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Palestinian Genocide

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                          VIEWPOINT
"Exploring The Powerful Issues & Emotions of The Middle East" 
  Reaching out to 51,228 Viewpoint readers around the globe
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Editor's Note:

This will shock many US readers because the depth of 
hatred some of the hard core Zionists have for the 
native population is not widely publicized. But please 
read this article and then view the video clip of the 
week below the article. 

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                   Video Clip Of The Week

         Drunken Israeli Settler Threatens Film Crew

In a drunken racial tirade, an Israeli settler threatens 
a British film crew. The wild exchange has the settler 
cursing Jesus, threatening to kill the film crew and 
Palestinians. Warning: Vulgar Language 

Click to View: Drunken Israeli Settler Threatens Film Crew
   
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Palestinian Genocide announced by Israeli Rabbi

"All of the Palestinians must be killed; men, women, 
infants, and even their beasts." 

This was the religious opinion issued one week ago by Rabbi 
Yisrael Rosen, director of the Tsomet Institute, a long-
established religious institute attended by students and 
soldiers in the Israeli settlements of the West Bank. In 
an article published by numerous religious Israeli news-
papers two weeks ago and run by the liberal Haaretz on 26 
March, Rosen asserted that there is evidence in the Torah 
to justify this stand. Rosen, an authority able to issue 
religious opinions for Jews, wrote that Palestinians are 
like the nation of Amalekites that attacked the Israelite 
tribes on their way to Jerusalem after they had fled from 
Egypt under the leadership of Moses. He wrote that the 
Lord sent down in the Torah a ruling that allowed the Jews 
to kill the Amalekites, and that this ruling is known in 
Jewish jurisprudence. 

Rosen's article, which created a lot of noise in Israel, 
included the text of the ruling in the Torah: "Annihilate 
the Amalekites from the beginning to the end. Kill them 
and wrest them from their possessions. Show them no mercy. 
Kill continuously, one after the other. Leave no child, 
plant, or tree. Kill their beasts, from camels to donkeys." 
Rosen adds that the Amalekites are not a particular race 
or religion, but rather all those who hate the Jews for 
religious or national motives. Rosen goes as far as saying 
that the "Amalekites will remain as long as there are Jews. 
In every age Amalekites will surface from other races to 
attack the Jews, and thus the war against them must be 
global." He urges application of the "Amalekites ruling" 
and says that the Jews must undertake to implement it in 
all eras because it is a "divine commandment". 

Rosen does not hesitate to define the "Amalekites of this 
age" as the Palestinians. He writes, "those who kill 
students as they recite the Torah, and fire missiles on 
the city of Siderot, spread terror in the hearts of men 
and women. Those who dance over blood are the Amalekites, 
and we must respond with counter-hatred. We must uproot 
any trace of humanitarianism in dealing with them so that 
we emerge victorious." 

The true outrage is that most of those authorised to issue 
Jewish religious opinions support the view of Rabbi Rosen, 
as confirmed by Haaretz newspaper. At the head of those 
supporting his opinion is Rabbi Mordechai Eliyahu, the 
leading religious authority in Israel's religious national 
current, and former chief Eastern rabbi for Israel. Rosen's 
opinion also has the support of Rabbi Dov Lior, president 
of the Council of Rabbis of Judea and Samaria (the West 
Bank), and Rabbi Shmuel Eliyahu, the chief rabbi of Safed 
and a candidate for the post of chief rabbi of Israel. A 
number of political leaders in Israel have also shown 
enthusiasm for the opinion, including Ori Lubiansky, head 
of the Jerusalem municipality. 

There is no dispute among observers in Israel that the 
shooting in Jerusalem three weeks ago that killed eight 
Jewish students in a religious school was pivotal for 
Jewish authorities issuing religious opinions of a racist, 
hateful nature. The day following the Jerusalem incident, 
a number of rabbis led by Daniel Satobsky issued a religious
opinion calling on Jewish youth and "all those who believe 
in the Torah" to take revenge on the Palestinians as hastily
as possible. A week following the operation, a group of 
leading rabbis issued an unprecedented religious opinion 
permitting the Israeli army to bomb Palestinian civilian 
areas. The opinion is issued by the "Association of Rabbis 
of the Land of Israel" and states that Jewish religious law 
permits the bombing of Palestinian civilian residential 
areas if they are a source of attacks on Jewish residential 
areas. It reads, "when the residents of cities bordering 
settlements and Jewish centres fire shells at Jewish 
settlements with the aim of death and destruction, the 
Torah permits for shells to be fired on the sources of 
firing even if civilian residents are present there." 

The opinion adds that sometimes it is necessary to respond 
with shelling to sources of fire immediately, without 
granting the Palestinian public prior warning. A week ago, 
Rabbi Eliyahu Kinvinsky, the second most senior authority 
in the Orthodox religious current, issued a religious 
opinion prohibiting the employment of Arabs, particularly 
in religious schools. This religious opinion followed 
another that had been issued by Rabbi Lior prohibiting the 
employment of Arabs and the renting of residential apart-
ments to them in Jewish neighbourhoods. In order to provide 
a climate that allows Jewish extremist organisations to 
continue attacking Palestinian citizens, Rabbi Israel Ariel,
one of the most prominent rabbis in the West Bank settlement
complex, recently issued a religious opinion prohibiting 
religious Jews involved in attacks against Palestinians to 
appear before Israeli civil courts. According to this 
opinion, they must instead demand to appear before Torah 
courts that rule by Jewish religious law. 

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Haaretz newspaper noted that what Rabbi Ariel was trying to 
achieve through this religious opinion has in fact already 
taken place. The first instance of such a court in Kfar 
Saba ordered the release of a young Jewish woman called 
Tsevia Teshrael who attacked a Palestinian farmer in the 
middle of the West Bank. And there are Jewish religious 
authorities that glorify killing and praise terrorists, 
such as Rabbi Yitzhaq Ginsburg, a top rabbi in Israel who 
published a book entitled Baruch the Hero in memoriam of 
Baruch Goldstein, who committed the Ibrahimi Mosque 
massacre in 1994 when he opened fire and killed 29 
Palestinians as they were performing the dawn prayer in 
Hebron in the southern West Bank. Ginsburg considers his 
act "honourable and glorious". 

The danger of these religious opinions lies in the fact 
that the religious authorities issuing them have wide 
respect among religious Jewish youth. And while only 28 
per cent of Israel's population is religious, more than 
50 per cent of Israelis define themselves as conservative 
and grant major significance to opinions issued by Jewish 
religious authorities. According to a study conducted by 
the Social Sciences Department of Bar Elon University, 
more than 90 per cent of those who identify as religious 
believe that if state laws and government orders are 
incongruous with the content of religious opinions issued 
by rabbis, they must overlook the former and act in 
accordance with the latter. 

What grants the racist religious opinions a deeper and far-
reaching impact is the fact that for the last decade 
followers of the Zionist religious current, who form nearly 
10 per cent of the population, have been seeking to take 
control of the army and security institutions. They are 
doing so through volunteering for service in special combat 
units. The spokesperson's office in the Israeli army says 
that although the percentage of followers of this current 
is low in the state's demographic makeup, they form more 
than 50 per cent of the officers in the Israeli army and 
more than 60 per cent of its special unit commanders. 
According to an opinion poll of religious officers and 
soldiers supervised by the Interdisciplinary Centre 
Herzliya and published last year, more than 95 per cent 
of religious soldiers and officers say that they will 
execute orders from the elected government and their 
leaders in the army only if they are in harmony with the 
religious opinions issued by leading rabbis and religious 
authorities. 

Wasil Taha, Arab Knesset member from the Tajammu Party led 
by Azmi Bishara, says that these religious opinions lead 
to the committal of crimes. He mentions religious opinions 
issued by a number of rabbis in mid-1995 that led to the 
assassination of former Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak 
Rabin at that time. "If that's what happens when religious 
opinions urge attacks against Jewish leaders such as Rabin, 
what will the situation be like when they urge attacks 
against Palestinian leaders and the Palestinian public?" 
he asks. "We, as Arab leaders, have begun to feel a lack 
of security following this flood of religious opinions, 
and we realise that the matter requires a great deal of 
caution in our movements as we are certain that there are 
those who seek to implement these opinions," he told Al-
Ahram Weekly. 

Taha dismisses those who ask about the role of the govern-
ment and Israeli political cadre in confronting these 
extremist religious opinions. "The ministers in the Israeli 
government and the Knesset members compete to incite 
against the Palestinian public and don't hesitate to 
threaten expulsion of the Palestinians who live on their 
land in Israel and carry Israeli citizenship outside of 
Israel's borders, just as former deputy premier Avigdor 
Lieberman and representative Evi Etam did," Taha said. He 
notes that Palestinian citizens within Israel have begun 
to take extreme precautionary measures since the issue of 
these religious opinions, including security measures 
around mosques and public institutions and informing 
officials of public demonstrations so that members of 
Jewish terrorist organisations can be prevented from 
attacking participants. Taha holds that the sectors of the 
Palestinian population most likely to be harmed by these 
religious opinions are those living in the various cities 
populated by both Jews and Palestinians, such as Haifa, 
Jaffa, Lod, Ramleh and Jerusalem. 

Palestinian writer and researcher Abdul-Hakim Mufid, from 
the city Um Fahem, holds that the religious opinions of 
rabbis have gained major significance due to the harmony 
between official rhetoric and that of the rabbis. Mufid 
notes that official Israeli establishments have not tried 
to confront the "fascist" rhetoric expressed in these 
religious opinions even though they are capable of doing 
so. "Most of the rabbis who issue tyrannical religious 
opinions are official employees in state institutions and 
receive salaries from them. And the state has not held 
these rabbis accountable or sought to prohibit the issue 
of such opinions," he told the Weekly. 

Mufid points out that when the official political 
institution is in a crisis, the Zionist consensus behind 
these religious opinions grows more intense, and offers 
as an example the religious opinions relied upon by Rabbi 
Meir Kahane in the early 1980s to justify his call to 
forcefully expel the Palestinians. Mufid adds that Israel 
in practice encourages all those who kill Palestinians, 
and points to the way that the Israeli government dealt 
with the recommendations of the Orr Commission that 
investigated the Israeli police's killing of 13 Palestinians
with Israeli citizenship in October of 2000. The government 
closed the file even though the commission confirmed that 
the police had acted aggressively towards the Palestinian 
citizens. Mufid suggests that what makes the racist rhetoric
the rabbis insist upon influential is the silence of leftist
and liberal voices, and the lack of any direct mobilisation 
against it. 

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