Sunday, January 11, 2009
too hot, even for the bush administration?
the conflict in gaza is so controversial that i considered keeping my trap shut on the subject, but as others start to tread the treacherous waters of personal opinion on the matter, i feel that it may be time to put my own two cents in.
i am not under any delusion that the white house would condemn the actions of the state of israel, who are a long standing ally as we all know, and i don't think anybody could seriously consider hamas to be upstanding or legitimate in their attacks, but here is some brow-raising bits of information that i find rather appalling. since firing the first kassam rocket into israel in 2002, hamas has continued launching thousands of rockets into israel, causing about two dozen israeli deaths and widespread fear. these were indiscriminate attacks on civilians, these can be defined as war crimes. during roughly the same period, israeli forces killed nearly 2,700 palestinians in gaza according to the israeli human rights group b'tselem.
since december 27th of last year, the first day of the current war, the palestinian death toll rose to 870 today, an estimated half being civilians (275 children and 93 women), gazan medical officials said. thirteen Israelis have been killed. over 3650 people have been injured in the attacks, some being linked to white phosphorous, a gas that israel claims they are using as a smoke screens to hide military operations — "a permissible use in principle under international humanitarian law", but human rights organizations have long urged a world ban on the munitions, saying they cause undue suffering through severe burns, essentially having the same effect as napalm. a protocol to the 1980 Convention on conventional weapons forbids using incendiary weapons against civilians or against military targets amid concentrations of civilians. video of the alleged incidents and first account interviews of victims can be seen at the france24 website. also, here is some footage of gaza's main hospital and the scene there at the cnn website.
the people in heavily populated gaza strip (nearly 1.5 million people) have been affectively locked inside the borders, sorrounded by israel, the mediterranean sea and egypt, who will not allow palestinian refugees to cross their border. the people are without electricity and running water and food, the only relief coming in the allotted 3 hour cease fire every day, which the red cross claims is an insufficient amount. is this starting to sound like genocide to anyone else?
Even the white house seems shaky in their support of israel right now after not vetoing the united nations security council cease-fire resolution that passed Thursday night (which powerful pro-israel lobbying group, the american israel public affairs committee criticized them for).
if you would like to get started on your own investigation, i would suggest the new york times website (of course), the bbc gaza crisis: key maps and timeline and the human rights watch website.
this post is not an invitation for any anti-semitic banter. take that shit somewhere else! living in the united states has also taught me to separate the actions of a government state and the people that they govern.
on a lighter note, i am listening to