During World War II, Germany and its Nazi government decided to exterminate all the Jews in Europe. Six million Jews were slaughtered by being starved, rounded up and placed into concentration camps, worked to death, used in gross medical experimentations, forced into open-air prisons such as the Warsaw Ghetto where nobody could get out, and no food or aid could get in, until enough of them had died that the Germans moved in for the final slaughter.
There were between 80 and 100 million people who died during World War II. Poland had 6 million dead, only half of whom were Jewish. Russia had 24 million of their citizens who died during World War II. The Philippines lost between 1/2 and 1 million people. Yugoslavia had 1 million dead. And China had between 10 and 20 million who died. So it's important to keep in mind that an awful lot of people were killed during World War II, but most of them did not leave the nation of their birth and their heritage to go to somebody else's country and steal their land.
If we're going by the number of people killed, then I suppose the Soviet Union is the big winner with 24 million dead, and they should have gone to the middle east and stolen somebody else's land. But being the victims of a war has never been seen as a justification to go steal somebody else's land. Most people return to their own country and live alongside their former persecutors, even though they may never do more than co-exist. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_War_II_casualties
Some of the Jewish survivors of that genocide in Europe wanted to leave Europe forever. Unfortunately, a group of Jewish people who called themselves zionists encouraged survivors to move to Palestine, a territory controlled by Britain and occupied by Palestinian and Jewish people. The zionists, however, had a secret plan to expel the Palestinians and steal the land for themselves. And that is what happened. In 1948, the zionists attacked their Palestinian neighbors and drove them out of their homes, off of their lands, and out of Palestine. Israel seized and held a section of land, which they named "Israel," and the U.N. and most nations of the world agreed to recognize this as a jewish state. Of course any religious state is a bad idea.
Since that time, Israel has been conducting a persistent siege and attack on all Palestinians who remain within what was formerly Palestine, using military and economic means to force the Palestinians further off of their own land. The official Israel policy is to commit genocide against the Palestinians, to kill as many as possible, if not outright with bullets and bombs, more indirectly by starving people and denying them medical assistance. The second tool of Israel is ethnic cleansing, to drive all Palestinians or non-Jewish people out of all the new land that Israel continues to steal from the Palestinians.
The goal of Israel is to have a Jewish nation in which only Jewish people live. The government of rabid right-wing religious and racist fanatics, who, much like the Nazis in Germany, decide people's merits based on the percentage of "good" Jewish blood in their veins, wants to have an all-Jewish nation purged of the discards, the people who have the "wrong" blood in their veins. In most respects, Israel's law and policies are mirror images of those of Nazi Germany, right down to evaluating the percentage of different kinds of blood in people's veins to determine whether they are worthy, they may stay, they may have the rights of citizens, or determining that they are discards and must be expelled or killed. Like the Klan and the Aryan nation does in our country.
It is almost too obvious to point out, but if the approximately 6 million mostly European Jewish people living in Israel did not want to live around any Arabs, they picked the wrong neighborhood to move into. There's 6 million really angry Palestinians who want their land back, for starters. And there's about 90 million other Arab folks in the immediate vicinity. So either the Jewish people in Israel need to find some way to live in peace with their Arab neighbors, or they need to get out. Go somewhere else.
The map above shows the land Israel has stolen from 1948. Its theft continues, funded by U.S. donations in the billions, and "reparations" from various European sources paid to Israel for people killed during World War II, since Israel somehow claims to be the spokesperson, the representative for all Jews everywhere. I have never heard of reparations being paid to the Soviet Union, or to China, both nations having the largest number of citizens killed during World War II. It's ironic that Israel has stolen so much of the Palestinian's land and refused to pay even a penny for it, has killed so many Palestinian people but never paid for the wrongful deaths, destroyed homes and institutions and buildings and never paid a penny. I guess reparations flows in only one direction.
