Le Panoptique

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Israel Prepares to Escalate its War on Gaza, Maybe Lose Everything

Publié le 14 janvier, 2009 | Pas de commentaires

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As the days draw on, in article after article, Israel’s military strikes on Gaza are not only being condemned as war crimes and atrocities, but also as some kind of “beginning of the end” for Israel as we now know it.

The language being used to condemn the brutality of the onslaught, not only by Mr Fisk of the Independent, but by even mainstream newswriters, is the strongest I have seen in my lifetime. The threat of being called “anti-semitic” has suddenly lost its kryptonite-like power. Every newspaper in the world devotes its front page to stories of the weak and starving Palestinians who were ordered into “safehouses” where they were subsequently bombed, and images of small, dead children where no corpses of Hamas warriors can be found. UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon has finally used the words “war crimes” to describe Israel’s actions, and academics and economic advisors alike are not only calling for but insisting on boycotts and powerful sanctions, to isolate Israel the same way South Africa was frozen out in order to end apartheid there.

But what, other than expressing a chastened support for Israel’s ‘right to defend itself’ and other used-up clichés, are western leaders doing to end the violence? When the U.N. cannot reach Gaza with aid because Israel attacks its vehicles, when Israel taunts those who follow the laws of civilization with new and more brazen flouting of human rights each day, is anyone out there still waiting for Condoleezza Rice to broker a cease-fire?

This inaction on the part of any power that has historically been allied with Israel makes me question whether or not a different and more sinister policy is being crafted in the minds of those so-called ‘leaders’ who are resisting any useful negotiation or interference. Is the west waiting for someone – anyone – to perpetrate violence against Israel even greater than Israel is now wreaking on Gaza, so that it can step in with its own agenda in the name of avenging Israeli deaths?

Do not put it past those clinging on to the last days of the morality-free Bush administration, to allow Israel to do its worst in the hope – yes, the hope – that someone else will step in to redress the deaths and misery in Palestine, a someone else who is the ‘enemy’ of the coalition.

If this evil step is allowed to occur, it can only mean war on a mass scale, made doubly dangerous as the economies of half the world’s countries – the western half – are jeopardized by crippling deficits and unstable markets. Instead of allowing Israel to go forward with further bombings of civilians, instead of allowing Israel to break the camel’s back by committing war crimes of such magnitude as can no longer be justified by any rhetoric or excuse, the western leaders must step in, now, and with a show of great force, to rein them in and take up the Palestinian cause, ensuring Palestinians a separate state and government, no longer doomed to the humiliating captivity endured by all who are now forced to live in that no-man’s land.

If not, if the west waits anxiously hoping for their chance to appear to have the ‘just’ cause by retaliating against a major attack on Israel by another power, I am not certain that any court, law or international coalition could put an end to the fury that would be released not only in that region, but all over the world.


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