imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Calendar Publish RSS
Features
latest news
best of news
syndication
commentary


KILLRADIO

VozMob

ABCF LA

A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List

LAAMN List




IMC Network:

Original Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech

Surviving Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: canada: quebec east asia: japan europe: athens barcelona belgium bristol brussels cyprus germany grenoble ireland istanbul lille linksunten nantes netherlands norway portugal united kingdom latin america: argentina cmi brasil rosario oceania: aotearoa united states: austin big muddy binghamton boston chicago columbus la michigan nyc portland rochester saint louis san diego san francisco bay area santa cruz, ca tennessee urbana-champaign worcester west asia: palestine process: fbi/legal updates process & imc docs projects: radio satellite tv
printable version - js reader version - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

Palestine: Occupied, Divided, Isolated, Oppressed and Unaided

by Stephen Lendman Friday, Aug. 20, 2010 at 10:58 AM
lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net

What should outrage everyone

Palestine: Occupied, Divided, Isolated, Oppressed and Unaided - by Stephen Lendman

Imagine the following:

You're ruthlessly oppressed in an occupied country under a system of institutionalized racism, affording rights solely to Jews. You have no recognized nation, no right of citizenship, no democratic freedoms or civil liberties, including no power over your daily life.

You live in constant fear, collectively punished, politically denied, and economically strangled in a continuing cycle of violence. Military orders deny free expression and movement, enclose population centers, close borders, and impose curfews, checkpoints, roadblocks, separation walls, electric fences, dispossessions, land seizures, and domination over all aspects of life under draconian military orders like the following:

-- No. 92 giving Israel control of all West Bank and Gaza water;

-- No. 158 stipulating that Palestinians can't construct water installations without (nearly impossible to get) permit permission and those built will be confiscated or demolished;

-- No. 1015 requiring Palestinians get permission to plant trees on their own land;

-- No 128 authorizing the IDF to take over any Palestinian business not open during regular business hours;

-- No. 107 prohibiting Arabic grammar, Crusades history and Arab nationalist publications;

-- No. 101 banning gatherings of more than 10 people without advance notice with names of participants;

-- Nos. 811 and 847 letting Jews buy land from Palestinian owners with or without their consent;

-- No. 998 requiring Palestinians get permission to withdraw funds from their bank accounts;

-- No. 818 authorizing how Palestinians can plant decorative flowers;

-- No. 329 preventing the right of return; and

-- Nos. 1649 and 1650 turning all West Bank residents (including native born ones) potentially into "infiltrators," making them vulnerable to deportation, fines or imprisonment without IDF-issued permits.

Overall, your land is occupied, communities isolated, homes invaded, friends and relatives arrested, neighborhoods attacked, homes bulldozed, land stolen, fields uprooted and burned, businesses closed, and livelihoods denied. You're impoverished, unemployed, starved, tortured, murdered, punitively taxed and fined, and demonized for being Muslims in a Jewish state. You endure it daily on your own unaided, yet you go on, hoping others later will do better.

Separation - A Dominant Aspect of Daily Life

The Gisha Legal Center for Freedom of Movement promotes, defends and protects the right of free movement, "guaranteed by international and Israeli law," yet denied Palestinians under a draconian "system of rules and sanctions," restricting the lives of millions in Gaza, the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

As a result, their basic rights are violated, including the right to life, to access medical care, to education, to livelihood, to family unity, and to freedom of religion.

Gisha's new Safe Passage (SP) spg.org web site shows what's "not new and not 'internal' or 'geographical,' but rather intentional, about the separation of Gaza and the West Bank," Israel's draconian control over daily life.

In May, SP examined the affect on families and trade, including legal obligations under international and Israeli laws, spurned with impunity.

Family Separation

Since September 2000 (the start of the second Intifada), travel throughout the Territories (especially between Gaza and the West Bank) has been restricted or denied, notably after Israel's imposed siege. As a result, visiting relatives, pursuing education, accessing medical care, or living normally is virtually impossible, particularly for Gazans wanting to reach the West Bank. "The policy is taking a heavy personal toll on women, men and children, (since) many families have close relatives living in both areas."

ID card addresses affect normal life, including for West Bank natives identified as Gazans, making them subject to dispossession and deportation, separating them from families, husbands from wives, children from a parent, and friends from neighbors - because Israel controls the process, the Palestinian registry, and remains hardline.

Since 1990, Gaza-born Samir Abu Yusef has lived in Qalqilya in the northwestern West Bank. He's a carpenter, married with four children, yet in early 2008 was arrested entering Israel and deported because of his ID card address.

