The Culture of Lies

The state of war between Israel and Arab countries has had ups and downs and permutations throughout the years. However, one constant that has existed throughout the Arab-Israeli conflict is the culture of lies that that the Arab world used to attack Israel. Since its establishment, the State of Israel has been accused of oppression, killing innocents, and apartheid. In fact, nothing could be further from the truth.

The Arab world has always been against Jews returning to their homeland, as they opposed the Balfour Declaration. Due to Arab pressures, Britain changed their policy and produced “The White Paper”, which prevented Jewish immigration to the Land of Israel, even during the Holocaust, resulting in the extermination of uncountable victims. This policy is the true image of apartheid.

However, with great sophistication, the Arab world has succeeded in accusing Israel of every negative stigma, and many around the world have bought into their story.

In February, 1982, the forces of Haffetz Al-Assad took over the city of Hama following an attempted upheaval, murdering tens of thousands. The city was destroyed and thousands of Syrians became refugees, as they fled the ruins that was once their place of residence. Following the destruction of Hamma, an organized opposition to the Assad regime was established, while at the same time the events of Hama were completely silenced by official channels, as if they never occurred.

The current events in Syria are indeed a watershed of the massacre of Hamma. There is no doubt that the current civil war in Syria is an internal matter, as is “the Arab Spring” in general. The Muslim Brotherhood, who has exploited “the Arab Spring” in Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, and possibly Yemen, are utilizing a similar approach in Syria. In all of these events, Israel has taken no part.

However, as the number of deaths rises in Syria, reaching today 100 thousand, Assad feels the need to blame somebody – and has thus taken pointed a finger at Israel. As a humane country, Israel has taken some injured Syrians, who reached the border to its hospitals, providing them with the top level of medical care. This purely moral gesture, with no ulterior motives is being manipulated by Assad to accuse Israel of sending troops to take part in the civil war, claiming that these wounded in fact Israelis, not Syrian. The Assad regime has adopted the culture of lies, attempting to blame Israel for an internal Syrian matter, as Israel has no interest in getting involved in this bloody civil war. However, this does not prevent the official sources in Syria from accusing Israel of being responsible for the horrible events that have overtaken the entire country.

Syria has a history of taking a leading role in all of the anti-Israel initiatives over the last decades, and has never viewed lying as problematic. The Syrian case illustrates the strategy of all the Arab states, which attempts to tarnish the image of the State of Israel in any way possible.

This culture of lies must be exposed to the entire world. The State of Israel faces constant attacks through manipulations of global public opinion, based on lies, half-truths, blood libels, used to de-legitimize the State of Israel.

The same world that is so diligent in finding a solution for the Palestinian refugees of 1948, who left their homes at the dictates of Arab leaders, ought to show the same care for the refugees fleeing from Syria due to the massacre place there, a refugee issue which is impacting negatively the entire Middle East.

The time has come for Israel to open the eyes of the entire world. Israel does need not they to expose each and every lie, but instead must illustrate the methodology being used, the same methods used by Goebbels and the Soviet KGB in their use of propaganda, which was studied and applied by the Arab world.

In conclusion, the war in Syria must teach the world three things: First, in Syria, there is a massacre taking place, and nobody is doing anything to prevent it. Second, in Syria and the Arab world in general, a war of words is being launched against Israel, which will be used to justify violence against Israel. Finally, the UN peacekeeping forces have fled the border region illustrates that peacekeeping forces cannot be trusted during times of danger, and Israel cannot entrust its security in such hollow promises of international forces. Just as they did on the eve of the Six Day War, international forces are fleeing when the situation becomes too dangerous.


About the Author
Dr David Altman is senior vice-president at the Netanya Academic College and vice-chair of the college's Strategic Dialogue Center