After two Palestinian teenagers has been killed, and hundreds more wounded by Israeli airstrikes in Gaza, an Egyptian-led ceasefire was called on Saturday night between Israel and the Hamas and Islamic Jihad movements, who had fired several rockets into Israeli territory, injuring at least three people. Saturday’s Israeli onslaught on the besieged Gaza strip marked the most intense daytime assault on the coastal enclave since Israel’s 2014 offensive which left nearly 2,000 Palestinians dead.
Category Archives: Gaza
More than 100 days have passed since the Great March of Return began in Gaza. Despite the bloody events in those 15 weeks, where 138 unarmed Palestinians have been killed and more than 16,000 wounded by Israeli fire, the protests continue. Ahmad Kabariti talks to Palestinians in Gaza to find out what they believe the Great March of Return protests have accomplished so far.
Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has closed the only crossing point for commercial goods to enter and leave the Gaza Strip. He is unhappy that Palestinian protestors have deployed incendiary kites. Rather than address the illegal blockade which gave rise to the protests, Netanyahu has decreed that Gazan Palestinians will be permitted no trade, no shops and no goods to buy, as if he bestows those things as favours. Two million Gazan Palestinians are living in his War of the Worlds fever dream.
Gaza’s Great March of Return has reinvigorated a specious argument against UNRWA: by upholding Palestinians’ rights as they are written into international human rights law and UN resolutions, UNRWA’s very existence is said to perpetuate the conflict. The real aim of this argument is to eliminate the refugee issue entirely.
Jonathan Cook says the flaming kites being flown by protesters in Gaza are driven by a mix of recognisably human emotions: a refusal to bow before crushing oppression and a compelling need to take back control of one’s life.
Hanan Abubasheer describes the trauma of life in Gaza: “For instance, you are returning happily from close friends’ wedding and you suddenly hear loud noise. if you are Gazan you don’t think of the possibility that there may be children playing or fireworks going off somewhere, you think: oh, the war is back.”
Israeli journalist Dan Margalit warns of a scenario where Palestinian “terrorists and children and handicapped” break through the fence around Gaza & set up an outpost. So shooting Palestinian protestors in Gaza has “has saved many Palestinian lives”.
Israeli forces dropped leaflets by drones on the Gaza Strip Thursday, warning residents “not to get close to the border or try to attack Israelis”. The leaflets said, “Residents of the Gaza Strip! Greetings, and may Ramadan bring you blessings,” the leaflets said. “A wise man considers the results of his actions in advance and chooses the action whose benefits outweigh the costs…”
“We are stones standing in front of bullets”. That’s how 21-year-old Razan al-Najjar explained the situation to Mersiha Gadzo and Anas Jnena in April regarding the unarmed Palestinian demonstrators on the ground facing Israeli snipers from across the fence. Al-Najjar also told them that an Israeli soldier had threatened to kill her if she continued aiding protesters. “Soldiers tried to kill me so many times,” Razan explained. “I received some information that I’m targeted by the Israeli army and that I have to stay away from the field because of my activities [tending to the injured] but I ignore all of that.”
Let’s say Hamas fired a rocket that killed a young Israeli nurse while she was tending to the wounded from earlier rockets. Is there any doubt that the mainstream media would cover her death extensively, with photos, and interviews with friends and family? But when Israeli snipers murdered a 21-year-old Palestinian nurse named Razan Al-Najjar, the mainstream media was nearly silent.
Today, Palestinians mourned the funeral of 21-year-old Rawan al-Najjar, carrying her body with on top her medic vest soaked in blood, in the city of Khan Yunis, Gaza Strip. Al-Najjar was a medic who was shot the day before by an Israeli sniper as she was attempted to reach the injured during the protest at the Gaza fence, near Khuza’a.
Today an Israeli sniper shot and killed Razan al-Najjar, a 21-year-old volunteer medic in Gaza, She was wearing a white coat when she was shot and was reportedly tending wounded Palestinians when she was shot.
Hamza Abu Al-Tarabeesh writes, “For many of us who are Palestinians, we fight and sacrifice for those things we have yet to touch, experience, or see. In the 27 years of my life I have never smelled or gazed upon land that was once Palestinian and now part of Israel. Therefore it is through the eyes of others that I tell this story. Recently some friends managed to obtain much coveted permits to visit Israel, which in Gaza is commonly referred to as ‘our occupied lands.'”
