From Florida to Syria, children are vilified mercilessly

From Florida to Syria, children are vilified mercilessly
From Al Jazeera - March 5, 2018

Describing the human depravity it takes to insult and throw accusations at children facing deadly violence is quite difficult to do in any language, polite or otherwise.

It is absurd and unnecessary to have to say that it is wrong for adults to attack children, who have survived a school shooting or facing facing bombardment on a daily basis. But apparently, we live in a world where children in distress are seen as "fair targets", accused of everything and anything from being actors, to being exploited for regime change, to being al-Qaeda agents.

This was recently the case with a Syrian boy, 15, who has been viciously attacked online and in the media for posting videos showing the devastation of Eastern Ghouta.

The reaction against him was hardly surprising. Syrian children have been mercilessly killed by the regime and its allies for seven years now and there has been a constant stream of images of their bloodied faces. But the response to them has been scepticism and online attacks instead of sympathy and an imperative for change; news outlets and activists alike, in a bizarre vague manner, mention the "deaths" of these children but somehow fail to say who murdered them.

For children in the Middle East, this is nothing new. For more decades than I have lived, children who are victims of murderous US and Arab foreign policies have been treated with a shocking lack of sympathy by both the mainstream and alternative media.

To be perfectly clear, this is not the fault of any of these children: It is the fault of adults who claim to be up in arms about US imperialist ambitions, yet defend Russian imperialist ambitions.

Palestinians have fought the battle of "humanising" their victims for over 100 years, documenting their victims, giving media interviews, creating their own media, and generally using any tools at their disposal to show how Israel is an aggressor. Afghans, Iraqis and Yemenis have had to do the same.

In some cases, they have succeeded. Yet, some of the very westerners who were thought to have finally admitted the nature of the aggressor that Israel is or that the US is, have now turned around and used Israel as an argument against another oppressed people: the Syrians who rose up against Bashar al-Assad, Russia, Iran, and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as ISIS). They, this "logic" goes, are pawns of Israel, so vilifying them and their children amid death and destruction is acceptable.

Many failed to recognise the danger of these attacks on children, until this type of human depravity came home to roost.

From Florida to Syria to the West Bank, children are victims thrice over

When a young man shot and killed 17 children at a Florida high school, the aide to a local legislator accused the students speaking out against guns and the National Rifle Association (NRA) of being paid actors. Some conspiracy theorists went so far as to claim the whole thing was suspicious because one of the outspoken students' fathers was a retired FBI agent.

This is not about us


Continue reading at Al Jazeera »