“The sky was all purple There were people runnin’ everywhere Oops out of time,Tryin’ to run from the destruction You know I didn’t even care…So tonight I’m gonna party like it’s 199.”–Prince, “1999”
By Barry Rubin
I have been working hard to explain to people that Iran’s nuclear weapons are not the major threat to Israel. It is obvious.
The problem is that after almost a century, Israel is not just the object of genocide by the Arabs but by many Iranian, Turkish, and newly European and North American Muslims. It is truly awesome how few politically active would-be peacemakers among Arabs and Middle Eastern Muslims there are.
1941: The Palestinians’ Arab leadership asks for a safe haven in Berlin. For the next four years, this leadership organizes thousands of German Nazi troops and SS imams, advises the German government, sends delegations to concentration camps with an eye on setting up death camps throughout the Middle East, etc.
1941: Massacre of Jews in Baghdad; revolt by radical Iraq’s Nazi ally put down.
1948: Refusal of UN partition giving a Palestinian Arab state.
1955: Soviet-Egyptian alliance.
1956: Suez War: Israel pressed to pull back by U.S. victory but gets nothing.
1967: Israel attains victory.
1967: 1970 War of Attrition.
1970: Arab summit–no recognition of Israel, no negotiations, no peace.
1970-1982: Decades of terrorism; the murder of any Israeli in reach; yet relatively little retaliation. And there was the assassination of almost every Arab leader willing to make peace with Israel.
2000: Refusal of UN partition to receive a Palestinian Arab state.
Okay, why go on?
Now consider today. Well, it’s the same thing. It is obvious that despite the thinnest veneer, it is pretty much the same thing as 1929, 1941, 1948, 1979, 2000-2004, etc. That is a terrible and sobering situation, but it is true. Maybe not inevitable, but it is based on leadership. Remember Iran (34 years) and Turkey (about 12 years) are relatively new additions to existential conflict with Israel.
When asked by a recent poll if Israeli-PA negotiations would ever lead to peace, 25 percent of Jewish Israelis said yes, while 73 percent of them said no. Remember, many of those Jews who were against still–or used to–vote for the left. It is angering that Israel and PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s “hard line” are being blamed for this, but it should be obvious that the conflict will not end.
In the meantime, Iran is getting nuclear weapons while Israel is getting nothing but insults from Kerry as the–wait for it–“bad” guy after 65 years. He is unintentionally encouraging murders (two of four Israeli soldiers killed in two weeks were not killed in the territories–one was killed while visiting what he thought was an Arab “friend” and another while sleeping on a bus bench).
Or as former U.S. Secretary of State Shultz explains what is really happening: Iranians will “cut your throat.” He is really encouraging this Iranian throat-cutting.
But no doubt Kerry knows better. On Palestinian television (which incidentally is under protest for censorship by Palestinian journalists who have at times been arrested), he stated,
Failure of the talks will increase Israel’s isolation in the world. The alternative to getting back to the talks is a potential of chaos. I mean, does Israel want a third intifada? I believe that if we do not find a way to find peace, there will be an increasing isolation of Israel.
Two intifadas? Is he going to do something about this if there is a third intifada? Is Kerry going to protect Israel? Because there will be cross-border attacks, and they will only be covered in one-paragraph shorts, while any photos will be of Palestinian terrorists’ grieving families.
So what is Iran doing in the meanwhile? Here are some public statements by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
First, Israel is “the rabid dog” of the region. Iranian leaders have also said that Israel wants genocide against all Muslims. In fact, antisemitism is justified on the basis of the Koran by Iranian leaders. Iran says that everybody in the Middle East wants to destroy Israel.
But here is the tip-off: “Zionist officials cannot be called humans, they are like animals… The Israeli regime is doomed to failure and annihilation.”
Wait, there’s more. Here is Khamenei’s analysis of U.S. positions. He accused Western officials of “kneeling before the Israeli regime.” Moreover, he said, “The government of the United States of America is on the top of the arrogance in the world.” (The audience repeatedly chants: “Death to America.”)
And he continues, “We fight against the arrogance. Arrogance is a word in the Koran. It is used in the Koran for people like Pharaoh, malevolent groups which are hostile to truth and righteousness….” I think that pharaoh ended up being drowned in the sea. I don’t think that there is any good intention for the U.S. here, even though it is going to stop sanctions worth billions of dollars to Iran, and enable them to develop nuclear weapons.
Last, he stated that the,
Zionist regime is doomed to oblivion. The Zionist regime is an imposed regime which is formed by force. None of the formations or creatures which are formed by force is durable, and neither is this one….Unfortunately, some European countries cringe before this creature which is not worthy of the name of a human being, before these leaders of the Zionist regime, who look like beasts and who cannot be called human.
Sounds like he wants peace to me!
But who cannot be called human? Where have we heard that before? Say, Nazi propaganda? Didn’t end well then.
Any by the way, the Obama administration did not condemn these vicious anti-Israel statements nor did it alter any policy because of them.
Meanwhile, the U.S. policy has also hardened Palestinian Arabs’ lines, as shown in statements by leaders. In turn, the Palestinian Arabs have hardened their policy, insulting the United States. Recently, there was a situation in which a Georgetown University session ditched a Nazi speaker but still featured a Nazi professor who denied that bin Ladin had played a role in September 11.
And moreover, Professor Rima Najjar posted on her Facebook page: “What Brandeis University does not understand: Palestinian armed resistance to Zionist colonization is a path to liberation.” Brandeis University suspended its partnership with al-Quds University after the West Bank University had a rally that was meant to honor the martyrs of Islamic Jihad, in which the symbol of Israel, the Star of David, was symbolically stepped on by all demonstrators.
Well, what do you think has been happening for almost 90 years?
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Barry Rubin is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center and editor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) Journal. His latest book, Israel: An Introduction, has just been published by Yale University Press. Other recent books include The Israel-Arab Reader (seventh edition), The Long War for Freedom: The Arab Struggle for Democracy in the Middle East (Wiley), and The Truth About Syria (Palgrave-Macmillan). The website of the GLORIA Center and of his blog, Rubin Reports. His original articles are published at PJMedia.