Video 24.49 Transcript Below
What follows is a rough transcription of the interview.
Press TV: Dr. Barrett, why does Israel…, it appears to have money when it comes to its sophisticated military but when it comes to social programs, Tel Aviv seems to have problems now, wanting to spend the money on the programs that the people are demanding?
Barrett: Well, I think that you have put your finger on it exactly. Israel has invested in the military industrial security complex, it has put all its chips in that basket and there is a limit to how far you can build an economy by simply building weapons and technologies for killing and forcibly controlling people.
Now I think that our guest was absolutely right that Israel is indeed one of the most, economically, unequal societies on earth as reflected in all statistics and I do not think that there is any disagreement about that but he is absolutely wrong in denying that Israel is not an apartheid state.
Even President Carter, a very middle of the road and moderate political figure, wrote a book called, Peace not Apartheid, pointing out that of course Israel is an apartheid state.
Where there are ‘Jews only’ roads, ‘Jews only’ neighborhoods; laws saying that, you know, Jews will be paid from all over the world to come to Israel whereas non-Jews have been ethnically cleansed and put in concentration camps.
The Gaza strip is the world’s largest concentration camp. There are concentration camps still in Lebanon, in Jordan, there are Palestinian refugees now numbered more than seven million around the world. These are rightful citizens of Israel-Palestine.
In the 1948, a brutal genocidal ethnic cleansing was perpetrated as the Israeli defense forces, at that time they were a terrorist group, the Stern Gang and so on, went around murdering people, bayoneting men, women and children, killing thousands, many thousands of people; strafing the boats and caravan as people tried to flee.
This mass murder drove, some say, as many as a million people out of Palestine and those are rightful citizens of the state of Israel-Palestine, they have still been ethnically cleansed.
If you are not a Jew in Palestine, or call it occupied Palestine AKA Israel, you are a second class citizen at best.
Press TV: Dr. Barrett you seem to have a comment on what our guest said in London.
Barrett: Well, in a sense he is right. Peace would greatly improve the economy and standards of living for everyone in the occupied Palestine.
But the only way to have peace is to have at least a modicum of justice and that means undoing the 1948 genocide and certainly the 1967 war of aggression.
Every country in the world recognizes that the occupied territories do not belong to Israel and that Israel does not have the right to settle even one person on those territories and yet they have settled half a million people there.
So as long as that is going on, obviously there is going to be legitimate resistance. People, who are occupied, legally, under international law have the clear and inarguable right to resist occupation, militarily if necessary.
So yes, we need peace but the only way to peace is through justice.
Press TV: Ok Dr. Barrett sorry for interrupting you but I want to look at, again, this economic aspect of things.
The United States is giving Israel approximately 8.5 million dollars a day in military aid.
I want to talk about a population of just over 7.5 million, it would appear that with that aid and other aids, that that would be more than enough for this entity to sustain itself and not be experiencing this economic pressure.
Why do you think…, what is the bottom reason that you think that Israelis are, actually, now experiencing these austerity measures?
Barrett: Well, this is kind of a paradox, is not it?
As you said the US is giving seven million plus, a day to Israel. That is actually a low estimate, it does not count all kinds of hidden subsidies.
If you, actually, add up everything that US is spending on Israel as a Christian Science Monitor article did about several years ago; they found that the US taxpayer has subsidized Israel to a total of well over a trillion dollars, probably close to two trillion dollars.
The US is throwing tidal waves of money at this last settler colonial state in the world. The others: South Africa and French Algeria and, you know, British Rhodesia, have all been dismantled but we have got one last settler colonial state in the world, the US taxpayers propping it up. For the details on that go to: Ifamericansknew.org.
So why cannot Israel manage to have a prosperous economy when it is being massively subsidized by the American taxpayers?
Well, I think it is again because they are focusing entirely on the military and security end of things and the military spending kills economies.
There is a great website called: realeconomy.com that shows that, actually, every dollar spent on the military is vastly worse for the economy than even just spending that dollar by having people dig holes and fill them up again would be, because military spending has a long list of negative economic effects.
So if you build a country’s economy on nothing but the military, as Israel has, you are digging your own grave and those who live by the sword, die by the sword and Israel is very close to dying by the sword.
Press TV: What about that Dr. Barrett? Israel is no different from any other country in the world experiencing these economic downturns?
Barrett: Well, this is actually quite humorous to hear the guest saying that it is a two-way traffic. That is that the US is getting back something from Israel, he cannot say what.
Well, yeah we are getting a lot of cheap Chinese artwork sold by Mossad agents, who come over here and pose as art students.
We know that before 9/11, 200 Mossad agents were over here tracking the alleged 19 hijackers’ every move, they were caught while they were celebrating the destruction of the World Trade Center, they were identified as Mossad agents, they were sent back to Israel and they confessed on Israeli TV that they were sent to New York to “document the event”.
So yes, here in America we are getting something for that trillion plus dollars that we have given to Israel.
We are getting the World Trade Center blown up in order to create an Israeli-style security state here and to destroy our constitution, to be a basically an occupied country.
The US is an Israeli occupied territory right now post 9/11. September 11th was plotted by Project for the New American Century and the neo-conservatives to turn America to war against Israel’s enemies forever.
That is what we are getting for the trillion dollars we have handed to Israel as a tax on America.
Press TV: Well, Dr. Barrett some political and military analysts are saying that with more and more Israelis taking to the streets and, actually, trying to put pressure on the government there, that there is a higher possibility that Israel could initiate another war or confrontation in order to sidetrack or sideline the domestic demands and try to bring the sense of unity amongst the people in fighting a common enemy.
Your take on that Sir?
Barrett: Yes, the Israelis have been doing this forever. Israeli society is fractious, disunited, made up of a lot of groups that do not get along very well.
Even the Sephardic Jews, who were brought under false pretenses and settled in Israel, have been widely mistreated.
We have had the Ethiopians sterilized, others, Moroccan Jews were subjected to horrific radiation experiments that left incredible damage on the health of these people.
So yes, it is a very disunited society and the only way they can try to bring together their so-called Jewish state, is by trying to unite everybody in hatred of their common enemy, which is, basically, all of the people of the region that they are part of and to a lesser extent, the entire world.
They are always talking about how the whole world hated them and so on and so they have been starting wars and creating attacks, they even create a lot of false flag attacks, precisely in order to distract their own people from the conditions in the country including the economic troubles.
And I would not be surprised if Netanyahu’s recent decision to attack Syria, his efforts to escalate the war on Syria and his endless and tireless efforts to try to start a war with Iran and then drag the US into it to do his own fighting for him; might escalate, given these economic problems and these protests in Israel.
Press TV: We are just about out of time but Dr. Barrett how do you see this?
Is this just systematic of an elitist system showing more and more its true colors as far as the way it is treating the difference between the haves and haves not?
Barrett: Yes, as I said earlier it is one of the most unequal societies in the world, not even counting the ethnic victims huddling in concentration camps, drinking water polluted with sewage, getting white phosphorus dropped on them, having their children shot down on a regular basis for sport by the IDF troops.
So it is a terribly unequal situation and the only answer the way to restore peace and prosperity to occupied Palestine is peace with justice and that means, it’s very simple, it means right of return, allowing all Palestinian ethnic cleansing victims to be first class citizens of a united Israel-Palestine.
Once that happens they can stop wasting all their money on these outlandish military and security measures and they can build a vibrant economy and lead the whole Middle East to prosperity.