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Let Us Call It What It Is
Israeli Zionism is Genocide
By Imam Khalid Fattah Griggs
The Zionist state of Israel ended its most egregious brutal 11-day aerial assault on the population of the Gaza Strip after unprecedented worldwide demonstrations and denunciations by citizens and governments. In the United States, the largest pro-Palestinian demonstration ever held in Washington, DC in modern times was held at the Lincoln Memorial. The Sanction Israel Rally, whose sponsors included American Muslims for Palestine, USCMO, and ICNA CSJ attracted over 35,000 demonstrators. The Israeli attacks targeted an already limited number of hospitals and medical facilities, roads leading to standing hospitals like the one in Gaza City, residential buildings, and local infrastructure like water desalination centers. There is no standing army in Gaza, airplanes, armed personnel vehicles, or weapons of mass destruction for the populace to be able to defend themselves against the most heavily armed and deadly military in that part of the world. Seventy-seven thousand Muslim Palestinians were internally displaced inside Gaza further exasperating existing overcrowding and food shortages. The health needs of the people of Gaza were made worse as the world Health Organization estimates that at least 200,000 of the two million Gazans are in dire need of medical attention. Only two percent of Gazans have received Covid-19 vaccinations in a country that boasts one of the highest vaccination rates in the world. The Zionist government of disgraced leader Benjamin Netanyahu imposed a near-complete boycott on Gaza in 2008 after the defeat of the Palestinian Authority and the election of Hamas as the representative government of Gaza. The boycott disallowed basic food staples, baby formula and diapers, building essentials like concrete, and other items necessary for survival.
Leading up to the assaults, residents in the Sheik Jarrah neighborhood in East Jerusalem were forcibly removed from their homes by Israeli settlers and military. Under the pretext of controlling Palestinian protestors at Masjid ul Aqsa, Israeli police and military attacked unarmed demonstrators and otherwise created havoc on worshippers at the sacred site. Since the forced imposition of the Zionist state of Israel on the Palestinian people in 1948, over 600 hundred Palestinian villages have vanished under the Zionist mythology that Israel represented, “Land for people for people without land.”
From time immemorial, men have constructed dehumanizing systems of exploitation that stagger the limits of even the most vivid imaginations. Each of these contrived multi-generational inhumane orderings of society share some common characteristics, notably a disregard or self-serving distortion of divine guidance, creation of racial, ethnic, and religious hierarchies, extreme monopolization of resources, and implementation by the dominant class of systematic brutality to subdue the subordinate population. The well-documented practices of the Pharaonic system imposed on the populace of Egypt for thousands of years perhaps best epitomizes the extent to which oppression was systematized in societies during antiquity.
One of the exploitative social systems during the medieval ages, particularly from the ninth to the 15th century, was European feudalism. Feudalism was a tightly structured caste-like social system in which individuals were relegated to exclusive roles in society. At the top of the feudalism pyramid were the nobles or lords whose status came from their receiving lands in perpetuity from the Crown in exchange for their military service. Vassals were tenants of the nobles on land known as a fiefdom. Land was given to vassals in exchange for their support of lords and if enough land were accumulated by vassals, they could become lords themselves. At the bottom of the feudal system were serfs/peasants who lived in mostly wretched conditions as unfree laborers on the lord’s land, gave him homage, labor, and a share of the produce. The institution of feudalism was by necessity relatively less barbaric than many other systems because the rigid social system was widely accepted by the those at the bottom of society.
One of the most dehumanizing systems to ever exist was that of chattel slavery. Trans-Atlantic settler colonialism of Europeans began with Christopher Columbus in the late 1400s. The centuries-long Trans-Atlantic trade of enslaved Africans ushered in a system of global exploitation whose vile residue of anti-Black and structural racism exist up to this day. Columbus was afforded the backing and financial resources of the Spanish crown, particularly Queen Isabella, to explore a new mercantile route to China and India. Muslim domination of the Mediterranean and northeastern Atlantic seaboard of the African continent presented a major obstacle to the maritime aspirations of European seafaring countries like Spain and Portugal. Queen Isabella shared Columbus’ intense hatred for Muslims making his proposal to sail westward to find an alternate route to the spice-rich orient more appealing to the Spanish crown. Other European nations like Italy and Portugal flatly denied sponsorship of his ambitious proposal. Columbus, like Isabella, harbored crusading ambitions to recapture Jerusalem from Muslim control. Although never participating in a Crusade to Jerusalem, Columbus fought with Spanish soldiers during the bloody 1492 Christian reconquest of Granada, Spain, the last Muslim stronghold there. Spanish and Portuguese settler colonizers in the Americas were especially averse to the presence of Muslims in the New World due to their religious hatred of Islam after the near 700-year control of Al-Andalus by Muslims.
