Larry Kerschner Writes


Genocide

      According to the United Nations Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, genocide is defined as an act committed with the intent to destroy, in part or in whole, a national, ethnic, racial or religious group.  Complicity in genocide is to be punished along with the direct crime whether committed by constitutionally responsible rulers, public officials or private individuals.

     History is replete with acts of genocide.  In 1492 when Columbus first came to the Caribbean the Native population of the New World was about twelve million.  By 1850,  Native population was estimated at 237,000.  Between 1915-1918 one and a half million Armenians were killed by the Turks.  Between 1932-1933 Josef Stalin's forced famine in the Ukraine resulted in seven million deaths.  During 1937-38 the Japanese Army killed half of the 600,000 Chinese living in Nanking .  Between 1938 and 1945 the Nazis murdered six million Jews, Gypsies, homosexuals and Jehovah's Witnesses.  Between 1975-1979, Pol Pot, with the formal support of the United States, was responsible for the death of two million Cambodians. In Rwanda in 1994 800,000 Tutsis were killed by the Hutu militia with machetes.   Between 1990-2003, one million Iraqis (including 500,000 children) died as a result of economic sanctions maintained by the United States. 

      The United States and the State of Israel seem to have arrived at a genocidal solution to the “Palestinian Problem”.  The recent killing of Palestinian picnickers on a Gaza beach typifies the value placed on Palestinian children. The U.S. Congress is complicit in the genocide that is occurring in Palestine .  On May 23, 2006 the House of Representatives voted 361-37 to cut off all aid to non-governmental organizations that provide a minimal safety net in Palestine .  These two States have colluded to prevent other governmental aid from the Palestinian Authority.  This action is exactly described in the Convention on Genocide as a crime against humanity.    During the Clinton administration the Secretary of State revealed our crime when she stated that death of other people's children is a price we are willing to pay.  The Israelis follow along this line.  According to a 2004 study published in the British Medical Journal  two thirds of the children killed at checkpoints died from small arms fire, directed in over half the cases to the head, neck, and chest – the sniper's wounds”.  Reminiscent of the U.S. atrocity against the children of Iraq , one quarter of Palestinian infants under the age of five are acutely or chronically malnourished.  To cap this, the infamous Israeli wall will isolate 97 primary health clinics and eleven hospitals from the Palestinian population that they are meant to serve. Without the 140 billions of dollars in U.S. aid since the Second World War and the U.S. military weapons the Israelis would have long ago found a way to live in peace with the Palestinians.  The current genocidal war against the children of the Palestinians belongs to the United States as much as to the Israelis.