In this post we will show you both the hollowness of the anti-BDS claims that if you boycott Israel, you need to boycott any technology they claim it has had a connection with and the dishonourable line of historical thinking these claims belong to.
I JUSTIFYING PALESTINIAN SUFFERING WITH ALLEGED ISRAELI TECHNOLOGICAL PROGRESS
We all have met them: The pro- Israeli propagandists that attack BDS by claiming that those who boycott Israel should also boycott everything (they claim) has been invented or made in Israel.
Beyond the fact that their lists include things not remotely connected to the self-declared ‘start-up nation’ Israel, these claims throw revealing light upon the Zionist worldview and how it justifies oppression and violence towards the oppressed in this case.
The justification which we find in these arguments is simple: Technological progress justifies oppression and violence towards the oppressed, ethnic cleansing and Apartheid included.
This, in fact, is a very old justification that goes back to at least as the early apologists of the Spanish conquistadors’ crimes against the Native Americans and the beginning of the trans-Atlantic slave trade and continues through to apologists of slavery in the United States’ South, European Imperialism and eventually to Fascism, Maoism and Stalinism.
The state of Israeli occupation and Apartheid is not just what 21st century slavery looks like, the 21st century slavers are in their arguments the direct ideological descendants of those antebellum slave-owners of US South and Spanish conquistadors.
Alleged – real or inventory – progress to a higher stage of cultural, ideological, religious or social or technological state (usually these are seen as connected to each other) is claimed to justify, mitigate or fully eradicate or the downsides there is to ‘breaking a few eggs’ (like one famous apologist once defended Mao’s Great Leap and Cultural Revolution).
The 21st century apologists or propagandists of Israel with their claims that Israeli-developed or produced piece of technology in your computer or smart phone means that you can’t boycott Israel without stopping using that device, fit to this dishonourable lineage of apologists to what can’t be defended like fish in water.
Israel’s apologists also claim that Israel also represents ‘higher’ cultural and civilizational state than what existed in historic Palestine before the massive ethnic cleansing of the Nakba; this is again in line with the historical ‘forefathers’ of these apologists that we have pointed out before.
Human suffering, this line of ‘reasoning’ goes, doesn’t matter if it produces something that is seen as good – by those who themselves benefit or think they benefit from that human suffering – which allegedly overweights the suffering.
To them a price can be put on human suffering, and they are willing to make others to pay for it and demand the ‘right’ both to continue to make others to pay that price and not to be criticized or boycotted as a result.
This of course reveals a paradox in their thinking: They defend atrocities by using the ‘greater good’ excuse, but also don’t want to be reminded through criticism and boycotts that they are committing those atrocities in the first place.
II THE DOUBLE-THINK OF APOLOGISTS OF ISRAELI OCCUPATION AND APARTHEID
The apologists and propagandists of Israeli occupation and Apartheid also refuse to accept that similar ‘greater good justifies human suffering’ excuses as mentioned can be used to reveal their own double-think.
You may think that what comes below is hitting these ‘hasbara trolls’ ‘under the belt’. We strongly believe that if that’s where they must hit so that the message of necessity of freedom reaches if not themselves, then the wider audience still standing on the sidelines, then those punches must be taken.
In Israel the music of Richard Wagner has been traditionally boycotted because he was openly an anti-semite and his daughter-in-law was an actual Nazi who allowed Wagner’s music to be used in the Nazi propaganda.
But does Israel boycott the Nazi ‘achievements’ of jet engine, guided missile or the space rocket? The ME-262 jet fighter, V-1 missile and V-2 rocket programs all saw large-scale use of slave labour in both of building of factories and producing the actual weapons.
No, it doesn’t.
When Israel uses jet fighters and missiles to attack let’s say Syria, based on data gained from a spy satellite send to orbit by a rocket, does this ‘justify’ the Nazi crimes, even those that are not directly connected to the destruction camps and other forms of mass killings in the genocides of the Jews and Roma?
Of course not. But based on the logic of Israel’s apologists it should – but yet, as Israel officially opposes, even partly basis in its identity in its own propaganda to the memory of those crimes, it also should boycott all technology in which development the Nazi regime and those who worked for it played even the smallest role.
But, as we all know, Israel instead takes full advantage of these technologies whose development was done through immense human suffering by an evil regime, whose crimes Israel denounces and uses to ‘justify’ its own violence, as a necessity so that such crimes could never be done again, at least against Jews if not others like the Roma – or the Palestinians.
III ARGUMENTS AND HISTORY ARE ON THE SIDE OF THE BDS MOVEMENT
What this shows is the extreme weakness and inhumanity of the propaganda which Israel’s apologists – often paid for by Israel’s government or organizations supporting the Israeli occupation – use against the BDS movement.
We also see the historical continuum in which these arguments against BDS belong to, and through that we see that these arguments have been discredit again and again in history, and the past crimes they were used to defend from criticism in word and action have all gone to be recognized as great evils that no claim of ‘progress’ can justify or excuse.
This, we believe, shows us also the eventual inevitable fate of both Israeli occupation and Zionism as an ideology, and how they will be seen by future generations.
Both arguments and history are on the side of the BDS movement, but also basic human decency.
Basic human decency, which the state of Israel, it’s representatives and its propagandists currently lack – and will lack to the day when the occupation of East Jerusalem, Gaza Strip, Golan Heights and the West Bank end along with the Apartheid and the living death of the refugee camps.