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Itrisyia Dayini

The Necessity to Understand the Truth Behind the Struggle for Freedom for Palestine

By Mohd Nazari Ismail

Chairman,  BDS Malaysia

January 28, 2019

The Malaysian government’s recent decision not to allow Israeli para swimmers into the country seems to have attracted a lot of attention from fellow Malaysians and non-Malaysians alike.  Interestingly, many who applaud the decision are non-Malaysians. One of them, Assoc, Professor Dr. Peter Slezak,  a Jewish academic teaching philosophy at the University of New South Wales in Sydney and a strong supporter of the global Boycott , Divestment and Sanction movement (BDS), even sent a congratulatory message to me.

The people who agree with the decision are invariably those who understand the real history of the crimes committed by Zionists against the Palestinians. As explained by Ilan Pappe, a Jewish professor of history from the University of Exeter in the UK in one of his books, ‘The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine’, the creation of the state of Israel was actually accomplished by a process of ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian population. Thousands were killed and their villages were razed to the ground. Around 750,000 Palestinians became refugees in Gaza, Syria, Lebanon and Jordan.  They had no choice because the Zionist terrorist gangs of Irgun and Stern would have killed them and their families had they decided to remain in their houses. 

The above historical facts are not known by many unless one bothers to dig deeper into the issue. Sadly, some ignorant Malaysians have accepted the standard Zionist narrative that they showed up in Palestine in the late 19th century to reclaim their ancestral homeland;  that Jews bought land and started building up the Jewish community there;  that they were met with increasingly violent opposition from the Palestinian Arabs, presumably stemming from the Arabs’ inherent anti-Semitism; that the Zionists were then forced to defend themselves and, in one form or another, this same situation continues up to today. But as explained by a group of Jews who call themselves `Jews for Justice in the Middle East’ in their publication entitled “The Origin of the Palestine-Israel Conflict”, the above account is simply not true.

According to the `Jews for Justice in the Middle East’:

“What really happened was that the Zionist movement, from the beginning, looked forward to a practically complete dispossession of the indigenous Arab population so that Israel could be a wholly Jewish state, or as much as was possible. Land bought by the Jewish National Fund was held in the name of the Jewish people and could never be sold or even leased back to Arabs (a situation which continues to the present). The Arab community, as it became increasingly aware of the Zionists’ intentions, strenuously opposed further Jewish immigration and land buying because it posed a real and imminent danger to the very existence of Arab society in Palestine. Because of this opposition, the entire Zionist project never could have been realized without the military backing of the British. The vast majority of the population of Palestine, by the way, had been Arabic since the seventh century A.D. (Over 1200 years). In short, Zionism was based on a faulty, colonialist world view that the rights of the indigenous inhabitants didn’t matter. The Arabs’ opposition to Zionism wasn’t based on anti-Semitism but rather on a totally reasonable fear of the dispossession of their people.”

It is therefore very obvious that Israel as country was formed illegally. By right, the international community should not have recognised the country called `Israel’. Unfortunately, only a few countries, which include Malaysia, hold that stance till today and hence the absence of diplomatic relations between Malaysia and Israel. 

Meanwhile, Israel continues to commit flagrant human rights violations against the Palestinians such as seizing their lands and building illegal settlements on them, killing and injuring thousands of innocent Palestinian citizens, imprisoning them (including women and children) and making their life difficult by imposing all kinds of restrictions including hundreds of checkpoints on roads used by Palestinians. The millions who are living in Gaza are enduring untold sufferings because it has been blockaded by Israel since 2007. Movement of people and goods are severely restricted and as a result Gaza is like a giant open air prison.  In recent months almost 250 Gazans were murdered by Israeli sharpshooters and thousands maimed or severely injured. Their only `crime’  was simply to hold unarmed protests near the barrier set up by Israel to prevent the Palestinians refugees from going back to their homes even though that right has been given to them under UN resolution 154 which was passed in 1948.

People who understand the above reality will appreciate the decision by the Malaysian government to ban athletes representing Israel from entering the country. Fortunately, more and more people do, and that is why the decision is being applauded and appreciated.  It is now our responsibility to educate the rest who are not aware of the truth behind the Palestinian struggle for freedom, justice and equality so that they too will one day be part of this noble cause.

ON AUSTRIAN CHANCELLOR SEBASTION KURZ’S REMARKS ON ANTI-SEMITISM

MEDIA STATEMENT

ON AUSTRIAN CHANCELLOR SEBASTION KURZ’S REMARKS ON ANTI-SEMITISM

Chancellor Kurz raised concerns about antisemitism in his meeting in Vienna with Malaysian Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.  Bearing in mind the horrific culmination of European antisemitism during the Second World War, we accept his legitimate fears of antisemitism rearing its ugly head anywhere. 

