Wednesday, July 28, 2010

how bad is it for Palestinians?

I'm going to use the covers of publications of the Israeli human rights group, B'tselem, to give you an idea of the awful situation the Palestinians find themselves in, oppressed in a variety of ways by Israel. All of what you will see is made possible by the United States "standing with" Israel through funding and political protection. Each picture is from the cover of a publication that is typically 100 pages in length. You can read each publication in its entirety by clicking on the link. Never lose the thought that all this information is provided by Israelis who do not approve of the conditions they are reporting on. None of this is propaganda produced by Palestinians.

The Hidden Agenda - The establishment and expansion plans of Ma'ale Adummim and their human rights ramifications (December 2009)

This picture shows the stark contrast between the living quarters of the Palestinians (foreground) and the settlers (tile roofs), all on Palestinian land.

Let's look at another illegal settlement below, Ofra, noticing the similarity of modern development placed on land taken from the Palestinians. Remember you are not looking at Israel but at the occupied West Bank and the homes of the occupiers...

The Ofra Settlement - An Unauthorized Outpost (December 2008)

So the land has been stolen. How about the land around the settlements?
That's been taken too. Settlers use modern roads built for them, Palestinians make do. If a settlement sits between a farmer and his land, too bad.

Access Denied - Israeli measures to deny Palestinians access to land around settlements (September 2008)

But surely there are health measures for the Palestinians and they can get clean water? No.

Foul Play - Neglect of Wastewater Treatment in the West Bank (June 2009)

How about justice before the law? From the report below: "Israel...holds hundreds of Palestinians for months and years under administrative orders, without prosecuting them. By doing so, it denies them rights to which ordinary detainees in criminal proceedings are entitled: they do not know why they are detained, when they will go free and what evidence exists against them, and are not given an opportunity to refute this evidence" Guantanamo has been an embarrassment for the United States. In the occupied territories, the same practices are the norm.

Without Trial - Administrative Detention of Palestinians by Israel and the Internment of Unlawful Combatants Law (October, 2009)

So the land is taken, the water is bad, there is no justice that Americans would recognize. Can Palestinians simply move around in the West Bank? No. Gaza is known to be an open air prison but the following report is about the West Bank where permission is required from the occupying power for just about everything.

Ground to a Halt - Denial of Palestinians' Freedom of Movement in the West Bank (August 2007)

Do you recognize similarities with what we do in the United States? I sure don't. But if you are an American, your money and mine is supporting what you've seen here. It has to stop. It should have stopped years ago. I am definitely not "standing with Israel". Do you?

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