Tony Greenstein | 22 May 2023 | Post Views:

YouTube Collude with Zionism’s Genocidal Racism By Deleting Videos of Their Crimes Under Hate Speech Policies

Pogrom against Palestinians by Jewish Settlers Jerusalem Day

Last Thursday 18 May the annual ritual of thousands of settlers being herded and protected by the Israeli Police through Damascus Gate in East Jerusalem took place. They chanted a variety of racist slogans, such as the delightful ‘Death to the Arabs’ whilst attacking any Palestinian they could lay their hands on.

It was an Israeli Labor government that instituted Jerusalem Day in 1968 as an assertion of Jewish Supremacy over Arab Jerusalem.

Last year it was Security Minister Omar Bar Lev, a member of the Israeli Labor Party, who gave authorisation to the Flag March and the inevitable pogrom through East Jerusalem.

You will remember that the Israeli Labor Party was part of the so-called Government of Change with Benny Gantz, who outlawed 6 Palestinian Human Rights groups at the stroke of a pen, including the highly dangerous Defence for Children International – Palestine. Whatever else it was the Change Government represented no change for Palestinians.

This year the march was led by Israel’s Police Minister, the neo-Nazi Police Minister Itamar Ben Gvir of Otzma Yehudit, Jewish Power. In the West the very term ‘Jewish Power’ is considered an anti-Semitic phrase but not in Israel where it is a reality.

Bogi Yaalon, “Mein Kampf,” reversed and Jewish Supremacy ideology infiltrated the government

Even Moshe Yalon, the right-wing former Likud Defence Minister has characterised Ben Gvir as ‘Mein Kampf in reverse’ but the yellow press and the craven BBC cannot bring themselves to describe in simple words the record of Gvir, who had on his living room wall until recently the picture of Baruch Goldstein, the man who massacred 29 Palestinian worshippers in the Ibrahimi Mosque in Hebron in 1994. This is what Zionism has evolved into.

Western Hypocrisy

Just imagine what the BBC and the British press would say if in Iran, which has the second largest Jewish community in the Middle East after Israel, some 25,000, thousands of  Muslims were to march through the Jewish parts of Tehran chanting ‘Death to the Jews’.

You would have every talking head in the media condemning this in no uncertain words and talking of a second holocaust yet when it comes to the equivalent behaviour by Israeli Jewish settlers and their government supporters, there is absolute silence – not just by the British media but the New York Times, Washington Post and the rest of the prostitute press in the West.

Indeed last year we had the spectacle of the BBC’s disgusting racist, their correspondent in Israel, Yolande Knell, reporting that the pogrom through East Jerusalem was a ‘festive’ event. ‘It feels like a party’ this creature twittered into a microphone.

there are just thousands upon thousands of young Israelis like this that I’ve seen around the city the mood of them is really jubilant, it’s festive, it feels like a party.

As I wrote at the time:

‘One wonders what Yolande would have made of the Nazi pogrom Kristallnacht in November 1938. Perhaps she would have been caught up in the enthusiasm of the Nazis’ Sturmabteilung (SA) as they burnt Jewish synagogues and smashed Jewish shop windows, declaring that

there are just thousands upon thousands of young Germans. The mood of them is really jubilant, it’s festive, it feels like a party.

BBC Reporter Yolande Knell reporting on the Zionist pogrom on Jerusalem Day May 2022

But it’s not just the BBC and the British press who ignore Israel’s pogromists. The social media companies do their bit to help keep people in ignorance.

At 1.02 in the morning of 13 May I received notice from Youtube that they were taking down the video below

Jerusalem Day Demonstration by Settlers – Shireen is a Whore because ‘ we think it violates our hate speech policy.’ They went on to justify their crass decision because ‘it’s important to us that YouTube is a safe place for all.’

However I was informed that ‘If you think we’ve made a mistake, you can appeal and we’ll take another look.’

Now I have had experience of this kind of thing before. Not so long they took down a similar video. On that occasion it was a group of Israeli right-wingers shouting at Jewish demonstrators against house demolitions in Sheikh Jarrar in Jerusalem that ‘Hitler was right’ and telling them that they should have died in Auschwitz.

