We're about ready to head for our annual Thanksgiving Day feast like many Americans this week. We'll enjoy our favorite foods and the comfort of family and give thanks for our good fortune. In Palestine, though, millions of people face a bleak prospect of hunger, dirty water, no medicines to sustain life and lack of fuel for electric generation. The Irish Sun reports,
In what the UN has described as collective punishment, the Israeli blockade of the Gaza Strip continues.Ma'an News in Gaza reports that wheat supplies fit for humans ran out this weekend as Israeli and Egyptian border guards turned away truckloads of donated food and medication so bakeries in the besieged Gaza Strip have begun grinding second-rate wheat, usually fed to farm animals and birds, to provide bread.
Notwithstanding 56% of the 1.5 million Gazan population consists of children, Israel has shut down access to the region refusing to allow desperately needed food trucks to reach their destination.
UN food agencies in Gaza that have had their food supply cut by the Israeli blockade say they are facing a "humanitarian catastrophe."
This week the UN described the IDF crackdown as collective punishment. Our government has supported the Israeli occupation and oppression with $30 billion each year. For over 19 days, Israel has been violating Geneva Conventions on treatment of civilians in an occupation of their land. Even Israeli human rights organization, Gisha, in a letter to the IDF on Thursday from its attorney Yadin Elam said the closure of crossings,
"is done with the illegal intention of inflicting pressure on the civilian population in an attempt to affect the behavior of militants and political elements. The closure of the crossings is therefore in violation of the absolute prohibition in International Law against collective punishment."International law and the UN Charter mean nothing to the Israeli government or to the current Bush administration. Reuters reports,
Karen AbuZayd, commissioner-general of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, said the human toll of this month's sealing of Gaza's goods crossings was the gravest in eight years.Gaza has been made into a huge 146 square mile concentration camp and unlike the Nazi camps even the Red Cross has difficulty getting in and providing aid without molestation.
"It's been closed for so much longer than ever before and we have nothing in our warehouses. It will be a catastrophe if this persists, a disaster," said AbuZayd, whose agency is the largest aid body providing services to Palestinian refugees.
"They are not just under occupation, they are under siege, it's a word I don't usually use, they are completely closed off," she added.
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, who issued a statement saying he supported statements by the Gazan office, telephoned Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert on Tuesday urging him to provide access for UN food trucks. Olmert said he would look into the situation on an urgent basis.Collective punishment of a civilian population is against the law. Israel and the US are both in violation of International Law. An Israeli group, B'tselem, which has been monitoring human rights violations against Palestinians, reports that during the month of October the Israeli authorities imprisoned 599 Palestinians under Administrative Detention, including 11 children. PNN reports:
By Friday Ban had received no word back from Olmert, so he bypassed him and telephoned Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni to stress the urgency of the situation. Livni however rebuffed the UN Secretary-General's plea saying the world should be condemning Palestinian rocket attacks.
"Whoever thinks that a situation of them firing at us, while everything continues as usual, can exist is mistaken," her office said in a statement. "The international community must be more decisive in making itself heard, and in using its influence, in the face of these attacks."
Among the 11,000 Palestinians held in Israeli prisons, over 300 are children. To highlight the case, a youth group of Palestinian and Jewish activists are focusing on two minors being held under Administrative Detention, meaning no charge or trial with renewable sentences.This is a violation of habeas corpus, the right to know the charges against you and stand for trial before a jury of your peers. It's a standard of modern jurisprudence and governance and yet it has been denied by today's totalitarian governments such as the US and Israel.
Israel has even blocked foreign journalists, who are usually based in Tel Aviv or Jerusalem, from entering the Gaza Strip. The world is not allowed to see the crimes against humanity that are happening in the Gaza Strip. Our government has claimed that Israel is a beacon of democracy in the Middle East. We should worry about their definition of democracy.
Rami Almeghari in Gaza reports that Dr. Abdellatif Alhaj, director of the European Gaza Hospital, has said spare parts for the hospital's CT scanner had been held up by the Israelis for over five months. CT scanners don't make or fire missiles. How can this punishment of civilians be justified?
