Occupation, Schmoccupation: And Propaganda Shall Cover For Everything (Except the Ugly Truth)
By Abby Zimet / commondreams.org

As part of Israel's ongoing and desperate PR campaign to counter opposition and prove it has justice on its side, The Yesha Council, a settlers' organization in the West Bank, has released a new booklet to teach young people "the right facts" - fictions like "There has never been a state called Palestine," “every attempt to give the Arabs land led us to terror attacks and violence,” "the Arabs of Judea and Samaria manage their lives independently with elections and a civil administration,” so-called "price tag" attacks against Palestinian lives, homes, property and olive groves are in fact the result of "internal conflicts between the Arabs over land," and Israel is made up of good guys who really want peace, but bad guys, aka Palestinians, don't.

The illustrated book is part of Israel's unrelenting “hasbara” campaign, its euphemism for propaganda. Released in time for the start of the school year, it will be distributed in community centers, universities and other places where teenagers gather. With peace unlikely soon, says a Yesha spokesman, "It's important to us that the younger generation knows the right facts and doesn't rely on stigmas left-wing organizations are trying to disseminate." 

The book's title, "Occupation, Schmoccupation," reflects a country in pathological denial as it faces down an increasingly censorious world. In the latest evidence of its growing isolation, the European Union Thursday voted overwhelmingly in favor of labeling consumer goods produced in Israel's spreading, prosperous, illegal Israeli settlements "in the spirit of differentiation between Israel and its activities in the occupied Palestinian territories." The move was deemed "insufficient" by BDS activists who, among many others, seek a military embargo. Still, it was sufficient enough for Israeli officials to freak out.

A Foreign Ministry spokesman called it "discriminatory with a sharp smell of boycott," and Netanyahu called it "a distortion of justice and logic (that) hurts peace." He  pointedly, absurdly added, "The root of the conflict is not the territories (and) not the settlements," and for good measure threw in the inevitable Holocaust reference: "We have historical memory of what happened when Europe labeled Jewish products." Such tired tactics, argues Haaretz' Gideon Levy, will not work indefinitely, because some fundamental realities - like the evil of the Occupation - are not "hasbarable." Thus, the magic bubble where official Israel lives - where "we say terrorism...shout anti-Semitism...say gay-friendly, drip irrigation, cherry tomatoes, the only democracy, the greatest army...tell the world that it all belongs to us because the Bible says so...(believe) the memory of the Holocaust will serve us forever, and justify any injustice" - will burst. And sooner, not later.

3.8 ·
1
What's Next
Trending Today
10 Provocative Quotes from Ivan Illich's "Deschooling Society"
Daniel Lattier · 12,871 views today · Ivan Illich’s groundbreaking book Deschooling Society (1971) offers a radical critique of the institutionalization of education within modern societies. Illich believed that we...
This Text Message Exchange Between a Mother and Daughter is Pure Gold
Belinda Hankins · 8,986 views today · When Belinda Hankins got a text message from her 13-year-old daughter, who was shopping for period products, it started an exchange that will resonate with women everywhere. Enjoy.
What Makes Call-Out Culture So Toxic
Asam Ahmad · 4,242 views today · Call-out culture refers to the tendency among progressives, radicals, activists, and community organizers to publicly name instances or patterns of oppressive behaviour and...
Welcome to Marinaleda: The Spanish Anti-Capitalist Town With Equal Wage Full Employment and $19 Housing
Jade Small · 4,143 views today · With virtually no police, crime or unemployment, meet the Spanish town described as a democratic, socialist utopia. Unemployment is non-existent in Marinaleda, an Andalusian...
When You Kill Ten Million Africans You Aren't Called 'Hitler'
Liam O'Ceallaigh · 3,323 views today · Take a look at this picture. Do you know who it is? Most people haven’t heard of him. But you should have. When you see his face or hear his name you should get as sick in...
Superblocks: How Barcelona Is Taking City Streets Back From Cars
5 min · 3,047 views today · Modern cities are designed for cars. But the city of Barcelona is testing out an urban design trick that can give cities back to pedestrians.
11 Traits of People With High Emotional Intelligence
Raven Fon · 2,715 views today · Lately, new ways to describe human interactions, social behaviours, and many facets of psychology have emerged on the social network scene. One of those descriptions is “high...
What You Might Notice If You Forgot Your Phone For a Day
2 min · 2,013 views today · There is a moment happening right in front of you, right this second, and you just might be missing it
Who Are You? Watching This Breathtaking Video Could Be the Moment You Change Your Life
2 min · 1,963 views today · "Normal is getting dressed in clothes that you buy for work, driving through traffic in a car that you are still paying for, in order to get to a job that you need so you can...
Ikigai - Finding Your Reason for Being
Chip Richards · 1,914 views today · What Gets You Out of Bed in the Morning? When asked what is the single most powerful contributing factor to one’s health and vitality, integrative medical...
Throw (2016)
10 min · 1,760 views today · The first installment of Invisible Thread, an ongoing ELM passion project series, Throw tells the story of an outsider from East Baltimore, an area challenged by gang violence...
93 Documentaries to Expand Your Consciousness
Films For Action · 1,503 views today · There are over 800 documentaries now cataloged in our library of social change films. That's probably way too many for any mortal to ever watch in a lifetime, let alone a few...
Today I Rise: This Beautiful Short Film Is Like a Love Poem For Your Heart and Soul
4 min · 1,357 views today · "The world is missing what I am ready to give: My Wisdom, My Sweetness, My Love and My hunger for Peace." "Where are you? Where are you, little girl with broken wings but full...
Fighting Trump - Residents Opposing Donald Trump's Scottish Golf Resort
14 min · 941 views today · Documentary on the residents protesting against Donald Trump's golf development on the Menie Estate in Aberdeenshire, Scotland. Directed and Presented by James Trosh.
Real Change in Democracy Comes Not in the Voting Booth but Activism at the Grass-Roots
Ilze Peterson · 937 views today · Many years ago, the late Judy Guay, a low-income woman from Bangor, founded the Maine Association of Interdependent Neighborhoods in order to advocate for the neediest in our...
Schooling the World (2010)
66 min · 937 views today · If you wanted to change an ancient culture in a generation, how would you do it? You would change the way it educates its children. The U.S. Government knew this in the 19th...
Doctors Response to Daily Mail Bigotry is Beautiful
Neil Tiwari · 849 views today · A poetic open letter to the Daily Mail newspaper from Dr. Neil Tiwari, in response to a bigoted attack on his colleagues, is going viral and it's beautiful.
Forest Man
16 min · 846 views today · Since the 1970's Majuli islander Jadav Payeng has been planting trees in order to save his island. To date he has single handedly planted a forest larger than Central Park NYC...
How to Criticize with Kindness: Philosopher Daniel Dennett on the Four Steps to Arguing Intelligently
Maria Popova · 688 views today · “Just how charitable are you supposed to be when criticizing the views of an opponent?”
John Lennon's "Imagine," Made Into a Comic Strip
John Lennon. Art by Pablo Stanley · 628 views today · This is easily the best comic strip ever made.  Pabl
Load More
Like us on Facebook?
Occupation, Schmoccupation: And Propaganda Shall Cover For Everything (Except the Ugly Truth)