On October 19, President Biden gave an Oval Office address. He was desperately trying to convince the nation to support his $105B military and humanitarian aid package for Israel, Ukraine and border efforts. His focus was on the wars between Israel/Hamas and Ukraine/Russia. Biden’s presentation was ahistorical, based upon supposition, personal bias and just wrong. One of Biden’s constant underlying themes as he champions support for these failing efforts is that by supporting Israel and Ukraine, we’re supporting “democracy”. One of the prevalent talking points about Israel is that it’s the “only democracy in the Middle East”.
It’s now generally understood that McCarthyism was a dark and shameful aspect of our history. Oppenheimer made $953 million at the U.S. box office this summer and the bulk of Christopher Nolan’s film isn’t about the bomb, but the Red Scare attacks that destroyed the physicist’s reputation. Political repression might get pilloried in films these days, but you can still hear the faint echo of the Wisconsin Senator’s accusations in any number of policies being pushed throughout the country. One of the most glaring examples is the GOP’s ongoing war on libraries. However, that crusade is mainly waged by just one party. The war on Palestine activism that has emerged since October 7th is a bipartisan affair.
All too often, the question of Palestine is framed as an eternal conflict arising from ancient ethnic or religious hatreds, with questions regarding the origins of the state of Israel and the legitimacy of land claims reduced to matters of scriptural interpretation. Such views entirely omit the actual history of Palestine and the Zionist movement. The colonization of Palestine, a process still playing out before our eyes to this day, has definite historical origins at the turn of the 20th century, when Zionism was born and the encroachment of Palestinian land began. Historian Rashid Khalidi, author of The Hundreds’ Year War on Palestine: A History of Settler Colonialism and Resistance, 1917- 2017, joins The Chris Hedges Report for a look into this essential history, and how it can help us frame Israel’s present war on Gaza.
On the International Day in Solidarity with the Palestinian People, the people of the world are demanding a fully liberated Palestine. November 29 was also the last day of the temporary pause in the Israeli war on Gaza, negotiated between Israel and Hamas. However, a day long extension was achieved through negotiations just ahead of its expiration. Mass movements around the world are standing unequivocally with the people of Palestine, facing a genocidal war in Gaza with at least 15,000 Palestinians killed by Israel. Even during the pause in aggression, Israeli forces continue to kill Palestinians, recently targeting the Jenin refugee camp and slaughtering two children in a raid last night.
Joining me to discuss this censorship is Dylan Saba, a staff attorney with Palestine Legal. He was commissioned by an editor at The Guardian newspaper to write about the campaign to silence voices critical of Israel’s assault but was then informed shortly before the piece was to be published that the newspaper would not run it. So let’s begin with this level of censorship which is probably unprecedented since maybe immediately after the events of 9/11. I was one of them attempting to denounce the calls to invade Iraq. But let’s lay out its intensity, its reach, and then let’s go into perhaps the causes of it.
Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network denounces in the strongest terms the raids carried out by German police in four federal states, with a particular focus in Berlin, targeting Palestinians labeled by the German state as members or supporters of Samidoun or of the Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement, Hamas. We express our deepest solidarity with all of those subjected to these raids today, and we view these raids as a clear attempt by the German state to terrorize the Palestinian, Arab and Muslim communities in Germany and, more broadly, the popular sentiment in support of Palestinian liberation.
In the gray, smoldering rubble of Gaza, hope is elusive. The wails of babies clutched in the arms of staggering, broken, bloody Palestinian civilians are surpassed in volume only by Zionist bombs that shake the earth, level multilevel structures and create scenes so hellish that even vultures probably pass on the chance to feast on a massive banquet of carnage. The world strains to find even the slightest reason for encouragement, and perhaps the only positive that flows dialectically from a profound negative is that the truth rises from Gaza’s ruins more brightly than a thousand suns.