For over two years, he was separated from his family causing immense anguish and hardships, including financial ones. His application to return home was denied because he didn't observe Israel's permit criteria. His wife and children also couldn't visit him for the same reason.

Gisha petitioned Israel's High Court of Justice (HCJ) on his behalf and succeeded, reuniting him with his family in March, Samir saying months earlier:

"Two years have passed since I saw my children. I yearn to touch them, to watch them grow up, to hug them....It's very hard (being) away from them....The holiday season is the hardest time....On the holiday, I stay alone in my room and cry....What have my children done to deserve such a terrible punishment - to live without a father?"

Thousands of others in the West Bank fear the same fate - arbitrary removal, so they restrict their movements, fearing arrest at a checkpoint or by military patrols and deportated.

Gaza-born Ahmed Alul, a Tulkarm resident since 1996, visited his parents and family in Gaza in April 2001. He was then prevented from returning, his wife Samar saying how hard it is "to raise two boys by myself. I am both father and mother to them....no one can (replace their) father."

Unlike most countries and all civilized ones, Palestinians are denied free movement. As a result, Gazan men and women with West Bank spouses can't reunite to be together, yet Israel lets West Bank and East Jerusalem residents move to Gaza, but not return - an option risking livelihoods, land, homes, and family support networks, one few wish to choose.

West Bank-born Gazans face an impossible choice. They can stay with their spouse, detached from West Bank families, or return and be separated from wives or husbands who can't leave. The toll for many is unbearable, living half lives not whole ones.

If allowed, leaving Gaza involves hardships even in extreme cases, such as battered or divorced wives or widows seeking West Bank shelter with parents or other family members. Travel restrictions between the Territories are so strict, that it's easier for Gazans to meet family members abroad than internally, despite the difficulties reaching Egypt through Rafah.

Even Gazans managing to do it can't enter the West Bank via the Allenby Bridge (on the Jordanian side) to reunite with families. Mohammed Abu Aishah's case is tragic. Born in Jordan, his family moved to the West Bank when he was eight, yet his ID card address is Gaza even though he never lived there, because it was his mother's original address.

In February 2007, he visited his brother in Gaza, couldn't leave for over two years, got to Egypt through Rafah, and from there to Jordan. Yet he was denied entry to the West Bank and now lives under impoverished conditions, age 22, "with no future, no profession, no livelihood, no roof over my head. For three years I've (tried) to survive another day."

According to international accords Israel signed, West Bank and Gaza residents live in a single territorial entity. Yet Israel's separation policy creates "an almost impenetrable barrier," disrupting families, including husbands from wives, parents from children, siblings from each other, and friends from neighbors and community ties - in violation of international law and common decency.

Legal Implications of Family Separation

As an occupying power, Israel is required to ensure proper functioning of public life and institutions, including protection and welfare of families. The High Court of Justice (HCJ), in fact, affirmed these obligations because Israel control's Gaza's borders and occupies the West Bank, the populations dependent after decades of military control.

In addition, the Oslo Accords committed Israel to recognize Gaza and the West Bank as a single territorial entity in which free movement (notably safe passage) was allowed between the two by private vehicles or buses through Israel. Crossing permits were required but didn't require residency in either area exclusively.

Yet military orders or regulations separate families, creating inducements to move to Gaza and stay. Family visits, including between spouses, are prohibited, except under specially allowed humanitarian circumstances rarely granted. In addition, Israel now arrests West Bank residents with Gaza addresses, removing them by force. Also, strict criteria restrict Gazans from reuniting with family members in the West Bank, those returning removed by force.

"Understanding this policy requires understanding control over the Palestinian population registry," ostensibly given the Palestinian Authority (PA) under Oslo on these terms:

The PA must "inform Israel of every change in its population registry, including, inter alia, any change in the place of resident of any resident."

Nonetheless, Israel usurped control, treating PA address change notifications as a request it can approve or deny. As a result, since 2000, Israel refused to register them for Gazans who moved to the West Bank. Palestinians relocating thus had no way to record the change. At the same time, West Bank residents with Gaza IDs must get "staying permits" (rarely granted) to remain.

To quality, they must have entered the West Bank before 2000, be married to a resident there, have children, and demonstrate exceptional humanitarian circumstances.

Israel then prohibited Palestinians with Gaza addresses from traveling to the West Bank to reunite with families, except under "extraordinary restrictive circumstances."

Its policy states that family separation alone isn't a qualifying factor, effectively banning reunifications, even for parents and children, spouses, and siblings, with these exceptions:

-- children under 16 seeking reunification with a surviving parent;

-- elderly invalids needing help from a first degree West Bank relative; and

-- chronically ill people needing assistance from a first degree West Bank relative.

Even then, Gazans must prove they have no local relatives to provide care. Only then may they get temporary permits for up to seven years before being able to request an address change. However, if the humanitarian need expires before the permit, it's rescinded. If all conditions are met, Israel conducts a security check before deciding whether or not to grant permission. As a result, "family reunification is nearly impossible." For example:

-- a very young Gazan girl would be prohibited from reuniting with her West Bank mother if any Gaza relative can care for her; if not, hard to get special permission would be required;

-- a elderly invalid would be refused permission to be cared for by a West Bank niece because she's not a first degree relative; if one is there, the applicant must prove no one can provide assistance in Gaza; and

-- if all qualifications are met and permission granted, permits would be rescinded if the humanitarian need expires.

Other obstacles also exist, including the requirement for the Palestinian Civil Affairs Office Director-General to personally transmit requests to the military. In addition, if families are divided between the Territories, West Bank members are prohibited from visiting others in Gaza unless they waive their right to return.

Separation Policy's Damaging Affect on Trade between Gaza and the West Bank

Before closure, Gaza and the West Bank comprised single territorial entity, letting goods produced in one area be sold in the other, some (now destroyed) Gaza factories earning most of their revenue from West Bank sales.

However, during the 1990s, Israel imposed restrictions, to advantage its own companies over Palestine's. By late 2006, trade had markedly declined, and with Gaza under siege, virtually all its exports are prohibited, only limited amounts entering, including minimal amounts of essential to life items.

Excluded are medical equipment, all kinds of spare parts, construction materials, and basic items like books, wheelchairs, pens and pencils, shoes, cleaning and hygiene products to bring the Strip to its knees, induce malnutrition, illness, and systemic hardship for 1.5 million people - in gross violation of international law.

In mid-June, modest easing was announced, though hardly enough to matter, and it won't help the West Bank. Prior to closure, dealers earned a living selling goods in Gaza at affordable prices. Afterwards things changed, restricting items to a limited few, and imposing an expensive, lengthy, uncertain process to operate.

West Bank goods must be bought remotely, without checking for quality, then await permit permission to import them, provide storage, and coordinate with Palestinians and Israeli truck drivers for transportation through Israel to the Kerem Shalom crossing into Gaza.

About 12 days are needed, costing over ,000 per truck, plus storage costs and the possibility that distribution will be impeded or denied, forcing longer storage, lost sales and spoilage.

Previously, Gaza merchants could travel between the areas freely, selecting goods prior to buying them. No longer, and crippled Gazan industries can't compensate. As a result, unemployment and impoverishment skyrocketed to some of the highest levels globally, making Gazans dependent on humanitarian aid to survive, never enough because Israel restricts amounts and excludes most items, including essential ones.

Unsurprisingly, Gaza - West Bank business relationships have deteriorated, each cut off from the other, one Gaza farmer/fruit and vegetable dealer saying:

"In 2000, I used to export 10 - 12 tons of vegetables to the West Bank every day....Now I....can't export a thing. I had 1.2 acres of land where I grew guavas, among the best (in the Strip). They used to say that someone with a guava orchard is like a king, because they could be exported to the West Bank. Now, guavas mean a loss - the market has completely disappeared....I'm broken inside."

The few remaining Gaza businesses suffer huge losses, and most factories were either destroyed or shut down because West Bank raw material imports are prohibited. As long as the siege continues, a productive economy is impossible. So is earning a living, even one modest enough to survive and support a family.

The announced "economic peace" skipped Gaza, the World Bank saying:

"The West Bank and Gaza are now almost completely delinked, with Gaza starkly transformed from a potential trade route to a walled hub of humanitarian donations."

Besides their damaged societies and economies, the Gaza - West Bank disconnect destroys the possibility of unifying Palestine, the World Bank adding:

"(T)he strategic goal of an economically viable Palestinian state is achievable only if Gaza and the West Bank are maintained as an integral economic entity," what Israel prevents, keeping Gazans under siege and West Bank communities confined to Bantustans, isolated in the Territory's least valued areas, hoping they'll wither, perish or leave, transforming all Palestine into a greater Israel, exclusively for Jews, pressuring Israeli Arabs to comply, move, or be forced out.

A Final Comment

Phillip Weiss and Adam Horowitz blog on Mondoweiss on Israel/Palestine and Middle East issues daily. A July 18 entry related the distaste some Jews have for Arabs, one man saying they're guests as long as they behave. Another called them stinking Arabs ("aravim masrichim"). A third hoped the next war would drive them out because they're the modern incarnation of Amalek, the enemy of God and the Jews, and still another said "We like to be with people who think like we do."

