Tony Greenstein | 03 April 2023 | Post Views:

Jonathan Freedland’s Inability to Understand Israel’s Present Crisis is Symptomatic of Liberal Zionism’s Refusal to Accept that a Jewish Democratic State is an Oxymoron

Whatever the situation and whatever the crisis, Jonathan Freedland can be relied on not to understand it. So it is with his latest essay on [Netanyahu is leading a coup against his own country. But the threat is not only to Israel, Guardian 31 March 2023]

No one quite beats Freedland, the Guardian’s Zionist gatekeeper, when it comes to the ability to write at length and say nothing

Freedland is the man who waged a war against Jeremy Corbyn’s ‘anti-Semitism’ whilst failing even to mention Boris Johnson’s own, genuine anti-Semitism. Jonathan Freedland’s journalism is representative of the collapse in the Guardian’s own journalistic standards. Its representation on the D-Notice Committee, its publishing of fake stories on Julian Assange and the sheer trivialisation of every issue that he touches. Freedland truly has a Midas touch in reverse. In a very real sense the Guardian has been ‘freedlandised’.

West Bank settler at a new outpost

True to form Freedland neither understands Israel’s present crisis nor where it comes from. The very real threat to Jewish democracy, because there is no democracy for Palestinians, including Israeli Palestinians, does not come out of thin air but from the poison injected by the settlement project in the West Bank. Freedland barely mentions the fact that the West Bank settlement project has now gained critical mass with over 700,000 settlers and a corresponding political influence, especially when allied to that of the Orthodox religious parties, Shas and United Torah Judaism and Likud.

The conquest of the West Bank and Gaza resulted in Religious Zionism, which till 1977 had formed coalition governments with the Israeli Labor Party, transforming into support for political messianism whose ultimate goal could only be the ethnic cleansing of Palestine and its coronation in a Third Temple.

But who was it who sponsored the original settlement of the West Bank, including the ultra-nationalists of Hebron, if not Israeli Labor? It was the stalwarts of the Israeli Labor ‘left’, Yigal Allon, Yisrael Galili and Yitzhak Tabenkin, who helped found the Greater Israel movement because they saw, quite correctly, that the settlement project in the Occupied Territories was but an extension of the internal colonisation of pre-67 Israel itself.

The Jewish Nazi Who is Israel’s Police Minister

It wasn’t Itamar Ben Gvir or Bezalel Smotrich who first Who up the Judaisation (in Nazi Germany this was called Aryanisation) of the Galilee, Negev and then East Jerusalem. This was all the work of the Israeli labor movement.

Jerusalem – Ongoing Ethnic Cleansing and House Demolitions

In a very real sense the demonstrations that we have seen in Israel are the rage of Caliban at seeing his own face in the mirror. There is nothing that Smotrich and Ben Gvir advocate, including the wiping out of Harara, that the Israeli Labor movement did not pioneer in the Nakba.

Freedland has no problem in justifying the Nakba and demonising anyone, which was Corbyn’s ‘crime’, for advocating for the right of return of the Palestinian refugees.

The Mothers of the Plaza

No-one is more devoted to a ‘Jewish’ state than Freedland. What Freedland cannot or will not understand is that Israel is not a refuge from anti-Semitism. Quite the contrary. Zionism has always thrived on anti-Semitism as Argentinian Jews found to their cost during the years of its neo-Nazi Junta (1976-1983 ) when Israel collaborated with the Junta and refused to say anything about its torture and murder of up to 3,000 Jews. Israel had a profitable strategic, political and military relationship with that junta.

Nor does Freedland understand why the sticking plaster of the Good Friday agreement in Northern Ireland worked, up to a point, in securing a frozen peace whereas the Oslo Accords were an abysmal failure. Ulster Unionism no longer had the political strength to fight for a Protestant State for a Protestant People (James Craig) whereas Zionism had lost none of its appetite for colonisation and a Jewish Supremacist State. All it needed was time to consolidate. Yet even in Northern Ireland the question of  Partition looms large as we have seen over Brexit and the Northern Ireland Protocol.

Smotrich – Head of West Bank Military Administration – called for the ‘wiping out’ of the Palestinian town of Huwara

The only solution in Israel is a state of all its citizens as opposed to a Jewish state. However the abolition of Israeli Apartheid is the one solution that Freedland will not countenance because he is a Jewish chauvinist. As the Israeli government prepares legislation that will ban Israel’s Arab parties, thus ensuring that the only governments Israel will know in the future are those of the far-Right, Freedland fails to perceive that a ‘Jewish’ state, like all ethno-nationalist states, can only go in one direction.  If you want a state of racial purity then who better to carry it out than those who will complete the project and not stop halfway?

Lapid & Biden

All Zionist parties are committed, in Yair Lapid’s phrase to ‘maximum Jews, maximum land and minimum Palestinians.’ Who better to carry it out than those who believe in there being no Palestinians rather than ‘minimum’ Palestinians (other than slaves and hewers of wood and drawers of water?

The irony of Freedland is that when faced with finding a genuine Jewish hero during the Holocaust to eulogise he was forced to choose an anti-Zionist, Rudolf Vrba, since the Zionism movement had distinguished itself by its collaboration with the Nazis!

Tony Greenstein

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Tony Greenstein

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