Israel, Palestine and so on

Firstly, Larry Derfner has an outstanding op ed in the Jerualem Post.

The kill ratio was 100-to-1 in our favor. The destruction ratio was much, much greater than that. To this day, thousands of Gazans are living in tents because we won’t let them import cement to rebuild the homes we destroyed. We turned the Gaza Strip into a disaster area, a humanitarian case, and we’re keeping it that way with our blockade.

Meanwhile, here on the Israeli side of the border, it’s hard to remember when life was so safe and secure.

So let’s decide: Who was the victim of Operation Cast Lead, them or us?

No question – us. We Israelis were the victims and we still are. In fact, our victimhood is getting worse by the day. The Goldstone report was the real war crime. The Goldstone report, the UN debates, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, the Red Cross, B’Tselem, the traitorous soldiers of Breaking the Silence and the Rabin Academy – those were the true crimes against humanity. This is what’s meant by “war is hell.”

It is we who’ve been going through hell from the war in Gaza. It is we who’ve been suffering.

Gazans? Suffering? What’s everybody talking about?

We let them eat, don’t we?

One, we refuse to acknowledge any facts that mar this image of ourselves as victims, and instead go over and over and over only the facts that fit the picture.

We talk only about the thousands of Kassams fired at Sderot; we never mention the thousands of Gazans we killed at the same time.

We talk only about Gilad Schalit; we never mention the 8,000 Palestinian prisoners we’re holding.

And we never mention our ongoing blockade of Gaza or the devastation it does to those people.

The second thing we do to convince ourselves and the world that we’re still victims is to never, ever, ever let go of the Holocaust – because that’s when we really were victims. Victims like nobody’s ever known, victims a million times worse than the Gazans.

Auschwitz, lambs to the slaughter. Remember us, the people of the Holocaust? That wasn’t the Middle East’s superpower you saw fighting in Gaza.

That was the 6 million.

So you can’t blame us. We’re immune from your criticism. We’re the biggest victims the world has ever known. We’re desperate, so don’t tell us about kill ratios and disproportionate use of force and collective punishment. We’re fighting for our survival.

Haaretz editorialises: Israel should withdraw from the Golan, and rightly blames Netanyahu.

Mustafa Barghouti was on Jon Stewart’s Daily Show. Angry Arab wasn’t very impressed. I think Jon Stewart was pretty ignorant and uninformed, but Barghouti (and the Jewish activist he appeared with) were pretty good, and it was good that they got exposure to a progressive American audience. I think it’s a shame that Barghouti is a politician, but as far as spokespeople go, he’s the best the Palestinian government has.  It’s a little depressing to think for how long the leadership of the Palestinians has just ignored this aspect of the struggle.

I wrote the other day about Nick Griffin’s support for Israel. Today, I read about Elie Wiesel and anti-Semitic Christian lunatic John Hagee buddying up. But I never liked Elie Wiesel anyway.

Also, As’ad AbuKhalil had an article in al Akbar on Arab dictatorships translated into English. It analyses the reasons for the duration of Arab tyrannies. Though it is translated, it displays many of his qualities: political independence, erudition, a fierce opposition to all governments in the region, and also US imperialism.

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