Author: Hosam Mekdad
In a desperate attempt to defend Israeli occupation, David Schwartz and Amichai Kilchevsky threw around random and baseless accusations, only to support them with even worse analogies that were hurtful, inappropriate and totally out of place. And while claiming to speak for Middlebury's intelligence, the writers made many dull claims, the funniest of which is that Israeli soldiers are only defending themselves. It has become a standard for pro-Israelis to take events out of context, and point out to Palestinian violence as something coming out of void. In the process, Palestinians are depicted as a bloodthirsty horde that out of unjustified hate is trying to drive the good democratic Israel into the sea. This is how that "Israeli soldiers are only defending themselves" and similar lies come into being, and this is how they are kept alive.
Yet the truth is different, and what those Israeli soldiers are defending is their unlawful and inhumane occupation of Gaza, the West Bank and the Golan Heights. The Israeli occupation has forced scores of Palestinians and Arabs into exodus, with millions living in sub-human conditions in refugee camps, and those more fortunate ones scattered around the globe. That done, Israel has embarked on a racist policy of bringing in foreign Jewish settlers, who possess no ties whatsoever to the land, to replace the Palestinians. Random checkpoints, arrests and blockades are only some of the methods Israel has used to humiliate and harass Palestinians. Yet somehow in the end, Israel is still the victim and Palestinians are the aggressors.
The United Nations guarantees the rights of people to resist occupation, and Palestinians have the right to use that right. The Palestinian uprising is a direct result of Israel’s brutal occupation. How can Israel expect to suppress and maim another nation and not expect a reaction? Even worse, when this reaction takes place, Israel uses it as an excuse to further oppress Palestinians, to tighten its grip on the occupied lands and to feed its propaganda campaign to delude world opinion. Along the way, Israel has sought to erase historic Palestine from the world’s memory and to belittle the Israeli occupation and separate it from the Palestinian uprising. Thus, Israel pictures the whole conflict as some sort of confrontation between two equal powers, and not as a struggle of an oppressed nation fighting to win its freedom from the much stronger occupying Israel.
By electing a war criminal to lead the nation, the Israelis demonstrated that neither they wanted the government to change its unjust policies, nor they wanted to give Palestinians their rights back. Instead, they hoped that Sharon would bring an end to the uprising by more suppression and more force. They talk about peace, but the peace they want is a peace where Israel maintains its occupation, with Arabs indefinitely living stripped of their most basic rights. There is not middle ground in this issue. You are either pro-occupation or pro-peace. And a just and comprehensible peace agreement can only be reached when Israel completely returns the lands it has occupied and allows Palestinian and Arab refugees to return home. Any peace that does not comply with UN resolutions and guarantee those most basic rights is simply a postponement of further conflict. But then, Israel’s policy does not only continue to include violating these resolutions, but also the undermining of the legitimacy of the United Nations altogether. Could the whole world be wrong with Israel being the only one that is morally and politically right?
Israel is the strongest militarily and economically. It enjoys undisputed political and financial US backing while still reaping the benefits of occupying Arab territories. And with the world barely noticing its oppressive and unjust policies, Israel and its friends are quite content with the way things are, if it just wasn’t for those Arabs not keeping quiet!
It must be quite a setback when things don’t go quite the way planned either back in the occupied territories or on American campuses.
Uprising Result of Israeli Supression
Author: Hosam Mekdad