• John H. Bryan - Cop Training Seminar EXPOSED on VIDEO:

    https://thecivilrightslawyer.com/2024/04/01/cop-training-seminar-exposed-on-video-1000s-of-cops-nationwide-involved/

    #StreetCopTraining #PoliceTraining #Malfeasance #Misconduct #Corruption #Discrimination #ExcessiveForce #Racism #RacialBias #Bias #Sexism #Denigration #Dehumanization #Interrogation #SmallTalk #TrafficStop #WrongfulArrest #EvidenceSuppression #CriminalAppeal #Appeal #FirstAmendment #FourthAmendment #DefundThePolice #CivilRights #CriminalJustice #ConstitutionalLaw #Law
    John H. Bryan - Cop Training Seminar EXPOSED on VIDEO: https://thecivilrightslawyer.com/2024/04/01/cop-training-seminar-exposed-on-video-1000s-of-cops-nationwide-involved/ #StreetCopTraining #PoliceTraining #Malfeasance #Misconduct #Corruption #Discrimination #ExcessiveForce #Racism #RacialBias #Bias #Sexism #Denigration #Dehumanization #Interrogation #SmallTalk #TrafficStop #WrongfulArrest #EvidenceSuppression #CriminalAppeal #Appeal #FirstAmendment #FourthAmendment #DefundThePolice #CivilRights #CriminalJustice #ConstitutionalLaw #Law
    THECIVILRIGHTSLAWYER.COM
    Cop Training Seminar EXPOSED on VIDEO | 1000's of Cops Nationwide Involved! - The Civil Rights Lawyer
    The New Jersey Office of the State Comptroller recently published a scandalous report detailing private for-profit police training of 1000's of police officers from around the country that, among other things: promoted the use of unconstitutional policing tactics for motor vehicle stops; glorified violence and an excessively militaristic or “warrior” approach to policing; spoke disparagingly of the internal affairs process; promoted an “us vs. them” approach; and espoused views and tactics that would undermine almost a decade of police reform efforts in New Jersey, including those aimed at de-escalating civilian-police encounters; andwhich included over 100 discriminatory and harassing remarks by speakers and instructors, with repeated references to speakers’ genitalia, lewd gestures, and demeaning quips about women and minorities.
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  • US congressman Walberg says Gaza should be destroyed 'like Nagasaki and Hiroshima', also suggests nuking Russia
    walberg
    The coments were made during a town hall meeting in Dundee, Michigan on March 25
    A Michigan Congressman has suggested a nuclear bomb should be dropped on Gaza to 'support Israel's swift elimination of Hamas.'

    Speaking during a town hall earlier this week, U.S. Rep. Tim Walberg, a Republican from Lenawee County, appeared entirely comfortable advocating for the use of nuclear weapons against the Palestinians.

    'It should be like Nagasaki and Hiroshima. Get it over quick,' Walberg could be heard stating in a video posted to X in which he mentioned the Japanese cities in which America detonated atomic bombs at the end of World War II.


    Walberg, an eight-term Republican congressman from Lenawee County, can also be heard speaking against providing humanitarian aid for those in the Palestinian territory.


    'We shouldn't be spending a dime on humanitarian aid,' Walberg stated in response to a question about American troops being deployed into Gaza to build a port that would help aid be delivered to the Palestinians.

    Walberg had been responding to a question about an initiative put forward by President Joe Biden to use American tax dollars to construct a port off the Gaza coast that would allow humanitarian aid to be delivered more quickly.

    Walberg's office has now attempted to explain the GOP congressman's seemingly straightforward answer as a metaphor.

    'During his community gathering, he clearly uses a metaphor to support Israel's swift elimination of Hamas, which is the best chance to save lives long-term and the only hope at achieving a permanent peace in the region,' Walberg spokesman Mike Rorke said on Saturday.

    'Congressman Walberg vehemently disagrees with putting our troops in harm's way. He has great empathy for the innocent people in Gaza who have been thrust into this situation due to the attack carried out by Hamas leaving 1,163 innocent civilians dead,' Rorke continued.


    'To this day, Hamas still is holding hostages, including Americans. Hamas should surrender and return the hostages.'

    Walberg's comments have been described as 'clear call to genocide by a member of Congress'.

    The Michigan chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations said his remarks should be 'condemned by all Americans who value human life and international law.'

    'To so casually call for what would result in the killing of every human being in Gaza sends the chilling message that Palestinian lives have no value,' CAIR Executive Director Dawud Walid said to Detroit News.

    'It is this dehumanization of the Palestinian people that has resulted in the ongoing slaughter and suffering we see every day in Gaza and the West Bank.'

    The U.N. food agency has said famine is 'imminent' in northern Gaza, with two-thirds of population experiencing catastrophic hunger.

    Later in the town hall, held on March 25 in Dundee, Michigan, Walberg went on to suggest that a nuclear bomb should also be used in Russia's war with Ukraine in order to 'defeat Putin quick.'


    He said instead of American money being used to provide aid to Ukraine for humanitarian purposes, it should instead be used 'to wipe out Russia, if that's what we want to do.'

    Walberg has been taken to task over his comments by his Democratic colleagues with some calling for his immediate resignation.

    Michigan state Democratic Senator Darrin Camilleri tweeted how Walberg had been caught on video 'endorsing and calling for a complete genocide in Gaza.'

    'He's an absolute disgrace and needs to resign,' Camilleri stated.

    'Threatening to use, suggesting the use of, or, God forbid actually using nuclear weapons, are unacceptable tactics of war in the 21st Century,' wrote Democratic Michigan Rep. Haley Stevens.

    'As W.J. Hennigan recently & accurately described for the NYT, the use of nuclear weapons creates hell on earth.'

    Fellow Michiagn Democratic Rep. Elissa Slotkin also condemned his remarks.

    'This is a reprehensible thing for anyone to suggest, especially an elected official and someone who considers himself a man of faith. Rep. Walberg should take back his comments, and try to put himself in the shoes of the many Michiganders who see themselves in the casualties in Gaza,' Slotkin said in a statement.

    Democratic U.S. Rep. Dan Kildee said Walberg's comments were horrific and shocking.

    'It is an indefensible position to argue against humanitarian relief for the people of Gaza while also calling for the wholesale massacre of the Palestinian people. I could not disagree more with these extreme and dangerous comments,' Kildee said in a statement.


    https://www.sott.net/article/490259-US-congressman-Walberg-says-Gaza-should-be-destroyed-like-Nagasaki-and-Hiroshima-also-suggests-nuking-Russia
    US congressman Walberg says Gaza should be destroyed 'like Nagasaki and Hiroshima', also suggests nuking Russia walberg The coments were made during a town hall meeting in Dundee, Michigan on March 25 A Michigan Congressman has suggested a nuclear bomb should be dropped on Gaza to 'support Israel's swift elimination of Hamas.' Speaking during a town hall earlier this week, U.S. Rep. Tim Walberg, a Republican from Lenawee County, appeared entirely comfortable advocating for the use of nuclear weapons against the Palestinians. 'It should be like Nagasaki and Hiroshima. Get it over quick,' Walberg could be heard stating in a video posted to X in which he mentioned the Japanese cities in which America detonated atomic bombs at the end of World War II. Walberg, an eight-term Republican congressman from Lenawee County, can also be heard speaking against providing humanitarian aid for those in the Palestinian territory. 'We shouldn't be spending a dime on humanitarian aid,' Walberg stated in response to a question about American troops being deployed into Gaza to build a port that would help aid be delivered to the Palestinians. Walberg had been responding to a question about an initiative put forward by President Joe Biden to use American tax dollars to construct a port off the Gaza coast that would allow humanitarian aid to be delivered more quickly. Walberg's office has now attempted to explain the GOP congressman's seemingly straightforward answer as a metaphor. 'During his community gathering, he clearly uses a metaphor to support Israel's swift elimination of Hamas, which is the best chance to save lives long-term and the only hope at achieving a permanent peace in the region,' Walberg spokesman Mike Rorke said on Saturday. 'Congressman Walberg vehemently disagrees with putting our troops in harm's way. He has great empathy for the innocent people in Gaza who have been thrust into this situation due to the attack carried out by Hamas leaving 1,163 innocent civilians dead,' Rorke continued. 'To this day, Hamas still is holding hostages, including Americans. Hamas should surrender and return the hostages.' Walberg's comments have been described as 'clear call to genocide by a member of Congress'. The Michigan chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations said his remarks should be 'condemned by all Americans who value human life and international law.' 'To so casually call for what would result in the killing of every human being in Gaza sends the chilling message that Palestinian lives have no value,' CAIR Executive Director Dawud Walid said to Detroit News. 'It is this dehumanization of the Palestinian people that has resulted in the ongoing slaughter and suffering we see every day in Gaza and the West Bank.' The U.N. food agency has said famine is 'imminent' in northern Gaza, with two-thirds of population experiencing catastrophic hunger. Later in the town hall, held on March 25 in Dundee, Michigan, Walberg went on to suggest that a nuclear bomb should also be used in Russia's war with Ukraine in order to 'defeat Putin quick.' He said instead of American money being used to provide aid to Ukraine for humanitarian purposes, it should instead be used 'to wipe out Russia, if that's what we want to do.' Walberg has been taken to task over his comments by his Democratic colleagues with some calling for his immediate resignation. Michigan state Democratic Senator Darrin Camilleri tweeted how Walberg had been caught on video 'endorsing and calling for a complete genocide in Gaza.' 'He's an absolute disgrace and needs to resign,' Camilleri stated. 'Threatening to use, suggesting the use of, or, God forbid actually using nuclear weapons, are unacceptable tactics of war in the 21st Century,' wrote Democratic Michigan Rep. Haley Stevens. 'As W.J. Hennigan recently & accurately described for the NYT, the use of nuclear weapons creates hell on earth.' Fellow Michiagn Democratic Rep. Elissa Slotkin also condemned his remarks. 'This is a reprehensible thing for anyone to suggest, especially an elected official and someone who considers himself a man of faith. Rep. Walberg should take back his comments, and try to put himself in the shoes of the many Michiganders who see themselves in the casualties in Gaza,' Slotkin said in a statement. Democratic U.S. Rep. Dan Kildee said Walberg's comments were horrific and shocking. 'It is an indefensible position to argue against humanitarian relief for the people of Gaza while also calling for the wholesale massacre of the Palestinian people. I could not disagree more with these extreme and dangerous comments,' Kildee said in a statement. https://www.sott.net/article/490259-US-congressman-Walberg-says-Gaza-should-be-destroyed-like-Nagasaki-and-Hiroshima-also-suggests-nuking-Russia
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  • Weekly Briefing: Now everyone hates Israel
    The unbelievable onslaught on a captive people in Gaza has at last cracked the conscience of the American Jewish community and sent American Zionists into complete crisis.

    Philip WeissMarch 17, 2024
    Chuck Schumer's historic speech to the Senate on March 14, 2024, stating that Netanyahu must go if Israel is not going to become a "pariah" state. Screenshot.
    Chuck Schumer’s historic speech to the Senate on March 14, 2024, stating that Netanyahu must go if Israel is not going to become a “pariah” state. Screenshot.
    This was a huge week in American Jewish political history.

    First, the director of a movie about Auschwitz, Jonathan Glazer, accepted an Oscar in a speech saying that his Jewishness should not be used to justify the slaughter of Gazans.

    Right now, we stand here as men who refute their Jewishness and the Holocaust being hijacked by an occupation which has led to conflict for so many innocent people. Whether the victims of October 7 in Israel or the ongoing attack on Gaza — all the victims of this dehumanization, how do we resist?

    In saying “We,” Glazer spoke for his producer Len Blavatnik, a billionaire who stood silently behind him, and who just months ago had joined the Harvard donor revolt over alleged antisemitic — actually pro-Palestinian speech — on campus. A revolt that forced the resignation of the Harvard president.

    Glazer’s speech was followed four days later by the “momentous speech” by New York Senator Chuck Schumer, who, speaking as a Jew, called on Netanyahu to hold new elections because his rightwing policies are hurting Israel. “As a lifelong supporter of Israel, it has become clear to me, the Netanyahu coalition no longer fits the needs of Israel,” said Schumer.

    The Gaza slaughter figured largely. Schumer fears that the massive civilian death toll in Gaza, which causes him “anguish,” will cause Israel to become a “pariah” nation.

    In coalition with far-right extremists like Ministers Smotrich and Ben-Gvir, and as a result, [Netanyahu] has been too willing to tolerate the civilian toll in Gaza, which is pushing support for Israel worldwide to historic lows. Israel cannot survive if it becomes a pariah.

    The first thing to observe about both speeches is that Palestinian lives are finally counting in American politics. The unbelievable onslaught on a captive people that caused Susan Abulhawa to somehow get in there and come out to say there’s a holocaust in Gaza that language cannot describe has at last registered in American politics.

    And just as Joe Biden said last week that Netanyahu “cannot have another 30,000 Palestinians dead”– as if the first 30,000 were mere table stakes — the genocide is also cracking the conscience of the American Jewish community.

    Schumer is “a bellwether for the Jewish community, who has refrained from sharp criticism of the Israeli government” (as J Street put it)– and his speech has great significance.

    American Zionists are in utter crisis. They see that Israel is a state in the eyes of the world. They see that you cannot force the hand of the U.S. president in support of the genocide, out of concern for his political donations, and topple Ivy League presidents who have not been supportive enough of Israel — without grave consequences.

    Schumer acted out of pure desperation. Biden may lose Michigan if the Jewish community cannot pivot and come out against genocide. He sees Israel becoming a “pariah” state.

    There is now no difference between right-wing and left-wing Zionists inside the Democratic Party. They have all now gathered around the Schumer/Biden delusion that if you just get rid of Netanyahu, Israel will be able to curb the slaughter, pursue the two-state solution, and save the Jewish state.

    So, Zionism is entering an unending public crisis. Because Netanyahu won’t go. Or if he does go, he will be replaced by others who are equally or almost as warmongering and who will do nothing to end the occupation. And Israel will just continue to be a pariah state. And the tsunami of boycotts, long predicted by Israel lovers, will really be upon us. Even Schumer said that the U.S. must restrict aid to Israel if it cannot stop slaughtering civilians.

    This is a crisis of Jewish identity. Schumer cited Jewish tradition and conscience as the impulse for his speech. “What horrifies so many Jews especially is our sense that Israel is falling short of upholding these distinctly Jewish values that we hold so dear. We must be better than our enemies, lest we become them.”

    However cynical you are about Jewish values and conscience — and I’m as cynical as they come — his speech represents a great wake-up call for Jews who care about human rights to take on the genocide-enablers in the U.S. Jewish community. Despite the love Schumer expressed for Israel and the mythologies he espoused about its creation and democracy, his speech is historic on this ground.

    Because as more than one critic of Schumer’s said this week, he is giving permission to others. The most powerful Jewish politician in U.S. history is saying, As a Jew I tell America, Israel is doing wrong. Yes, everyone hates Israel now.

    Schumer has opened the doors on the Jewish discussion that I and others in the anti-Zionist community have long sought: How can we support a discriminatory, brutal state in our name over there when we absolutely oppose religious nationalism and persecution of minorities here?

    Anti-Zionists will win this argument. Because the Jewish state will not be able to transform itself to suit American liberal values. And regardless of the political arrangements in coming years in Israel/Palestine — partition into two states, or one state — Israel’s move to pariah status is so well advanced now by its own actions that no Zionist will ultimately be able to save its racist apartheid constitution. And idealistic Jews here will help transform that land.

    In directing Israelis what to do– go have another election!– Schumer exposed a great secret of Zionism: It is an international Jewish ideology that will always cause confusion about national interest. Schumer could well argue that he was justified in directing Israelis because Israel interferes in our politics all the time, as Netanyahu did in 2015 on the Iran deal. “Imagine if some foreign leader who was ostensibly an ally of the United States, came here and gave an address before Congress that threw the American president under the bus on their key policy item of the times,” a New York liberal Zionist said in praising Schumer’s speech. “Can you imagine it?”