Despite me telling them that far from advocating what was in the video I was exposing the Zionists as the racists and fascists that they were Youtube turned down my appeal. I could have saved my breath because Youtube aren’t interested in exposing Zionist and Israeli racism. Their sole interest was in preventing the exposure of racism –all under the rubric of ‘hate speech’! 

In reality Youtube’s ‘hate speech’ policy is a policy to protect hate speech.  This is Youtube’s commitment to anti-racism. We should not be surprised since Google is developing artificial intelligence software for use by Israel’s military for the purposes of surveillance. So I had no illusions in their ‘appeal procedure’ which is in reality a rubber stamping procedure.

In my appeal I said:

Are you stupid?  Do you deliberately conflate EXPOSING racism with ADVOCATING racism?

The video ‘Jerusalem Day Demonstration by Settlers-Shireen is a Whore’ doesn’t support pogroms against the Palestinians by Jewish settlers but OPPOSES their racism.

Are you really that stupid?  Can you not tell the difference between exposing racism and supporting it?  

Let us assume you are not that stupid, which is possible. Then there is only one conclusion to be drawn from your removing this video and that is that you want to protect the very racists that I am exposing. In which case it is YOU not me who is guilty of breaching your ‘hate speech guidelines’

In which case the disgusting hate mongers and racists are the morons who removed this video who do not even have the honesty to admit to their racism

Suffice to say this appeal did not succeed, thus proving that the Youtube Moderators are indeed racist scum.

Below is an excellent article on Mondoweiss by Mariam Barghouti about the political implications of Jerusalem’s annual flag march.

The Flag March is part of the Zionist war on Jerusalem

The Flag March represents the Zionist ethnic cleansing of Palestine and the imposition of Israeli colonial dominance over Jerusalem. It is part of the Zionist forever war on Jerusalem.

By Mariam Barghouti May 22, 2023

On Thursday, May 18, Israeli settler groups held the annual “Flag March” in Jerusalem. The march, or the “dance of flags,” was first inaugurated in 1968, a year after Israeli forces occupied East Jerusalem and took over Palestinian, Syrian, and Egyptian lands in the West Bank, the Golan Heights, and the Sinai. Israeli officials such as the National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir and Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich joined this year’s march, both members of the new far-right Israeli coalition.

In what the Israeli state calls “Jerusalem Day,” the Flag March signals a settler emphasis on the “reunification of Jerusalem.” However, as Palestinians insistent on remaining in their homes, from Sheikh Jarrah, to the Old City, and to neighboring towns in East Jerusalem, the Flag March has become an attempt to drive out the last remaining Palestinians from Jerusalem.

In a statement, the spokesperson for the Palestinian presidential office, Nabil Abu Rudeineh, warned that the Flag March could lead to an “explosion,” with tensions already high amidst Israel’s increased violence in Jerusalem. In a statement to the press, the Palestinian prime minister, Mohammad Shtayyeh, condemned the march as an attempt to consolidate the Judaization and conquest of Jerusalem further, emphasizing that “the Palestinians will continue to confront the policies of the occupation, no matter how heavy the price.”

However, for Palestinians in Jerusalem, the Flag March is not only a political and military move meant to solidify Israel’s stranglehold over Jerusalem but is a day of guaranteed violence and settler abuse.

The backdrop

The ethnic cleansing of Jerusalem began in 1948 with the massacres committed in Deir Yassin, Ein Karem, Abu Ghosh, and other towns surrounding Jerusalem. The military annexation of East Jerusalem began in 1967, and the judicial solidification of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel took effect on July 30, 1980. That summer, the Jerusalem Law was added to the Israeli Basic Law (a set of Israeli laws adopted in lieu of a constitution). The law declared Jerusalem, including East Jerusalem, as the capital of Israel. This further allowed the Israeli government to expand its jurisdiction over Palestinian lives in the city. This also violated international law and the internationally recognized status of East Jerusalem as occupied Palestinian territory. It is what laid the foundation for sparking the First Intifada of 1987. In December 2000, less than a year after the eruption of the Second Intifadathe Israeli Knesset made another amendment to the Jerusalem Law affirming sole Israeli power and jurisdiction over the city.

