[Marxism] A kinder, gentler Occupation or putting lipstick on a pig

Dennis Brasky dmozart1756 at gmail.com
Wed Aug 18 14:29:24 MDT 2010

*A kinder, gentler Occupation*
Aug 16, 2010 01:02 pm | David Samel


For those of you worried that the tone of the so-called Occupation is a bit
too confrontational and unpleasant, I have some optimistic news. As reported
in Haaretz<http://mondoweiss.us1.list-manage.com/track/click?u=8d38ef747c2061bb9c6137961&id=f0484ded22&e=894828857e>,
a company of reservists is introducing politeness into the everyday
checkpoint encounters between Palestinian civilians and the Israeli soldiers
who decide if and when workers can go to work, children can go to school,
family members can visit each other, and the sick may seek medical
attention. Instead of barking out harsh directives, soldiers will now
preface their requests for Palestinians to obey orders with “'min fadlakum'
(please), with an emphasis on the request,” according to Eliezer Cohen, the
poet and social worker who is the brainchild behind the initiative. Cohen
adds that is not "just the words. We decided that we would look everyone in
the eye and that we would not aim our gun at anyone.” Of course, if
Palestinians stubbornly refuse to comply with these cordial invitations to
obey softened by eye contact, guns may indeed have to be pointed. Sure, it’s
still in the experimental stage, but if it works, the program could be
extended to other reservist groups and perhaps the entire IDF.
There are two conceivable outcomes. One is that the effort will be a
resounding success, thereby diminishing worldwide pressure on Israel to end
the “occupation.” The other unfortunate possibility is that the Palestinians
will not graciously accept the soldiers’ sincere efforts at courtesy, and
continue to make unreasonable demands for freedom from foreign military
dictatorship. It will not be the first time that the Palestinians have
missed an opportunity for genuine reconciliation

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