Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

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IvanV
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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by IvanV » Sat Mar 23, 2024 12:12 pm

Fishnut wrote:
Fri Mar 22, 2024 9:05 pm
The IDF has built a road across the width of northern Gaza, dividing the north from the south. According to the BBC,
The new route is wider than a typical road in Gaza, excluding Salah al-Din.

Imagery analysis also shows that buildings along the route, which appear to be warehouses, were demolished from the end of December until late January. This includes one building several stories high.
...
Justin Crump, a former British Army officer who runs Sibylline, a risk intelligence company, said the new route was significant.

"It certainly looks like it's part of a longer-term strategy to have at least some form of security intervention and control in the Gaza Strip," said Mr Crump.
,
And Netanyahu has quite openly and clearly said that Israel will continue to be the security force in Gaza for the foreseeable future. So Crump is saying no more than, it looks like he means it. He has also explicitly mentioned having security zones, which might reduce the agricultural area of Gaza by 30%-40%. So clearly they had in mind taking control of a substantial area of land to achieve that.

The possibility of Israel seeking to control Gaza by dividing it up into sectors occurred to me as soon as it became clear that Arab states were unwilling to make major commitments on the ground in Gaza to ensure peace. Then Netanyahu started to say that they would be the security force, and occupying all this security land, and it became increasingly clear that was probably their plan. That way they can control and inspect movement of people and goods between sectors. That would aim to prevent, or at least substantially reduce, the transport and deployment of ordnance around Gaza. And enable the detection and closure of any tunnels that sought to cross from one sector to another. And to achieve that you would need broad corridors that completely crossed the territory from the border to the sea, at the least. And a broad security zone around the perimeter.

Implicitly, the West Bank is already like that, an archipelago of Palestinean islands with Israel controlling all transit from one to another, and from the exterior. And presumably that's why there's not much in the way of ordnance being launched from the West Bank. You can make a few small IEDs, but hard to move imported rockets into Ramallah with all the inspection on the way. Stone-throwing is the symbol of Palestinean resistance.

I didn't really want to mention it before, as the vision of Gaza being even more of an open air prison was just too depressing. But now we can see it is probably is their idea.

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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by headshot » Wed Apr 03, 2024 8:09 pm

Are we allowed to say how f.cking nuts Israel has behaved now?

Jesus.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2024/ ... airstrikes
The Israeli military’s bombing campaign in Gaza used a previously undisclosed AI-powered database that at one stage identified 37,000 potential targets based on their apparent links to Hamas, according to intelligence sources involved in the war…

Israel’s use of powerful AI systems in its war on Hamas has entered uncharted territory for advanced warfare, raising a host of legal and moral questions, and transforming the relationship between military personnel and machines.

“This is unparalleled, in my memory,” said one intelligence officer who used Lavender, adding that they had more faith in a “statistical mechanism” than a grieving soldier. “Everyone there, including me, lost people on October 7. The machine did it coldly. And that made it easier.”

Another Lavender user questioned whether humans’ role in the selection process was meaningful. “I would invest 20 seconds for each target at this stage, and do dozens of them every day. I had zero added-value as a human, apart from being a stamp of approval. It saved a lot of time.”

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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by jimbob » Thu Apr 04, 2024 11:48 am

headshot wrote:
Wed Apr 03, 2024 8:09 pm
Are we allowed to say how f.cking nuts Israel has behaved now?

Jesus.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2024/ ... airstrikes
The Israeli military’s bombing campaign in Gaza used a previously undisclosed AI-powered database that at one stage identified 37,000 potential targets based on their apparent links to Hamas, according to intelligence sources involved in the war…

Israel’s use of powerful AI systems in its war on Hamas has entered uncharted territory for advanced warfare, raising a host of legal and moral questions, and transforming the relationship between military personnel and machines.

“This is unparalleled, in my memory,” said one intelligence officer who used Lavender, adding that they had more faith in a “statistical mechanism” than a grieving soldier. “Everyone there, including me, lost people on October 7. The machine did it coldly. And that made it easier.”

Another Lavender user questioned whether humans’ role in the selection process was meaningful. “I would invest 20 seconds for each target at this stage, and do dozens of them every day. I had zero added-value as a human, apart from being a stamp of approval. It saved a lot of time.”
Indeed.

It's not even falling into the US trap in Vietnam, but doing worse.
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Fishnut
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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by Fishnut » Sun Apr 07, 2024 7:39 pm

It's been six months since Hamas attacked Israel and killed 1,139 people and took 250 people hostage. Around 129 hostages are still being held with 34 presumed dead.

Israel responded by bombing Gaza, killing at least 33,091 Palestinians and injuring at least 75,750 as of 5 April 2024. Many of those injured have lost limbs,
Humanity & Inclusion (HI), also known as Handicap International, has reported that 70 to 80 per cent of those being admitted to the 12 hospitals which are still partially functioning inside Gaza have lost limbs or suffered spinal cord injuries.

