Islamophobia and the elephant in the room …

christchurch mosque al nur

The Al Nur mosque in Christchurch, where dozens were killed and injured last week.  Every human life is precious and sacred, killing one is like triggering a genocide. (Al Quran 5:32)

Jamal Kanj

By: Jamal Kanj, Ph.D.

Were you surprised by Masjid al Noor massacre in Christchurch, New Zeeland? If your answer is yes, I would like to be the first to welcome you to our planet earth. According to FBI records, hate crimes against Muslims have increased by as much as five folds since 2001.

The massacre in New Zealand, or the murders of shop-owners (some were Indian Sikhs suspected of being Muslims) and mosque bombings in the US, or Quebec City mosque massacre and the London van ramming into a crowd of worshippers in 2017. To name just few, these were not abstract singular events, but the outcome of organized virulent campaigns to demonize Muslims in the West.

It is impossible to have constructive discourse on Islamophobia absent of confronting the elephant in the room: Islamophobia is the creation of an unholy alliance between political Zionism and neocons in the West. The depraved alliance made it easy for Islamophobes to normalize Muslim hate and castigate Islam as “radical” religion.

In America, the recent coordinated malicious attacks on Muslim US Congresswoman, Ilhan Omar for questioning Israeli hold on US elected officials, are inseparable from the Islamophobic cultural onslaught vilifying followers of the “demonized” religion and dismissing their views as irreverent and out of touch.

Hordes of Islamophobe predators cast slanderous aspersions on Congresswoman Omar as Anti-Sematic for expressing views on the nation of Israel. The defamatory blackmail label intentionally conflates Anti-Jewish racists—who are for the most part allies of political Zionism—with those who justly criticize the Netanyahu Jewish apartheid regime in Israel.

Throughout the years, political Zionism has successfully perfected this intellectual terrorism tool to silence critique of Israel. Sadly, the same is blindly mimicked by most Jewish leaders, media outlets and Islamophobes to stifle any rational debate on Israel.

It is not mere coincidence that the exact same phrase “radical Islam” is parroted across four continents: Benjamin Netanyahu in Israel, Donald Trump, Ted Cruz, Mike Huckabee, John Hagabee  in the US, Scott Morrison and Fraser Anning in Australia, Tommy Robinson and Gerard Batten in UK.

Defying centuries old trends to regionalize the English language, it’s most likely that globalizing the same Islamophobic locutions is part of a cheat sheet to debase Islam and hence, promote Islamophobia. Especially since all these pundits have one thing in common, besides uniting an English lexicon, they’re staunch supporters of Israel and political Zionism.

Neocons and political Zionism mantras like “radical Islam” are fodders for Islamophobia in the West. It blames the belief system of more than one billion human beings for the actions of relatively small number of individuals, although this only applies to Muslims.  

It’s certain that Benton Tarrant massacre will not be attributed to “radical Christianity.” As no one had implicated “radical Judaism” on the celebrated Jewish terrorist Brauch Goldstein—who used an Israeli army supplied automatic rifle to massacre 29 Palestinian worshipers in 1994. And his tomb became a religious shrine with a plaque that read “To the holy Baruch Goldstein, who gave his life for the Jewish people, the Torah, and the nation of Israel”.

Owning to their shared Islamophobic values, anti-Muslim pundits have cultivated unique relationship with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. As with his allies in the West, Netanyahu has just entered into unholy alliance with Itamar Ben-Gvir, leader of “Jewish Power”―the Israeli Jewish version of the KKK.

Typical of tribal hate, Gvir calls Christians “bloodsucking vampires” and displays a photo in his room of the Jewish copy of the Christchurch terrorist. Gvir, the decedent of a Kurdish immigrant advocates the ethnic cleansing of non-Jewish Native Palestinians from villages and homes their existence predated Gvir’s birth, and certainly before his father immigrated to Palestine and the creation of the state of Israel.

Israeli racist Jewish politics had drifted too far, prominent Jewish and international Linguist and Scholar Noam Chomsky has recently reminded us of decades old concerns expressed by renowned Israeli biochemist and polymath, Yeshayahu Leibowitz who described Israeli occupation of Palestinian land as “Judeo-Nazi” in nature. Leibowitz had cautioned his compatriots of the danger in making Israel and Zionism more sacred than Jewish humanist values.

The onus is therefore on mainstream Jewish organizations to make sure “Jewish humanist values” are not defined by Israeli Prime Minister alliance with the Jewish version of the KKK, or with Netanyahu’s Islamophobe allies in the likes of Trump, Morrison, Cruz, Hagabee, Huckabee, Batten …etc.   

