How to Justify a Genocide: The Israeli Government in Action in Kentucky
Photo source: Visitfrankfort.com
By Ülvi Gitaliyev
For over 3 months now, the world has witnessed Gaza turned into rubble and the Netanyahu government abandon even pretence of respecting Palestinian statehood. Yet, all is now well within the Iron Dome. Without U.S. military aid in the field and diplomatic support in the United Nations, Israel’s war against the Gazan population would have run out of steam by now. Israel knows this all too well, which is why the following developments are so worrying to their government.
According to a national NBC News poll from November 2023, 70% of voters aged between 18 and 34 disapprove of President Biden’s handling of the war in Gaza. Protests in favour of a free Palestine have erupted across college campuses, including Berea College. Without young voters, the Biden campaign’s chances of winning the 2024 presidential election are slim to none. Therefore, even the unwavering support of the Biden Administration for Israel has begun to falter in recent weeks.
In response to these developments, the Consul General of Israel to the Southeast US, Anat Sultan-Dadon came to Frankfort, Kentucky to an host “exclusive closed door screening” of atrocities by Hamas on October 7th, as reported by the Lexington Herald-Leader. Only legislators, journalists, and other pre-approved persons could view the screening. The Berea Torch requested access to the event and was permitted to the screening. While originally, there was going to be one event in the Kentucky State Capital, the consulate separated legislators and journalists into separate screenings in the last minute.
As we drove to the journalist screening in the evening, the Israeli Consul’s plans were already going awry. Dozens of protestors were holding up Palestinian flags outside the venue. Reportedly, protestors were also present at the legislature screening. When we reached the screening auditorium, it was eerily quiet. . Overall, there were less than 10 journalists and reporters in the whole auditorium. Consul General of Israel to the Southeast US, Anat Sultan-Dadon, her staff and an IDF Officer were present as well.
We will not go into details, but the 45-minute video showed alleged atrocities by Hamas soldiers on October 7th in the Re’im music festival and multiple Kibbutzes along the border with Gaza against Israeli soldiers and civilians. 26 villages were attacked on that day, and the video showed 139 bodies of October 7th victims. Throughout the screening, we could hear chants such as “1,2,3,4 occupation no more/ 5,6,7,8 Israel is a racist state” and “No justice, no peace, no genocidal police” from the protestors outside. The Israeli officials were visibly irritated and later complained, calling the protest “A demonstration of hate against of Israel”. In essence, nothing shown or said by the Israeli Consul was new. Israel has been using the viciousness of Hamas’ actions on October 7th to justify its own genocidal campaign against the entire Gazan population since the conflict began.
After showing us the video, Consul Sultan-Dadon made a speech where she unequivocally defended Israel’s conduct in the war. She boldly stated, “Every effort to preserve civilians has been made by Israel” despite all the evidence to the contrary. The most ominous comment was that “Gaza will be deradicalised” after the war. In international politics, she said that “There is no logic to South Africa representing terrorists in the ICJ” Finally, the Consul ended her speech by saying “We will defeat this evil…we cannot afford to stop fighting this evil.”
So, since nothing the consul said has not already been repeated by other members of the Israeli government, what was the purpose of this whole event? While Consul Sultan-Dadon did not explicitly say it, much of her ire during her speech was not against Hamas, but pro-Palestinian protestors here in the U.S. “The Consul said “Universities and colleges [in the United States] are safe spaces for all students, expect Jews” and that by allowing demonstrations against Israeli’s war policy, “Future generations of America are being taught that hate is okay“. A confidential source later told us that bills restricting students ability to protest for Palestine are being planned, with these events serving to convince politicians and the media to go along.
As we left, we pondered over our notes and the sheer absurdity of the statements made. Did Sultan-Dadon really believe that Israel was preserving civilian life or that her government did not plan on eliminating the Gaza Strip? Was the state of Israel infallible to her? Or was there a point at which even she would have to admit wrongdoing. Whatever the case is, the consul’s actions in Kentucky showcase just how willing Netanyahu and his government are to whitewash their crimes and use the death of innocent people to continue the massacre of Palestinians, with U.S. support. As public pressure against Israel in the U.S. grows, it will only become harder to justify, their actions.
Republished from Berea Torch.
Wed, February 21, 2024
Wed, February 21, 2024