Many of the 10,000 people it has assessed have had to undergo amputations, including hundreds of children.

In January, UNICEF estimated that around 1,000 children in Gaza have lost one or both their legs – equivalent to 10 children losing legs every day.
...
“A generation of child amputees is emerging,” said Aseel Baidoun, Director Advocacy and Campaigns for Medical Aid for Palestinians (MAP).

“We know that Gaza’s collapsed medical system is too over stretched to give children with long term injuries the intricate follow-up care they need to salvage their still-growing, truncated bones.
Unicef say that 13,000 children have been killed and preliminary figures from the Palestinian Center for Human Rights show at least 20,000 have been orphaned. Save the Children estimate that one in 50 children in Gaza have been killed or injured since the attacks.

As of 1 April 2024, 28 children are known to have died of malnutrition and dehydration. The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) has declared it an "unprecedented humanitarian crisis".

Hospitals have been destroyed
In Gaza today, scalpel blades have to be reused in surgeries, but that results in them becoming too blunt to do what they are supposed to do.

In Gaza today, medics often carry out surgical procedures without pain control.

In Gaza today, nearly all patients suffer from malnutrition, so their wounds do not heal.
...
Medical professionals – starving, exhausted and fearing for the safety of everyone around them – are struggling to help people in the handful of barely functional medical facilities left in the besieged Gaza Strip.
...
Israeli attacks have destroyed more than 200 medical facilities, partially or completely. At least 32 hospitals have been put out of service.
...
Nearly a quarter of injuries are children, the ministry said.
Schools have been destroyed
Eight out of 10 schools in the Gaza Strip are damaged or destroyed, the United Nations children’s agency (UNICEF) says...

So far, in this war, at least 53 of Gaza’s 563 school buildings have been destroyed, according to the UN agency.

More than 67 percent of schools took direct hits, according to a report by aid agencies, including UNICEF, based on satellite imagery and on-the-ground reporting.
...
Makeshift schools have been set up in tents in the southern city of Rafah, where half of the territory’s population has sought shelter.

In one tent, Hiba Halaweh was teaching 30 children to learn to read their first words. “The children are happy to get back into it,” said the teacher, who lacks even textbooks and pens.
Universities have been destroyed
According to Palestinian news agency Wafa, the Israeli army has destroyed or damaged all 12 universities in the Gaza Strip, by means of air strikes or bombs. At the beginning of January, around 75% of the enclave's educational infrastructure had been damaged, according to the UN.
...
According to the human rights organization Euro-Med Human Rights Monitor, based in Geneva (Switzerland), Israeli military attacks on the Gaza Strip have wiped out higher education. The organization estimates the damage caused to universities at over €200 million. At least three university presidents have been killed since October 7, and more than 95 deans and professors. Some 88,000 students have had to interrupt their studies, and a further 555 on international scholarships have been unable to travel abroad because of the violence.

Some of Gaza's institutions were first transformed by the Israeli army into barracks or detention centers, before being demolished. This is the case of Al-Israa University, pulverized on January 17 by a bombardment whose images have circulated on social media. According to the management, before the explosion, soldiers had stolen antiquities from the National Museum, housed in one of the establishment's wings.
Homes have been destroyed
Nearly 70% of Gaza’s 439,000 homes and about half of its buildings have been damaged or destroyed
BTW, that link is from 30 December 2023 because finding newer figures is proving difficult. Suffice it to say, things are even worse now.

Farms, orchards and olive groves have been destroyed
Before 7 October, farms and orchards covered about 170 sq km (65 sq miles), or 47% of Gaza’s total land area. By the end of February, FA estimates from satellite data that Israeli military activity had destroyed more than 65 sq km, or 38% of that land.

As well as cultivated land, more than 7,500 greenhouses formed a vital part of the territory’s agricultural infrastructure.

Almost a third have been destroyed entirely, according to FA’s analysis, ranging from up to 90% in the north of Gaza to about 40% around Khan Younis.

Samaneh Moafi, FA’s assistant director of research, describes the destruction as systematic.

Researchers used satellite imagery to document a repeated process in multiple locations, she says: after initial damage from aerial bombardment, ground troops arrived and dismantled greenhouses completely, while tractors, tanks and vehicles uprooted orchards and fields of crops.

“What’s left is devastation,” says Moafi. “An area that is no longer livable. [sic]”
Cultural heritage is being destroyed
The report issued yesterday -13 March 2024] on the Palestinian National Culture Day said Israel has destroyed 32 cultural centres and institutions as well as 12 museums while more than 2,100 pieces of heritage dresses and embroidered items had been lost. As many as 45 writers, artists and activists have been killed by Israel since it started its war in October.

The Israeli aggression has led to the destruction of about 27 murals, and the bombing of more than eight publishing houses and printing presses, three media and art production companies and studios, nine public libraries as well as four religious shrines.

