Palestine Update 514
Israel’s method in madness
It’s nothing short of being a “barbed wire monster” as Gideon Levy; writing in the Haaretz puts it. Israel invested 3.5 billion shekels to build a ghetto. The men, who are consumed by equal proportions of false fear and real hate, celebrated with hugs. They had successfully built an “underground wall” worse than a prison. For, those who have been locked in are innocent people, not criminals and murderers, like those who built them.
Will these bring Israel peace and the so-called security they so desire? Not even by a remote chance. Gaza’s incendiary balloons launched from Gaza will continue to blow in the air and spark fires in Israel. These men and women who ordered them can only claim to have wasted those billion shekels in a mindless and futile exercise. It will delay the end of the blockade. Balloons don’t fly below the ground where the wall has been built. Nor will Israel manage to send fighter jets and gun fire through the walls. The whole thing is an exercise in imprudence. For generations the people will hold the Netanyahu’s and Gantz’s in contempt and ridicule. The wall did not even hide the shame of the corrupt Netanyahu who launched this white elephant as a distraction from his criminal trial.
On a similar front, Israel faces another fear factor. It is argued that kitchen knives have claimed more victims than concieved. The kitchen knife has become a symbol of resistance against Israel’s policy of settlements. And still, in its absolute lunacy, Israelis wonder why 14-year olds stab their Jewish neighbours. The West, which claims to be civilized, should be asking why two million people have been imprisoned for 15 years + under some of the most horrendous circumstances. The Wall is an addition to their dreadful and enforced exile.
They should be asking why houses are demolished indiscriminately. Why people are thrown into prison for no real rhyme or reason. Why women in prison are mistreated in ways that amount to worse than the worst forms of cruelties in the last century by fascists and autocracies. What prompts the knife stabbings? For every barricade and cordon, the Palestinians invent a new way to fight back. And for as longIsrael is building fences; it only confirms that there is an occupation- a state of colonial invasion rooted in racist premises.
Haaretz captures the Zionist mood succinctly when it argues that the political lunacy under which rationale the wall was constructed and completed will be viewed by the fascists and their alliance partners “in all its glory”. But, as Haaretz goes on to say: “It can serve as a new national monument to memorialize the temporary sanity that the country has lost”. After all Europe and North America, in their latent intent to remain complicit will allow Israel to carry out the worst and stay blind to those new facts on the ground?
It’s Official: Gaza Is Now a Ghetto
And now it’s official: This is a ghetto. Not a prison. A ghetto! What’s the difference between a prison and a ghetto? In a prison they incarcerate people for their crimes. In a ghetto they incarcerate people for their genes. Over 2 million human beings are crowded into this ghetto, 99 percent of them innocent of any crime. But that doesn’t bother the ghettos and their builders. After all, ghettos have always been designated for the innocent. Who knows that as well as we do?
Anyone who looks at this barbed wire monster, the guard towers, the strip of death, the user-friendly lethal toys, the sensors, the spotlights, the cameras, the sirens, and isn’t horrified and isn’t reminded and doesn’t whisper “ghetto!” to himself, that’s a sign that his soul has become calloused and his heart has hardened. And if he is Jewish and in spite of that he doesn’t find it hair-raising, that’s a sign that his entire history has been wasted on him. He hasn’t learned a thing from it.
The event was festive. Prison Guard First Class Aviv Kochavi delivered a speech. Defense Minister Gantz thanked barrier visionary Netanyahu. Brig. Gen. Eran Ofir, head of the Bars and Barriers Command, provided moving statistics about the length of the barbed wire and thickness of the concrete. Mazel tov.
Why Jerusalem cannot be taken off the table?
“When Palestinian teenagers get up in the morning and decide to go out to stab Israelis on the streets of the country’s “undivided” capital, knowing full well that they will likely end up dead and that their families could pay a very high price too, the Israeli response cannot just be to beef up security forces and continue business as usual. That may seem like an acceptable solution to Israelis, especially when their government frames it as the necessary cost of Israel’s control of East Jerusalem and ever-expanding settlement project. But Palestinians won’t accede to an authority that treats them simply as “terrorists” and targets for eviction. Without a political process working toward the prospect of self-determination for Palestinians, and with dispossession and repression undiminished, conflict and violence will only intensify, especially in East Jerusalem.”
Israel prison administration assaults Palestinian female prisoners
The Israeli prison administration in Damon prison has been carrying out successive assaults against female Palestinian prisoners, the Palestinian Prisoner’s Society (PPS) reported yesterday. In a statement, PPS said the repression measures against female prisoners continued for days and are still ongoing, stressing that the prisoners were severely beaten and some of them had been slightly injured. Israeli prison authorities imposed several repressive measures against the female prisoners, including cutting off electricity and spraying tear gas in their cells, adding that one of the prisoners lost consciousness during the repeated attacks. The escalation against the female prisoners took place after they refused the new measures announced by the prison administration against them, as well as the collective penalties that were imposed on them, including depriving them of family visits and purchasing items from the canteen, and the imposition of fines.
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Christians face threat of ‘extinction’ from ‘radical’ Israeli groups, warn church leaders
Christians in the occupied Palestinian territories face the “threat of extinction” from “radical” Israeli groups, church leaders have warned in a startling message in the run up to Christmas. They have called for help from the worldwide Christian community of 2.3 billion people.
“In recent years, the lives of many Christians have been made unbearable by radical local groups with extremist ideologies,” said Francesco Patton, the Catholic Church’s Custos of the Holy Land. Writing in the Daily Telegraph, he warned of the threat from Israeli extremists. “Despite two thousand years of faithful service, our presence is precarious and our future is at risk.” Patton is also the guardian of the Christian religious sites in the Holy Land. “Where once we numbered 20 per cent of the population of Jerusalem, today the Christian community counts for less than 2 per cent.” Prior to Israel’s creation in 1948, Palestinian Christians were the second largest religious community, making up more than eleven per cent of the total population. The waves of ethnic cleansing which the Palestinians call the Nakba (“Catastrophe”) has reduced their number to its present “extinction” level.
Israel’s violent capture, illegal annexation and military occupation of Jerusalem has accelerated the flight of Palestinian Christians from their country. Human rights groups have described Israel’s rule over the territory as a form of apartheid under which Christian Palestinians are also treated like second and third class citizens. Patton explained that the lives of Christians have been made unbearable because radical Jewish groups seek “to free the Old City of Jerusalem from its Christian presence, even the Christian quarter.”
Israeli Army allowed to shoot Palestinian stone throwers
The Palestinian Foreign Ministry condemned the Israeli army’s reported decision to allow Israeli soldiers to directly open fire at Palestinian stone throwers in the West Bank even after they run away.” The decision serves as a green light to commit more field executions against the Palestinians, according to the whims, moods, and assessments of the Israeli soldier,” the Palestinian Ministry said.
“The ministry is seriously considering the new decision, which represents a flagrant disregard for international humanitarian law and human rights principles,” it added. Israel Radio reported that the Israeli army began to change the policy of opening fire in the West Bank in a way that allows shooting at anyone who throws stones and Molotov cocktails during clashes and after they escape.