Two years later and nothing has been done to bring justice for the 1,300+ innocent civilians that were murdered in Israel’s siege on Gaza two years ago, nor the nearly 6,000 injured in the massacre. Nothing has been done to alleviate the plight of the remaining population that has been forced to live in the remnants of a territory blitzed back to the pre-industrial era thanks to Israel’s illegal weapons, actions, and occupation. In fact, any actions to help Palestinians living in Gaza have been resolutely shot down by the colonizing Israeli government – sometimes even literally – like in the Freedom Flotilla massacre during the summer, in which Israeli Defense Forces illegally boarded a humanitarian aid boat trying to deliver necessary basic resources to the Palestinian people and murdered 20 peace activists.
Rather than getting closer to an ultimate justice and peace for Palestinians, the actions of the Israeli government during Operation Cast Lead have instead been slipping further and further back into the archives of history. The United States and Israel have been prolonging taking any action towards investigating, recognizing, or prosecuting the war crimes that took place in Palestine in hopes that the world will soon forget they ever happened; the Goldstone Report conclusively stated that Israel committed war crimes during the siege, but was vehemently vetoed by the US in the United Nations. The remembrance of Gaza has remained alive on the memory of statistics, as human nature chooses to desensitize itself to such massacres by viewing unjustified deaths solely as a number, rather than recognizing each single one as the loss of a mother, a father, a brother, a sister, a son, a daughter, a friend.
Today, the Palestinians are still not in a better situation. The adamance of Israel’s preventing basic construction materials into the territory have left the infrastructure desecrated and stuck in time. Families go through a majority of the day without electricity in their homes. The most basic human resources remain depleted, including medicine, hospital supplies, even food and clothing. Palestinians trying to assert their own rights have to go to Israeli courts… the perpetrator retains the power of prosecuting what’s right and wrong.
In a situation like this, how can humane people living abroad feel anything but helpless? But this is actually the type of feeling that plays into the agenda of intimidation and oppression, and this is exactly the type of feeling that we must fight against. As unfortunate as it may be, it’s true that money makes the world go ’round. Thus, as consumers in this modern world, and with the state of our current economy, every purchase we make is a vote. The Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions Movement is a global push towards ending Israel’s illegal actions by uniting consumers against Israeli goods and companies that support its government. By tactfully recognizing where our money is going and steering it away from inhumane causes, we can, as BDS puts it, “apply economic pressure for change.”
Sadly, we are living in a world in which politics are more important than innocent lives or the morals that preserve them. But, that should just serve as the fuel to make us fight even harder to right what’s wrong in this world. Every single voice counts, and together we will one day become loud enough to be heard.