Your Duplicity is Killing Us

Few are those in the “international community” who fail to condemn Palestinian attacks against Israeli targets, whether civilians, soldiers or armed settlers. But many are those who find it less urgent and compelling to condemn the killing of Palestinians, whether civilians, Palestinian police officers or armed activists.

The American administration in particular and the pro Israel American Congress manage to find elaborate terminology in condemning “Palestinian terror.” Sometimes I find myself resorting to a dictionary to figure out the meaning of some of these well-thought terms of condemnation.

Words like “Palestinian terror” and “Palestinian terrorisms” is taken at face value. Israel determines and therefore defines the term “terrorism” based on its own tilted political scale. The US media and government spokesmen abide by the official Israeli positions on the matter to a more faithful degree than the Israeli opposition and media.

Even in the most abhorrent crime carried out against sleeping children in Gaza a few weeks ago, the American Administration simply questioned how such a bombing would contribute to Israel’s security and advance peace in the region. How touching.

Even in Europe, known to be more balanced than the United States government , words as “terrorism” or “state terrorism” are hardly associated with Israel.

One need not resort to Palestinian definitions that differentiate between terrorism and freedom fighting. Just a quick look at Webster’s definition clarifies everything. “Terrorism,” is “the unlawful use or threatened use of force or violence by a person or an organized group against people or property with the intention of intimidating or coercing societies or governments, often for ideological or political reasons.”

Nothing can be more intimidating than state terrorism, and no army in the Middle East can reach the point of organization that the Israeli army has reached. But while heads of state and world leading governments fight to have the first word of condemnation, describing with horror the inhumanity of an 18 year old girl who was coerced by the brutality of a terrorist military occupation to blow herself up in Jerusalem, the killing of innocent Palestinians often evokes nothing but dead silence.

As this article is being written, not one suicide bombing was reported anywhere in Israel, or against occupation soldiers or settlers in the West Bank and Gaza for nearly a month, no thanks to the Israeli army “crackdown” on Palestinians or to its choking curfew. The lull of Palestinian attacks is a result of ongoing deliberation among Palestinian factions regarding the morality, necessity and political correctness of suicide bombings.

During the halt of retaliatory Palestinian attacks, some political “achievements” have been scored between Israel and the PA, as officials from both sides indicate. On the other hand, Danish Foreign Minister Per Stig Moeller began a tour to the Middle East to promote his country’s and the EU’s latest peace proposal.

If the so-called international community was indeed concerned for peace in the Middle East, it would strongly condemn and vehemently oppose any attempt to jeopardize this promising quiet in the region.

But the United States and European leaders turned their backs as the Israeli government and Prime Minister Ariel Sharon strived to foil any chances of calm in the West Bank and Gaza.

Sixty one Palestinians were killed by the Israeli army and militants settlers in the month of August alone. Those include Nivin Salmi, 3, Aymen Faris, 5, Asma Ahmed, 9, Hamzeh Al Badwi, 15, Ateih Abu Mgheiseb, 13, Mahmoud Abu Audeh, 14, Abdul Hadi Hamyeh, 14, Abdul Karim Al-Sa’di, 16. They also include the four members of the same family, Ruedah Al-Hjain, 55, and both of her sons and their cousin near Jabalia in Gaza. They also include the killing of 5 people who were blown to smithereens after a missile attack on civilian cars in Tubas near Jenin. Burham and Osama Daraghmeh, 6 and 12 were among those killed. They also include the ambushing and murder of 4 Palestinian laborers in the village of Bani Naem near Hebron, who were killed as they returned home after a hard day at work.

Sure, we might differ on explaining the cowardly stance of the so-called international community before the Israeli crimes. We can deliberate the hegemony of the Israeli lobby over the Congress and the co-conspirators in the US government and media whose job is to justify the murder of innocent Palestinians as part of Israel’s “right to defend itself.” We can spend more time discussing the racism on which Israel was established that sees Palestinian blood of no value compared to Jewish blood. We can do all of that and more, but we must not fail to see how Israel intentionally manipulates Palestinian responses to its bloody policy.

It’s the same dreadful scenario repeated for the thousandth time. Israel murders many innocent civilians; the international community hears nothing, sees nothing and does nothing; Palestinian officials demand an international response and meaningful strategy to protect Palestinians as dictated by international law; the calls go unanswered; out of rage, anger and desperation, a Palestinian decides to respond to the massacres committed against his people by blowing himself up in a crowed of Israelis; the death toll is still much lower than that inflected on Palestinians by Israeli terrorism; the Western world is occupied by a wave of condemnation of “Palestinian terrorism”, “the enemies of peace”, the fanaticism of Palestinians, and a long list of accusations ..

After all of this, can Palestinians ever trust the United States’ government as an honest broker in the peace process? Can they line up in the streets with wavering flags to meet the Danish Foreign Minister and his new peace proposal? Can they put there faith in the United Nations and its double standards once more?

No, Palestinian’s use of violence to liberate their land is not the cause of the Arab-Israeli conflict, nor can one limit the conflict to the Israeli occupation of Palestinian land. The murderous Israeli occupation would have dismantled long ago, if it was not for the United States immoral support of Israel, the racist perception that sees Palestinian blood of little worth if compared to that of Israeli blood, the incompetence of the United Nations, the double standards of the EU, the duplicity of the Western media …

Sharon knows that the murder of innocent civilians comes at little political cost for him outside, and will unlikely generate real media criticism or meaningful political condemnation. He therefore continues his violent drive to cleanse the “Promise Land” amid international silence. But when Sharon’s victims rebel and chaotically fight back considering the little means of defense they possess, many find it shameless to denounce them and their struggle. True, the Israeli occupation must end for violence to quell, but this Western treachery must also end for a lasting peace to ever prevail.

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