It is no secret that the right wing has appropriated and manipulated the definition of “peace” in today’s poisonous political climate. Peace is now synonymous with power, and little is being done to challenge this notion on a political level, to the point that one can speak of collusion between the right wing and the alleged peace builders.
Consider, for a moment, Italian Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini’s recent statement during a press conference on a visit to Israel: “Whoever wants peace, needs to support Israel.”
Whatever happened to the right of people living under a brutal military occupation to seek their liberation by all possible means? We are, surely, entitled to a reasonable answer to this question.
Shamefully, the reality is that the difference between Salvini’s outrageous remark in support of an aggressive colonial state and statements issued by international institutions is minimal. To retain a semblance of respectability, the UN and the EU, for example, speak of supporting Palestinians while endorsing Israel’s right to exist and defend itself (ironically, against the people whose land it has usurped and who have a legitimate right to resist colonial occupation). Salvini was overtly anti-international law in his comment, but merely uttered what our “peace loving” institutions can’t say due to diplomatic constraints: they “need” to support Israel. Read more.