December 14, 2008 by theradicalmormon
This lady is absolutely correct in this opinion piece she has written for the San Jose Mercury News. She writes:
On Nov. 18, the Israeli military kidnapped me — a Jewish American leaving behind the comforts of San Jose — and 17 others from three Palestinian fishing vessels plying Gaza’s coastal waters. Two other international human rights workers and I were accompanying 15 Palestinian fishermen to provide witness to and documentation of the frequent harassment and attacks by the Israeli navy. Our seizure belies Israel’s claim that it no longer occupies Gaza and its 1.5 million people.
Israel’s military occupation of Gaza did not end with the withdrawal of its soldiers and settlers from Gaza in 2005. Israel still controls access of people and goods into and out of the Strip. It controls Gaza’s airspace, borders and, as my capture attests, territorial waters.
When the occupier has the ability to control access to the basic necessities of life… we would be hard pressed to say that Palestinian territory is no longer occupied.
The author writes further:
This collective punishment is illegal under international law. Article 55 of the Fourth Geneva Convention, for example, states that “to the fullest extent of the means available to it, the Occupying Power has the duty of ensuring the food and medical supplies of the population; it should, in particular, bring in the necessary foodstuffs, medical stores and other articles if the resources of the occupied territory are inadequate.”
This author in this piece at the LA Times website also writes of the horrors of the occupation in relation to the recent tightening of the clamp:
The situation in Gaza got worse early last month when Israel tightened its blockade of Gaza. Our food, fuel and medical supplies have been severely limited. The blockade has ruined our economy and reduced many among us to a level of economic desperation that has alarmed United Nations officials.
According to Karen Koning Abu Zayd, the commissioner-general of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, the human toll of this siege is terribly grave. Gaza has “been closed for so much longer than ever before … and we have nothing in our warehouses. … It will be a catastrophe if this persists, a disaster,” she said. And U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon recently called for the immediate easing of the closure because of “deprivations of basic supplies and human dignity.”The secretary-general rightfully condemned Palestinian rocket fire at civilian targets in Israel. Such rockets are morally wrong and strategically inept. Yet the blockade that Israel has clamped on 1.5 million Palestinians in Gaza is a collective punishment that harms men, women and children who have no power to control those firing the rockets. Rather than turn Gazans against Hamas, the blockade’s effect has been a humanitarian catastrophe that alienates Gazans young and old from both Israel and the West. Even I, a practicing psychiatrist for decades and a longtime advocate of coexistence between Palestinians and Israelis, am having trouble coping with the hardships to which we are subjected.
I am unable to express the horror I feel at this massive injustice. The entire Palestinian population is being deprived of the basic necessities of life by their occupiers. The world is apparently not paying too much attention. There have been some protests from Iran and some Arab nations and from the UN, but the main ones who should be protesting (the nations that would really make a difference if they protested) are not lifting a finger. Of course, that is us western nations. Instead we say, “Israel has the right to defend themselves,” as we have been taught to speak by AIPAC.
So much misery and sufferring we are an accomplice to over there. Truly the Zionist regime of Israel fulfills the ancient prophecy of Isaiah in chapter 59 where he says:
3 For your hands are defiled with blood, and your fingers with iniquity; your lips have spoken lies, your tongue hath muttered perverseness.4 None calleth for justice, nor any pleadeth for truth: they trust in vanity, and speak lies; they conceive mischief, and bring forth iniquity.5 They hatch cockatrice’ eggs, and weave the spider’s web: he that eateth of their eggs dieth, and that which is crushed breaketh out into a viper.6 Their webs shall not become garments, neither shall they cover themselves with their works: their works are works of iniquity, and the act of violence is in their hands.7 Their feet run to evil, and they make haste to shed innocent blood: their thoughts are thoughts of iniquity; wasting and destruction are in their paths.