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Pam Geller’s Subway Ads

October 11, 2012

You may have heard by now about the controversy created by Pam Geller’s “American Freedom Defense Initiative” ad campaign on San Francisco buses and in New York City’s subway. The ads which call on viewers to support “civilized” Israel against “savage Jihadists”, by evoking a strong sense of patriotism (“American freedom”) in a battle between the sons of light and the sons of darkness, is a crass attempt to create controversy and generate headlines. They are as tactful as a KKK Grand Wizard in the middle of Harlem.

If I were a conspiracy theorist and if I hadn’t known Pam Geller’s true vile character and bigotry from her previous “work”, I would suspect that Ms. Geller was a Palestinian supporter. After all, the ads achieve exactly the opposite of what their declared purpose is. This failure is so obvious that even the ADL, the main Zionist mouthpiece within the US, was quick to distance itself and condemn the ads as racist.

So what does this ad do? Does it garner support for Israel from previous opponents? Does it affect undecided Americans in a way that they would shell even more of their taxpayers money into Israel’s coffers? Not by a long shot.

Pam Geller’s ad draws an implicit parallel between the “civilized” European settlers in North America and the “civilized” Jewish settlers in Palestine and between the “savage” native Americans and the “savage” Palestinian resistance fighters. These were the exact terms, still fresh in every American’s mind, that were used to describe the North American takeover by European settlers and to justify the dispossession of native Americans. The same goes in Israel as the Zionist colonial settler state, created through violence and the expulsion, dispossession and oppression of the natives of Palestine, views itself as being at war with the “native savages” of the Middle East.

The problem of course is that in America and most of the “civilized” world, it took countless genocides and destructions of local populations until the white “civilized” man realized the evils of colonialism and acknowledged his sins. Colonialism is passe, there is not much support for eradicating more native populations. The “savages” who at times scalped women and children were just resisting dispossession and defending their land against a foreign invasion. Their violence, as savage as it might have been, was just a small fraction of the violence and savagery inflicted upon them by the colonial invaders, who in essence decimated and genocided them.

Israel in that sense is just “behind”, as the last active colonial state in the world today, still refusing to recognize its past sins and failing to acknowledge its current ones. The cynical Israeli mindset is “we have to finish the job first, just like in America”, i.e. to decimate Palestinians to “manageable” levels, before they acknowledge any past injustices. It is no secret that many Israelis pray and hope for a “Jewish Hitler” who will bring about a final solution and rid the land of those pesky Palestinians altogether.

So back to Pam’s Islamophobic ads, which are a blessing in disguise. Are they likely to sway any supporter of Palestine or “undecideds” in favor of the “civilized” Israel? I don’t think so. The ads will appeal to bigots and those who already believe in the “war of civilizations” that the Zionist masterminds concocted. However, even a mildly intelligent American will be able to connect the dots, either consciously or subconsciously and realize that Israel is doing to Palestinians what has been done to native Americans. After having acknowledged its past sins, is America ready to support another colonial project of dispossession, if presented as such? I don’t think so.

And as for Palestine supporters, I suggest the following counter-campaign, inspired by the universal view of mankind’s shared struggle for justice and freedom:

In any conflict between oppressor and oppressed,
support the oppressed.
Support Palestine,
defeat Israeli Apartheid.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Jay Chong permalink
    October 18, 2012 4:54 am

    What disturbs me about the ad is that it is so ambiguous; what exactly does it mean to “defeat” jihad?
    They have the right to post their ads, but it doesn’t actually advance any kind of cause.


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