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Banksy Visits Gaza, Calls on World to Act

A scene from Banksy's mini-documentary from his visit to Gaza

A scene from Banksy's mini-documentary from his visit to Gaza

Famous British street artist Banksy went undercover in Gaza and released a series of thought-provoking graffiti as well as a mini documentary.

Banksy also released a short two-minute documentary entitled “Make this the year YOU discover a new destination” on his website and YouTube page. In it, we see Banksy entering Gaza through one of the countless tunnels dug by Gazans across their borders with Egypt and Israel.

The documentary looks like a sarcastic version of a tourism ad as Banksy welcomes us to this city that's “well away from the tourist track”. He describes the people of Gaza as liking it so much they never leave, before adding between parentheses “because they're not allowed to”.

Screenshot from Banksy's ""

Screenshot from Banksy's “Make this the year YOU discover a new destination”

Banksy then went on to describe Gaza's neighbors as friendly, and then adding that over 18,000 homes were destroyed in Gaza during Israel's so-called ‘Operation Protective Edge’, as we previously covered on Global Voices. ‘Development opportunities are everywhere’, he tells us before adding “no cement has been allowed into Gaza since the bombing.”

Soon after, we see the first graffiti, entitled “Bomb Damage” and possibly inspired by Rodin's “The Thinker“. It was posted to his Instagram account and got over 12,000 likes at the time of writing. Rather than representing philosophy as The Thinker does, this figure seems to be sheltering herself from the devastation around her.

"Bomb Damage" by Banksy. Photo from www.banksy.co.uk

“Bomb Damage” by Banksy. Photo from www.banksy.co.uk

The second one, originally posted on streetartnews, transforms a symbol of Israel's occupation, a towering guard station, into an object of amusement for children. Guard stations are placed along the ‘Apartheid Wall’, one of the terms used for Israel's West Bank barrier, which will be approximately 700km (434 miles) upon completion.

Photo from www.banksy.co.uk

Photo from www.banksy.co.uk

The third one targets the Internet's love of cats. In it, we see a kitten playing with a ball of coiled metal rather than the usual cotton ball. Banksy was quoted in RT as saying: “A local man came up and said ‘Please – what does this mean?’ I explained I wanted to highlight the destruction in Gaza by posting photos on my website – but on the internet people only look at pictures of kittens.”

Cat

Cat playing with a ball of coiled metal. Photo from www.banksy.co.uk

We see Gazan children playing next to the kitten, and a father interviewed by Banksy tells us:

This cat tells the whole world that she is missing joy in her life. The cat found something to play with. What about our children? What about our children?

Finally, Banksy's message can be summarized by the quote he wrote on a wall in Gaza, which reads:

If we wash our hands of the conflict between the powerful and the powerless, we side with the powerful – we don't remain neutral.

Palestinian kid climbs the wall featuring Banksy's message

Palestinian kid climbs the wall featuring Banksy's message. Image from Banksy.co.uk

This is not the first time that Banksy visits Palestine. The graffiti that he made on the Palestinian side of the West Bank barrier remains some of his most well-known ones. Here are a few of them.

Banksy in the West Bank. Photo from www.banksy.co.uk

Banksy in the West Bank. Photo from www.banksy.co.uk

Banksy in the West Bank. Photo from www.banksy.co.uk

Banksy in the West Bank. Photo from www.banksy.co.uk

Banksy in the West Bank. Photo from www.banksy.co.uk

Banksy in the West Bank. Photo from www.banksy.co.uk

Banksy in the West Bank. Photo from www.banksy.co.uk

Banksy in the West Bank. Photo from www.banksy.co.uk

Banksy in the West Bank. Photo from www.banksy.co.uk

Banksy in the West Bank. Photo from www.banksy.co.uk

  • Shein Ariely

    People form Gaza have a choice.
    NO to the Hamas government:
    No Jihadist government
    No Islam over all ideology
    No charter to murder all the Jews
    No terror hub against civilians
    No hate children indoctrination
    No shoot behind civilians
    No shield behind civilians
    No usage of Mosques, schools, hospitals as hiding terrorist

    People for Gaza -say yes to:
    Build a better life
    Build a 21 century society
    Build an education system teaching peace, coexistence/
    Love life and not death
    A government for the people and not people for extremists.
    ——————-

    UN-USA and EU:
    By avoiding learning and changing you are not part of the cure, you are part of the problem!
    The only way to help to promote a real peace is to change the funding system and establish an effecting managing system of the use of the funds only for peaceful projects.
    UN and EU should not be part of the managing system.

