Jews’ supposedly divine mandate, of Israel’s “miraculous” accomplishments, and of the Jews’ monumental suffering in the Holocaust, the dispossession of the Palestinians was made to appear to a disinterested West as nothing more than a minor misfortune.

Addressing what he calls the “destabilizing logic” of Zionism, Alam builds the argument that Zionism thrives on, and indeed can survive only in the midst of, conflict. In the first instance, Alam shows, Zionism actually embraced the European anti-Semitic charge that Jews were an alien people. This was the natural result of promoting the idea that Jews actually belonged in Palestine in a nation of their own, and in addition, spreading fear of anti-Semitism proved to be an effective way to attract Jews not swayed by the arguments of Zionism (who made up the majority of Jews in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries) to the Zionist cause. Early Zionist leaders talked frankly of anti-Semitism as a means of teaching many educated and assimilated Jews “the way back to their people” and of forcing an allegiance to Zionism. Anti-Semitism remains in many ways the cement that holds Zionism together, keeping both Israeli Jews and diaspora Jews in thrall to Israel as their supposedly only salvation from another Holocaust.

In the same vein, Alam contends, Zionists realized that in order to succeed in their colonial enterprise and maintain the support of the West, they would have to create an adversary common to both the West and the Jews. Only a Jewish state waging wars in the Middle East could “energize the West’s crusader mentality, its evangelical zeal, its dreams of end times, its imperial ambitions.” Arabs were the initial and enduring enemy, and Zionists and Israel have continued to provoke Arab antagonism and direct it toward radicalism, to steer Arab anger against the United States, to provoke the Arabs into wars against Israel, and to manufacture stories of virulent Arab anti-Semitism — all specifically in order to sustain Jewish and Western solidarity with Israel. More recently, Islam itself has become the common enemy, an adversary fashioned so that what Alam calls the “Jewish-Gentile partnership” can be justified and intensified. Focusing on Arab and Muslim hostility, always portrayed as motivated by irrational hatred rather than by opposition to Israeli and U.S. policies, allows Zionists to divert attention from their own expropriation of Palestinian land and dispossession of Palestinians and allows them to characterize Israeli actions as self-defense against anti-Semitic Arab and Muslim resistance.

Alam treats the Zionist/Israel lobby as a vital cog in the machine that built and sustains the Jewish state. Indeed, Theodore Herzl was the original Zionist lobbyist. During the eight years between the launch of the Zionist movement at Basel in 1897 and his death, Herzl had meetings with a remarkable array of power brokers in Europe and the Middle East, including the Ottoman sultan, Kaiser Wilhelm II, King Victor Emanuel III of Italy, Pope Pius X, the noted British imperialist Lord Cromer and the British colonial secretary of the day, and the Russian ministers of interior and finance, as well as a long list of dukes, ambassadors, and lesser ministers. One historian used the term “miraculous” to describe Herzl’s ability to secure audiences with the powerful who could help Zionism.

Zionist lobbyists continued to work as assiduously, with results as “miraculous,” throughout the twentieth century, gaining influence over civil society and ultimately over policymakers and, most importantly, shaping the public discourse that determines all thinking about Israel and its neighbors. As Alam notes, “since their earliest days, the Zionists have created the organizations, allies, networks, and ideas that would translate into media, congressional, and presidential support for the Zionist project.” An increasing proportion of the activists who lead major elements of civil society, such as the labor and civil rights movements, are Jews, and these movements have as a natural consequence come to embrace Zionist aims. Christian fundamentalists, who in the last few decades have provided massive support to Israel and its expansionist policies, grew in the first instance because they were “energized by every Zionist success on the ground” and have continued to expand with a considerable lobbying push from the Zionists.

Alam’s conclusion—a direct argument against those who contend that the lobby has only limited influence: “It makes little sense,” in view of the pervasiveness of Zionist influence over civil society and political discourse, “to maintain that the pro-Israeli positions of mainstream American organizations... emerged independently of the activism of the American Jewish community.” In its early days, Zionism grew only because Herzl and his colleagues employed heavy lobbying in the European centers of power; Jewish dispersion across the Western world—and Jewish influence in the economies, the film industries, the media, and academia in key Western countries—are what enabled the Zionist movement to survive and thrive in the dark years of the early twentieth century; and Zionist lobbying and molding of public discourse are what has maintained Israel’s favored place in the hearts and minds of Americans and the policy councils of America’s politicians.

This is a critically important book. It enhances and expands on the groundbreaking message of Shlomo Sand’s work. If Sand shows that Jews were not “a people” until Zionism created them as such, Alam shows this also and goes well beyond to show how Zionism and its manufactured “nation” went about dispossessing and replacing the Palestinians and winning all-important Western support for Israel and its now 60-year-old “exclusionary colonialism.”

Kathleen Christison is the author of Perceptions of Palestine and the Wound of Dispossession and co-author, with Bill Christison, of Palestine in Pieces: Graphic Perspectives on the Israeli Occupation, published last summer by Pluto Press. She can be reached at kb.christison@earthlink.net.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Hamas Official Murdered in Dubai Hotel Room

By ROBERT F. WORTH and ISABEL KERSHNER
Published:
January 29, 2010

SANA, Yemen — A senior Hamas official was murdered in a Dubai hotel room last week, the Palestinian militant group said on Friday. Hamas accused Israel of the killing and vowed to retaliate.

The official, Mahmoud al-Mabhouh, 50, lived in Syria and was a founder of Hamas’s military wing, which has carried out hundreds of deadly attacks against Israel since the 1980s, Hamas officials said. He had survived several previous assassination attempts, relatives said, including one three months ago that left him in a coma for 24 hours. The Dubai police issued a statement saying that Mr. Mabhouh was killed hours after arriving in the city on Jan 19 by a “professional criminal gang” that left Dubai before the body was discovered. The killers had been tracking him since before his arrival in Dubai, and most of them traveled on European passports, the statement said.

There were conflicting reports about how Mr. Mabhouh was killed, with some relatives saying Hamas officials told them he was electrocuted and others saying he was poisoned or suffocated. Osama Hamdan, a Hamas spokesman in Lebanon, said “we will not talk about the details until we have put all the pieces of the puzzle together.” Israeli officials declined to comment.

Assassinations are rare in Dubai, a polyglot business hub on the Persian Gulf where deposed foreign leaders sometimes sought shelter among the city’s skyscrapers and luxury hotels. But that began to change last year after a former Chechen rebel was shot dead in an underground Dubai parking lot.

“The myth that Dubai is the eye of the storm, and no one will touch it because everyone has an interest, is being blown apart,” said Christopher Davidson, the author of two books on the United Arab Emirates, to which Dubai belongs.

Mr. Mabhouh is said to have organized the capture of two Israeli soldiers during a Palestinian uprising in the 1980s. He was imprisoned several times by Israel. Hamas has ruled Gaza since 2006, but its political leaders are also based in Damascus, Syria. There have been a number of attempts on the lives of Hamas members. Last month two Hamas officials were killed in a mysterious explosion in southern Beirut, near the headquarters of Hezbollah.

In 1997, Khaled Meshaal, the leader of the group’s Damascus politburo, survived an Israeli assassination attempt in Amman, Jordan.

Mr. Mabhouh was buried on Friday in the Al Yarmouk Palestinian camp, near the Syrian capital, on Friday afternoon. Television images showed large crowds of Palestinians in attendance, as pallbearers carried his coffin, draped in a green Hamas flag.

Hamas officials visited the Mabhouh family home in the Jabaliya refugee camp in northern Gaza and vowed to avenge his death.

Ismail Haniya, the leader of the Hamas government in Gaza, kissed Mr. Mabhouh’s father on the forehead and described his son as a hero. Another senior Hamas leader in Gaza, Khalil al-Hayya, told reporters at the Jabaliya home that Mr. Mabhouh was “not the first one the Mossad’s hand has reached.”

“We reserve our right to respond to this crime in a suitable time and place,” Mr. Hayya said. But, he added, “We in Hamas emphasize that our battlefield is the land of Palestine and our battle with the enemy is in Palestine,” and not on foreign soil.

Mohammed Abdel Raouf al-Mabhouh, the brother of Mahmoud, said in an interview that he had last seen his brother in May 1989. Mahmoud felt that he was in danger, according to his brother, because of his involvement in the abduction and killing of two Israeli soldiers in separate incidents that year.

Mahmoud escaped Gaza without telling his family where he was going. Mohammed said he had not been back in Gaza since, but that his wife and children had visited there in 2007.

On Jan 20, according to Mohammed, Mahmoud’s wife called from Syria to say that Mahmoud had been found dead in his hotel room in Dubai, hours after his arrival there.

“We were sure there was something mysterious about his death,” Mohammed said, adding that his brother had been the target of several assassination attempts before.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Report on Al-Quds conference 20-21 January 2010 Crowne Plaza Hotel KL

Organiser: PGPO & IICL (International Islamic confederation of Labour)

Participants: Respective NGOs from Egypt,Syria, Jordan,Lebanon, Morocco, Pakistan,Malaysia, Indonesia, Sudan,Bangladesh ,Iran,Turkey, Croatia,UAE, Palestine, India & Algeria.

Summary report on 2nd day of the conference.

Tabling of resolution.

1. Solidarity & Public Activity.
2. Economic committee.
3. Media & International public opinion
4. Legal & right of return.

All the above resolutions were agreed to be made into strategy & convert into action. The working group need to further discuss a detail action plan after completing the resolution.

Some strong comments from the floor :
- Fund raising required inorder to activate the proposal.
- Establish a distance e-learning & e-training (a door opening to the palestinians). Palestinians who are capable of using computer can work from home.
- Budget is required for such ideas.
- Facing challenges to turn propose project into reality.

