The Way It Looked in 2010

by Mark Chmiel

When we define the struggle against foreign rule as nonviolent or violent, it’s as if we have asked the occupied to prove their resistance is kosher (or not). And to whom? The very foreign rulers who considers boycotting settlement products to be unkosher. The adjectives nonviolent and violent presume that the occupation is a natural state of affairs, whose violence is permitted, a civilized norm meant to tame its subjects. A nonviolent struggle therefore diverts attention from the fact that forced rule is based on the use of violence. Every soldier at roadblock, every camera on the separation fence, every military edict, a supermarket in a settlement, and an Israeli diaper factory on Palestinian land—they are all part of the nonstop violence.

–Amira Hass, Israeli journalist

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