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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 1/6/09

Scenes from Dante's Inferno

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“...new torments and new tormented souls I see around me wherever I move, and howsoever I turn, and wherever I gaze.” –Third Circle, Inferno by Dante Alighieri

“Consider well the seed that gave you birth: you were not made to live your lives as brutes, but to be followers of worth and knowledge.” –Ulysses, Inferno

The U.S. continues to support and condone the actions of Israel as Israel presses on with its “urban offensive” or rather, its act of aggression toward Palestinians. The United Nations, on behalf of the Arab states, pushes to pass a statement condemning the actions of Israel which may call for a ceasefire. And, doctors cry out in horror as they witness what could be best described as hell on Earth.

Dr. Mads Gilbert’s declared on Sky News, “This is an all out war against the civilian Palestinian population in Gaza and we can prove that with the numbers.” He added, “The average age of the Gaza inhabitant is 17-years. It's a very young population and 80% are living below the poverty limit of the U.N.”

Gilbert further stated, "This is a poor and very young people and they are able to escape absolutely nowhere because they can not flee like other populations can in wartime. Because they are fenced in and they are in a cage. So, they are bombing one and a half million people in a cage. And young people and poor people and, you know, you can not separate between the civilians and the fighters in such a situation." [emphasis added]

A letter addressed to the UN by Permanent Observer of the Permanent Observer Mission of Palestine to the United Nations Ambassador Riyad Mansour click here Israel has used “excessive, disproportionate and indiscriminate use of force” which “reflects Israel's ongoing bloody onslaught against the Palestinian population in the Occupied Gaza Strip, in complete disregard and violation of all norms and rules of international humanitarian law and human rights law.”

To date, more than 500 Palestinians, including 107 children and 37 women have died in less than ten days.

Mansour’s letter further explains, “Israeli helicopters deliberately targeted and killed three paramedics as they rushed to rescue a group of Palestinians in Tal Al-Hawa neighborhood in Gaza City…many of the injured, now over 2500, have not been able to obtain the urgent medical treatment they need. Medical teams have been unable to access areas to rescue the injured and Gaza hospitals, already dealing with critical shortages of supplies due to 18 month siege on Gaza , have not had the supplies, equipment or capacity to handle the massive number of civilians requiring urgent medical care.”

Israel, besides claiming there is no humanitarian crisis and claiming that Hamas has refused help with medical care, has issued statements that he thinks hospitals may be caring for Hamas leaders. Therefore, hospitals caring for civilians with doctors like Gilbert making the ultimate sacrifice face the ever-growing possibility of an attack.

One can only imagine the terror that one must feel if he or she was being assaulted by a military force. When family members were injured, he or she would feel compelled to turn to the hospital for help. Yet, if the hospitals for civilians, where does one in this highly impoverished country go to save his or her family member who may be a primary source of income?

Ola Attalah, a correspondent for IslamOnline.com, spoke with a few facing the terrible prospect that Israel may bomb hospitals. The harrowing piece, which runs for about two pages, is worthy of being read in full. For, if we cannot listen to the voices of the occupied and understand, what is the likelihood that this horror ever ends?

Abu Khaled could not believe his ears when he heard the thundering of Israeli warplanes.
Helplessly, the panicked father put his arms around his three wounded children who laid at one of Al-Shifa hospital's rooms.

"I was petrified," he said recalling last night's nightmare.

Israeli aircraft flew over al-Shifa, the largest hospital in the Gaza Strip, leaving hundreds of injured and their family members fearful of a possible strike.

Abu Khaled tried desperately to calm his terrified children as they saw the jets flowing overhead and unleashing tens of light and stun bombs over the hospital's facilities.

"We could not sleep for the rest of the night."

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Kevin Gosztola is managing editor of Shadowproof Press. He also produces and co-hosts the weekly podcast, "Unauthorized Disclosure." He was an editor for OpEdNews.com
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