Darlene Wallach of San Jose, California was with Gazan fishermen trawling in Gazan waters when she was kidnapped at gunpoint by masked Israeli commandos along with two other international observers. The boats were illegally searched and seized by the Israeli navy. Darlene and the other ISM activists are still in a foul Israeli prison. Darlene is an American citizen who is Jewish. She reminds us that according to Article 55 of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea the Exclusive Economic Zone extends to a distance of 200 nautical miles (370 km) out from its coast. This is the zone where people may fish.
Israel imposes an arbitrary six nautical mile fishing limit on the fishermen from Gaza City and an arbitrary four nautical mile fishing limit on the fishermen from Rafah. According to the Oslo accords the Palestinian fishermen have the right to fish out to 20 miles into the sea. The six mile limit is totally arbitrary and illegal by the Israeli occupation force navy. This genocidal policy must end!Rachel Corrie, another American citizen who was Jewish, was crushed by a bulldozer in Gaza a few years ago, trying to stop the destruction of civilian homes. Can Jews intentionally harm other Jews? Yes, especially those who oppose the politics of Jewish National Zionism. Could Israel be involved in shooting missiles from Gaza into Israel to maintain their oppression of the Palestinian people and the stealing of their land?
Israel was involved in attacks against Iraqi Jews in 1950, according to an Iraqi Jew, Naeim Giladi who had joined the Zionist underground at age 18.
Just this year a UK government file on the hijacking of an Air France flight and 98 passengers were held hostage, many of them Israeli citizens. The flight was seized shortly after it took off from Athens and was flown to Entebbe, Uganda where they were rescued by a Hollywood style operation. The file released from the British National Archives, contains a claim that Israel itself was behind the hijacking. BBC reports,
An unnamed contact from the Euro-Arab Parliamentary Association told a British diplomat in Paris that the Israeli Secret Service, the Shin Bet, and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) collaborated to seize the plane.The dossier on Abu Nidal and his variously named organizations is interesting information. The hi-jacking of the Italian cruise ship the Achille Lauro by "Palestinian terrorists" was later reliably reported by former IDF arms dealer Ari Ben-Menashe in his 1992 book, Profits of War: Inside the Secret U.S.-Israeli Arms Network, to have been ordered and funded by Mossad.
"The operation was designed to torpedo the PLO's standing in France and to prevent what they see as a growing rapprochement between the PLO and the Americans."
He adds: "My contact said the PFLP had attracted all sorts of wild elements, some of whom had been planted by the Israelis."
Ben-Menashe revealed that Israeli intelligence organizations regularly engaged in "black operations," espionage activity designed to portray Palestinians and others in the worst possible light. "An example," wrote Ben-Menashe, "is the case of the 'Palestinian' attack on the cruise ship Achille Lauro in 1985. That was, in fact, an Israeli 'black' propaganda operation to show what a deadly, cutthroat bunch the Palestinians were. " According to Ben-Menashe, Israeli spymasters arranged the attack through "Abu'l Abbas, who, to follow such orders was receiving millions from Israeli intelligence officers posing as Sicilian dons. Abbas . . . gathered a team to attack the cruise ship. The team was told to make it bad, to show the world what lay in store for other unsuspecting citizens if Palestinian demands were not met.The false flag attack on the Jews of Iraq by the Israeli was over 50 years ago and we have heard from an Iraqi Jew who was on the Achille Lauro occurred over 20 years ago and most people have not read the book by Ben-Menashe or read the BBC report about the PFLP and Shin Beit collaboration in the Air France hijacking and the fake rescue at Entebbe. Most people haven't connected the dots on the Black September kidnapping of the Israeli athletes at the 1972 Olympics in Munich. This isn't seen on the History Channel or CNN or FOX. This isn't reported where most people would see it. So for most people the sound-bytes they are fed on mainstream media or at the movies become the myth that becomes their history.
How many years will it take before the tale of the Israeli False Flag Missile Attacks from Gaza will become known too late to affect honor and justice for the Palestinians and too little to affect an historical perspective for most of the rest of us?