Celebration of bloodthirstiness. Cruelest exhibition of power. The fearless struggle of the oppressed. Jerusalem’s old city is undergoing a lot right now. With the Israeli brutality reaching new heights and the death tolls of Palestinians mounting, the impudent faces of the so-called peacekeepers are being exposed. Let’s pay a visit to what happened, what the world leaders are doing, and shed some light on how you can impact.

Gaza: the return of barbaric aggression

After the birth of Israel as a ‘state’, two bloody wars took place in 1948 and 1967, resulting in the steady expansion of Israeli settlements, leaving millions of Palestinians under an open prison. The holy city of Jerusalem is accustomed to seeing violence on and off for decades since both Palestinians and Israelis view Jerusalem as their eternal capital. The latest round of unrest erupted in April, with the wounds of 2014 still in place. Israel killed 2314 Palestinians in 2014 alone, breaking all the records of Palestinian civilian killing since the occupation began in 1967. [1] The clash this year began over Israel’s eviction plan of Palestinian homes at Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of East Jerusalem. The tension further escalated with Israel’s unlawful move of preventing the gatherings of Palestinians at Al-Aqsa Mosque in the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. Amid the chaos, Hamas, the militant group of Palestine, set an ultimatum for Israel to withdraw its police force by May 10th. Upon not meeting the deadline, Hamas streamed out rockets to Israel and the immediate response came in the form of relentless bombarding from Israel on the Gaza Strip. With the threat of Israeli military general to fight ‘forever’ and no sign of Hamas to stop responding, the possibility of a ceasefire does not seem imminent.

A massacre in the making

Israeli fighter jets attack civilian targets in Gaza, Jabalia and Beit Lahiya – REUTERS

The intense hostility of Israel in years is getting severe every day surpassing the last. Nights are loud in Gaza with heavy airstrikes and continuous drone attacks. The death toll of the Palestinians increased to 201, including 34 women and 58 children as of Monday since the killing began on May 10th.[2] Israel claimed to have their 10 citizens dead in the rocket attack of Hamas. The lopsided death count says a lot about what’s going on in the region. Loss of loved ones and dream homes, overwhelming hospitals, and wreckage all around the city- the burden is too heavy for Palestinians to carry. Omar al Hadidi, a 5-month-old lone survivor of an Israeli bombarding became the face of Israeli aggression on Palestinians. Airstrikes hit the building where the Hadidi family was residing at night and killed 10 members while they were asleep. Muhammed al Hadidi, father of Omar who was not with his family during the attack says, “There were no rockets there, just women and children, just peaceful children celebrating Eid, what have they done to deserve this?’ Being afflicted with the pain of losing a whole family at once he continues, “I call on the international community those who cherish human rights, children’s rights and democracy, those who penalize anyone who harms a child to look at our children here who are being bombed with rockets that weigh 200, 250 tonnes fired by F-16s.”

In the face of the increasing death toll, the Secretary-General of the UN Antonio Guterres called for an immediate end of the ‘senseless cycle of bloodshed’ in a UN security council meeting. Concerns have also been raised from Save the Children since children are making up most of the civilian deaths. Years of Israeli occupation and brutality in Gaza and the occupied territory have made the inhumane face of Israel familiar to the world long ago. The actions of Israel regardless of the global concern now proves its immunity to protect its nature of violating human rights.

Catapults and stones against deadly weaponry

The conflict between Palestine and Israel however was and still utterly uneven. The armed forces of the Israeli military were always confronted with stones and catapults of the Palestinian civilians. Hamas (known as ‘terrorist’ in the west) acting most often as the safeguard of the Palestinian inhabitants, is equipped with rockets and missiles, which is mostly intercepted by Israel’s Iron Dome System of air defense.[3] Israel’s military may not be as large as the ones of Turkey and Egypt, but the training and nuclear weapons certainly made it unassailable in the region. 3.8 billion USD American military aid to Israel on an annual basis has paved the way for Israel to become a goliath in the region.[4]  America always justified the aid as necessary to support an underdog nation to forfend its foes who threaten its survival. However, the reality shows us just the opposite with Israel’s incessant usage of weaponry and piles of Palestinian dead bodies. Apart from the US support, the recent reset in relations with some gulf states diplomatically helped Israel. Gaza on the other hand is always backstabbed by its fellow Arab nations and deceived by the US, a self-declared upholder of humanity. For years now Gaza has become the favorite place of Israel for bloodshed, which lacks port facilities and Israel patrols its Mediterranean coastline all the time. With a handicapped territorial position, absence of a strong ally, and weaker defense, Palestine is fighting a seemingly unattainable war.

