21 July 2010


Reply to Michael Brull’s reply to Ned Curthoys and Dennis Altman in Overland 198 Autumn 2010

18 July 2010

When Michael Brull wrote his article for publication in the Overland Autumn 2010 issue, the Israeli butchers had not yet committed murder on the high seas in international waters on 31 May 2010 in the Mediterranean, killing in cold blood 9 Turkish citizens trying to take relief goods by ship to the starving Gazans in the Israeli concentration camp, one of the largest in the world, housing about 1.5 million Palestinians whose crime is to be living in territory which Israel wants to ethnically cleanse in order for its religious fanatics to occupy.

And all with the support of the international community!

Brull spends a great deal of time discussing the Australian Jewish community and its born-again zionism.

What needed to be attacked by his article was the toadying approach which the Australian zionists show towards their United States counterparts, and this was missing altogether.

Back to local Jewish politics and the Independent Australian Jewish Voice (IAJV) group. I am a signatory to this group for one reason only. I did not agree with its watered down version of the UK document attacking the UK zionists and making a much better fist of it than the local version because, as Brull says, it tends to support Israel’s right to exist.

The nub of my argument is that Israel now only has the right to exist in some sort of con-federal state of Israel-Palestine because it is long past there being any possibility of a two-state solution. Israel virtually occupies or lays siege to the whole of the rest of Palestine which is not part of Israel, the West Bank and Gaza. So a secular one-state solution is the only possible answer and one both the Israelis and Palestinians find totally unacceptable at the moment!

Brull analyses the different approaches by Curthoys and Altman and agrees and disagrees on many points they both make I their different approaches.

Altman tends to be too moderate and middle-of-the-road in his acceptance of the legitimacy of the state of Israel, and Curthoys is all for the broadening of the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) approach to include as much of the Israeli state as possible.

As a South African who watched the BDS campaign against the apartheid state gathering pace, particularly after I left that benighted country for this one in 1978 – this one at the time looking like a moderately progressive modern state, and how quickly things can change – I noticed that BDS actually worked in the longer term by bringing a once very rich country almost to its knees economically, because it was, of course the whites who had all the wealth, and the rest of the community had nothing. (And now in 2010 South Africa, the more things change the more they stay the same!!) But that departs from the central points of this thesis which are a critique of the majority of the Australian Jewish community and its unquestioning support of Israel through thick and thin.

Brull devotes space in his article to various Australian Jewish organizations which could more correctly be called Australian Zionist organizations. Those of us Jews who don’t toe the “party” line are accused of anti-semitism – a furphy if ever there was one. The cause of anti-semitism in the mid-20th century and onwards is the state of Israel and its brutality to the native population of Palestine and its apartheid regime which learnt from South Africa and now applies many of its own variations on a theme.

Why waste time on people like Mendes – someone who has shown over the years by his attacks on people who don’t accept his version of events that he represents views to the right of Genghis Khan or Julia Gillard! And Danby – the federal member of parliament for Israel!

Chomsky is another matter altogether. He has written seminal works on the Middle East and certainly understands the situations in the region better than almost anybody. But although he may support the idea of a two-state solution in theory, in practice we all know this is impossible and unrealistic when faced with what has happened on the ground, more specifically the settlement growth in the West Bank.

Doe Israel have a right to exist? Should it have been agreed to in principle at all? Many Jews around the world at the time Israel came into being, including those who had been Bundists in Europe at the beginning of the 20th century believed there were other solutions to the “Jewish” problems in Europe and around the world. They did not see a land of Israel, even after the Holocaust, when there was a certain amount of guilt felt by countries such as the USA, France and many others that a Jewish homeland may be a solution to ongoing anti-semitism, as solving the problems of systemic and systematic pogroms in Europe and elsewhere.

Ironically, the more Israel has succeeded, with the total support of the USA, in becoming the most powerful state in the region, the more has anti-semitism been on the increase around the world. In addition, it has seen the growth of extremism in many Muslim countries which see the Occupation and suppression of Palestinians as anti-Muslim.

Back to Australia, a mini-scene of zionist and anti-zionist thought and action around the world with the growth of militant zionist Israel and its brutal occupation and suppression of millions of people in concentration camps with appalling conditions and human rights abuses which the world continues to ignore.

Australian Jewish organizations continue to discredit themselves by their attacks on people and groups opposing the zionist path to glory, but are most notable for the fact that they continue to reside in Australia, not Israel. People like Mendes and many others of his ilk enjoy the comfort and security which Australia offers them while, as Brull relates, attacking the likes of Curthoys and Docker, with statements that Curthoys is only part-Jewish, whatever that means.

Michael Brull himself needs to relate somewhat to people who wish to use his articles on their web pages and not ignore possible allies in a world where nationalism and racism have started spiralling out of control – vide the forthcoming presidential style federal election with Hanson-style views being trotted out by all sides for ‘our protection and border control’ and other such crap and bullshit, and where zionism continues to be a racist, sexist, apartheid-style form of control of populations who are just “IN THE WAY”! but beloved by so many Australians - politicians and others, Jewish and not Jewish alike

See Michael Brull’s article in Overland issue 198, autumn 2010, pages 92-98.

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90 years old, political gay activist, hosting two web sites, one personal: http://www.red-jos.net one shared with my partner, 94-year-old Ken Lovett: http://www.josken.net and also this blog. The blog now has an alphabetical index: http://www.red-jos.net/alpha3.htm