Thursday, June 22, 2006

The acceptable hate
A number of bloggers have commented on the International Committee of the Red Cross's (ICRC) decision to finally allow the Mogen David Adom admittance. Of course the MDA's admission is under conditions that renders it less equal than other member organizations: MDA's symbol is enclosed in a "Red Crystal," if members of the MDA are working in a country that doesn't approve of a Jewish Star then they may only wear the crystal.

The basic unfairness and obvious capitulation to antisemitism cannot be overstated. Still this is an accomplishment on some level, but this cannot be the final status.

However this is the ICRC's mission statement:
The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is an impartial, neutral and independent organization whose exclusively humanitarian mission is to protect the lives and dignity of victims of war and internal violence and to provide them with assistance.

By taking the irrational Arab/Muslim demand into account the ICRC arguably is violating its impartiality and neutrality.

Consider Article 38 of the original Geneva convention
Art. 38. As a compliment to Switzerland, the heraldic emblem of the red cross on a white ground, formed by reversing the Federal colours, is retained as the emblem and distinctive sign of the Medical Service of armed forces.

Nevertheless, in the case of countries which already use as emblem, in place of the red cross, the red crescent or the red lion and sun on a white ground, those emblems are also recognized by the terms of the present Convention.

Even though the MDA preceded the 1949 convention it was the one insignia that was not allowed to convert to a member organization. This compromise perpetuates that injustice.

Keep in mind that the symbol that offends the ICRC, does so because it offends the Arab/Muslim world. Just this week Ghana's John Pantsil - who plays on an Israeli soccer team - celebrated his nation's World Cup victory by producting an Israeli flag. Unfortunately, that simple act of appreciation had consequences as a number of bloggers noticed.

The cowardly reaction of the Ghana Football Association as recorded by the BBC was
Akufo-Addo met ambassadors from the Palestinian Authority, Libya, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Algeria and Morocco and apologised to them.

"The incident was the act of an individual, who was completely ignorant of its political and diplomatic implications, and clearly had no official support," he said on Thursday.

"The government of Ghana deeply regrets this act by one of our citizens.

"Ghana has not drifted from its even-handed diplomacy in the Arab-Israeli conflict and we hope that this incident will not affect our relations with our Arab brothers and sisters."

Yes let's be evenhanded, we mustn't offend Muslims by dignifying Israel's existence. Yes let's be neutral and impartial by abiding by the hateful prejudice the Muslim world displays towards the world's one Jewish state.

The acceptability of Arab/Islamic antisemitism in a world that claims to abhor mindless hatred is a disgrace. Neither the New York Times nor the Washington Post have condemned these outrages in editorials. Antisemitism disguised as hatred of Israel reamains respectable even among the enlightened.

Technorati tags: , , .

No comments: