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Fri

03

Nov

2006

Palestine: Women of Beit Hanoun Go "Over the Top"
Friday, 03 November 2006 23:38

by Chris Cook


The symbol of the end of the 'Gilded Age' and ultimate refutation of Hope in the still young 20th Century, the ‘Trenches’ of the First War, horrors filled with dead farm boys, a-swim in mud, blood, rats and the reek of futility was given an eerie revisiting today in Palestine. Through the courtesy of BBC television, we witnessed not the flower of Europe's manhood going "over the top," but the women of Palestine, desperate to shield their sons, husbands, fathers, and brothers from the relentless, and pitiless, and murderous Israeli Defence Force, mounting the barricade to face naked the guns.

 

 

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.


The "War to End All Wars" failed of course to fulfill its billing, just as all its predecessors failed to fulfill theirs. No, this waste of innocents, the insatiable maw that was the "Great War," was not finale but merely prelude to grosser horrors to come.

Emblematic of the grim dehumanization the future promised, images of doomed soldiers sent "over the top," out of their trench shelters, to march slowly into the remorseless machinery of modern warfare is the legacy of that bloody century: We are the inheritors today of a moral degeneracy culminating on our television screens, where we can watch men of high station joke about distant women and children destroyed, rent to pieces by bombs and bullets and worse, as we eat supper.

The women clambered over the earthen walls, as the foot soldiers of the distant war past had, with hope but no assurance they would survive, but unlike those long dead Tommy’s and Huns, they went over the walls thrown up by the Israeli bulldozers to stop the killing, not participate in it; they challenged the humanity of those Jewish soldiers surrounding the mosque, daring them to stay their hand, challenging them to show mercy and become men again.

Perhaps some held their fire. Perhaps others aimed high, or wide of the burkas; but clearly others did not. I watched the women fall to the ground dead tonight; not "insurgents," "terrorists," "Hamas;" not "Hezbullah," "al Qaida," nor "Taliban," but mothers, sisters, daughters, wives, mercilessly shot down by cowards, robot warriors who failed, outside a mosque in Beit Hanoun, to claim their humanity, just as the cowards in Iraq, and Afghanistan, and every other place where soldiers and their masters surrender duty to conscience and kill. 

The men that rushed into the firestorm in aid of the stricken Heroines came under fire today, as so often they have before in Palestine, too falling victim to Israel's Defence Force and its so-called "Rules of Engagement;" rules [sic] allowing men desert decency, deny mercy, and treat every being in their range as a "legitimate" target of war.

Cases of criminal outrage against humanity committed by the IDF within what survives of Palestine are legion: Think Lebanon in many multiples. It is a wonder women would climb into that gallery, face the assassins of so many of their kith and kin, and deliver to the killers a chance to redeem their humanity, or not. 

Here's a look at Google News of Israel’s recent doings in Gaza. That’s just today, tomorrow is another, and the next day another; all days of brutality, meted out over the months and years and decades in Palestine. Where even the greatest war ended, its dead planted in rows like so much wheat, in this killing field the crosshair never ceases, and the flower of the nation are yet cut with no end in sight.

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
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Samo said:

0
It is our time...
I think it is time Palestinian women stand up and show the world that they to are smart and have the right and opportunity to make themselves heard. Check this Palestinian woman I found on my space. We need more women like this.

http://www.myspace.com/faizaahmed
 
November 05, 2006
Votes: +0

Noga said:

0
...
I'm not 100% sure what exactly Mr. Cook is speaking of in his highly bathetic and emotionally-manipulative account. Is this it?

"On Monday, Palestinians in Gaza flocked to the home of an alleged Hamas leader to prevent a possible Israeli air force attack. The house belonged to Wael Rajab, a senior member of the governing Palestinian militant group. Israel has not confirmed it planned an attack there.

Similar action last week caused Israel to call off an air strike on the home of another militant leader in Gaza's Jabaliya refugee camp.

Mohammed Baroud, a commander in the Popular Resistance Committees, said he had been warned by Israeli forces to leave his home - instead he summoned neighbours to help defend his property". http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/6173850.stm

I, too, would have been moved to tears by the selfless heroism of these women, especially as they are sung by Mr. Cook. But I'm not. They are not protecting life or rights. They are protecting weapons-storage facilities and tunnels hidden in these houses, through which weapons are being smuggled. What are those weapons for? Are they meant for fighting soldiers on battlefields, far from densely-populated areas? Not bloody likely. These weapons are meant for being launched at civilian centres in Israel, as we know has been happening almost everyday since Israel evacuated completely from the Gaza strip, over a year ago. They are terrorist weapons, INTENDED for children as they play in their backyards in Sderot, or for workers in a factories, or for elderly women as they cross the street in Ashkelon. This is what these women are shielding, the God given right of Palestinians to murder Israelis with impunity, and being hailed as heros for it by the likes of Mr. Cook.

And why are they even daring to do that? Because they have no fear whatsoever that they will be targeted by the IDF. They know the IDF does not deliberately TARGET civilians, so they can pretend to be brave and defy Israel's "murderous intents" that they know full well are non-exitant.
 
December 03, 2006 | url
Votes: +0

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