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October 23, 2016 / 21 Tishri, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘Gaza’

Israel Begins Building Underground Barrier Along Gaza Border

Thursday, September 8th, 2016

The IDF has begun building a 70 kilometer long subterranean barrier along the Gaza border.

The concrete barrier, which is expected to take years to build and cost NIS 2 billion, will go to depth of a few meters underground and include advanced tunneling detection systems in case Hamas tries to dig below the wall.

The hope is that the barrier will block Hamas’s terror tunnels from crossing the border from Gaza, though Hamas has previously built tunnels that go dozens of meters underground into Israel.

Jewish Press News Briefs

Ramallah Court Postpones Elections After Gaza Court Drops PLO Candidates from Ballots

Thursday, September 8th, 2016

The Khan Younis Court dismissed several PLO candidates from the lists competing in the municipal elections in the southern Gaza Strip, Ma’an reported Thursday morning. The court’s decision came after several appeals had been filed against PLO lists in and around the cities of Khan Younis Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip.

Journalist Dov Lieber tweeted in the early AM: “Palestinian court postpones local elections set for October,” which he attributed to AFP. Apparently, the court in Ramallah has followed the disqualification of PLO candidates in Gaza by postponing the elections altogether.

The Gaza court decision wipes the PLO out of the competition in nine municipalities out of 25 in Gaza.

Dr. Fayez Abu Eita, a spokesman for the PLO, said the decision to drop his movement’s candidates from local lists was tantamount to a “massacre by the Hamas court.” He said the PLO was running “lists of the finest people, qualified specialists and professionals,” and so when Hamas realized they had no one of equal quality to run against them, they ordered their court to “drop them under false and fabricated pretexts” which were both “illogical and illegal.”

Abu Eita added: “They wanted to compete with themselves after the overthrow of these lists.”

Abu Eita called on the Central Election Commission to assume their responsibilities over what he described as the failure of the election process, stressing that all the appeals were illegitimate, intended solely to thwart any challenges to the Hamas candidates.

David Israel

Women’s Flotilla About Everything But Helping Gaza

Thursday, September 8th, 2016

{Originally posted to the IPT website}

Arguably, more humanitarian aid flows into Gaza than ever before. And strong evidence indicates that Hamas chooses to divert significant amounts of construction material that should be used to rebuild housing in order to gear up for future terrorist attacks against Israel.

And so a flotilla aimed at drawing attention to Palestinian suffering hopes to set sail shortly and make it to Gaza by Oct. 1.

Its message: Israel is to blame for everything. It should willingly embrace suicide for its people by ending a naval blockade on Gaza that stops Hamas from importing even more weapons of war. The Women’s Boat to Gaza‘s message for Hamas?


The boats will carry women only, in an attempt to put forth a more peaceful message, organizers say. Think of it as a sort of Lilith Fair on the sea for Israel-hating women.

“The Freedom Flotilla Coalition has decided to launch the Women’s Boat to Gaza because we believe that it is essential to highlight the vital role women play not only in the resistance movement, but in the survival of the Palestinian people as a whole.”

The ships will carry no aid, organizers say. Ending the blockade is the sole mission. Organizers insist it is illegal but offer no support for the claim. They ignore a United Nations investigation conducted after a 2010 flotilla ended violently. Passengers on the Mavi Marmara attacked Israelis troops who raided the ship to stop it from reaching Gaza.

“Israel faces a real threat to its security from militant groups in Gaza,” the investigation found. “The naval blockade was imposed as a legitimate security measure in order to prevent weapons from entering Gaza by sea and its implementation complied with the requirements of international law.”

But the blockade does not stop legitimate aid from reaching Gaza residents. It adds a measure of control. Aid to Gaza is peaking, especially since the recent rapprochement between Israel and Turkey opened the door to direct Turkish deliveries – 25 trucks daily – including food, toys, medicine and more.

