Empire before human needs

Brian McFadden

Which soldier is the hero?

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Bradley Manning with his escort

I’m thankful today…

…because one of Uncle Sam’s drones has yet to put a cap in my ass. Some, however, have not been that lucky.

Cease-fire in Gaza

The New York Times reports:

Gazans poured into the streets declaring victory against the far more powerful Israeli military. In Israel, the public reaction was far more subdued. Many residents in the south expressed doubt that the agreement would hold, partly because at least five Palestinian rockets thudded into southern Israel after the cease-fire began.

The Times, putting into practice its vaunted ‘balanced journalistic practices,’ failed to report what the Gazan’s expected from Israel, whether the cease-fire would hold, for how long and for what reasons. Nor did the Times question the origin of the conflict — Israel’s occupation of Palestinian land. The report mostly reflected the foreign policy requirements of the Obama government.

Recommended: The Limits of Israeli Belligerence

Dina Jadallah wrote:

One can watch the latest Israeli assault on Gaza and become overwhelmed with the enormity of the destruction, the loss of human life (one-third of whom are children), and the indiscriminate and disproportionate use of asymmetric power by an occupying state against one million and seven hundred thousand people (mostly refugees) living under an embargo for several years.

On the other hand, one can watch the latest assault and marvel at the resistance, the power of human will, the high morale of a steadfast population that is determined to return to their usurped lands. More importantly, one can be reassured because the people in Gaza are ahead of their leaders, while their resistance is inflicting real damage on their enemy.

The latest conflict might be an inflection point in the struggle, especially if its achievements are employed wisely in order to achieve politically strategic goals such as the lifting of the embargo, a halt to colonies / “settlements, and so forth.

Despite the skewed balance of raw muscular power in Israel’s favor, how is it that it cannot even win what was (wrongly) projected to be a brief and spectacular skirmish that would boost the political fortunes of Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu and his Minister of Defense, Ehud Barak?

Zohan, like his good friend, Uncle Sam, possesses a vast and ever-increasing military advantage over those he would dominate. But also like Uncle Sam, Zohan mostly fails to achieve the political goals he seeks. Zohan has already lost his latest battle. The imprisoned Palestinians refuse to yield. They continue to fight back, to resist this compelling force. That is his defeat in a nutshell. Zohan now needs a cease-fire settlement as much as the peopled interred in his Gaza prison-land.

When we consider a situation like this one, we should always keep this thought in mind: “You can do anything with bayonets except sit on them,” a maxim attributed variously to Talleyrand, Thomas Hardy, Napoleon I and Bismarck.

Jimmy Carter calls out the Israeli imperialists

Elisabeth Braw of Metro International posed the following question to Jimmy Carter:

President Obama says he supports a Palestinian state, but even so there’s a deadlock. Does it take even more than the support of a US President to get a Palestinian state?

Carter’s answer:

I think the big change is that the Israeli leaders have decided to abandon the two-state solution. Their policy now is to confiscate Palestinian territory, and they’ve announced publicly that it the Palestinians have to recognize not just Israel but Israel as a Jewish state, even though 20% of the Israeli community are non-Jews. Netanyahu has also decided that even the Jordan valley has to be under Israeli control. So, those factors indicate quite clearly that Netanyahu has decided that the two-state solution is not what he wants. He wants what is being called Greater Israel, Eretz Israel. That’s a new development, and I think everyone recognizes this.

Zohan does battle with a terrorist