So Whoâ€™s the â€œBad Guyâ€ Again?
By Tali Shapiro at May 17, 2009
Once you wake up, you're bound to find the world much more clear. Problem is, the picture is not necessarily what you'd like it to be. I know the price of my politics and that's why I keep away from people. The majority of my communication is done via the web, for better or worst. This post is a more personal piece, because I just got beat up.
Restricting to Friendly Forums
Basically Znet is my home, my war room, my think tank and my fortress (we gotta come up with some more peaceful linguistics). It's a great place to find like minded people and I was relieved to find it, in the days of the Gaza onslaught, so I could speak and read some real news. I've recently found a second home with Palestinian Mothers, which gives me something that Z can't (at this point)- communication with Palestinian women.
What happens, though, when I get out of this protective sphere? If this was real life, someone would have raped me and left me for dead. So thank god it isn't, and thank dog I only do this on YouTube. I wouldn't have ventured out of my protective sphere, but I technically need Youtube, to upload my videos, and I find their annotation feature invaluable for my translations. Here's what happens when you make concessions in safety:
It's not real, but my hands shake every time I translate one of these.
Welcome to the Israeli Cesspool
Who are they? Some of you may say "who cares?!" And you're probably right, but by what I've learned, I believe that the boogie man is bigger in the dark. So let's switch on the lights:
It's suspect from the first moment, when the word Zion is in the name. I'll give you a hint- this guy ain't a Marley fan. This 24 year old also calls himself The ZoHaN! (if he actually watched the movie, you think he'd be bothered by the Palestinian love interest of the Israeli protagonist). More fun facts about our religious sexual harasser:
- Hometown: The Temple Mount- Jerusalem
- Country: Israel
- Occupation: It's all ours.
- Companies: IDF / IAF UnLTD.
- Interests and Hobbies: Defending Israel
- The featured video: "There Is No Palestine"
- Top on the play list: "Kahane Chi!"
- Links on the sidebar: http://www.truthtube.tv/
- Statements on the sidebar: "One people- one heart"
"NO HEBREW LAND FOR PEACE EVER!!!"
"Nuke Mecca for Peace!"
Just so you don't think this fine, young Yeshiva student is racist, he'd like you to know that he hates you all equally:
"What happens when a fly falls into a coffee cup? The Italian - throws the cup and walks away in a fit of rage. The Frenchman - takes out the fly, and drinks the coffee. The Chinese - eats the fly and throws away the coffee. The Russian - drinks the coffee with the fly, since it was extra with no charge. The Israeli - sells the coffee to the Frenchman, the fly to the Chinese, Buys himself a new cup of coffee and uses the extra money to invent a Device that prevents flies from falling into coffee. The Palestinian - blames the Israeli for the fly falling in his coffee, Protests the act of aggression to the UN, takes a loan from the European Union to buy a new cup of coffee, uses the money to purchase explosives And then blows up the coffee house where the Italian, the Frenchman, The Chinese, and the Russian are all trying to explain to the Israeli that He should give away his cup of coffee to the "Palestinian" "
I do pity people who are born in a home that teaches hate. I hope he recovers.
Shay Cohen is a typical, common, Israeli name. His profile says he's 28, but he seems to have a juvenile fascination with violence. The one and only video he posted are shots of what looks like a typical club fight (not "fight club"- Israelis don't organize that well). Whoever made the video seems to think it's way cool, as 20 young men bash into one that's laying on the ground. The commentators seem to think it's funny and cool, too.
I take it back, it's scarier with the lights on. These people are dangerous and hopefully they wouldn't recognize me, if they see me. Luckily, I can spot both these types a mile away, and don't really come in their vicinity, in my day to day life.
Out of One Cesspool and Into Another
By no means are these the majority of Israel. The majority are well-adjusted adults, who have something better to do than spread hate, violence and racism. However, this is a military state, with a military nation. It is well known that with militarism comes fascism, and with fascism comes chauvinism, racism and other negative isms. Since this is the point of departure, you might want to be careful who you speak with and what about, as a rule of thumb. Even when it comes to pacifists.
I've written about Israeli pacifists before, and I find myself compelled to do it again. In my articles about Achinoam Nini and Yoni Goodman, I was making syllogisms from the combination of the art and the statements by the artists, in order to conclude a state of mind. It seems I was gentle.
My love affair with Palestinian Mothers is a result of this fantastic article I read on Palestine Think Tank (another beautiful achievement). It accurately outlines the pitfalls of debating Zionists, and gives, as example, the site MePeace. In MePeace's own words:
"MEPEACE is a non-profit organization which aims to foster a growing community of peacemakers. Our peacemakers, from 175 countries, are committed to realizing peace in the Middle East. Our community is active online and on the ground. Online, our web platform enables individuals and organizations to share and find information. The Israeli media titled us "Facebook of Peace" (Ha'aretz, March '08). On the ground, we create community-building encounters, provide activist leadership training, and offer technology consulting to other peace organizations."
I'd hate to single out one faulty organization, but this one has apparently gained momentum, as Ha'aretz has hailed it "Facebook of Peace" (Ha'aretz proving once more that it doesn't do too much research, because a) Facebook is full of influential peace groups and b) Ning is a successful group building network in it's own right). So this highly recommended group must deserve a review.
So what's wrong with the above text? Let's apply our inside knowledge of the Israeli mind and delve into the details:
- The text reads like an IT start up manifesto, very telling of capitalistic mode of thought- very Israeli. It lacks the Palestinian voice, which is usually more emotional and political. Usually, when Israelis speak of "making peace", they clean up the language, to gain the "upper moral hand". Palestinians have a strong national identity (it's not my cup of tea, but under the circumstances- understandable), and of course make a strong emotional plea, because peace is not on the table- basic human rights are.
- The preferred term is "peacemaker"- I get it. I use it myself, when I want to compliment someone on their humanitarianism. Since Israelis erected this site, however, I'd need to see more commitment and more understanding of the situation. "Pro-palestinian", "Human rights advocate" , "anti-Zionist". That would make sense. The term "peacemaker" is another example of cleaning up the language.
- "On the ground"- That is military-speak- there is no place for it in a peace group and I'm sure the women of New Profile or MachsomWatch for instance, would have never used the term (definitely not twice in the same paragraph).
- The fact that they tout Ha'aretz as hailing them whatever, is kind of lame, to say the least. Ha'aretz is the bedrock of pseudo-leftism (as anyone who's been reading my posts knows by now). It's also the only honor they have to their name and it's an Israeli honor. To this I say: The Progressive- or it didn't happen. Feel free to read the article, written by Oded Yaron, who writes light internet pieces, that occasionally go Zionist. And realize that Ha'aretz didn't call it "Facebook for Peace"- the group's creator did.
- I love the last sentence: "...[we] offer technology consulting to other peace organizations." I did the marketing blog thing- I know a sales line when I see it.
But let's leave the damning little details and move on to content. Whatever the membership count of MePeace, a quick look at the forums will show the realities of it. The active members are a few centrist-rightis (i.e rightist-violent rightist) Israelis, an impressive Palestinian (this is his site) that hasn't given up yet and a handful of internationals, some scary, some resilient and wasting their time in a community that wants to masturbate in its own self-righteousness.
I don't know as to MePeace's activities "on the ground", as a group or as individuals, but on the internet, they are not about peace.