Cyprus Mail
CM Regular ColumnistOpinion

There is revenge and fanatical revenge

By Hermes Solomon

BAN KI-MOON, Secretary General of the United Nations finally lost his temper and uttered contemptuously, ‘This is disgraceful! This nightmare of the past four weeks must stop and not be allowed to continue!’

Immediately after that uncharacteristic outpouring he was ‘spoken to’by his superiors, whereupon his tone mellowed and he returned to regurgitate the UN ‘party line’, which was that effectively, Hamas must stop firing rockets or Israel would continue massacring innocent civilians, destroying entire neighbourhoods and families, and in particular, schools crowded with the homeless policed by the United Nations.

We lily livered, full stomached hypocrites succumbed to his forcibly mellowed tone and remained silent. But I can no longer contain my outrage… Exodus 21:24, the second book of the Old Testament states that a victim of violence can take an eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot. That is followed in 21:25 by a burn for burn, wound for wound, bruise for bruise, etc.

Exodus tells how the Israelites escaped slavery in Egypt through the strength of Yahweh, the God who has chosen them as his people.

Led by their prophet Moses, they journeyed through the wilderness to Mount Sinai, where Yahweh offered them Canaan, the ‘Promised Land’ and a peaceful existence in return for their faithfulness to Yahweh’s laws and instructions for the Tabernacle.

Today’s Israelites, among the world’s best educated, most sophisticated and cultured of peoples, have sunk to depths of heartless and imprecisely targeted retaliation that outrage even their own supporters.

What does Exodus have to say about insatiable carnage? Were not thousands of Ashkenazy Jews imprisoned in Cyprus after their own sorry exodus from Europe, awaiting entry into the Balfour declared expropriated Promised Land of which Yahweh knew little?

How many Palestinian eyes have been gouged out this past month? How many more before this Israeli/Hamas madness stops for good?

The world’s media usually draws the line when it comes to the slaughter of children? But not this time; Ban Ki tried but was silenced.

Mass slaughter throughout the Near East continued unabated last week with Barack bombing the jihadists, purportedly in response to massacred Yazidis, (recent arrivals on the media scene) deflecting the spotlight momentarily away from Israel.

Why has Barack not yet reprimanded Israel? Or is the bombing of jihadists primarily intended to secure US/EU owned fossil fuel installations?

And just who is arming those murderous double-cabin cowboys – Saudi Arabia or Qatar?

The Gaza Strip has been imprisoned by world powers this past 60 years.

It is a mere 40 clicks long by an average of nine wide. The population stands at around 1.8 million on a strip of the land one twenty fifth the size of Cyprus. There is no natural source of fresh water and most essential commodities are imported via Israel.

Five thousand Palestinians are packed into one square kilometre as against 140 Cypriots in Cyprus. Wouldn’t we be screaming to break out if packed in like that?

The Strip’s coastline is blockaded by the Israeli navy and inaccessible to aid worker ships, thus today’s 450,000 homeless are unable to escape the horror and take refuge in places like Turkey or Cyprus (Interior Minister, Hasikos proposing we assist Near East asylum seekers when our migration department persistently abuses the human rights of those few we already have).

Can we not empathise…a little at least? Is man’s compassion for his fellow man to be found in his wallet rather than his heart?

Gaza Palestinians do not possess a well-equipped army to defend their towns against barbarism, a voice in the world other than home-made rockets (domestic gas bottles) 95 per cent of these ‘toys’ shot down by the US/Israeli Iron Dome missile defence system, while Israeli tanks despatch super shells from the Israeli/Gaza border which perforate walls and explode from the inside of a building out; reinforced concrete columns buckling as flat roofs cave in crushing cowering inhabitants.

In just a few weeks, twenty five per cent of the Gaza Strip has been reduced to ruins.

How do the inhabitants remain rational and sane when living in such slaughterhouse conditions, and in the same breath watch Israelis illegally build yet more settlements into the Strip and on the West Bank?

The Gaza casus belli might be flawed, but their plight, as that of Syrians and Iraqis, shamefully incriminates western powers, which hide their collusion with Israel behind platitudes, aid helicopters and unworkable resolutions.

Responding to Hamas’ ineffective rockets by annihilating civilians is hardly just – three Israeli civilian deaths against nearly 2000 Gaza men, women and children, never mind the 10,000 seriously injured.

Agreed, action by Israel to stop the rockets must be taken, but there is revenge and fanatical revenge.

Is it not written in Romans 12:19, “Vengeance is mine saith the Lord,” that proverb taken from the sixth book in the New Testament?

During this holy Christian week of Assumption, I only wish all Christians, Jews and Muslims practised what their priests/rabbis and teachers of the Koran preached. But perhaps religion, like art, is dead…and if not, then distorted to accommodate man’s evil intent against his fellow man.

The Israelites might be God’s ‘Chosen People’, but as many said after the Holocaust, ‘It’s time God chose somebody else!’

Unbeknown to them He did, and chose Barack and Vladimir. And by their leave, the Near East and Eastern Ukraine have become The Waste Land(s) of death and fossil fuels.

The 434 line poem, The Waste Land was published in 1922. Its first section, The Burial of the Dead is followed by A Game of Chess (between the gods I would like to think). TS Eliot uses the idea of a sterile wasteland as a metaphor for a Europe devastated by war and desperate for spiritual replenishment but depleted of the cultural tools necessary for renewal.

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