Monday, June 26, 2006

Israel, Palestine, a Fence and "The Wall"

Roger Waters of Pink Floyd is in Israel this week. He had been scheduled to perform in Tel Aviv, but moved to the "Peace Village" Neve Shalom after criticism by British anti-apartheid activists. Neve Shalom is highlighted as an example of Jewish and Arab integration in contrast to much of the rest of Israel and Palestine.

This Reuters article (reprinted by Ynet) shows how the mainstream media often gives in to politicized terminology that favor the imperialist mythology of the Israeli government.

For example,

"Pink Floyd front-man Roger Waters, who inspired the rock band's iconic album "The Wall," has scrawled "tear down the wall" on the concrete panels of Israel's security fence on Wednesday."

It has become something of a politicized battle over the name of the "apartheid wall" or "separation fence." Once it became clear that apartheid meant separation, "security fence" has become the dominant terminology. Now I know some of the "barrier" is more like a fence and some is more like a wall, but have you ever heard of a concrete fence? Seriously, can we just be honest and call it whatever word in the English language best describes it.

By the way, as if Gaza hadn't exploded enough already, after some 20 Palestinian non-combatants including many children were killed in the last two weeks, militants claiming to be part of Hamas attacked a checkpoint and took an Israeli soldier hostage. Hamas representatives are saying, at least in Hebrew, that they are not responsible and that the soldier must be treated well by his captors.

This is bound to cause increased attacks by Israel and retaliation by Palestinian militants.

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