Zionism is antisemitism, and Palestine

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by CriticalResist
Published: 2023-10-20 (last update: 2023-11-29)
25-40 minutes

More and more people are saying the situation in Palestine is "complicated". That we have to deplore the amount of deaths on "both sides". That Hamas is "illegitimate" or "terrorists". Even worse, they are now compared to ISIS! What an insult.

Starting from the origins of Zionism through the colonisation of Palestine to the recent Flood of Al-Aqsa operation in October 2023, we aim to set the record straight and debunk Zionist propaganda that aims to retain its cushy privilege in Palestine by any means necessary -- including psychological warfare against the world population.

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"At the end of the blind alley that is Europe ... there is Hitler." Aimé Césaire, Discourse on Colonialism

This article is also available on the author's substack.

More and more people are saying the situation in Palestine is "complicated". That we have to deplore the amount of deaths on "both sides". That Hamas is "illegitimate" or "terrorists". Even worse, Hamas is now compared to ISIS! What an insult.

First, we must understand that the "conflict" (really a genocide against Palestinians) is not "complicated". You don't need to be an archeologist or historian to understand it. A nation is being displaced to make way for an occupier. Under UN law, "Israel" is an occupier.[1] This is a fact.

Let's begin with some history. Zionism is not ancient. It's actually pretty new. Zionism was first theorized coherently by Theodor Herzl who, while himself issued from a Jewish family, was an antisemite and atheist: he believed that Jews were foreign to Europe, despite himself being Ashkenazi. Read this Twitter thread for a primer on Ashkenazi identity (thread reader link). Herzl further admitted Israel was a colonial project; He called Palestinians "savages" and referred to Israelis as "colonists".

In short: Ashkenazi Jews are European. To deny that is fundamentally antisemitic, because when it comes from a European it implies there are "acceptable" Europeans and "unacceptable" Europeans. "European" becomes a conditional identity, and one bigger than its geographical boundaries. If the claim comes from a Jewish person on the other hand, it implies that Jews can never fully be emancipated in Europe and that despite this continent being the ancestral homeland of the Ashkenazim, it isn't really their home. That there is some amount of "foreignness" in them as well, inherent to their personhood as Jews.

If you get to go to your "promised land" because it's your "ancestral home", why stop there? Are Europeans allowed to colonize Iraq because we came from Mesopotamia? Should I get a bunch of people together, take up weapons, and go steal homes in Iraq? And if Iraqis decide to defend against their forcible displacement, they are considered terrorists which gives me and my friends the right to kill them?

The irony of course is that this is exactly what happened in 2003, albeit under the guise of a military intervention. We see here the premises of a major driver in the existence of "Israel": its existence serves the exact same interests that the invasion of Iraq served in 2003; gaining a foothold in West Asia for further imperial endeavours, to ultimately control oil-producing regions. Is it any wonder that Israel's most valuable export is diamonds followed by refined petroleum?[2] Is it any wonder that they export 78% of this value solely to the United States, their main backer and funder?[2]

But here's the thing -- it doesn't matter if you can trace your lineage back to a place some thousand years ago (nobody can, but let's imagine they could). People are living in what you call your ancestral homeland. To displace them, steal their property and claim their territory as your own is literally colonialism. It is genocide.

A free Palestine

This brings us to Palestine. The first question we should ask is: why is Israel in Palestine specifically? Why not somewhere else? Well, Herzl, the first Zionist, actually proposed various other places for a Jewish state. But after World War 2, Europe wanted to finish what Hitler started and get rid of their remaining Jewish population. Ask yourself this question: why didn't we give them Bavaria, since Germany was being divided either way? Why didn't we give them Austria, which had been annexed by Germany and then forcibly broken away after the war? Why didn't we give them Poland, which was also newly restored, since the relative majority of European Jews lived in Poland before the war? Why did the United States not cede some of its vast stolen territory, since it knows a thing or two about colonialism?

Because we didn't want them in Europe or America. This is the answer to all these questions.

"it would be worthwhile to ... reveal to the very distinguished, very humanistic, very Christian bourgeois of the twentieth century that without his being aware of it, he has a Hitler inside him, that Hitler inhabits him, that Hitler is his demon." -- Aimé Césaire, Discourse on Colonialism.

