[Reader-list] The Dominion of Death

abir bazaz abirbazaz at rediffmail.com
Sat Dec 8 22:57:42 IST 2001

The article below was written by Dr. Nurit Peled-Elhanan, a long-time Israeli peace activist and recent winner of a peace award from the European Parliament.  Nurit was the mother of Smadar Elhanan, 13 years old when she was killed by a suicide bomber in Jerusalem in September 1997. 

The Dominion of Death 
Nurit Peled-Elhanan

Dylan Thomas wrote a war poem entitled "And Death Shall Have No Dominion." In Israel, it does. Here death governs: the government of Israel rules over a dominion of death. So the most astonishing thing about yesterday's terrorist attack in Jerusalem and all similar
attacks is that Israelis are astonished.

Israeli propaganda and indoctrination manage to keep coverage of these attacks detached from any Israeli reality. The story in the Israeli (and American) media is one of Arab murderers and Israeli victims, whose only sin was that they asked for seven days of grace.

But anyone who can remember back not even one year but just one week or several hours knows the story is different, that each attack is a link in a chain of horrific bloody events that extends back 34 years
and has but one cause: a brutal occupation. An occupation that humiliates, starves, denies jobs, demolishes homes, destroys crops, murders children, imprisons minors without trial under appalling conditions, lets babies die at checkpoints and spreads lies.

Last week, after the assassination of Abu Hanoud, a journalist from Yediot Ahronot asked me whether I felt "relief." Hadn't I been frightened that "a murderer like that was roaming free"? No, I did not feel relief, I told her, and I will feel no relief as long as
the murderers of Palestinian children continue to roam free...

On Friday it was reported that politicians from both sides had reached a deal in Jerusalem to allow the reopening of the casino upon which their own livelihood depends. They did it without American intervention, without high-level committees, with just the assistance of lawyers and business people, who promised the parties
what was
tween the leaders: when an issue affects them directly (unlike the deaths of children) they are quick to find a solution.

It strengthens my belief that all of us, Israelis and Palestinians,are victims of politicians who gamble the lives of our children on games of honour and prestige.  To them, children are worth less than roulette chips.

Nurit Peled-Elhanan
Yediot Ahronot, Dec 1, 2001

Translated by Edeet Ravel, Montreal. 

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