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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 6/16/12

Five Years and Counting: Israel Creates and Manages Its "Humanitarian Crisis in Gaza"

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Drawing from a report by Save the Children, Electronic Intifada's Managing Editor Maureen Clare Murphy, describes what she correctly terms, Israel's managed "humanitarian crisis in Gaza."

A humanitarian crisis that is managed? Wait a minute; "managing" means controlling what happens. Yes it does.

Which is how it comes about that Israel is managing "Gaza's humanitarian crisis."

Aided and abetted by the United States, Israel has for five years deliberately and systematically blockaded Gaza with militarily-enforced "restrictions placed on the movement of people and goods in and out of Gaza."

The humanitarian crisis in Gaza does not come from floods, hurricanes, or earthquakes. This on-going crisis comes from the official policy of Israel.

American taxpayers are funding this evil and deliberate crime, through annual doles in the billions, and the continued presence of corporate US interests that support and contribute to the managed crisis. (And which American church leaders refuse to condemn.)

How could it be that American taxpayers permit a blockade that "has been the single greatest contributor to endemic and long-lasting household poverty in Gaza," an act that prevents families from access to food, medicine and medical care?

Americans permit and pay for this "managed cruelty," as the Electronic Intifada's Maureen Clare Murphy, correctly terms Israel's blockade policy.

We are all "good Germans," no different from those Germans who denied the reality of trains loaded with Jews that traveled through their countryside, bound for German-managed camps where Jewish men, women and children were starved, experimented on, and killed with modern efficiency.

Here is just a part of the Gaza report from Save the Children. The report has gathered statistics on the effect of the blockade. These statistics reveal what we would rather not know:

"Stunting, or long-term exposure to chronic malnutrition, remains high, found among 10% of children under five. Anaemia, usually caused by dietary iron deficiency, affects most children in Gaza (58.6% of schoolchildren, 68.1% of children 9-12 months) and one-third (36.8%) of pregnant women. If untreated, iron-deficiency anaemia adversely affects child development and pregnancy outcome.

"Sanitation-related diseases with serious implications for child mortality, such as typhoid fever and watery diarrhoea in children under three years of age, have increased at clinics serving refugees in the Gaza Strip. Gaza's polluted water supply will have long-term health implications, but current monitoring is insufficient to measure the impact of untreated sewage and poor water quality."

The full Save the Children report, with footnotes, written in the unemotional tone of an official report, may be accessed at this link.

It is an appalling situation for which Israel, the United States, and the rest of the "good Germans" in the world, are deeply liable and responsible.

What do we do about it? Nothing. When protestors attempt to "run the blockade," Israel kills its passengers. When Rachel Corrie stands in front of a Caterpillar tractor and demands that it not destroy a home in Gaza, Israel kills her.

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James Wall served as a Contributing Editor of The Christian Century magazine, based in Chicago, Illinois, from 1999 through 2017. From 1972 through 1999, he was editor and publisher of the Christian Century magazine. Many sources have influenced (more...)

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