But we would like to point out that antisemitism is a disease peculiar to European Christianity and other western societies but not to Asia. The anti-Israel movement in Malaysia, of which Boycott, Divest, Sanctions Malaysia (BDS Malaysia) is a part, is not in any way antisemitic. Just like the Austrian chancellor, we abhor all forms of antisemitism and do not wish to be associated with any of them. We have no problems whatsoever with anyone of Jewish ethnicity or, for that matter, any ethnicity. One’s ethnicity is no more and no less an accident of birth. But we do have problems with Zionists whether they are Jews or non-Jews because of the undeniable suffering of the Palestinian people at the hands of Israel, one which after seven decades has gone on for far too long.

Barring Israelis from our country cannot be interpreted as a kind of antisemitism. We do it because we do not want to be exploited by the Zionist propaganda machine as an example of a Muslim-majority country which finds Israeli oppression of Palestinians acceptable. Our boycott of Israel in all areas continues because of this and because of our support for the Palestinian cause. 

We are not anti-Jewish at any level. Vocal critics of Israel such as Miko Peled, Dr Peter Slezak, Ms Anna Baltzer and the leader of the Gaza Freedom Flotilla, Ms Zohar Regev have all visited Malaysia. We couldn’t care less that they are Jews. But we cared a great deal that their voices as individuals who are demanding a just and genuine end to the conflict be heard by the Malaysian public. Mr Peled’s visit was hosted by Dr Mahathir himself. So much for Dr Mahathir’s antisemitism.

We would respectfully direct Chancellor Kurz’s attention to the following concerns. 

1. Having declared Austria to be a friend and partner of Israel, is that an endorsement or moral support for the apartheid and heinous policies of the Israeli government against Palestinians? If it is not, Austria should speak up and publicly object to those policies. What are friends for if they do not point out the error of one’s way? If it is, then Austria is in no position to lecture others about the racist nature of antisemitism.    

2. The Israeli government for self-serving reasons is in the habit of branding all criticisms of its actions and policies as antisemitic. While an antisemite correctly means a person who does not like Jews, it is becoming to mean a person the Israeli government does not like such is the ease it uses that accusation against its critics. Chancellor Kurz should be concerned that in his opposition to antisemitism he does not become an unwitting party to such dishonest attempts to stifle free speech and legitimate criticisms of Israeli actions.

3. The Israeli government claims to speak and act in the name of all Jews in the world, despite clear evidence that it does not. This deliberate conflation of ‘Jew’ and ‘Israeli’, especially involving acts which are clear violations of the human rights of Palestinians, plays no small part in fueling antisemitism. Rising antisemitism suits the Israeli government if it leads to higher Jewish emigration to Israel. Surely this is a matter which Chancellor Kurz should address his concern about to the Israeli government. 

BOYCOTT, DIVEST, SANCTIONS MALAYSIA

Kenyataan Media dari BDS Malaysia berkenaan Komen Canselor Kurz dari Austria

Kenyataan Media dari BDS Malaysia berkenaan Komen Canselor Kurz dari Austria

24 Januari 2019

Baru-baru ini Canselor Kurz dari Austria telah menyuarakan kebimbangan beliau berkenaan sikap anti-semitik (atau sikap kebencian kepada orang Yahudi) Malaysia semasa pertemuan beliau dengan Perdana Menteri Malaysia Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad di Vienna. Ini susulan keputusan Malaysia menyekat penyertaan atlet Israel di Pertandingan Renang Para di Kuching pada bukan Julai 2019. 

Memandangkan bahawa sejarah Eropah adalah penuh dengan episod keganasan yang mengerikan terhadap bangsa Yahudi yang mencapai kemuncaknya semasa Perang Dunia Kedua, kita boleh memahami kebimbangan beliau tentang kemungkinan sikap antisemitik ini muncul lagi di tempat-tempat lain.

Namun hakikatnya ialah sikap anti-semitik adalah sebenarnya masalah yang khusus kepada komuniti Kristian di Eropah dan masyarakat barat lain semata-mata dan tidak di Asia. Pergerakan anti-Israel di Malaysia, yang mana Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions - Malaysia (BDS Malaysia) adalah sebahagian darinya, adalah langsung tidak bersikap antisemitik atau benci kepada bangsa Yahudi. 

Bahkan sebenarnya kita juga membenci semua bentuk sikap antisemitik dan tidak mahu dikaitkan dengan mana-mana pihak yang mempunyai sikap perkauman ini. Kita tidak membenci kaum etnik Yahudi atau mana-mana kaum etnik. Kita sangat sedar bahawa keturunan etnik atau bangsa seseorang individu adalah bukan pilihan individu tersebut dan oleh itu adalah sangat tidak wajar membenci seseorang individu semata-mata kerana beliau adalah berketurunan sesuatu kaum atau bangsa. 

