Heartrending pictures have been coming to us through media and social networking sites- images of a father holding on to the dead body of his child, a dead mother with her arms protectively wrapped around her little kid, coffins of families lined together, children crying in front of their destroyed homes…one just can’t hold back the tears. Palestine has been burning. The Gaza strip is witnessing a massacre. Around 600 Palestinians including more than 150 children havebeen killed by Israeli Defence Forces till now in this one-sided war between the military might of Israel and the resistance personified civilians of Palestine.
Although Israel clearly has never had a reason to bombard Palestine, it has found excuses on and off to do the same. This time the abduction and killing of three Israeli youngsters GiladShaar, NaftaliFrenkel and EyalYifrah gave Israel an excuse enough to launch operation Protective Edge whose results are for the world to see. Israel DefenceForces blamed the abduction and killing of these Israeli kids on Hamas, the fact remains that Israeli security forces were unable to gather any evidence to support their allegations, yet the IDF killed several Palestinians and arrested hundreds from West bank, at the beginning of the crisis..
Arrests and killings of Palestinians ignited the issue; Israeli aircrafts went on to bomb dozens of sites in Gaza and later started a ground operation as well, killing hundreds of Palestinians including women.Hamas in response fired hundreds of rocket towards Israel that were not even able to kill a single Israeli or damage any property in Israel because of the Iron Dome Air Defence System of Israel. This system is designed to intercept and destroy short-range rockets and artillery shells fired from distances of 4 kilometers to 70 kilometers away and whose trajectory would take them to a populated area.
Worldwide protests erupted against the Israeli aggression in Gaza. Thousands of pro-Palestinian protesters came to streets in the cities of Europe, Africa and Asia to express outrage against the barbarism of Israeli Defence Forces. Most of the processions/protests around the world culminated peacefully except the procession in Indian Occupied Kashmir where a boy, a grade-nine student, was shot by the police during a peaceful protest against Israel’s military offensive against Palestinians in Gaza.
The boy Suhail became thefirst and the only global pro-Palestinian protester who was killed in Indian occupied Kashmir, but why didthis happen only in Kashmir? Why was only a Kashmiri killed when similar protests against the Israeli aggression were happening worldwide?
The answer is very simple, Kashmiris and Palestinians are not much different from each other, there are many similarities in Kashmir and Palestine conflict,and even the occupants of their areas also stand in the same ranks. This could be the reason that the security forces of Indian held Kashmir were not able to tolerate the protest of one oppressed Muslim nation (Kashmiris) for the other oppressed Muslim nation (Palestinians).
The roots of these two conflictslies in the year 1947, when many states in South Asia and Middle East gained independence from the British Empire. While India got independence in 1947, Israel was founded in the same year on the basis of a United Nations decision to partition the territory between the Jordan River and Mediterranean sea between two states, one Arab and one Jewish.
Later both India and Israel illegally occupied other territories in the region that gave birth to the Kashmir conflict and the Palestine conflict . India and Israel both used their military might to oppress the people of their illegal occupations. Every year hundreds of innocents are killed in these areas, many havegone missing and never returned. Every year the highest number of human rights violations are recorded in these two areas, the security forces of the occupants can raid any area any time and lhave been known to rape the women and arrest men by labelling them as militants/freedom fighters or their sympathizers.There have also been reports about close coordination between India and Israel in strategic know how upon how to deal with the people of the areas occupied by them?
On many occasions, Israel hastrained and helped the Indian security forces in curbing the independence movement in Kashmir. Both occupants are violating UN resolutions every day because the United Nationshas not managed to solve this problem in decades. Both of these conflicts are the oldest unresolved conflicts in the world and two greatest examples of the failure of United Nations.
In all this barbarism at the hands of India and Israel, the people of Kashmir and Palestine are fighting for their right of self-determination and freedom. Generations of Kashmiris and Palestinians have fought for their rights and are still fighting against the two nuclear powers and great military mights of the world. With no sophisticated weapons in hand, unlike their occupiers, young boys in Kashmir and Palestine have often been seen engaging in fierce battles with mere stones. This is not to match with the military strength of the occupiers but simply a form of resistance that has developed over the years. Stone pelting kids are arrested and tortured or simply shot during demonstrations but the spirit of resistance has never withered. India and Israelhaveused all the tactics they know, tried every vindictiveness in the book but they have not managed to stop these stone pelting kids, they have not managed to erase the love for freedom from the hearts and minds of the people of Kashmir and Palestine.
The message is clearfor the occupants – in the decades’ long struggle for freedom and the thousands of sacrifices made by the people of Kashmir and Palestine in form of their lives – that their hope for freedom cannot be suppressed by killing them.Perhaps that’s why Kashmir bleeds as Palestine does, for who else can better understand the pain of living under an occupation, and of lost childhood and broken dreams than those who are experiencing the same themselves? Tactics of oppression used by India and Israel might be similar, so is the spirit of resistance and faith among the people of Occupied Kashmir and Palestine to be free, one day, some day.
Discuss this topic on Defence.pk