02 oktober, 2006

Kikkerten for det blinde øje

Den Israelske blog Not a Fish har til glæde for de af os der ikke kan læse hebraiske oversat en tre-delt serie af artikler om den åbenlyse dissonans der er mellem fordømmelserne af Israels kamp for overlevelse og de tab dette fører med sig, og den totale stilhed der er om de millioner af muslimer som muslimerne selv slår ihjel. Den Israelske forfatter og historiker giver et godt resumé:

On the Jewish New Year’s Eve, Ma’ariv’s senior journalist Ben-Dror Yemini, published the first installment of a three part series about media representation of the Arab-Israeli conflict worldwide. The piece was entitled And the World is Silent. Yemini, a long time leftist, and supporter of Palestinian independence, has nevertheless been outraged, quite rightly, by the way that the criticism of Israel’s occupation, which he shares, has seeped, especially in Europe, into a wild array of attempts at delegitimizing the right of Jews to self-determination.

A central part of these attempts is the persistent myth about systematic “genocide” allegedly committed by Israel against Muslims in general and Palestinians in particular. Yemini did a simple thing: he collected the available numbers – they are staggering indeed – of Muslims murdered during the years of the Arab-Israeli conflict. Some 10,000,000 (ten million!) Muslims were murdered, by the more conservative estimations. But only about 0.6% of these deaths were caused by the Arab-Israeli conflict itself. Read again: about half a percent. Here’s one finding from the margins of Yemini’s research: France is responsible for about ten times more Muslim deaths than Israel during the same years. Not something your average newspaper reader in Europe is likely to guess. Imshin, an Israeli blogger, has translated the whole piece, which you can now read in English here.

THE NUMBERS IN A NUTSHELL:

Israel is responsible for about 60,000 Muslim deaths (all its wars and the occupation included).
The USA is responsible for about 70,000.
France is responsible for about half a million (in the 1950s alone, by the most conservative estimate).
Russia (along with the former Soviet Union) over one million.
About 8.5 million Muslims were murdered by Muslim regimes, internal Arab civil wars, and Arab tribal ethnic cleansing.

The first thing that meets the eye when you read the piece, since that was the piece’s intention, is the discrepancy between Israel’s image in world public opinion, and the actual numbers. But the more profound result of reading this research is quite other. If Israel is responsible for some 60,000, how have the deaths of the other 10,000,000 been so effectively marginalized in public opinion? The numbers were never secret, after all. Yemini collected them from Human Rights Organization, UN agencies, and the like. That those who have care fairly little about those who have not, we know. But that genocide on such a vast scale should slip under the radar and leave so small an impression is beyond pedestrian cynicism.

Artiklen kan læses i tre dele her, her og her. To små smagsprøver om konflikter, de fleste næppe har hørt noget om:

Bangladesh: This country aspired to gain independence from Pakistan. Pakistan reacted with a military invasion that caused mass destruction. It was not a war, it was a massacre. One to two million people were systematically liquidated in 1971. Some researchers define the events of that year in Bangladesh as one of the three greatest genocides in (history - IJ) (after the Holocaust and the Ruanda genocide).

An inquiry committee appointed by the government of Bangladesh counted 1.247 million fatalities as a result of systematic murder of civilians by Pakistan’s army forces. There are also numerous reports of ‘Death squads’, in which “Muslim soldiers were sent to execute mass killings of Muslim farmers”.

The Pakistani army ceased only after the intervention of India, which suffered from waves of refugees - millions – arriving from Bangladesh. At least 150 thousand more were murdered in acts of retaliation after the retreat of the Pakistan army.

Bangladesh summary: 1.4 million to 2 million. ....

Yemen: In the civil war that took place in Yemen from 1962 to 1970, with Egyptian and Saudi involvement, 100,000 to 150,000 Yemenites were killed, and more than a thousand Egyptians and a thousand Saudis.

Egypt committed war crimes by incorporating the use of chemical warfare. Riots in Yemen from 1984 to 1986 caused the deaths of thousands more.

Yemen summary: 100,000 to 150,000 fatalities.

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