(ANTIMEDIA) United Kingdom — The latest victims of Israeli aggression in the occupied Palestinian territories are 30-year-old pregnant mother Noor Hassan and her 2-year-old daughter Rahaf. The family was killed in the early hours of Sunday in Gaza, after airstrikes — that Israel claims were targeting Hamas infrastructure — caused their home to collapse.
Since October 1st, the situation in the West Bank, occupied East Jerusalem, and Gaza has deteriorated. Over 20 Palestinians have been killed and more than 1000 injured as official requests by the Palestinian leadership for international protection go ignored.
On October 8th, Amnesty International issued a statement that condemned deliberate attacks on both Israeli and Palestinian civilians. The condemnation also included the widespread use of excessive force by the Israeli army and its failure to protect Palestinians from attacks by Israeli settlers.
Those surprised by these recent events haven’t been paying attention, but should not be blamed. Amid escalations in the region, mainstream news coverage is always lacking in context and portrays the violence as though it arises out of a vacuum. Israelis are historically painted as victims, besieged by their vicious neighbours who want nothing more than to push them into the sea — all while the savage Palestinians attack them for no other reason than violence inherent to their nature.
The insidious reporting not only fails the public, but lets the colonial regime off the hook. Omitting the context of 67 years of brutal military occupation, creeping settlement expansion, and Israel’s extrajudicial killings to focus solely on Palestinian “terror” gives a green light to the armed settler puppets of right-wing politicians to run riot — literally.
While shocking video evidence of undercover Israeli soldiers infiltrating a group of stone-throwers before shooting a Palestinian at point blank range must be seen to be believed, footage of death-chanting Israeli mobs rarely see the light of day. Witness footage of Israeli forces shooting 30-year-old mother Israa Abed would be deemed to graphic for mainstream.
But graphic is exactly what Palestine is, and the reason for the deadly increase in attacks by Israel’s trigger-happy army was revealed earlier today in a chilling allegation by ex-Israeli soldier Eran Efrati:
“In recent days I am getting reports from soldiers in the Israeli army who tell me that their rules of engagement were changed entirely and that procedures that were true to a certain extent only in Gaza and parts of the West Bank are now being implemented all across Palestine and Israel.”
Efrati claims “free permits” to open fire on any Palestinian citizen who seems suspicious are now being distributed. He says soldiers are discussing orders they have received that eliminate the apprehension of a suspect and the “suspect arrest procedure,” as well as any attempt to stop or talk with “a suspect.”
“The Israeli army is killing civilian protesters in cold blood,” Palestinian Issa Amro from Youth Against Settlements told Anti-Media. “Palestinians are trying to defend their homes and their land, we need international support.”
Asked about the surge in “lone-wolf” attacks carried out by Palestinians, Amro was frank: “Palestinian violence is not proportional to the violence carried out by Israeli settlers and the army, Palestinians are held accountable while settlers have impunity.”
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