Le Panoptique

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White Phosphorus in Gaza Burns a Trail for bin Laden, Jihad

Publié le 17 janvier, 2009 | Pas de commentaires

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The war crimes perpetrated by Israel now include chemical warfare.

It beggars the imagination, but it’s true: white phosphorus, used not only against Gazan civilians – excuse me, ‘Hamas’ – but also against the headquarters of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency. « We do not want such incidents to take place” said Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, “and I am sorry for it but I don’t know if you know, but Hamas fired from the UNRWA site. This is a sad incident and I apologise for it. » (A “sad incident”. Like Bush calling the Iraq War a “disappointment”.) Over 1100 Palestinians have been killed in this “operation”, as Israel calls it, but their deaths will never quiet Gaza, even if every actual member of Hamas had been killed.

In a recent video message directed at anyone who will listen, Osama bin Laden has urged the targeting of “Zionists anywhere in the world” and called for renewed jihad against Israel. When civilians – Jews living in France or Rome – are confounded with Israeli militants and targeted for violence, will Israel understand why you can’t go around murdering people because you have decided to call them ‘Hamas’?

The U.S. response to this new video was to dismiss it and bin Laden as “irrelevant”, but what is obvious to anyone is that western attempts to broker ‘peace’ in the area are not only irrelevant but impossible. As long as Israel exists, in its present, barbaric form, its victims will seek retribution for their enforced suffering and the violent deaths of so many non-combatants.

Witness the reaction to an article in today’s Guardian, titled, “It is not Israel’s action, but the vitriolic reaction to it that has been disproportionate. There’s only one explanation: antisemitism”. It is only 10:30am, and yet there are 1000 comments, almost unanimously rejecting the notion that anti-semitism is the cause of the world’s reaction. It is Israel, not Jewishness, that is the problem, and people are speaking out because they feel the jihadi reaction to those white-hot phosphorus fires threatening their own countries – their civilians – like never before.

But the U.S. has perpetrated its own war crimes. And Mr Obama had better recant his childlike notions about ‘moving forward’ and proceed with the very serious business of prosecuting those who have taken away America’s power to speak out against torture, against illegal military actions, against reckless civilian deaths, mass incarcerations and the rest. As hospitals, women and children sheltering in schools, are being bombed, we are now informed that it is “up to Egypt” to arrange a cease-fire in the region.

“’There will be discussions tomorrow morning, and it looks like a cabinet meeting will take place tomorrow night. Everyone is very upbeat,’ Olmert said. Meanwhile, Israeli tank fire killed two boys at a United Nations-run school on Saturday in the northern Gaza Strip town of Beit Lahiya.”

Upbeat? Olmert and Bush appear to hear the same different – delusional – drummer.


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