Mainstream Jewish leaders must stop abusing the “Anti-Semitic” cry to stifle legitimate political debate on Israel’s version of the KKK, or to defend the unholy alliance between political Zionism and Islamophobes in the West.

Else, they risk making the Anti-Semitic label as hollow as the gun barrel that massacred 51 Muslim worshipers in New Zealand.


*Mr Kanj (www.jamalkanj.com) an author who had written weekly newspaper column and publishes on several websites on Arab world issues. He is the author of “Children of Catastrophe,” Journey from a Palestinian Refugee Camp to America. His recent coauthored book “Bride of the Sea” was published in Germany and Poland. This Op-Ed piece can be published with the author’s permission.

Normalizing violence takes precedence over targeted assassinations

By Ramona Wadi

One outcome is certain when it comes to the forthcoming Israeli elections – Gaza will remain a top target for the new government. Amid the sparring between contenders for the elections, former IDF chief Benny Gantz declared he would implement Israel’s policy of targeted assassinations against Hamas leaders if elected, and if necessary.

His comments sought to counter Education Minister Naftali Bennett’s remarks over “Operation Protective Edge” in 2014, in which the latter used derogatory language to criticise Gantz’s decisions which, according to Bennett, endangered the lives of Israeli soldiers. Bennett alleged that Gantz would be Hamas’ preferable leadership option. This claim is also being supported by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who has stated that Gantz’s party would make “significant concessions to the Palestinians.”

Both Gantz and Netanyahu have increasingly focused on Gaza in their electoral campaigns, with “Operation Protective Edge” and the Great March of Return providing premises for their arguments. Gantz, who was in charge of the aggression against the enclave, has compared the 2014 aftermath to the ongoing protests and Netanyahu’s response, which was to order snipers positioned at the border to kill and injure Palestinians participating in the demonstration.

Gantz described Netanyahu’s strategy as a “tired policy”. The alternative in such a scenario, according to the former army chief, is to “return to a policy of targeted killings.”

In June 2018, Israel’s Security Minister Gilad Erdan advocated for the targeted assassinations of Hamas leaders and Palestinians launching the “incendiary kites” from Gaza’s border.

A return to targeted killings, however, is not accurate. Israel has a long history of assassinating Palestinian leaders from Hamas and other Palestinian political factions. Only last year, a Palestinian scientist affiliated to Hamas was gunned down in Malaysia, in an operation which raised speculation about Mossad’s role even in Israeli media, although there was no forthright confirmation of the agency’s involvement.

Gantz, therefore, will not be “returning” to a policy of targeted assassinations but embarking upon a continuation of Israel’s policy. Yet, speculation on targeted assassinations alone is just a deviation from the damage which both Netanyahu and Gantz have the power to inflict on the enclave in terms of political and humanitarian related violence.

Following “Operation Protective Edge”, Netanyahu adopted a strategy that prolongs violence for Israel’s benefit. The Great March of Return is one such example. Extrajudicial killings by Israel’s snipers raised international scrutiny which, with time, mellowed down to the usual expressions of concerns regarding what is deemed as routine violence. Distancing Israel from targeted assassinations in Gaza during this period provided Israel with the opportunity to normalize its ongoing violence on the border.

Gantz is no stranger to strategy. Targeted assassinations cannot be attributed to one single leader but to the existence of the colonial state and its policies of elimination. What Gaza will face under the new Israeli government is more likely to be a continuation of measures which maintains Palestinians’ deprivation in the enclave. Electoral campaign rhetoric aside, an outright endorsement and implementation of targeted assassinations contradict the intentional ambiguity which Israel has employed against leaders or individuals who have the potential to challenge its existence.

(Source / 16.03.2019)

‘Headaches, fainting’, Palestinian prisoners suffer effects of Israel jamming devices

Art work used by Palestinians during a protest after Israeli forces stormed into Ofer prison beat prisoners in Ramallah on 23 January 2019 [Mohammed Asad/Middle East Monitor]

Art work used by Palestinians during a protest after Israeli forces stormed into Ofer prison and beat prisoners in Ramallah on 23 January 2019

Palestinian prisoners are suffering from “depression, headaches and fainting” as a result of the jamming devices installed at a number of Israeli jails in which they are being detained, they said in a statement.

“The dangerous radiation” omitted by the devices are causing these symptoms, the statement continued, adding they fear this is just “the tip of the iceberg”.

Experts have said the devices can lead to “genetic deformities of human cells and cancer”. Forty prisoners who are battling cancer in Ras Al-Eid prison may have contracted the disease as a result of the devices, they added.

READ: PA pays stipends to martyrs’ families and prisoners 

Concluding their statement, the prisoners placed responsibility for their life on the Israeli occupation and stressed that they would not tone down their protests until the devices are removed.

Last week, Palestinian prisoners said Israel’s prison administration had installed jamming devices at a ward in the Ktz’iot Prison causing Palestinian prisoners to suffer from severe headaches.

The devices produce powerful radiation and stop radio and television signals from penetrating in to the area.

News reports have revealed that the devices were sent to Israel from a Chinese firm Decipro Technology Limited. With 40 such units received by Netline Communications Technologies in Tel Aviv on 29 November 2018.

(Source / 07.03.2019)

Palestinian prosthetics centre, providing limbs for those injured by Israel

Prosthetic technicians make limbs for Gazans who have lost theirs while taking part in the Great March of Return 

Prosthetic technicians make limbs for Gazans who have lost theirs while taking part in the Great March of Return [Mohammed Asad/Middle East Monitor]
Prosthetic technicians make limbs for Gazans who have lost theirs while taking part in the Great March of Return [Mohammed Asad/Middle East Monitor]
Prosthetic technicians make limbs for Gazans who have lost theirs while taking part in the Great March of Return [Mohammed Asad/Middle East Monitor]
Prosthetic technicians make limbs for Gazans who have lost theirs while taking part in the Great March of Return [Mohammed Asad/Middle East Monitor]
Prosthetic technicians make limbs for Gazans who have lost theirs while taking part in the Great March of Return [Mohammed Asad/Middle East Monitor]
Prosthetic technicians make limbs for Gazans who have lost theirs while taking part in the Great March of Return [Mohammed Asad/Middle East Monitor]

Palestinian prosthetic technicians have been working hard to make limbs for Gazans who have lost theirs while taking part in the Great March of Return.

The expertise they have amassed over the years, as a result of Israel’s repeated attacks on the enclave, has left them probably more efficient than their counterparts abroad.

Some 160 of those wounded during the protests have lost limbs, statistics from the Ministry of Health have revealed. This was a result of the occupation’s targeting of demonstrators  with live ammunition and explosives, fragments of which entered their bodies, tearing through their joints and limbs.

READ: Israel closes Gaza border blocking aid transfers

Gaza’s Artificial Limbs and Polio Centre (ALPC) in Gaza City was established in 1974 and operates with the technical support of the International Red Cross. Its Director Lotfi Mousa said that the Gaza Strip has developed an advanced centre which is improving day after day.

It deals with upper and lower limbs, he continued, and provides follow on care, while the technicians need to assess the amputee, taking in to account where the amputation is located and the patient’s fitness levels and weight over a number of months. This provides for a rehabilitation programme to be setup for the patient once the prosthetic limb has been made.

(Source / 06.03.2019) 

Slow death for Gaza cancer patients

Israel’s siege on the Gaza Strip makes it difficult, if not impossible, for cancer patients to receive treatment. Over the last decade, Israel has controlled and restricted shipments of medicine, among other basic necessities, into Gaza. This often causes severe drug shortages in Gaza hospitals.

“I come to the hospital to receive treatment and I am surprised that there is no treatment,” Sabreen al-Najjar, 40, told The Electronic Intifada. Al-Najjar is one of many cancer patients in Gaza turned away by hospitals due to severe drug shortages. “It is unbelievable. They sentence us to death. A slow death,” she added. With the unreliable availability of medications, many patients try to receive treatment outside Gaza.

Israel denies many of those patients the permits necessary for them to leave the enclave and receive treatment in the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem, or within Israel. More than 1,800 patients were denied permission to cross Erez checkpoint for healthcare in 2018, according to the World Health Organization, compared to approximately 700 denied in 2017.

 (Source / 25.02.2019)

Easing the Suffering of Pregnant Women at Al-Sahaba Clinic in Gaza

22 Feb 8:07 AM

photo: Hind Abu Jahal, a pharmacist at Al Sahaba, talks to a patient.

By Anera.org / Gaza/ PNN

Al Sahaba medical complex in Gaza City specializes in offering medical services to women at reproductive age and beyond. “Most of our patients need constant follow-up and check-ups to monitor the status of their fetus throughout the course of their pregnancy,” says Dr. Ziyad Siam, an obstetrician at Al Sahaba.

Providing proper maternity services in Gaza can present challenges. Dr. