Nearly every outbreak of Israel-Palestinian violence in recent years has been a grotesque exercise in false equivalency. While there are wrong doers on both sides, culpability is not the same when one side has hugely disproportionate power, inflicts pain disproportionately,...
...sets the rules & laws that oppress the other side, serially violates the human rights of those on the other side & often provokes the situation by compounding bad laws & policies with worse ones. It is not the same when Palestinians throw rocks and Israel launches air attacks.
It is not the same when Palestinians respond to daily humiliations & dispossessions with anger after Israel has imposed those & placed behind its policies the most potent military force in the region. It is possible to acknowledge the fear caused by Hamas rocket attacks & still..
...recognize that it is Israel that has created an apartheid state that denies fundamental rights and freedoms to the Palestinian people and has sought to carve away from those people year-in and year-out what little land and dignity and freedom that they still have.
Yes, Israel has elements of democracy in its government and has been an ally to the US...but it is not a democracy if Palestinians are denied what is granted to their Israeli neighbors and it is not helping the US when it making the situation worse.
Yes, Hamas is a bad actor, the Palestinian government is weak and often feckless, and innocent Israelis have a right to live free of fear. But that does not somehow shift the fundamental culpability in this situation from the Israeli government that solely has the power to...
...stop its oppression of the Palestinian people and accept that the only solution to this problem is two independent states, each with the right of self-determination and an expectation of peaceful co-existence. Israeli assertions that somehow they have the right to...
exact punishment several times worse for every Palestinian "transgression" even when many of those are in direct response to Israeli abuses only further undercut any effort to suggest that both sides are equally responsible for the constant and deepening suffering & unrest.
Yes, both sides can do better, both can help reduce tensions, but justice will not be achieved until it is acknowledged that one side, the side with all the institutional power, is the primary author of this horror story & must accept real, sweeping change for justice to be done.
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