Letter from Israel: The Dehumanizing of People

We are publishing another letter from Israel, which reflects the anguish of an Israeli worker faced with the prospect of war in the Middle East.

Since September 11, a word, "terrorist", has taken on a new meaning. George W Bush now labels anyone who does not tow the "Western" capitalist line a “Terrorist”. He said famously “You are either with us, or against us”. The US (which for some reason, that one can only put down to arrogance) seems to think it is sacrosanct and should never be attacked. This reminds me of those awful days back in the 1950s when a nobody senator called Joseph Macarthy tried to prove that any American who did not appear to be a good “Patriot” according to his warped mind was a "Communist". And so we had good ordinary people who may have been the friend of a friend of a friend who once looked at a left wing journal being called up before that oh so democratically named "The un-American activities house committee".

The parallel with now and then is simple! FEAR! Fear that its consumer based way of life of just keeping the stock market climbing up with no conceivable goal, other than making more money, would be destroyed. The US in the 1950s was afraid of the Soviet Union, which at the time seemed an entity it could not control or defeat. Well the USSR has gone and, contrary to America's dream, all is not sweetness and light in the world. The US cannot go ahead and plunder the wealth of the poor countries of the world unhindered, so surprise, surprise a new bogy man has emerged on the scene to fraught the capitalist world.

Now this article is not being written to defend Al-Qaeda or any organization like it. Killing human beings is WRONG! But I would like to know why supposedly intelligent people who run this beautiful, but sad planet think they can exploit, debase, and cause little children to die of hunger without having known what life is. How can they commit all these crimes (because crimes are what they are) without this causing a reaction, a backlash?

The fact that the US is now curbing back the human rights of its citizens, should really come as no surprise to anyone who has studied that country well. But now "decent" countries like the United Kingdom are introducing draconian laws to curb its subjects' rights. Australia is another, and I’m sure more capitalist countries that we think of as liberal such as Holland and Germany will soon jump on the bandwagon, all in the defense of preserving their so called democracy.         

But to my mind sitting here in my flat in a small town in Israel, only a few hours or so's drive from places that have become so familiar to the whole world, like Jenin, Bethlehem, Kalkiyah etc., the greatest crime is being committed here. Because Israel has now termed a whole Nation as terrorist. The Palestinians have had every aspect of what is a normal people's rights extinguished. Their culture, their right to education, health care, the list is endless, and now their humanity. Israel through the madness of the capitalist world, can now dub an entire nation of some three million souls TERRORIST. And Bush has made it very clear that its open season on terrorists now.