Netanyahu: 9/11 attacks good for Israel
by shergald, Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 05:14:07 AM EDT
16 Apr 2008
While Hillary and Obama argue about who is more pro-Israel, only Hillary seems to have adopted Israel's view that its greatest problem is terrorism and that it is terrorism that impedes peace in the Middle East, Hamas, of course, being the scapegoat. Hillary refuses to mention a Palestinian state, the military occupation that is the source of the problem, or Israel's continuing ethnic cleansing of Palestinians from the West Bank.
How did terrorism come to dominate talk about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict?
The Israeli newspaper Ma'ariv (and Haaretz) on Wednesday reported that Likud leader Benjamin Netanyahu told an audience at Bar Ilan University that the September 11, 2001 terror attacks had been beneficial for Israel.
"We are benefiting from one thing, and that is the attack on the Twin Towers and Pentagon, and the American struggle in Iraq," Ma'ariv quoted the former prime minister as saying. He reportedly added that these events "swung American public opinion in our favor."
To read more about Netanyahu's talk, including some remarks by the nutty president of Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, and Israel's fear mongering about the Iranians, click here.
The truth is that Netanyahu is correct, but not in the way most people would think. 9/11 was really a boon to Israel's propaganda effort to hide its ongoing colonialism of the Palestinian West Bank, because it permitted Israel to recast the Israeli-Palestinian conflict into "terrorist-victim" terms, to turn Israel into the victim of terrorism rather than the illegal military occupier/colonialist it really is.
This transformation is one theme of the documentary, Peace, Propaganda, & The Promised Land, and it is recommended for anyone who wishes a post-9/11 understanding of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the origins of the terrorist meme as now applied to Palestinians.
This excerpt is from Robert Jensen, Professor of Journalism, University of Texas-Austin, speaking in the context of the second Intifada:
"In contrast to the international press, in American media, there is a reversal of cause and effect in that the occupation is framed as a response to the suicide bombings. All of the Palestinian actions are attacks and Israel actions retaliation, is meaningful. Retaliation suggests a defensive stance against violence initiated by someone else. It places a responsibility for the violence on the party provoking the retaliation. In other words, Palestinian violence like suicide bombings is seen as cause and the origin of the conflict. Since the September 11 attack on the US, Israel's PR strategy has been to frame all Palestinian actions, violent or not, as terrorism. To the extent that they can do that they have repackaged the illegal occupation as part of the war on terrorism."
News headlines of the day also reflected how the press helped create the myth of the Palestinian terrorist:
"This is Israel's war on terrorism.""F16s hit a Palestinian in the Gaza Strip this morning....""The case the Israelis are trying to make: this is no different than what the US is doing in Afganistan (air attacks in the West Bank)...""Prime Minister Ariel Sharon declared on television tonight, that he was determined to root out what he called `the terrorist infrastructure.'"
Most of these headlines tended to leave out the fact that the Palestinians were fighting a long and incessant military occupation by Israel that the UN has called illegal.
Click here for Part I of Peace, Propaganda, & The Promised Land:
Click here for Part II:
Thanks for Haitham Sabbah for drawing my attention to the news articles.