Why Not Commemorate Every Nakba, Including the Suffering of the Al-Qaeda Hijackers?
I posted the following message to a listserv of University of Haifa professors, after several members of the tenured Left posted messages there insisting that there was no nefarious agenda behind the holding of “Nakba Day” mourning events in Israel and elsewhere:
The Arab nationalist anti-Israel radicals and their fellow travelers from the Jewish radical Left are insisting that everyone should commemorate “Nakba Day,” where “Nakba,” of course, means catastrophe. On that day,
these people want the world to mourn the victory of Israel over its genocidal enemies and also to mourn the very existence of Israel. Apologists for the Nakba-philes are claiming that there is nothing wrong with this, they simply want everyone to commemorate all forms of suffering, including the “suffering” of the genocidal Arab militias, gangs, and armies that unsuccessfully attempted to annihilate the Jews of Israel in 1948-9. There is no political agenda to be read into those taking this position, these Nakba-Day apologists argue, all while maintaining a straight poker face.
Well, if that is so, then it behooves us to make a list of other completely apolitical and neutral positions regarding human suffering. In so doing, we shall demonstrate that there are no political agendas, none at all, behind the choice of which “tragedies” are selected to be commemorated and mourned.
First, we must all agree to hold a day of commemoration for the tragic losses in property values by white slave owners in the American South, stripped of their slave assets, as a result of the loss of the Confederacy in the American Civil War. That would be a great step in the direction of neutral apolitical honoring of human rights and dignity. Clearly there would be no political agenda behind such a position.
Then we should be holding special campus days of commemoration and empathy for the male rapists who have been injured while violently raping women. Their bruised knees and knuckles and scratched faces are human tragedies that all compassionate members of society must honor and respect in the name of neutral human rights and apolitical dignity. While we are on the subject, members of the Boko Haram group in Nigeria who have ever been insulted or called names by the Christian girls they were violently deflowering should also be specially honored, and empathy expressed for their plight. Clearly there would be no political agenda behind those taking such a position.
After that, we need to hold a special day of remembrance for the guards at Gulag facilities in the days of Stalin who suffered terribly and at long distances from their homes and families in order to man and staff the internment camps. Clearly there would be no political agenda behind those taking such a position.
Then a special day of sympathy should be held on September 11 each year to remember the sufferings of the Al-Qaeda hijackers who died such terrible deaths that day in 2001. How it must have burned!
A much more important event would have to be the day in which the German and Japanese victims of Allied bombing raids are remembered and honored, and there of course should be no need to mention any other people who suffered during World War II, since there is no need for proportionality or inclusion of unrelated cases of human suffering. Clearly there would be no political agenda behind those taking such a position.
To top it all off, we would, of course, want the Law School at the University of Haifa to operate special clinics for prisoner rights that provide free legal counsel only to convicted Arab terrorists. Why confuse the issue by bringing up unrelated cases of other prisoners, which would only make people think there is an ideological agenda behind the choice?!
And after all of that, then by all means, do hold completely apolitical Nakba Day mourning events that have nothing at all to do with any ideological agenda.