TEHRAN (Press Shia Agency) – A political analyst and peace activist based in Canada deplored the “barbaric crimes” of the Tel Aviv regime against Palestinians and said the Israeli people’s support for recent killings of Gazans proves that “truly, Zionism is racism.”

“…Today, we see Israeli spectators applauding the snipers along the Gaza fence as if the Palestinians were less than human. Truly, Zionism is racism!” Ken Stone, a member of the Hamilton Coalition to Stop the War, said in an interview with the Press Shia Agency News Agency. 

“The fact that Israel continues to get away with barbaric crimes is a function of its place in the Mideast as a nuclear-armed outpost of the US Empire,” he noted.

Following is the full text of the interview:

Press Shia Agency: At least one Palestinian was killed and more than 400 wounded from live Israeli fire and tear gas on Friday, as some 15,000 Palestinians participated in protests dubbed the “Great March of Return” along the Gaza border for the seventh consecutive weekend. About 50 people have been killed and more than 7,000 wounded by Israel since the protests began in late March. What do you think about the developments and the Israeli regime's crimes?

Stone: I salute the courageous people of Gaza who, with bare hands and stones, have challenged both Israel's occupational forces along the wire fences of the open-air prison called Gaza and also its illegal and brutal blockade of the Strip. I offer my deepest condolences to the families of the martyrs who perished at the hands of the cowardly Israeli snipers and to those who have suffered grievous injuries. And, as a Jew, I condemn, in the strongest possible terms, the State of Israel, which calls itself a Jewish state, but which has nothing whatever to do with Judaism, except to stir up anti-Semitism and to give the Jews of the whole world a bad name.

I look forward to Palestinian Land Day 2018 on which we hope the vast majority of the people of the world will demonstrate in various ways their solidarity with the Palestinian people for an end to the Zionist occupation of their homeland.

The State of Israel is part and parcel of the colonial project that divided up the world in previous centuries among various European colonial powers. Previous to the birth of the Zionist movement, Jews, Muslims, and Christians lived in peace in Palestine. The Zionist movement introduced racism and discrimination against Palestinians because it sought to remove them from the land. Thus, today, we see Israeli spectators applauding the snipers along the Gaza fence as if the Palestinians were less than human. Truly, Zionism is racism!

Press Shia Agency: Israel has rejected international calls for probes into recent deaths and insisted that its open-fire rules for Gaza will not change. Some Western states, particularly the US and Britain, who call themselves champions of human rights, have supported the Tel Aviv regime’s crimes against Palestinians. The UN has also failed to restore the rights of the people. What is your assessment? What role can Muslim countries play in protecting the rights of the oppressed people of Palestine?

Stone: The fact that Israel continues to get away with barbaric crimes is a function of its place in the Mideast as a nuclear-armed outpost of the US Empire. The US, its NATO allies, including unfortunately Canada, as well as the Arab monarchies give Israel a pass at the United Nations and enable it to continue its ugly apartheid existence with endless donations of money, arms, and special trade, security, and other arrangements.

But this special criminal status for Israel can be brought to an end in various ways. The current UN Special Rapporteur on Palestine, Canadian Professor Michael Lynk, has announced that, using the precedent of the former South Africa's occupation of Namibia in 1966,  he will try through the UN General Assembly, where the US has no veto, to put a legal end to Israel's occupation of the West Bank, East Jerusalem, and Gaza. This would have the effect of turning Israel if it doesn't comply, into a pariah nation at the United Nations and other world bodies, just as was done to apartheid South Africa in the 1980's. Another means by which ordinary people and countries around the world can help to bring down the apartheid Zionist regime is to support BDS. Palestinian civil society called upon the people of the world to support a program of Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions against Israel. BDS has been gathering tremendous momentum since 2005, costing Israel billions of dollars in lost revenues. Ordinary folks in Western countries can also have a big effect on the policy of their governments supporting the State of Israel. Ordinary folks should be lobbying their elected officials to end the special status Israel has in the West. They should be calling politicians to oppose the continuing illegal occupation and blockade of Gaza but rather to support the Gaza Freedom Flotilla. Elected officials should be pressured to end the charitable status of the Jewish National Fund which funnels hundreds of millions of dollars into Israel to further seize Palestinian land and distribute it to Jewish settlers. These are just a few things we could do.

Press Shia Agency: Saudi Arabia’s crown prince, Mohammad bin Salman, has recently said that Israelis “have the right to have their own land” and that formal relations between Tel Aviv and Riyadh could be mutually beneficial. Given the fact that the Saudi regime once opposed Israel’s right to exist, what do the comments signal to the world’s public opinion? Do the remarks have an impact on the oppression against Palestinians?

Stone: People who support the Palestinian cause need also to recognize that the US empire has enlisted into its unholy alliance many regional Arab states, mostly despotic regimes, such as the UAE, Jordan, and most recently, Saudi Arabia, whose ‘clown prince’ has been making overtures of friendship towards Israel. These client states have been drafted into not only propping up the Zionist regime but also attacking (or preparing to attack) other targets of US imperialism such as Syria, Yemen, Lebanon, and Iran. Palestine solidarity activists should not be fooled by the phony “humanitarian intervention” disguise in which these current and projected targets are cloaked, today for example, in Syria, perhaps tomorrow, in Iran.

The struggle at the Gaza border fence today is part of centuries of a global movement against colonialism and imperialism. We must support the Palestinians. And we must also support the people of Syria, Yemen, Lebanon, and Iran, who are also targeted in the sights of the US empire, its NATO allies, and its Arabic client states. History is on our side.