Demonizing the oppressed from Kenya to Palestine

Image created by Boycott From Within with a quote from the Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant calling Palestinians “human animals” on top of an image from the Warsaw Ghetto.

A deluge of racism against the Palestinian people goes hand-in-hand with the missiles fired by Israel in revenge for the Al-Aqsa Flood uprising. Israeli defense minister Yoav Gallant called Palestinians “human animals.” 

There’s nothing new about Zionist officials dehumanizing Palestinians. Back in 2014, Ayelet Shaked, who later became the Zionist state’s justice minister, posted an article on Facebook that referred to Palestinian children as “little snakes.” 

Israeli bombs are now killing hundreds of Palestinian children in the Gaza ghetto.

Apartheid Israel is a colonial settler state, and defending colonialism requires racist falsehoods. One whopper was President Joe Biden’s lying statement — which had to be retracted — that he saw pictures of Israeli children who had been beheaded. 

Another one was the gruesome picture being shopped around by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of a burnt Israeli baby, which was actually created by artificial intelligence (AI). 

The conquistadors that pillaged the Americas claimed the inhabitants were cannibals. Both Indigenous and African peoples were considered “subhuman,” or as the Zionist Gallant put it, “animals.”

One of the biggest lies — in an attempt to deny centuries of genocide— is that the area now occupied by the United States was barely populated by Indigenous nations. Charles C. Mann debunked this falsehood in his book “1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus.”

Similarly, a favorite Zionist slogan was “a people without land for a land without people.” This implied that Palestine was uninhabited.

Former Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir declared in 1969 that “there was no such thing as Palestinians.” She lived in a house stolen from a Palestinian family. 

The oppressor always lies about the oppressed. Hundreds of Hollywood movies featured “innocent settlers” in wagon trains being attacked by “merciless Indian savages.” The actual massacres of Indigenous peoples were rarely mentioned.

Those whose land was being stolen had the right to resist by any means necessary. General Custer had it coming.

Demonizing the ‘Mau Mau’

Seventy years ago the most notorious “terrorist” — as labeled by the U.S. and British media — was not a Palestinian, an Arab, or a Muslim. The person demonized was Jomo Kenyatta, who became the first president of independent Kenya.

At the time, Kenyans were fighting for their freedom from British colonialism. Queen Victoria’s stormtroopers seized Kenya in 1895.

British aristocrats stole the land, with Lord Delamere alone grabbing 160,000 acres. Africans were forced at gunpoint into “native reserves,” modeled on Indian reservations in the United States.

Palestinians were similarly driven from their land during the founding of Israel in 1948. Called the Nakba — meaning catastrophe in Arabic — 15,000 Palestinians were murdered, and Zionists destroyed 531 Palestinian villages.

Oppression sparks resistance. On May Day in 1950, the East African Trade Union Congress issued a call for independence and majority rule.

One hundred thousand workers joined a general strike to protest. Nairobi was paralyzed for nine days. It took a mobilization of the British army and colonial police to crush this uprising.

Freedom demanded that an armed struggle be launched. Kenya’s Land and Freedom Army was born. The capitalist media called it the “Mau Mau.”

Kenya’s colonial governor, Evelyn Baring, responded by declaring a state of emergency on Oct. 20, 1952. The governor’s family-controlled Barings Bank was founded in 1762 by the slave trader Francis Baring.

Baring ordered the colonial police to frame up Jomo Kenyatta and other independence fighters. There was no jury.

According to Caroline Elkins’ Pulitzer Prize-winning book, “Imperial Reckoning,” Baring guaranteed a conviction by paying Judge Ransley Thacker a 20,000-pound bribe. That’s worth nearly 710,000 pounds or $874,000 today

Baring hoped Kenyatta’s frameup would demoralize Africans. Instead, it ignited years of guerrilla warfare.

Mau Mau fighters liberated weapons and ammunition from the colonialist army and police. Mau Mau-supporting blacksmiths made hundreds of guns.

Britain mobilized 55,000 soldiers and cops to fight the freedom fighters. Caroline Elkins estimated that the colonial forces threw 300,000 Kenyans into concentration camps and forced another million into 800 “emergency villages” built with the Africans’ own slave labor.

The media helped this genocide by printing lurid stories about alleged Mau Mau atrocities, like Netanyahu’s awful baby photo. Typical was Time magazine’s description of a former Land and Freedom Army leader as “one of the Mau Mau’s bloodthirstiest killers.”

Zionists wanted Uganda

Theodor Herzl — the “father” of the Zionist movement — proposed in 1903 that a Zionist state be built in Uganda, which was then a British colony.

British colonial secretary Joseph Chamberlain, whose empire held a quarter of humanity in chains, was in favor. The British government agreed to establish a “Jewish territory” in East Africa.

Joseph Chamberlain was the father of British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain. The younger Chamberlain’s appeasement of Nazi Germany in the 1938 Munich Agreement was telling Hitler to go east and invade the Soviet Union.

Much of the proposed Zionist settlement was actually in present-day Kenya. If Herzl’s Uganda project had taken place, 50 years later, Zionist settlers would have been fighting Mau Mau freedom fighters.

Zionism was always a colonial project, not a liberation movement. In 1902, Herzl wrote to Cecil Rhodes, seeking support.

Rhodes was one of the war criminals who carved up Africa for himself and other European and U.S. millionaires. Rhodes founded the De Beers’ diamond monopoly and invaded Zimbabwe, which he renamed “Rhodesia.” 

The people of Zimbabwe waged a decades-long liberation war, or Chimurenga, against the white settler state. Just as they slandered Kenya’s Land and Freedom Army, U.S. and European media called the Zimbabwe freedom fighters “terrorists.”

The U.S. State Department kept Nelson Mandela on its “terrorist watch list” until 2008. 

Nelson Mandela defended Palestine. In a 1997 speech on the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, he declared, “We know too well that our freedom is incomplete without the freedom of the Palestinians.”

From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free!


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