Khamis, 31 Julai 2014

Attack on Gaza 2014 : Why this time is different

Gaza bombing 2014

As this article were wrote, the war in Gaza dubbed Operation Protective Edge 2014 is now entering its 24th day, with death toll reaching more than 1459 Palestinian lives, mostly non-combatant, civilians and children. Although the term 'war' is highly debated, with the majority of the world now seen the recent escalation as 'genocide' rather than war because of the unbalanced force between the two sides. While the Brazilian President, Dilma Rousseff called the Israeli aggression on Gaza a 'massacre'.

But this time, there is something changed. This brutal aggression and killing were not the same as the Operation Cast Lead in 2008 and Operation Pillar of Defense in 2012. The different is not on the body count, type of bombing or the strategy of war, but rather a mass shifting of worldwide view of the conflict. As if the common Israeli pretext to justify its aggression which is 'to defend itself' is no longer viewed as justified, and the strategy of attacking others who doesn't shared the Zionist idea as anti-Semitic is no longer effective. The opinion world wide today seems shifting toward more sympathy for Palestine, even in the US which is the Israeli strongest allies, this trend is emerging- albeit slowly. I believe that there will be major change around the corner, a positive political shift toward Palestine, and Israel will no longer enjoy committing war crime unnoticed and unpunished. The tide is changing.

The rise of alternative media, which can provide the world with live coverage and live images in real time is now challenging the mainstream media. The mainstream media such as Fox News which is known as bias and used by the Zionist as a propaganda machine are now viewed as unreliable and skewed. The role of social media now is seems to be more important than ever to shape public opinion on this matter, Israel may be winning on the ground as they managed to killed more than a thousand civilians, but on the social media Israel is losing. As noted by Paul Mason, 'Israel is losing the hearts and minds of the world'. The fact that Gaza has been blocked for almost 7 years, and become the largest open air prison, is now known all over the world. Although the death toll keep on rising as the escalation continues, the resilience shown by the people in Gaza which were led by Hamas actually gave them positive impact, which is more sympathy and support from the world to the Palestinian plight.

The rise of awareness about the Palestinian plight can be viewed with the emerging reactions from celebrities, sportsmen, footballer, politician, journalist, scientist and academician across the globe. The trend which is not seen on the previous escalations. Among the interesting reaction is Joey Barton's tweet against Israeli midfielder Yossi Benayoun. Solidarity with Gaza can also be seen at the third Investec Test when England batsman Moeen Ali wore 'Save Gaza' wristbands, although England cleared Moeen to wear the bands, the ICC banned the wristband citing that it was against the clothing regulations. While at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, our Malaysian cyclist Azizulhasni Awang shocked the world with his 'Save Gaza' gloves, he later won a bronze medal in the Keirin event.

Joey Barton's tweet

Celebrities also showing their support to the Palestinian cause. Selena Gomez on her Instagram post a picture that read "It's about humanity.Pray for Gaza". Although later been bombarded by her pro-Israeli fans, unlike Rihanna, she did not delete the post. Mark Ruffalo tweeted when Israel destroy El- Wafa hospital, again bombarded by pro-Israelis, he added "Sorry, I thought blowing up Hospitals was something that all human beings could agree was off limits". Recently One Direction's Zain Malik also become embroiled in a twitter debate after the singer post a tweet with a hashtag Free Palestine.

Among the brave politician who dare to speak up for the Palestinian was British member of parliament, David Ward from Bradford East. On his comment, he stated that if he is a Gazan, he will surely fire rockets to Israel. The Liberal Democrat Party later issued a statement urging Ward to apologize for his statement or face disciplinary action, Ward however refuse to apologize. The crisis in Gaza this time shown among other, a variety of heroes, which come in different shape and sizes. These heroes maybe will not be included in Hollywood films, but they will surely be remembered and embraced as a symbol for freedom and dignity. All the peoples in Gaza are heroes, the whole world became a witness that nearly everything is made from China, except for courage, it's made in Palestine!

