Jonathan Brun

Double Standards

I have little time to write these days. Kids, work, priorities. However, the last few days in Israel and Palestine have been shocking – and that says a lot for Israel – Palestine.

In the past four days, every twenty minutes or so, a Palestinian child is killed by Israel. The total is currently at 326 dead children and counting. You can follow the killing of Palestinian children via the organization Defense of Children Palestine.

I do not understand how so many “mainstream” people can justify the death of children as good. The carnage in Israel was real and terrifying for Israelis and to a certain extent, the larger world community. That being said, killing hundreds of people – nearly half being children – in indiscriminate retaliatory attacks cannot be defended. Yet, if you read mainstream newspapers or mainstream news channels, you would never know that Israel is committing war crimes, deepening the crisis and killing children and women who have no responsibility for the crimes of Hamas. I feel like a crazy person.

In Canada, politicians have been completely unable to show even the slightest bit of sympathy for innocent Palestinians. Without any form of shame, Canadian leads have applied a double standard to death. It is shocking and saddening to see the racism and discrimination by so many people in positions of wealth and power. This reality is so terribly saddening because it outlines that Palestinians have no hope of any support, not even moral, from the West. Not only has the West long abandoned Palestinians, the Arab world has too. 2 million Palestinians are trapped in Gaza with no food, no water, no recourse and no hope. Israel is preparing a ground invasion that will likely see high casualty rates on both the Israeli and Palestinian side. The conflict seems worse than it ever has been and the fault, as Haaretz has explained, lies on the Israeli side.

This interview with the editor of Jewish Currents, a centre-left Jewish magazine, does a good job of explaining the conflicting emotions that a select few people have. While some people may have some conflicting feelings about the war, the fact that so many “supporters of Israel” are calling for genocide and vengeance on a biblical scale is what truly depresses me. In Canada, organizations that purport to support human rights, such as the Liberal Party of Canada or the Raoul Wallenberg Center, are oddly silent on the death of children who are not Jewish. This double standard is being applied across the western world by mainstream organizations and people who claim to believe in liberalism and equal rights. Real liberalism does not discriminate. Death does not discriminate. Suffering is felt by all.

So far, the best statement by a Canadian organization or the current escalation is the statement by Independent Jewish Voices, one of the few organizations that actually called for a cease-fire. Death will only bring more death, vengeance will only come back to haunt Israel. As Gandhi said, “an eye for an eye will leave the world blind.” We have become blind to the death of Palestinian children and the situation is only getting worse.

During the siege of Melos in the Peloponnesian wars, the conquering Athenians proudly claimed, “, “the strong do what they can and the weak suffer what they must”.[29]

Published on October 12, 2023