Documented Israeli State Terror
Palestinians face daily repression by a ruthless occupier, controlling their daily lives, imposing economic strangulation and collective punishment on an entire population for not being Jewish.
Population centers are isolated, free expression and movement denied. Military orders control virtually all aspects of daily life, the fundamental rights of Palestinians denied.
Daily life includes militarized occupation, endless persecution, neighborhood incursions, mass arrests, checkpoints, roadblocks, curfews, Jews-only areas, encroaching settlements, the separation wall, and a puppet Palestinian Authority serving as Israel’s enforcer.
A new film by the B’Tselem human rights group titled “Of Land and Bread” documents “unmediated view of life under Israel’s occupation.”
It’s based on the group’s archival video footage, showing how Israeli violence affects Palestinian daily life.
Persecution is “carried out by uniformed soldiers and police, but also by Israeli settlers acting under their protection and with the backing of the state,” B’Tselem explained, adding:
“It is a story of a vulnerable life, with no political rights or the right to protest, a life on the receiving end of the project of dispossession of land and resources which is the Israeli occupation, and where one’s only defense is the camera.”
B’Tselem’s Camera Project began in 2007. Documenting life in Occupied Palestine, footage and commentaries explain what establishment media suppress.
It’s all about how Palestinians are denied their political, economic, social, and cultural heritage rights, enduring “dispossession of land and resources…where one’s only defense is the camera” able to document what goes on daily under occupation.
Of Land and Bread begins with the story of a Palestinian farmer, facing dispossession from his land.
A settler claims it belongs to Israel. “You will all be our slaves if you’re found worthy,” he says.
Throughout the film, things go from bad to worse, B’Tselem saying it “makes the feeling of injustice creep deep under our skin.”
Video from B’Tselem’s Camera Project includes footage of endless attacks by Israeli soldiers and settlers on Palestinians in Hebron’s al-Harika neighborhood.
Home to around 3,000 Palestinians, it’s located next to the illegal Kuryat Arba settlement.
B’Tselem: “The proximity of the settlement means that al-Harika residents suffer constant harassment by settlers, who are protected by the military.”
“The attacks include verbal abuse, stone throwing and other forms of physical assault, and intensify on weekends and Jewish holidays.”
A 1.5 km fence separates the two neighborhoods. Extremist settlers routinely throw stones at nearby Palestinian homes.
When settler-initiated clashes result, Israeli soldiers attack Palestinians with tear gas, stun grenades, rubber-coated steel bullets, and at times live fire.
Along with the above, Palestinians throughout the Territories endure near-daily incursions by Israeli soldiers, including pre-dawn home break-ins, terrorizing families, traumatizing young children, arrests made, justice denied.
B’Tselem: “Israel’s policy…creates exasperating, impossible living conditions for local residents, which are manifested in violence by security forces and settlers, with backing from the Israeli authorities.”
“This leads Palestinians to abandon homes and businesses…” — replaced by exclusive Jewish development.
One of many examples of what goes on throughout Occupied Palestine was as follows:
On November 3, soldiers detained 13-year-old ‘Abd a-Razeq Idris in the Jabal Jales neighborhood.
“They…took him to the al-Harika neighborhood and led him through the streets, blindfolded,” said B’Tselem.
“As they were doing this, the soldiers threw stun grenades and tear gas canisters at neighborhood homes.”
An affected resident said the following:
“The soldiers are in our neighborhood a lot, throwing stun grenades and tear gas canisters in the streets.”
“Sometimes, the gas seeps into our house. One of those times, my baby Hamzah, who’s three months old, choked on the gas and I was sure he was going to die.”
“Sometimes, the soldiers also shoot live fire and ‘rubber’ bullets on the streets and hit the solar tanks on the roofs.”
“A week ago, while we were harvesting olives near the house, soldiers suddenly threw tear gas in our direction.”
“My sisters-in-law, the little kids and I ran home and waited for the gas to dissipate.”
“For a week now, soldiers have been coming every day to the building where we live with other relatives and going up on the roof.”
“They stay there from 6:00 AM to 10:00 PM. They shoot live bullets in the air from the rooftop, and keep going up and down the stairs inside the building.”
“Two days ago, in the early afternoon of 3 November 2019, when the kids were coming home from school, two soldiers who were on our roof came down and tried to block their way.”
“The kids ran off. A while later, one of the soldiers came back to the entrance of the building and asked my brother-in-law Muhammad, 35, who was standing there, something.”
“Muhammad understood that he was asking about the kids and said they were inside. Then one of the soldiers threw a tear gas canister into the building.”
“When I smelled the gas, I took the children quickly into an inner room, closed the door, and covered their noses with perfumed paper. About two hours later, two soldiers went back up to the roof. The entrance to our building still smells of gas.”
Similar incidents to the above happen multiple times daily throughout Occupied Palestine, the world community doing nothing to help their long-suffering people.
B’Tselem said the following:
“Israel’s regime of occupation is inextricably bound up in human rights violations.”
“B’Tselem strives to end the occupation, as that is the only way forward to a future in which human rights, democracy, liberty and equality are ensured to all people, both Palestinian and Israeli, living between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea.”
Separately on Thanksgiving Day in the US, the Palestinian Center for Human Right said Israeli soldiers demolished four Palestinian homes in Beit Kahel village, northwest of Hebron.
Dispossessing Palestinians of their land and property is all about enforcing Fourth Geneva banned collective punishment on a long-suffering people — victims of institutionalized Israeli state terror.
My newest book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”