“The rocket hit me directly after it made a hole into the roof,” said Khader al-Zahhar, 20, from his hospital bed in Gaza City’s al-Shifa hospital on Sunday.
Al-Quds TV cameraman Khader al-Zahhar after he was seriously injured in an Israeli air strike on a media building. (Anne Paq / ActiveStills)
Al-Zahhar, a cameraman for al-Quds TV, spoke to The Electronic Intifada and other reporters after his right leg was amputated following an Israeli strike on the Shawa and Hussari press building the night before in the al-Rimal quarter of Gaza City.
Al-Zahhar said that just before the strike, “Some of my colleagues and I were having some rest after a long working day during the Israeli escalation. I wanted to sleep for only an hour, as the situation seemed to be getting sort of calm.”
But the calm was illusory. Israel intensified its attacks on Gaza on Saturday night, bringing the death toll to more than 60 persons with hundreds more injured.
In the single bloodiest incident, an Israeli bomb completely destroyed a two story house of the Dallou family in a residential district of Gaza City, killing 11 persons. Among the dead were five women, including one 80-year-old, and four small children, Gaza health official Ashraf al-Kidra was quoted by the Associated Press as saying.
Journalists were resting when missiles hit
Smoke rises as an Israeli air strike hits a media center in Gaza, 18 November.
(Majdi Fathi / APA images)
Cameraman al-Zahhar was later reported to have been transferred to an Egyptian hospital for more medical care. His colleagues described the attack on their offices that occurred at about 1:30 in the morning.
“Our apartment on the eleventh floor of the [Shawa and Hussari] building is made up of four rooms. When the air strike happened, I was laying down for a rest along with my colleague Darwish Bulbul in one of the rooms,” said Hussein al-Madhoun, 22, a colleague of al-Zahhar, as he showed the damage from the attack.
After the strike: “We rushed over when we heard the voices of our colleagues in the living room, pleading for help,” he said.
“As Khader and my other colleague Muhammad Khrais were yelling at us for help, we managed to remove some of the rubble on Khader to find him covered in blood. By then, one more rocket hit the same building and we had to pause and then took out both Khader and Muhammad, who was slightly injured,” al-Madhoun added.
“About five to six rockets hit our building,” al-Madhoun said. “I am really surprised to see that we journalists are being attacked. What do they want? Do they want to silence us and stop us telling the truth? No, we will continue our work unabated and will not fear their strikes,” al-Madhoun said.
The Israeli attack on the al-Quds TV offices in the Shawa and Hussari building also hit the office of Iran’s Press TV and that of the Russia Today TV station.
In addition to the attack on the Shawa and Hussari building, which wounded seven people in total, Israeli warplanes bombarded the offices of al-Aqsa TV on the 15th floor of al-Shorouq building.
The floor was extensively damaged, and three journalists working for Palestine Media Production, whose office is located on the 14th floor, were wounded, according to a release from the Palestinian Center for Human Rights today (“Ongoing Israeli Offensive on Gaza: Palestinian Civilian Deaths Rise to 27…”).
Journalists won’t back down
“Harming us will not make us back down from our important mission, spreading facts here as far and wide as we can,” said Samir Khalifa, a correspondent of the Palestinian Authority-run Palestine TV in Gaza.
“Israeli attacks on journalists mean that we have so far succeeded in uncovering Israeli crimes against the civilian population of Gaza; therefore, we are not going to stop,” Khalifa said at the al-Shifa hospital where he was reporting on the stream of wounded people being brought in.
Another journalist, Wisam Khadra, a producer with a Russian news agency and Russian TV, voiced similar sentiments: “I would like to say outright that we will stay in the field, reporting and reporting until the truth is completely told to the outside world.”
The attack on journalists earlier on Sunday drew widespread condemnation among journalistic bodies across the Gaza Strip. The Gaza-based Government Media Office issued a statement, calling for holding Israel accountable for the latest attack and many others underway in Gaza.
“We have sent letters to concerned media bodies worldwide, including Arab information ministries and the international journalists union and the Committee to Protect Journalists in New York. Whatever the Israelis do to silence truth here, the truth should keep being told until Israel is held accountable in international courts of justice,” Salam Marouf, director general of the Government Media office in Gaza, told The Electronic Intifada in a phone interview on Sunday.
