No 1516 Posted by fw, November 17, 2015
“We’ve lost. On the day a 13 year-old is questioned as if he were the head of a crime organization; on the day when Israeli thugs surrounded him, screaming ‘die, you son of a bitch’, as he lay bleeding; on the day young parents and newscasters on television call an 11-year-old boy a “terrorist” without even thinking of their own children; on the day Israel became more like Eritrea and Uganda by legislating a monstrous law allowing incarceration of children as young as 12; when executions of knife-wielders or presumed knife-wielders become routine occasions for admiration and when lynching occurs ever more frequently — these are days that mark the moral dissolution of this country.” —Gideon Levy, Haaretz
Correspondent Gideon Levy lays bare the ‘moral decline’ evidenced by how Israel treats kids. An embedded 11-minute video of an injured, then cruelly interrogated Palestinian boy, Ahmed Manasra, is presented at the end of this post. As Levy notes, throughout the bullying, “Manasra projects more power and dignity than his interrogator does.”
Note: The hyperlink to the title of Levy’s piece has not been added because clicking on it may trip your malware to block access to the website. Also, Haaretz charges a fee for access to its articles for those without a paid subscription.
A sane society wound not incarcerate children as young as 12, but would instead try to treat the roots of their motivation.
We’ve lost. On the day a 13 year-old is questioned as if he were the head of a crime organization; on the day when Israeli thugs surrounded him, screaming “die, you son of a bitch”, as he lay bleeding; on the day young parents and newscasters on television call an 11-year-old boy a “terrorist” without even thinking of their own children; on the day Israel became more like Eritrea and Uganda by legislating a monstrous law allowing incarceration of children as young as 12; when executions of knife-wielders or presumed knife-wielders become routine occasions for admiration and when lynching occurs ever more frequently — these are days that mark the moral dissolution of this country.
This end-of-season sale doesn’t mark a great Palestinian victory — far from it — but it notes a fateful loss for Israel. Without an air force or tanks, the Palestinians have tested Israel and Israel has not withstood the challenge.
It’s enough to watch the video showing the interrogation of Ahmed Manasra, the kind almost every Palestinian in the territories has been subjected to: The interrogator, with sunglasses over his forehead and a small skullcap over his shaved head barks and screams like a madman at the boy. He accuses him, among other things, of “assisting the enemy in times of war.” The investigator’s loss of wits, authentic or manipulative, is emblematic of this society losing its wits. Manasra projects more power and dignity than his interrogator does.
The serious wounding of another 11-year-old child-stabber two days ago also marks the low point we’ve sunk to. By the time he recovers, our Justice Minister will again have to amend the law to enable incarceration from the age of 11. Her office will not rest until prison kindergartens are established. However, these won’t remain exclusively for Palestinian children. Very quickly, Israeli children will also be imprisoned there. They already have the knives. We already have accidentally killed bystanders and their numbers will now grow at an alarming rate.
Those who now cheer the shooting and incarceration of children of any age will be biting their nails when their children are late in returning from a school party. Judea and Samaria will be here, and soon.
They already are. TheMarker [Israeli Hebrew publication] published an item yesterday showing that Israel has slipped in the index of generosity. On an index of willingness to aid strangers it placed 139th out of 145 countries. Sodom is here. A UNICEF report from two and a half years ago already determined that “the cruel attitudes to children in Israel are established and systemic… In no other country are children judged in military courts that don’t afford them protection of their rights.” At the time, the average number of Palestinian children arrested each year was 700. Since then, hundreds more have been added. It’s this approach that contributes to the creation of the child-stabber.
The treatment of children is an excellent litmus test for the moral fiber of a society. A sane society wouldn’t dare call them “terrorists”, wouldn’t dream of reducing the age of criminal responsibility and above all — instead of shooting them and interrogating them as if they were criminals, would try to treat the roots of their motivation. These are children, but to Israeli eyes they are non-children. “Murder in his eyes,” screamed yesterday’s headlines, talking about an 11-year-old.
This is what a society sliding downward and a democracy in crisis look like: They are rudderless. This loss of wits in legislation, in punishment, in regulations determining when opening fire is permissible and in detentions. They all indicate weakness and a shedding of basic values. We can of course continue boasting about our cherry tomatoes and the invention of the USB stick and even of our gay pride parades — propaganda can sell anything. However, Israel will ultimately be judged according to other parameters. In the meantime, it’s changing at an alarming rate. This is what remains of a society which once entertained moral dilemmas, even if hypocritical at times: “Die, you bastard!” hurled at a wounded boy.
VIDEO: Harsh Israeli interrogation of Palestinian teen Ahmed Manasra ahead of knife attack trial posted by DAILY SABAH , November 10, 2015
Palestinian Ahmed Manasra teen went on trial before a Jerusalem court on Tuesday over an alleged stabbing attack last month that fueled a media war amid the ongoing deadly surge in Israeli-Palestinian violence. Manasra earlier came into prominence with the footage that show him lying on the floor his head bloodied as bystanders curse him and shout “Die!” in Hebrew. This time on Monday, Palestinian media released footage showing Jerusalem police questioning Ahmed.
Read more at: http://sabahdai.ly/GLkBrN
Source: Maan News Agency
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