by Ayman Ahmed (Main Stories, Crescent International Vol. 51, No. 9, Rabi' al-Thani, 1444)
The zionist occupiers continue their multi-pronged attacks against the Palestinians with the clear aim of trying to crush the spirit of resistance. A clear pattern has emerged.
Heavily-armed zionist squatters, euphemistically called “settlers”, protected by equally heavily-armed Israeli police, storm Palestinian neighbourhoods, farms, villages, towns, as well as the Aqsa Compound in East Jerusalem that houses the Qibli Masjid and the Dome of the Rock.
If the Palestinians resist—as they have started to do in recent weeks especially in Jenin and Nablus—the zionists go berserk and attack the neighbourhoods with tanks, armoured personnel carriers as well as dogs. Jenin has been subjected to particularly brutal attacks.
On October 14 morning, Israeli forces shot 20-year-old Mateen Dabaya when they attacked the Jenin refugee camp. Dr. Abdallah Abu Teen, 43, rushed to Dabaya’s help. This was in front of the Jenin hospital. The Israelis shot him in the head killing him instantly as he tried to provide medical care to the injured young man.
Dabaya died of his wounds. Two Palestinian paramedics and several civilians were also wounded in the Israeli barrage of gunfire at the entrance to the hospital.
Since the beginning of 2022, Israeli occupation forces have murdered 160 Palestinians, many of them youth.
In addition to the Aqsa Compound—the first qibla of Muslims and the third holiest site in Islam—the zionists have also invaded the Ibrahimi Mosque in Al-Khalil (Hebron). On October 3, a large group of zionist squatters entered the mosque and played music and danced for several hours, desecrating its sanctity.
It needs recalling that on February 25, 1994, a zionist terrorist Baruch Goldstein, an illegal alien from Brooklyn, New York entered the Ibrahimi Mosque in the early morning. It was the month of Ramadan. Muslims were offering Fajr Salat. He shot and killed 29 worshippers including children before he was overpowered and clubbed to death. The zionists have built a shrine to this terrorist. The same day, the Israeli army shot and killed 21other Palestinians in protests over the brutal murders.
The total disregard for Palestinian life and sacred places is typical of the zionists’ mindset. They lay claim to the whole of Palestine without any historical evidence, barring their distorted version of history. Even Jewish scholars have admitted that Israel has no claim to Palestine or Jerusalem. The holy city is supposed to be the spiritual capital of the Jewish people. There is no concept of a ‘political capital’ in Jewish tradition, notwithstanding the zionists’ self-serving assertions.
In his article ‘Religion, Politics and Jerusalem’, Msgr. Robert L. Stern writes, “Believers of three great faith traditions look upon Jerusalem as a Holy City (emphasis added).” Let us consider what else does he say.
“Although Israelis assert that Jerusalem is their eternal and indivisible capital, for religious Jews the significance of Jerusalem is not so much that it was the political capital founded by King David as it was the spiritual capital of ancient Israel. The great thing that David did was to bring the Ark of the Covenant to Jerusalem. He wanted to build a place for the Ark at the summit of the hill on which his palace stood. In the plan of God, it fell to David’s son Solomon to build a place for the Ark. (emphasis added).
“The Ark was a chest in which were carried the Tablets of the Law, the contract between God and Israel. When the Ark was in its special tent in the desert and, later, housed in the Temple of Jerusalem, it was always a privileged place of communication with God, a place where prayers were offered and sacrifices were made. For ancient Israelites, it was their spiritual center.”
Most zionists are secularists and do not believe in God yet they insist He promised them the Holy Land. We need to understand their true nature: they are settler colonialists and are fully aware that they have no legitimate claim to Palestine, much less to Al-Quds/Jerusalem, yet they peddle the fiction of God’s promise to them. God does not reward hustlers and thieves.
Take the case of Itamar Ben Gvir, a notorious zionist terrorist, who is leader of the neo-Nazi Otzma Yehudit party in the Israeli Knesset (aka parliament). It is a den of racist murderers and thieves.
If some people are surprised by the neo-Nazi label used for Ben Gvir, it shows how successful zionist propaganda has been in influencing their thinking. For those uninitiated in the politics of the illegitimate zionist entity, consider this.
On the evening of October 13, Ben Gvir was seen in a video wielding a pistol in the occupied east Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah. He urged zionist squatters and the police to shoot at Palestinians who throw stones at the occupation forces.
“We’re the landlords here, remember that,” he arrogantly claimed. “I am your landlord … If [Palestinians] throw stones, shoot them,” Ben Gvir told the heavily-armed squatters and police. They needed no prompting. They have been shooting and killing Palestinians for decades. These have escalated in recent months, largely because the Palestinian youth, fed up of zionist brutalities, have decided to fight back.
Ben Gvir’s ‘landlord’ claim is also quite rich. He is an illegal alien into Palestine and a thief. The indigenous population did not invite him; he forced his way into the holy land because the zionists have the backing of imperialist and colonial powers.
On the night of October 12, the neo-Nazi terrorist threatened to “mow down” a group of Palestinians in Sheikh Jarrah. This threat should be taken seriously. On November 1, elections will be held in the zionist snake pit to choose a new prime minister. Given deep political divisions and no party being able to win a clear majority, coalitions are the norm.
There is a possibility that Benjamin Netanyahu, another notorious war criminal, might form an alliance with Ben Gvir’s Otzma Yehudit party. It will give the latter one or more cabinet posts. While oppressing Palestinians is the norm, an alliance of neo-Nazis would increase the risk to Palestinians’ survival immeasurably.
Last year, the east Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah gained international attention because of Israel’s indiscriminate land grab and expulsion policies. It is regularly subjected to raids by illegal squatters, including one that occurred on October 14.
Concurrently, the zionists have intensified their encroachment of the Aqsa Compound. Heavily-armed squatters accompanied by the police barge onto the sacred site. Palestinian worshippers are locked up inside the mosque.
Those that step out to confront the zionists are beaten up with batons, rifle butts, tear-gassed or even sprayed with sewage water. Only the zionists can think of such filthy tactics. Many Palestinians have been shot and killed in and around Masjid al-Aqsa.
The Aqsa compound is a special target of the zionists. It is part of the broader policy of occupying the whole of Jerusalem including its eastern half, to pave the way for the destruction of Masjid al Aqsa.
On October 10, scores of zionist squatters swarmed al-Khalil (Hebron) in the occupied West Bank. They then proceeded to tear up and set fire to copies of the Qur’an near the city’s Qaytoun Mosque.
According to a statement issued by the Palestinian Minister of Endowments and Religious Affairs Hatem al-Bakri, Israeli troops and zionist squatters have stormed and attacked 15 mosques since the start of the year. What precisely do they want to achieve by such criminal acts?
On October 20, the United Nations Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and Israel, declared Israel’s occupation as illegal under International Law. The three-person Commission called on the General Assembly to request an urgent Advisory Opinion from the International Court of Justice on the legal consequences of Israel’s continued refusal to end its occupation of the Occupied Palestinian Territory.
This is an important report issued by an independent UN Commission of Inquiry. It will bring some comfort to the long-oppressed Palestinian people, even if it does not result in the immediate liberation of their lands. For that, they will have to intensify their struggle. There are already signs of that.