Maha Mohammed al-Sherif

The Other Face of the West

The Western world seems to have recently reached a rare moment of terrific lethargy by ignoring the tragedies and crimes of Israel’s war on Gaza. The war that Hamas ignited was met with an Israeli attack that crossed all red lines and targeted civilians and public facilities, including hospitals, schools, and homes. The West did not hesitate to justify the horrific toll as self-defense for an occupying state, which is inconsistent with international laws and conventions.

So how does an occupier have the right to defend itself? How can the European Union and Western countries that boast about European values, human rights and international law ignore the genocide against the defenseless Palestinian people?

What’s worse, when pictures of slaughtered children and women spread on social media, Western countries timidly criticized Israel. They did not ask it to stop the war, but only to use less destructive weapons!

We should not overlook the terrible price paid by the people in Gaza, where more than 14,500 civilians were killed, around 35,000 were wounded, and 7,000 are still missing under the rubble, in addition to the destruction of about 50,000 homes and dozens of hospitals and schools.

The release of 150 Palestinian prisoners, including women and children - despite its importance – will not heal the wounds of the people of Gaza for many years to come, as there are many obstacles facing the solution to the Palestinian issue.

The reason for this is primarily Israel and its policies over 75 years of occupation. The international will, with great influence from the West, is supporting Tel Aviv in obstructing the two-state solution. Moreover, respect for the United Nations and the existing rules-based international system has significantly weakened, amid increasing doubts about the usefulness of the Security Council, which goes out of service when it comes to taking any practical decision against Israel.

Many people felt deceived after Israel’s war on Gaza. This can be explained by the scandalous silence over the brutality, killing and extermination, by the Security Council and all international organizations, whose role is to regulate the relationship between countries, protect international peace and prevent wars.

We have seen how this truth has faded with the passage of time; how the sparkling image that the major powers portrayed in past years has waned after the painful facts that highlighted the distortions that occurred in the humanity of the world.

Throughout history, Israel has targeted the Palestinians without deterrence. For a long time, Israel has maintained its military operations against civilians, and the fierce repression generated an uprising to confront the wave of violence and killing.

In 2008, Israel intensified its offensive operations against the Gaza Strip. More than 1,300 lives were lost and more than 5,000 people were injured in these attacks within three weeks. For how long will Israel continue to target the Palestinians? How many times will we see the same scenes being repeated: killing, then truce, then a reconciliation conference between Israel and Hamas?

The failure of the international community and the Security Council had its effects, the conditions of oppression and tyranny worsened, and legislative systems no longer played their effective role.

The current world order, in its cycle of contradictions, has failed humanity. It has become necessary to review the transformations and their outcome, rebuild cooperation, and spread peace in the world instead of adopting mere slogans that are never implemented.

In general, Palestine must be governed by the Palestinian National Authority as a state based on a unified rank that includes all components of the Palestinian political community, under one leadership. It is the only way to establish a stable state.

This means that the Authority alone constitutes the entire political unit. The Western position is to negotiate with Abbas’ government about the future of the Strip, and with the Arabs about the future of Gaza. This will be a reflection of a state of authority, not a group, as part of the two-state solution.