The war against the unborn
  Gideon Levy
January 23, 2002


For a people who are always going on about "never again" regarding the 
capital H "Holocaust," the Israelis have an extraordinarily brutal and 
hypocritical attitude toward their neighbors the Arabs. The current policy 
of the Jewish state is to treat the Palestinians living in the occupied 
West Bank and Gaza as subhuman, or untermenschen, as Hitler might say. And, 
like Hitler with the Jews, Israel's rulers are now carrying out a Final 
Solution to the Arab problem.
True, Israel doesn't run death camps. Instead, they have turned the 
occupied territories into giant, crowded concentration camps, separated by 
nearly empty Israeli roads and settlements in which Arabs are forbidden to 
set foot. Israel is slowly choking the Palestinians to death, little by 
little. They rocket civilian buildings, pull down houses, and blockade 
towns, allowing nobody in or out. They assassinate Palestinian activists, 
and then, when others react by blowing themselves up and killing Israelis, 
they use that as a pretext for further provocation. Israeli soldiers shoot 
at kids for sport.

But what hurts the Palestinians the most is the way the Israeli army uses  
roadblocks and checkpoints to prevent people from going to their jobs, to 
get food, or even to get to hospitals in emergencies. Thus the story linked 
above, from Israel's liberal daily newspaper, Haaretz, about two pregnant 
women who lost their babies because they were prevented by Israeli soldiers 
from getting to a hospital less than a mile away. 
>> Suleiman's parents didn't even succeed in approaching the 
>> anonymous, faceless, inhuman soldiers who were perched in the 
>> tanks that blocked their way. Mohammed's parents did manage to 
>> approach the soldiers, but were unable to persuade them to let 
>> a woman in labor travel 1.5 kilometers on the main road -- 
>> which is open to Jews only -- to the maternity hospital in 
>> Jenin. The soldiers were contemptuous; they sent the parents 
>> back home. 
>> These are not exceptional cases. This is policy. The siege that 
>> was imposed on Jenin encompasses everything, including 
>> ambulances and women in labor. These are not normal times. 
>> These are disgusting times, as the writer David Grossman put 
>> it, when a Palestinian woman in labor no longer has a way to 
>> get to a place of sanctuary. These are brutal times, which have 
>> no parallel since the onset of the occupation nearly 35 years 
>> ago. These are the worst of times. 
>> And this is also the other side of terrorism -- Israeli 
>> terrorism. A roadblock that doesn't let pregnant women in 
>> labor pass is a lethal roadblock. It attacks innocent 
>> civilians, just as in a suicide bombing attack.

It is now clear that the Israeli policy under Ariel Sharon is to destroy 
the Palestinians utterly -- to drive them completely out of the West Bank 
and Gaza, which Sharon regards as rightfully belonging to the Jews. That 
such a policy would be formulated under Sharon is unsurprising: he headed 
a death squad in the 1950s responsible for massacring entire villages, 
and, according to the Israeli courts, engineered the massacre of 
Palestinian refugees in Lebanon in the 1980s. What is shocking, however, 
is that this murderous policy is apparently condoned by the majority of 

These are the people to which our rulers have pledged their undying support 
and billions of our tax dollars. They are the obvious reason the Empire is 
killing thousands of children a week in Iraq through a blockade that 
prevents them from getting adequate food, medicine, and even clean water.

Look no further for a reason explaining how other people hate Americans 
enough to die killing us.

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