Madinat al-Muslimeen Islamic Message Board
|Eliminate unjust policies|
|10/09/00 at 16:09:27|
Eliminate unjust policies
Published in The Orlando Sentinel on October 05, 2000
The Israeli Army admitted that it killed 12-year-old Mohammad Jemal al-Durah as he
huddled next to his father on a street in Gaza.
Thanks to a brave cameraman for French television, the boy's death was recorded and
has been broadcast around the world. The boy now forever will be a symbol of Israeli
The Israeli soldiers also killed an ambulance driver trying to reach the dying boy and
his wounded father. They fired on six other ambulances in other areas and shot three
other Palestinian medics. As of this writing , approximately 53 Palestinians have been
killed, including a 10-year-old boy and an 18-month-old baby. All of them were killed in
their own country -- Israel.
Obviously, Israel was not firing in self-defense. It was firing in defense of its illegal
military occupation of Palestinian lands. Seven of the Palestinians who were killed hold
Israeli citizenship. They, too, were killed in their own country.
Seven years after the Oslo accords were signed, the Israelis still control, according to
an article in the Israeli newspaper Haaretz, 61 percent of the West Bank and Gaza.
Here's the Palestinian point of view: When Palestinians agreed to a two-state solution
to the conflict, they conceded two-thirds of their country, including West Jerusalem, to
the Israelis. They are not about to concede 61 percent of the remaining one-third, and
most of all they are not about to concede East Jerusalem or to abandon the refugees
created by the 1948 and 1967 wars.
Palestinians insist that all of these refugees have a right to return to their lands or to
receive compensation for them. So far the Israelis have refused.
How any decent person can argue that Jews -- 50 years after the fact -- deserve
compensation for property lost to the Nazi government but that Palestinian refugees,
whose property was taken by the Israeli government, have no right to compensation is
The important point for Americans to remember is that our government acting as if it
were an extension of the Israeli Government is not in America's national interests. We
should support international law. We should be neutral and even-handed in trying to
mediate the conflict.
Instead, we use our veto to block the application of international law, and our so-called
mediation has consisted of pressuring the Palestinians to take the crumbs Israel has
That is not in our interest at all. The Israelis are playing with fire when they claim
ownership of Haram Al-Sharif and the Aqsa Mosque. That is a holy site not just to
Arab Muslims but to all 1.1 billion Muslims throughout the world.
If the dispute becomes a religious war, which up to now it has not been, then there is
no telling how far the violence will spread. It could spread to attacks on American
interests if the United States persists in its one-sided support of Israel's aggression
The simple solution to terrorism is to eliminate the unjust policies that cause it. The
American government's deliberately blind eye to the abuse of Palestinian human rights
is certainly an injustice.
The late Yehoshafat Harkabi, former head of Israeli military intelligence, wrote an
important book, Israel's Fateful Hour, some years ago, in which he argued that failure
to allow the Palestinians to develop their own independent state would be tantamount
to Israel committing suicide.
I couldn't find anything to disagree with him about when I first read the book, and I
don't now. The Middle East is full of ruins left by people who thought military power
could sustain them.
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