The true test [Archives:2006/965/Viewpoint]

July 20 2006

The tension and alarm the Arab and Muslim world is currently going through reminds me of the crises in Iraq in 2003 and the second Intifada in Palestine in 2000. In fact, as we are glued to our TVs following every new move whether it be by Israel or Hassan Nasr Allah, it reminds me very much of the time we saw the missiles fall on Baghdad International Airport. Since then, not a single day passes without further bloodshed in Iraq or Palestine, and the real tragedy is that it does not affect the world that much anymore because somehow we are used to it now.

Now, once more, we are observing the beginning of a new war and I believe that in no time we will have got used to this war, too, and will hear the escalating numbers of killings on both sides with complete indifference. This is not just about a war in the Middle East; unfortunately the value of human life has been degraded everywhere around the world: The continuous famine in Africa, the guerrilla raids in East Asia, the Latin bandits, the drug traffickers of North America, the European Mafia… etc

However, not all human life has the same value. It is amazing how the value of a human being's life is decided according to their passport. How the life of three Israelis are worth hundreds of Lebanese and Palestinians, and how several Americans are equal to tens of Iraqis. It is also amazing how obvious facts are able to be manipulated and turned upside down; like how Israel becomes the victim of cruel Lebanese and aggressive Palestinians.

The true test in this new crisis in the Middle East is not to win the war. In fact, winning in such battles is a very relative issue. The true test is our position in front of humanity and history. Time will move on, Lebanon will reconstruct its nation like it has done many times before, Palestine will fight until the very last soul and the Iraqis will stand on their feet again no matter how long it takes. I wonder how the Israeli and the United States' governments, the G8, the current leaders of the UN, Arab League and all the Arab leaders will be viewed in another 100 or 200 years. That is the true test.