Sunday, January 18, 2009

No one pays except the dead and the maimed

Yesterday, with my husband and some members of the Arab and the Muslim groups here in town, I went to NDP MP Bruce Hyer's office for its grand opening. I carried a sign reading "Canada's Shame: Gaza", which I draped with a Palestinian keffiyah. I will write about that next post.

Last night my mind, like many of yours I am sure, was spinning with the horrors committed on the Palestinian people of Gaza through this terrible Israeli massacre, and I was thinking about how a ceasefire, while absolutely necessary to prevent more deaths and injuries, is but only what it says: cease fire.

It does not mean anything more than a breather for now.

Which means all the fire is just waiting. Which means the fire is not seen as the problem. Which means nations keep making fire, and I don't just mean the rhetoric of fiery language but the technologies of fire that maim and kill.

Ceasefire has to mean more than just stopping this terrible massacre of civilians, which is the latest one in a long line of many, and many more to come unless we rise up collectively and say NO! Not in our names!

It is the military mindset, the militarization of nations, the normalization of war and the military, and the military industry and its growth through neoliberal economies and ideology, the impunity of nations like the US and Israel that are not held accountable for the illegal crimes that they commit through their militaries and their military technologies that have to be exposed, protested, resisted and CHANGED.

Normalizing war and the military is wrong-headed. These so-called legal munitions are used illegally by US and Israel. This has been shown time and time again. UN Resolutions have been made. BUT THERE IS NEVER ANY ACCOUNTABILITY.

Nothing happens. No one is charged. No one goes to court or to prison, except for some lowly soldiers who all the blame gets pinned on. Nations are exonerated. National representatives are exonerated.

No accountability. No one pays except the dead and the maimed.

Now Gaza, numerous times Lebanon, Iraq and Afghanistan ongoing, and what next? Which civilians next to suffer cluster bombs, phosphorus bombs, bunker busters, drones, Apaches helicopters and other terrible death technologies?

Apache helicopter
And btw, how can the US get away with calling these killing machines "Apache" after AMERICAN INDIANS who they slaughtered mercilessly in colonizing Turtle Island and creating the U. S. of A? What arrogance and racism allows that?

So, today I found Julie, one of my readers, has been thinking about these munitions, too, and questioning them. Please read the comments in the last few posts where I have linked to some articles worth reading about the making, shipping, and normalization of bombs and other military technologies, which Canada is deeply involved in.

Anna Nieminen (1995) writes that Canadian Uranium Perpetuates the Weapons Business:

"In 1965, Canada banned all exports of uranium for military purposes. Since then, however, Canadian uranium has been involved in what Dorothy Goldin Rosenberg of the Canadian Coalition for Nuclear Responsibility has called 'Canada's quiet nuclear export.'"

Exposing and resisting Canada's increasing militaristic role is our ongoing work as Canadians so that we can do what we can to prevent the next massacre of civilians. Today, I am writing another letter to Jack Layton, the PM and other Canadian govt represenatives to take them to task on Canada's role in creating death not peace.


Merche Pallarés said...

What surprises me, dearest Taina, is that WE the citizens, the GREAT MAJORITY in the world are absolutely unable to stop these few gangsters who run our governments. A new--worldwide--version of the French Revolution is needed; OK, we don't have weapons but we can all throw stones and shoes as long as we could get organized and do it at the same time. Ah... wishful thinking, I know... THEY, the powers-that-be, have us very well tied and THEY KNOW IT. Hugs, M.

northshorewoman said...

Merche, I agree with you. Some sort of revolution in thought and action must take place. Non-violent civil disobedience, like my small act of attending my local Minister of Parliament's Open House to celebrate his getting in office with, what some would consider, a political and a controversial sign stating Canada's Shame: Gaza, and walking among the people munching snacks and milling about with small talk, well, those sorts of things are the revolutions of the everyday which each one of us has an obligation to take up. Risk. Dare. Live are on the line. Do not waver from your beliefs no matter what or who comes before you.

So, I believe, that resistance is practiced in many ways. It is those who aren't even aware that there is something to resist who are our goal to reach.