    THE PALESTINIANS RECEIVED THE LAST 19 YEARS ALREADY MORE THAN FOUR TIMES AS MUCH AS THE EUROPEANS GOT FROM THE MARSHAL PLAN AFTER WW2.

    Europe used the funds to build in a short time a prosperous democratic society with high moral values.
    —-
    Prevent the next round of violence- Israel and Palestinian people suffering and distraction of all the investments.
    The new funds should:
    2: Support projects that will create a healthy economy and higher income to the people
    3: Help housing projects for all the people leaving in Gaza, West bank and other Palestinian sites in the ME.
    4: Provide know-how to create an education system teaching coexistence, peace and cheer life and not death.
    5: Disarm Islamist Hamas terror organization and other Jihad organization in Gaza and their seeds in the west bank and other Palestinian sites in the ME.

    8: Reshape UNRA mandate and provide funds only by settling down each year 10% of the Arabs refugees.
    UNRA preserves the Palestinian refugees as tools of endless conflict
    Only in 2012 the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees managed to resettle ca. 1,000,000 of worldwide refugees. Since 1949 up today UNRA has resettles
    — ZERO Palestinian refugees—.
    Over 30.000 personal are working for UNRA.
    Many are Islamist Hamas activists

    9: In case of any type of terror attack the help should be automatically stop and renewed only after the terror group will be brought to justice.
    10: No funds and works will proceed as long as the Palestinians are preaching violence

    • sd34

      Last time I checked, Israelis killed children.

      • Shein Ariely

        What you ignore – doen’t change the reality

        When you people will start asking questions about the Palestinian doctrine using their own civilians to shield their terror attacks, terrorists hide and fire from hospitals, schools, ambulances while fire on Israeli civilians?
        The term Hypocrites is well deserved>

        —Israeli culture prizes life and children are the life future.
        Unlike the Arabs prizing the culture of death and are using children to commit suicide attacks and acts of violence.
        Clinton testimony: Palestinian indoctrination of Kids- Bombs more precious than children
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YIBNRVgq59Ydeology


        Palestinians kidnapped and murdered 3 school boys (6 month ago).
        What is Israel response?
        The granddaughter of Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh was transferred to an Israeli hospital for treatment, sources in the Gaza Strip confirmed.
        http://www.jpost.com/Middle-East/Israeli-hospital-treats-Hamas-PM-Haniyehs-granddaughter-332193

        What was the Palestinians response?
        The Palestinians uploaded pictures images and words of solidarity of small children to the kidnappers and killers of the Israeli boys.
        Some of the boy’s life has been rescued by operation in Israel hospitals!
        !!! Israel saved their life and they are supporting kidnapping and killing of Israeli children !!!!
        —–
        Israeli hospitals accept Palestinian women to deliver baby’s Save a Child’s Heart, an Israeli organization, saved the lives of 3,000 children, of who half were hailing from the Palestinian Authority.
        The official PA daily Al Hayat Al Jadida has recognized these facts

        Palestinians bombed the hospitals the same time when Palestinian women delivered baby’s and where Palestinian childrenlives are saved
        —————–

        And know a old new story_
        The story of the Frog and the Scorpion

        On an old story, a Scorpion asked a Frog to carry him across a river.
        The frog start caring the scorpion across the river when the scorpion stringed the frog, dooming them both.
        When asked why, the scorpion points out that this is its nature.
        ——-

        The modern times version of the story:
        Actors:
        Frog =Israel or Egypt
        Scorpion=Palestinian Hamas and Patah

        Conclusion:
        The natural behavior of ideologies using the terror tool is inevitable, no
        matter how they are treated and no matter what the consequences

        • sd34

          No matter how hard you try to prove that Israelis are the “angels”, the truth is that they have become worse than their torturers. 2500 Palestinian victims in one summer – with only 60 of them being militants.
          Enjoy your non – guilty attitude, i understand that you need excuses.

          • dale

            Why should we feel guilty?

            They started a war…we won it. Like you’re supposed to do when some aggressive maniac starts threatening you.

