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Palestine: “The Bloodiest Day Since 1967″

It started as a “normal” day in Gaza. By the end of the day, however, it became clear that December 27 would be known as the bloodiest day of the Palestine-Israel conflict since 1967. Although the target of the Israeli airstrikes was Hamas, as the day went on it became clear that there were also a number of civilian casualties among the 225 or so total.

Bloggers in Palestine and around the world are in shock as the numbers climb. That shock, coupled with anger at the biased media coverage of the events, is palpable in the blog posts from today.

Marcy Newman of body on the line details her day in the West Bank, recalling the moment she heard the news:

11:30 am the itf begin their air strikes in gaza with american-made f16 fighter jets. the radio is not on in the service. no one seems aware of this fact. but within 15 minutes over 200 patients flood hospitals, like al shifa hospital. orthopedic and maternity wards are turned into make-shift emergency rooms. from 10 month old babies to 55 year old women, palestinian civilians are massacred. this is the single bloodiest day since 1967.

She concludes:

this is the bloodiest day since 1967. i have lost track of time. i have been watching al jazeera–english and arabic–for hours. it is now 3:08 am. the itf bombed a mosque a couple of hours ago across the street from al shefa hospital. i think that was at 1:10 am. i cannot keep track. 225 palestinians massacred. more in the rubble.

Haitham Sabbah, a self-described “uprooted Palestinian blogger,” shares a number of photographs taken today within the confines of Gaza. Of them, he commented:

Palestinians in the Occupied West Bank went demonstrating against the Israel terrorist crimes in Gaza and attacked Israeli terrorists with stones. Reports indicated that all fractions between political parties vanished during these demonstrations, which included Hamas and Fatah supporters who attacked Israel's terrorist army side by side.

Moroccan blogger Al Miraat (The Mirror) proffers his usually calm perspective, stating:

Bombing civilian areas is not something civilized countries do. Since Nuremberg this is considered a war crime. This is a war crime; a massacre; a mass murder, committed by American made deadly weapons, mostly paid for by American taxpayer’s money.

The terrible thing is, this will not make Israel safer and will only aggravate the trend in the Palestinian (and indeed the Arab street) toward a more extremist position. These policies have been pursued for decade after decade and have led nowhere. It is Israel that is upholding the status quo.

KABOBfest's Mohammad, who is based in Palestine, summed up the day's events. He was able to speak to friends and family members in Gaza, and reported on their reactions:

It was tough to get a line into Gaza during the day, but I managed to get hold of my uncle Mohammad in Gaza City. He sounded in shock, unable to say much. I asked him where he was; he replied that he was next to the building used to issue passports, and there were about 50 bodies inside. I couldn't say anything. I hung up.

My uncle Jasim in Khan Younis was also outside. He said he was okay, but there were explosions and dead people everywhere.

I didn't even bother talking to my uncle Mahmoud; my mom had called him and heard crying all around him. His wife was mourning the death of her brother.

I think the most poignant emotion was shock, whether in Gaza or in the West Bank. As its primary victims, we had become used to Israel crossing red lines in its continuous policy of opression and occupation. But this was something else. The sheer scale of the massacre was unfathomable.

He summed up:

Israel still believes it can impose its will by force. The only way its goals will be met is through genocide. But there is another angle, and that is the upcoming Israeli election. It is not novel for incumbent Israeli governments to carry out atrocities against Palestinians to garner domestic support, and with the Likud expected to win the next elections, this is definitely a power play by the embattled ruling party, Kadima.

Today, and probably the days to come, will be a clear demonstration os the very worst of Israel, what Will termed a dangerous blend of Zionist fantasy and election posturing. For 60 years, Israel has tried to use its overwhelming military prowess to cow the Palestinians into accepting the fate it dictates for them, and for 60 years no Israeli government has been able to do that.

Remember Gaza.

For more on the attacks on Gaza, visit Global Voices Special coverage page on the bombings.

27 comments

  • Manus

    Yes Andry nobody is going to challenge Hamas because they do not hold the key for peace. Hamas (or for that matter any Arab country) has nothing to offer the Israelis for them to relinquish the land that have taken. Israel on the other hand is an ethnocratic theocracy with Universal Suffrage that will stop at nothing to realise their biblical dreams of land judaisation and the total inhalation of any type Palestinian opposition. This is a war to change the map of the region and create a faite accomplish on the ground. So please stop the nonsense and be at least honest about of what all Jews worldwide are aspiring to a Greater Israel. As Golda Meir said once that Israel is stretching from the Tigris and Euphrates Valleys in the north to the Nile Valley in the south.