One of Israel's policies is the "right of return." In order to bolster their claim that God wants them to steal this land and murder the Palestinians, Israel declared that any Jewish person (with the right percentage of "Jewish" blood in their veins) has the absolute right to move to Israel and steal land from any Palestinian.
Of more interest, the millions of Palestinians who have been expelled have the legal right to return to the nation of Palestine, according to international law, which luckily is not so concerned with the percentage of blood in people's backgrounds or veins. If the Palestinians whose land has been stolen and who have been driven out of Palestine were allowed to return, they would be the majority.
How can Israel have a religious state, controlled by Jewish laws, with rights only for Jewish people, if the majority of their citizens are Palestinians and not Jewish. That is precisely why Israel is committed to genocide and ethnic cleansing to force out all the Palestinians. The Jewish settlors from Europe never had a right to steal that land of Palestine in the first place, and the demographics of the region make it unlikely they will be able to hold the land for the long-term, unless they kill every single Palestinian. And maybe that's what they're trying to do.
Below is a map showing the Gaza strip. It is a small segment of land that Israel has not yet completely stolen, although they keep trying. Israel wants to kill or drive out every Palestinian living in the Gaza strip, all 1.5 million of them. The Gaza strip is bordered on 2 sides by Israel, on one side by Egypt, and on the 4th side by the Mediterranean sea.
(The Gaza Strip)
In order to force out the remaining Palestinians from the Gaza strip, Israel has established illegal settlements, stealing land and building homes, then sending armed settlers out to live on Palestinian land. Of course the "settlors" are just thieves with another name, and tend to be the most fanatic, racist, right-wing religious zealots in the world. Think Sarah Palin and Jerry Falwell's love children, ignorant, insane, home-schooled, on meth and heavily-armed.
In addition, when that wasn't forcing the Palestinians out quickly enough, or killing them off quickly enough, Israel declared that the Gaza strip would be subject to complete boycott/barricade. Nobody can go in, nobody can go out, nothing can go in, nothing can go out. Just like the Nazis did with the Warsaw Ghetto.
Israel hopes the Palestinians in the Gaza strip will die off from starvation and a lack of medical attention, plus will be murdered by routine attacks by the Israeli military, including the dumping of white phosphorous in the area which has radically increased the cancer rates and birth defects among the people in the Gaza strip. (Human Rights Watch report on Israel's use of white phosphorous against the palestinian people in the Gaza strip: http://gazasiege.org/docs/mar09/HRW_Gaza_Report_March2009.pdf).
Egypt receives a lot of money from the U.S., so they went along with Israel's demands to barricade off the Gaza strip and leave the people to die. Re the barricade, see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2007%E2%80%932010_blockade_of_the_Gaza_Strip
Israel has its PR machine cranked up, and has called the humanitarian aid workers on the boat, the ones they killed, as being "pro-palestinian activists," whatever that means. Apparently Israel thinks they have the right to kill an aid worker trying to bring some antibiotics to sick people. They killed 10 of the aid workers outright and wounded another 30. It was an act of barbarism and an international war crime.
Of course Israel claims that when they attacked the aid boats (which supposedly happened in international waters, which nobody owns), that the aid workers attacked the Israeli millitary. The Israeli military, that is, that attacked in the pre-dawn hours, a few bucket-of-bolts old boats filled with humanitarian aid, and the Israeli military came in with their naval ships and helicopters. It's ridiculous to claim that the aid workers attacked them.
But here are two additional important points: (1) Israel had no right to attack those boats, and if the aid workers had fought back, they would have been within their rights of self-defense; and (2) since the attacks, in which Israel murdered 10 people and wounded another 30, Israel has held all the aid workers incommunicado -- nobody has been allowed to speak, to communicate with the outside world, or to tell their story. I wonder if Israel is torturing them, or murdering more of them. "Where'd you hide the bandaids? Beat him, make him tell. Where'd you put the aspirin?"