Namun kita sangat membenci puak yang berfahaman Zionis sama ada mereka berketurunan Yahudi atau bukan Yahudi. Ini kerana puak Zionis lah yang telah secara haram mewujudkan negara Zionis Israel dengan membunuh ribuan rakyat Palestin, menghalau 750 ribu yang lain dan merampas tanah dan harta mereka. Puak Zionis adalah penyebab utama kepada penderitaan rakyat Palestin yang telah berlaku semenjak tujuh dekad yang lalu dan masih berterusan. 

Adalah salah untuk menyatakan bahawa sekatan Malaysia terhadap athlet Israel adalah akibat dari sikap antisemitik atau kebencian kita terhadap bangsa Yahudi. Kita menyekat wakil Israel kerana Israel adalah sebuah negara apartheid yang zalim. Di samping itu kita juga tidak mahu dieksploitasikan oleh mesin propaganda Zionis Israel yang akan mengatakan Malaysia adalah sebuah negara majoriti Muslim yang boleh menerima penindasan zalim Israel terhadap rakyat Palestin. Sebaliknya kita akan terus memboikot Israel dalam semua bidang selagi Israel menzalimi rakyat Palestin. Kita juga akan terus menyokong rakyat Palestin yang menjadi mangsa kepada kezaliman ini.

Perlu dinyatakan sekali lagi bahawa Malaysia adalah bukan anti-Yahudi. Buktinya ialah ramai pengkritik lantang terhadap Israel yang berketurunan Yahudi seperti Miko Peled, Dr Peter Slezak, Anna Baltzer dan pemimpin Flotilla Freedom Gaza bernama Zohar Regev telah dibenarkan melawat Malaysia dan disambut dengan baik oleh kerajaan dan rakyat Malaysia. Sebenarnya kita tidak kisah bangsa etnik mereka tetapi kita sebaliknya menerima baik kedatangan mereka kerana mereka adalah pejuang keadilan yang akan membantu menerangkan hakikat sebenar kezaliman Israel kepada rakyat Malaysia. Tambahan pula Miko Peled adalah tetamu Dr Mahathir sendiri. Ini membuktikan bahawa Dr Mahathir bukan seorang yang antisemitik atau anti Yahudi. 

Di samping itu, Canselor Kurz juga harus mengambil kira perkara-perkara berikut.

1. Beliau telah mengisytiharkan Austria sebagai sahabat dan rakan kongsi Israel. Persoalannya ialah apakah ini bermakna Austria memberi sokongan penuh kepada dasar apartheid dan tindakan-tindakan kejam pemerintah Israel terhadap rakyat Palestin? Sekiranya tidak, Austria perlu mengisytiharkan penentangan terhadap dasar-dasar Israel tersebut secara terbuka. Apakah ertinya menjadi rakan kepada Israel jika enggan memberikan teguran apabila Israel telah jelas melakukan kesalahan? Jika Austria enggan berterus terang kepada Israel, ini bermakna Austria juga tidak layak untuk mengajar orang lain mengenai sifat antisemitisk.

2. Sudah menjadi tabiat biasa bagi kerajaan Israel untuk menuduh mana-mana pihak yang mengkritiknya sebagai kumpulan antisemitik. Walaupun memang benar seseorang yang antisemitik adalah seseorang yang tidak menyukai orang Yahudi, namun sekarang apa yang jelas Israel telah menggunakan istilah itu untuk melabel mana-mana individu yang tidak disukai oleh Israel. Canselor Kurz perlu sedar bahawa penentangannya terhadap antisemitik dengan cara yang difahami oleh Israel telah berjaya memenuhi perancangan jahat Israel untuk menghalang sebarang perbincangan bebas dan kritikan yang sah terhadap tindakan zalim  Israel terhadap rakyat Palestin.

3. Kerajaan Israel mendakwa ia bercakap dan bertindak atas nama semua orang Yahudi di dunia, walaupun sekarang telah terbukti dengan jelas bahawa ini adalah tidak benar. Tindakannya dengan sengaja menyamakan istilah 'Yahudi' dengan istilah 'Israel' telah menimbulkan banyak kekeliruan, terutama sekali kerana Israel telah terlibat dengan tindakan yang jelas melanggar hak asasi rakyat Palestin. Kebencian terhadap kezaliman Israel telah mengakibatkan ramai pihak yang keliru dan membenci semua orang Yahudi dan oleh itu menjadi antisemitik. Sebenarnya Israel amat suka dengan peningkatan sikap antisemitik kerana ini akan menjayakan objektif utama fahaman Zionis iaitu peningkatan penghijrahan orang-orang Yahudi ke Israel. Canselor Kurz perlu berkongsi kekhuatirannya terhadap isu ini dengan kerajaan Israel atau memboikotnya secara total.

