By Fra Hughes – Oct 17, 2023
According to the Palestinian health ministry in Gaza, 50,000 Gazan women are set to give to birth in Gaza within the next 14 days.
Israel’s abhorrent genocidal destruction of Gaza continues unabated. The ongoing targeting of the living, the dead, and, now, it appears, the unborn garners no criticism from the political elite in the West but only unquestioning support. American boots may be seen on the ground soon.
There are nearly 3,000 dead, with a suspected further 1,000+ Gazans missing, presumed buried under the rubble of their homes, and more than 10,000 wounded. Figures that we endured in 30 years of conflict have been visited upon Gazans in just 10 days.
No water, no electricity, no food, and no fuel is condemning the most vulnerable—that is, the very young and the very old—to death. How many miscarriages, still births, and deaths in labour can we expect to see when there are no hospital beds, medicines, or sterile equipment to help facilitate these births.
Like baby Jesus in the biblical tale who was born in stable in Bethlehem in Palestine 2000 years ago because there were no available lodgings, will we witness Gazan children being born in stables, in the back seats of cars or by the roadside? Tens of thousands flee from one unsafe area only to discover their new place of refuge is to be bombed too, accompanied only by the cries of dying children, dying mothers, dying grandparents and their extended families, carried on a fetid breeze filled with disease and death.
Some may question the actions of the united Resistance in Gaza, who mounted operation Al Aqsa Flood on October 7, 2023. People should remember, all resistance from Gaza is purely a response to the ongoing policies of the Zionist apartheid regime.
Netanyahu showed his new map of the Middle East at the UN assembly recently, which erased Gaza and the illegally occupied lands of the West Bank to show one Israel from the river to the sea.
Let us not forget Ariel Sharon, the “Butcher of Beirut,” in 1982, desecrated the Al Aqsa mosque in Al Quds, East Jerusalem when he led illegal settlers into the building, sparking the first Intifada.
While Netanyahu played his game of provocation at the UN, right-wing, Jewish religious fundamentalist broke into the Al Aqsa Mosque and desecrated the third holiest shrine in Islam just last week, potentially igniting the current situation.
240 Palestinians in the West Bank had been murdered just this year alone, and that was before the Gazan resistance launched operation Al Aqsa Flood.
Between 800 and 1,000 Palestinian children are arrested and detained in the occupied territories each year, many as young as 12, charged with throwing stones at occupation forces, and imprisoned.
More than 5,000 Palestinians are currently languishing in Israeli prisons, many without charge or due process under administrative detention. Hundreds are suffering with chronic medical conditions such as diabetes and cancer. They are refused medical treatment.
Illegal settlers continue to steal Palestinian land and water resources. They attack Palestinian farmers out collecting their harvest and burn the olive groves upon which many families rely.
Israel ethnically cleansed 750,000 Palestinians before their self-declared state was recognized in 1948.
The Stern gangs, Leahy and Hagganah, were terrorists who genocidally purged Palestine of many of its indigenous people, leveling 500 villages so Palestinians had no homes or land to return to. To this day, Israelis refuses the Palestinians their Right of Return enshrined in UN Resolution 194.
Believe me: that is what we are witnessing today in Gaza. The wholesale destruction of Northern Gaza is designed to prevent the people from returning to their homes and land. 2.3 million people will now be herded like cattle into a strip of land now halved in size to 3 miles by 12 miles, half the size of the Ards peninsula, where life will be untenable. This is Israel’s intended endgame.
They want Gazans to be forced into the Sinai in Egypt and the people of the occupied West Bank to be forced into Jordan.
The Americans are using the refugee crisis to assist Israel in its long term goal of expelling every last Palestinian from their homeland when it asked Egypt, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia to take the Gazans in.
Not content with creating millions of refugees from Syria to Iraq and from Yemen to Afghanistan, they want another 2.3 million on the road with nothing but the clothes on their back and the shoes on their feet, accompanied by the cries of dying children, old men, old women, and the disabled, all fleeing for their lives.
For those of you who wave flags and then go for a beer, a coffee, or a shopping spree while in town, I would ask, is that really enough for you?
Waving a flag?
Like snow on a ditch on a spring morning will you disappear back into the comfort of a Saturday bet, minding the grand kids or booking a holiday? Will we really not see you do anything until the next attack, maybe in Jordan, or Lebanon, in Syria or Yemen, in Iran or Iraq? Greater Israel has designs on lands far bigger than Palestine. They already illegally occupy parts of Lebanon and Syria.
Give yourselves a shake.
Commendable as it is for tens of thousands of people of good conscience across this island to call for an end to the bloody unilateral coercive measures imposed on Gaza, if that’s all you intend doing, I respectfully suggest you question your motives.
You are obviously following your conscience, and I commend you for that, but once the gunpowder residue and the building dust settles, are you going to help the people on the ground or simply put Emerdale on the TV, have another coffee, place another bet, watch the champions league, or have another round of shopping?
Only you can answer that question
Well, you and your conscience.
A 71-year-old American landlord assaulted his tenants in a frenzied attack last night. Saying “you Muslims must die,” he stabbed a six-year-old boy 26 times, leaving him dead and his mother fighting for her life in hospital.
An isolated deranged loner? Or a sign of the huge rise in Islamophobia created by our cherished political leaders who are beating Palestinian supporters on the streets of Germany and banning the Hijab in France, while allowing nuns to continue to wear their habits, equating anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism in order to obscure the difference and deplatform and criminalize those who stand against political Zionism.
Corbyn won’t be the last victim of smears, lies, and distortions, you can bet on that.
Israel has now given orders to its storm troopers to shoot any male of fighting age.
Not content with wiping out a generation of unborn Palestinian children, they are going to kill the present generation of 16-to-60-year-olds without justification.
If you’re 14 and you look older or if you are 70 and look younger, well, that’s just too bad.
The only good Palestinian, apparently, is a dead Palestinian.
Palestinians have the right under international law to resist the illegal occupation of their lands and homes.
If it’s good enough under international law, then that’s good enough for me.
I stand by the right of Palestinians to choose how, when, and where they resist that illegal occupation.
The question, is do you?
Fra Hughes is an Irish political activist, commentator, and author. His most recent books are My Walk with Palestine: an Activist's Tale and Voices from Donbass.
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