Al-Jazeerah: Cross-Cultural Understanding
Opinion Editorials, June 2010
The Violent Radicalization of Israel
By Rev. Ted PikeAl-Jazeerah, ccun.org, June 7, 2010
Israel's PR representative, the Anti-Defamation League, accuses the political right in western nations of moving toward increased "violent radicalization." Yet, that description applies best to the behavior of Israel toward the "Free Gaza" flotilla this past week.
As a result of mounting criticism of Israel's bombardment and quarantine of Gaza, Israeli leaders now portray Israel's strong critics as potentially violent terrorist sympathizers and insist that Israel's response be correspondingly severe.
Last December, Diaspora Foreign Minister Yuli Edelstein said “to be anti-Israel is to be anti-Semitic.” Foreign minister Avigdor Lieberman agreed that strong criticism of Israel is anti-Semitism: cooperation with terrorists who desire the destruction of the Jewish state. This week Lieberman portrayed the "Free Gaza" flotilla as "violent propaganda."
Demonization of critics is a beginning that leads Israel to extreme, unlawful, and—as we see in the slaying of nine peace activists—violent conclusions. If Israel's critics are potentially violent terrorists, then, according to Israel:
ADL Brings Israel's Premises to the World
Ominously, the Anti-Defamation League, Israel's PR representative and official opponent of what it calls the global anti-Semitism "pandemic," is bringing to the western world the same dire suspicion (even paranoia) against critics of Israel. Increasingly, ADL and "ADL South," the Jewish Southern Poverty Law Center, portray critics of Zionism as using legitimate criticism only as a mask for the same virulent, Jew-destroying anti-Semitism that spawned the Holocaust. Yet ADL/SPLC are not content to vilify critics of the Jewish state. Their negative stereotyping extends to all in the Christian/conservative right who resist secular Judaism's pro-homosexual, pro-abortion, pro-hate law agenda. That includes tea partiers, militia groups, and the whole evangelical right, whom they now portray (in their MIAC Missouri police document) as potentially violent domestic terrorists. ADL echoes Israel's justification of its attack on the peace flotilla. It says the flotilla exists "to lure the Israeli military onto the ship where many were waiting to attack them. It is deeply disturbing that the leaders of the flotilla and their sponsors were willing to engage in an elaborate sham as a pretext for ambushing and violently attacking Israeli military personnel." (May 31 “ADL Calls Flotilla to Gaza a Deliberate Provocation against Israel”)
Reality may be provided by Knesset member Hanin Zoabi (Balad) who participated in the flotilla. "It was clear from the size of the force that boarded the ship that the purpose was not only to stop this sail, but to cause the largest possible number of fatalities in order to stop such initiatives in the future."
What is really disturbing is the predictable sympathy of evangelical media to the transparently manipulative ADL/Israeli point of view. Although leadership of the religious right in America is widely aware of ADL's boast that it was behind creation and passage of the potentially Christian-persecuting federal hate crimes bill, evangelical oracle WorldNetDaily rushes to agree with ADL/Israel in this dispute. Through WND's Jerusalem-based mouthpiece to Mossad, Aaron Klein, WorldNetDaily denigrates the "violent Gaza flotilla." It quotes the government of Israel, saying the peace activists had "clearly prepared their weapons in advance" in order to attack Israeli commandos.
Thus, it is not just 679 peace activists who were unlawfully attacked or threatened by Israel as terrorist sympathizers. ADL/Israel views critical, uncooperative humanity, floating in a sea of increasingly turbulent doubt and disapproval of Israel, as its enemies. As such, it is you and I who must also submit and be quiet - or face similar violence.
According to the demonstrated behavior of Israel this week, the whole world is now subject to its jurisdiction.
Rev. Ted Pike is director of the National Prayer Network, a Christian/conservative watchdog organization.
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