It took the European powers almost ten years to act against Hitler -- after they saw the writing on the wall when he invaded Poland and they realized they were going to be next. During those ten years, they happily let Hitler displace Jews in ghettos, ramp up antisemitic propaganda, conduct the Kristallnacht, revoke citizenships and slowly dehumanize German Jews.

Hell, Hitler even had official support abroad. Virtually all European countries harboured their very own, local Nazi sympathisers and gave them positions in government. Churchill himself spoke highly of Hitler, saying:

To feel deep concern about the armed power of Germany is in no way derogatory to Germany. On the contrary, it is a tribute to the wonderful and terrible strength which Germany exerted in the Great War, when almost single-handed she fought nearly all the world and nearly beat them... One may dislike Hitler’s system and yet admire his patriotic achievement. If our country were defeated I hope we should find a champion as indomitable to restore our courage and lead us back to our place among the nations. I have on more than one occasion made my appeal in public that the Führer of Germany should now become the Hitler of peace.[3]

And before Hitler, there was colonialism. And this colonialism was not German, it was European through and through. Germany only ever controlled tiny areas of Africa. Compare to the British Empire (1/3rd of all landmass in the world). The French Empire (reaching as far as Pacific islands). Spain. Portugal. And then bring it back to Germany.

Europe created its own Hitler through its legacy of colonialism and antisemitism: that is what Aimé Césaire was getting to.

Antisemitism is not new in Europe; it is a 2000 year old tradition. Expelling Jews was the basis for the existence of Israel. Remember that Palestinians never had a say in how their land was to be used. Palestine was an Ottoman territory until the British seized it after World War I. From then, it became a "mandate" under British rule. In 1948, it was decided for them that their country would be divided in two, with one half ceded to specifically European Jews, survivors of the Holocaust -- thereby once and for all, the British hoped, finishing what Hitler had started. But non-European Jews were not part of this consideration. They were brought in later, after Israel had established itself, to legitimize the fledgling imperialist project.

They were, after all, already out of Europe.

Why could the survivors not be welcomed into the State of Palestine? After all, many Jews, native to the Levant, already lived in Palestine before Israel existed. This is the question settlers don't want to be asked. Why was it necessary to create a State of Israel instead of a plurinational and pluricultural free state of Palestine where Christians, Muslims and Jews could live together and be represented? This question cannot be answered, because the only answer betrays the ethnonationalist roots of Zionism: "We deserve to have a country just for us".

Therefore we see that Zionism is antisemitic, and it cannot be anything else. It is impossible to take a Jewish person who has lived their entire life in, say, Toronto Canada and move them halfway across the world to a place they have never been, their family has never been, their grandparents have never been, and say that is actually their homeland.

In 21st century, Israel serves a very important purpose to the imperial core: it is a staging ground for further incursions into the Middle East/West Asia. Iran, Kuwait, Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria (which Israel bombs every so often, including bombing the civilian Aleppo Airport in October 2023 during the Flood of Al-Aqsa operation!)... "Israel" is essentially a glorified US military base, and that is why they receive over 3 billion USD in "aid" every year.[4] Aid which includes weapons (as US presidents have all said one after the other that "Israel has a right to defend itself", which for them includes bombing Gaza indiscriminately, even though the UN disagrees).

Does Israel have "a right to exist"? (No)

Map showing the rapid colonization of Palestine over the past 70 years

It's as simple as that. Zionism has always been a colonial and antisemitic project. The area is important to all three Abrahamic religions - Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Should Christians be allowed to colonize Israel because Jesus was born in Bethlehem? This is what Zionists believe, if we follow their logic.

It's not an issue of "religion", like some naively believe, or an issue of "race", or anything complicated. It's an issue of an occupier colonizing a territory. And Palestinians are resisting this occupation.

The reason it's "complicated" is because people have an interest in making it seem difficult or complex. Pasty white Zionists who converted to Judaism a month ago can get instant citizenship and a free house in "Israel": all they have to do is show up in the West Bank and occupy a Palestinian family's home. If the family so much as lifts a finger to protest, the IOF (Israeli Occupation Force) will side with the settler -- and are allowed to shoot Palestinians at their discretion. So is the settler, if he has access to a weapon.

So they invent justifications to defend their occupation and hope you won't look into it. Because any reading of the situation in Palestine beyond surface-level will show this is exactly what it looks like: colonialism.

This process displaces entire families from their actual ancestral home, which they can sometimes trace back generations. They then wander to refugee camps -- Gaza, for example, was first built as such a camp after the Nakba. This process illegal under Occupation law -- the occupier cannot move its population into the territory it occupies.

