Aug 18, 2014 | Jason Shawa reporting from Gaza
My name is Jason Shawa, i am a Palestinian American and have lived 43 of my 45 years in Gaza. I an not a supporter of Hamas, but i do support our resisting occupation.Need to say that English is my second language, so please forgive the misplacement of dots and commas here and there :)
In 1948 Israel was created on the rubble of 400 Palestinian towns on villages. Hundreds of thousands of Palestinians lost their homes, land, wealth, savings, citizenship and anything else you can think of. they became scattered all over the world especially in Arab countries.
They still live till today in very despicable conditions in these camps where ever they may be. Many Israelis argue that it is the fault of these host countries that our refugees live in these horrible conditions, and maybe to an extent that is true, but the responsibility they are displaced and stateless is Israel and not these countries. In 1967 Israel occupies the remaining parts of Palestine which are the west bank and Gaza and east Jerusalem which was under Jordanian patronage.
Since then, all Israeli government have made it their unwavering mission to make life for these Palestinians as miserable as humanly possible in an futile attempt to force them all out of Palestine. They used all means at their disposal spearheaded by the one of the most powerful and advanced armies in the world, what they call the IDF.
I am going to sight, in no particular order just a few of the things they did to Palestinians since.
Confiscating rightfully and documented Palestinian land to create colonial settlements, demolishing homes under the silliest of pretexts, imprisonment of tens of thousands of Palestinians, many of which are children and even women, imposing back breaking taxes specifically on Palestinians, treating Palestinians trying to get from point a to point b like sub-humans to say the least on countless check points scattered all over the west bank and Gaza, extrajudicial killings of Palestinians by settlers under the full protection of the Israeli army, and the army itself did the same. students for decades were not allowed to leave to study unless their parents signed an undertaking that their son/daughter does not return for at least 2 years. countless Palestinians grew up with out fathers who were imprisoned, and that still is the case today. they maintained a crushing and brutal control over anything related to economic growth in Gaza and the west bank.
now as i Gazan, i would like to talk about Gaza in particular.
In 2005 Israel unilaterally withdrew its forces and settlers from the Gaza Strip. at first glance, and to the non resident that sounds great. The fact is they redeployed their force to just outside Gaza, besieged it completely. Till this day Israel controls every single solitary aspect of our livelihood, they control how much we are allowed to import of milk, tissue paper, toilette paper, live cattle, tvs radios, toys water, meds,wood, cement, glass, paint. shoe polish, ice cream, fuel, cooking gas, rice, flour….
The list is endless and basically contains every thing you in for life of business. they even came up with a list of import and import nots. for example, at times we were not allowed to import toilette paper and allowed Kleenex, other times they would allow toilette paper and nd prevented bottle water. sanitary pads okay, but no glass! the list has nothing to do with logic or their security, its just about keeping us in constant need. we in Gaza are constantly and daily struggling to find gas for cars and electric generators, cooking gas to cook, cement (which is used for many many other things than tunnels!!
We live on a very strict diet of electricity. at present it is six hours per day, when it does come, people have to scatter to get washing done, heating water, charging phones, charging home battery systems to be able to have a fan when electricity is gone. simply everything and anything is a major issue in our daily lives. Israel has systematically stood against any projects pertaining to sewage treatment or garbage treatment or even water treatment. the only difference between my tap water at home and sea water is that we don’t have fish coming out of the tap yet, the only thing u can use tap water is flushing a toilette or cleaning floors. all are dependent on water filters than can barely coupe with the terrible water.
As much as I try to explain how harsh the Israeli siege on Gaza is, I just cant, you need to live it to fully understand it. One very important notice is that the majority of all the above existed decades before Hamas was created and was strengthened when Hamas came to power through democratic elections sanctioned by most parties involved in the Palestine/Israel issue including Israel and the US.
So what to do? During the ww2, Nazi Germany then gathers countless innocent Jews and put them in what got to be known as the Warsaw ghetto and besieged it very tightly. Jews came up with the idea of digging tunnels to smuggle in food and then weapons to resist the Nazis. That was deemed as a natural thing for Jews to do, I personally think it was perfectly natural and legitimate to do.
So the Hamas dudes thought Hmmm guess that’s our only choice. It started out for food only and later also for weapons to resist the ongoing aggression of Israel on Gaza.
Why is it so hard for the world to understand that Gaza will try and resist fails me.
Palestinians tried everything from stone throwing up rises to futile negotiations that have been going on for 2 decades now to absolutely no avail.
What would you do? What choices do we as Gazans have left?
Don’t know if I managed to give a clear picture, I am not a writer and thoughts just rush through my head and find it very hard to organize better than I did.
Through these actions Israel has diminished Palestinians will to live aside such a state, why would they want to?
So until Israel decides to acknowledge all the wrongs it did starting by occupation, until the understand we are human beings just like them who want to enjoy life and raise our children in peace and dignity, until they decide to right all the wrongs above and much more, there will always be suicide bombers.
Maybe when the do decide we are equal human beings and not sub humans and act accordingly, then I can guarantee you rockets will stop raining on Israel.
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 (*)
- Special Topic – Ethnic Cleansing
- Israeli escalation in Gaza – A cover-up for settlement activity
- “Slow Death” -International report: Collective punishment of Gaza has reached critical stage – Incl Full Report PDF
- A “Leaflet” to the World about it’s own “forgotten” Extermination Camp called Gaza
- Gaza Siege Harshness Continues. Israel’s committing slow-motion genocide ~ by Stephen Lendman
THE LEGAL RIGHT OF RESISTANCE
81 Notre Dame Law Review1275(2006). Conducting an in-depth study of the genocide in Darfur, Sudan, and also discussing other genocides, this article details the inadequacy of many of the international community’s response to genocides, such as “targeted sanctions” or international peacekeeping forces. Examining international legal authorities such as the Genocide Convention, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and the International Court of Justice, the article demonstrates that groups which are being subjected to genocide have a legal right of self-defense. International treaties, Security Council arms embargoes, or national gun control laws cannot lawfully be enforced in a manner which prevents self-defense resistance to a genocide in progress, because under international law, the prohibition against any form of complicity in genocide takes legal precedence over lesser laws. With Paul Gallant & Joanne D. Eisen. In PDF.
- The Palestinian Right of Self Defense
- Brayer: The Absolute Right of Palestinian Resistance – Source
- No. Israel Does Not Have the Right to Self-Defense In International Law Against Occupied Palestinian Territory – Source
- If Jews in WWII Warsaw would have had rockets: They would have fired them too – by occpal
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
* 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.