Population: 1.5 million, rising very fast. Unemployment: about 33%. Size: 4-7.5 miles across, 25 miles long.
Susan Abulhawa, author of Mornings in Jenin, Bloomsbury, 2010, in The Huffington Post in December 2010, attacking Bernard-Henri Lévy. Links in original. The original gisha.org one has expired. Via Qunfuz.
“Israel has been wiping Palestine off the map, expelling us and stealing everything we have. All that remains to us is less than 11 percent of our historic homeland, now in the form of isolated Bantustans, surrounded by menacing walls, snipers, checkpoints, settler-only roads and the ever-expanding Jewish-only settlements built on confiscated Palestinian property [though no longer in Gaza]. We have no control over our own natural resources. The amount of water one receives is based on one’s religion, such that Palestinians must share bathing water, while their Jewish neighbors water their lawns and enjoy private swimming pools. According to Defence for Children International, in Jerusalem alone, Israel has imprisoned 1,200 Palestinian children this year [that is not what they say if you follow the link], who are routinely abused and forced to sign confessions in Hebrew, which they do not understand. Israel routinely targets Palestinian schools and has created a full generation of lost souls in Gaza, who are growing up knowing only fear, insecurity and hunger. Documents pertaining to Israel’s brutal siege of Gaza and its merciless attacks on that civilian population show the cold mathematical formulas designed intentionally to produce food shortages and hunger in Gaza. Christian Palestinians have all but been wholly removed from the place of Jesus’ birth. And on goes the inhumanity – the constant expulsions, home demolitions, systematic theft, destruction of livelihoods, uprooting of trees – especially olive trees which are so precious to Palestinian culture – curfews, closures, institutional discrimination, and on and on.”
Also: “The people who today are being marginalized, humiliated, dispossessed, and oppressed for the sole reason of their religion are Palestinian Christians and Muslims. That is the real antisemitism of today.” Sole reason, when there is a physical occupation and racism?
I asked Qunfuz at the time about her use of the 1,200 children statistic. He replied:
“[Defence for Children International] says 1200 criminal cases have been opened against children and suggests (although it isn’t clear) that these children were arrested. An arrest in occupied Palestine means imprisonment, if only for a short time. the statistic doesn’t surprise me. when i was in Palestine I found that the majority of males over 14 or 15 had a prison experience.”
Guardian on water resources in the occupied territories