Since the reunification of Jerusalem in 1967,” the website of Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs reads,

 “the city has become a haven for coexistence and revitalized religious and cultural expression for all faiths. Freedom of worship at all holy sites is guaranteed for the faithful of all three monotheistic religions, the first time in modern history that this has been the case.”

For Palestinians, this so-called “coexistence” has meant surviving the draconian policies of Israeli authorities known for persecuting Palestiniansenforcing apartheid, and committing crimes against humanity. 

Recent Jerusalem escalations

The settler Flag March should be viewed within the context of an escalatory dynamic particular to Jerusalem, in which rightwing settler groups and the Israeli state have attempted to progressively shrink Palestinian rights to the city while expanding Israeli colonial encroachment into Palestinian spaces. This process of encirclement has not only included the takeover of homes in neighborhoods like Sheikh Jarrah or restrictions in areas like Silwan but has also extended to restricting religious and worshiping rights. This has led to chronic and repeated flare-ups in the Old City and local and regional tensions intensifying.

In the first three months of this year, more than a dozen settler attacks were recorded against churches in Jerusalem, while police violations against Muslim worshippers and the systemic targeting of youth in the Old City intensified compared to previous years

On April 15, Israeli forces denied Palestinian Christians from participating in Easter worship by banning them from entry into the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and beating them. “The occupation, through such policies, claims that Jerusalem is theirs,” Archbishop Atallah Hanna told Mondoweiss following the police attack on the Church of Holy Sepulchre during Easter.

Just ten days before that, Israeli forces invaded the third holiest site in Islam, the al-Aqsa Mosque compound in the heart of the Old City, attacking and assaulting peaceful worshippers while they prayed. Hundreds of worshippers were arrested during the month of Ramadan, as almost 47 worshippers from the West Bank were arrested and held in detention for days and exposed to mistreatment and abuse by Israeli police, according to eyewitnesses who spoke to Mondoweiss. Meanwhile, in the West Bank, settlers have carried out arson attacks against Palestinian towns and villages, described even by the Israeli military as pogroms.

The “reunification of Jerusalem” celebrated by the Flag March therefore represents the Zionist promise for the ethnic cleansing to which the Palestinians of Jerusalem have been subjected since 1967, what the Mondoweiss Palestine Bureau has called the “Zionist forever war on Jerusalem.” 

This war has taken on many forms and has passed through several iterations. In 2017, Israeli policymakers attempted to mute the call to prayer for Muslim worshippers in Jerusalem and to set up metal detectors outside the entrance to the Aqsa compound, which resulted in the Bab al-Asbat uprising; in 2020, Israeli police and authorities began targeting bread bakeries in Jerusalem, noting that Jerusalem’s ka’ak bread is an emblem of Palestinian presence and identification in Jerusalem; in May 2021, settlers invaded the Aqsa compound, and again in April 2022, resulting in the beating and arrests of hundreds in both years.

Every year since May 1968, Palestinians in Jerusalem have had to fight for their homes and the right to assembly and freedom of worship. For Palestinians, the Flag March means surviving the violence of the Israeli state and its settlers yearly and refusing to be ethnically cleansed.

Holding a city captive

“[The first time I remember the Flag March] was around ten years ago,” Israa Abu Ahmad, a 29-year-old mother of two, told Mondoweiss on the day of this year’s march on May 18. “My sister was young, maybe 12 or 13, and was filming during the Flag March,” Abu Ahmad continued. “The [Israeli armed forces] then began to beat her, beat her a lot. She was a child.”

Incidents of the kind suffered by Israa are the norm for Palestinians in the Old City during the annual march. While Israelis prepare for ease of movement through the alleyways of the Old City and the streets of larger Jerusalem, Palestinians are herded through metal pathways erected around the city to ensure every Palestinian step is controlled and directed. Like most Palestinian residents of the Old City and its surrounding areas, Israa had to remain home with her children, fearing the likely violence from settlers.

“It’s as though we keep the children in a prison.”

Israa Abu Ahmad

In anticipation of settler and police violence, medical personnel and journalists were present around the city throughout the day to respond to and document developments. At approximately 3:00 p.m., before the march began, Israeli border police began manhandling, assaulting, and impeding medical staff in the area, according to on-the-ground documentation by Mondoweiss. According to reporters on the ground, several journalists were also attacked throughout the day.

