Crisis in Gaza

By Geoffrey Cook, MMNS

Jerusalem–January 16th–Your correspondent would like to bring his audience up to date on Gaza’s catastrophic episode, her  humanitarian calamity in Gaza.

Israel purposely pushed into highly concentrated centers of Gaza’s cities and towns, while Hamas’ soldiers stuck in the desert outskirts of that territory, which was the reason their rockets could not be stopped, and was the proof that the Israeli object was not to destroy Gaza’s military infrastructure, but  rather to punish civil society and break the will of the citizens they represented. 

At the same time, anti-Semitic violence has broken out all over Europe, from disgust with Zionism rather than Judaism.

The Secretary-General of the United Nations (U.N.s) Ban Ki-moon has told the Arab (League) as a whole to “get it together,” but, after their (partial) meeting in Kuwait, they could not come to a consensus because of the opposition of the conservative Saudi Arabia and Egypt.

Militarily, Hamas is a pyrrhic victor even though Israel signed a Security Treaty on the last day of the Bush fasces.  (The Senate and the current President has to agree to it, though.)  Yet, Israel (and Egypt for that matter) has not agreed to breach their boundaries, and the Gazan nationals were unlocked to permit humanitarian help that is one of the bases of their truce agreements, and in sharp violation of Security Council Resolution 1860!  Still, Hamas and Israel fired on each other as Israel retreated.  The ceasefire is fragile indeed!

Ban-Ki Moon, standing on the Gazan rubble called on the International Communities to restore the debris of the modern Philistia!  The human tragedy is inexpressible.  He and Donatella Rover, whom we talked to last week, on the BBC clearly stated that War crimes had been create once they could get into the territory and observe for themselves.

So, we must approach the Humanitarian crisis by enquiring what we can do.

I was on a press conference through the miracles of telephony from Jerusalem with Mercy Corps, which does not seem to be attached to a Christian denomination – or is concerned with conversion in the least, but seems to be influenced by the Christian ethos by the word Mercy.  I should think the Islamic charities could work well across our common beliefs, and I hope we can all do so.

The Director of the Committee, Roger Sherman, admitted the heaviest toll has been the human disaster.

A David Holbrook reported from the third Holiest City that the Corps has had a presence in the Middle East for some time.  Although up to the last month (January), “Gaza has been isolated from the [rest of] the Middle East, [‘she’] has resonation across the region.”

Our ethos is to help our partners from whatever side of a conflict.  “We have a belief that there will be a Renaissance” here.  Gaza can become a dynamo or can change into reaction.  Yet the situation has only become worse over the last three years.  Today, (I find the Gazans to be well educated — a great many have even gone to a College or a University.)

First, we have a staff in the area of about twenty-three –mostly within Gaza City itself.  They have been able to communicate with their workers through cell and landlines.   “We are ready for the ceasefire… so, we can bring our [loaded] trucks in.”

An unidentified woman stated that their organization would focus on displaced families.  Half of the family units are in U.N. shelters; another half has taken refuge with their kin.  Yet, when conveys are let in, they will not be sufficient to fulfill the requirements.  Twice the tonnage would not touch the requisite basics.  The focus has been on the Western media reports.  We as a relief association are connected to all other Global citizens (and their resources).  This would, especially, include the Red Crescent and other Islamic charities.

Stephen Schwartz, a regional Director of the Foundation, confirmed that trucks were immediately ready to cross the Rafah frontier (this transfer point was closed two weeks before the actual truce(s) to the slightest compassionate aid at all) as soon as the IDF (Israel Defense Forces) would stop firing upon them, and the truce has now commenced, and, hopefully the current peace will hold, allowing the passage(s) to remain an open boundary permanently by the time you read these words.  They look “forward” to traversing the Egyptian perimeter to the south and through Israel to the north having to navigate through intricate Hebrew checkpoints within the Mediterranean enclave.  Careful liaison had to be built with the Israeli Defense Force whom many of their Palestinian workers must hate.  There is an immense need for non-food items – notably being in this deadly winter, it has been exceptionally frigid, and there has been a necessity for blankets and tents, etc.  Consequently, of course, there has been an immense necessity for food and medicine, also.

What makes the situation worse (still) has been the total blockade for months before the attack.  The prerequisite necessities were already particularly low.  Now, there is no place for the inhabitants to flee but into their basements and cellars, for they are surrounded on three sides by the antagonistic Jewish State and by the fourth the hash “Pharaonical” nation. They are prisoners within their own land, and that is why a refugee problem has not developed as yet.  The rest had been relocated to the refugee camps in the dry landscape of Gaza many years ago previously from other parts of Palestine.  There is an overriding commonality of psychological problems children.  It has been the young offspring of the terrain who have borne the brunt of this struggle for freedom.  “We wish you to advocate for the humanitarian Corps” of this world!  In other words, support the charity of your preference who is working for Gaza at this moment.

Within the Gazan government, the Civil Service is still up and operating — most strikingly the Health Services, and the Police although the Administration’s leadership had been forced to hide.  Although the external media has been shrill, it is hard to understand the larger lack of external Arab aid to their ethnic “brothers.”  Before the truce, humanitarian aid has been held under lock and key.  Although a ceasefire has been announced by both sides, it is still no more than a trickle.  “Nor is Tel Aviv interested!”  Further, “We can’t buy aid within Gaza.  We have to truck it in little by little.”  Also, “It is too hard to get professionals [Doctors, etc.] into Gaza.  So, even volunteers [doctors, etc.] can’t get employed within” the Strip.

Your author concludes that Tel Aviv should pay Gaza City the reparations to totally repair the infrastructure of miniscule Republic. Israel is a rich country while Gaza is amongst the poorest due to the Army of West Jerusalem siege!  “Israel has to take its [moral] responsibility!”

There has been no shortage of International investments.  In fact, most of the infrastructure that was destroyed was paid for by Western European nations.  Europa should demand their money back by directly applying lucre to revitalization of the Gaza City nationette, and sending the bill to Tel Aviv!


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