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Israeli State Terror

by Stephen Lendman Thursday, May. 22, 2014 at 12:28 AM


Israeli State Terror

by Stephen Lendman

Every day is Kristallnacht in Palestine. Israeli security forces attack, brutalize, murder or injure nonviolent Palestinians with impunity.

They're ruthless. They're lawless. It's standard practice. Crimes too grave to ignore occur multiple times daily.

Soldiers, border guards and police harass, intimidate and terrorize Palestinians ruthlessly.

They hold an entire population hostage.

Fear is constant. It's pervasive. Collective punishment is official Israeli policy. Peaceful public demonstrations are prohibited.

So are free expression and movement. Population centers are isolated. Borders are closed. Occupation harshness denies Palestinians control over their own land.

Normal daily life is nonexistent. Economic strangulation is imposed. Institutionalized racism reflects official Israeli policy.

Curfews, roadblocks, checkpoints, separation walls, electric fences, and other barriers are standard practice.

Neighborhood incursions, land, sea and air attacks, bulldozed homes, land theft, ethnic cleansing, slow-motion genocide, targeted killings, political assassinations, mass arrests, torture, and gulag imprisonment reflect daily life.

Fundamental human and civil rights are verboten. Crimes of war and against humanity repeat without redress.

Wanting to live free in sovereign Palestine is called terrorism. So is legitimate self-defense.

Punitive taxes are imposed. Few services are provided. Vital ones are lacking or inadequate. Palestinian lawmakers are imprisoned for belonging to the wrong party.

Fishermen are attacked at sea. Soldiers shoot Palestinian children for target practice. Farmers in their fields are vulnerable.

Working at the wrong time risks arrest, injury or death. Crops and orchards are destroyed. Settlers commit regular attacks. Courts provide no help.

Slow-motion genocide reflects official Israeli policy. Gazans suffer horrendously under siege. They're being suffocated.

Media scoundrels blame victims. Vital truths are buried. Israeli crimes are suppressed. The myth of the region's only democratic state persists.

Democracy is fantasy. Hardliners run things. They do so ruthlessly. They do it lawlessly.

Palestinians have no rights whatever. Israeli Arab citizens have too few to matter.

Amira Hass once lived in Gaza. She knows firsthand what goes on. She writes about Occupied Palestine harshness. She does so regularly.

On May 21, she headlined "IDF uses live-fire zones to expel Palestinians from areas of West Bank, officer admits."

It's done to "reduc(e) the number of Palestinians living nearby," she said. It's to prevent what Israel calls illegal construction.

Building on their own land without permission is considered criminal. Israel controls so-called Area C.

It comprises over 60% of West Bank land. It includes vital Palestinian water resources Israel stole.

It designated about 18% of West Bank land closed military zones. It's one among other ways it steals land.

Thousands of Palestinians in dozens of communities are affected. They lived on their land for generations. It doesn't matter.

Occupation changed things. They're terrorized. They're  dispossessed. They're mostly in Jordan Valley and Dead Sea communities.

They're vulnerable. They're victimized for not being Jews. Living in Occupied Palestine risks life and limb.

On May 15, Israeli forces murdered two Palestinian children. They shot them in cold blood.

They wounded eight civilians. One child was injured. He's in serious condition. He may not survive.

Two gunned down children threatened no one. They were commemorating the 66th Palestinian Nakba anniversary. They did so near Ofer Prison.

Dozens of Palestinian men, women, students and children participated. They headed toward Ofer's gate.

Israeli forces closed it. They stood guard. They threatened demonstrators. Palestinians responded.

They set tires ablaze. They threw stones. Soldiers used rubber-coated metal bullets, tear gas, sound bombs and live fire.

Two deaths and eight injuries followed. Israel disdains Palestinian lives. Jewish ones alone matter.

These type incidents are commonplace. So are similar ones.

On May 19, 12-year old Ahmad Qasim was arrested. Israeli soldiers broke into his home. He's wanted for interrogation.

He's detained. He awaits military kangaroo court trial. For what isn't clear. Guilt by accusation is official Israeli policy.

He likely faces imprisonment. Imagine treating a 12-year old this way. Israel makes no distinction between children and adults.

Doing so violates Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) provisions. Palestinian children are violently arrested. They're beaten. They're blindfolded.

They're painfully shackled. They're isolated. They're sleep-deprived. They're brutalized in other ways.

They're physically and verbally abused. They're given limited access to water, food, toilet facilities and medical care.

They're isolated from family members and lawyers. They aren't told their rights.