Settlers are especially hostile, notably religious extremists believing they're chosen, Israel given them by God, the Messiah's reemergence imminent once it's entirely gotten, the "infidels" driven out.

With that mindset, American support, and a complicit world community, prevailing is a formidable task, yet achievable with enough tenacity to persist. If Palestinians are committed, can global activists do less and be true to their ethics, principles, honor, and resolve to demand equal justice, self-determination and peace.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. Also visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.

http://www.progressiveradionetwork.com/the-progressive-news-hour/.

Report this post as:

Local News

Change Links September 2018 posted S02 10:22PM

More Scandals Rock Southern California Nuke Plant San Onofre A30 11:09PM

Site Outage Friday A30 3:49PM

Change Links August 2018 A14 1:56AM

Setback for Developer of SC Farm Land A12 11:09PM

More problems at Shutdown San Onofre Nuke J29 10:40PM

Change Links 2018 July posted J09 8:27PM

More Pix: "Families Belong Together," Pasadena J02 7:16PM

"Families Belong Together" March, Pasadena J02 7:08PM

Short Report on the Families Belong Together Protest in Los Angeles J30 11:26PM

Summer 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! J11 6:58AM

Watch the Debate: Excluded Candidates for Governor of California M31 5:20AM

Change Links June 2018 posted M28 7:41AM

The Montrose Peace Vigil at 12 Years M22 8:01PM

Unity Archive Project M21 9:42AM

Dianne Feinstein's Promotion of War, Secret Animal Abuse, Military Profiteering, Censorshi M17 10:22PM

CA Senate Bill 1303 would require an independent coroner rather than being part of police M10 9:08PM

Three years after OC snitch scandal, no charges filed against sheriffs deputies M10 8:57PM

California police agencies violate Brown Act (open meetings) M02 8:31PM

Insane Company Wants To Send Nuke Plant Waste To New Mexico A29 11:47PM

Change Links May 2018 A27 8:40AM

Worker-Owned Car Wash on Vermont Closed A27 5:37AM

GUIDE TO REBEL CITY LOS ANGELES AVAILABLE A13 12:39AM

lausd whistle blower A11 6:58AM

Website Upgrade A10 10:02AM

Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images A04 8:02PM

UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light A02 6:58PM

Change Links April 2018 A01 6:27PM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

OUR HOUSE Grief Support Center Celebrates 25 Years with the House of Hope Gala S24 7:10PM

Against the Rent Madness and For a Nonprofit Orientation! S24 11:56AM

Cybermonde, cyberguerre, cyberespace, cyberterrorisme S24 6:35AM

Paraphysique de psychosomatique S22 6:58AM

Chuck Grassley: Women Abusing, Animal Murdering, Illegal War Supporting Criminal S22 2:58AM

Finance Capitalism and the Digital Economy S21 4:45PM

Muselières syndicales, muselières patronales S21 7:19AM

Jeff Bezos, Amazon, The Washington Post, Whole Foods, Etc S21 2:50AM

Why Choose Nut Milk Over Cows' Milk S21 1:01AM

Antrhopocène, le grand effondrement S19 9:53AM

Abolir l'économie S18 11:18AM

The Dictatorship of Corporations S17 5:26PM

18 Lethal Consequences Of Hunting S17 3:13PM

Paraphysique de l'outplacement déontologue S15 6:51AM

Shopping du bashing S14 8:42AM

After Lehman Brothers, Experts Say Global Financial Crisis Can Happen Again S13 8:28PM

“Animaniacs in Concert!” Starring Voice Legend Rob Paulsen S12 9:30PM

Probabilités de fin d'humanité S12 6:49AM

Florida Area of Migrant Farmworkers Denied Right to Construct Health Clinic near NaplesCIW S11 2:57AM

Steer clear of work morality! S09 12:10PM

The Shortwave Report 09/07/18 Listen Globally! S06 11:23PM

August 2018 Honduras Coup update S06 12:28PM

Brett Kavanaugh Filled The 5th Circuit With Execution Judges S06 6:14AM

Augusta Georgia Woman Gets 5 Year Prison Sentence for Writing About Russians Crime Acts S05 8:29AM

Paraphysique de contextualité S05 8:29AM

Crisis Regulation in Global Capitalism S03 3:39PM

Ex-voto de réification S03 10:24AM

Please Oppose Warmonger, Execution and Torture Supporting Bush Operative Brett Kavanaugh A31 10:45PM

More Breaking News...
© 2000-2018 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy