I spent most of the day yesterday watching news and updates on the various TV channels, until I got so tired, that I decided to take a break and sit outside on the porch with my book, The Ministry of Utmost Happiness by Arundhati Roy. How ironic that the following lines by Habib Jalib were quoted in the book: Bullets you sow instead of love
Our homeland you wash with blood
You imagine you’re showing the way
But I believe you’ve gone astray
Immediately those lines spoke to me and I thought Israel has always been astray, but has truly gone rogue this time, and so has the USA for not raising a voice on the ongoing brutality and dispossession of the Palestinians. Palestinian lives matter just as little as black lives do when it comes to Settler-Colonial nation states like Israel and the USA. Israel and the USA always take pride in claiming that they share common values!!! Watching the brutality of the Israeli police against our young people, one needs to be absolutely blind not to see the similarity in the methods that the American police used against George Floyd.
How sad and anti-Semitic that the Jewish genocide by Europe continues to be the justification for allowing Israel to get away with all the criminal, illegal and repressive measures against the indigenous Palestinians on whose land Israel was created by the enabling of those same powers, mainly the UK and the USA and Germany, as if to distract from their complacency in the Holocaust.
However, no power has had the guts to force Israel to atone for the dispossession and massacres of the Palestinians that took place during the establishment of the state of Israel. And Israel continues to claim that it is the only democracy in the Middle East region, irrespective of the fact that the Palestinians who remained in Israel when it was created and became citizens of the state over-night, do not have the same rights as the Jewish population of the state. This fact was sealed by the Nation State law approved by the Knesset in July 2018, and which enshrines Israel as a Jewish Supremacist state despite the fact that more than 20% of Israel’s population (19% Palestinian at least ) are not Jewish.
The protests of this last week that erupted in Jerusalem against the forced expulsion and dispossession of Palestinians from a whole neighborhood of “Sheik Jarrah” in Jerusalem, and the storming of Masjed Al-Aqsa, the third holiest place in Islam, during the holy month of Ramadan was but one of the egregious methods of the ongoing ethnic cleansing of the Palestinians, both Muslims and Christians who were recently barred from reaching the Holy Sepulcher during the Orthodox Holy Saturday before Easter.
It was only when the rockets from Gaza hit Israel, that the impotent voice from the White House was heard, assuring Israel that it has the right to defend itself, as it was indiscriminately bombing the Gaza Strip without mercy killing whole families including children. An area that Israel has had under siege for the last fourteen years.
Our Palestinian leadership thought they were going to have a better deal with the US after Trump lost the elections. How naive indeed. At least with Trump we knew the reality, and we knew where we stood without any hypocricy. They were just as naive, or maybe stupid, when they thought that Israel was genuinely interested in peace, when in reality all it was interested in is to be left in peace, and that is what the Olso agreement of 1993 helped them to achieve. We are now reaping the fruits of a bad agreement, failed leadership and European sins. The landscape has completely changed as the land according to that Oslo agreement was divided into areas, A, B, and C, which eventually was filled up with colonial settlements. Jerusalem was sealed off, stopped being accessible to the Palestinians living on the West Bank, even though East Jerusalem is technically in the West Bank, and the Jerusalem area is already filled up . with 250,000 Jewish settlers. The Apartheid Separation Wall, separated Palestinian territories from each other and military check points made life more and more difficult for Palestinians.
On the grass roots level, we have watched many movements standing in solidarity with our people. So hopefully they will eventually make a change and bring justice to our people, for without justice there can never be peace. But according to Benjamin Franklin “Justice will not be served until those who are unaffected are as outraged as those who are.”
So I hope we can continue to count on your actions that would make a difference in the lives of our people