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January 14, 2016

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Witch-hunt against left wing activist is the prologue to a Stasi state

One day, when things get out of control, some will be sorry that they collaborated or stood by, but by then it will be too late.

By Gideon Levy | Jan. 13, 2016 | 11:41 PM

The treatment of the detained “left-wing activist” is the prologue to a Stasi state. The ongoing events surrounding the anti-occupation organizations is a witch-hunt. There is no other way to describe the madness of the campaigns Israel is waging other than in these harsh terms.

They are not exaggerations – prologue to a Stasi state and witch-hunt. The media is fanning the flames. The politicians are inciting, the authorities rejoice, most Israelis yawn and everyone is satisfied. A coalition of wall-to-wall satisfied people – the right, the center, the government, the security apparatus, the press and most citizens. It is a coalition that is foreign to democracy.

One day, when things get out of control, some of these groups will be sorry that they collaborated or stood by, but by then it will be too late. The fire will consume them, too. The facts that the Israel Bar Association did not announce a strike, journalist associations did not protest and law school faculty heads did not sign a petition proves how great the rift is.

A leftist activist is under scandalous arrest and is being held in scandalous conditions. His arrest at the airport as a fugitive – which is how the press presented it – though there was no restraining order against his leaving the country, tore a wide rift in the rule of law. When he was prohibited from meeting his attorney, as if he were a dangerous security detainee, a ticking time-bomb, a burner of babies in Duma, another brick fell from the flimsy wall of justice. The allegations against him are among the most preposterous ever seen here.

The Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court, collaborating with the security apparatus, extended his remand and approved – in alarming, automatic fashion – the police request to prohibit him from meeting a lawyer.

The main suspicion against him is maintaining contact with a foreign agent. That “foreign agent” is the Palestinian Authority’s security services, Israel’s security subcontractor. Can we expect a wave of arrests, without the right to see an attorney, of all the agents of Israel’s organizations of security and darkness, the IDF and the Shin Bet, who are in daily contact with those “foreign agents?”

Other suspicions against the “leftist activist” are based almost entirely on a TV “investigation” broadcast last week – accessory to manslaughter without anyone being killed, accessory to attempted murder without there being a murder, and even transporting an illegal resident, which is probably an offense deserving life imprisonment.

And as if that were not enough, Channel 2 television news delivered the gold-standard in evidence: He received 1,400 shekels ($355) from the non-profit organization Breaking the Silence. What did he receive it for? It doesn’t matter. It’s blood money. You had to see the spasm of revulsion on the face of Channel 2 anchor Danny Kushmaro when he read the sensational news.

A “leftist activist” is easy prey. He is merely an appetizer for the witch-hunters. Drunk with victory, their moles continue to stream more and more sensational proof from the basements of the target organizations.

Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper revealed Wednesday that Alon Liel, a former Foreign Ministry director general and ambassador to South Africa, had met with members of Breaking the Silence and given them a briefing.

Unbelievable! The secret recordings of the bold moles who crossed enemy lines, caught Liel on tape talking about what lessons to draw from the struggle against apartheid and how to prevent the appointment of Danny Dayan as ambassador to Brazil. If I were Liel, I would be planning for my arrest. It would not be much more baseless than the arrest of the “leftists activist.”

The media, which “doesn’t work for anyone,” in the words of the presenter of the TV “investigation,” is fanning these flames. The media, which doesn’t work for anyone, except for ratings, the ambition to curry favor, shameful cowardice and fascism, which has long been underway and whose thundering has now begun.