Kerala Kaumudi Online
Saturday, 16 October 2021 2.46 AM IST

Gaza, the sore heart of humanity


The UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said that if there is a hell on earth, it is the life of children in Gaza today. The UN has managed to bring some relief to the 11-day Israeli-Palestinian conflict through another ceasefire and it is in this context that the UN Secretary has called the situation an atmosphere of fear, and equated it with hell. The battle has been going on for more than 14 years now. The U.N. has estimated the toll as 5,822 deaths on the Palestine side and 263 deaths on Israel side. So more than six thousand people died for no mistake of their own between 2008 to 2021. It was in 2014, that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict peaked. That year, 17,533 Palestinians were injured and 2,327 were killed. The Israel-Palestine issue is not a unidimensional one as it combines many fundamental questions which have nor real answers, let alone right or wrong answers. Jews are one of the most persecuted people in history. They had been moving around for what they call The Promised Land for years. In 1947 a resolution was introduced at the United Nations to establish the state of Israel. At that time, the decision of the U N Committee was to divide Israel and Palestine into two nations, keeping Jerusalem as an internationally controlled city. and in accordance with this the UN passed a resolution which was rejected by the Arabs.

As Britain withdrew from Palestine in 1948, the Jews declared independence for Israel. In the ensuing Arab-Israeli war, Israel conquered West Jerusalem, East Jerusalem and Jordan. East Jerusalem was captured by Israel from Jordan in the 1967 Six Day War. Israel claims the entire city of Jerusalem as its capital and Palestine demands that East Jerusalem should be the capital of their future nation. The United States recognizes the undivided Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

The US president Joe Biden said a two-state is the only solution for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. He asserts that the U.S. commitment to Israel's security remains unchanged. But the Palestinians have a right to their own nation. Biden warns that the religious conflict in Jerusalem is not making the situation any better.

Spread over an area of ​​129 square kilometers, Jerusalem is a holy city for Jews, Christians and Muslims alike. The Al-Aqsa Mosque and the Dome of the Rock, considered sacred by Muslims, are located in Jerusalem. The walls of the first synagogue, built during the reign of King Solomon, and the Wailing Wall, believed to be the second synagogue, are also here. The Christian community believes that this was where Jesus was crucified. The main reason for the current provocation is the rocket attack by Hamas, a Palestinian militant group targeting Israeli settlements. However, for their impulsive action, it is mostly women and children who had to pay the penalty with their lives. That is why the UN secretary observed that the children in Gaza now live in hell.

Israel is a small but powerful nation when we consider intelligence as strength. That is their key to survival. In 1947, India, which did not support the resolution on the formation of Israel in the U N General Assembly, has now established strong diplomatic relations with that nation. Israel provided a number of direct and indirect assistance to India at various critical stages especially, during the Indo-Pak wars. The Arab world too has now established diplomatic relations with Israel only because it is a nation governed by rationalism and is an irreplaceable nation in the modern age. Israel's scientific research, especially in agriculture, water consumption and technology, is exemplary to the world. Peace in the Israeli-Palestinian territory has become a global necessity.

Kerala also watched the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in May 2021 with great concern. Keralites, some of whom form a global expatriate community, have also made their presence felt in Israel's workforce. On May 11(2021), tragically a Malayali nurse, Soumya Santosh, was killed in a Hamas rocket attack in Israel. The fact that her body was brought to Kerala on May 15 and her funeral was attended by the Israeli Consul shows the great care and responsibility of that nation. Let's hope for more peace on the Israeli-Palestinian border in the near future.

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