The average person’s lifespan is 70 years. It’s a long time for a lot to happen, to gather memories and experiences that rest inside one’s head and heart. No photograph, no ‘selfie’ could capture any of it, but it will remain there for when you smell, taste, hear, see or touch something or someone that will rush those memories to the fore. For Palestinians, and in Gaza in particular, life can be as short as a few seconds after being born at a checkpoint, to as long as to witness the brutality of a dehumanizing military occupation that suffocates deliberately and increasingly by each day that passes.
Gazans have been locked up for over two decades; in the last decade it has totally suffocated its inhabitants – by land, air and sea. As of 2016 the UN deemed it “unliveable”, human rights groups have termed it “an open air prison”, a ghetto, the largest concentration camp on Earth, and by 2020 as some estimates go, it will be “uninhabitable”. Over half of the now 2 million imprisoned in the Gaza Strip are under the age of 25. Of the last 4 massacres in the last 7 years and damage to infrastructure unimaginable to the average person, Gaza has received no reconstruction materials, nor any humanitarian foodstuff or medicines. Even if one wanted to send money to the besieged, they would have to transfer it into the Zionist pocket before it gets out to the intended. 90% of its water is unfit for human and animal consumption, and certainly not usable for agriculture. Electricity is now down to 3-4 hours a day, if they are lucky, thanks to a corrupt “leadership” that is in cahoots with their occupiers. They are not allowed to fish beyond 3 nautical miles in their own waters lest they, their boats or both are shot at by the occupation forces, even when international law says they are “allowed” 12 nautical miles. The Zionists regime keep telling the world Gaza is no longer occupied; that they left in 2005; all the suffering is of their own making. After all they elected Hamas.
Palestinians have tried everything from violent resistance (a right to enshrined in international law and within the UN charter) to acceptance to nonviolent resistance. Every avenue has been met with a tsk tsk, coupled with blame squarely on the victim for their own imprisonment, slaughter, the theft of their own land, natural resources, and loss of their freedom. The military occupation regime, along with the submissive talking heads, have asked “where is the Palestinian Gandhi?” – misleading at best since the answer is already known by Zionist ministers admitting “we don’t do Gandhi well”.
Palestinians figured it out: 70 years is just an excruciating time to wait, an elastic band that stretches, is never relaxed nor snapped back. So, on March 30th, 2018 the Gazans gave the world their “Palestinian Gandhi” in the tens of thousands, fearlessly, desperately. It was an angst-ridden cry for the world to see that they are still alive and they were going to save what is being slowly erased from the international memory. Their wounds, amputated legs, their tear gas filled lungs, their shaheed, are all a testament to this nonviolent resistance. They marched peacefully to their border with Palestinian flags, had clowns for entertainment for the children, they passed on cultural heritage that is exclusively Palestinian to the younger generation – one that cannot be usurped by anyone, especially the occupation who have stolen already too much.
According to the war minister Avigdor Lieberman “there are no innocents in Gaza”. This was the queue: the over 100 snipers were given freedom to shoot to kill anyone. All 12,000 injured and over 100 dead – 60 of them in one day – women, children, men, the elderly, those made crippled from past massacres, medics (local and international), ambulances, hospitals, the press, infants, not one innocent person in the lot.
And be sure, there were videos. Each time their target produced a fist-sized hole through a protestor’s leg, or worse, cheers were heard on these ‘homemade’ videos. They were posted on Facebook. Not one gruesome video was removed, no accounts blocked or taken down for “inciting violence”. Maybe Mark Zuckerberg still hasn’t caught on to what is going on in his social media company, as he clearly demonstrated a couple of months back.
Palestinians burned tires so the sharpshooters hiding behind sand dunes would not be able to see past the black smoke so no one would lose anymore limbs or life. The Zionist regime and the servile media turned it upside down. They claimed Palestinians were about to overtake the border by “hurling burning tires at the fence”. If they had sent journalists over to report from the ground, it would have been self-evident that one side had the means and orders to cripple, maim or kill on the spot, and the other side had nothing but faces painted to hide the mark of being Palestinian, rocks, tires and Palestinian flags. They sent balloons and kites, and yes some kites were lit on fire, and no, there was no “imminent danger” to people or the fields. This act of resistance, too, was considered “dangerous” and had to be stopped. Balloons and kites! Seriously?! The “most moral army in the world” is the most terrified of… balloons and kites?!
The UN has called for an independent investigation. Large sums of money and time are spent on these investigations. They produce insurmountable volumes of their findings and call them ‘reports’ that do and go nowhere other than to the libraries for the dust to settle upon them. All words, no action. But good news, the US, true to form, blocked this attempt. Time, trees and money saved. The Zionist regime and supporters have once again played the overused and predictable anti-semitism, anti-‘israel’, anti-jewish, anti-whatever-comes-next, card. These words are solely meant to shut down debate, intimidate, avoid accountability, distract They’ve time and again openly admitted to committing crimes against humanity… they continuously point out the fact that others in the neighbouring states have committed as bad, if not worse, crimes as them! Is no one listening to the language they use?! These guys are masters at deception! This card has corners torn and is yellowing with age to all to justify their odious actions and crimes from the inception of the Zionist project to date.
But there has to be more than these tired excuses given time and again.
Governments are supposed to review all arms and military hardware contracts before anything is sold to other nations. These laws are in place so no crimes against humanity are committed. Yet, the governments who have allowed arms companies to sell nefarious forms of artillery to be used upon the Palestinians – not only from the US, but by Canada, the UK and France – have all slipped wilfully under their radars. Playing ignorance is good business for everyone, but especially for the Zionist regime. After the massacres, they showcase their wares in documentaries and tradeshows in the Middle East and feature new forms of reprehensible equipment. These items are touted as “tried and tested in the field”. That “field” is Gaza and they are “tried and tested” on Palestinians caged up in Gaza. This year, the star of the show may well be drones that are able to carry up to a dozen teargas canisters. But I digress….
So the question begs to be asked: what if this all were happening the other way around? That it were the another people who were locked up in a ghetto, made to be “put on a diet”, have their freedom on every minute level one can imagine snatched away, not allowed any medicines for the sick? What would the outcome be? We all know the answer… it DID happen. Remember? The Holocaust? That was 70 years ago, and the Zionists love to remind us at every turn! Well, it’s time to face it: there has been another Holocaust in the making ever since the Zionist project came under way.
This has to end. The absolute military occupation of Palestine must end. There are too many people of all ages who are being imprisoned or wiped off the earth. Too many Gandhi’s are being snuffed out for profit, names not even allowed to be uttered or written. If it took 6 million Jews to have Palestine ripped away from the indigenous people who lived on and cultivated their own land for millennia, how many Palestinians will it take for them to get it back?
The world needs to urgently come out of their complacency. To wait an entire lifetime to be freed from the apartheid and military occupation regimes’ yoke is more than enough for anyone to bear. It’s unimaginable, unforgiveable. It is time for the honest dialogue to be had without any evasion. No more anti-semitism scare tactics. It’s not difficult. It is time to end the occupation. It is time to free Palestine. It is time for Palestinians to be free once and for all.
LONG LIVE RESISTANCE