The Israeli bombing has completely destroyed 219 mosques and partially destroyed 287 mosques and three churches, 195 historical buildings, nine archaeological sites and 19 universities and colleges.
What Hamas did was despicable, but what Israel is doing in response is genocide. It is attempting - and succeeding - in wiping Gaza off the map. The intention is clear - total annihilation of the people and land. They want to kill as many Palestinians as possible and make Gaza uninhabitable for those that remain.

However, it seems that after six months of watching Israel 'defend itself', world powers are slowly starting to realise they may have gone a bit overboard. The killing of seven aid workers from World Central Kitchen in a clearly targetted attack (sorry, a "grave mistake") have forced western governments to start wondering whether they should try and reign in the Israeli government. They aren't actually going to stop selling them the weapons that are instrumental in all this death and destruction, but they might ask Israel not to kill any more white people with them. So that's something, I suppose.
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Tristan
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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by Tristan » Mon Apr 08, 2024 9:45 am

Fishnut wrote:
Sun Apr 07, 2024 7:39 pm

What Hamas did was despicable, but what Israel is doing in response is genocide. It is attempting - and succeeding - in wiping Gaza off the map. The intention is clear - total annihilation of the people and land. They want to kill as many Palestinians as possible and make Gaza uninhabitable for those that remain.
Citation very f.cking needed.

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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by bjn » Mon Apr 08, 2024 10:10 am

Finance Minister, Bezalel Smotrich, last December.
What needs to be done in the Gaza Strip is to encourage emigration. If there are 100,000 or 200,000 Arabs in Gaza and not 2 million Arabs, the entire discussion on the day after will be totally different.
Having Ben-Gvir is the head of national security has been as open for calls to ethnically cleanse Gaza and resettle it with Israelis. He also recently celebrated the killing by sniper of a twelve year old Palestinian boy on the West Bank who was playing on his door step, calling him a "terrorist".

They don't give a sh.t about Gazans, they have clearly stated they want to ethnically cleanse Gaza and they celebrate violence against Palestinians. They may not have said "We are going to kill as many Gazans as we can to drive them out", but their actions, married to previous statements, make that a pretty simple inference.

https://www.reuters.com/world/middle-ea ... 023-12-31/

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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by Fishnut » Mon Apr 08, 2024 11:49 am

Tristan wrote:
Mon Apr 08, 2024 9:45 am
Fishnut wrote:
Sun Apr 07, 2024 7:39 pm

What Hamas did was despicable, but what Israel is doing in response is genocide. It is attempting - and succeeding - in wiping Gaza off the map. The intention is clear - total annihilation of the people and land. They want to kill as many Palestinians as possible and make Gaza uninhabitable for those that remain.
Citation very f.cking needed.
Well, apart from all the posts in this thread over the last six months documenting the wanton destruction of Gaza by the Israeli military, how about the fact that Netenyahu has said that he wants “total victory” over Hamas and the “eternal disarmament of Gaza",
When asked by a reporter to further explain what “total victory” meant in the current context, Netanyahu invoked a chilling metaphor, citing how one smashes glass “into small pieces, and then you continue to smash it into even smaller pieces and you continue hitting them.”
In January, the Washington Post reported,
Members of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s right-wing coalition have called for the dropping of a nuclear bomb on densely-populated Gaza, the total annihilation of the territory as a mark of retribution, and the immiseration of its people to the point that they have no choice but to abandon their homeland.

This week alone, a parliamentarian from Netanyahu’s Likud party went on television and said it was clear to most Israelis that “all the Gazans need to be destroyed.” Then, Israel’s ambassador in Britain told local radio that there was no other solution for her country than to level “every school, every mosque, every second house” in Gaza to degrade Hamas’s military infrastructure.
There's many more comments from Netenyahu and other senior Israeli politicians echoing these sentiments. Plus, even if those comments didn't exist, we all have eyes! If you think that what's going on in Gaza right now is proportionate,is in keeping with the rules of war, or is even doing anything to help rescue the hostages still held by Hamas then god help you.

Netenyahu has claimed that that the Israeli military has killed 13,000 Hamas terrorists without giving any idea of how they identified them as terrorists. According to the Government Media Office in Gaza, around 14,500 children have been killed by the Israeli military. Even if you take Israel's figures as accurate (which would basically require them to consider every single male killed as being a Hamas terrorist), they have still killed more children than terrorists, the people they claim to be targetting. That's appalling and shows a callous disregard for life that you would be calling out vociferously if it were being done by any other military.

For comparison, the war in Ukraine has been going on for over two years now and 10,582 civilians have been confirmed as being killed as of February this year out of a population of 38 million. In Gaza, 33,000 have been killed out of a population of 2.2 million in a quarter of the time.

