Elimination is the keyword that runs through many of the atrocious tales that assail us from around the world. Elimination is a solution to no problem. The wish to eliminate others as the source of our problems is based on a wildly false premise, that those people are to blame for our predicament and that by getting rid of them we rid ourselves of the threat we perceive in them. In so doing, not only does the will to eliminate spread suffering and misery that ultimately impacts on those who seek to eliminate, but they forfeit an essential part of what it means to be human. Cutting themselves off from what binds us to all humans whatever their colour, creed or gender, by focussing solely on what makes us different.
Any criticism of the acts of the Israeli state is quickly taxed as antisemitic. To call a person antisemitic is an efficient way to silence comments. It indiscriminately lumps the speaker with those who exterminated millions of Jews. It eliminates criticism by accusing those who raise questions of wanting to eliminate Jews. Few people are not horrified or ashamed of what happened in the concentration camps during the second world war. Yet there is nothing racist nor antisemitic in being appalled at the slaughter of unarmed Palestinians, including women and children, by Israeli snipers firing bullets specially designed to maim if not kill at a safe distance. The news coming from the fortified fence that imprisons Palestinians in the isolated and impoverished Gaza Strip is appalling and sickening. How can the people who were victims of the Shoah gun down defenceless men, women and children?
What else was the Shoah than an attempt to eliminate a race and other supposedly undesirable groups of people? An act of ‘cleansing’ ostensibly justified by a largely trumped-up fear for one’s own existence. Elimination doesn’t work! The Israelis can’t eliminate the Palestinians. The Palestinians can’t eliminate the Israelis. Elimination is a hateful, hate-filled solution. The majority of Israelis are intelligent, sensitive people. How can they condone a government that acts this way? As staunch champions of wisdom and learning, surely they can find a solution that does not depend on elimination.
As dozens fall to sniper bullets and thousands are maimed for life, the offspring of the American president, bloated by their own self-importance, parade in Jerusalem at the newly moved US embassy in a ceremony presided over by a racist preacher chosen by the US administration, who has publicly stated he hates Muslims, Jews, Catholics and LGBT people. Americans, are you not ashamed to be represented by such people? You who pride yourself on being the First Nation, the bastion of democracy, the country of opportunity, you who are the staunch defenders of freedom of speech, why do you not speak out against these sons of the rich who rub shoulders, all smiles on their lips, with people who have ordered this carnage?
That these appointed representatives of the American government turn their backs on the nearby slaughter perpetrated by their ‘gracious’ hosts is not surprising. Trump and his rich cronies have turned their backs on the millions of poor and needy in their own country that are the victims or the products of the ‘American Dream’. They have cut back on schools, on healthcare, on housing, on environmental protection, targeting those who need them most. They have rewarded corporate greed, granting unfettered irresponsibility that leaves the poor and the down-and-outs all the more impoverished. The Trumpian administration wages war on immigrants, many of whom have been living for years in the country. Others arrive at the border in distressing circumstances. Have the American people forgotten they are all immigrants on somebody else’s land? Encouraged by the discourse of this administration, the police freely gun down people of colour at the slightest pretext. The administration disenfranchises women by outlawing abortion and birth control while their leader sets an example that woman can be sexually abused with impunity. They seek to harass the LGBT community, relegating them to third class citizens unprotected against the scorn and hatred of everyday extremists. And the list goes on. When are the American people going to rise up and say “No!” to the politics of elimination and exclusion? Vote, say the valorous students of Parkland. Yes. They are right. But if neither of the two parties is capable of bringing change then it is time to form a new one.
Oliver Holmes & Hazem Balousha, The Guardian, Israel faces outcry over Gaza killings during Jerusalem embassy protests
Martin Pengelly, The Guardian, Pastor who prayed at embassy opening is ‘a religious bigot’, says Mitt Romney
Sharif Abdel Kouddous & Amy Goodman, Democracy Now! Gaza: Israeli Soldiers Kill 50+ Palestinians Protesting Nonviolently as U.S. Opens Jerusalem Embassy