Chen-ou Liu's Translation Project: First English-Chinese Haiku and Tanka Blog

Sunday, January 14, 2024

Whoever kills one life kills the world entire

Against the Drowning Noise of Other Words, VI: "death count"
written on the 100th day of the Israel Hamas War

Whoever kills one life kills the world entire

white sand beach
miles north of a refugee camp

a Gazan's first and last
apperance on the TV
bombed-out hospital

death count debate
a peace vigil stretches
into foggy night

FYI: The title is taken from Talmud:

Why was man created alone? Is it not true that the creator could have created the whole of humanity? But man was created alone to teach you that whoever kills one life kills the world entire, and whoever saves one life saves the world entire. —paraphrased from the Talmud

--Gideon Frieder, "To Save the World Entire"

Democracy Now!, Jan 10: IDF Is Using Hunger as a Weapon of War, Says Israeli Rights Group B'Tselem

Human rights groups say Israel is using starvation as a weapon in the Gaza Strip as Israel severely restricts the delivery of humanitarian aid, medicine and food supplies to millions inside the besieged and bombed territory. In a new report," Israeli human rights group B'Tselem lays out how Israel's decision to cut off electricity, water and international humanitarian aid to Gaza after a 17-year blockade against the territory has led to a very quick collapse of infrastructure. "The things that impede this provision of food for people who are starving is a declared policy by Israel," says Sarit Michaeli, B'Tselem international advocacy lead. "The Israeli government is at fault, is responsible for this, and this should lead to immediate international action."

CNN, Jan. 11Some Israeli intel officers "shocked by what they were asked to do’ in Gaza, says Israeli journalist

Bianna Golodryga speaks to Yuval Abraham, a journalist at +972 Magazine, on his investigations into how the Israeli army is operating in Gaza.

And Haaretz, Opinion, Jan. 15: ICJ Genocide Trial Showcases Israel's Collective Temporary Insanity and Vile Government

It should be mentioned that this humanitarian assistance, very aid, which was a central aspect of Israel's line of defense before the judges but actually before the judgment of the entire world, was maligned and vilified by several members of Israel's government, as an act of capitulation.

The New Yorker, Jan. 12: How Israel’s Inspection Process Is Obstructing Aid Delivery

One of the things we witnessed personally was a large warehouse filled with humanitarian goods that had been rejected at Israeli inspection points. Goods like medical kits used to deliver babies, water-testing kits, water filters, solar-powered desalinization units, tents that people said might’ve been returned because they had metal poles.

So a whole collection of rejected items that seemed purely arbitrary. And I will also say that when one item on a truck is rejected, the entire truck is turned back, and in talking to a truck driver and others we learned that some of these trucks take twenty days to go from the starting point to delivering assistance. 

Haaretz Podcast, Jan. 9How Can We Expect Others to Empathize With Us When We Fail to Empathize With Palestinians?

Haaretz, Jan. 12Half a Million Gazans Are Suffering From Acute Hunger. Let That Sink In
The scope of the crisis in Gaza is becoming clearer; according to the UN, Israel is creating conditions that are making life in Gaza impossible; but Israeli leaders are unbothered

Haaretz, Jan. 30: A New Low: The Israelis Advocating to Starve the People of Gaza

For Israel's extremists, nothing is off-limits when it comes to Gaza – fighting the delivery of humanitarian aid, re-establishing Jewish settlements, human decency. But it would be a mistake to dismiss them as a fringe movement... According to Agam Institute surveys, nearly 60 percent of Israeli Jews oppose humanitarian aid – a stable figure over time.

Added: Against the Drowning Noise of Other Words, VII: "war after war"

war after war after Arctic blast nothing new under the sun

FYI: The Guardian, Jan. 11: ‘Brutal’ Arctic blast expected to bring frigid temperatures to North America: Extreme cold warning issued in Canada as US forecasters warn of wind chills in Texas and major snow in midwest and east coast

And according to the Geneva Academy, there are more than 110 armed conflicts in the world.

Added: This Brave New World, CXLI

fireballs bursting skyward
smell of winter air

AddedAgainst the Drowning Noise of Other Words, VIII: "broken world"

On This Fresh Morning

just to be alive
in the broken world, my friend writes
I respond,
dying is the most alive
you'll ever feel in Gaza

with one purpose
does this war make a stone
of the broken heart?
thousands of miles away
I ponder in a cold snap