The Case For People Of Conscience To Condemn Israel


Why does Palestine matter more than any other conflict at present? Why is it so important that anyone of conscience condemns Israel?

Because, beyond the fact that Israel rampaging around the Middle East, armed to the teeth, acting like a lunatic in a bid to maintain its occupation of Palestine has the potential to throw the entire region into conflagration, and, as a nuclear-armed state, the capacity to harm millions around the world, freeing Palestine is important because their suffering and senseless slaughter at the hands of their occupier matters more desperately than most, because this injustice is our doing.

Because this travesty, this injustice, these war crimes, these human rights atrocities are our creation. Every one of us who is an adult and a citizen of a democratic nation which does not and has not spoken out against the barbarity of Israel as an occupier, coloniser and apartheid State is responsible.

The world allowed the immoral and illegal partition of Palestine. And the world has allowed nearly 70 years of Israel's continued theft of Palestinian land and its continued abuse of a helpless indigenous people, and encouraged – in fact aided and abetted and enabled – Israel on its path to becoming something even more evil – an apartheid State which uses deadly and destructive military power to punish the Palestinians if they dare to resist.

Israel could not have become the monster that it has nor committed the evil that it has and does without the support, first and foremost of the Americans, who manage to put aside their pious and pompous talk about freedom and democracy when it goes against their interests, and when it is only 'inferior' brown and black 'guys' who are being slaughtered.

And then the support of every other craven, gutless, cowardly country like our own, Australia, which backs the evil that the US and Israel do to the Palestinians, either by omission or commission.

Toss in the corrupt, cowardly, craven, gutless, profit-driven press which in the main has ignored the suffering of the Palestinians and supported Israel's war crimes and human rights atrocities and you have a perfect recipe for the rise of a nation, or rather the reducing of a nation, to that which equates with pure evil.

Enter stage left, Israel, the rogue state and pariah which has been brought to birth, aided and abetted, by the international community over the past seven decades. There have been a few lone 'voices' but generally Israel has been allowed to call itself victim while 'crowing' over the Palestinians it has dispossessed and murdered.

Why have we done this to Israel? Because what we have done to Israel in support of its barbarism and brutality is far worse than what it has done to the Palestinians.

They have become stronger, more resilient because in their fight for justice they have integrity.

Israel has become base, barbaric and truly sick to the point where Israelis can sit on hilltops drinking wine, eating food and cheering as every bomb drops on the Gaza concentration camp, shredding and dismembering children.

The average age in the Gaza prison is 17, with 50 per cent of the population children, as the IDF well knows, and most of the dead are women and children.

Even worse, an Israeli MP reveals the horrific 'shadow' in the cultural psyche when she calls for every Palestinian woman to be killed so there are no more babies.

Even Israeli columnists, those few of sanity and conscience, say that what she represents is the true depths of the black evil which rots at the heart of Israel's soul.

And it is all the work of Israel and its supporters… those who have not had the courage or integrity to point out that what Israel has done and is doing is terribly, terribly wrong and entails a level of barbarism which has no place in a modern world.

Israel is our creature. Israel is our shadow. Israel is the new monster state in a long line of monster states, led by delusion, fascist and racist belief, and drowned in a denial, which, because so few will tell them the truth of what they are, what they have done and where they are heading, spirals only further into its own destruction.

For it is Israel which is the ultimate loser, thanks to its so-called friends. The Palestinians have time, numbers, justice and finally, world opinion on their side. The Israelis have none of that, and can only drown in the debased and corrupted nature of their culture and society as an occupier.

It is merely a matter of how many more must die. How much more blood will be spilled. How many more children will be scarred for life by the trauma. And that applies to Palestinians and Israelis alike, although for the Israelis physical death and destruction is minimal and soul destruction is maximal. For the Palestinians it is vice-versa.

Palestine will be free and the Israelis will also be free from the worst that they have become, although they will have to carry the truth of the evil that was done in their name for at least a generation, perhaps more, just as citizens of other nations have had to do.

Anyone of conscience who cares about not just Palestinians but about Israelis and in particular about a civilized world should be demanding an end to occupation.

Because, as a democracy, or at least a nation which claims to be a democracy, what Israel does and is reflects on the democratic world – the modern world, the civilized world. Israel of course cannot be a democracy as an occupier, coloniser and apartheid State but it says it is and so it is judged by the bar it has set itself.

When we do not speak out against the worst that humans can be, particularly when they seek to do it in the name of democratic 'principles' and worse, in the name of a religion, then we betray the very foundation of our modern world and we tear at the fragile edges of the very thin veneer which is civilization.

The world should be ashamed at what it has allowed Israel to do to Palestine and what it allows Israel to do to Palestinians, but it should be even more ashamed of what it has done and is doing to Israelis.

Monster states are not born, they are made! When we look at Israel we see a nation crafted by the world at large, most particularly the democratic world, the Western world, the modern world; honed and carved by greed, selfishness, dishonesty, dissembling, corruption, baseness, ignorance and cowardice.

Whether we support or condemn Israel, what we are looking at is our own shadow and until we recognise that, even as Israel 'disappears' as a rogue state, as it will, because they all do, it is just a matter of how much time, how much blood, how much death… there will be another and another and another and another….

Roslyn Ross is a journalist, editor, writer, blogger and poet who has lived around Australia and the world, including Europe, India, North America and Africa. This includes much time spent with Israeli colleagues and employers.

Launched in 2004, New Matilda is one of Australia's oldest online independent publications. It's focus is on investigative journalism and analysis, with occasional smart arsery thrown in for reasons of sanity. New Matilda is owned and edited by Walkley Award and Human Rights Award winning journalist Chris Graham.