Thursday, June 03, 2010

The Smallest World Possible

Each day, whether due to the BP oil leak bleeding pollution into the Gulf, or the news about Israel’s blockade in Gaza, we’re reminded just how small the world has become.

It’s not because we receive news instantly instead of in daily or nightly feeds as was typical 20 or so years ago; and it’s not because emails, text messages and/or multimedia messages allow us to be witnesses to historical events unfolding.

It’s that where we were once isolated throughout the world, everyone is now united by one single, simple catalyst: the Internet. And while the instant appeal of this communication is a great and positive thing, it also serves to demonstrate how we all are world citizens. More importantly, it serves to demonstrate that people with common goals – be they beneficial or pernicious – who were once isolated can now commiserate and stoke the fires of their desires, good or bad.

The new “it” topic – at least for the next week or ten days – will undoubtedly be Israel’s handling of the Turkish flotillas that attempted to violate the Israeli blockade of Gaza. And while that particular incident was not a surprise for many, what will be even less so – and perhaps increasingly disappointing – is that the world will “re-up” and attempt to politically wear down the Israelis to lift their blockade of Gaza.

Another “aid” ship – this time carrying cement, toys, medical supplies and “educational materials” – will attempt to enter Gaza and break the Israeli blockade. And again, Israel has offered to permit the ship carrying these items – an Irish ship named the Rachel Corrie – to dock in Israel so Israel can a) screen the shipment; b) distribute the items; and c) protect itself from the mass influx of weapons and explosives smuggled through legitimate sources like “humanitarian missions” such as this one. The “Free Gaza Movement” organization is very vocal as they should be; there are issues in Gaza that need to be seen and examined. But the vocal aspect of their participation is to criticize Israel for its blockade, not to criticize the extremists who use these types of shipments to bring in weapons and other materials contrary to peace. Israel’s blockade isn’t intended to deny human rights to anyone, including her neighbors; if it were, then one would wonder why they would request any ship carrying aid materials dock in their port so they can handle the expense and responsibility of distributing this material.

Put another way, if the Israelis were the monsters most ignorant observers loudly proclaim they are, why would they offer to help in the distribution process?

And while we’re on the subject of asking very simple questions whose answers seem to elude the people striving for “Free Gaza,” if the Israeli blockade intended to injure the “peace activists” on those Turkish flotillas, why did the Israeli commandos who raided those ships do so carrying paint-ball guns rather than typical commando fare with live ammunition? Why didn’t they a) just fire on each ship from far enough away to avoid putting their commandos in danger? Obviously, they have demonstrated they – rightfully – are more interested in the survival of Israel than what people beyond her borders thinks. And why were “peaceful activists” armed on these vessels? And further, why did these “peaceful activists” attack the commandos? Please correct me if I’m mistaken, but as a peaceful person, if I’m a passenger on a ship en route to Gaza and commandos storm the boat on which I’m sailing, my first reaction would be to get my head down and avoid pissing them off. In fact, knowing the Israelis don’t mess around with their military, I’d be inclined to hide; my last inclination would be to attack them.

And the world is shocked that “peaceful activists” were injured or killed by a venomous group of Israeli commandos looking for blood?

Ridiculous at best; and complete bullshit at worst.

Not a shock, as per usual.

There’s a moral I learned as a child which I practice to this day: the moral is “don’t poke the sleeping bear.” Other ways of communicating this same concept is “let sleeping dogs lie,” and yet another is “don’t ripple the water.” These three phrases mean one and the same thing: don’t go looking for trouble. These Turkish ships – violating an Israeli blockade – opted to ignore Israel’s willingness to help with the humanitarian aid bound for Gaza. Israel’s blockade – unjustified to those who have nothing but disdain for Israel’s existence – is not illegal nor is it designed to mistreat its neighbors. Its goal is to limit and prevent the mass shipments of weapons – machine guns, missiles, explosives, and bomb materials – into the region. Ironic how “peaceful activists” not only attacked Israeli commandos, but fail to comprehend the rationale behind the blockade.

Even more ironic is that – since 1940 – these people who use “peace” as a war cry still haven’t learned not to poke the bear.

And frankly, only one thing is certain: they never will.