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Israelism a missed opportunity

Israelism was screened at the Bermuda Underwater Exploration Institute this month (Image supplied)

Dear Sir,

If you’ve heard the adage “the first casualty of war is truth”, then you will be at odds as I was with the reported feedback on Israelism — eg, “Film on Israel-Palestine conflict fills theatre hall”.

Having also attended the screening at the Bermuda Underwater Exploration Institute, this documentary brings to mind the book Icon of Evil: Hitler’s Mufti and the Rise of Radical Islam, in which authors David G. Dalin and John F. Rothmann researched Haj Amin al-Husseini, the Palestinian leader and grand mufti of Jerusalem, whose relationship with Hitler and Nazism influenced various Arab nations and radical Islam, including Hamas’s genocidal doctrine.

I bring to readers’ attention the deadly Iraqi Farhud, meaning, “violent dispossession/pogrom” in Arabic. For callous incitement to murder by the grand mufti’s Nazi-enthused rhetoric, and transpiring between June 1 and 2, 1941, scores of angry Muslim rioters almost annihilated Baghdad’s Jewry, whose presence in Iraq had spanned 2,400 years back to Bible days. Savagely, these rioters slaughtered 175 Jews and injured 1,000 others. Mercilessly, they raped an unknown number of defenceless Jewish girls and women while maiming children in front of their families. They looted and destroyed some 900 Jewish homes.

Dehumanising Jews and Israelis, and like the Farhud transpiring on the eve of the Jewish holiday of Shavout, Hamas’s October 7 attacks were also planned for a Jewish holiday. Thus, the 1941 events are eerily familiar when viewed through the lens of Hamas’s sadistic pogrom, reflecting its Nazi-inspired jihadist mission to exterminate Jews, attacking peaceful-loving Israeli communities bordering Gaza.

Strikingly, Israelism is a slick and highly emotive propaganda piece ignoring the core of the conflict between Palestinians and Israelis. Namely, Palestinians’ persistent refusal to recognise Israel’s right to exist within any borders in their indigenous homeland. Fittingly, one should inquire, how many peace deals have the Palestinians rejected? Note, for example, the view of the Begin-Sadat Centre for Strategic Studies: “A Short History of Palestinian Rejectionism.”

At no point were viewers informed that, in stark contrast to the Israeli society, and from the cradle to the grave, Palestinians are weaned on a diet of Jew hatred. Their glorification of terrorism financially rewards slaughtering and maiming of Jews. Worst was the absence of any mention of how utterly corrupt Palestinian Hamas leaders are. Brazenly stealing internationally donated aid, Hamas built Gaza’s sprawling underground tunnel infrastructure for war with Israel, rather than helping Gazans — eg, building homes, hospitals and schools.

Significantly, Israelism ignored the incendiary role of the United Nation Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East in prolonging the conflict. Thankfully, recent media reports have shown how the UNRWA, whose cover for providing Palestinian social services has been exploited by Hamas, has indoctrinated Palestinians into a lifelong cycle of terrorism, which was documented by United Nations Watch.

It is not surprising that there was no mention of Israel’s security needs in Israelism. Further, the film reviled the Jewish state’s proven security measures for thwarting terrorism emanating from the Palestinian-controlled areas — eg, the life-saving separation barrier/wall curtailing suicide bombings.

Notably, as explained by the Wilson Centre, “Hamas has invoked militant interpretations of Islam to spearhead a Sunni extremist movement committed to destroying Israel”. Israelism failed to mention this or that the libellous charges of genocide and ethnic cleansing unjustly lobbed at Israel reverberate with historical evidence of how the Arab and Muslim states emptied their borders of Jews across the Middle East and North Africa. Resoundingly, in March 2017, UN Watch rightly underscored this inconvenient truth before the UN Human Rights Council, then shamed Israel’s accusers before the council into silence. See Algiers, where are your Jews?, a viral video with the memorable encounter.

Finally, Israelism’s one-sided perspective not only misses a teachable moment, but inflames existing tensions around an intractable conflict as noted in two in-depth reviews by informed American Jews — The Jewish Journal “The film Israelism assaults the truth and hurts Palestinians” and Stand With Us “Review: Israelism.”

Thus, I continually call for Hamas’s surrender and release of the remaining hostages, ending the war described as being an existential struggle between modernity and the forces of Nazism-imbued, radical Islam perpetuating early primitive medievalism.



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Published February 24, 2024 at 8:00 am (Updated February 24, 2024 at 7:09 am)

Israelism a missed opportunity

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