Posted by: Lister | December 29, 2008

The Siege of Gaza

The BBC:

Since Hamas took control of Gaza, its 1.5m people have been relying on less than a quarter of the volume of imported supplies they received in December 2005. Some weeks, significantly less than that has arrived.

They have a graph showing that supplies increased a little during the ceasefire, but not to full capcity. By October 2008, the supplies had been cut to less than July 2008 — marked as the beginning of the ceasefire.

Goods into Gaza

I found the above article in a post by ddt at JREF, who goes on to quote a table from an article UN Office for Coordination of Human Affairs (pdf).

Advertisements

Responses

  1. Apparently, they have no shortage of rockets being imported. At least, not until the other day when the number of rockets fired on a daily basis from Gaza into Israel dropped from 130 each day to a mere 20.

  2. Sara Roy’s article at Christian Science Monitor describes what it really means to be a Jew.

    She also reports that:

    During November, an average of 4.6 trucks of food per day entered Gaza from Israel compared with an average of 123 trucks per day in October. Spare parts for the repair and maintenance of water-related equipment have been denied entry for over a year.

    Later she says:

    And what will happen to Jews as a people whether we live in Israel or not? Why have we been unable to accept the fundamental humanity of Palestinians and include them within our moral boundaries? Rather, we reject any human connection with the people we are oppressing. Ultimately, our goal is to tribalize pain, narrowing the scope of human suffering to ourselves alone.

    […] Jewish intellectuals oppose racism, repression, and injustice almost everywhere in the world and yet it is still unacceptable – indeed, for some, it’s an act of heresy – to oppose it when Israel is the oppressor. This double standard must end.

  3. Israel’s blockade is no different than a naval blockade against countries we deem as a threat to the US, and we have used those on occasion. The Sara Roy quotes you use fail to point out why Israel needed to use the blockade or to limit trucks entering Gaza. These quotes ignore the fact that the Palestinians are the ones that always start the problems, that it is the Palestinians that insist that Israel has no right to exist, that it is Hamas that has in its charter a requirement to fight until Israel is destroyed.
    Israel is not the opressor, it is justly engaging in self-defense.

  4. It wasn’t intended as an answer to you, DB. You don’t deserve an answer. You deserve to have on your side all those who agree with you.

    This blockade and attack on Gaza has harmed Israel more than any attack by any Arab army. There are protests all over the world.

    Even American public opinion is split down the middle. Rasmussen. I don’t recall seeing opinions like that in America before Bush.

    But Israel’s ‘friends’ are all of the sort who let Israel drive drunk. A real friend, like President Carter, would tell Israel truths that it doesn’t want to hear. Because that’s a job best done by a friend. A real friend.

    But I bet you call President Carter anti-semitic. The only President to have brought any amount of peace to the region. That’s the kind of ‘friend’ you are to Israel.

  5. Lister,
    Where was the public outcry for the past year, while 3,000 rockets rained down on Israel from Gaza? The blockade you bemoan was set up for just this reason, to prevent weapons from getting into Gaza to be used against Israel. But the weapons still get in, and the world stills protests when Israel defends itself.
    You equate Israel to “driving drunk” while you ignore the Palestinians “attempted murder” and “murder”.

  6. The public outcry against qassams was very present. You might be confused by the lack of support for Hamas’ crimes which makes the debate seem less intense. Support for Israel’s disproportionate response means that the debate is unmissable. And, yes…. Israel’s response is much more worthy of criticism and attack. The death toll is above 800 now.

    Wiki’s timeline of qassam attacks, 2008

    At the beginning of the ceasefire, in July, the number of rockets were greatly reduced and the blockade was slightly weakened. During October, however, the number of rockets fired was reduced further (wiki lists only one rocket) but the blockade was increased in comparison to July.

    Blockade is an act of war. The blockade of Gaza killed 200 people, according to PHR. The BBC:

    PHR says 200 patients died while waiting for permits in the past year. The WHO attributes at least 20 such deaths, in a two-month period, to the fact the patients could not leave the Strip for treatment.

    Do you protest these deaths? Or do you support them as part of the collective punishment of Gaza?

  7. There has been no outcry of the qassams from anyone but Israel and people like me. The world as a whole ignored the issue of Hamas’s crimes against Israel. The fact that Israel’s counter attack has killed over 800 people is irrelevent. In September of 2001, we had 3,000 people killed by Al-Qaeda. In response to that attack we have killed how many? The fact of war is that “proportionate responses” don’t win. All wars are one and lost the same way, one side kills more of the other side than the losing side can stand leading the losing side to quit the fight.
    I am surprised that you would use wiki as a source, anyone can put anything on wiki, leading it to be full of inconsistant, and even false, “facts.”
    The actual counts of the rockets have been 3,000 in the past year, based on news accounts from CNN and Fox. The blockade was set up to stop weapons from being shipped into Gaza to be used against Israel. Surely even you would have to admit that firing rockets into Israel is an act of war that Israel had to respond to? How did you expevt them to react? Maybe they should have apologized for making the Palestinians send suicide bombers into Israel to murder Israeli children?
    To be honest, no I don’t protest the deaths of the Palestinians, they are the ones that knowingly elected a terrorist organization who declares that Israel has no right to exist and vows to destroy Israel. It was the Palestinians that let Hamas fire rockets into Israel, with the full support of the citizens. It was the Palestinians that let Hamas hid weapons and fighters within the civilian community, using the civilians as human shields.
    You can call that “collective punishment”, I choose to call it what it is, a war. The important thing to remember is that Hamas and the Palestinians started this war.