Attacking humanitarian aid workers is like attacking kittens. Ireland, among many other nations, has condemned Israel for this murderous assault.
There are humanitarian groups which have been desperately trying to get aid into the Gaza Strip, including food, water, and medical supplies. When israel last attacked the Gaza strip, they deliberately targeted and blew up the hospital, the school for the children, and the aid relief buildings. The people are therefore left with nothing. And they are dying, just like the Jews in the Warsaw ghetto died.
It is an international war crime to attack humanitarian aid groups trying to bring medical and food supplies to people under siege. Israel is a criminal nation. They should be indicted. The U.S. needs to cut off all relations with Israel, boycott all business or other relations with that nation, people should stop going there on these religious tours which just gives more money for their bullets which are used to kill Palestinian children. There is nothing religious about murder. And we need to cut off all money to Israel. Our politicians take money from israel "support" groups. It's like selling out of the people of the U.S. in exchange for money from a foreign country. It's treason. It needs to end.
U.S. Out of Israel.
Here's a link to an NPR story from 2008. The wall between the Gaza strip and Egypt was knocked down in one section, and Palestinians poured into Egypt to buy such basic staples as food and water which they could not get because of Israel's barricade. http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=18349120&ps=rs
Here's a statement from Amnesty International:
Israeli killings of Gaza ship activists must be investigated
31 May 2010
Amnesty International has called for Israel to launch an immediate, credible and independent investigation into the killing by its armed forces of at least 10 activists on boats protesting the Israeli blockade on the Gaza Strip.
“Israeli forces appear clearly to have used excessive force,” said Malcolm Smart, Amnesty International’s director for the Middle East and North Africa.
"Israel says its forces acted in self-defence, alleging that they were attacked by protestors, but it begs credibility that the level of lethal force used by Israeli troops could have been justified. It appears to have been out of all proportion to any threat posed.”
As a first step, Amnesty International has called on the Israeli authorities to make public immediately the rules of engagement issued to the troops who carried out this lethal attack.
“The activists on the ships made it clear that their primary purpose was to protest against the continuing Israeli blockade, which constitutes a form of collective punishment and so a breach of international law,” said Malcolm Smart.
For nearly three years, Israel, which is the occupying power in the Gaza Strip, has implemented a policy of banning all movement of goods and people, except for the most basic humanitarian necessities, which are imported by international aid agencies. Only a fraction of patients in need of treatment outside Gaza are allowed out, and dozens have died waiting for Israeli permission to travel.
“The blockade does not target armed groups but rather punishes Gaza’s entire population by restricting the entry of food, medical supplies, educational equipment and building materials,” said Malcolm Smart.
“Unsurprisingly, its impact falls most heavily on those most vulnerable among Gaza ’s 1.5 million people: children, the elderly and the sick. The blockade constitutes collective punishment under international law and must be lifted immediately.”
Israel has a duty under international law to ensure the welfare of Gaza ’s inhabitants, including their rights to health, education, food and adequate housing.
More re the siege of Gaza: http://gazasiege.org/index.html
The Campaign for Peace and Democracy is asking people to call the White House and the U.S. Ambassador to the U.N.:
... The U.S. arms Israel to the tune of billions of dollars a year and hence shares responsibility for this atrocity. How many more must die before the Obama Administration cuts off the aid we give to Israel each year?
On board were 750 people of conscience from 40 different countries, including 35 international politicians intent on breaking the Israeli-Egyptian blockade. We offer our sincerest condolences to family and friends who have lost loved ones in the attack. One of the boats was named after Rachel Corrie, to honor this strong young woman killed by the Israel Defense Forces in April 2003.
Contact the White House!
Call or email to demand an immediate cutoff of U.S. aid to Israel.
Email the White House: http://www.whitehouse.gov/contact.
Contact the U.S. Mission to the United Nations and demand that U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice vote to support a UN Security Council resolution condemning Israel's action and initiating an investigation. 212-415-4062