When Barack Obama finally spoke out publicly about the Israeli assault on Gaza, at a press conference, he wove an astonishingly thick web of deception and distortion.
I’m no Obama-basher. But when I see him bashing and trashing the truth so blatantly, I have to speak out. I have to express my pain, because I know that his misleading words will increase the risks to my loved ones and fellow Jews in Israel and the much greater risks to the victims of Israeli aggression in Gaza.
Of course to hear Obama tell it, it’s the Israelis who are the victims. “The precipitating event here that’s causing the current crisis … was an ever-escalating number of missiles” fired from Gaza into Israel, he said. “And there’s no country on Earth that would tolerate missiles raining down on its citizens from outside its borders.”
This is the same old tale Americans have been getting from their presidents, politicians, and press for decades: Those nasty Arabs, attacking Jews out of the blue for no good reason that we can see.
Not a word about Israel’s economic blockade, which has inflicted so much misery on the people of Gaza for so many years. Israel has turned Gaza into what Noam Chomsky (who just returned from the Strip) calls “the world's largest open-air prison,” where the only relief from suffering comes from materials brought (or smuggled) across the border from Egypt.
From the Israeli side, there is only a systematic plan “to put the Palestinians on a diet, but not to make them die of hunger," as one cynical Israeli official put it.
And that’s literally what the Israelis have done.
~ from Obama Weaves Web of Deceit on Gaza War by Ira Chernus ~
In the US, we have become very used to one-sided news. We're used to hearing that every war we participate in or support is justified and honorable. We're used to hearing that the evisceration of the Bill of Rights will make us safe. We're even use to hearing how torpedoing Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid will save them!
So, it is not surprising at all that Americans believe it when they're told that ALL of the troubles in the Middle East are the fault of the "evil" Palestinians and that Israel has no choice but to defend itself in the face of repeated -- and "unprovoked" -- attacks.
To be honest, while I will agree that the Palestinians have gotten the raw end of the deal for quite some time, I still have trouble understanding the logic of firing shells over the border into Israel. It's like a scrawny 6 year old throwing spitballs at the school's hulking 12 year old bully. Do it enough and you know the bully will retaliate by smashing the 6 year old's face in the asphalt!
I'm not saying that the Palestinians do not have the right to pissed to hell with the Israeli government. If I was in their shoes, I would be boiling mad. But throwing pebbles at somebody that you KNOW will throw back boulders only will make a bad situation worse.
That said, I do understand their desperation. As long as the US and her western allies grant Israel the green light to be human rights thugs, the Palestinians are at their mercy. Since the Israeli government seems bound and determined to ethnically cleanse Palestinians out of their -- that is, the Palestinian's -- homeland, desperation often breeds actions that aren't in anyone's best interests.