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Symbols of malevolent power

Crikey readers talk Israel and the symbols of IS.

Israel’s end game

Ian Neering writes: Re. “How Mike Carlton got it wrong” (yesterday).  Philip Dalidakis may be correct to be critical of Mike Carlton’s strident tone in his recent criticisms of Israels’s foreign policy, but Dalidakis is being disingenuous when he asserts the invasion of Gaza was all about Palestinian rockets. We have only to look at Israel’s recent announcement that it will expropriate four square kilometres of Palestinian land in the occupied West Bank to affirm that Israel’s goal is hardly consistent with the much touted two state solution.

Dalidakis denigrates the Palestinian Authority for not building shelters to protect their citizens from Israeli rockets as the Israelis did against Palestinian missiles. It’s hard to see how this could have been done, given the way that Israel has starved Gaza for resources such as bricks and mortar. Yet another example of the snide propaganda being used by Israeli supporters.

As another one of those pesky secular Jews who abhors the lies and hypocrisy of the Israeli state I wonder  how in this day and age we can continue to support the Israeli land grab on the basis of ”a gift from God”.

Robert Kinnane writes: I don’t expect to see much change in Israel’s prospects in my lifetime, but if I were Jewish relying on a country for my safety against persecution, Israel, an Eastern European settler colony of 6 million on a land area of 20,000 square kilometres, primarily dependent on fading US imperial power, bordered by the Mediterranean to the west and over a billion Arabs in a dozen countries to the north, south and east, would be my last choice.

Take their symbols

Thomas Richman writes: Re. “Rundle: the real target in Iraq intervention is not IS, but Iran” (yesterday). A more humane and effective way of de-fanging  the likes of Hamas and IS than bombs, rockets and strafing would be to concurrently eliminate each one’s symbolic strengths. For example, why not also place an embargo on, or destroy their sources of, black, white and green cloth used for flags, balaclavas or tunics … the same obliteration  for wherever these are assembled? This would be like the Nazis shorn of the swastika and dramatically reduce all the cohesive power that came with it.

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  • 1
    Robinson
    Posted Wednesday, 3 September 2014 at 1:34 pm | Permalink

    No disrespect, Ian Neering, but isn’t it obvious how Hamas (not the PA) in Gaza could have provided shelter to Palestinians from Israeli missiles? By using the huge quantities of cement and building materials that entered Gaza for just such purposes, as well as for building homes, schools etc, instead of criminally diverting them to build an underground tunnel network from which to attack Israel. In fact, as they had built the tunnel network, why didn’t they just evacuate their citizens to these, if they wanted to protect them?

  • 2
    Ian Neering
    Posted Wednesday, 3 September 2014 at 4:07 pm | Permalink

    I’m sorry Robinson but your reply makes no more sense to me than Mr Dalidakis. In the first place, please provide us with some evidence that Israel provided the wherewithal or even permission to build bomb shelters let alone schools and homes. As i understand it the Palestinian economy has been devastated by its enforced isolation.

    As regards the tunnel network. I have no idea about their construction. Can you confirm that bricks and mortar are diverted into making them?

    Finally, can you really believe the tunnels would be a suitable shelter given that they were the primary Israeli targets?

  • 3
    Robinson
    Posted Wednesday, 3 September 2014 at 11:33 pm | Permalink

    I am similarly perplexed by your response, Ian, as there has been such saturation coverage over the past month of the Gaza conflict in general, and within that context a great deal written in regard to the tunnels. Here are but a couple of examples:

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/08/19/us-mideast-gaza-tunnels-exclusive-idUSKBN0GJ1HS20140819

    http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2014-07-23/next-gaza-disaster-after-war-with-israel-no-cement-for-rebuilding

    I don’t believe the Palestinians need Israeli permission to build, and they certainly didn’t ask for permission to build a tunnel terror network extending into Israel, so again I don’t understand your comment.

    As far as destroying the tunnels, Israeli did so as far as it was able from its end, but as one of the articles above points out, parts of tunnels are likely to remain intact at their Gazan end, so yes, people would have been safer sheltering here had they been allowed to do so.

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