The World is War Zone

defend gaza

I imagine the people of Gaza must be glad to know that people care.
That even as bombs rain down on their homes, even as they bury their children, there are people out in the world who condemn this madness, who add their voices to a global outcry against Israel’s criminally stupid attack on Gaza.
I feel a great sense of belonging outside Downing Street watching young Muslim women and old white lefties, and keffiah clad cool sorts hurl shoes over the police.
There are thousands there. Tens of thousands. Still coming up along Embankment, past Big Ben, up Whitehall and pouring into the heart of Babylondon.
The protestors chant a bitter sweet call and response – Israel: Terrorist, George Bush: Terrorist, Gordon Brown: Terrorist.
It is like the sweetest music to my ears and because it is nearly Carnival I am tempted to start put my hands in the air and shake my defiant boomsie in the face of those who are silent on Israel’s genocidal mission.
I imagine the people of Gaza must feel reassured that so many thousands of people around the world have taken to their streets demanding an end to the madness. I also imagine they are too busy trying to survive to give a damn about us standing out there being captured on film by the police photographers.
There is a smell of fuel in the air and before I know it five or six Asian youths have set fire to a replica of the Israeli flag. There is so much anger in their eyes I have to look away.
I can’t imagine what it must be like to live a life punctuated by war.
But standing in Trafalgar Square I am struck by the silence of all those thousands of people, listening to the various speakers, sharing food, leaning on placards, shivering in the cold.
It’s not often these days that I feel proud to be a human. Less often than feeling like I belong.
It is a constant source of confusion for me that humans can just be so downright mean to each other.
image000 When people come together to lend their voices to bring an end to the suffering of others, surely this is a much more powerful thing than sitting at home watching it all unfold on the television, mumbling your complaints into your living room.
I imagine that these mass outpourings of love and rage only ever happen when humanity comes under such threat that those of us who still hold on to some, have to find ways to manifest it.
Annie Lennox calls down shame and damnation on the Israeli government as Somali men perform ablutions before their prayers, right there on the Strand, in the shadow of Lord Nelson’s column.
It is too cold to do anything but stand there, shifting weight from one leg to another. Feeling angry that all I can do is stand there, in the cold, holding a placard.
It is too cold to talk but just being there is warmth enough. Not just because demonstrations are to activists what ecstasy pills are to ravers.
And as I reflect on the niceness of the feeling of being part of something, I remember the bitter taste in the back of my throat when so-called leaders accused people like me of being an outsider for taking an interest in what was going on in Chatham with plans to build an Alcoa aluminum smelter.
How Trinidad is a place where we have become as obsessed as our so-called leaders with carefully demarcated territories that must be controlled by the various competing patriarchies. About how difficult it is for us to express solidarity with each other, far less to care about what’s going on outside of our immediate community.
I suppose this is the case everywhere. Apathy thrives. Later I meet up with a bredrin from Iceland who tells me amazing stories about a whole country coming to the brink of collapse and how this has completely galvanized even the most complacent of the middle class to take to the streets, to take over town halls and cinemas to meet and confront their leaders who dare not treat them with the kind of contempt that is readily available for us here.
Too fantastic to imagine that this will ever happen in sweet and sour T&T. Too ridiculous to imagine that Trinidadians will ever care about anything enough to take to the streets in their thousands.
Apathy thrives, unless perhaps your wallet or your life is affected.
The world is a war zone whether blood is being shed or not. And those who want peace or security cannot resist the urge to try and fight for it.

For more information on how you can speak out against Israel’s crimes against Gaza and the Palestinian people click here

4 thoughts on “The World is War Zone

  1. Pingback: Global Voices Online » Trinidad & Tobago, Haiti: The Israel-Palestine War Zone

  2. the world looks on to see if any super powers will step in to protect the people of Gaza.
    the Jews kill women and children and still no one will step to defend the human right for these people to be able to just live in peace.
    you see things about the Jews on line crying saying the Germans did this to us and that killed people who couldn`t defend them self well looks like the Jews have become the SS of Gaza.
    I think that good name for the KID KILLERS THE JEWISH SS OF GAZA.
    no good you looking at united states the Jews control the puppets in power,plus most Yanks would be on the side of the Jews because of there money and no good looking at England the Jews control the powers that be here as well.
    so where is France and Germany well those 2 powers have there head stuck up each others ass so no chance of help from them ah Nato well it cost a lot for jumped up puppets to sit round and bark at each other very little gets done and when a power wants to do it own thing ,it does and Nato just looks on,odd that i thought Nato was put there to deal with problems just like Gaza.

    after the 2nd world war if people take there head out of there ass and look the Jews made should they placed them self round the world in places of power or helped to fund lots things so people in office like in united states would take there side.
    Super powers around the world should be aware if you trade with Jews it means you think its ok to kill kids and women and families that just want to live a life like you or me.
    people should stop trading with Jews till they stop ,to gain the respect of the Arab people its about time we started to treat them like people.
    all major powers should think hard why Arab people don`t trust people like us its because we help Kid killers i mean the Jewish SS ( the Jews stock pile drones and make loads other weapons and no one speaks out against that, any of the Arab states that try to make weapons have united states and england dropping bombs on them and invade countries nothing to do with us.
    as a Arab state who stands alone you are not a full strenth but if all the Arab states joined as one and made a flag that was for all the Arab world then you be a major power to defend yourself from out side countries that have no right to invade your country and give the Jews a reason to move back to were ever the hell they came from. leaders of the Arab world unite as one and lead your people to better days of peace or lead your people as many and be at war till the end of days.
    the Arab world has so much to offer people from around the world a rich history and all the different arts and crafts though out the ages ,i just hope one day i may see a land i could walk in that was of peace.

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