Last week the 21-year-old Fathi Harb extinguished his life in an inferno of flames in central Gaza. He had no hope of finding work and could not afford a home for his young family. But self-immolation is more than suicide, it is protest. Jonathan Cook writes: “Harb understood only too well the West’s hypocrisy in denying Palestinians any right to meaningfully resist Israel’s campaign of destruction. The flames that engulfed him were intended also to consume us with guilt and shame. Can the West be shamed into action?”
For a first time since 1967, two wooden boats set off from Gaza heading to Cyprus on Tuesday, charting their course in protest of Israel’s decade long siege. The vessels carried students attempting to attend university, patients seeking medical treatment abroad, and protesters from the Great March of Return who were wounded with live-fire. Five hours after leaving the dock, the Israeli Navy intercepted the boats arresting 17 passengers while they were 9 nautical miles off the shores of Gaza. “This bid is a scream to the whole world that the Gaza seaport should again carry passengers and goods to Haifa and Jaffa, it is a scream again that the Gaza’s people will not afford the life under blockade,” said Adham Abu Selmeyeh, a spokesman for the International Committee to Break the Siege on Gaza.
Israel’s Supreme Court has unanimously rejected two petitions brought by human rights groups demanding Israel’s army to stop using snipers and live ammunition against unarmed Palestinian protests in the Gaza Strip.
Sabah al-Salibi collected dozens of small stones with her daughters, Susan, 22, and Rawand, 24. She said she wanted to pass them to the demonstrators whose eyes were blurry from teargas “to save them time by finding suitable stones” to throw at Israeli snipers hidden behind earthen berms at the Gaza – Israel fence. “Although these stones are small and few, but are stronger than their bullets and gas canisters,” al-Salibi said.
Last week, Egyptian President Abd al-Fatah al-Sisi announced the opening of the Rafah border crossing with Gaza for the entire month of Ramadan, which he said was “in order to ensure the easing of the burdens on the brothers in the Gaza Strip.” Mondoweiss spoke to several Palestinians — students going abroad to study or in search of jobs, people traveling to reunite with families, and injured protesters seeking treatment in Jordan — as they waited for their chance to leave Gaza. The journey out of Gaza is far from simple, as only a select number of Palestinians with permission are allowed to leave.
Statement by civil society organizations in Israel: “In light of recent barbaric and inhumane military actions carried out against unarmed protesting Palestinian civilians in Gaza by Israeli forces protests have erupted all over the world and in Israel in solidarity with Gaza and its victims. Amongst the many hotspots, Haifa experienced the highest number of Police brutality cases and arrests of activists and high school students. Demonstrators have been gathering daily to peacefully express their right to protest and stand by the “March of Return” victims. Police have escalated their intervention and use of violence against protesters each day culminating in the mass arrests and brutality witnessed on Friday night.”
After more than 70 years of the Nakba, Gaza refugees have raised their voices through the Great March of Return. A day after the bloodiest day in Gaza since the 2014 war, Ahmad Kabariti asked protesters what they were thinking about on this Nakba Day.
Palestinians in Gaza today began holding funerals for protesters killed by Israeli forces at yesterday’s Great March of Return near the buffer zone between Gaza and Israeli, which coincided with the opening of the U.S. embassy in Jerusalem. Overnight casualties increased to 61, with the youngest killed was identified as 8-month old Laila al-Ghandour who died of tear gas inhalation.
At least 58 Palestinians were killed and more than 2,700 wounded by Israeli forces on Monday as protest spread across Gaza in the bloodiest day in the strip since 2014. According to the Great March of Return organizers, around 50,000 protesters were gathered along the Gaza border as the new U.S. Embassy opened in Jerusalem. “I am waiting for those youth if they could pull down the fence, then I will cross with them into my father’s land,” said Ahmed Abu Reyaleh, a 65-year-old retired chemistry teacher, whose family was originally from the Bayt Jirja village (15.5 km northeast of Gaza). “We have not been created to be under occupation for our whole life, so it’s time to say enough.”
Gilad Erdan, Israel’s minister of Strategic Affairs and Hasbara, referred to Gazans as “Nazis” twice within five minutes today. “The number of killed doesn’t indicate anything – just as the number of Nazis who died in the world war doesn’t make Nazism something you can explain or understand,” he tweeted.
The Israeli military claims its soldiers are “in danger” from the protests across the fence in Gaza, but a simple review of the facts proves this is not the case. Here are the questions any journalist talking to the Israeli military should ask.
It took a visiting New York Times reporter from Cairo to finally tell some truths about Israel’s ongoing massacre of Palestinian demonstrators inside Gaza. Meanwhile, the paper’s Israel correspondents continue to distort and whitewash.