Yesterday, Israeli defence minister and former Israeli Defence Force IDF chief of staff Moshe Yaalon announced that Operation Protective Edge marks the beginning of a protracted assault on Hamas. The operation “wont end in just a few days,” he said, adding that “we are preparing to expand the operation by all means standing at our disposal so as to continue striking Hamas.”This morning, he said:”We continue with strikes that draw a very heavy price from Hamas. We are destroying weapons, terror infrastructures, command and control systems, Hamas institutions, regime buildings, the houses of terrorists, and killing terrorists of various ranks of command… The campaign against Hamas will expand in the coming days, and the price the organization will pay will be very heavy.”But in 2007, a year before Operation Cast Lead, Yaalons concerns focused on the 1.4 trillion cubic feet of natural gas discovered in 2000 off the Gaza coast, valued at $4 billion. Yaalon dismissed the notion that “Gaza gas can be a key driver of an economically more viable Palestinian state” as “misguided.” The problem, he said, is that:”Proceeds of a Palestinian gas sale to Israel would likely not trickle down to help an impoverished Palestinian public. Rather, based on Israels past experience, the proceeds will likely serve to fund further terror attacks against Israel…A gas transaction with the Palestinian Authority [PA] 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.”Operation Cast Lead did not succeed in uprooting Hamas, but the conflict did take the lives of 1,387 Palestinians 773 of whom were civilians and 9 Israelis 3 of whom were civilians.
On the 26th of July, WILPF’s section in the United States published a statement calling for,WILPF US demands that our US government immediately suspend military aid to Israel, and instead use our tax dollars for humanitarian aid to Gaza.WILPF US urges that all nations calling for a cease fire will also join the call to give assistance to the Palestinian refugees.WILPF US further demands that US military aid to Israel remain suspended pending investigation of violations of US and International Laws for crimes against Palestinian civilians with the weapons thus obtained.The world has stood by and allowed these atrocities to happen again and again. No more.Read the full statement.
“On the same day, a universe away, in Falluja, Iraq – poisoned by weapons armed with uranium, chemically and radiologically toxic, and white phosphorous, a chemical weapon, and other so far unidentified “exotic weapons” – baby Humam was born. In a city relentlessly bombarded in 1991 and again in two further criminal, inhuman US decimations in 2004.
Humam was born with Retrognathia, a congenital heart disease , Omphalocele and Polydactly of upper and lower limbs. Omphalocele is an abnormality that develops as the the foetus is forming. Some of the abdominal organs protrude through an opening in the abdominal muscles in the area of the umbilical cord. Polydactly is the manifestation of extra digits on the hands or feet, in Humam’s case, both.
Humam translates as: “Brave, noble, generous.”
Sixty-eight years ago this week, the United States wiped out more than 200,000 people when it dropped two atomic bombs on the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.Tens of thousands more victims were to die over the ensuing years due to slow, painful deaths from cancers and birth defects.Yet the US – the only state to have ever used atomic weapons – has never apologized or made any atonement for this singularly horrific crime. Officially, the US justifies it as a legitimate attack during war even though many historical sources show that there was absolutely no military necessity for the bombings.