Friday, 23 April 2010

Stormtroopers Daily Carnage in Occupied Palestine

Bulldozers return to destroy children’s playground in Beit Jala

Israeli bulldozers today destroyed a garden and children’s playground in Beit Jala, and 100 fruit and olive trees in Al Walaja, both in the Bethlehem district, to make way for the continued construction of their illegal apartheid wall. Soldiers present used violent force to remove Palestinian, Israeli and international activists who attempted to prevent the destruction. Two Israelis were arrested immediately, and six internationals were later arrested.

In Beit Jala, this is the second time that this particular garden and playground has been bulldozed. A legal injunction preventing further destruction expired this week. Following the previous demolition, in early March, local Palestinian residents and international supporters rebuilt the playground and planted new olive trees in the garden. All these were today destroyed.

Twelve people, representing six different nationalities, sat in front of the Caterpillar bulldozer as it moved up to the garden. Soldiers forcefully removed all twelve, several of whom sustained minor injuries, and one of whom was hospitalised with suspected broken ribs after his stomach was repeatedly stamped upon by one of the soldiers.

After soldiers forced everyone but the owners of the garden up to the road above, they joined approximately 50 other internationals and local residents to hold a demonstration which lasted into the evening. Overlooking the wreckage of the morning’s destruction, the protesters chanted and sang, asking only to be allowed back down to the house, where bulldozing had finished, to speak with the family there. Late in the afternoon, six activists, from the USA, Italy, Spain, Germany and France, managed to access the house via a back route, bringing food in to the family, before being arrested by Israeli Border Police, accused of illegally entering a Closed Military Zone.

In Al Walaja, Israeli military prevented any internationals or journalists from accessing the area to observe the uprooting of approximately 40 olive trees.

The International Court of Justice has ruled that the building of Israel’s apartheid wall is in violation of international law. When complete, the wall will run for over 700km, the vast majority of it passing through and effectively annexing Palestinian land in the West Bank. More

On April 22, 4 Israeli tanks and 4 large Israeli military bulldozers invaded Al Faraheen, destroying Palestinian farmland in the what the Israeli authorities have unilaterally declared as the "buffer zone", a 300 metre stretch of land along Gaza's border to Israel in which Palestinians have been forbidden to enter, doing so at risk of being shot by Israeli soldiers. Tens of Palestinian civilians have been killed and injured by Israeli soldiers' shooting and shelling attacks in and outside of the "buffer zone'', even as far away as 2 km from the border.

The April 22nd invasion saw Israeli bulldozers churn up plots of wheat and lentils, tanks and bulldozers coming within approximately 50 metres of Jaber Abu Rjila's home.

Abu Rjila's home and chicken farm was heavily attacked in a May 2008 Israeli invasion: the chicken barn was destoyred, killing nearly all of the 3000 birds, and the surrounding farm land was razed, killing various fruit and olive trees, crops, and destoying farm equipment, tractors, water pumps and a cistern.

The Abu Rjila house, like many along the border region, is constantly subject to indiscriminate Israeli soldier fire from Israeli military jeeps and towers along the border. As a result, the family has moved out of their home and now pays to rent a home in a safer area. Their livelihood and ability to be self-sufficient has been destroyed by these Israeli aggressions.

Israel Winning its War on Goat

Nine-year-old Ismail spends every afternoon herding his family's flock of sheep and goats, a scraggly group of roughly 20 animals. They live in a shanty house district near Tel el Howa in Gaza City, where growth is sparse to non-existent.

"I walk all over to find food for the animals," he says, swishing his stick to move them along.

His and other flocks can be found throughout the Strip, walking city streets and scavenging vacant lots where rubbish has accumulated, scrounging for any edibles.

On a back lane near Gaza's Rimal district, Abu Mohammed and two of his sons herd 15 goats and sheep.

"We live on the north end of Jalah Street. We walk everywhere to find food for our sheep," Abu Mohammed says. He watches as his flock strays into a small, broken-walled vacant lot and head for the overflowing garbage bin. There are some tree clippings here, so the animals feast. MORE

No comments: