July 6, 2008
The act of a frustrated man
Abdul Aziz Al-Suwaigh | firstname.lastname@example.org
Israelis killed a Palestinian youth for driving a bulldozer onto the midst of a crowd in the heart of West Jerusalem and killing three Israelis last week. But the reaction of the Western political leaders to the action of the Palestinian worker, one of over a million and half living in humiliation of the Israeli occupation, amounted to killing him and other Palestinians a thousand times.
While the Western leaders did not feel any compunction in condemning the poor building worker in the harshest words they could find in the dictionary, they did not have the guts to describe the incident as the natural and likely reaction of a human being put to indignities beyond his endurance powers.
It is true that no Israeli civilian ever drove a bulldozer onto the midst of Palestinians on a crowded street. Why should they when their bombers and missiles can and do kill Palestinians in thousands in their homes and streets?
Over the past six months 365 Palestinians have been killed by Israel, most of them civilians, with children accounting for 50 percent.
The only civilian an Israeli bulldozer killed was an American woman, Rachel Corrie, the 23-year-old peace activist from Olympia, Washington. Corrie was crushed to death by a 60-ton Israel Defense Forces bulldozer as she stood before a Palestinian home in the Gaza Strip in 2003. She was killed while trying to prevent the demolition of a Palestinian home.
It is high time that we made a clear distinction between the acts of terror, particularly from a state that calls itself a democracy, and the acts springing from frustration, injustice and humiliation.
This Palestinian youth was a human being with normal feelings of pride and honor. He could not be blamed for losing his equanimity for a moment when he thought about the plight of his brothers and sisters who are being treated like dirt in the Gaza Strip and West Bank and put under a blockade denying them the most basic requirements of life.