100% of the population are facing "high acute food insecurity" and 1.1 milion (around 50%) are exeriencing "catastrophic food insecurity" according to OCHA,
While humanitarian organizations continue efforts to scale up response operations, intense aerial bombardment in densely populated urban areas, large-scale military ground operations, unexploded ordnance (UXO) contamination, prevailing insecurity, the closure of key border crossings, movement restrictions, infrastructure damage and persistent access restrictions and denials by Israeli authorities have generated a volatile, insecure, and non-permissive operational environment. These obstacles are hindering the ability of humanitarian actors to address the essential needs of Gaza’s population.

n March, an array of access restrictions and denials imposed by Israeli authorities continue to obstruct and limit humanitarian operations throughout Gaza. Israeli authorities have authorized the use of only one primary border crossings preventing humanitarian assistance or commercial goods from entering directly into northern Gaza, where levels of catastrophic food insecurity and humanitarian needs are most acute. In addition, lengthy inspection processes, fuel shortages resulting from Israeli restrictions, and restrictions on the movement of trucks, convoys, and vetted drivers create significant delays, while congestion at the Kerem Shalom crossing present a major operational bottleneck.
...
Access to medical facilities was particularly constrained. In the last week of March, all four planned medical missions to Al Shifa hospital were either denied or impeded.
...
in late March, Israeli authorities announced that one of the three partners delivering food in Gaza would no longer be allowed in northern Gaza, where more than 300,000 people face catastrophic food security conditions. Amid imminent famine and severe levels of acute food insecurity, food distributions in Gaza continue to encounter persistent challenges in mission coordination and encounter high proportion of mission denials, postponements, or impediments.
...
More than 190 aid workers have been killed in Gaza between 7 October 2023 and 31 March 2024, including at least seven aid workers during the month of March. This total includes the highest number of UN personnel killed in a conflict in the history of the organization. In addition, Israeli military operations and airstrikes have repeatedly affected medical facilities throughout Gaza and humanitarian facilities — including an aerial strike on a humanitarian food distribution center on 13 March in Rafah — resulting in casualties of medical staff, humanitarian personnel, and civilians, despite ongoing humanitarian notification and coordination mechanisms with Israeli authorities. [my emphasis]
There is no access to clean water in northern Gaza and no wastewater treatment in any part of Gaza. Only one in three water pipelines are operational, and those are only at 70% of their full capacity. Only 17% of groundwater wells are functioning. Around 1.7 million people (or 77% of the population) have been forced to flee their homes. We are watching people die from dehydration and starvation simply because Israel won't let in aid trucks.

Let's also not forget that Israeli soldiers killed their own hostages because they thought that three men, shirtless and waving a white flag were terrorists. The IDF claims it "only targets terrorists and military targets" yet there is ample evidence that while this may be their intention, their practice is very different,
In mid-February, a group of UN experts accused the Israeli military of targeting Palestinian civilians who are evidently not combatants, including children, as they sought shelter.
...
Eyewitness accounts and video recordings appear to back up claims that Israeli soldiers have fired on civilians, including children, outside of combat with Hamas or other armed groups. In some cases, witnesses describe coming under fire while waving white flags. Haaretz reported on Saturday that Israel routinely fires on civilians in areas its military has declared a “combat zone”.

Israeli and foreign human rights groups have documented a long history of snipers firing on unarmed Palestinians, including children, in Gaza and the West Bank.

Palestinians in Gaza also report a terrifying new development in the latest Gaza war – armed drones able to hover over streets and pick off individuals. Called quadcopters, some of these drones are used as remote-control snipers that Palestinians say have been used to shoot civilians.
Drones were responsible for the deaths of the World Central Kitchen aid workers,
[World Central Kitchen] says their movements had been co-ordinated with the IDF in advance but the investigation has found that this information had not been shared with Israeli drone operators tracking the convoy.
...
The investigation says "one of the commanders mistakenly assumed that gunmen were inside the accompanying vehicles and that these were Hamas terrorists".

The drone operators, the IDF says, had "misidentified" one of the aid workers as a gunman - they thought he was carrying a gun when he entered one of the cars but he was holding a bag. The IDF has not shown this footage.

The cars were then targeted.
The actions of the Israeli military are genocidal. There are five prohibited acts in the genocide convention and Israel is committing three of them: killing members of the group; causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group; and deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction. The international community may hesitate to call it a genocide, but it has a long track record with that. From a wiki page on the Rwandan genocide,
After first failing to heed the warnings of organised mass killings, there is an overwhelming consensus that the international community then failed to recognise that genocide was occurring, delayed and equivocated over the use of the term "genocide", and finally, once the fact that genocide was occurring was beyond any doubt, failed to take any meaningful action to stop the killings.
Sound familiar?
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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by Tristan » Mon Apr 08, 2024 12:48 pm

ok, so no evidence that, as badly as Israel is conducting this, they are killing as many as possible. Got it.

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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by Woodchopper » Mon Apr 08, 2024 1:37 pm

Tristan wrote:
Mon Apr 08, 2024 12:48 pm
ok, so no evidence that, as badly as Israel is conducting this, they are killing as many as possible. Got it.
The threshold for genocide isn't killing as many people as possible. To start with the convention also covers attempted genocide.

