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Archive for the ‘Israeli occupation’ Category

Israelis’ License to Murder with Impunity Must be Revoked

Posted by terres on June 2, 2010

Israel: A Terrorist State Targeting Anyone at Will

NO sane  society could allow less than 0.1 percent of its population to exercise the power of life and death over the remaining 99.9 percent

Israelis murder 10 peace activists and leave at least 30 others wounded.

Former Ambassador Edward Peck, 81, who was aboard one of the ships carrying medical supplies to the Israeli-blockaded Gaza said:

“They came up in assault boats very quiet, muffled and the moon was out and they didn’t come up the moon path and the next thing you know they’re coming over the sides of the ship.”

The flotilla was carrying relief supplies including medical equipment to Gaza, the “open-air prison”  that has been blockaded, repeatedly invaded and bombarded  by Israelis on almost daily basis since 2007.

Peck says masked Israeli commandos raided the six ships in the flotilla, while the vessels were still in international waters.

“What we intended to do was to lock arms around the wheelhouse so they couldn’t get in and take that over,” Peck said. “We didn’t get enough so the Israeli soldiers broke through that very easily.”

The soldiers killed at least 10 of the peace activists and injured more than 30 others. About 60 people on Peck’s boat including 5 U.S. activists were detained for two days.
“I didn’t expect anybody to get killed,” Peck said. “I didn’t know anybody had been killed until I got to New Jersey this morning.”

“I think it’s unfortunate in every way imaginable,” he added. “The only thing that could’ve made it worse is if more people were killed.”

Israeli leaders say the murders were in self-defense.

Murder in Self-Defense?

How Rachel Corrie Was Murdered by Israeli Military

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Rachel Corrie lies on the ground fatally injured by the Israeli military bulldozer driver. Rachel’s fellow activists have dug her a little out of the sand and are trying to keep her neck straight due to spinal injury. Picture taken at 4:47PM on 16 March 2003, Rafah, Occupied Gaza. Photo by Joseph Smith. (ISM Handout)

Rachel Aliene Corrie (April 10, 1979 – March 16, 2003) was an American member of the International Solidarity Movement (ISM) who traveled to the Gaza Strip during the Second Intifada. She was killed when an Israeli soldier drove his bulldozer over her as she protested against the destruction of Palestinian homes by the Israeli Occupation Forces in the Gaza Strip.

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Israeli Occupation Forces murdered Rachel Corrie, but they couldn’t kill her spirit.

Tom Hurndall

Tom Hurndall a student and a British peace activist was shot in the head the 11 April 2003 as he tried to help a Palestinian woman and her children flee Israeli gunfire. Tom Hurndall was shot as he moved towards the family in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip. He was wearing a fluorescent orange vest, and witnesses say that there had been no exchange of fire between the Israeli army and Palestinian gunmen that day. —Near

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Tom Hurndall was in a coma for nine months after being shot in the head by an Israeli sniper on  April 11, 2003. He died January 13, 2004. Source

James Miller

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James Miller, a British cameraman, was shot dead by Israeli soldiers. Photo source: Mona Baker

James Henry Dominic Miller (18 December 1968 – 2 May 2003) was a British  (Welshman) cameraman, producer, director  and recipient of numerous awards, including five Emmy Awards.  He was murdered by a single shot fired by a an Israeli military sniper on 2 May 2003 while filming a documentary in Rafah. The soldier who shot him was identified as Captain Hib al-Heib.

American man severely wounded by Israeli troops

Israel must take full responsibility for the shooting of our son. —Mike Anderson, Victim’s Father

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American Peace Activist Tristan Anderson, 38, from Oakland, Calif., was severely wounded after he was hit in the forehead and face by a tear gas canister fired at him by Israeli troops in the town of Naalin, in the West Bank, March 13, 2009. Photo AP. Image may be subject to copyright.

