Last week, in a stunning video, YouTube recorded a United Nations General Assembly meeting that took place to address the Israeli-Hezbolla violence. As I watched it, I was shocked at the lack of support for the victims of this horrific attack. In fact, one old lady stood up to express her outrage at Israel and the United States for not doing enough to stop the violence. It appears that we cannot have an unbiased international body when it comes to Israel and Hezbolla.
Some say that the call for an uprising YouTube videos is a part of the larger international call to boycott, divest, and cut off from Israel. That would be a huge blow to the U.S., which has so far provided the most money to assist the Israeli government in its efforts to crush Hezbolla and stop attacks on its citizens. It seems like the international community does not want to upset the apple cart. But we also know that human nature, unfortunately, is not as forgiving as we wish. Once things start getting bad, people just don’t seem to know how to stop or take any action.
The recent Hezbolla attack was one of many, perhaps hundreds, on civilians in occupied territories around the world. Just as the Hezbollah video caught the world’s attention, this latest video may well have done the same for the United Nations and its call for an uprising against Israel. Yet, in the two videos, the same message was delivered; one inflammatory speaker blamed the U.S. and other western countries for fomenting the violent anti-American demonstrations in Pakistan and elsewhere. Then, in the second video, the speaker went after Israeli officials and military officers, saying that they were “killers” and that they were “disrespected.” It was an extraordinary message and one that should be received by all nations, including those that have signed the United Nations Security Council Resolution condemning Hezbolla’s July attack on a humanitarian aid ship.
Now, a quick look at the original Hezbolla video reveals that the person speaking in the video did not actually name any of these officials or even express support for them. So, while it’s possible that he did call for an uprising, that call is not exactly identical to the one he makes against the U.S., and certainly not to those who’ve criticized Israel’s actions. In fact, if Hezbolla is saying that the U.S. is to blame for their conduct, then he is contradicting his video with his actual statements. As such, it’s hard to see how Hezbolla can be considered the voice of the resistance when his own group calls for violence against the U.S.
More importantly, it’s also hard to see how Hezbolla can be considered a legitimate organization when, according to their own video, it’s called “The Resistance” and has no particular connection to international politics. This, of course, raises questions as to whether Hezbolla is one of many organizations calling for violence against Israel. For instance, Popular Resistance movements are, in general, anti-American in nature. It would be hard to take seriously an organization calling for killing Americans, as it clearly shows a lack of understanding of American history and current events. This doesn’t mean, however, that there aren’t legitimate organizations that use the name Popular Resistance in their names, just as groups calling themselves Anti-Americans also have an anti-American agenda.
Still, in comparing the two videos, it’s clear to see that Hezbolla calls for an uprising and not an anti-American attack on Israel. In doing so, Hezbolla joins a growing number of groups calling for violence against the U.S. Even if they were to carry out such an attack, which we highly doubt, the U.S. would still be justified in its actions. After all, America is still the greatest nation ever created in the history of mankind and it has the ability to defend its interests. And it’s not just an “antisocial” group calling for violence: many Americans, including politicians, are saying that the Tea Party is preparing for a terrorist attack on America. And if this is true, one has to ask: Are the American people overreacting to what they perceive as a rise of radicalized individuals?
Many people seem to think that YouTube is the place to go to get any type of information these days. People who are not versed in Middle Eastern affairs watch Al Qaeda and violent Arab groups on YouTube and are impressed with their abilities to recruit fighters and propagandize against America. It would seem reasonable that anyone watching these videos should be receptive to the message being spewed forth by these groups. But is this really the case? Has the YouTube phenomenon created an irrational desire among citizens to believe wild conspiracy theories about America’s safety and resolve an imaginary problem while using advanced propaganda techniques?
When it comes to calling for an uprising, it seems that Hezbolla seems to be more on target with its message than Mr. Nakanin’s call for people to burn Israel down. The second video is more disturbing: it shows the use of live ammunition and what appears to be Israeli troops firing randomly into a vehicle containing civilians. This could only mean war, as the vehicle was obviously a civilian car. And although the Israeli Defense Forces has confirmed that the soldiers involved were carrying out a legitimate operation, the incident is still difficult to comprehend coming from a country that bows to Israel’s military occupation. It is hard to reconcile the apparent brutality of a clip showing a member of a terrorist organization handing a gun and telling “You ready, shoot.”