hama-house

The New York Times runs an ad by Elie Wiesel entitled “Jews rejected child sacrifice 3,500 years ago. Now its Hamas’ turn”.

Thoughts on this:

A. Elie Wiesel is sham, fraud and a racist. For someone who built a reputable name condemning injustice around the world, you’d think he’d have at least a shred of empathy for the conditions of Palestinians. But I suppose its much easier to chastise a profoundly oppressed population for their mode of resistance rather than confront what they’re resisting.

B. Hamas has never been caught using children as shields. This lie has managed to infect discourse and even the most seemingly “objective” publications. Its islamophobic propaganda that’s been easily consumable because the west is hostile and wary of Muslims. This is how you have almost 2,000 Palestinians who’ve been ruthlessly killed and “neutralists” respond with “Hamas is using them as human shields”, which then portrays the apparatus of the Israeli settler state as moral and left without choice because of Hamas’ recklessness. We’re allowing the genocide of people to occur with obfuscations such as this.

C. Ironically, the only people who’ve used Palestinian children as shields against gunfire are Israeli soldiers.

D. This article plays into the greater idea that Palestinian oppression is a religious conflict rather than the construction of a brutal settler state that has enacted the most heinous policies to eradicate and torture a people it deems undesirable and existence as a roadblock to their Manifest Destiny. So much of the antisemitic rhetoric which masquerades as a criticism of Israel has hinged on the idea that Israeli aggression is a fault of Judaism or Jewish people, rather than colonialism, which is what Elie Wiesel has managed to proliferate. It also portrays Palestinians as unanimously Muslim, which is why interfaith dialogue between Rabbis and Muslims who are not Palestinian occurs, thus erasing the existence of Palestinian Christians.

E. This is a really egregious trend amongst the liberal Zionist crowd, condemning Hamas for the sake of Palestine. Bullshit. Troll concern to the nth degree. Hamas is a democratically elected parliament. It is immensely degrading and paternalistic to denounce a party chosen by a people on behalf of the people. To be fair, I recognize Hamas’ faults, but I also recognize how wholly irrelevant that is to the broader discussion of the state of Palestine. Hamas is not a current deterrent to Palestinians, Israel is. Hamas doesn’t destroy houses in the West Bank, Israel does. Hamas doesn’t induce the death of Palestinian women in labor by holing them at checkpoints, Israel does. Hamas has never installed over 400 miles of apartheid wall, charred olive trees, killed livestock and dumped sewage waste in drinking water, which wreak havoc on agriculture and irrigation, Israel did. To insinuate that one is to condemn Hamas on behalf of Palestine, but not the Israeli government is flagrantly dishonest.

Everyday Scenes Playfully Transformed Into Speed Sketches

Bir grup kadın öğle arası sohbet eder, bir kız sessizce masasında kitabını okumaktadır, birileri şarkısını söylerken diğeri çantasını karıştırmakla meşguldür… Illustrator Hama House ise hayat normal akışında devam ederken eline sketch defterini alır ve çok hızlı bir şekilde bu gündelik sahneleri çizimleriyle belgeler. İşin en güzel yanı da Hama House'un bu işi ticari amaçlı değil hobi olarak yapmasıdır. Bence hepsi çok başarılı.

İşte onlardan bir kaçı : 

Militant rockets can be seen launching from crowded neighborhoods, near apartment buildings, schools and hotels. Hamas fighters have set traps for Israeli soldiers in civilian homes and stored weapons in mosques and schools. Tunnels have been dug beneath private property.

With international condemnation rising over the death toll in Gaza exceeding 650 in the war’s 16th day, Israel points to its adversaries’ practice of embedding forces throughout the crowded, impoverished coastal enclave of 1.7 million people.

“Hamas uses schools, residential buildings, mosques and hospitals to fire rockets at Israeli civilians,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his Canadian counterpart in a call over the weekend, according to a statement from Mr. Netanyahu’s office. “Hamas uses innocent civilians as a human shield for terrorist activity.”

Nothing is ever so clear in the complex and often brutal calculus of urban warfare. There is no evidence that Hamas and other militants force civilians to stay in areas that are under attack — the legal definition of a human shield under international law. But it is indisputable that Gaza militants operate in civilian areas, draw return fire to civilian structures, and on some level benefit in the diplomatic arena from the rising casualties. They also have at times encouraged residents not to flee their homes when alerted by Israel to a pending strike and, having prepared extensively for war, did not build civilian bomb shelters.

Israel, for its part, says it takes precautions to avoid killing civilians, but has also accepted as inevitable that there will be large numbers of civilian casualties when it strikes at certain targets, like Hamas members in their houses, or offices, or mosques.

“It’s a bit of a fluid concept,” said Bill Van Esveld, a lawyer and senior researcher in the Middle East division of Human Rights Watch. “If you have any choice in the matter, you should not be fighting from an apartment building full of civilians.”

Some of Hamas’s tactics mirror those of other insurgent groups, like the Irish Republican Army and Nicaraguan contras.

“Hamas knows that it works to its advantage, politically and diplomatically, as the civilian death toll mounts, there is increasing pressure to end the war immediately, and what that typically entails, if past is precedent, is making some concessions to Hamas,” said Nathan Thrall, co-author of a recent International Crisis Group report on Gaza. “Hamas deliberately buries the weapons in populated civilian areas hoping that will reduce the chance that those weapons will be taken out from the air — that’s a pretty clear-cut case.”

Experts in international law say that even as Hamas is legally obligated to minimize its operations near civilians — and is committing a war crime by firing rockets indiscriminately — so, too, is Israel obligated to identify specific military targets and keep the risk to civilians proportionate to the threats the targets pose.