Blockading the Truth
Israel has imprisoned the people of Gaza in a stateless limbo while carefully controlling almost every aspect of their lives, including what medicines they can have, what manufacturing and building materials they are allowed and even, at times, how much food they are allowed to eat to keep the population weakened but just above malnutrition levels, writes CHRIS FLOYD.
At that time, we were told in many news reports about an Israeli ‘crackdown’ in Gaza, including mass arrests, military operations and, finally, the killing of six Hamas members. It was after these operations and these killings – which were clear breaches of a ceasefire which Hamas had been honoring for nineteen months – that Hamas began its retaliation against Israel’s unprovoked attacks.t is simply a lie that Israel’s [recent] slaughter in Gaza is a response to an ‘unprovoked attack’ by Hamas. Not only is it a lie, it is a transparent, brazen lie, whose falsehood is glaringly apparent to anyone who had given even a cursory look at coverage of the Israeli government’s response to the murder of three Israeli teenagers in June 2014.
(And no, the murder of the teenagers was not a ‘provocation’ by Hamas, which disclaimed all connection to the crime. It was almost certainly carried out by a rogue clan which has often – conveniently – staged provocations whenever it seems that some small movement toward peace might be made, and has been a thorn in Hamas’ side for a long time. What’s more, as Max Blumenthal reported, the Israeli government knew the teenagers had been murdered almost immediately, and who the likely culprits were; but the Netanyahu regime chose to wage a worldwide campaign of mendacity – and torment the boys’ parents – by claiming they might still be alive, and launching ‘search’ missions for them.)
These are all undisputed facts. The narrative that dominates the Washington media and political discourse – ‘plucky Israel attacked without motive by demonic foes’ – is, again, an obvious lie. But that has not stopped it from being repeated endlessly, all across the political spectrum and in every form of media, day after day after day.
It is impossible that Barack Obama does not know these undisputed facts. Standing at the apex of history’s most all-pervasive intelligence system – and receiving daily digests of news reports on volatile areas like the Middle East – he, of all people, knows that the Hamas rocket fire was a response to an Israeli military action, an Israeli violation of a long ceasefire.
It is also impossible that a majority, if not all, of the 100 U.S. Senators who voted to endorse the Israeli slaughter in Gaza – including stalwart ‘progressives’ like Al Franken and ‘socialist’ Bernie Sanders – did not know the truth when they cast their ballots. It is impossible that the editors and reporters of the nation’s leading media organizations do not know these facts – which they themselves reported only a few weeks ago.
Yet, day after day after day, from the commanding heights of our ‘culture’ (if the debased goon-show of our public discourse deserves such a word), the Big Lie thunders forth. What’s more, Obama is putting his money (or rather, our money) where his mendacious mouth is, tacking $225 million for Israel’s ‘Iron Dome’ missile defense system into a bill ostensibly meant to deal with the influx of child immigrants.
Obama and the Senate Democrats are making political pawns out of these children – most of whom are fleeing Central American hellholes created in no small part by decades of bipartisan military and political backing for repressive oligarchs (including, of course, Obama’s support for an oligarch-militarist ‘regime-change’ coup in Honduras early in his Presidency).
With the new money for Israel’s military, the Democrats hope to sucker the Republicans into voting for the emergency immigration bill (from which they cut $1 billion – hey, you don’t want to coddle those kids!), or else put them in a political bind if the immigrant-hating GOP votes against the bill: “You aren’t supporting plucky little Israel!”
Israel has imprisoned the people of Gaza in a stateless limbo while carefully controlling almost every aspect of their lives, including what medicines they can have, what manufacturing and building materials they are allowed and even, at times, how much food they are allowed to eat to keep the population weakened but just above malnutrition levels. This brutal regimen in daily life is, of course, punctuated with regular night-raids, bombings, kidnappings, ‘disappearings’ and almost weekly civilians deaths at the hands of Israeli overseers. This has gone on year after year.
Eban said Israel was justified in retaliating with military force when Egypt had blockaded a port for a few weeks. How much more justified would the Palestinians be in retaliating against a total blockade – by land, sea and air – that has lasted almost eight years?
I don’t agree with lobbing missiles into cities. I believe it’s wrong. But I also realize that I have the great luxury of pondering these moral and legal and philosophical questions at my leisure, in comfort and safety. I haven’t seen my family half-starved, my children’s growth stunted, my friends and relatives blown to bits. I haven’t been trapped in stateless limbo, with no passport, no freedom, no opportunity, under threat of violent death or arbitrary arrest every moment of my life.
I don’t know what I would do if that was my reality. I don’t know what I’d do if I saw my loved ones suffer that way, year after year. I might somehow hold on to the ideal of non-violent resistance – or I very well might not.