Tit for tat? (On the left an Israeli building hit by Palestinians “rockets”; on the right a Palestinian building hit by Israeli fire.) The Israeli government launched an attack during the Christmas season which was designed to insure there would be no peace on earth, or goodwill towards Palestinians. Using the false pretense that the Palestinian firing of rockets was unprovoked and therefore an Israeli response was necessary, the bombardment of the Gaza strip is no less than genocide against a defenseless civilian population.
What else can you expect from a government whose leaders had publicly made such statements as Gazans should not be allowed to “live normal lives (Ehud Olmert) or that punishment should be inflicted “irrespective of the cost to the Palestinians” (Avi Dichter) or that Israel should “decide on a neighborhood in Gaza and level it” (Meir Sheetrit) the intent of this latest act of murder is to inflict the maximum amount of casualties possible. Some bloggers have even gone on to suggest that the lifting of the embargo by the Israelis was designed to offer them a window to kill the most number of civilians gathered to collect foodstuffs denied them by the Israelis for so long, but whatever the motive, the means were the use of the best military weaponry the state of Israel can finagle from America in their extermination of Palestinians.
Israel decided on a collective punishment policy after the Hamas electoral victory in ’07, and part of that punishment was in the form of the blockade which denied the Gaza Strip even the barest of essentials, electricity and food. They did so while thumbing their noses at an international community which sought to chronicle Israel’s abuses. The flagrant and exaggerated expulsion of Richard Falk, the UN’s Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in the Palestinian Territories is just one example among many where the Israelis have ignored the “rule of law” and internationally recognized conventions while continuing to oppress the Palestinian civilian population.
As always, the Israelis blame their victim for Israeli transgressions, saying that recent rocket attacks at the end of the ceasefire are responsible for this latest Israeli slaughter. And while large numbers of rocket attacks are thrown at the public in order to justify Israeli aggression, lost in the argument is that these Palestinian “rockets” are ineffective, inaccurate (only one Israeli casualty since Palestinians started firing the rockets after the ceasefire) and essentially home-made munitions. What the Israelis have done however to get around the disproportionate nature of their aggression is to return to collectivism of the Palestinian population, equating all within the borders of Gaza as terrorist and therefore subject to elimination, no questions asked.
This latest Israeli atrocity occurs in plain sight before the world stage and yet Hamas and by extension the Palestinians are responsible. In the light of such global response the likelihood Israel will stop such unparalleled genocide is nil. Countless deaths will be exacted before the Israelis stop this latest slaughter and resume their obfuscation of Palestinian statehood and peace in the Middle East. By accepting their line of reasoning, the US is also a willing and active participant in this bloodshed. One can now see the reason behind the Bush Administration’s abandonment of international law in its treatment of people captured during the phony WOT; accepting the link between themselves and their ally Israel means the only way to escape international illegality is to propose it doesn’t accept the terms of what’s legal and illegal. Therefore it’s necessary to call such actions as the Israeli attack on Gaza bestial, inhumane, psychopathic, sociopathic, murderous, because in a nation where laws are no longer adhered to, legal and illegal have no meaning. That seems to be acceptable to the Israeli government and the rest of the world.
Not even Israelis seem to take the firing of rockets by Palestinians seriously. Take the tone of this article (Latest Gaza Rockets Injure More Arab Children than Jews) which appears in an Israeli newspaper. It refers to the rockets used by the Palestinians as ‘locally produced rockets’, meaning internal, meaning made in Gaza, meaning at the very most, crude, (We’ve spoken of the ineffective nature of such munitions.) yet in the Israeli scheme of looking at things they justify the killing of scores of people; a culture of death brought to us by the party of death.
Not that there’s anything new about this, but assertions by the Israelis that their attack was in response to alleged ceasefire breakdowns, or violations on the part of Hamas to the expired ceasefire are not true, according to this piece from Haaretz.
Long-term preparation, careful gathering of information, secret discussions, operational deception and the misleading of the public – all these stood behind the Israel Defense Forces “Cast Lead” operation against Hamas targets in the Gaza Strip, which began Saturday morning.
Sources in the defense establishment said Defense Minister Ehud Barak instructed the Israel Defense Forces to prepare for the operation over six months ago, even as Israel was beginning to negotiate a ceasefire agreement with Hamas…..
The expression in the above link to “misleading of the public” is ironic and a common feature of the Israeli government.