Israel cannot stop the resistance of the Arab masses!

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Mohammed Chehab

The following presentation was made by Mohammed Chehab at the Uhuru House in St. Petersburg, Florida on July 23, 2006 after the illegitimate settler-state of Israel began bombarding the people of Lebanon.

Uhuru! I am an Arab. I can trace my roots for 14-1500 years in the Arab world. I know exactly where I came from. I know where my heritage is, and I’m not from Manhattan or New Jersey. (applause)

And I demand the land. The land is mine. I love that land. It is mine, and they can never take it away from me. That will never happen.

Even when I die they’re going to write my name on the grave in Arabic and they’re going to say that I lived there and that I belong there.

What is going on over there is just another link in that chain of oppression that they have started.

Israel is the new tool of the colonialist monster. This new tool was created in 1948 by a promise in 1917 from the British Empire.

The British Empire decided to give a piece of land they did not own to people who did not belong to that land. They gave it to people that came from Romania and New Jersey and Manhattan and Poland and everywhere else.

Golda Meir, the prime minister of Israel, was Polish. What happened? I mean, is this the world turned upside down? A Polish prime minister of an Arab land?

They tell you God gave them that land, but to my knowledge, God is not a real estate agent. (applause)

And to my knowledge, God is fair. He does not prefer a certain people over another.

And I’m a Semite. So nobody can tell me I’m anti-Semitic. I am a Semite, and I belong to that area.

Imperialists attempt to divide Middle East into smaller microstates

Lebanon is a small nation. We have 17 different ethnic groups in Lebanon and 21 different religious sects. They all live together, and they all live alike. They’re all neighbors.

The Lebanese, in times of peace, fight with one another tooth and nail. It’s fair. You have different opinions. You have arguments. That’s fair. No problem with that.

But in times of when there is calamity, when there is trouble, they band together. When they meet one another overseas they become instant brothers and sisters and friends.

What’s happening now is Israel is trying once again to break that tiny country.

Israel is trying to make it into four or five different countries to justify their own existence. What they want to do is create small entities all around the Middle East of single entity nations rather than have a big country in the Middle East that engulfs everybody around.

They want to do that in Iraq. They want to do that to Syria. They want to do that to Sudan, Egypt, Morocco, Algeria and every single country around that would threaten their formula of existence.

It is a colonialist formula built on oppression of all of their neighbors. And the only way they can oppress their neighbors is by breaking them apart into smaller entities that they can insulate economically, politically, culturally, etc. I won’t say culturally because culturally they will not even come close.

At every single occasion along the past 50 or 60 years Israel has tried to destroy Lebanon. In 1948, Israel grabbed the first piece of Lebanon.

In 1954, [Israeli leaders] Abba Eban and David Ben Gurion said they had to get into the Lebanese infrastructure, into the Lebanese fabric and start breaking that country apart. That was as far back as in 1954.

In 1956, England, France and Israel began the Arab-Israeli War when they invaded and attacked Egypt together and tried to occupy it and put the colonial power in there again. They tried to take the Suez Canal from the Egyptians again.

In 1968, after the 1967 war, the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) took power into its own hands and they started an armed struggle against Israel.

So what did the Israelis do? They came into the Lebanese airport and they destroyed 17 civilian Boeing aircraft on the ground.

In 1970, they attacked the Palestinians in Jordan. In 1974, the Lebanese president came into the United Nations and gave a speech and said the solution to the Palestinian-Israeli question is the creation of a nation based on equal rights for everyone in that land.

“There is no such thing as a nice occupier. There is no such thing as friendly occupation or friendly colonization. Colonialism by nature is a beast. It cannot be anything else. ”

His idea was similar to the system that we have in Lebanon where we have different people, different faiths, different ethnic groups and they all have equal rights. But guess what? Israel didn’t like that.

One year later, they infiltrated the fabric of the Lebanese society and they started using their own agents. They did have some agents there, and the Lebanese civil war started in 1971.

It’s a little strange that this happens about a year after this solution that was proposed by the Lebanese president on behalf of the Arab League and on behalf of the PLO.

The PLO at the time was not calling for the destruction of Israel. The PLO at the time was calling for the destruction of the State that did not believe in equal rights for its own citizens.

Israel forced Arab exodus from Lebanon

In 1978, Israel invaded Lebanon and as a result of that invasion there was a massive exodus of people. About half a million people were kicked out of their own homes in South Lebanon because Israel decided they didn’t want people in there. They kicked them out and they ended up in South Beirut.