That blockade isn’t going away anytime soon, so the flotilla’s actual benefit to the people of Gaza is minimal at best.

There are things the passengers can do to help, however, if their agenda truly is about improving life for Palestinians and not some feckless attempt to discredit Israel.

Start by condemning Hamas political leaders for making jihad a priority over improving living conditions. As much as 95 percent of cement meant for rebuilding Gaza gets diverted to tunnel building. The Los Angeles Times also described a concern among some Gaza residents that the money that does go toward home construction benefits Hamas insiders and mosques first.

This is no Israeli spin. Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad frequently acknowledge deaths and injuries to its fighters due to tunnel collapses during construction.

What benefit do any of these death holes bring to Palestinians today?

The boat women also can demand that Hamas stop indoctrinating Palestinian children with messages glorifying violent jihad and martyrdom. It has been going on for years. Simply put: It is indefensible.

Finally, a flotilla of women hoping to improve life for Palestinians in Gaza should say something about the treatment of women under Hamas rule. Something is amiss in a society when women riding bicycles creates a stir. Women in Gaza also cannot dance or smoke in public or have their hair done by men.

If Hamas were pressured into adopting a more peaceful agenda, Israel’s justification for the blockade would crumble. Perhaps the boat women know this is a losing battle.

As Arab-Israeli journalist Khaled Abu Toameh showed last month, the Hamas charter has never been altered despite years of spin alleging the terrorist group somehow is now willing to live side-by-side with Israel.

Hamas sees the land encompassing Israel and the Palestinian territories as a religious trust “until the Day of Resurrection, no one can renounce it or part of it, or abandon it or part of it. There is no solution to the Palestinian problem except Jihad. The liberation of that land is an individual duty binding on all Muslims everywhere. In order to face the usurpation of Palestine by the Jews, we have no escape from raising the banner of Jihad.”

Abu Toameh also pointed to a statement last month from longtime Hamas political leader Mousa Abu Marzook that promised, “The Zionist entity will not be part of this region. We will continue to resist it until the liberation of our land and the return of our people.”

“Abu Marzouk did not talk about building new schools and parks for the Palestinians,” Abu Toameh wrote. “When he talks about ‘serving’ the people, he means only one thing: recruiting Palestinians to Hamas and jihad against Israel and the Jews.

It is worth noting that previous flotilla efforts and land-based convoys worked closely with Hamas officials, with leaders from the terrorist group greeting the international travelers. And the women’s flotilla could be no different. The Al-Awda Palestine Right to Return Coalition is among the groups endorsing the flotilla.

Al-Awda advocates “the rights of all Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and lands of origin, and to full restitution of all their confiscated and destroyed property,” according to the organization’s website. The group’s logo is a picture of the map of Israel and a key.

In the June Facebook posting at right, Al-Awda co-founder Zahi Damuni refers to Hamas terrorists in Israeli custody as “our prisoners.”

The Women’s Boat to Gaza effort coincides with other Gaza-focused campaigns. IHH, a Turkish charity with ties to Hamas and a suspected al-Qaida funder, announced plans to deliver meals to 600 Gaza families in a program called “Martyrs of the Freedom Flotilla.” IHH organized the 2010 flotilla in which 10 passengers on the Mavi Marmara died after attacking the Israeli troops enforcing the Gaza blockade.

At least it’s real assistance. There’s a lot that Palestinian advocates can do to improve living conditions in Gaza. To do so, however, they must be willing to face some uncomfortable realities about why the quality of life has grown worse since Israel withdrew more than a decade ago. They can continue hating Israel and still acknowledge Hamas’s failings.

It’s their choice.

