The political world order and even the mass media would want us to believe and more importantly accept that the crisis unfolding before us in Occupied Palestine is simply a conflict between two groups of people. Even for the most superficial observer, this spin is difficult to absorb. You do not need to be gifted with the brains of Imam Ghazzali to discern that the conflict is simply not for territorial control.
To state the obvious, Palestine is in the Middle East, an area that is the richest in the greatest asset the world needs: oil! It is not only the natural resources that are of value but even more important is the revenue of millions of petrol dollars it generates. Coupled with the geographical location of the Middle East, it makes it incumbent upon any nation wishing to dominate and impose its power in the world to be in control of this area both economically and politically.
Therefore the West (and by the West I primarily mean the U.S.), followed by its barking bodyguard the UK and then the rest of Europe, saw the need not only to control the oil fields but also to ensure the petrol dollars generated are channelled to the West in order to maintain their supremacy. It has therefore been the preoccupation of the hungry minds of the West since the turn of the last century, i.e. before the First World War, to achieve the desired status quo.
To achieve their goal, the British government masterminded the collapse of the Ottoman empire and subsequently drafted and then implemented their plan to prop up regimes in the Middle East, which they called an “Arab Faéade”; these are regimes which would have an external “Arab or Islamic” faéade acceptable to the indigenous population but under ultimate British control.
But after the First WorldWar, the British colonialist power began to wane and hence entered into the fray with the United States of America. The U.S. managed to sideline France and even the Russians, who were party to the carving up of the Middle East during the First World War, while maintaining the UK on board only because it accepted to play second fiddle serving in the role as a U.S. attack dog.
This fantastic colonialist ideology for the Middle East, which worked for a while, made one callous assumption: that the people will remain subservient to their masters in the West at all times and forever. As there is always a party popper, so it was in the Middle East, the Arab nationalists, and more recently the Islamists, have turned the colonialist dream into a nightmare.
But to expect the West to abandon what has been and is lucrative and more importantly supplying the colonialist West with “power” is impossible to give away by the mere whims of some Arab nationalists or Islamists.
As the British colonialist system of the Arab faéade was fading, the U.S. began to search for a State or States called, “local cops on the beat” with the headquarters in Washington.
Israel fit the bill to the tee, and according to the CIA, “a logical corollary of opposition to Arab nationalism would be to support Israel as the only reliable pro-Western power in the Middle East.”
Again, it does not take a rocket scientist to work out that Israel not only allied with the U.S. but also became its military base.
Israel’s first medal of an accomplice was awarded when in 1967 it destroyed the greatest Arab nationalist of the time, Nassar of Egypt. Nassar, according to the U.S., was a “virus”, that is to say a virus of Arab nationalism that needed eradicating before it spread. After the Israelis quelled Nassar, the U.S./Israel love affair blossomed.
It thus follows that the local cops on the beat were afforded privileges by assisting to maintain U.S. hegemony. Those nations with an Arab Faéade are also allowed special compensations, but to a lesser degree than the local cops on the beat, provided they at all times control their populace and channel its resources and also revenue generated to the West. Even the UK benefits, very much like the little fishes that swim along with the shark do, in so much as they get to pick up the crumbs provided they maintain their service and hope the master does not get too hungry and maybe one day even swallows them.
Where do the Palestinians fit in the picture? Well, they simply don’t. They are a nuisanceéa group of people whose own society is divided in various camps and crucially a populace that is detached from the desired individuals imposed by the West. They have no natural resources and more importantly make “unreliable partners” to serve the needs of the West. Palestinians are simply bad cops for the beat and, come to think about it, irrelevant since the West already has an obedient cop for the area. Under the circumstances some would even argue a low-level intensity conflict in the Middle East between various neighbours and especially between Palestine and Israel works in the favour of those holding and wishing to maintain the balance of power.
Therefore it should not surprise anybody that we have seen American F-16 jets with Israeli pilots bombing Palestinian-concentrated areas.
Although the battle arena is occupied Palestine, the deaths of Palestinians caused by the fingers of Israelis on M16 guns or an Israeli pilot in an Apache attack helicopter or F16 jet, we must remind ourselves the equipment and more fundamentally the ability of Israel to act with impunity is the direct result of the U.S. and to a lesser degree British governments acquiescence to Israeli actions.
However, the Israelis need not fool themselves that the West loves the Zionist or even the Jew. If they only go back a few years in history, it was the very same West that persecuted them and, to quote one example, in 1939 a ship called the St Louis left Germany with 930 Jews, who had escaped the beginning of Nazi Germany persecutions, with U.S. immigration permits; when the ship docked in the U.S., not a single Jew was allowed to set foot on U.S. soiléthey were all forced to return. This is an example of the “West’s banner for humanity.” It was the same U.S. who in 1941 instead of making it easier for Jewish refugees to get in to the U.S. passed new immigration laws making it almost impossible for Jews to immigrate, but at that time the Jew had no credentials for a cop on the beat!
So where do those concerned with human rights, justice and equitable treatment for fellow humans concentrate their efforts in order to alleviate the oppressions suffered by the Palestinians?
We in the West need to kindle the lamp of hope; those who aspire for human dignity, honour and freedom to live in peace need to employ both short- and long-term strategies for the implementation of justice with peace in Palestine. Although, as we read this, American and other Western countries’ equipment is being used to maim and kill Palestinians, we need to germinate the mechanism for the truth of our countries’ role in the genocide of Palestinians to permeate the masses.
The media’s total jaundiced view needs to be challenged at every occasion and questioned as to why they fail to mention newsworthy stories from Occupied Palestine, which shows Israel in its true light. Concerned individuals could address this dilemma by arranging talks, seminars, exhibitions and other events highlighting the plight.
Becoming an ethical consumer may at an individual level appear insignificant, but the united effect of the masses does not only hurt the profit margins of targeted companies but much more importantly the public relations generated is worth the effort as part of a tool in the strategy for hope and the solidarity factor in visiting Palestine must not be abandoned.
The long-term strategy of engaging the government into debate for the improvement of human rights must be emphasized for a secure future for all. The ideology of the need to climb a ladder of supremacy on other peoples’ backs must be made counter-productive and hence the need to create cops for the beat or faéades must be eradicated, as was slavery. We may not be able to change the balance of power, but we can work towards altering the political and ideological climate for a safer and peaceful future for all in the Holy Land.
Mr. Ismail Adam Patel is Chairman, Friends of Al-Aqsa, a voluntary organization concerned with the defence of Al-Aqsa Haram al-Sharif and the protection of Palestinian Human Rights.