Propaganda and “Othering” in Action…

Just read this AP article on Huffington Post: Israelis get creative in coping with rocket threat

I just shook my head.

There’s nothing wrong with writing a story like this. It is interesting and important to know how a people cope with having rockets dropped into their houses, near their coffee shops…right before their weddings. It allows us to connect with those who suffer this kind of violence. It makes distant people seem not so different from us…how beautiful. Truly. And how necessary.

But how sad. Because I am not seeing the front page stories about how Palestinians “get creative” with the bombs, and constant bulldozers, and checkpoints, and settler incursions, and destroyed olive trees, and poverty, and dead and wounded children. About the endless cycles of jail time and searches. About all of the weddings and birthdays missed because of rockets or tanks or long stops by soldiers trying to get to the event in time. I’m not seeing the stories of how they have “coped” with occupation and displacement for so many decades.

No. There is no balance in this coverage, which is no surprise. When there are human interest stories about Palestinians, I see people running here and there from bombs. I do see screaming women or crying fathers. But what I don’t see is the context. The connection. Because even screaming victims of war are easily distanced and othered. Where is the history? Why are occasional rockets in Israel given the treatment of something that folks are getting used to, that is becoming daily…when the violence that Palestinians experience is portrayed as immediate, ahistorical, a big flashing siren…and not what it really is…a gaping wound, constantly jostled and stretched and re-opened, barely given a moment to scab or scar before the flesh is torn again…and again.

I am angry about this, if you couldn’t tell.

Currently Reading:

-Dispersing Power by Raul Zibechi