Operation Locked Kindergarten

So the folks down south, the ones who long for peace but have no willing partner, had apparently come up with yet another ingenious name for yet another of their killing sprees, only that this name was not widely publicized. The operation was named “locked kindergarten”. Its victims, 22 – many of them children, who would’ve been in school today.

Gideon Levy writes about the operation in Ha’aretz: “This sprawling, overcrowded [Saja’iya] residential neighborhood was occupied for almost a week by the IDF. The army wreaked destruction in it. A monstrous bulldozer maliciously potholed a few roads, scarring the asphalt with gaping wounds, for no apparent reason. Houses were hit, street tiling was uprooted, electricity poles were cut down, cars were crushed, dozens of trees were destroyed and 22 residents were killed. For almost a week the tens of thousands of residents lived in terror, some of them unable to leave their homes.” He quotes an IDF spokesperson, who insists that “[t]he IDF operated in Saja’iya as part of the overall activity to create the conditions for the return of Gilad Shalit, damaging the terrorist infrastructures and the firing of Qassam rockets.”

We are asked to believe that the splitting of the body of a 14-year-old into two is what would create the conditions for the return of Gilad Shalit. True, suicide bombings are despicable, murderous acts, but is the capture of an IDF soldier just as despicable? And what about the Israeli crimes committed in the name of this or that, today the freeing of Gilad Shalit, tomorrow the dispersal of a peaceful demonstration, and the next day who knows what? The Israeli message is clear – the targeting of military personnel is the same as the targeting of civilians. The bottom line, no matter what you do, you will suffer (what message does that send? The killing of civilians is much easier than the capture or killing of soldiers; don’t Israel’s actions encourage the targeting of civilians as opposed to operations restricted to targeting Israeli military forces?). The only solution is that you disappear, pack your bags and leave, because the Jews need all the “living space” they can get, and the Palestinians can move to other Arab countries. In the meantime, they will continue to come up with these ingenious names for their massacres. “Operation Summar Rain”??? Shells raining down on Gaza??? “Operation Just Reward”???? Shells and DU bombs raining down on Lebanon, killing some 1200 civilians? Just reward??? And worst of all, locked kindergarten???? But should we be surprised? The actions are worse than the names of the operations…

World media is busy covering the plight of the bears at Haifa zoo. Don’t expect them to pay any attention to the bodies torn apart by shells directly targeting 14-year-olds.

Advertisements

12 responses to “Operation Locked Kindergarten

  1. Exeunt On-line Journal of Political and Social Commentary
    from the Middle East to Launch in FALL 2006

    Submission guidelines at http://thethinkingleb.blogspot.com or http://exeuntblog.blogspot.com

    We are currently seeking volunteer writers and photographers to help launch our new publication and help build a free and democratic press in the Middle East

    Exeunt is a fresh and unique political on-line Journal being launched by Lebanese and Canadians in November 2006. Headquartered in Beirut, Vancouver, London, New York, Italy and anywhere else contributors may lurk, Exeuntis a weekly on-line publication looking to form opinions, influence minds and to examine and debate the most pressing political and social issues from Middle East and throughout the World today. Can we offer something better? Can we approach one another, as people in the midst of it all, in an intelligent way in hopes of avoiding the repetition of a cruel history?Exeunt exclaims that the answer to this question is “yes, we can.”

    Exeunt’s name is Latin for “Exit” (“Makhraj” in Arabic). In Shakespeare’s plays the names of characters exiting a scene are always preceded by the word ” Exeunt”, representing the end of a scene, and the beginning of a new round of dialogue influencing and changing the unfolding of future events. This, in a nutshell captures the spirit of Exeunt. Our mission is to ‘EXIT’ and stray from the discourse of the status-quo in the Middle East. We want people engaging and informing one with their own unique perspectives and with new solutions in mind. No agendas except one: Just, smart, fair and fresh coverage with aims to objectively examine how foreign policy detracts from or enhances the human experience politically and socially.

    Write for us!

