Israeli bombing kills 192 in Gaza including 58 children as media building is wiped out

Japhy Barrera, is a member of the YCL’s Birmingham branch

Israel’s barrage on the Palestinian-majority Gaza strip has rapidly escalated over the last few days. Israeli airstrikes on Sunday killing 42 Palestinians including 10 children has brought the total to 192 confirmed to have been killed in the last week, 58 of which being children as young as a few months old. These killings have been mostly if not all civilian deaths.

The state of Israel’s reasoning for the airstrikes has remained consistently that they are willing to destroy the threat of Hamas – the Palestinian political organisation that governs the Gaza strip, at any cost. In retaliation to Israel’s carpet bombing of Gaza and maltreatment of Palestinians in the West Bank, Hamas has sent back attacks of far less force. These retaliatory and defensive attacks, which have caused over 1900% fewer fatalities than those of the aggressor in the last week, are being used to justify Israeli terror.

Israel has gone as far as to bomb a media building in Gaza used by the Associated Press and Al Jazeera, citing that Hamas was using the location for its operations. The building was left completely decimated, collapsing almost immediately following the attack, and no evidence has yet been given proving Hamas’ utilisation of the location.

This attack on the press is yet another severe war crime committed by Israel and its western sponsors. The press is completely off bounds in political conflicts according to international law, but that has never held back Israel who regularly violate such regulations including the massacring of civilians and children. The ideological motives behind the destruction of media headquarters are clearly far more tactical for Israel: to halt the worldwide media exposé of Israeli war crimes and settler colonisation.

Over the past week as the Israeli occupation has come to one of its harshest points in years, many across the world are becoming enlightened to the reality of what is one of the world’s most devastating humanitarian issues. What can only be described as a backward and dystopian situation is everyday life for Palestinians living under Israeli occupation, especially in the Gaza strip. The region, which is populated by approximately 2 million people, is over 40% children, making the current carpet-bombing even more incomprehensible.

The outraged realisations of people all over the world have resulted in countless protests and demonstrations in solidarity with the Palestinian cause for freedom. These demonstrations prompted a United Nations Security Council meeting that took place on Sunday regarding Israel’s relentless bombing of Gaza.

While nearly every country in the meeting agreed that a ceasefire must come, little to no action was taken. While the United States and United Kingdom may make calls for ceasefire “on both sides,” that rhetoric is made vapid by the continuation of billions of funding and sales arms that both countries supply to the state of Israel. What has been made abundantly clear is that western interests in the Middle East, satisfied by Israel, are prioritised heavily over the killing of Palestinian kids and babies. The complacency of the UN, as well as its tendency to be completely swayed by the hegemonic NATO powers, has rendered international law meaningless and civilian massacres acceptable.

The Palestinian ambassador to the meeting pleaded for international intervention, alas it fell on deaf ears. “How many Palestinians killed is enough for condemnation?” he beseeched. “We know one Israeli is enough, but how many Palestinians?”

Japhy Barrera

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