Meet the new occupant, like the old occupant.
Palestinians understand that the exchange of one evangelical extremist as Israeli prime minister for another evangelical extremist will not change one iota the way Israel proceeds methodically, day after day, to commit apartheid in occupied Palestine.
If there was any doubt about that predictable score, the re-bombing of Gaza last week provided further proof. The new guy is as quick as the old one to remind the world that he will use the same murderous device to traumatize, maim and kill as many Palestinians as Israel wants, whenever Israel wants, for whatever reason it wants. , for as long as Israel wants, and with the exception of little Ireland, no prime minister or president will do or say much about it.
Yet Israel is forced – as a senseless and superficial public relations exercise – to trot one of the familiar litanies of “provocations” to justify the trauma, mayhem and murder of as many Palestinians as it wishes. , whenever he wants, by whatever means. he wants it and for as long as he wants.
This time, Israeli attack planes worth $ 110 million destroyed more of Gaza in multi-day sorties after patches of barren and barren fields were briefly set ablaze by so-called “balloons”. arsonists ”filled with helium and tied together by“ militant ”Palestinians with string.
The “provocations” are a tired and exculpatory pantomime.
Whether it’s balloons, slingshots, burning tires, kites, rocks or glorified metallic firecrackers, Israel knows it is granted a residence permit outside The Hague to traumatize , mutilate and kill as many Palestinians as he wants, whenever he wants, by any means he wants, for whatever reason, for as long as he wants, and no prime minister or President outside Ireland will not do or say much about it.
So it doesn’t matter what the last Israeli prime minister was, what racist and crass party he leads, or how he and his accomplices were able, with supposedly Machiavellian skill, to concoct a coalition to finally get rid of the old one. One indelible constant remains: the apartheid machinery continues, day after day, in occupied Palestine as it has done since the middle of the last century.
Here’s another constant: Just like the fanatical former Israeli prime minister, the fanatical new Israeli prime minister also knows that most Western television and newspaper editors don’t pay fleeting attention to what Israel has done and made to the Palestinians in occupied Palestine only when Israel decides to bomb the Palestinians in occupied Palestine.
This means that every few years or so, after the “bang-bang” flares – this is the jargon of journalists when instruments of war are “booming” – generally invisible Palestinians appear on news networks. Western cabled and on the opinion pages of Western newspapers. newspapers to talk or write about how Palestinians have been and continue to be stripped of their homes and lands, imprisoned, tortured, traumatized, mutilated and killed by a long line of thugs in costume and uniform.
This is another run-of-the-mill pantomime now.
Providing Palestinians with some time and space to chronicle or condemn Israel’s crimes provides the editors of Western television and newspapers with practical coverage to congratulate themselves on their serenity and brag, “You see. , the Palestinians also have a say.
All the while, these same TV and newspaper editors refuse to admit that Israel has been convicted by human rights groups of practicing apartheid – as defined by international law. and not like a hyperbolic club – and has, since its artificial creation, brandished carte blanche. allowed not only to rob Palestinian homes and land, but to imprison, torture, traumatize, maim and kill Palestinians with impunity.
Regardless of the unease they may feel in private with the violent and illegal means Israel uses to systematically rob Palestinian homes and land or how many Palestinians Israel imprisons, tortures, traumatizes, maims and kills, most editors chief of Western television and newspapers have always publicly defended Israel’s “right”. do all of the above – yesterday, today and tomorrow.
To challenge Israel’s “right” to defend itself against the existential threat supposedly posed by balloons, slingshots, burning tires, kites, boulders or glorified metallic firecrackers would be a sacrilegious act of geopolitical heresy.
This canonical editorial support for Israel is an almost word-for-word reflection of the equally pleading attitude towards Israel shared by most Western prime ministers and presidents whenever their ally and friend chooses to unleash more “bang-bang” on Palestinians imprisoned in the already seriously injured occupied Palestine. .
Here is Canadian astronaut turned Foreign Minister Marc Garneau not only dismissing – like television and newspaper editors who claim to hold him responsible – any conclusion, from anywhere, that Israel is a state of ‘apartheid, but implying, hysterically, that the “label” is an anti-Semitic trope.