As a result, the United Nations woke up and put out Resolutions 425 and 348 that called for Israel to withdraw out of Lebanon. They did this before with Resolution 242 that called on Israel to withdraw from the areas it captured in 1967. But it remained ink on paper because Israel never ever implemented a single United Nations Resolution. Not a single one.

Yet if a nation like Iraq told the U.S. we’re not going to implement this resolution now, that’s the end of it. They invade Iraq. Israel has refused to implement a single United Nations Resolution.

In 1982, they invaded Lebanon again. But this time, they went all the way to Beirut so that they could put a puppet regime in place with a single color, and a single religion and a single ethnicity. That would have been a total disaster. Luckily, they were not successful.

Hezbollah created to liberate Lebanon from Israeli domination

As a result of the 1982 war, Hezbollah was created. Hezbollah did not exist until 1982. Hezbollah was created because Israel occupied Lebanon in 1982.

Hezbollah’s main mission was to free Lebanon from the Israeli government. Its objective was to free South Lebanon from that vicious occupation.

There is no such thing as a nice occupier. There is no such thing as friendly occupation or friendly colonization. Colonialism by nature is a beast. It cannot be anything else.

So Hezbollah started fighting the Israeli soldiers and started fighting Israel to get it out of Lebanon. But Israel does not like that because, militarily, Israel wants to maintain the stature as the strongest country in the Middle East and as the only super power in the whole area.

They want to maintain their stature as the only colonial agent of the colonial powers in Europe and the United States. They want to maintain that stature, so they started the war with Hezbollah.

In 1996, Israel again invaded areas in South Lebanon and again they committed other massacres in South Lebanon. The United Nations of course didn’t do anything, and the United States didn’t do anything. And that only encouraged Israel to be more ruthless.

Hezbollah continued fighting the Israeli soldiers in South Lebanon. Strictly in South Lebanon. Hezbollah never attacked a single civilian body in all of its existence. Never a civilian target.

Israeli occupiers cannot accept defeat from the occupied

In the year 2000, the Israeli government figured out that they had paid a high price to stay in South Lebanon, and they decided to withdraw under the continued attacks of Hezbollah. Well the Israeli society, which is a militaristic society, didn’t like that.

They wanted revenge. “How can a group like Hezbollah kick us out of the country? How can they defeat us?”

“We are a militaristic society. We are a colonial agency. We are the colonial extension of Europe and the United States. How can we lose? We have to teach these groups a lesson. We have to teach everybody who tries to stand on their feet. Nobody is allowed to resist.”

“Israel holds about 10,000 political prisoners in its jails. Out of the 10,000 prisoners, about 500-600 of them are children. ”

So ever since they’ve been trying to undermine the Lebanese society.

They have destroyed a lot of the villages in South Lebanon. They’ve destroyed every single bridge in the country. They’ve destroyed hospitals, schools and every single radio station.

They’ve destroyed all of the transmission antennas, cellular antennas. Yesterday they destroyed the last of the TV antennas that remain so that nobody can show pictures of what was going on. Nobody can transmit pictures of what was going on.

Yesterday they’ve attacked press people that were in South Lebanon. They killed one of them and the rest managed to make it somehow.

They’ve been attacking anybody that would transmit the picture on what’s going on in South Lebanon to the rest of the world. They don’t want anybody to see the dead children and the dead woman and the dead people in Lebanon. They don’t want to have these pictures out.

The media does not show anybody anything. It only shows the Israeli side of the story and those poor Israelis have got to fight but the Arabs had better not fight. It’s their job to die peacefully, silently or else.

But that’s not going to happen. The Arabs are not dying silently. We won’t go away.

There’s something about us Arabs. We never forget.

We want our rights. We want our justice. Without justice you can never have peace.

As an imperialist outpost, Israel allowed to do whatever it wants with no UN reprimand

So Hezbollah has been saying over the past six or seven years that they were going to capture Israeli soldiers so that they can swap them with the Lebanese prisoners and the Arab prisoners. Israel holds about 10,000 political prisoners in its jails. Out of the 10,000 prisoners, about 500-600 of them are children.

Israel violated the sovereignty of Lebanon by air, by land, by sea about 3500 times over the past 12 months, as documented by the United Nations observers in South Lebanon.

So Hezbollah captures two Israeli soldiers and now all hell breaks loose. All hell breaks loose because, guess what, Hezbollah violated the sovereignty of Israel, but Israel can violate the sovereignty of anybody they want to.

It’s okay as long as nobody violates their sovereignty. They can occupy lands. They can kick people out of their homes, out of their lands, but nobody can touch them. Nobody can through a stone at them.

