Column: Silence makes us accomplices

editorial image

On Monday when America opened its embassy in Jerusalem – whilst declaring Jerusalem as the capital of Israel only a few weeks before - I realised then, many innocent people, namely Palestinians were to be killed, and so it is proven.

As I write this column 55 Palestinians have been killed and more than 2000 injured – it’s another massacre – and by the time this week comes to an end, the casualty toll is set to have increased.

Let me make clear, this is not a conflict, nor is it a clash, or a war – this resulted from a protest against a decision that Trump unilaterally took to further occupy the land of the Palestinian people.

Protest is an act of democracy and should never result in a massacre.

This is a land that provided a safe haven to Jewish people from the horrors of the German holocaust.

We should all remember the role Palestine played in the Second World War to protect minorities and the Jewish community .

I am unsure what exactly constitutes a human rights violation in the context of international law

We may have won the war, it was Palestine that won the conscience of humanity.

Let me also state that the Israeli Government openly quote that Trump has recognised the history of 3000 years ago in declaring Jerusalem the capital – and I know that some theologians will declare that being a fact too.

Nonetheless, I can’t be concerned about religion when I observe and can foresee the massacre of a people that is going to take place in the coming days.

B’Teselm, a leading Israeli human rights organisation,, stated, “that the demonstrations were no surprise and that Israel had plenty of time to come up with alternate approaches”.

They went on to say, “The fact that live gunfire is once again the sole measure that the Israeli military is using in the field evinces appalling indifference to human life on the part of senior Israeli Government and military officials”.

I am unsure what exactly constitutes a human rights violation in the context of international law – I’ve lost count of the number of times the UN have condemned the Israel Government for human rights breaches – or the number of times politicians representing membership clubs in so called democracies have spoken about the two-state solution.

Frankly, it is all talk, and little by little we have all witnessed what has happened to the land that Palestine once called home.

As I write this, I still recall Jon Snow’s brilliant journalism in calling out the Israeli Government on its aggression and shelling of parts of Palestine that resulted in the many deaths of children.

The image should awaken the world from its slumber and call this out for what it is…a human being massacre.

In 2014, I read countless media reports of the horrific abuses that mainly the Palestinian people suffered – for me all those reports from internationally renowned journalists suddenly became insignificant, because of one young girl, Farah Baker a 16 year old from Gaza.

Some media reporters named Farah the Palestinian Anne Frank – this is one page from her diary.

“I just noticed that it’s Thursday! How could days pass so quickly! Days have become similar, and dangerous. Even houses became unsafe! Where should we hide from this wicked world?

“Maybe graves are the safest, but houses in Gaza which are unsafe are like graves, they’re always dark because of power cut, and when a house is bombed it buries people under its stones, so even graves become unsafe! Where should we go?!

I read the above in the July of 2014, and I kept the above page as a reminder, as Farah would say of the wicked world we all live in.

I thought a thousand times about writing this column and the criticism I will probably receive for writing it.

On the flip side that criticism is insignificant compared to the suffering of the last few days, and to come in the next few days for mainly the Palestinian people.

It is important that we, our Government sends out the strongest condemnation against these human rights violations – mainly against this human massacre – let not our silence be a sign that we are passive accomplices.