In the latest clash between the Israeli military and the people of Gaza, it seems that everyone supports the Palestinians. Messages of support, words of condemnation, protests, marches and angry demonstrations against Israel are increasing in number. Just yesterday, The Co-op supermarket chain announced it has banned all exports from Israeli settlements. In this conflict, it appears that there is one clear oppressor and one clear group being oppressed.
Yet, it seems support for Palestinians exists everywhere except for in the hearts of those in power. They may voice some criticsm or call for ‘restraint’ but no action has been taken. No action has been taken since the very beginning of this conflict in 1947-8. It leaves the common person on the street wondering what on earth they can do to help the people of Gaza who are being attacked daily. In contrast, an Israeli human rights activist herself claimed that the rockets from Gaza were ‘shitty.’
That is not the point though. This conflict is not merely because Israel are retaliating against rocket attacks or against the killing of three teenagers. It has always been about much more. Only when flashpoints like the current situation occur, does the world focus its lens on Gaza whilst Palestinians have been suffering the oppression of having their country invaded for decades.
Despite this, there are still some celebrities who openly claim to support Israel when they can see with their own eyes, the things they have done. It is shocking as it is like openly being in favour of oppression, aggression and a country which dismisses the law unless it suits them. Many of these celebrities are perhaps Israeli themselves but this does not mean they should be blinded by patriotism and follow their leaders like headless sheep. It may be argued that politics is not their concern but then why are so many ambassadors for some cause or another? They have a greater power to sway public opinion and should use their status to help those in need.
We as humans and ‘ordinary mortals’ should also play our part. Speak up against the things you see, realise what is going on around the world and work to eradicate them. Boycotts and protests, these are the tools of democracy and we are entitled to use them to voice our discontent. We may have our own problems but the truth is, they pale in comparison to the ones the people of Palestine have been facing their entire lives.