An appeal to Hugo Chavez and Evo Morales

 

An appeal to Hugo Chavez and Evo Morales to close the offices of the Jewish National Fund (JNF) in Venezuela and Bolivia,  and demand the removal of the names of their states and heroes of liberation  from colonialism from JNF sites

 

The Jewish National Fund Law and theCovenant between the Government of Israel and the JNF are central to theIsraeli legal apartheid system[1].The JNF offices located in the capitals of Boliviaand Venezuela – like all ofthe JNF offices around the world – raise funds that are used to furtherentrench an apartheid system and to erase the signs of Israel’s crimesagainst the Palestinian people and Jews of Arab origin. This appeal is directedtoward the two governments, which have released their people from colonizingforces. It suggests concrete ways that these governments can act in solidaritywith the occupied and dispossessed Palestinian people and publicly recognizethe crimes of this ongoing colonial project.

The Zionist movement is a Jewish Europeancolonial movement that was established at the end of the 19thcentury by European Jews ("Ashkenazi" Jews) and for their benefit, serving theEuropean colonialism and supported by it. Since the middle of the previouscentury the Zionist movement has committed two crimes against humanity. These two crimes initially occurred on the backdrop of, and werefacilitated by, British colonialism in the Palestine Mandate and in other
Arabcountries and with its assistance.

The first crime is an ethnic cleansing of Palestine,the beginnings of which are marked by the expulsion of close to 800,000 of theindigenous people of Palestinefrom their 13 cities and more than 500 of their villages, and the demolition ofmost of those villages, accompanied by tens of organized massacres. The "Stateof Israel", which the Zionist movement established in the territoryof Palestine that was occupied,persecuted and killed refugees in order to prevent them from returning to theirland, which Israelseized. In 1967, Israeloccupied the rest of the Palestinian land and the Syrian Golan heights,demolishing an additional 19 Palestinian villages, 170 Syrian villages, and oneSyrian town, expelling the indigenous inhabitants. These crimes have continuedto unfold for at least 60 years. Today, Israelcontinues to steal lands from the Palestinian people who remain, to demolishtheir houses, persecute the refugees in the refugee camps in Gazaand Lebanon,and to simultaneously deny the crime of ethnic cleansing.

The second crime is the destruction of ancient Jewishcivilizations all over the Arab and Muslim world, the transferring of theircommunities to Palestine by means of terror[2]and the exploitation of their deeply rooted religious relationship with Palestine,[3]The Land of Israel. The transfer of the Arab-Jewish communities was accompaniedby the looting of their property. The oppression and exploitation ofArab-Jewish communities continues today, although the conditions of oppressionthat Arab-Jewish communities face today must be understood relative to theconditions of Palestinians people, many of whom, for example, are living in therefugee camps. Nonetheless, the State of Israel continues today to demolishArab-Jewish homes, which were built upon the land and ruins of Arab Palestinianvillages [recently cases include[4]:Kfar Shalem / Salame 2008, Kfar Gvirol / AlQubeiba 2009],[5]blocks them from institutions of higher education, pushes them intounemployment, poverty, crime and drugs, and systematically implements policiesthat exterminate their Jewish cultures because they embody Arab characteristics[6]and are deeply rooted in Islam.[7]

The Role of the Jewish National Fund (JNF)

After demolishing most of the Palestinianvillages, which were occupied in 1948, the Zionist movement housed the victimsof Arab-Jewish transfer in some of the villages and the JNF employed them inthe planting of pine forests over the ruins of Palestinian villages. Pine,planted in millions, became a predominant flora, forcing out the indigenousflora and thus serving to veil the crimes of expulsion and expropriationcommitted there.

The JNF wasestablished by the 5th Zionist Congress in Basel in1901. It was registered in Britain under English law as a company under thename Jewish National Fund Ltd. in 1907, and in Israel, by power of the JewishNational Fund Law, in 1953. Prior to the declaration of the establishment ofthe State of Israel, the JNF had already succeeded in purchasing approximately7% of the entire lands of Mandatory Palestine.

