predictability

Funerals in Lebanon are taking place as the bodies (bones, really) of the martyrs are distributed among families and political parties. On Al Jadeed TV last night they noted that there are 9 bodies that seem to be missing; they are the bodies of Communist resistance fighters. A complete list of names of the almost 200 martyrs returned to Lebanon has yet to be released, though I hope this happens soon. They need to be remembered, humanized, named.

Meanwhile, I want to know what exactly is going on in Nablus. I’m not sure if I’m just more attuned to what is happening there at the moment, but it seems to me that over the past week or so an inordinate number of attacks and people kidnapped there has escalated and been far higher than any other area at the present moment. These attacks are coming from both illegal Israeli settlers as well as Israeli Occupation Forces. Here is a sampling of the headlines:

Israeli settlers launch a home made shell at O’rta village in Nablus City

Palestinian legislators criticize Israeli abduction of female legislator

The Israeli Army kidnaps 8 civilians and confiscates an institution in Nablus

The Israeli army shoots 2 civilians and kidnaps 12 in Nablus city

The Israeli army kidnaps 15 civilians in the West Bank city of Nablus

The Israeli army kidnaps 30 civilians from Nablus city

Of course other attacks in Palestinian villages and cities is ongoing. But this is the face of Israeli terrorism today. This terrorism that has existed for over 120 years. That was the catalyst for resistance operations like those of the returning martyrs to Lebanon. But interestingly, last week historical document of Jewish terrorism (pre-statehood) was found and is being auctioned in England. The pamphlet reads in part:

Irgun propaganda targeted the British Army’s wavering morale, already dented by the bomb attack on the Mandate’s headquarters – the King David Hotel in Jerusalem – which killed 91 people.

In the document, Irgun tells British troops: “It is unavoidable that many Jewish soldiers and many British soldiers should fall. And it is only fair that these people know at least why they may be killed.”

It adds: “Most of you have been in this country for quite a long time. You have learned what the word ‘terrorist’ means, some of you may even have come into direct contact with them (and heartily desire not to repeat the experience). But what do you know about them? Why does a young man go underground?”

It then draws a parallel with what would have happened if, seven years earlier, Britain had been overrun by Nazi Germany. “Remember 1940. Then it seemed quite possible that your island country would be conquered and subjugated by Hitler hordes . . . what would you have done? Would you have gone underground?” The pamphlet says that the occupation is “illegal and immoral” and “parallel to the mass assassination of a whole people”, in language that echoes that used on a note pinned to the booby-trapped bodies of two British intelligence officers executed by Irgun that same summer.

I saw PM Gordan Brown on Al Jazeera this week speaking in Jerusalem–in the King David Hotel of all places. Of course he didn’t mention the hotel’s history nor these documents being auctioned off in his country.

And I wonder what it is that Barack Obama will say in Palestine this week when he visits. Will he be predictable and pull a Hillary and become even more of a soul-less human being by condoning settlement expansion, Israeli Occupation Forces brutal regime? Will he look at the 25 foot Apartheid Wall and declare it is for Israel’s “security”? Human Rights Watch issued an open letter to him asking him not to fall into these traps:

Human Rights Watch urged Obama, the Illinois senator and US presidential candidate, to support a new approach to Israel, the Occupied Palestinian Territories, and Jordan by conditioning relevant portions of US financial aid on each government’s compliance with international human rights law. Each has committed serious abuses of human rights that US government policies have insufficiently addressed.

“Senator Obama should signal to all parties in the region that, to avoid complicity, the US government will cut aid that is funding continuing breaches of international human rights law,” said Kenneth Roth, executive director of Human Rights Watch.

Those abuses include the continued expansion of settlements in the West Bank and illegal blockade of the Gaza Strip by Israel, indiscriminate rocket fire at Israeli civilian areas by Gaza-based Palestinian groups, numerous instances of torture of prisoners by both Palestinian and Jordanian security forces, and significant new legal restrictions on independent nongovernmental organizations in Jordan.

Unfortunately, I suspect Obama will be predictable.

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