    I can imagine just that because Schumer himself admitted that he voted against the Iran deal because it was in Israel’s interest not the American one.

    So Zionism has always been a huge asterisk on American Jewish liberal values. This week that asterisk began to fall apart.

    Thanks for reading,

    Phil


    https://mondoweiss.net/2024/03/weekly-briefing-now-everyone-hates-israel/
    Weekly Briefing: Now everyone hates Israel The unbelievable onslaught on a captive people in Gaza has at last cracked the conscience of the American Jewish community and sent American Zionists into complete crisis. Philip WeissMarch 17, 2024 Chuck Schumer's historic speech to the Senate on March 14, 2024, stating that Netanyahu must go if Israel is not going to become a "pariah" state. Screenshot. Chuck Schumer’s historic speech to the Senate on March 14, 2024, stating that Netanyahu must go if Israel is not going to become a “pariah” state. Screenshot. This was a huge week in American Jewish political history. First, the director of a movie about Auschwitz, Jonathan Glazer, accepted an Oscar in a speech saying that his Jewishness should not be used to justify the slaughter of Gazans. Right now, we stand here as men who refute their Jewishness and the Holocaust being hijacked by an occupation which has led to conflict for so many innocent people. Whether the victims of October 7 in Israel or the ongoing attack on Gaza — all the victims of this dehumanization, how do we resist? In saying “We,” Glazer spoke for his producer Len Blavatnik, a billionaire who stood silently behind him, and who just months ago had joined the Harvard donor revolt over alleged antisemitic — actually pro-Palestinian speech — on campus. A revolt that forced the resignation of the Harvard president. Glazer’s speech was followed four days later by the “momentous speech” by New York Senator Chuck Schumer, who, speaking as a Jew, called on Netanyahu to hold new elections because his rightwing policies are hurting Israel. “As a lifelong supporter of Israel, it has become clear to me, the Netanyahu coalition no longer fits the needs of Israel,” said Schumer. The Gaza slaughter figured largely. Schumer fears that the massive civilian death toll in Gaza, which causes him “anguish,” will cause Israel to become a “pariah” nation. In coalition with far-right extremists like Ministers Smotrich and Ben-Gvir, and as a result, [Netanyahu] has been too willing to tolerate the civilian toll in Gaza, which is pushing support for Israel worldwide to historic lows. Israel cannot survive if it becomes a pariah. The first thing to observe about both speeches is that Palestinian lives are finally counting in American politics. The unbelievable onslaught on a captive people that caused Susan Abulhawa to somehow get in there and come out to say there’s a holocaust in Gaza that language cannot describe has at last registered in American politics. And just as Joe Biden said last week that Netanyahu “cannot have another 30,000 Palestinians dead”– as if the first 30,000 were mere table stakes — the genocide is also cracking the conscience of the American Jewish community. Schumer is “a bellwether for the Jewish community, who has refrained from sharp criticism of the Israeli government” (as J Street put it)– and his speech has great significance. American Zionists are in utter crisis. They see that Israel is a state in the eyes of the world. They see that you cannot force the hand of the U.S. president in support of the genocide, out of concern for his political donations, and topple Ivy League presidents who have not been supportive enough of Israel — without grave consequences. Schumer acted out of pure desperation. Biden may lose Michigan if the Jewish community cannot pivot and come out against genocide. He sees Israel becoming a “pariah” state. There is now no difference between right-wing and left-wing Zionists inside the Democratic Party. They have all now gathered around the Schumer/Biden delusion that if you just get rid of Netanyahu, Israel will be able to curb the slaughter, pursue the two-state solution, and save the Jewish state. So, Zionism is entering an unending public crisis. Because Netanyahu won’t go. Or if he does go, he will be replaced by others who are equally or almost as warmongering and who will do nothing to end the occupation. And Israel will just continue to be a pariah state. And the tsunami of boycotts, long predicted by Israel lovers, will really be upon us. Even Schumer said that the U.S. must restrict aid to Israel if it cannot stop slaughtering civilians. This is a crisis of Jewish identity. Schumer cited Jewish tradition and conscience as the impulse for his speech. “What horrifies so many Jews especially is our sense that Israel is falling short of upholding these distinctly Jewish values that we hold so dear. We must be better than our enemies, lest we become them.” However cynical you are about Jewish values and conscience — and I’m as cynical as they come — his speech represents a great wake-up call for Jews who care about human rights to take on the genocide-enablers in the U.S. Jewish community. Despite the love Schumer expressed for Israel and the mythologies he espoused about its creation and democracy, his speech is historic on this ground. Because as more than one critic of Schumer’s said this week, he is giving permission to others. The most powerful Jewish politician in U.S. history is saying, As a Jew I tell America, Israel is doing wrong. Yes, everyone hates Israel now. Schumer has opened the doors on the Jewish discussion that I and others in the anti-Zionist community have long sought: How can we support a discriminatory, brutal state in our name over there when we absolutely oppose religious nationalism and persecution of minorities here? Anti-Zionists will win this argument. Because the Jewish state will not be able to transform itself to suit American liberal values. And regardless of the political arrangements in coming years in Israel/Palestine — partition into two states, or one state — Israel’s move to pariah status is so well advanced now by its own actions that no Zionist will ultimately be able to save its racist apartheid constitution. And idealistic Jews here will help transform that land. In directing Israelis what to do– go have another election!– Schumer exposed a great secret of Zionism: It is an international Jewish ideology that will always cause confusion about national interest. Schumer could well argue that he was justified in directing Israelis because Israel interferes in our politics all the time, as Netanyahu did in 2015 on the Iran deal. “Imagine if some foreign leader who was ostensibly an ally of the United States, came here and gave an address before Congress that threw the American president under the bus on their key policy item of the times,” a New York liberal Zionist said in praising Schumer’s speech. “Can you imagine it?” I can imagine just that because Schumer himself admitted that he voted against the Iran deal because it was in Israel’s interest not the American one. So Zionism has always been a huge asterisk on American Jewish liberal values. This week that asterisk began to fall apart. Thanks for reading, Phil https://mondoweiss.net/2024/03/weekly-briefing-now-everyone-hates-israel/
    MONDOWEISS.NET
    Weekly Briefing: Now everyone hates Israel
    The unbelievable onslaught on a captive people in Gaza has at last cracked the conscience of the American Jewish community and sent American Zionists into complete crisis.
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  • The life of (my) life, soul of my soul

    I have been calling my daughter what translates from Hebrew as "the life of life" or "love of love" for some years now; this is a modern, Israeli take of an Arabic use of language.

    I grew up in a very Zionist place and time. But I was lucky enough to grow among Mizrahi, Arab Jews; both my father and my beloved uncle spoke Arabic as their first language, and the two, childhood friends, marries two sisters, my mom ant aunt, born in Morocco to Jewish parents.

    Arab music was part of the soundtrack of my childhood, and from a young age I knew the names and would recognize the voices of legends such as Farid al-Atrash, Abdel Halim Hafez, Warda, Umm Kulthum, Fairuz and others. My father would also take me with him to work occacionally (he was am aluminum worker in construction), and his teammate Isaa, an Arab from Nazareth, was almost a family friend. We all knew him, and loved and welcomed him whoever we would meet.

    I never forgot how one cold winter morning, when I tagged along with my father on a work day, Issa's wife made us coffee and tea, accompanied by sweet, delicious sugar powder-covered cookies, as they wouldn't let us just pick Issa up and go (I certainly can't speak for all Arabs homes but I know enough to say with confidence that you don't just pass through an Arab home: you sit and have coffee and eat something and have some small talk. Arabs Jews are also similar in that regard).

    Like many second and 3rd generation Mizrahi Jews, I can't speak Arabic, but I pick up quite a lot of it, and the musicality of the language always sounds a little like home to me.

    fortunate to have been exposed to Arabs, Jews and just Arabs, from a young age, I was never intimidated by anything Arab. On the contrary: I grew immensely fond of the gentleness, the warmth of heart, the humor, the special sweetness of an Arab street, store or home.

    In later years, I was lamenting the forced disconnect between me and my Arab roots created by Israel's paranoid mentality. Like many other Arab Jews of my generation I was not an Arab anymore, but not really an Israeli as well to this day I am not sure what being Israeli means, really, apart from a negation of Jewish experiences and denial of current realities).

    Israeli, just like American or English, connotes whiteness. And white we Mizrahi Jews are not, nor will we ever be.

    Unlike many Mizrahi Jews, I refused to become an empty shell, filled only with the ideological content of the state: A de-Arabized Arab Jew. That I wouldn't be. I chose to be free instead.
    -
    When I heard of the way Nur's grandfather, Khaled, called her, and how similar it was to the way I call my daughter, and when I see the suffering, wounds, burns, pain and death of Gaza's children, the memory and consciousness of me and my roots, both known and simply genetic, springs to life immediately, undeniable and bare. These kids are not foreign or alien to me. They are me and mine, too. I feel their pain and fear, I understand the terms of endearment and the farewells of their grief-stricken parents, even as I really understand but a few words here and there. My soul understands Arabic is the way I'd put it.

    Zionism's message of fear, hate and suspicion towards Arabs and Palestinians is totally and forever lost on me, and I consider it a personal triumph. I will never hate Arab people.

    And I ache the terrible dehumanization of Arab people, societies and communities that have so much beauty, gentleness and love in them. The world will know the truth. I am sure of that, and I will do whatever I can to help bring this day about, which is why I write this.

    (and that's me and my daughter)

    https://twitter.com/alon_mizrahi/status/1748387894685835663?t=Q08CrljUjSZCMXaiGa2rpg&s=19
    The life of (my) life, soul of my soul I have been calling my daughter what translates from Hebrew as "the life of life" or "love of love" for some years now; this is a modern, Israeli take of an Arabic use of language. I grew up in a very Zionist place and time. But I was lucky enough to grow among Mizrahi, Arab Jews; both my father and my beloved uncle spoke Arabic as their first language, and the two, childhood friends, marries two sisters, my mom ant aunt, born in Morocco to Jewish parents. Arab music was part of the soundtrack of my childhood, and from a young age I knew the names and would recognize the voices of legends such as Farid al-Atrash, Abdel Halim Hafez, Warda, Umm Kulthum, Fairuz and others. My father would also take me with him to work occacionally (he was am aluminum worker in construction), and his teammate Isaa, an Arab from Nazareth, was almost a family friend. We all knew him, and loved and welcomed him whoever we would meet. I never forgot how one cold winter morning, when I tagged along with my father on a work day, Issa's wife made us coffee and tea, accompanied by sweet, delicious sugar powder-covered cookies, as they wouldn't let us just pick Issa up and go (I certainly can't speak for all Arabs homes but I know enough to say with confidence that you don't just pass through an Arab home: you sit and have coffee and eat something and have some small talk. Arabs Jews are also similar in that regard). Like many second and 3rd generation Mizrahi Jews, I can't speak Arabic, but I pick up quite a lot of it, and the musicality of the language always sounds a little like home to me. fortunate to have been exposed to Arabs, Jews and just Arabs, from a young age, I was never intimidated by anything Arab. On the contrary: I grew immensely fond of the gentleness, the warmth of heart, the humor, the special sweetness of an Arab street, store or home. In later years, I was lamenting the forced disconnect between me and my Arab roots created by Israel's paranoid mentality. Like many other Arab Jews of my generation I was not an Arab anymore, but not really an Israeli as well to this day I am not sure what being Israeli means, really, apart from a negation of Jewish experiences and denial of current realities). Israeli, just like American or English, connotes whiteness. And white we Mizrahi Jews are not, nor will we ever be. Unlike many Mizrahi Jews, I refused to become an empty shell, filled only with the ideological content of the state: A de-Arabized Arab Jew. That I wouldn't be. I chose to be free instead. - When I heard of the way Nur's grandfather, Khaled, called her, and how similar it was to the way I call my daughter, and when I see the suffering, wounds, burns, pain and death of Gaza's children, the memory and consciousness of me and my roots, both known and simply genetic, springs to life immediately, undeniable and bare. These kids are not foreign or alien to me. They are me and mine, too. I feel their pain and fear, I understand the terms of endearment and the farewells of their grief-stricken parents, even as I really understand but a few words here and there. My soul understands Arabic is the way I'd put it. Zionism's message of fear, hate and suspicion towards Arabs and Palestinians is totally and forever lost on me, and I consider it a personal triumph. I will never hate Arab people. And I ache the terrible dehumanization of Arab people, societies and communities that have so much beauty, gentleness and love in them. The world will know the truth. I am sure of that, and I will do whatever I can to help bring this day about, which is why I write this. (and that's me and my daughter) https://twitter.com/alon_mizrahi/status/1748387894685835663?t=Q08CrljUjSZCMXaiGa2rpg&s=19
    0 Comments 0 Shares 12571 Views
  • TORTURE AT ABU GHRAIB
    From the archive

    Seymour Hersh

    An Iraqi who was told he would be electrocuted if he fell off the box.
    I am on vacation this week but thought it would be useful to republish a painful story I did two decades ago for the New Yorker about a group of US army soldiers who went out of control amid a war in Iraq that, so they were told, was being waged against the terrorism that struck America on 9/11. What the GIs did then are what any army does in war when hating and fearing the enemy is encouraged and runs through the ranks, from the lowest level grunts to the senior generals. It takes a special leader, as you will read about below, who confounds his superiors by not covering up the crimes of his soldiers and their most senior officers, and does so knowing that his career is over. Would that there were such fearless leaders in the Middle East today.

    In the era of Saddam Hussein, Abu Ghraib, twenty miles west of Baghdad, was one of the world’s most notorious prisons, with torture, weekly executions, and vile living conditions. As many as fifty thousand men and women—no accurate count is possible—were jammed into Abu Ghraib at one time, in twelve-by-twelve-foot cells that were little more than human holding pits.

    In the looting that followed the regime’s collapse, last April, the huge prison complex, by then deserted, was stripped of everything that could be removed, including doors, windows, and bricks. The coalition authorities had the floors tiled, cells cleaned and repaired, and toilets, showers, and a new medical center added. Abu Ghraib was now a U.S. military prison. Most of the prisoners, however—by the fall there were several thousand, including women and teen-agers—were civilians, many of whom had been picked up in random military sweeps and at highway checkpoints. They fell into three loosely defined categories: common criminals; security detainees suspected of “crimes against the coalition”; and a small number of suspected “high-value” leaders of the insurgency against the coalition forces.

    Last June, Janis Karpinski, an Army reserve brigadier general, was named commander of the 800th Military Police Brigade and put in charge of military prisons in Iraq. General Karpinski, the only female commander in the war zone, was an experienced operations and intelligence officer who had served with the Special Forces and in the 1991 Gulf War, but she had never run a prison system. Now she was in charge of three large jails, eight battalions, and thirty-four hundred Army reservists, most of whom, like her, had no training in handling prisoners.

    General Karpinski, who had wanted to be a soldier since she was five, is a business consultant in civilian life, and was enthusiastic about her new job. In an interview last December with the St. Petersburg Times, she said that, for many of the Iraqi inmates at Abu Ghraib, “living conditions now are better in prison than at home. At one point we were concerned that they wouldn’t want to leave.”

    A month later, General Karpinski was formally admonished and quietly suspended, and a major investigation into the Army’s prison system, authorized by Lieutenant General Ricardo S. Sanchez, the senior commander in Iraq, was under way. A fifty-three-page report, obtained by The New Yorker, written by Major General Antonio M. Taguba and not meant for public release, was completed in late February. Its conclusions about the institutional failures of the Army prison system were devastating. Specifically, Taguba found that between October and December of 2003 there were numerous instances of “sadistic, blatant, and wanton criminal abuses” at Abu Ghraib. This systematic and illegal abuse of detainees, Taguba reported, was perpetrated by soldiers of the 372nd Military Police Company, and also by members of the American intelligence community. (The 372nd was attached to the 320th M.P. Battalion, which reported to Karpinski’s brigade headquarters.) Taguba’s report listed some of the wrongdoing:

    Breaking chemical lights and pouring the phosphoric liquid on detainees; pouring cold water on naked detainees; beating detainees with a broom handle and a chair; threatening male detainees with rape; allowing a military police guard to stitch the wound of a detainee who was injured after being slammed against the wall in his cell; sodomizing a detainee with a chemical light and perhaps a broom stick, and using military working dogs to frighten and intimidate detainees with threats of attack, and in one instance actually biting a detainee.

