Jun 23, 2024

Moral test of our time

Why Palestine matters: The most important moral test of our time
[References at end]

This was said 30 years ago: “This is a unique colonialism that we’ve been subjected to where they have no use for us. The best Palestinian for them is either dead or gone. It’s not where they want to exploit us, or that they need to keep us there in the way of Algeria or South Africa as a subclass.” (Edward Said, in The Pen and the Sword: Conversations with Edward Said, by David Barsamian, 1994.)

Day 262 of the murderous and genocidal attacks on Gaza Strip. Over 150,000 Palestinians killed or injured. 80% of buildings destroyed including residential buildings, hospitals, schools, universities, streets, and other infrastructure [R01]. But this genocide is implemented not merely with bombing civilians but with starvation and denial of water, medicine, and all aspects of livability. More people are now dying of diseases and famine than from bombings. The environmental impact of this genocidal war has also been devastating [R02]. In parallel with this, there is an attack here in the West Bank (including Jerusalem) that is no less mean and no less important. I was just in the Jordan valley and the situation is dire: some 3000 Jewish colonial settlers pillaged the land and the natural resources and the population of Palestinians there has shrunk from 350,000 to some 75,000. The armed settlers and soldiers are on a rampage [R03]. The onslaught throughout Palestine not being halted by UN security council resolution calling for a ceasefire not by the cases at the International Court of Justice or the International Criminal Court. Nothing seems to deter this fascist government running this apartheid state. Zionist occupied White House is hosting ICC criminal Gallant and the Zionist-occupied US congress extended an invitation to ICC lunatic criminal Netanyahu to give a speech to a joint session of congress. This is working against US laws and against US interests to serve Zionazi genocide. Imagine inviting Hitler and Himmler as a genocide goes on? Will the US public (taxpayers) rise-up in arms against this?

Will the massive demonstrations happening in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem against the Israeli government make them pause? It is unlikely. Not even the perilous threat of a catastrophic regional war. In the north of Palestine, the Lebanese resistance showed that there is not Israeli target that is off-limits to it [R04]. This time unlike previous wars, Israel cannot destroy Beirut again without Tel Aviv being destroyed. Yet again Netanyahu is unphased. He disbanded his "war cabinet" and feels empowered by the Zionist lobby's hold on the US government [R05].

Zionism is not merely what the ideology that devastated our ancient society and culture with ethnic cleansing and genocide but what it has done to a three generations of Jews (both indoctrinated here or abroad) has been equally troubling. The majority have bought into this idea of colonial supremacist Zionism [R06]. This allowed them to directly do or at least financially and publicly support the most atrocious crimes with cruelly, hatred, and dehumanization that no words can do justice to describe [R07]. Thus in so many levels Zionism is not only racist and genocidal but also suicidal [R08]. That is why hundreds of millions around the world including a growing number of Jews are saying that once Palestine is free from the river to the sea, Jews and all humans will be free. It is logical: there should NOT Be a Jewish State, Nor a White State, Nor a Christian State, Nor a Slave-based Confederacy State, Nor an Islamist State, Nor a Master-Race Third Reich State, Nor an Apartheid South African State. We should learn from history that these are genocidal suicidal states. But the stakes are much higher now as the genocide is streamed live and the world is armed to the teeth and technology is such that walls, tanks, and airplanes cannot “win” wars. If you want proof see what Hamas, Houthis in Yemen or Hizbollah are able to do to challenge empire (challenging western governments who spend trillions arming themselves).

Will the growth of the global popular mass movement cause the fall of empire or will the US/ Israel be allowed to continue to drag the world to a final Masada, an apocalypse, an end of the world? [R09]. We can and must win this this quest to end war and impose justice including Palestinian refugee right to return to their homes and lands. They are the few and we are the many!! In my talks around the world including my recent trip to the Australian continent (including Aotearoa) I explained that there is a 50:50 chance we will manage to change the direction of history. The alternative of regional followed by Global war is far too catastrophic to allow to happen. In either case, the empire will lose.

It is worth reiterating Martin Luther King, Jr.: "Cowardice asks the question - is it safe? Expediency asks the question - is it politic? Vanity asks the question - is it popular? But conscience asks the question - is it right? And there comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular; but one must take it because it is right."

There are many people doing what is right. One can cite the defections within the empire [R10]. One can only cite the growing campus movements around the world [R11] and the growth in the movement for Boycott, Divestments sections [R12]. We ae moved to accelerate our work as the moment of truth is upon us. "We either live together as fellow human beings or we die together as fools". The Palestine situation provides a moral test of our time but it is far more than that: it is an existential struggle in which people need to choose to be on the side of life not on the side of genocide/suicide.