However, Genocide is a tricky crime to prove because intent is a central element of that crime (just as it is with murder in domestic jurisdictions). As far as I remember the common explanation for the ICJ not declaring genocide wasn't timidity or lack of evidence of terrible acts, but because genocidal intent by the Israeli leadership hadn't been proved.

Of course there is ample evidence of Israel having committed systematic war crimes on a massive scale. For that we just need to see the victims.

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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by bjn » Mon Apr 08, 2024 3:11 pm

Also, there isn't a war in Ukraine because Putin hasn't called it a war.

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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by IvanV » Mon Apr 08, 2024 5:02 pm

Tristan wrote:
Mon Apr 08, 2024 12:48 pm
ok, so no evidence that, as badly as Israel is conducting this, they are killing as many as possible. Got it.
Clearly they do not have a shoot on sight policy. So "as many as possible" is not the clearest way of putting whatever Fishnut might actually have more precisely meant.

What I feel, and I suspect has an overlap with what Fishnut is saying, is that ultimately the level of death and injury in the civilian population, and destruction of infrastructure, is just unconscionable, even if there are ways of defending it as not illegal. In the same way that organisations can be systematically discriminatory, not through specific discriminatory acts, but as an overall effect of their policies, so it might be said that the result of the government of Israels present policies appears to be systematically genocidal.

You seem to be willing to agree that they are not being very careful over what gets trampled along the way of achieving military objectives. There is the much acknowledged issue that the co-location of the military and the civilian is pervasive in Gaza. And that presents very large legal get-out clauses over avoiding killing civilians and destroying civilian infrastructure.

My perception is that the IDF's general approach to military targets is along the lines of, if in doubt, take it out. Which results in a much higher rate of collateral damage than more careful approaches. And probably the above means there is legal cover for that.

Some have also suggested that they go a bit further and deliberately additionally take out some illegitimate targets that are convenient to them to take out, reckoning it won't be noticed under the cover of everything else that is going on, can be blamed on inaccuracy, etc. The recent incident over killing aid workers is really about whether it was a bona fide error.

In WW2, the allies carpet bombed Dresden, regardless of what they were striking. Similarly the US fire-bombed about 85% of Japanese cities, and subsequently dropped the atomic bombs on a couple of the few, still intact, cities. Many did and still will justify this as the necessary response to nations behaving with such criminality that all means become legitimate to defeat them. I think many in Israel, and outside, do believe that likewise Hamas is so criminal that all means are justified to defeat them. Whatever definition is being put on "defeat".

Israel chose to occupy Gaza and the West Bank in 1967. The labour of those populations has ironically contributed to the growth of Israel, even as the economies of Gaza and the West Bank performed much more badly, in large part because they did not get the investment of Israel. If Israel has taken a large hit in its GDP recently, in large part that is because it is now preventing even West Bank Palestinians from crossing checkpoints to work in their jobs. Yet despite their contribution to the prosperity of their country, some, and today many, in Israel have treated these populations as a nuisance, rather than taking responsibility for them and nurturing them as seems apt for an occupied population. In 1956, Moshe Dayan said "Why should we complain about their burning hatred for us? For eight years they have been sitting in their refugee camps in Gaza, watching us transforming the lands and the villages where they and their fathers dwelt, into our property." And that was when Gaza was part of Egypt. Dayan was realistic. And without such realism, there will be no positive development.

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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by Fishnut » Mon Apr 08, 2024 8:00 pm

Tristan wrote:
Mon Apr 08, 2024 12:48 pm
ok, so no evidence that, as badly as Israel is conducting this, they are killing as many as possible. Got it.
Ah, gotcha. So as long as the Israeli military doesn't actually nuke Gaza into complete oblivion then I'm being hyperbolic and we should focus on that rather than the humanitarian disaster that is occurring in Gaza right now.

It doesn't matter that back in November, human rights groups estimated that Israel had already dropped the equivalent of two nuclear bombs on Gaza or that in December the Financial Times reported on how Israel was using bombs with a blast radius of over 300m (that's a diameter of over half a kilometre) in densely populated urban environments.

It doesn't matter that people are starving while food waits, ready for transporting, on the other side of the Iron Wall.

It doesn't matter that Israel has cut electricity to Gaza for 6 months.

It doesn't matter that the IDF has been flooding tunnels with seawater, risking further contamination of the already contaminated aquifers that supply most of Gaza's water while simultaneously stopping supplies of fresh water and fuel to power desalination plants.

It doesn't matter that dogs are eating bodies of people who have died and haven't been able to be properly buried.

It doesn't matter that children are writing their names on their arms so they can be identified if they get killed.

It doesn't matter that hospitals are so overwhelmed and poorly equipped that patients are left screaming in pain for hours and are ending up with maggot-infested wounds.

