The Gaza carnage and the undoing of the Zionist state

The arch-imperialist, Winston Churchill, in making his rallying call to the US to take part in World War II concluded his speech to the US Congress with the following poem:

If we must die, let it not be like hogs
Hunted and penned in an inglorious spot,
While round us bark the mad and hungry dogs,
Making their mock at our accursed lot.
If we must die, O let us nobly die,
So that our precious blood may not be shed
In vain; then even the monsters we defy
Shall be constrained to honor us though dead!
O, kinsmen! we must meet the common foe!
Though far outnumbered let us show us brave,
And for their thousand blows deal one death-blow!
What though before us lies the open grave?
Like men we'll face the murderous, cowardly pack,
Pressed to the wall, dying, but fighting back!

The poem encapsulates the essence of Palestinian resistance against the ongoing Israeli carnage against the people of Gaza. The Zionists and their US and European backers have simply not grasped the fundamental historical truth that where there is oppression there will be resistance. Neither have the quisling Arab leaders understood this truth as they hide under the protective umbrella of their imperial masters against the rising tide of solidarity for the Palestinians vocally expressed by the Arab masses across the Middle East.

The Zionists have proven to be masters of perception management and have a compliant international media through which they churn out their full-spectrum propaganda. They have parasitically advanced their cause on the back of a history of pogroms and the holocaust perpetrated by Europeans against the Jewish people. Their well oiled propaganda machine has managed to turn the aggressor (Israelis) into victim and the victim (Palestinians) into aggressor with the settler/colonizer Israeli state expanding its territory with each round of attack against the Palestinians and the neighboring Arab states.

This continuing victimhood narrative which Israel effectively spews out to the world is plainly a big lie. The principle justification for its ongoing war crimes in Gaza is that Hamas has been firing Qassam rockets on its southern towns and that Hamas, a terrorist organization, has not agreed to renew the ceasefire because it does not accept the existence of Israel, as spelt out in Hamas’ political charter.

To begin with, during the so-called ceasefire the Israelis made provocative incursions into Gaza as and when they liked and killed Hamas activists and civilians. More importantly and glaringly, the one and a half million people of Gaza have been herded into an area 40 kilometers by less than 10 kilometers, the most densely populated area in the world, with all access by land, sea and air controlled by Israel. Any Gazans wanting to leave would have to go through the Israeli controlled border and they have invariably been denied exit. The Guardian on 7 January interviewed a lady teacher of English whose relative had been just killed by an Apache helicopter gunship. She said, ” I’ve tried to leave Gaza for the past two years, but every time I’ve tried to leave we’ve been turned back from the crossing.”

This is a siege of one and a half million people. It is the largest concentration camp in the world with all medical supplies, food, fuel, electricity and all other necessities of life controlled by Israel. These items are allowed in drips and drabs in accordance with Israel’s whims, prompting the Israeli peace activist,  Uri Avnery, to observe, “Some time ago I wrote that the Gaza blockade was a scientific experiment designed to find out how much one can starve a population and turn its life into hell before they break. This experiment was conducted with the generous help of Europe and the US. Up to now, it did not succeed. Hamas became stronger and the range of the Qassams became longer. The present war is a continuation of the experiment by other means…”

On the collapse of the ceasefire, Uri Avnery wrote, ““As a matter of fact, the cease-fire did not collapse, because there was no real cease-fire to start with. The main requirement for any cease-fire in the Gaza Strip must be the opening of the border crossings. There can be no life in Gaza without a steady flow of supplies. But the crossings were not opened, except for a few hours now and again. The blockade on land, on sea and in the air against a million and a half human beings is an act of war, as much as any dropping of bombs or launching of rockets. It paralyzes life in the Gaza Strip: eliminating most sources of employment, pushing hundreds of thousands to the brink of starvation, stopping most hospitals from functioning, disrupting the supply of electricity and water.”

Under these circumstances, Israel’s claim that it is not an occupying power in Gaza as it pulled out voluntarily is another big lie. The pulling out of troops from Gaza while continuing the blockade imposed on land, sea and air on Gaza makes the pullout an empty gesture to serve Israeli propaganda. Hamas has just issued a statement that the Palestinians will be killed slowly through the siege as has been going on for some time, or they will be killed quickly through the ongoing military action by the Israelis. Either way is unacceptable and the UN resolution crafted by the US, France and Britain with the Arab quislings must include the lifting of the siege for the ceasefire to be meaningful.

When you are blockaded in a concentration camp such as Gaza, resisting by any means available is a most natural and justifiable act. In a widely televised BBC series on the Nazi concentration camps in the 70s, one of the main themes was the Jewish resistance in the concentration camps. Their weapons of choice did not include equivalents of Qassam rockets, but I dare say if the resistance had such weapons they would have rightly fired the rockets at the Germans. No doubt the Nazis would then have excused the holocaust on the grounds that the Jews had fired rockets at their people, just as Israel is justifying the ongoing holocaust of Palestinians because of the rockets fired on Israel by Hamas.

