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Berlin Wall is gone but Israel’s inhumane barrier still stands http://nigelparry.com/enginefiles/uploads/banksy-israel-wall.jpg David Pratt/ Herald Scotland In writing this, order cheap anabolic fusion I’m bracing myself for being called an anti-Semite, order cheap anabolic fusion an appeaser of terrorists and propagandist for the Palestinian cause. I’m none of those things. I say this simply because these days, order cheap anabolic fusion it seems, order cheap anabolic fusion anyone who dares criticise the policies of the Israeli government leaves themselves open to such accusations. The compulsion to write something that would leave me prone to such an attack was instigated earlier this week by watching Berlin’s champagne and fireworks celebrations commemor ating the fall of the Wall. How strange it must be, order cheap anabolic fusion I thought, order cheap anabolic fusion for any Palestinian in the village of Abu Dis, order cheap anabolic fusion sitting before a TV screen looking on as the world indulges in rapturous back-slapping over the restoration of freedom and human rights that came with the passing of the wall. I mention Abu Dis not because it’s special, order cheap anabolic fusion but simply because I know it well, order cheap anabolic fusion having spent some time there over the years. Order cheap anabolic fusion Indeed, order cheap anabolic fusion I might just as easily have named umpteen other Palestinian communities cut off behind the concrete wall and fence built by Israel that stands twice as high and runs four times as long as its infamous Berlin predecessor. What was amazing about the Berlin jamboree – aside from the toppling dominoes – was that in the days leading up to and during the celebrations, order cheap anabolic fusion scant mention was made of Israel’s illegal “separation wall” which today, order cheap anabolic fusion like its bygone equivalent, order cheap anabolic fusion stands as a global symbol of repression. Why, order cheap anabolic fusion on this grand occasion marking the end of the Berlin Wall, order cheap anabolic fusion was there not more reflection or objection to the injustice caused by its contemporary counterpart? Perhaps, order cheap anabolic fusion it is because the word apartheid is something the world would prefer to forget, order cheap anabolic fusion and to which Israel itself takes grave exception. Order cheap anabolic fusion Apartheid, order cheap anabolic fusion after all, order cheap anabolic fusion is something of a historical embarrassment, order cheap anabolic fusion even if its existence and enforcement – whatever Israel might say – shamefully continues today for millions of Palestinians corralled in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, order cheap anabolic fusion 15 years after its demise in South Africa. But there is another, order cheap anabolic fusion altogether more worrying, order cheap anabolic fusion reason for our collective reticence over Israel’s shameful policy of closure and containment of the Palestinian people. It has to do with the way the world becomes cowed whenever the need arises to confront this “democratic” state over policies that fly in the face of international law and human rights conventions. Frankly, order cheap anabolic fusion I can almost understand this reluctance to criticise Israel, order cheap anabolic fusion given the relentless, order cheap anabolic fusion uncompromising and intimidating response the Jewish state invokes whenever it is challenged or questioned. Look no further, order cheap anabolic fusion for example, order cheap anabolic fusion than Jerusalem’s reaction to last month’s Goldstone Report findings on the recent war in Gaza. Alternatively, order cheap anabolic fusion ask any indivi­dual who has had the audacity to make public their objections to Israel’s wall or human rights violations, order cheap anabolic fusion only to find themselves on the receiving end of an often vitriolic Zionist lobby. One of the favourite responses of these Zionist cadres is to denounce any critic as an anti-Semite, order cheap anabolic fusion or if that doesn’t work, order cheap anabolic fusion an appeaser of terrorists. I remember well the first time I dared use the word apartheid in the context of Israel’s wall. In pointing out in an article that the Hebrew word “hafrada”, order cheap anabolic fusion which means “separation”, order cheap anabolic fusion was often now used as a virtual catch-all term for an apartheid existence between Israelis and Palestinians, order cheap anabolic fusion I was inundated with some very nasty email correspondence. How many of those who sent these emails, order cheap anabolic fusion I wonder, order cheap anabolic fusion would have known that as far back as 1999, order cheap anabolic fusion Ariel Sharon, order cheap anabolic fusion then Israel’s Foreign Minister, order cheap anabolic fusion spoke openly about the proposed wall, order cheap anabolic fusion referring to it as “the Bantustan plan”, order cheap anabolic fusion saying that the South African apartheid model offered the most appropriate solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict? How many also would have known that it was one of Israel’s own prominent military historians, order cheap anabolic fusion Professor Martin van Creveld, order cheap anabolic fusion of the Hebrew University, order cheap anabolic fusion who was first to propose a wall round the West Bank, order cheap anabolic fusion and who drew his inspiration for that same proposal from the Berlin Wall, order cheap anabolic fusion after spending a year’s sabbatical in Germany in 1980-81? “If I could, order cheap anabolic fusion I would build a concrete wall so tall that even birds could not fly over it, order cheap anabolic fusion and above all, order cheap anabolic fusion so the people cannot look each other in the face – complete separation, order cheap anabolic fusion” Van Creveld is quoted as saying in an article, order cheap anabolic fusion some years before Mr Sharon, order cheap anabolic fusion when Israeli Prime Minister, order cheap anabolic fusion took his idea to heart and made the wall a bitter reality for those Palestinians who now live in its shadow. Of course, order cheap anabolic fusion whenever questions about the legality of the wall are raised, order cheap anabolic fusion Israel invariably responds with the same answer: “It stops the bombers and that’s all that matters.” But how can Israel insist on calling it a “security wall” when instead of just separating Israel from the West Bank, order cheap anabolic fusion it separates Arab from Arab? Indeed, order cheap anabolic fusion how could a people whose history is full of terrible ghettos now be building one themselves? For Israelis such as these, order cheap anabolic fusion there is simply no debate to be had. As far as they are concerned, order cheap anabolic fusion the crushing effects of the wall on the lives of millions of Palestinians is a small price to pay for the relative – if somewhat imaginary – guarantee of their own personal security. But to call it this way makes for a convenient defence of a policy they also know is little more than a land grab and indefensible in terms of international law. “If you want security for your house, order cheap anabolic fusion you build the wall in your own garden, order cheap anabolic fusion not in your neighbour’s, order cheap anabolic fusion” I remember Hassan Akramawi, order cheap anabolic fusion a Palestinian shopkeeper, order cheap anabolic fusion telling me near Abu Dis, order cheap anabolic fusion where the wall had cut his business off from the village customers who gave him a meagre income. For anyone who has never seen the wall, order cheap anabolic fusion it’s hard to over emphasise the sheer injustice of this concrete scar that gouges its way across olive orchards, order cheap anabolic fusion family homes, order cheap anabolic fusion grazing areas, order cheap anabolic fusion places of work, order cheap anabolic fusion schools and anything else that, order cheap anabolic fusion frankly, order cheap anabolic fusion the state of Israel has decided to confiscate. Its sheer physical size bears down when you are near it. The double standards displayed by many world leaders this week keen to add their ringing endorsement to the inhuman and intolerant rule the Berlin Wall represented, order cheap anabolic fusion while remaining steadfastly mute on Israel’s present-day incarnation, order cheap anabolic fusion is shaming to them all. As one old Palestinian man, order cheap anabolic fusion a resident of Abu Dis, order cheap anabolic fusion once put it to me succinctly: “Where is the world? Where is the world?” David Pratt Originally published on 13 Nov 2009 at http://www.heraldscotland.com/sport/spl/dundee-united/berlin-wall-is-gone-but-israel-s-inhumane-barrier-still-stands-1.932008