    In preparation for our launch, we are encouraging writing and photography submissions. You don’t have to be an experienced/professional writer or a photographer, all you need are your ideas, unique perspectives and an engaging and intelligent way of presenting them to readers! Exeunt is essentially open to anyone. Also encourage friends, family or colleagues if you think they can make a healthy contribution. This is also a chance to get some exposure if you are an aspiring writer or looking to build your portfolio.

    We encourage you, or to inspire people you know, to get involved and help Exeunt become a success and our publication to grow in hopes of continuing to build on an increasingly free and democratic press in the Middle East and abroad.

    Thanks for reading,

    Mohamad El Masri
    Exeunt Editorial Board

  2. Really good post.

    Interesting anarchist pov, of support for Hezbollah. I bet you have the Israeli anarchists, up all night, thinking about how to reply to your argument.

    I admit I’m struggling with the concept of critical support. How much support, and how much critque, do you bring?

  3. Renegade Eye, I am mostly critical of HezbAllah’s theological/religious policing / authoritarianism and ideological base, though the former is not quite “as bad as” similar policing attempts in other places. Moreover, in as much as HezbAllah can be considered a non-state actor thanks to the combined factor of its weapons and minority/opposition position in the government, in terms of party politics and elections, HezbAllah has acted in less-than-decent ways, supporting for example the gangs of Hariri, Junblatt, and Samir Geagea in gaining seats in the Beirut district during the elections. Now they are talking about the corruption of the officials that THEY allied with in the elections, and who ironically turned against HezbAllah as soon as the elections were over. Not to mention, HezbAllah’s refusal to distance itself from Syrian occupation and oppression in Lebanon…

  4. As for the issue of support, we must realize that we can’t fight all evil all at once. It seems that some anarchists insist that we should all fall in line (I call it philosophical/ideological authoritarianism) to their brilliant idea that we should either fight all of them simultaneously or not fight them at all. The argument what we should fight them simultaneously is illogical (and here I must accuse those people of being armchair anarchists who only talk and don’t even think of the practical aspects of the strategies they insist on) and falls apart, unless one insists that one has no plans for the future. In other words, it is all great if you say anarchism should be left in the ideological realm, but it is NOT fine if you insist on bringing it into the practical realm… By this I mean, whom do you fight first, the lesser of two evils? Some even insist that this should be the case. That, for example, we should fight/criticize HezbAllah first, and Israel only afterwards, because that way we would at least have one of them off our back. But I argue that this would be suicidal, merely because WE do not have the tools to fight the bigger of the two evils. So what do we do? We do not uncritically support HezbAllah, but we do support its fight against Israel. Let us say that Israel had won and HezbAllah had been mostly destroyed, Israel would have maintained its occupation and authoritarian attitudes (in terms of foreign policy) towards the civilians in Lebanon. Who would’ve checked their actions then, in the absence of HezbAllah? Sure, the Lebanese would’ve rid themselves of a party/movement that often forced things on them, but would they be better off, living in the shadow of (or completely under) Israeli rule/authority? Now, however, Israel’s influence has diminished significantly, and with similar movements elsewhere, such as the West Bank & Gaza, it would diminish even further. So you would have, for example, three entities, and none of them are absolutely powerful except over the constituencies that they control. This would make it easier to dismantle them internally. Instead, by criticizing the underdogs on equal terms, you would in effect be advocating an imperialist model. In other words, dismantle those smaller movements, because they are easier to dismantle, for the sake of enjoying a short-lived moment of achievement/glory, only to give way for the rise of an empire.

  5. The terrible things that happen there are in the shadows since the war in Lebanon broke out 2 months ago.
    Maybe Blair’s visit and the promises for a meeting between Israeli and Palestinian leaderships will start negotiations for peace.

  6. Anarchorev said, “Renegade Eye, I am mostly critical of HezbAllah’s theological/religious policing / authoritarianism and ideological base, though the former is not quite “as bad as” similar policing attempts in other places.”

    Anarchorev I am pleased that you are concerned about that aspect of HezbAllah. I just completed an article about that aspect of Islam titled: The Danger of Islamic Revolutionaries Infesting the Middle
    http://blue-is-beautiful.blogspot.com/2006/09/danger-of-islamic-revolutionaries.html

    I believe Hezbollah has the ability to become an active people-minded political party if they do not become a part of he infestation of the dark side of Islamic Revolution.

    Back to the issues of Israel – I continue to be amazed that the word press does not hold Israel to task on the actions it takes in the name of self-defense.

  7. Question for Anarchorev: Do you know if any blog software exists that can permit Farsi and English both to be read no matter what language is posted or read?

  8. Roxie if I am not mistaken you can post in any language as long as the font is in UTF-8 (Unicode) format, and people would be able to read.

  9. Roxie – actually, though I am critical of them, I don’t see why there should be (in any shape or form) special emphasis on the “danger” of “Islamic Revolutionaries”. Certainly U.S policies and actions since the 1940s have been quite terroristic (not to mention that the very bases of the USA itself is based on ethnic cleansing and racism), more so than all the Islamic revolutions and attempts combined. If special emphasis should be placed, it should be on the history of the U.S, which has not been dealt with, not to mention compensating its victims. It seems that the fundamental problem in the U.S is the generally-dominant view that while criticism of others is justified and welcome, and actually necessary, criticism of oneself (and here I am not talking about criticism of one president or another candidate, but of general U.S policies and U.S history which is based on ethnic cleansing) is unpatriotic. It seems that the dominant attitude is that you should set others’ houses in order before cleaning up yours. That by no means implies that the criticism is invalid, but it goes to show that this criticism, while welcome in its own right, is based on an agenda, and that agenda, if lookd at closely, is a patriotic one aimed at advancing U.S interests. In fact, it is EXACTLY for this reason that there is now a concern with Islamists, with, most of the time, no mention of the causes that such movements have sprung up and now command large followings. Moreover, it seems that the harshest critics of Islamic revolutionaries do not shun the idea of authority of the state, but do so only when that state is based on Islamic tenets and laws. I have a huge problem with this. If one claims to be against all forms of subjugation, how can one explain/justify one’s support of the authority of the state and the tyranny of the majority (that it is by the majority does not mean it is not tyranny). The problem is that, this form of authority is now taken for granted, because it has already been baptised by fire. Today there is another attempt to plant the roots of another form of authoritative rule deep into the ground, and it is ironic that those who point to its inherent evil are the chief supporters of the centuries of violence that power struggles and the thirst for rule (whatever means were/are used to legitimize it) resulted in.

  10. Of course, there are very few places that one can find that haven’t been “ethnically cleansed” at one point or other (which, of course, doesn’t justify it at all, but there are precious few out there mourning the demise of the Picts or the loss of the Phonecians.) But one can, of course, try to learn from past mistakes (of which the US, along with the rest of the world, has made myriad) and change things going forward.

    This current US regieme, even more than most, tries to squelch
    criticism in any way it can. It is an incredibly dangerous combination of true believers (Bush, some neo-cons) and incredibly cynical pricks (Cheney, Rummy). If only Cheney’s ticker would drive him to some Scottsdale links course for the rest of his born days –

  11. 1.2 million is the number of cluster bomblets dropped on Lebanese villages and towns.

    “What we did was insane and monstrous, we covered entire towns in cluster bombs,” the head of an IDF rocket unit in Lebanon said regarding the use of cluster bombs and phosphorous shells during the war.

    Today on Ha’aretz:

    Quoting his battalion commander, the rocket unit head stated that the IDF fired around 1,800 cluster bombs, containing over 1.2 million cluster bomblets.

    In addition, soldiers in IDF artillery units testified that the army used phosphorous shells during the war, widely forbidden by international law. According to their claims, the vast majority of said explosive ordinance was fired in the final 10 days of the war.

    The cluster rounds which don’t detonate on impact, believed by the United Nations to be around 40% of those fired by the IDF in Lebanon, remain on the ground as unexploded munitions, effectively littering the landscape with thousands of land mines which will continue to claim victims long after the war has ended.

    http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/761781.html

  12. Stupid and criminal. This kind of stupid attempts at collective punishment have never, ever worked. And with unexploded cluster bombs, it’s kids that get killed.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s