On August 28, an Israeli judge gave the final verdict in the case of 23-year-old Rachel Corrie, the young American woman who was killed by an Israeli bulldozer, while she tried to protect the demolition of the home of a six-year-old Palestinian girl and her family, in the Gaza Strip. The Israeli judge’s verdict ruled that Israel did not bear responsibility for her death and that it was her own fault for not pulling out of the way. The judge further said the incident was an accident and that the driver of the bulldozer was not able to see Ms Corrie. Prosecutors argued that she was wearing an orange vest, as visible in pictures, and also carried a bullhorn with her — signs that the driver of the bulldozer could not have missed.
The ruling in Ms Corrie’s case epitomises the neglect of the Israeli state in dealing with its rulings fairly and in a manner that critically examines reasons for both the Israeli military and Ms Corrie to react in the ways they did. The state turned a blind eye to Ms Corrie’s request of protecting the home of the Palestinian family and consequently, to her fight for human rights; a move that should not be excusable in any country’s court of law.
This ruling by the Israeli court should alert Pakistan’s own government for its negligence in providing justice to its people in a court of law. Does the state of Pakistan wish to emulate Israel, which failed to provide justice to a person who was fighting for human rights or should we begin adhering to stricter means in order to attain justice in our court rooms, so as not to mirror such governments? It is time to turn an analytical eye towards our own injustices and dishonesty. While Ms Corrie’s lawyer said the family will appeal to the Israeli Supreme Court within 45 days, there is no doubt, in the words of Ms Corrie’s mother, that “the diplomatic process between the United States and Israel failed us”. It failed the whole world, Mrs Corrie.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 30th, 2012.