Israeli Orange Shirts Protest, Threaten Violence
Tens of thousands of rightwing Israeli protesters came out on Monday to rally against the withdrawal of Israeli colonizers from the Palestinian Gaza strip. To the lexicon of brown shirts and black shirts of the European far right can now be added the phrase “Orange Shirts,” the color favored by the pro-colonialism demonstrators.
The government prevented the busing of even more protesters in, for fear they would invade a military zone that had been erected around the Israeli settlements on Palestinian land that it plans to dismantle. The Orange Shirts are threatening violence in order to get their way. Member of the Israeli Parliament ‘ Effi Eitam (Religious Zionism) said that preventing buses from reaching Netivot was a “tragic mistake that would escalate the situation and create more violence.” ‘
The Gaza settlers are already violently clashing with Israeli security forces.
Reuters reports that Israel is expanding its colonial settlements on Palestinian land in the West Bank even as it is planning to remove a few thousand settlers from Gaza.
We have seen these sorts of events many times in colonial history. The French colonists rioted in Algiers in January 1960 as it became clear that DeGaulle was moving toward granting Algerian demands. There were a million colonizers in Algeria then, and they had managed to grab up the best land, the most lucrative industries. The Algerian owners of the country had run out of patience with this colonial theft, however, and the colonists would not prevail. Had the French tried to remain in Algeria, it would have meant a 30 years war. The Western Right, so attached to the colonial project of dominating others and establishing racial and economic hierarchies, has been frustrated for decades by decolonization. But as the Israelis have learned, the costs of colonialism in the contemporary world are very great indeed, since contemporary populations are mobilized, connected by media, and savvy about using modern science to strike back at their torturers. You can have a colony to feel superior over, and to exploit, only at the cost of living your life in fear and being brutalized and driven toward a kind of fascist society. The only forces that really want such a fate are . . . fascists.