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The First Factor We Ought to Keep in mind Concerning the Tremendous Bowl Is the Bloodbath

World / February 12, 2024 During the year’s biggest television event in the US, Israel launched an attack on Rafah, hoping Americans wouldn’t notice. Now, the strikes are part of NFL history. (Said Khatib / AFP via Getty Images) This year’s Super Bowl was a weapon of mass distraction. If there’s any justice, future generations

The First Factor We Ought to Keep in mind Concerning the Tremendous Bowl Is the Bloodbath


February 12, 2024

In the course of the 12 months’s largest tv occasion within the US, Israel launched an assault on Rafah, hoping People wouldn’t discover. Now, the strikes are a part of NFL historical past.

(Stated Khatib / AFP by way of Getty Photographs)

This 12 months’s Tremendous Bowl was a weapon of mass distraction. If there’s any justice, future generations will keep in mind the sport not for Patrick Mahomes, Travis Kelce, or Taylor Swift however for the US-funded assaults on Palestinian civilians that occurred whereas so many People had been glued to their TVs. In the course of the sport, watched by effectively over 100 million individuals in america, Israel launched a bombing raid of Rafah within the Gaza Strip, probably the most densely populated space on earth. Greater than 1 million individuals had fled now-leveled Gaza Metropolis to the refugee camps in Rafah and surrounding areas. Palestinians who’ve survived earlier Israeli strikes at the moment are staving off illness, destitution, and concern. They, together with individuals all through the world, had been hoping for a negotiated cease-fire. The Israeli authorities and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu feinted to take this concept severely, however as a substitute, as soccer gamers battled in Las Vegas, rained dying from the skies.

As of now, the Gaza Well being Ministry estimates that Israel killed at the very least 67 Palestinians within the Tremendous Bowl assaults. That doesn’t account for the quantity injured or the attendant trauma. Ghada al-Kurd, who was sheltering in Rafah, told The New York Occasions, “I swear to God it was an indescribable evening.… The bombing was in every single place—we had been satisfied that the Israeli military was invading Rafah.” The Israeli authorities is crowing of victory after liberating two hostages. And far of the US media is following swimsuit, relegating the deaths of Gaza civilians to a footnote.

In the meantime, CBS granted the Israeli authorities house for an advert in regards to the 130 hostages left in Gaza. This advert, meant to construct public help and justify the slaughter of practically 30,000 civilians in Gaza, spurred 10,000 individuals to register complaints with the FCC, as a result of the industrial didn’t disclose {that a} overseas authorities had paid for it. Coupled with the Rafah raid, this appears to be like extra like army synergy than happenstance.

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Cover of January 2024 Issue

New England Patriots proprietor Robert Kraft additionally spent $7 million on an advert from his group Basis to Fight Anti-Semitism. It options Clarence Jones, a 93-year-old former speech author for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Kraft and different pro-war billionaires use the reminiscence of King a lot, they need to be paying his household indulgences for slandering his title. The advert failed to say that Kraft has given $1 million to pro-war AIPAC and donated $1 million in 2016 to Donald Trump’s inauguration. Provided that Kraft says that the Nazi march in Charlottesville was his motivation to start out his basis (Charlottesville was the one with “good individuals on each side,” in line with Trump), his hypocrisy is insidious.

Kraft and Israel need the identical factor: a clean test to uproot Palestinians from Gaza and construct settlements. One can even solely think about if a peace group tried to purchase an advert asking Israel and america the query: “What number of useless youngsters will likely be sufficient?” I believe it could be denied sooner than a public-service announcement about concussions.

Outdoors of america, the broad notion is that the hostages, the ache of their households, and the Hamas killings of October 7 are each a tragedy and a fig leaf to justify a complete struggle on the civilian inhabitants of Gaza and a seizure of land. However the Israeli authorities treats world opinion exterior the US as irrelevant. It is aware of that there’s actually just one patron must be appeased, and that’s the sponsor sending them billions of {dollars} in weaponry. The sponsor is not only Biden and the US Congress; it’s the US taxpayer. That is why the Tremendous Bowl cowl for this newest atrocity was so essential. Israeli authorities officers know that US dissent is an impediment to attaining their fantasy of controlling the land “from the river to the ocean.”

We don’t know if the White Home gave the go-ahead for what has now been dubbed “the Super Bowl massacre,” however in case you launch an assault throughout the largest TV occasion of the 12 months—blunting an emergency response by US demonstrators and hoping that everybody will likely be too hung over, drunk on commercialism, and playing apps to provide a rattling—it doesn’t take a poli-sci main to see how Biden advantages.

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The Tremendous Bowl has been used as a driver of struggle up to now, most famously when Whitney Houston sang the nationwide anthem in 1991 as struggle planes flew overhead within the lead-up to Operation Desert Storm and when U2 and Bono fanned the flames of post-9/11 America in 2002. Now we have now “the Tremendous Bowl bloodbath,” which was designed to make us not discover the struggle crimes that American taxpayers are funding. The assaults on Rafah ought to turn out to be an even bigger a part of soccer historical past than response photographs of Taylor Swift, Usher’s curler skates, and even Patrick Mahomes’s late-game heroics. Whether or not a soccer fan or not, we have now to do greater than always remember. We should say “by no means once more.”

Dave Zirin

Dave Zirin is the sports activities editor at The Nation. He’s the writer of 11 books on the politics of sports activities. He’s additionally the coproducer and author of the brand new documentary Behind the Shield: The Power and Politics of the NFL.

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