Put-on apologies thrive on political cowardice

Empowering Weak & Oppressed

Afeef Khan

Jumada' al-Ula' 20, 1434 2013-04-01


by Afeef Khan (Opinion, Crescent International Vol. 42, No. 2, Jumada' al-Ula', 1434)

Zionist Israel’s apology to Turkey is not only contrived and hypocritical but flies in the face of countless other crimes perpetrated by the Zionists for which they have offered, and are not likely to offer, any apology.

An apology, if given sincerely, leads typically to a change in behavior on the part of the one expressing regret. He pledges to do his utmost never to repeat the behavior that elicited the regret to begin with. Does anyone expect the junkyard dog that is apartheid Israel to behave any differently than it has for the past several decades? Can a scorpion be “trusted” not to sting? Over the short history of the Zionist occupation of the Holy Land, bigger and more hurtful Israeli transgressions are more meritorious of an apology from the arrogant and racist thugs that have come to be members of the Israeli government.

Has Israel apologized for killing nearly 1,500 civilians, most of them women and children, in Operation Cast Lead against a defenseless Gaza? Has it apologized for bombing schools, UN missions, hospitals, and apartment buildings? Has it apologized for destroying the infrastructure in all of Southern Lebanon, all the way up to Beirut, during the 2006 war with the Islamic resistance organization, Hizbullah, which was defending the integrity and independence of Lebanon? Has it apologized for murdering civilian scientists in Arab countries and Islamic Iran? Has it apologized for instigating a war against Iraq, under the pretext that it had WMDs ready to be launched against the US and its regional allies (that is, Israel), in which 1.5 million were killed, over 5 million were displaced, and more are still dying due to sectarian tensions stoked by Al Saud and Al Yahud together? Has it apologized for its Zionist instigators kicking around a copy of the Qur’an in the courtyard of Masjid al-Aqsa? Has it apologized for the suspected polonium poisoning of the elected Palestinian head of state (Yasser ‘Arafat)? Has it apologized for depriving Hamas of the international funds that it deserves for running an elected government that was legitimately endorsed by the Palestinian people through free and fair elections? Has it apologized to its chief patron and supporter, the US, for murdering 34 sailors aboard an unarmed communications vessel (USS Liberty)? Has it apologized for conducting the most pernicious espionage program against its own allies? And this list can go on to fill many hundreds of pages, not the least of which are line items that enumerate the millions of Palestinians who individually deserve an apology, compensation, and restitution for being needlessly and forcibly expelled from their homes and homelands.

The logic that was used to bomb and “occupy” the Mavi Marmara is the same as the one that is used to justify bombing Gaza, assassinating civilian scientists, and forging passports: that the security of the thief who illegitimately, immorally, and unlawfully stole someone else’s property is threatened, and that the threat is coming not from the dispossessed, but from those who were born hating the Jewish people. So when the causes and justifications are all the same, why issue an apology to Turkey and not to all the other people and countries wronged by Zionist Israel? Is it because the murdered on board the Turkish peace vessel were all unarmed civilians? Are not and were not the majority of the people either killed directly by Israelis (Palestinians), or killed on behalf of Israelis by the US and the EU (Iraqis, Afghans, Iranians, Sudanese, Libyans, Egyptians, Somalis, Yemenis, etc.), not unarmed civilians? While the “contrite” Israeli prime minister was issueing an apology to Turkey, he gave orders to violate for the umpteenth time the ceasefire agreement with Hamas by restricting the fishing rights of Gazans from the five-mile limit down to three. In justifying this violation, he said that Hamas had fired rockets into Israel; in fact, it is now well-known that the Salafi group, Majlis Shura al-Mujahideen, which is not only opposed to Hamas but is probably receiving directions from Washington through the agency of Saudi Arabia, fired those rockets. And all this was probably done with the approval of Israel as part of its strategic escalation campaign in order to ensure that no substantive discussions would take place with the US president while he was visiting Tel Aviv.

Official apologies issued publicly, in a world shaped by imperial occupations and Zionist depredations, are just another tactic of war. As for NATO, the US, Israel, Arabia, Turkey, and the rest of the governments and paramilitary outfits that are coaching, financing, and training the “resistance” in Syria, the civil war is going badly: there are mass defections, even of the commanders leading the insurgents; the Syrian government is retaking control of previously insurgent-held areas; Syrian refugees, even though it is just a trickle, are beginning gradually to return home; and the money that was to be used to sustain the insurgents is being laundered and then resurfacing in European capitals and American banks. With two of the three main governments, who are supposed to be conducting this war so that Washington does not have to get directly involved (Israel providing the intelligence and surveillance data, Turkey providing the staging areas, and Saudi Arabia providing the financing), openly bickering, this can’t be helpful to the cause of beating the sh-- out of Bashar al-Asad, and the ultimate prize, of finally getting at an isolated Islamic Iran. And so the responsible officer of Washington’s government came to talk to his “children” and reacquaint them with their joint goals, and to show them that “we’re all on the same (wrong and unscrupulous) side.”

Political courage requires those who have it to take an unpopular and difficult — but nonetheless principled, right, and just — stand, even at the cost of a tarnished reputation, a diminished status, a lost position of influence, or at worst, political suicide. No American president has exhibited the political courage to take on Israel, the Jewish Lobby, or the Zionist controlled media. In fact, everything a candidate for president has had to do in order to assume the office — from promises to kickbacks to returning favors for the delivery of constituencies (votes) — has precluded him from nurturing the kind of character necessary to courageously take the kind of stand that people in positions of power ought to be able to do. US presidents (and other heads of state) who make the trip to Tel Aviv go less to alleviate, negotiate, dictate, or perorate, but to pay homage to they who have power, and to ingratiate themselves for the favor of making operational decisions on behalf of they who themselves are not accountable to anyone. Every time they make this pilgrimage, they leave with less power than they had going there, and they concentrate more power in the hands of they who would continue to abuse the givers.

By contrast, any conscientious Muslim who goes to a free and open Hajj attends the obligation to pay homage to the Ultimate Power, and he leaves there having more power than when he came, while diminishing nothing from He who gave. In the same way, one innocent and dispassionate act of courage, especially by one who has a lot to lose in terms of worldly odds, multiplies into a charged motivation that liberates the potential of those around him. Hence, the principles of the founder of the Islamic Revolution and the struggling leaders of the Islamic movement on the one hand, and the now inspired, but once dormant, wellspring of courage in the Muslim masses on the other, are cut from the same wet cloth that is wringing out the political opportunism of presidents, princes, despots, and dictators. The courage of principle and the principle of courage buttress one another in the same way that political cowards and insincere apologizers make for compatible bedfellows.

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