    There was stunning evidence to support the allegations, Taguba added—“detailed witness statements and the discovery of extremely graphic photographic evidence.” Photographs and videos taken by the soldiers as the abuses were happening were not included in his report, Taguba said, because of their “extremely sensitive nature.”

    The photographs—several of which were broadcast on CBS’s “60 Minutes 2” last week—show leering G.I.s taunting naked Iraqi prisoners who are forced to assume humiliating poses. Six suspects—Staff Sergeant Ivan L. Frederick II, known as Chip, who was the senior enlisted man; Specialist Charles A. Graner; Sergeant Javal Davis; Specialist Megan Ambuhl; Specialist Sabrina Harman; and Private Jeremy Sivits—are now facing prosecution in Iraq, on charges that include conspiracy, dereliction of duty, cruelty toward prisoners, maltreatment, assault, and indecent acts. A seventh suspect, Private Lynndie England, was reassigned to Fort Bragg, North Carolina, after becoming pregnant.

    The photographs tell it all. In one, Private England, a cigarette dangling from her mouth, is giving a jaunty thumbs-up sign and pointing at the genitals of a young Iraqi, who is naked except for a sandbag over his head, as he masturbates. Three other hooded and naked Iraqi prisoners are shown, hands reflexively crossed over their genitals. A fifth prisoner has his hands at his sides. In another, England stands arm in arm with Specialist Graner; both are grinning and giving the thumbs-up behind a cluster of perhaps seven naked Iraqis, knees bent, piled clumsily on top of each other in a pyramid. There is another photograph of a cluster of naked prisoners, again piled in a pyramid. Near them stands Graner, smiling, his arms crossed; a woman soldier stands in front of him, bending over, and she, too, is smiling. Then, there is another cluster of hooded bodies, with a female soldier standing in front, taking photographs. Yet another photograph shows a kneeling, naked, unhooded male prisoner, head momentarily turned away from the camera, posed to make it appear that he is performing oral sex on another male prisoner, who is naked and hooded.

    Such dehumanization is unacceptable in any culture, but it is especially so in the Arab world. Homosexual acts are against Islamic law and it is humiliating for men to be naked in front of other men, Bernard Haykel, a professor of Middle Eastern studies at New York University, explained. “Being put on top of each other and forced to masturbate, being naked in front of each other—it’s all a form of torture,” Haykel said.

    Two Iraqi faces that do appear in the photographs are those of dead men. There is the battered face of prisoner No. 153399, and the bloodied body of another prisoner, wrapped in cellophane and packed in ice. There is a photograph of an empty room, splattered with blood.

    The 372nd’s abuse of prisoners seemed almost routine—a fact of Army life that the soldiers felt no need to hide. On April 9th, at an Article 32 hearing (the military equivalent of a grand jury) in the case against Sergeant Frederick, at Camp Victory, near Baghdad, one of the witnesses, Specialist Matthew Wisdom, an M.P., told the courtroom what happened when he and other soldiers delivered seven prisoners, hooded and bound, to the so-called “hard site” at Abu Ghraib—seven tiers of cells where the inmates who were considered the most dangerous were housed. The men had been accused of starting a riot in another section of the prison. Wisdom said:

    SFC Snider grabbed my prisoner and threw him into a pile. . . . I do not think it was right to put them in a pile. I saw SSG Frederick, SGT Davis and CPL Graner walking around the pile hitting the prisoners. I remember SSG Frederick hitting one prisoner in the side of its [sic] ribcage. The prisoner was no danger to SSG Frederick. . . . I left after that.

    When he returned later, Wisdom testified:

    I saw two naked detainees, one masturbating to another kneeling with its mouth open. I thought I should just get out of there. I didn’t think it was right . . . I saw SSG Frederick walking towards me, and he said, “Look what these animals do when you leave them alone for two seconds.” I heard PFC England shout out, “He’s getting hard.”

    Wisdom testified that he told his superiors what had happened, and assumed that “the issue was taken care of.” He said, “I just didn’t want to be part of anything that looked criminal.”

    The abuses became public because of the outrage of Specialist Joseph M. Darby, an M.P. whose role emerged during the Article 32 hearing against Chip Frederick. A government witness, Special Agent Scott Bobeck, who is a member of the Army’s Criminal Investigation Division, or C.I.D., told the court, according to an abridged transcript made available to me, “The investigation started after SPC Darby . . . got a CD from CPL Graner. . . . He came across pictures of naked detainees.” Bobeck said that Darby had “initially put an anonymous letter under our door, then he later came forward and gave a sworn statement. He felt very bad about it and thought it was very wrong.”

    Questioned further, the Army investigator said that Frederick and his colleagues had not been given any “training guidelines” that he was aware of. The M.P.s in the 372nd had been assigned to routine traffic and police duties upon their arrival in Iraq, in the spring of 2003. In October of 2003, the 372nd was ordered to prison-guard duty at Abu Ghraib. Frederick, at thirty-seven, was far older than his colleagues, and was a natural leader; he had also worked for six years as a guard for the Virginia Department of Corrections. Bobeck explained:

    What I got is that SSG Frederick and CPL Graner were road M.P.s and were put in charge because they were civilian prison guards and had knowledge of how things were supposed to be run.

    Bobeck also testified that witnesses had said that Frederick, on one occasion, “had punched a detainee in the chest so hard that the detainee almost went into cardiac arrest.”

    At the Article 32 hearing, the Army informed Frederick and his attorneys, Captain Robert Shuck, an Army lawyer, and Gary Myers, a civilian, that two dozen witnesses they had sought, including General Karpinski and all of Frederick’s co-defendants, would not appear. Some had been excused after exercising their Fifth Amendment right; others were deemed to be too far away from the courtroom. “The purpose of an Article 32 hearing is for us to engage witnesses and discover facts,” Gary Myers told me. “We ended up with a C.I.D. agent and no alleged victims to examine.” After the hearing, the presiding investigative officer ruled that there was sufficient evidence to convene a court-martial against Frederick.

    Myers, who was one of the military defense attorneys in the My Lai prosecutions of the nineteen-seventies, told me that his client’s defense will be that he was carrying out the orders of his superiors and, in particular, the directions of military intelligence. He said, “Do you really think a group of kids from rural Virginia decided to do this on their own? Decided that the best way to embarrass Arabs and make them talk was to have them walk around nude?”

    In letters and e-mails to family members, Frederick repeatedly noted that the military-intelligence teams, which included C.I.A. officers and linguists and interrogation specialists from private defense contractors, were the dominant force inside Abu Ghraib. In a letter written in January, he said:

    I questioned some of the things that I saw . . . such things as leaving inmates in their cell with no clothes or in female underpants, handcuffing them to the door of their cell—and the answer I got was, “This is how military intelligence (MI) wants it done.” . . . . MI has also instructed us to place a prisoner in an isolation cell with little or no clothes, no toilet or running water, no ventilation or window, for as much as three days.

    The military-intelligence officers have “encouraged and told us, ‘Great job,’ they were now getting positive results and information,” Frederick wrote. “CID has been present when the military working dogs were used to intimidate prisoners at MI’s request.” At one point, Frederick told his family, he pulled aside his superior officer, Lieutenant Colonel Jerry Phillabaum, the commander of the 320th M.P. Battalion, and asked about the mistreatment of prisoners. “His reply was ‘Don’t worry about it.’ ”

    In November, Frederick wrote, an Iraqi prisoner under the control of what the Abu Ghraib guards called “O.G.A.,” or other government agencies—that is, the C.I.A. and its paramilitary employees—was brought to his unit for questioning. “They stressed him out so bad that the man passed away. They put his body in a body bag and packed him in ice for approximately twenty-four hours in the shower. . . . The next day the medics came and put his body on a stretcher, placed a fake IV in his arm and took him away.” The dead Iraqi was never entered into the prison’s inmate-control system, Frederick recounted, “and therefore never had a number.”

    Frederick’s defense is, of course, highly self-serving. But the complaints in his letters and e-mails home were reinforced by two internal Army reports—Taguba’s and one by the Army’s chief law-enforcement officer, Provost Marshal Donald Ryder, a major general.

    Last fall, General Sanchez ordered Ryder to review the prison system in Iraq and recommend ways to improve it. Ryder’s report, filed on November 5th, concluded that there were potential human-rights, training, and manpower issues, system-wide, that needed immediate attention. It also discussed serious concerns about the tension between the missions of the military police assigned to guard the prisoners and the intelligence teams who wanted to interrogate them. Army regulations limit intelligence activity by the M.P.s to passive collection. But something had gone wrong at Abu Ghraib.

    There was evidence dating back to the Afghanistan war, the Ryder report said, that M.P.s had worked with intelligence operatives to “set favorable conditions for subsequent interviews”—a euphemism for breaking the will of prisoners. “Such actions generally run counter to the smooth operation of a detention facility, attempting to maintain its population in a compliant and docile state.” General Karpinski’s brigade, Ryder reported, “has not been directed to change its facility procedures to set the conditions for MI interrogations, nor participate in those interrogations.” Ryder called for the establishment of procedures to “define the role of military police soldiers . . . clearly separating the actions of the guards from those of the military intelligence personnel.” The officers running the war in Iraq were put on notice.

    Ryder undercut his warning, however, by concluding that the situation had not yet reached a crisis point. Though some procedures were flawed, he said, he found “no military police units purposely applying inappropriate confinement practices.” His investigation was at best a failure and at worst a coverup.

    Taguba, in his report, was polite but direct in refuting his fellow-general. “Unfortunately, many of the systemic problems that surfaced during [Ryder’s] assessment are the very same issues that are the subject of this investigation,” he wrote. “In fact, many of the abuses suffered by detainees occurred during, or near to, the time of that assessment.” The report continued, “Contrary to the findings of MG Ryder’s report, I find that personnel assigned to the 372nd MP Company, 800th MP Brigade were directed to change facility procedures to ‘set the conditions’ for MI interrogations.” Army intelligence officers, C.I.A. agents, and private contractors “actively requested that MP guards set physical and mental conditions for favorable interrogation of witnesses.”

    Taguba backed up his assertion by citing evidence from sworn statements to Army C.I.D. investigators. Specialist Sabrina Harman, one of the accused M.P.s, testified that it was her job to keep detainees awake, including one hooded prisoner who was placed on a box with wires attached to his fingers, toes, and penis. She stated, “MI wanted to get them to talk. It is Graner and Frederick’s job to do things for MI and OGA to get these people to talk.”

    Another witness, Sergeant Javal Davis, who is also one of the accused, told C.I.D. investigators, “I witnessed prisoners in the MI hold section . . . being made to do various things that I would question morally. . . . We were told that they had different rules.” Taguba wrote, “Davis also stated that he had heard MI insinuate to the guards to abuse the inmates. When asked what MI said he stated: ‘Loosen this guy up for us.’ ‘Make sure he has a bad night.’ ‘Make sure he gets the treatment.’ ” Military intelligence made these comments to Graner and Frederick, Davis said. “The MI staffs to my understanding have been giving Graner compliments . . . statements like, ‘Good job, they’re breaking down real fast. They answer every question. They’re giving out good information.’ ”

    When asked why he did not inform his chain of command about the abuse, Sergeant Davis answered, “Because I assumed that if they were doing things out of the ordinary or outside the guidelines, someone would have said something. Also the wing”—where the abuse took place—“belongs to MI and it appeared MI personnel approved of the abuse.”

    Another witness, Specialist Jason Kennel, who was not accused of wrongdoing, said, “I saw them nude, but MI would tell us to take away their mattresses, sheets, and clothes.” (It was his view, he added, that if M.I. wanted him to do this “they needed to give me paperwork.”) Taguba also cited an interview with Adel L. Nakhla, a translator who was an employee of Titan, a civilian contractor. He told of one night when a “bunch of people from MI” watched as a group of handcuffed and shackled inmates were subjected to abuse by Graner and Frederick.

    General Taguba saved his harshest words for the military-intelligence officers and private contractors. He recommended that Colonel Thomas Pappas, the commander of one of the M.I. brigades, be reprimanded and receive non-judicial punishment, and that Lieutenant Colonel Steven Jordan, the former director of the Joint Interrogation and Debriefing Center, be relieved of duty and reprimanded. He further urged that a civilian contractor, Steven Stephanowicz, of CACI International, be fired from his Army job, reprimanded, and denied his security clearances for lying to the investigating team and allowing or ordering military policemen “who were not trained in interrogation techniques to facilitate interrogations by ‘setting conditions’ which were neither authorized” nor in accordance with Army regulations. “He clearly knew his instructions equated to physical abuse,” Taguba wrote. He also recommended disciplinary action against a second CACI employee, John Israel. (A spokeswoman for CACI said that the company had “received no formal communication” from the Army about the matter.)

    “I suspect,” Taguba concluded, that Pappas, Jordan, Stephanowicz, and Israel “were either directly or indirectly responsible for the abuse at Abu Ghraib,” and strongly recommended immediate disciplinary action.

    The problems inside the Army prison system in Iraq were not hidden from senior commanders. During Karpinski’s seven-month tour of duty, Taguba noted, there were at least a dozen officially reported incidents involving escapes, attempted escapes, and other serious security issues that were investigated by officers of the 800th M.P. Brigade. Some of the incidents had led to the killing or wounding of inmates and M.P.s, and resulted in a series of “lessons learned” inquiries within the brigade. Karpinski invariably approved the reports and signed orders calling for changes in day-to-day procedures. But Taguba found that she did not follow up, doing nothing to insure that the orders were carried out. Had she done so, he added, “cases of abuse may have been prevented.”

    General Taguba further found that Abu Ghraib was filled beyond capacity, and that the M.P. guard force was significantly undermanned and short of resources. “This imbalance has contributed to the poor living conditions, escapes, and accountability lapses,” he wrote. There were gross differences, Taguba said, between the actual number of prisoners on hand and the number officially recorded. A lack of proper screening also meant that many innocent Iraqis were wrongly being detained—indefinitely, it seemed, in some cases. The Taguba study noted that more than sixty per cent of the civilian inmates at Abu Ghraib were deemed not to be a threat to society, which should have enabled them to be released. Karpinski’s defense, Taguba said, was that her superior officers “routinely” rejected her recommendations regarding the release of such prisoners.

    Karpinski was rarely seen at the prisons she was supposed to be running, Taguba wrote. He also found a wide range of administrative problems, including some that he considered “without precedent in my military career.” The soldiers, he added, were “poorly prepared and untrained . . . prior to deployment, at the mobilization site, upon arrival in theater, and throughout the mission.”

    General Taguba spent more than four hours interviewing Karpinski, whom he described as extremely emotional: “What I found particularly disturbing in her testimony was her complete unwillingness to either understand or accept that many of the problems inherent in the 800th MP Brigade were caused or exacerbated by poor leadership and the refusal of her command to both establish and enforce basic standards and principles among its soldiers.”

    Taguba recommended that Karpinski and seven brigade military-police officers and enlisted men be relieved of command and formally reprimanded. No criminal proceedings were suggested for Karpinski; apparently, the loss of promotion and the indignity of a public rebuke were seen as enough punishment.

    After the story broke on CBS last week, the Pentagon announced that Major General Geoffrey Miller, the new head of the Iraqi prison system, had arrived in Baghdad and was on the job. He had been the commander of the Guantánamo Bay detention center. General Sanchez also authorized an investigation into possible wrongdoing by military and civilian interrogators.

    As the international furor grew, senior military officers, and President Bush, insisted that the actions of a few did not reflect the conduct of the military as a whole. Taguba’s report, however, amounts to an unsparing study of collective wrongdoing and the failure of Army leadership at the highest levels. The picture he draws of Abu Ghraib is one in which Army regulations and the Geneva conventions were routinely violated, and in which much of the day-to-day management of the prisoners was abdicated to Army military-intelligence units and civilian contract employees. Interrogating prisoners and getting intelligence, including by intimidation and torture, was the priority.

