Teaching the Israeli Way of Life


As the sizzling Arabian sun sets beneath the cool Mediterranean Sea, his deep blue eyes pierce through the darkest corners of the empty desert, searching for the evil that lies within, among the ruins of “Arab Terrorist Enclaves.”


Apparently, this is not the beginning of a low budget Hollywood movie, nor is it an excerpt from yet another novel about a white knight riding on a white horse before a crusade to rid the world of “dark” forces!


It is, somewhat unfortunately, a fantasy that has so far attracted 20 people from the United States – including a judge, doctors, and a Middle East lecturer – to sign up (at a cost of US$ 5,500 per person) for a four day excursion designed by Jewish settlers to train foreigners in dealing with “Arab terrorism.” Whatever, and whoever, that term will encompass remains at the sole discretion of the program’s organizers; illegal Jewish settlers (according to international law).


Their most prominent organizer and “entrepreneur,” US-born Jake Greenwald, told BBC Online in early March, 2003 “éthere’s a lot of the ‘wow’ factor, like going up in an army helicopter and firing machine guns.” The course will allegedly enable its participants to cope with an emergency situation, and to work in teams to deal with fear, “éso there is not this mass panic when something happens.”


Greenwald said that there will be talks and briefings by Israeli military personnel who participated in “éthe offensive in Jenin last April, and lessons in how to track “terrorists” across the desert.” Tracking terrorists across the desert?!


Nevertheless, the program (or should we say: Israel’s generous gift of enlightening the rest of the world?) reaches its climax in a trip involving a paintball fight in a simulated Arab village, where participants will be able to go from room-to-room “cleaning out Arab terrorists”, according to Greenwald.


What better example bears witness to the racist and brutal mentality that is reinforced in Israeli society today? What better demonstration can we have of the blatant Zionist distortion of the Palestinian reality? Not only have the Palestinians been robbed of their basic right to live as free human beings, uprooted and forcefully displaced, and made to suffer under the last remaining military occupation in modern history, but they are now being reduced to the level of sub-humans, only to be shamelessly used as variables illustrating Israel’s destructive culture of militarism.


When the Jenin refugee camp massacre of April 2002 is used as a model for illustrating Israel’s alleged “experience against terror,” it is a crime repeated. When political assassinations, torture, and the killing of innocent human beings by the Israeli forces are used as credentials to support Israel’s declared military superiority, it is a crime repeated.


When the world remains silent before such atrocities, it is a crime endlessly repeated.

(*The content above reflects the views of the author, and not necessarily the views of MIFTAH)

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