Things left unsaid
August 22, 2008
In a recent letter to the editor, Jerome Marks criticizes those of us speaking up for the rights of the Palestinian people because we don’t mention their transgressions against Israeli civilians, yet I have never seen one letter by the defenders of Israel denouncing Israeli transgressions against Palestinian civilians.
Marks and friends are quick to list every violent act by a Palestinian, but not once have they mentioned the violence by Jewish settlers and soldiers in Israeli occupied Palestine. They never mention that to make way for Jewish-only roads and towns, Palestinian families are evicted and their homes and olive groves are bulldozed, creating on average 10,000 new Palestinian refugees every year. They never mention the daily incidents involving Jewish settlers throwing stones at Palestinian children on their way to school or the story of 12-year-old Ahmed Khatib who was shot dead by Israeli soldiers in the occupied city of Jenin and whose father donated his son’s organs to save the lives of Israeli children because the Palestinian hospital lacked the facilities to treat their dying son or make use of his organs.
“Extreme-propaganda” Jews are strangely silent after the July 29th killing by the Israeli army of a 10-year-old Palestinian boy who was attending a protest against Israel’s construction of the Apartheid Wall across Arab land. In their recent letters Jerome Marks, Judy Kava and Buster Feldman had nothing to say about the two Palestinians who were injured when Israeli settlers attacked a Palestinian wedding ceremony.
Similarly, they have nothing to say about continued illegal Jewish settlement building in the West Bank despite stern condemnation by international leaders and humanitarian organizations. Or about the unethical and immoral apartheid situation the occupation has created which a visiting black South African delegation recently described as far worse than what they experienced. This is basically what makes everything extremist Jews say less than credible, why they have lost all support by objective and informed people and why their words carry so little weight.
Jerome Marks and others of the extremist view see only Palestinians as wrong. It is always a one-sided argument. In part, this is based on holding the Palestinians suffering under a 40-year occupation to impossibly high standards, while holding Israel to no standards at all. As if anyone in the Palestinian’s circumstances would do better.
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The Palestinians are under military occupation. Has there ever been a “nice” occupation?
To quote Jerome Marks; “All of this self-righteous moralizing and biased condemnation is hypocritical, to say the least. Totally one-sided arguments, such as some of the recent letters, can rightfully be classified as propaganda.” They say the harshest criticism comes from those who are guilty of the same thing they are accusing others of. Thank you Jerome for the unique glimpse you’ve given us into your own soul.