(de) Situation in Israel/Palästina nach den Angriffen auf den Gaza-Streifen

a-infos-de at ainfos.ca a-infos-de at ainfos.ca
Tue Jan 6 23:00:50 CET 2009

Hier ein aktuelles Interview mit einen israelischen Anarchisten zur
aktuellen Situation. Übersetzung und gegebenenfalls Erläuterungen folgen.
Weiterer interessanter Link, auch wenn nicht ganz neu:
http://www.anarchie.de/main-69219.html "What can we in Germany and Europe do
against the war?" ----

Well, perhaps we should start with what you can do. First, let's define
targets. Stopping the Israeli attack is necessary, but that is only the very
short-term - more attacks are sure to follow from time to time as has been
the case ever since the October 2000 events (and the beginning of the second
Intifadah). Also, assuming you are not powerful enough to significantly
influence your (federal) state government's foreign policy (or to effect a
revolution) in the near future, I would think you have two remaining courses
of action, to be pursued in parallel:
The first is combatting disinformation and prejudice about the situation in
Palestine in general, and about the Gaza strip and Hamas in particular. As
far as I can tell, western media is in general accepting of the depiction of
Hamas as a terrorist organization which has taken over a piece of land. Now,
for us as Anarchists, that's not too bad a portrayal of someone, since
obviously when the people of a certain region rise up and remove the
existing regime or government, in today's day and age, that's exactly how
they would be described. But for most people this means something evil and
illegitimate. What is in fact the case, as you probably know, that Hamas is
a ruling political party in the Palestinian semi-state - it won the
elections and has all the questionable legitimacy of a democratically elect
state government. Fatah, its somewhat-more-collaborationist rival attempted
a military coup, aided by Israel and the US, which was successful in the
west bank where Israel and Fatah are stronger and can operate with less
restraint, and thwarted in Gaza by Hamas militia. Hamas are no angels even
as a statist entity: They were rather vicious in the infighting with Fatah,
and are suppressing speech and (mostly Fatah) political opponents in the
Gaza strip. But relative to external conditions, one could say that their
rule has been a marked improvement over the Fatah years. With respect to
religious extremity, Fatah are a religious conservative party; they're not
fundamentalist, like, say, the Taliban in Afghanistan. I'm not sure how well
they would compare on questions of religion to conservative religious
politicians in Europe, but I would think they're not too far off; you know,
"modern-day materialist permissiveness and non-authoritarian education are
at the root of many/most of society's problems". So one should consider them
as political opponents on such issues rather than some crazed madmen. The
thing is, we're dealing with Islam rather than Christianity here; had they
been conservative Christians nobody would have been demonizing them as is
now the case. It is interesting to note, by the way, that the Palestinians
in the west bank and Gaza have become more conservative religiously than was
the case 40 years ago when these regions were occupied by Israel. Now, this
is just a small part of what can and should be said, and written, and read
by Europeans, and I believe is not. There's a lot more, like Hamas'
political positions, which are grossly misrepresented; in fact, some people
in Germany, especially anti-Imperialists, may be attributing to Hamas
positions which are far beyond what it's really after, so "disillusionment"
efforts are relevant to the political left as well as to the public in
general; or the fact that some Israeli towns taking rocket fire are in fact
built on the location of ethnically cleansed Palestinian towns and villages,
some of whose residents are currently in refugee camps in Gaza. etc.

The second course of action is concrete and (almost) direct aid. You should
try contacting Palestinians in Gaza. In fact, You should probably contact
the Palestinian government (the Gaza government effectively, not Abbas'
government) itself, at


ask them if they have liaison offices in Germany. Ask them what they need. A
lot of it you might not want to help with due to disagreement with Hamas
politics, and a lot of it is not politically meaningful - although still
worthwhile - such as medical supplies which might be able to pass through
Egypt or Israel etc. But there might be a chance they might ask for
something that you as groups or individuals feel that you can help with.
Now, I know - this is "collaborating with a state apparatus". But in your
situation it's unclear you can get around that, and even interacting with
the Palestinian state might be a challenge. Gaza is, after all, in grave
crisis, and should be supported in such a way that the Palestinian
resistance (by which I don't mean Hamas in particular, although Hamas is a
part of it to some extent) is not broken, and the population does not die or
get expelled.