Steve Emerson

Watch B’Tselem Spokeswoman Refusing to Call Hamas a Terrorist Organization [video]

Tuesday, September 6th, 2016

Alan Mendoza, Executive Director of the Henry Jackson Society, interviewed B’Tselem Spokesperson Sarit Michaeli on Monday on J-TV, a new YouTube channel “providing weekly content on Current Affairs, Jewish Wisdom, Movers & Shakers and Jewish Food.” As the conversation progressed, the host pushed Michaeli on the fact that her group devotes much more attention to the Israeli side, while most Arab violations of human rights are given a pass. Michaeli didn’t argue the facts, noting that B’Tselem does condemn major human rights violations by the Arabs in both Gaza and the PA, but that, being an Israeli organization, it is more dedicated to teaching Israelis about wrongs committed by their own government.

At some point, Mendoza asked her if B’Tselem has condemned Hamas as a terrorist organization and Michaeli said that when Hamas attacks Israeli civilians it certainly commits acts of terrorism. Yes, the host insisted, but are they a terrorist organization? Maybe a part-time terrorist organization? No matter how many times he tried, the B’Tselem spokeswoman would not go on the record condemning Hamas as a terrorist group. Instead she accused Mendoza of joining Israeli extremists who wish to associate B’Tselem with anti-Israeli politics. The more he pushed, the more she stuck to repeating that mantra.

Sarit Michaeli's injured leg / Screenshot

Sarit Michaeli’s injured leg / Screenshot

Sarit Michaeli was injured by a Border Guard rubber bullet during a riot in which she participated in Nabi Saleh, back in 2013. She actually filmed her own bleeding leg as she was lying on the ground. Being a British person, host Mendoza did not have the DNA to conclude Monday’s encounter with a rubber bullet to the guest’s leg, even if she weren’t calling in on Skype, so he just hung up on her.

David Israel

Who is Responsible under International Law for the New Gaza Wars?

Tuesday, September 6th, 2016

{Originally posted to the Gatestone Institute website}

“The safety of the People Shall be the highest law.” — Cicero, The Laws.

It is beginning again. As Hamas terrorists are attacking Israeli civilians with indiscriminate rocket fire, most recently in the southern city of Sderot, Israeli self-defense reactions are already being labeled “excessive” and “disproportionate.” As usual, international public opinion is quickly, if bizarrely, mobilizing against Israel’s underlying supposed “occupation” of Jews living in their own Biblical land.

But what of the facts? In Gaza, since 2005 at least, when every last Jew left, there has been no “occupation.” There are no Israelis in Gaza.

Systematic Hamas misrepresentations get progressively worse.

Any such blame, however, has no basis in law. Regarding “proportionality,” the actual legal requirement of proportionality contained in international humanitarian law (the law of armed conflict) has nothing to do with how many unfortunate deaths there might be on either side. Proportionality has nothing to do with each side incurring an equivalent number of deaths.

Luis Moreno-Ocampo, Chief Prosecutor at the International Criminal Court, investigated allegations of war crimes during the 2003 invasion of Iraq, and in 2006 published an open letter containing his findings. Included was this section on proportionality:

Under international humanitarian law and the Rome Statute, the death of civilians during an armed conflict, no matter how grave and regrettable, does not in itself constitute a war crime. International humanitarian law and the Rome Statute permit belligerents to carry out proportionate attacks against military objectives, even when it is known that some civilian deaths or injuries will occur.

A crime occurs if there is an intentional attack directed against civilians (principle of distinction) or an attack is launched on a military objective in the knowledge that the incidental civilian injuries would be clearly excessive in relation to the anticipated military advantage (principle of proportionality).[1]

Under no circumstances, at least documented ones, have Israeli retaliations been guilty of any such excess.

Recurrent Hamas rocket attacks upon Israeli noncombatants are, basically, examples of terrorism. Such terrorism – all terrorism, irrespective of so-called “just cause” — represents a distinct crime under international law.

When Palestinian terrorism reflects populations that enthusiastically support terror attacks, and where the terrorists can find hospitable refuge among local populations, the legal responsibility for all ensuing counterterrorist harms lies with the perpetrators.