"Israel" cabinet for the year 2023. Only 5 persons of color are counted amongst the many members. The rest would not look out of place in Long Island, New York.

Although, this process only applies if one is white. When Zionists needed to legitimize their made-up ideology, "Israel" called Jews from Morocco, East Africa, Iraq and elsewhere to come live in occupied Palestine. A "homeland" for all Jews. This was in the 60s and 70s. Now that "Israel" is well-established, they don't need to worry about undesirables (non-White people) anymore. They have become undesirable, as was always intended.

Ethiopian Jews are being sterilized[5] (which falls under the definition of genocide). Israel set up a double-citizenship system where POC Jews and Arabs (most of which are Palestinians who fled into the occupied territories after the Nakba) do not get the same rights Whites do. POC Jews trying to gain citizenship in Israel from Morocco or elsewhere are being denied entry to the occupied territory of Palestine. They are not needed any more to legitimize the Zionist project.

This is dangerous for all Jews worldwide. The fact is that most Zionists are Christians. Israel tries really hard to equate Judaism with Zionism. Most big-name organisations against antisemitism are actually Zionist fronts: The Anti-Defamation League and the Simon Wiesenthal Center for example, just to name two. Most of them were founded right after or shortly after World War II.

Their position of forcibly equating Jewish identity with support for Israel is antisemitic. It denies Jews the right to self-determination and freedom of thought. It picks their position for them. There comes a time in every Jewish child's life where they must ask themselves the Israel question. The existence of this state forces such a question on virtually all Jews.

The fact is there are also plenty of anti-Zionist Jews and organisations (the American Council for Judaism to name just one). Orthodox Jews consider Israel a severe breach of Judaism as Jews are not allowed to seize or take land until the Messiah comes. Whether the Messiah will one day arrive is another story. Whether Israel exists in the modern day in the face of a lacking Messiah is current events and geopolitics: it is a fact.

The fact is that Israel also targets Christians. The hospital the Zionist entity bombed on 18 October 2023,[6] the Al-Ahli Hospital, was founded by Baptist Christians in 1882[7] and belongs to the Anglican (Episcopal) church in Jerusalem. Churches have also been targeted by the occupier in Gaza, Jerusalem and the West Bank.[8][9]

If you are not a White Jew, Israel does not want you. That is how they have been operating for decades: ask anyone who has tried to go to "Israel". They will detain you for hours at the border and ask questions about your travel plans, itinerary, reason for being here at every checkpoint. This is how an ethnostate starts. The evidence could not be clearer.

In offense of a "Jewish state"

The "Jewish state" is a laughable idea from the start.

We're not even going into why there must be such a thing as a Jewish state. The best argument Zionists have for it is that "the French have France, the English have England". But Judaism is a religion. Is there a Christian state for all Christians? No. Is there an Islamic state for all Muslims? No. A Buddhist state for all Buddhists? No.

A Christian cannot waltz into the Vatican and get citizenship. But this is how it works in Israel.

ISIS is fighting for a caliphate, yes, but not for all Muslims. Only their branch. And the world rightly condemns them. We're thus right back where we started: under this logic, Christians are allowed to colonize and seize Bethlehem from Israel. If you disagree, you're bigoted.

This obviously makes no sense.

Some argue that Jews form an ethnic group or a nation. I added the term nation here to this claim because the position that an ethnic group deserves a State of their own is literally ethnonationalism, especially when the territory for that state is already populated and requires the forceful displacement of the native population to exist. I will hold my readers to a higher standard and not sincerely entertain the idea that an ethnostate is ever a serious idea.

A Jewish ethnicity can however exist without a state to accompany it. This is not a problem. As we've seen, Zionism is more than simply a state. It's a base of operations. It's a foothold for further ventures. It is, and can only be, an ethnostatist pipe dream. Once again, to claim that Zionism is inherently Judaism, is inherently tied to a Jew's identity -- no matter where they come from in the world, no matter where they live, no matter if they converted or can trace their ancestry -- is to claim that Jews are inherently genocidal and will always seek to form an ethnostate of their own.

I choose to believe this is not the case and that no people have inherent traits that guide their actions, especially not that of genocide (to which the only response would be to genocide them before they genocide you). Because that would indeed give credibility to the idea of an antisemitic Jewish ethnicity. But your mileage may vary.

Let's consider whether Jews form a nation instead. A nation can be thought of as "a historically constituted, stable community of people, formed on the basis of a common language, territory, economic life, and psychological make-up manifested in a common culture".[10]

This definition, however, should be thought of as a guideline and not a strict set of conditions. Palestinians, for example, who have been displaced from their homeland would not qualify as a "stable community of people formed on the basis of a common territory". It is a definition that dates from over 100 years ago, before decolonization theory even existed.

Nevertheless, we can start from this definition. We see that there are several different Jewish ethnicities. There are the Sephardic, Ashkenazim, Misrahi and Ethiopian Jews -- and these are just the most-represented groups. All of these groups (or ethnicities) speak different languages, come from different regions of the world, traditionally dressed differently, practice their faith differently, and do not have this common psychological make-up.

Jews do not form one nation.

Should this mean that there can be several Jewish states?

No. Because such states could only be formed in one of two ways:

  1. Invoking the premise of Zionism, Ashkenazim Jews (or any other group) are foreign to Europe and cannot live there (and must therefore carve out their own ethnostate).
  2. Founding their own state in an unpopulated and/or ungoverned territory. No such territories exist in the modern day.

Terrorism is something only the other does

But now Palestinians are deemed "terrorists" because they dared take up weapons to try and match their colonizer's weapons! Palestinians have rocks and small arms. Their rockets are glorified fireworks. Israel has tanks, a navy, an airforce, missiles -- all paid for by the US military-industrial complex.

Palestinians are displaced from their own home. The world rightly stands with them. But some people stay on the fence, deploring the deaths on "both sides" or decrying the violence on the grounds that "Hamas are terrorists". We aim to set the record straight. First of all, Hamas was elected in 2006 in Gaza. Virtually all Palestinians in the world like Hamas. Yes, even in the West Bank. The reason they are considered "terrorists" is because our imperialist countries only recognize the "Palestinian Authority", or Fatah, now only located in the West Bank. Fatah's crime is akin to collaborating with the Nazis in its day. It's the same situation. They happily surrendered to their occupier. Their own police put down, for example, pro-Gaza protests in the West Bank!

It's funny that Biden, with his measly 28% approval rating, is considered the legitimate President over the entire United States and nobody disputes that. But Hamas, with their 57% approval rating in Gaza (and 52 in the West Bank) are apparently not. The reason we think Palestinians don't support Hamas is twofold:

  1. we think what we're told. The media uses words like "terrorists", "the group that rules Gaza" (as opposed to a party that governs), etc. This language tries to create an "us vs them" mentality, trying to pit the undefined, nebulous "Palestinians" (which ones?) as being separate from Hamas. Thus making Hamas a justified target of retaliations and aggression, and hoping to lower support for Hamas abroad.
  2. we think with our Western sensibilities and would like to see a peaceful solution, thinking it's even possible. We, as Europeans or North Americans living in peace, want nothing more than for things to be solved peacefully. But for Palestinians, that's not an option. They tried peace. It didn't work. In the West Bank, where treaties were made, you can be kidnapped by the IOF and never seen again at any time. You can get your home stolen when you come back from work. This is what "peace" got them.

Hamas is popular in Gaza though. They brought order and some semblance of normal life to Gaza. They got popular by driving out the occupier and its collaborationist arm, Fatah, in 2007. They defend Gaza against incursions from Israel. Generally, Gazans understand the need for resistance, whether it comes from Hamas or another group (we should not forget the resistance is also the PFLP and PIJ and smaller groups).

If Hamas are terrorists, then what is Biden? What is Sunak? What is Macron?

To call for the dissolving of Hamas thinking they are the people preventing peace is short-sighted. It is wishful thinking. Wishes have never solved anything, only concrete actions do. Israel does not want peace: they want to kill every last Palestinian. Palestinians do not want peace: they want their country back. To call for the dissolving of Hamas means to stop the Palestinian resistance and surrender them to their butcher. Peace treaties have been tried before. Agreements have been tried before. Fatah is a collaborationist party because they have agreements. And we see every day that living conditions in the West Bank are not improving. The PLO tried peace treaties before, in the 70s and 80s. At every turn Israel broke them and continued on with genocide.

We are talking about a country that, let me remind you, sends its soldiers in kindergartens to tell children that they must kill Arabs and how proud their family will be when they do.[11]

The fact is that most Zionists in the world are Christians

Calling for a ceasefire or peace is a position of privilege, made from our cushy, safe lives in Europe and North America. Calling for a ceasefire is giving the green light for Israel -- as the party with the most power in this situation -- to proceed with their genocide and the establishment of their ethnostate: a state where only white Jews will be allowed.

The only real position, if one supports national liberation, is to support Hamas. Not necessarily as the only party capable of liberating Palestine, but as the most capable one at the current moment.

Operation Flood of al-Aqsa

This brings us to the al-Aqsa Flood. People are talking of a "massacre" committed by Hamas, and then in the same breath talk about the "disproportionate" response from the occupier ("Israel") and don't see the contradiction!

This is the contradiction: The joint resistance (all groups, not just Hamas) killed and destroyed military targets during the weekend of 7 October. This is important. The resistance does not target civilians like ISIS or Israel (who actually funded ISIS[12]) do. This is further compounded by UN occupation law, and by the fact that Israel decided all citizens must serve in the IOF: civilians become military targets as well.

Hamas and the Palestinian resistance have never once summarily executed or beheaded anyone, contrary to ISIS.

"Israel" has been trying very hard on social media to compare Hamas to ISIS, even starting the hashtag #HamasIsis and talking about beheadings (which Hamas has never done) to essentially say that ISIS = Hamas = Islam = barbarians. In other words, all Muslims form a monolith and want nothing more than to behead infidels. Lovely propaganda from the "only democracy in the Middle East".[13]

Are Hamas terrorists? Let's look at the facts. First, the Palestinian incursion into the occupied territories was legal. In 1982, the UN reaffirmed that Palestine had the right to use arms, unconditionally, to resist.[14]

Before that, the UN agreed in 1967 that Israel formed an occupying power and therefore Occupation law applied to both parties: To Palestine as the occupied territory, and to Israel as the occupying power, giving each of them respectively rights and obligations.

The incursion, which lasted 3 to 4 days, led to the capture of over 150 prisoners of war. This is legal and a normal course of warfare. Since all "Israelis" serve in the military, they are recognized as prisoners of war. Therefore, these are not "kidnappings" like the media says, as that word implies civilians were targetted.

Furthermore, the occupying power is not allowed, under international law, to move its population to the territory it occupies. This makes all settlers, civilian or not, legitimate targets of the resistance. There is precedent for that: an accountant for Nazi Germany stationed in France was just as dangerous as a soldier. If that accountant was French and therefore a collaborator, should he still be considered a "neutral" third-party to this conflict? Is he untouchable, free to send thousands to extermination camps, because he is only a collaborator and not a soldier? Are soldiers incorporated in the Wehrmacht but on clerical or mechanical duty not legitimate targets because they don't carry weapons? This is the basis for the evolution of Occupation law.

There is a very simple solution to settlers if they do not want to be targetted: they can leave. Their passport offers them access to most of the world, as Israel is integrated -- by design, as we discussed -- into imperial core politics. And indeed, as soon as the Operation started, thousands were seen rushing to the airports to board the first flights out. Israel has 30-days visa-free agreements with most of the imperial core. Palestinians, on the other hand, are either stuck in the concentration camp that is Gaza or second-class citizens with no freedom of movement (again a breach of their human rights, but who's even counting except us?). They cannot leave. They cannot go anywhere.

A proportionate response?

The operation led to the deaths of 500 settlers when all was said and done and lasted only 4 days, after which the resistance drove back to Gaza. Immediately, the occupier responded by attacking Gaza -- a war crime, as they are not allowed to retaliate like this under international law (Israel can "defend itself" only against direct attacks, they cannot target something else later and call it defense). The resistance retaliated with more incursions and rocket fire, which led to the estimated deaths of 500 more settlers, up to a possible total of 1000 (only ~600 bodies have been retrieved so far).

Meanwhile, Israel has been bombing and besieging Gaza for almost two weeks. They have cut off water and electricity (which they are obligated to provide under Occupation law, again a crime!). They are preventing aid from entering Gaza. Their actions have led to more than 4000 killed in Gaza, and more are being added every hour of the day.

Chart tracking yearly deaths attributed to Palestine and "Israel". We see that Palestinians are killed at much higher rates than "Israelis" are.

What is "proportionate" about this? While this is happening, and 1000 children in Gaza have been confirmed dead (with many photos and videos surfacing of these children, the youngest being only 10 days old), Israel is launching a psychological warfare campaign on social media to cry about their "40 dead babies" -- for which they cannot provide any evidence that they indeed were killed or even exist.

By bombing Gaza, Israel is also targeting the prisoners of war the resistance took. Some have already died. Not all were Israeli, some were dual citizens or foreigners. "Israel" cannot really be called a country. Like we said before, it's a glorified military base. You only get to stay alive as long as you are useful to the project. Once you've been taken prisoner, it makes more sense for the regime to kill you than negotiate for your release.

Many are washing their hands clean, condemning both Hamas and Israel. But it is clear there is a disproportionate power imbalance at play here. Blaming the colonized for resisting against colonisation is essentially whitewashing the occupation. It's saying "1000 dead Israelis is exactly the same as 4000 dead Palestinians". They may not intend this phrasing, but this is what people are saying when they condemn the attack: that the life of one settler is worth the life of 4 Palestinians.

This is not out of the ordinary either. Palestine is at a huge power disadvantage, and always has been -- their enemy after all is funded by the US to the tune of billions per year. One only needs to look at yearly deaths on both sides from the conflict to understand the power imbalance.

Every time you say "both sides need to reach an agreement [and Hamas should stop attacking]", you are repeating the above: the life of an Israeli is worth more than the life of many Palestinians. You are implicitly, likely not even realizing it, defending this line. The fix is easy: stop doing it. Stop trying to take the moral high ground and appear wise.

The fact that the resistance started the operation on 7 October does not mean that the conflict started today. It started in 1948 with the first Nakba (literally genocide). To repeat: the resistance was allowed to start this operation. Everything they did during it was lawful. Israel was not allowed to retaliate against Gaza for it, and they are still not allowed to do it. This is a fact; it was confirmed by the United Nations when they upheld that Palestine was occupied and as such Occupation law applied.

The situation is as simple as this: Palestine was divided without consultation. Next, it was rapidly colonized by the made-up state of "Israel" so as to gain a foothold for imperialist actions in West Asia. Today, Palestinians are displaced -- a form of genocide. Everything else is a distraction.

The solution for peace

Map of Gaza and the West Bank. Both territories were once part of a unified state of Palestine.

Calling for a ceasefire and peace is a privileged position. Palestinians are imprisoned in the concentration camp that is Gaza. They cannot leave -- there is a fence blocking the entirety of Gaza, and Israel controls the sea. There is a border with Egypt, but the Egyptian authorities have closed it down, owing to difficult relations with Gaza and, chiefly, the fact that if Egypt let Palestinian refugees leave Gaza, they would never be able to go back home, thereby making Egypt complicit in their genocide.

In the West Bank, things are not much better. While Palestinians there enjoy relative freedom of movement and are safe from missile fire and bombing runs, they are not safe from IOF incursions into their homes at night and settlers harassing or aggressing them with impunity. Every day, a Palestinian gets kidnapped by the IOF from the West Bank, never to be seen again. They are not arrested on any charges and are often used as leverage to get to someone else.

In this context, some call for a two-state solution: one State of Israel, and one State of Palestine. Redraw the borders back to the 1947 UN plan and hope it works better this time. This forgets that it was exactly the 1947 borders that got us to where we are today, with two different Palestinian authorities and a colonizing implanted power slowly genociding the native population. These borders were never a real solution: they were never meant to work. It was meant for Israel to colonize and annex Palestine.

The only viable solution, therefore, is a one-state solution: there will exist only the State of Palestine. A plurinational, pluricultural Republic where people of all faiths are represented as Palestinian citizens. This is what Hamas calls for. It is what all resistance groups call for. There is simply no reason a state of Israel needs or deserves to exist.

There is a tendency to conflate Hamas with Palestine. Hamas only governs Gaza; they were not present in the West Bank. Hamas — or rather their military wing, the Al-Qassam brigade — is also not the sole resistance group in Gaza or even in the whole of occupied Palestine.

Some, under this confusion, are opposed to all resistance under the grounds that it is perpetrated by Hamas. They argue that since Hamas identifies as a Muslim party, they fight for a non-secular Palestine.

But here is Hamas’ charter from 2017 — their most up to date one. Nowhere does it say Hamas is fundamentalist, or that they want an Islamic state. Yes, Hamas itself does draw from Islam to inform their values and goals, and this is reflected in the early points of their charter. But they do not advocate for an Islamic state of Palestine; words are important, especially in a disseminated programme such as this charter.

