GUEST: Bassem Tamimi, internationally recognized Palestinian human rights activist from the West Bank farming village of Nabi Selah, talks about the weekly nonviolent demonstrations held in opposition to illegal Israeli settlement construction and military occupation.
I found it much harder watching this YouTube video of this young Palestinian boy than talking to the young boy's father, Bassem.
Bassem Tamimi has a quite way about him, possibly from the beatings and torture he received in Israeli prisons for his activism. As he spoke to me, I became increasingly aware of what the Israelis will have to do to the Palestinians to permanently subjugate them or drive them away from their lands; Israel will have to massacre them. After over 65 years, the Palestinians are still resisting. Not only that, whole families like Bassem's have made keeping their lands and keeping their dignity their most important human value.
Of course, in trying to ethnically cleanse the Palestinians from their homeland, the Israelis have lost their religion as well as their humanity. Occupation does that to the occupying nation. In the end, the occupier must become the murderer.
Unexpectedly, Bassem talked about the Holocaust with sadness and sensitivity. Jews have suffered greatly, and now it is his people who bear the brunt of hatred and vicious racism. Did he feel a kinship with the Jews being persecuted in Germany during the 1930s? He certainly expressed his admiration for the Jewish Israelis who stand with him against the taking of his land and the murdering of his people.
Like most human rights activists, Bassem has come to the conclusion that it is the apartheid state of Israel that is responsible for the impending genocide of his people. And behind it all stands the empire, always ready to provide Israel with weapons, billions in aid, and protection at the UN. Yes, behind Israel's war crimes are the American people, you and me.