Tariq A Al-Maeena, writing in the Kuwait Times, argues Israel’s bombing of Gaza fits the definition of a “Holocaust” and cites a dictionary definition that claims a Holocaust occurs when “a very large amount of destruction, especially by fire or heat, or the killing of very large numbers of people.” The word “Holocaust” is generally used by historians to describe actions by a government to systematically kill every single member of a particular group regardless of where they are in the world. If we take the definition used by Maeena, then just about any “large” number of people killed could be termed a Holocaust. I have yet to see any Arab newspaper refer to the death of over 3,000,000 in the Congo or the murder of over 200,000 in Darfur or the killing of over 50,000 in Uganda by the Lord’s Resistance Army as examples of a Holocaust.
He argues “Palestinians are being killed like insects not because of Hamas or because of Qassam rockets or hand-thrown rocks. Palestinians burn and bleed because they are non-Jewish natives of that land. There is no other reason.” If Israel seeks to kill Muslims because they are Muslims, then why haven’t the one million Muslims in Israel been hunted down and killed? The GOVERNMENT of Gaza, which was elected by the people of Gaza, sent over 5,000 rockets into Israel. Let me make clear, I believe the Israel attack on Gaza was way out of proportion to the problem. I condemn the bombing of schools and killing of innocent Muslim civilians. However, there is NO Israel government program to kill each and every Muslim. Hogwash.
I agree with Maeena that Israel’s response was disproportionate to the issue of rocket attacks. I agree it has resulted in the death of innocent civilians. But, at no place in his article does Mr. Maeena make reference to the criminal actions of Hamas in placing weapons in schools or firing mortars from areas where there were many civilians.
I beg to differ with Mr. Maeena in his historical analysis of the land of Palestine. There has always been a significant Jewish population in the area. I believe the Ottoman Empire census of Jerusalem in 1896 revealed a majority of its inhabitants were Jewish. The Ottoman Empire encouraged Jews to settle in Palestine in the 1880s– prior to Zionism. Perhaps, he could explain why in 1948, Egypt took over the Sinai and Jordan seized the West Bank area– the Arabs did NOT establish a nation of Palestine.
Arabs would stand on higher moral ground if they would condemn the Arab Muslim slaughter of over 200,000 people in Darfur and the expulsion of over 600,000 from their lands. Why no concern for those people, Mr. Maeena? I do not see any mention of the 750,000 Jews forced to flee for their lives from Arab nations in the 1940s and 1950s.
Let me make clear, there is enough stupidity and disregard for people on both sides. The recent Israel attack is horrific and violates basic Jewish values. But, Arab Muslims who seek the high moral ground have to get around to condemning the slaughter of millions in the Congo and hundreds of thousands in Darfur. Would Mr. Maeena begin by employing the word “Holocaust” in reference to the Muslim Arab nation of Sudan’s policies in Darfur?