It seems that significant section of the Israeli Left are supporting the
war, is this true?
Is there restistance in Israel against the war?
Among Israeli Jews (or rather, I should say Hebrew-speakers, but let's not
delve into definition issues) there is overall support and not much
resistance to the operation in Gaza. Opinion polls from early last week say
about 75% (IIRC) of the population support the operation, although 67% don't
believe it will end rocket fire on the settlements surround Gaza. 75% means
virtually ~90% of Israeli Jews. This as opposed to close to 100% of Jews who
supported the second Lebanon war initially, two years ago. Many columnists
draw parallels between the two events (although not the obvious one, being
that the rocket fire is in general instigated by Israeli aggression and
could have been avoided, at least in the short term, by less belicose and
violent policies). The support will probably wane over time, as cease fires
are suggested internationally and Israeli soldiers start dying in the ground

The Israeli Jewish (non-Zionist) left, which is very small, is opposed to
the war, as well as all the Palestinian political sphere, from the Islamists
through the liberals to the soft-socialist nationalists (remind yourselves
again that socialism + nationalism does not mean Nazism even though it's
technically the same term). This week has seen an average of 1.5
demonstrations a day here in Haifa, and many demonstrations in other places
all over the country as well. Interestingly enough, some presumptive members
of parliament in the Meretz party list have quit in protest over the party's
support for the attacks on Gaza, signaling a move towards the DFPE (the
democratic front organization of the communist party) which has recently
done well in local elections. Remember that parties like Meretz or Labor
(from which the minister of defence originates) are called "left" in Israel,
although they are in no way that, and in a European context would be
considered a centrist liberal and a conservative party, respectively.

Oh yes, I forgot to mention: We have parliamentary elections scheduled for
next month. Many suggest that the entire operation, or at least its scale,
are nothing more than a part of the election campaign of Ehud Barak and
Tzipi Livni, the Labor and Kadima party heads respectively, who are expected
to lose out to a Likkud coalition headed by Benjamin Netanyahu. The
situation of the labor party has been looking particularly grim - 11 seats
for a party which used to get 45 and above, and was the ruling party for 29
years straight - and the campaign has given them 5 more. This question of
motive is even being discussed on mainstream media, which manages at the
same time to support the operation and be somewhat cynical about it.

On a positive note, we had a 7,000-person strong anti-war demo tonight in
Tel-Aviv. The slogans sucked, but still. The Israeli Palestinian political
movements organized a national demo today as well, in Sakhnin, which in my
estimate as a participant was about 50,000-70,000-person strong.

Will we see a third Intifada?
This question is not really meaningful. Intifadah, literally, is the
"shaking off (of a yoke)". It describes a situation of a disruption of the
normal and steady state of life under occupation (direct or with the help of
the collaborationist Palestinian National Authority) by an uprising. But
there's no prolonged calm, not even relatively, which could be disrupted by
an uprising... except perhaps in the west bank, where all organizations not
loyal to Fatah rule have been basically outlawed, with only some allowed to
resume functioning, and is under sort of a double martial law, by Fatah and
Israel. This could erupt, but I wouldn't call that a third Intifadah. we're
in the middle of a struggle and not in a phase of quiescence. If you're
asking about mass mobilization in the struggle, that does exist in Gaza, as
we've seen in the forcing of the Egyptian border twice already, and the
spreading out of tens of thousands of demonstrators near the barrier
separating Gaza from the rest of Palestine (it was early this or in 2007, I
don't recall exactly). Bear in mind that Israel has no qualms about firing
into large crouds of people, both in Gaza and the west bank, so organizing a
mass demonstration almost surely means sending some people to their deaths.

Are the perspectives for an common future of all people in Palestine thrown
Not at all; that is, they're no farther today than they were two weeks ago -
which is pretty far off. Ironically, the prospect of two states - an
incommon future, if you will - is the one losing viability, even among its
supporters, as Israel is proving itself to be intolerable as a regime (both
to its Arab citizens and to the Palestinians in the 1967 OTs), and as the
settlement, land confiscations, and the carving up of the west bank
continue. Some Zionist commentators are warning that if a permanent
agreement is not reached soon, two states may no longer be an option. How
Israeli Jews and Arabs are to interact and relate other than with violence,
hatred and racism (mostly from one side of course) is indeed a question very
difficult to answer. This week at the Technion, my university, the anti-war
demonstration contained not more than two Israeli Jews out of about 200
people; while on the other side, the counter-demo was chanting "an Arab = a
Saboteur" and "Death to the Saboteurs" and "Arab ingrate, hand back your

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