Wed, Apr 18, 2007 - Page 9 News List

Victimhood and media rhetoric on Israeli affairs

By J. Michael Cole

Former Serbian president Slobodan Milosevic was also accused of making recourse to similar tactics during the Kosovo war in 1999, which US and NATO generals used to deflect criticism when their guided and not-so-guided missiles went astray and killed civilians.

But when the IDF turns to similar tactics, which on at least one occasion resulted in the death of the Palestinian used as a human shield, the repercussions are next to nil and we can expect the investigation launched by the Israeli army to amount to very little. At most, a commander is suspended, as if this were an isolated event.

The only solution to the Israeli-Palestinian quagmire lies in a use of language that truly reflects reality and doesn't turn the tables on the aggressor and the victim.

The IDF was not forced to use Palestinian teenagers as human shields, nor is it forced, despite what its propaganda would have us believe, to occupy and repress entire generations of people, as it has done for almost 60 years now. It chooses to do so, just as it should choose to do the right thing and leave.

J. Michael Cole is a writer based in Taipei.

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