Published on Monday, December 28, 2009 by Al Jazeera English
One year has passed since the savage Israeli attack on the
Since Palestinians in
According to international aid agencies, only 41 trucks of building supplies have been allowed into
Promises of billions made at a donors' conference in
Policy of destruction
Amid the endless, horrifying statistics a few stand out: Of
Of 122 health facilities assessed by the World Health Organization, 48 per cent were damaged or destroyed.
Ninety per cent of households in
Forty-six per cent of
That "much of
This policy has been clear all along and it has nothing to do with Israeli "security".
From June 19, 2008, to November 4, 2008, calm prevailed between
That ceasefire collapsed when
Even so, Palestinian factions were still willing to renew the ceasefire, but it was
Operation Cast Lead, as
Like the murderous sanctions on
In many respects things may seem more dire than a year ago.
Barack Obama, the US president, whom many hoped would change the vicious anti-Palestinian policies of his predecessor, George Bush, has instead entrenched them as even the pretense of a serious peace effort has vanished.
According to media reports, the US Army Corps of Engineers is assisting Egypt in building an underground wall on its border with Gaza to block the tunnels which act as a lifeline for the besieged territory [resources and efforts that ought to go into rebuilding still hurricane-devastated New Orleans], and American weapons continue to flow to West Bank militias engaged in a US- and Israeli-sponsored civil war against Hamas and anyone else who might resist Israeli occupation and colonisation.
Shifting public opinion
These facts are inescapable and bleak.
However, to focus on them alone would be to miss a much more dynamic situation that suggests
A year after
It is true that the European Union leaders who came to occupied Jerusalem last January to publicly embrace Ehud Olmert, the then Israeli prime minister -- while white phosphorus seared the flesh of Gazan children and bodies lay under the rubble -- still cower before their respective Israel lobbies, as do American and Canadian politicians. But the shift in public opinion is palpable as
The universalist cause of justice and liberation for Palestinians is gaining adherents and momentum especially among the young.
I witnessed it, for example, among Malaysian students I met at a Palestine solidarity conference held by the Union of NGOs of The Islamic World in Istanbul last May.
And again in November, as hundreds of student organisers from across the
This week, thousands of people from dozens of countries are attempting to reach
Each of the individuals traveling with the Gaza Freedom March, Viva Palestina, or other delegations represents perhaps hundreds of others who could not make the journey in person, and who are marking the event with demonstrations and commemorations, visits to their elected officials, and media campaigns.
Against this flowering of activism, Zionism is struggling to rejuvenate its dwindling base of support.
Multi-million dollar programmes aimed at recruiting and Zionising young American Jews are struggling to compete against organisations like the International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network, which run not on money but principled commitment to human equality.
Increasingly, we see that Israel's hasbara [propaganda] efforts have no positive message, offer no plausible case for maintaining a status quo of unspeakable repression and violence, and rely instead on racist demonisation and dehumanisation of Arabs and Muslims to justify Israel's actions and even its very existence.
Faced with growing global recognition and support for the courageous non-violent struggle against continued land theft in the West Bank,
In acting this way,
And despite the failed peace process industry's efforts to ridicule, suppress and marginalise it, there is a growing debate among Palestinians and even among Israelis about a shared future in Palestine/Israel based on equality and decolonisation, rather than ethno-national segregation and forced repartition.
Last, but certainly not least, in the shadow of the Goldstone report, Israeli leaders travel around the world fearing arrest for their crimes.
For now, they can rely on the impunity that high-level international complicity and their inertial power and influence still afford them.
But the question for the real international community -- made up of people and movements -- is whether we want to continue to see the still very incomplete system of international law and justice painstakingly built since the horrors of the Second World War and the Nazi holocaust dismantled and corrupted all for the sake of one rogue state.
What we have done in solidarity with the Palestinian people in
© 2009 Aljazeera.net/english
Ali Abunimah is co-founder of The Electronic Intifada  and author of One Country, A Bold Proposal to End the Israeli-Palestinian Impasse. He will be among more than 1,300 people from 42 countries traveling to
Donations can be sent to the
"The master class has always declared the wars; the subject class has always fought the battles. The master class has had all to gain and nothing to lose, while the subject class has had nothing to gain and everything to lose--especially their lives." Eugene Victor Debs