Eyeless in Gaza

Eyeless in Gaza is a novel by Arduous Huxley that I read when I was young and remember little about. Except the opening scene with the exploding fox terrier. I hereby vow to reread it and write an entry about it. The title is a reference to Samson, I think.

The title came to mind as I read and heard the news from Gaza and recalled Mohatma Gandhi’s observation that “‘An eye for an eye’ leaves the whole world blind.”

Now I’m not second-guessing anyone here. I’m just an average American trying to figure this out.

As I understand it, a bunch of criminal idiots, that’s all one can say about them, launch rockets against civilians in Israel. These would be much the same kind of guys who thought it would be a good idea to murder Israeli athletes at the Munich Olympics. A real PR triumph.

Now the whole world wants these criminals to be apprehended. If stuff like this happened anywhere else in the world, it would be a matter of securing the cooperation of local law enforcement officials and apprehending them. But we can’t do that here. Why is that?

If a resident of Brooklyn were to murder a resident, or even several residents of Queens, law enforcement officials in Queens would not be authorized to fire a tank round obliterating three floors of an apartment building in Brooklyn where the killer was reported to be.

In the interest of full disclosure, I have a friend who is trying to save his grandfather’s farm in Nahalin, near Bethlehem, in the West Bank. He happens to be a Christian, but that has nothing to do with the justness of his cause. And my cousin’s ex-husband was a diver at the Munich Olympics.

I also think it is important to observe that we as Americans are not standing idly by. In a terrible, tragic, ancient conflict such as this, that might be an acceptable course of action.

But we are not standing idly by. We are actively participating. There are bomb fragments in the street marked ‘Made in USA.’ And those bombs killed people’s daughters, mothers, friends, grandmothers, etc. Can you think of a better way to increase recruitment for suicide bombers?

I remember the great John Rassias once expressed his concern that the United States of America might become ‘a deaf and dumb giant in the council of nations’ and it’s true. We don’t see the devastation in Gaza. We don’t even see the children we ourselves have maimed in Iraq.

Europeans see this. Asians see this. Africans and South Americans see this. American’s don’t see this. It might upset them. American’s don’t even see flag-draped coffins. Why? It’s because American reporters, lacking a key anatomical feature, have agreed to a lot of rules to protect the American people from images that might upset them.

I still say that the more we can regard these problems in a law enforcement context instead of a military context, the further we can go toward imprisoning criminal idiots and protecting innocent civilians.