I’ve been avoiding the hard topics in recent posts – it makes for far more pleasant writing and no doubt reading to focus on happier things like fantasy libraries and stupid movies – but sometimes the state of the world just demands attention. What the fuck are they doing in Gaza? It’s so grim. Who breaks a ceasefire? Who’s the big crazy dangerous idiot in Hamas who gave the go ahead to kick it off again? Where is the honour in it? That’s what I don’t understand. How can anyone believe there is any honour in this? And of course Israel is striking back. They always do. There’s no surprise there, no bolt out of the blue. This is the puppet show, and it was ever thus.
The awful truth is that Palestinian children are currently a third of the Gaza dead. Llew read out an appalling story over the weekend about an Hamas operative being warned by the Israelis that his house was going to be hit, who decided not only to stay there in order to martyr himself, but also insisted his wife and children remain at home too. They all perished. Now, I’m so cynical about reportage these days that I don’t even know if we can believe this story, but the sad truth is that it doesn’t sound far-fetched. It sounds all too hideously plausible. And I can’t bear it. I just can’t bear it. This is why I flee into the safety of my extraordinarily privileged life. It’s very nice here, and it’s unthinkably horrible there. There, in Gaza, with all the dead children. It’s just not right.
My correspondent friend said on her Facebook status the other day “Gaza is going to hell,” and I thought, well, she should know. To me, I must admit, it sounds like it’s already there. Hell on Earth. There’s too much appetite for unrest, too much stubborn myopia, too much of the sickness that turns us against each other and unleashes our basest selves. It makes my stomach churn that people on both sides are prepared to do this to each other and each other’s children. It is a fucking disgrace, and we should all be ashamed.
How is it that some people don’t want peace? Offered a ceasefire, there will always be those thirsting to drag peace asunder. Who are they, and what in any god’s name makes them tick?