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The region: Party like it's 1939
By BARRY RUBIN
09/12/2013
Despite the thinnest of veneers, 2013 is much like 1929, 1941, 1948, 1979, 2000-2004, etc., as far as Israel’s place in the Middle East goes.
 
I have been working hard in the column to explain to people that Iran’s nuclear weapons are not the major threat to Israel. Rather, 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.

Given Secretary of State Haman the Agagite, it is unfortunate that there is no King Ahasuerus. Of course some of this, especially in the West, is due to the phony two-state or at least two-stage-to-extinction solution. I should mention this is not just a knee-jerk conclusion on my part, but one reached over the course of 45 years. Of course, we can always hope for a Queen Esther, who in answer to the king’s, “Where is the man who has dared to do such a thing?” could reply, “The adversary and enemy is this vile Haman.” Somehow, I don’t see Michelle Obama playing such a role.

Here’s some background illustrating how ridiculous the current focus only on Iran’s nuclear program is: 1929: Hebron massacre of Jews. No Arabs massacred.

1937-1939: Arabs fight war against British mandate of Palestine including terrorist assassinations.

1939: Jordan and Egypt are inclined to prevent Israel’s creation by diplomatic means but the Palestinian Arabs, Saudi Arabia and Iraq want violence.

1939: Saudi Arabia secretly negotiates weapons purchase for the Palestinian Arabs from Nazi Germany.

1939: Muslim Brotherhood subsidized by Nazi Germany. Seventy- five years later, the grandson of the head of the Brotherhood and the son of the Palestinian European leader were permitted by The New York Times, without contradiction, to write that the Brotherhood believed in parliamentary democracy and was pro-British during the war.

Meanwhile, the Brotherhood and the Arab-Palestinian leadership from Berlin were advocating massacres of the Jews in Egypt, and the government was providing maps of British fortifications to the German army.

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, 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: Arab refusal of UN partition giving a Palestinian Arab state.

1955: Soviet-Egyptian alliance.

1956: Suez War: Israel pressed to pull back by US 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. The assassination of almost every Arab leader willing to make peace with Israel.

1973: War.

2000: Refusal of UN partition to receive a Palestinian Arab state.

There’s lots more, but really, what’s the point? The situation today is just more of the same. It is blindingly obvious that despite the thinnest of veneers, 2013 is pretty much the same as 1929, 1941, 1948, 1979, 2000-2004, etc., as far as Israel’s place in the Middle East goes. That is a terrible and sobering conclusion – but it is the truth.

Remember that Iran (34 years) and Turkey (about 12 years) are relatively new additions to existential conflict with Israel.

When asked in a recent poll if Israeli-PA negotiations would ever lead to peace, 25 percent of Jewish Israelis said yes, while 73% of them said no. Remember, many of those Jews who were against still – or used to – vote for the Left. It is frustrating that Israel and Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s “hard line” is 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 US secretary of state George 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.”

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, anti-Semitism 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.”

But wait, there’s more. Here is Khamenei’s analysis of US 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 pharaoh ended up being drowned in the sea. I don’t think that there is any good intention for the US 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 wait a minute, that rings a bell. Who was it that used to go on about who could not be called human? Where have we heard that before? Ah, that’s right: Nazi Germany. That didn’t end well, did it.

Any by the way, the Obama administration did not condemn these vicious anti-Israel statements, nor did it alter any policy because of them. Holocaust? Yawn. Meanwhile, US 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. Brandeis University suspended its partnership with al-Quds University after the West Bank University had a rally that was meant to honor the martyrdoms of Islamic Jihad terrorists, 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?

The author is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center at the Interdisciplinary Center (IDC) Herzliya and is editor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) journal.
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