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Gaza Crisis Global Silence

World  (tags: Gaza, inhumane conditions, UN, Israel, war crimes, Palestinian Authority, Ali Abunimah, Global Silence, bend to the west )

- 640 days ago -
After 10 years of Israeli siege the UN warns Gaza is becoming unlivable. Ali Abunimah of The Electronic Intifada says Israel with the Palestinian Authority help is responsible for the crisis, as most of the world looks on in silence. Share this please


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MmAway M (522)
Sunday July 16, 2017, 6:52 pm
Perfection ! How do the two us get into these videos today???

MmAway M (522)
Sunday July 16, 2017, 6:53 pm
Yours is powerful for Gaza, mine was for the Earth

Animae C (509)
Sunday July 16, 2017, 9:58 pm
Silence always follows suffering.... : ((

Darren W (218)
Sunday July 16, 2017, 10:27 pm
It's always the innocents, children, weak and vulnerable who suffer the most.

Shared news footage and analysis over social media to raise and spread awareness.

Dawnie W (250)
Monday July 17, 2017, 12:52 am
💙💜Noted...It's a hell hole, my son was there with the army a year or two ago and he said life was miserable and dangerous. He said we don't know how lucky we are and if we knew how horrible life was there we would never whinge again because we are so blessed. Since he has been to some absolute hell holes in this world he cannot stand people who say how hard life is here. He always says go try life in this place and see how hard and awful life is.

💙💜Thank you...Dandelion.💙💜

😉💜ღ 💙Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ😺💜L💙ve, Hugs and Peace go with you all💜😺Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ ღ💙😉

Ingo Schreiner (8)
Monday July 17, 2017, 2:22 am

jan b (5)
Monday July 17, 2017, 6:49 am
Accurate figures about women honor killings in Gaza and the West Bank are harder to obtain, and not all cases are documented or covered by the Palestinian media. When it comes to violence against women in the Middle East in general, and in Palestine in particular, there are two dominant and completely opposing paradigms: The first blames the violence on a backward tradition and an inherently misogynistic society, choosing to focus solely on the category of “honour” crimes, as if they represent the only form of domestic violence women are subjected to. The other paradigm, meanwhile, holds Israeli colonialism and its institutionalised discrimination responsible, claiming that one cannot expect women to be free when Palestine is under occupation. Both paradigms are obviously too simplistic and unrepresentative. They avoid asking the tough questions and ignore both the multi-layered reality and the politics of daily life that Palestinian women on the ground face.
Dubbed “The Procession of Life,” the Palestinian women's protest called for an end to the phenomenon of “honour” crimes. Two motorcades, sending a vociferous message against violence throughout Palestine. Names of women killed by their family members, as well as placards and signs that read “No honour in honour crimes,” and “She was killed for being a woman” were raised on the cars. The impressive turnout for the protest and the media attention it attracted, however, could not prevent subsequent "murders".

Ed Site Issues V (198)
Monday July 17, 2017, 10:53 am
Noted, Thanks

Barb SiteIssues V (202)
Monday July 17, 2017, 2:08 pm
Noted, Thank you

Winn Adams (179)
Monday July 17, 2017, 5:46 pm

Jolene Pope (7)
Monday July 17, 2017, 8:43 pm
This is a terrible tragedy. Pressure needs to be put on Israel to do the right thing.

Evelyn B (63)
Tuesday July 18, 2017, 1:54 am
How typical to try to divert attention from the reality of the hell in Gaza by raising another issue!

Honour crimes are a problem across the Middle East (in all religious groups), and there are many Arab groups, associations & individuals who are combatting this tradition. It is not a Gaza-specific issue. Post a story about honour crimes, Jan - and let people discuss it there.

This thread is about the crisis in Gaza, where the situation is deteriorating horrifically. These are human beings suffering, and their suffering is getting worse as the health services are being hard hit. Can you not feel ANY empathy for those who suffer, if they happen to be Arab???

In addition, barely a day goes by when no Israeli planes fly low over Gaza, and people don't know if "this" plane with drop a shell. And off shore, Israeli ships prevent fishermen from going out to their official sea limits - far from it, they often force them back close to the shore. This contributes to starving people. And from the boundary fence, armed Israeli soldiers shoot & injure & kill people in Gaza. This is "routine" - it is seldom picked up by the media ... in fact, it is so frequent as not to constitute "news".

It suits the Israeli narrative to claim that they "react" to aggression - yet they carefully avoid any hint that the first strike comes from them, & the rare retaliation by people in Gaza is presented as though those people are INITIATING aggression ...

Thanks, Dandelion - I hope this video will be widely viewed.

Abbas does not serve Gaza. His priority is to try to ease things in the West Bank (where the situation is difficult enough).


Danuta Watola (1251)
Tuesday July 18, 2017, 6:27 am

Roberto MARINI (88)
Tuesday July 18, 2017, 9:22 am
Gaza is a big problem, thanks Dandelion

Marija M (25)
Tuesday July 18, 2017, 9:32 am
Poor people in Gaza. Thank you Dandelion

Sheryl G (359)
Tuesday July 18, 2017, 4:07 pm
I thought this was a very clearly stated video - these people have little electric in which to obtain water, cook their food, do their studies. Conditions are horrendous even on the best of days and I posted this video for the very reason of it's title.......SILENCE.

Global Silence.........I'm only one small person, but I will not let their cries and pain be unheard, even if only one more person learns of it, one more hears that cry from within their heart. The only worse thing than a person actually suffering what the Gazans are doing - is for no one to even KNOW that they are suffering.

It is too bad that some would rather change the subject than to at least feel an ounce of compassion. We may not agree with all that someone does, but I still know they are human beings. Deserving at least that much - how does it help them to bring up something that may or may not be happening.

There are many Fundamentalist Christians that toss their children to the curb because they are gay, or in the communities where all the old men want the young daughters once they reach 15. Too many young males around is too much competition, so they are sent packing their bags. Now do all Christians do this? No. But yet it seems when it comes to certain religions that the extremist are held up that everyone does the same thing.

If you don't think that a 65 year old man having his way with a 15 year old who just left being in the next room with her sister and her Aunt the night before isn't a destroyer, or the gay child roaming around in a world he wasn't brought up in alone, cold, and hungry isn't a life destroyer, well as they say, sometimes death is more merciful. Not that I advocate any of it.

Janet B (0)
Tuesday July 18, 2017, 7:30 pm

Colleen L (3)
Tuesday July 18, 2017, 7:46 pm
Agree with Jolene's comment. Thanks Dandelion

Tom P (29)
Tuesday July 18, 2017, 10:15 pm
Strange phemoninum how te more suffering there is the more the world stays silent.. Maybe we,re all afraid iour country, our neighborhood is next. and it will be.

