Genocidal Israel, condemned by words and actions

Jan 24, 2024
Prayer Shawl - Tallit, jewish religious symbol.

In the indictment brought against Israel by South Africa in the International Court of Justice (ICJ) Blinne Ní Ghrálaigh KC asserted it was, ‘the first genocide in history where its victims are broadcasting their own destruction in real time in the desperate, so far vain hope that the world might do something.’

Not only that however, the ones carrying out their genocide are also broadcasting their intent.

Not even the Nazis were that blatantly injudicious. Rather than baldly stating their intent they used many circumlocutions like the ‘final solution,’ ‘special treatment,’ around the ‘Jewish question.’ In using such terms all in authority knew what was meant. Such euphemisms may have even allowed a sense of decorum, to be kept regards the real plans of genocide for European Jewry, homosexuals, Romanies, and other ‘untermenschen’ (lesser people) in general. Such language could also later serve as a means of cover.

Thus, the proceedings of the January 1942 Wannsee conference, during which the detailed plans were made for genocide, were not broadcast, while few copies of revealing minutes were secretly distributed.

That heinous conference copiously using euphemisms, determined that the Jews and others would be transported eastward, and organised into labour gangs. The work and living conditions would be sufficiently hard so to thin the large numbers by ‘natural diminution,’ while those surviving would be ‘treated accordingly.’

While the German populace had been progressively imbued with a racial ideology from the Nazi ascension to power in 1933, the full intent of that ideology was never made explicit to the general populace, although as it became more perverse and extreme, with people grown accustomed to it, increasing numbers must have known, or have at least suspected, its extent.

The rationale for this genocide was that, ‘international Jewry’ was planning such against Germany, and that Germany was only doing such a ‘distasteful’ thing in self defence. That in the current Gaza conflict sounds familiar.

The judiciousness of the Nazi regime, as amoral as it was, can be contrasted with the open boasting of genocidal intent by the current Israeli government. The South African indictment includes nine pages of quotations from Israeli leaders regarding their intent, among the most brutal ever uttered.

A few shall suffice.

On 9th October 2023, the Israeli Defence Minister, Yoav Gallant announced, ‘I have ordered a complete siege on the Gaza Strip. There will be no electricity, no food, no fuel, everything is closed…We are fighting human animals and we are acting accordingly.’

The following day, the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories Maj. Gen. Ghassan Alian echoed him, stating, ‘Human animals must be treated as such. There will be no electricity and no water [in Gaza], there will only be destruction. You wanted hell, you will get hell.’

On October 10, the Israel Defence Forces spokesperson, Daniel Hagari announced dropping ‘hundreds of tons of bombs…the emphasis is on damage and not on accuracy.’

Two day later, the Minister of Energy and Infrastructure, Israel Katz said, ‘Humanitarian aid to Gaza? No electrical switch will be turned on, no water hydrant will be opened and no fuel truck will enter until the Israeli abductees are returned home,’ later adding, ‘They will not receive a drop of water or a single battery until they leave the world.’

On October 13, Israeli President Isaac Herzog justifying collective punishment, charged, ‘It is an entire nation out there that is responsible. It is not true this rhetoric about civilians not being aware, not involved. It’s absolutely not true.’

Finally, on October 29, the Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu invoked the Biblical story of Amalek to justify Israel’s assault on Gaza, stating, ‘You must remember what Amalek has done to you, says our Holy Bible, and we do remember, and we are fighting.’ I reference this account following.

Lest it be argued that such statements were a result of some ‘understandable rage’ concerning the Hamas attacks on 7th October, such genocidal intent well precedes those events. They are copious , extending over many years, and may be found here.

During my time as a theological student I remember being horrified, upon first learning what is called in Hebrew, the herem (trans ‘utterly destroyed’), the consecration to God of persons or things, to be excluded from ordinary use. This extended to warfare where everything, including those captured, including women and children, were to be consecrated to God by being ‘utterly destroyed.’ This practice, commonly known as ‘the ban,’ meant there were to be no spoils from war, but rather total annihilation. Thus the Canaanites once defeated, were put to the sword (Numbers 21:3), likewise those in Jericho (Joshua 6: 17-21), and the aforementioned Amalekites (1 Samuel 15: 3,8). Such horrendous practice found its basis in the Law or Torah (Deuteronomy 7:2).

It seems by the extent of destruction in Gaza, both by their actions and statements, Israel has revived this reprehensible practice.

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