Wednesday, January 14, 2009


Over the past few days, many if not most have been talking about this idea of boycott or refusal to participate. An economic boycott was sanctioned by the Malaysian government in order to send a strong message of disagreeing with the Gaza conflict. Israel has been seen as the culprit and deemed to be the "bully" between that conflict and thus a boycott on items related to israel has been put into motion. Oh and a few minutes ago i just got a message stating that McDonalds and Starbucks are going to contribute their whole month of income ( January) towards the Israeli cause.

Over the past few days as well a few things have popped into mind regarding this matter for me. A student in one of my classes when prompted questioned: "Will it work?" (if youre wondering why an English lecturer would be talking about the conflict, its because language needs an issue.)

I stared silently into the crowd, remembering the many disputes and debates i have had with myself, my countless monologue while i commute to work.

It has always been my contention and a known fact that boycotts (1) work only in the long run (2) it is a accumulation of individual right.

When confronted with the question of boycott these two things sprung to mind. Because firstly, the conflict in Gaza has been going on for almost 60 years, some might claim even longer and there are facts to support that. And in this 60 years we have decided to begin our boycott in an era where most of our citizens have grown accustomed to the things they are asking us to boycott. I read somewhere the internet were founded by jews and so was the pentium. So to boycott israel means to not buy computers??? you figure it out.

You see boycott is a self choice. If people think that cant live without McDonalds for example, it would be hard for him or her to participate in the boycott (this is rhetorically of course). So it should be left up to personal choice. If choosing between a supposedly (israel tea) and Sabah Tea fo instance, then the better choice (assuming of course youre participating in the boycott) would be to buy the Sabah Tea. But not to the extent of throwing away your computer because the intel chip was founded by people who are supporting Israel.

The two kinds of boycott would fall under the necessity and the luxury. For example, eat local food instead of a chain store like KFC or McDonalds, drink Sabah Tea instead of Lipton or Boh (these are just examples i dont know whether they are israel based) using mustika ratu lotion instead of johnson and johnson. Yes some would argue the quality differs and that is why i leave it personal choice. If you think you cannot live without johnson and johnson lotion then dont try. Youre boycott should not in anyway put you in a discomfort. More admirable are those who allow themselves to be rid of certain or all luxuries in life which could contribute to the Isreali cause but lets be realistic, I dont think all could do so.

Which brings me to another point. Why have we chose to implement this now? If we had started 40 years ago our generation today would not have grown dependant on household names such as Johnson and Johnson, Seba, Pampers and such. But no, we decide now to do so.

Will it work? will people really stop buying for sure???

No..... people wont. So confounded are people with their current status quo that most would simply brush this idea of or give a lame excuse such as, "the neighboring countries of palestine dont give a damn so why should we?"

I see the glass as half full... so even though our so called boycott might not work because of the dependancy on foreign products, it is still a statement that we do not condone israeli violence. That we are against it and we want the UN to stand and be counted at this moment of despair. It is in this time of conflict the UN should prevail and understand that Isrealis are the bullies and even though vengeance has grown deeper and darker and even more bitter over the span of 60 years, it is time we intervene and stop the violence.

I once read an article telling this story of an Israeli soldier. Where he said three of his friends were out on patrol and during that patrol they taken/abducted and killed and heads were stuck to a stick displayed for all the israel soldiers to see. Then he went on to tell the story of how israel soldiers were being mocked by children on the border and as the kids (aged probably around 8-12) threw rocks and cursed at the israelis, the faces of their fallen comrades come into their faces and these soldiers start shooting at the children. Putting round after round into these young bodies because they were angry. In the story he said...

"I have forgotten the cause of this war, it has been so long ago that i do not remember how everything started in the first place... but as look upon the bodies of a Palestinian child bloodied guilt swarmed over me, this young body will never understand life anymore and we have taken its life..... I have forgotten the cause of this war... but even if i remember... i do not think it is worth... what ever the cause maybe... too much blood has been spilt..."

As a muslim im with my Palestinian brothers. My Muslim brothers, their suffering is mine and if we sit idly by, we are as much as guilty as the israelis who are killing innocent children. Churchill said For evil to prevail all good men have to do is nothing. So at the very least, I emphatize with my Muslim brothers.

as a human being, i do not believe any man was built to withstand guilt of killing an innocent child. And if Isrel continues its horrendous assault on the innoecent victims that now lay waste at 900 bodies, they are losing the spiritual war. They are losing themselves. They are losing the battle to remain.... Human. I do not know this for sure... but i hope that they do feel guilt of the innocent lives they have massacred because if they have no guilt... then this war will carry on until both nations lay in ruins.

One of my friends asked me.... "Do you understand this war hanafee?"

To be honest, i understand and i do not understand this war. I understand that basic need to keep what is sacred to you in your lineage. The battle for jerusalem. The battle to retain what is sacred. But what i do not understand, is why both these sides would allow innocent casualties. Why dont the Hamas move to an area further away from the civilians instead of continuing with this militant hiding in the society tactic, and why does israel continue to attack without acknowledging that innocent lives are dying. Would they prefer to kill innocent lives just to win this war?? would both the hamas and the israelis prefer to let all innocent people die before finally killing each other???

This post started with just a brief explaantion regarding this idea of boycott and this is the extension and extent of this issue. This is one war no one will win.

For the closing I take the words of the Turkish general in the Movie Kingdom of Heaven. Jerusalem -- It is everything, and nothing.


Sabrina said...

"Einstein was a socialist Zionist who supported the creation of a Jewish national homeland in the British mandate of Palestine" -wikipedia-

ironic tak? Herh.

Anonymous said...

dont say it as 'war', say it as 'pencerobohan'. war occurs between two sides who got same strength. but what happened in Palestine, the Isreali is the bully and the other side is victim.
heh, susah tul ckp omputeh neh...
cmni la, nape hamas x blah dr situ demi xnk penduduknya mati... aku rasa senang kalo kita bayangkan cmni... katakan omputeh datang malaysia, ceroboh malaysia untuk jajah.pehtu wat negara ni sbg negara dorg, adakah kita akan blah dr malaysia or kita akan pertahankan negara kita sampai kita ke titisan darah terakhir? haa camtu la kt palestin.
satu lg utk diambil iktibar...
yahudi n nasrani xkan setuju dgn kita slagi kita x ikut dorg... tu dlm Quran cakap...selagi org palestin x ikut ckp israel, x ikut agama yahudi, selagi tu la israel akan terus serang...
wallahu a'lam

semut putih said...

tahu kenapa kita perlu boikot?

sebab nak lemahkan ekonomi orang-orang yahudi and the gang kan?

ye ke?

eerr...setakat boikot, boleh ke lumpuhkan diorang nih?

but hey!
penting sangat ke nak lumpuhkan ekonomi diorang?

apa tujuan UTAMA kita?

tolong makcik pakcik abang kakak adik sedara mara kita kat Palestin kan?

kalau nak tolong, kenapa tak nak pi Palestin teruih?

tak mampu? takut mati? huhuhu...

so, macam mana nak tolong diorang? hati ni meronta-ronta nak tolong! (ye ke?)

derma. dah derma? setakat 1 ringgit mana la cukup.
never underestimate the POWER of 1 ringgit!

doa. dah doa? doa je? cukup ke?
never underestimate the POWER of DOA!

boikot. dah boikot? berkesan ke?

penting sangat ke keberkesanan tu?

mana lebih penting, usaha kita atau result yang kita dapat?

ALLAH tengok kita, menilai kita dengan usaha kita atau dengan hasil kerja kita?

pandangan Allah atau pandangan manusia lebih penting?

ingat kisah burung time nabi ibrahim kene bakar?

burung ni berusaha padamkan api yang membakari nabi Ibrahim

memang api tu tak terpadam

dan usahanya dipandang remeh oleh manusia

tapi macam mana pula pandangan Al-Khaliq terhadap usaha burung ni?

berkesan ke tak boikot ni, tak penting. Yang penting USAHA kita nak bantu.

Kenapa kita nak bantu? atas sebab kemanusiaan sahaja? atau atas sebab persaudaraan atas nama Islam?

Ingatlah, Palestin TANAH AIR kita

di mana ada ummat Islam di situ juga tanah air kita

Jangan biarkan semangat kebangsaan atau nasionalisma yang dicucuk oleh barat menguasai diri kita


PALESTIN diceroboh!

kita boleh duduk senang-lenang je?


ketuk hati, tanya imanmu

-old classmate SMKSB-

Hanafee said...

To Anonymous and Semut Putih...

Do not misunderstand what i wrote... Yes My heart and my belief is with my muslim brothers i emphetize and sympathetic towards their fate and the current conflict they are in...

And yes although i acknowledge that the boycott might not work... i still think there is a valid explanation as well as a valid need for it to be carried out. Do not assume just because i want the war to end means i am not against the israeli violence...