“The Liberal government’s position is extremely clear on the issue of the apartheid label,” Garneau said recently. “We categorically reject it… and we are, of course, totally against any anti-Semitism. “
When inevitably replaced as foreign minister by another pedestrian, card-reader dummy, Garneau could well become a columnist in any Canadian newspaper that writes its standard apologies every time Israel traumatizes, maims and kills. Palestinians with his unlimited arsenal of “bang-bang” supplied by pleasant arms dealers in Ottawa and elsewhere.
The corollary of this stubborn phenomenon is, of course, that when the large and sustained “bang-bang” displays stop, most editors of Western television and newspapers stop inviting Palestinians to speak or speak. to write about how Israel continues to rob their homes and lands, and imprison, torture, traumatize, maim and kill Palestinians with impunity in occupied Palestine.
Invariably, this translates into far fewer “live hits” by television reporters – largely from security and welcoming Tel Aviv bosom – describing the most recent “spasm” of the “tit for tat conflict” Which lasted for decades. caused death and suffering on “both sides” to an almost equal extent.
And the lucky “voices” who got a rare fragment of time and space on cable news networks and in newspaper columns to broadcast the Palestinian “perspective” during Israel’s murderous 11-day shooting in Gaza disappear because their symbolic presence is no longer required to give the public the patina of balance and fairness.
Indeed, the fact that Israel has resumed bombing Gaza is no longer even recorded as “news” to many editors of Western television and newspapers, most of them – when it comes to “fate.” Palestinians – have the attention span of a frightened man. squirrel.
Either way, the “war” has not yet broken out – yet. When it does, they will return to take a momentary peek. Until then, it quickly returned to rhetorical affairs as usual: Israel has the “right” to defend itself blah, blah, blah and these “militant” Palestinians keep asking for a nosebleed.
Meanwhile, Palestinians must endure, alone, and for the most part out of sight, the trauma, indignities and provocations that long ago have become a routine part of daily life under the suffocating Israeli military occupation. .
This is stealth apartheid.
Flag-waving, militant Israeli religious fanatics can swoop down on Palestinians in occupied East Jerusalem, shouting “Death to the Arabs” and “Let your village burn” and television and newspaper editors shrug their shoulders.
A brother and sister who have taken to social media to denounce the likely eviction of Palestinians from Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood by enraged force are arrested and TV and newspaper editors shrug their shoulders.
More than 2,000 Palestinians are herded like cattle and jailed shortly after the announcement of a “ceasefire” for resisting the inexorable destruction of occupied Palestine and its people, and the editors of the television and newspapers shrug their shoulders.
Heavily armed Israeli balaclavas – euphemistically called “security forces” – storm the compound of Al-Aqsa Mosque and fire rubber-coated steel bullets, tear gas and stun grenades, injuring dozens of people. faithful, and the editors of television and newspapers shrug their shoulders.
An 11-year-old Palestinian boy, Mazen Bessam, is arrested and “detained” by the aforementioned hoods – presumably for the security of Israel – while his younger sister weeps and pleads for his release, and the TV editors and newspapers shrugged their shoulders.
As Human Rights Watch and others have documented in precise and compelling detail, Israel’s execution of apartheid never ceases. It is committed against Palestinians before, during, and after the talkative “bang-bang” sounds and images that temporarily catch the concerned eye of TV and newspaper editors who would much rather, I suppose, speak and talk. write about Donald’s crazy musings. Asset.
The “bang-bang” is part of the ruthless continuum of systemic and State-sanctioned persecution by the State of Israel against Palestinians throughout occupied Palestine.
The deliberate reluctance and failure of Western television and newspaper editors to admit this demonstrable fact and fundamentally recalibrate their coverage of what is happening to Palestinians “on the ground” in occupied Palestine makes them complicit in the explicit consequences, inhuman and disfiguring persistence and unapologetic practice of apartheid.
The occasional appearance of a Palestinian on television or in the print media every time Israel resumes its explosive “bang-bang” show is hardly a remedy for this pervasive and shameful blindness.
The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial position of Al Jazeera.