I am a political activist who has worked and lived in the West Bank of the Occupied Palestinian Territories. This blog chronicles my time in Palestine and also provides news and analysis about Palestine and the situation on the ground in the Occupied Palestinian Territories.
Monday, June 26, 2017
“Will there be an upcoming attack on Gaza?” Is Not the Question We Should Be Asking, After 11 Years of Siege.
Dear friends, please find below an article by my good friend, Noura Mansour on the current situation in Gaza.
couple of years, since Hamas was elected in 2006, the International
Community grants Israel a window of opportunity to carry out a major
attack on Gaza. All the leaders of the “free world” then stand together
in supporting Israel’s right to “defend itself” from besieged unarmed
Gazan civilians. Some countries provide political back up, others
provide arms, while others offer their silence allowing Israel to carry
out its violations of International law and Human Rights unimpeded.
Is it that time again?
seems like the escalation against Gaza has already begun. On Monday,
June 12th, the Israeli government decided to cut down electricity
supplies, leaving 2 million people with only 4 daily hours. Few days
later, in June 20th, Israel further tightens the cut and reduces the
electricity supplies from 4 to 2 hours daily. The reason for why this is
occurring at this time is threefold:
the rise of right wing governments, the election of Trump in the US,
and the spread of Xenophobic and Islamophobic discourse, which find
their reflection in real policies in the US, Europe and different parts
of the world, provide a fertile ground for any operation that targets
Muslims people, countries or organisation. Israel isn’t even required to
provide plausible reason (not that it was ever required to do so in the
past) especially in times when being a Muslim is enough by itself to
make an individual or an organisation a terror suspect and legitimate
the recent diplomatic crisis in the Arab gulf, between Saudi Arabia,
Egypt, Bahrain and UAE on one hand, and Qatar on the other, has been an
enabling factor in increasing the likelihood of the occurrence of such
and even further escalation. The Saudis and their allies have been blunt
about Qatar’s support of Gaza as one of the primary reasons that led
them to cut diplomatic ties with Qatar. This alignment between the
Saudis and allies, with the US and Israel provides an Arab and Muslim
cover for and regional legitimacy for whatever action the Zionist state
decides to take against the besieged 2 million Palestinians in Gaza.
Israel, Netanyhu is grappling with three different corruption scandals,
which he is currently being investigated over, and may very well be
indicted for. According Israeli media (Ma’ariv, Ynet, The Marker and
Walla websites), the police is expected to recommend Netanyahu’s
indictment for unlawfully receiving gifts worth a few hundred thousand
dollars and in return providing certain services. Netanyahu has already
declared that, even if he is indicted, he will not step down from office
as he is not required to do, according to the Israeli law.
has also stated that he is considering to call for early elections, in
an obvious attempt to distract the public from the current conundrum he
is in. Early elections will allow Netanyahu to portray himself as the
only strong leader fit to fight “terror”, and what a better way to prove
it to his electorates than to escalate, further abuse and possibly
attack a besieged community that has been living on the verge of a
humanitarian crisis for the last 11 years under Israeli blockade?
off electricity is a clear step in escalating the humanitarian crisis
and is designed to provoke a Palestinian response, as we have learned
from previous Gaza attacks. Such tactics have been repeatedly used by
Netanyahu and other Israeli governments to justify their attack on Gaza.
presenting the electricity cut as a “Palestinian domestic issue” and
stating that it was requested by the Palestinian Authority, Netanyahu is
clearly trying to shift the responsibility for the escalation from
Israel and place it on the Palestinians. It is hard to believe that the
Zionist state takes orders from the Palestinian Authority, but even if
this is the case, the Palestinian domestic context is entirely
controlled and manipulated by Israel. It is no secret that Israeli
policies have instigated, fueled and created structures to maintain the
Palestinian political rift and prevent Palestinian unity between Gaza
and the West Bank. That said, over a week into the electricity cut,
there has been no actions or at least statement from the PA, condemning
or opposing this move as collective punishment. Once again, the PA fails
to perform as an elected authority, and proves to be incompetent in
representing and protecting the needs of its own people.
What can be done to try and prevent the next mass murder of Palestinians in Gaza?
shouldn’t wait until the bombs start to fall, or the body count exceeds
2,200 on the next attack to start mobilizing for Gaza again. We, as
individuals and civil society organisation, inside and outside of
Palestine, can play a vital role by surfacing what has been happening
and highlighting the real issue, which is that Gazans have been living
under inhumane conditions due to Israeli policies for the last 11 years.
Since the beginning of the siege, various human rights organisations
and solidarity movements across the world have been calling for the
immediate end to the blockade, however it seems like there is a pressing
need for renewing campaigns that focus on the man-made humanitarian
crisis in Gaza, and intensifying attempts and actions aimed at breaking
the siege through advocacy, organizing events, freedom flotillas, and
applying more pressure, through the BDS campaigns, targeting specific
parties that have been playing a role in sustaining the blockade.
need to demand and actively push for no less than an immediate end of
the illegal and inhumane Israeli blockade on Gaza. Once the Israeli
air-force starts to hover, and the bombs start to rain over Gaza skies
again, it will be too little and too late.