A message that keeps on escaping

Israeli/American activist Jeff Halper left Australia this morning after a highly successful two-week visit, speaking to a host of media, upsetting the bigoted Zionist establishment and teaching thousands of Australians about the reality of Israeli apartheid. I was proud to be a part of his visit, via Independent Australian Jewish Voices.

Halper told New Matilda that the Obama administration had to force the Jewish state to end the occupation or its relationship with the super-power was in jeopardy:

Halper’s formula has three stages. “First, Obama must assure Israel, ‘We love you’. Second, he guarantees Israel’s security; Israel can become a member of NATO. And third, the occupation is over — period. You have to be out of every square inch in three to four years. We, the international community, will pay for the redeployment, which the World Bank estimates will cost about $140 billion.”

And when Congress refuses? Halper refers to a strategy of “dual loyalty” that Obama can employ against Congress. As a precedent, he points to Ronald Reagan’s response to Congress when, under pressure from Israel, it attempted to block the US sale of sophisticated surveillance aircraft to Saudi Arabia.

“Reagan stood up and said ‘I am the Commander and Chief, and this is in the vital interests of the US, and you’re all American Congressmen’. The sub-text that the Jews picked up was this issue of dual loyalty. Reagan said to Congress, ‘Are you Americans or are you Israelis?'” Congress backed down.

By bringing the Israel lobby face-to-face with this notion of dual loyalty, Halper is sure Obama will be able to overcome Israeli resistance to ending the occupation. He advises Obama to speak privately with the Jewish leaders, including members of Congress, to get their help convincing Israel to end the occupation.

For the local Zionist lobby, however, it absurdly claimed that Israel was desperate to end its occupation:

The only reason Israeli troops are still there [in the West Bank] is because there is no Palestinian leadership willing and/or able to take control and prevent rocket and other terrorist attacks from the West Bank into Israel.

Yes, continually expanding colonies in the West Bank is the sign of a state that wants to cease its building program.

Human rights abuses are the defining feature of Israeli policies in the territories (just the latest here.) Acknowledging this challenges the fundamentals of Zionism: expansion, domination, control and humiliation.

Text and images ©2024 Antony Loewenstein. All rights reserved.

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