Edward Said: Is Israel More Secure Now?
Palestinians have been sequestered by the Israeli Army in no fewer than 220 discontinuous little ghettoes, and subjected to intermittent curfews often lasting for weeks at a stretch. No one, young or old, sick or well, dying or pregnant, student or doctor, can move without spending hours at barricades, manned by rude and deliberately humiliating Israeli soldiers. As I write, two hundred Palestinians are unable to receive kidney dialysis because for 'security reasons' the Israeli military won't allow them to travel to medical centres. Have any of the innumerable members of the foreign media covering the conflict done a story about these brutalised young Israeli conscripts trained to punish Palestinian civilians as the main part of their military duty? I think not.
Zoe Mulford has an album out: Soon As I'm On Top Of Things.
Peter Beaumont on the treatment of Afghan POWs.
When our fixer saw him, he was being beaten slowly and methodically to death by a local warlord. We reached the camp too late. When we arrived, the man who had been doing the beating told us that he no longer had any Taliban prisoners. They had buried some al-Qaeda fighters that day whom they had killed in the liberation of the city, he told us. We asked again about the prisoner. He clarified the situation: 'There are no prisoners any longer.'
A some point as a kid, I watched Bridge on the River Kwai. I remember being baffled that the Japanese who were running the prison camp had the gall to just dismiss the Geneva convention. I was genuinely confused. I asked my dad how they could do that. I don't remember what he answered, I remember thinking that gosh, they must be pretty evil and ruthless people. I like to think that I'm just a tad less naive now (and less racist too). Even though I know that ignoring international law is hardly anything new for the US, it's still a bit of a shock that now I'm one of the evil and ruthless people, even within that childishly simplistic understanding.