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"When First We Practice to Deceive"

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Cross-posted from Wallwritings


Israeli bombing attacks on Gaza
(Image by Foreign Policy)
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"Oh what a tangled web we weave
When first we practice to deceive."

These words from Sir Walter Scott (1808) describe the political template of the modern state of Israel.

Israel is a nation built on deceptive lies, preserved by deceptive lies. Israel is a nation practiced in the art of using whatever is available to keep alive their carefully "tangled web" of deceptive lies.

The latest addition to this tangled web came June 12, when three Israeli teenagers disappeared in the occupied territory of the West Bank. The boys were from three Orthodox Jewish settler families living in illegal settlements in the Hebron area.

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Their families had placed them in a danger zone. Juan Cole writes:

"It should be fairly obvious that if you take adolescents into the middle of the Palestinian West Bank and steal Palestinian land and build houses on it and shoot at Palestinians trying to harvest their crops nearby and bulldoze down their homes or dig tube wells so deep as to cause the Palestinian wells to run dry -- if you engage in this settler-colonial enterprise, then you are exposing those adolescents you drag with you into it to danger.

"It is still wrong. Violence in anything other than direct self-defense is always wrong, and innocent non-combatant life must never be taken. A resistance movement is legitimate, but its quarrel must be with soldiers."

The latest narrative of Israel's tangled web continued as Israel sent its occupying army on an extensive search for the teenagers.

The search extended well beyond the reasonable area where the boys might be found. Instead, it focused on homes and areas known to house Hamas supporters and leaders, the Palestinian party Israel wants to prevent from joining a unified Palestinian government.

From the outset the search was a deceptive lie.

The teenagers were not missing, they were dead. What was missing were the bodies of the three boys.

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Knowing this from the beginning, the government of Israel put a media "gag order" on news of the search.

The government of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu allowed a narrative of national outrage and grief to grow, providing a search cover for a military assault on Hamas.

The teenagers had been dead since June 12. The government knew this. And yet, it allowed the lie that they might be found alive to fill the hearts of three grieving families and the collective heart of the nation.

Buzzfeed described what the government had known since shortly after the teenagers disappeared:

"Within minutes of stepping into the battered Hyundai i35 on the night of June 12, Israeli teens Gilad Shaar, Naftali Fraenkel, and Eyal Yifrach knew they were in trouble.

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http://wallwritings.wordpress.com/

James Wall is currently a Contributing Editor of The Christian Century magazine, based in Chicago, Illinois. From 1972 through 1999, he was editor and publisher of the Christian Century magazine. Many sources have influenced Jim's writings over (more...)
 

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