Miss You All Dearly (67)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 1:56 am
Many thanks for this Dandelion.......we as Peoples don't seem to learn from the Past..unfortunately:

Niemöller was a Lutheran minister and early Nazi supporter who was later imprisoned for opposing Hitler's regime.

Martin Niemöller (1892–1984) was a prominent Protestant pastor who emerged as an outspoken public foe of Adolf Hitler and spent the last seven years of Nazi rule in concentration camps.

Niemöller is perhaps best remembered for the quotation:

First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Socialist.

Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.

The quotation stems from Niemöller's lectures during the early postwar period. Different versions of the quotation exist. These can be attributed to the fact that Niemöller spoke extemporaneously and in a number of settings. Much controversy surrounds the content of the poem as it has been printed in varying forms, referring to diverse groups such as Catholics, Jehovah's Witnesses, Jews, Trade Unionists, or Communists depending upon the version. Nonetheless his point was that Germans—in particular, he believed, the leaders of the Protestant churches—had been complicit through their silence in the Nazi imprisonment, persecution, and murder of millions of people.

Evelyn B (63)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 2:18 am
**************************************************** Ros!

Jerome S (0)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 2:28 am
thanks for sharing.

Jerome S (0)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 2:32 am
thanks for sharing.

Jim Ven (0)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 3:14 am

Jim Ven (0)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 3:18 am

Arild Gone for now (174)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 3:19 am
Israel is one of the few Countries that know what it means to live in a concentration camp so this is using the Nazi's playbook against the Palestinians living in Gaza.

ABBAS is TRAITOR! not just Puppet and Quisling

Sylvie A (190)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 3:31 am
It's a real tragedy for these people.
Thank you

Evelyn B (63)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 8:40 am
Arild - the PA needs younger, les entrenched leadership!

Crawling before the Israeli authorities has yet to lead to serious implementation by them of the Oslo Agreements, or any international laws on occupiers & occupied territories. It is time they woke up to this reality! And worked out non-violent resistance in a more systematic way ... while waiting for the balance to swing, current impunity for the State of Israel to come to an end - not least, due to growing Israeli Jews' recognition that continuing to apply Zionist expansionist policies is immoral, unethical, contrary to the principles of Judaism (religion) - and likely to destroy the State of Israel from within.

Lona G (66)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 10:20 am
Ali Abunimah: "Here's the critical point. This is not a natural disaster. This is a policy choice by Israel to do this to a million people and it is a policy choice the so called international community is supporting"." Yes, the silence is deafening. Thank you for making it heard, Dandelion.

Arild Gone for now (174)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 10:41 am
In some sense do agree with you Evelyn.The Oslo agreement was dead in the water whenYitzhak Rabin were assassinated,still the Zionists claim to adhere to this agreement and ruling in accordance with what Israel agreed to + further Zionist occupation of Palestinian territory.
Until the free western world - minus USA - wake up and tell Bibi that this is not acceptable,nothing good from the current Israeli policy against the Palestinians
“Milestones in the History of U.S. Foreign Relations” has been retired and is no longer maintained.
I put more faith in the Palestinian Movement of BDS than I do to the idea that Isreal will collapse from within.With the Ultra-Right ruling in Israel and the USA have Agent Orange I don't see much changing for a better situation for the Palestinians in the next 4 years.
Regarding me calling Abbas a Quesling comes from the fact that I'm Norwegian and we know what a person who betrays his or her own country by aiding an invading enemy, often serving later in a puppet government; fifth columnist. (1940; after Vidkun Quisling (1887-1945), pro-Nazi Norwegian leader) You can all find more info on the web if you are so inclined.

fly b (26)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 6:16 pm
- the PA needs younger, les entrenched leadership!" *************** Evelyn

From Middle east Children's Alliance (MECA):

"People are doing everything in the dark -cooking, eating, caring for babies and those who are sick or old. Food rots in refrigerators. No fans to cool the hot Gaza summer. Children can't read, students can' study. There have been many tragic house fires because the only solution people have is to use candles. "

July 7, 2017

fly b (26)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 6:36 pm
MECA's Gaza Project s Director Dr. Mona EL-Farra:

"The electricity situation right now overshadows everything. We are getting just 1.5-3 hours of electricity each day. In the hospitals, we have to postpone surgeries. The sewage treatment plants can't cope with the electricity cuts so most of the raw sewage is being dumped in the sea. The water is very bad and people who live in high buildings or rural areas can't even get the bad water because there is not enough electricity to pump the water to them. I expect we will have more diseases this summer, especially among children.

We can't get the medications we need to treat out patients. Cancer patients are dying daily because we have no medicine for them and they can't leave Gaza. No one can leave Gaza. The border with Egypt has been closed for three and a half months, which is the longest period since this inhuman siege started ten years ago.

This year when we distributed food parcels to families in Gaza, I saw there is real hunger. Poverty is everywhere and people are scared.

But despite the terrible situation and the shortages, people support each other. There is community solidarity and spirit, especially in the young people. In one town, young people came together to fix the main road. People contributed funds or volunteered to work in the summer heat. A team of volunteer engineers designed rechargeable battery-operated lighting systems that MECA can make and distribute in Gaza.

We're calling this the Gaza Light Campaign and our goal is to raise $18,000 to provide 200 families with the new systems.

Please make a special contribution to bring light and electrical power to hundreds of families in Gaza.

I have not heard from our friend, Abo, in Gaza, for months. I am concerned for him and his family, and their well being.
Thank you, Dandelion

fly b (26)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 6:37 pm
Families in Gaza receive just 1.5 to 3 hours of electricity each day. It's a disaster.

Your tax-deductible gift will make it possible for MECA to work with a group of young engineers in Gaza to purchase materials and install rechargeable battery-operated systems in homes in Gaza with lights, a fan, and a cell phone charging station.

fly b (26)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 6:39 pm
End all U.S. aid to Israel, NOW!!!

fly b (26)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 6:59 pm
Things will get worse for Palestinians. Why I still have faith.

As the Israeli occupation turns 50, I still believe Palestinians will bring justice without creating injustice, secure equality for all and achieve freedom

Janet B (0)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 7:43 pm

Roberto MARINI (88)
Thursday July 20, 2017, 8:29 am
thank you Dandelion

Freya H (345)
Thursday July 20, 2017, 12:51 pm
How ironic that a people who were subjected to one of the worst - if not THE worst - examples of ethnic cleansing now carry it out themselves. Or more precisely, the government of their "chosen" nation. I'm sorry, Israel, but you can no longer play the Jew Card - it is worn out and caked with innocent Palestinian blood. Not that I'm ever going to don a red brassard with a black gammadion on it - the Nazi scum persecuted many other segments of the population, and I am just the sort of person whom they would toss in a death camp. I am anti-Zionist, but still pro-Jewish, and that is NOT an oxymoron.

