. = V E N T = .
Letters to the Editor

From time to time, a commentary on the world will bubble up inside of me to the extent that I'm forced to write a letter to my local, metropolitan, daily newspaper, The Age. This is where I blow of some steam. Feel like venting too? Add your own comment or visit my homepage.

Tuesday, March 09, 2004

Leunig's Cartoon

Yesterday's cartoon (4/3) is an example of Leunig stepping over the line from child-like to childish. He makes explicit the causal link between Israeli assasinations and Palestinian terrorism. Yet he neglects the preventative role of the assasinations. This is to be expected since it involves empathy for the human lives saved by intervention: a big ask for visual-minded people like cartoonists. (It's much easier to draw the dead than the saved.)

What's disappointing is that Leunig's one-sided view fails to highlight the viscious circle at the heart of this crisis. He has missed an opportunity to provide an insight into what makes the cycle of violence so tragic.


<    >
Anonymous Anonymous vented ...

Considering the Holocaust was such a terrible event, you would imagine that the Israeli people would have a special place in their hearts for the oppressed, tortured and disappeared of the world.

But what really surprises me, every single day, is that they say that what they are doing to the Palestinian people is different. Dispossessing people of their homes, their livelihoods and their freedom by fencing them into ghettos, on the poorer and more marginal land, how does that differ from the Holocaust?

Monday, February 27, 2006 1:19:00 pm  
<    >
Blogger Greg vented ...

I do not think the current Israeli policies can be fairly likened to the Holocaust (Shoah). The differences are twofold: first and foremost is the sheer scale. The six million or so Jews, Gypsies, gays, Jehova Witnesses etc worked and gassed to death cannot compare to the several thousand Arabs killed.

Secondly, the Jews were a fully integrated part of central European society, speaking the same language and living and working together, hence the need for informers, detailed family trees and yellow stars. It seems to me that prior to Partition Jews and Arabs had more-or-less separate languages, villages etc.

The present Israeli policies and behaviours are more akin to Chile under Pinochet, South Africa under Apartheid or Kosovo under the Serbs. We're talking about low-level paramilitary operations combined with ethnic cleansing (social, political and economic exclusion and "ghettoisation"), not genocide.

I don't doubt that a significant number of influential Israelis would love to see entire Arab villages loaded into buses and driven into the desert and buried. However, to date at least, saner heads have prevailed.

Let's hope the peoples between the Mediterranean Sea and Jordan River decide to join in a modern, secular, liberal democracy, where everyone within its border has a vote and right to work and no religion or ethnicity is privileged - yet all are respected and celebrated.

Too much to ask?

Monday, February 27, 2006 1:37:00 pm  

Post a Comment

<< Home