Monday, January 5, 2009
Hebrew nursery rhyme goes off to war
from Obey: Propaganda Engineering
I critique the word 'progress' in my classes. I show it to part of the discourse of Western superiority.
The first job of any nation state is to protect its citizens. And so I can assure you that if -- I don't even care if I was a politician -- if somebody was sending rockets into my house where my two daughters sleep at night, I'm going to do everything in my power to stop that. And I would expect Israelis to do the same thing.
Glen Greenwald from Salon wonders:
"Can't the exact same mentality be deployed to justify everything Hamas has done and is doing, to wit: "if a foreign power were brutally occupying my country for four decades -- or blockading my country and denying my children medical needs and nutrition and the ability even to exit -- I'm going to do everything in my power to stop that. And I would expect Palestinians to do the same thing"? But the last thing that our political class ever extends is reciprocal, two-sided analysis to this dispute."
Whose children count, I wonder? Are some children not as precious as others?
In another excellent critique about Selective Terrorism Greenwald writes:
"Those who giddily support not just civilian deaths in Gaza but every actual and proposed attack on Arab/Muslim countries -- from the war in Iraq to the Israeli invasion of Lebanon to the proposed attacks on Iran and Syria and even continued escalation in Afghanistan -- are able to do so because they don't really see the Muslims they want to kill as being fully human.
Yosefa Loshitzky explains that,
"I am not sure that most people understand the meaning of the name "Operation Cast Lead" chosen by Israel for its murderous and criminal attack on Gaza. The name is borrowed from a Hebrew nursery rhyme which was (and may still be) very popular among Israeli children in the 1950s. In this song, a father promises to his child a special Hannukah gift: "a cast lead sevivon." Sevivon, in Hebrew (A dreidel in Yiddish) is a four-sided spinning top, played with during the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah. Somebody, in the Israeli army, who apparently feels nostalgic about his childhood, decided that if Israeli kids would enjoy a sevivon cast from lead there is no reason why Palestinian children would not appreciate it too. After all Operation Cast Lead is not the first (and unfortunately, will not be the last) of Israel's cruel war games."
Hatem Omar, Ma'an photo