A brutal system of chattel slavery in the Americas and the Caribbean was the primary vehicle by which European nations and their White settler colonizing counterparts established global economic and military hegemony in the first quarter of the 16th century and lasting to varying degrees for more than 400 years. After 1492, England, Spain, and Portugal launched genocidal assaults against indigenous populations in the Western hemisphere resulting in the total Native American populations in North America, Central America, the Caribbean, and South America being reduced by slaughter, disease, and germ warfare by 70 to 90 percent. The immune systems of Native Americans were not capable of warding off European diseases that were non- existent in the Western Hemisphere before European settler colonization.
Before the European settler colonization of North America, Europeans identified themselves by their tribes or nations rather than by the social construct of race. In the New World, European survival was predicated on their unification based on their present social and physical realities not past historical events. During the 16th century, European settler colonizers adopted the identity of being “White” to distinguish themselves as a united people in their exploitative relationships with enslaved Africans and Native Americans. This born of necessity identity of being White has proved to be the bedrock for systems of White supremacy that have stifled the equitable distribution of resources and militated against the promotion of human equality throughout the world. Unfortunately, religious dogma has not been immune from the ill-effects of racist teachings as a means of justifying White supremacy. Chattel slavery and anti-Black racism have been draped in distorted interpretations and out-of-context references to Biblical scriptures.
In 1913, three years after South Africa gained its independence from Britain, racial segregation and White supremacy were institutionalized in South Africa with the passage of 1913 Land Act. The Land Act forced Black Africans to live in resource deprived, woefully overcrowded reserves. The Afrikaner National Party won the national election in 1948 on the campaign pledge of Apartheid, Apartness. The new government’s immediate goal was to not only separate non-Whites from Whites, but to also separate non-Whites for each other, while dividing the majority Black population along tribal lines to decrease any potential political power. In a series of Land Acts passed over the years, 80 percent of South Africa’s land was reserved for the minority White population. Non-Whites were forced to carry passbooks confirming their authorization to be in each area. This practice had historical precedent in chattel slavery in the United States. Apartheid legislated that marriage and sexual relations between Whites and non-Whites was illegal. The Population Registration Act of 1950 classified all South Africans by race, Bantu (Black Africans), Coloured (mixed race), and White. A fourth category of Asian (Indian and Pakistani) was later added. Movement, jobs, housing, and other privileges were assigned based on these categories. Black Africans were at the bottom of the apartheid structure and were most brutally sanctioned, punished, and killed.
The two nations that unwaveringly supported the almost 50-year apartheid regime were the United States and Israel. South Africa was a pariah to most of the nations of the world due to the sheer brutality of the regime and its unapologetic racist practices. Israel adopted its own version of homelands (Bantustans) by appropriating occupied land for Jewish immigrants from primarily Europe and America, forcibly removing its Palestinian Muslim populations and resettling them in concentration camps, euphemistically called camps, in the West Bank and Gaza while allowing others to remain in already established cities and forcing Christians in to live in designated villages and long-existing cities like Bethlehem and Jerusalem. Israel, like apartheid South Africa, receives unqualified support from the United States in its racist, inhumane treatment of non-Jewish citizens. It is a racist state that remains unrepentant for its actions against its Palestinian citizens due primarily to United States economic and military support, pressure on other nations to avoid acting against Israel.
Yet, despite South Africa’s unrelenting backing by the United States, the global movement against apartheid eventually triumphed against seemingly insurmountable odds. Massive global demonstrations against apartheid undoubtedly played a significant role in the eventual demise of the despicable system. But, more importantly, the world community sustained an effective boycott of South African made products and companies that proved to make the cost of sustaining apartheid too high. Even the United States government eventually recognized that apartheid was destined for the trash bins of history much like chattel slavery, feudalism, and the pharaonic system in ancient Egypt. The current BDS, Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions attempts to end international support for Israel’s maltreatment and oppression of Palestinians and force the government to comply with international law. The BDS movement is not an anti-Jewish effort nor is it an attempt to dismantle the state of Israel. It is an effort to halt genocidal actions against Palestinian people just as the anti-apartheid movement was never intended to drive all Whites out of South Africa or destroy South Africa. We must avail ourselves of all legal, effective methods to stop the genocidal assaults on the Palestinian people by the state of Israel. BDS is a growing global movement that offers a realistic path to end the abominations committed against the Palestinian people since 1948.