Associated Press Writer JERUSALEM (AP). The parents of an American man severely wounded by Israeli troops during a West Bank protest have asked Israeli police to launch an investigation, their lawyer said Monday. Tristan Anderson, 38, from Oakland, Calif., was struck in the head by a tear gas canister fired by members of Israel’s paramilitary border police in the Palestinian village of Naalin on March 13.

Anderson had joined a protest against Israel’s separation barrier, which cuts off Naalin from 300 acres of olive groves. In the past year, four Palestinians were killed in Naalin by Israeli troops quelling weekly stone-throwing protests against the barrier, according to Israeli human rights group B’tselem.

The couple’s lawyer, Michael Sfard, said he asked Israel’s police to launch an investigation. http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/feedarticle/8418011

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Posted in Israeli assassins, Israeli attack on Gaza, Israeli blockade, Israeli murderers, Israeli occupation | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

How Humanity Failed Gaza – I

Posted by terres on December 28, 2009

Many children stay awake at night for fear of Israeli soldiers returning

Majority of children suffering psychological trauma one year after Gaza conflict

Source: Save the Children Alliance

Date: 27 Dec 2009

The majority of children in Gaza are suffering from anxiety, depression or behavioural problems as result of their experiences of conflict and living through a deepening humanitarian crisis, warns Save the Children.


One year on from Israel’s three-week military offensive in Gaza, leading psychologists working with the children’s charity report that many Palestinian children in Gaza are suffering sustained psychological damage as their experiences of violence and loss during the conflict are compounded by the hardships of life under the blockade.

Osama Damo, aid worker for Save the Children in Gaza, said: “This is a traumatised nation. Many children we work with are not able to sleep at night for fear of soldiers returning. Others cry at the sound of loud noises, mistaking them for military jets and tanks coming to bomb their homes. Young children in Gaza are surviving under extreme levels of stress, which will pose long-term dangers not only for their mental health, but for the future of the region.”

Save the Children warns that until Israel’s tight restrictions on the movement of goods and people in and out of Gaza are lifted and the threat of further conflict eased, the mental health of the 780,000 children living in Gaza could continue to deteriorate.

Osama Damo continued: ‘The psychological crisis facing children in Gaza just keeps getting worse. Thousands of children are still living in half-destroyed homes or in over-crowded conditions with host families. Hundreds still live in tents where they risk being attacked by packs of wild dogs and don’t have proper protection against the cold and rain.”

Research currently being conducted by the Gaza Community Mental Health Programme suggests that the majority of children in Gaza are showing signs of anxiety, depression and behavioural problems, including aggression and bed-wetting.

Dr Ahmed Abu Tawanheena, Director of Gaza Community Mental Health Programme, has worked with victims of trauma in Gaza for 20 years. He said:

“The safety and comfort children rely on their parents for has been destroyed twice in one year: first, during the conflict, when they saw their parents terrified and unable to protect them from the violence. Now, under the blockade, they see their parents are still unable to provide for their basic needs, such as shelter or food. Many children report feeling abandoned by their parents and by the outside world, and parents are left struggling with feelings of guilt. It’s a crisis which is threatening families and communities across the Gaza Strip.”

Osama Damo said: “Save the Children’s priority is to try and restore a sense of well-being and normality for children in Gaza. We are helping them take baby steps towards regaining their childhood, but there’s a huge job in front of us. If things are really to change for children here, there has to be an immediate lifting of the blockade to allow children to recover, and Israeli, Palestinian and international governments have to act urgently to make this happen.”

As part of its emergency response to the conflict, Save the Children provided psychological support to children in Gaza, creating ‘safe places’ where they could play, draw and express themselves. Save the Children has been working in Gaza since 1973, where we are currently running health, child protection and education projects.

For more information and interviews with Osama Damo in Gaza, Save the Children Gaza experts in London or with Dr Ahmed Abu Tawanheena, Director of Gaza Community Mental Health Programme, please contact Save the Children’s media unit on +44 7831 650 409.

