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Sunday, July 17, 2011

MJ Rosenberg claims no one is trying to delegitimize Israel. Ha!

An op-ed by MJ Rosenberg in the LA Times:
Israel can't be delegitimized, and no one is trying to do so. But the idea does serve the purpose of diverting attention from the Israeli occupation of the West Bank and the blockade of the Gaza Strip.

Suddenly, all the major pro-Israel organizations are anguishing about "delegitimization." Those who criticize Israeli policies are accused of trying to delegitimize Israel, which supposedly means denying Israel's right to exist.

The concept of delegitimization has been used as a weapon against Israel's critics at least as far back as 1975, when then-U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Daniel Patrick Moynihan accused the international body of delegitimizing Israel by passing a "Zionism is racism " resolution. That may have been the last time the term was used accurately.
Is this guy serious? What does he think the entire purpose of the BDS movement is, if not to delegitimize Israel? What exactly doesn't he understand about the slogans being shouted outside the Ahava store just this weekend, "From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free"? (There is also nothing "sudden" about it, as he admits himself - the term has been around since at least 1975 and the concepts since 1948.)

Maybe Rosenberg needs to read an actual article, published in the mainstream pro-PalArab media, that says explicitly "our aim is to delegitimize Israel." Would that convince him?

Luckily, that exact article was published only this past week in the Uprooted Palestinians site, the Palestine Free Voice site, the far left MWC News and the French Palestine-Solidarite site, among others. It says:
The progressive movement of de-legitimization of the colonial and racist Israel has spread throughout the world. International conferences, a Durban (2), international forums, some commissions of the United Nations itself have also contributed to the change. People around the world claim more and more solidarity with the resistance and has organized to block the roads in their own countries, boycott of Israeli made goods and sanctions against representatives of the Zionist entity, including arrest warrants of its war criminals. And the proliferation of the Zionist entity in media bypasses the media subject to Zionist lobbies and disseminates information and anti-Zionist analysis.
This is not a Zionist site claiming that the so-called progressive movement is working to delegitimize Israel - but the "progressives" themselves!

Lawrence Davidson at Redress.cc put his own spin on this, only two weeks ago, in response to another Rosenberg piece:
There is a growing, world-wide movement of civil society seeking the isolation of Israel at all levels. This is the same strategy that brought change to apartheid South Africa. And, towards the growth of this movement, intellectual debate is very useful and important. It is no accident that the Zionists point to those who advocate boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) against Israel as the number one enemies within their category of delegitimizers. I think they know, or at least sense, that the BDS movement is the very best long-term strategy for those who wish to force Israel to rid itself of what makes it truly illegitimate – its Zionist ideology.

Sounds a lot like the "Zionism is racism" argument that Rosenberg admits was an attempt to delegitimize Israel!

These are only two recent examples. For Rosenberg to argue that the "pro-Palestinian' movement represented by the likes of the late Vittorio Arrigoni or George Galloway do not do everything they can to de-legitimize Israel is beyond absurd. In fact, every major Palestinian Arab group worldwide insists on the "right to return" - what is that if not an effort to delegitimize Zionism and the very reason for Israel's existence?

There is also the small matter of Iran and its satellites in Syria, Lebanon and Gaza. They make it pretty clear that they will never accept the state of Israel in any form.

Then again, he continues to push lies himself:

The Palestinians are not, after all, seeking statehood in Israeli territory but in territory that the whole world, including Israel, recognizes as having been occupied by Israel only after the 1967 war. Rather than seeking Israel's elimination, the Palestinians who intend to go to the United Nations are seeking establishment of a state alongside Israel.
Yet the poll of Palestinian Arabs that was publicized last week shows that 66% of Palestinian Arabs say that the "two state solution" is only meant to be a stage on the way to - you guessed it - destroying Israel. Not a poll of Hamas members, but of Palestinian Arabs who already live in the areas of British Mandate Palestine as a whole. (And I would bet that the Arabs of Palestinian descent who live in Syria, Lebanon and elsewhere would be even less accepting of a two-state solution.)

And these wonderful moderates that Rosenberg is praising for being willing to accept a state in the territories occupied by Jordan and Egypt from 1948-1967 are still insisting, today, on the same "right to return" meant to destroy Israel.

The truth is completely different from how Rosenberg is painting it.

It is true that Israel is not going anywhere, and that there is no short-term existential danger from BDS or flotillas or Iran. But it is also true that the delegitimization campaign has been effective at making Israel look like a rogue state, and exaggerating its perceived crimes way out of proportion to reality and to use that twisted view of reality to add more ammunition against Israel's very existence - from NGOs, from "non-aligned" nations, and from the entire Muslim world. The war against Israel is a long-term battle, designed to isolate and weaken it to the point where it will eventually be destroyed - militarily, demographically, or otherwise.

And Rosenberg's writings, whether he intends to or not, helps work towards that goal.

Maybe that is why he writes such nonsense - because he doesn't want to admit his part in the entire worldwide campaign to de-legitimize and ultimately replace Israel with another Arab state (or two.)