For Those Who Think Palestine is Free


A free country is not cut up by walls policed by another country.

Calling it a separation barrier doesn’t change what it is. It’s a walled enclosure around Palestinian lands.

Neither does shooting Palestinians who come near it. Samir Ahmed Awad was the 4th in 5 days.

The barriers must come down. When people like Pat Condell say that “Palestinians are all evil and wish for the destruction of Israel” he ignores these people. A 17 year old kid who died because he tried to run from troops who he threw stones at. And two farmers who were shot on their own land. And a man whose only wish was to earn a living which he cannot because his country is cut up by walls. If you cannot see why Palestinians are angry then think of life in a country where you have no rights because you basically live in really big cages.

I mean Separation Barriers. Because if you call it walls then you imply that Palestinians live in ghettoes, and history suggests that treating a group of people like that doesn’t end well.

Now if you excuse me I should go back to imbibing inscribed information from a bleached cellulose parchment and perusing the internet for a portable computational device.

Comments

  1. slc1 says

    Mr. avicenna seems to have a selective memory. He has apparently forgotten why the security fence was put up in the first place. The purpose is to prevent Palestinian terrorist homicide bombers from coming into Israeli cities and blowing up pizza parlors. And it has been quite effective in that regard as such incidents have been greatly reduced.

    Incidentally, the Palestinians should be thankful they are on the West Bank, as inconvenient as their situation is. Their compatriots in Syria are in much worse case, where over 800 have been killed since the uprising began. That’s several times more then were killed in both Gaza Strip actions by the IDF combined. The Syrian armed forces don’t bother with precision munitions, like the IDF does. They just apply Hama Rules.

  2. =8)-DX says

    @slc1 So you agree with everything in the piece except that it didn’t put loads of emphasis on Palestinian suicide bombers and terrorists? Because fear of what enraged murderers might do is all that this discussion is about?

    You do know what the goal of terrorists is, right?

  3. Igor says

    “You do know what the goal of terrorists is, right?”

    At first I thought it was to educate about the importance of explosives safety. But now i think their goals might be much more sinister. I suppose the immediate goal of every terrorist is to inflict a long lasting emotional wound that outlasts any loss of life or damage actually inflicted, to wit, terrorize. I suppose a more indirect goal might be to effectuate some desired ideological,, cultural, social, economic, etc. change against an overwhelming military and political might of the status qup. In essence it’s a guerrilla tactic.

    Fortunately, safety measures such as barefoot walks through the metal detectors and perfectly harmless low level gamma radiation to check the contents of my undergarments make us safe from bad terrorists, as well as any travel comfort or retention of dignity.

    However one addresses the respective claims to that holy piece of drywall worth killing for, surely a country has a right to put a giant wall on it’s border. Sure it’s foolish, wasteful, and detrimental to the cut off territory, but at least they don’t resort to the economic sanctions which create an invisible wall of even greater devastation.

  4. says

    You have to realise one thing.

    The Palestinians don’t see Israel as an entity, they seem them as invaders. These are effectively a bunch of Europeans who have displaced them from their homes.The people who lost their homes to the Israelis are still alive. West Bank isn’t “home”. Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and pretty much the entire Israel is “home”. They are a bunch of “White” people who showed up to take all their shit and then have the temerity to make the moronic claim that their ancestors used to live there. That’s like rounding up the population of New York to go live in a refugee camp because the Native Americans suffered “buyers remorse” and want their land back.

    If a powerful alien race were to appear and demand that their chosen people (the native Americans) be restored to the USA and then take all the non-native americans and throw them into a refugee camp, would people in the USA fight back? What? White guys can get mad about losing their homes to space aliens but Palestinians cannot to real Israelis?

    The Palestinian suicide bomber is a symptom of a problem. And that problem is that Europeans and Americans circa 1940 to 50 were “proper racist”. They gave no fucks about the Palestinians and repeatedly demonstrated how few fucks they gave about them by repeatedly backing some very dubious Israel stunts. When Israel pulled off a “first strike” it was called a pre-emptive strike and tactical genius. When Saddam did it, it was mindless aggression of a monster.

    You think Israel has a right to exist. I think that the formation of Israel was one of the stupidest plans on the planet because any one with an ounce of any understanding of human beings would have grasped the end result. I think Palestine has an equal right to exist and a better claim to the land that is now Israel. For fuck’s sake, I have a better claim to that land than the Israeli claim of “It was our ancestor’s land according to this religious text”.

    So to recap… Palestinians already see Israel as some sort of invader taking all their stuff (because that totally happened) but also see them adhering to double standards (When Israel massacres Palestinians they don’t get sent to the Hague. Also the illegal settlements and fences are involved in taking what little stuff they have.

    They aren’t free to travel in their own country, they cannot vote for who they want and they get shot trying to make a living. This is what breeds anger. To the Palestinian, a suicide bomber is not a terrorist but a freedom fighter, because that’s what they want.

    In addition I should tell Greta and Jen to stop fighting for women’s rights in the USA because it could be worse, they could be living in Rajasthan (Shoes!? Fuck shoes! Boys get to wear shoes! You are lucky we didn’t drown you in a well!). Ian Cromwell should stop complaining about racism because he could be living in Ukraine (Neo Nazis were filmed at a major football match giving out the olde nazi salute just prior to last year’s Euro Cup Football Tournament). Or he could be living in the DRC where AIDS and Diarrhoea are a lot more pressing issues than what western culture thinks about the colour of people’s skin.

    That’s the fucking attitude that got us into this mess in the first fucking place. Palestinians shouldn’t complain! In the 1900s we would have just machine gunned the lot of them while wearing some really jaunty shorts. Aren’t you lucky we magnanimous brits didn’t do that?

    There are two solutions to the problem.

    Either we recognise Palestine as a nation and provide it with an equal level of development and pay war reparations for the losses incurred since the formation of Israel. Also to pay for the loss of their old homes we give Jerusalem to them under a UN mandate that Jerusalem’s Jewish monuments are to be protected and Jews and Muslims both have free travel through the city.

    Or we have to dissolve Israel as a Jewish state and make it a secular nation giving Palestinians equal rights as Israeli citizens along with reparations and other financial assistance. I don’t know… Call it Phoenicia or what have you.

    To keep supporting Israel blindly is to keep supporting the cause for the instability.

  5. A Hermit says

    I was going to say something about how I support Israel’s right to exist now that they are there; but I do not support their “right” to expand their borders with illegal settlements and fortified barriers that restrict the free movement of goods (including water) and people., but I think I’ll just say “what Avicenna said…”

  6. slc1 says

    Re Avicenna @ #4

    The Palestinians don’t see Israel as an entity, they seem them as invaders. These are effectively a bunch of Europeans who have displaced them from their homes.

    1. How about the Jews who were expelled from Arab countries after 1948, which numbers were about equal to the number of Arabs who were expelled from what is now Israel? Obviously, they don’t count to folks like Mr. Avicenna.

    2. Some 2 million ethnic Germans were expelled from the Sudetenland after WW2 and displaced by Czechs and Slovakians. That’s more then twice the number of Arabs who were expelled from what is now Israel. Don’t see Mr. Avicenna nattering on about that.

    3. That’s how Native Americans felt about European settlers.

    Either we recognize Palestine as a nation and provide it with an equal level of development and pay war reparations for the losses incurred since the formation of Israel.

    And, of course, Mr. Avicenna also demands that the Jews who were expelled from places like Iraq similarly be paid war reparations for their losses. I won’t hold my breath.

    In addition I should tell Greta and Jen to stop fighting for women’s rights in the USA because it could be worse, they could be living in Rajasthan (Shoes!? Fuck shoes! Boys get to wear shoes!

    Rather interesting that Mr. Avicenna compares girls wearing shoes with the mass murder occurring in Syria.

