May 19, 2021 | Hopeton O’Connor-Dennie |
The Andrew Holness led JLP government for their own reasons is deafingly silent on this latest middle East war, apparently seeing it as a semi-religious conflict.
It is the bloodshed on either side that is of main concern to us. So far 12 Israeli citizens including two children are reported as having been killed and two injured. In the West Bank so far 200 have been killed as the aerial bombardment by the Israeli army continues in response to rockets launched from the West Bank, home of the densely populated city. A breakdown shows one hundred (100) women and children have been killed in Gaza total 200 overall. Top leaders of Ammas have been said to have been killed also. Some 1,500 are said to be injured in Gaza. The Palestinians have no war planes to aerially bombard any Israeli cities.
This is therefore a lopsided war.
Many buildings in Gaza have been destroyed by bombs from Israeli war planes.
US president Joe Biden has called both leaders in the conflict to cause a cease-fire. It is unfortunate that there are reports that the Americans are blocking a debate in the United Nations, which could lead to a cease-fire. We hope these reports are false.
There was a caller on a Talk Show today bemoaning the fact that Jamaica has not commented on the middle east conflict. Hon. Kamina Johnson Smith, Foreign Minister, are you asleep? We need to hear from you Minister Johnson Smith.
It is not in keeping with the tradition of Jamaica as a strong advocate of humanity not to comment as a country on bloodshed in such a lopsided conflict. Jamaica did speak out against South African atrocities in the 80s and 90s. Why not now? There needs to be consistency when there is humanitarian suffering. One hundred (100) women and children killed in Gaza by Israeli warplanes. Also two children killed in Israel by the rockets of the other side. All lives matter and we condemn the bloodshed.
We say get to the negotiating table soon. Stop the bloodshed now. There has to be a better way to settle your dispute. Israel needs to return stolen or disputed lands from the Palestinians. That is not fair. What is your view?
Hopeton O’Connor-Dennie is a poet and veteran journalist who follows international events.