Problems raised by Al-Quds delegation (Mufti Al-Aqsa mosque commented)

The number of school in west bank is insufficient. They are also facing a health issue. Historical areas are being demolish due to Israel's military operation & excavation work. Visiting is limited.The zionist creates mischievous activities to manipulate the religious touring. Mufti urged everyone to play a role in saving Al-Quds as the muslim's holy city. A specific committee of Al-Quds must be setted up to potray the truth. Statistic & right figure is important & need to be addressed.

Israel is strong politically & militarily BUT islamic countries can estalish an economic platfom to fight against Israel. Some example like hold an embargo on Israel & their allies. Also promote the use of "Dinar" concept (when dinar is strong the demand for dollar will go down, US & Isreal will eventually decline).

The problem now is, most needed aid, food, material, medical need & money cannot enter Palestine. Government from majority of countries insisted money be transfered to PLO authorities. We are unaware which organisation is control by Israel. The Boycott Israeli product & Israeli supported product must go on.

Some spontaneous ideas of promoting tourism is highligted by the Mufti, create awareness amongst tourist (transportation, hotel) where to visit & where to stay. Continue to maintain activities in Al-Quds, Israeli control Al-Quds. The Mufti keep saying... what we all think of Al-Quds is not that true... they know best their problem. Its impossible to get license from Israel. The school are controlled by
them.

The final request from delegates is to Insist egypt to immediately stop building the concrete steel wall at Rafah border. It was highly debated & no conclusion were reach.

The resolution in English translation wasn't ready yet! They will forward in due course.

During the closing speech, Tun Mahathir emphasized on the importance of unity amongst muslim ummah. The world need to be told on the real situation. Facts on Palestine should be distributed. He mentioned the effort of VP convoy, delivered goods to GAZA & they are majority European. The support should be enlarged. The struggle must be understood by all, irredardless of religion & race.

The struggle is a just struggle not to terrorize the world. It is an attempt to regain what is lost for the Palestinian. Muslim must speak up to the world to support Al-Quds. NGOs plays an important role, we must take action which the government cannot take. The purpose is to support Al-Quds. It is not a government war. Pressure must be continuously impose as to stop the zionist aginst violence & killing of Palestinians. This conference is a new milestone for the struggle. Our task is to increase awareness & gain sympathy from the world.







Session ended at 6.30pm after a photograhy session.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Press Release On Viva Palestina Malaysia’s Boycott Israel Walkabout




Kuala Lumpur, 24th January 2010... Viva Palestina Malaysia (VPM) members, family and friends donned ‘Boycott Israel’ t shirts while taking in a leisurely morning stroll amidst the cool crisp morning air and lush green surroundings of Taman Bukit Kiara. The walk was aimed at encouraging the public to boycott Israel as well as 4 companies which support the Zionist regime through their manufacturing and business operations.

As part of sustained efforts to support the Palestinian cause for freedom and justice, Viva Palestina Malaysia (formerly known as COMPLETE - Coalition of Malaysian NGOs against Persecution of Palestinians) joins the worldwide call for a boycott of Israel.

The Sunday walk was the third activity in a series of ‘Boycott Israel’ events held by VPM starting with our Boycott Israel Campaign I held on 15th August at Menara DBKL followed by a ‘Family and Friends Day’ at Sunway Pyramid Shopping Mall on November 14th.

Viva Palestina Malaysia’s activities reinforce the message that was relayed by last year’s ‘Criminalising War’ Conference in Kuala Lumpur at which Y.A. Bhg Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and other prominent speakers like George Galloway and Cynthia Mckinney emphasised the need for perpetrators of war crimes and genocide to be brought to justice. At the very least, there must be efforts made to result in these criminals being ostracized by the world community. The boycott instrument is one such effort which has worked successfully in the past, particularly against the Apartheid regime in South Africa.

We believe measures such as boycotting will isolate and compel Israel to seriously negotiate to end the tragedy leading to the creation of a free and independent state of Palestine.

For info please contact : Yuzaidi at 012 273 4353,
Noraini at 012 277 1710


____________________________________________________________________

VIVA PALESTINA MALAYSIA, formerly known as COMPLETE (COALITION OF MALAYSIAN NGOs AGAINST PERSECUTION OF PALESTINIANS) is a coalition of more than 50 NGOs that cuts across racial, religious and political lines in Malaysia. This coalition was formed after the recent escalation of Israel-Palestine conflict that culminated in the invasion of Gaza. We intend to work closely with foreign NGOs with similar objectives, and together as a worldwide united front of NGOs, act as an effective pressure group to governments, pushing for a just and comprehensive resolution of the conflict.

VIVA PALESTINA MALAYSIA’s VISION:

To effectuate a just, equitable, prompt and sustainable resolution to the conflict in Palestine.

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