Liberal arrogance and some Palestinian non-violent martyrs

Guardian America editor Michael Tomasky thinks he’s being clever and original by asking: “why don’t the Palestinians just imitate Ghandi?“.

Self-satisfied liberals ask this from time to time. From Michael Moore in “Stupid White Men” to occasional Haaretz editorials. It seems every liberal who asks this thinks they are the first to ever do so. Apparently, the Palestinians are supposed to thank them for bringing them the enlightenment of non-violence resistance.

The answer to the question is: “actually, they do all the time: idiot. But you’re too busy kissing Barack Obama’s behind to notice. Too busy to report on the Palestinian victims of Israeli soldiers’ frequent attacks against unarmed demonstrations.” Hell: an American was shot in the head by Israeli soldiers last month just after such a demonstration (he was not even protesting at the time). Did you even report on that Tomasky? That says a lot: you won’t even report on unarmed victims in Palestine when they are the privileged White Man.

Here is a list of 17 names (10 of whom minors). It is a list of unarmed Palestinians murdered by Israeli terrorist soldiers during popular demonstrations against Israel’s apartheid wall in the West Bank in the last 5 years.

Take note that this list does not even include the hundred of civilians (926 according to Palestinian hospital sources) murdered by Israel during their latest massacre in Gaza — they were mostly sitting at home, in hospitals or UN schools acting as makeshift shelters or trying to flee the Israeli onslaught. It does not include other unarmed Palestinian demonstrators murdered by Israeli terrorist soldiers during the second intifada, those who were demonstrating about things other than the wall. It does not include the victims of the ruthless Israeli repression of the first intifada: which on the Palestinian side was almost entirely a popular non-violent struggle. It does not include the 3000 victims of Sabra and Shatila, murdered by Israel’s sectarian rightist death squad allies in Lebanon, brought into the Palestinian refugee camps by Israeli soldiers in 1982. It does not include the many returning Palestinian farmers shot dead by Israeli soldiers for checking on their farms between 1948 and 1967. It does not include many many thousands of Palestinian and other Arab civilians murdered by Israel for far less than demonstrating non-violently over the last 100 years of Zionist colonialism in Palestine.

Nevertheless, here is the list. Remember these names before you start preaching to the Palestinians, Tomasky. They know far more about non-violent resistance than you ever will.

February 26th, 2004
Muhammad Fadel Hashem Rian, age 25 and Zakaria Mahmoud ‘Eid Salem, age 28
Shot dead during a demonstration against the wall in Biddu.

Abdal Rahman Abu ‘Eid, age 17
Died of a heart attack after teargas projectiles were shot into his home during a demonstration against the wall in Biddu.

Muhammad Da’ud Saleh Badwan, age 21
Shot during a demonstration against the wall in Biddu. Muhammad died of his wounds on March 3rd 2004.

April 16th, 2004
Hussein Mahmoud ‘Awad ‘Alian, age 17
Shot dead during a demonstration against the wall in Betunya.

April 18th, 2004
Diaa’ A-Din ‘Abd al-Karim Ibrahim Abu ‘Eid, age 23
Shot dead during a demonstration against the wall in Biddu.

Islam Hashem Rizik Zhahran, age 14
Shot during a demonstration against the wall in Deir Abu Mash’al. Islam died of his wounds April 28th.

February 15th, 2005
‘Alaa’ Muhammad ‘Abd a-Rahman Khalil, age 14
Shot dead while throwing stones at an Israeli vehicle driven by private security guards near the wall in Betunya.

May 4th, 2005
Jamal Jaber Ibrahim ‘Asi, age 15 and U’dai Mufid Mahmoud ‘Asi, age 14
Shot dead during a demonstration against the wall in Beit Liqya.

February 2nd, 2007
Taha Muhammad Subhi al-Quljawi, age 16
Shot dead when he and two friends tried to cut the razor wire portion of the wall in the Qalandiya Refugee Camp. He was wounded in the thigh and died from loss of blood after remaining a long time in the field without being treated.

March 28th, 2007
Muhammad Elias Mahmoud ‘Aweideh, age 15
Shot dead during a demonstration against the wall in Um a-Sharayet – Samiramis.

March 2nd, 2008
Mahmoud Muhammad Ahmad Masalmeh, age 15
Shot when trying to cut the razor wire portion of the wall in Beit Awwa.

July 29th, 2008
Ahmed Husan Youssef Mousa, age 10
Killed while he and several friends tried to remove coils of razor wire from land belonging to the village.

July 30th, 2008
Youssef Ahmed Younes Amirah, age 17
Shot in the head with rubber coated bullets during a demonstration against the wall in Ni’lin. Youssef died of his wounds August 4th 2008.

December 28th, 2008
Arafat Khawaja, age 22
Shot in the back with live ammunition in Ni’lin during a demonstration against Israel’s assault on Gaza.

Mohammad Khawaja, age 20
Shot in the head with live ammunition during a demonstration in Ni’lin against Israel’s assault on Gaza. Mohammad died in the hospital on December 31st 2008.

This list, based on eyewitness accounts, is maintained in English by the ISM and the AATW. A slightly older version has been published on the ISM website, since when there have been two more murdered.

UPDATE: On 17th April 2009, this grizzly list became 18 when Basem Abu Rahme was murdered by a Israeli terrorist soldier in Bil’in.

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One Response to Liberal arrogance and some Palestinian non-violent martyrs

  1. Chris Rossdale

    When Finkelstein came to Warwick a few months ago, he spend two hours explaining in detail the links between Gandhi and Palestinian resistance. I hope he gets a future book chapter out of it because more people need to be reading this stuff.

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