Understood in terms of a still-ongoing cycle of Palestinian terrorism, and Israeli self-defense against terror, the Palestinian side must accept full legal responsibility for civilian casualties in Gaza. Without their premeditated terror attacks on Israeli civilian populations, there would never be any Israel-inflicted Palestinian harm.

It is that simple.

Under international law, which also happens to be part of the law of the United States,[2] all Palestinian terrorists are hostes humani generis: “Common enemies of humankind.” Significantly, in law, such murderers should be punished severely, wherever they are found. Concerning their prospective arrest and prosecution, jurisdiction is now, after the post-WWII Nuremberg trials and principles, expressly “universal.”

Terrorism, including Palestinian terrorism, is always cruel. In addition to rockets, Palestinian murderers, often using bombs filled with nails, razor blades, and screws dipped in rat poison, seek to maim and burn Israeli civilians. This objective is generally announced with cheers, and abundant blessings from the leading Islamic clergy.

In the recurring indictments offered by Hamas-appointed clergy is the claim that “the Jews lack sanctity.” The lack of distinction here between “Jews” and “Israelis” is intentional. It underscores what most observers still do not seem to understand: For Hamas, the true enemy is identifiable by religion, not territory, and is therefore irremediable.

If the Hamas enemy were merely “the Israelis,” and not “the Jews,” there might still be good reason for seeking a political or diplomatic “peace process.” But for the Palestinians, especially Hamas and its terror-group allies, the enemy is, as expressed in the Hamas Charter, unalterably “the Jews.”[3]

With such an enemy, there can never be a compromise. For “the Jews,” whether in Israel proper, or in “occupied territory,” this means that the only way to avoid Arab terror is to disappear, or submit to Islamic control — supposedly for the Jews once again to become persecuted, second-class dhimmi citizens in their own country, just as the indigenous Christians are now in Egypt and much of the Middle East.

There are additional ironies. Those more-or-less wealthy Palestinian commanders who directly control the suicide-bombers’ mayhem (made wealthy with huge sums of money systematically stolen from UN agency funds), evidently prefer to cower fearfully in their towns and cities, usually taking great care to find personal safety amidst densely-packed Arab populations.

Together with assorted Israel Air Force (IAF) units, special IDF counterterrorism and commando elements meticulously identify and target only terrorist leaders. Always, Israel seeks to minimize any collateral damage. Still, such harm cannot always be avoided even by the IDF, which follows its “Purity of Arms” code more stringently than any other military in the world.

Deception can be legally acceptable in armed conflict, but the Geneva Conventions disallow placement of military assets or personnel in heavily populated civilian areas. To place military assets in heavily populated civilian areas is considered, under international law, “perfidy.” It is widely recognized that these rules are also binding on the basis of customary international law.

Perfidy represents an especially serious violation of the Law of War, one identified as a “grave breach” at Article 147 of Geneva Convention IV, which states that,

Grave breaches to which the preceding Article relates shall be those involving any of the following acts, if committed against persons or property protected by the present Convention: wilful killing, torture or inhuman treatment, including biological experiments, wilfully causing great suffering or serious injury to body or health, unlawful deportation or transfer or unlawful confinement of a protected person, compelling a protected person to serve in the forces of a hostile Power, or wilfully depriving a protected person of the rights of fair and regular trial prescribed in the present Convention, taking of hostages and extensive destruction and appropriation of property, not justified by military necessity and carried out unlawfully and wantonly.

The critical legal effect of perfidy committed by Palestinian terrorist leaders in Gaza is to immunize Israel from any responsibility for any unintended counterterrorist harms done to Arab civilians. Even if Hamas did not deliberately engage in perfidy, any Palestinian-created link between civilians and terrorist activities would grant Israel full legal justification for undertaking all necessary defensive actions.

Under law, all uses of force are governed by established rules. All combatants, including Palestinian insurgents, are bound by the international Law of War. This requirement is found at Article 3, common to the four Geneva Conventions of August 12, 1949, and also at the two protocols to these Conventions.

