18 August 2006

A State of Mind

What is it about the Lebanese and Palestinian peoples that they refuse to kneel to power?

Hundreds of thousands of people began flooding back to the South of Lebanon just minutes after a cease fire was supposed to have taken place, in a jubilant celebratory elation amidst a devastating annihilative scenery of their homeland, homes, towns and livelihoods. But they were cheering. What were they cheering for? The destruction? Do they consider themselves victorious, having sat in homes without bomb shelters under the rain of bombs, having spent weeks running from town to town to avoid death, as everything they've built for generations was being destroyed around them? Why do the Lebanese consider themselves victorious, and in the same regard, how can the Palestinians stand honorable and proud as they are, to this very moment, incessantly ransacked, raped, beaten and butchered, while they are deliberately and increasingly abandoned and sold out by the rest of the Arab world, and conspired against in the most historic of betrayals? What constitutes a victory, and what constitutes a defeat for such a people?

For such a people, victory is a state of mind. It has nothing to do with a mental state of denial and everything to do with a differentiation between right and wrong. Not that they represent angelic societies which are infallible and which respect every aspect of the Declaration of the Rights of Man; far from it. Arab society, in general, is in a deep sociological and psychological crisis. But there is one grandiose wrong that the Lebanese and Palestinians have continuously rejected. The complete and utter defiance of occupation and military domination has become a legacy of Lebanon and Palestine.

Defiance of domination is synonymous with Lebanon and Palestine.

When a person or a people choose to refuse, they are victorious, even, and especially, under relentless slaughter and destruction by way of the most elite and technologically sophisticated weaponry that a ruthless juggernaut can dish out. It is the concept of the blood rising triumphant over the sword. They keep refusing because there is a great travesty that they cannot comprehend accepting: zionism. The zionist project of military, economic and socio-political hegemony over the other peoples of the region plans to make itself a reality one way or another. The zionists, who are not synonymous with millions of Jews around the world, want to continue to live among the peoples of the region but only on the axiom of mastery over them. This basis for the Izraeli government's behavior continues, and the outright refutation of it also continues.

Defeat is also a state of mind. Izrael will always feel a crisis within it, a crisis of imminent catastrophe, not because everyone around it is about to invade it and destroy it tomorrow; but more because the zionist project can never fathom the idea of coming down from its lofty mental superiority complex to accept the reality of its existence: It exists only on the pretext of expulsion, occupation, and a U.S. sponsored paper-tiger economy. It can only exist by means of weaponry that is simultaneously most superior and least effective, in the midst of a sea of hundreds upon hundreds of suppressed Arabs and Muslims, suppressed by Izrael and what Noam Chomsky pinpoints as "The Arab Facade." It is the Izraelis who are in denial about the fact that they are in this sea.

It's amazing to me that some Lebanese discuss so objectively the idea of not trusting outside powers, namely Syria, but still rely in their analysis on the trust of other foreign powers when it comes to Lebanon's self-interest. What they fail to accept when making such analysis is that there are millions of Lebanese who will absolutely never accept an Izraeli, American or French paternal relationship. If the Lebanese are to be honest with themselves, they must not be under any illusion about replacing one dominant foreign relationship with another. The only way Lebanon can ever maintain unity and at the same time protect itself after this destructive war, is for its national army to be equipped with a political will and a defensive military that is able to neutralize any and all Izraeli offensive threats, including Izraeli air power.

Below is a story that my friend sent me recently. He was on a trip to Lebanon with his wife and children and found themselves caught in the war. It is this story that affirms that Izrael gained nothing and accomplished nothing in this war, save for emotional revenge by killing civilians and breaking things.

Waseem writes:

We wanted this summer to be special. My wife, my daughters and I spent months planning for it. It was supposed to be our first vacation in ten years, our return to Lebanon after seven years and the first occasion for my daughters to see their country. I feared from the expectations waiting for me, I am not talking about the war of course; I was not even thinking about it, I was thinking about the endless inquisitive questions of my daughters (born and raised in the US). They wanted to learn everything about their country and the city they relate to. With a lot of effort I was able to answer most of their questions. The uneasy questions emerged as we were preparing to visit the liberated part of Lebanon which we did not have the chance to see yet: What is occupation? What did the bad guys (Israelis) do? How come the bad guys kill children? Etc…

Well, I did not personally answer these questions. The days we spent under Israeli fire, the sound of the airplane raids, the rockets exploding, the news of the massacres, and the historic persistence of the resistance did the job. I can say that my daughters got a hands-on training in history and how to make it.

Two days ago, I was reading some excerpts from Israeli journals. One analyst presented a simplistic comparison between Israel & Lebanon from one side, and Tom & Jerry from the other side. While some people prefer classic cartoons, my daughters’ favorite movie is “Mulan”.

BTW, my daughters are looking forward to the next vacation: They want to see their grandfather’s new house. Guess what happened to the old one...



Anonymous said...

I pray that the Lebanese and Palestinians can survive these awful wars. How can anyone put up with all this killing from a world class army all the time. I always pray for peace for everyone.

Zee said...

In broad strokes I agree with your assessment in this post, makes me wonder why you criticized mine the way you did. Ah well, I left you with a response if you care to read it.
You see, you have no clue of how much I actually support Lebanon (and also Palestine) in their struggle - that though doesn't exclude my "bohemian free spirit" to rant and pin point at certain issues where I believe the "cart is stuck"!
Your "armchair philosopher" ...

silverpearl1 said...

anonymous, continue to pray for peace, but at the same time, please pray that this world class army stops getting weapons delivered to it. perhaps then, the innocents can have a chance at survival.

The 21st Century said...

At the end of the day when you ululate about dead Jews you're still just squatting in the rubble. Good luck with that whole being the world's niggers thing. I'm sure it will work out for you.

Zee said...

I agree with you "silverpearl", personally I would even go further and say: All the government monetary subsidies from the US to Israel have to stop!
Even puppies grow up and become dogs ... and at that point you cut the leash :)

Ibn Bint Jbeil said...

NO ONE HERE is ululating about dead Jews, nor would we. But people in Lebanon ARE ululating about zionists that have been repelled, zionists with massive phalanges of fighter jets and tanks. funny, all that military hardware did nothing but produce piles of rubble, and that is what YOU are ululting about, in your loathsome voice.

Zee said...

ululating - cool word