VIII.THE SOURCE OF THE CONFLICT

Anything less than a comprehensive peace, including the right of the Palestinian nation to an independent state of its own, is also to invite increasing disorder instead of security for the Zionist state. Given the legislated commitment of the state of Israel to the fundamental concept of primacy for Zionism's "Jewish People" nationality, there is no way the state can implement human rights in any of the commonly accepted definitions of the term. And violence inexorably follows violations of human rights if the consequent injustices are not eradicated by peaceful proceses and established by law. When the deprived victims are of one ethnic group, with familial and national or ethic ties to neighboring states, the violence has great potential for internationalization. Conceptually THIS IS THE KERNAL OF THE Zionist/Palestinaian/Israeli/Arab confilct. It is a sad commentary that for all this time, the reputed statemen of the world have iether accepted, or appeared to accept, at face value the standard ZIONIST APOLIGETICS offered to justifiy Israel's Zionist commitment for any given period of its history. The most prevalent excuse today attributes ISRAEL'S AGGRESSIVE EXCLUSIVISM to the STATE'S NECESSITY FOR BOTH INTERNAL AND EXTERNAL SECURITY. But hisstory supplies abundant evidence to the contrary. Nationalist territorial Zionism's dehumanizing of Arabs has NOT been in response to or defense against Arab inhumanity to Jews. The accurate statement of the equation is quite the other way around. IT has been the sometimes gradualist, sometimes cataclysmic translation nto practice of Zionism's IDEOLOGY which has GENERATED ARAB HOSTILITY. Arabs are humans, capable of rational thought and the determination of self interest. It follows that the delared source of THEIR SUSTAINED HOSTILITY is no mere political rationalization to disguise sinister designs or to make some inherent racial or religious prejudice appear more palatable. Nor was the conflict originally spawned and later nourished by disagreements over merely territory or about the possible deographic mix of "Arabs" and "Jews" in what MIGHT HAVE BEEN AN INDEPENDENT PALESTINIAN STATE. THE SOURCE OF CONFLICT WAS ALWAYS ZIONISM. There was Arab resistance to Zoionist agression from the earliest days of the WZO/JA's implementation plans when the majority population was Arab, and there was no dispute about territory as such. NO FORMULA has ever worked peace in Palestine. From the very beginning, starting with the first Zionist Commission which went to Palestine EVEN BEFORE THE MANDATE legitimized the Balfour Declaration. ALL FORMULAS HAVE FAILED BECAUSE OF ZIONISM'S INSISTENCE UPON IT'S HARD CORE RACIST AND OR THEOCRATIC YARDSTICKS TO DETERMINE FULL PARTICIPATION IN THE SOCIETY WHICH ZIONISM CONTEMPLATED. Unless the above is understood, a "peace" formula which might otherwise be regarded to offer rationally acceptable compromises on territory or on a form of Palestinian autonomy, may simply allow the paranoid abnormal ideology of Zionism to seep into crevices instaed of being heavy handedly imposed in the style of Mr. Begin. A specific example is the APPARENTLY innocent demand that "Jews" be permitted to trade in land and reside in the West Bank. Zionists want the world to believe this demand represents only a simple problem of HUMAN RIGHTS in which an individual's RELIGIOUS FAITH should create no social or political disabilities. BUT SUCH SIMPLICITY IS NOT THE WHOLE TRUTH. The rest of the truth is that the appellant making this demand is the very one which declares every Jew is a constituent of "the Jewish People", POSSESSING NATIONALITY RIGHTS AND OWING NATIONALITY OBLIGATIONS TO THE ZIONIST STATE. Even in ideal conditions of peace, no state is legally or morally obligated to ACCPET INHABITANTS WHO ARE PRESUME TO HAVE SUCH OPERATIV FOREIGN ATTACHMENTS. The objectionable character of the demand is aggravated when those foreign attachments are saturated with an ideology as XENOPHOBIC, AS PARANOID,AS RACIALLY OR THEOCRATICALLY EXCLUSIVIST AS ZIONISM IS TODAY. There has not been an American President, and perhaps no statesman of other nationality, who has not needed TO BE TOLD, that this ideology, WITH ITS BUILT IN PARANOIA and INHERENT ANTI-ARAB COMMITMENT, is at the root of Arab Inability to make further compromises about either territory or the "inalienable rights" of the Palestinians. Statesmen and dipomats of all kinds have needed, and still need, to be impressed with both the character of this ideology and its central role in determining Israeli policies. Only one American Sec. of State ever approached an exposition of the obstacle to Middle East peace which is INHERENT in ZIONIST IDEOLOGY. When JOHN FOSTER DULLES returned fro the Middle East in 1953, he advised the American people "the Arabs fear Zionism more than Communism". His Asst. Sec. HENRY BYROADE, expanded on the idea in two statements which are unique in all the official American rhetoric and among declarations by authorities of other nations. BYROADE advised Israel TO BECOME A MIDDLE EASTERN STATE AND TO "CEASE REGARDING ITSELF THE CENTER OR NUCLEUS OF A WORLD WIDE GROUPING OF PEOPLE OF ONE RELIGIOUS FAITH". The savagery of the Zionist/Israeli attack on Byroade measured how close he came TO THE RAW NERVE of THE INDEFENSIBLE IDEOLOGY of the Zionist State. Anti-Zionists applauded the effort to distinguish between A NORMAL ISRAEL and A ZIONIST ISRAEL. Nor, judging by the available records, have "Arab" statesmen or diplomats competently and consistently informed the world of the dimensions of the obstacle to peace which Zionist ideology presents. Perhaps because they have been most egregiously injured by Zionism, some Palestinian spokemen have addressed the issue. In an authoritative article in the Journal of Palestine Studies (32), Sabri Jiryis, who is also a member of the PLO National Council, candidly wrote:

The Palestinians may, in certain circumstances, be ready to seek a settlement in the area to which Israel is a party. But they are not prepared to conclude an agreement RECOGNIZING THE LEGITIMACY OF ZIONISM; no palestinian Arab can ever accept as LEGITIMATE a doctrine THAT HE SHOULD BE EXCLUDED FROM MOST PARTS OF HIS HOMELAND, because he is a Christian or Muslim Arab, WHILE ANYONE OF THE JEWISH FAITH ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD IS ENTITLED TO SETTLE THERE. Realism may require recognition of the existence of a Jewish state in Palestine and that this fact be taken into account in seeking a settlement. BUT THIS CAN NEVER MEAN APPROVING THE EXPANSIONIST AND EXCLUSIVIST TENDENCIES OF ZIONISM.

(Note: This essay by Rabbi Elmer Berger was written eighteen years ago.

What has changed?)

NOTES:

(32) SABRI JIRYIS, Political Settlement in the Middle East, Journal of Palestine Studies, Autumn, 1977, Vol. VII, No. 1, pp.3-25