Lebanon

Robert Fisk: From My Home, I Saw What the “War on Terror” Meant.

I was watching an ABC report the other night that stated how many people were killed in a Lebanese attack, but completely failed to state how many were killed in the Israeli response. And why is it the “Arab-Israeli conflict” when so much of the killing and conflict is caused by Israel – perhaps we should start calling it the “Israeli-Arab conflict” – say that out loud. Sounds weird doesn’t it.

We are subtly conditioned, and the order of those two words, which probably isn’t deliberate (probably just alphabetised), speaks volumes to how this conflict is and will be reported.

I’m ashamed to say I’m not 100% clear on what prompted this particular attack (a scan of news reports had me believing that it was in retaliation to the capture of two Israeli soldiers). But the hallmarks of the reportage of the attack are all too familiar, and particularly apparent to me having read Robert’s book. I wish I had more time at the moment to dig deeper into the news. (Perhaps I’m guilty of “Sunstein syndrome” too.)

Miguel posts a quote from tikkun.org which I will sub-quote from – I think it pretty much captures my feelings:

Meanwhile, the partisans on each side, content to ignore the humanity of “the Other,” rush to assure their constituencies that the enemy is always to blame. Each such effort is pointless. We have a struggle that has been going on for over a hundred years. Who tosses the latest match into the tinder box matters little. What matters is how to repair the situation. The blame game only succeeds in diverting attention from that central issue.

I said to Ang last night, I don’t want someone to attack Israel. Violence begets violence. America could pull the plug on this series of attacks immediately – first by calling on Israel to stop, and if that failed, threatening withdrawal of it’s military support for the country. It won’t happen, but if peace is truly what the U.S. wants (and I don’t think it does, though I fail to see any benefit to this conflict for the US), that’s all that’s required.