Thursday, August 10, 2006

Broummana Diary

Now I’m home.
Really home.
I can settle down in my native country, the greatest country the world has ever seen, and follow the news of the war that uprooted me from what had been a cozy little living in Broummana, Lebanon. Actually, it’s a full-time job to figure out what is happening in the land of the cedars, the country I have left temporarily. Here in Central California, the land of grapes and raisins, I’ve become a hard-core news junkie, searching for my hourly fix of the latest developments in the war between Israel and Hizbullah.

Boy, did I have it wrong. First of all, there’s that nasty old al-Jazeera. I can’t believe I wasted 20 fucking years of my life studying and learning Arabic. All I got out of it was the false belief that this fighting had something to do with, well, for example, the promotional spot that al-Jazeera had come up with: “The Sixth War Between Israel and an Arab Side,” if you accept a quasi-literal translation. Over at al-Jazeera they’re fiendishly clever, that’s for sure. They thought they had produced a slick title since it covers all of the major conflicts that have broken out since 1947, when the United Nations stuffed Palestine in a box and told the world, “And now, ladies and gentlemen, watch me saw this lady in half.” They should have just given the whole piece of territory to the Zionists and prevented all these troubles. After all, the Zionist settlers had shown up there, hadn’t they? They did take the trouble of actually going to Palestine, and claiming it, so why shouldn’t they get the whole thing? If the UN had been a bit more courageous and stood up to Kofi Annan, or whoever was in charge then, we could have avoided all of these headaches. The problem was that the UN didn’t have the guts to pass a clear, unambiguous resolution outlawing the Palestinians, and recognizing only Israelis and their right to exist. In fact, if the world community had shown a bit more imagination and foresight, it would have acted before the Zionist movement even showed up. All you had to do was set up a big trap door under Palestine, pull the lever, and whoosh, all the people disappear. And then the Zionist settlers could have arrived safely and we wouldn’t have any refugee or terrorist problems today.

But that’s all water under the bridge, whether or not it’s been bombed. There was the war back in 1948, and then there was
*1956, when the mighty superpower known as Egypt under Gamal Abdel-Nasser was threatening to let loose a storm of blood and fire that would have wiped the UK, France and the junior G-men squad in Israel out of existence. So they had no choice but to attack Egypt. First, of course.
*1967, when Israel launched a surprise self-defense attack, or defense of surprise attack, an attack of not-so-surprise defensiveness, or something like that, in the war to end all wars, at the time.
*1973, when Egypt and Syria tried to recover their occupied territory from Israel, but in a cunning attempt to confuse the Jewish state, decided not to tell each other what they really wanted to do, or how.
*1982, when a bunch of Palestinians who were bored with living in their own country and had taken over Lebanon, where the night-life was better, decided to threaten Israel with total and complete annihilation, with the rest of the world backing their evil plan. But in a big miscalculation by the Palestinians, the World Cup was taking place, so no one ended up helping them out. Israel was forced to kill nearly 20,000 terrorists in Lebanon, to beat back that life-threatening, um, threat.
*And this time, 2006, is War number 6. What a confusing bunch of crap. I’m glad I’m back home, since CNN can just sum it up for me: “Mid-East Crisis.” On Fox News, it’s “Mideast Turmoil.” Now these are ideas we can understand over here. It’s the crazy old Middle East, there’s a crisis or turmoil of some kind, like bad weather or something, and it’s certainly not a case of the Israelis calling everybody in the world a terrorist or aspiring terrorist and shooting people who are much weaker than they are, who can’t fight back in any serious way, in the heads. In the back. In the face. With internationally banned weapons. Nope, that’s not what’s happening. And describing such a thing would require a silly title, like “The Israeli Butchery Show, Thanks to American Self-Delusion, Indulgence and Weapons Technology.” Nope, “Mid-East Crisis” is much more accurate. And it’s also easier to say.

