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Saturday, November 29, 2014

Letter: Palestinian slaughter unjust, not self-defense

Editor,

The onslaught of Palestine by the state of Israel has no justification. No slaughter can be justified, regardless of who commits it against whom. Those who try to rationalize the bloodshed into a moral-political necessity do so to hide their monstrous face behind a mendacious mindset.

Rationalizing the impermissible is deliberate Orwellian miscategorization. The mass murder of the defenseless is never “self-defense.” None of the more than two thousand killed after a month of shelling has been a “threat” to the state of Israel.

On the contrary, their murder by the callous clock precision of Israel’s ticking bombing campaign proves it is Israel that is a threat to the humanity of its victims. The “most moral army” is a murder machine. “Only a tyrant or an impotent man is content to decimate.”

These words by the Danish theologian Søren Kierkegaard speak the truth of a war that is no war, but coldly calculated carnage.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and all those who support him in his crimes against humanity are such tyrants and impotent men.

They are content to pile up their victims in heaps of shredded flesh visualized arithmetically in the growing number of dead Palestinians looming over the bad conscience of a world too spineless to stop the bloodshed. That the bloody facts on the ground should sanctify the fundamentalist ideology of imperial politicians is the deadly logic of an authoritarian theology. No god sides with the villain, only idols do.

Today, the crucified body of Jesus Christ lies under the rubble of mosques, schools, hospitals and homes. Despite the butchery, God refuses to wreak havoc from planes, tanks, drones and machine guns.

That is the doing of diabolic forces. Israel’s precision bombing is an indictment against the mechanics and technology of modern warfare. It destroys exactly what it targets. It kills precisely those within the vicinity of the target. It knowingly targets and kills indiscriminately. The best self-defense against Palestinian rocket fire is the lifting of the savage siege of Palestinian land partitioned and occupied by Israel. Israel’s blockade has turned Gaza into a prison camp reminiscent of the Warsaw Ghetto.

The blockade controls and bans trade, cripples the economy, stunts child growth, breeds sickness, spreads disease, fuels resistance and dehumanizes a whole people to brutes and savages free to die and ready to be killed at will.

The carnage of Israel’s blockade and invasion commits the crime of collective punishment. In the context of the siege rocket fire is the desperate cry for help to an indifferent, cowardly complacent and complicit world. To accuse resisters of the perennial injustice of using its people as human shields is like accusing the forest of harboring trees and the trees of growing in a forest. It does not absolve from the responsibility of the so-called collateral damage.

All master-race logic blames its victims for the crimes committed against them in an all-too-human reflex caught in a futile attempt to cleanse its mendacious mind from the heavy guilt of its atrocities. A logic that divides up the world into a master race licensed to cleanse lesser humans from their homeland is headed toward the ominous final solution now openly called for again by fascist mobs marauding Israel with the assistance of the complicit police, beating up the few courageous Jews protesting the terror. The slogan “Death to the Arabs” instinctively understands the message of the masters of war. No one threatens Israel’s existence, but Israel does so itself with its questionable actions. The terror of its policies waged against a dispossessed people is inconspicuously reminiscent of the Nazi terror that annihilated the European Jews.

While the Nazis openly stood by their crimes, Israel denies committing such crimes. The victims of the Holocaust do not justify Israel’s aggression as self-defense. They utterly condemn it as the gravest offense against humanity. The solution to the stalemate is not the gradual genocide of a native people in a final long-term solution. The answer lies in a one-state solution of a unified Palestine-Israel, where religion and ethnicity no longer function as attributes of discrimination and therefore no longer draw borders with the blood of the people.

To contain the rise of global anti-Semitism in the face of these war crimes, Israel must give up its self-conception as a Jewish state and replace it with that of an open-minded, liberal, inclusive state, based on the principles of democratic tolerance where all are equal under the civilized rule of the same secular humanitarian laws. It is the maiming and slaying of Palestine that puts the existence of Israel into serious question. As the designer and provider of Israel’s weaponry the United States is directly implicated in Israel’s carnage.

Here lies the power of its leverage and the task of its duty: The United States can and must bring Israel back to the communal responsibilities of humanity.

The billions of dollars given to Israel annually by the United States now need to flow directly to Palestine as reparations to a decimated people incarcerated in an abandoned wasteland.

Joachim L. Oberst

UNM instructor