It doesn't matter that doctors were forced to abandon babies when the IDF raided their hospital, leaving them to die.

It doesn't matter that the IDF ordered people into Rafah, swelling its population from 280,000 to over 1.5 million, and is now planning an assault on the city, despite US concerns that there's no credible plan to protect noncombatants.

None of this matters. What matters is pointing out that could be worse and so I was hyperbolic. For that, I'm sorry.
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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by discovolante » Thu Apr 11, 2024 3:29 am

Hm I think I'm going to link back to two other posts of mine (cringey and bad form I know): viewtopic.php?f=10&t=4043&p=156199&hilit=Apex#p156193

viewtopic.php?f=10&t=4043&p=156199&hilit=Apex#p156199

I can't remember if the podcast I linked to quotes this directly but I was reading a paper by the podcast guest which quoted another statement: "The focus on specific types of outcomes that qualify as genocide is analogous to studying the peaks of mountains from above a cloud-line that only particularly tall mountains penetrate, when a glimpse beneath the cloud-line would illustrate that other mountains fall just short.” (from the Oxford handbook of genocide studies I think, bear with me I'm on my phone on a bus and might lose Internet connection any minute. Also only posting because this is a long journey so if anyone does reply to this I might not reply again for a while). Aside from the existence of a legal definition and the significance of each of its elements, and the legal consequences, there is clearly a huge political significance to whether or not Israel's actions constitute genocide but well, like other have said, it's not a binary 'genocide or nothing'. For quite a while I've really been trying not to speak about stuff I don't have enough knowledge or expertise in because there are plenty of people voicing their opinions about this already and it's an area where it's extremely easy to do more harm than good, but to be honest if there is a solution to this situation I can't see how it can be physically and psychologically destroying pretty much an entire population. I'm going to go out on a limb and say that if Israel's actions can be compared to a trauma response beyond more general military tactics then it doesn't necessarily follow that the actions are justified.
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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by IvanV » Thu Apr 11, 2024 2:40 pm

Leaked documents show that it is a policy of the IDF to use disproportionate force, and the US assisted it to shed doubt on evidence that was what it did. Or at least that's how the journalist at the Byline Times interprets it. And the leaked documents are from 2008-10, though there is some resonance in more recent documents. So what do we make of that?

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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by bjn » Sat Apr 13, 2024 7:27 am

Meanwhile on the on the West Bank, armed settlers attack and burn a Palestinian village while Israel soldiers prevent Palestinians from moving around and block ambulances from reaching the injured.

https://edition.cnn.com/2024/04/12/midd ... index.html

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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by Fishnut » Sat Apr 13, 2024 11:19 pm

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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by IvanV » Sun Apr 14, 2024 12:06 pm

bjn wrote:
Sat Apr 13, 2024 7:27 am
Meanwhile on the on the West Bank, armed settlers attack and burn a Palestinian village while Israel soldiers prevent Palestinians from moving around and block ambulances from reaching the injured.

https://edition.cnn.com/2024/04/12/midd ... index.html
There is so much you can say about this illegal action, in response to an Israeli teenager unaccounted for, that the Israeli authorities appear to condone. But I will choose just one.

What kind of a message does this send to the Palestinian population as to the proper and suitable manner of settling disputes? Does it reinforce what Hamas says, that the only way to achieve progress is to fight for it? Or does it show that there are better ways of resolving the inter-communal dispute in Palestine?

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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by IvanV » Sun Apr 14, 2024 2:38 pm

More generally, I have recently read Alex de Waal's book, The real politics of the Horn of Africa: Money, war and the business of power (2015). It sets out how fragile states in practice "work" these days, which has evolved in recent decades due to modern communications. And the impact of modern communications is not always helpful, sometimes it is easier to keep the peace if the people you are dealing with are badly informed. The case studies are 6 countries in the Horn of Africa, but wider references are made and the analysis is likely to apply elsewhere. It is not an attractive or encouraging description. Organised violence is an important part of the structure.

It is a self-reinforcing system, and so hard to escape from. It helps us to understand how foreign aid and peace-making/keeping actions of certain kinds are likely to be less effective than some others, and none is likely to achieve what we might like to see. In some cases, the prospects for peace, development and state-building are likely to remain poor for a long time.

One relevance is that it is, unfortunately, a likely description of any likely Palestinian state in the near future - indeed it rather describes what Gaza and West Bank have recently been like.

I was particularly struck by one observation. He observes that there is a strong tendency for actors within these systems to over-estimate the effectiveness of violent actions. Often by a lot. We can understand how this bias occurs. The violent actions that such people choose to carry through tend to be those where they have over-estimated the likely effectiveness.

Unfortunately both Hamas' and Israel's recent violent actions tend to conform to this observation.

