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July 26, 2016 / 20 Tammuz, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘UNICEF’

Save the Children

Sunday, August 31st, 2014

Reprinted from FirstOne Through
I first came upon the “Save the Children” organization when I saw that they sponsored an appeal to raise money for Gaza in a poster in the London Underground. The name of the group sounds so innocent and well-meaning. Who is more innocent than a child? Who could possibly be against helping children? Can helping children ever be considered a biased agenda?

Some days later, I came across a retail thrift store bearing the STC name in Bath, England. Posters in the store window contained two new appeals to help rebuild Gaza and to stop the “Israeli” War in Gaza. There was no appeal or comment to stop the Palestinian war against Israel. I decided to look into the group on their own website.

The President & CEO of STC, Carolyn Miles, posted a blog called “Gaza’s Miracle Tomatoes” on July 8, a day after Israel launched Operation Protective Edge to stop the bombardment of Palestinian missiles into Israel. It was her first ever (and currently only) post about Israel or Gaza.

In the column she describes the “bleak landscape” and “dusty barren patches” of Gaza. The scene contained “donkeys pulling carts filled with rubble and surrounded by men and boys along harsh, rocky earth”.

The blog continued that 20 minutes away from the bleak picture along the border with Israel, a “miracle” appeared from nowhere: “a lush green field …a simple greenhouse …row after row of beautiful tomatoes … the result of a recently-concluded project by Save the Children and other partners and funded by USAID.” This oasis painted by Miles intentionally gave a reader the specific impression that STC helped create a miracle from nothing in the terrible Gaza landscape. It contained three significant lies of omission:

Gaza had a flourishing greenhouse business built by the Israelis for years. The Israelis cultivated 1,125 acres and built hundreds of greenhouses in Gaza while there in the 1990s up until they left in 2005. The business generated roughly $75 million of revenue. Jewish donors bought and donated the greenhouses to the Palestinians. World Bank president James Wolfensohn, Mort Zuckerman and several others paid the Israelis $14 million for two-thirds of the greenhouse equipment to donate them to the Palestinians (some Israelis opted to not take the payment and take their equipment with them to re-start businesses back in Israel). The Palestinians looted and destroyed the greenhouses. Soon after the expulsion of Jews from Gaza, Palestinian looters stripped the greenhouses of the irrigation pumps, computer monitors and greenhouse sheeting, leaving over one-fourth of the greenhouses bare. The businesses withered.

The STC piece continued: “we drove through the streets of Gaza and heard from residents about the impact of border crossing restrictions on children there—the rising rates of malnutrition and resulting stunting, the lack of basic medicines and care when children became sick, and the severe circumstances disabled children were in.” The article had now moved past being the miracle machine and placed blame for the situation on Israel (for border crossing restrictions), and continued with outright lies:

The children of Gaza have better health statistics than almost all Arabs in the Middle East. According to the United Nations, UNICEF and UNRWA, Palestinians in Gaza have the highest immunization rates and longest life expectancy of surrounding Arab and Muslim countries (including: Turkey; Jordan; Egypt and Iran). They have the highest literacy rate.

However, the facts don’t add to the Save the Children’s non-miracle.

Save The Children claims it does not choose sides, it just chooses children, but is that factual? Is the characterization that the children of Gaza suffer because of the actions of Israel – as opposed to the actions of their parents – really not taking sides? Is a minute and one-half video featured on the STC site that only shows bombings in Gaza (and nothing in Israel), not choosing sides? Has STC helped fund a single bomb shelter just a few miles away, in the targeted playgrounds of Israel?

A bigger question for Save the Children – and the world – is how do you protect children from their own parents?

Paul Gherkin

Israel Rejects Report of ‘Recycled’ IDF Abuse of Arab Children

Thursday, June 20th, 2013

Israel said a United Nations committee that accused its military of mistreating Palestinian children used recycled information from another U.N. agency’s report.

The Foreign Ministry said it had responded to a similar report by UNICEF in March and questioned whether the Committee on the Rights of the Child investigation broke any new ground.

The United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child said in its report released Thursday, which covers the past 10 years, “Palestinian children arrested by (Israeli) military and police are systematically subject to degrading treatment, and often to acts of torture, are interrogated in Hebrew, a language they did not understand, and sign confessions in Hebrew in order to be released.”

The report, which also acknowledged Israel’s real security concerns, accused Israel of using Palestinian children as human shields and informants.

JTA

Susan Rice Says Defending Israel Swallows Much of Her UN time

Tuesday, April 23rd, 2013

Defending Israel’s legitimacy is a “huge part” of her work as U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, Susan Rice told a Reform Judaism event Sunday evening.

“It’s a huge part of my work to the United Nations,” she said at the launching of this year’s social activists’ Consultation on Conscience, organized by the Religious Action Center.

She likened the volume of work to her efforts to coordinate Syria’s isolation and to contain violence and abuses in Sudan, and added that she often works in “lockstep” with the Israeli delegation.

“We will not rest in the crucial work of defending Israel’s security and legitimacy every day at the United Nations,” Rice said.

She noted that Israel’s success at the United Nations often is not reported, for instance in joining the boards of the U.N. Development Program and UNICEF, and in advancing development initiatives.

JTA

UNICEF: Israel Treatment of Arab Minors in Custody Cruel and Inhuman

Wednesday, March 6th, 2013

A United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) report released on Wednesday alleges that Palestinian children detained by the IDF are subject to widespread, systematic ill-treatment that violates international law, Reuters reports.

The report estimated that 700 children aged 12-17, most of them boys, are arrested and interrogated by the IDF, police and security forces every year in Judea and Samaria.

According to UNICEF, it has documented “examples of practices that amount to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment according to the Convention on the Rights of the Child and the Convention against Torture.”

Israeli sources have declined to comment on the findings at the moment. The UNICEF report states that it is based on more than 400 cases since 2009, legal papers, reports by governmental and non-governmental groups, and interviews with Palestinian minors, and Israeli and Palestinian officials and attorneys.

Is not clear at this point how much of the information in the damning report was presented to Israeli authorities for a response prior to publication. This will be clarified by Israel when it offers its official comments on the UNICEF accusations.

According to the report, the ill-treatment of Palestinian minors often begins with an arrest in the middle of the night, and continues through prosecution and sentencing.

“The pattern of ill-treatment includes … the practice of blindfolding children and tying their hands with plastic ties, physical and verbal abuse during transfer to an interrogation site, including the use of painful restraints,” the report says.

During their interrogation, the minors, who are arrested for throwing stones, suffer physical violence and threats, are coerced into confessions and do not have immediate access to a lawyer or family during questioning, the report alleges, adding that this practice “appears to be widespread, systematic and institutionalized.”

“Treatment inconsistent with child rights continues during court appearances, including shackling of children, denial of bail and imposition of custodial sentences and transfer of children outside occupied Palestinian territory to serve their sentences inside Israel,” the report said.

On the positive side, the UNICEF report cites “positive changes” in Israel’s treatment of Palestinian minors, including new hand-tying procedures that prevent pain and injury.

Also, a military order issued in 2010 requires Israeli police to notify parents about the arrest of their children and to inform children that they have the right to an attorney.

Yori Yanover

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/unicef-israel-treatment-of-arab-minors-in-custody-cruel-and-inhuman/2013/03/06/

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