Saturday, October 21, 2023

Palestine has been burning for two weeks now under Israel’s brutal and indiscriminate military tanks, artillery, airpower, and ground troops, which if had been done by another country, not US and European staunch ally, would qualify for war crimes, genocide and crimes against humanity, yet the world remains ambivalent. Ostensibly, this latest episode is retaliation to Hamas abhorrent raid on a social festival that left hundreds dead including many taken hostage which left the bravado state awfully terrified, humiliated and angry. 

Since 2007 to-date, Israel imposed total aerial and land blockade over Gaza for electing Hamas, and in 2018 it slaughtered 250 unarmed Palestinians, 60 of them on 14 May alone of those matching demanding that the blockade which the UN has called illegal be lifted. It’s the fifth war on Gaza since 2008, and a repeat of the 2021 unrestrained brutality when Israel police squad matched into Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem to remove loudspeakers used during prayers, a deliberate provocation. 

The escapists who shield Israel’s crimes, prefer that today’s events are examined from only two weeks ago, yet, Hamas’ acts are driven by decades of frustration to regain home for over 13 million Palestinian refugees scattered around the world. The State of Israel which enjoys world powerful lobby and diplomatic patronage has been permitted to terrorize its Arab neighbours especially Palestinians, Iranians, Syrians and Jordanians in criminal fashion and the so-called ‘international community’ cannot raise an effective response because the US won’t permit.

While Israel faces threats from Islamic extremists, the prevailing wisdom is that whoever questions its culpability in the Middle East conflicts is put on watch list or accused of siding with ‘terrorists’ who seek to repeat Adolf Hitler’s World War II playbook against Jews. That blackmail has forced people of good conscience into conspiracy of silence, leaving Israel to behave as it pleases, continuously expand its illegal occupation and waging unrestrained wars whose main victims are children, women and civilians. It’s an absurdity that Israel said to be very powerful with the most sophisticated intelligence but has failed to uproot Hamas, somehow expects the hapless and unarmed Palestinians civilians in Gaza and the West Bank to expel Hamas from their midst, the failure of which, they must be subjected to the most extreme collective punishment, a crime established at the Nuremburg trials of 1945. 

While Hamas is accused by Israel of throwing explosives into Israel and occupied territories, Israel responds with disproportionate power often destroying buildings, livelihoods and killing massively. It’s incompressible that Israel still believes that its strong-arm tactics that have failed over seven decades can resolve the intractable conflict perpetuated by its own malignant behaviour.

Hamas, designated decades ago as a terrorist organization has to-date eluded the collective Israel, US and Western European might to be evicted from the 362sq km narrow Gaza Strip, and that failure is an indictment on claims of Israel superiority. It’s like the laughable and embarrassing scapegoats by US and UK to blame Russia whenever their politics and technology systems falter which isn’t compliment to the arrogant super powers.

Iran and Syria both designated as state sponsors of terrorism and under international sanctions, and blackmail continue to be used as the powers behind Hamas and Hezbollah, an absurdity woven by Israel, US, and their quisling allies, and spread by international propaganda machinery which few are willing to vigorously challenge. 

Iraq was destroyed partly because Israel and CIA deliberately falsified intelligence that Saddam Hussein had stockpiled weapons of mass destruction. In Washington and London no one is talking about how they created the Mujahedeen in Afghanistan, the precursor to Al Qaeda. In the decades gone by, it was Yasser Arafat, the founder of the Palestinian Liberation Organisation (PLO), the main target of insidious accusations, harassment, political and diplomatic sanctions, assassination attempts, and aerial blockade that left him to die dejected man. 

That conflict has run for eight decades now for the Palestinians, characterized by horrors of destructive wars, violence, occupation, intifada, dispossession, exclusion, and repeated expulsions from their homes and land as another one million face today given only twenty hours to leave.   

Such actions by Israel continue to fuel the deep sense of abandonment that Palestinians have felt since 1947 when the State of Israel was created by the UN at the prodding by Britain and US. It was similar feelings of isolation that drove Arafat to seek support from Ayatollah Khomeini in 1979 following Iranian revolution. After successive Arab defeats by Israel, Egypt capitulated, and Anwar Sadat’s visit to Israel in 1977 was considered a betrayal. Today with the UN, US, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and EU all in inertia, there is no hope among Palestinians that anyone is speaking for them.

Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian Authority President since 2005, and Arab countries that profess brotherhood are so pitiable in a US hegemonic world where it does so little to hold Israel accountable for disobeying UN resolutions on Palestine, and Joe Biden’s public hug of Benjamin Netanyahu simply rubs more salt into sore wounds.