Friday, July 11, 2014

Israel Racks Up 101 Dead Palestinians- Hamas Rockets Kill Zero So Far

So what is the focus of the U.S. media? Hamas rocket fire, of course. Par for the course.

As usual, the Hamas rockets land almost entirely ineffectually. Israel, on the other hand, thanks to its U.S.-supplied F-16 fighter jets and U.S.-supplied munitions, is lethally effective. For good measure, Israel has been shelling Gaza from the sea.

Entire families have been wiped out. A cafe blown off the face of the earth, killing terrorist World Cup fans watching Television. (They must be terrorists, right? Anyone Israel or the U.S. kills is by definition a posthumous terrorist. Actually Israel called that one a “mistake.” On the other hand, they whispered in various reporters’ ears that they were targeting a single man allegedly present. Well he shouldn’t be using people as human shields! He should stand in the middle of nowhere with a target on his back! Actually Gaza is so tightly packed with people, there are no areas where a bombardment by air and sea, as Israel is conducting, wouldn’t kill “human shields” that “terrorists hide behind.”)

On top of 101 dead Palestinians (about half women and children), over 700 have been wounded- and the Gaza hospital lacks medical supplies.

The U.S. calls all this “self-defense” by Israel. The U.S. Secretary of State, the unbearable blowhard Skull and Bonesman John Kerry thundered that “no nation!” would or could tolerate rockets fired at it. (Actually plenty of nations have had to tolerate that, and worse. Victims of U.S. aggression, for example. And Lebanon, attacked repeatedly by Israel. But never mind. No point going once again through the futile exercise of illuminating the breathtaking hypocrisy and utter contempt for historical facts of the U.S. imperialist overlords.)

Israel has called up 40,000 reservists and is massing its army on the border with Gaza in preparation for a land invasion. Israel’s “intelligence” head has openly proclaimed the need to occupy Gaza for a spell, to root out Hamas.

A standard trope of Israeli propaganda (repeated by their supine parrots, the U.S. media) is that Hamas rocket fire is “indiscriminate.” “Indiscriminate” is code for inaccurate. It’s Israel that is killing people indiscriminately. It actually tacitly admits this by its standard justification line: “Hamas is using human shields! Hamas hides behind the civilian population! (Ergo, we have to blow up their shields.)”

Not to defend Hamas- those fanatics have brought down pointless suffering and death on the Palestinians in the Gaza open air concentration camp since the Israelis threw in the towel on “settling” Gaza. They had 10,000 army troops to defend 8,000 colonizers. Ariel Sharon The Slaughterer made a pragmatic decision that the cost wasn’t worth it. Instead he decided to concentrate on driving the Palestinians out of conquered East Jerusalem and expanding the colonial effort in “Judea and Samaria” (the West Bank to the world outside of Israel and Zionist circles). Hamas at that point made the very poor decision to lob ineffectual rockets into Israel. This provided a pretext for Israeli attacks, and also a propaganda coup for Israel, which could say “You see? We withdrew from Gaza and they respond with attacks on our civilians. They don’t want peace.” This also helped harden the attitude of the Israeli public towards Palestinians. Probably 90% of the Israeli public at this point viscerally despises the Palestinians, and some large percentage would be glad to see them exterminated.

Now Hamas, with its suicidal bravado, is giving Israel another excuse to butcher Palestinians and once again reduce their pathetic infrastructure to rubble. (This will be the third time in 6 years Israel has done this. They also do it to Lebanon every decade or so.)

Let’s recap how the current situation started. Parties unknown kidnapped and shot dead three Israeli teenaged colonists, burying their bodies. Israel blamed Hamas, presenting no evidence; Hamas denied it. (Without evidence, we cannot know who did it, but as I previously wrote, it doesn’t have Hamas’ M.O. That by itself doesn’t rule out Hamas.) Israel went on a rampage in the West Bank to try and find the missing teens, arresting around 400 Palestinians and killing 7 in the process- already double the number of missing Israelis. In response, rockets were fired from Gaza, perhaps by Hamas, perhaps by a fringe group. When after several weeks, the bodies of the teens were found, Jewish colonists kidnapped a 16 year old Palestinian boy, Muhammad Abu Khdeir, and burned him alive (as an Israeli autopsy discovered- burns in the air passages of the victim established that). Subsequently his teen cousin, who was visiting from Florida and is an American, was savagely beaten unconscious by Israeli police at a demonstration by Palestinians angry over Khdeir’s murder. (The Israelis claim he had a slingshot. Well, ok then, beat him unconscious!) Only because the beating was captured on video did anything come of this. The U.S. mildly objected, so Khdeir was put under house arrest and fined. (Fine before conviction- that must be another Israeli innovation in repression.) Well, that’s more than the U.S. did when Rachel Corrie was murdered by an Israeli army bulldozer driver, obvious acting under orders, or when scores of American sailors and killed and wounded when Israel tried to sink the U.S.S. Liberty in 1967, so maybe that’s progress. (Not really.)

It doesn’t matter what the Palestinians do- their situation is hopeless. Israel respond to peaceful Palestinian protests the same way it responds to Palestinian violence- with violence. And in fact it has always done so, and that is well documented, including by Israelis. So the fact that the Palestinians are an oppressed people cannot be denied.

And the U.S. imposes its usual double standard. Violence is fine to achieve its ends. When it doesn’t like a regime, it will support violence against that regime, as it did earlier this year in Ukraine. The U.S. has supported numerous guerrilla and terrorist groups historically. But the Palestinians aren’t even allowed to join international organizations without suffering reprisals by the U.S. and Israel. They are supposed to docilely participate in the charade called “the peace process,” which is nothing more than the creeping Bantustanization of the Palestinians. Recall that during the 8 years of the “Oslo process” under the mass murderer Bill Clinton, the colonizer population doubled. Which put the lie to the idea that the Israelis were negotiating a handover of the West Bank (much less East Jerusalem, although to this day those lies are repeated, along with the claim that Arafat ruined everything).

Meanwhile the cynical, feckless, and cruel Arab regimes once more do nothing to help the Palestinians, instead spouting anti-Semitic crap to dupe their credulous publics. Thus the worst of both worlds- anti-Semitism with no actual opposition to Israeli imperialism and repression, but in fact secret connivance. The Saudis in particular are secretly tight with Israel. Jordan is an Israeli ally in all but official name. And Egypt has been a co-repressor of the Palestinians with Israel for decades.

But the new Egyptian military dictator, Sisi, is all heart. He decided to allowed badly wounded Palestinians (no one else) to pass through the Rafa border crossing into Egypt for medical care. Otherwise the blockade of Gaza by Egypt stands. (Palestinians have to dig tunnels, like moles, to get even basic supplies. Israel is now bombing those tunnels- again.) A whole 20 ambulances- 20! have been sent by Egypt to the border.

Thanks, Sisi! What a guy!

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