Israeli intransigence has no bounds. And that was squarely evident as an Israeli court refused to fault the Jewish state for the death of Rachel Corrie in Gaza at the hands of transgressing soldiers.
The 23-year-old peace activist from the United States was killed as she rubbed shoulders with the locked-down populace of the occupied enclave. A volunteer for the pro-Palestinian International Solidarity Movement, Rachel was at the vanguard of the initiative to expose Tel Aviv’s brutality and had holed herself up as human shield — trying to stop the Israeli army from demolishing Palestinian homes. Her death and now this farce verdict have simply buoyed the world opinion against atrocities committed by Israel, whose policies had kept regional peace and security on tenterhooks.
Rachel’s parents may have lost the case in an Israeli court, but they have won the high moral ground. A couple of observations raised by the jury are self-explanatory, and go on to mock the norms of justice, fairplay and decency in state-centric relations. The court, while absolving the state in a civil claim for negligence, ruled that the state of Israel was at war in Gaza. This is tantamount to accepting that crimes against humanity were committed over the dispossessed enclave of two million people — who are starved of basic civic amenities.
Secondly, the justice observed that Rachel should have distanced herself from the area while seeing the mighty tanks roll on, ‘as any thinking person would have done’, is no less than an indictment.
Thirdly, the argument on the part of the court that Rachel was not visible to the intruding forces is devoid of logic. An earlier inquiry commission set up by the Israeli army had documented that the activist was out there in an orange high-visibility jacket carrying a megaphone and made every effort to block the path of the military bulldozer. So much so for the norms of justice! Israel is guilty of not only killing more than 2,000 Gazans but also cold-bloodedly murdering Rachel Corrie.
The verdict has surprisingly coincided with a United Nations report on Gaza, which declared that the world’s largest prison on the earth under the Israeli yoke would not be a livable place by 2020, unless action is taken to improve basic services in the territory. The most worrisome aspect is that the enclave will run out of water in the next four years. It is now more than a decade since Israel rolled its tanks into Gaza, sending its elected government packing and indulging in genocide. Irrespective of the fact that Rachel’s parents and sympathisers couldn’t get justice, the slain activist has made a point. She has touched the human conscience. Rachel has simply put Israel in the dock. Khaleej Times
Justice you must be joking? Israel has illegally occupied Palestinian land with impunity. Eventually, they would meet justice, may be not in the near future but this status quo could not go on for ever. It has nothing to do with the most of average Israeli citizens but there is are hard liners who never want justice for the Palestinians. The fundamentalist Christian organizations in the USA are to blame for most of this.
Hameed Friday, 31 August 2012 12:32 PM
We had Israeli spin doctors on TV rationalising Rachel's murder. One of them said that Israel had 'purity of arms' and the most 'moral' army in the world. Now that there is a murder inquiry into Arafat's death, you might have a smarty telling us about its 'purity of poison'
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