Monday, January 26, 2009

Silence, resistance, and reality

Songs about Palestine and Gaza

Sandy Tolan, TomDispatch: Essential for George Mitchell in all of this will be an openness and a creativity absent from American diplomacy since the violent birth of Israel and the Palestinian catastrophe in 1948. Increasingly, small groups of Palestinians, a handful of Israelis, and even motivated outsiders are looking at the possibility of a third way. The alternatives differ sharply: some call for a one-state solution; others for a binational state; others for an Israeli-Palestine confederation or a Middle East Union. The words 'single state' spark a visceral fear among many Israelis who see this, too, as the end of the Jewish state... But 'No problem,' said Einstein, 'can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it.'

Ilan Pappe, The Electronic Intifada: Every act whether it was ethnic cleansing, occupation, massacre or destruction was always portrayed as morally just and as a pure act of self-defense reluctantly perpetrated by Israel in its was against the worst kind of human beings... This shields the society and politicians in Israel from any external rebuke of criticism... The self-righteousness is a powerful act of denial and justification... There is only one way forward: challenging head-on this righteousness as an evil ideology meant to cover human atrocities.

Der Spiegel: Israelis do not understand a world that reproaches them for what they have done... They brush aside concerns about civilian casualties and stories about Palestinian suffering are relegated to the back pages... All of this happened less than an hour's drive from Tel Aviv. But no one in Israel seems to be talking about the consequences... There is no public discourse about the ethical boundaries soldiers and officers should have observed. Nobody asks how many children it was acceptable to sacrifice.

Time: Israel's blockade has left Gaza's 1.5 million residents relying on the tunnels as their economic lifeline... 'If Israel keeps the borders sealed off, we'll keep digging and only Allah can stop us. Let the Israelis drop their bombs. Without the tunnels we can't survive anyway... And if a bomb catches me underground, well, they won't have to dig my grave.'

Ramzy Baroud, Global Research: Isn't 60 years of suffering and survival enough to convince Olmert that the will of the Palestinians cannot be broken? How many heaps of wreckage and mutilated bodies will be enough to convince the prime minister that those who fight for their freedom will either be free or will die trying?... It is strange that conventional wisdom still dictates that 'the Arabs understand only the language of force.' If that were true, then they would have conceded their rights after the first massacre in 1948. But following more than 60 years filled with massacres new and old, they continue to resist.
Image source here.