Elias Harfoush
Dar Al-Hayat (Opinion)
January 2, 2009 - 1:00am

This is not the first time throughout the lengthy history of the bloody conflict between the Palestinians and Israel that the Israeli killing machine devotes its most intense slaughtering tools to annihilate the largest number possible of the Palestinians. The timing of the attack - on that black Saturday morning when Gaza's streets are usually crowded, the targets of the attack - with Israel not distinguishing as usual between militants, fighters, and civilians, and the intentions to manipulate the Palestinian blood in Israel's election, do not suggest that Israel was only retaliating for rocket attacks as it claims. Instead, the entire Palestinian people was the target of the punishment, young and elderly people, women, and children.

Thus, the long history of these carnages becomes the headline of the bleak future that the coming days of this conflict portend. The more intense the killing machine, the more vocal are those calling for the continuation of the resistance, "even if Gaza is destroyed over the heads of its people." This is how the tragic picture unfolds. The government of Israel and the government of the Islamic Movement in the Strip, alongside some rejectionist Arabs and regional parties, agree on one goal: to take the path of extremism to its inevitable end, i.e. annihilate the Palestinian people under the weak Israeli pretext of ceasing the rocket attacks (which have killed four people in the past few days, including an Arab against more than 360 Palestinians), and amidst an international silence which has "understood" the motives behind the offensive and called for allowing available blood and food and medical aid into the stricken strip!

In this conflict, producing extremism and seeking to lay out its ideological and religious foundations have become a popular and profitable industry. Furthermore, Tsipi Livni and Benjamin Netanyahu are running neck and neck to kill more Palestinians, while Barak, who is out of the electoral battle, finds a good opportunity to add more medals to his long record of medals which he reaped for his Palestinian invasions, from Verdun to Tunisia.

Hamas' allies and those behind (or ahead) it in the provincial capitals and on television satellite channels, do not miss any chance to add fuel to fire whenever a glimpse of hope heralds a solution, or at least an end to the spate of massacres which would allow the Palestinian students to go to schools and the youths to resume their work and studies, just as children and youths do elsewhere. The calls for such an ordinary life have become suspected: "Do you want the Palestinian people to live for the sake of eating, drinking, and sleeping?" Are the Palestinians destined to be ready sacrifices because the interests of the Arab resistance and rejectionists and their supporters cannot be achieved otherwise?

Thus, the moderate voices, wherever they exist, have become faint and timid voices in front of this bloody picture of murder. On the one hand, these voices are labeled traitors under the pretext of supporting the murderer and justifying his massacres. On the other hand, they are regarded as useless voices incapable of making any change in an arena brimming with extremism and its ideas. Ironically, the masters of extremism are serving one another: Livni's extremism serves Hamas and backs its open war argument until the last Palestinian, while the bullets and fiery Arab voices in the Arab and regional arenas intensify the offensives staged by the Israeli F-16 and Apache aircraft, even though these killing machines do not need justifications to perpetrate their carnages.


American Task Force on Palestine - 1634 Eye St. NW, Suite 725, Washington DC 20006 - Telephone: 202-262-0017