Unless the Israelis get rid of Nuttin-Yahoo and other extremists, I fear that Israel will become the target of some Very Bad Karma.

Janet B (0)
Thursday July 20, 2017, 5:19 pm

Evelyn B (63)
Saturday July 22, 2017, 1:25 am
*************************************** Freya!

fly b (26)
Saturday July 22, 2017, 3:11 am
Rachelle Marshall (1927-2017)

In Memoriam

READERS OF the Washington Report will be sad to learn of the passing May 29 of Rachelle Marshall, whose incisive and knowledgeable articles on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict graced these pages for some 25 years. Her death occurred just shy of her 90th birthday, and her commitment to the cause of justice for the Palestinian people was evident to the very end.

Those who knew Rachi, as she was affectionately called by family and friends, knew her to have a brilliant mind and a passionate, feisty and caring way of being in the world. Her life was deeply rooted in the cause of social justice. She and her husband, Hugh, who at 97 died this past December, were extremely active in the civil rights movement and in opposing the war in Vietnam. Prior to that, in the 1940s the two worked with poor people in West Virginia around housing issues.

Like most Jews of her generation, Rachi was indelibly marked by the Holocaust that sensitized her to the suffering of her own people.

Eventually, however, as she explained in her “Seeing the Light” essay for this magazine (see facing page), after an intensive period of study and meeting with Palestinians, Rachi came to understand the suffering and injustice inflicted upon the Palestinian people at the hands of Israel, and she became a fierce, committed and deeply informed critic of Israel. This evolution in her thinking caused many friends and relatives to express anger at what she was doing. This was a difficult time for her, but she stood her ground and did not waiver.

Rachi loved learning and had a vast interest in and knowledge of both political and cultural issues, and one could always learn something of interest in spending time with her.

She was a prolific and talented writer, and her articles on a variety of political topics appeared in such venues such as The Progressive, Foreign Policy in Focus, and Truthout. She also had an uncanny ability to get her insightful letters published in The New York Times as well as her local paper. A good example of her sophisticated and nuanced thinking appears in an article in Foreign Policy in Focus, where she wrote that Americans fail to understand the visceral way Russia views NATO and the European Union as an existential threat. She went on to say, “Even more disturbing is the fact that so few policy makers observe the cardinal rule of effective diplomacy: that when dealing with a perceived adversary, negotiators should be acutely aware of the other side’s concerns, especially when it comes to security.”

In another article in Foreign Policy in Focus, she wrote that modern warfare invariably involves the indiscriminate killing of human beings who bear no responsibility for its causes, and any attempt to distinguish between legitimate military actions that kill civilians (“collateral damage”) and tragic mistakes that kill civilians is a pointless exercise. She believed that atrocities are an integral part of war and that all wars must be considered war crimes.

While highly critical of Hillary Clinton’s obsequious, unconditional support of Israel and her proclivity to foreign intervention and war, Rachi was deeply frightened and disturbed by the election of Donald Trump, because she saw to the core of his racist, authoritarian personality, which reminded her so much of how fascism came to power in Germany.

Rachi spent the last several years of her life living with her husband in a retirement home in Mill Valley, California, where she was active with Mill Valley Seniors for Peace. She was also a member of Jewish Voice for Peace and the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom. She is survived by her son, Jonathan (see this issue’s “Other Voices” supplement”) and daughter-in-law and four grandchildren.

Rachi lived her life with courage and integrity and was an inspiration for me and many others. I for one will miss her greatly, and feel grateful to have known her and worked with her for the cause of Palestinian justice that is so dear to us both.

Seeing the Light:  Lessons From My Son and My Grandfather

Washington Report, November 1989

LIKE ALMOST ALL Jews of my generation, I was indelibly marked by the calamity inflicted on the Jews of Europe between 1933 and 1945. Growing up safely in New York during those years, I knew that I was alive only because my grandparents had decided to come to America. Others in my family were not so lucky. During the late 1930s there was constant anxiety in our house as my father talked endlessly on the telephone trying to secure safe passage for relatives still in Europe. The newsreel I saw in 1938 of bearded Jews on their hands and knees in a Vienna street, surrounded by jeering crowds, was a searing revelation that ordinary men and women could suddenly become savage.

So after World War II it would have been unthinkable to me not to welcome the establishment of the state of Israel. At last, I thought, the Jewish people had a safe haven. During the 1950s and 1960s it never occurred to me that there was any inconsistency in working for civil rights in America and giving my full support to Israel. The only “Palestinians” I knew about were Jews like my Uncle Simon, who had settled in Palestine in the 19th century to escape the Czarist pogroms.

For nearly 20 years I assumed that whatever the Israeli government did was for self-defense, and thus justified. The first, imperceptible doubt arose the day after Israel’s victory in the June 1967 war. “What a triumph!” I exclaimed at breakfast after a look at the headlines. “Israel is finally safe.”

Our 12-year-old son, Jonathan, looked skeptical. “Why is Israel any safer than before?” he asked. “Doesn’t conquering more territory just mean making more enemies?” I reminded him that he hadn’t been alive during the Holocaust and therefore couldn’t possibly understand the relief that Jews everywhere must be feeling. To my shame, I accused him of being too rational.

As the days passed and I read news reports from the Middle East that suggested the conflict was far from over, Jonathan’s questions occasionally troubled me. But, at the time, U.S. involvement in Vietnam was uppermost in my mind, so much that in December 1967 I spent three weeks in jail for helping to block the entrance to the Oakland Army Terminal.

The carpet bombing of Vietnam by B-52s and the use of napalm and white phosphorus against defenseless peasants struck me as not so different from the Nazi ruthlessness we had once condemned. When the Honeywell Corporation announced it had developed an “improved” napalm that would stick to the skin longer, I realized that the Germans had no monopoly on evil.

When I later came to read about the Middle East, the knowledge that my own country was capable of committing atrocities gave me a degree of objectivity that enabled me to accept information about Israel that I would earlier have dismissed as Arab propaganda. The learning process began a year or two after my breakfast table confrontation with Jonathan, when an article appeared in the Stanford Daily that harshly criticized Israel’s treatment of Palestinians.

