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Don’t kill the Palestinians during Ramadan, kill them after!

March 2, 2024 at 1:21 pm

An aerial view of Palestinians performing Friday prayers among the rubble of the Al-Farooq Mosque, destroyed in an Israeli attack on March 01, 2024 in Rafah, Gaza. [Abed Zagout – Anadolu Agency]

Two things can be understood by the US proposal for the first phase of the truce between the Palestinian resistance in Gaza, led by the Hamas movement, and the Israeli state.

The first is sustaining this truce in the hopes of moving to a second phase, even though the proposal did not mention anything about a second phase.

This matter requires a great deal of caution because it is related to ambiguous US intentions, which still give contradictory signals regarding the war and its outcomes, and because the US formulates its proposals at the same table as the Israelis. The bottom line is that, even if the US wants an end to the war, it would be an end in which it confirms its concern for the Israelis more than its concern for itself.

Famine or genocide

The second thing that can be understood by this proposal is that the US does not want the sound of war to remain loud during Ramadan. However, during Shawwal and beyond, there is nothing wrong with slaughtering and starving the Palestinians, continuing the destruction of what little remains of the features of urban life in the Gaza Strip and pushing as many Palestinians as possible out.

Why is the US concerned about Ramadan? It seems sad and funny at the same time, not because one is able to laugh at this heart-breaking horror, but because this world is absurd and even more complicated than the common saying: “The worst calamities are those that make you laugh,” and we are the subject of ridicule for this world immersed in degenerate absurdity.

READ: Israel Minister calls for ‘wiping out’ month of Ramadan

There is always, in the Global South and our East, an overwhelming desire to rationalise the absurdity of the Global North and to paint the policies of white colonialism with genius and cunning so that we believe the white man’s perceptions of us. Their perceptions were not rooted in practical policies to dominate and violate us. We may doubt their perceptions if they are in the cultural sphere, but if they move to politics, we believe them! Why is that so, even when they become even more ridiculous when they become actual policies?

The first absurd idea circulating in this cynical space is that the US appears merciful. Consider the possibilities of American mercy: It is okay, Palestinians, for you to be killed during all the months of your lunar year except for Ramadan. We could just imagine US President Joe Biden and his administration staff listening to a senior official in one of the US national security agencies, perhaps William J. Burns himself, director of the Central Intelligence Agency, as he proudly and pedantically lists the names of the Arab months to them, explaining that Ramadan falls between Shaban and Shawwal, while noting that it is better to temporarily stop the genocide of Palestinians because it is a holiday for Muslims!

This is reminiscent of discussions by the US committee to select the Japanese cities that would receive American atomic bombs. Then-Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson ruled out the Japanese city of Kyoto because of its cultural importance to the Japanese people and because he and his wife spent their honeymoon there. We shouldn’t forget the names the US gave the nuclear bombs it dropped on Japan, dropping “Little Boy” on Hiroshima and “Fat Man” on Nagasaki, but we should specifically remember the report by The Washington Post earlier in December 2023, quoting officials in the Biden administration saying that their president does not sympathise with the Palestinians, even though he is known for sympathising with the people. I guess that is because no US Secretary of Defence spent his honeymoon in Gaza with his wife.

Why is it better to stop massacring Palestinians temporarily during Ramadan?

This time, an Arab may be pedantic, practising self-alienation, based on this American desire, by saying that the US is afraid of stirring the religious feelings among the Arabs and Muslims, which are heightened during the Holy Month of Ramadan. This includes a deep sense of compassion and solidarity as they talk to each other between prayers about the Palestinians who are being massacred while fasting and being unable to find any food to break their fast. Perhaps the preachers would dare to remind the people of the Muslims’ victories during the month of jihad.

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We should perhaps thank the US for thinking so highly of the Arabs, but the Arabs and Muslims should not imagine anything that is not true about themselves. Why would they be moved by the annihilation of people fasting in Ramadan and not moved by the annihilation of the hungry in Shaaban? They are not only hungry due to the Israeli siege, but also because of the Arab/Muslim failure to allow the entry of aid convoys piled up on the Egyptian border with Gaza. Whether it is due to inability, failure or complicity, the result is the same. We are then astonished at those who insist on denying the international betrayal and deliberate complicity reflected by this Arab position.

Some Arab intellectuals go as far as to say: “The behaviour of the Arab regimes towards Gaza should not be interpreted as a betrayal; it is a matter of interest,” as if this obsession with denying complicity to be rational changes anything. Isn’t it worse, more obscene, eviller and more degenerate when the interaction of the Arab regimes lies in massacring the Palestinians and starving them to death while more than half a billion Arabs and two billion Muslims watch? What interest do these Arab regimes have in annihilating the Palestinians? What makes this interest different from the Israeli interest that would justify it not being described as treason or complicity?

The Arab intellectual will say that it is not a desire to annihilate the Palestinians, but rather a desire to eradicate Hamas. So what is the difference between the Arab regime that wants to crush Hamas, even by destroying Gaza and annihilating everyone in it, and any Israeli or Western Zionist who presents the same excuse by saying: “There is no way to eliminate Hamas without this amount of violence, the price of which will be paid by hundreds of thousands of innocent victims?” Aren’t they all the same Zionist position?

We will agree with the US that this nation will not forget the revenge of the Palestinians in Gaza. We will observe the noble Prophetic hadith: “If a man says, ‘People are ruined’, he himself will be the most ruined among them all.’ We will be optimistic in our opinion of a nation that is described by its Prophet by saying: “The parable of my Ummah is that of a rain; it is not known if its beginning is better or its end.” However, we also know that this Ramadan will not be the Palestinians’ first Ramadan in which they are attacked, nor is it the first Ramadan in which Al-Aqsa Mosque has been desecrated. Therefore, the US can rest assured that its guards over Israel are the torturers of their people, even if only for a while!

Translated from Arabi21, 27 February, 2024.

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