Het fascisme leeft en groeit op basis van toenemende onwetendheid

The expulsion of Jaffa Arabs in 1948

Holland mocht zich gelukkig prijzen dat het als een broedervolk werd beschouwd door de Duitsers, economisch, cultureel en sociaal nauw verweven met elkaar. Dat kwam tot uiting bij de ontmoeting van de twee legeraanvoerders aan weerszijde van de grens vlak voor 10 mei 1940. Broers met adelijk bloed.
Wat zou gebeurd zijn als die zienswijze bij de oosterburen niet gegolden had? Zou dit land dan leeggeroofd zijn en de bevolking verdreven? Lebensraum scheppen en zich verzekeren van toevoer van grondstoffen was immers een centraal motief voor de nazi’s. Een strategisch gelegen handelsknooppunt was hierbij onmisbaar en in die zin kan ook het bombardement op Rotterdam als friendly beschouwd worden. De plannen, die al klaar lagen tot herstructurering van de stad, konden nu voortvarend uitgevoerd worden. Van verzet tegen de Duitse overheersing was dan ook nauwelijks sprake. Men dacht te weten waar de toekomst lag en aldus werd gehandeld.
Je kunt je niet aan de indruk onttrekken dat met dergelijke opvattingen vanuit Holland steeds gekeken is richting Palestina na de kolonisatie door zionisten, die er hun eerste geboorterecht kwamen opeisen. Het land moest dan wel gezuiverd worden van een volk waarmee ze niets wensten te delen. Dit proces is nog steeds gaande als een sluipende genocide.



Odeh Bisharat

For anyone who hasn’t read the stage play “The Personal Tragedy of Mr. Sami Saada,” recently published by historian Adam Raz, I say don’t delay. Run and buy the book, which they may also plunder. And if the bookstore also has it, buy Raz’s “The Looting of Arab Property during the War of Independence” (both in Hebrew).
Why? From the moment that Benjamin Netanyahu received a mandate to form a government over a month ago, preparations for plunder have not ceased for a moment – just like in 1948. At that time, one looter left with a sink that they pulled out of the wall while a second took gilted coffee cups and a third grabbed a toilet bowl that they thought was used for pickling olives. In the case of Sami Saada of Haifa – the protagonist of Raz’s play – even the rooms of his apartment were snatched from him one after another by squatters, while Saada, a tragic hero, was left facing the unknown. Read the Kafkaesque play and see into what dark depths Saada descended.
What’s currently happening is a second version of plunder of the type committed in the war of 1948. Then, those handsome pioneers plundered the country, its land and its personal belongings. Now a second conquest is taking place – the plunder of the country from those “pioneer” looters.
What will this war be called? Worry not. The Israeli army’s computer will find an appropriate name. And if the computer is frank with itself, maybe it will suggest: The Second Looting War, patterned after the Second Lebanon War. One war follows another, looting follows looting. By the way, in Lebanon, the pioneers also coveted the soft toilet paper with which well-to-do Lebanese caressed their bottoms.
And it turns out that the twin sister of fascism, and apparently not just in Israel, goes by the name of looting – taking control of the country’s assets, breaking government ministries into pieces and divvying them up to those issuing threats. The plunder is in full swing at the moment as the “Hardal” right-wing religious Zionist parties are endlessly handed new ministries and generous funding, and that’s without mentioning the gigantic plunder that is being handed to the ultra-Orthodox parties.
They’re looting major funding from the Arab and Jewish public while ordinary Haredim are thrown small change that impedes their earning a better income by going to work. Fascism is alive and growing based on increasing ignorance.
Last Monday, I was at the Knesset ahead of a demonstration that evening against the bill designed to permit Shas Chairman Arye Dery to serve in the cabinet despite his recent criminal conviction. Wherever I turned, I encountered right-wing religious Zionist and ultra-Orthodox representatives in the corridors, in the cafeteria and on the stairways. In my mind’s eye, the Knesset resembled the scene at the Winter Palace in St. Petersburg, when it was captured in the Russian Revolution.
At that time, the workers were enraged by the sight of the palace’s dazzling splendor while they had been left without food. They plundered anything they could get their hands on. Today things are different. The light fixtures and other furnishing at the Knesset have remained in place and the looting has shifted to the government ministries and government funding on computers.
I behold it and am amazed. Is this history’s sweet revenge for the major plunder of 1948? At that time, if you were walking down the street without a sofa or a cabinet from an Arab’s home, you were considered a sucker. And if you didn’t plunder a piece of land here or there, you wouldn’t have been entitled to be called the salt of the earth. It turns out that “salt of the earth” is a code name for someone who plunders the land.
In my parents’ village of Ma’alul, land was also plundered, and the wheat, and the property, but they were magnanimous enough not to expropriate the houses. They simply demolished them – so the eye didn’t see and the heart didn’t ache.
But even when history repeats itself, the status of the Arabs remains stable. They remain the plundered, although this time around, they are being joined by many Jewish citizens of the country. Friends, I’m sorry, but that’s what history can do – take revenge. And today, 74 years later, a new species of looters has arisen that doesn’t have mercy on its own people. Welcome to the club of victims of the plunder. And as a long-time member, I am calling for a joint struggle.



HaaretzOpinion19 december 2022

Uitgelichte foto: ASSOCIATED PRESS

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