I was angy and wanted to reply, but I couldn’t counter the author’s facts with facts of my own. So I went to the library and began reading—starting with Christopher Sykes’ Crossroads to Israel and Maxime Rodinson’s Israel and the Arabs, and going on to books by Israelis and others. It wasn’t until much later that I was willing to trust works by Arab authors such as Sabri Jiryis and Edward Said. I took two courses on the Middle East at Stanford and went to hear most of the speakers who came to the campus, including Muhammad Hallaj and Ibrahim Abu-Lughod. I was shocked when they were nearly shouted off the stage by members of the audience.

The light began to dawn as I learned that the Jewish haven I had welcomed was established on land the Palestinians had a right to claim as their own. I learned about the methods that Jewish forces had used to expel over 700,000 Palestinians from their homes, such as the fiery barrel bombs that burned through Arab villages, and the massacre of 250 men, women and children at Deir Yassin. I learned about Arab terrorism and about Israeli reprisal raids. From Menachem Begin’s book, The Revolt, I learned about Jewish terrorism and of the dedication of Jewish zealots to extending Israel’s borders to include the east bank of the Jordan.

The more I read, the greater my sense of betrayel. A large part of what I had been told about Israel and its neighbors was based on myth, I realized. And the myths continued to be repeated in most of the newspaper and magazine articles I read that dealt with the Middle East. But then I found that the price of challenging the conventional wisdom came high.

In the mid-1970s I began writing letters to the editor that were critical of Israel’s role in Lebanon, specifically its devastating bombing of civilian villages and its support for the Phalangist forces. The printed replies (and anonymous letters) were short on factual arguments but called me everything from an anti-Semitic Jew to a communist. The nice local rabbi, a hero of the Selma civil rights march, called me in to ask me not to wash our dirty linen in public. “It can only do harm to Jews when we criticize Israel,” he said.

The hardest thing was that relatives and friends expressed pain, and sometimes anger, over what I was doing. One of the guests at a family birthday party said to me in all seriousness, “You are an enemy of the Jews.”

My husband and children were shocked by this reaction, but what reassured all of us is that we soon came to know, and work with, a group of Israeli and Palestinian graduate students at Stanford who believed fervently that both peoples could peacefully coexist, as equals, in separate independent states. At the time, this was a daring position for either Israelis or Palestinians to take. The sanity and humaneness of these students reinforced my own belief that a two-state solution was the only way to settle the Middle East conflict and therefore assure Israeli’s security.

Despite this intellectual conviction, there were times when the accusations by fellow Jews that I was doing harm to Israel by what I wrote and said made me wonder if perhaps I was a kind of traitor. Then a chance discovery about my grandfather changed everything.

He had come to America just before World War I and died before I was born. All I really knew about him was that my parents and aunts and uncles revered him, that he had founded a Hebrew-language newspaper in New York, and had helped to raise money in America for schools in Palestine. One day while I was browsing in the library, I found his name, Abraham Lubarsky, in the index of a book and learned that he had been an associate of Ahad Ha-Am.

Ahad Ha-Am (whose real name was Asher Ginzberg) was already a hero of mine. He was one of a small group of Russian Jews called “cultural Zionists” who favored the establishment in Palestine of a homeland for the Jews but believed that they had no right to rule the entire country. The Arab inhabitants, Ahad Ha-Am wrote in 1920, “have a tangible right based on generation after generation of life and work in the country. The country is their national home, too, and they too have the right to develop their national potentialities as far as they are able.” (Zionism, Gary Smith, ed., Harper & Row, 1974.) My grandfather’s entry in Encyclopedia Judaica says that he was “especially close to Ahad Ha-Am, whom he stimulated to write his first famous essay.”


It is now too late for the kind of multicultural nation in Palestine that Ahad Ha-Am and my grandfather envisioned. But their insight that Arabs and Jews would have to live together as equals in the land of Palestine if there was to be peace between them is as valid today as it ever was. The “cultural Zionists” believed the identity and survival of the Jewish people depended not on wielding power over others but on establishing a community that would preserve and put into practice centuries of Jewish teaching and tradition. Central to the Judaism they valued were the words of Amos: “Let justice roll down like waters and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream.”

If they were alive today, Ahad Ha-Am and my grandfather would undoubtedly have felt obliged, as Jews, to speak out against acts of brutality and injustice no matter who committed them. And I think they would have believed, as I do, that today the Jewish people face their greatest danger not from Palestinians seeking self-determination, but from an Israeli government that is making a mockery of Judaism.

fly b (26)
Saturday July 22, 2017, 3:15 am
Power cuts put lives of Gaza kidney patients in danger. 21 July 2017

The Gaza Strip’s healthcare system is failing amid an ongoing electricity crisis that has seen the territory’s two million people forced to cope with just a few hours of power a day amid sweltering summer temperatures.

In June, Israel began sharply reducing the electricity supply to Gaza – a step human rights groups said was illegal, since Israel, as the occupying power, is responsible for the welfare of the civilian population.

This came after the Palestinian Authority drastically reduced electricity payments to Israel, as part of its effort to squeeze Hamas, the political movement that is the de facto government in Gaza.

Gaza’s power has in the past months dropped from eight hours a day to just three or four, with periods when it has fallen even lower.

Three months prior to that, the PA began restricting transfers of vital medicine to Gaza, according to health authorities in the territory.

Ashraf al-Qidra, the spokesperson for Gaza’s health ministry, told Reuters the PA reduced shipments of medicine for cancer and cystic fibrosis by 35 percent in March.

The shortage of power and medicine is taking its toll on the most vulnerable people.

Health officials estimate that 320 people in Gaza have cystic fibrosis, an incurable inherited lung disease that is life threatening without specific medicine and regular hospital treatments.

In addition to being short of vital medicines, Gaza’s hospitals are now nearly completely dependent on backup generators that regularly malfunction, causing interruptions to treatments.

Last week, al-Qidra stated that in recent weeks, 16 Palestinians in Gaza had died, because Israel and the Palestinian Authority obstructed their transfers to hospitals outside Gaza for urgent medical treatment.

Dialysis treatments disrupted

The Gaza-based Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) reported this month that power cuts have also compromised dialysis – another life-saving treatment to clean the blood of patients suffering from kidney failure.

Dialysis machines to which patients must be connected for several hours at a time cannot operate properly with the constant interruptions in the electricity supply.

As a result, blood is left in the machines, which can cause a shortage of blood and other health complications that can be fatal.

“I had a patient whose treatment was interrupted for three hours because the generator had no fuel and the blood started to clot and the patient needed a blood transfer,” Dr. Muhammad Shatat, the head of dialysis at al-Shifa Hospital, Gaza City’s largest, told PCHR.

“If this would happen on a regular basis, the patient would die after two or three days.”