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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by Fishnut » Mon Apr 15, 2024 5:12 pm

At the beginning of the retaliation for the Hamas attacks, Defense Minister Yoav Gallant promised,
We are imposing a complete siege on Gaza. There will be no electricity, no food, no water, no fuel, everything will be closed. We are fighting human animals, and we are acting accordingly.
He has kept his word and the inevitable and intentional famine is beginning to hit hard in Gaza,
Nuzha Awad’s triplets, Malek, Khader and Moustafa, born two months before the war began when Hamas attacked Israel on 7 October, did not stop crying as she spoke to the Guardian. She fled Gaza City when food and formula for her babies began to run out; in their new home, a makeshift tent in the central town of Deir al-Balah, she is still desperately afraid for their futures.

“At this age a child should weigh 8 kilos. They weigh 2 kilos … They don’t have thighs yet. At this stage they are supposed to be crawling and preparing to walk. And now you can see the state they’re in,” she said.
...
Malnutrition is spreading at record pace among children, according to the World Food Programme. More than 90% of young children and pregnant and breastfeeding women are subsisting on two or fewer food groups – mainly bread – with no access to fruit, vegetables, milk or proteins.

Almost half of Gaza’s population of 2.3 million is under 18, and the effects of starvation may follow those who survive for the rest of their lives: their brains and bodies, without the nutrients needed for growth, cannot properly develop, leading to health problems such as poor eyesight and learning difficulties later in life.
...

A promised surge in aid Benjamin Netanyahu promised Joe Biden after Israel’s killing of a team of international aid workers earlier this month has so far failed to materialise, charities say.
Meanwhile tonnes of food is stuck on Gaza's border,
At least 540 trucks of aid waited within 4km of Gaza’s border with Egypt. Even by conservative estimates, the vehicles carried almost 14,000 tonnes of supplies including flour, rice, pulses, blankets and medicine.
...
Just 130 trucks a day entered Gaza on average between December and March, according to UN figures. The accumulated shortfall is so big that Magnus Corfixen, humanitarian lead at Oxfam GB, suggests at least 1,500 trucks are needed to turn things round.
...
one of the biggest frustrations for aid groups is what they call an “arbitrary” regime of Israeli rules governing what is allowed to enter.

No single list of allowed goods is made available by Israel, so agencies draw their own lessons from failed consignments, where questions over a single item can stop an entire truck of goods.

One aid worker, who wishes to remain anonymous, recalls problems with a consignment of filled croissants, which are useful because they contain a high number of calories and require no cooking. “I mean it’s food and it's 500 calories a croissant,” the worker says.

Aid workers were told Israeli authorities rejected the croissants because they were “non-humanitarian”. Deliveries of filled croissants later resumed.
...
...he unexplained decisions ripple through the aid supply chain in sometimes bizarre ways. Aid agencies began systematically pitting fruits after a batch of dates with stones was rejected, according to one aid worker.

Oxfam says a shipment of its water testing equipment has been held up by the Israelis since December despite receiving advanced clearance. Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) has had oxygen concentrators and other medical equipment turned away, as well as medicines and chemicals used for making prostheses.

Helen Ottens-Patterson, MSF’s medical referent for Gaza, suggests the ever-changing and seemingly arbitrary rules are intended to confuse and delay. “I think it’s a deliberate act to sabotage our activities,” she says.

Brendan O’Hara, a Scottish National party MP, says he saw “boxes and boxes” of items rejected in Israeli checks in a tent at El Arish in Egypt during a visit. They included neonatal resuscitation and birthing kits, incubators, wheelchairs, crutches, generators, solar panels, tents and wooden boxes of educational material for children. The only possible conclusion, he says, is that the international humanitarian effort is being “deliberately stymied” by Israeli authorities.
An IPC Special Brief published on 18 March 2024 shows the grim reality being faced by people in Gaza right now.
Screenshot 2024-04-15 at 17.50.46.png
Screenshot 2024-04-15 at 17.50.46.png (251.61 KiB) Viewed 3777 times
This is an entirely man-made disaster, one that could be ended by Israel instantly (although the impacts of it will last for generations) but instead they - and the rest of the world - sit by watching while people starve to death.
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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by Sciolus » Mon Apr 22, 2024 8:40 pm

Oh look. Israeli claims that UNWRA employed Hamas members continue to be completely unevidenced. Still, I'm sure Israel has plenty of evidence for its claim and excellent reasons for keeping all of it secret. Only anti-semitism could explain anyone thinking that making false claims of this kind are of a piece with Israel's strategies of mass starvation, dirty tricks and inducing other nations to participate in its genocide. It's entirely Hamas's fault that $450m in funding has been cut.

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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by tenchboy » Tue Apr 23, 2024 8:30 am

And now - as reported by the BBC but unverified by me - the country that may not be criticised for fear of being called nasty things is beating its Palestinian prisoners to death.
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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by Fishnut » Tue May 07, 2024 4:37 pm

It's now been seven months since Hamas attacked Israel and killed 1,139 people and took 250 people hostage. No-one seems to know how many hostages are still being held alive, and Israel has had to lower its demands for their release as part of a ceasefire agreement as the initial demand for 40 living hostages who were women, children, elderly or sick couldn't be met.

