Gaza crisis: America gives Israel more ammunition – and more children die


Russell Myers

Fury at ‘re-stocking’ of US-supplied arms as the youngest victim of Israeli bombing operation is just 40 days old

A 40-day-old boy in Gaza lies wrapped in a blanket, not sleeping, but dead – a victim of Israel’s US-sponsored missile blitzes.Baby Kerem Ebu Zeyid was slaughtered in an attack on his home as it emerged soldiers were stocking up at American-owned weapons stores not far away in Israel.
Gaza crisis America gives Israel more ammunition – and more children die

US officials today confirmed they have sold the Jewish state grenades and mortar rounds stored there in case of emergency – yet soon after they were condemning its attacks on Gaza.

Speaking about a UN school that Israel bombed this week, killing at least 19 people and injuring 125, White House spokesman Josh Earnest said: “The shelling of a UN facility that is housing innocent civilians who are fleeing violence is totally unacceptable and totally indefensible.

“We believe the Israelis need to do more to live up to the own standards that they have set for protecting innocent civilians.”

And he urged Israel’s government and military to end its deadly operation, adding: “These reports that hundreds of innocent Palestinian civilians have been killed are tragic.”

Getty Gaza conflict

Casualty: A Palestinian child wounded in an Israeli strike on a compound housing a UN school in Beit Lahia
America gives Israel £2billion a year for defence and funds a £750million high tech anti-missile system called the Iron Dome, which protects the state from rocket attacks.

More than 1,400 Palestinians, 220 of them children, have been killed in Gaza since fighting began on July 8.

In stark contrast, 56 Israeli soldiers and three civilians have lost their lives.

Israel, where eight million people live, is bombarding an enclave with a population of just 1.8 million where the average age is just 17.

As well as the 220 children’s deaths, at least 1,516 have been injured in the conflict.

A huge explosion in a Gaza public garden this week killed eight youngsters.

A Palestinian “miracle” baby who was born by caesarean after her mother, 23, was killed in an Israeli air strike died after battling to survive in hospital for three days.

Getty Gaza conflict

Other side: The family of Israeli soldier Guy Algranati, 20, mourn during his funeral in Tel Aviv
A four-year-old boy died when tank shells hit his home in Jabaliya. And 46 people, mostly children, were wounded in an attack on a playground in the Shati refugee camp.

Navi Pillay, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, hit out at the US for failing to use its influence over Israel.

She said: “They have not only provided the heavy weaponry which is now being used by Israel in Gaza, but they’ve also provided almost $1billion in providing the Iron Domes to protect the Israelis from rocket attacks. But no such protection has been provided to Gazans against the shelling.”

More than 425,000 people – about a quarter of Gaza’s population – have been displaced from their homes, according to the UN.

Whole communities have been obliterated as aid workers warned a large scale humanitarian crisis is just days away. Health facilities have been badly affected, with some hospitals warning that they only have enough fuel to run electricity generators for another four to five days.

Getty Gaza conflict

No let-up: An Israeli soldier carries a shell as he and his comrades prepare their tanks

This could leave nearly one million children without access to electricity, water or medical services.

Dr Yousef al-Sweiti, the Director of the Save the Children-supported al-Awda hospital in northern Gaza, said: “At the hospital we have fuel maybe for a week maximum – if it finishes we will have to stop our work. If this war continues everything will collapse.”

It was decided the state of Israel should be created after the Second World War and the Holocaust, in which six million Jewish people were killed.

The Jewish people were given a large part of Palestine, which they considered their traditional home. But Arabs who already lived there refused to accept the new country.

Two wars in 1948 and 1967 resulted in bloodshed over Israel’s fight for the right to exist.

Israel finally left Gaza in 2005 but soon after, Hamas won elections and took control there.

Reuters Gaza conflict

Dust storm: Israeli armoured personnel carriers (APCs) drive outside the central Gaza Strip
It refuses to recognise Israel and wants Palestinians to be able to return to their old home.

Israel insists it is acting to stop the Hamas rocket attacks but has been criticised over the scale of the operation. However, Israeli opinion polls show strong public support for it.

Over 16,000 reservists were called up to join the Israeli army yesterday, fuelling speculation the ground campaign would widen.

A total of 86,000 reservists now stand alongside army troops with no end to the conflict in sight.

Back in Britain, Tory MP Margot James has demanded Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond condemn Israel’s response to Palestinian terrorism as “disproportionate”.

She wrote: “The scale of suffering in Gaza cannot be justified on the grounds of defence in proportion to the threat from Hamas.”


2 thoughts on “Gaza crisis: America gives Israel more ammunition – and more children die

  1. Uploaded on 15 Jun 2011
    Gaza’s energy authorities say Israel is planning to steal Gaza’s natural resources.

    This comes after Israel’s Ministry of National Infrastructure authorized earlier this week Noble Energy, a crude oil and gas exploration giant, to begin developing a natural gas field off the Gaza Strip coastline.

    Israel says the decision to grant the approval was made in light of what it described as a severe shortage of natural gas supplies.

    The BG Group drilled two wells in 2000: Gaza Marine-1 and Gaza Marine-2.

    Reserves are estimated by British Gas to be of the order of 1.4 trillion cubic feet, valued at approximately 4 billion U.S dollars.

    The issue of sovereignty over Gaza’s gas fields is crucial. From a legal standpoint, the gas reserves belong to Palestine. UN resolution 3005 affirmed the principle of sovereignty of the population of occupied territories over their natural wealth and resources.

    Crude oil and natural gas sit in pockets in the onshore region of occupied Palestine. One of the wellheads that has been producing crude oil for Tel-Aviv for some years sits off the Northeast tip of the Gaza Strip and was once Palestinian Territory.

    Analysts blame the international community for failing to protect the rights of Palestinians.

    Since the beginning of the blockade, British Gas has been dealing with Israel. In turn, the Hamas government has been bypassed in regards to exploration and development rights over the gas fields.

    Israel has received the bulk of its natural gas supplies from Egypt in the past two decades but the supply was interrupted following the anti-government protests and the ouster of former Egyptian president Husni Mubarak. Now experts say Israel may plan to tap into Gaza’s Natural Gas reserves to meet its needs.

    The truth about Israel’s new war on Gaza – the energy rush – MEM via Cameron


    Catherine Shakdam
    Tuesday, 22 July 2014 12:27

    While Israel has deployed its media machine, telling the world that it has the right to defend itself against foreign aggression, arguing that no country should ever be made to tolerate systematic terror, even though under international law such narrative holds no legal ground as Israel has been de facto occupying Gaza, rendering null and void the notion of Gaza as a foreign entity, little has been said of Israel’s real motives.To quickly settle Israel’s argument that it legally and morally can and should defend itself against any aggression coming from Gaza, it is important to understand that the Gaza Strip is not, under international law, a sovereign state, it is an occupied land, therefore Israel cannot declare war on its people, rather it owes its people protection.

    As explained by Nura Erakat in a report published in Intifada Palestine, “Military occupation is a recognised status under international law and since 1967, the international community has designated the West Bank and the Gaza Strip as militarily occupied. As long as the occupation continues, Israel has the right to protect itself and its citizens from attacks by Palestinians who reside in the occupied territories. However, Israel also has a duty to maintain law and order, also known as ‘normal life’, within territory it occupies. This obligation includes not only ensuring, but prioritising, the security and well-being of the occupied population. That responsibility and those duties are enumerated in Occupation Law.”

    As for Palestinians in Gaza they do however have an inherent right to resist foreign occupation. Such right is again, protected under international law.

    But as the following arguments will attempt to demonstrate all the above, the contradicting narratives, the political manipulations and media campaigns, are but a distraction from far more pragmatic realities and maybe truth – the war on Gaza has little to do with sovereignty, terror, politics or even religion, rather it has everything to do with energy.

    If Israel is so keen on levelling Hamas it is essentially because the faction has categorically refused to discuss an energy sharing agreement whereby Israel would have access to Gaza’s gas resources.

    Let us all remember that Israel faces an energy crisis of biblical proportion and that Gaza’s untapped and unexploited billions of dollars represent a fortune and a lifeline which Tel Aviv will not tolerate to go to waste.

    As noted by Tascha Shahriari-Parsa: “Operation Protective Edge is the war of a colonial state dedicated to expanding its theft of Palestine’s natural resources … incarcerating and bombing its people in the world’s biggest open air prison, while growing rich at their expense.”

    Rather than a bunch of lunatic radicals animated by the savagery of the crusades, Zionists are actually quite a practical bunch. What they seek in Gaza is merely access to Palestine’s underground riches. Whatever happens on the surface is just there to act as a public distraction, a ploy designed for the masses so that Israel could commit grand larceny in perfect impunity under the very nose of the ever pliable world community. Who after all would dare deny the plight of martyr Israel?