When the United Nations observers came to Lebanon recently to try to talk about the current situation nobody wanted to talk ceasefire. The United States said no it’s not time for a ceasefire. The United Nations said no it’s not time for a ceasefire.

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A picture of a Lebanese child murdered by Israeli forces bombarding villages in Lebanon.

People are dying. Civilians are dying and nobody wants to talk ceasefire. Last month when [Israeli prime minister Ehud] Olmert came to Washington D.C. it was widely understood that George W. Bush authorized the Israeli operation way before anything had happened.

They thought they could go ahead and take care of that manufacture any kind of reasoning they wanted that justified the actions that they were going to take.

They could justify destroying the country, destroying bridges, killing people. They gave them the green light to do it.

When the United Nations envoy came to Beirut and held the discussions, they said they were going to talk to the Israeli side and come back. When the UN went to Israel, they were shot at.

Of course nobody talks about that. But if they were shot at in Beirut, it would be the story in the news for years to come.

Two days ago, one of the reporters on MSNBC was going to transmit a report of what was happening in Haifa. When it was time he said they wouldn’t be able to transmit video because an Israeli settler urinated on their equipment and on them. He said the man then took a two-by-four and started beating on the crew. That was on the air only one time.

Just imagine if, instead of a settler, that was a Hezbollah gunman. The Israelis can do anything they want to.

“This war is about subduing the last people of resistance in the Middle East, whether it’s Hamas or Hezbollah, and they’re not the last. Believe it. The people of the area will never be subdued. ”

They came on with the speakers at the beginning of the bombing campaign that they had. They told everybody to get out in an hour because they were going to flatten the town. It’s a little town on the borders of Lebanon and Israel. I should say occupied Palestine.

The poor civilians ran to the United Nations post over there. They refused to take them. They said, no we cannot take you. You have to go out on your own.

So they did get into their cars and as they were leaving town the Israeli jets came and incinerated the entire caravan of 26 or 27 civilians. They incinerated them alive.

I saw the pictures. Did anybody see those pictures on MSNBC or CNN or Fox? No. You will never see those because you are not meant to see them.

You’re not meant to see the nature of that beast, of that occupier, of that colonial power.

Israel is the real terrorist in the region

Now if I understand it correctly, the way the United States defines terrorism is someone who attacks innocent civilians. Who is the terrorist then?

They say Hezbollah is sending rockets made by Iran. Guess who made those weapons that are being used to bombard Lebanon? Guess where they are made. Miami. Seattle. They’re made right here.

And they are rushing them some more laser guided missile bombs. Two thousand kilos. Two tons each because they want to kill some more people.

The evidence is right there. So far there are at least a half million evacuees from the area. South Beirut is a part of the city where about a million people live. More than half of that part has been flattened and the rest has been destroyed. It’s uninhabitable.

One million people now are living in schools. They’re living in parks in the open air. They’re living with friends and neighbors.

They wanted to create animosity between them, so now they have Muslims from the South living in Christian churches. You have Christians from the South living in Muslim mosques. You have people from the South no matter what their religion is living with friends and neighbors and living in villages where the villages have invited them to come over to live with them until the whole thing is finished.

Guess what? Israel doesn’t like that, either. So, what did they do? Where did they bomb yesterday?

Those same villages where they have people living in now. They want to inhabitants of those villages to know that they are bombing because you are taking those people in so you all are going to pay the price.

You’re not supposed to live with one another. You’re supposed to fight one another. You’re supposed to be against one another. That’s the nature of the beast we’re dealing with.

Israel’s war on Lebanon about crushing resistance, not two captured soldiers

This war in Lebanon is not about the two soldiers. If you are an oppressed people you are not allowed to fight back.

You’re not allowed to resist. You’re not allowed to say I want freedom. I want justice. You’re not allowed to say that. You do what we want you to do. This is what this war is about.

This war is about subduing the last people of resistance in the Middle East, whether it’s Hamas or Hezbollah, and they’re not the last. Believe it. They’re not the last.

There are a lot more groups who are springing up. This colonialist power does not understand. The people of the area will never be subdued. Mark my words. The people of the area will never be subdued.

Israel and the United States will have to recognize sooner or later that they cannot live by subduing people. You either live with the people on an equal basis or you are going to have the same thing happen over and over.

You will have people who will fight you until they get their own justice, until they get what they want for their destiny.

Mohammed Chehab is a Lebanese activist based in Tampa, Florida. He is a member of the Arab American Relations Forum and an outspoken advocate for Palestinian rights. While living in Beirut in 1982, Chehab and his neighbors rushed to organize transport and shelter for survivors fleeing the infamous Israeli massacre of Palestinian refugees in the Sabra and Shatila camps.

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