Israeli Soldiers Kill Teenager in West Bank, Fourth Palestinian Death in a Week

anarcho-queer:

Israeli Defense Forces on Tuesday shot from behind and killed 16-year-old Samir Awad, a Palestinian boy in the West Bank, as he was retreating*. The IDF claims Awad tried to breach the separation barrier Israel has built to help fortify their system of apartheid and land theft.

However, Ayeed Mora, a member of the Budrus Popular Committee, claims “that near the separation barrier that Israel built, IDF soldiers ambushed the youths and opened fire,” Haaretz reports. “There was no just cause to open fire, he asserts.”

“In recent days we feel an escalation by the army, which shoots at everything that approaches the fence, even if they are children,” Mora told Haaretz. “Time and time again we hear of the claim that the young Palestinians provoked or hurled stones, but nothing justifies the shooting of live rounds at children.” Mora added that the IDF “shouldn’t speak of provocations, the fact they built the fence on our lands is provocation.”

This is the fourth Palestinian killed by the IDF in a week. Israeli soldiers also shot a Gaza farmer, 21-year-old Mustafa Abu Jarad, in the head on Monday. This time, the IDF had no excuse and has refused to comment.

The last time Israel tried to quietly murder unarmed Gazans, it used Palestinian retaliation as an excuse to bomb the entire strip.

*Update: The Guardian reports that Awad was shot by Israeli forces in the back, as he was running away.

According to villagers, Samir was grabbed by soldiers who were concealed in a trench. He broke free and was running away when a soldier or soldiers opened fire. He was hit by three or four bullets, in his head, torso and leg.

Ayed Morrar, a member of the village popular resistance committee, said: “They shot him in cold blood, they shot him in the back. He wasn’t threatening them.”

(Source: jayaprada)

Israeli Soldiers Kill Gaza Student With No Warning Shots

Israeli soldiers attacked a group of three Palestinians today along the border with the Gaza Strip, killing one and wounding another in what Israeli officials described as an attempt to “harm Israel’s sovereignty.

The slain Palestinian was described as a student studying for an upcoming exam. His brother was also present at the incident, and was uninjured. The third person, described as a farmer, was shot in the leg and taken to the hospital.

Israeli soldiers on the border have had their rules of engagement changed considerably since the most recent truce went into effect, and are supposed to exclusively fire warning shots at protesters’ feet. Though the military insisted today’s shootings were warning shots, the slain man was hit in the chest.

Today’s death was the third of a Gaza Strip resident since the ceasefire began, each shot by Israeli troops along the cusp of what they consider the “no-go” portion of the tiny strip, close to the border with Israel.

(Source: jayaprada)

Israel does need a two-state solution, because the continuation of the conflict is wrecking the country. It’s an enormous waste of money and human potential. It’s pushing Israeli politics in a frighteningly anti-liberal direction … the settlement enterprise has undermined the rule of law within Israel, with wide-reaching negative consequences. And there’s always the potential for a truly catastrophic war. But there is no one-state alternative to a two-state solution. The alternative to a two-state solution is continued war.
http://www.theamericanconservative.com/millman/the-one-state-illusion/ (via theweightofemptiness)
Not to go to the UN would be suicidal for the Palestinian Authority. All these people [in Gaza] took the brunt of the attack and now we should chicken out because they [the US and Israel] will cut off some money? What we’re doing is not violent; it’s not military; it’s not illegal. The world should see that if they keep maintaining the status quo, it will get you nothing but more bloodshed. That’s the lesson from Gaza.
Senior Palestinian official Nabil Shaath - Assuring the Guardian’s Chris McGreal that Palestinians resolve to seek recognition of statehood from the United Nations would be broken by monetary threats. Several countries, most notably the US and UK, have been pressuring the Palestinian Authority to make various concessions ahead of its next attempt to gain international recognition on November 29. Much of the concern allegedly stems from the Israeli’s government’s fear that it will be dragged before the International Criminal Court on war crimes charges related to the Gaza offensive that took place four years ago. source (via shortformblog)

Israel's 'Right To Self-Defense' - A Tremendous Propaganda Victory | Amira Hass

One of Israel’s tremendous propaganda victories is that it has been accepted as a victim of the Palestinians, both in the view of the Israeli public and that of Western leaders who hasten to speak of Israel’s right to defend itself. The propaganda is so effective that only the Palestinian rockets at the south of Israel, and now at Tel Aviv, are counted in the round of hostilities. The rockets, or damage to the holiest of holies - a military jeep - are always seen as a starting point, and together with the terrifying siren, as if taken from a World War II movie, build the meta-narrative of the victim entitled to defend itself.

Every day, indeed every moment, this meta-narrative allows Israel to add another link to the chain of dispossession of a nation as old as the state itself, while at the same time managing to hide the fact that one continuous thread runs from the 1948 refusal to allow Palestinian refugees to return to their homes, the early 1950s expulsion of Bedouin from the Negev desert, the current expulsion of Bedouin from the Jordan Valley, ranches for Jews in the Negev, discrimination in budgets in Israel, and shooting at Gazan fishermen to keep them from earning a respectable living. Millions of such continuous threads link 1948 to the present. They are the fabric of life for the Palestinian nation, as divided as it may be in isolated pockets. They are the fabric of life of Palestinian citizens of Israel and of those who live in their lands of exile.

But these threads are not the entire fabric of life. The resistance to the threads that we, the Israelis, endlessly spin is also part of the fabric of life for Palestinians. The word resistance has been debased to mean the very masculine competition of whose missile will explode furthest away (a competition among Palestinian organizations, and between them and the established Israeli army ). It does not invalidate the fact that, in essence, resistance to the injustice inherent in Israeli domination is an inseparable part of life for each and every Palestinian.

The foreign and international development ministries in the West and in the United States knowingly collaborate with the mendacious representation of Israel as victim, if only because every week they receive reports from their representatives in the West Bank and Gaza Strip about yet another link of dispossession and oppression that Israel has added to the chain, or because their own taxpayers’ money make up for some of the humanitarian disasters, large and small, inflicted by Israel.

On November 8, two days before the attack on the holiest of holies - soldiers in a military jeep - they could have read about IDF soldiers killing 13-year old Ahmad Abu Daqqa, who was playing soccer with his friends in the village of Abassan, east of Khan Yunis. The soldiers were 1.5 kilometers from the kids, inside the Gaza Strip area, busy with “exposing” (a whitewashed word for destroying ) agricultural land. So why shouldn’t the count of aggression start with a child? On November 10, after the attack on the jeep, the IDF killed another four civilians, aged 16 to 19.

Wallowing in ignorance

Leaders of the West could have known that, before the IDF’s exercise last week in the Jordan Valley, dozens of Bedouin families were told to evacuate their homes. How extraordinary that IDF training always occurs where Bedouin live, not Israeli settlers, and that it constitutes a reason to expel them. Another reason. Another expulsion. The leaders of the West could also have known, based on the full-color, chrome-paper reports their countries finance, that since the beginning of 2012, Israel has destroyed 569 Palestinian buildings and structures, including wells and 178 residences. In all, 1,014 people were affected by those demolitions.

We haven’t heard masses of Tel Aviv and southern residents warning the stewards of the state about the ramifications of this destruction on the civilian population. The Israelis cheerfully wallow in their ignorance. This information and other similar facts are available and accessible to anyone who’s really interested. But Israelis choose not to know. This willed ignorance is a foundation stone in the building of Israel’s sense of victimization. But ignorance is ignorance: The fact that Israelis don’t want to know what they are doing as an occupying power doesn’t negate their deeds or Palestinian resistance.

In 1993, the Palestinians gave Israel a gift, a golden opportunity to cut the threads tying 1948 to the present, to abandon the country’s characteristics of colonial dispossession, and together plan a different future for the two peoples in the region. The Palestinian generation that accepted the Oslo Accords (full of traps laid by smart Israeli lawyers ) is the generation that got to know a multifaceted, even normal, Israeli society because the 1967 occupation allowed it (for the purpose of supplying cheap labor ) almost full freedom of movement. The Palestinians agreed to a settlement based on their minimum demands. One of the pillars of these minimum demands was treating the Gaza Strip and West Bank as a single territorial entity.

But once the implementation of Oslo started, Israel systematically did everything it could to make the Gaza Strip into a separate, disconnected entity, as part of Israel’s insistence on maintaining the threads of 1948 and extending them. Since the rise of Hamas, it has done everything to back up the impression Hamas prefers - that the Gaza Strip is a separate political entity where there is no occupation. If that is so, why not look at things as follows: As a separate political entity, any incursion into Gazan territory is an infringement of its sovereignty, and Israel does this all the time. Does the government of the state of Gaza not have the right to respond, to deter, or at least the masculine right - a twin of the IDF’s masculine right - to scare the Israelis just as Israel scares the Palestinians?

jayaprada:

Palestinian and Israeli Deaths: Timeline of Violence Since September 2000 from Visualizing Palestine

Gaza’s Health Crisis and Israel’s Crimes Against Humanity

Israeli air strikes for the past 6 days have killed over 100 Palestinians in Gaza, many of them women and children; one strike deliberately targeted a media building that Israeli government knew to house journalists. Medics announced Monday that they are running out of key medicines (Gaza is under Israeli blockade). Military strikes are also interfering in the delivery of medical and other aid by international organizations in the Strip.

This Arabic-language report says that Israeli warplanes targeted the Jordanian field hospital late on Monday. I have not been able to find confirmation for this report, but if it is true, and deliberate, it would be a war crime.

A WHO spokesman reported Monday that injured individuals showing up at Gaza hospitals had “dramatically increased in the last 24 hours”. Some 700 have come to hospital, 252 of them children. Nurses at Shifa Hospital, who work 12-hour shifts, say that the injuries they are seeing are unprecedented. One said, “It’s very hard now, with many injured people coming every hour. Women and children outnumbered men, especially with the new wave [of attacks] targeting houses and civilian buildings.”

Mourners gather around the bodies of the al-Dalu family during their funeral in Gaza City, 19 November.
(Majdi Fathi / APA images), courtesy Electronic Intifada”

Since small homemade rockets coming out of Gaza in 2012 had killed no Israelis before the Israeli Air Force started bombing the Gaza Strip last week, there is no doubt that Israel is engaged in a disproportionate use of force and a reckless disregard for the well-being of civilian non-combatants in its own occupied territory. Israeli army spokesmen claim they are precisely targeting only Hamas paramilitary personnel and blame Hamas for hiding among non-combatants. However, it is the Occupying power’s responsibility to do due diligence in ensuring the safety of the occupied population, and if Israeli pilots don’t have a clear shot at an enemy combatant, they simply should not take it.

These hostilities are deepening a longstanding crisis in Gaza health care that has resulted from deliberate Israeli policies.

The Reuters Foundation’s Trust.org reported that 39 aid organizations are warning of humanitarian disaster in Gaza if there is no ceasefire soon. Nishant Pandey, director of Oxfam Country is quoted as saying:

“We urgently need to enforce a cease fire. The present conflict threatens to perpetuate and worsen the humanitarian impact on Palestinian civilians in Gaza of over five years of Israeli blockade and the 2008-2009 Israeli military operation ‘Cast Lead’.”

In a statement, the World Health Organization worried about lack of medicine:

“Many of the drugs at zero stock are lifesaving. Gaza hospitals are now having to deal with the growing number of casualties with severely depleted medical supplies.”

Physicians in Occupied Gaza are attempting to treat head injuries, serious burns, and injuries from falling buildings and debris caused by Israeli pilots.

Aljazeera English reports on the difficulties faced by paramedics in Gaza during the Israeli bombardments [x]

A spokesman for the Israeli army tweeted on 19 November, “We continue to transfer goods & gas to #Gaza”, saying that on 18 November some 16 trucks carrying medical supplies entered Gaza, and 26 Palestinian patients were taken to Israel for treatment.

Although Israel is now letting in some supplies, they were inadequate to the need even before these attacks. Medhat Abbas, head of Shifa Hospital, reported that his institution lacks 40% of the needed drugs: “The shortage, of course, affects the quality of our work. However, our staff are working to the maximum to fulfill needs in this catastrophic situation.”

Morocco is setting up a field hospitals in Gaza to treat the wounded. Jordan has had one there for 3 years, and all the personnel are Jordanian.

Some 500 Egyptian activists, from the same youth groups that overthrew Hosni Mubarak in February, 2011, brought food and medical aid to Gaza on Saturday. Egypt is keeping its Rafah checkpoint with Gaza open for the transport of wounded to El Arish Hospital.

Wounded Palestinian at El Arish

The Gaza Strip, home to some 1.7 million Palestinians (about half of them children and minors), has been the victim for a long time of Israeli colonial oppression, including policies that deliberately harm the health and well-being of its residents. Stunting in children, along with widespread anemia in pregnant women and children, are one result of the economic blockade imposed on Israeli-occupied Gaza by the far right wing Likud government of Israel. Israeli strangulation of the Gaza economy has led not only to poverty and food insecurity but also to threats to the availability of potable water and access to medicine and hospital care.

