The Palestinians in Yarmouk are unlucky, mainly because they are being attacked and killed by Muslims, and not by Israel. An Israeli attack on the camp would have drawn worldwide condemnation and protests, with Palestinian and Arab leaders rushing to seek the intervention of the UN Security Council and the international community.
The Palestinians in Yarmouk are unlucky because their leaders in the Palestinian Authority and Hamas are still busy fighting each other over power and money. This is a power struggle that has been going on since Hamas drove the PA out of the Gaza Strip in the summer of 2007.
Setting aside the fine points of Islamist rivalry that may exist between Daesh and Hamas, the absurdity and obscenity of the destruction of the Palestinian Yarmouk Camp may serve to highlight the sociopathic character of the despots who brought it about: Putin, Assad, Khamenei.
Aboud Dandachi’s observations regarding the perverting of Syria’s Arab Spring into an extremist’s civil war are borne out by the advance of the al-Qaeda spin-off that is Daesh and the more than equal measure of punishment meted to Yarmouk by the Assad (“Or Burn It”) regime. All of the Arab accusation and handwringing on behalf of the (descendants of) refugees of 1948 have been betrayed as convenient loud mouthiness. In the pinch, not one militant or military Arab hand stood to defend — to hold dear and keep safe — the larger population of Yarmouk.
If the reader should happen to be thinking like a healthy human being, this might be a good time to put on the mantle of any of a number of malign narcissistic sociopaths and start to think like a ringleader, a showman, a producer of conflict to be delivered, described, and framed in the cause of one’s own self-aggrandizing political theater.
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said the mayhem has turned Yarmouk into “the deepest circle of hell.”
“A refugee camp is beginning to resemble a death camp,” Ban told reporters at the U.N., adding that the residents, including 3,500 children, are being used as human shields by armed elements inside Yarmouk and government forces outside it.
You cannot understand the Islamic State’s assault on the camp or what it means unless you also consider how Bashar al-Assad, as a gift to the Palestinian people, turned a thriving neighborhood of hundreds of thousands of people into a desperate population of 18,000 waiting to die. We cannot stop what happened in Yarmouk from repeating itself elsewhere unless we save the 600,000 besieged civilians whom Assad is starving to death.
Zakarya, Qusai. “The Starving of Yarmouk, Then the Capture: The Islamic State’s attack on the besieged Palestinian refugee camp outside Damascus is highly suspicious. It could only have happened with Assad’s complicity.” Foreign Policy, April 9, 2015.
At the time, the full scale of the group’s collusion with the Assad regime was not yet well known, and it was perceived as an independent Al-Qaeda group with dreams of a 21st century caliphate, which they started to impose on Raqqa.
In mid-2012, Hezbollah entered Syria, ostensibly to safeguard a regime that was vital in supporting its operations in the region. Once thought of as the ‘axis of resistance’ against Israel, their intervention, coupled with their ally’s brutal siege on Yarmouk, has damaged the movement’s popularity among Palestinians from Syria.
Published about a year ago, this piece seems practically quaint by the standards of horror being visited today by Daesh on the beleaguered Palestinians.
Reports also say that several Palestinians including an imam have been beheaded by Isis. Grisly pictures posted on social media shows severed heads hung on spikes inside the refugee camps.
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