Jenin, 2023-08-21, a young boy from Jenin camp brought his cat during the forced expulsion tonight by Israeli forces.
Yanis Varoufakis, 2023-10-25
Well, Janus Varoufakis is an economist and a former Greek finance minister. He joins us from Athens. Good to have you with us, sir. So, first of all, what do you make of the response by European governments to the latest incidents and events in the last 24 hours, the bombing of this hospital, as someone who once was, of course, a member of a European government?
Scandalous. I can think of no other word by which to describe the dereliction of duty (i.e. the shameful failure to fulfil one’s obligations) by European Union leaders. The response by the European Union, the leadership of the European Union, has been scandalous. For days, they simply parroted whatever Washington, D.C. and Tel Aviv were bringing out as statements.
Yesterday, for the first time, the European Union Council decided to come out with a statement of substance. And what was the substance – that the European Union will increase its expenditure on aid for the people of Gaza?
But at the same time, they are saying nothing about the fact that Israel is blocking all aid from going into Gaza. And the European Union simply does not have what it takes, does not have the moral spine to condemn the state of Israel for blocking, blockading Gaza.
The European Union wants to spend on from entering Gaza more generally for decades now (…inaudible) Europe, all our member states, with no exception, may be the occasional (…) blind eye of Palestine to the state of occupation, which in itself is a violent act. It breeds violence.
And let me jump in and present to you what a lot of the rhetoric we hear from a lot of European leaders as well from Israel that Israel has a right to defend itself, that these actions are justified.
Well, war crimes are not justified – for anyone, anywhere in the world, at any time, for any reason, at any purpose.
After the great carnage of the Second World War, the international community came together. We have a united nations, we have a Geneva Convention, we have rules of engagement in war. And those rules are very explicit.
It doesn’t matter who the perpetrator is, it doesn’t matter who the victim is, it doesn’t matter what the arguments on one side or the other are.
You do not bomb hospitals. You do not starve a population because you don’t like the fighters who are hiding in the midst. You do not bomb theatres.
Let me put it this way. Those who turned the blind eye and did not condemn the killing of innocent, unarmed journalists, of doctors, of nurses, of children, all those years by the Israeli army, have lost the right to condemn the serious, repugnant atrocities of Hamas.
Okay, Yanis, I want to ask you about the response domestically now of some European governments. Are they upholding their principles? For example, Amnesty International has criticised France’s decision to ban all demonstrations sympathetic to the plight of the Palestinians. I believe even you’ve fallen victim to having your invitations to speak cancelled.
Well, a veil of darkness, a veil of censorship, a veil of the diminution of civil liberties is descending upon us because this is what happens really. I mean, we’ve always known that.
The moment our governments become complicit in war crimes, the moment they become complicit in the ethnic cleansing of a whole nation, whether this is in Palestine or Nagorno-Karabakh, wherever. When Vladimir Putin invaded Ukraine, I came out and DiEM25, the movement that I represent, we came out condemning him and saying that it doesn’t matter who gets attacked, who gets occupied, whether it’s the Ukrainians or the Palestinians.
The double standards of the European Union, on the one hand, beating our chest whenever there is a war crime by Vladimir Putin in Ukraine, which we should do, but at the same time banning Palestinian writers for presenting their work in book fairs in Germany or in France or wherever, that is the beginning of the end of any moral claim Europeans have towards being a civilized continent.
Last updated on 2023-10-30 by w3admin