Israel/Palestine: A Recent Chronology

After a few days when the casualty numbers began to grow
more slowly, Israeli military forces initiated a bombing
attack on the West Bank town of Bethlehem Dec. 3.

Israeli settlers, backed by the military, attacked
Palestinian Muslims near the shrine of Rachel’s Tomb.

The two sides clashed for hours. Israeli helicopter gun
ships opened fire with rockets at the nearby Aida refugee
camp.

Fourteen Palestinians were seriously wounded late Dec. 3 and
early Dec. 4, Palestinian hospitals reported.

So far almost 300 people have been killed in the fighting
and close to 10,000 injured. Almost all those killed or
seriously injured are Palestinians shot by Israeli troops
and settlers.

After a few days when the casualty numbers began to grow
more slowly, Israeli military forces initiated a bombing
attack on the West Bank town of Bethlehem Dec. 3.

Israeli settlers, backed by the military, attacked
Palestinian Muslims near the shrine of Rachel’s Tomb.

The two sides clashed for hours. Israeli helicopter gun
ships opened fire with rockets at the nearby Aida refugee
camp.

Fourteen Palestinians were seriously wounded late Dec. 3 and
early Dec. 4, Palestinian hospitals reported.

So far almost 300 people have been killed in the fighting
and close to 10,000 injured. Almost all those killed or
seriously injured are Palestinians shot by Israeli troops
and settlers.

Israeli troops are ordered to shoot to maim the young
Palestinian demonstrators, who are mostly armed only with
stones and slingshots, by targeting their legs so that the
victims are permanently disabled.

According to an interview with an Israeli sharpshooter
published in the Israeli newspaper Haaretz, the troops are
not supposed to shoot at people unless “they are more than
12 years old.” This order came as result of the bad
publicity after Israeli forces were videotaped murdering a
Palestinian child who was trying to take cover with his
father.

After admitting they had killed the child, Israeli officers
tried to claim he had been killed by the Palestinian side,
in a vain attempt to reverse the bad publicity. This “big
lie” came a little late.

But Israeli forces have a public-relations problem because
the vast majority of conflicts are between rock-throwing
Palestinian youths and Israeli soldiers armed to the teeth
with U.S.-provided machine guns, tanks, rockets, etc. Any
honest reporting exposes these criminal attacks on a
civilian population. So they have been using even harsher
methods to control publicity.

ISRAELI MILITARY TARGETS JOURNALISTS

According to a report published recently by the Committee to
Protect Journalists, between Sept. 28 and early November, 24
journalists covering the Intifada were injured or harassed–
22 of them by the Israeli side. That includes shooting live
ammunition at 13 journalists, holding journalists for
questioning, preventing their entry into certain areas and
confiscating press credentials.

Of the three shootings the Israeli military investigated, it
turned out the Israeli army had indeed shot the reporters.
The report does not claim that the Israelis targeted the
reporters, but some reporters believe they did.

Not only have Palestinian youths been punished mercilessly
for rising up against their occupiers, but the Palestinian
population in general has been suffering from a siege of
their territory and extensive curfews. Also Israeli
settlers, often backed by troops, have destroyed hundreds of
olive and orange trees that Palestinian farmers depend on
for their livelihood.

There are 195,000 Israeli settlers living among the 3
million Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza. The settlers
live in prosperous suburban housing on the hills near
Jerusalem or scattered on the better farmland further away
from Israeli towns.

These settlers are connected to each other and to Israeli by
a system of highways. Palestinians are not allowed onto the
highways.

When the Israeli regime denies freedom of movement to the
Palestinians, it cuts off the major part of their income.
That’s why there are reports that the Palestinian population
is on the verge of hunger in many areas.

When Palestinian women demonstrated on Nov. 29, the Day of
Solidarity with Palestine, they ended their demands with the
following plea:

“We mothers, wives and daughters can no longer endure seeing
our loved ones killed, maimed and injured on a daily basis.
Our Intifada is an expression of our quest for liberation,
freedom and dignity. We appeal to all women of the world to
understand our worthy cause and support us in our struggle
for justice and peace.”

Author: John Catalinotto

News Service: Workers World News Service

URL: http://www.workers.org