West has itself to blame for escalation in Mideast violence

| APRIL 14, 2024, 11:34 PM IST

On Sunday the world woke up to the news that Iran had launched multiple, possibly hundreds of armed drones towards Israel in what marked a serious escalation in tensions in the Middle East ever since the War between Israel began its genocidal campaign in Gaza masked as a war against Hamas.

In truth, this escalation has been a long time coming. Over the last eight months or so Israel has continued to escalate both in terms of its offensive against Hamas in Gaza as well as wilfully and with impunity strikes on what it says were legitimate targets in Jordan, Syria while the US and UK have been striking targets in Yemen in response to attacks on mercantile shipping launched from that territory.

The world has watched on as battles have raged including striking targets amidst densely populated civilian areas, the deliberate targeting of journalists and their families and using tactics that even the US and Russia have been reluctant to use in the various wars they have fought and are fighting because of the risks it poses to the civilian population.

The final straw was when Israel attacked the Iranian embassy in a foreign country considered an unprovoked escalation.

Western leaders have been quick to condemn Iran for the overnight attacks on Israel but have been hesitant to speak up against the untold atrocities heaped upon civilians in Gaza who have been caught up in the conflict and whose toll has neared 40,000 to date. No other country has been permitted this scale of casualties and attacks on civilian infrastructure without earning international condemnation.

In truth, the West has itself to blame for the recent escalation that threatens to destabilise the globe, take us to the brink of war and is already coming at a huge cost to the world economy.

The US and the West have repeatedly called for a de-escalation, a ceasefire and cessation of the ongoing offensive. However, their words have not been matched by action with countries across the world continuing to supply Israel with weapons and financial aid in order to keep the war going while doing little to pressurise Israel to limit its attacks.

Over the past six months and indeed for a conflict that dates back to at least 1948 Israel has been allowed to occupy upon territory set out for Palestine, arbitrarily and with impunity detain Palestinians, deny them access to their own homes, lock them within enclaves manned by Israeli soldiers and have its snipers kill Palestinians while they watch on sipping beer.

It is no secret that the conditions that Israel has been subjecting Palestinians to for decades on end only serves to sow the seeds for more and more attacks against Israel and Israelis including civilian targets.

The ongoing war has become not a question of who will win, but rather of who will emerge with their credibility intact and on that front Israel, backed by the West, has been failing miserably.

In making no effort to bring about lasting peace in the region, the world risks not just the immediate threat of an escalating conflict that threatens the relative peace the world has seen since the ebbing of the Cold War but maintains a long term risk of war that could erupt anytime later this century.

It is imperative that Israel be brought to book and held to the same standards as everyone else, failing which the cycle of violence will continue for the foreseeable future as the boiling pot of violence remains a risk to global rules based order.

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