The Jewish National Fund Law of 1953 and theCovenant between the Government of Israel and the JNF of 1961 are central tothe Israeli legal apartheid system. Together they define 93% of the entireterritory, which Israeloccupied in 1948, as "national lands" and are legally designated forthose persons who are defined under the laws of the State of Israel as"Jews". In addition, the JNF has been instrumental in veiling theruins of many, if not most, of the Palestinian Arab localities ethnicallycleansed by the Israeli army in the course of and in the wake of the 1948 war.It accomplishes this task by planting forests and developing recreationalfacilities on the lands they have cleansed, and over their remains[8].

 

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The JNF sign on the entranceto Eshta’ol forest

 

A prime example of the double crime beingcommitted by the Zionists is Eshta’ol Forest. Most of the Eshta’ol Forestresides on the lands of the two villages ‘Islin (عسلين),where 280 inhabitants used to live, and Ishwa‘ (إشوع),where 680 inhabitants used to live. The inhabitants of these lands wereexpelled by arms by the Har’el Brigade of the Plamah, which departed fromKibbutz Zora’a in the framework of the Dani operationon the morning of July 18th, 1948. The Eshta’ol forest also resideson the lands of two other villages: Beit Mahsir (بيتمحسير), where 2620 inhabitants were expelled on May 11, 1948, and Beit Susin (بيت سوسين), where 230 inhabitants were expelled onApril 20, 1948.

In Eshta’ol Forest, there stand threecourts. The first one is in the memory of the liberator of Latin America in the19th century from the European colonialism, Simón Bolívar; it standson the land of the village Ishwa‘. The other two courts are in memory ofanother liberator of Latin America from the same period, General José de SanMartin; they stand on the landof Beit Mahsir.

Moshav [the Zionist term for village]Eshta’ol, built on the ruins of the Ishwa‘ village, is a village of immigrants from Yemen,which were transferred by the Zionist movement to Palestine right after the 1948 ethniccleansing. In the transfer camp in San’a, Yemen’s capital, the Zionist Agencylooted more then 50 tons of their ancient sacred books and manuscripts[9] and a tens of tons of goldsmithing,[10]a craft in which this community specialized. In the transfer camp, childrenwere kidnapped and were delivered for adoption.[11]Once in Moshav Eshta’ol, and in the neighboring Moshav, Yish’i, which has anidentical story (see Appendix 1), the community succeeded to restore a part oflife as it was in Yemen.The return of the Palestinian refugees to their land does not necessarily meansanother dispossession of this community. On the contrary, it may open anopportunity to establish neighborhood relationships that will fix the wrongthat was done both to  the Palestinianrefugees and Arab-Jews by Zionists, while strengthening the culture of theYemeni Jewish community of Moshav Eshta’ol and Moshav Yish’i, which were alwaysfed by Arab and Muslim civilizations in their country of origin. It might alsoserve to strengthen their Arab dialect of Hebrew, a dialect and a culture,which are under the dagger of an extermination held by the Israeli ZionistAshkenazi establishment.

 

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The sign leading to Bolívar andSan Martin courts.

 

This appeal is to the two new regimes wholibrated Venezuela and Bolivia in our time – countries which underwent violentdirect colonial occupations including the seizure of land, the extermination ofcivilizations, cultures, and human beings, and until recently the indirectcolonialism of the US, which trampled their peoples and looted their resources.This appeal is to the two countries, which recently succeeded to replace theirterror regimes that served and were supported by the US, with new liberating regimesthat have been established to serve their peoples. This is an appeal to refusecomplicity in the Zionist double crime and its cover-up. This is a call to HugoChavez and Evo Morales to close the JNF offices in th
e Venezuelan and Boliviancapitals and to demand the removal of the names of their States and heroes ofliberation from colonialism from JNF sites, as a concrete act of solidaritywith the occupied and dispossessed Palestinian people, and as a recognition ofthe double crime which was committed by the European, colonial, Zionistmovement in the middle of the previous century and which continues until today.This solidarity will feed our hope for the replacement of the Zionist regime bya regime that will provide the indigenous Palestinian inhabitants their rightsin this land. In Jewish, Christian and Muslim traditions, it is named amongother names the Landof Israel, which is NOTthe colonial apartheid "State of Israel". This is an appeal to feed the hope ofthe marginalized inhabitants of the region who lived together for thousands ofyears in this region, that we may live again in peace and dignity.

 

  

Appendix 1: a listof sites under the name of Venezuelaand Boliviaand their heroes of liberation from colonialism

A. Sites under the name of Bolivia: Simon Bolivar court in Eshta’ol forest.

B. Sites under the name of Venezuela:

1) + 2) Two courts in Eshtaol forest under the name on GeneralJosé de San Martin.

The following list was received from the JNF information service. Theywere not sure these sites still existed since "You have to check that the signstill exits and the forest is not burned because the [Arab] inhabitantsvandalize the signs; In general there are many fires and a lot of vandalism".Therefore it is strongly recommended to ensure the removal of the signs fromthe following sites as well if they remain:

3) In Golani junction, near JNF offices the name of Venezuela iswritten on a special wall.

4) A forest under the name of Venezuela, in the Tura’an Mountain.

5) Park Venezuela in Hanita forest.

6) A ceremony for adding a sign under the name of Venezuela wasconducted in Yishi’I JNF forest.

  

Appendix 2: Thecontact details of the JNF offices in Venezuelaand Boliviacapitals.

 

Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael
Avenida Jorge Washington

Edificio Bet Am Piso 2

San Bernardino
Caracas 1011, Venezuela

Tel: + 582-12-551-2030, +582-12-552-1163
Fax: + 582-12-552-1250

e-mail: adamos@cantv.net

 

Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael

La Paz, Bolivia
Tel: + 591-2-373839

Fax: + 591-2-376963

e-mail:j-epelbaum@entelnet.bo


[1] Apartheid Israel: TheJewish National Fund, by Uri Davis, April 2006, http://www.uridavis.info/jewish_national_fund_apartheid_israel.htm

[2] See YehudaShenhav article"The Perfect Robbery"

[3] See Nizar Hassan and Sigalit Banaifilms:"Cut" (2000) and "The pioneers" (2007)

[4] Among otherexpulsions of Arab-Jews: Moshav Tohelet (Asaferiya السافرية) (1976), and YaminMoshe (1968) and Mamila (1988) neighborhoods in Jerusalem.

[5] See "Arim",local paper of Rehovot, issue 1142, 4.2.2009, p. 22: "Fifty years ago they tookour children and now they are taking our home."

[6] Seeinterview with the author and the literature researcher Shim’on Ballas, whodeclares: I am an Arab-Jew" in the Palestinian periodical "AlKarmel", issue 60,summer 1999 211-233 (214)

[7] See "The Bridge with Islam" by RabbiHaim Ovadia, the rabbi of Kahal Joseph Congregation in Los Angeles, California,who writes: "I am a Jew of Islam"

[8] Apartheid Israel: TheJewish National Fund, by Uri Davis, April 2006, http://www.uridavis.info/jewish_national_fund_apartheid_israel.htm

 

[9] Amos Nevo,"That’s how they robbed the immigrants", Afikim periodical, September 1991, p.14-16

[10] SmadarLavie, "Cultural property rights and the construction of the Mizrahi race as a commercialsymbol", In: Rainbow of opinions: Mizrahi agenda for the Israeli society, byYone, Na’aman and Mahleb (eds.), Jerusalem:November books 2007, p. 198-204

[11] The missing Yemenite children: Sometimestruth Is stranger than fiction, by Shoshana Madmoni in The News From Within,February 1996

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