a different side of Israel

Ticking Tunnel

We’re all familiar with the term a “ticking bomb“. This morning I learned a new term: a “ticking tunnel“.

Apparently a ticking tunnel was the reason behind the operation in Gaza last night. The Israeli intelligence community warned Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and his cabinet that the Palestinians are keen on abducting more soldiers and that they already have a tunnel (or several) in place underneath the border.

Personally, I think that’s a very legitimate reason to go out on a mission to demolish the tunnel. However, I find the mentality of a “ticking tunnel” disturbing. It’s a discourse that primes preemptive strikes, and one that broadens our militaristic viewpoint of the world. In other words, are we going to be talking about “ticking towns” and a “ticking instigator” anytime soon?

The action was probably necessary. The language is totalitarian.

Gaza Tunnel - Photo by Alon Golan

Gaza Tunnel - Photo by Alon Golan

1 Comment

  1. I find the comparison somewhat disingenuous. The digging of a tunnel is a hostile military action in itself. The same cannot be said of villages and towns.

    What I mean is that any tunnel is a perfectly legitimate target for destruction by any means, regardless of the perceived intentions for use of that tunnel. Which is why the term “ticking tunnel” is itself a silly one — it would be enough to say “tunnel”.

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