Monday, July 03, 2006
Ever since Hamas militants kidnapped an Israeli soldier the world has all of the sudden took notice that there is something sinister going on in Gaza and West Bank.
The world concerns however, mostly lies with the Israeli soldier not with the wider conflict that has produced scores of Palestinians dead and wounded, and reduced much of their economy into rubble.
Even Pope Benedict had called for the Israeli soldier release.
Israeli actions do not make it any more moral or righteous than those of Hamas military wing, since kidnapping and killing of civilians is a common and habitual Israeli practice.
Only two days before the eruption of the crises, Israel had kidnapped two Palestinian civilians in Gaza, and had killed tens of innocent Palestinians few weeks before.
Hardly anyone of those world leaders including the concerned pope has uttered a word.
My question is: does the life of one Israeli soldier worth more than the lives of 3 million Palestinian being held captive and punished on wholesale scale!
The Israeli soldier was an active soldier in an occupying army in Gaza, not in his own house or picnicking with his family and friends on a beach in Tel-Aviv.
If Israel can kidnap and kill Palestinians at will, it should not be surprised by the Palestinian reaction, in fact Israel should expect that the bloodshed it spills will beget more bloodshed. It is a useless vicious cycle that serves no purpose.
Perhaps Israeli leaders ought to pay attention to the old saying, "wha's good for the goose is good for the Gander"
Israel has no moral case to claim here, in fact Israel has committed war crimes under international law and the Geneva conventions by kidnapping third of the elected Palestinian parliament and a fourth of the government and by destroying civilian infrastructure depriving over 750.000 civilian of power and water.
It is quite interesting that Hosni Mubark of Egypt went as far as threatening Hamas leaders if they did not release the Israeli soldier immediately, on the premise that Israel will consider freeing some Palestinian prisoners in the future. But Hamas military wing would have none of it, for they don't trust the Israeli intentions.
Hamas military wants Israel to free Palestinian men, women and children immediately in exchange for soldier. That infuriated Mubark, his threats to Hamas made him appear more like an Israeli politician and not the president of the largest and most powerful Arab country.
Mubark's reaction is quite understandable, at the home, he faces an active and vociferous opposition to his kingly rule, and he also needs an American and Israeli support to have his son "electd" after him as president, which might explain his anger. Moreover,Mubark's government contemptuous and humiliating treatment of Hamas leaders after its victory maybe have come back to hunt him in this crisis.
Other notable reactions:
Where is Uncle Kofie? .. You know... The guy who runs the United Nations!
I have yet to read or hear any thing worthy or of substance from him not even a verbal condemnation. But we know that Uncle Kofie who barley kept his job few years ago, cannot say or do anything that might upset his benefactors.
The Europeans have said that it is of " particular concern" in commenting on mass arrest of Palestinian members of parliament and sending the Palestinians back into an age of darkness.
I am puzzled at the European reaction, I don't know whether it was the word" particular"or the word "concern" that puzzled me more. They could have said it more simply or bluntly " we don't care" or " Israel can dresden the hell out Gaza and we will pretend that we have seen or heard nothing".
Arab governments faired even worst, they did not even use their customary gobbledygook of " we condemn" " we deplore" it is unacceptable" " we reject" it is unfortunate" blah blah blah
In Sudan and Morocco, citizens went out on the streets to express support for the Palestinians. In Oslo Norway, a cold and far away country, Norwegians held a rally in support of Palestinians.
Few days ago, in Baghdad, Shia militias, apparently acting in sync with the Israeli army, killed a 67-year-old Palestinian teacher, and killed four of his relatives who went to the morgue to claim his body.
For this crisis to end, Israeli leaders should come out of their "prison guard" mentality and start thinking of the Palestinian people as human beings in need of dignity and liberty like any other human including the Israelis themselves.