Friday, 16 January 2009

Stalin, Bond Street, and Israel-Palestine.

I went down to Bond Street the other day with a view to taking a photo of an artefact which I had noticed fleetingly some time ago. My camera's batteries decided to go on strike just as I made to shoot---it gobbles up batteries the way a lizard consumes flies...What struck me was an odd feature of the (double) statue—can you see what is wrong here?..Well, the anomaly struck me straight away; of course, there should have been three elderly gentlemen portrayed on the bench. This was, after all, one of the most famous photos of the last century now transformed into a three-dimensional statue.
However, the photo shows three men---Churchill, Eisenhower, and...Stalin.
They met , as war-time allies, in the Black Sea resort of Yalta, as the Second World War was reaching its conclusion. Broadly speaking, they met to decide how to deal with the Axis Powers once they had defeated them..
My question is: why has Stalin been left out of a reproduction of such a world-famous
picture? Is it an attempt at airbrushing the “bad man” out of a now-unpalatable facet of history? If that is the case, Stalin would have been proud, at least with this method of making a political opponent “disappear”!
The apparent message seems to be that Britain and America were alone in the fight against Fascism...I see it as an opportunity wasted to educate younger generations as to what really happened in those dark days, even if this picture was taken after the famous group photo.
Political airbrushing of a similar kind is now occuring on our televison screens. We are confronted daily with images of defenceless Palestinians watching helplessly as their neighbourhoods are bombed to smithereens, their lives shattered beyond repair...
In the meantime, our leaders unflinchingly parrot the shameless justifications provided by their American masters. They, in turn follow the script which has been force-fed them by their Zionist masters---we learned only last week that the outgoing Israeli Prime Minister is able to drag the President of the United States out from the middle of a speech in order to dictate to him how to cast his vote in a United Nations vote on a possible caesefire to the present conflict in Gaza. The tail wags the dog...
At least, we have a handful of newspapers over here who are able to tell us the facts as they are. Without reading such excellent publications as “The Independent”, one would be ignorant of the reality behind the air-brushed version of it. The Israeli propaganda machine's representative in London has been allowed to repeat the half- truth that Israel “withdrew” from Gaza several years ago...I have yet to hear an interviewer challenge this assertion by pointing out that the Israelis still control all the access to Gaza's air and sea routes, electricity and water supply. Their borders are controlled by the Israelis, Egypt seems unable or unwilling to open its border.
In fact, elements of the Right have been up in arms because a functionary in the Vatican
used a most-appropriate term to describe the situation in Gaza...The term “concentration camp” has riled more than a few Zionist sympathisers.
What is it about human beings? How is it that those who have long suffered under oppression can prove themselves so accomplished in inflicting such brutality on others?
We are still being cajoled into thinking of Israel as the defenceless “little guy”, while the Palestinians are exhorted to relax because “it is not they who are being targeted”. The F16s which are knocking out their homes, schools, municipal buildings, etc., are “only aimed at the Hamas terrorists”.
Almost every interview with an Israeli representaive includes the term “terrorist”. No-one thinks fit to remind them that their state was founded as a result of “terrorism”....To do so is to run the risk of being labelled “Anti-Semitic” .
As I write, the rockets still rain down on Israeli towns, The tanks are still patrolling the centre of Gaza, and thousands are dying. Just as unrelentingly, the photoshopping of modern reality continues...

No comments: