Can you please stop the collective punishment of 1.5 million Palestinians in Gaza?
BBC news reported the resignation today of the Mayor of Sderot, Eli Moyal. Eli Moyal is fed up with the situation and says the Israeli government is not doing enough to stop the missiles coming from Gaza nor is it re-enforcing houses in Sderot to protect local residents from rocket attacks on their homes.
The Israeli government controls all aspects of life in the Gaza strip. Israel has recently reduced electricity and fuel supplies to Gaza and threatens to reduce them further. Food and basic supplies are monitored and prevented from entering and people in need of treatment are prevented from getting to hospital. The people of Gaza live in a large prison.
When Israel does send its army into the Gaza strip to search for Hama’s militants it often results in civilian deaths. Israel collectively punishes the citizens of Gaza for the rocket attacks on towns such as Sderot, but also kills innocent men, women and children, who already live in a prison, in search of those responsible for firing the rockets.
The rocket attacks are a response to Israel’s brutal treatment of Gaza residents. If the citizens of Israel were to be treated as the Palestinians are currently being treated in Gaza they would also be fighting back as best they could.
However, the general public in Israel seem happy to allow the collective punishment of Gaza, unwilling to challenge the right-wing members of their government who care not for how many Palestinians die as long as they can get their Jewish state.
Local residents in Sderot are not happy. Unlike their fellow Israeli’s living in Tel Aviv they must endure the results of Israel’s constant oppression of the Palestinian’s.
And rightly the Ex-Mayor of Sderot blames the Israeli government. Eli Moyal has every right to be upset that rockets are falling down on his township. But what Eli Moyal has requested, that the government make an incursion to get those who shoot the rockets and to re-enforce houses to make them more resistant to rocket attacks, is not going to stop the rockets being fired upon Sderot.
The collective punishment of Gaza will stop the rockets falling on Sderot.
The killing of innocent civilians will stop the rockets. Talking to Hama’s, who represent over half of the Palestinian people, will stop the rockets. And no, requesting Gaza militants to stop firing the rockets before allowing Gazan residents to live like human beings will not work because Hama’s know that if they stop first, Israel will just keep destroying the lives of 1.5 million Palestinians in Gaza less any consequences. Israel’s treatment of Gaza is wrong, many members of the international community who don’t have vested interests in the suffering of the Palestinians have said it is wrong. It must stop.
Eli Moyal should be asking the Israeli government, pleading in fact, to stop the collective punishment of Gaza. Why do the residents of Sderot not see the root of the problem and accept that the government they voted in collectively punishes 1.5 million people and that this may have consequences, which are in the form of home made rockets.
The next Mayor of Sderot can do something for his township and the people of Gaza. He can ask the Israeli government to stop practicing numerous human rights abuses in the Gaza strip. He can ask the Israeli government to allow Gazans to live as human beings free of fear, which is created by military incursions, threats to cut electricity, limited staple goods, not knowing when food is next available, army incursions and rockets from fighter planes, just as rocket attacks on Sderot bring fear to its local residents.
The next Mayor of Sderot needs to ask Israel to respect the rights of 1.5 million people in Gaza so 22,000 residents in Sderot can be free of rocket attacks, which mind you, is something the people of Gaza also put up, along with so much else.