  8. There has been no outcry of the qassams from anyone but Israel and people like me. The world as a whole ignored the issue of Hamas’s crimes against Israel.

    You’re very ignorant, DB
    It only takes a moment on google to prove you wrong.

    HRW (2005): Hamas must cease immediately “Qassam” rocket and mortar attacks against civilian areas, Human Rights Watch said today.

    IHT (Feb 2008 ): UN humanitarian chief condemns Palestinian rocket attacks

    But when statements like that are made, they don’t cause controversy. So you don’t notice them.

    What bothers you is any attempt to understand why Qassams are launched. Any attempt to lay any blame on Israel.

    People were dying in Gaza because of the blockade. But you don’t care. You don’t even think it matters that 800 people have died.

    In September of 2001, we had 3,000 people killed by Al-Qaeda. In response to that attack we have killed how many? The fact of war is that “proportionate responses” don’t win.

    The day after 9/11, America had conquered the world. A few wars later and what have you gained? America’s standing in the world has never been lower. America’s influence in the world is diminishing, and only a fool would talk about this being a New American Century.

    And you think you’re winning the war?

    All wars are one and lost the same way, one side kills more of the other side than the losing side can stand leading the losing side to quit the fight.

    That is simplistic rubbish. Wars are won by the side that achieves their aims.

    That’s how things are measured. There is no New American Century so Cheney and his pals have failed.

    I am surprised that you would use wiki as a source, anyone can put anything on wiki, leading it to be full of inconsistant, and even false, “facts.”

    That’s a cop-out. Check its sources.

    To be honest, no I don’t protest the deaths of the Palestinians, they are the ones that knowingly elected a terrorist organization who declares that Israel has no right to exist and vows to destroy Israel. It was the Palestinians that let Hamas fire rockets into Israel, with the full support of the citizens. It was the Palestinians that let Hamas hid weapons and fighters within the civilian community, using the civilians as human shields.

    When I get comments like that, I always link to Chomsky. I’m sure that most of those I respond to do not recognise themselves in bin Laden’s words. But, believe me, you and bin Laden are two of a kind.

    On February 12, the statements of Osama bin Laden were reviewed in the New York Times by NYU law professor Noah Feldman. He described bin Laden’s descent into utter barbarism, reaching the depths when he advanced “the perverse claim that since the United States is a democracy, all citizens bear responsibility for its government’s actions, and civilians are therefore fair targets.” Utter depravity, no doubt.

    Two days later, the lead story in the Times casually reported that the United States and Israel are joining bin Laden in the lower depths of depravity.

    Palestinians offended the masters by voting the wrong way in a free election. The population must therefore be punished for this crime. The “intention,” the correspondent observed, “is to starve the Palestinian Authority of money and international connections” so that President Mahmoud Abbas will be “compelled to call a new election. The hope is that Palestinians will be so unhappy with life under Hamas that they will return to office a reformed and chastened Fatah movement.” Mechanisms of punishment of the population are outlined. The article also reports that Condoleezza Rice will visit the oil producers to ensure that they do not relieve the torture of the Palestinians. In short, bin Laden’s “perverse claim”; but when the United States advances the claim, it is not ultimate evil but rather righteous dedication to “democracy promotion.”

    You are a terrorist.
    You are willing to punish innocent people for the actions of their government.

    Consider that the last word on this matter. I will delete any further posts you make.

  9. Now back to my blog….

    Jeremy Bowen at the BBC conducted some interviews in Gaza before the war broke out. John Ging, of UNRWA, comments:

    “We were not allowed to reconstitute our stocks during the ceasefire… That belies the Israeli argument about security. They didn’t allow stocks in when the ceasefire was on.”

    “The Israelis were fully informed of the situation. For five months we were not allowed to reconstitute our reserves. So when the ceasefire broke down we ran out of food for the 750,000 who depend on us. Access for food and medicine is problematic ”

    “We tell the Palestinians that rockets are illegal and bad. Then we have five months without rockets and things don’t improve. It plays into the hands of extremists.”

    […] John ran through the litany of misery that existed in Gaza before the Israeli offensive. Of course it is many times worse now.

    “There’s one million on food aid, including 750,000 refugees. 80% are below the poverty line, meaning they live on less than $2 a day. Almost 100,000 jobs have gone in the last 18 months, since the total Israeli embargo came in. [Because that included most building materials] $93m of Unrwa construction projects, medical centres, houses for refugees, all are stopped. 3,200 out of 3,500 Gaza businesses have gone down in the siege.”

  10. Hamas arrested an al-Aqsa rocket squad in July 2008.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Categories

%d bloggers like this: