John Key must put humanity before 'the club'

Whether the victims are beheaded, or, as they were during the latest Israeli blitz on the Gaza Strip, blown to bits (500 children dead) it is unacceptable and hypocritical that our leaders should be so selective in their condemnation of war crimes.

German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, has decided to supply the Israeli Navy with an increased number of nuclear-powered, diesel-electric, AIP Dolphin Class submarines. The submarines have been developed and constructed by the German company Howaldtswerke-Deutsche Werft AG. Israel has modified those that have already been delivered with long-range (SLCM) cruise missiles equipped with nuclear warheads. The Zionist state's Navy has devastating destructive power.

Israel, the Western ally that introduced nuclear weapons to the Middle East, already enjoys absolute security and it also remains the only nuclear-armed country in the region. Israel's security is guaranteed by the United States and immunity for its violations of international law finds additional support with the collusion of Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Qatar. Surrounded largely by such allies, Israel's malevolent persecution of Palestine continues unabated. While UN Security Council Resolution 1860 obliges Israel to open the port of Gaza and facilitate the free movement of goods and people, Israel instead strives, but is failing, to provoke the Palestinian resistance into fresh violent reaction. Already this year, up to and including 8 February, Israel has committed at least 62 ceasefire violations, terrorising the population (including farmers and farmworkers) and damaging, sinking and destroying fishing boats.

Last September, John Pilger reminded us that: “The resistance in Gaza is rightly compared with the 1943 Jewish uprising in the Warsaw Ghetto – which also dug tunnels and deployed tactics of subterfuge and surprise against an overpowering military machine. The last surviving leader of the Warsaw uprising, Marek Edelman, wrote a letter of solidarity to the Palestinian resistance, comparing it with the ZOB, his ghetto fighters.”

In the New Zealand Parliament on 10 February 2015, Prime Minister John Key said: “Issues like Ukraine and Iraq and Syria, the Middle East, and the war on Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) will be all important for us, as a good participant in the Security Council, to debate and discuss. This will be a government that will take seriously its responsibilities . . .” Yet while going so far as to prepare New Zealand troops for action in Iraq, John Key has failed even to draw attention to the subject of Israel's repeated and flagrant violations of the Gaza ceasefire agreement.

Key also said in Parliament, in support of sending New Zealand troops to Iraq, “I will not, as leader of New Zealand, stand back and see Jordanian pilots burnt to death . . .” But John Key never had anything to say about another horrific burning to death – of a young Palestinian at the hands of ideologically-driven Israeli extremists. A post mortem showed 90% of 16-year-old Mohammed Abu Khdair's body was covered in burns. ISIS beheads its victims – and so also does the West's ally, Saudi Arabia. Whether the victims are beheaded, or, as they were during the latest Israeli blitz on the Gaza strip, blown to bits (500 children were among the dead), such actions are criminal and unacceptable. It is also unacceptable and hypocritical that our leaders should be so selective in their condemnation of war crimes.

In the New Zealand Parliament John Key claimed “it will be a busy year for Foreign Affairs. We are on the Security Council in 2015 and 2016.” Key went on to say that “as a good participant in the Security Council” issues such as the Middle East will be “all important for us to debate and discuss.” But what will be the motivation? According to a New Zealand Herald article, “Prime Minister John Key says New Zealand's likely military contribution to the fight against Islamic State 'is the price of the club' that New Zealand belongs to . . .” Also according to the Herald article, Mr Key draws heavily on New Zealand pulling its weight as part of “a club”. On the other hand, New Zealand could show some independence and integrity. Rather than involving the New Zealand military in support of the Western club's manifestly failed policies, this country should seize the opportunity of making a real contribution to the defence of international peace and stability at the Security Council. We could start by removing New Zealand's voice from the carefully directed chorus of selective morality, stop turning a blind eye and forthrightly witness for the whole truth and all humanity. It might even catch on!

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