    To borrow the words of Tascha Shahriari-Parsa when she wrote a report for The Ecologist: “Behind the operation, behind the mass Israeli and US propaganda attempting to justify the massacre, and behind the death of every child in Gaza is a conflict rarely discussed – an imperialist conflict and a contradiction that rests on Israel’s ambitions to appropriate and profit from Gaza’s natural gas resources.”

    Palestine’s vast natural resources

    Let us go back to 2000 when British Gas (BG) discovered that Gaza sat on an estimated $4 billion worth of natural gas. Needless to say that this discovery came as a shock to Israel, as suddenly Gaza, this little slither of land which Palestinians have been discarded upon, this purgatory which Zionists imagined to crush Palestinians’ hopes and dreams, became a key geo-strategic priority. Come hail and high waters, Israel would have to gain access to those resources.

    Since BG made its first estimation, it was established that Gaza’s gas reserves are far greater than first anticipated. According to Michel Chossudovsky, a Canadian economist and prominent analyst, Gaza is basking in as much wealth as the State of Kuwait.

    Rather than live in abject poverty, Gaza should be a vibrant business hub, a brilliant economic success. Instead, it has been withering away under Israel’s blockade, forced to scrap and beg for its daily bread, its people reduced to servitude.

    Let us remember that Israel’s maritime blockade coincides with BG’s discovery. Let us remember that it is since 2000 that Israel has denied Palestine access to its territorial waters, thus infringing on international law and de facto putting Gaza under siege; all because Israel wants to pillage Palestine’s resources.

    Not convinced yet?

    Well, let us refer to an interesting and rather revealing comment made by former Israeli army Chief of Staff Moshe Ya’alon back in 2007 when he laid bare Israel’s true motives. Answering comments in regards to Gaza’s gas riches, he noted: “Proceeds of a Palestinian gas sale to Israel would likely not trickle down to help an impoverished Palestinian public. Rather, based on Israel’s past experience, the proceeds will likely serve to fund further terror attacks against Israel. A gas transaction with the Palestinian Authority will, by definition, involve Hamas. Hamas will either benefit from the royalties or it will sabotage the project and launch attacks against Fatah, the gas installations, Israel – or all three … It is clear that without an overall military operation to uproot Hamas control of Gaza, no drilling work can take place without the consent of the radical Islamic movement.”

    What Ya’alon is really saying is that since Hamas will unlikely agree to a deal with Israel, Israel needs therefore to eliminate Hamas, by declaring its faction a terror organisation – even though many would argue that it is a resistance movement, according to international law.

    Israel needs gas now!

    So why a war now? To put it bluntly, Israel cannot wait any longer. Plagued by high unemployment and rising inflation, Israel needs to find a viable solution to both its energy crisis and mounting economic difficulties – financing an eternal war can be rather costly.

    According to Israel’s own projection, the state will face an aggravated energy crisis by 2020. Earlier this July, Haaretz published a report in which it quoted the excerpt of a report written by chief scientists from the Energy and Water Ministry and the Environmental Protection Ministry, explicitly mapping out Israel’s energy crisis. It read “We believe Israel should increase its [domestic] use of natural gas by 2020 and should not export gas. The Natural Gas Authority’s estimates are lacking. There’s a gap of 100 to 150 billion cubic metres between the demand projections that were presented to the committee and the most recent projections. The gas reserves are likely to last even less than 40 years!”

    Israel is quite simply running out of time. If recent mass protests in Israel in regards to depreciating living conditions and social injustice are anything to go by, officials indeed feel a great sense of urgency.

    As Israel’s needs increase, so has its determination to by-pass international law, as before Israel’s will nations should only bow and recoil in awe.

    Since whatever Israel cannot negotiate it will obliterate, beginning of course with Hamas, the war on Gaza came as a natural development to Israel’s geo-strategic realities.

    Let us remember that the last time Israel marched on Gaza, in 2008, its military deployment also aligned with its contracting of BG to discuss critical negotiations around Gaza’s natural gas. A coincidence? Maybe not.

    This new war on Gaza is a colonial war. This new war on Gaza has little to do with self-defence or terror or sovereignty… it has however everything to do with Israel’s neo-imperialistic ambitions.

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