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Will they only sing until the river runs red?

The Netanyahu regime has repeatedly dipped its toes into the pool of human right violations, however has remained anonymous from the ICC. Does this imply a double standard when it comes to persecuting world leaders for human right violations?

Ramadan is a holy month for Muslims, they go to the Mosque for prayer and a time for reflection of how to be a better person. Not only this, but it is a place where you feel safe and protected from the dangers of the outside world. This is why it was alarming seeing the violent images have come from the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem as Ramadan was taking place. The Israeli police force have taken upon themselves to attack those while they pray in peace. I’m sure everyone by now has seen videos in which the police prevented Palestinians from their prayers outside of Al-Aqsa, with further recorded scenes of them also charging inside the mosque inside reported by the Insider News

That month was not only holy for Muslims, but there have also been religious celebrations for Easter and Passover; this is a time for peace not hostility. In the Torah, it is said that Moses went to the bank of the river Nile while Pharaoh was on a boat. Through the power of God, he used the staff to turn the water into blood, the blood being that of the Hebrews Pharaoh had killed and oppressed. It seems the Israeli government have either not read this or choose to ignore it, as they would happily wash the Jordanian river with the blood of the Palestinian people.

Hypocrisy is the word that comes to mind when witnessing brutal attacks from armed Israelis against those who are praying, the foundations of Judaism condemn those who attempt to prevent worship of the Lord above. Not to mention, as a persecuted people for centuries, there should be some level of empathy when dealing with civilians, instead of police utilising brute force as an option by striking men and women with batons. On the 10th of April Israeli forces killed a 15-year-old boy, according to Middle East Eye. More recently on the 6th June a funeral was held for a 2-year-old boy who was shot in the head by Israeli forces per Middle East Eye. A 2-YEAR-OLD! What kind of times are we living in? The Israeli government has no regard for young people with one of its programmes focusing on detaining children, which has been ongoing for years. Save The Children reported 81% of Palestinian kids suffer physical beatings in such detainment camps. B’Tselem reports that since 2000, 2,223 Palestinian minors have been killed, these statistics are harrowing. One thing is for certain, the level of aggression cannot continue, the world is watching idly by as blood is being shed.

These attacks on Palestinian civilians are nothing new, and specifically when examining the history of aggression on the Al-Aqsa Mosque. The first strike out came in 1969 when an arsonist set fire to the pulpit inside (where the imam delivers sermons). In 1990 what is known as the ‘Temple Mount Killings’ occurred where Israeli officers killed 21 Palestinians. The Palestinians were demonstrating as they had the previous year against Jewish ultranationalist groups laying a cornerstone which would have meant levelling Al-Aqsa Mosque in accordance with the construction of the third temple. In response to the protests police used tear gas and eventually gunfire fatally ending lives in a total blood bath. In 2000 then to be Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon visited Al-Aqsa with hundreds of soldiers which sparked large protests from the Palestinians, to which the soldiers fired gas cannisters and rubber bullets. More gun fire occurred at the West Bank killing 6 Palestinians which caused the Second Intifada (meaning rebellion). According to B’Tselem, this resulted in the deaths of 6,371 Palestinians and 1,083 Israelis. More recently, Palestinians were even removed from the Mosque in 2015 for Israelis to go inside. Attacks on Al-Aqsa have seemingly continued nearly every year over the past ten years.

The reason I have listed these events is because the common phrase that is used amongst historians is ‘we must learn from the past’, well it seems as if we haven’t learnt anything because the past remains present. These memories must live on, for a cause that does not ask much, but simply to live in peace where their ancestors were from and to take pride in this. The scenes that have occurred for the past however many years are heart-breaking, which no matter your view on Palestine and Israel I’m sure you can agree should not be happening. We should not be born into a world to know that our life will end in misery but instead that we may have hope for what life brings.

It is crucial that there is some sort of international intervention which occurs, conflict has been an epidemic of killing over the years to both sides and it is clear to see that prime minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu is no closer to ensuing for peace between the Israeli and Palestinian people. There is a clear link, that Netanyahu uses the conflict to further his own interests, which are covering up a corruption scandals that he has been charged with. Israeli protestors took to the street in the month of March in response to his conspicuous attempts at passing a law enabling the head of state should be exempt from trial. Some of the allegations pinned against him include; accepting $300,000 dollars in bribes, making backdoor deals with Telecom businesses and negotiating a deal with an Israeli newspaper in return for support, according to the The New York Times. Due to the heat Netanyahu has been under during his tenure, he uses deflection tactics of which the Palestinians bear the brunt of, so he can cover up his wrong doings.

The myth of the Zionist movement according to Beverly Milton-Edwards and Peter Hinchliffe in their book ‘Conflicts in the Middle East since 1945’, is that ‘the struggle against Palestine was crucial in helping to build a state for refugees’ (2001, p.45). Should peaceful co-existence become a viable option with Palestine, it would create instability not for Israel but for the Likud party, who in all likelihood would not maintain sovereignty. Thus, should a liberal faction in Israel assume rulership, the Netanyahu and Likud’s wrongdoings as a government would be exposed, which is why continuation of aggressive policy is necessary for Netanyahu. The general claim of the Netanyahu government has always been that his wish for the state of Israel is to go on in peace, however the Netanyahu Regime has a record of even attacking its own citizens (who they so ardently insist they protect) such as anti-draft protestors, shown here by Middle East Eye.

The one take away from Israeli’s protesting against the regime, is that criticism against Netanyahu’s government can no longer be labelled as antisemitism, despite what extreme Zionists supporters have claimed over the years (as not all Jewish people agree with his conduct). Rather, it’s unlawful policies, corruption and inhumane treatment of Palestinians has been the centre of anger directed towards Netanyahu’s government. Both Palestinians and even many of the Israeli people have had enough of him, citing a need to replace the current government with a more co-operative leadership. The rest of the world cannot continue to watch humanitarian rights be so blatantly violated, and thus an intervention must occur in the hopes that long term peace for the future can be achieved.

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