November 11, 2006

US Vetoes UN Resolution Condemning Israel - Again.

A resolution was proposed today by Qatar in the Security Council condemning Israel for the murder of 18 Palestinians and as expected the United States vetoed the proposal. US vote was the only dissenting one. Britain, Denmark, Japan, and Slovakia abstained. The proposal also called on Israel to end its occupation of Gaza.

This is almost the 40th time in the past 35 years that US has used its veto power in the security council to reject any measure that is critical of Israel. This latest instance is particularly egregious. The whole world condemned the reckless killing of innocent civilians. Even Israel admitted the mistake and apologized. But the United States somehow thought that condemning them for this or calling on them to end the illegal occupation of Gaza is not "even-handed characterization", in the words of John Bolton, the US ambassador to the UN. That is in fact true. There can not possibly be any even-handed characterization or a stand not biased against Israel, if one is to be factual. Such are the facts.

The point is that US or Israel do not give a damn about Palestinian lives. If they are lost it is only due to an unfortunate error. Well, there have been too many errors. More than 60 have died in the last ten days. Many of those alive, children who are suddenly left orphans and adults who lost their children, will suffer emotional damages for years to come. There are real people killed and real lives destroyed. This hardly makes an impression on the forces that are causing this mammoth human catastrophe.

And the world has been trained to look away. Everything can be explained and even justified with clever public relations tricks. Even mercilessly killing thousands of people and perpetuating violence in the name of peace. Israel says it has to kill terrorists. So they will attack their hideouts.

But in Gaza there is no place that isn't near residences, that is free of children and mothers, of unemployed people who fill the alleys and of young people without hope. Everyone sees everyone else, everyone helps everyone else to the best of his ability. Because there is no other way out. [Link]

It is incredibly ridiculous to believe that Israel can achieve peace and security by their current policies. What will be the reaction of a passionate and weak individual amid this destruction of everything he cares for by an all too powerful state. He is amazingly defenseless against it. It is only natural that he will seek vengeance in a cowardly and self-defeating manner. It is a most evident moral truism that an eye for an eye makes the whole world blind. This sequence of violence has to stop. But who should take the first step. Obviously the side which is overwhelmingly stronger and which systematically tries to control the lives of the other side while illegally occupying their land.

That however will not happen unless the most powerful country in the world stops lending it uncritical support and refrains from hypocritical vetoes at the UN.

Update: I just read this article No one is guilty in Israel by Gideon Levy. It stresses the real issues forcefully and demands that responsibility must be taken by "flesh-and-blood human beings" for the killings of Palestinians. It also laments the "yawning indifference" of Israeli society.


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