            In WWII the Americans killed more Germans than Germans killed Americans. USA bad guise amirite? Americans killed more Japanese than vice-versa, so they were the guys there too, eh?

            If you completely ignore who the aggressors are and focus on body count, yes, I suppose you could rationalize how the suicide bombing, jihadi praising, martyrdom seeking death cult that shoots up citizens the middle of Paris for saying something they didn’t like are the victims here.

          • sd34

            It’s another thing to engage into a war and kill militants, and another to kill women and children. That is a war crime.

        • MissCostello

          Get help.

          • dale

            Why, do you love terrorists too?

            Do you celebrate in the streets and hand out candy when your child commits a successful suicide bombing mission.

            Gotta get that “martyrdom” money from the iranians, huh?

            Take off the suicide vest and check into the nearest mental health facility you waste of oxygen and sperm.

          • sd34
      • Dale

        Hamas kills children too, and on purpose, not as collateral damage during an armed conflict.

        Hamas kills children…on purpose…and then holds celebrations in the street. Comparing the two is willfully ignorant and dishonest.

        Maybe Palestinains should actually care about their children and not let maniacs fire rockets from their homes.

        You fire a rocket, you deserve to die. Stop victimizing these people who continuously start wars they cannot win in the name of a cause they will never achieve.

        • sd34

          Killing children whether on purpose or as a collateral damage is the most repulsive thing. You DO NOT have the right to kill innocents, even if you were dragged into a war. Stop making excuses as “collateral damage”. Just because Hamas is extremist, doesn’t make you less of a murderer.

    • MissCostello

      Halfwit

      • dale

        Terrorist-sympathizing imbicile.

        • MissCostello

          Before you call someone an ‘imbicile’, you might learn how to spell it.
          I.M.B.E.C.I.L.E.

    • KP

      Fuck it, I’ll bite.

      To address your list of “pro-tips”, there is about 1.7 million people in Gaza(another 2.7 in West bank), last summer they were invaded. Clearly there was not even 100 000 of these out fighting it. So clearly a majority of the people chose not to fight or use violence. I guess the same could be said of the Israelis, except they keep voting for Netanyahu which even the former Mossad cleif now thinks is destructive(atleast towards Iran but cmon, he’s a facist).

      I don’t know what level of anti-violence is expected before Israel actually allows Gaza to recover, it keep’s blowing shit up. I mean it’s unreal and super naive to expect any oppressed people to just lay down arms completely when it keeps getting the hammer. Though the same is to be said about nationalism. It brought about WW1 and 2 before and it has brought about countless of genocides. What you are basically saying Palestinians should do is just disperese and accept their homeland being taken.

      “Help housing projects for all the people leaving in Gaza, West bank and other Palestinian sites in the ME.”

      Though I guess your spelling could just be shit, and by how well thought out the rest of your points are I’m assuming you’re 15 so maybe you get a pass on that.

      “Provide know-how to create an education system teaching coexistence, peace and cheer life and not death.”

      More or less just “Accept your fate.”

      “Only in 2012 the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for
      Refugees managed to resettle ca. 1,000,000 of worldwide refugees. Since
      1949 up today UNRA has resettles
      — ZERO Palestinian refugees—.”

      Oh yeah mean some of the actually want to remain in their homeland? Even though it’s being invaded? Who coulda thought…
      Well here’s a long list from wikipedia of places with significant Palestinian population:
      Jordan
      3,240,000

      Israel
      1,658,000

      Syria
      630,000

      Chile
      500,000

      Lebanon
      402,582

      Saudi Arabia
      280,245

      Egypt
      270,245

      United States
      255,000

      Honduras
      250,000

      United Arab Emirates
      170,000

      Mexico
      120,000

      Qatar
      100,000

      Germany
      80,000

      Kuwait
      80,000

      El Salvador
      70,000

      Brazil
      59,000

      Iraq
      57,000

      Yemen
      55,000

      Canada
      50,975

      Australia
      45,000

      Libya
      44,000

      United Kingdom
      20,000

      Peru
      15,000

      Colombia
      12,000

      Pakistan
      10,500

      Netherlands
      9,000

      Sweden
      7,000

      Algeria
      4,030

      “In case of any type of terror attack the help should be automatically
      stop and renewed only after the terror group will be brought to justice.”