Protocol I applies humanitarian international law to all conflicts fought for “self-determination,” the stated objective of all Palestinian fighters. A product of the Diplomatic Conference on the Reaffirmation and Development of International Humanitarian Law Applicable in Armed Conflicts (1977), this Protocol brings all irregular forces within the full scope of international law. In this connection, the terms “fighter” and “irregular” are conspicuously generous in describing Palestinian terrorists, fanatical criminals who “normally” target only civilians, and whose characteristic mode of “battle” is not military engagement, but rather what amounts to religious sacrifice.

In the ancient world, the Roman statesman Cicero wrote in The Laws: “The safety of the People Shall be the highest law.”[4] Nothing has really changed. Under current international law, Israel has both the right and the obligation to protect its citizens from criminal acts of terrorism.


Louis Rene Beres

UN Report on Failed Gaza, PA Governments: It’s All Israel’s Fault

Monday, September 5th, 2016

If a visitor from outer space were to read the new Report of the “United Nations Conference on Trade and Development assistance to the Palestinian people: Developments in the economy of the Occupied Palestinian Territory” to be issued Tuesday, they would have walked away with an image of a nation of industrious, democratic, peace-loving people named the “Palestinians” who are intentionally and on a daily basis prevented from thriving and achieving the economic success they so richly deserve by a cruel and capricious Israeli occupation that sets out to torpedo every shred of goodness those peaceful folks manage to sustain.

This horrifying image is only enhanced by the fact that this report comes from the principal organ of the UN General Assembly dealing with trade, investment, and development issues. The organization’s goals are to: “maximize the trade, investment and development opportunities of developing countries and assist them in their efforts to integrate into the world economy on an equitable basis.”

With that in mind, here is the opening paragraph of the Executive summary of the UNCTAD report, meaning the gist of whatever else comes below:

“In 2015, Israel withheld Palestinian fiscal revenue for four months, donor aid declined and Israeli settlements continued to expand into the Occupied Palestinian Territory, while poverty and unemployment remained high. The Occupied Palestinian Territory continued to be a captive market for exports from Israel, while occupation neutralized the potential development impact of donor aid. Genuine reconstruction has yet to take off in the Gaza Strip despite $3.5 billion in donor pledges. Gaza’s socioeconomic conditions worsened and the infant mortality rate increased for the first time in 50 years.”

It’s an executive summary, so one cannot argue that so many of these assertions are being lumped together out of context. And yet, for a report that should provide an overview of the economic and social situation in the PA and Gaza to cite the withholding of revenues without mentioning that Israel was forced to freeze those funds after the PA had accumulated half a billion dollars in unpaid electric bills; and for the same executive summary to make the construction of a smattering of Jewish apartment units as a top-level cause for Arab decline — signals the point of view and general inclination of the authors.

You’re welcome to read the entire report if you wish. We went looking for those items that best reflect how the report turns facts and figures on their head to come up with the preconceived conclusion: it’s all the fault of the Israeli occupation, and once Israel is out of the picture you’ll see how those Palestinians will become Switzerland of the Middle East.

UN Blames Israel for Unemployment

Take, for instance, item 5, dealing with Arab unemployment. In 2015, the unemployment rate in the “Occupied Palestinian Territory” was 26%, compared with 12% in 1999.

What happened in 1999? Well, for some unknown reason, there was an Israeli “tightening of restrictions on movement and access of Palestinian labor and goods.”

What a capricious, wicked nation those Israelis must be. Of course, 1999-2000 marked the eruption of the second intifada, which made the current plague of shooting, stabbing, car ramming and stone and firebomb throwing look like a day at the fair. Israeli employers were done with hiring Arabs from the PA and Gaza who would turn on them one morning and slash their throat, thank you very much. Israel imported foreign labor from Asia, and other migrants started cutting through the border illegally in the Sinai, and the Arabs were pushed out of the Israeli labor market. God is in the context.

UN Blames Israel for PA Arabs Wanting to Work for Israelis

Next, the report offers a blatant lie (Item 6): “Lack of employment opportunities in the domestic economy forces thousands of unemployed Palestinians to seek employment in Israel and in settlements in low-skill, low-wage manual activities.”

The reality is that those “lowly” jobs in Israel pay three times what the average job pays inside the PA, and if Israel only issued more work permits, those PA Arabs would have gladly abandoned their lousy jobs in Ramallah and Shechem and flooded Israel’s construction sites.

But the report is unhappy with the fact that as many as 12% of the PA Arabs find decent employment in Israel, because, let’s face it, “this forced dependence on employment in Israel and in settlements magnifies the vulnerability of the Palestinian economy to political shocks, as Israel can at any time bar Palestinian workers, even those with Israeli permits, from entering Israel and settlements.”

On that assertion, there is one surefire way to make sure Israel would never, ever bar those workers and take away their permits: if Arabs from the PA not start shooting, stabbing, car ramming and stone and firebomb throwing. It’s a scientific correlation, proven by 50 years of Israeli presence in Judea, Samaria and Gaza: Arab violence leads to Arab poverty; Arab civility leads to Arab prosperity. It’s such a simple message, one must attend many anti-Semitic incitement sessions at one’s local mosque to be able to ignore it.

Israel’s Response to Arab Terror and Illegal Construction Harms the PA Economy

Here’s Item 9, which does not belong in an economic report, because it covers a negligible issue in terms of costs to the Arab economy, but it’s there to make a political point, and tell another lie: “In April 2016, the Secretary-General of the United Nations advised the Security Council that demolition of Palestinian homes and businesses in the West Bank was continuing at an alarming rate.” How alarming? “By early April, the number of Palestinian structures demolished had exceeded the total of those destroyed in 2015, displacing 840 people.”

Israel demolishes Arab homes in Area C for two reasons: illegal construction, and participation of one of the occupants in a terror attack. In terms of numbers, the vast majority of the structures are destroyed for lack of building permits. Israel is the recognized sovereign in Area C, according to the Oslo accords, and you can’t defy the sovereign power by building whatever and wherever you want. But Israel also demolishes Jewish structures in Area C, for a variety of legally contested issues, a fact that is completely ignored by the report which prefers to repeat the mantra that Israel demolished those Arab homes “while accelerated settlement activity created facts on the ground.”

Now, what was the economic effect of those 840 demolitions on the PA, whose citizens reside in Areas A and B? Probably negligible, but a point scored is a point earned.

In Item 14, UNCTAD supports the World Bank’s assessment of a problem they named “the Palestinian fiscal leakage.” What it means is that while the Arab earnings are meager and sub-standard in the PA, the PA Arabs working in Israel make triple those wages and get to keep a lot more after taxes, some of which Israel transfers to Ramallah. But the World Bank and now the UNCTAD want those PA laborers in Israel to pay higher taxes, which would go to their government. Indeed, Israel has promised to collect and transfer to Ramallah “$128 million to cover some of the losses accumulated over the years by the Authority.” That money, as the Israeli Finance Ministry explained to the Knesset Finance Committee this summer, will be coming out of the wages of PA Arabs working in Israel.

UN Blames Israel for Gaza’s Internal Problems

Now we get to what the report names, “Slow reconstruction in Gaza and disregard for the productive base.”

It has been documented by every major news outlet and at least two recent court cases in Israel that Hamas has completely usurped the $3.5 billion in donations for the digging of new terror tunnels and for rebuilding Hamas leaders’ homes destroyed in the 2014 war. It is also understood by most rational people in the world that as long as the Gaza Strip is governed by a terrorist organization whose major stated aim is to destroy the Jewish State, Israel has no choice but to impose a blockade on the free flow of goods into Gaza, because those goods would inevitably be used to prepare for the next attack on Israel.

