07.24.14 @ 23:12♥283
When Dr. Mohammed Mossadegh went before the world at the United Nations Convention in 1951 to expose Britain’s colonialist domination of Iran, he boldly confronted his country’s imperialist oppressors:
"They [The British government] are trying "to persuade world opinion that the lamb has devoured the wolf."
International law affords special protection to vulnerable populations through Protocol I of the Geneva Convention by designating “armed conflicts in which peoples are fighting against colonial domination, alien occupation or racist regimes” as international conflicts. This principle does not excuse or exonerate atrocities perpetuated from the victimized population, as it holds both state and non-state actors accountable for their actions. Rather, recognition of the victimized population entails acknowledging their plight and understanding the root causes of their grievances — and seeking greater accountability from their oppressors.
Regardless of the true circumstances behind the casus belli of this latest phase, the fact of the matter is that this current round of conflict — like every round and phase of it — has a stark disparate impact on one community. This grossly disproportionate nature is not just confined to a vastly inflated body count on one side, but extends to the very essence of behavior. Sentiments like “it’s both sides fault” may be true in the strictest sense of the principle that it takes two parties to have a conflict, but in practice the gulf is stark.
One side routinely have their houses demolished, while another is building mansions in their place. One side are routinely expelled from their homes; the other side is adverse possessing them like it’s a monopoly game. One side has water use rationed down to the drop; the other draws upon the same water supply to support swimming pools and fountains in illegal settlements. One side routinely has pregnant women and/or their newly born children die while trying to get through a maze of checkpoints in order to get to their local hospital, the other has roads criss-crossing occupied territory exclusively for their own use. One side can be jailed, shot, and even killed for protesting, while the other can vandalize, harass, and assault with impunityand has the full resources of a sovereign state act as their personal security guards.
The list of disparities goes on and on, and again does not even take into account a stark reality of each and every phase of this six decade tragedy — that one sideroutinely loses far more of their sons, daughters, husbands, and wives than the other.
We can blame both sides all we want for the sake of maintaining “objectivity.” Yet one of these kids must belong in the timeout corner for far longer. In my world, that kid should be the bully. It’s up to you to decide who it is in yours.
Throughout history, BBSS [Blame Both Sides Syndrome] has long served oppressors and their defenders as politically correct pretense to deflect responsibility and blame. For far too many others, it is simply a convenient crutch to cop out of confrontation and remain apathetic. On the choice between supporting the oppressed or excusing and enabling their oppressors, I choose the former — as has countless citizens of conscience from all walks of life around the world. A growing number of Israelis and Palestinians, Jews and Muslims alike are embracing this reality and realizing that to be truly “pro-Israel” is to be anti-occupation and pro-two state solution, and to be “pro-Palestinian” as its essense to be pro-peace, pro-human rights, and to be a defender of the fundamental and universal right to self-determination.
I hope you will join us in doing the same. History is watching — and taking attendance.
(Read Full Text) (Photo Credit: Tijen Erol / Flickr)