    By the way, Palestinian President Abbas has refused to accept Palestinian refugees fleeing the Assad kleptocracy in Syria. How about commenting on that Mr. Avicenna?

    By the way, Mr. Avicenna describes himself as a native of India, currently studying medicine there. I seem to recall that millions of Muslims and Hindus were displaced after the Indian subcontinent was divided between what is now Pakistan and Bangladesh and India. Those numbers make the number of Arabs and Jews displaced in what is now Israel and various Arab countries look like pretty small potatoes indeed.

  7. Brian M says

    So slc1…

    Your basic arguments (which you pontificate about endlessly on every single atheist website. Which I don;t understand because Israel is increasingly beholden to theocratic nuts as bad as any Salafi terrorist*) is that there are other crimes, completely unrelated to the original post, so we should ignore the crimes of the increasingly xenophobic and religiously extreme* Israeli state? A State based definitionally on a blood-and soil racism that is unsustainable given the history of the territory for CENTURIES.

    That makes plenty of sense to me, yep! yep!

    We’ll just ignore Israeli actions because Assad is a bastard?**

    Heck, the South African Xhosa living under Apartheid could have been living in Ethiopia so they should have just SHUT UP and thanked the Boers for their oppression!

    *I mean…we all like to discuss the horrors of Salafi Islam. The haradim are almost as bad.

    **Especially since Israel receives billions in direct aid from the United States government while engaged in pretty blatant espionage and direct attacks on U.S. military vessels. How can Israeli-enablers then demand that Americans make no comments about their garrison state’s actions?

  8. says

    The Palestinians don’t see Israel as an entity, they seem them as invaders. These are effectively a bunch of Europeans who have displaced them from their homes.

    1. I will quote Gandhi and say here that an eye for an eye makes the whole world blind. The expulsion of Jews was done because of the partition of Palestine and the refusal to let Palestinians back to their homes. (AKA Other way around… they behaved badly in response to western colonialism). AGAIN here the trigger point was the formation of Israel at the cost of Palestinians. In addition roughly 800,000 to 1,000,000 people were displaced. And it was roughly the same numbers at the TIME, as time progressed more and more Palestinians were displaced. Again the fault lies squarely in the idiots who thought that Israel was a great idea.

    2. I lived in Prague for 3 years, I am aware of the nature of the Sudetenland expulsions. That has nothing to do with Israel and Palestine. For starters last I heard Germany was free to elect whoever it wanted and it’s populations didn’t have to live in fenced off areas. Nor are Germans shot out of hand when they approach borders or just work in their fields. Germany has some restrictions on the usage of it’s army but apart from that Germany is Independent and free. In addition this situation is an entirely different one and we may as well argue the price of fish. At the time it was excused and indeed tolerated by Germans because the full realisation of the horrors of the Nazi movement had sunk in, but in retrospect it was the rule of mob rather than the rule of common sense. Again I repeat, this is an entirely different issue powered by the post war hatred of Germans due to the Nazis while Palestine was split up because quite frankly no one really cared for Arabs.

    3. Yes, and the treatment of Native Americans has gone down in history as an all round bad thing. The white man was not the “Good Guy”, the Cowboy is the Villain of the piece. The USA was the “baddies” in that. The fact is just tragic that people have forgotten the treatment of Native Americans but at least they are still capable of pointing that out without people jumping in protecting Manifest Destiny or portraying all of them as shiftless firewater addicts.

    The Jews expelled from Iraq were given housing and benefits from the Israeli state while the original inhabitants got precisely dick. In addition the state of Israel gets all sorts of cool things from the USA while the state of Palestine does not. The Israelis expelled have the right to vote and a good 25% of them have settled in the USA and UK and other European nations as citizens while Palestinians were NOT given that right to settle. They got sent to refugee camps and stayed in refugee camps for a very very long time.

