As Attacks on Gaza's 'Besieged Civilians' Continue, US Gov't Rallies Behind Israel
As Attacks on Gaza's 'Besieged Civilians' Continue, US Gov't Rallies Behind Israel
By Sarah Lazare / commondreams.org
Aug 2, 2014

Bombardments continued Friday night and Saturday, bringing the Palestinian death toll to at least 1,650—80 percent of them civilians.

As Israel continues to pummel Gaza, and more Palestinian deaths pile up, the United States is placing "unequivocal blame" on Hamas for the crumbling of the "humanitarian ceasefire" on Friday.

Israel's heavy military attacks in and near Rafah continued Friday night, following earlier strikes on Rafah's main hospital. Heavy civilian casualties in the area are reported, and medical officials said Saturday at least a dozen homes were destroyed in the fresh round of attacks, according to Reuters. Israel bombed numerous other targets on Saturday, including the Islamic University and several mosques in Gaza City.

Ashraf al-Qudra, spokesperson for the Gaza Health Ministry, reported on Saturday that the Palestinian death toll is now at 1,650, with 8,900 wounded. Over 80 percent of Palestinians killed are civilians, according to UN estimates, and more than 300 of them are children. In Israel, 63 Israeli soldiers have died and three civilians have been killed over the past month.

United Nations Relief and Works Agency spokesperson Chris Gunness reported on Twitter Saturday: 

 

UNRWA estimates that a quarter of Gaza's population is displaced. Disease is breaking out in UN shelters, which have been targeted by deadly airstrikes, in addition to Gaza's only power plant. This has led to electricity shortages throughout Gaza, cutting of households from basic services, including water. 

Palestinian journalist Mohammed Omer reported Friday in Al Jazeera English that Israel is 'tightening the siege' on Gaza by declaring a buffer zone within Gaza's borders that "represents 44 percent of Gaza's territory." He writes, "To the east, Palestinians in Gaza are fenced in by Israeli artillery tanks, mortars, cannon shells and snipers. On Gaza's western side, Israeli warships form a blockade and allow only a three-mile fishing zone. To the north resides more military checkpoints and soldiers. To the south, the Egyptian military has closed off the Rafah border."

Both the United States and the United Nations blamed Hamas for breaking the 72-hour"humanitarian ceasefire" Friday by allegedly killing two Israeli soldiers and capturing one. "We have and I have unequivocally condemned Hamas and the Palestinian factions that were responsible for killing two Israeli soldiers and abducting a third," Obama said at anews conference on Friday.

But Max Blumenthal and Allison Deger write on Mondoweiss that there is insufficient evidence that Hamas alone is to blame. They argue that "the more likely explanation is that Washington has sought to frame Hamas as the aggressor to enable Israel to intensify military operations disproportionately directed against a besieged civilian population."

3.5 ·
1


Love Films For Action? 

Films For Action empowers citizens with the information and perspectives essential to creating a more just, sustainable, and democratic society.

If you feel like you get some value from this library, consider making a donation today. Every little bit helps.

Trending Today
In the Absence of the Village, Mothers Struggle Most
Beth Berry6,578 views today ·
Black Friday Is Buy Nothing Day: Here Are 10 Films to Inspire a Joyous Shopping-Free Holiday
Tim Hjersted6,411 views today ·
The Canary Effect: Kill the Indian, Save the Man (2006)
63 min4,226 views today ·
This Is How Globalized Capitalism Operates Today
4 min3,911 views today ·
Today I Rise: This Beautiful Short Film Is Like a Love Poem For Your Heart and Soul
4 min2,329 views today ·
The Adorkable Misogyny of The Big Bang Theory
22 min1,546 views today ·
This Incredible Animated Short Film Says So Much Without Saying a Word
13 min1,053 views today ·
John Lennon's "Imagine," Made Into a Comic Strip
John Lennon. Art by Pablo Stanley980 views today ·
Native American Girls Describe the Real History Behind Thanksgiving
2 min875 views today ·
Load More
Join us on Facebook
As Attacks on Gaza's 'Besieged Civilians' Continue, US Gov't Rallies Behind Israel