The march of death

May 19, 2023
Jafar with Christ and the crown of thorns.

Ever since the six-day war of 1967, when Israel occupied the whole of Jerusalem, a triumphant march of conquest, called ‘Jerusalem Day March’ takes over the Holy City. How would you feel if this was your home, your neighbourhood and you and your family were faced with hoards of religious fanatics, waving the Israeli flag, chanting ‘Death to all Arabs’ and ‘Your Second Nakba Is Coming’. Last year a new curse was added, “May Your Village Burn” and, of course, the usual cry repeated over and over, “Kill Them All”.

Despite the recent carnage in Gaza, where the blood of the innocents has not even dried yet, this provocative and offensive march again took place on Thursday May 18th, led by Ministers of this present government, Smotrich, Levin, Ben Gvir and Katz, to name but a few.

It is because of religion and unproven words in an old text called The Bible that a group of atheist Zionists from Europe declared that the land of my birth and that of my forefathers is theirs. And only theirs as ordained by their Bible.

Seventy-five years ago those atheist Zionists, under the banner of their Jewish King David committed one of the most horrific crimes in history when they carried out a murderous assault on my country and my people. The result of which was tens of thousands of Palestinians killed, 750,000 Palestinians forcibly exiled and 78% of the historic land of Palestine stolen.

In the process of that carnage and theft, 550 Palestinian towns and villages were destroyed and buried without trace. The Jewish hero of the 1967 war, General Moshe Dayan, described the ethnic cleansing of Palestine, clearly and succinctly.

“Jewish villages were built in the place of Arab villages…There is no one place built in this country that did not have a former Arab population.”

Mr David Ben Gurion, the founding father of the Zionist state had this to say:

“We must use terror, assassination, intimidation, land confiscation, and the cutting of all social services to rid the Galilee of its Arab population.”—David Ben-Gurion, May 1948, to the General Staff (Michael Ben-Zohar, Ben-Gurion, 1978).

Ben-Gurion justified the theft of Palestine by saying, “I don’t need a mandate to rule over Palestine. The bible is my mandate.” **

When Ben-Gurion reflected on the situation he and his Zionist partners created, he admitted, “If I were an Arab leader, I would never make terms with Israel. It is natural; we have taken their country. Sure, God promised it to us, but how could that matter to them? Our God is not theirs” (British Peel Commission 1937).

Our God is not theirs? Are not all the teachings in the so-called holy books about the one God and that we are all created in his image? But if the Zionists were to admit that our beliefs are on par with theirs then the creation of a state simply for Jews wouldn’t make sense. What does make sense to them is to make us look inferior, uncivilised and unruly to justify their colonisation and theft of our land.

If you listen to the teachings of Rabbi Eliezer Kashtiel, head of the pre-military academy of Eli, an illegal settlement in the West Bank, you can see how it works. He was speaking to school children when he said “Jews are the masters, Arabs are the slaves, this is not by chance, this is biology and genetics. They are happy to be slaves, they want to be slaves. Arabs want to live under occupation, because they can’t run a country or do anything, look at them, look what they look like”.

The Knesset went one further five years ago when they passed the Nation State Bill, which reaffirms in no uncertain terms that self determination in the land of Israel is ‘exclusively for the Jews’ to the detriment of all other citizens or inhabitants of Israel. Which clearly explains the intentions of Mr Ben Gurion and what he had in store for us.

“We must do everything to ensure they [the Palestinians] never do return….” (Nahum Goldmann, “The Jewish Paradox”, 1978).

Successive Israeli leaders have kept to the word of their founding father. They are determined that we will never return. Not only that, they are equally determined that the entire land mass of Palestine, and I mean 100% of the land, is theirs and theirs alone. And if any of us Palestinians are left on this land our situation will be that of a slave serving his master. To quote the late Chief Rabbi, Ovadia Ben Yosef,

“Goyim were born only to serve us. Without that they have no place in the world. Only to serve the people of Israel.” (Chief Rabbi, Ovadia Ben Yosef, born 1920 in Iraq, died 2013 in Jerusalem).

Five years ago, there was another march of a totally different nature, called ‘The March Of Return’, when Palestinians, armed only with flags, marched to the separation fence between Gaza and Israel to demand their right of return. Only to be met with sniper fire, tear gas and missiles in full view of the international community. The following year they tried again. Still the world looked the other way, sighing perhaps for the 223 dead. Are those brave snipers gunning down unarmed Palestinians also pupils of Rabbi Eliezer Kashteil? Does this explain their callous disregard for Palestinian lives?

Perhaps it does. Rabbi Shmuel Eliyahu, Chief Rabbi of Safed, in Palestine, and a member of the Chief Rabbinate Council spells it out.

‘Kill Palestinians to get closer to God’, he says.

Is this what religion is all about?

Obviously it is, for many in the Christian Evangelical community, who will not only condone what Israel is doing to us but openly and actively encourage it. All in the hope that their Messiah will return and fulfil his promise to the faithful.

This saviour or Messiah, might I add, was like me, a Palestinian. Does his hoped for return negate my return? Is this what religion is all about?

This article was inspired by a visit I made, with my wife, to the Matthias Church in Budapest and saw the ornate trappings of religious power beside an austere bust of the Christ with his crown of thorns.

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