Just lately our screens have hardly been saturated with images from last weeks shocking massacre. Gaza has been mentioned, It would be stretching things rather a long way to say that the British public has been battered with coverage though. Let me draw a comparison here, Bloody Sunday, that atrocity took place in January 1972, 28 civilians were shot to death in a "peaceful protest". An awful turning point in history which still rumbles on today. I was 12 years of age, yet I remember it clearly. I also remember the media being full of it. Forty Six years ago, yet the stain remains. Peace has endured in Ireland for a long time now. Thankfully.
So, Israel and the reactions to last week. I am no longer 12, I have creaked my way through to the age of 58. During those intervening years many shocking events have occurred, "Soldiers" following orders and shooting unarmed civilians has been quite rare, not rare enough, but still something which when it has occurred has instantly resulted in complete global condemnation. And quite rightly so. As long as this sort of atrocity is likely the human race has no right to call itself civilised. Yet here we are in the 21st century seeing such things unfold before our eyes in glorious HD. I am truly staggered that medical personnel from neutral countries, such as Canada, were targeted and shot. Along with members of the media, journalists and reporters have been shot and killed. An 8 month old baby died after choking on tear gas, though the question has to be asked, why was that baby there in the first place?
The deep problems between Israel and Palestine have been around for all of my lifetime and on the surface appear to be impossible to fathom, let alone solve. The Gaza strip has figured in news coverage for many decades. Other countries around the world have had seemingly impossible situations to deal with, and have done so. Ireland seemed impossible to deal with for many years, yet with a lot of sacrifice and superb work by the Labour government of the day, it happened, Korea is currently making encouraging noises, there is always hope. America and Cuba seem to be heading in the right direction, though Mr Trump is now trying to alienate Mexico just to cancel that out.
Why is the Gaza situation not at the very top of the list of every other so called civilised nation? Where are the voices calling for immediate negotiations to take place? I do not understand why our world leaders are not actively working towards getting neutral forces in there, setting up meeting after meeting in Strasbourg or somewhere, urging for unified criticism and immediate cessation of hostilities.
The silence is deafening.
At the very least ALL economies around the 21st century commerce world should be halting any trade with Israel immediately. TODAY. This is not to say that then they all take one side or the other, it is to say that shooting unarmed civilians is not acceptable, indeed it is the work of evil people and will fetch with it heavy penalties. It should be said here that it is all to easy to fall into associating ordinary Israeli people with the disgraceful scenes, this is not, I believe fair. It an easy step to associate the people with the actions of their current leaders and therefore sentence them via association (we should know) and that only complicates and magnifies the wrong issues. Worryingly , it does seem that "outside forces" are at work here. Trump clearly is involved quite deeply. It is obvious that Israel would not be acting as it is without the full support of that deranged individual in the White House. Iran, China and Russia are all on the sidelines at the minute, it will not take much more for them to involve themselves. The reasons for all these other countries to be on the starting blocks are deep and complicated, and actually do not really matter. Those "soldiers" pulling the trigger were not thinking about other governments or world opinion. They were following orders. Though, it has to be said that once any "soldier" has done that, they cease to hold any honour or respect that other soldiers deserve just for putting their uniforms on.
Netanyahu is making one massive misjudgement re America. He is assuming that Trump will remain an ally, will look upon his country in a good light, will stick by Israel. He will not. He will use Israel until has has what he wants, then he will toss it aside like a used french fries carton. It seems that what Trump wants is the whole region in uproar, while he sits thousands of miles away, waiting for the dust to settle then calmly cherry picks that which will bolster the financial fortunes of his country. The only thing that motivates Trump, as he marches on under his "America Only" banner is money. Netanyahu is a bully, a callous murdering one, he is also not all that bright if he thinks Trump is a true ally. Sadly Palestine is bleeding to death as a result.
The United Nations Human Rights Council, which is by the day becoming less and less relevant, has called, after a vote which was overwhelming, for an urgent independent investigation into the recent goings on in Gaza. The British PM instructed that the UK abstained. This is truly staggering, a huge insult to every peace loving citizen of this once fine country. The clearest indication yet that morals and lives come a very distant second to the whiff of cash. The UK is now the second largest arms dealer on the planet. It is well known that the UK has supplied Israel with weapons, parts, ammunition etc, and profited hugely. The UNHRC provided a perfect opening for the UK to signal that it does indeed detest cold blooded murder, that shooting Drs and Reporters and "angry" civilians throwing stones was inhumane. It side stepped the issue rather than risk yet another stack of immoral cash. Nuff Said eh?