“Journalists are civilians and are protected under international law in military conflict,” said CPJ Deputy Director, Robert Mahoney in a brief statement on the group’s website on Sunday. “Israel knows this and should cease targeting facilities housing media organizations and journalists immediately.”
Rami Almeghari is a journalist and university lecturer based in the Gaza Strip.
#GazaUnderAttack | NOV 19, 2012 | LIVE BLOG
#GazaUnderAttack | NOV 18, 2012 | LIVE BLOG
#GazaUnderAttack | NOV 17, 2012 | LIVE BLOG
#GazaUnderAttack | NOV 16, 2012 | LIVE BLOG
#GazaUnderAttack | NOV 15, 2012 | LIVE BLOG
#GazaUnderAttack | NOV 13, 2012 | LIVE BLOG
#GazaUnderAttack | NOV 14, 2012 | LIVE BLOG
#GazaUnderAttack | NOV 12, 2012 | LIVE BLOG
#GazaUnderAttack | NOV 11, 2012 | LIVE BLOG
#GazaUnderAttack | NOV 10, 2012 | LIVE BLOG
For who does not understand the need or concept of resistance of Palestine, recommended read: The History of Resistance | The Eagle of Palestine
- Special Topic | All Israeli Massacres on Palestinians
- iRemember… | Confirmed Names of Martyrs Occupation 2011 *
- Special Topic | Ethnic Cleansing
- Israeli escalation in Gaza | A “cover-up for settlement activity
- UN: Israel killed 2,300 & injured 7,700 people in Gaza in 5 years | Source
- The Palestinian Right of Self Defense
MYTHS & FACTS ABOUT THE ROCKETS FROM GAZA
- The “Rocket” from Gaza Myth – Photography
- More facts about the Rocket from Gaza Myths – Storify
- Half the story: What @IDFSpokesperson leaves out about #Gaza ~ by @yousefmunayyer
- Israel and #Gaza: Context Behind Projectile Fire ~ by @yousefmunayyer
- Truths and lies behind Israel’s attacks on Gaza and its whining about rockets ~ by @AliAbunimah
- Israel is not looking for peace. Nor talks. But: This
- March 23, 2012 | Gaza Siege Harshness Continues. Israel’s committing slow-motion genocide ~ by Stephen Lendman
- March 18, 2012 | A “Leaflet” to the World about it’s own “forgotten” Extermination Camp called Gaza
Click on the thumbnails to view the full albums
Martyred By Israeli Occupation Attacks
انّا للہ و انّا الیه راجعون
May Allah Subhana wa Ta’ ala grant the Shuhada Jannatul Firdaus, and ease it for their families, loved ones and anyone around them. Allahumma Ameen ya Rabbil Alameen. ‘ Inna Lillahi wa ‘ Inna ‘ Ilayhi Raji’un, Allahu Akbar
* The list of shuhada does not display, the numerous victims of the zionist occupation which are undocumented by media. Nor it displays the victims of the “silent onslaught” due to restrictions of movement, ability to go to hospitals for treatment or life saving surgery, due to lack of medication because of the blockades and so on. For example: The Slow Motion Genocide by the Siege on Gaza only, killed 600 patients since Gaza got under Israeli Siege.
Neither does this list, display the avoidable mortality. A clear and statistical factual evidence, about the number of deaths due to indecent ruling by occupation forces. For even an occupier has obligations under International Laws, Geneva Convention and the Hague regulations, which it is neglecting. These circumstances, together with deliberate policies of the occupier to neglect and even deny every basic human right, severes avoidable mortality which is totally silenced by media or reporting organisations. While in the Holocaust, 1 on 6 Jewish people directly died of deliberate neglect, so if we believe the facts over 1 million due to avoidable mortality, neither should these same circumstances be ignores which are ongoing in Palestine. For this report displays a avoidable morality of at least 0,5 million Palestinians.
How many more dead corpses of Palestinians does the international community need to see in order to act? How many more cruelties and violations of Human Rights, Regulations and International Law will be needed to intervene so this ongoing warcrime is being stopped once and for all.