    The mistreatment at Abu Ghraib may have done little to further American intelligence, however. Willie J. Rowell, who served for thirty-six years as a C.I.D. agent, told me that the use of force or humiliation with prisoners is invariably counterproductive. “They’ll tell you what you want to hear, truth or no truth,” Rowell said. “ ‘You can flog me until I tell you what I know you want me to say.’ You don’t get righteous information.”

    Under the fourth Geneva convention, an occupying power can jail civilians who pose an “imperative” security threat, but it must establish a regular procedure for insuring that only civilians who remain a genuine security threat be kept imprisoned. Prisoners have the right to appeal any internment decision and have their cases reviewed. Human Rights Watch complained to Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld that civilians in Iraq remained in custody month after month with no charges brought against them. Abu Ghraib had become, in effect, another Guantánamo.

    As the photographs from Abu Ghraib make clear, these detentions have had enormous consequences: for the imprisoned civilian Iraqis, many of whom had nothing to do with the growing insurgency; for the integrity of the Army; and for the United States’ reputation in the world.

    Captain Robert Shuck, Frederick’s military attorney, closed his defense at the Article 32 hearing last month by saying that the Army was “attempting to have these six soldiers atone for its sins.” Similarly, Gary Myers, Frederick’s civilian attorney, told me that he would argue at the court-martial that culpability in the case extended far beyond his client. “I’m going to drag every involved intelligence officer and civilian contractor I can find into court,” he said. “Do you really believe the Army relieved a general officer because of six soldiers? Not a chance.”

    https://open.substack.com/pub/seymourhersh/p/torture-at-abu-ghraib?r=29hg4d&utm_medium=ios&utm_campaign=post
    TORTURE AT ABU GHRAIB From the archive Seymour Hersh An Iraqi who was told he would be electrocuted if he fell off the box. I am on vacation this week but thought it would be useful to republish a painful story I did two decades ago for the New Yorker about a group of US army soldiers who went out of control amid a war in Iraq that, so they were told, was being waged against the terrorism that struck America on 9/11. What the GIs did then are what any army does in war when hating and fearing the enemy is encouraged and runs through the ranks, from the lowest level grunts to the senior generals. It takes a special leader, as you will read about below, who confounds his superiors by not covering up the crimes of his soldiers and their most senior officers, and does so knowing that his career is over. Would that there were such fearless leaders in the Middle East today. In the era of Saddam Hussein, Abu Ghraib, twenty miles west of Baghdad, was one of the world’s most notorious prisons, with torture, weekly executions, and vile living conditions. As many as fifty thousand men and women—no accurate count is possible—were jammed into Abu Ghraib at one time, in twelve-by-twelve-foot cells that were little more than human holding pits. In the looting that followed the regime’s collapse, last April, the huge prison complex, by then deserted, was stripped of everything that could be removed, including doors, windows, and bricks. The coalition authorities had the floors tiled, cells cleaned and repaired, and toilets, showers, and a new medical center added. Abu Ghraib was now a U.S. military prison. Most of the prisoners, however—by the fall there were several thousand, including women and teen-agers—were civilians, many of whom had been picked up in random military sweeps and at highway checkpoints. They fell into three loosely defined categories: common criminals; security detainees suspected of “crimes against the coalition”; and a small number of suspected “high-value” leaders of the insurgency against the coalition forces. Last June, Janis Karpinski, an Army reserve brigadier general, was named commander of the 800th Military Police Brigade and put in charge of military prisons in Iraq. General Karpinski, the only female commander in the war zone, was an experienced operations and intelligence officer who had served with the Special Forces and in the 1991 Gulf War, but she had never run a prison system. Now she was in charge of three large jails, eight battalions, and thirty-four hundred Army reservists, most of whom, like her, had no training in handling prisoners. General Karpinski, who had wanted to be a soldier since she was five, is a business consultant in civilian life, and was enthusiastic about her new job. In an interview last December with the St. Petersburg Times, she said that, for many of the Iraqi inmates at Abu Ghraib, “living conditions now are better in prison than at home. At one point we were concerned that they wouldn’t want to leave.” A month later, General Karpinski was formally admonished and quietly suspended, and a major investigation into the Army’s prison system, authorized by Lieutenant General Ricardo S. Sanchez, the senior commander in Iraq, was under way. A fifty-three-page report, obtained by The New Yorker, written by Major General Antonio M. Taguba and not meant for public release, was completed in late February. Its conclusions about the institutional failures of the Army prison system were devastating. Specifically, Taguba found that between October and December of 2003 there were numerous instances of “sadistic, blatant, and wanton criminal abuses” at Abu Ghraib. This systematic and illegal abuse of detainees, Taguba reported, was perpetrated by soldiers of the 372nd Military Police Company, and also by members of the American intelligence community. (The 372nd was attached to the 320th M.P. Battalion, which reported to Karpinski’s brigade headquarters.) Taguba’s report listed some of the wrongdoing: Breaking chemical lights and pouring the phosphoric liquid on detainees; pouring cold water on naked detainees; beating detainees with a broom handle and a chair; threatening male detainees with rape; allowing a military police guard to stitch the wound of a detainee who was injured after being slammed against the wall in his cell; sodomizing a detainee with a chemical light and perhaps a broom stick, and using military working dogs to frighten and intimidate detainees with threats of attack, and in one instance actually biting a detainee. There was stunning evidence to support the allegations, Taguba added—“detailed witness statements and the discovery of extremely graphic photographic evidence.” Photographs and videos taken by the soldiers as the abuses were happening were not included in his report, Taguba said, because of their “extremely sensitive nature.” The photographs—several of which were broadcast on CBS’s “60 Minutes 2” last week—show leering G.I.s taunting naked Iraqi prisoners who are forced to assume humiliating poses. Six suspects—Staff Sergeant Ivan L. Frederick II, known as Chip, who was the senior enlisted man; Specialist Charles A. Graner; Sergeant Javal Davis; Specialist Megan Ambuhl; Specialist Sabrina Harman; and Private Jeremy Sivits—are now facing prosecution in Iraq, on charges that include conspiracy, dereliction of duty, cruelty toward prisoners, maltreatment, assault, and indecent acts. A seventh suspect, Private Lynndie England, was reassigned to Fort Bragg, North Carolina, after becoming pregnant. The photographs tell it all. In one, Private England, a cigarette dangling from her mouth, is giving a jaunty thumbs-up sign and pointing at the genitals of a young Iraqi, who is naked except for a sandbag over his head, as he masturbates. Three other hooded and naked Iraqi prisoners are shown, hands reflexively crossed over their genitals. A fifth prisoner has his hands at his sides. In another, England stands arm in arm with Specialist Graner; both are grinning and giving the thumbs-up behind a cluster of perhaps seven naked Iraqis, knees bent, piled clumsily on top of each other in a pyramid. There is another photograph of a cluster of naked prisoners, again piled in a pyramid. Near them stands Graner, smiling, his arms crossed; a woman soldier stands in front of him, bending over, and she, too, is smiling. Then, there is another cluster of hooded bodies, with a female soldier standing in front, taking photographs. Yet another photograph shows a kneeling, naked, unhooded male prisoner, head momentarily turned away from the camera, posed to make it appear that he is performing oral sex on another male prisoner, who is naked and hooded. Such dehumanization is unacceptable in any culture, but it is especially so in the Arab world. Homosexual acts are against Islamic law and it is humiliating for men to be naked in front of other men, Bernard Haykel, a professor of Middle Eastern studies at New York University, explained. “Being put on top of each other and forced to masturbate, being naked in front of each other—it’s all a form of torture,” Haykel said. Two Iraqi faces that do appear in the photographs are those of dead men. There is the battered face of prisoner No. 153399, and the bloodied body of another prisoner, wrapped in cellophane and packed in ice. There is a photograph of an empty room, splattered with blood. The 372nd’s abuse of prisoners seemed almost routine—a fact of Army life that the soldiers felt no need to hide. On April 9th, at an Article 32 hearing (the military equivalent of a grand jury) in the case against Sergeant Frederick, at Camp Victory, near Baghdad, one of the witnesses, Specialist Matthew Wisdom, an M.P., told the courtroom what happened when he and other soldiers delivered seven prisoners, hooded and bound, to the so-called “hard site” at Abu Ghraib—seven tiers of cells where the inmates who were considered the most dangerous were housed. The men had been accused of starting a riot in another section of the prison. Wisdom said: SFC Snider grabbed my prisoner and threw him into a pile. . . . I do not think it was right to put them in a pile. I saw SSG Frederick, SGT Davis and CPL Graner walking around the pile hitting the prisoners. I remember SSG Frederick hitting one prisoner in the side of its [sic] ribcage. The prisoner was no danger to SSG Frederick. . . . I left after that. When he returned later, Wisdom testified: I saw two naked detainees, one masturbating to another kneeling with its mouth open. I thought I should just get out of there. I didn’t think it was right . . . I saw SSG Frederick walking towards me, and he said, “Look what these animals do when you leave them alone for two seconds.” I heard PFC England shout out, “He’s getting hard.” Wisdom testified that he told his superiors what had happened, and assumed that “the issue was taken care of.” He said, “I just didn’t want to be part of anything that looked criminal.” The abuses became public because of the outrage of Specialist Joseph M. Darby, an M.P. whose role emerged during the Article 32 hearing against Chip Frederick. A government witness, Special Agent Scott Bobeck, who is a member of the Army’s Criminal Investigation Division, or C.I.D., told the court, according to an abridged transcript made available to me, “The investigation started after SPC Darby . . . got a CD from CPL Graner. . . . He came across pictures of naked detainees.” Bobeck said that Darby had “initially put an anonymous letter under our door, then he later came forward and gave a sworn statement. He felt very bad about it and thought it was very wrong.” Questioned further, the Army investigator said that Frederick and his colleagues had not been given any “training guidelines” that he was aware of. The M.P.s in the 372nd had been assigned to routine traffic and police duties upon their arrival in Iraq, in the spring of 2003. In October of 2003, the 372nd was ordered to prison-guard duty at Abu Ghraib. Frederick, at thirty-seven, was far older than his colleagues, and was a natural leader; he had also worked for six years as a guard for the Virginia Department of Corrections. Bobeck explained: What I got is that SSG Frederick and CPL Graner were road M.P.s and were put in charge because they were civilian prison guards and had knowledge of how things were supposed to be run. Bobeck also testified that witnesses had said that Frederick, on one occasion, “had punched a detainee in the chest so hard that the detainee almost went into cardiac arrest.” At the Article 32 hearing, the Army informed Frederick and his attorneys, Captain Robert Shuck, an Army lawyer, and Gary Myers, a civilian, that two dozen witnesses they had sought, including General Karpinski and all of Frederick’s co-defendants, would not appear. Some had been excused after exercising their Fifth Amendment right; others were deemed to be too far away from the courtroom. “The purpose of an Article 32 hearing is for us to engage witnesses and discover facts,” Gary Myers told me. “We ended up with a C.I.D. agent and no alleged victims to examine.” After the hearing, the presiding investigative officer ruled that there was sufficient evidence to convene a court-martial against Frederick. Myers, who was one of the military defense attorneys in the My Lai prosecutions of the nineteen-seventies, told me that his client’s defense will be that he was carrying out the orders of his superiors and, in particular, the directions of military intelligence. He said, “Do you really think a group of kids from rural Virginia decided to do this on their own? Decided that the best way to embarrass Arabs and make them talk was to have them walk around nude?” In letters and e-mails to family members, Frederick repeatedly noted that the military-intelligence teams, which included C.I.A. officers and linguists and interrogation specialists from private defense contractors, were the dominant force inside Abu Ghraib. In a letter written in January, he said: I questioned some of the things that I saw . . . such things as leaving inmates in their cell with no clothes or in female underpants, handcuffing them to the door of their cell—and the answer I got was, “This is how military intelligence (MI) wants it done.” . . . . MI has also instructed us to place a prisoner in an isolation cell with little or no clothes, no toilet or running water, no ventilation or window, for as much as three days. The military-intelligence officers have “encouraged and told us, ‘Great job,’ they were now getting positive results and information,” Frederick wrote. “CID has been present when the military working dogs were used to intimidate prisoners at MI’s request.” At one point, Frederick told his family, he pulled aside his superior officer, Lieutenant Colonel Jerry Phillabaum, the commander of the 320th M.P. Battalion, and asked about the mistreatment of prisoners. “His reply was ‘Don’t worry about it.’ ” In November, Frederick wrote, an Iraqi prisoner under the control of what the Abu Ghraib guards called “O.G.A.,” or other government agencies—that is, the C.I.A. and its paramilitary employees—was brought to his unit for questioning. “They stressed him out so bad that the man passed away. They put his body in a body bag and packed him in ice for approximately twenty-four hours in the shower. . . . The next day the medics came and put his body on a stretcher, placed a fake IV in his arm and took him away.” The dead Iraqi was never entered into the prison’s inmate-control system, Frederick recounted, “and therefore never had a number.” Frederick’s defense is, of course, highly self-serving. But the complaints in his letters and e-mails home were reinforced by two internal Army reports—Taguba’s and one by the Army’s chief law-enforcement officer, Provost Marshal Donald Ryder, a major general. Last fall, General Sanchez ordered Ryder to review the prison system in Iraq and recommend ways to improve it. Ryder’s report, filed on November 5th, concluded that there were potential human-rights, training, and manpower issues, system-wide, that needed immediate attention. It also discussed serious concerns about the tension between the missions of the military police assigned to guard the prisoners and the intelligence teams who wanted to interrogate them. Army regulations limit intelligence activity by the M.P.s to passive collection. But something had gone wrong at Abu Ghraib. There was evidence dating back to the Afghanistan war, the Ryder report said, that M.P.s had worked with intelligence operatives to “set favorable conditions for subsequent interviews”—a euphemism for breaking the will of prisoners. “Such actions generally run counter to the smooth operation of a detention facility, attempting to maintain its population in a compliant and docile state.” General Karpinski’s brigade, Ryder reported, “has not been directed to change its facility procedures to set the conditions for MI interrogations, nor participate in those interrogations.” Ryder called for the establishment of procedures to “define the role of military police soldiers . . . clearly separating the actions of the guards from those of the military intelligence personnel.” The officers running the war in Iraq were put on notice. Ryder undercut his warning, however, by concluding that the situation had not yet reached a crisis point. Though some procedures were flawed, he said, he found “no military police units purposely applying inappropriate confinement practices.” His investigation was at best a failure and at worst a coverup. Taguba, in his report, was polite but direct in refuting his fellow-general. “Unfortunately, many of the systemic problems that surfaced during [Ryder’s] assessment are the very same issues that are the subject of this investigation,” he wrote. “In fact, many of the abuses suffered by detainees occurred during, or near to, the time of that assessment.” The report continued, “Contrary to the findings of MG Ryder’s report, I find that personnel assigned to the 372nd MP Company, 800th MP Brigade were directed to change facility procedures to ‘set the conditions’ for MI interrogations.” Army intelligence officers, C.I.A. agents, and private contractors “actively requested that MP guards set physical and mental conditions for favorable interrogation of witnesses.” Taguba backed up his assertion by citing evidence from sworn statements to Army C.I.D. investigators. Specialist Sabrina Harman, one of the accused M.P.s, testified that it was her job to keep detainees awake, including one hooded prisoner who was placed on a box with wires attached to his fingers, toes, and penis. She stated, “MI wanted to get them to talk. It is Graner and Frederick’s job to do things for MI and OGA to get these people to talk.” Another witness, Sergeant Javal Davis, who is also one of the accused, told C.I.D. investigators, “I witnessed prisoners in the MI hold section . . . being made to do various things that I would question morally. . . . We were told that they had different rules.” Taguba wrote, “Davis also stated that he had heard MI insinuate to the guards to abuse the inmates. When asked what MI said he stated: ‘Loosen this guy up for us.’ ‘Make sure he has a bad night.’ ‘Make sure he gets the treatment.’ ” Military intelligence made these comments to Graner and Frederick, Davis said. “The MI staffs to my understanding have been giving Graner compliments . . . statements like, ‘Good job, they’re breaking down real fast. They answer every question. They’re giving out good information.’ ” When asked why he did not inform his chain of command about the abuse, Sergeant Davis answered, “Because I assumed that if they were doing things out of the ordinary or outside the guidelines, someone would have said something. Also the wing”—where the abuse took place—“belongs to MI and it appeared MI personnel approved of the abuse.” Another witness, Specialist Jason Kennel, who was not accused of wrongdoing, said, “I saw them nude, but MI would tell us to take away their mattresses, sheets, and clothes.” (It was his view, he added, that if M.I. wanted him to do this “they needed to give me paperwork.”) Taguba also cited an interview with Adel L. Nakhla, a translator who was an employee of Titan, a civilian contractor. He told of one night when a “bunch of people from MI” watched as a group of handcuffed and shackled inmates were subjected to abuse by Graner and Frederick. General Taguba saved his harshest words for the military-intelligence officers and private contractors. He recommended that Colonel Thomas Pappas, the commander of one of the M.I. brigades, be reprimanded and receive non-judicial punishment, and that Lieutenant Colonel Steven Jordan, the former director of the Joint Interrogation and Debriefing Center, be relieved of duty and reprimanded. He further urged that a civilian contractor, Steven Stephanowicz, of CACI International, be fired from his Army job, reprimanded, and denied his security clearances for lying to the investigating team and allowing or ordering military policemen “who were not trained in interrogation techniques to facilitate interrogations by ‘setting conditions’ which were neither authorized” nor in accordance with Army regulations. “He clearly knew his instructions equated to physical abuse,” Taguba wrote. He also recommended disciplinary action against a second CACI employee, John Israel. (A spokeswoman for CACI said that the company had “received no formal communication” from the Army about the matter.) “I suspect,” Taguba concluded, that Pappas, Jordan, Stephanowicz, and Israel “were either directly or indirectly responsible for the abuse at Abu Ghraib,” and strongly recommended immediate disciplinary action. The problems inside the Army prison system in Iraq were not hidden from senior commanders. During Karpinski’s seven-month tour of duty, Taguba noted, there were at least a dozen officially reported incidents involving escapes, attempted escapes, and other serious security issues that were investigated by officers of the 800th M.P. Brigade. Some of the incidents had led to the killing or wounding of inmates and M.P.s, and resulted in a series of “lessons learned” inquiries within the brigade. Karpinski invariably approved the reports and signed orders calling for changes in day-to-day procedures. But Taguba found that she did not follow up, doing nothing to insure that the orders were carried out. Had she done so, he added, “cases of abuse may have been prevented.” General Taguba further found that Abu Ghraib was filled beyond capacity, and that the M.P. guard force was significantly undermanned and short of resources. “This imbalance has contributed to the poor living conditions, escapes, and accountability lapses,” he wrote. There were gross differences, Taguba said, between the actual number of prisoners on hand and the number officially recorded. A lack of proper screening also meant that many innocent Iraqis were wrongly being detained—indefinitely, it seemed, in some cases. The Taguba study noted that more than sixty per cent of the civilian inmates at Abu Ghraib were deemed not to be a threat to society, which should have enabled them to be released. Karpinski’s defense, Taguba said, was that her superior officers “routinely” rejected her recommendations regarding the release of such prisoners. Karpinski was rarely seen at the prisons she was supposed to be running, Taguba wrote. He also found a wide range of administrative problems, including some that he considered “without precedent in my military career.” The soldiers, he added, were “poorly prepared and untrained . . . prior to deployment, at the mobilization site, upon arrival in theater, and throughout the mission.” General Taguba spent more than four hours interviewing Karpinski, whom he described as extremely emotional: “What I found particularly disturbing in her testimony was her complete unwillingness to either understand or accept that many of the problems inherent in the 800th MP Brigade were caused or exacerbated by poor leadership and the refusal of her command to both establish and enforce basic standards and principles among its soldiers.” Taguba recommended that Karpinski and seven brigade military-police officers and enlisted men be relieved of command and formally reprimanded. No criminal proceedings were suggested for Karpinski; apparently, the loss of promotion and the indignity of a public rebuke were seen as enough punishment. After the story broke on CBS last week, the Pentagon announced that Major General Geoffrey Miller, the new head of the Iraqi prison system, had arrived in Baghdad and was on the job. He had been the commander of the Guantánamo Bay detention center. General Sanchez also authorized an investigation into possible wrongdoing by military and civilian interrogators. As the international furor grew, senior military officers, and President Bush, insisted that the actions of a few did not reflect the conduct of the military as a whole. Taguba’s report, however, amounts to an unsparing study of collective wrongdoing and the failure of Army leadership at the highest levels. The picture he draws of Abu Ghraib is one in which Army regulations and the Geneva conventions were routinely violated, and in which much of the day-to-day management of the prisoners was abdicated to Army military-intelligence units and civilian contract employees. Interrogating prisoners and getting intelligence, including by intimidation and torture, was the priority. The mistreatment at Abu Ghraib may have done little to further American intelligence, however. Willie J. Rowell, who served for thirty-six years as a C.I.D. agent, told me that the use of force or humiliation with prisoners is invariably counterproductive. “They’ll tell you what you want to hear, truth or no truth,” Rowell said. “ ‘You can flog me until I tell you what I know you want me to say.’ You don’t get righteous information.” Under the fourth Geneva convention, an occupying power can jail civilians who pose an “imperative” security threat, but it must establish a regular procedure for insuring that only civilians who remain a genuine security threat be kept imprisoned. Prisoners have the right to appeal any internment decision and have their cases reviewed. Human Rights Watch complained to Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld that civilians in Iraq remained in custody month after month with no charges brought against them. Abu Ghraib had become, in effect, another Guantánamo. As the photographs from Abu Ghraib make clear, these detentions have had enormous consequences: for the imprisoned civilian Iraqis, many of whom had nothing to do with the growing insurgency; for the integrity of the Army; and for the United States’ reputation in the world. Captain Robert Shuck, Frederick’s military attorney, closed his defense at the Article 32 hearing last month by saying that the Army was “attempting to have these six soldiers atone for its sins.” Similarly, Gary Myers, Frederick’s civilian attorney, told me that he would argue at the court-martial that culpability in the case extended far beyond his client. “I’m going to drag every involved intelligence officer and civilian contractor I can find into court,” he said. “Do you really believe the Army relieved a general officer because of six soldiers? Not a chance.” https://open.substack.com/pub/seymourhersh/p/torture-at-abu-ghraib?r=29hg4d&utm_medium=ios&utm_campaign=post
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  • The 'Hamas human shield' justification for Israeli war crimes
    Zionist projection is the default Hasbara strategy