Or you can read Langston Hughes, "Harlem" :
What happens to a dream deferred?
Does it dry up
like a raisin in the sun?
Or fester like a sore—
And then run?
Does it stink like rotten meat?
Or crust and sugar over—
like a syrupy sweet?
Maybe it just sags
like a heavy load.
Or does it explode?

[R01] See for updated reports: https://www.ochaopt.org/ and https://www.pcbs.gov.ps/default.aspx
ICC case: https://www.commondreams.org/news/icc-war-cimes-gaza
The UN Human Rights Council has investigated Israel's war in detail - and the conclusions are DAMNING: "We conclude that Israeli authorities are responsible for war crimes, crimes against humanity... including extermination, internationally directing attacks against civilians... using starvation as a method of war... sexual and gender-based violence..." All those states that touted the Rules Based Order in Ukraine must now act to impose a UNSC-sponsored arms embargo on Israel.
An important message about Genocide from the leader of Human Rights Watch

[R02] UNEP: Environmental impact of conflict in Gaza https://wedocs.unep.org/bitstream/handle/20.500.11822/45739/environmental_impact_conflict_Gaza.pdf
Warning about loss of biodiversity in Gaza
It is time to seek justice for environmental war crimes
and my own paper on environmental impact of war

[R03] https://www.btselem.org/media/3826

[R04] Hezbollah releases close-up surveillance footage captured recently by its reconnaissance drones, showing sensitive Israeli targets in the north – including Haifa Port, a number of Iron Dome Platforms, and military complexes. https://x.com/TheCradleMedia/status/1803051154139496797
also there is realligment of powers and enhancement of BRICS+

[R05] AIPAC (Israel's lobby) will spend $100 million to interfere in US elections this year!
Israel lobby gets bills to silence US media and other organizations (enforced by "Secretary of Treasury" who is always selected by the lobby) https://theintercept.com/2024/05/10/terrorism-bill-nonprofit-journalists-israel-hamas/
See also exposure of the lobby on MSNBC https://twitter.com/Jonathan_K_Cook/status/1769857621878612335?s=20
Jill Stein, Green Party calls it like it is: They are destroying the united states
[Donate to her campaign)

[R06] see example from the second largest Jewish population, USA: https://www.pewresearch.org/short-reads/2021/05/21/u-s-jews-have-widely-differing-views-on-israel

[R07] How colonial Israeli regime treats children
If the world livestreams genocide
Torture is now rampant in Israeli gulags for thousands of Palestinians
Whistleblowers describe abuse of Palestinian prisoners
Poignant Dr. Mads Gilbert https://x.com/drmadsgilbert/status/1781417942514622608
New York Times investigates

[R08] Why Zionism is bad for jews too by Alon Mizrahi
How the Gaza genocide will lead to Israel's collapse https://youtu.be/ly7qO9fGYZA
See also Suicidal empire https://popularresistance.org/suicidal-empire/
Amir Hass in Haaretz: The Destruction, Starvation and Death in Gaza Are Israel’s Defeat

In 1938 David Ben-Gurion said: “If I knew that it would be possible to save all the [Jewish] children in Germany by bringing them over to England and only half of them by transporting them to Eretz Israel, then I opt for the second alternative. For we must take into account not only the lives of these children but also the history of the people of Israel." [Tom Segev, The Seventh Million: The Israelis and the Holocaust, Henry Holt & Co., New York, First Owl Books Edition 2000, p. 28 ]
“Israel Should Be Eliminated, It’s A Genocidal Apartheid Regime” | Miko Peled
Hamas is winning https://www.foreignaffairs.com/israel/middle-east-robert-pape

[R09] Israel is dragging the world into darkness
Toward the Abyss: United States’ fatal relationship with Israel

[R10] DemocracyNow! A resignation following White House lies:
Action: More resignations from US State Department. Tell the Biden administration to stop partnering in genocide

[R11] Shruthi Kumar delivers an important graduation message in Harvard (a university succumbing to Zionist lobby to prevent graduation of 13 students)
Palestinian Harvard Student describes her family suffering in Gaza

[R12] For more on BDS actions see BDSmovement.net and here are relevant news
Elbit Systems:
Abandoning a sinking ship of the Israeli economy, Intel pulls investments
In an open letter, a group of self-described Apple workers, former employees, and shareholders are calling on the company to halt donations to nonprofits linked with Israel’s war effort
How Western Tourism Giants Illegally Enrich Israeli Settlements on Stolen Land
Pro-Palestine and climate justice movements converge against Citigroup in New York