Facetious Gaza Post

Gaza Wall
In reporting the recent Gaza border break the BBC reffered to the security “wall”. Now, call me pedantic, but that looks more like a big fence to me, just like the other “security fence” currently under construction around the West Bank.

Oh, but wait! The fence in the West Bank is actually a wall. Now I’m confused. Why can’t we get nomenclature correct on this one?

That’s the problem with dehumanising people these days, you just run into a wall of political correctness. Or is that a fence?

13 thoughts on “Facetious Gaza Post

  1. If the caption to that photo is correct then that would be the border with Gaza? You know, the Gaza that is run by Hamas? That thinks that Israel has no right to exist and spends as much time and money as it can to bring about its destruction?

    Let me know when someone starts a website called StopTheKatyushas.org

  2. Actually, Jack, I think rob is highlighting a relevant point. Facetious, maybe, but neat, you have to admit.

    If fences and walls were not different in important ways, we would only have one word for both of them, wouldn’t we? And the difference between a wall and a fence is neither subtle nor complex, is it?

  3. Cleanthes, I think the facetiousness which so irked Jack is born out of my frustration at the circularity of the problem. Israel builds a wall so Hamas fires some rockets so Israel bombs a power station, or whatever. There seems no end to the ‘he said, she said’ politics.

    And as I understand it, the borders with Egypt were closed at the request of Fatah. No-one has a monopoly on the dehumanisation process.

    And what is most depressing is that the fallen wall will undoubtedly be re-erected soon. This act of popular panic, which looks pretty non-violent to me, will be ignored in favour of more fear and repression.

    Since you’re a pragmatic kind of chap, I’m assuming that your apologies for Israel’s walls are inspired by a ‘whatever works’ attitude rather than a belief that all Palestinians should be caged like cattle. But, long term, are such strategies really so pragmatic? Surely the persistence of the Katyushas, and the hate that Hamas has towards Israel, tell us that the policy is actually rather counter-productive, and inadvisable on pragmatic grounds.

    When I see the Reverend Paisley and Mr McGuiness working and laughing together, I can’t help thinking that there is another way.

  4. “so Israel bombs a power station”

    umm…. In all the fracas, Israel has never stopped providing power to Gaza. In fact, there are Israelis who brave the rocket fire landing in Sderot to keep the power station running to provide power to Gaza.

    “When I see the Reverend Paisley and Mr McGuiness working and laughing together, I can’t help thinking that there is another way. “

    It is interesting that you raise that comparison. Reprehensible though the IRA were (and remain), they never came close to the barbarity of Hamas. Not on the same page.

    There is a very good case to be made that a significant factor in the progress toward peace in Northern Ireland was that the thugs on both sides realised that they were not prepared to use really truly horrifyingly indiscrimate violence on the scale of 9/11. The game was up: they didn’t really have their hearts in the violent struggle to extent required to attract the world’s attention.

    However much Rev Paisley may have frothed, he would have far far happier in a Catholic/united Ireland than a Jew would be almost anywhere in the Arab world. Even to make the comparison shows just how ludicrous it is.

    So, back to my question. Which do you think is more likely to lead to a peaceful outcome? Stopping the wall or stopping the Katyushas?

    If the wall were not there, do you think Sderot would be safer?
    If the Katyushas were not there, do you think the wall would be there?

  5. For the avoidance of doubt, I am not suggesting that Hamas carried out 9/11. I *am* saying that their ideology, outlook and willingness to use indiscriminate violence on a horrifying scale is the same.

  6. If the wall were not there, do you think Sderot would be safer?
    If the Katyushas were not there, do you think the wall would be there?

    This is precisely my point about circularity. The cry from the Palestinians is:

    “If the wall were not there, do you think the Katyushas would be there?” And they do have a point, since the resistance was certainly not so ferocious at the start of the occupation. Of course I don’t think they have responded particularly sensibly to the occupation, and you’re right to say that the brutality of the response has been worse than in Northern Ireland. But then again, the brutality of the occupation is probably worse too. Soldiers shooting kids is a far more frequent occurrence in Palestine than in Northern Ireland. Again, its a circular argument.

