Thursday, January 15, 2009
Pundits: Not My Idea of Heros
Israel has a history of knocking off Palestinian leaders and thinkers . . . Ghassan Kanafani ring a bell? Kamel Nasir, the poet shot by Ehud Barak in drag? Mubarak Awad advocated non-violent resistance during the first intifadeh, and he was expelled from the country. Dr. Hanan Ashrawi has faced bullets as has Dr. Mustapha Barghouti. Ever hear of the village of Beit Sahour? Well, it has a long history of non-violent resistance,but Israel still helps itself to its village lands. The villagers in Bil'in have non-violent protests every Friday, but that doesn't stop the Israelis from raiding their houses, intimidating their leaders, and shooting at the demonstrators. It really is morally repugnant to divert attention from the wholesale slaughter going on in Gaza right now, but that doesn't stop myriads of writers hoping to capitalize on Palestinian suffering . Hard at it is for many to fathom, Palestinians come in all shapes, sizes, and are of many different political persuasions. Hamas plays a very small part in the history of the Palestinian struggle. There was no Hamas when 531 Palestinian villages were razed to the ground by Israel between 1948-1960 and when half of its population was expelled in 1948 before any Arab army took part in the conflict. Look at the whole picture and the Zionists' plan for the land without the people is clear. Ashkelon, and Sderot are built on the ruins of Palestinian villages. Many of the refugees were expelled and ended up in Gaza; they still are the legal owners of the land. This is the root of the conflict; Palestinian refugees and their descendents have the right to return to their homes, just as I, although employed in Germany, have the right to return to my native California whenever I feel like it.