In the recent developments happening in the Middle East crisis, many parties are changing their traditional stance towards the region. They are beginning to distinguish between the ‘offender’ and the ‘defender’.
Thank God that unlike organized religions, there isn’t any single custodian or a specific city in the case of English language to dictate what is authentic or not. Or else it would become hard for humanity to distinguish between the terms- ‘terrorism’ from ‘patriotism’.
When a HUMAN being with god-given soul is killed for no legitimate reason, it is a crime. Whether such a crime is done by a group of frustrated individuals or state sponsored hooligans, it is against the norms of civilized society. Every human being is made of the same clay and his soul comes from the same source (as long as one believes in it).
That being said, look above at the topic of this essay. DO you feel like asking, “Why does this have a laughing face on it?”
The words ‘I am an American” apparently refers to an article written by an American in the town of Ramalla in Palestine, Israeli-occupied Palestine that is.
In the article, she is narrating the unwarranted raid of her home by 50 armed Israeli OCCUPYING forces who were ‘kind’ enough to ask her to ‘shut up and sit down’ when asked the purpose of their attack.
The writer goes on to say how she tried to convince them that she was an AMERICAN whose life is worthy of PROTECTION much more than others who were shot and killed.
To quote her words,
I insisted that they leave the house and told them that, as an American, I protest to what they are doing. They said “this is no worse than what your country is doing in Afghanistan.”…
…they kept on pushing me, poking me with the guns and telling me to get back in the house. I started screaming, “I cannot believe you are doing this, don’t you realize I am American??”…They started laughing and calling me [U.S. President George W.] Bush….
They were everywhere and doing what they felt like doing – including urinating on the floor…
As soon as they left…I also called his (American Consul General’s) office and insisted that I talk to him personally. They put me on the phone with the American Citizens Services section Ms. Victoria Coffineau (Chief of section). She told me I was one of dozens of American citizens making such complaints. The details of the disturbing phone call and response will follow soon to help other Americans in understanding what our offices abroad are about and what we actually get for our tax dollars. And how we allow ourselves to be treated by so called “allies”.
Not that I have anything against the nation cherished by the ideals of individual liberty and freedom for pursuit of happiness. Nor am I in favor of the misdeeds of the Israeli troops.
Yet, I cannot ignore the two ironies involved in the above experience. And hence the 🙂 icon.
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Firstly, the argument put forward by the writer is that since she is AMERICAN, she is not supposed to be attacked. She can’t be blamed for this notion. As any other average American, she is a victim of the of the ethnocentric philosophy inoculated by her government into the minds of its people.
In the eyes of American policy makers, nothing is worthy of standing in the way of preserving the American way of life.
When Madeline Albright, the former US Secretary of State, was asked, “We have heard that a half million children have died… and you know, is the price worth it?” Albright responded, “I think this is a very hard choice, but the price-we think the price is worth it.”
Or as U.S. Brig. General William Looney says (Interview Washington Post, August 30, 1999) while referring to the the mass-murder of hundreds of civilian Iraqi men, women and children during first eight months of 1999 “They know we own their country. We own their airspace… We dictate the way they live and talk. And that’s what’s great about America right now. It’s a good thing, especially when there’s a lot of oil out there we need.”
And therefore the intentions behind the so-called Global War on Terrorism should not surprise us. Uncle Sam fails to understand the parity between the Burger-eating American and the Roti-eating Afghan civilian.
The hijack and subsequent murder of Daniel Pearl, the WSJ journalist, by separatist militants made great hue and cry in the media.
But what about about the Italian photographer shot dead by Israeli occupying forces? There was an unusual silence about him.
Why? Aren’t they both cases victims of terrorism?
Back to the Ramalla experience. She was nursing the misconception that Americans ought to live in safe heavens, no matter what happens to the rest of the world. And this I believe is the germ of the oft-repeated prayer. “God bless America”.
After such bitter experiences, every peace loving American will learn to pray “God bless the world” as Hamza Yousuf, the American scholar, reminded in his speech.
The second irony is crystal clear enough.
…what we actually get for our tax dollars. And how we allow ourselves to be treated by so called “allies”
It only took one day’s experience for an American to realize the sufferings of Palestinians for the past 4 decades. The state of Israel, armed and sponsored by America and her allies, is let loose like a monster led by its blood-thirsty leader.
As I stated elsewhere, ‘In the coming years, the American public may think twice before paying taxes, a portion of which goes to fund the Zionist state’s occupation of the Arab land.’
To conclude, creating further hatred is not the solution to today’s problems. We need to learn some new habits and unlearn some. Let’s be empathetic, not ethnocentric.
America is a great nation that has enlightening personalities such as Thomas Jefferson among its architects. Its people are broad-minded and peace-loving. But a few vested interest groups have got hold of the mainstream media and politics that preaches arrogance and indifference to other civilizations.
Yet, I am hopeful that one day they will recognize their ‘true allies’ and realize their mistake in funding the Zionist state that knows nothing but brutal killing of the Palestinians that it calls cockroaches.
Meanwhile, let the Palestinians bear in mind that their true savior is not a visiting ‘messenger’ from western governments, rather in their own determination. They are living in blind hope that a western power will come to their rescue. As Allama Iqbal says:
Your balm lies not in London nor Geneva
The Jewish grasp is tight on Europe’s throat.
Apr 1, 2002