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Posted in children in Gaza, gaza kids, Gaza Strip, Israeli occupation, OPT | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Renewed claim to Gaza Strip, or pointless war?

Posted by terres on January 19, 2009

The following otherwise well-written Editorial by The Observer (UK), dated Sunday 18 January 2009 assumes that Israel previously had any space on high moral ground!

The world will know in the coming months whether a renewed claim to Gaza Strip is a proposition Israel cannot ignore!

A pointless war has led to a moral defeat for Israel

Editorial
The Observer, Sunday 18 January 2009

In historical terms, it is impossible to separate Israel’s offensive against Hamas in Gaza from the long narrative of conflict and mutual grievance in the region.


A Palestinian touches the head of a teenager after he was shot by Israeli troops in the West Bank city of Hebron January 16, 2009. REUTERS/Nayef Hashlamoun. Image may be subject to copyright.

In geographic terms, the war over a tiny plot of land cannot be detached from the wider involvement and strategic interests of other countries: Syria, Egypt, the US, Iran.

All of which makes it difficult to judge where – even if a unilateral Israeli ceasefire holds – the war really begins and ends.

That fact alone explains why the operation represents a defeat for Israel, as was always likely to be the outcome. The notion that the country’s security problems can be resolved by the unilateral use of extreme force is a persistent delusion among Israeli politicians. In this case, the problem was perceived to be Hamas rocket fire into southern Israel; the solution was judged to be a war against Hamas. That analysis did not allow for the vital, humane recognition that, in densely populated Gaza, an all-out war against Hamas is, by necessity, an attack on the civilian population.


[Deadly Israeli Assault.] An Israeli soldier covers his ears as a mobile artillery unit fires a shell towards Gaza in the early morning near the Gaza border during Israel’s offensive January 17, 2009. REUTERS/Yannis Behrakis.
Image may be subject to copyright.

Even on its own terms, the campaign has failed. Israeli authorities will insist that they have limited the ability of Hamas to launch rocket attacks. But the ostensible war aim was destroying that capability completely.

Israel will also claim that its campaign has exposed a lack of support for Hamas in many Arab capitals; that Hamas’ position as the ruling authority in Gaza has been undermined; and that Hamas has been revealed as little more than a terrorist proxy acting on behalf of and armed by Syria and Iran.

But the reality is that the status of Hamas as the preferred vehicle for Palestinian resistance to Israeli occupation has been enhanced by the indiscriminate brutality of the military assault.


[
Retaliatory Palestinian Fire Power!] A Palestinian stone-thrower uses a slingshot to throw a stone towards Israeli border police officers (not pictured) during scuffles at Qalandiya checkpoint near the West Bank city of Ramallah January 16, 2009. REUTERS/Mohamad Torokman.  Image may be subject to copyright.

Meanwhile, that status guarantees the resurgence, in some form, of armed response, including rocket fire and terrorist attacks on Israeli soil. It is possible that Hamas’ military capability has been drastically reduced. But even when Israel had full command of Gaza’s external borders, it could not stop the trade in smuggled weapons. Sadly, Hamas will re-arm with or without a ceasefire agreement.

Meanwhile, any increased consideration of Iranian or Syrian sponsorship of terrorism will pale against global outrage at the extraordinary disregard shown by Israeli forces for the lives of Palestinian civilians. It is quite possible, as the Observer today reports, that an Israeli withdrawal will reveal evidence of actions deserving indictment as war crimes. Those allegations must be independently investigated.

Israel’s allies in the west, chiefly the US, have traditionally defended the country on the grounds that it is a democracy besieged by despotic regimes and terrorists. But while Israeli citizens do enjoy immense political and social freedom, those values do not automatically prevent the state from committing atrocities.

The fact of Israeli democracy is not a reason to resist negotiations with Hamas. That was true before this pointless, brutal war and will remain so afterwards.

Copyright: Guardian/Observer

Posted in crimes against humanity, Gaza massacre, Israeli citizens, Israeli occupation, war crimes | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »