A smoking skull

HOUDINI Magazine

Erik Houdini

There Is No Lever: 60 Days of Palestinian Genocide

Here's the real issue, the critical matter that I believe is not being adequately addressed in public discourse. We are witnessing a genocide against Palestinians that has persisted for 60 days – a legitimate, undeniable genocide by Israel. This is not just a case of apartheid or segregation. We're talking about the wholesale slaughter of children, 400 every day, with weapons made in America. This is beyond comprehension.

Less than 10% of the casualties are enemy combatants. The majority are innocents, children being killed at a horrifying rate, and it has been ongoing for over 60 days. 60 days of unending bombing, starvation, war crime after war crime. Newborn children left to die in bombed out hospitals, all with explicit and unanimous support from our so-called representatives. Our response? Some of the largest peaceful protests in the history of the United States, and indeed, globally. The demands? Merely a ceasefire. Not the cessation of the apartheid regime, not the end of settler colonialism, nor of the dismantling of capitalism but just a halt to the bombing of children and the mass starvation of the people of Gaza.

It's alarming that only about 60% of Americans support this ceasefire, leaving a significant 40% seemingly indifferent to the bombing of children. This isn't even about demanding the end of oppressive regimes; it's about stopping the bombardment of kids. Those who remain silent, who insist they are part of our "culture" must decide now, will you be a voice for liberation, or remain silent and die with the status quo?

Consider this: Joe Biden has set a deadline for the end of the year for Israel to 'complete their mission.' What is this mission? According to Israeli media, this country, which we support unequivocally, aims for genocide, a second Nakba. They take pride in ethnic cleansing. Yet, our media tells us they're merely defending themselves, and we should provide them with even more aid, ostensibly in the form of weapons, bombs and funding to build camps. How much more aid? Genocide Joe Biden floated 100 BILLION in for "aid" for both military support and to establish "humanitarian camps" for Palestinian "refugees" on the border of Egypt. Sounds like a whole lotta HR speak hogwash for "Haliburton is going to make a fat wad of cash building a new Dachau in the desert." Need I remind you that Israel has UNIVERSAL HEALTHCARE, and we DON'T? Seems they can afford their own war crimes, but now, with the US vetoing the 3rd attempt at a ceasefire resolution? It's clear that Israel's war crimes are America's war crimes.

This brings me to my question for my fellow young people, especially Gen Z: What does a ceasefire mean in this context? It feels like a hollow victory. We've watched our government explicitly support a genocide, explicitly remove the options for peace, with the U.S. and the UK being the only countries to vote against a UN ceasefire THREE TIMES. The world is united against this, and a mere ceasefire, the most compromised, barest minimum of demands, is simply not enough. After 60 days, a ceasefire, while it will save Palestinian lives in the short term, it will only allow Israel to revert back to the slow, creeping genocide of before. That's not a win for us. That's not a win for humanity. Furthermore, do you really believe that a system that enables and profits from the murder of children stands capable, or willing to take on the issue of climate collapse?

This is my fear: The government will get away with it, no one will be charged, no one will be hung for their crimes against humanity and then what will be, oh, they did a ceasefire, and I guess it's over, we'll just move on. Liberals will spin it as "Joe Biden secured a ceasefire." "We can get back to normal!" "We got what we wanted, see? Peaceful protests do work!" Imma be real with you, fuck normal. Normal just means what, working for our daily bread, building parking lots to fill em with cars? Ignoring the plights of people around the world for comfort? Fuck "keeping the peace", no peace until liberation! It's been 60 days and these protests very clearly haven't worked in regards to securing a ceasefire. They've rallied the spirits, let the Palestinians know where we stand, but now, we must go further. And after all of this? Biden said that they could have unlimited access to our weapons stockpiles, that our tax dollars paid for instead of healthcare, or school lunches for our children, to complete this merciless genocide of children across the ocean. Make no mistake, our children in this country go hungry, without books, without proper education, so that children in countries like Palestine can be bombed in their homes, schools, hospitals, courtyards, bakeries and everywhere else one could imagine a child being.

Of course this isn't to say that a ceasefire wouldn't immediately save lives and stop the senseless killings of innocent Palestinian men, women and children. Nor is this to advocate against one. Of course being a white dude in the imperial core allows me a level of privilege not afforded to those being killed, whether it's in Palestine, Hawai'i or Congo but I feel like we to need get more radical with our demands. The Popular Liberation Front for Palestine (PLFP) has long been calling for far more radical action than Point A - Point B marches. We have the momentum, we have the mindset, we have the numbers, to quote Fred Durst, "This could be the one." I truly believe we are witnessing the birth of a global revolution. In this critical phase, we should adopt the role of doulas, nurturing and guiding this movement with the same dedication and care one would provide to a newborn, lest it become stillborn.

The only acceptable resolution is an immediate, unconditional ceasefire by the Zionist Entity, and the systematic dismantling of every settler colony, every one of these imperial nations and their financial and bureaucratic tools for legitimizing colonization. I'm not just talking about Israel, but also America, Canada, Australia, New Zealand – the entire imperial core. They have no more legitimacy than Israel. We must acknowledge that, just as there is no Israel, only Palestine, there is no 'America' as we know it, only Turtle Island. It's time to see through the façade. From the river to the sea, this world shall be free.

The absence of the level in the trolley metaphor insists we must destroy the trolley.