Zionism must be exposed and discredited

PHILIP WEISS

You could not get a better picture of Zionism than from two recent events. Israel bombed a consulate in a foreign country – Syria – killing top Iranian military officers, among others, and Israel supporters in the U.S. forced the cancelation of the valedictorian address at the University of Southern California because the speaker opposes Israeli genocide in Gaza.

Today Zionism threatens political freedom in the United States and international order.

These actions are consistent. They are expressions of a maximalist ideology that operates on a global level to support the Israeli regime. That ideology, of course, is Zionism, the belief that Jews need a state in order to be safe. Today Zionism threatens political freedom in the United States and international order. It threatens the political tradition of liberalism in the United States by compelling Democratic politicians to pay for more bombs to advance a genocide.

Zionism destroys every good thing in its path.

After 150 years of struggle and practice, Zionism is dedicated to one purpose, the neverending subjugation of Palestinians, who resist their persecution.

There is only one way to fight this ideology. Those who oppose it must explain the truth to Americans: Zionism is racist. Its supporters must be called out and cornered and discredited—as adherents of a Jim Crow ideology.

There is only one way to fight this ideology. Those who oppose it must explain the truth to Americans: Zionism is racist.

I have always said that I might have been a Zionist in an earlier age. Zionism was a perfectly understandable ideology in light of European oppression of Jews. Jews left Europe as refugees, not supremacists. If Zionism had focused only on Jewish safety it might be a tolerable ideology today.

But from the beginning maximalist Zionists won out. They wanted more land with fewer Palestinians. For at least 75 years now this is the Zionist credo, and they repeatedly used terrorism to achieve that goal.

–In the 1920s the socialist leader Chaim Arlosoroff sought to advance ideas of national coexistence with Palestinians. He was murdered on the beach in Tel Aviv in 1933 by Zionist militias that later produced the highest officials in Israel.

–In 1949 a U.N. diplomat, Folke Bernadotte, who had saved thousands of Jews from Nazis during the war, sought to advance plans to keep Jerusalem an international city, as designated by the UN Partition plan. He was assassinated in Jerusalem by a Zionist gang that – again – later produced the highest officials in Israel.

–In the 1990s a Labor Prime Minister, Yitzhak Rabin, declared that Israel would only have peace if it returned land to Palestinians so as to allow them to have sovereignty. Rabin was murdered by a rightwinger who enjoys deep political support to this day.

These murders arose from a consistent program: Israeli leaders have again and again told us that they will not accept a Palestinian state alongside the Jewish state.

Because of Israel’s defiance of international law in the occupied territory and its declaration of higher Jewish rights in the nation-state law in 2018, human rights groups worldwide have stated that Israel is an apartheid state.

Zionists have deployed the antisemitism charge against their critics. You just hate Jews. (No, we hate segregationists.)

Israel has used overwhelming violence to quash resistance. It has repeatedly massacred Palestinians, and in Gaza, in the last six months has indiscriminately killed tens of thousands of women and children, and aid workers. Any sensible person understands that this onslaught will only foster radical resistance.

I don’t support violence against civilians. It is why I have been outspoken against Hamas’s October 7 attacks, and the dehumanization that occurs on both sides in a war.

But clearly Zionism is the root problem. It is an ideology that treats Palestinians as lesser, in their own land. It brought religious nationalism to the Middle East and destabilized a region long before ISIS. It attacks villages so as to solidify “the Jewish majority,” and even the liberal wing rationalizes its actions. (“My father…. was a terrorist,” says Jeremy Ben Ami of J Street – an organization started to oppose Zionist settlements that has achieved nothing for that agenda in 15 years.)

Today Zionism is undermining American freedom. Zionists and sympathizers in the U.S. government pushed the Iraq war that destroyed Arab cities and the American image too. Zionist sympathizers are today justifying a genocide and denying the famine in Gaza– and getting Biden to sign off. The Zionist lobby has corrupted our elections, canceled free speech on a routine basis, wrecked the American Jewish community, and compromised some of the best minds of my generation (including Jewish writers in whom I have observed the tragic loss).

There is only one way to defeat Zionism. It must be indicted and described, as the racist antithesis of everything the American experiment has achieved. Its support must be harried, hectored, and starved. It must be defeated in the United States, in Congress, and at the University of Southern California. We will win, because we must.

(Source: Mondoweiss)