  • Manus

    Yes Andry nobody is going to challenge Hamas because they do not hold the key for peace. Hamas (or for that matter any Arab country) has nothing to offer the Israelis for them to relinquish the land that they have taken. Israel on the other hand is an ethnocratic theocracy with Universal Suffrage that will stop at nothing to realise their biblical dreams of land judaisation and the total inhalation of any type Palestinian opposition. This is a war to change the map of the region and create a fait accompli on the ground. So please stop the nonsense and be at least honest about of what all Jews worldwide are aspiring to a Greater Israel. As Golda Meir said once that Israel is stretching from the Tigris and Euphrates Valleys in the north to the Nile Valley in the south.

  • Fred

    Hamas decided to heat up the conflict. Maybe they thought Israel would ignore the increase in the number of rockets, and the attempt to tunnel under the wall. If so, Hamas was wrong.

    Most reports indicate that the vast bulk of the hundreds dead are Hamas security people. So Israel is aiming pretty well. Hamas rockets aren’t aimed at all.

    I think more people will die before this is over. Hamas says they love death; They’ll be getting a bunch whether they love it or not.

    War is a terrible thing, and in all wars, civilians die as well as armed men. It would no doubt help if Hamas military would agree to wear uniforms and not launch from civilian areas: A lot of Arab lives could be saved. Maybe some Israelis too.

    @Manus: If Israel wanted to, they could have killed or evicted all the Arabs between the river and the sea any time in the last 40 years; No need to wait for Hamas to increase its rocketing. The Israeli government is trying to get a peace settlement with the Palestinians; This may be foolish or futile, but that’s what they are trying to do. Killing the Arabs would be easier.

  • Manus

    This is not a war this is genocide. For a start you need two states to have a war. In this instance we have a nuclear state with the most sophisticated weapons in the world and groups of civilians that Israel is illegally occupying. The Palestinian police are still civilians under international law as the state of Palestine does not exist and does not have armed forces. Also, there is a myth that in Gaza there are areas where the Hamas guerrilla could launch attacks without being amidst the rest of the population. The fact are that it is the most densely populated open air prison in the world and there are nowhere where the legitimately elected authority in Gaza can have police station but amidst highly populated areas. The reason for the conflict is not the launching of rockets by Hamas (as the launching of rockets is a consequence of the Israeli strangulation of the Palestinian people), but the expansionist aspirations of the Israeli fanatical religious right run by Rabbis and in a fragile coalition with the Zionist left. Fred, please stop that nonsense about the Palestinian love dying as it makes you people even sicker than you really are. As far as evicting all Arabs from the Arab peninsula and ethnically cleans the area that is your ultimate goal, however you will never succeed to do so.

  • Enver Hodja

    As a Albanian living in the US , I say Gaza is getting what its political figures were asked for. Once before the Israeli disangagement we used to hear “No peace Unless Israel leaves Gaza”,and there was no peace, but silly cat amd mouse attacks by Quassams and rockets. Enough is enough Israel said. If war is what you want, then war will come to you. The target is to destroy Hamas infrastructure, including officials whose whole goal is to wage war. That’s OK, war is war. Israel has join the poker game, make your bet Hamas or get out of game room. This is toy war my friends. Israel means business now.

    To say that it is genocide is ridiculeous. Israel has the capabilities to wipe out Gaza out of the map, that’s what genocide is, however Israeli politicians are not arrogant to say it out loud. I think they should say it because they CAN mean it, not like some islamo-fascists leaders who would rather bost their naive propaganda of destruction of zionist state with their self-serving righteousness that does not measure hell of a lot of beans.

    Once there was a prime lion who eat a large bull, and he kept roaring. His pack told him to be quiet and to take a rest. He kept on roaring because of the large prey he captured and eat. It was indeed a large bull. However there was a hunter who happen to pass by and heard the loud roaring. He went and shot the lion dead. It goes to show, “don’t roar when you full of bull”.

  • Enver Hodja

    Genocide?? If there is genocide in Gaza, Israel should have perpetrated it sometimes ago, by wiping Gaza off the map. Instead IDF are targeting specific sites including homes of Hamas official and Immamo-fascists. Israel is not arrogant and a loud mouth as some leaders who proclaim they can wipe out Israel. War is war and it is not pretty. The pocker game has just started. Israel is just entered with full pledge weapons of mass destruction.

