Tanzanians should condemn Israel’s genocide in Gaza

DEPENDING on whatever global TV network you have been tuning in this week, you must have been shocked and chilled at the level of carnage and massacre of the civilian population of the Gaza strip largely populated by Palestinian people. As a resident of the 3 million plus population of Dar es Salaam, just imagine, for instance, the scenario of half of this population concentrated around the Magomeni and Manzese area.

So imagine this area first, being sealed off and then rained by bombs from the skies day and night. The explanation given by those raining bombs on this area being that they are getting rid of ‘terrorists’ in the midst of the 1.5 million population! So this is exactly what has been happening in the last seven days in the Gaza Strip, a piece of land portioned off to Palestinian people, along with the West Bank in the Middle East.

Today, Friday, is the seventh day of constant and relentless bombing by Israel on this town. I first watched the scene of the level of these Israeli attacks on the civilian population of Gaza from the safety of my living room last weekend. Look here, all these global TV networks, regardless of their pretentiousness, all subscribe to the tune of their owners.

What you will see on BBC is not exactly what you will watch on CNN and invariably they all report on an angle most palatable to the agenda of the real owners. So the pictures of those hurt most in the Israeli air raids, such as babies, children and women will not be shown on CNN or BBC in a focused manner!

As my remote control gadget moved from one channel to another, I found out that only the Qatar based Aljazeera TV global TV network provided me with a comprehensive coverage of the carnage with its Correspondents stationed right in Gaza itself, as well as Jerusalem and the Israeli army’s frontline.

I was alarmed to see dead and dying people everywhere, building and other structures burning and hospitals overburdened with injured and dying people. The most heart-rending pictures were those of children and infants.

Oh! My God! Frankly, I could not bring myself to terms with what I was watching or what I have been watching in the intervening week, that human beings are capable of perpetrating such callous acts of barbarism. Reflecting on my hazy reading of the atrocities of pre-modern day Germany’s

Adolph Hitler on the Jewish people, I could not see any difference to what I was seeing being meted on Palestinian people. What is more, I could not believe that offspring’s of what has become to be known as the holocaust could themselves turn around the pendulum in the same manner Hitler did to their ancestors!

Going by the argument of the Jewish state, they have embarked on this line of action to nip in the bud ‘terrorists’ going by the name of Hamas, so that they are never again a threat to the peace of their people, who have now and again been victims of rockets fired by Hamas from Gaza.

Even accepting the logic of this argument, the questions to ask are: does the Jewish state need to inflict collective punishment to a whole people or it needs to identify the perpetrators and take them on their own doze? Does the Jewish state need to clamp up a blockade of the Gaza strip, depriving the people of the area of any food, medicines and above all water and electricity? As watchers of the events in the area will agree, this is precisely what has happened preceding to the current bombardment.

In fact all the life pipelines and highways have been bombed to impassable levels and the aim is clearly to suffocate slowly but surely a whole 1.5 million people to death! And by the way, it is not difficult to appreciate this move when one looks at the manner it has been coldly and viciously calculated.

Knowing that there will be a change of guard in Washington with the rise of Barack Obama who is being sworn-in shortly as the new President of the United States, the idea was thus mooted and is being implemented to finish off the job in this transition period, so that the powers that be and the international community is presented with a fait accompli.

The authors of the crime know only too well that Mr Bush is busy winding up and in any case he would not be interested to bother if the job being done is to finish off ‘terrorists’! And they also know that Mr Obama hasn’t any authority at the moment in time because he is still ‘President-elect’ yet to be sworn-in. So what a superb moment to do the ‘job’! And verily:

the Security Council resolution yesterday saw the United States and Britain abstaining to condemn Israel for its excessive use of force in Gaza, for the reason that Hamas was not sanctioned in the censure for its acts of terrorism! So there we are. The circle is complete; the conspiracy has been joined by the powerful of the world; who have chosen to look away at the genocide of a whole people.

This brings the issue to a moral and conscience judgement of the international community which includes the Tanzanian people. We have seen the all round condemnation of Israel from New York to London and from London to Santiago and indeed across the Middle East and some countries in Africa.

The people of these countries have made demonstrations in these capitals, condemning Israel’s version of holocaust on Palestinian people. In Dar es Salaam, demonstrations will be taking place today. But how I wish the demonstrations were organized by the youth wing of the governing party, CCM, rather than Muslims per se.

How I wish my own government was able to put up a statement condemning Israel for its acts of genocide against a whole people. If this was to be done, then this country will have re-asserted its own old glory as a moral voice of Africa.

To speak out against injustice committed by whosoever has been what had firmly put Tanzania on the world map from the word go right in the days of its founding Father. But where this is lacking, then the message of the people and of the civil society should be loud and clear as reflected in the demo today and elsewhere in the world.