The Palestinians’ life is hanging by a thread again.
And this time over the forced evictions of families in Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood of the occupied West Bank, which sparks huge protests in the community.
The move to displace over more than 37 Palestinian families is due to a Jerusalem district court that ruled the homes belonged to the Jewish settlers, citing purchases made when the land of Palestine, including what is now Israel, was under British rule pre-1948.
The 1948 occupation, dubbed as the “Nakba”, or the Catastrophe saw the creation of the state of Israel by the Zionists. It resulted in the displacement of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians from their homeland to neighbouring countries. Some of the families settled in the Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood in East Jerusalem.
After settling more than 65 years in the Sheikh Jarrah, the Palestinians’ worst nightmare becomes a reality when Israeli courts recently allowed the Israeli army and police to evict fifteen Palestinian families. It is a renewed Nakba. The worst injustice in the history of modern humankind is repeating itself before our eyes. It is heartbreaking, but it also gives a feeling sense of a déjà vu.
This is not something new. Millions of Palestinians have been dispossessed and fall victim to the strategic ethnic cleansing by Israel for more than 70 years. Israel continues to oppress, displace and kick Palestinian out from their land continuously and strategically until today, and the occupier remains unscathed.
As expected, the media from the most powerful country globally, including the US and the UK, who pride themselves as the bastion of human rights and freedom, remain silent and oblivious. This is not unusual. The Western media have been very timid if not condoning the Israel oppression and ethnic cleansing over Palestinians.
Just look at the CNN website. Sparring a couple of “objective” reporting from the world news channel, none of the news of the Israel atrocities over the Sheikh Jarrah or violent raid by Israeli forces on Al-Aqsa made the front page of the website. It does not come as a surprise as the US administrations have always been staunch supporter and steadfast friend of Israel.
Although late in its coverage, the BBC is currently making the news of the flash raid launched by Israeli security forces as its front page. As usual, the BBC is always tentative in its coverage, disguising under the tenet of impartiality. Although in the case of Palestinian oppression by the Israeli state, the sacred concept of impartiality in British journalism is rendered irrelevance. The truth is, the Palestinians have suffered immensely under the occupation of the Israeli state. Arguably, the BBC may need to remain impartial, as it was the British occupation that helped the Zionist establish a home for the Jewish people in the Palestinian land.
Al Jazeera, is the only global news channel that gives voices to the Palestinians of their struggles. Its minutes to minutes coverage of the Palestinian suffering provides the world audiences insights into the Palestinian suffering.
For CNN and the BBC, the Al Aqsa mosque attack by the Israeli forces is described as “Israel police clash with Palestinians”, while Al Jazeera called it a “violent raid by Israeli forces on Al Aqsa”. Al Jazeera rightly called the locality of the Al Aqsa attacked as “Occupied East Jerusalem”, while CNN and the BBC described it as simply a “Jerusalem”.
Thanks to social media, especially Twitter, the world can witness the gross injustice of Palestinians’ lives before our very eyes. The visuals of security forces storming Al Aqsa mosque, the third holiest site for Muslims worldwide, as worshippers prayed in the mosque during Ramadhan provide chilling indications of the fractions of oppression faced by Palestinian in their daily life. The pictures of the brave souls of the young Palestinians who fight back the aggression by the Israeli forces are now being shared and retweeted by global netizens.
For the rest of us, there may not be much that we can do. But we can join the social media movement. Let’s spread the awareness. Tell the world what’s going on in Palestine and what they have endured for the past decades.
Such inhuman treatments of Palestinians need to stop.