When I was living in Lebanon I wasted so much time looking at all that coverage, all of those photos of dead Lebanese and others who were in the wrong place, etc. They looked like they had been killed in pretty graphic ways, and I saw those images of corpses, and parts of corpses, with the guts and brains hanging out. And then there was that doctored photo, you know, the one with the smoke? Those crafty Lebanese were actually trying to fool the world into sympathizing with them by making the smoke over the southern suburbs of Beirut look a slightly darker shade of gray, or even black! Because if the world had seen very dark gray smoke, and not medium-gray smoke, the outcry would have been enormous and stopped Israel from any further terrorist cleansing operations. Now the shock of war is fading for me, as I recover my wits back home… I’m beginning to remember that earlier this summer, I overheard Lebanese, especially the Hizbullah people I know, whispering things about producing hundreds and hundreds of stuffed humans, basically cloth fixed up and painted up to look like dead people, to be used if the Israelis were to attack. I mean, they were saying, that “when Iran and Syria push the remote control button on the 12th of July and send that robot patrol of Israeli soldiers near the Blue Line, for us to act like we’re capturing it, we’d better have those stuffed people corpses ready to go, because all those gullible international journalists are going to show up.” Of course, it sounded so far-fetched at the time, but if I had reported it then, I could have had a real scoop. If you think about it, the cloth dummies that are supposedly “corpses” are pretty easy to spot: some of them come in these weird shades, not the kind of colors you see when people are killed normally, and they have all these strange spots and markings, like the cloth had been left too close to a kind of, um, chemical fire, for example. It’s an obvious giveaway that they’re not normal dead people.

Marlin Dick, west of the Litani River (near Fresno, California)


Anonymous carmel said...

here's another alternate reality for you: in 1978 Israel and Egypt made peace and PM Begin wanted to give back Gaza along with Sinai to Saadat. Saadat refused politely. he was a very smart man and he knew the Palestinian problem will emerge somehow and he didn't want it to emerge in his courtyard. it's so convenient to blame those Zionist "others" later, than to face it bravely as a problem of the Arab world. Begin should have insisted, said something like all or nothing... but who could have known?

however i don't think it would have mattered. a lot of people in Islamic countries just don't us here even if we're the nicest bunch of people. we can't change that. the Palestinian issue is just a good excuse but i don't think Hezbollah or al Qaeda really care about them....

12:12 PM  
Anonymous Hasan said...

What sort of crap is this.???

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3:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hamdillah al-salameh, marlin.

enjoyed the latest entry: it's great to see that irony can still be press-ganged into the service of criticising this butchery america and israel are perpetrating upon the people of lebanon.

8:21 PM  
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10:37 PM  
Blogger Sarmad said...

Volumes have been written about the Arab-Israeli conflict which has been ongoing for the last 60 years.

The first thing that should be recognized is that the Arabs are not in a fight against the Jews. The Arabs and the Jews are both Semitic people. There has to be a firm distinction made between Jews and Zionists. Israel carefully and jealously calls itself the Jewish state, whereas it is actually a Zionist state. Many Jews don’t identify with this ideology. (Einstein for example disapproved of Zionism.)

The Zionist ideology is a racist one. Israel likes to call itself a democracy. But if you look carefully at the makeup of Israeli society, it has encouraged migration of Jews from all Jewish communities from all over the world, from the extreme right to the extreme left. But they have been most careful to encourage migration from those who are mostly Zionists, whether they belong to the right wing Likud or the left wing Labour party. They have been careful to ensure that whatever government is elected it is ruled by Zionists. Israeli democracy is littered with threats to Israeli politicians to “tow the line or else” politics, enforced by American Jews sympathetic to Zionism.

Zionism has a stated aim: to claim, by any means, military or otherwise, land that will fit 20+ million Jewish immigrants from all over the world, whether Zionists or otherwise. They realize that the land that they occupy now is not enough to fit all those people. Their doctrine, leading to their ideal solution of solving the problem, is to occupy the land between the Nile and the Euphrates. Their flag is the symbol of that. (The blue lines above and below the Star of David symbolize that.) Their war against Lebanon has a hidden agenda, to grab as much land as they can, and tap into Lebanon’s water resources.

The dilemma now is how Israel can do that with an increasingly aware and waking Arab and international public. This is where America comes in.

This American administration, although headed by President Bush, is recognized to be actually manipulated by VP Mr. Dick Chenney. Ms. Rice and Mr. Rumsfeld are also part of the neocon administration, but they have lost much of their credibility after the Iraq war which was started by “faulty” intelligence.

When commentators state that this is all about oil, don’t dismiss it out of hand. It may not be “all about oil”, but oil has quite a lot to do with it. America, and by proxy, Israel, would love to have a Middle East in turmoil, while America conceives a “New Middle East”. President Bush regularly and with monotonously repetitive utterances denounces Hizballah and their “sponsors” Iran and Syria. America is now the only Superpower in the world. Who is there to denounce Israel’s expansionist policies sponsored by the USA?

Make no mistake, Israel is fighting America’s war in the Middle East to induce the “birth pangs of a new Middle East”. America regularly informs us that it has no friends, it has only interests. There will come a time when America will have no use for Israel anymore.

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