    I just don’t think there is anything about the nature of the world which says Jews and Muslims cannot live together. Zionists and Islamists, maybe, but that’s not the same thing.

  7. This is precisely my point about circularity. The cry from the Palestinians is:

    “If the wall were not there, do you think the Katyushas would be there?”

    And the answer is “Yes I do”. That’s the whole point. Hamas has only been able to deploy rockets from Gaza since the Israelis withdrew. They didn’t just take down a wall, they removed all their soldiers, all their settlers and left all their hi-tech investment for the Palestinians. And then they get hit by rocket fire from much closer at hand. So I’m afraid the cry from the Palestinians doesn’t cut much ice.

    “I just don’t think there is anything about the nature of the world which says Jews and Muslims cannot live together. Zionists and Islamists, maybe, but that’s not the same thing.”

    I agree, but it’s also irrelevant. Do you consider Olmert to be a Zionist?
    Perhaps you would like to comment on the co-existence of Islamists and non-Zionist Jews.

    Next, re IDF soldiers shooting kids: tell me about the relative levels of discipline and the existence of, let alone adherence to, strict rules of engagement between IDF and Hamas. When you’ve done that, tell me if you were actually on the spot where that 15 year old was shot.

    “It is difficult to imagine what possible threat he could have posed that required such lethal force.”

    I disagree.

    Israel is providing power, and its people risk their lives to do so.
    Israel provides medical help to Palestinians and they repay the kindness by trying to kill the VERY PEOPLE HELPING THEM. This kind of behaviour is NOT circular. It is barbarism on a scale that we cannot comprehend.

    The hatred that feeds this behaviour is delivered to primary school children in their schoolbooks. This kind of behaviour is NOT circular. It is barbarism on a scale that we cannot comprehend.

  8. Oh and whilst we are on the barbarity of the IDF, note that this girl was detained.

    Now imagine what Hamas would do if they spotted a Zionist suicide bomber on its way into one of their clinics?

    The behaviour is NOT circular. The two sides are NOT equivalent and I rather wish you would recognise that.

    Now, when are we going to see StopTheKatyushas.org or is it only the more reasonable side that you bother to lobby?

  9. Hmm. I think we’ve argued before about the difference between condemning the acts of terrorists, who aren’t responsible to an electorate or to any ‘higher’ claims, and the actions of a government who is. My understanding is that the rockets are the actions of terrorists, whereas The Walls are errected with the collusion between Israel, Egypt, and (on the Gaza Egypt border), Mahamoud Abbas administration. But yes, I appreciate that this line of argument begins to lose water where Hamas is concerned.

    Nevertheless, I still don’t think this justifies the collective punishment we see when Gaza and the West Bank are turned into an open air prison. The Walls, I say, are nothing short of atrocities – Psychic as well as physical barriers to either side seeing the other as human.

    Remember the phrase “if you pay peanuts, you get monekys”? Similarly, if you build cages, you get animals. We need to break out.

  10. “Similarly, if you build cages, you get animals. “

    West Berlin had a population of 2.1M in a space of 600 sq km – density of 3800/sq km.

    Gaza has a population of 1.5M in 360 sq km – also around 3800/sq km.

    For a period of twenty years during the cold war, West Berlin was entirely hemmed in on all sides by the wall separating it from East Germany. Why did they not resort to indiscriminate rocket attacks on the East Berliners? Why did they not become like caged animals?

    “The Walls, I say, are nothing short of atrocities “
    No. They’re borders. There is plenty of scope to argue about where they should be, but that’s what they are: borders.

    Why does Israel (or Egypt or anyone, but it seems that we are only really focussing on Israel) not have the right to secure its borders?

  11. Surely that isn’t quite how West Berlin worked. Wasn’t it the case that East Germans would escape in to West Berlin, where they could get free passage elsewhere?

    Regardless, don’t you think that the Berlin Wall was dehumanising too? All that barbed wire and concrete. “Mr Gorbachev, tear down this wall” and all that.

  12. I’d have to agree with Cleanthes on this one. Every country has the right to secure its own borders. Can we start with Britain?

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