[News] A Christmas Remembrance

Anti-Imperialist News news at freedomarchives.org
Tue Dec 22 10:37:37 EST 2009

A Christmas Remembrance

Sabbah • Dec 21st, 2009 at 17:29


By <http://sabbah.biz/mt/archives/author/william-a-cook/>William A. Cook*

"The white civilized man (is) the most ferocious 
animal on the face of the earth."
(Herman Melville, 1840s)

In 1841, Melville sailed aboard the Acushnet, a 
whaling vessel, on a three year trip to the South 
Seas. By July of 1842, Melville and a shipmate, 
Toby Greene, jumped ship revolting against the 
tyrannical powers that brutalized the crew by 
oppressing these men of many races. Having 
witnessed American warships firing their guns at 
naked islanders in the Marquesas, Tahiti, and 
Hawaii and watched "rapacious hordes of 
enlightened individuals" seizing the "depopulated 
land" from the natives, reducing them to starving 
"interlopers" in their own country, he realized 
that the superior white Christian civilization 
epitomized absolute savagery and that cannibals 
treated others with more humanity than these 
self-identified enlightened men. That 
understanding of the civilized white man struck 
me with its absoluteness, its certainty, its 
expressive force the moment I opened my file of 
little four year old Kaukab Al Dayah, whose 
tender face rests on top of the rubble of her 
home, an unsuspecting victim of white Zionist 
brutality that delivered her family a missile as 
a Christmas gift just over a year ago. (See 
Salaman, "The true Jew is the European Ashkenazi 

 of whitish appearance," in Sand's 
Invention of the Jewish People). (To see the 
picture of Kaukab Al Dayah, see above or google 
her name. Two sites have photos: Getty Images and Laweranceofcyberia).

She, too, like the islanders in the South Seas 
157 years ago, is a resident of a "depopulated 
land," or perhaps is an "interloper" that failed 
to flea when the merciful enlightened hordes shot 
their warning shots announcing the white man's 
civilized gesture to those about to be crushed, 
if they hoped to survive. How considerate. How 
truly enlightened. How like now in Gaza just a 
year ago, when Israel, our westernized culture in 
the Mid-East, the friendly democratic state of 
Europeanized enlightenment, attempted to crush 
the defenseless Gazans caught on their own island 
surrounded by the savage might of this most 
civilized state. How unfortunate since the 
intended target was the school next door; an 
unexplainable mistake since only precision 
missiles are used, $300,000 dollar weapons to 
ensure accuracy. "After all we are civilized; we 
don't permit such pictures to be made public. 
That's brutal, pornographic; at least blur the 
face as we do lest our people be shocked, or 
dismayed that the enemy seems so small, so sweet, so silent, so dead."

I look upon that serene face and see my own 
daughters asleep in their beds, no more than a 
yard apart when tucked in, sleeping now after the 
story's end, eyelids closed, lips parted, faces 
visible above the blankets as I turned out the 
lights. I remember because I was restoring a 1750 
colonial house at the time and their room had not 
been touched yet. The heavy thick horse hair 
plaster was cracked on the ceiling, parts of it 
hung above the beds waiting the day I would 
tackle that room. But that night it crashed to 
the floor with a thunderous roar amid the 
screaming voices of the girls. How fear rushed to 
my throat; how relieved to find them untouched 
but sitting up in fright. How comforting for me 
to hold them and hug them till they fell asleep 
again. Remembering this moment, I find no words 
to express how a mother or a father or a 
grandmother or aunt or sister or brother would 
feel upon seeing the innocent face of little 
Kaukab shrouded in this pall of dirt and stone.

What horror strikes the soul to see that face 
encased in death, the weight of that shroud 
pressing around her tiny body, the cement wall 
rising beside her like the vault's side that 
receives the coffin, but there is no coffin. This 
is unnatural death. This is civilized death, the 
death of the innocent whose life was yet to be 
lived, whose eyes, shut now, will see no more the 
rising sun, whose hair, all matted now, will 
never flow in the warmth of the breeze, whose 
voice, silenced now, will never sing again. This 
is now the cold body of an unknown girl, unknown 
to the pilot of the F-16 that fired the missile, 
indeed, unconsidered by him lost as he is in his 
indifference to those he cannot see or hear or 
touch. How like Kaukab perhaps is that pilot's 
daughter. Was he happy, perhaps, upon his return 
home after his days work to lift his daughter's 
face to his lips before sitting down to dinner?

But he need not worry after all, Rabbi Yitzhak 
Shapira has already absolved him of any guilt 
with the recent publication of his book, The 
King's Torah, a best seller in Israel, but 
un-reviewed in America, not by the enlightened 
New York Times or the Washington Post or the Los 
Angeles Times. The good Rabbi writes "even babies 
and children can be killed if they pose a threat 
to the nation" (Haaretz 12/15/09). Many other 
Rabbis joined with Shapira in his call to kill 
Gentiles while absolving the soldier or citizen 
of Israel from guilt before the crime is 
committed. During Israel's Gaza New Year 
celebration last year, euphemistically dubbed 
Cast Lead, Rabbi Mordechai Elyahu, one of the 
leading Rabbis in Israel, "urged the army not to 
refrain from killing enemy children in order to 
save lives of Israel's soldiers" (EU Times, 
11/11/09). After all, Christian morals are not 
binding on Jews. Certainly the civilized world 
can understand these perspectives since the 
ultra-orthodox Rabbis have only exonerated God's 
chosen from the guilt that attends Gentiles 
should they be so rash as to kill a Jew. Funny 
how we condemn Hamas as a terrorist organization 
and justify the carnage that took the life of 
little Kaukab Al Dayah. No doubt the F-16 pilot 
feared for his life if he did not destroy her 
before she got old enough to commit some yet to 
be determined evil against the IDF forces.

