Tactics in the fight over “Zionism”

War of words in the war for justice
War of words in the war for justice

There is a fight over “Zionism”, over the meaning of the word “Zionism”.

Words are important because social opinion and attitude mobbing has a strong influence on domestic and foreign politics. There is a constant war of words, which plays on the concepts of taboo, decency, social acceptance, identity, pathology, and so forth.

One such war that is in full furry at present is the war over the meaning of “Zionism”. It is playing out in the elite media, in the parliaments of nations, and in the criminal courts.

At one extreme, “Zionism” is the benign truism that “Israel has a right to exist”, where the later phrase simply means that it would be immoral, indecent, illegal… to unilaterally dissolve the state of Israel and to drive away all occupants from indigenous territory taken by Israel using force and intimidation.

The benign definition of “Zionism” is defended by Israel itself and by the Israel lobbies in Western countries including the USA, Canada, France, UK, Australia… These special-interest networks and Israel argue that the definition of “Zionism” has been perverted and that the term has evolved into a code word as part a growing “new antisemitism”.

As such, the loaded weapon of “The Holocaust” (the Nazi holocaust) is being brought to bear in order to incapacitate the “anti-Zionist” or “pro-Palestinian rights” movement. The Holocaust is home base because the impact of the accusation of antisemitism derives from the maintained mental image of the Nazi holocaust, just as the impact of the accusation of racism derives from the USA crime against humanity that was Black slavery and from the Euro-holocausts in Africa, Asia, and the Americas.

At the other extreme, “Zionism” means Israel’s actual state practice and policy of “cleansing”, of annexing territory by war, occupation, apartheid, displacements, settlement, “mowing the grass”… in order to establish a religious state on an increasing and cleansed territory. The false pretext for the on-going “cleansing” is twofold: (1) the Jewish people have a right to a religious state, and (2) that state cannot otherwise be viable and able to protect itself in a world that would annihilate it from within and without.

Because of Israel’s apparent viciousness, the latter extreme meaning of “Zionism” has become a rallying call to impede or reverse Israel’s practice of systematic human rights violations; from the violence of everyday occupation and apartheid, and forced collaboration, to indiscriminate murder, imprisoning rock-throwing children, home demolitions, and military massacres.

In that sense, therefore, the Israel lobbies are correct in ascertaining that the word “Zionism” has acquired a powerful contextual meaning. The Israeli response has been to attack the word, to attempt to tar it with antisemitism, which in turn is buoyed by Holocaust imagery, which is referred to as “memory”.

The attack has been a formidable campaign, aimed at the elite managers: the parliamentarians, the judges, the mainstream media leaders, the university professors, the professional classes… The campaign includes publicized witch hunts against targeted public intellectuals and propagandized “hate crime” criminal prosecutions against insignificant bloggers. It includes every manner of editorial comment and bogus parliamentary commission, and on and on.

All this is anchored in more Holocaust museums, holocaust pilgrimages, and “friendship trips” to Israel than you can shake a stick at. The methods of the lobbies have been meticulously spelled out in Dr. Norman Finkelstein’s landmark book “The Holocaust Industry: Reflections on the Exploitation of Jewish Suffering”.

As a result of the combined effects of the Israeli campaign and the frequent use of the word by Palestinian rights advocates, Israel has largely won the battle in the professional and managerial circles. “Zionism” is starting to have a negative ring to it in the mouths of human rights activists.

I propose a solution, a tactic of circumvention. Rather than defend the chosen extreme meaning of “Zionism” and engage in the war of words, activists could simply admit that “Zionism” contains both meanings and choose to be more specific by using the term “Zionist terrorism”.

In analogy with Israel’s adoption of the term “Islamic terrorism” [1], “Zionist terrorism” should be defined as:

Zionist terrorism is defined as any state or non-state terrorist act, set of acts or campaign committed by Israel or groups or individuals protected by Israel who profess nationalistic or Jewish motivations or goals. Zionist terrorists justify their violent tactics through interpreting the Torah or Israeli nationalism according to their own goals and intentions.


[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_terrorism, accessed on 2017-03-04.

Author Details
{p}Denis G. Rancourt was a tenured and full professor at the University of Ottawa in Canada. He was trained as a physicist and practiced physics, Earth sciences, and environmental science, areas in which he was funded by a national agency and ran an internationally recognized laboratory.{/p} {p}He published over 100 articles in leading scientific journals. He developed popular activism courses and was an outspoken critic of the university administration and a defender of Palestinian rights. {/p} {p}He was fired for his dissidence in 2009 by a president who is a staunch supporter of Israeli policy. He is the author of the 2013 book “Hierarchy and Free Expression in the Fight Against Racism”.{/p}
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  1. These are the biggest hypocrites on planet Earth. They finally concluded Adolph Hitler’s tactics were right after all but don’t say it too loudly to impair the good money rolling in from the sympathy scam. But then most Americans likely think a hypocrite is some sort of wild animal in Africa.

  2. How can the victims of the 1943-44 holocaust turn around and 4 years later do the same to the Palestinians.
    have wondered that myself. cognitive dissonance, or the suspension of rationalism, is the signature trait of religions and collectives both of which use myths to fuel their ideologies.

    the many and varied resources that constitute the whole humanoid can and are misused. the imagination, the massively parallel computing that enables reflexive action. when combined and used properly with our reflective processor, the cerebal cortex, the humanoid can take ideas conceived in the imagination to reality by applying the planning and goal setting and routine management resources of the cognition. otoh, the endless hypothesizing of gods and archons of religions is an example of imagination gone awry. fantasizing sex for craving a high is another misuse and abuse of yet another amazing resource. all taken for granted from birth. and marginalized by the googleites in their pursuit of robotics and AI.

  3. My problem is with Talmudic Judaism and I’ll tell that to anyone’s face. My problem is self explanatory to anyone who’s aware of the Talmud. Why should we walk on egg shells while speaking truth to power? No matter how much B’nai Brith pays the government to make criticizing Talmudic behaviour illegal, I will condemn evil no matter who commits it and I won’t let any government tell me what I can and can’t say. They could put me in jail, but that would just confirm that we live in a world where warranted criticism against brutal atrocities leads to a criminal conviction. Who’s the bad guy?

  4. just pull down the flag…..that is all they have to do…..no-one needs to die for a lie…..just pull it down, the star of remphan, it is a cause of offense now…..do not fly it in your nations or your churches…..pull it down and destroy it….remove it from sight…..any jew too can do that….and no-one dies but the lies

  5. Is this about Hollywood? Zionist propaganda is transparent already, but the western platforms that aspire to use it for their financial goals are obviously not enough. Territorial Zionists are losers just like any other territorialists. What if Israel was created in Wyoming or in Siberia? It would be no shorter of historical or ideological significance than New Zealand is to the British. There is no ideological causality that would need Zionism to shapeshift its origins in the West.

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