REINHART, Tanya. Jewish Israeli linguistics professor: "The trouble is not exactly with Zionism, but with the Israeli leadership and the way Zionism has been executed, based on ethnic cleansing from the very start"

Professor Tanya Reinhart (born 1943 in Haifa, Palestine Mandate; died 2007) had an MA, Hebrew University Jerusalem and a PhD Massachusetts Institute of Technology (under Professor Noam Chomsky). She was  professor of linguistics and literary theory, Tel Aviv University, Israel. She was  an Israeli linguist, author and peace activist; wrote many articles for Israeli and US journals (see: and ).


Professor Tanya Reinhart on “A slow, steady genocide” in {Palestine (2003): “After September 11, Israel succeeded in depicting its project of destroying Palestinian society as part of the war against terror, and the Palestinians terrorists. The consequence, at least in the Israeli propaganda, has been that the same means the US uses in fighting its own terror, Israel can also use in fighting the Palestinians. For the Palestinians, this has had very grave consequences - Operation Defensive Shield [in April 2002, Israel's largest escalation since the 1982 war on Lebanon], in which Israel invaded all of the West Bank, and the Jenin horrors that came afterwards. Ever since, Israel has used all of the US methods, including economic strangulation. Under the pretext of fighting terror, they are freezing all sorts of funds to the Palestinian society. Many of the Hamas funds go to support families that are affected by the siege, the blockades, the lack of work. The only funds that are still supporting the social infrastructure of the Territories are often these charity funds, and they are being frozen - all in the name of the war against terror… But I don't like the term anti-Zionism to define opposition to Israeli policies, because Zionism - the way it is perceived by most Israelis - is that Jews are entitled to a State of their own. It is the liberation and self-determination of the Jewish people motivated by the Holocaust and their fate in exile. The trouble is not exactly with Zionism, but with the Israeli leadership and the way Zionism has been executed, based on ethnic cleansing from the very start. I believe it was possible to reach the same goal [of Jewish self-determination] with much less loss and sacrifice for the Palestinian people. It is not part of having your own state that it must be based on striving to grab more and more of your neighbour's land, or depriving minorities of their rights - this is the Israeli military system's implementation of the idea of Zionism. So I believe what we should say is that we are against Israel - meaning Israel's  acts and the policy of its leadership, and against the Occupation, and leave the question of Zionism aside.[1, 2].

[1]. Tanya Reinhart, “A slow, steady genocide”,  Z Net, 11 September 2003: .

[2]. Tanya Reinhart, “A slow, steady genocide”,  republished as Chapter 11 in  “The Plight of the Palestinians. A long history of destruction”, edited by Willam Cook, Palgrave Macmillan, London 2010: .