    vanessa beeley

    What separates Israel, the United States and other democracies when it comes to incredibly difficult situations like this is our respect for international law and, as appropriate, the laws of war. We do everything we can, in these situations, to avoid civilian casualties.

    That is in direct contrast with Hamas which uses people as human shields. It [Hamas] actually seeks to put Palestinian civilians in situations where they could be harmed. This is very much part of the game plan. We know Israel will take all the precautions it can, just as we would, again that is what separates us from Hamas and terrorist groups that engage in the most heinous kind of activities

    US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken

    If you actually listen to the clip of Blinken justifying Israeli brutality you will hear how he stumbles over his words. He knows he is lying in my opinion. The 4000 plus dead children, 10,328 dead civilians, 26000 injured and 2300 missing believed buried under the rubble of Israeli bombs does not substantiate Blinken’s claims of adherence to international law.

    The Israeli bombing of humanitarian convoys, ambulances, paramedics, Civil Defence headquarters, journalists - 50 killed so far, hospitals, makeshift refugee centres, places of worship - mosques and churches, schools, UNWRA facilities, humanitarian aid supplies including essential bottled water supplies, sewage treatment plants, bridges, solar panels, electricity and internet, media buildings, fisherman’s boats, flour stores, burning of food crops - all these targets are in direct violation of any rule of war or human rights conventions.

    The deliberate policy of starvation and the cutting off of water, food, fuel and electricity supplies is a genocidal policy:

    According to Euro-Med Monitor, the Israeli war of starvation has taken very dangerous turns, including cutting off all food supplies to the Northern half and bombing and destroying factories, bakeries, food stores, water stations, and tanks throughout the entire enclave.

    Soaring malnutrition cases especially among pregnant women and children. A Euromed report confirms that “women and children in Gaza are disproportionately suffering from the effects of Israel's war. Approximately 52,500 infants in Gaza are currently at risk of starvation, death, dehydration, and other health hazards due to overcrowding, in addition to 55,000 pregnant women, of whom 5,500 are expected to give birth this month.”

    “According to Euro-Med Monitor, getting bread in the Gaza Strip has become an existential challenge, since Gaza’s sole mill there is still unable to grind wheat because of a shortage of fuel and electricity. Since October 7, 11 bakeries have been bombed and destroyed, while the ones that are still operating face tremendous difficulties due to fuel and flour shortages.”

    Israel has been blatant about its genocidal policies. Blinken disappears the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians from West Bank and Gaza in his statement. Israeli Heritage Minister, Amichai Eliyahu, has not only described the bombing of Gaza as “amazing”, he has recommended nuking Gaza and sending Palestinians to Ireland or the desert. According to a Times of Israel article:

    Eliyahu also voices his objection during the interview to allowing any humanitarian aid into Gaza, saying “we wouldn’t hand the Nazis humanitarian aid,” and charging that “there is no such thing as uninvolved civilians in Gaza.”

    “They can go to Ireland or deserts, the monsters in Gaza should find a solution by themselves.”

    He says the northern Strip has no right to exist, adding that anyone waving a Palestinian or Hamas flag “shouldn’t continue living on the face of the earth.”

    Corpses rotting under rubble, shallow and hastily dug mass graves. Chemicals believed to be used by Israel in the bombing campaigns including White Phosphorous - all these factors spell disaster when the rains come.

    Gaza is a strip of land the size of the Isle of Wight ( 40km X 12km) with a population of 2.2 million civilians. With the forced evacuation by Israel from the north to the south - you will have 2.2 million civilians living in an area half its original size.

    Israel has destroyed Gaza’s ability to desalinate water to provide clean drinking water or to effectively pump sewage out of the strip. When the rains come, disease will be rife with sewage, decaying bodies, chemicals, disease flooding the enclave.

    Even in so-called peace time children are used to wading through sewage to get to school. Children are forced to swim in raw sewage in the sea off the Gaza coast. This pollution will be exponentially increased by the latest Israeli aggression.

    Added to this, the targeting of hospitals and health centers will result in chronic illness patients dying from lack of available treatment. Euromed - “more than 2,000 cancer patients, more than 1,000 patients in need of dialysis to survive, 50,000 cardiovascular patients, and over 60,000 diabetics—urgently need access to basic healthcare services considering the severe shortage of medications, medical supplies, fuel, food, and clean water.” These patients are not given priority because of the massive influx of emergency cases from the Israeli bombing raids. As Euromed Monitor reports:

    Eighteen out of 35 hospitals in the Gaza Strip have stopped operating so far, according to local health officials there. Overall, 120 health institutions have been targeted, while more than 48 primary care centres (70%) are now out of service due to the ongoing Israeli raids and the fuel crisis.

    The Hamas Human Shield trope

    The claim that Hamas or as I prefer to call it, the Palestinian Resistance coalition, use Palestinian civilians as human shields is consistently used to justify the Israeli bombing of civilian targets as mentioned above. The bombing of an ambulance carrying wounded for evacuation at the Egyptian Rafah border was justified by the Israeli claim that Hamas fighters were on board. Claims that are never substantiated or investigated.

    In my experience in both Gaza during Israeli aggression 2012 and in Syria on various frontlines - it is normal for the injured or civilian evacuees to be escorted for their safety by military, in Syria by the Syrian Arab Army. I do not know if this was the case in Gaza but it is a legitimate reason for military escort. The civilian bodies that were brought from the ambulance into hospital however contradict Israeli claims. Israel has, so far, failed to provide evidence of its claims that resulted in the deaths of civilians including children.

    Gaza is a strip of land 40km by 12km. It is a densely populated enclave with buildings arranged in close proximity, schools, hospitals, residential areas all on top of each other. Israel claims that the Palestinian Resistance is using their own families, children and civilians as “human shields” while carpet bombing entire residential areas to allegedly wipe out ‘Hamas’.

    The denials of Hamas using human shields

    2014 - BBC’s Jeremy Bowen wrote for the New Statesman - ‘I saw no evidence of Hamas using Palestinians as human shields’. Bowen described his experience in Gaza:

    I saw no evidence during my week in Gaza of Israel’s accusation that Hamas uses Palestinians as human shields. I saw men from Hamas on street corners, keeping an eye on what was happening. They were local people and everyone knew them, even the young boys.

    Also in 2014 a Truthout article was published - ‘Congress utilizes myth of human shields to justify [Israeli] war crimes’

    According to the report ‘no Gaza eyewitness found evidence of Hamas using human shields’ during the 2014 Israeli aggression against the Gaza strip which followed a similar pattern to the ongoing 2023 mass bombing of civilian infrastructure - a war crime in itself. From the report:

    Human Rights Watch cited evidence of Israel “blatantly violating the laws of war designed to spare civilians,” including attacks on heavily-populated neighborhoods and shooting at fleeing civilians. Similarly, the Israeli human rights organization B’Tselem challenged its government’s claims that they had “no intention of harming civilians,” noting how after “weeks of lethal bombardments by Israel in the Gaza Strip which have killed hundreds of civilians and wiped out dozens of families, this claim has become meaningless.” United Nations officials in the Gaza Strip also charged Israeli forces with engaging in serious violations of international law, following a series of attacks against six UN schools where Palestinians were seeking refuge, and where no Hamas weaponry or fighters were present, killing 46 civilians.

    None of the claims by the US State Department or individual Representatives that Hamas used civilians as human shields have been evidenced according to the Truthout report.

    Again in 2014 the Belfast Telegraph correspondent, Kem Sengupta, based in Khan Younis, southern Gaza reported on the ‘myth of Hamas’ human shields’ - Gazans deny being put in the line of fire. Sengupta writes:

    What used to be a three-storey house had been turned into debris sunk into a deep crater with twisted steel rods jutting out. Twenty-six people were killed in the mostly deadly air-strike so far in this bloody conflict. Twenty-four of them were from one family, the Abu Jamaa.

    Around the same time that attack was taking place on Sunday evening, Benjamin Netanyahu was charging Hamas on TV with using “human shields” to gather “telegenically dead Palestinians for their cause”.

    Amnesty International, following an extensive investigation after the 2014 war, found no evidence that “Palestinian civilians have been intentionally used by Hamas or Palestinian armed groups during the current hostilities to ‘shield’ specific locations or military personnel or equipment from Israeli attacks.”

    In 2018 the Independent ran a headline - ‘Israeli army edits video of Palestinian medic its troops shot dead to misleadingly show she was 'human shield for Hamas'

    The edited clip was condemned by Palestinians and rights activists as attempt to ‘justify’ 21-year-old Razan al-Najjar’s death - an IOF sniper shot her in the chest during protests on the Gaza-Israel border on 1st June 2018 as she attended to wounded and unarmed protestors also targeted by IOF snipers.

    Israeli government and military officials tweeted out a video labelled ‘Hamas use of human shields must stop’ showing an excerpt of an interview with Al Najjar. The reality is that the young nurse does not mention Hamas and states clearly that she was there to save the wounded at the front lines.

    “The IDF always accuses Palestinians and Israeli human rights orgs of editing documentation of it human rights abuses. But it edited this video of Razan al Najjar to discredit her after murdering her. Absolutely despicable and hypocritical,” Israeli-American writer Mairav Zonszein said on Twitter.

    From personal experience, Hamas officials have always been very against civilians protesting at the border areas because of the high risk of injury and sniping by the IOF.

    In 2013 I went with protestors to Beit Hanoun, north-east Gaza, to confront the IOF prison guards who encircle the Gaza strip with apartheid walls and barbed wire - converting the enclave into an open air concentration camp.

    The automatic gun turrets that are found along the walls are set to fire at a varying distance. Israel changes the distance without ever informing Gazan farmers -so one day the safe distance is 4 meters, some days it is 6 meters - when farmers cross the red line, they are fired upon by the automatic machine gun turrets.

    We stood on high ground next to the wall. We could see the IOF vehicles and guns trained on us. After about an hour of protests, Hamas cars arrived and asked us to leave the area for our own safety.

    Razan Al Najjar was shot in the chest deliberately by the IOF. She presented no danger to the IOF. She was attending to the wounded during the Great March of Return that began in March 2018. The peaceful march demanded the end of the blockade on Gaza and the right to return for Palestinian refugees.

    The IOF responded to these unarmed civilian demonstrations with the use of tear gas, rubber-coated bullets and live ammunition. ‘Among the casualties of the first year are 227 UNRWA students who were injured and 13 who were killed.’

    Watch this video - Great March of Return, a mother’s perspective:



    6 months after the start of the Great March protests, Amnesty International reported:

    According to the Al Mezan Center for Human Rights, since the start of the protests, over 150 Palestinians have been killed in the demonstrations. At least 10,000 others have been injured, including 1,849 children, 424 women, 115 paramedics and 115 journalists. Of those injured, 5,814 were hit by live ammunition. According to Israeli media, one soldier was moderately injured due to shrapnel from a grenade thrown by a Palestinian from inside Gaza and one Israeli soldier was killed by Palestinian sniper fire near the fence that separates Gaza and Israel outside of the context of the protests.

    Legitimate calls for Israeli authorities to lift their 11-year illegal blockade on Gaza and to allow Palestinian refugees to return to their villages and towns have not been met.

    The claim that Al Najjar was a Hamas human shield is a cynical ploy by the Zionist forces to provide justification for their targeting of unarmed civilians who have a legally justified cause to protest under international law. Those that so often call for Palestinians to protest peacefully should understand that there is no effective ‘peaceful’ protest against the IOF.

    In 2021 Law4Palestine - ‘Under Scrutiny: Allegations of Use of Human Shields by Palestinian Armed Groups and the International Criminal Court Investigation’

    What is certain, so far, is that the allegation that the armed groups are using human shields is unsubstantiated, and even the Prosecutor’s Office does not seem to have evidence on this regard, because the evidence at our disposal is the same as that which was available to the Prosecutor’s Office at this stage of the investigation.

    Israel will try to defend itself – whether through the Court or through its political discourse – regarding the commission of war crimes by claiming that the PAGs are terrorist groups and that the war on Gaza was a war on terror where terrorists do not shy away from using civilians as human shields. However, it will face obstacles relating to the characteristics of the Palestinian situation in the Gaza strip and the possibilities of taking “all the possible limits of necessary measures and precautions” to protect civilians and spare them from military attacks.

    Detailed investigations following the 2008-2009 and 2014 conflicts by Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, the United Nations Human Rights Council, and others have failed to find a single documented case of any civilian deaths caused by Hamas using human shields.

    Not one.

    The following video by journalist Abby Martin demonstrates the hypocrisy of ‘human shield’ claims by Washington and Tel-Aviv:

    Now let’s look at Israel’s proven use of Palestinian children and civilians as human shields

    So not only is the Palestinian use of human shields a myth lacking any evidence, it is in fact Israel who is infamous for using human shields in its oppression of the Palestinians. Examples of this are incredibly easy to find even with the most rudimentary of research. Like much Israeli propaganda, it seeks to turn reality upside down and accuse the Palestinians of the crimes that Israel so often commits. This is a prime example of baseless dehumanization that many eagerly embrace because they have come to internalize a demonized image of Palestinians based on Israeli propaganda.

    Decolonize Palestine

    The evidence of Israel using Palestinians as human shields is voluminous, I will cite a number of cases and then offer links to additional reports.

    May 2023 in Ramallah - a report by Defence for Children (DCI) claims that Israeli forces have used at least five Palestinian children as human shields so far this year, including two toddlers.

    Israeli forces then threatened his sons Nidal, 9, and Karam, 11, in addition to his twin nephews, Ahmad and Mohammad, both two years old, and forced them to stand in front of Israeli military vehicles while Israeli forces fired tear gas canisters, stun grenades, and live ammunition at Palestinians confronting the group of soldiers.

    Israeli special forces forced Anas to stand and walk in front of them for several minutes while handcuffed as they confronted two Palestinian men and fired live ammunition. Before killing the two Palestinian men, Israeli forces forced Anas to sit on the floor of a house next door, blindfolded.

    “International law is explicit and absolutely prohibits the use of children as human shields by armed forces or armed groups," said Ayed Abu Eqtaish, accountability program director at DCIP. “Israeli forces intentionally putting a child in grave danger in order to shield themselves constitutes a war crime.”

    While Israeli forces used the Shalloun family as human shields in Aqbat Jabr refugee camp, one soldier ordered mother Samia to put her two-year-old nephew Mohammad on the ground and raise her hands. Mohammad cried as an Israeli military dog approached him, and as Samia lowered her hands to move him away from the dog, the Israeli soldier put his gun to Mohammad’s head, saying, “Move again and I’ll shoot him.”

    Since 2000, DCIP has documented at least 31 cases involving Palestinian children being used as human shields by the Israeli army. Last year, Israeli soldiers forced 16-year-old Ahed Mohammad Rida Mereb to stand in front of an Israeli military vehicle in Jenin as armed Palestinians fired heavily in their direction.

    A 2013 report by the U.N. Committee on the Rights of the Child describes a litany of abuses of children by the IOF and security forces including their use as human shields:

    Almost all those using children as human shields and informants have remained unpunished and the soldiers convicted for having forced at gunpoint a nine-year-old child to search bags suspected of containing explosives only received a suspended sentence of three months and were demoted.

    Further details of this case can be found in this Guardian report.

    Two Israeli soldiers who used a nine-year-old Palestinian boy as a human shield were given suspended sentences and demoted after being convicted of "inappropriate conduct".

    The unnamed soldiers, from the Givati Brigade, ordered Majeh Rabah, from the Tel al-Hawa neighbourhood in Gaza City, to check bags for explosives in January 2009, towards the end of Israel's three-week offensive.

    Also in the report from Human Rights Watch.

    2014 - a report from ReliefWeb based on the original report by DCI Palestine:

    Ramallah, August 21, 2014—Israeli soldiers repeatedly used Ahmad Abu Raida, 17, as a human shield for five days while he was held hostage during Israel’s ground invasion of the Gaza Strip.

    Ahmad, from Khuza'a, near the southern Gaza town of Khan Younis, was just 16 years old when he was taken from his family on July 23. He was forced at gunpoint to search for tunnels for five days, during which time he was interrogated, verbally and physically abused, and deprived of food and sleep. Ahmad told DCI-Palestine in a sworn testimony that Israeli soldiers attempted both to extract information from him regarding Hamas members, and recruit him as an informant, before releasing him on July 27.

    "The Israeli military has consistently accused Hamas of using civilians - particularly children - as human shields, but this incident represents a clear case of their soldiers forcing a child to directly assist in military operations," said Rifat Kassis, executive director of DCI-Palestine. "Israeli officials make generalized accusations while Israeli soldiers engage in conduct that amounts to war crimes."

    A report in Mondoweiss at the same time records accounts of Israeli forces using civilians as human shields:

    Ayman Abu Toaimah, 32, a resident of Khuza’a recalls, “As Israeli invading troops advanced to the village they besieged it and used residents as human shields. When the Israeli army arrested people and then released some of them, they were told they are free to go back to the village, but as they were fleeing they came under fire and some of them shot dead. These people were used as human shields.”

    Abu Saleem, 56, a resident of Khuza’a echoed Abu Toaimah, “Israelis claim that Hamas is using us as human shields– how? This is a lie, we do not see fighters in the streets. It’s them, the Israelis who used us as human shields in Khuza’a and Shuja’iyeh. They turned our houses into military posts, terrified residents in the houses. They attacked innocent civilians with their bombs, and missiles, they attacked chicken farms, they burned our crops, they have no mercy.”

    May 2022 a Palestinian teenage girl was used by the IOF as a human shield during a military raid in Jenin:

    According to DCIP, during a raid on the morning of May 13th, Israeli soldiers forced 16-year-old Ahed Mohammad Rida Mereb, to stand in front of an Israeli military vehicle for two hours as the vehicle came under fire from Palestinian gunmen, while Israeli soldiers sat inside the vehicle.

    Breaking the Silence documents abuses of Palestinians by the IOF based on accounts from former IOF soldiers. A ‘moving human shield’ is one such report:

    Apparently, that captain had gone to Takua, which is a pretty hostile village—they were throwing stones at the jeep. So he just stopped a Palestinian guy who was passing, forty-something years old, and tied him to the hood of the jeep, a guy just lying on the hood, and they drove into the village. No one threw any more rocks. A human shield. Yes. But not just a human shield—first of all, a human shield is bad enough—this was a moving human shield. Tied to the hood of the jeep and they drove with him tied there. Drove with him through the village, it’s horrific.


    22nd April 2004, a 13 year old boy called Mohammed Said Essa Badwan/Badran was used as a human shield. Mohammed was peacefully taking part in spontaneous demonstration in Biddo against the building of the Annexation Wall. Around noon, following the launch of sound bombs and teargas canisters by the soldiers, some nearby youth started throwing stones. At this point, two Israeli Border Guards arrested Mohammed, beat him and forced him to sit on the hood of their jeep, tying his arm to the windshield screen and then using him as a human shield.

    Rabbi Arik Ascherman, who heads the organisation Rabbis for Human Rights, was present and tried to intervene for the release of the child but was instead arrested and beaten. Mohammed was reported to have been repeatedly hit by the soldiers while he was tied to the vehicle. Although he begged them to release him because he was scared and in pain, they would not. He also reportedly suffered from exposure to the teargas used by the soldiers, since he could not move nor was he given any protection. After about four hours, Mohammed was untied, forced into the jeep and taken first to Al-Sahl, an area in which the Annexation Wall is being constructed. He was then questioned by a military officer. Finally the child was released in the neighbouring village of Al-Kalaileh where he had to wait, alone and in the dark, for a relative to come and pick him up.

    Ramallah June 4th 2013 - ‘Israeli soldiers proudly paraded the handcuffed teen up and down the street, making a public spectacle of him in the occupied West Bank town of Abu Dis.’

    Armed with live ammunition, rubber-coated metal bullets and tear gas, on Friday, April 19, at least 10 Israeli soldiers confronted the crowd of protesters using 17-year-old Muhammad Rabea as a human shield. They forced him to walk at gunpoint with his hands raised in the air as they approached the protesters.

    Prior to being abused as a human shield, Muhammad had been savagely beaten by the IOF forces that had grabbed him from the streets. He was hit on the forehead with a rifle stock, kicked repeatedly on the legs, hit at the base of his neck by steel helmets. He was bundled in the back of the military jeep, verbally and physically abused, his hands tied by plastic cords. He was forced to sit in a revolving chair while IOF soldiers kicked him as the chair spun in the back of the jeep.

    “One of the soldiers sprayed the keffiyeh (scarf) I was wearing with pepper spray before tying it tightly over my eyes, burning them,” he says. “Each time I coughed, he told me to shut up and kicked me. I wasn’t allowed to cough.”

    At the military camp, soldiers forced him to stand facing a metal pole. Muhammad said the soldiers ripped his jacket and searched him, while an army dog clawed his back and calves. Following the search, soldiers knocked him down on the ground where he laid for two hours in pain as they continued to kick him in his legs, back and stomach. One of the soldiers removed the keffiyeh over his eyes and poured gasoline on it, burning it in front of him. The soldiers re-blindfolded him with a black piece of cloth and continued to hit him on the head with their helmets.

    Btselem (The Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories) 2017:

    Since the beginning of the occupation in 1967, Israeli security forces have repeatedly used Palestinians in the West Bank and in the Gaza Strip as human shields, ordering them to perform military tasks that risked their lives. As part of this policy, soldiers have ordered Palestinian civilians to remove suspicious objects from roads, to tell people to come out of their homes so the military can arrest them, to stand in front of soldiers while the latter shoot from behind them, and more. The Palestinian civilians were chosen at random for these tasks, and could not refuse the demand placed on them by armed soldiers.

    Using civilians to get wanted persons out of a house is known as “neighbor procedure.” This procedure does not differ significantly from other ways in which the military has used Palestinian civilian. It, too, too, constitutes illegal exploitation of civilians to perform military tasks and places them in real danger. This was made irrefutably clear in an incident that took place in 2002. On 14 August, soldiers sent Nidal Abu Mukhsan, a 19-year-old from the village of Tubas, to the home of Nasser Jarar, a Hamas activist, and ordered him to get Jarar out of the house. When Abu Mukhsan approached the house, Jarar, apparently thinking that the person knocking at the door was a soldier, shot and killed him.

    2012 report from the Institute for Middle East Understanding:

    In 2007, B'Tselem releases a report documenting 14 cases in which Israeli soldiers have used Palestinian civilians - including boys and girls as young as 11-years-old - as human shields to protect themselves in dangerous situations. In one case, a 14-year-old girl in Gaza is shot in the stomach and leg after soldiers used her as a human shield during an incursion.

    In May 2011, two dozen former Israeli soldiers come forward to provide eyewitness accounts of the abuse of Palestinian civilians by the Israeli military, including their use as human shields.

    2021 - Human Rights Watch - A Threshold Crossed, Israeli Authorities and the Crimes of Apartheid and Persecution.

    When Palestinians Became Human Shields: Counterinsurgency, Racialization, and the Great Revolt (1936–1939) - Cambridge University Press

    Using Palestinians as human shields began under the British Mandate in Palestine that ended in 1947. In frustration at the relative success of Palestinian rebels who rejected the influx of European Jews to dispossess Palestinians of their land, the British turned to the use of human shields to defuse Palestinian guerilla military campaigns from 1936-38.

    The regularization of human shielding served as proof of “the dark path of repression” foreseen and warned against by the Peel Commission. Footnote125 It was also elemental to an ongoing process of colonial racialization that robbed the Palestinians of their humanity, stripped them of any figment of legal rights or protections, and denuded them of the most basic security of life. Indeed, with the systematic use of human shields, the colonial regime veered towards the “negation of all law” so feared by top civilian officials and took Palestinian society with it into the ensuing abyss.

    Conclusions

    US law requires Biden to impose sanctions on Hamas for using human shields.

    The Hill

    According to a report in The Hill, the “Sanctioning the Use of Civilians as Defenseless Shields Act” passed both houses of Congress unanimously in 2018. The Shields Act, as it is known, specifically requires the president to submit to Congress a list of persons he determines to be involved in the use of human shields.

    Biden should move swiftly to impose the sanctions already required by his determination that Hamas is using human shields.

    There is no evidence of Hamas using civilians as human shields - there is a plethora of evidence that Israel has historically exploited Palestinians as human shields putting the lives of children at risk on multiple occasions, torturing and traumatising them in the process. This is completely ignored by Washington. No sanctions on Israel?

    It can be argued that Israel has deliberately put its own civilians in danger as human shields by facilitating settlement in contested zones beyond the green line - as for example in the case of the Kibbutz Be’eri when it is now proven that Israeli civilians were not only killed by the IOF gunfire during battles with Palestinian Resistance factions but were also shelled by Israeli tanks two days after the 7th October when the IOF took a decision to eliminate their own civilians alongside Resistance militants.

    They [Israelis] are directly put in danger as a sacrifice to Israel’s expansionist colonial designs, which they can then blame on Palestinians to further accelerate this same project.

    Decolonize Palestine

    ‘Israel justifies its violent attacks by continuously accusing Hamas of using human shields, desperately hoping to stir moral indignation while also trying to muster a legal defence for the indefensible.’

    The subtext is that civilised people protect their children while Palestinians sacrifice them.

    Under this pretext all Palestinians become legitimate targets and Israel can be exonerated of all blame. It is a criminal manipulation of reality to enable justification of genocide and the US and UK are upholding it - thus they are complicit in genocide.

    The director of the New York Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Craig Mokhiber, resigned on Tuesday, writing:

    “As a human rights lawyer with more than three decades of experience in the field, I know well that the concept of genocide has often been subject to political abuse. But the current wholesale slaughter of the Palestinian people, rooted in an ethno-nationalist settler colonial ideology, in continuation of decades of their systematic persecution and purging, based entirely upon their status as Arabs, and coupled with explicit statements of intent by leaders in the Israeli government and military, leaves no room for doubt or debate. In Gaza, civilian homes, schools, churches, mosques, and medical institutions are wantonly attacked as thousands of civilians are massacred. In the West Bank, including occupied Jerusalem, homes are seized and reassigned based entirely on race, and violent settler pogroms are accompanied by Israeli military units. Across the land, Apartheid rules.

    “This is a text-book case of genocide. The European, ethno-nationalist, settler colonial project in Palestine has entered its final phase, toward the expedited destruction of the last remnants of indigenous Palestinian life in Palestine. What’s more, the governments of the United States, the United Kingdom, and much of Europe, are wholly complicit in the horrific assault. Not only are these governments refusing to meet their treaty obligations ‘to ensure respect’ for the Geneva Conventions, but they are in fact actively arming the assault, providing economic and intelligence support, and giving political and diplomatic cover for Israel’s atrocities.”

    See full letter, news report and interview from Wednesday morning with Mokhiber.


    Journalist Sam Husseini wrote on X - I asked the State Dept on Tuesday about the recent DAWN MENA report documenting the Biden administration's efforts to pay for Israeli plans to "ethnically cleanse" Palestinians to Gaza. The spokesperson refused to comment on the funding request:

    If you really want to understand Washington’s defence of Israeli war crimes and human rights abuses including a de facto genocide of the Palestinian people, you need look no further than this extraordinary admission by Robert F. Kennedy Jr:

    Palestinian life is expendable if it ensures US unipolar supremacy. Heck, even the lives of Israelis are superfluous when faced with US protection of its global hegemony. If it is not yet clear that tropes such as “Hamas atrocities” and “Hamas human shields” are nothing more than fig leaves for US proxy war crimes in defence of US global military adventurism - then we are headed for a very ominous future.

    Thank you for reading.

    ***

    Please do consider subscribing to my substack. Every little amount does help me to keep pushing back against the lies that threaten us all.
    The 'Hamas human shield' justification for Israeli war crimes Zionist projection is the default Hasbara strategy vanessa beeley What separates Israel, the United States and other democracies when it comes to incredibly difficult situations like this is our respect for international law and, as appropriate, the laws of war. We do everything we can, in these situations, to avoid civilian casualties. That is in direct contrast with Hamas which uses people as human shields. It [Hamas] actually seeks to put Palestinian civilians in situations where they could be harmed. This is very much part of the game plan. We know Israel will take all the precautions it can, just as we would, again that is what separates us from Hamas and terrorist groups that engage in the most heinous kind of activities US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken If you actually listen to the clip of Blinken justifying Israeli brutality you will hear how he stumbles over his words. He knows he is lying in my opinion. The 4000 plus dead children, 10,328 dead civilians, 26000 injured and 2300 missing believed buried under the rubble of Israeli bombs does not substantiate Blinken’s claims of adherence to international law. The Israeli bombing of humanitarian convoys, ambulances, paramedics, Civil Defence headquarters, journalists - 50 killed so far, hospitals, makeshift refugee centres, places of worship - mosques and churches, schools, UNWRA facilities, humanitarian aid supplies including essential bottled water supplies, sewage treatment plants, bridges, solar panels, electricity and internet, media buildings, fisherman’s boats, flour stores, burning of food crops - all these targets are in direct violation of any rule of war or human rights conventions. The deliberate policy of starvation and the cutting off of water, food, fuel and electricity supplies is a genocidal policy: According to Euro-Med Monitor, the Israeli war of starvation has taken very dangerous turns, including cutting off all food supplies to the Northern half and bombing and destroying factories, bakeries, food stores, water stations, and tanks throughout the entire enclave. Soaring malnutrition cases especially among pregnant women and children. A Euromed report confirms that “women and children in Gaza are disproportionately suffering from the effects of Israel's war. Approximately 52,500 infants in Gaza are currently at risk of starvation, death, dehydration, and other health hazards due to overcrowding, in addition to 55,000 pregnant women, of whom 5,500 are expected to give birth this month.” “According to Euro-Med Monitor, getting bread in the Gaza Strip has become an existential challenge, since Gaza’s sole mill there is still unable to grind wheat because of a shortage of fuel and electricity. Since October 7, 11 bakeries have been bombed and destroyed, while the ones that are still operating face tremendous difficulties due to fuel and flour shortages.” Israel has been blatant about its genocidal policies. Blinken disappears the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians from West Bank and Gaza in his statement. Israeli Heritage Minister, Amichai Eliyahu, has not only described the bombing of Gaza as “amazing”, he has recommended nuking Gaza and sending Palestinians to Ireland or the desert. According to a Times of Israel article: Eliyahu also voices his objection during the interview to allowing any humanitarian aid into Gaza, saying “we wouldn’t hand the Nazis humanitarian aid,” and charging that “there is no such thing as uninvolved civilians in Gaza.” “They can go to Ireland or deserts, the monsters in Gaza should find a solution by themselves.” He says the northern Strip has no right to exist, adding that anyone waving a Palestinian or Hamas flag “shouldn’t continue living on the face of the earth.” Corpses rotting under rubble, shallow and hastily dug mass graves. Chemicals believed to be used by Israel in the bombing campaigns including White Phosphorous - all these factors spell disaster when the rains come. Gaza is a strip of land the size of the Isle of Wight ( 40km X 12km) with a population of 2.2 million civilians. With the forced evacuation by Israel from the north to the south - you will have 2.2 million civilians living in an area half its original size. Israel has destroyed Gaza’s ability to desalinate water to provide clean drinking water or to effectively pump sewage out of the strip. When the rains come, disease will be rife with sewage, decaying bodies, chemicals, disease flooding the enclave. Even in so-called peace time children are used to wading through sewage to get to school. Children are forced to swim in raw sewage in the sea off the Gaza coast. This pollution will be exponentially increased by the latest Israeli aggression. Added to this, the targeting of hospitals and health centers will result in chronic illness patients dying from lack of available treatment. Euromed - “more than 2,000 cancer patients, more than 1,000 patients in need of dialysis to survive, 50,000 cardiovascular patients, and over 60,000 diabetics—urgently need access to basic healthcare services considering the severe shortage of medications, medical supplies, fuel, food, and clean water.” These patients are not given priority because of the massive influx of emergency cases from the Israeli bombing raids. As Euromed Monitor reports: Eighteen out of 35 hospitals in the Gaza Strip have stopped operating so far, according to local health officials there. Overall, 120 health institutions have been targeted, while more than 48 primary care centres (70%) are now out of service due to the ongoing Israeli raids and the fuel crisis. The Hamas Human Shield trope The claim that Hamas or as I prefer to call it, the Palestinian Resistance coalition, use Palestinian civilians as human shields is consistently used to justify the Israeli bombing of civilian targets as mentioned above. The bombing of an ambulance carrying wounded for evacuation at the Egyptian Rafah border was justified by the Israeli claim that Hamas fighters were on board. Claims that are never substantiated or investigated. In my experience in both Gaza during Israeli aggression 2012 and in Syria on various frontlines - it is normal for the injured or civilian evacuees to be escorted for their safety by military, in Syria by the Syrian Arab Army. I do not know if this was the case in Gaza but it is a legitimate reason for military escort. The civilian bodies that were brought from the ambulance into hospital however contradict Israeli claims. Israel has, so far, failed to provide evidence of its claims that resulted in the deaths of civilians including children. Gaza is a strip of land 40km by 12km. It is a densely populated enclave with buildings arranged in close proximity, schools, hospitals, residential areas all on top of each other. Israel claims that the Palestinian Resistance is using their own families, children and civilians as “human shields” while carpet bombing entire residential areas to allegedly wipe out ‘Hamas’. The denials of Hamas using human shields 2014 - BBC’s Jeremy Bowen wrote for the New Statesman - ‘I saw no evidence of Hamas using Palestinians as human shields’. Bowen described his experience in Gaza: I saw no evidence during my week in Gaza of Israel’s accusation that Hamas uses Palestinians as human shields. I saw men from Hamas on street corners, keeping an eye on what was happening. They were local people and everyone knew them, even the young boys. Also in 2014 a Truthout article was published - ‘Congress utilizes myth of human shields to justify [Israeli] war crimes’ According to the report ‘no Gaza eyewitness found evidence of Hamas using human shields’ during the 2014 Israeli aggression against the Gaza strip which followed a similar pattern to the ongoing 2023 mass bombing of civilian infrastructure - a war crime in itself. From the report: Human Rights Watch cited evidence of Israel “blatantly violating the laws of war designed to spare civilians,” including attacks on heavily-populated neighborhoods and shooting at fleeing civilians. Similarly, the Israeli human rights organization B’Tselem challenged its government’s claims that they had “no intention of harming civilians,” noting how after “weeks of lethal bombardments by Israel in the Gaza Strip which have killed hundreds of civilians and wiped out dozens of families, this claim has become meaningless.” United Nations officials in the Gaza Strip also charged Israeli forces with engaging in serious violations of international law, following a series of attacks against six UN schools where Palestinians were seeking refuge, and where no Hamas weaponry or fighters were present, killing 46 civilians. None of the claims by the US State Department or individual Representatives that Hamas used civilians as human shields have been evidenced according to the Truthout report. Again in 2014 the Belfast Telegraph correspondent, Kem Sengupta, based in Khan Younis, southern Gaza reported on the ‘myth of Hamas’ human shields’ - Gazans deny being put in the line of fire. Sengupta writes: What used to be a three-storey house had been turned into debris sunk into a deep crater with twisted steel rods jutting out. Twenty-six people were killed in the mostly deadly air-strike so far in this bloody conflict. Twenty-four of them were from one family, the Abu Jamaa. Around the same time that attack was taking place on Sunday evening, Benjamin Netanyahu was charging Hamas on TV with using “human shields” to gather “telegenically dead Palestinians for their cause”. Amnesty International, following an extensive investigation after the 2014 war, found no evidence that “Palestinian civilians have been intentionally used by Hamas or Palestinian armed groups during the current hostilities to ‘shield’ specific locations or military personnel or equipment from Israeli attacks.” In 2018 the Independent ran a headline - ‘Israeli army edits video of Palestinian medic its troops shot dead to misleadingly show she was 'human shield for Hamas' The edited clip was condemned by Palestinians and rights activists as attempt to ‘justify’ 21-year-old Razan al-Najjar’s death - an IOF sniper shot her in the chest during protests on the Gaza-Israel border on 1st June 2018 as she attended to wounded and unarmed protestors also targeted by IOF snipers. Israeli government and military officials tweeted out a video labelled ‘Hamas use of human shields must stop’ showing an excerpt of an interview with Al Najjar. The reality is that the young nurse does not mention Hamas and states clearly that she was there to save the wounded at the front lines. “The IDF always accuses Palestinians and Israeli human rights orgs of editing documentation of it human rights abuses. But it edited this video of Razan al Najjar to discredit her after murdering her. Absolutely despicable and hypocritical,” Israeli-American writer Mairav Zonszein said on Twitter. From personal experience, Hamas officials have always been very against civilians protesting at the border areas because of the high risk of injury and sniping by the IOF. In 2013 I went with protestors to Beit Hanoun, north-east Gaza, to confront the IOF prison guards who encircle the Gaza strip with apartheid walls and barbed wire - converting the enclave into an open air concentration camp. The automatic gun turrets that are found along the walls are set to fire at a varying distance. Israel changes the distance without ever informing Gazan farmers -so one day the safe distance is 4 meters, some days it is 6 meters - when farmers cross the red line, they are fired upon by the automatic machine gun turrets. We stood on high ground next to the wall. We could see the IOF vehicles and guns trained on us. After about an hour of protests, Hamas cars arrived and asked us to leave the area for our own safety. Razan Al Najjar was shot in the chest deliberately by the IOF. She presented no danger to the IOF. She was attending to the wounded during the Great March of Return that began in March 2018. The peaceful march demanded the end of the blockade on Gaza and the right to return for Palestinian refugees. The IOF responded to these unarmed civilian demonstrations with the use of tear gas, rubber-coated bullets and live ammunition. ‘Among the casualties of the first year are 227 UNRWA students who were injured and 13 who were killed.’ Watch this video - Great March of Return, a mother’s perspective: 6 months after the start of the Great March protests, Amnesty International reported: According to the Al Mezan Center for Human Rights, since the start of the protests, over 150 Palestinians have been killed in the demonstrations. At least 10,000 others have been injured, including 1,849 children, 424 women, 115 paramedics and 115 journalists. Of those injured, 5,814 were hit by live ammunition. According to Israeli media, one soldier was moderately injured due to shrapnel from a grenade thrown by a Palestinian from inside Gaza and one Israeli soldier was killed by Palestinian sniper fire near the fence that separates Gaza and Israel outside of the context of the protests. Legitimate calls for Israeli authorities to lift their 11-year illegal blockade on Gaza and to allow Palestinian refugees to return to their villages and towns have not been met. The claim that Al Najjar was a Hamas human shield is a cynical ploy by the Zionist forces to provide justification for their targeting of unarmed civilians who have a legally justified cause to protest under international law. Those that so often call for Palestinians to protest peacefully should understand that there is no effective ‘peaceful’ protest against the IOF. In 2021 Law4Palestine - ‘Under Scrutiny: Allegations of Use of Human Shields by Palestinian Armed Groups and the International Criminal Court Investigation’ What is certain, so far, is that the allegation that the armed groups are using human shields is unsubstantiated, and even the Prosecutor’s Office does not seem to have evidence on this regard, because the evidence at our disposal is the same as that which was available to the Prosecutor’s Office at this stage of the investigation. Israel will try to defend itself – whether through the Court or through its political discourse – regarding the commission of war crimes by claiming that the PAGs are terrorist groups and that the war on Gaza was a war on terror where terrorists do not shy away from using civilians as human shields. However, it will face obstacles relating to the characteristics of the Palestinian situation in the Gaza strip and the possibilities of taking “all the possible limits of necessary measures and precautions” to protect civilians and spare them from military attacks. Detailed investigations following the 2008-2009 and 2014 conflicts by Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, the United Nations Human Rights Council, and others have failed to find a single documented case of any civilian deaths caused by Hamas using human shields. Not one. The following video by journalist Abby Martin demonstrates the hypocrisy of ‘human shield’ claims by Washington and Tel-Aviv: Now let’s look at Israel’s proven use of Palestinian children and civilians as human shields So not only is the Palestinian use of human shields a myth lacking any evidence, it is in fact Israel who is infamous for using human shields in its oppression of the Palestinians. Examples of this are incredibly easy to find even with the most rudimentary of research. Like much Israeli propaganda, it seeks to turn reality upside down and accuse the Palestinians of the crimes that Israel so often commits. This is a prime example of baseless dehumanization that many eagerly embrace because they have come to internalize a demonized image of Palestinians based on Israeli propaganda. Decolonize Palestine The evidence of Israel using Palestinians as human shields is voluminous, I will cite a number of cases and then offer links to additional reports. May 2023 in Ramallah - a report by Defence for Children (DCI) claims that Israeli forces have used at least five Palestinian children as human shields so far this year, including two toddlers. Israeli forces then threatened his sons Nidal, 9, and Karam, 11, in addition to his twin nephews, Ahmad and Mohammad, both two years old, and forced them to stand in front of Israeli military vehicles while Israeli forces fired tear gas canisters, stun grenades, and live ammunition at Palestinians confronting the group of soldiers. Israeli special forces forced Anas to stand and walk in front of them for several minutes while handcuffed as they confronted two Palestinian men and fired live ammunition. Before killing the two Palestinian men, Israeli forces forced Anas to sit on the floor of a house next door, blindfolded. “International law is explicit and absolutely prohibits the use of children as human shields by armed forces or armed groups," said Ayed Abu Eqtaish, accountability program director at DCIP. “Israeli forces intentionally putting a child in grave danger in order to shield themselves constitutes a war crime.” While Israeli forces used the Shalloun family as human shields in Aqbat Jabr refugee camp, one soldier ordered mother Samia to put her two-year-old nephew Mohammad on the ground and raise her hands. Mohammad cried as an Israeli military dog approached him, and as Samia lowered her hands to move him away from the dog, the Israeli soldier put his gun to Mohammad’s head, saying, “Move again and I’ll shoot him.” Since 2000, DCIP has documented at least 31 cases involving Palestinian children being used as human shields by the Israeli army. Last year, Israeli soldiers forced 16-year-old Ahed Mohammad Rida Mereb to stand in front of an Israeli military vehicle in Jenin as armed Palestinians fired heavily in their direction. A 2013 report by the U.N. Committee on the Rights of the Child describes a litany of abuses of children by the IOF and security forces including their use as human shields: Almost all those using children as human shields and informants have remained unpunished and the soldiers convicted for having forced at gunpoint a nine-year-old child to search bags suspected of containing explosives only received a suspended sentence of three months and were demoted. Further details of this case can be found in this Guardian report. Two Israeli soldiers who used a nine-year-old Palestinian boy as a human shield were given suspended sentences and demoted after being convicted of "inappropriate conduct". The unnamed soldiers, from the Givati Brigade, ordered Majeh Rabah, from the Tel al-Hawa neighbourhood in Gaza City, to check bags for explosives in January 2009, towards the end of Israel's three-week offensive. Also in the report from Human Rights Watch. 2014 - a report from ReliefWeb based on the original report by DCI Palestine: Ramallah, August 21, 2014—Israeli soldiers repeatedly used Ahmad Abu Raida, 17, as a human shield for five days while he was held hostage during Israel’s ground invasion of the Gaza Strip. Ahmad, from Khuza'a, near the southern Gaza town of Khan Younis, was just 16 years old when he was taken from his family on July 23. He was forced at gunpoint to search for tunnels for five days, during which time he was interrogated, verbally and physically abused, and deprived of food and sleep. Ahmad told DCI-Palestine in a sworn testimony that Israeli soldiers attempted both to extract information from him regarding Hamas members, and recruit him as an informant, before releasing him on July 27. "The Israeli military has consistently accused Hamas of using civilians - particularly children - as human shields, but this incident represents a clear case of their soldiers forcing a child to directly assist in military operations," said Rifat Kassis, executive director of DCI-Palestine. "Israeli officials make generalized accusations while Israeli soldiers engage in conduct that amounts to war crimes." A report in Mondoweiss at the same time records accounts of Israeli forces using civilians as human shields: Ayman Abu Toaimah, 32, a resident of Khuza’a recalls, “As Israeli invading troops advanced to the village they besieged it and used residents as human shields. When the Israeli army arrested people and then released some of them, they were told they are free to go back to the village, but as they were fleeing they came under fire and some of them shot dead. These people were used as human shields.” Abu Saleem, 56, a resident of Khuza’a echoed Abu Toaimah, “Israelis claim that Hamas is using us as human shields– how? This is a lie, we do not see fighters in the streets. It’s them, the Israelis who used us as human shields in Khuza’a and Shuja’iyeh. They turned our houses into military posts, terrified residents in the houses. They attacked innocent civilians with their bombs, and missiles, they attacked chicken farms, they burned our crops, they have no mercy.” May 2022 a Palestinian teenage girl was used by the IOF as a human shield during a military raid in Jenin: According to DCIP, during a raid on the morning of May 13th, Israeli soldiers forced 16-year-old Ahed Mohammad Rida Mereb, to stand in front of an Israeli military vehicle for two hours as the vehicle came under fire from Palestinian gunmen, while Israeli soldiers sat inside the vehicle. Breaking the Silence documents abuses of Palestinians by the IOF based on accounts from former IOF soldiers. A ‘moving human shield’ is one such report: Apparently, that captain had gone to Takua, which is a pretty hostile village—they were throwing stones at the jeep. So he just stopped a Palestinian guy who was passing, forty-something years old, and tied him to the hood of the jeep, a guy just lying on the hood, and they drove into the village. No one threw any more rocks. A human shield. Yes. But not just a human shield—first of all, a human shield is bad enough—this was a moving human shield. Tied to the hood of the jeep and they drove with him tied there. Drove with him through the village, it’s horrific. 22nd April 2004, a 13 year old boy called Mohammed Said Essa Badwan/Badran was used as a human shield. Mohammed was peacefully taking part in spontaneous demonstration in Biddo against the building of the Annexation Wall. Around noon, following the launch of sound bombs and teargas canisters by the soldiers, some nearby youth started throwing stones. At this point, two Israeli Border Guards arrested Mohammed, beat him and forced him to sit on the hood of their jeep, tying his arm to the windshield screen and then using him as a human shield. Rabbi Arik Ascherman, who heads the organisation Rabbis for Human Rights, was present and tried to intervene for the release of the child but was instead arrested and beaten. Mohammed was reported to have been repeatedly hit by the soldiers while he was tied to the vehicle. Although he begged them to release him because he was scared and in pain, they would not. He also reportedly suffered from exposure to the teargas used by the soldiers, since he could not move nor was he given any protection. After about four hours, Mohammed was untied, forced into the jeep and taken first to Al-Sahl, an area in which the Annexation Wall is being constructed. He was then questioned by a military officer. Finally the child was released in the neighbouring village of Al-Kalaileh where he had to wait, alone and in the dark, for a relative to come and pick him up. Ramallah June 4th 2013 - ‘Israeli soldiers proudly paraded the handcuffed teen up and down the street, making a public spectacle of him in the occupied West Bank town of Abu Dis.’ Armed with live ammunition, rubber-coated metal bullets and tear gas, on Friday, April 19, at least 10 Israeli soldiers confronted the crowd of protesters using 17-year-old Muhammad Rabea as a human shield. They forced him to walk at gunpoint with his hands raised in the air as they approached the protesters. Prior to being abused as a human shield, Muhammad had been savagely beaten by the IOF forces that had grabbed him from the streets. He was hit on the forehead with a rifle stock, kicked repeatedly on the legs, hit at the base of his neck by steel helmets. He was bundled in the back of the military jeep, verbally and physically abused, his hands tied by plastic cords. He was forced to sit in a revolving chair while IOF soldiers kicked him as the chair spun in the back of the jeep. “One of the soldiers sprayed the keffiyeh (scarf) I was wearing with pepper spray before tying it tightly over my eyes, burning them,” he says. “Each time I coughed, he told me to shut up and kicked me. I wasn’t allowed to cough.” At the military camp, soldiers forced him to stand facing a metal pole. Muhammad said the soldiers ripped his jacket and searched him, while an army dog clawed his back and calves. Following the search, soldiers knocked him down on the ground where he laid for two hours in pain as they continued to kick him in his legs, back and stomach. One of the soldiers removed the keffiyeh over his eyes and poured gasoline on it, burning it in front of him. The soldiers re-blindfolded him with a black piece of cloth and continued to hit him on the head with their helmets. Btselem (The Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories) 2017: Since the beginning of the occupation in 1967, Israeli security forces have repeatedly used Palestinians in the West Bank and in the Gaza Strip as human shields, ordering them to perform military tasks that risked their lives. As part of this policy, soldiers have ordered Palestinian civilians to remove suspicious objects from roads, to tell people to come out of their homes so the military can arrest them, to stand in front of soldiers while the latter shoot from behind them, and more. The Palestinian civilians were chosen at random for these tasks, and could not refuse the demand placed on them by armed soldiers. Using civilians to get wanted persons out of a house is known as “neighbor procedure.” This procedure does not differ significantly from other ways in which the military has used Palestinian civilian. It, too, too, constitutes illegal exploitation of civilians to perform military tasks and places them in real danger. This was made irrefutably clear in an incident that took place in 2002. On 14 August, soldiers sent Nidal Abu Mukhsan, a 19-year-old from the village of Tubas, to the home of Nasser Jarar, a Hamas activist, and ordered him to get Jarar out of the house. When Abu Mukhsan approached the house, Jarar, apparently thinking that the person knocking at the door was a soldier, shot and killed him. 2012 report from the Institute for Middle East Understanding: In 2007, B'Tselem releases a report documenting 14 cases in which Israeli soldiers have used Palestinian civilians - including boys and girls as young as 11-years-old - as human shields to protect themselves in dangerous situations. In one case, a 14-year-old girl in Gaza is shot in the stomach and leg after soldiers used her as a human shield during an incursion. In May 2011, two dozen former Israeli soldiers come forward to provide eyewitness accounts of the abuse of Palestinian civilians by the Israeli military, including their use as human shields. 2021 - Human Rights Watch - A Threshold Crossed, Israeli Authorities and the Crimes of Apartheid and Persecution. When Palestinians Became Human Shields: Counterinsurgency, Racialization, and the Great Revolt (1936–1939) - Cambridge University Press Using Palestinians as human shields began under the British Mandate in Palestine that ended in 1947. In frustration at the relative success of Palestinian rebels who rejected the influx of European Jews to dispossess Palestinians of their land, the British turned to the use of human shields to defuse Palestinian guerilla military campaigns from 1936-38. The regularization of human shielding served as proof of “the dark path of repression” foreseen and warned against by the Peel Commission. Footnote125 It was also elemental to an ongoing process of colonial racialization that robbed the Palestinians of their humanity, stripped them of any figment of legal rights or protections, and denuded them of the most basic security of life. Indeed, with the systematic use of human shields, the colonial regime veered towards the “negation of all law” so feared by top civilian officials and took Palestinian society with it into the ensuing abyss. Conclusions US law requires Biden to impose sanctions on Hamas for using human shields. The Hill According to a report in The Hill, the “Sanctioning the Use of Civilians as Defenseless Shields Act” passed both houses of Congress unanimously in 2018. The Shields Act, as it is known, specifically requires the president to submit to Congress a list of persons he determines to be involved in the use of human shields. Biden should move swiftly to impose the sanctions already required by his determination that Hamas is using human shields. There is no evidence of Hamas using civilians as human shields - there is a plethora of evidence that Israel has historically exploited Palestinians as human shields putting the lives of children at risk on multiple occasions, torturing and traumatising them in the process. This is completely ignored by Washington. No sanctions on Israel? It can be argued that Israel has deliberately put its own civilians in danger as human shields by facilitating settlement in contested zones beyond the green line - as for example in the case of the Kibbutz Be’eri when it is now proven that Israeli civilians were not only killed by the IOF gunfire during battles with Palestinian Resistance factions but were also shelled by Israeli tanks two days after the 7th October when the IOF took a decision to eliminate their own civilians alongside Resistance militants. They [Israelis] are directly put in danger as a sacrifice to Israel’s expansionist colonial designs, which they can then blame on Palestinians to further accelerate this same project. Decolonize Palestine ‘Israel justifies its violent attacks by continuously accusing Hamas of using human shields, desperately hoping to stir moral indignation while also trying to muster a legal defence for the indefensible.’ The subtext is that civilised people protect their children while Palestinians sacrifice them. Under this pretext all Palestinians become legitimate targets and Israel can be exonerated of all blame. It is a criminal manipulation of reality to enable justification of genocide and the US and UK are upholding it - thus they are complicit in genocide. The director of the New York Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Craig Mokhiber, resigned on Tuesday, writing: “As a human rights lawyer with more than three decades of experience in the field, I know well that the concept of genocide has often been subject to political abuse. But the current wholesale slaughter of the Palestinian people, rooted in an ethno-nationalist settler colonial ideology, in continuation of decades of their systematic persecution and purging, based entirely upon their status as Arabs, and coupled with explicit statements of intent by leaders in the Israeli government and military, leaves no room for doubt or debate. In Gaza, civilian homes, schools, churches, mosques, and medical institutions are wantonly attacked as thousands of civilians are massacred. In the West Bank, including occupied Jerusalem, homes are seized and reassigned based entirely on race, and violent settler pogroms are accompanied by Israeli military units. Across the land, Apartheid rules. “This is a text-book case of genocide. The European, ethno-nationalist, settler colonial project in Palestine has entered its final phase, toward the expedited destruction of the last remnants of indigenous Palestinian life in Palestine. What’s more, the governments of the United States, the United Kingdom, and much of Europe, are wholly complicit in the horrific assault. Not only are these governments refusing to meet their treaty obligations ‘to ensure respect’ for the Geneva Conventions, but they are in fact actively arming the assault, providing economic and intelligence support, and giving political and diplomatic cover for Israel’s atrocities.” See full letter, news report and interview from Wednesday morning with Mokhiber. Journalist Sam Husseini wrote on X - I asked the State Dept on Tuesday about the recent DAWN MENA report documenting the Biden administration's efforts to pay for Israeli plans to "ethnically cleanse" Palestinians to Gaza. The spokesperson refused to comment on the funding request: If you really want to understand Washington’s defence of Israeli war crimes and human rights abuses including a de facto genocide of the Palestinian people, you need look no further than this extraordinary admission by Robert F. Kennedy Jr: Palestinian life is expendable if it ensures US unipolar supremacy. Heck, even the lives of Israelis are superfluous when faced with US protection of its global hegemony. If it is not yet clear that tropes such as “Hamas atrocities” and “Hamas human shields” are nothing more than fig leaves for US proxy war crimes in defence of US global military adventurism - then we are headed for a very ominous future. Thank you for reading. *** Please do consider subscribing to my substack. Every little amount does help me to keep pushing back against the lies that threaten us all.
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  • This lady is spot on regarding Cooties and Nazi Dehumanizationists such as Bill Gates.
    This lady is spot on regarding Cooties and Nazi Dehumanizationists such as Bill Gates.
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  • Be Vigilant and Be Sober
    One purpose for all the uncertainty, apprehension and secrecy is to beat you and i mentally senseless. They want to render us emotionally lost, frightened, and susceptible. That's the only way they can prey us, like a vulture waiting to strike. This is how they scheme to steer in their dehumanization plan. Be vigilant, be sober.
    Be Vigilant and Be Sober One purpose for all the uncertainty, apprehension and secrecy is to beat you and i mentally senseless. They want to render us emotionally lost, frightened, and susceptible. That's the only way they can prey us, like a vulture waiting to strike. This is how they scheme to steer in their dehumanization plan. Be vigilant, be sober.
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  • The Corrupt Establishment DOES NOT need a real crisis or facts to control the masses. They can simply promulgate and declare it and the masses will follow.
    Don't think that the monkeypox scare is over, Dr. Malone just released a substack implying that the monkeypox variation that is spreading may be bioengineered. BTW, that's exactly what the NTI and other Globalists and Globalists entities were warning about. They predicted it and presto it happened!
    Heretofore today's "Disasters by Design" cultivate to occur in numbers, and we should expect to see more than conventional quantities of polluted foods, sick animals who have to be euthanized, and a profusion of other difficulties relating to the food supply. Anticipate it, because it's all by design.
    If one had to recapitulate the global elite's far-left agenda in just a few terms it would be this: Dehumanization, Slavery, and Death.
    The Corrupt Establishment DOES NOT need a real crisis or facts to control the masses. They can simply promulgate and declare it and the masses will follow. Don't think that the monkeypox scare is over, Dr. Malone just released a substack implying that the monkeypox variation that is spreading may be bioengineered. BTW, that's exactly what the NTI and other Globalists and Globalists entities were warning about. They predicted it and presto it happened! Heretofore today's "Disasters by Design" cultivate to occur in numbers, and we should expect to see more than conventional quantities of polluted foods, sick animals who have to be euthanized, and a profusion of other difficulties relating to the food supply. Anticipate it, because it's all by design. If one had to recapitulate the global elite's far-left agenda in just a few terms it would be this: Dehumanization, Slavery, and Death.
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