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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 6/14/10

OCHA's Special Focus on Occupied Palestine

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OCHA's Special Focus on Occupied Palestine - by Stephen Lendman


On June 9, McClatchy and other publications revealed some of what's rarely, if ever, acknowledged in the press - that Israel's blockade of Gaza is "economic warfare," not for security as most commonly reported, based on an Israeli document the Gisha Legal Center for Freedom of Movement's lawsuit obtained.


Gisha's director, Sari Bashi, said the document shows the siege is collective punishment, in violation of Fourth Geneva's Article 33 stating:


"No protected person may be punished for an offence he or she has not personally committed. Collective penalties and likewise all measures of intimidation or of terrorism are prohibited."


For over 43 years of occupation, Israel has willfully and maliciously violated this and virtually all other Fourth Geneva and other humanitarian rights law provisions.


In the wake of the Flotilla massacre, a Gisha June 9 press release headlined, "The Pyrrhic Victory of Jam and Halva," saying:


Israel agreed to let these items, razors, coriander, cardamon, and cookies enter Gaza, after banning them for three years. However, it "continues to prevent the transfer of purely civilian goods, such as fabrics, fishing rods, and food wrappers, as part of what it calls "economic warfare" aimed at crippling Gaza's economy, (and by doing so) denies 1.5 million human beings the right to engage in productive, dignified work," let alone rebuild and survive under unending harshness.


The day before on June 8, the London Daily Telegraph's Adrian Blomfield and Alex Spillius headlined, "Israel to accept British plan to ease Gaza blockade," saying:


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I was born in 1934, am a retired, progressive small businessman concerned about all the major national and world issues, committed to speak out and write about them.

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