Al-Shifa is the only facility that offers dialysis, forcing residents in the north and south of Gaza to make lengthy journeys to receive treatments that may not be successful.

In 2012, the United Nations predicted that Gaza would be “unlivable” by 2020. But in another report released earlier this month, the UN said the deterioration has accelerated “further and faster” than anticipated.

It noted the shortcomings of the Gaza Reconstruction Mechanism and Israel’s refusal to allow necessary material and equipment to complete reconstruction after the massive destruction of Israel’s war on Gaza in 2014.

Last year, The Electronic Intifada exclusively published the detailed terms of the Gaza Reconstruction Mechanism, along with a confidential legal analysis that had been prepared for top UN officials.

The leaked analysis said that the UN-brokered scheme violated international law, including the very right to life of Palestinians, because it tightened Israel’s control over vital construction materials entering Gaza.

Sheryl G (359)
Saturday July 22, 2017, 6:55 am
Thank you for sharing the life of Rachelle Marshall (1927-2017) who among her many accomplishments for humanitarian causes, was also able to move her mind and opinion based on facts she was able to obtain. If we should all be so lucky to have people with entrenched views to be so willing to question what they believe to be true. In any case I'm sure her Grandfather was waiting for her on the other side with open arms to say good job granddaughter.

fly b (26)
Saturday July 22, 2017, 5:14 pm

Gaza’s power system is at risk of collapse.

In 2006, the Israeli military bombed Gaza’s only power plant, destroying its six transformers. Under the blockade, the power plant can’t import parts to replace damaged components. Temporary fixes have allowed the plant to function at a minimal level, but those solutions were never made to last.

Other factors have exacerbated the power crisis, including a halt in smuggled fuel from Egypt in 2013, the destruction of fuel storage tanks and other structures at the plant by Israeli airstrikes in 2014, and the destruction of infrastructure and distribution networks throughout Gaza. Since April 2017, the Gaza power plant has been offline due to limited fuel imports, further limiting electricity in Gaza.

While Gaza’s electrical grid is linked with the Israeli system, Israel limits how much power it sells to Gaza, and existing power lines can only supply a fraction of Gaza’s total needs.

Today, less than one-third of Gaza’s electricity demand is being met. Rolling blackouts leave Palestinians in Gaza with less than four hours of electricity per day—affecting the health and well-being of residents; jeopardizing critical services, such as hospitals, schools, and water sanitation; and making it impossible for businesses to function.

Ending the blockade is crucial to address the power crisis, but it will not improve the situation immediately. Even if new parts could be imported and additional infrastructure could be built, it would take up to five years for the system to reach a point where current needs could be met.

People in Gaza have no more than 4 hours of electricity per day.

Why Gaza can't count on electricity

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•The Gaza power plant operates at less than one-third of its capacity and has regularly had to shut down, due to fuel shortages, caused by fuel costs and Israeli limitations on importing fuel.

•Because of the limited power supply, over 70 percent of Gaza households have access to piped water for only six to eight hours once every two to four days.

•Since 2010, at least 29 people—24 of them children—have died in Gaza from fires or suffocation directly linked to power outages.

•Water is piped to over 70 percent of Gaza households only once every two to four days for four to six hours at a time. That’s because the insufficient power supply can’t provide uninterrupted access to water. And if homes don’t have power during those periods to operate household pumps used to fill cisterns, then they will receive no water.

•Hospitals provide only limited services because they rely on generators, which produce insufficient electrical supplies that can damage sensitive medical equipment.

•Schools often run without electricity, leaving students in the dark and making many educational activities impossible.

fly b (26)
Saturday July 22, 2017, 5:23 pm
Justice for Palestine. Stand With Issa Amro!

From the notorious Qalandia checkpoint.

"I am in Palestine and Israel for the month of July, witnessing life under occupation. On Sunday, I will attend the trial of human rights defender Issa Amro as he faces 18 politically motivated charges in Israeli military court. This is the kind of solidarity and experiential learning that happens on our CODEPINK trips and peace camps.

During our Peace Camp, I will talk about my experiences in Palestine. From the notorious Qalandia checkpoint to the growth of outpost settlements in the Jordan Valley to life in Bethlehem’s Aida refugee camp, I will relay my experiences and what we can do to support the Palestinian struggle for peace."

Alexa R (319)
Saturday July 22, 2017, 5:25 pm
Freya H, still subjected to one of the WORST cases of ethnic cleansing and the world at large is silent:

down for Friday night Shabbat dinner in their home in Halamish. They had invited their friends to come later that evening for a celebration to mark the birth of a grandson when suddenly a Palestinian terrorist infiltrated their home, and stabbed Yosef, 70, and two of his children - Elad, 36 and Chaya, 46 - to death.

Yosef’s wife, Tovah, 68, was wounded and hospitalized at Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem. The funerals of the deceased are expected to take place Sunday It took only 15 minutes from the moment the terrorist, Omar al-Abed, climbed over the fence around the settlement of Halamish to the moment he was killed by an off-duty soldier, IDF Spokesman Brig.-Gen. Ronen Manelis said on Saturday.

The initial investigation into the attack determined that Abed, 19, carried out the assault alone.

He walked three kilometers from his village of Kobar to Halamish armed with a knife he bought a few days earlier. Carrying a backpack with a Koran, wallet and bottle of water, he arrived at the family’s home, close to the entrance of the settlement.

He is believed to have “purified himself” with the bottle of water before entering the home and stabbing to death Salomon and his two adult children.

The attack ended when Abed was shot in the stomach by the victims’ neighbor, an off-duty Oketz unit soldier, who heard screams from the home next door and shot through the window of the house, seriously wounding the attacker. Abed was later hospitalized and is now in the hands of the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency).

Manelis said: “It was a horrific, murderous, attack. The house is full of blood,” adding that the photographs showing the aftermath of deadly attack don’t show the entire picture.

“He decided in the last two days that he wanted to carry out an attack,” Manelis said.

While it appeared Abed carried it out alone, Manelis said security forces were still looking into possible accomplices.

The terrorist’s brother was arrested on Saturday to determine whether people around the attacker knew of his intentions.

Manelis confirmed that Abed triggered the warning system when he infiltrated the settlement by climbing over its security fence. Security forces are now investigating how he was able to carry out the attack.

IDF forces in action following deadly attack in Halamish, July 22, 2017. (IDF Spokesperson's Unit)
IDF forces in action following deadly attack in Halamish, July 22, 2017. (IDF Spokesperson's Unit)

There is also a broader effort underway to prevent further deterioration of the situation on the ground, which Manelis said is worsening with the trend of increased support for attacks among Palestinians.

