Tuesday, 13 January 2009

When Will It End?

I have not posted for a while—longer than I had wished, for various reasons; fatiguing classes, mundane errands and being harassed by a line of unwanted disturbances, from (among others) blown out lightbulbs to a tooth problem, which, while all relatively minor, put a damper on my spirits.

Perhaps the most distressing event of all, which no doubt set me into a deliberately negative mood till today, was when I found out last week that the death-toll in Gaza topped 800 people (it's now topped 900) and that UNRWA was to stop aid work in Gaza due to one of its staff members being shot at (it has now resumed aid). Even as we speak more tanks and troops are entering Gaza.

The Malaysian Parliament has passed a motion condemning Israeli action (surprise, surprise) but I wonder, what's it all for? While I am glad my country takes a firm stand, realistically, this isn't going to change anything. The OIC, which Malaysia is secretary general to, has already unequivocally condemned the attacks from day one, and Malaysia has never had diplomatic ties with, and has always been critical of Israel, so it's not as if we need to trumpet our stance or offer more moral support—neither will make any difference on the ground for the Gazans who are dying and suffering as our parliamentarians put on a good show.

And while I laud the pledging of money in aid of the Gazans, how much of that money is going to actually reach Gaza in time after bureaucracy, 'discounts' and 'administrative fees'? There seems to be little detail on how the money is to be used or chanelled, it seems like nothing but an empty promise. Even if the money does reach the borders of Gaza in kind, will it get it? Aid organisations are making it clear that even if the so called '3 hour lulls' are respected (they are not), there is no physical way they can enter Gaza, give aid, and then leave in 3 hours.

I ask: when will anything make a difference? The UNSC's resolution was ignored by Israel and Hamas (I suppose it was just wishful thinking that the resolution would be followed) and the deathtoll has reached a epic level as the offensive. The humanitarian situation in Gaza is not even a situation anymore, it's basically disastrous. Even the Red Cross is crying foul and claiming that the IDF is not following international codes of conduct. How many dead and injured people will it take to end this? 1000? 2000? 10,000?

The Israeli authorities are claiming they are using precision rockets to hit only Hamas targets. Then why the 'accidental' deaths of 40 civilians at a UN school? Why so many women and children dead? Why is Hamas still fighting back if Israel authorities claim they are close to reaching their aim? When will Hamas stop fighting back? When half the population is wiped out?

Despite all this, I did get to write a few lines for the 'About' section, which I shall put up when they're done.


Post a Comment