Felled by Pathocracy: Rachel Corrie, Palestinians and 20 newly dead humanitarians


By Rady Ananda 

Yesterday, Israel added to its war crimes by attacking a Gaza humanitarian aid ship in international waters. Twenty people are reported dead, and the remaining 700 passengers abducted. Today, on Memorial Day, many of us pause to remember those who died in the cause of social justice, rather than imperial aims. One of those fallen heroes is Rachel Corrie (1979-2003), who has become an international icon for the horrific and ongoing genocide being perpetrated on Palestine by Israel. 

Corrie died in Gaza on March 16, 2003 while trying to prevent the genocidal tactic of bulldozing civilian homes.

Just weeks before her murder on March 16th, she wrote to her father:

“Coming here is one of the better things I’ve ever done. So when I sound crazy, or if the Israeli military should break with their racist tendency not to injure white people, please pin the reason squarely on the fact that I am in the midst of a genocide which I am also indirectly supporting, and for which my government is largely responsible.”

Two days before her murder, she gave this interview to the Middle East Broadcasting Company where she details more genocidal tactics, like bombing the civilian water supply: 

Defining Genocide

In 1996, Gregory H. Stanton (now of Genocide Watch) created a working definition of genocide for the US State Department. That resulted in his 7 Stages of Genocide. He explains that the “first stages precede later stages, but continue to operate throughout the genocidal process.”

* Classification (us vs. them);
* Symbolization (e.g. black fist);
* Dehumanization (use of hate speech, nonhuman name-calling);
* Organization (the target is always a collective group that is treated as a criminal class, nowadays often labeled “terrorist” organizations);
* Polarization (use of extreme, inflammatory language to isolate moderates);
* Identification (segregate the targeted population physically or by use of identifying features on national identity cards); and
* Extermination (build camps, stockpile weapons, give the order).

In an April 2010 speech, Stanton added an eighth stage, “which is always a part of the genocidal process: Denial.”

Pathocracy in Action

Indeed, after the Israeli attack yesterday on the flotilla which carried 700 passengers from 50 nations and 10,000 tons of food, medicine, water and other essentials: 

“Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon blamed the victim … saying the activists themselves were responsible for the massacre and branding them allies of international terrorist organizations,” reported Tehran Times.

Psychopaths are “extremely skilled at rationalizing their behavior, often seeing themselves as the victims (and blaming their real victims),” writes Andrew M. Lobaczewski, author of Political Ponerology.

It is to our benefit to understand the actions of Israel in terms of ‘ponerology’ or, the study of evil. Lobaczewski explains:

“Ponerology describes the genesis, existence, and spread of the macrosocial disease called evil. Its causes are traceable and can be repeatedly observed and analyzed. When humanity manages to incorporate this knowledge into its natural worldview, it will have defensive potential as yet unrealized.”

He explains that “evil can manifest on any societal level. The greater the scope of the psychopath’s influence, the greater harm done. Thus any group of humans can be infected or ‘ponerized’ by their influence. From families, clubs, churches, businesses, and corporations, to entire nations. The most extreme form of such macrosocial evil is called ‘pathocracy.’”

In describing some of the ways that a psychopath or a pathocracy can infect a population, he writes of the Israeli occupation of Gaza:

“When determining the morality of the occupation of Palestine, many reject that the Palestinians were ethnically cleansed in the Nabka of 1948. Accepting this datum would lead to a correct, albeit disturbing, conclusion regarding the morality of Israeli military occupation…. In the case of Palestine, some groups have convinced themselves that there is no such thing as a Palestinian: Palestine was empty when the Jews found it, they say.”

It must be noted that Stanton rejects the use of the term ‘ethnic cleansing.’ He considers it part of the dehumanization stage of genocide. It is as euphemistic as the term ‘kiddie porn’ when discussing child rape and torture.

As each stage of genocide manifests, preventive techniques can be employed. Stanton suggests, for example, that race, religion and ethnicity labels be removed from identity papers.  More obviously, when an authoritative body like the United Nations Fact Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict issues a finding of genocide, “PROSECUTE IT!” Stanton bellowed. 

The sane and compassionate bulk of humanity mourns the loss of Rachel Corrie, along with the tens of thousands of lives, including the twenty new people, whom Israel has murdered.

Rachel Corrie 5th Grade Speech I’m here because I care:

Take Action:

The US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation has created an action page where you can contact the U.S. Mission to the United Nations to demand that U.S. Ambassador to the UN Susan Rice vote to support a UN Security Council resolution condemning Israel’s action and initiating an investigation. 

Further Reading:

  • Doctor: 90% of war casualties at Gaza hospital were civilians
  • Human Rights Watch says EU Should Demand Justice for Victims of Gaza War
  • Israel admits white phosphorus use in Gaza
  • Israel to build 900 new homes in annexed Jerusalem
  • Israeli Organ Harvesting- long history
  • Robbing Gaza: Chomsky on Palestine and the Region in the Obama era; The Emerging Framework (Video)
  • UN Finds War Crimes Committed in Gaza
  • To learn of other social justice heros, see my 2008 piece, A Memorial Day for the Civically Engaged.

    9 responses to “Felled by Pathocracy: Rachel Corrie, Palestinians and 20 newly dead humanitarians

    1. A link to contact the US mission to the UN is included below

      EMERGENCY-Take Action: Israel Attacks Gaza Humanitarian Aid Flotilla
      May 31st, 2010

      In an international act of piracy and murder in international waters, the Israeli navy intercepted, boarded, and opened fire on humanitarian activists on a flotilla of ships attempting to deliver humanitarian supplies to the Israeli-blockaded Palestinian Gaza Strip.

      According to news reports, Israeli commandos killed as many as 19 humanitarian activists on board one ship, and have abducted all 700 passengers on board the six boats composing the flotilla who are in the process of being sent against their will to Israel for arrest and/or deportation.

      The reaction of the Obama Administration to Israel’s attack on the humanitarian aid flotilla, which included U.S. citizens, has been tepid. A White House spokesperson stated that he “deeply regrets the loss of life and injuries sustained.”

      Of course, this statement completely ignores U.S. complicity in arming Israel and enabling its human rights abuses. In July 2008, the United States signed a contract worth $1.9 billion to transfer the latest-generation of naval combat vessels to Israel at U.S. taxpayer expense. Currently, Congress is in the process of appropriating a record $3.2 billion in military aid to Israel this budget year.

      Events are moving quickly. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has apparently canceled his meeting tomorrow at the White House to return to Israel. Later today, the UN Security Council is set to address Israel’s attack on the humanitarian flotilla. For the latest news from the flotilla, please click here. http://witnessgaza.com/


      1. Organize an emergency protest against Israel’s attack on the humanitarian flotilla. Find events near you and post your event details by clicking here. http://gazafreedommarch.org/cms/en/flotilla/protest.aspx

      2. Contact the U.S. Mission to the United Nations at 212-415-4062 right away and demand that U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice vote to support a UN Security Council resolution condemning Israel’s action and initiating an investigation.

      3. Learn more about the deadly impact of U.S. military aid to Israel and take action to end it by clicking here. http://www.aidtoisrael.org/

    2. Pingback: EMERGENCY-Take Action: Israel Attacks Gaza Humanitarian Aid Flotilla « Wake-up Call

    3. agreed. when I got the news this morning, I noted that Middle East sites covered it en masse.

    4. I’m done with Israel. Right to exist? Sure. Same way we all do…on your own.

      Send the Turks to Houston and let them handle Emanuel in Chicago.

      Target their nuclear installations and destroy them from the inside, out.

      Holy land my a*s.

    5. Pingback: The Progressive Mind » Felled by Pathocracy: Rachel Corrie, Palestinians and 20 newly dead humanitarians « COTO Report

    6. On the CBC, we have these lies from the war criminal Netanyahu:

      “Israelis on ship acted in self-defence: Netanyahu
      UN holds emergency meeting on attack
      Last Updated: Monday, May 31, 2010 | 5:55 PM ET Comments 2632 Recommend1450
      CBC News

      Read more: http://www.cbc.ca/world/story/2010/05/31/israel-gaza-aid-death.html#ixzz0pYanps3Q

      Note the number of comments, 2,632.

      • omg – thank gawd people are holding Israel’s feet to the fire on such an outrageous lie. One of the reports I read (or viewed) repeated witness descriptions of their terror as Israeli commandos dropped down from helicopters.

        and the first video posted shows live satellite feed from the main Turkish vessel until the machinery was confiscated (or otherwise destroyed).

    7. Pingback: Felled by Pathocracy: Rachel Corrie, Palestinians and 20 newly dead humanitarians (via COTO Report) « The China Rose

    8. Pingback: Helen Thomas ends career on a high note: Israel, ‘get the hell out of Palestine’ « COTO Report

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