BOYCOTT, DIVESTMENT AND SANCTIONS  (BDS)  MALAYSIA

MEMORANDUM FROM NGOs IN SUPPORT OF FREEDOM FOR PALESTINE TO THE GOVERNMENT OF MALAYSIA

  • Published in News

MEMORANDUM FROM NGOs IN SUPPORT OF FREEDOM FOR PALESTINE  TO THE GOVERNMENT OF MALAYSIA

15 January 2019

We applaud wholeheartedly the Malaysian government’s action in not allowing Israeli athletes into the country for the World Para Swimming Championships 2019 due to be held in July this year. 

Such action is fully in keeping with the long held policy of the Malaysian government to bar any Israeli passport holder from entering the country. The Malaysian government must maintain this policy firmly and unwaveringly and not make any exception. 

Lessons must be learnt. In 2017, the previous administration of the Malaysian government was foolish enough to surreptitiously allow Israeli diplomats into the country. And the upshot was the Zionist propaganda machine doing a song and dance with the sub-text that another Muslim-majority country finds Israeli policies towards Palestinians acceptable. That mistake must never be repeated. 

As can be seen during the Great Return March by Palestinians in Gaza, the Zionist regime has no compunction in instructing its military sharpshooters to target unarmed men, women and children including journalists, nurses in full uniform and worst of all, the physically disabled. Before anyone spews any nonsense about sports and politics not mixing , he or she would do well to remember that in the Great Return March, 241 civilians, including 42 children under 18, 5 women, 3 paramedics, 2 journalists were killed and 26,140 others were injured, almost all by Israeli sharpshooters who could clearly see who they were shooting at. 

For Malaysia too, the memory is still fresh of Dr Fadi al-Batsh, a beloved son of Palestine and gentle teacher to his students and all who knew him, martyred here in the heart of Kuala Lumpur at the hands of the Zionist state which violated Malaysia's sovereignty in carrying out its terrorist activities.  

No human being or country in its right mind should want to have anything to do with such a murderous regime whether in sports, trade, culture or any other area. Boycotting and isolating Israel is the very least that can and should be done to express moral outrage. If it worked against apartheid South Africa, it will work against apartheid Israel. The Malaysian government is doing the right thing in barring Israelis from this country. 

  1. BDS Malaysia
  2. Cakna Palestine
  3. MyCARE
  4. al-Quds Foundation Malaysia (QFM)
  5. Viva Palestina Malaysia (VPM)
  6. Haluan Malaysia (HALUAN)
  7. Muslim Youth Movement of Malaysia (ABIM)
  8. Global Peace Mission (GPM) Malaysia
  9. Rose2Rose
  10. Persatuan Belia HARMONI Malaysia
  11. Palestinian Cultural Organization Malaysia (PCOM) 
  12. MAPIM
  13. SALIMAH
  14. IReach
  15. SHURA
  16. SEJAGAT
  17. AMMAR
  18. MANAR
  19. TERAS
  20. Ittihad Alami Muslim Scholars Malaysia
  21. Citizens International
  22. Asean Coalition for Palestine
  23. Persatuan Saintis Muslim Malaysia (Perintis)
  24. Muslim Care Malaysia
  25. Pertubuhan AnNida Malaysia
  26. SERANTAU MUSLIM
  27. Pertubuhan Suara Prihatin Malaysia
  28. National Union of the Malaysian Muslim Students (PKPIM)
  29. Pertubuhan Mawaddah Malaysia
  30. Pertubuhan IKRAM Malaysia
  31. Yayasan Amal Malaysia
  32. Unisza Society for Humanity (HUMANE)
  33. Ummatic Mission Relief of Malaysia Chef by
  34. Movement for Monetary Justice (MMJ)
  35. Yayasan Muslimin Malaysia
  36. Pertubuhan Harmoni Bersatu
  37. Persatuan Darul Hana (PERDANA)
  38. Persatuan Kebajikan Islam Sarawak (PERKIS)
  39. Pertubuhan Komuniti Harmoni Sarawak (HARMONIS)
  40. Gabungan Salam Sarawak
  41. Persatuan Falak Syar'i Malaysia (PFSM)
  42. Gabungan Pembebasan Akademik
  43. Persatuan Penduduk Jalan P1, Taman Melawati,
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