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November 18, 2000
Manufactured Disdain.
By Ahmed Amr.

If we thought that instead of 200 dead there, that 2000 dead would end this whole issue and that at once everything would end, then we would use much more force."

Barak, Prime Minister of Israel
Washington Post Nov 17, 2000

The high death toll inflicted on the Palestinian resistance has all the signs of Israeli government sanctioned mass assassinations. Barak's remark clarifies the essential fact that Israel controls the level of violence in the occupied territories. By his own admission, Barak could have chosen to inflict a higher death toll against the Palestinians agitating against Israeli Military rule. It follows that he could have directed his occupation army to murder and maim fewer Palestinians.

The number of Palestinians killed for resisting the continuation of a thirty three-year Israeli military occupation is as high as Barak needs it to be. Many of these young Palestinian martyrs were born under the Israeli military thumb. They lived and suffered a short humiliating life under a despised foreign occupation. And they died at the hands of the occupation's executioners, the IDF and the Jewish settlers from Brooklyn.

To date, no Israeli soldier or officer has been charged in the death of that 12 year old Palestinian whose murder was witnessed by the whole world. It would take a dim mind to conclude that he was the only innocent Palestinian who was arbitrarily slaughtered by Israeli military goons. It now appears that the IDF has a daily quota of 'kills' it must achieve before returning to their barracks. During the last few weeks, that quota has obviously been increased. Barak is constantly bickering with Sharon about what the correct level of 'kills' ought to be.

The Israelis apparently have no intention of negotiating a peace deal with the Palestinians. They insist on Palestinian capitulation. Barak, a man who wears his arrogance on his sleeve, fancies himself the father of a vassal Palestinian State that will dance to any tune he chooses.

Barak has repeatedly vowed to bring all Palestinians who kill Israelis to justice. He does not even mention the possibility of investigating the serial killers in the ranks of the IDF. Indeed, he has resisted every international effort to assist the Israeli government in tracking down Israeli war criminals.

There are rules for everything, including rules that govern military occupations, and that includes Israeli military occupations. Crimes committed by the occupation army against innocent civilians are considered War crimes. But Israel, with American blessings, has gotten away with murder for years.

The American government has demonstrated, once again, a high level of tolerance for Israeli violence against Palestinians. This level of American acquiescence tended to increase during a particularly nasty presidential election season, which required $3 billion dollars of campaign financing. For that kind of dough, American politicians, including presidential candidates, are willing to shed as much Palestinian blood as Barak. One suspects that Hillary Clinton would even raise the IDF's daily quota, just to prove how 'New York' she can be.

That the Clinton administration has refused to utter a word about the level of carnage is a disgusting manifestation of the underlying bigotry that has been an essential component of America's policies in the Middle East. Indeed America's policies mirror Israel's racist contempt for the Palestinians and the other Arabs in the neighborhood. What makes matters worst is that the Palestinians have a leadership incapable of protecting them from Israeli violence. While Arafat continues to grovel before a lame-duck American President married to the First Lady of American bigots, the Assassin who rules Israel is busy deciding how many Palestinians to kill today.



  January 3, 2001