Shattered lives in Gaza: how the Israeli army targeted civilians
“My mother, gone. My sisters, gone. My brother, gone. My aunt, gone. My sister-in-law, gone. My nieces, nephews, all gone. Why did they do this? For what?”
10 December 2012
Palestinian women mourn four-year-old Mahmoud Raed Sadallah, killed in Gaza by Israeli airstrike, 16 November 2012.
THE FATHER OF THE FAMILY, Jamal Mahmoud Yassin al-Dalu, was praying when the missile struck.
It was the afternoon of November 18th, the fifth day of the Israeli attack against Gaza misnamed “Operation Pillar of Defense”.
Jamal’s wife, Tahani Hassan al-Dalu, 52 was at home preparing lunch. His grandchildren, ages 1, 4, 6, and 7 were playing with their toys, waiting to eat.
Two neighbors in an adjoining building, 75 year old Ameena Matar al-Mauzannar and 19 year old Abdullah Mohammed al-Muzannar, were also killed, crushed by collapsing walls.
Two weeks later, there was a vigil with neighbors, friends and family of the 12 victims of the attack. Children stood with candles on the ruins of the home remembering their loved ones who were killed.
Kitty Holland - Irish Times
Ireland must move to ban goods imported from illegal Israeli settlements in Palestine, the Irish Congress of Trade Unions has said.
David Begg, general secretary of Ictu is calling for an “urgent meeting” with Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs Eamon Gilmore “to seek an immediate and effective intervention by the Irish Government in light of the recent conflict in the Gaza Strip.”
In a letter to Mr Gilmore, sent over the weekend, Mr Begg calls on the Tánaiste to demand revocation of the favoured trading status Israel enjoys with the EU and an Irish push for an EU ban on trade with Israeli settlements.
In another letter, also sent to Mr Gilmore over the weekend, a coalition of Palestinian agricultural and farming groups calls for “a ban on trade with illegal Israeli settlements”.
The appropriation of Palestinian land on the West Bank has continued since 1967. According to the Israeli human rights organisation B’Tselem, Israel has established more than 200 settlements in the Gaza Strip and West Bank. Some 42 per cent of the West Bank has been occupied by over 500,000 Israeli settlers.
Justin Kilcullen, executive director of Trócaire, says while Palestinians endure check-points, water and medicine shortages, house demolitions and land confiscations, Israeli settlers “enjoy tax-breaks [and] access to swimming pools”.
Among the settlement goods on sale here are agricultural crops, plastic garden furniture made by Keter, and Soda Stream products.
They are labelled as coming from Israel. Their value is small – between €7 and €8 million a year. However Joe O’Brien, advocacy co-ordinator with the Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel (EAPPI) says an Irish ban would be internationally and symbolically “very important”.
so Ehud Barak says he will quit politics after the January general election but he refuses to rule out serving again as defence minister (World News 27 November). This sounds a bit like an Israeli ceasefire.
The breaking of the current one occurred last Friday when the IDF shot dead 20-year old Anwar Qudaih near the border. The report by Mark Weiss (26 November) that “both sides continue to observe the Egyptian-brokered ceasefire” is inaccurate and his comment later in the report that “Along some areas of the border, Hamas police kept residents away from the fence, following clashes with Israeli troops on Friday in which a resident was killed and 19 wounded” is deeply mischievous.
Meanwhile the suggestion by Richard Haass (World News, 23 November) that the US Government has a positive role to play in a long term solution is, as one tweet noted last week regarding Tony Blair’s role as middle east peace envoy, “a bit like asking Gary Glitter to chair an enquiry into Jimmy Saville”. Successive US Governments have left a bloody legacy in the Middle East. No real peace will be achieved while they continue to interfere.
Why Israel did not win its latest war on Gaza
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London Review of Books
THE CEASEFIRE AGREED by Israel and Hamas in Cairo after eight days of fighting is merely a pause in the Israel-Palestine conflict.
It promises to ease movement at all border crossings with the Gaza Strip, but will not lift the blockade. It requires Israel to end its assault on the Strip, and Palestinian militants to stop firing rockets at southern Israel, but it leaves Gaza as miserable as ever: according to a recent UN report, the Strip will be ‘uninhabitable’ by 2020. And this is to speak only of Gaza.
How easily one is made to forget that Gaza is only a part – a very brutalised part – of the ‘future Palestinian state’ that once seemed inevitable, and which now seems to exist mainly in the lullabies of Western peace processors. None of the core issues of the Israel-Palestine conflict – the Occupation, borders, water rights, repatriation and compensation of refugees – is addressed by this agreement.
The fighting will erupt again, because Hamas will come under continued pressure from its members and from other militant factions, and because Israel has never needed much pretext to go to war.
Civic offices bombed in Gaza within the supposed safe zone that the IDF had directed Gazans to retreat to. It’s the video clip on the right on this page.
http://news.sky.com/story/1014721/gaza-israel-and-hamas-ceasefire-under-way - Video: Damage After Gaza Air Strikes
Sky's Stuart Ramsay reports on the blast damage caused by Israeli air strikes in Gaza City.
All ceasefires in Gaza are temporary but what stopped Israel invading this time?
By John Rees
Over 150 were killed in Israel's eight-day bombardment, but Palestinians still saw the ceasefire as a victory for Gaza.