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Blog: Condoning Israel's premeditated massacre

August 12, 2014 at 3:40 pm

Just as we try to do in the United States and be as careful as possible in going after targets to avoid civilians, mistakes are made. We’ve made them. I don’t know a nation, no matter what its values are – and I think that democratic nations have demonstrably better values in a conflict position – that hasn’t made errors, but ultimately the responsibility rests with Hamas.” Hillary Clinton’s comments from an interview published in The Atlantic summarise the perils of impunity and the rhetoric of blame – necessary equivalents in the campaign seeking to tarnish Palestinian resistance and upholding Israel’s fictitious right to defend itself.

Clinton’s evocations of similarities between Israel and the US are precise, compounded with the disfigurement of vague concepts such as “values” and “conflict” within the exclusively-oppressive democratic framework as advocated by the imperialist and colonial powers.

Both Israel and the US have sought to maximise the number of civilian deaths by relying upon collateral damage terminology and attempting to create the illusion that “mistakes” are not tantamount to murder. In every occurrence of foreign intervention or, in the case of Israel, colonial violence unleashed upon Palestinians, blame has been shifted upon the oppressed and resilient population. The illusion of better values is nothing more than a continuous appropriation and manipulation of political power that forces interpretations of violence upon the rest of the world without specifying the foundations of murderous intent.

The destruction wrought by Israel is justified through the foolish excuse of Hamas embedding “rockets and command-and-control facilities and tunnel entrances in civilian areas”, which, according to Clinton, absolves Israel of any accountability. In this scenario Hamas is blamed for Israel’s precision strikes that have intentionally targeted Palestinian civilians. The intent, however, is to misrepresent both cartography and resistance.

Detachment from history remains a priority in discourse that focuses upon distorting the immediate reality. In keeping with the usual laments about Israel as a “small country” surrounded by “enemies”, despite the historical collaboration of several Arab leaders with the settler-colonial state. Clinton’s strategy is to indirectly invoke recurring recollections of part rhetoric exacerbated by propaganda that attempts to distort the densely populated enclave into an area deliberately transformed by Hamas into a “human shield” zone.

As with other resistance movements through decades of Zionist settler-colonial oppression and expansion, the emergence of Hamas as a resistance movement is a necessary outcome brought about by the establishment of Israel. Hence, any accountability with regards to the murder of Palestinian civilians lies not only with the current Israeli leaders and participants in “Operation Protective Edge”, but the entire construction of the Zionist state and its upholders.

Responsibility for Israel’s genocidal phases commencing with the Nakba remain the responsibility of imperialist-supported settler-colonisation in Palestine. Projecting blame upon Palestinian resistance is an abdication of responsibility – one that can be remedied by the obliteration of Israel to pave the way for land reclamation and the return of all Palestinian refugees and their descendants.

With regards to Hamas and Palestinian resistance factions, culpability would arise should the aims of Palestinians for total liberation be subjected to another travesty of diplomatic concessions and the quest of seeking legitimacy from the compromised international institutions advocating for the complete colonisation of Palestine.


The views expressed in this article belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Middle East Monitor.