Not on planet UNCTAD.

Item 22 states without benefit of context or recognition of regional realities: “Israel’s blockade of Gaza, in its ninth year, continues to exert a heavy toll. The population of Gaza is locked in, denied access to the West Bank and the rest of the world. … The blockade has affected Gaza’s once vibrant export sector.” Ah, those capricious Israelis and their obsession with not getting killed.

UN Report Straight Out Lies

The same item adds a nasty line: “Even people in need of medical treatment are not allowed to travel to obtain essential health care.” The author of this blatant lie should come visit Israeli hospitals in Ashkelon, Ashdod and Beer Sheva, where Gazan patients are a regular feature, including family members of top Hamas officials.

Israel Refuses to Be Annihilated

Item 23 is also about Israel’s refusal to be annihilated: “A prominent element of Israel’s restrictions on Palestinian productive activities is the dual-use list, which prohibits the importation of civilian goods deemed by Israel as potentially having other, harmful uses. The list includes essential factors of production, raw materials, agricultural fertilizers, telecommunications equipment, steel, pipes, spare parts and other capital goods.”

Yes, because Hamas engineers have skillfully turned all those highly useful items into highly murderous weapons.

The same item complains that “recently, more items have been added to the list, and the thickness of wood classified as dual-use has been reduced from 5 to 3 cm, then to 1 cm. This has far-reaching implications for Gaza’s furniture industry, among other harmful effects. Enforcement of the stringent dual-use restrictions obstructs reconstruction efforts, raises production costs and forces Palestinian firms out of business.”

Again, let Hamas officially abandon its murderous designs on Israel, let it sign a document recognizing Israel’s right to exist and watch how the Gaza Strip becomes paradise in a month. The fact is, with the right investments and without the Islamic extremists’ threat, Gaza could become as pretty and as prosperous as Sad Diego. Parts of it already are, even today.

UN Blames Israel for Gaza’s Now Rising Infant Mortality Rate

Item 25 is a tour de force of convoluted logic: “A shocking indicator of the grim situation in Gaza is the rising infant mortality rate, one of the best indicators for the health of a community. Infant mortality has risen for the first time in 50 years. The rate of neonatal mortality has also risen significantly, from 12 per 1,000 live births in 2008 to 20.3 in 2013.”

The sad truth is that Israel was investing in Judea and Samaria and Gaza infrastructure and social services to the point where they exceeded the standards in all other Arab countries. It is safe to say that had Israel continued to run those territories, today they would have been its equal in terms of social services and levels of income.

The relatively low baby mortality cited for Gaza in 2008 did not appear out of thin air — Israel, that hated occupier, pushed it on with heavy investments and years of government effort. The progressive decline in both parts of the Arab-run territories is not the result of “the occupation,” but of the utter failure of local Arab governments to manage modern state systems. We can illustrate this point:

On June 16, 1994, the Israeli Civil Administration in the Territories issued a report comparing the state of the Arab infrastructure in Judea, Samaria and Gaza in 1970 with 1990. According to that report, in 1970 Gaza had 3 community clinics. In 1990 there were 28. Each of the Israeli built Community Clinics in the Gaza Strip offered mother and child health services, family care units, and pharmacies. Several of the centers offered 24-hour a day delivery units and emergency services, and minor x-ray units.

Major renovations and/or additions were made to almost every hospital in Judea, Samaria, and Gaza since 1967. Thus, for example, Rafidiah Hospital in Shechem received a radiology center in 1987 and an out-patient department in 1988. Wattani Hospital in Shechem received an intensive care unit in 1987. Ramallah Hospital received a diagnostic radiology center in 1987 and a neo-natal and premature intensive care unit in 1986. Beit Jala Hospital received a radiology center in 1987. Hebron Hospital received an outpatient and laboratory wing in 1988. The Bethlehem Mental Hospital received a chronic care department for male patients in 1986. The dialysis department at Shifa Hospital in Gaza City was completely renovated in 1989. Khan Yunis Hospital’s surgical suite was refurbished in 1987. The Opthalmic Hospital in Gaza City was renovated and re-equipped in 1989.

