Wednesday, December 31, 2008

GAZA BEAT

Stephen Lendman, Global Research - Since Hamas won a majority in the Palestinian Legislative Council in January 2006, Israel, Washington and the West withheld recognition and more. All outside aid was cut off, an economic embargo and sanctions were imposed, and the legitimate government was isolated and vilified.

The leading candidate to become Israel's next prime minister, Tzipi Livni, vows as a "strategic objective" to overthrow Hamas by military, economic and diplomatic means. Her main opponent, Benjamin Netanyahu, pledges to "topple the Hamas regime" and end its effective resistance against an oppressive occupation.

All along, Hamas has been conciliatory to no avail. Earlier in the year, its leaders agreed to a ceasefire and observed months of it unilaterally, despite repeated Israeli violations and Gaza being under siege. On November 4, it ended after the Israeli Defense Forces entered the Strip (without cause) and killed six Hamas officers supposedly to close off tunnels close to the Kisufim roadblock. Thereafter, in spite of both sides calling for peace, IDF hostilities continued.

Israel is a serial aggressor. Hamas responds in self-defense as international law allows. Article 51 of the UN Charter permits the "right of individual or collective self-defense (against an armed attack) until the Security Council has taken measures to maintain international peace and security."

On December 21, 1965, the UN General Assembly adopted Res. 2131 titled: "Declaration on the Inadmissibility of Intervention in the Domestic Affairs of States and the Protection of Their Independence and Sovereignty." It called armed intervention, subversion, and all forms of indirect intervention synonymous with aggression and, for the first time, recognized "the legitimacy of struggle by the people under colonial rules (including occupation) to exercise their rights to self-determination and independence."

On November 22, 1974, the General Assembly passed Res. 3236 recognizing that Palestinians have the same right to self-determination as other sovereign states.

On June 8, 1977, Protocol 1 to the August 1949 Geneva Conventions was passed - "relating to the Protection of Victims of International Armed Conflicts." It declared the legitimacy of armed struggle (or resistance) to achieve self-determination as long as no proscribed methods are used. Further, "all states (are urged) to provide material and moral assistance to the national liberation movements in colonial territories (including occupied people seeking freedom)."

Rarely do Palestinians get any, and, since 1967, have been some of the most isolated people in the world. For Gazans, no outside aid gets in, except for what Israel occasionally lets UN and humanitarian agencies supply and the little coming through tunnels on Egypt's border. It's never enough and falls woefully short of minimum amounts needed to survive. The result is a growing humanitarian crisis, an entire people on the verge of breakdown, compounded by mass slaughter, destruction, and it's "only beginning" according to the IDF spokesman.

The world community is silent and lets Israel do as it pleases - despite repeated international law violations, willful acts of aggression, grievous harm to four million people under occupation, including 1.5 million under a medieval Gaza siege, now under attack. . .

Hamas was democratically elected. It's the legitimate Palestinian government. It's falsely called a terrorist organization, and it has every right to resist an illegal occupation under international law. It observed a unilateral ceasefire for months and extended peace overtures numerous times in the past. Israel spurned them by dividing Gaza and the West Bank, co-opting Mamoud Abbas, inciting Fatah against Hamas, isolating Gaza, and pursuing a policy of aggression, killings, targeted assassinations, mass incarcerations, and torture with full support from Washington, the West, and (from his comments above) the incoming Obama administration. . .

For her part, Israeli foreign minister Tzipi Livni ordered the Ministry to "take emergency measures (to) open an aggressive and diplomatic international public relations campaign," according to Haaretz. In other words, Israel will spin its wanton aggression into justifiable self-defense and get dominant media help to sell it. . .

The Times and dominant media . . . continue spreading spurious lies about Hamas being "officially committed to Israel's destruction, and when it won Palestinian legislative elections in 2006 and then 'forcibly' took over Gaza in 2007, it said it would not recognize Israel, honor previous Palestinian Authority commitments to it, or end its violence against Israelis."

All of the above is untrue. The Times continues to report falsely. Hamas wants peace, has repeatedly been conciliatory, and its founder, Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, said earlier that armed struggle would end "if the Zionists ended (their) occupation of Palestinian territories and stopped killing Palestinian women, children and innocent civilians."

Israel rejects all overtures. More recently, Hamas offered peace and Israeli recognition in return for a Palestinian state inside pre-1967 borders - its Occupied Territories that it's entitled to under international law.

1 Comments:

At December 31, 2008 1:06 PM, Anonymous bleeding heart said...

While Pelosi snd Reid cheerlead for mass murder they don't care that most Americans, indeed most people, disagree with their one-sided approach (email them, please).
"International Poll: Most Publics--including Americans--Oppose Taking Sides in Israeli-Palestinian Conflict"
http://www.worldpublicopinion.org/pipa/articles/international_security_bt/503.php?lb=btis&pnt=503&nid=&id=

 

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