Israel’s 60th Birthday

Angela Merkel addresses the Knesset by Dave

The following analysis on Chancellor Merkel’s speech to the Knesset is from the Electronic Intifada.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s historic speech to the Israeli Knesset on 18 March 2008 has been almost universally applauded, and has been described by Charlotte Knobloch, President of the Central Council of German Jews, as having “opened a new chapter in the relationship between Israel and Germany.”

Given the huge influence of Germany within the European Union, it is imperative to subject Merkel’s speech to a close reading and to question the assumptions implicit both in the speech itself and in the German media response to it.

Having expressed Germans’ “shame” for the Holocaust, she goes on to point out that “while we are speaking here, thousands of people are living in fear and terror of Hamas’s rocket-attacks and terrorism.” Her clumsy choice of words seems to emphasize the failure to mention the hundreds of thousands of Palestinians who are living in daily fear and terror of Israeli incursions, home demolitions, assassinations, air-strikes, arbitrary arrest, imprisonment and torture.

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Merkel’s historic Israel visit by Dave

“The visit does not have a high political agenda. It is more of a symbolic visit.”

To have no real political agenda in a time of great crisis for the Palestinians is to be complicit in Israel’s war crimes and refusal to negotiate peace.

Shame on Merkel travelling to Israel to celebrate 60 years since the beginning of the ethnic cleansing of Palestine.

A rather more interesting trip took place recently involving German intellectuals. See Israel’s creation made Palestinians victims of the Holocaust and No more preferential treatment for Israel.

    The Local: German Chancellor Angela Merkel travels to Israel on Sunday for a visit of major historical significance more than 60 years after the end of World War II, writes AFP’s Simon Sturdee.

    Merkel will be the first German chancellor to address the Knesset when she gives a speech at the Israeli parliament on Tuesday, an honour reserved normally for heads of state.
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    German cabinet and Chancellor Merkel to Celebrate Israel’s 60th by Dave

    “In March, the German cabinet, including Chancellor Merkel, will travel to Israel for a ceremonial meeting in celebration of Israel’s 60th anniversary. What better way to reinforce the existence of Israel for 60 years than to sever economic and political ties with Iran, a country yearning for the destruction of Israeli democracy.” Haaretz

    Looks like the Germans will be joining in the celebrations marking the 60th anniversary of the ethnic cleansing of Palestine. Iran is not yearning to destroy Israel – its the other way round – Israel is seeking to attack Iran. I presume theres a mistake and the article refers to the meeting of world leaders in Israel in May not March. Either that or theres another event on.