Saturday, January 3, 2009
What Israel forgot
During world war 2, Vichy France lived under the shadow of its conqueror Nazi Germany, and with which it collaborated. The Free French who fought in the name of Charles DeGaulle, sang as a national anthem 'le chant des partisans' [song of the partisans]; it couldn't sing 'la marseille'for France's national hymn Vichy France had appropriated for its own as a defeated nation and then ally of Hitler Germany. Now you may ask what has this to do with Israel? Well for one thing, 'le chant des partisans', music and lyrics were written by two French cousins who were Jews. Joseph Kessel, a journalist and advocate of a Jewish state in Palestine and later a member of 'l'Academie Francaise', and the popular writer Maurice Duron. Again what has this to do with Israel? Everything in a way. Look at Israel's proactive war against Gaza now in its eighth day. Israel bombs have killed two leading members of Hamas' military wing, and one of its objectives in war. Yet it has rained 200 tonnes of bombs on a postage size strip called Gaza visiting untold death and injury on civilians and much destruction. And yet, Hamas has never stopped raining down rockets on Israel's south, reaching even Beersheva. What has 'le chant des partisans' to do with Israel? Everything in a way, we say again. Israel's never ending war against the legally elected Hamas government in Gaza which it calls 'terrorist' will not end no matter how many leaders of Hamas it bombs kill. It will simply increase the number of rebels. The national hymn of resistance resounds loudly during these times, but Israel is deaf. 'Friend, if you fall, a friend will come out of the shadows and take your place'. And in deliberate pursuit of Hamas, Israel has but one solution which it ultimately will have to abandon: the complete destruction of Gaza and its inhabitants. And that the lesson Israel forgot, and will ultimately have to learn.