Peoples Geography — Reclaiming space

Creating people's geographies

A tale of two racist slurs: Israel

Wonder what the legal punishment is for such abhorrent statements? The Israeli Ambassador seems only to have been slapped on the wrist.

1. Israel curtails term of Australia envoy after ‘yellow race’ remark (Ha’aretz 31 Oct 2006):

Foreign Ministry sources said Tuesday that Israel’s ambassador to Australia will have his term cut short in the wake of an interview to Haaretz, in which he called Australia and Israel white sisters amid “the yellow race.”

2. Wife of right-wing activist charged with racist incitement (By Nir Hasson, Ha’aretz, 29 October 2006)

“The 39 Arabs Goldstein killed is a drop in the bucket compared to what needs to be done. There needs to be a real war. We need to conquer this land once and for all,” she said.

Elisheva Federman, the wife of extreme right-wing activist Noam Federman, was indicted Sunday for incitement to racism.

The Jerusalem District Attorney based the indictment presented to the city’s Magistrate’s Court on remarks made
by Federman, a resident of the West Bank city of Hebron.

The remarks were recorded on two occasions – first, by Haim Yavin in the documentary film series “Land of the
Settlers,” and later by a Channel 10 team in a story on Purim celebrations in Hebron, which was never aired.

To Yavin, Federman said, “We are talking about people who are subhuman… there is nothing to be done except for
throwing them out of here, and not to Jordan, but far, because if they’re in Jordan they will try to return. As far as possible.”

“I say in the best circumstances we need to expel them… If they don’t leave? We’ll kill them… They’re enemies.
We have to fight them. If they don’t leave, we’ll start bombing them. That’s the only thing that will help… We
don’t need to put on airs. We’re in a war. A la guerre, comme la guerre – we must act as if we’re in a war,” she said.

“The entire Arab street supports the suicide bomber… everyone is complicit in such an act. We can give them an
ultimatum to leave here with their possessions intact, and if not, we’ll simply send… planes and bomb them and hold
on to our land,” she added.

In remarks made off the record, Federman said, “Whoever wants to remain alive should leave, and whoever doesn’t
will be killed. There is no choice.”

In conversation with a Channel 10 reporter, Federman praised Baruch Goldstein, a West Bank settler who opened
fire on Muslim worshippers at Hebron’s Tomb of the Patriarchs in 1994 before being beaten to death.

“The 39 Arabs Goldstein killed is a drop in the bucket compared to what needs to be done. There needs to be a
real war. We need to conquer this land once and for all,” she said.

Federman is charged with one count of incitement to racism and two counts of attempting to spread incitement.

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Timely Reminders

"Those who crusade, not for God in themselves, but against the devil in others, never succeed in making the world better, but leave it either as it was, or sometimes perceptibly worse than what it was, before the crusade began. By thinking primarily of evil we tend, however excellent our intentions, to create occasions for evil to manifest itself."
-- Aldous Huxley

"The only war that matters is the war against the imagination. All others are subsumed by it."
-- Diane DiPrima, "Rant", from Pieces of a Song.

"It is difficult
to get the news from poems
yet men die miserably every day
for lack
of what is found there"
-- William Carlos Williams, "Asphodel, That Greeny Flower"