Israel Shamir

The Fighting Optimist

Open letter to the President of the Italian Republic

Mr. President,

From what I can read on Rai’s teletext service, you are supposed to have stated:

“No to anti-Semitism even when it is disguised as anti-Zionism” .

“Anti-Zionism entails the rejection of the inspiring source of the Jewish state, of the reasons of its birth, yesterday, and of its security today, beyond the governments taking turns at Israel’s guide”.

If this is what you really thinks , and obviously I hope that is not the case, let me tell that these are wrong and serious statements and I hope that they may arouse a calm and reasoned but firm reaction by many Italians.

Mr. President,

let me disagree with the first remark you pronounced. You argue that the opposition to Zionism is a disguised form of anti-Semitism. Nor can one think that you meant to say that only some anti-Semites conceal their real anti-Semitism behind an alleged or false anti-Zionism.

You have formulated your thought in an unequivocal way: to you, he who is anti-Zionist is an anti-Semite sic et simpliciter. I agree with you that anti-Zionism is the “rejection of the inspiring source of the Jewish state and of the reasons of its birth” but I firmly believe that the denial of the reasons of the Jewish state’s birth and its replacement with a sole democratic state for Jews and Palestinians over the whole Palestine might bring nothing but good to the Jews, the Palestinians, the middle-eastern and world peoples. I hold, and I am not the only one ,given that many anti-Zionists Jews have the same opinion, that the Zionist state for Jews only is as racist , colonialist and expansionist as it was the South-African  racist state for whites only .

The Zionist nature of Israel is a menace to world peace and to Jews themselves.

Mr. President,

I am not a Holocaust-denier and I do not nourish anti-Jewish feelings. I only want the Jews living in Palestine not to deny the Palestinians a right they claim for themselves . The Palestinians, both refugees and residents in Israel or in the occupied territories, have the right to live peacefully and in harmony in Palestine, enjoying the democratic freedoms that all the peoples of the world deserve. This principle we do not refuse to the Jews from Palestine, is denied by Israel  to the Palestinians.

Maybe are you in favour of the states grounded on ethnicity ? I thought I had understood that you and the party you come from were in favour of the democratic states in which all the citizens are equal regardless of the religion , the ethnicity , the culture and more besides they belong to .

Maybe I was wrong. I cannot understand : why have Italy and EU first committed themselves for the equality of the rights between whites and blacks in South Africa, between Macedonians and Albanians in Macedonia, between Muslims and Orthodox Christians in Bosnia, between Sunni , Shiites and Christians in Lebanon, and then they support the exclusively Jewish character of Israel ?

Maybe has Olmert asked you too, as he has done with Mr Prodi, to defend Israel as exclusively Jewish and Zionist state ?

If this is your opinion, I want to ask you:

–         should Israel decide to deport non-Jewish Israeli citizens, just as the racist Minister Avigdor Liebermann has been demanding for some time, would you endorse this policy in the name of the support of the Jewish character of the Israeli state ?

–         do you ignore perhaps the fact that the non-Jewish citizens of Israel do not have the same rights of the Jewish ones ? Do you not know that a non-Jewish Israeli citizen is not allowed by law to purchase landed estate from a Jew ? Do you ignore perhaps that there are roads connecting Israel to the settlements in the occupied territories on which it is not allowed (not to the Palestinians from the occupied territories, this is a fact well known  by everyone) to Arab citizens of Israel to move around ? I want also to remind you, inter alia, that the rejoining is denied to the consort to an Arab citizen of Israel if this consort comes from the occupied territories. I hope you are informed about the law proposal at the Knesset that provides for removing the Israeli nationality from an Israeli Arab citizen in case he is not willing to profess his loyalty to Zionism. You might realize that this corresponds to accepting the historical injustice the Zionism has done the Palestinians by the same victims of the injustice.