I think as I look upon this young girl's face of 
the mother who bore her, cherished her, dreamed 
for her; I think about her father who never 
thought that his daughter would find her grave in 
the ruins of her room as she slept; I think about 
her sisters and brothers who played with her just 
the evening before never imagining that her life 
would end in such suffering and pain; I think of 
her as a reflection of all who died in this 
wasted war that accomplished nothing but horrific 
pain for the Palestinian and provided only a 
junky's moment of ecstasy for Olmert, Barak, and 
Livni, as they sunk needles into their arms, 
feeling nothing but self-gratification, a 
sickness of the mind and spirit, a high that 
knows nothing of others, nothing of love or 
gratitude or peace, the ecstasy of nirvana that 
unites all in the human embrace.

As the year ends that opened with Israel's 
invasion of a people locked behind walls with no 
place to go, an invasion by the world's fourth 
largest military according to Israeli estimates, 
an invasion against a people that have no 
military, an invasion of a small speck of land 
that is home to 1.5 million people, an invasion 
that capped two years of siege by this same 
military that destroyed the infrastructure of 
Gaza, preventing food and medicine and oil and 
gas and water from entering Gaza, an invasion 
that was as merciless as that of any ferocious 
animal killing its prey, but here the prey is not 
one but 1400 with upwards of 5000 wounded and 
maimed, an invasion that can only mark the 
perpetrators as ruthless killers without 
compassion or conscience, a robotic mass that has 
lost all sense of humane sensitivity, a people 
that should be and must be isolated from the law abiding nations of the world.

Perhaps, if there is a God of mercy, He has left 
this image as a token of His love for those who 
died in this carnage, and a token of His 
compassion for those who inflicted it that they 
might learn. It is after all a mirror that both 
must look into, a symbolic image of life and 
death. For the Palestinian, it mirrors what life 
should be for little Kaukab and all children: the 
joy that should have been; the love showered upon 
her, lost forever; the home filled with laughter 
and hope and dreams and warmth and security, 
blasted now; the neighbors and friends and 
family, tightly knit in love and kinship, 
shattered now as this home is shattered. An image 
of what must be, for friend and foe alike, if 
this life of hope has meaning and promise.

For the Israeli, it mirrors what this state has 
become and what the future of the Jews might be 
under the pathological sickness imposed on them 
by the Zionists. What minister of God could 
conceive the slaughter of children and justify it 
unless he was mired in myth as recorded in 
Biblical lore. There we read of the Scourge 
inflicted by G-d on the first born of all who 
lived in Egypt on behalf of the Jews. There we 
read of Herod's slaughter of the innocents that 
first Christmas lest his throne be threatened by 
the Christ child. Why do such tales exist? They 
exist to give license to those who would inflict 
their will on those they fear; they are stories 
of minds distorted by self-indulgence, arrogance 
and pride; they impose what they will to ensure 
their power not through rational deliberation but 
through deceit, coercion and fear.

That child mirrors for the Zionist the perceived 
enemy next door grown into adulthood, the fear of 
what might be; the twisted steel bars rising from 
the rubble reflect the prison built around those 
who have been excluded from privilege; the 
crushed cement strewn on the ground beneath the 
grey walls reminds the Israeli of the Wall of 
Fear they have built around the Palestinians, a 
fear resident deep in the psyche of the Zionist, 
as all embracing as the rubble that encases 
little Al Dayah, a fear that those different from 
them might walk their streets and shop in their 
stores reminding them that the world is full of 
people to fear, people that must be controlled 
and isolated; and in that image they see 
themselves, the consequence of the corrosive acid 
that is destroying their faith that once stood 
for compassion and love seen in the sorrowful 
face of this innocent girl, the realization that 
they have destroyed their neighbors, those 
closest in blood and place to their lives, and in 
the reaction from people around the world to this 
unwarranted slaughter, they understand they have 
built their own ghetto wall around an enclave 
that exudes violence, vengeance, retaliation, and 
death to those who do not capitulate to their 
wants; they have in fact created what their fear 
predicted, a complete isolation from the civilized world.

What more can be said? Melville saw the cannibals 
as more civilized than the white Christians that 
ripped apart the indigenous people of the 
islands, denying that they had rights, and with 
impunity destroyed their cultures. It's not only 
the Christians now, the evangelical end timer 
Christians; it's the white Ashkenazi of Europe 
that act now with impunity, the enlightened 
offspring of the Eurocentric mind that believes 
in their own superiority fostered by their own 
myths, supported by the Congress of the United 
States, as they ravage the defenseless people of Palestine.

Let us all ask of the Child of Bethlehem that He 
offer this world once again the Beatitudes:

For little Kaukab, Blessed are the poor in 
spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven;

For her parents, Blessed are the peacemakers, for 
they shall be called the children of God;

For the perpetrators of this havoc, Blessed are 
the merciful for they shall obtain mercy.

* William A. Cook is a professor of English at 
the University of La Verne in southern California 
and author of 
Rape Of Palestine: Hope Destroyed, Justice 
Deception: Bush Mid-East Policy and 
Chronicles Of Nefaria. He can be reached at: 
<mailto:wcook at laverne.edu>wcook at laverne.edu.

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