    You call what they are doing now genocide. You have not seen yet the capabilities. I think that Hamas should not have boosted their rhetorics on destroying Israel. If one asks for war, then one needs to smell the pizza of war instead of cat and mouse firing of match stick rocket and Quassams. If you cannot wage war to win, then stop the silly game of war. Don’t poke a viper and assume it will not strike. And don’t use the usual victimization discourse. No one is buying it, (I mean the international community). The Arab leaders don’t buy it and many people in the Arab world dont buy it either.

    I will tell you a story.
    There was once a mightly lion who one day tracked, ambushed, killed and eat a very large bull. After eating the bull, the lion started to roar very loud. His pack asked him to keep quiet and take a nap. But he was not ready to rest as he wanted to send the message of who the lion king really was. He roared and roared very loud.
    It just happened that a safari hunter with rifle was passing by and heard the loud roaring. He went to the lion and shot him dead.

    It goes to show that: “You should roar when you’re full of bull.”

  • Enver Hodja

    Sorry, I forgot the “NOT” in the last quote.
    The quote should read:

    “You should NOT roar when you’re full of bull”

  • Imus

    I cannot believe this piece of news.

    http://www.memri.org/bin/latestnews.cgi?ID=SD216408

    Possible responses from the genocide calling crowd:

    1. PLO is a traitor. The PA government should die.
    2. Conspiracy theory: Zionist mis-information and propaganda.
    3. Mossad infiltration and use of hallucigenic drugs to make PA say what Zionists want the world to hear.
    4. Zionist take over of the internet.
    5. All PA officials have doubles. The statements come from the doubles not the real ones.
    6. The real one have join the fight to liberate Gaza

  • @Manus

    Ok, now that you made your claims that Israel is aspiring to return to all the land the Israeli kingdom had in bible time, I know who I;m speaking with.

    I’m trying to be reasonable with you but turns out you are so full of misconceptions and lies that I’m not sure a few comments on a website is what will change your mind.

    The real information is all around you and still you refuse to see it. I’m not encouraged to have a sterile discussion on such terms. I don’t mind arguing on facts and interpretations (hell, that’s all we bloggers do anyway), but the imaginary Israel you hold in your head is not the real country I come from or can speak for. Sorry.

  • Manus _ By TED HONDERICH

    @to our friends from Israel
    It is said truth is the first casualty of war. It is rather the first casualty of inhumanity. You have to lie, maybe to yourself as well, when your are engaged in inhumanity. You wouldn’t have to lie about a war that really was right.

    By Zionism I mean the founding and actually necessary defence of the state of Israel in roughly its 1948 boundaries. It was justified by the Holocaust in the past and is justified by the existence of a Jewish homeland now. By neo-Zionism I mean the taking from the suffering Palestinians, the only indigenous people of historic Palestine, at least their autonomy in the last fifth of their homeland.

    A decent humanity, the Principle of Humanity, ultimately justifies Zionism. It condemns neo-Zionism absolutely. There aren’t two sides to the story of a real rape.

    The neo-Zionist government of Israel says that in attacking the democracy of Gaza it is doing no more than engaging in self-defence. It is saving lives of its own citizens from rocket attacks.

    That is not its aim. If that were its aim, Israel would achieve it immediately by embracing the solution to the Palestinian problem, in no way complex. It would give up neo-Zionism. It would withdraw, without negotiation, from the remaining homeland of another people.

    The preponderant aim of neo-Zionism in Gaza now is neo-Zionism. It is that vicious selfishness. It is that semitism on a level with anti-semitism and now beginning to be comparable in effects. The state of Israel has no moral right to pursue its preponderant aim in Gaza.

    That is not quite all. In its neo-Zionism, Israel has no moral right to defend itself against the rockets used against it. Whatever the instincts of human nature, it has no more right to defend itself against them than Hitler Germany had a right to defend itself and its death camps.

    What Israel is engaged in is not even war. For a war, in the connotation of the term that is necessary, including necessary for propaganda, you need two sides comparable in power. What is happening in Gaza now is something else.

    It is the Palestinians who have had, and now have, a moral right to their terrorism, their justified self-defence against neo-Zionism, in all of historic Palestine. The argument for that proposition, partly on the basis of the Principle of Humanity, is now easier.

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