Where are the flags for Palestine?
Travelled the country North to South
Where yellows and blues have fluttered for over a year
From window and doors, even no.10
People and institutions all over the land
So quick in Solidarity for ‘people like us’
The ‘relatively civilised’
Witty t-shirts with ‘Puck Futin’,
‘Slava Ukraini’ (a fascist slogan) comes so easy
To every mouth, but ‘Free Palestine’ is
Legitimate Cause For Concern to the Jewish Community
And ‘from the river to the sea’ a call to genocide threatening those...
Who are committing genocide.
Ten thousand killed in a month, four thousand children
More than in the whole of Evil Putin’s war
No justification for targeting civilians, we are told
But if you call them ‘barbarians’ or ‘animals’
I guess that’s just fine.
Ukraine was free to retaliate against its aggressor
With armed force.
It was applauded for doing so
And funded to the tune of billions
In fact the money was rolling in well before:
6bn to destabilise and fix an election where
‘Yats is our guy’
And Russian speakers in the Donbass and elsewhere
Faced discrimination and.. bombs
A trade union building burned with 40 dead,
An atrocity committed by western-backed neo-nazis
Against pro-Russia demonstrators in Odessa
Was this not terrorism -
Designed to affect a political response
Through extreme violence?
Yet they weren’t depicted as butchers,
Rapists, beheaders of babies, ‘worse than ISIS’.
Nor the bombers of Nordstream
Nor the killers of pro-Russian journalists in crowded cafes
Nor the drone attacks on Moscow
Nor the destruction of the Khakovka dam
(If Russia did it, then why not Israel
Gunning down those kids – human kids –
At that music festival?
You know, with Hellfire from above,
Helicopters, tanks, the Hannibal doctrine and all that.
No? Okay then.)
I guess when the victims are
‘Orcs’, 'terrorists', ‘animals,’ or rather:
Troops in an occupying army,
You can start to forgive, right?
All down the length of the country,
On road and rail – many yellows and blues still flutter
Though solidarity has waned
Since the military failures
And the endless stream of money
Going to Zelensky and co
To stave off the inevitable
While people at home shiver in the dark
And decide between heating and eating.
Where is the money for Gaza and the West Bank?
Calls for No Fly Zones and F-16s
No expense spared to protect Democracy
(Hamas is an elected government)
Territorial integrity and the Rules Based Order?
Not when they are brown people,
Not when they are Arabs, Muslims,
Not when they’re in the way of oil and gas extraction
And redevelopment contracts
For neighbourhoods of blood-drenched rubble.
But, but… they bombed their own hospital!
The paid liars come on screen
And humiliate with the screaming falsehoods
They force us to treat credibly
With nary a retort from all those
Suddenly unable to prepare a defense
Or have any contrary facts to hand.
(No such hesitation when demanding
We condemn condemn condemn…
A resistance organistation
Opposing genocidal violence.
Do you condemn the Warsaw Ghetto uprising?
Do you condemn the partisans of
Occupied Europe in WW2?
Of course we mustn’t make such comparisons.
(The Zionists can, invoking Dresden – not the Blitz –
But we can’t, or doing so be labelled antisemites)
It’s the West’s victims we must condemn
When they have the nerve, the brass front,
The ingratitude to fight back.
The Indian Mutiny (rapists, murderers!)
The Haiti slave uprising (OMG they want us all dead!)
The ANC (Mandela the terrorist)
The Vietcong (how dare they not fight us in the open?
The Native American resistance
(Ok, we’ll name our weapons after you 100 years later)
Of course, they are the ones we must condemn.
They are the ones committing atrocities,
Despite verifiable evidence,
Never the ones responding to them.
How could they have the right to respond in kind?
Evil Putin bombed that maternity hospital in Melitopol,
Bombed that school with ‘children’
Written outside on the pavement
We know this.
The ‘journalists’ and politicians say it
With immediate certainty,
And to doubt it is evidence of your collusion
With Russian depravity.
You’re not even allowed to ask for proof.
But Al-Shifa explodes,
Days after the IDF ‘taps on the roof’
With ordinance of the kind
Hamas fighters could only dream of,
A direct hit from the only group in the area
That has targeted munitions with that kind of power,
The one with a history of destroying
And numerous medical facilities.
But no, we need to hear
Israel’s side of the story
And give airtime to their
Barefaced lies and victim-blaming.
Of course, they did it to themselves,
Those stupid Arabs.
They probably did it on purpose to get the sympathy.
This is what you get when ‘children of light’
Take it upon themselves to rid the world of
‘Darkness’, the uncivilised, ‘Amelakites’
(There goes the religious justification)
And the propaganda-addled
Just go along with all of it.
The length of the country
And not one flag for Palestine.
All I saw was one little girl
At Kings Cross Station with
‘Palestine: now and forever’
On her t-shirt.
She had slightly amber-tinted skin
And big brown eyes.
To be honest, it made me feel a little unsafe.