Attacking Palestine’s future


A schoolgirl held by soldiers after clashes with protestors near Hebron

Gregg Shupak writes in the Electronic Intifada:

Traveling across Palestine, as I did to give lectures earlier this year, means following a perpetually fresh trail of repression.  Omnipresent are the prison guard towers, the barbed wire, the Israeli soldiers with their massive guns and the separation wall.

The day before an event at which I was speaking in Beit Sahour, a small town adjacent to Bethlehem, residents held a funeral for Sajid Mizher, a 17-year-old volunteer medic Israeli soldiers had just shot dead in Dheisheh refugee camp despite his wearing an identifying vest.

The night before my talk at Birzeit University near Ramallah, a group of undercover Israeli forces broke into its campus and kidnapped three Palestinian students.  Persecuting students in this manner is part of a larger pattern as is Israel’s routine killing and maiming of Palestinian children, 44 of whom it shot on 25 October in Gaza.

The implications of these abductions and shooting sprees go beyond the direct physical and psychological harm to victims themselves and the agony and fear Israel inflicts on Palestinian families and communities.  As UNICEF points out, violence against Palestinians poses “daily challenges and threats to the fulfillment of children’s rights. Violence against children in all its forms is of serious concern, as it compromises children’s learning and future potential.”

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