Thursday, November 16, 2017

  • Thursday, November 16, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon
Reading about Israeli political victories through the eyes of Israel-haters who are not used to having the tide turned against them is a lot of fun.

From Scoop.nz: 

Anti-BDS Laws and Pro-Israeli Parliament: Zionist Hasbara is Winning in Italy

By Romana Rubeo and Ramzy Baroud
A proposed law at the Italian Parliament is set to punish the boycott of Israel. In the past, such an initiative would have been unthinkable. Alas, Italy, a country that had historic sympathies with the Palestinian cause has shifted its politics in a dramatic way in recent years. Most surprisingly, though, the Left is as implicated as the Right in the rush to please Israel, at the expense of Palestinian rights.

The sad reality is this: Italy is moving to the Israeli camp. This is not only pertinent to political alignment, but in the reconfiguration of discourse as well. Israeli priorities, as articulated in Zionist hasbara (official propaganda) have now become part of our everyday lexicon of Italian media and politics. As a result, the Zionist agenda is now part and parcel of Italian political agenda as well.

Italy’s anti-Fascist, anti-military occupation and revolutionary past is being overlooked by self-serving politicians, growingly beholden to the pressures of a burgeoning pro-Israel lobby.

The pro-Israel trend has been in motion for years. In a famous interview with the Israeli newspaper Yediot Aharonot in 2008, former Italian President Francesco Cossiga declared: “Dear Italian Jews, we sold you out”.

Cossiga was referring to the so-called “Lodo Moro”, an unofficial agreement, which was allegedly signed in the 1970’s by Italian Prime Minister Aldo Moro and the leaders of The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PLFP). Its understanding supposedly allowed the Palestinian group to coordinate its actions throughout the Italian territory, in exchange for the PLFP keeping Italy out of its field of operation.

The “Lodo Moro” is often used in Israeli hasbara to highlight Italy’s supposed failures in the past, and to continue associating Palestinians with terrorism.

...

In 1974, the Italian government advocated for Palestinian leader, Yasser Arafat’s participation in the United Nations General Assembly; in 1980, it committed to the EEC Declaration of Venice, which recognized the Palestinian ‘right to self-determination’ and, expectedly strongly opposed by Israel and the US.

Throughout the 1980’s, the attitude of Italian government was openly pro-Palestinian, which often lead to foreign policy clashes with Israel and its American benefactors, especially during the so-called Crisis of Sigonella in 1985.

During a speech at the Italian Parliament, socialist Prime Minister, Bettino Craxi, went as far as defending the Palestinian right to armed struggle.

In 1982, the Italian President Sandro Pertini talked at length about the horror of the Sabra and Shatilla massacre in his traditional end of the year address to the Nation.

While center-left political forces supported Palestine to keep good relations with Arab countries, left-wing parties were mainly motivated by the anti-imperialist struggle, which then resonated within Italian intellectual circles.

But things have changed as Italy is now living in its ‘post-ideological age’, where morality and ideas are flexible, and can be reshaped as needed to confer with political interests.

Today, left-wing parties don’t feel the need to stand for oppressed nations. They are too beholden to the diktats of globalization, and are thus driven by selfish agendas, which, naturally brings them closer to the US and Israel.

While neo-liberal politics has ravaged much of Europe in recent years, Italy proved that it is not the exception.

In October 2016, Italy abstained from the vote on the UNESCO resolution, condemning the Israeli occupation of Palestinian East Jerusalem.

Even that half-hearted move angered Israel, promoting the Israeli ambassador to Italy to protest. The Italian prime minister moved quickly to reassure Israel.

Matteo Renzi spoke harshly of UNESCO’S proposal. “It is not possible to continue with these resolutions at the UN and UNESCO that aim to attack Israel”, he said.

One year earlier, Renzi had officially reaffirmed Italy’s commitment to Israel in the Israeli Knesset, declaring: “Supporters of ‘stupid’ boycotts betray their own future”.

During his inaugural speech, Italy’s current President Sergio Mattarella addressed the ‘menace of international terrorism’ by mentioning the attack in front of The Great Synagogue in Rome, in 1982. His words “deeply touched Italian Jews”, according to the right-wing Israeli newspaper the Jerusalem Post.

Zionist groups constantly try to sway Italian public opinion. Their strategy is predicated on two pillars: infusing Israel’s sense of victimhood (as in poor little Israel fighting for survival among a sea of Arabs and Muslims) and injecting the accusation of anti-Semitism against anyone who challenges the Israeli narrative.

The hasbara instruments are working, as Italian politics and even culture (through the media) are increasingly identifying with Israel. Worse still, the pro-Israel feeling is now completely accepted among left-wing political parties as well.

According to Ugo Giannangeli, a prominent criminal attorney who devoted many years to defending Palestinian’s rights, the Italian Parliament is working on several laws, with the sole purpose of winning Israel’s approval.

One of these initiatives is Draft law 2043 (Anti-discrimination act. It ought to be called the Anti-BDS act. The signatories compare boycott of Israel to “disguised anti-Semitism”. If approved, the legislation would provide exemplary punishment for BDS campaigners.

Among the signatories is Emma Fattorini, member of the Italian Democratic Party and also member of the “Committee for the protection and promotion of human rights”. Palestinian rights, are of course, of no concern to Fattorini at the moment since it appears nowhere in her ‘human rights’ agenda.

Another signatory is Paolo Corsini, who abandoned the Democratic Party and moved to left-wing party MDP – Articolo 1. Corsini was also the rapporteur of the “Agreement between Italy and Israel on public safety”, already ratified by the Italian Parliament. The agreement strengthens the relationship between the two countries at a more effective way, in exchange for Israeli sharing of information on public order and how to control mass protests.




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