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June 30, 2006

Let's Work Together To Obliterate Ourselves

On the night of September 11, 2001 I walked as far south down the Hudson as you could go, which was Canal Street. There was speculation the city government was going to use the warehouses along the river as morgues, though that turned out (I think) not to be necessary.

I remember thinking one thing in particular that, in retrospect, was incredibly stupid. It was: man, the U.S. will surely see NOW that we've got to stop supporting the Israeli occupation of the West Bank and Gaza.

Anyway, here's a good source for the latest permutations of the ongoing nightmare (via Nell of A Lovely Promise). And here's the end of a long NY Times Magazine piece by Elizabeth Rubin from 2002:

Over the two days I spent in the Jenin camp, I watched and occasionally talked to a 13-year-old girl...[H]er house had been destroyed and her father killed. She had an encyclopedic brain and an uncanny memory. She remembered what I wore in the camp a month before, though we had never met. She remembered conversations with her father from eight years ago and knew what all the politicians were saying or had said. She never smiled and told me that her father wanted her to be a doctor. She said she would prefer to study nuclear physics so she could blow up America. ''When someone comes to fight you in your home, you have to fight him back, isn't that true?'' she asked.

Of course, these are the words of an angry, hurt child. But in the mind of Serraj, the psychiatrist in Gaza, they may express a potentially terrifying illness, the fruits of 15 years of unending violence. ''We have seen the children of the first intifada become suicide bombers,'' he had said. ''You only have to wait and see these children of today, what kind of horror they will bring to the world.''

Posted at June 30, 2006 11:59 AM | TrackBack

...sometimes all I want to do is cry. But at 45 years of age, I'm afraid I'm all out of tears now.

Posted by: Darryl Pearce at June 30, 2006 01:15 PM

Well, as they say--children are our future.

I hope many of the regular commenters here have chosen to have children; I think they would produce wise and kind people. Perhaps THEY will have softer, wiser hearts than the generations before.

It's a long holiday weekend folks--get crackin'!

Posted by: Mike of Angle at June 30, 2006 02:49 PM

"Mission Accomplished" that is what the banner said, mission accomplished. There are consequences for everything and they are not going to end with a banner or a ride on a jet plane dreamed up by some whacked out public relations person. They are not going to end if and when the troops are pulled out of Iraq. This is the legacy of Bush. Recently Bush has regaled us with his desire to leave a legacy of his presidency. Well there is no need to worry on that account Georgie Porridgie puddin' pie. After George leaves office and relaxes smirking at his ranch perhaps fishing on his private eleven acre lake the whole world will be still be paying the price of admission to the world of Bush.

Since Israel is part of the topic see this great post by Dennis Perrin at Red State Son. And recall that it was Bush who set the example.

Israel's assault on Gaza continues, which is now an open effort to overthrow the elected Palestinian government and punish the population, something the IDF does quite effectively...

Posted by: rob payne at July 1, 2006 02:12 AM

Yes, it's kind of discouraging. On the other hand, I recall that twenty years ago, I was convinced that a bloody race war was the way that South Africa's apartheid regime would be toppled. And yet it happened differently. History is the story of humankind's inhumane behavior. There are occasional times when the good comes through, however. Enjoy them. And if possible, find a way to enjoy the struggle (in the larger sense of the word). Expect it to continue for the rest of your years, if any.

Posted by: mistah charley, ph.d. at July 1, 2006 08:37 AM

Not too long ago we were told "We're all Israelis now." After Jenin, Fallujah, Ramadi and Gaza I know what that really means.

Posted by: Lloyd at July 1, 2006 02:36 PM

I know being pro-Isreal is being unpopular amoung leftists at the moment, but how many children of Isreali victims of Palestinian suicide bombers are are currently plotting to wipe out say, the Saudis? This really is insane. Isreal and Palenstine are currently looked in cycle of aggression where both sides feel the need to retaliate when ever something is done to them. Both sides need to cool down and work together for Peace. To blame Isreal for everything is unreasonable. Sure what Isreal did an Jenin was horrible, but so is killing dozens of people on a bus or at a nightclub.

Posted by: Marcus at July 1, 2006 05:21 PM


I used to feel the way you do (many years ago) but reading history and realising how unequal the contest has been and most decidedly is now, changed me. I fully support Israel's right to exist, but not by occupying the West Bank and Gaza. Not by building their obscene wall, locking Palestinians into poverty stricken, depressing and hopeless territorial prisons. Not by collectively punishing the residents of Gaza for a violent act committed by an uncontrollable faction group. Just look at the numbers killed, Palestinian children vs. Israeli children, and you will see who is suffering most. Israel, a country I once resided in and considered immigrating to, has become a monstrous aggressor state, aided and abetted by US money, weapons and military intelligence. It is long past time Americans realised their collective guilt and did something radical to change their government. Like taking to the streets in the millions in non-violent demonstrations until Bush, Cheney, Rice, and the rest resigned.

Posted by: brynn at July 3, 2006 10:22 AM