My contention is based solely on (1) this boycott should have been taken more seriously at least 40 years ago before most Malaysians have grown dependant on foreign items.

(2) That both Hamas and Israel should try and settle things peacefully and if things cannot be settled peacefully.... then so be it....

The alarming rate in which people are dying currently, will leave both nations destroyed. Both nations destroyed....

Then i ask you this... if both nations are destroyed, who will then take jerusalem??? Right now... if matters are settled peacefully, Palestine will still have Jerusalem. Baitulmaqdis. But if they are both destroyed. if both israel and palestine are destroyed. who do you think will be the first to claim rights over jerusalem under the name of not wanting anymore war to happen??? under the name of peace.

This is not good patriotism or good nationalism... this is good basic war strategy.. if we still have what they want... we won this war already.. and the only way of making sure we keep jerusalem and keep winning.. is by offering peace... Then Israel will have to accept and if they dont even more of "humanitarians" will be for Palestine and against israel...

Yes Semut Putih effort does count for so much more... but in reality it is not. How do i know???

A student studies all throughout his high school life and in the end still underperforms... Does anyone remember his effort to learn and study??? or do people remember his result???

Iman aku terletak pada Islam. Hati aku ter"jatuh" pada apa yang terjadi kepada umat islam di palestin. Tetapi good war tactics leaves aside emotion. and sentiments. SO... Kamu mahu berperang??? aku ada caranya

p/s - budak smksb.. waaaaa ader budak smksb baca blog ni ke takut weih

semut putih said...

aku hormat pendapat hang dan aku hormat pendapat org lain =)

ummat islam di palestin sedang berperang dan nyawa mereka berada di hujung tanduk

ummat islam di merata dunia berperang mulut nak boikot ke tak

suka orang-orang yahudi laknatullah tengok. kan?

why not we put aside keegoan kita dan bersatu menetang Israel. Ini lebih UTAMA

nak menetang Israel macam mana? Just buat yang mana kita rasa terbaik, tapi try not to persoalkan cara orang lain untuk menolong palestin.

kita buat apa yang kita rasa dapat menolong. mereka buat apa yang mereka rasa dapat menolong.

yang PENTING ummat Islam tak berpecah atau berperang lidah dek kerana hal-hal remeh begini.

BERSATU LEBIH UTAMA dalam keadaan kita sekarang

p/s: dunt worry cik Nap. i will tell nobody
p/s: btw, joyeux anniversaire!

yg jauh.. said...

KALAU lah israel tu cukup baik utk settle things peacefully...

Hanafee said...

Erm.... I dont understand aper sebenarnya is the contention and the contradiction... Like i said.. i agree with the boycott... regardless of whether or not it works... All that matters is that we go through every option possible...

If i was writing as a muslim individual and i was emotional i would dig up everything i can about israel that makes them evil and why in my head they deserve to be rid out. instead of just saying Israel is bad... prove it...

in 1942 Israelites began to pour into Palestine land and they began buying the lands slowly. and by 1048 they had enough land within palestine themselves. and during this year the assasination of the "tak ingat" an islamic leader was prominent which brought upon the war. Palestinian continued to say that palestinians are getting help from islamic terrorist and to a certain extent it is true... but they too had that islamic virtue you mentioned of. in 2005 america insisted in having a democratic election in Palestine in hopes that Hamas would be pushed aside by the people of palestine.

In 2006 Hamas won the election and their win was considered rigged by the united states and that was considered the last draw in American intervention.

The Hamas won the election but they were unrecognized because they went against israel. And israel again asserted pressure on America as an ally so that they would contemplate pressuring the Palestinians especially the Hamas.

A writer writes based on facts and numbers and figures. Not pure judgemental spursions. That is how i write. Like i said the boycott is individual right... you wanna do it... do it... if you cant then dont... you wanna try it... keep trying.... there is no special case to it.... I agree witth the boycott not as a boycott in itself but rather a statement a msg and regardless what i thought of the boycott my views should not participate in anothers judgment.

And yes....

i think it is a violent act israel has performed waging war and invasion upon a land that has no military option or RnD in the past 40 years.

but still.... the war should stop first... let the killing stop first then we'll figure out how to deal with israel. By tribunal and international law and if that doesnt work... all islam nations has an obligation to go to war (Physically) are we ready?

Anonymous said...

mcm mana nk stop war? xkan stop punya... lgpun ni bkn war, ni pencerobohan... org yg menceroboh xkan berenti menceroboh slagi dorg x dpt apa yg dorg nak...