Saturday, July 20, 2013

The rabid heritage of Rabbi Kook

The caption on this photo says: “A Palestinian woman throws stones at Israeli soldiers during clashes at a protest against the Jewish settlement of Qadomem.” If you didn’t know Zionist settlers were expanding Qadomem by expropriating Palestinian lands you would think Palestinian mothers as lawless as their children are portrayed by media.

Qadomem (or Kedumim) was settled in 1975 by the Gush Emunim settlement movement. Gush Emunim, which combined rabid Zionism with religious fanaticism, was founded by the appropriately named Rabbi Tzvi Kook. It existed from the mid-1970s until 1984 under the patronage of the most right-wing political forces in Israel & engaged in terrorist attacks on Palestinians, including car bomb attacks. While Gush Emunim no longer exists as an organization, Qadomem is still run by these religious & political nut cases who hold a deranged (some would call it messianic) commitment to taking over Palestinian lands on the belief God gave it to the Jewish people & they are fulfilling a biblical prophecy by taking back the land they call Judaea & Samaria.

Under international law all settlements on the West Bank are illegal but under Israeli lawlessness a distinction is made between legal settlements authorized by the Israeli government (as Qadomem is considered) & illegal outposts or expansions built after 1991. The legal distinction in Israeli law is flouted in actual practice by Zionist settlers & the Israeli military protecting them. If the Israeli government takes any ritual steps (for benefit of foreign media) to dismantle new construction or obstruct expansions in the West Bank, the settlers use a tactic called the “price tag policy” which exacts revenge not on the Israeli army but on local Palestinians--including vandalism of Palestinian property, physical attacks on Palestinians, burning of mosques & fields, uprooting of olive trees, damaging & defacing property.

The fearless spirit of this Palestinian woman is the same as that of Palestinian kids standing with rocks & slingshots against army bulldozers. It’s the spirit of intifada & resistance to ethnic cleansing. Honor the boycott of Israeli products (barcode beginning 729) as a way to support Palestinians in their struggle.

(Photo by Alaa Badarneh/EPA)

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