Political gains behind the curtain


Gaza has been bombarded for several years at various levels. What makes Israel go back to this evil pattern? Benjamin Netanyahu, the Israeli Prime Minister did not delay a moment to accuse Hamas of crossing ‘the red line’ and started a violent reply soon after. Experts say Netanyahu is utilizing the tension to retain his position in the face of four elections that were criticized as inconclusive, held in the last two years. Apart from the unstable ballot box, Bibi is also facing corruption trials at home, charged with breach of trust, fraud, and bribery. So, is he trying to save his political career by bombarding Gaza?

Israel’s strike on the press: ‘the world will know less about Gaza’

On May 15th Israel bombarded a media tower ‘Al-Jala’ in Gaza that contained international media outlets like AP and Al Jazeera and several local radio stations. On a one-hour warning, the 11-story high-rise quickly turned into relics. Netanyahu justified the attack accusing Hamas to be committing a ‘double war crime’ and hiding in Al-Jala. The CEO of the AP Gary Pruitt ruled out the claim in a statement, “I can tell you that we’ve been in that building for about 15 years with our bureau, we certainly had no sense that Hamas was there, we would like to see the evidence.” Condemning the attack he adds, “I can tell you the impact, it will be that the world will know less about what’s going on in Gaza because that building was leveled”. With the attack on the media, Israel showed the world once again how well they practiced their norm of violating international laws and regulations.

In solidarity with Palestine: ‘God is with you, so are we’

Whatever position the governments take regarding the violence in Gaza, the people all over the world showed solidarity for Palestine. From Baghdad to Islamabad to London to Madrid, people have come out in support of the Palestinians. ‘Free Palestine’, ‘Israel is the real terrorist’, ‘End apartheid, ‘God is with you, so are we’ were echoed in the streets of major world cities. Protesters also called for expelling the Israeli diplomat and shutting down the Israeli embassy. In some cases, local police got involved in a clash with pro-Palestinian protesters. However, the message from the march is clear-the violence must end and Israel must hold responsible for its crime against humanity.

The shameful stance from the Arab brethren

A Palestinian boy near the ruins of his house after an Israeli airstrike in Gaza City, Gaza Strip, May 14, 2021 – New York Times

The unexpected yet not surprising reaction came from the Arab counterparts following the raid at Palestine. The condemnation came in the form of statements and tweets, and in some cases a summon of the Israeli diplomat. Here arises the question, is that enough? Looking at the state of the relationship of some gulf states with Israel may answer. How can countries like the UAE create pressure on Israel when there is a mutual trade going on worth billions of dollars? How can Egypt truly condemn Israel when the dancing images of its soldiers with the Israeli defense force get viral? How can Saudi Arabia take a tougher stance on Israel when the news of a ‘secret meeting’ between its crown prince and Israeli PM comes up? Palestine is frankly alone when it needs a back for survival.

US’ take on Israel: does self-defense not apply to Palestine?

The US has long been the strongest supporter and ally of Israel and hence does not own completely clean hands. Apart from annual military aid to Israel, Washington always used its veto power in the UN security council to endorse Israel’s terrorism for decades. The recent statement of President Biden that ‘Israel has a right to defend itself’ says it all. He hopes to see an end to the conflict while urging only the rocket attack of Hamas to stop. What an irony from a state that talks about human rights in the world all year round! The quirky and hesitant answer of the US State Department spokesperson when asked the question ‘Does Palestinians have a right to self-defense?’ also gives a clear picture of what the US is doing to protect human rights. Let’s not forget the famous quote of the late anti-zionist Israeli professor “Israel is a small America and America is a large Israel”.

How can you help?

It requires a human with a sensible mind to support Palestine, not to be a Muslim essentially. Many grassroots organizations are working directly with Palestine to provide food, medicine, and basic services to the civilians of Palestine. Here is a list of the charity organizations that you can support with a donation-

You can also support the organizations sharing Palestinian stories with historic artifacts and personal narratives. One such organization is the Museum of the Palestinian People (website: https://mpp-dc.org/ ). You can boycott the products and services of Israel and other international companies that are complicit in the war crimes of Israel like HP, PUMA, Volvo, and Motorola Solutions. If someone thinks of neutrality in the face of a massacre, then here is what defines him-“If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor”- Desmond Tutu, Nobel Peace Prize laureate.

Late pressure from the Biden administration may lead to a ceasefire. In case it happens or not, the lost lives will never return and the pain will forever hurt. The incursion of the Israeli police into the Al-Aqsa Mosque will have a far deeper impact than the Netanyahu administration realizes. It was not enough for the brutal regime to occupy a nation’s land they own, evict them from their homes, and refuse to vaccinate civilians under unlawful occupation; it had to kill innocent worshippers in Islam’s 3rd holiest site in the holy Muslim month. The crisis is already densified with the death of a Lebanese protester in a clash with bordering Israeli forces and three rocket attacks of Syria towards Israel. No matter what the future holds, one thing is evident from history, the oppressor cannot go far with its bloody hands, against the people who refuse to give up.


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