    And no, I didn’t compare the wearing of shoes. I compared the existence of women in India. It is estimated that in the past 20 years 50 million female babies were killed through disease, negligence, infanticide and gender selection. Women in places like Rajasthan don’t get to survive all that well and those that do, don’t have a great life. Your “Do Not Whine” argument is like asking western women to not want things because women in Rajasthan have it “rough”. You made a terrible argument, an argument that equates to “We won’t ever listen to Palestinians”. What do you think causes a young man to blow himself up?

    Again… Are you seriously incapable of differentiating between a politician and the people they are from? Am I to assume that based on GW Bush all Americans are ignorant Bible Thumpers who think the world is 6000 years old? No. Because people are what counts..

    No. President Abbas didn’t refuse to accept Palestinian refugees. There is no Palestine border with Syria! There is however an Israeli border and do you remember all those fences? Rather hard to cross them without Israeli permission. Especially considering they shoot people who come near them…

    Abbas approached Ban Ki Moon (UN Secretary General) With regards to offering Palestinians fleeing the conflict a place in Palestine. Ban negotiated on his behalf. The Israeli response can be paraphrased as….

    “Sure, but only if they give up their claims to their old property in Israel and stop arguing for a right to return”.

    Also? Palestine doesn’t have the resources to care for these people (it barely has the resources to care for itself courtesy of Israeli economic blockades) and no one was willing to help them with that. It’s better for these refugees to go to Lebanon or Jordan where the refugee camps there are better equipped and not subject to the whims of Israeli borders.

    In short? Israel blackmailed Abbas and he was always going to say no to something he and the Palestinians had been fighting for decades.

    And I am a Native of the United Kingdom. Indian is a Nationality and an Ethnicity.

    And the millions and millions of people who were displaced by the partition lead to some of the biggest tragedies in the history of mankind with more than a million people dead from the riots that ensued and countless more injured or dead from the hate that followed. It has cost India thousands and thousands and was arguably a terrible decision, however India, Pakistan and Bangladesh are now free. Palestine is not. It’s not the same situation. Remember how I said your second point was a terrible one? This is just as bad. For pretty much the same reason. Not relevant to a discussion about Israel and Palestine.

    Again… Saying “Other people’s problems are worse” is a stupid way of saying things.

    What you are doing is something I like to call “Yorkshiremanning”. Which is a reference to the Yorkshiremen Sketch from Monty Python. Where you cannot complain because each of them has a story that gets progressively worse. Which is nonsense, there are worse things out there than “Palestinians and Israelis” but you know what? Palestinians got to this state because we used your argument to denigrate their concerns for decades.

    The only time we listen to them was when they were blowing themselves up.

  9. slc1 says

    Re Avicennia @ #8

    “Sure, but only if they give up their claims to their old property in Israel and stop arguing for a right to return”.

    A perfectly reasonable request; the Jews expelled from Arab countries aren’t demanding a right of return.

    Also? Palestine doesn’t have the resources to care for these people (it barely has the resources to care for itself courtesy of Israeli economic blockades) and no one was willing to help them with that. It’s better for these refugees to go to Lebanon or Jordan where the refugee camps there are better equipped and not subject to the whims of Israeli borders.

    Apparently, Mr. Avicennia is unaware of the fact they they are being denied entry into Jordan and Lebanon also.

    By the way, Palestinian refugees from Libya were allowed into the West Bank via mutual agreement between Abbas and Netanyahu during the action to overthrow Qaddafi.

    India, Pakistan and Bangladesh are now free. Palestine is not. It’s not the same situation.

    The Palestinians have had numerous opportunities over the years to have an independent state, including most recently in negotiations between Abbas and Olmert. They have turned down all such opportunities because of their refusal to give up the non-existent right of return. No Israeli Government will agree to any such proposal, and, if it did, it would be removed from power in short order. If Mr. avicenna finds that to be unacceptable, as the Palestinians have so far done, tough bananas.

