<h3><bold>The following article is entirely the opinion of Philip Fairbanks and does not necessarily reflect the views of the Goldwater</h3></bold>
Who is Ahed Tamimi? It depends on who you ask. According to an Op-Ed at the Guardian she's "the latest child victim of Israel's occupation." An Op-Ed at Ha'aretz paints quite a different picture and points out how the teenage girl, who turned 17 in an Israeli jail has embraced anti-Semitism. This would be quite contrary to her stated goals:
<blockquote>"The world must recognize the Palestinian cause. The occupation is not only the theft of land. We oppose racism, Zionism, the entire system of occupation and not only the settlements."</blockquote>
Tamimi was a speaker at a conference hosted by the European Parliament in Brussels when she dared to make comparison between Zionist Apartheid and the Nazi regime:
"The Nazis were tried in Nuremberg for their crimes. Today, Israel is experiencing impunity. You must bring the war criminals to justice and tell your governments that they must cease all cooperation with the Zionist state."
As noted in Ha'aretz, one of the co-panelists was former airline hijacker Leila Khaled who also emphasized the importance of the BDS (Boycott, Divest, Sanction) movement as an attmept to end some of the issues faced by those in Gaza or anywhere near the illegal Israeli settlements on the West Bank.
The Ha'aretz Op-Ed strongly decries how "the social media activity of the Tamimis reveals ardent Jew-hatred and enthusiastic support for terrorism – notably including terror attacks targeting civilians and children." But isn't this so? Even when it's not IDF forces occasionally indiscriminately killing civilians, some of them teens and children, there are other cases like the sanctions in Gaza that lead to a medical crisis that the UK and other governments have demanded an end to. The situation has been a literal death sentence for many of those trapped on <a href="https://thegoldwater.com/news/10895-Israel-s-Cancer-Awareness-Stunt-Backfires">"the wrong side" of the Apartheid line</a>.
What were some of the worst of her crimes besides appearing at European panels to speak? Well there was of course "a viral anti-Semitic meme alleging Israelis detain Palestinian children to steal their organs, and that Zionists control the media to suppress this information." And of course her history of being an unarmed child threatening to punch or slap heavily armed Israeli Defense Forces. If the IDF can't handle unarmed 11 to 16-year-olds, maybe they should get in a new business. To me, the whole business smacks of David versus Goliath warmed over. Only now it's Goliath sized tanks and the children throwing rocks are Palestinians, "the other Semite meat."
You know who else has alleged that Israel has a "disproportionate role" in world organ trafficking? The New York Times. The Guardian has reported that Israeli pathologists admitted harvesting organs without consent. And this isn't anything new, the 2009 Aftonbladet Israel controversy just opened the door for the conversation to reach a larger audience. In 2010, the Huffington Post reported how Israel admitted harvesting organs from dead bodies, including Palestinians, (many who died in custody) without permission of their families. A mastermind of Israeli organ trafficking was arrested in Cyprus just last month.
Magdalena Mughrabi, deputy director for Amnesty International's Middle East and Africa division had the following to say:
<blockquote>“As an unarmed girl, Ahed posed no threat during the altercation with the two Israeli soldiers who were heavily armed and wearing protective clothing. Yet again the Israeli authorities have responded to acts of defiance by a Palestinian child with measures that are entirely disproportionate to the incident in question.”</blockquote>
Culture Minister Miri Regev said before the military tribunal that the teenage girl faces (behind closed doors of course) that she "is not a little girl, she is a terrorist. “It’s about time they will understand that people like her have to be in jail and not be allowed to incite to racism and subversion against the state of Israel.”
I find it interesting that the sole charge of terrorism is based on social media posts and the viral video of a 16-year-old girl slapping a heavily armed IDF agent.
Is telling the truth inciting racism? Is it subversive to point out horrific injustice? Many supporters of Israel tout how they are the "only democracy in the Middle East." For me democracy denotes the existence of free speech. If teenage girls can be locked up for giving addresses and making social media posts calling out an apartheid state, then I don't have much hope in the current state of "Middle Eastern democracy."