by Zafar Bangash (Opinion, Crescent International Vol. 43, No. 6, Shawwal, 1435)
The zionists are bombing homes, schools, hospitals and even centres for the disabled in Gaza. These constitute war crimes.
The 1.7 million Palestinians bottled up in tiny Gaza Strip (10 km x 25 km) have been subjected to another zionist military assault resulting in the deaths of hundreds of innocent people. At least 80 percent of those killed in Israel’s latest blitzkrieg are civilians; a third of them children. Nothing is safe; the vicious zionists have targeted people’s homes, schools, centers for the disabled and even hospitals. Al Wafa Hospital, the only orthopedic facility in Gaza, was bombed and completely destroyed.
The Zionist regime indulges in such egregious crimes with impunity because the US and European countries support it. Even the Red Cross has been complicit as was evident in the manner in which messages about the Israelis’ imminent attack on Al-Wafa Hospital were relayed to Palestinian medical staff and told to evacuate in two hours. The zionists fired missiles at the hospital within one hour demolishing the four storey building completely. This constitutes a war crime as does attacks on civilians destroying their homes and burying civilians under rubble.
What precisely is the reason for the zionists’ latest bout of blood letting in Gaza? Apart from its two-year itch to attack Gaza because it is considered weak and vulnerable, the ostensible reason for the attack was the kidnapping and killing of three Israeli squatters in the West Bank on June 12. The Zionist regime accused Hamas of kidnapping and subsequently killing them. Hamas denied any involvement; the zionists have presented no evidence to prove Hamas’ involvement but they need no reason to indulge in wanton killings and war crimes. Killing Palestinians is a way of life for them.
The kidnapping of the three Israelis and their killing the same day was known almost immediately to the Israeli police and intelligence and, therefore, to the Zionist regime of Benjamin Netanyahu, as Max Blumenthal has revealed in the Electronic Intifada (July 8). The kidnapping was used as a pretext to whip up Zionist tribal frenzy that in any case needs little prompting to hate the Palestinians since they are fed a steady diet of racist cant on a daily basis. Similarly, as perennial whiners, the zionists presented themselves as ‘victims’ of Palestinian violence and deflected international attention from their refusal to accept the US-brokered arrangement with the Palestinian Authority of Mahmoud Abbas. The Americans were furious at the ass-like stubbornness of Netanyahu; President Barack Obama is barely on speaking terms with him. Even Martin Indyk, the Australian-born naturalized American Zionist who was acting as ambassador for Israel-PA talks resigned in frustration. Netanyahu’s upsetting of a staunch Zionist ally like Indyk speaks volumes for his bloodymindedness.
He was also furious at the agreement between Abbas and Hamas to form a unity government. Netanyahu saw this as a threat to his plans to keep the Palestinians divided and weak and exploited the kidnapping episode to launch a massive military campaign in the West Bank. Abbas’ goons were complicit in facilitating attacks on Hamas supporters in the West Bank.
The zionists raided universities and homes; scores of houses were destroyed and an estimated $3 million in cash was stolen from the Palestinians. Also, more than 600 Palestinians were kidnapped and thrown in Israeli dungeons. Many of them were released in the 2011 prisoner exchange swap for the Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit. By the time the ‘discovery’ of the three Israelis’ bodies was announced on June 30, ten Palestinians had been murdered. Perish the thought if such information was given any significance in the western corporate media. Only Israeli lives matter; Palestinians are dispensable.
While Hamas has not repudiated the unity agreement with the PA, the zionists have managed to present its aggression on Gaza as a conflict with Hamas. Gaza has been subjected to relentless bombardment with the clear intention of provoking Hamas to retaliate. Since the November 2012 ceasefire agreement, Hamas had not fired any missiles at Israel even though the zionists refused to lift the illegal siege they had agreed under the same deal. Israel’s latest attack on Gaza could not go unchallenged; the zionists succeeded in provoking Hamas.
The complete silence of the Arabian regimes at the slaughter of innocent Palestinians is also revealing. No Arab League summit has been convened nor any calls made to Israel to stop the killings. There is deathly silence from the palaces of the kings and amirs whose billions are readily available to the takfiris to kill fellow Muslims. The Arabian regimes are as much the enemies of Muslims as the Zionist regime; they are two sides of the same coin.