Confessions are extracted under duress. They're forced to sign them in Hebrew they can't read.

They're threatened with physical violence, death, and sexual assault against themselves (and/or) family members.

They're treated like subhumans. High crimes to grave to ignore are commonplace. Generations of Palestinian children suffered.

Nadim Ahmed Nowarah and Mohammed Mahmoud Odah Abu Thaher Israel's latest victims. Video evidence showed Israeli soldiers murdering them in cold blood.

Rigat Kissis heads DCI-Palestine. "These acts by Israeli soldiers may amount to war crimes, and the Israeli authorities must conduct serious, impartial, and thorough investigations to hold the perpetrators accountable for their crimes," he said.

Oscar Fernandez-Taranco is Assistant UN Secretary-General for Political Affairs. At a Security Council briefing he said:

"It is of serious concern that initial information appears to indicate that the two Palestinians killed were both unarmed and appeared to pose no direct threat."

"The UN calls for an independent and transparent investigation by the Israeli authorities into the two deaths, and urges Israel to ensure that its security forces strictly adhere to the basic principles on the use of force and firearms by law enforcement officials."

Palestinian officials accused Israel of "excessive and indiscriminate violence." At the same time, illegitimate president Abbas does nothing to help.

He actively collaborates with Israel. He's done so for many years. He betrays his own people. He's Israel's enforcer.

He governs extrajudicially. He has no legitimacy whatever. He represents Quisling rule. He's more stooge than leader.

He subverts Palestine's liberating struggle. Collaborating with the enemy is treason. He's guilty multiple times over.

Israel lied about killing Nadim and Mohammed. It turned truth on its head claiming:

"A preliminary investigation determined that live fire was not used by security forces."

"The video clip which was released today has been edited, and doesn't document the full extent of the event, nor does it reflect the violent nature of the riot."

Clear video evidence showed otherwise. It was independently made. Eyewitnesses confirmed what happened. Israeli soldiers committed cold blooded murder.

DCI-Palestine's Bratt Parker said:

"What we do know is that at the time (both boys) were shot it was relatively calm."

"There was no stone throwing. There was a very low level of violence, if any, based on the video we have."

Some stone throwing occurred earlier. None ever warrants live fire responses. Police states operate this way.

Israel is by far the region's worst. State terror is official policy. According to Parker:

"The Israeli army has an obligation to not use lethal force, unless they are threatened with lethal force."

"So when the teens were shot there was no immediate threat to any soldiers' lives and therefore these killings are not justified under international humanitarian law, under international human rights law, and also the use of live fire isn't justified in this circumstance under the Israel's military own guidelines."

Israel denied using live fire. Autopsies proved otherwise. Dozens of Palestinians are murdered annually.

Palestinian lives don't matter. Brute force is official Israeli policy. Nonviolent unarmed Palestinians are murdered in cold blood. Young children are treated like adults.

On May 20, B'Tselem said "initial findings on Nakba Day incident at Bitunya indicates grave suspicion that forces willfully killed two Palestinians, injur(ing)…others."

"Findings refute the military's claim that no live ammunition was fired in the incident."

On May 20, B'Tselem obtained full video footage. Four security cameras provided it. They're installed on the building opposite the incident.

It's "available to the media at B'Tselem's offices," it said.

"We have made available two sequences, containing footage from two opposing cameras, depicting the moments of the killing," it added.

B'Tselem analysis refutes Israeli lies. Soldiers used live ammunition. Circumstances revealed no justification whatever.

Evidence shows killings were "willful." Israel stands guilty as charged.

B'Tselem obtained expert medical opinions. Autopsies concluded deaths by live fire. Bullets were found in wounded victims.

They weren't rubber-coated ones. Eyewitnesses described live gunfire sounds. It's different from firing rubber-coated bullets.

Israeli open-fire regulations are clear. They leave no ambiguity. They prohibit live fire at all times.

Except when soldiers' lives are threatened. Clear video evidence showed no danger whatever.

Nadim was shot while walking peacefully. He threatened no one. Mohammed was shot in the back. Both youths were murdered in cold blood.

B'Tselem demands a full investigation. They want one "into the military's incorrect version of the incident conveyed to the media," it said.

Whitewash for sure will follow. It's longstanding Israeli practice.

Cold blooded murder is swept under the rug. It's done so routinely. Unjustifiable killings are called self-defense.

Dead Palestinian children don't lie. They deserved better. Their corpses prove crimes too grave to ignore.

It bears repeating. Israel stands guilty as charged. It's not the first time. For sure not the last.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

Visit his blog site at

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs.

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