Available Now! (click cover)

America's Counter-Revolution
The Constitution Revisited

From the back cover:

This book challenges the assumption that the Constitution was a landmark in the struggle for liberty. Instead, Sheldon Richman argues, it was the product of a counter-revolution, a setback for the radicalism represented by America’s break with the British empire. Drawing on careful, credible historical scholarship and contemporary political analysis, Richman suggests that this counter-revolution was the work of conservatives who sought a nation of “power, consequence, and grandeur.” America’s Counter-Revolution makes a persuasive case that the Constitution was a victory not for liberty but for the agendas and interests of a militaristic, aristocratic, privilege-seeking ruling class.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Nakba Day, 2015


Today is Nakba Day, the day set aside to remember the catastrophe that befell the Palestinian Arabs in 1948 in connection with the creation of the “Jewish State” of Israel. Over 700,000 Palestinians were driven from their homes and villages, and many massacred, in an ethnic-cleansing operation that should shock the conscience. Hundreds of villages were erased and replaced by Jewish towns. The Arabs who remained in the Israeli state that was imposed on them by the UN and Zionist military forces have been second-class citizens, at best, from that time.

Since 1967 the Palestinians of the West Bank and Gaza Strip, many of whom were refugees from the 1948 catastrophe, have lived under the boot of the Israeli government. Their day-to-day lives are under the arbitrary control of the Israeli government. Gaza is an open-air blockaded prison camp subject to periodic military onslaughts (the latest was last year), while the West Bank is relentlessly gobbled up by Jewish-only settlements and violated by a wall that surrounds Palestinian towns and cuts people’s homes off from their farms. For the Israeli ruling elite, the so-called peace process is a sham. Benjamin Netanyahu, who is now embarking on an unprecedented fourth term as prime minister, rejects any realistic plan to let the Palestinians go -- that is, have their own country on the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. He insists that they must recognize Israel as the Jewish state, that is, as the state of Jews everywhere, even though it sits largely on stolen property (PDF) -- which raises an interesting question: Is subjugation of the Palestinians an instantiation of Jewish values or is it not? If it is (as apparently most of its supporters believe), then what does that say for Jewish values? If it is not, then what does that say for Israel's purported status as the Jewish State?

Again, I note that the best short introduction to the catastrophe is Jeremy Hammond’s The Rejection of Palestinian Self-Determination: The Struggle for Palestine and the Roots of the Israeli-Arab Conflict. Further, Hammond debunks the myth that the United Nations created the state of Israel.


Additional reading: "Why the Inconvenient Truths of the Nakba Must Be Recognized," by Tom Pessah


Anonymous said...

Coincidentally it is also the day that the day Arab states launched their attack on Israel and Arab League Secretary General Azzam Pasha announced that "[t]his will be a war of extermination and a momentous massacre which will be spoken of like the Mongolian massacres and the Crusades."

Sheldon Richman said...

Of course, it was no coincidence. The Arab governments reluctantly came to the defense of the beleaguered Palestinians after public pressure overcame the rulers' lack of interest. The Zionist leadership had already cut a deal with the king of Transjordan to assure that no Palestinian state would emerge. (See Avi Shlaim's Collusion Across the Jordan.) Most of the fighting between the disorganized Arab forces and well-organized Zionist forces took place in what the UN had recommended become a Palestinian state.

Anonymous said...

"Palestinians were driven from their homes and villages, and many massacred, in an ethnic-cleansing operation..."

So, it was like the events described in the Book of Joshua.

It's by the way that two of the tribes, Rueben and Gad, were situated to the west of the Dead See and the Jordan. Another tribe, Manasseh, had territory on both sides of the Jordan. So it isn't difficult to predict what land will be grabbed for Israel in the future, perhaps even during our lifetimes.




Yj Draiman said...

The Arabs persecuted and expelled over a million Jewish families - YJ Draiman

The Arabs have Jordan, which was Jewish territory. The Arabs persecuted and expelled over a million Jewish families (who lived there for over 2500 years), from their countries and confiscated all their assets, businesses, homes and Real estate property 6 times the size of Israel - 120,440 sq. km. and valued in the trillions of dollars. Most of the expelled Jewish families from Arab countries were resettled in Israel, today over half the population in Israel are the families of the million Jewish families expelled from Arab countries. Let the Arab-Palestinians relocate to those lands and solve the Arab Israeli conflict and the Arab-Palestinian refugee problem.
YJ Draiman.

Anonymous said...

There's nothing inherently "Jewish" about taking land and killing the inhabitants. From the Mongols to the Nazis history is full of evil men who have coveted the lands of others.Jews do themselves a disservice by doing so themselves, unless they want others to think of them in that light.