“Why does the world fail to understand us?”
Sir Isaac Albert Isaacs, Member of Parliament, High Court judge, and 9th Governor General of Australia wrote in 1946 that “the honour of Jews throughout the world demands the renunciation of political Zionism”.
In his book titled ‘Palestine: Peace and Prosperity or War and Destruction? Political Zionism: Undemocratic, Unjust, Dangerous’ , Sir Isaac explained his objections to political Zionism, summarised as follows;
- “A negation of Democracy, and an attempt to revert to the Church-State of bygone ages.
- Provocative of anti-Semitism.
- Unwarranted by the Balfour Declaration, the Mandate, or any other right; contrary to Zionist assurances to Britain and to the Arabs, and in present conditions unjust to other Palestinians politically, and to other religions.
- As regards unrestricted immigration, a discriminatory and an undemocratic camouflage for a Jewish State.
- An obstruction to the consent of the Arabs to the peaceful and prosperous settlement in Palestine of hundreds of thousands of suffering European Jews, the victims of Nazi atrocities; and provocative of Moslem antagonism within and beyond the Empire, and consequently a danger to its integrity and safety.
- Inconsistent in demanding on one hand, on a basis of a separate Jewish nationality everywhere Jews are found, Jewish domination in Palestine, and at the same time claiming complete Jewish equality elsewhere than in Palestine, on the basis of a nationality common to the citizens of every faith.”
Isaac Isaacs, born in Melbourne to Jewish parents of Polish heritage, understood the fundamental injustice of the Zionist project in Palestine. His critique of political Zionism, which pre-dated the creation of the state of Israel, is as valid today as it was when he wrote it. Ironically, were Isaac Isaacs alive today, he would be denounced as a “self-hating Jew” by supporters of Israel. Worse, the pro-Israel lobby in Australia today would probably use their political influence to prevent him holding public office.
The problem for Israel is not that the world does not understand. The world understands Israel very well. The problem is lack of legitimacy; many do not like what they see. With few exceptions, dislike of Israel is not the result of ignorance or the hatred of all things Jewish. The state of Israel attracts opprobrium because it perpetuates and amplifies the injustice and hypocrisy described by Sir Isaac Isaacs.
In a sense, Israel was born illegitimate. By 1948 it was already considered unacceptable for Europeans to subjugate another people and take their land. Eventually, Israel will have to choose between pariah status and accepting the end of Jewish privilege in Palestine. The price of deferring that choice is a constant battle against truth and freedom of speech throughout the world. Israel’s continued survival as an apartheid state requires that people do not understand, or cannot freely express, the ugly reality of settler-colonialism in Palestine.
The Israeli war against truth has given rise to hasbara, a monstrous state sponsored industry devoted to the production and dissemination of lies, the chief aim of which is to dehumanise the native people of Palestine. This page is about hasbara, the Israeli propaganda offensive. From time to time some of the more relevant, obnoxious or even amusing examples of hasbara will be posted and discussed here.
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