Saturday, April 23, 2011
The brutal killing of the Italian activist Vittorio Arrigoni shocked the world.
He lived with the Palestinian people, worked and suffered alongside them, and his death and kidnapping was finally blamed on the people he loved and was loved by. He was a loud and vocal supporter of the Palestinian cause and backed his words with action: He stood by the Palestinians in good times and bad, and was one of the only foreigners to stay in Gaza during the December 2008-January 2009 Israeli assault. Hundreds of people took part in a remembrance march across Gaza and the West Bank for him; hundreds across the world mourned him with no less sorrow.
A Salafist group has been accused of the heinous crime. One of their members, we are told, has confessed.
The question to ask when looking for the perpetrator of a crime is always: Who stands to gain from it? Who has the motive to plot an atrocity and the capability to carry it out? The answer here is, beyond a doubt, Israel. The 2nd freedom flotilla to Gaza is scheduled soon; Goldstone recently retracted his report on Israel’s 2008 Operation Cast Lead that relentlessly bombed Gaza; and Israel has evidently decided to strike when the iron is hot.
If it is the way it appears, this crime only serves to underline the “brutality” of the Palestinian people. They are ruthless even to those who help them. Do they deserve peace?
Let us not allow Vittorio’s death to go in vain. Let us not willingly swallow the story spoon-fed us by those in power. Let his work continue on unabated. Let us honor him as he should be honored."
The next day I was pleasantly surprised to find a reply to me in the Letters section: