mardi 6 janvier 2009

Who are the terrorists?

'Since Israel attacked Gaza to defend its people it has killed as many Israelis as the Hamas Rockets.'

Read that again. It does make sense. The IDF have killed four of its own misting them for Hamas fighters.

Over here in France, the second news item on the main news, was about an attack on a synagogue is Toulouse. The conjunction was not an accident. As the news coming from Gaza turns into another PR disaster for the Israelis (something which we are evidently meant to give a flying fuck about), one can expect a greater concentration on stories like this. Their role is blatant and obvious. The problem is a small one, but when is asked to 'condemn' such atttacks (a car set on fire and driven into building's metal cage, in this instance) we cannot 'condemn' - for what verb would you then use to describe one's attitude towards the shameful and dihonourable action brutally taking place in Gaza? It is clear that these acts, whoever they have been done by, are pointless, stupid and destructive. They serve no role in solving the deeper social and political problems that have created the current virtually intenable situation.

From a wider point of view, the Palestinian cause threatens to evolve into a channel down which wider anger at the current situation (CS) could direct itself. This is something all Western European states want to avoid. The word 'Greece' should be enough to remind ourselves why.

In the wise words of the French Jewish Students Movement En période de crise, [c'est possible que] «la cause palestinienne canaliser» une rage latente. ("In this preiod of crisis it is possible that the Palestinian cause could act as a lightning rod for wider discontent").

That partially explains the ambiguous EU response to the slaughter. For me, Sarkozy's position (scuttling about condemning everyone) stems from a perception of the dangers of this other form of 'contagion'. They want either a quick Israeli victory, so it'll all blow over and leave the Gazans to settle down to a quiet beseiged death or force a cease-fire somehow sometime quickly. They have been shaken not only by the size of recent demonstrations (70000 in Paris on Saturday) but by their focused anger and unity.

The lesson for us - march, demonstrate, connect and agitate.