The Art of Institutionalized Oppression:
An Israeli Manual
By Ramzy Baroud
Editor-in-Chief of PalestineChronicle.com
The fall of the classic theory and practice of imperialism compels us modern imperialists, who are keenly interested in maintaining control of our remaining colonies, to develop an advanced strategy that would protect our interests. Consolidating our power over indigenous populations may be difficult, but if done the right way, the Israeli way, that is, our colonies could be successfully sustained when our subjects are oppressed and under control.
An important factor in institutionalizing oppression is through the law. Israel has successfully passed laws, such as the Law of Return which allows Jews to immigrate to Israel based on their racial preference, while Palestinians are denied the right in their own land and property since they don’t fit into this category. Moreover, the Absentee Law allows the state of Israel to confiscate the property of dispossessed Palestinians and claim it as state property.
These laws have proven successful, for they made racial supremacy the determining factor in attaining rights in Israel, making Jews first class citizens and making the remaining Arabs a second class. It also rids the state of Israel from over five million refugees, scattered elsewhere.
Another important start up rule to get oppression institutionalized is through military occupation. The state of Israel had occupied Palestine and other Arab land for decades. This way, although condemned by futile United Nations’ resolutions, Israel has become the upper hand and has held a greater stance when negotiated with its subjects over secondary matters.
A modern imperialist must also understand that a strong army remains essential in controlling the colonies and populations. Thanks to Israel’s strong army, Palestinian rebellions have been suppressed by massive use of force. It doesn’t matter whether force is used against armed or unarmed individuals, children, women or elderly. What matters the most is conveying a message that subjects have no rights, and that they should submit to what Israel finds suitable. (Suitable means what meets Israel’s interests).
Today’s imperialists must use the media religiously, for the media is the most effective tool in winning today’s wars. It’s important that the message conveyed through the media highlights the losses of the colonialist, not the colonized. The media must show us as civilized, and our enemies as savage, they must show us as righteous and our enemies as wicked, they must show us as peaceful and our enemies as terrorists.
If the media is tightly controlled, we can completely modify what is really happening and create our own reality. We can drive the world to blame our enemy when we kill their children, we can make our soldiers heroes and their fighters criminals.(Please refer to Ariel Sharon’s biography, Warrior.)
The state of Israel has indeed mastered the art of media control, to the point that we can even blame Palestinian parents, saying that they send their children to be killed for media attention. Interestingly enough, many believe us.
Killing your enemies, torturing their prisoners, occupying their land, confiscating their properties are truly important, but not enough. You have to humiliate them while you carry out your policies.
Humiliation is indeed a winning strategy, for you can destroy the spirit of your enemy. Yes you can kill a man, but slaying him as his family watches and then stealing his dead body is more effective.
You can beat a defiant young man who refuses to plead for mercy, but if you strip him naked first, you will certainly break his defiant spirit and make him wish death.
Yes you can torture a prisoner by heavily beating him, but imagine how successful it will be if you threaten to rape, or if you do in fact rape his wife or sister. We’ve done it, and it was often extremely successful.
If your subjects are subdued and not defiant, reward them with partial freedom and allow them to reach their low paying jobs. But if they defy, clamp down on them and have no mercy, otherwise they’ll rebel too often.
If you push them to the limit of leading an uprising, don’t back down, but fight back; close down their schools, uproot their trees, burn down their farms; block their streets; isolate their cities; demolish their homes; throw them in jail; curfew them in their houses for weeks; deny them clean water, electricity, and even crucial supplies, such as oxygen bottles for their hospitals.
If they decide to upgrade their defiance by using firearms, then feel free to do all that can be done. In Israel for example, we are using our highest tech weapons against them, F 15, F 16, Apache helicopters, missiles and more. Try massacring once in awhile, it does manage to frighten them you know. We have done this numerous times, and our statistics show much more subservience and calm in areas were we have carried out these massacres.
Destroy their symbols and deny them an identity. In Israel we have destroyed numerous mosques and have attacked and desecrated many churches. Imagine what that made them feel, even God cannot protect them now. If you issue them identification cards, write "undefined" as a nationality, burn their flags, bans their books, forbid them from learning their own history; call their intellectuals militants and their religious leaders fanatics.
Make them always feel trapped with nowhere to escape, besiege their land, their air and water; make them feel like a wild animal trapped in a net; terrorize them; give them ultimatums. Force them to accept their fate, which of course you ordain.
Try to make them turn against each other whenever possible. Some of them might be weak, easy to manipulate, use those ones to spy on the others. If those traitors become known, they’ll be jailed, or even executed. That’s good, because then, like we do here in Israel, you can tell the world that your enemies violate human rights. Both ways, you win.
Build trenches around their fertile land like we did to them in Nablus. We said it was a security measure, the world believed, but they lost thousands of hectares of fertile land that is now useless. Eradicate their forests and woodlands; dump your toxic waste in their areas and destroy their environment.
In short, imprison their men, rape their land, murder their youth, put them to the brink of desperation… to the point of suicide. You will have then succeeded in the complete dehumanization and defeat of your enemy, while through strict control of the media, you will have convinced the world you are actually the victim.