28. Hamas believes in, and adheres to, managing its Palestinian relations on the basis of pluralism, democracy, national partnership, acceptance of the other and the adoption of dialogue. The aim is to bolster the unity of ranks and joint action for the purpose of accomplishing national goals and fulfilling the aspirations of the Palestinian people.

I am not interested in replying to bad faith with good faith. I have no reason to take the higher road. If Zionists, who claim that Hamas wants an Islamic state (as opposed to the secular state of Israel?), want to uphold this line, then they are invited to read and debunk the charter. They are welcome to contort themselves into all sorts of shapes trying to ascribe to Hamas things they are not. They are welcome to answer their very own question of “How can you have a pluralist state if it’s not secular?”

Secondly, nowhere does Hamas say they are fundamentalists. Much like the “Hamas is ISIS” line, this argument is only cemented on the shaky foundations of Islamophobia. The shortcut this argument attempts to take is to make you do the work of equating all Islam with fundamentalists (Wahhabists and Salafists). It preys on the wish that you are uneducated about Islam and can easily be swayed by such simple arguments.

But this is the bad faith actor’s problem, not mine. I already know Palestine will be a pluralist, democratic state with equal representation.

If the problem is that Hamas "wants" (critics say) a religious "Islamist" state of Palestine, then they should support the secular PFLP, shouldn't they? The PFLP has been pretty clear about their stance for a secular, pluralist state of Palestine.

So, do you support the PFLP?


  1. "Commission of Inquiry finds that the Israeli occupation is unlawful under international law". United Nations Press Release.
  2. 2.0 2.1
    “The top exports of Israel are Diamonds ($9.06B), Integrated Circuits ($5.09B), Refined Petroleum ($2.73B), Medical Instruments ($2.36B), and Other Measuring Instruments ($2.32B), exporting mostly to United States ($17B), China ($5.04B), Palestine ($4.16B), India ($2.82B), and Germany ($2.22B).”

    "Israel on OEC website". Observatory of Economic Complexity.
  3. https://winstonchurchill.org/resources/reference/the-fine-art-of-selective-quoting/
  4. “According to USAID Data Services as of January 2023, in constant 2021 U.S. dollars (inflation-adjusted), total U.S. aid to Israel obligated from 1946-2023 is an estimated $260 billion. [Author's note: 260 billion over 77 years equals an average of 3.37 billion every year]”

    Congressional Research Service (2023). U.S. Foreign Aid to Israel.
  5. Steven Kaplan (2016). Coercion and Control. Tsehai Publishers.
  6. “Al-Ahli Baptist Hospital was sheltering thousands of displaced people when it was bombed Tuesday, the Palestinian Health Ministry said in a statement. Many victims are still under the rubble, it added.”

    Jessie Yeung, Tara John and Zahid Mahmood (2023-10-18). "Hundreds likely dead in Gaza hospital blast, as Israeli blockade cripples medical response" CNN.
  7. “Al-Ahli is one of the oldest hospitals in Gaza founded in 1882, and it serves more than 45,000 patients each year.”

    "Where in Gaza is al-Ahli Arab Hospital, the site hit amid war with Israel?" (2023-10-18). Al Jazeera.
  8. "Israel bombs Greek Orthodox Gaza church sheltering displaced people" (2023-10-20). Al Jazeera.
  9. Mohammed Najib (2023-03-19). "Israeli settlers assault clerics and worshippers at East Jerusalem church" Arab News.
  10. Joseph Stalin (1913). Marxism and the National Question.
  11. Empire Files (2017-03-06). "Empire Files: Israeli Army Vet’s Exposé - “I Was the Terrorist”". YouTube.
  12. "Israel ‘giving secret aid to Syrian rebels’, report says" (2017-06-19). Independent.
  13. The Telegraph headline, dated 2023-03-29: "Israel is proving it is still the only democracy in the Middle East", written by Jake Wallis Simons.
  14. “2. Reaffirms the legitimacy of the struggle of peoples for independence, territorial integrity, national unity and liberation from colonial and foreign domination and foreign occupation by all available means, including armed struggle;”

    United Nations General Assembly-Thirty-seventh Session (1982). Resolutions adopted on the reports of the Third Committee.