Biden’s plan for sea-borne aid to Gaza is incredibly stupid

Mar 15, 2024
Diplomatic handshake between countries: flags of United States and Israel overprinted the two hands

March 7, Evening, Washington D.C. : Joe Biden announces an incredible plan to provide a route for aid into Gaza, with no American ‘boots on the ground’.

Incredible: too extraordinary and improbable to be believed. At least, unless one is a serious conspiracy theorist, because this idea is staggeringly stupid or of Machiavellian cunning.

This announcement follows reports of over 100 deaths branded by the IDF as ‘looting’ or ‘crushing’ – or as generally believed, shooting by IDF soldiers. The IDF denies anything but a few necessary angry shots fired to stop attacks by ‘looters’ on the gentle, peaceful IDF soldiers trying to maintain an orderly delivery of humanitarian aid.

We have seen the mass destruction and one-on-one murders committed by the IDF. Who can dismiss the image of a Palestinian grandmother holding the hand of her grandson who was waving a white flag, shot from an estimated 200 metres away by IDF personnel?

Evidently, Biden / his strategists can. They can (possibly) fail to deduce a pattern of behaviour: atrocity after atrocity (waved through to the keeper by Israel as lies or anti-Semitic propaganda) that is by now so familiar that 15 of 16 judges of the International Court of Justice agree on most evidence pertaining to ‘probable’ genocide.

I say possibly, because it is possible that Biden / his advisers believe they have dreamed up a scenario that would be a win-win for both the USA and Israel, under the guise of aid to the Palestinians. Decent people would recoil in shame.

The ‘ideal’ scenario from the USA perspective: ships full of humanitarian aid arrive at this newly-constructed docking facility, pallet after pallet of aid material rolls along the floating port onto Gaza soil where patient queues of grateful Palestinians wait to receive a share of the goodies while attentive but calm and respectful IDF soldiers ensure that there is order and fairness amongst those receiving help.

And the band plays Kumbaya.

Biden’s strategists imagine the USA helps Palestinians while also enabling Israel to fake the persona of a just and fair overseer of the area. No USA boots on (illegally occupied but claimed as Israeli by divine right in the eyes of the Ultra-Right Zionist [‘URZ’] movement) ground here.

Israel wins by ‘allowing’ the landing of aid supplies, contradicting judgements of genocidal actions. The rest of the world can go away happy. The overwhelmingly grateful Palestinian community eschews HAMAS governance and accepts the benevolent Israeli overlordship of their country.

Events post October 7th starts with the shock and horror of the despicable HAMAS attack and the ferocity of the initial Israeli reaction: that is both understandable and (initially) reasonable in the judgement of pretty much anybody in the world.

The world shared – initially – that reaction; time, reflection and circumstance has ameliorated that reaction greatly as the URZ ‘warriors’ and the IDF have converted it into a shield under which they operate what has been judged as plausibly genocide. The URZ position is that they won’t stop until ‘total victory’ while the IDF just shoots everybody it can on sight including its own people that the IDF was supposed to be attempting to rescue.

Biden’s plan has huge potential to be grist to that URZ mill. The basic flaw with the plan is logistical: how will the material be distributed? Already, the plan of a shipment of aid from Cyprus has been met with an Israeli statement that ‘shipments will be subject to inspection according to Israeli standards’ . Israel has no legal right to do this and this may in fact represent either piracy if conducted afloat or looting if conducted on land.

The effects of delay or wastage through deliberate ‘mishandling’ of humanitarian aid through Israeli inspection processes and the blockage of transport of aid is a given. Only by the direct presence of USA troops will that not occur – the IDF would not indiscriminately shoot USA troops.

The greater fault is entirely political and both the USA and the URZ faction would be the beneficiaries. The benefits are profoundly unethical, immoral, contrary to the so-called ‘international rule of law’ and in both cases would prolong what is entirely likely to be judged at some future time as genocide in the first degree.

Not that there will be any commensurate punishment, but that is real politics raw in tooth and claw.

For the USA, the value of this idea would be to dilute domestic criticism of failing to help the Palestinians while at the same time continuing supply of war materiel to Israel.

To the URZ the advantage is a PR bonanza: ‘We are helping distribute aid fairly and safely, even though this is very difficult and dangerous for us’. Realistically, Israel will be continuing to do everything in its power to make sure that there is no let-up in its devastation of the Palestinian people.

Vast shipments of aid that never reaches its intended recipients is useless and perverting that work into political advantage is malignant hypocrisy.

Better by an immeasurable amount: stop the supply of arms to Israel, demand an end to the illegal occupation, organise aid that actually eventuates. Or, as it might be simply said: ‘DO what is right by the tenets of the Rule of Law’.

A novel concept I admit, but possible and necessary, immediately.

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