The late Amos Oz was right to say ‘even unavoidable occupation is a corrupting occupation’. Israeli voters should heed his words
In the last nine months of 2018, according to the United Nations, Palestinians – many of them children – were killed at the rate of around one a day while taking part in protests along Israel’s perimeter fence with Gaza about their right to return to ancestral homes. They included medics and journalists. Most of the dead were unarmed and posed no danger to anyone, with little more than rocks in their hands and slogans on their lips. Yet Israel continued with an immoral and unlawful policy that sees soldiers of its military, which is under democratic civilian control, shoot, gas, shell and kill protesters, including those who pose no credible threat.
Hospitals in Gaza, which already struggle under an Israeli-Egyptian blockade, have been stretched to breaking point in dealing with the flood of patients ferried in from the protests. In its defence, Israel’s diplomats cast Hamas, the Islamist militant group that controls Gaza, as terrorists who are organising demonstrations in “a war zone”. It would appear, sadly, that Israel wishes to conduct a war over the airwaves, as well as one on the ground, against the Palestinians. This blatant disregard for Gazan lives and the lack of accountability is underpinned by a politics of resentment and dissembling that has profound repercussions for Israel. If one can kill with impunity, then can one lie without consequence?