But consider the impact of these home-made rockets on Israel. In six years of rocket fire nine Israelis were killed. The maximum range then was Sderot. In the same period more than six hundred Palestinians, mostly civilians, were butchered by Israeli bombs and missiles fired from sophisticated helicopter gunships and artillery rounds fired from Markeva tanks called ‘god’s chariots’ by the Israelis. In the current conflict when Hamas fired eighty rockets before the invasion and hundreds of rockets since then, only five Israelis have been killed as against over 700 Palestinians deaths and still mounting, 30% of these deaths being children, and over three thousand injured, not to mention the starvation and humiliation inflicted on them by Israel before the invasion. If the civilized world absolved itself from allowing the holocaust of Jews to take place on the grounds that they did not know, they certainly do not have the same excuse as the holocaust is taking place before our very eyes under the full glare of the international media.

In international law as well as moral doctrine, proportionality is a fundamental issue. The principle of ‘an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth’ is found in the scriptures of Jews, Christians and the Koran. This remedy is very well explained by Reza Aslan in his excellent book on Islam, ‘No God but God’, as establishing proportionality long before the rule of law and modern jurisprudence brought forth more humane remedies. Unfortunately, God’s chosen people now ruling the terrorist state understand this to mean ‘one hundred eyes for one eye of the chosen ones’.

Hamas was elected by the Palestinian people in a most democratic election conducted in the region and verified by international observers. The Israelis and the US did not accept the choice of the Palestinian people from the very outset; colonizers always assume they know better who the colonized should choose as their leaders. They only accept leaders who serve the interests of Empire, the major stakeholder in the region. The totally compromised leadership of Fatah after the death of Yasser Arafat made this election outcome inevitable. The Israelis and the US/European leaders prefer Mahmoud Abbas for his ‘moderate’ and ineffective position.

No meaningful concessions have been made to him for his moderation either as Israel has continued to expand settlements on the West Bank against international law. Of some 160 Israeli checkpoints on the West Bank only three have been dismantled. Incursions to abduct and detain Palestinians are carried out routinely, including elected representatives and the Speaker of the Palestinian Assembly. More than 10,000 political prisoners, including children, are held by Israel and many of them tortured. On none of these violations has Mahmoud Abbas any bargaining power. The most popular Fatah leader among the Palestinians, Marwan Barghouti, is imprisoned by Israel so that Mahmoud Abbas will have a free run. Like a poodle, the Israelis and the West bring their favourite puppet to conferences around the world to ‘negotiate’ one plan or another to establish a Palestinian Bantustan. No wonder Ariel Sharon described Abbas as a plucked chicken. Is it any surprise then that the Palestinian people opted for Hamas leadership.

Hamas has made a very clear offer to Israel to withdraw to the 1967 borders in exchange for a long term ceasefire during which period negotiations will be conducted on the main contentious areas such as the right of return by Palestinians, permanent boundaries and so on. There is implicit recognition of a de-facto Israeli reality and is a very generous offer as such negotiations would lead to the likely removal of items in the Hamas political charter deemed contentious by Israel. The PLO charter too contained the de-Zionising, or destruction, of Israel as its objective, but this was later removed during the protracted negotiations.

This latest atrocity on Gaza with the full support of the US and most European governments, against the democratic opinion of their people who have been demonstrating all across Europe against Israeli war crimes, will certainly not succeed in destroying Hamas. It is as bad a miscalculation as was the attack against Lebanon. Any settlement must now include the lifting of the blockade against Gaza and having Hamas at the negotiating table.

Internationally, Israel is rightly reviled by the people for its neo-Nazi policies. It is also reviled for its war mongering in the region throughout its existence as a state. The New York Times reported today (10 January 2009) that, “George W. Bush rejected a plea from Israel last year to help it raid Iran's main nuclear complex…Israel's request was for specialized bunker-busting bombs that it wanted for an attack that tentatively involved flying over Iraq to reach Iran's major nuclear complex at Natanz, where the country's only known uranium enrichment plant is located…” According to the Times online edition, “Bush decided against an overt attack based on input from top administration officials such as Defense Secretary Robert Gates, who believed that doing so would likely prove ineffective and could ignite a broader Middle East war.”

Israel made the push for permission to fly over Iraq for an attack on Iran following its anger over a U.S. intelligence assessment in late 2007 that concluded Iran had effectively suspended its development of nuclear weapons four years earlier.”

Israel is also a serial violator of UN Security Council resolutions, having the distinction of violating the most number of resolutions and twice the number of violations committed by Saddam Hussein, ironically from a body that legitimized its statehood.

 The quisling Arab governments in the pockets of the Israelis and the US will continue to dance to the tune of their paymasters, but the Palestinian resistance will in due course, sooner rather than later, put a stop to the war crimes.

The Zionists in their propaganda endeavors have successfully taken from the pages of the Nazis. Who could deny the Israeli propaganda in their recent blitzkrieg on Gaza has all the ingredients found in Nazi speeches such as the following: “I shall give a propagandist cause for starting the war. Never mind whether it is plausible or not. The victor will not be asked, later on, whether he told the truth or not. In starting and waging a war, it is not Right that matters but Victory. Have no pity. Adopt a brutal attitude…Right is on the side of the strongest.” –Adolph Hitler, 09/22/39, Speech to high officers.

Incidentally, the poem quoted above was plagiarized by Churchill. It was written by a Jamaican-born Afro-American, Claude McKay, and twenty years before it was read in Congress by Churchill the Justice Department had censored it and Congress denounced it as inflammatory and seditious. In a few days, a black President will sworn in. Regardless of how he will perform, that remains to be seen, it is nevertheless a historic occasion and the long resistance by Afro-Americans against oppression has gone up another notch.

Victory to the Palestinians! Down with Zionist neo-Nazism!


– Shahidan Said