The letter authored by Mr. Itai Bar-Dov, Israel’s ambassador to Guyana (KN, 11/10.2023) is a deliberate exercise in disinformation, akin to Goebbelsian propaganda. Nothing in the letter is based on facts or reality and frankly, the world is becoming extremely tired of Israel’s delusional and ahistorical account of what has taken place in Palestine, dating all the way back to 1917. This is the year that the catastrophic public statement, known as the Balfour Declaration, was issued by the British government, announcing its support for the establishment of a “national home for the Jewish people” in Palestine. On November 29th, 1947, the United Nations adopted Resolution 181 (also known as the Partition Resolution) that would divide Palestine into Jewish and Arab states when the British colonial occupation of Palestine was scheduled to end in May 1948.
Israel’s attempt to present an ahistorical, decontextualized version of the current situation in Palestine, in the hope that the youths of today will have no knowledge of the illegitimate establishment of the State of Israel and its attempt to ethnically cleanse Palestine of its Indigenous population is ill-founded and will never prevail. In fact, it is young people worldwide that are the most vociferous in calling for an end to this Apartheid State. The global majority knows fully well that the continued promulgation of this Israeli propaganda is part and parcel of Israel’s criminal agenda since 1948 to commit genocide against the Palestinian people. No matter what you choose not to mention Mr. Bar-Dov, history has indelibly recorded the brutal massacre carried out by the Zionist militias Irgun Zvai Leumi and the Stern Gang, on April 9, 1948, in the Arab village of Deir Yassin, and how in the same year, these gangs initiated a pogrom which resulted in hundreds of thousands of Palestinian families being driven from their land, forced to leave their homes taking just what they could carry, and taken in trucks to areas outside the new State of Israel.
According to UNRWA, the UN agency created to serve the displaced population, 5.9 million Palestinians are currently registered as refugees, with no right to return to their homeland. There is not the space in a single letter to chronicle the crimes against humanity committed by the State of Israel however, the killing of thousands of Palestinian civilians, men, women and children by the Israeli Defense Force in ongoing wars and repression dating back to 1948 and continuing to the present, is well documented. Mr. Bar-Dov’s attempt to equate the two sides of this conflict and portray the State of Israel as a victim of terrorist violence is contradicted by even his own people. Israeli human rights organization, B’Tselem, has been tracking Israeli and Palestinian deaths since September 2000. Their data shows that the overwhelming majority of deaths are Palestinian and have been for the almost 14 years since B’Tselem began tracking. The group has recorded 8,166 conflict-related deaths since 2020, of which 7,065 are Palestinian and 1,101 Israeli. Many sources record a much higher Palestinian death toll, however even this Israeli human rights organization acknowledges that there is a huge disparity and have consistently called for an end to the reign of terror and violence exerted by the Israeli State. As Guyanese historian, Walter Rodney asks, “By what standard of morality can the violence used by a slave to break his chains be considered the same as the violence of the slavemaster?
Let’s turn to the facts: Israel is the fourth largest military power in the world, outranked only by the US, Russia and China. The Palestinians live under occupation by the Zionist State of Israel. The Gaza Strip is a 25-mile-long, 6-mile-wide enclave, bounded by the Mediterranean Sea to the west, Israel to the north and east and Egypt to the south. With a population of 2.3 million people, the Gaza Strip is one of the most densely populated areas in the world and can be considered the world’s largest concentration camp. More facts: On the one hand, Israel is telling the civilian population of Gaza to leave their homes so they can bomb indiscriminately, and on the other hand they have closed their border crossings and have even resorted to bombing the Egyptian border crossing to ensure that Palestinian civilians cannot flee to safety. They have turned off the power and water in Gaza and have prevented any food and urgent medical supplies from reaching Gaza, which shows the extent to which they control every facet of Palestinian life.
Surely these actions expose Israel’s true agenda, that is, ethnic cleansing. So, when Mr. Bar-Dov states in his letter, “We will…overcome the current challenge, by sticking to the values of freedom, democracy and the respect of human life that we share with the free world”, it simply does not ring true. And what countries is Mr. Bar-Dov referring to when he speaks of those that share Israel’s “values of freedom, democracy and the respect of human life”? Of course, he is referring to the US and Western Europe. Again, he makes another claim that is not borne out by the facts. These countries are charged with countless crimes against humanity, including centuries of colonialism that led to the genocide of Indigenous populations and theft of their resources, the horrific trade in captured Africans, their countless illegal covert and overt regime change operations, countless wars of attrition, including the recent wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria and financial and military aid to fascist forces in Ukraine and Israel. The list of their crimes is endless. If this is what the Ambassador describes as “upholding values of freedom, democracy and respect of human life” then we are truly in the theatre of the absurd.
Reality check: despite Israel’s military might, the Palestinians, a people living under occupation since 1948, whose land and resources are under Israeli control, and who are unable to arm themselves in any comparable way to the State of Israel, have thrown the illegitimate State of Israel into chaos. Reality check: thousands are rallying, not only across the Arab and Muslim world, but in every major capital and corner of this globe, including the masses in the so-called “free world” that the ambassador refers to. Zionism is racism and Israel Mr. Bar-Dov is an Apartheid State, which is in flagrant contravention of international law and the world knows this. No amount of Israeli State fiction can alter this reality. As the African proverb says, “The truth moves through the fire unburned”.
The world is changing. As a multipolar world emerges, the power and influence of Israel and its current partners in crime, the US and their surrogates in Western Europe, is diminishing. Without financial assistance and political cover from the US Empire, the State of Israel will no longer be able to operate with impunity. Like the Apartheid State of South Africa, Israel would be advised to recognize that its time is up. No matter what Netanyahu and his cohorts do, they can never erase this resistance. We are all Palestinians today and there will be no peace without justice – that is abundantly clear.
Having suffered one of the longest occupations in modern history, successive Palestinian generations know nothing other than captivity and the brutality that accompanies it. This has galvanized them into exceptional people. Their resilience, defiance and resistance is a lesson for all of humanity, as we continue to battle tyranny. Their courage, fueled by faith, is in itself a victory. They are David facing Goliath, risking everything, having come to realize the truth in Frantz Fanon’s observation: “Colonialism is not a thinking machine, nor a body endowed with reasoning faculties. It is violence in its natural state, and it will only yield when confronted with greater violence.”
Gerald A. Perreira
Organization for the Victory of the People (OVP)