Israeli Police obstruct medical personnel from moving around the Old City, Damascus Gate entrance, May 18, 2023. (Photo: Alaa Dayeh/Mondoweiss)

For the majority of the day, Palestinians were forced to remain inside their homes. Even children were denied the space to play. “I have my children here inside. It’s so hard to keep children locked in the house for 24 hours,” Israa told Mondoweiss“It’s as though we keep [the children] in a prison.”

“I can’t play outside today, because they will hit me,” Rafeef Abu Ahmad, Israa’s 6-year-old daughter, told Mondoweiss. 

At that moment, banging was heard outside the house. “Do you see how [settlers] are beating?” Rafeef said, referring to the Jewish-Israeli youth rampaging outside her home near the Aqba Khaldiyeh area of the Old City. 

Just moments earlier, the 6-year-old had witnessed a mob of at least 15 Jewish settlers gathered around a man in her neighborhood, kicking him in the abdomen and continuing to beat him in a circle in what can only be described as an attempted lynching. Three Israeli police officers were on the scene, refusing to arrest the Jewish youth that assaulted the man and instead allowing them to continue on their rampage through the city. 

“In a previous Flag March, my shoulder was broken and, at the time my son was asleep by the window near my aunt’s house,” Israa continued, narrating the different years and forms of violence she and her family witnessed. 

“Settlers started to come out with liquor bottles across the windows and I was afraid for my son, so I went to him and carried him,” she told Mondoweiss. “By carrying my son, the bones in my shoulder broke to pieces. I had to do surgery and get platinum implants.” Israa’s son was nearly two years old at the time.

The impact this has on Palestinian Jerusalemites is also economic. These restrictions, especially during the Flag March, have forced Palestinians to close their shops early to make way for the rampaging settlers. Israa is one of them. “We closed all our shops today. I sew, and I have work. Today I closed the shop because I’m afraid they’ll attack,” she told Mondoweiss.

The day before the march on Wednesday, May 17, the Israeli police sent text messages to Palestinian residents of the Old City and shop owners, signed by the captain of the Israeli public police in the Jerusalem area, Shadi Basis. 

“Tomorrow will be the Flag March for the reunification of Jerusalem, from Damascus Gate on Waad St. to the Wailing Wall. Please take out all your cars and vehicles until 3 p.m., and shop and grocery owners must close at 3:00 p.m. Please adhere in order to obstruct collision and harm,”

Fear to document

The impact of this constant assault on Palestinian existence goes beyond the economic. It becomes an instrument of silencing Palestinians and punishing those who resist.

“We are not as strong as them, so we’re afraid,” a shop-owner in the Old City, who requested to remain anonymous, told Mondoweiss. “If the police ask us for something and we don’t do it, we become targets,” he said. “We’re afraid to have our voices recorded because of the threat that [Israeli police] will carry out revenge acts in different ways.”

“We are living in terror inside the city.”

Um Abed, shop owner

The fear witnessed in individuals and families approached by Mondoweiss for recorded interviews highlights the ways in which Israel punishes exposure. At least a dozen shop owners and residents in the city explicitly informed Mondoweiss they were afraid of repercussions from the Police if they spoke out.

“We are living in terror inside the city,” Umm Abed, a resident of the Old City and small shop owner, explained to Mondoweiss on Thursday morning, as preparations for the march ensued. “But the residents of the city cannot take this on. The youth are being banned from Aqsa, and they are either arrested or denied entry.”

“All the years that have passed are a series of assaults,” Umm Abed continued“People come and document but all we have to protect us is God.”

Umm Abed, a shop owner in the Old City of Jerusalem .(Photo: Alaa Dayeh/Mondoweiss)

“All these marches are provocations,” Nada Khader, 53, told Mondoweiss on Thursday morning as police moved to ensure the alleyways were empty of the visible presence of its Palestinian inhabitants. Khader has been living in the Old City ever since Israeli authorities demolished her home in Beit Hanina twice — the first time in December last year, and the second in January. A widow and a mother of seven, Khader continues to face slow expulsion from Jerusalem.

“They are provoking us Jerusalemites in order to create problems and for them to try and prove their presence to say that Jerusalem is theirs,” she said.

Alaa Dayeh contributed to this article.

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Tony Greenstein

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