–         Do you not believe that bringing those Jews supporting Israel (fortunately enough it is not about all the Jews) to get rid of a form of state which discriminates the non-Jewish citizens, which installs settlements over territories located beyond its borders, which is leading a war against an occupied and defenceless population , which owns nuclear weapons and has not signed IAEA’s non-proliferation of nuclear weapons treaty, which has been sanctioned thousand times by UN, may come in helpful  for them and  the Palestinians ?

–         A final question in the end: if Italy (which has already done it in the past) should carry out a discriminating policy against its Jewish citizens just as Israel discriminates its non-Jewish citizens and should start , unfortunately , a colonial policy again, would you not undertake again the struggle against the regime or the government that would behave so ?

Now then, why can one not fight a regime, like the Zionist one, that is discriminating, racist and colonialist ? No one is suggesting a new Jewish Holocaust; the anti-Zionists want for Palestine, for Jews and Palestinians  only one state that be not founded on religion, on ethnicity and racism.

Not differently from what are all the authentically democratic states in the world.

Mr. President,

I just happen to be interested in studying Zionism.  Hence, it is on the ground of my studies about this political ideology that I am writing you. I will remind you some facts:

First of all, the cooperation between Zionists (from both the right and the left) and anti-Semites and the Nazis. It was about a long and extremely harmful cooperation to the anti-Zionist Jews (at the time, the great majority) . As far as it may be incredible, the cooperation between Zionists, fascists , Nazis and anti-Semites , historically proved, was founded on a logic of criminal exchange to Jews’ detriment. The Zionists backed up the fascist and anti-Semitic regimes before and during the WWII, while asking in exchange to be allowed to bring Jews in Palestine in order to accomplish their colonial project.

Those Jews who did not approve of fleeing to Palestine were abandoned to their own fate. The anti-Semites were very pleased with being able to get rid of Jews in that way. It is not true, as you state, that the anti-Semites are anti-Zionists; if any, it is the other way round. I hope you will not doubt the words that were uttered by the Israeli writer A. B. Yehoshua who declared some year ago:

“The Gentiles have always fostered Zionism, thus hoping that it would help them dispose of the Jews living amongst them. Today too, in a perverse way, a real anti-Semite must be a Zionist”. (1)

The Israeli writer, yet, omits to say that the Zionists too, in a perverse manner, encouraged the anti-Semites in order that they might chase away the Jews from their countries and hand over them to the Zionist militants who were ready to bring them to Palestine’s settlements. A true Zionist is a friend to the anti-Semites.

This shameful feature of Zionism’s history starts with its founder himself, Theodor Herzl.

In August 1903, Herzl went to the Tsarist Russia for a set of meetings with Count von Plehve, an anti-Semitic Minister of Tsar Nicholas II, and with Finance Minister Witte.

The meetings took place less than 4 months after the heinous pogrom in Kishinev, whose direct responsibility rested on von Plehve himself. Herzl proposed an alliance, it being grounded on the common desire to make most of the Russian Jews leave Russia and , in the shorter run, to keep away the Russian Jews from the socialist and communist movement.

At the beginning of the first meeting (August 8) von Plehve declared that he regarded himself as “an ardent supporter of Zionism”. When Herzl started describing Zionism’s purpose, Count von Plehve came in by stating : “You are preaching to a converted one”.

During a following meeting with Witte, Zionism’s founder heard the Minister openly tell him: “I used to tell poor Emperor Alexander III: if it should be possible to drown six or seven million Jews into the Black Sea, I would be perfectly pleased with that; but it’s not possible, so we have to let them live”. When Herzl said he trusted in some encouragement from the Russian government, Witte replied: “We do give Jews some encouragements to leave, for instance kicks in the backside” (2)

The outcome of the meetings was von Plehve’s and Russian government’s promise of “a moral and material endorsement to Zionism at a moment when some of its concrete actions would help decrease the Jewish population in Russia”. (3)

“If we [Zionists]—Jacob Klatzkin used to say—don’t acknowledge that the others have the right to be anti-Semite, then we deny ourselves the right to be nationalist. If our people is worth of and yearns for living its own national life, it is natural that it feels like a foreign body forced to be amongst the nations amidst which it lives , a foreign body who insists upon having its own identity and who is therefore compelled to reduce the sphere of its own existence. It is fair therefore that they [the anti-Semites] fight us for their national integrity. Instead of setting up organizations to defend the Jews from the anti-Semites, who want to restrict our rights, we should found organizations to protect the Jews from our friends who wish to defend our rights” (4)

These words , and the consequent attitude of the Zionists, have certainly given precious arguments to the Nazis who , exactly , argued that the Jews were a foreign nation in their country.

“To the Zionists—Harry Sacher, a British Zionist, shamelessly  claimed—the enemy is represented by Liberalism; it is also enemy to Nazism; ergo, Zionism is supposed to cherish sympathy and comprehension for Nazism, whose anti-Semitism is likely to be only a temporary feature” . (5)


It is not about only political short-sightedness , it is also a criminal cooperation with the Jews’ enemy. And, Mr. President, are you willing to close your eyes before this aspect of Zionism’s history ? Moreover, I remind you that the Nazis reacted very positively to the Zionists’ offers , as proved by this excerpt from one of their circulars:

“The members from the Zionist organizations do not have to be treated , given their activities aimed at the emigration to Palestine, as severely as instead it’s necessary towards the members from the German-Jewish organizations (i.e. , the assimilationists) (6).

Further, Reinhardt Heyndrich, SS’s secret services’ chief declared:

“ It can not take too long time to Palestine to be able to welcome again its sons it had lost for over one thousand years. May our good wishes and our official benevolence accompany them” (7).

Settling Palestine was highly esteemed  by the Nazis. You know, colonialists get along well each other. That is just to remind you that the Nazis, with the aware help by the Zionists, have struck only those Jews who proposed to live in the countries they had been born and did not want to become responsible for Palestine’s occupation and the consequent and inevitable expulsion of the Palestinians.

These Jewish victims were not Zionist , if any they were either assimilationist or anti-Zionist.

After the Holocaust , the West did nothing but reward the Zionists by allotting them the Palestinians’ land and making those ones who had no guilt pay for the high price of the Jews’ annihilation that happened due to the direct responsibility of some European nations and to other ones’ sloth , as well as to the Zionist crazy plan.

The cooperation between Zionists and Nazis was also possible, beyond the concrete aspect of the common will to bring the Jews to Palestine, because the Zionist ideology and the Nazi one shared one point, as admitted by the Zionist Jew Prinz:

“A state founded on the tenet of nation’s and race’s purity (that’s the Nazi Germany) can have respect only for those Jews who regard themselves in the same way” (8).

The figure himself was aware of the paradoxical situation that was emerging and acknowledged :

“Taking actions was very awkward to the Zionists. It was morally embarrassing to look like being considered as the dearest sons of the Nazi government, particularly at a moment when it was dissolving the Jewish juvenile anti-Zionist groups and it seemed to prefer the Zionists. The Nazis were demanding a «more consistently Zionist behaviour»”. (9)

Notwithstanding, the cooperation went on. It was a multiform cooperation that I have reconstructed in my essay “Zionism’s nature” (10). I want to remind you, in the end, the exhortation of Dov Joseph, one of the heads from the Jewish Agency, who , at the end of 1944 ,when hundred thousand Jews were being killed in the concentration camps, while speaking in Palestine to Zionist journalists who were concerned about the news of the slaughters,  warned them about the risk of:

“publishing data that exaggerate the number of the Jewish victims, since if we announce that million Jews have been slain by the Nazis, then, after the end of the war,  we will be rightly being asked  where the million Jews for which we are claiming a homeland have ended up” (11).

All this may be enough, but , Mr. President, I dare suggest you to read up the topic.

Zionism’s history is a criminal one, therefore no wonder that the Zionists and the Zionist state are keeping on handling the Palestinians so savagely. But my concern goes beyond the Palestinian people’s very sad situation that everyone seems to be forgetting.

To be earnest, Mr. President, do we want to end up like the US in Iraq ? Today, outstanding personalities in the US, as former President Jimmy Carter or professors Mersheimer and Walt, are trying hard to make their fellow countrymen open their own eyes before the aftermath of the blind foreign policy that has been devised in Tel Aviv and in Washington’s neo-con Zionist  circles and that is carried out by the US in Middle-East.

Do you believe that the war in Iraq has been made because of the Saddam’s weapons of mass destruction ? Because of the threat that Iraq embodied for the West ? For exporting democracy ? For the Americans’  oil interests ? Many support this last hypothesis  (having the other ones miserably  fallen down ) . I wonder: can one not buy oil on the market ? Moreover: how much would the price of oil be if we should wage war on every producer country ?

Mr. President, the war has been made in order to weed out a possible rival to Israel and to strengthen the Zionist rule over Middle-East .

Now Tel Aviv is urging the West to destroy Iran and is blackmailing everyone by dropping the hint that if we do not do the job, it will be Israel to do it. In which way ? By invading Iran ? No , Mr. President, we all know that Israel would resort to its nuclear weaponry.

The Americans are beginning to get aware, at their own expenses, of what means to have let themselves be dragged into an absurd war in Iraq for Israel’s interests. And we will not be aware of that. Do we really want to be dragged into a nuclear war against Iran ? Into a world war against Islam ?

Please, follow former President Carter’s example and make a public statement against Israel’s Apartheid. If you do not want to do that, let someone else , for the sake of the humanity, of the Jews and of the Palestinians, go on blaming Zionism and fighting for a single, democratic and pacific state for all the inhabitants of Palestine, nobody excluded.

Mr. President,

You are likely not to remember me, yet we  met and spoke to each other. It happened on a very sad circumstance. Some year ago, at Rome-Fiumicino airport, you ,  as representative of your party, came to express solidarity to my sister, Marisa, who , after taking part in a pacifist demonstration in Jerusalem, lost one of her eyes after an Israeli fire engine had shot a so violent water sprinkling as to shatter the window glass and to drive a splinter in her eye, just because she was looking through the window at the Israeli policemen who were beating up a Palestinian youngster in the street.

At the time, you came to offer your regards to my sister who had paid for upholding the rights and the dignity of the Palestinians. Today, by your unacceptable declaration you are accusing the anti-Zionists, many of which are Jews, who strive for a democratic state in Palestine, putting them into the same filthy place of the anti-Semites.

I believe, Mr President, that the Zionists have managed to do to you  something worse than to my sister. They have managed to make her blind from one eye, but you from both them !

Yours truly

Manno Mauro


(1)Jewish Chronicle, 22 January 1982.

(2) Maxime Rodinson, Peuple juif ou problème juif?  Parigi, Petite collection Maspero, 1981, pp. 174-75.

(3)Maxime Rodinson, Peuple juif ou problème juif? cit. p. 174.

(4) Jacob Klatzkin, (1925), quoted  in Jacob Agus, The Meaning of Jewish History, in Jewish Encyclopedia, vol II, p. 425.

(5)Harry  Sacher, Jewish Review, September 1932, p. 104, London.

(6)Circular from the Bavarian Gestapo addressed to the Bavarian police, 23 January, 1935, published in Kurt Grossman’s Zionists and Non-Zionists under Nazi Rule in the 1930’s, Herzl Yearbook, vol VI, p. 340.

(7)Reinhardt Heyndrich, SS secret services’ chief, The Visible Enemy, article issued in Das Schwarze Korps, SS’s official organ, May 1935.

(8)Joachim Prinz, (1936), quoted in Benyamin Matuvo’s The Zionist Wish and the Nazi Deed, Issues, (1966/67), p. 12.

(9)Joachim Prinz, Zionism under the Nazi Government, in Young Zionist, London, November 1937, p. 18.

(10)Zionism’s nature , supplement to the issue 56, November 2006, by Aginform.

(11)Yoav Gelber, Zionist Policy and the Fate of European Jewry, p. 195.

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