And infant mortality in Gaza declined from approximately 85 deaths per 1,000 live births in 1968 to 26.1 in 1990. In Judea and Samaria, infant mortality declined from approximately 35 deaths per 1,000 live births in 1968, to 18.1 in 1991.

For comparison, in 1991 deaths per 1,000 births in Libya stood at 62, Egypt 82, Turkey 54, Iraq 66, Syria 37, Tunisia 38, Jordan 38, Lebanon 50 and Saudi Arabia 69.

Together with the decline in infant mortality, great progress was made by Israel in controlling and eliminating major childhood diseases, due mainly to immunization programs instituted since 1967. Twelve nursing schools, two of which offer BA degree programs were opened between 1971 and 1991. The numbers of both doctors and nurses more than doubled from 1967 to 1991.

Voluntary health insurance plans which were unavailable before 1967 were first offered in Judea and Samaria in 1973, and in Gaza in 1976. In 1978, a new comprehensive plan was introduced; it was automatically applied to Civil Administration workers and to area residents working in Israel and was offered to all other area residents on a voluntary basis.

Israel greatly improved and expanded sewage treatment facilities in the liberated areas. Before 1967, there were no sewage treatment plants in Judea and Samaria. Since 1967, modern installations were built in Jenin (1971), Tulkarem (1972), Ramallah (1979), and Kalkilya (1986). The first stage of the Hebron sewage treatment plant was completed in 1991. In Gaza, sewage was managed through local septic tanks. Since 1967, treatment facilities were improved and/or constructed in Gaza City, Khan Yunis, Jabalya, Rafiah, and the Shati refugee camp. Routine testing of sewage for various enteric bacteria was begun in 1981.

Judea and Samaria were recognized as malaria-free areas in 1971.

UN Report Blames Israel for Palestinian Authority’s Failure in Self-Government 

Item 37 in the UNCTAD report unwittingly makes this point: “Palestinian economic indicators have deteriorated in the last two decades, with serious ramifications for the welfare of the Palestinian people. In 1995-2014, the population grew by 3.6 per cent annually, while real GDP per capita grew by only 1 per cent. In addition, productivity failed to grow and unemployment increased by 9 percentage points to 27%.”

What else happened between 1994 and 2014?

Yes, governing of Judea, Samaria and Gaza was handed over to the local Arab leadership, which proceeded to mess things up while inciting to violence against the only country on earth that actually took the trouble to help them. With numbers like these, and the report heaps them in multicolored tables, the Arab record of self-government is nothing short of abysmal.

Naturally, UN reports that tell the world these failed regimes aren’t to blame, it’s all Israel’s fault, are not helping anyone, least of all the local Arabs who by now are telling survey takers openly they would rather live under Israeli rule or escape to Canada, whichever comes first.


Hamas PM Haniyeh Leaves Gaza on Hajj, With Trips to Qatar, Turkey

Monday, September 5th, 2016

Hamas de facto Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh left Gaza on Monday with thousands of others, traveling through the Rafah crossing with Egypt on the Islamic Hajj pilgrimage to the Saudi Arabian holy city of Mecca.

Egypt opened its sole crossing with Gaza for a three-day period to accommodate the Gaza residents who are traveling to Mecca for the annual Hajj.

However, according to the Hamas radio station the Gaza-based head of the terrorist organization is also making a couple of side trips while he is out of the region.

Haniyeh is taking the opportunity while he is abroad to visit Qatar and Turkey. There was no information on when he was expected to return from the trip, nor were there details on his agenda while in Doha and Ankara.

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/hamas-pm-haniyeh-leaves-gaza-on-hajj-with-trips-to-qatar-turkey/2016/09/05/

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