Mick Napier in Gaza 23 January 2008

The people of Gaza have blown up a wall of the biggest prison on earth, and with it they have outflanked Israel, shown international humanitarian law to be a sick joke, shaken the Egyptian dictatorship, and shamed all of those who have stood by and allowed Israel to carry out its crimes unhindered. Among the tens of thousands who overwhelmed yesterday’s harsh opposition from Egyptian security police, some went to visit long-separated relatives, some for life-saving medicines and all to buy necessities of life no longer available in Gaza. While the chancelleries of the world worked to force the Palestinians to abandon all hope of resisting Israel or of recovering their lost lands, once again, as so often in history, tens of thousands of extra-ordinary ‘ordinary people’ - a few of them lightly-armed fighters -cleared the way to freedom.

A short carnival of freedom before the people of Gaza were walled up once again by the Egyptian dictatorship for another Israeli massacreThe Egyptian regime has failed to bottle up the Palestinians while the Israelis go about their killing, even pumping a little girl’s head with bullets to ‘confirm their kill’. Even if the wall separating Gazans from their Arab brothers and sisters is put back in place, it will only be temporary: when Gazans need to get to Egypt they will do so. Israel can, and will, continue the killing but it has lost one key weapon from its armoury. When the Egyptian police stood aside and allowed Palestinians to flood into Egypt, Mubarak’s regime was weakened. Reuters reports a wave of arrests of pro-Palestinians in Cairo, but the example of Gazans unbowed by Israeli terrorism will continue to eat away at the fear that keeps Egyptians from joining those who oppose their President-for-life.

Perhaps we will look back from the future and see this popular tearing down of a small bit of wall as the beginning of the undoing of the geometric border system foisted on the Arabs by the UK and France in the Sykes-Picot agreement to divide and plunder the region.

Every decent human being on the planet is with the Palestinian Arab people of Gaza. Against them is still arraigned the US, EU, World Bank, the UN and the Arab regimes. As Israel carried out its plan to reduce them to levels of hunger, cold and misery unique in the Mediterranean coast, the silence of world civil society screamed that they were getting their just deserts and that the punishment would never end until they kissed the Israeli whip and conceded that the European colonists who drove them out of their homes and land were justified.

With small bombs and superhuman courage, the people of this Israeli-EU policed concentration zone have foiled the plans of the US-Israel-EU-UN coalition to punish them for their voting and for their resistance to Israel. The democratically-elected Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) have joined Hizbollah as the giants of the Arab world, a world ruled by petty, corrupt tyrants despised by their populations, who join with Israel to butcher the Palestinians. Israel, equipped with the latest US killing technology, may be able to kill impoverished Gazans from weapons platforms high in the sky but the people who win in any struggle are not those who kill the most, but those who endure the most and then have reserves to go on. Clearly, after much more pain and suffering inflicted by our governments on them, that will be the Palestinian people.

Mick Napier, 23 January 2008
Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign

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Israel and Settler Society by Lorenzo Veracini

The struggle between Israel and the Palestinians is not unique -- whatever the news media may suggest. Lorenzo Veracini argues that the conflict is best understood in terms of colonialism. Like many other societies, Israel is a settler society. Looking in detail at the evolution of other colonial regimes -- apartheid South Africa, French Algeria and Australia -- Veracini presents a thoughtful interpretation of the dynamics of colonialism, offering a clear framework within which to understand the middle east crisis.

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