Israel, right-wing parties and the anti-Islam campaign

Posted on | mei 24, 2011 | 2 Comments

The only nation in the world that still operates as it did during the Cold War is Israel, modeling its foreign policy, to some extent, after the US that has replaced the Cold War with the ‘war on terror’. In fact, the ‘war on terror’ and the US anti-Iranian crusade, as well as the anti-Islam sentiment among many in US and Europe serves Israel’s policy toward the Palestinians much better than the old Cold War.

However, both Israel and the US are about to lose the propaganda war for good, once the UN votes to include Palestine as a member state. If and when that takes place (presumably September 2011), direct or indirect acts of aggression against the UN-recognized state of Palestine by Israel and US will have a very different meaning than such acts had in the past sixty years. The only option for both US and Israel is to negotiate in good faith for all outstanding issues from statehood to water rights for Palestinians. Otherwise, the reconfigured Middle East in due course will have left both patron (US) and client (Israel) in the mid-20th century. What is Israel doing now to counter this prospect other than using the right wing tide in the US and Europe to forge alliances.

On 20 May 2011, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu decided to confront the US, Israel’s patron nation-state, with harsh rhetoric because Obama is vulnerable politically, and he dared to propose pre-1967 borders for Israel and Palestine. Essentially, Israel as a US client state has been pursuing internal colonization and apartheid policies for the last sixty years, and it demands unqualified support for its policies. One after the other, American presidents promising ‘a solution to the Palestinian Question’ – note that for the US this is not an “Israeli Question”, although it is Israel that has imposed military occupation, internal colonization and apartheid policies on Palestinians.

For their part, Palestinians are moving forward on several fronts. In part prompted by the Arab uprisings and pragmatism finally settling in, Hamas and Fatah have reconciled. A united Palestinian front is something that neither Israel nor the US wanted, any more than they want Arab solidarity to emerge as a result of the popular uprisings. Palestinians know that Israel would love to have Palestinians leave the territories and take up permanent residence in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, Egypt and other Arab countries. Given that Israel is not interested in negotiating on the basis of pre-1967 borders and only wants to prolong the status quo of internal colonization and apartheid, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, after consultations with Arab leaders, has decided to bid the UN to become a UN member state.

Masterful at political propaganda like no other nation-state on earth, Israel has been using the ‘terrorism’ issue against Hamas to win time and perhaps change public opinion in the West. The US and Israel will find themselves all alone in the world in September, because it will be very difficult for any UN member not to vote with Palestine that only seeks legitimacy, autonomy, self-determination, and sovereignty – all principles on which the UN was founded.

Under rapidly changing political conditions unfolding throughout the Arab countries and the US seemingly in backed into a corner about the pre-1967 border issue, what can Israel do at this point? Well, some politicians and businesspeople have teamed up with the rising right wingers in the US and Europe. The emergence of the US Tea Party coinciding with the rise of renewed strength of EU right wing parties may reflect the times in which we are living, but it is godsend for Israel. There is a growing realization on the part of those that follow right-wing parties that the centrist ‘democratic’ and socialist parties are indeed politically bankrupt and their policies are essentially the same as those of conservatives.

There have been reports that Israel’s Likud party has networked with the US Tea Party and various extreme right parties in Europe, including the neo-Fascist Aus­trian Free­dom Party and the Belgian Vlaams Belang.
Both of these parties have associations with other extreme right wing parties, including Italy’s Lega Nord, Denmark’s Danish People’s Party, Sweden Democrats, and Slovak National Party.

What is Israel’s Likud doing with the Tea Party, which has both anti-Semitic and vociferously anti-Islamic elements in it? Are Israeli right wingers interested in connecting with largely anti-Semitic European right wingers because all of them see Islamic fundamentalism as a threat? Are Israelis as aware as the extreme right wing European parties that German hegemony over Europe is the future and siding with them entails greater leverage?

In a recent poll, about half of Germans in the survey revealed that they have no qualms about voting anti-Islam candidate. By contrast, voting on anti-Semitic criteria carries the immense stigma, given the universal condemnation of the Nazi past. In short, for Germans and increasingly for the rest of North-West Europeans, anti-Islam prejudice has replaced anti-Semitic prejudice. This is precisely what Israeli right wingers are trying to cultivate.

A few months ago, Israeli businessman Chaim Muehlstein and members of the Knesset met with European ultra-right wingers (Austrians, Germans. Swedish, and Belgians) and signed the “Jerusalem Declaration”. This is a document that guarantees Israel the right to defend itself against ‘terrorist’ – in other words, continue the policies of the past toward Palestinians specifically, and Arabs in general. In part the document states: “We stand at the vanguard in the fight for the Western, democratic community” against the “totalitarian threat” of “fundamentalist Islam.”

If Islamization of Europe and US is the fear of the right wingers, then how could they possibly not support Israel to remain a Zionist state and to fight Palestinians until they are all completely out of the territories ideally, otherwise live like prisoners of an apartheid regime? Israel has nothing to lose playing the anti-Islamization card that the right wing in the US and Europe are also playing to deflect attention from the serious economic and social problems. by playing the Israeli card, European right wingers are trying to secure legitimacy and erase the image of racism.

The stakes for Israel are very high and this is a very dangerous game that right wing businesspeople and politicians are playing, a game that can backfire. Will the mainstream bourgeois parties distance themselves and strongly denounce racism whether it is directed against Jews, Muslim or any one else? Of course, it is important to note that the war on terror, which the US has launched and Israel faithfully followed to further its own policies, not only feeds racism, but it promotes extremism and prevents a permanent solution for the Palestinian people who have been without their own country since the 1940s.

By voting with the majority in the UN and ending the neo-Cold War policy based on the phantom of terrorism, the US can help to diminish political extremism throughout the world. Does the US have any incentive to pursue a democratic course? Only it it is interested in helping to strengthen its own civilian economy and that of the world.

AUTHOR: Jon Kofas
E-MAIL: jonkofas [at]


2 Responses to “Israel, right-wing parties and the anti-Islam campaign”

  1. charles
    mei 25th, 2011 @ 22:17

    if you stand by what you wrote with no double standers then why wasn’t Rhodesia, Republic of China, Republic of Kosovo, Republic of South Ossetia, republic of Orania and Republic of Abkhazia not givin the same treatment as the arabs in the middle east?

  2. MIKE GASTON: Israel needs our support – San Angelo Standard Times «
    mei 26th, 2011 @ 05:25

    [...] [...]

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