One of the hero that struck my heart most is Dr. Mads Gilbert from University of North Norway that came to serve at Shifa Hospital in Gaza, he left all the luxury and gambled his live to serve the injured Palestinians. As a Muslim I feel very ashamed with the amount of effort done by him as part of the humanitarian work which me myself cannot do. I gave him my utmost respect. In his moving letter, he wrote to the world:

“My respect for the wounded is endless, in their contained determination in the midst of pain, agony and shock; my admiration for the staff and volunteers is endless; my closeness to the Palestinian sumud [steadfastness] gives me strength, although in [some of the] glimpses I just want to scream, hold someone tight, cry, smell the skin and hair of the warm child, covered in blood, protect ourselves in an endless embrace - but we cannot afford that: nor can they."

Dr. Mads Gilbert in Shifa Hospital 

Journalist and presenter also showing some awesome solidarity this time. Jon Snow in his interview for Channel 4 News has given Israeli spoke person, Mark Regev a hard time. Among the question shot by Snow, which for me Regev failed to answer was the objective of the Israeli Occupation Force (IOF) bombing El-Wafa Hospital. Famous satirist, Jon Stewart also put forward the issue of Israeli blockade on Gaza in his Daily Show. He criticized the way Israeli warn civilian to evacuate, but the truth is, there is nowhere to go as Egypt and Israel closed all the borders. Stewart then asked "Are they supposed to swim for it?"

Political support also have been surging this time, it was an unprecedented trend that was never seen before. Much of the support came from Latin America. Bolivian representative to the UN Security Council, Sacha Sergio Llorenti Soliz was seen wearing Keffiyeh (Palestinian Scarf) during the session to show solidarity with people in Gaza. Bolivia's president, Evo Morales went on declaring Israel as a terrorist state, and renounced its visa agreement with Israel. While El Salvador recalled its ambassador from Tel Aviv to protest the military operation, making it the fifth Latin American country to do so after Brazil, Chile, Ecuador and Peru. Chile went further and suspend its free trade agreement with Israel to protest the military aggression. While other Muslim country may seen hesitate to put an economic pressure on Israel, Maldives canceled 3 of its previous economic agreement  that was signed by its former president, Mohamed Nasheed. At the same time Maldives will no longer accept any investment from the Israeli.

Bolivian representative, Sacha Sergio Llorenti Soliz wearing Keffiyeh in the UN
When the Israeli start bombing Gaza, the worldwide outcry is massive. The reaction is no longer regional or limited to the Islamic world. As the humanitarian crisis worsen, and Israel bombs no longer differentiate between military structure with schools, hospitals and homes, demonstrations and protest broke almost on every cities in the world. While in London the solidarity goes mainstream, after 100 000 peoples poured into the street in London calling for an end to the massacre and urging the public to support the BDS movement. Countries like Japan, Korea, Philippines also now have opened their eyes and becoming more reactive to the issue. With death toll rising everyday, and more images of dead children and babies emerging, the world now seeing an increasing level of disgust toward Israel from every part of the world. This trend will ultimately reach to a level where no sane government will support the Israeli war crime that been committed in the broad daylight. If you support Israel, then the blood is in your hand.

So what does all of this is telling us?

The shifting of worldwide support and solidarity toward Palestine is a signal, that the struggle is gaining more support. The world with its new generation can no longer tolerate the prolong injustice and occupation. For me, this trend will be a game changer. A new dawn is coming, it will bring along with it a new, fresh and positive development that is the lifting of the illegal blocked imposed on Gaza, and also Palestine liberation from the illegal Israeli occupation.

I believe that when the dust settle, a stronger Palestinian resistance force will be born. As Kelly Clarkson put it 'What doesn't kill you makes you stronger'.Unless Israel manage to kill all Palestinian walking on this earth, which is highly unlikely, this outcome is imminent.

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