Israel’s slaughter goes on. Marking Eid, the holiest day of the holiest month in the Islamic calender, at least 87 Palestinians have been killed in Gaza, including 18 children; over 530 have been wounded, and hundreds have been left homeless after Israeli missiles targeted 17 homes and the 13-story al-Hanadi apartment building, which also housed business, medical and media offices. “Gaza will burn,” vowed right-wing, blood-soaked Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz in an explicit threat to commit war crimes, pledging to exceed the savagery of his 2014 Operation Protective Edge that killed over 2,200 Palestinians, including 550 children. Today, Gantz is the norm in an apartheid Israel no longer shy about declaring, “This is a Jewish country”: A Netanyahu spokesperson posted an old video from Syria to accuse Hamas of using “human shields,” an Israeli lawmaker urged the military to “flatten the Strip,” a Justice Minister supports destroying Palestinian homes because, “Otherwise, more little snakes will be raised there.” With Israeli troops reportedly massing for a possible ground assault, Gaza is already a hellscape where “the sounds of children screaming are louder than the missiles.” The victims are random, innocent, beloved: Awad Abuselmya, who was his family’s only survivor when Israeli bombs killed his parents and six siblings in 2006; Munther Abd al-Karim Baraka, 21, and his sister Manar Abd al-Karim Baraka, 18, who were working on their family’s chicken farm; Lina Iyad Shrir, 15, and both her parents; Bashar Ahmad Samour, 17, a farmer who was harvesting parsely with two relatives; a family of six, including four children and their pregnant mother; many in their cars, some in their stores, one in a park; Reema Saad, a 30-year-old journalist, killed in an Israeli airstrike with her 3 year-old daughter, 5 year-old son, and husband Muhammed . She was four months pregnant. She is not a number. None of them are.
“Here is what I want you to understand,” writes one resident of untenable life in the long-besieged Gaza. “We are bleeding here, anyway. Bleeding silently, all the time. Regardless of this or that war.. Why do I, why do we, have to choose between a quick death during a time of war, or a silent death under blockade?” Complicit in the Gazan nightmare, lest we forget, is the U.S. and its almost four billion dollars in military aid to support David Ben-Gurion’s merciless edict for the Zionist project of “maximum territory, minimum Arabs.” That goal is reflected in today’s turmoil in occupied East Jerusalem, most notably in Sheikh Jarrah, where Israeli settlers intent on “Judaizing” the city are seizing homes where Palestinians have lived for decades – an effort funded significantly by American Jews. Biden, who’s long supported Israel, has stuck to his narrative: Israel, he says, “has a right to defend itself” (against small children and pregnant women). Many have had enough: “Biden has a right to go fuck himself until he stops funding apartheid and state terrorism. #FreePalestine.” Over 100 Democrats share the sentiment, arguing in a scorching open letter to Biden that, rather than send “hollow Eid greetings,” “We must not allow U.S. tax dollars to be the currency for ethnic cleansing for Israeli apartheid.” They urge Biden to slash a defense budget that now provides more money to Israel than climate change, and above all to “demonstrate actual leadership on human rights instead of turning a blind eye to the suffering of our brothers and sisters.” Their charge: “Hold the missiles, drones, bombs, cages, interrogations, detentions, incarceration, deportations, CIA covert missions, economic sanctions, torture, humiliation, forced evictions, land theft, broken promises, lies, empty gestures, hostilities, and most recently the vaccine apartheid.” The bottom line: “You don’t need to be Muslim to stand for GAZA. You just need to be HUMAN.” The call to an indifferent world is echoed by one small, ferocious Gazan boy: “All you nations sleeping through our pain – children are dying.”commondreams Further | All You Nations Sleeping | Opinion