The Guardian April 24, 2002


"Horrific beyond belief"

The savagery and barbarity of Israeli forces during their occupation of 
Jenin and other Palestinian cities is now revealed in graphic pictures and 
in the harrowing stories of the survivors and relief agencies. Although the 
Israelis forcibly excluded aid workers, medical teams, investigators and 
the media for a time the truth is getting out and will continue to come 
out.

The special UN envoy to the region, Terje Roed-Larsen declared what he saw 
in Jenin as "horrific beyond belief".

The Israelis systematically destroyed homes, roads, electricity networks, 
sewerage systems, water supplies and medical facilities.

Despite the bull-dozing of homes with people still inside and the gunfire 
of the Israeli tanks and planes, the Palestinian people have not been 
defeated or cowed.

They remain determined to continue and even intensify their struggle for an 
independent State, the withdrawal of all Israeli forces from the cities and 
towns of the West Bank and for the removal of Israeli settlements on 
Palestinian land.

Compared to the heroism of the Palestinian people, the response of many 
governments, even those which support the Palestinian cause, has been 
pathetically weak.

The United Nations has passed a number of resolutions expressing widely 
held international demands but has failed totally to take any step to 
implement them.

It has now agreed, after the destruction and the killings have taken place, 
to send a mission to Palestine, to look at what the Israeli killing machine 
has done and to view the destruction, that by their own inactivity, they 
failed to prevent.

The Israeli murderers have not only ignored the United Nations but have 
also ignored the hypocritical and weak remarks of the President of the 
United States who thinks of himself as all powerful. Bush gave the green 
light to the Israelis to do as they please, declaring that "Sharon is a man 
of peace".

Is the United Nations going the same way as the former League of Nations 
which collapsed because the big powers at the time failed to act to stop 
the aggression and war preparations of the fascist leaders, Hitler and 
Mussolini?

Where is the responsible and clear leadership of the five permanent members 
of the Security Council  Britain, China, France, Russia and the US who 
have, by their status, taken on special responsibilities to maintain the 
peace of the world?

By their virtual silence, except to adopt pious resolutions, they have not 
only failed to act to stop the Israeli carnage but are failing to warn the 
world of the emerging dangers of endless war which underlies the false 
claims that there is a "war against terrorism".

In the pre-World War II situation, the Soviet Union alerted the world to 
the danger of fascism and helped to mobilise the people of all countries 
that fascism meant war.

Today, a similar warning and leadership is needed  it is that the US "war 
against terrorism" in alliance with Zionism, also equals war. War is being 
prepared on a scale and barbarity that will surpass even that of the Nazis. 
It has nothing to do with opposition to terrorism, it is terrorism.

The Israeli Government is attempting to justify its war against the 
Palestinian people by claiming that it is part of the fight against 
terrorism and that if it fails, the state of Israel will be destroyed.

The Guardian and the CPA do not support acts directed solely against 
civilians while recognising that such acts by some Palestinians are a 
direct consequence of the systematic refusal of the Israelis over many 
years to withdraw from Palestinian lands and support the formation of an 
independent Palestinian State.

If this were done, such acts of desperation would stop.

Furthermore, the assertion that the survival of the State of Israel was at 
stake is a lie.

There is no single State that neighbours Israel nor any combination of 
States capable of defeating the Israeli armed forces which have been 
financed and supplied with the most up-to-date weapons by the United 
States. Furthermore, Israel has nuclear weapons, a fact that has never been 
condemned by the US, by the UN or by the other major Western Governments.

At the same time, abhorrence is expressed any time that Pakistan or India 
tests a nuclear weapon and other countries are systematically charged with 
preparing "weapons of mass destruction". Such is the hypocrisy and lying 
that has become a major feature of the statements of leading Western 
politicians.

The fate of the world now lies in the hands of the millions of 
demonstrators who have taken to the streets across the world in solidarity 
with the Palestinian people and against the Israeli aggression and 
barbarous destruction of even the infrastructure of Palestinian society.

Once again, demonstrations took place in Australian cities over the 
weekend.

Large demonstrations took place in New York and other US cities last 
Saturday. Last week's Guardian listed demonstrations that had taken 
place in many other world cities.

These actions need to be maintained and strengthened and made more united. 
Disunity at the present time will leave the warmongers in control of 
governments with disastrous consequences.

Unless the war danger is opposed, just as fascism was opposed, observers in 
bthe future will declare the destruction of many other towns and cities as 
"horrific beyond belief", as they suffer the same fate and today's 
barbarians vent on the world the only "solution" that they know  war 
without end.

The immediate steps necessary to stop the carnage are to establish an 
Independent state of Palestine, to force the withdrawal of all Israeli 
forces from the lands of the Palestinian state and to dismantle the Israeli 
settlements on Palestinian territory.

The implementation of these measures will bring peace to the region and 
eliminate the causes which have led some Palestinians to use their bodies 
to convey their desperation.

Back to index page