Jay Tea comments on the language used in the Israel-Paletinian conflict. One word he looks at is “civilian”:
To most people, this means folks who are not part of a military and not part of a particular conflict. However, this word has some different connotations in this context.
Israel has pretty much universal conscription. This means that nearly every Israeli has to serve in the military. Therefore, all Israelis of any age or sex is a combatant — either past, present, or future. There are no Israeli “civilians,” so therefore they are all targets.
Palestine is not a recognized state. It has no official military. Therefore, all Palestinians are civilians. Even — and especially — those who carry automatic weapons, fire rockets, and set bombs.
Reminds me of something I posted a while back:
Certainly, the Israelis aren’t entirely blameless. But the amount of finger-pointing in their direction never ceases to amaze me. It’s almost as if some folks were prejudiced, or something.