“There is more and more support for violence as the days go on and more potential attackers, Manelis said, stressing a new aspect that hasn’t been evident in other attacks since the wave of violence broke out two years ago.

“What is different now is that there is more focus on religion, especially in the last few days, which we didn’t see before. Such a focus makes it more dangerous because it has more support in the Arab world,” he said.

“There is more consensus and support for this attack among Palestinians and more legitimization on the streets,” he continued, adding that “there is a dangerous dynamic now and we are working to prevent another attack like the one on Friday night.”

A senior IDF officer stated that Abed was affiliated with Hamas but was not a member and had bought a knife in the last two days “with the intent to cause harm in response to the events surrounding the Temple Mount.”

The Gaza-based terrorist group praised the attack as “heroic” and said it was because of “Israel’s attacks on the rights of our people in Jerusalem and at the Aksa Mosque.”

Following the attack, Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Gadi Eisenkot held an emergency meeting to discuss the situation. It was decided that the IDF would send additional troops to the West Bank to reinforce forces already there, in addition to the five extra battalions placed on alert on Thursday.

The added security measures come amid tensions surrounding the installation of metal detectors on the Temple Mount complex following the deadly terrorist stabbing attack that took the lives of two Israeli police officers 10 days ago.

Eisenkot and Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman visited Halamish on Saturday morning, just hours after the attack, and called on Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to condemn it.

“We demand an unequivocal condemnation of the massacre that took place last night in which an innocent family, who did not endanger anyone, was massacred during their Shabbat meal,” said Liberman.

IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Gadi Eisenkot is briefed by senior IDF officers at the scene of the attack in Halamish, July 22, 2017. (IDF Spokesperson's Unit)
IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Gadi Eisenkot is briefed by senior IDF officers at the scene of the attack in Halamish, July 22, 2017. (IDF Spokesperson's Unit)

Eisenkot and Liberman, who were accompanied by the head of Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories Maj.-Gen. Yoav Mordechai, as well as the head of Military Intelligence Maj.- Gen. Herzl Halevi, were given a situational briefing by the commander of the IDF’s Central Command Maj.-Gen. Roni Numa, as well as by the brigade commander and Shin Bet authorities.

Liberman instructed security forces to speed up the procedures to demolish the homes of the terrorists who carried out th deadly attack in Jerusalem’s Old City, as well as the home of the Halamish attacker.

He also asked that the presence of IDF troops on roads and in sensitive locations in the West Bank be increased.

Earlier on Saturday Eisenkot also met with the commander of the Judea and Samaria Division, Brig.-Gen. Lior Carmeli.

Israeli troops raided Abed’s home in Kobar on Saturday morning, carrying out extensive weapons searches. They arrested his brother and mapped his home in preparation for the demolition. In addition, troops, special units and the Shin Bet encircled the village, allowing residents to leave only for humanitarian reasons.

President Reuven Rivlin called the attack heartbreaking, reaching out to the family and praising the IDF soldier who ended the killing spree.

“The entire world and the leadership in the region, in particular, must cooperate with Israel in the war against terrorism and incitement,” said Rivlin. “Those who do not uproot terrorism cooperate with it and contribute to the region’s deterioration in an unnecessary war of blood that no one wanted.”

Gil Hoffman contributed to this report.


fly b (26)
Saturday July 22, 2017, 5:43 pm
TAKE ACTION: Stand with Issa Amro.

Have you heard of Issa Amro? He has been called the “Palestinian Gandhi” and embodies non-violent resistance. In 2014, he helped establish a kindergarten for young children who otherwise had to walk through a checkpoint to get to school. In 2016, when Palestinian families were living under a 6-month long closed military zone order where no medical professionals, repair people, visitors, or human rights observers could enter, Issa organized volunteers to carry a refrigerator on their backs to a family in need.

Now he needs our help.

Israel recently dredged up 18 absurd charges against Issa dating back to 2010. His case will be tried in Israeli military court, where the conviction rate is over 99%!

Amnesty International has called for Israel to drop the “baseless” charges against Issa and states that if convicted, they will designate him a Prisoner of Conscience. Now, in a historic and unprecedented move, four members of our Congress are calling for his freedom, too, circulating a letter to U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, asking him to defend Issa’s “rights to due process, freedom of expression and peaceful protest.”

We can help amplify their voices.

We need as many representatives as possible to call for Issa to be protected from Israel’s illegitimate military court system. Please urge your Representative in Congress to sign the letter and keep Issa free! Send them an email. Schedule a meeting with them while they are in their home districts and attend their town halls. Use our information packetto talk with them about how Issa’s nonviolent resistance to 50 years of military occupation should be commended, not criminalized.

In 2010, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) declared Issa “Human Rights Defender of the Year” for Palestine. Now we have a chance to defend his own human rights.

Issa’s voice and presence are essential both to the Palestinian community on the ground and to the international community united for freedom, justice, and equality. It is essential we act to protect him.

3,255 signatures

Will you sign?

fly b (26)
Saturday July 22, 2017, 5:45 pm
CODEPINK is proud to work directly with Palestinian Human Rights Defenders to lift up their work and help protect them as they face attacks and attempts to silence them.
• Take Action: Protect nonviolent Palestinian human rights defenders, Stand with Issa Amro
• Read Rae Abileah's piece on the case of peaceful protesters under attack in Nabi Saleh

• Read Rae Abileah's piece on the case of peaceful protesters under attack in Nabi Saleh

End US Military Aid to Israel.

fly b (26)
Saturday July 22, 2017, 5:53 pm
sign THE PETITION: Demand the Release of Khalida Jarrar and Khitam Saafin

Sheryl G (359)
Saturday July 22, 2017, 7:42 pm
Petition signed. Amazing how I place on all sorts of human rights stories and environmental stories and never see any positive action presented by signing those petitions. Only if I place one article on about Palestinians do certain people come out of the woodwork and deflect what is being posted.

Sheryl G (359)
Saturday July 22, 2017, 7:47 pm
You know I care about all people, all killings are wrong. But when a certain injustice is presented on C2 it does not make another injustice any less. However, when we don't acknowledge the posting and the injustice that it reflects we have shown our limits of being human, that we don't accept the humanity in "some" people.

All injustices are wrong, and perhaps you should post that injustice onto C2 news, rather than ignoring what this video has presented.

Darren W (218)
Saturday July 22, 2017, 11:29 pm
Agree with everything you've written above, Dandelion.

In some cases, regime change at the top is necessary to enact a change at a global level / international, then national level, then regional, then local level.

If people continuously vote for right-wing politicians, who oppress, divide, destroy environments and exploit people, things are not going to change.

Alexa R (319)
Sunday July 23, 2017, 1:01 am
Caroline Glick:

The Solomon family was massacred Friday night as they celebrated Shabbat and the birth of their newest grandson in their home. They were massacred by a 19 year old jihadist who posted an explanation of his imminent act of barbarous murder against his Jewish neighbors on Facebook less that two hours before he stormed their home in Neve Tzuf.
The murderer used the same language as his"moderate" "pro-peace" "legitimate" leader, PLO chief Mahmoud Abbas who said that Jews pollute the Temple Mount with our "filthy feet."
Ironically and appallingly, just last week the US State Department published a report blaming Israel for Palestinian terrorism and claiming that the PLO-led, and US-funded Palestinian Authority doesn't incite terrorism and violence and hatred.
The State Department also opposes the Taylor Force bill which if passed -- along the lines passed in the House of Representatives, (the Senate bill is an insult to our intelligence), would end US taxpayer subsidization of Palestinian terrorism to the tune of more than half a billion dollars a year.
The State Department -- Tillerson included, apparently, doesn't see anything wrong with the fact that the PA uses more than $300 million every year to pay people like the murderer who butchered the Solomons and their families.
Having murdered the Solomons in their home, this terrorist is guaranteed a lifetime salary and pension for his family that ensure them all an upper middle class economic status -- courtesy of US taxpayers via the "moderate" PA, PLO, Abbas, terror machine.
I just gave my final speech in Australia and will be heading on to the US for a month from here.
It is my intention to use my time in the US to convince the Washington types that this appalling, anti-Israel and anti-Jewish policy of supporting people committed to our annihilation in the name of fake peace must end.
Enough is enough. This simply cannot continue. Jewish life is sacred, not worthless. It is time for the US to accept and base its policy on this basic, self-evident fact.

Miss You All Dearly (67)
Sunday July 23, 2017, 5:00 am has been such a long time since I saw you on Care2...I oftened wondered if you and yours were well and seems you are and I am thankful for that.....also read about that massacre on Friday horrible as it might is the way of the World these days..... Just like that innocent Australian woman that got shot down in the on a knife edge...that is what happens.....then when you throw injustice, inequality and all that goes with is a real cocktail.....but it has been happening for decades now......and after 24 hours most people will will shout louder but will they be thinks not....that is why nothing has changed....both sides get outraged but nothing some Palestinians get killed.......some Israeli Jews get killed....and in Australia our focus is on the road toll......and shark attacks.......we don't live in the Israeli/Palestine conflict zone......our thoughts are more about NK and China.......

fly b (26)
Sunday July 23, 2017, 9:57 pm
TAKE ACTION: They have no idea what the charges against them are.

Before dawn on July 2, Israeli forces burst into the homes of Palestinian women activists, Khalida Jarrar and Khitam Saafin. The women were taken to Ofer military prison where they were interrogated for 30 minutes and placed in small windowless prison cells. At 4:00 PM they were transferred to HaSharon prison.

Tell U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to pressure Israel to immediately release Khalida and Khitam!

Khalida and Khitam are being held under Israel’s system of administrative detention where secret evidence is used to hold prisoners without charge or trial. They have no idea what the charges against them are.

Khalida and Khitam must be set free. Tell Secretary of State Tillerson to pressure Israel to release them.

Khalida is on the Palestinian National Committee for the follow-up of the International Criminal Court. Khitam is president of the Union of Palestinian Women's Committee has spoken internationally at many events, including the World Social Forum. Join us in calling for their freedom and share the image above on Twitter and Facebook.

Towards justice,
Ariel and the entire CODEPINK team

P.S. Join us Monday, July 24 for a webinar on what you can do to stop the Trump administration from passing a budget that expands military spending while slashing social programs! Don't forget to attend our August 26-27 Sonoma Valley Peace Camp.

Margie FOURIE (148)
Thursday August 3, 2017, 12:16 am
Very sad that we are so cruel to others.

Margie FOURIE (148)
Thursday August 3, 2017, 11:37 pm
Thanks again

Margie FOURIE (148)
Sunday August 6, 2017, 1:53 am
Thanks again

fly b (26)
Sunday August 6, 2017, 9:05 am

Gaza: Ten Years of Economic Blockade

The tenth anniversary of Israel’s illegal blockade of the Gaza Strip has been marked by a glut of new reports from human rights organisations alerting the world to a deepening humanitarian crisis in the territory. Perhaps the starkest warning has come from the International Committee of the Red Cross in suggesting that “a systemic collapse of an already battered infrastructure and economy is impending.”

What distinguishes this crisis from the disasters and emergencies that normally push civilian populations to the edge of catastrophe is that it is not the result of a hurricane, flood, tsunami, drought or famine but the calculated policy of the Israeli government.

As Harvard scholar Sara Roy, who has meticulously researched the impact of Israel’s policy-making on Gaza for thirty years suggests,

“What is happening to Gaza is catastrophic; it is also deliberate, considered and purposeful.”

Roy argues that Gaza has been subjected to ‘de-development’ meaning that it has been “dispossessed of its capacity for rational and sustainable economic growth and development, coupled with a growing inability to effect social change”. So, what we are witnessing in Gaza today is the ‘logical endpoint’ of this policy; “a Gaza that is functionally unviable”.

In its public pronouncements on Gaza, Israel insists that the blockade is a security matter designed to keep Hamas, the Palestinian political group with a militant wing, at arm’s length. In its more off-guard moments, however, Israel has revealed its true hand in Gaza.

United States government cables leaked to Wikileaks show that the Israeli government kept the US embassy in Tel Aviv briefed on the blockade and on “multiple occasions” said their policy aimed “to keep the Gazan economy on the brink of collapse without quite pushing it over the edge.”

This appears to have been Israel’s blockade policy from the outset as the BBC reported an Israeli government adviser, Dov Weisglass, as having said in 2006:

“The idea is to put the Palestinians on a diet, but not to make them die of hunger.” And, in 2012, an Israeli court forced the release of a government ‘red lines’ document which detailed “the number of calories Palestinians in Gaza need to consume to avoid malnutrition.”

The Israeli human rights organisation Gisha, which won the legal battle to have the red lines document published, argues that “the research contradicts Israel’s assertions that the blockade is needed for security reasons.”

The chilling calculation behind the ‘red lines’ policy underlines the extent of Israel’s deception in publicly suggesting that the blockade is a security measure while privately, and quite methodically, inflicting collective punishment on an already desperately poor population, mostly comprising refugees.

On visits to Gaza’s eight refugee camps, I’ve seen stunted children clearly undernourished and underweight, living in desolate, concrete environments devoid of any greenery or safe spaces to play. The camps are concrete blocks heaped upon each other constrained in their expansion on the ground by Gaza’s tiny area of 360 square kilometres which is home to 1.8 million people; a population density akin to that of Manhattan or Tokyo.