A recent World Health Organization Report worries that in just 8 years, in 2020, if current Israeli policies continue, Gaza will be virtually uninhabitable. Israel as the occupying power since 1967 is directly responsible in international law for the well-being of its occupied populations, and is in severe violation of the 1949 Geneva Convention on the treatment of the occupied. Moreover, since Israeli policies of Apartheid, discrimination, exile, restriction of movement and infliction of harm on Palestinians in Gaza are long-standing, deliberate and systematic, Israeli leaders are guilty in this regard of crimes against humanity.

The WHO report:

“Ms. [Jean] Gough [of UNICEF] said that demand for drinking water was projected to increase by 60 per cent while damage to the aquifer, the major water source, would become irreversible without remedial action now. Mr.[Robert] Turner [of UNRWA] added that more than 440 additional schools, 800 hospital beds and more than 1,000 doctors would be needed by 2020.”

Israeli airstrikes are exacerbating what had already been a parlous health care situation for Palestinians in Gaza.

Juan Cole

Undermining Peace in Gaza and Israel in One Minute Flat | Congressman Dennis J. Kucinich

Undermining Peace in Gaza and Israel in One Minute Flat How the House Defeated the Democratic Process “Unanimously” Washington, Nov 20 -

On November 16, 2012, the United States House of Representatives passed a resolution, H. Res 813, expressing “vigorous support” and “unwavering commitment” to the State of Israel while bombs were being dropped on Gaza and missiles were launched toward Ashkelon. The resolution expresses the official opinion of the House of Representatives. The resolution was passed “without objection.”

It is unusual that legislation addressing a topic of such importance would be brought up without giving members of Congress any prior notice. The bill was introduced at 12:04 pm. The resolution was “agreed without objection” by 12:05 pm.

“There was no notice, no committee hearing, no discussion and no debate. In such a fashion, we achieve unanimity on great matters related to the Middle East,” said Kucinich.

Concerning this abnormal set of circumstances and addressing the tragic violence in Israel and the Gaza Strip, Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) today released the following statement.

“I object to H.Res.813, an unfortunately and unnecessarily one-sided resolution that was brought up on Friday, November 16th for consideration without any advance notice to members of Congress and which was completed in about a minute without any discussion. The hasty nature in which this resolution of such significance was considered undermines the unspoken, but operationally essential understanding, that bills of great importance will not be quietly tiptoed through Congress. A loss of Members’ confidence in Leadership results when House floor procedures are conducted in a manner frustrating to good faith. Such conduct can only add to the hyperpartisanship and the breakdown of comity in Congress that Americans find objectionable.

“Members must be given the opportunity to debate U.S. support of a military operation that is likely to be of significant consequence in talks between Israel and the Palestinians. This impacts the region and the world.

“Only one minute for consideration of a most consequential resolution in the House, when in the past week, the death toll in Gaza has climbed past 100, including 24 children. Over 800 people are reported to have been wounded. Rockets from groups in Gaza have landed in several Israeli towns. Three Israelis have been killed.

“This latest military escalation began after Israel assassinated Ahmed Al-Jabari, the head of Hamas’ military wing. According to Israeli negotiator Gershon Baskin, who secured the release of Gilad Shalit, Mr. Jabari ‘wasn’t just interested in a long-term cease-fire; he was also the person responsible for enforcing previous cease-fire understandings…On the morning that he was killed, Mr. Jabari received a draft proposal for an extended cease-fire with Israel, including mechanisms that would verify intentions and ensure compliance.’ Could anything be more destructive of peace than the assassination of a principal to ceasefire negotiations? And the House only has one minute to consider the ramifications of such action?

“The root of this latest flare up in hostilities is deep. Negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians on a two-state solution have been virtually non-existent. Innocent people in Gaza continue to suffer under a blockade that has deprived them of everything from food and clean water to educational opportunities. Illegal settlements continue to be built in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, further diminishing prospects for a negotiated two-state solution.

“The hastily written, and even more hastily passed resolution, fails to mention any of that. In its deficiencies are writ the failures of our own Middle East policies. This latest outbreak in violence is deplorable and I am strongly supportive of Egyptian efforts to negotiate a ceasefire. Innocent people on both sides deserve to live without fear. Can the House Leadership spare a minute for that point to be made?”

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