As I am away this week I was hoping to be able to bring you an exciting guest post from someone I admire and I am happy to bring you the voice behind the fantastic FashionWorked
I love anyone who writes with passion and giving him the free reign that he kindly affords me on his blog every month, here he is talking about what is important to him:
Vicky blogs for me once a month and has asked me if I’d like to guest with her and well yes I would. You may all know me as the guy behind FashionWorked, but the other me is a committed activist for human rights and today I’d like to talk about that part of my life and the anger and upset I feel right now at what is happening to Gaza.
I should make it clear that I hate the rockets from the militants, deplore violence, especially against the innocent, the attacks from Hamas members are wrong, so very wrong, and the killing of three teenage boys was a disgusting tactic for which the guilty should be punished.
However the current attacks on Gaza are the latest in a history of violence and collective punishment. Thousands of Palestinians are locked up without charge, with out legal process and without legitimate cause. What we see is the vile actions of a minority used to give a reason for collective punishment of every single Palestinian.
We hear the news talk of “aggressors” and “swapping fire”, we don’t here about the breaching of over 400 UN resolutions by Israel, the starvation, lack of clean water, free trade, or rights of Gaza and the West Bank, we don’t hear how the IDF kills children for playing near its security wall that steals land from the farmers of the West Bank, we don’t hear of the refusal to allow building supplies needed to repair and build the infrastructure blown away by fighter jets, the destroyed hospitals and sanitation plants.
We might occasionally hear of the IDF soldiers posing for trophy photos with people they have arrested, we don’t hear about the children who are no longer allowed to go to school because its on the wrong side of a check point, we don’t hear about the huge unemployment because the jobs people had are on occupied land or they are not allowed papers to get to them, we don’t hear about the segregated buses or the lack of equality.
We hear Israel say it won’t deal with Hamas because it’s a terror group, it can’t work with someone that doesn’t recognise its right to exist, well lets ask this question also, why does Israel condemn the democratically elected leaders of Palestine for seeking their own statehood, why does it ask the UN to refuse them any sort of status, and use every request as a reason to say Fatah have broken peace accords?
It talks of wanting peace when it occupies The Golan and The West Bank, has turned Gaza into a prison camp by land, sea and air, and has only just left Lebanon. It sends its agents out to the rest of the world to execute those it sees as danger.
It is time to recognise that there are men on both sides that are men who kill indiscriminately, but that the IDF destruction needs to end, the attacks on civilian targets, the deliberate destruction of hospitals and schools must end. We must demand that both not one side lay down their guns. We must demand that we put the people under the bombs first, we must demand a Palestinian state as a real option to end the slaughter.
No more can the world stand by and watch this killing, as I write 156 people have lost their lives, including civilians and children, some are militants yes, I’m not naive, but many are the victims of the philosophy of collective punishment.
If the West continues to hand military aid to the IDF it says it is alright to kill instead of talk, it should use its influence to drive both sides back to negotiation, With Arafat and Rabin we had a chance to see that, we can bring back that day. If we don’t do something soon there will be no land and no people left for a state to be built with.
Hamas were in trouble, they had lost their backers to the south, Iran had fallen out with them over Assad, the butcher in Damascus, never in decades had there been a better time to force Hamas back into a deal, no money, no weapons, losing ground for the forthcoming elections, they were weak, now they are the Lions of Defiance once again and the innocent bleed and die for this stupid entirely balanced to one side war.
We are people all born under the same sun, the same moon, and we share that planet, its time to stand and say end this killing, end this slaughter and lets help Israel find peace by talking and not annihilation of its enemies.
We remain one world, one people, lets live the ideals of Edith Cavell . .
“Patriotism is not enough. I must have no hatred or bitterness towards any one.”
And Thomas Paine . . .
“My country is the world, my religion to do good.”