Stranger than cruelty

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Life for the 1.5 million people living in the Gaza Strip could turn into a nightmare as the Zionist regime has decided to brand the territory as an "enemy entity" and cut off all possible fuel and electricity supplies

Life for the 1.5 million people living in the Gaza Strip could turn into a nightmare as the Zionist regime has decided to brand the territory as an “enemy entity” and cut off all possible fuel and electricity supplies.

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said the declaration meant the imposition of tougher sanctions on Gaza in a bid to stop rocket attacks by Palestinian fighters on southern Israel.

The Zionist regime has vowed to restrict the transfer of goods and people in and out of Gaza even more. The pretext for these cruelties was loosely vindicated by cross-border rocket attacks, one of which hit an army base last week, wounding 69 Zionist soldiers. The Zionist regime blames Hamas while reports by Israel Radio show the Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail Haniya made efforts to halt the rocket fire. After all, any Palestinian rocket can be employed as a pretext by the Zionist regime to tighten up its pressures against the Palestinian people.

The UN’s human rights chief Louise Arbour expressed her “grave concern” at the decision and warned that “the implementation of such measures would impose an unbearable burden on the civilian population of Gaza.” She also called on the Zionist regime to show restraint and abide by international humanitarian law.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon warned that cutting supplies “would be contrary to Israel’s obligations towards the civilian population under international humanitarian and human rights law”.

The question of Palestine and the innocent Palestinians is an old wound, which seems never to heal. The strangulation of the Gaza and Gazan people and children is a flagrant violation of the international humanitarian rules and regulations. The international community represented by the US which says it champions the cause of prosperity for people by staging its so-called war on terror is deaf and dumb to the horror of the virtual prison in Gaza built by the Zionist regime of Israel.

To cut off all fuel and electricity supplies is an act of collective punishment by Israel. Yet, is it fair and human to punish over one million innocent people and children for what others have done? As a signatory to the Geneva Convention, the Zionist regime is obligated to ensure and guarantee the well-being of a nation it has for years harassed? Is it an excuse for Israel to declare a war against Hamas and give vent to its deep-rooted hatred against the Palestinian people once more?

UN officials state the more than 1.5 million people in Gaza, including the old, the young and the sick are already suffering from the impact of prolonged closure and rely on the food from the United Nations. Not an uncommon phenomenon in Gaza, electricity shortages mean that people’s refrigerators will stop working, and they will have no means to store their food.

Despaired over the deplorable situation in Gaza, UN officials believe that it is not indeed in the interests of the people in Gaza.

“It is difficult to see how this is in anyone’s interest, not Israel’s, and not the people in Gaza’s. There is already a dire humanitarian situation there and this will only add to the sense of isolation and desperation. We all know that desperation in this situation drives people further toward extremism,” said Chris Gunness, a spokesman for the United Nation’s Relief and Works Agency.

Poverty in the area has caused hundreds of children to relinquish their education and seek to earn money in order to support their families. Reports show that children are resorting to more and more dangerous measures to earn money including entering dangerous ‘no-go areas’ where they are at risk of coming under fire in order to steal scrap metal.

With poverty neighing bitterly in the Gaza Strip, children have become the only breadwinners of their families.

The economic situation has never been so bad. If Israeli closure of Gaza continues, there will be a severe catastrophe. This is the month of Ramadan. Before the beginning of the month, Muslims buy food and sweet appetizers including dates. But this year, the markets are empty. Those who fast avoid eating and drinking from morning until dusk and break their fast with dates or food. However, this year, those who observe fasting barely have anything to break their fast with.

The situation is sure to remain bleak and bare; more horror is on the way. The Palestinian children are the victims of a destiny carved out for them by a regime, which has stolen their lands, their dreams and their aspirations.

US everywhere

The tragedy unfolds when US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice whose country claims to be combating terrorism in the world joins the Zionist regime in sympathy and voices support for the inhumane decision while announcing brazenly that Hamas is a terrorist organization.

“It’s no secret that the US declares Hamas a terrorist organization, and that we have been troubled by the fact that Hamas did what they did in Gaza against legitimate Palestinian institutions, against the legitimate institutions of the Palestinian Authority. (But) We will not abandon the innocent Palestinians in Gaza, and indeed will make every effort to deal with their humanitarian needs.”

However, Rice’s peace odyssey to the Middle East was complicated by her support for tougher sanctions by Israel on the Hamas movement. Meanwhile, fearing that she might be dubbed as a public enemy, she hastened to tell the reporters in Jerusalem, “innocent” Palestinians in Gaza that they would not be “abandoned.” Was she sympathizing with the Palestinians?

Israel, the United States and the European Union have demanded that Hamas recognize Israel as a legitimate state, a demand which is way beyond a possibility.

It will be a mistake to think that the US has any honorable intentions for the people in the Middle East. To disport oneself with the devil is a good sign that one is part of the evil. Indeed the US thrives on evil.


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