Web Letters | The Nation

Web Letter

It is really great to see that The Nation has published an editorial on the events near Gaza. A compelling humanitarian crisis has existed there, with the endorsement of the mainstream political establishment in the US, for forever and a day, and recently, as the Israelis have engaged in the full-scale strangulation of the people there, culminated in a moment of simultaneous despair and triumph. This poor, oppressed miserable people, cast aside by the wealthy and powerful of the Western world, has blown down a wall and bought, with its own money, a slightly extended lifespan.

It is shocking that the crisis in Gaza, in this climactic moment, has not registered a blip in the US presidential election.

To many, including myself, the US presidency can easily be reduced to one tangible result: body count. Every time a President is elected, the election's results can be communicated exactly and completely in terms of the resultant foreign body count. The election of a US President does not create net hope abroad for anything other than some measure of death, enumerated in the suffering and corpses of men, women and children.

Why in the name of God has the issue in the Gaza been given zero seconds of response by US presidential candidates--in particular, the supposed populist, humanitarians of the Democratic primary? Why is Barack Obama not forced by reporters to take a position on what's happening in Gaza? Why do women and children suffer so miserably while supposed feminist "icon" Hillary Clinton plays dice with photos of Tony Rezko?

The unaddressed plight in Gaza is yet another indictment of our political system--we claim the mantle of world leadership, yet our candidates have spent more time focused on whether Obama was rude to have not shaken hands with Hillary Clinton at the recent State of the Union Address than on the ongoing pathos of 1.5 million people who are subjects of a foreign policy agency that has a stranglehold on our government.

God save our souls as every last dollar and bullet is shipped to Israel and this poor suffering mass of people in Gaza, in the name of our mighty vacuous "democracy" and "freedom," is consigned to suffering and death.

Seymour Friendly

Seattle, WA

Feb 3 2008 - 11:34pm

Web Letter

The author claims that Egypt was being pressured by Israel and the United States to stop the Gazans from crossing into Egypt. What the author doesn't mention, however, is that Egypt has been unwilling to police its borders to stop the smuggling of rockets into Gaza that Hamas has been using to attack Israel. It appears the author is willing to let Egypt off lightly.

My source for this is: http://theweekdaily.com/news_opinion/main_stories/33768/desperate_palest...

Scott Kaplan

Pomona, NY

Feb 3 2008 - 8:40pm

Web Letter

Palestinians and Kurds share a fate of unconscionable suffering. Their neighbors want to keep them weak, divided and overwhelmed by their various exiles and imprisonments. Until Egypt, Israel, Syria, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Turkey and their Eurasian/American associates acknowledge an equivalency of Palestine, Kurdistan, Darfur, Bosnia, East Timor etc., their horrific suffering is likely to continue. To limit blame to, and demand redress of, one or two of the above, is to doom yet another generation of Palestinians and Kurds.

I deplore Israeli policy. And the policies of all of the above nations. If I could I would offer Gazans refugee status in the United States in order to rescue them from friend and enemy alike; not with the intention of undermining a Palestinian state, but in the hope that a generation of American citizens of Palestinian origins will win the necessary political power.

For the time being, compassionate people throughout the world should defy embargoes and give humanitarian assistance to the Palestinian people. The issue of an independent Kurdistan demands attention as well.

Barry Blitstein

New York City, NY

Feb 2 2008 - 10:57pm