Around 70 percent of Gazans are refugees and, according to the Euro-Med Monitor for Human Rights, food insecurity in the territory is at 72 percent and unemployment at 43.2 percent.

This economic crisis has created serious mental health problems in Gaza. Sara Roy quotes the Gaza Community Mental Health Program which has found that “forty percent of Palestinians are clinically depressed, a rate unmatched anywhere in the world” with Gaza’s Shifa Hospital receiving “up to 30 patients every month who have attempted suicide.”

Israel imposed the blockade on Gaza in 2007 following the return of a Hamas government in elections in 2006. The US and EU followed Israel’s lead in refusing to accept the legitimacy of the election result. International pressure contributed to an internal Palestinian power struggle which resulted in Hamas assuming control of Gaza and the Fatah-dominated Palestinian Authority governing the West Bank.

While Israel had withdrawn its settlements from Gaza in 2005, it remained the territory’s occupying power under international law by controlling its borders, airspace and coastline.

As Sara Roy suggests, the 2005 withdrawal reflected “Israel’s desire to rid itself of any responsibility for Gaza while retaining control of it.” She regards the core goals of Israel’s disengagement as seeking:

“to internally divide, separate, and isolate the Palestinians – demographically, economically, and politically – so as to ensure Israel’s full control both direct (West Bank) and indirect (Gaza Strip) – over all Palestinian lands and resources”.

The imposition of strict border controls tightly limiting the movement of goods and people across Gaza’s borders by Israel has been compounded by the closure of smuggling tunnels into Gaza by General Abdel Fattah El Sisi, who seized power in Egypt through a military coup in 2013.

The tunnels were an economic lifeline for Gaza and the passenger terminal at Rafah into Egypt, which became the only means for most Palestinians of leaving Gaza, has opened only intermittently under Sisi.

Euro-Med Monitor for Human Rights found that less than 50 percent of requests to exit Gaza for medical treatment through Israel’s Erez Crossing were approved in 2016 and 43 cancer patients were refused permission to cross to seek treatment in the first half of 2016.

With only a trickle of Palestinians securing passage through the Rafah crossing, these closures can be a death sentence for patients in need of medical assistance. They also deny opportunities for employment and study overseas which, for the majority, are the only escape routes from poverty.

The compounding pressures of war

The social pressures of poverty, isolation and economic inertia caused by the blockade have been compounded and exacerbated by three Israeli military operations in Gaza since 2008, which have collectively claimed the lives of 3,745 Palestinians and wounded 17,441.
The most recent operation, ‘Protective Edge’, was a 51-day onslaught in July and August 2014 that killed 2,131 Palestinians, of whom 1,473 were civilians, 501 were children and 257 women. There were 71 Israeli casualties; 66 soldiers and five civilians.

The infrastructural damage caused by ‘Protective Edge’ was devastating with: 78 hospitals and clinics damaged; 7 schools destroyed and 252 damaged; 17,800 homes damaged or completed destroyed; and half of the open-field crop areas damaged or destroyed. Just 46 percent of the $1.59 billion pledged by donors for reconstruction in Gaza has been received and a constant source of crisis is the greatly reduced electricity supply which impacts on all aspects of daily life in Gaza.

The World Health Organisation (2017) has said that the worsening electricity outages are “threatening the closure of essential health services which would leave thousands of people without access to life-saving health care.”

This crisis has been compounded by the Palestinian Authority’s decision this summer not to pay the full fuel bill to Israel for Gaza’s electricity supply in an attempt to weaken Hamas and wrest back control of the territory.

This wreckless and petty politicking by the PA will add to the bitterness of internal relations in Palestine and further delay overdue elections in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. It leaves the prospects for much needed Palestinian unity and strategy at a low ebb.

Unhappy anniversaries

This has been a year of significant and painful anniversaries for Palestine. It is the centenary of the Balfour Declaration in which the British Foreign Secretary in 1917, Arthur James Balfour, declared

“with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people.”

Theresa May has celebrated the centenary with ‘pride’ and seems unconcerned with the continued marginal existence of Palestinians on their own land.

Robert Fisk was closer to the mark when he described the Balfour Declaration as the “most mendacious, deceitful and hypocritical document in modern British history.”

2017 is also the 50th anniversary of the six day war in 1967 when Israel seized control of the West Bank, East Jerusalem, Gaza Strip, as well as the Syrian Golan Heights, and the Egyptian Sinai Peninsula. This annexation has continued apace since then with the settlement of 600,000 colonists in settlements across the West Bank that Amnesty International describes as illegal under Article 49 of the Geneva Convention.

These unhappy anniversaries are as much a result of the collusion and mendacity of western powers as they are of the relentless colonialism of Palestinian land by Israel which should compel us all to take action and oppose the siege and construction of settlements.

Gaza’s creaking infrastructure and impoverished population cannot countenance another decade of siege and war, and Israel has shown itself unwilling to respect its human rights obligations as the territory’s occupying power.

Only external pressure will change Israel’s policy toward Gaza which is why Palestinian civil society has reluctantly called for international support of the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement. This is a non-violent, vibrant and truly global movement for freedom, justice and equality in Palestine inspired by the South African anti-apartheid movement.

BDS urges action to pressure Israel to respect international law and is supported by trade unions, churches, academics and grassroots movements across the world. Supporting BDS will hasten an end to the siege and help lance a running sore in the Middle East and international relations. It deserves your support.

Stephen McCloskey is Director of the Centre for Global Education, a development non-governmental organisation based in Belfast. He is editor of Policy and Practice: A Development Education Review, an online, open access, peer reviewed journal. He is editor (with Gerard McCann) of From the Local to the Global: Key Issues in Development Studies(Pluto Press, 2015). He manages education projects for young people in the Gaza Strip and writes regularly on a range of development issues for books, journals and online publications.


fly b (26)
Wednesday November 1, 2017, 4:05 pm
*************************************** Freya!

fly b (26)
Wednesday November 1, 2017, 4:07 pm
PayPal: Stop Discriminating Against Palestinians

PayPal: Stop discriminating against Palestinians.

Paypal - stop discriminating against Palestinians

Paypal - stop discriminating against Palestinians

Paypal don’t discriminate against Palestine

Paypal don’t discriminate against Palestine

Tell PayPal to End Its Discrimination Against Palestinians

fly b (26)
Wednesday November 1, 2017, 4:10 pm
PayPal: Stop Discriminating Against Palestinians

Thank you for posting, Freya, and Darren for the hyper-links
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