    Also? Palestine doesn’t have the resources to care for these people (it barely has the resources to care for itself courtesy of Israeli economic blockades) and no one was willing to help them with that

    A fair point, but I would wager that the US, Canada, and the EU would be willing to help out if Abbas and Netanyahu were to come to some agreement on the issue.

    Incidentally, the situation in Syria, which is deteriorating almost daily, should be of great concern to all the nations in the area. If and when the Assad kleptocracy is ousted from power, unless there is an international force inserted into the country to restore order, the resulting chaos has the potential for a mass slaughter and millions of refugees, as the opponents of the regime exact their retribution for its crimes. The Israel/Palestinian problem will pale into insignificance if this comes about.

    Arguing about whether the creation of the State of Israel was a great idea 60 years later is like arguing whether the creation of the State of Poland was a great idea after WW1. We are where we are and we have to live with it, like it or not. Of course, Stalin and Frankenberger weren’t willing to live with it in 1939 and we see what that led to.

  10. says

    1. Yeah this is why Palestinians are fucking livid. What? Jews get to have their traditional land but not fucking Palestinians who have lived there for centuries? That’s not a reasonable request, that’s the request of someone who is willing to blackmail desperate Palestinians. Israel are clearly wrong and this was an attempt to not pay out any money or return the property of people who are refugees. Israel actually states explicitly that any deals with any arab nation have to involve damages for the Jews who were expelled. So no. Israel are basically stating “one rule for Jews, one for Palestinians”.

    2. If you think that’s perfectly reasonable then you have no idea what reasonable is.

    3. Do you have the resources to care for 7000 odd people? I don’t and I fucking work in rural care. 7000 people would absolutely destroy my system.

    And amusingly enough reports say that nearly 20,000 palestinian refugees have been taken in by Lebanon alone. So making your statement incorrect. Maybe they have hit the limit because you know… just blindly shoving people into refugee camps doesn’t work…

    4. Every single negotiation has not involved the destruction of the fence nor has it involved the total removal of the illegal settlements or “corridors”. In addition Israel demands control of airspace. What part of “free” do you not understand? Free doesn’t mean “Free but we get to keep soldiers here and divide your country up with fences”. That’s not free, that’s an insult to the word “freedom”.

    5. The fact you used the word tough bananas is precisely why Palestinians hate Israel. Because you have no empathy. Nothing. They have lost their homes. Do you know what it’s like to be a refugee? Do you even know how Israel treats them? I was born in Kuwait. I was a refugee once. You get one bag, not a suitcase, a bag. It’s all you can carry. Your entire life fits there. Your money, your documents your clothes. If someone says “Your house belonged to Native Americans, fuck off or die” you would get such a bag and leave. All your stuff is now part of someone else’s possessions. Tough Bananas is why we we have the UNHCR which cares for people.

    Then it’s simple… The people of Israel should be FORCED to accept the Palestinians. What? It’s fine to pay Israel billions of dollars in fancy weaponry to blow up Palestinians but not to place conditions on the usage of such? I am sorry? We did the same to South Africa when it was saying “Tough Bananas” to Mandela. Thank goodness people didn’t accept Tough Bananas or black people would still be drinking from different drinking fountains and Indians would still not be allowed to ride first class. on trains. Good thing Gandhi and King thought Tough Bananas could go fuck itself eh?

    Not if people are still running around claiming that the State of Israel was necessary because the myriad of reasons each stupider than the next. IF we don’t admit that the creation of Israel was stupid we won’t be able to think of alternatives.

    Israel will not tolerate an equal Palestine. And Palestinians want to go home. Their real homes. The ones they lived in. The ones that they were forced out off. They want those back. The best solution is the dissolution of both. It solves the problem of return, it solves the problem of illegal settlements and it gives real power to the Palestinians.

    Otherwise they will keep throwing rocks and firing rockets because that’s the only thing they have left. They don’t want to settle. American? Look at your currency. The people on them are not people who “settled”.

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