Wednesday, December 31, 2008

A note

What is happening in Gaza is not a war. When you have a population that is packed, wall to wall in one of the smallest strips of land in the world, minimal resources for basic necessities like food, water and medial supplies, and you react to their tossing outdated explosives at one spot in your large, rich country by sending in one of the most well-fed, well-equipped, and well-trained militaries to kill everyone, militants and civilians alike, that is not war. That is a fucking massacre.

Israel blames Hamas for primitive homemade rocket attacks on the nearby Israeli city of Sederot. In 2001-2008, these rockets killed about 15 Israelis and injured 433, and they have damaged property. In the same period, Gazan mortar attacks on Israel have killed 8 Israelis.

Since the Second Intifada broke out in 2000, Israelis have killed nearly 5000 Palestinians, nearly a thousand of them minors. Since fall of 2007, Israel has kept the 1.5 million Gazans under a blockade, interdicting food, fuel and medical supplies to one degree or another. Wreaking collective punishment on civilian populations such as hospital patients denied needed electricity is a crime of war.

The Israelis on Saturday killed 5% of all the Palestinians they have killed since the beginning of 2001! 230 people were slaughtered in a day, over 70 of them innocent civilians. In contrast, from the ceasefire Hamas announced in June, 2008 until Saturday, no Israelis had been killed by Hamas. The infliction of this sort of death toll is known in the law of war as a disproportionate response, and it is a war crime.

from Juan Cole's website

I can't believe that I have to state something that bleeding obvious.

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