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(en) Israel-Palestine, alt. media*, m 6405 8 Mar, 2003 - The Palestinians don't even have weather by Tanya Reinhart

From Worker <a-infos-en@ainfos.ca>
Date Thu, 27 Mar 2003 12:09:08 +0100 (CET)

A - I N F O S N E W S S E R V I C E

To the extent that the recent military acts in the
territories are debated in Israel at all, the debate
almost solely revolves around the question
whether or not it is possible to end the
Palestinian terror this way. The Palestinians, as
human beings, simply do not exist.

A few days ago it snowed in Jerusalem. On
Tuesday, Ferbruary 25th, the cold wave featured
in all Israeli papers as the main news. Even in my
heated home in Tel Aviv it was cold. My
thoughts wandered to my Palestinian friends -
colleagues from Bir Zeit University. How does the
snow fare with a family that still has a home, but
not that much money to heat it? And what's with
those who no longer have a home? It snowed in
Jenin as well. How did the Jenin refugees survive
the cold, and those who were recently made to
flee from Hebron? And what about the old people,
for whom the cold is particularly dangerous?
Where did the new homeless of Gaza spend the
night - those whose homes were destroyed that
same day? Is UNRWA still able to provide them
with blankets and tents? At the beginning of
February, the United Nations Relief and Works
Agency for Palestinians in the Near East
(UNRWA), renewed its emergency appeal to the
international community for urgent contributions
for the first half of 2003. They stated that
without these contributions, which have
decreased lately, their budget would end in

The heart seeks answers, but the papers tell you
nothing about that. Across the fence, outside the
media, outside of consciousness, the Palestinians
don't even have weather.

That same day, however, Ha'aretz reported a new
campaign, launched by the Israeli security
echelons, to confiscate funds that are transmitted
to the Palestinians through Israeli banks - "tens
of millions of dollars a year...mainly from charity
organizations in the Arab countries and in
Europe". (Amos Har'el, Hebrew edition only).
While UNRWA is on the verge of collapse, the
Palestinians should be deprived also of the
charity funds that help them survive.

This is not an isolated incident, but one more
step in a systematic Israeli policy of economic
strangulation. Already in June 2002,"internal
conclusions of the security echelons, following
operation 'Defensive Shield', assessed that...the
financial reserves of the Palestinian authority are
reaching the bottom... In a future not far off, the
majority of Palestinians will only be able to
maintain a reasonable life through the help of
international aid." (Amos Har'el, Ha'aretz,
Hebrew edition, June 23, 2002). At the same
time, Israel, aided by the Jewish Lobby in the US
congress, opened a campaign to restrict
international aid, and demanded a
"reconsideration" of UNRWA's operations in the
occupied territories:

"Israel has begun a campaign in the United States
and the United Nations to urge a reconsideration
of the way the UN Relief and Works Agency,
which runs the Palestinian refugee camps in the
West Bank and Gaza, operates. Israel charges
that UNRWA workers simply ignored the fact
that Palestinian organizations were turning the
camps into terrorist bases and it is demanding
the agency start reporting all military or terrorist
actions within the camps to the UN.... Meanwhile,
Jewish and pro-Israeli lobbyists in the U.S. are
waging a parallel campaign ... American Jewish
lobbyists are basing their efforts on the fact that
the U.S. currently contributes some 30 percent of
UNRWA's $400 million a year budget, and is
therefore in a position to influence the agency: A
congressional refusal to approve UNRWA's
funding could seriously disrupt its operations."
(Nathan Guttman, Ha'aretz, June 29, 2002).

Malnutrition of Palestinian children in the
occupied territories already equals that of Congo
and Zimbabwe (2), but Israel "launches a
campaign" to prevent even the little left to keep
them nourished.

Genocide is associated in our minds with mass
graves, or convoys of population transfer. The
slow death inflicted on the Palestinian people
has, perhaps, no name yet, but still, how does it
happen that the Israeli society seals its heart and
its eyes from seeing it? Part of the answer is that
evil is wrapped in words about "war against
terror". The security sources announce that
UNRWA "ignores" terrorist activities (as if
UNRWA is a police force), or that the charity
funds to the Palestinians are "millions of dollars
to terror" and the media just circulates their
prophecy. No further proof is ever needed.
Following the confiscation of charity funds, which
started in East Jerusalem banks, "the region
commander, Levi, refused to disclose precise
details concerning the terrorist activities in
Jerusalem that were funded with these
[confiscated] funds" (Arnon Regular and Amos
Har'el, Ha'aretz, February 28, 2003). The primal
Israeli instinct to believe that the IDF (army)
never lies, will do the rest.

Israel's persecution of the Palestinian people is
not war against terror. The Palestinian suicidal
terror has a simple solution - get out of the
territories and give the Palestinians reasons to
live. The war against the Palestinians is over the
'Promised Land' of Sharon, the army and the
settlers. In this kind of war, one needs to lie
constantly, because (according to the polls) most
Israelis don't care about the territories and they
are willing to get out of there tomorrow. Left to
themselves, people won't seek out ways to starve,
torture and abandon in the cold millions of other
people. To get them to accept that, one has to
cultivate their fears. In the same way, the half of
the American people that supports the war on
Iraq believes that if they don't immediately
eliminate the Iraqi people, Saddam Hussein will
eliminate the US.

(1) The text of the UNRWA Emergency Appeal
for 2003 can be found at
(2) Chris McGreal, The Guardian Feb 11, 200Ë

*[Ed. Note: Taken from:
The only post from a declared anarchist (which has a collumn
in the Israeli main daily "Yediot Aharonot") in the whole Israeli
indymedia - which is flooded by texts of fellow travelers of the
communist party, Trotskists, and Zionist leftists....]

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