      “No funds and works will proceed as long as the Palestinians are preaching violence”

      Again, the majority are simply crying for help, no surprise its young men who responds the quickest, and they don’t have many other set of tools when constantly getting bombed. The non-violence path may have worked for India, but they vastly outnumbered their occupiers. Hamas is vastly outnumbered and outgunned, they would lose power immidietly if Israels encroachment where to stop(the fucking settlements for fuck sake I mean are you fucking serious?) and the standard of living was improved. Israel says No though, cause of nationalism and facism(or is it religious extremism?).

      • Shein Ariely

        Facts and not Arabs Takiyya type lying to infidel’s propaganda: Arabs in their own words and actions:

        1:Arabs had the opportunity to form d a Palestinian country but they preferred not!
        Between 1948 o 1967:
        -Egypt ruled Gaza and Jordan the West bank.
        They didn’t create the Palestinian state.
        -The Arabs in Palestine didn’t demand the Palestine creation?
        *Why?
        Because Arabs know that Palestine is a fake

        2:Arabs in their own voices saying that never was a Palestine country or Palestinian people:

        ***”” Palestinians are not from Israel””
        “”The Arabs living in Gaza today origins are from Yemen- Egypt- Libya-Iraq.””
        Said by Hamas interior Minister
        Refer to : youtube watch?v=4UhVcAfMmuc

        3:: “”There Was Never A “Palestinian People””
        “”While the reality of the Jewish people is a known fact, the idea of the Palestinian people is something that was created recently for political reasons.””
        Said by Sheikh Abdul Hadi Palazzi, Head of the Muslim community in Italy:
        Refer to youtube watch?v=KHnmj74IEt8

        4: “”There Is No Palestinian Nation””
        Said by Professor Azmi Bishara
        Watch: youtube watch?v=l-OIb0tY1I8

        • KP

          1:Arabs had the opportunity to form d a Palestinian country but they preferred not!
          Between 1948 o 1967:
          -Egypt ruled Gaza and Jordan the West bank.
          They didn’t create the Palestinian state.
          -The Arabs in Palestine didn’t demand the Palestine creation?
          *Why?
          Because Arabs know that Palestine is a fake’

          The people living in the area had previously been under to control of the Ottomans, and after that British and French mandate, they never had the control of the territory nor a community in which they indentified. However, through the terrorism conducted by Israel the Palestinian people have found an identity with each other in the oppression of Israel. And the continuos bombing of Gaza and the settlement of the West bank fuels both the Palestinian identity and support for Hamas, if you want the violence to end all you have to do is remove the reaons why people join Hamas.

          “***”” Palestinians are not from Israel””
          “”The Arabs living in Gaza today origins are from Yemen- Egypt- Libya-Iraq.””
          Said by Hamas interior Minister
          Refer to : youtube watch?v=4UhVcAfMmuc”

          Lol. Yeah he is saying they are all Arab, they share a common history and common names. He isn’t saying they moved there en masse at some point to conquer a piece of land, like the Jews did after WW2. And I’m not even saying Israel does not have to the right to exist, I think it does, it is the reality that we live in now, but it’s nationalism and religious extremism is both terrible and hyrocritical as it accuses Palestinians and other Arabs of doing the same. Pretty fucking disgusting imo.

          Seriously though, citing what one or two arabs/palestinians are saying and claiming it to be THE TRUTH because it confirms your own biases is pretty childish.

          Yeah there never has been a STATE called Palestine, nor has there been a state called Kurdistan, it does not stop people from IDENTIFYING as it.

          Answer me this please; Is the existance of the State of Israel justified by religious reasons, or the holocaust?

          The violence will not end until Israel ends it, but it wont because of nationalism and facism. Enjoy your ignorance though, it must be nice living in a world where you’re chosen by God and all that you do is according to his plan so nothing you do can ever be evil. Fucking religious people.

        • KP

          Basically what I want you to realise is how filthy your soul must be to justify what Israel is doing to children. It’s disgusting and so are you.

  • Guest

    And what are we supposed to do about it.

  • commandergreen

    Look its jews vs muslims not my problem. But the muslims have a birthrate higher then the Jews, so all they have to do is wait and vote the jews out of power. So if your a muslim shit out a few more kids and wait for the inevitable. Jews better make a deal while you still can.

  • Justice

    You stole their land and kicked them out. That was before Hamas!! You left them with nothing. What are you talking about? I can’t believe your ignorance, and you’re arrogant too!

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