In 2021 this columnist wrote, “The Palestine Litmus Test.” At that time Israel was carrying out one of its periodic attacks against Gaza, deliberately targeting civilians, and in doing so practicing war crimes. Now the zionist state is intent on completely destroying Gaza, killing as many people as possible and driving out the survivors so that the region can be open for settlement and for oil and gas extraction. The horrific scenes of carnage have evoked revulsion for millions of people in the United States and around the world. Huge protests have taken place nationally and internationally and the zionists find themselves on the public relations defensive but will not concede defeat.
With each passing day, more Israeli bombs are falling on Gaza. Over a million Palestinians have been displaced from their homes. The world is bearing witness to a genocidal military campaign to clear out Gaza once and for all. As leaders in the West continue to stand by Israel’s outrageous crimes, activists and people of conscience around the world are using direct action to take matters into their own hands and disrupt the war machine themselves. Palestine Action is one such group that is strategically targeting direct disruptive actions at production sites of Elbit Systems Ltd. and its subsidiaries. Elbit Systems is an Israel-based weapons technology and defense company supplying the Israeli military with the instruments of sophisticated carnage whose deadly force is being unleashed upon Palestinians as we speak. TRNN Editor-in-Chief Maximillian Alvarez speaks with Fergie Chambers, Max Geller, and Calla Walsh of Palestine Action.
Political Zionism is a racist ethno-nationalist imperialist ideology and movement founded in the late 19th century that mis-uses Judaism to justify the settler colonial occupation of Palestinian land as a state reserved only for Jews. Christian Zionism, which actually preceded political zionism, is the belief that the biblical land of Israel should be controlled by Jews thereby ensuring the second return of Jesus which will bring salvation to Christians. Zionism in Africa long preceded the founding of Israel, and the relationship goes back to at least the South African Zionist federation founded in 1898. The Zionist movement considered east African countries for resettling Jews before agreeing on Palestine.
A new, highly publicized report from the Anti-Defamation League claims that anti-Semitic incidents across the United States have skyrocketed by more than 400%. But these ADL numbers do not add up – unless one equates opposition to the Israeli bombardment of Gaza with hatred of Jews. The Anti-Defamation League’s findings that anti-Semitic incidents in the United States have risen exponentially have made headlines, both in America and worldwide (e.g., Reuters, CBS News, PBS, CNN, Washington Post). American Jews are purportedly facing a wave of hatred and violence like never before, leaving many terrified at the prospect of merely leaving the house.
It's one of those situations where somebody who deals with trauma in my work and who and speaks so much, and words really are my metier, the words fail me at this point. It's difficult to explain how I perceive the situation but in a certain deep sense, I feel that it's the worst thing I've seen in my whole life. It's impossible to compare atrocities - I mean nothing compares with the mechanized murder of five, six million Jews by the Nazis. What can compare to the slaughter of three million Vietnamese civilians by the Americans; the many murders and mass killings that are not even reported in the Western press such as the Indian-Asian Genocide in East Timor...
Although my relatives had no intention of returning to Europe, they still retained the culture they brought with them. The old folks did not have a particular interest in Zionism. However, for many of my co-religionists today, the tradition of European Jewish culture is being replaced by the Disneyesque synthetic of political Zionism. The shame and pain of the past is buried in the Zionist conceit. The ideal of the Jewish scholar has been discarded for the veneration of the warrior. No longer identifying as the “people of the book,” the Zionist is proud to be the gun bearer.
The mainstream media often portrays the Palestine-Israel conflict in a biased and oversimplified manner, depicting Palestinians as angry and irrational while downplaying their oppression. Media coverage often focuses on Palestinian reactions rather than Israeli actions, creating an unfair narrative. Israel has framed the conflict as a religious issue, diverting attention from political and human rights concerns, and placing blame on Palestinians while ignoring their struggle for self-determination and justice. The use of terminology like “separation wall” instead of “apartheid wall” in mainstream media further distorts the reality of the genocide.