As of yesterday, the Ministry of Health in Gaza has reported the deaths of 34,735 (with innumerable people unaccounted for and buried under rubble) and 78,108 injured.

Mass graves have been found at Nasser and Al Shifa hospitals. 392 bodies have been found at Nasser hospital, of which 165 have been identified (as of April 25 2024). 30 bodies have been found at Nasser hospital. In both locations, there are reports of people being buried with their hands tied and stripped of their clothes.

Meanwhile, northern Gaza has entered 'full-blown famine', according to the head of the United Nations World Food Program.

Israeli forces are beginning their attack on Rafah after telling people to evacuate to a coastal 'safe zone' in al-Mawasi, a sandy area that has few amenities and has been repeatedly bombed.

The government of Israel is committing genocide. It has destroyed infrastructure, historic buildings, universities, hospitals, schools, farmland, archives, cultural amenities and, most importantly, people. Tens of thousands of people. Tens of thousand more have injuries, many life-altering. An entire generation is being traumatised in a way that is difficult to comprehend. People are starving, literally starving. But as with 'genocide' the definition of 'famine' is fraught with politics and it's likely there'll be more hand-wringing over whether or not the definition of famine has been met than action to end it.

The assault on Rafah may be the 'end game' for now, but what then? Do we really think that Israel's going to bring out the 'mission accomplished' banner and then go home once they've achieved whatever it is they're trying to achieve in that city? And even if it does 'go home', rebuilding Gaza is going to take decades and billions of dollars of investment. Healing the people - mentally and physically - is going to be even harder, and it can't begin until this retaliation ends.

I don't know how this ends, but it's clear that it's not going to be any time soon. And before it does, thousands more are going to have their lives irrevocably changed or ended.
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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by IvanV » Tue May 07, 2024 9:54 pm

Fishnut wrote:
Tue May 07, 2024 4:37 pm
The assault on Rafah may be the 'end game' for now, but what then? Do we really think that Israel's going to bring out the 'mission accomplished' banner and then go home once they've achieved whatever it is they're trying to achieve in that city? And even if it does 'go home', rebuilding Gaza is going to take decades and billions of dollars of investment. Healing the people - mentally and physically - is going to be even harder, and it can't begin until this retaliation ends.

I don't know how this ends, but it's clear that it's not going to be any time soon. And before it does, thousands more are going to have their lives irrevocably changed or ended.
The Israeli govt had a spokesman talking to BBC News today saying, repeatedly and clearly, that Israel's non-negotiable objective is to destroy Hamas. So any ceasefire acceptable to Israel can only be a temporary arrangement to extract some hostages, recognising that Israel will get back to the business of destroying Hamas. Not a lot of incentive to agree to such a ceasefire on the other side.

As the BBC interviewer fell short of saying, but clearly implied, these are not really conditions where a negotiation in good faith can take place. And as they spoke, Israel's operations in Rafah had begun, and all aid arrivals were blocked. The spokesman implausibly denied the latter.

Hamas has apparently said it is accepting Israel's ceasefire offer just as offered, but Netanyahu is saying it is unacceptable. The difficulty is over what might happen next. Hamas wants to use the ceasefire to talk about an end to hostilities, but Israel will not contemplate an end to hostilities until Hamas is destroyed, whatever that means. But there seems to be little incentive for Hamas to agree to a ceasefire, if all that happens is that you have to hand over your bargaining chips and then they'll return to destroying you.

I see Hamas as a bit like the Taliban. You can defeat them militarily and remove their leaders. But it's a movement, and movements don't go away. In the end, we had to give up and let them take over again.

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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by Woodchopper » Wed May 08, 2024 12:51 pm

IvanV wrote:
Tue May 07, 2024 9:54 pm

Hamas has apparently said it is accepting Israel's ceasefire offer just as offered, but Netanyahu is saying it is unacceptable. The difficulty is over what might happen next. Hamas wants to use the ceasefire to talk about an end to hostilities, but Israel will not contemplate an end to hostilities until Hamas is destroyed, whatever that means.
I assume that what Israel is looking to repeat is when in 1982 about 15000 PLO members and leadership were expelled from Lebanon after the country was invaded by Israel and Beirut besieged. I'm not sure where Hamas might go to though.

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Re: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Post by Imrael » Wed May 08, 2024 1:33 pm

I'm also not sure that eliminating the organisation called Hammas would actually bring more than short term reduction in violence.

As that well known Paletinian sympathiser Moshe Dayan said "What cause have we to complain about their fierce hatred to us? For eight years now, they sit in their refugee camps in Gaza, and before their eyes we turn into our homestead the land and villages in which they and their forefathers have lived."

It has to be recognised that the other side of the coin is also true - that we basically have 2 neighbouring populations with well founded reasons for hatred and fear of each other.

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