Of Crime and Complicity

By Mike Severson

How much of the wrong done to the Palestinians and in a larger context, Muslims, can be excused by Barak Obama’s address to the Islamic world? The speech offered a wish to make accommodations. But what is he excusing, what is he covering when he said he was in Cairo to seek ‘a new beginning between the United States and the Muslims’ around the world, one based ‘on mutual interest and mutual respect’?

The answer lies again and again in the ‘unbreakable bond’ as Mr. Obama called it. However the bond knows little boundary. There is no boundary to crimes in the past, crimes in the present and crimes in the future. The past is part of the cover as is the present. Where is the future?

The crime is one of complicity on the part of the United States. The crime is following orders when the world court of morality has condemned Israel again and again, or if the concept of the world court of morality is not specific or debatable, then the United States blocking United Nations resolutions time after time, and though Obama gave recognition to the ‘intolerable condition’, he didn’t identify who is making the intolerable condition:  Israel and its proxy, the United States. The specifics are there to read if one goes beyond the kept press and the official statements of the United States and Israel.

Much has been made of ‘following orders’ in relation to Nazi Germany. The Neurenburg Trials dwelt on the extent to which knowing and doing nothing was a partnering in the war crimes, genocide and ethnic cleansing , an excuse used to shed accountability. The question now is who is following the orders of whom in relation to Palestine and the Middle East. There is no question as to the crimes.

To know of crimes being committed and do nothing is complicity. Worse, is to further the crime not only through complicity but through openly supporting the crimes. The crimes against Palestine are so long lasting and great, and supported by the United States, that the crimes have become the norm. That norm shows itself by indifference. Consider the present recent report on what per cent of the American populace condones torture. Consider how twisted the reality has been made to view the Palestinian as terrorist. Consider the popular disregard for Islam. 

Did Mr. Obama’s address do anything consequential in expressing a recognition of America’s crimes in its overwhelming participation in financing, arming and blocking criticism of Israel?

By not doing so, he continues the complicity. By not acknowledging what the United States has done and is doing in the Middle East, he continues doing and continues complicity.

Upon returning, Obama and the ever remindful Elie Wiesel visited and respected memorials in Germany. This is the same person who said he never criticizes Israel, never will, who Yassar Arafat called upon to voice the wrongs done to Palestinians which so greatly repeat in the past and the present that which made for the memorial which Obama recognized.

Don’t expect any similar memorial in Israel to the crimes committed against Palestinians, yet relentlessly Zionism wants past complicity recognized.

Where is the recognition and real acknowledgment about the ongoing torture and imprisonment in Israel, as well as the United States?

Complicity prevents it.

Did he visit Gaza? Did he visit the vanished villages of the Palestinians? Did he visit the Wall? Did he visit the sites of Israeli genocide, the names of which are known by those who know–does he know? Did he visit the grave of Yassar Arafat? Did he lay a wreath there? Did he visit refuge camps? Does he know of them? Did he visit Fallujah, Iraq? Does he know what that city looks like, what’s left of it? The list of where he could have visited goes on and on.

Barak Obama has spoken of racism in the United States. Has he spoken about the racism that is Israel? Has he spoken about the prisons that house countless Palestinians, held without habeus corpus? Has he spoken about those tortured, those assassinated? Does he even know about Rachel Corrie or others like her?

Has he addressed the millions of refugees from Iraq, the ruination of that country and the lies which the United States used to wage that war, including the manipulation and prodding done by Israel and its Zionist minions, in the media, the government and their organizations which actively promoted that war?

Complicity furthers exploitation, lies and crime.

– Michael Severson resides in Santa Rosa, California. He taught in the public schools in Sonoma County at the secondary level for 35 years, English, History and Art. He contributed this article to PalestineChronicle.com.

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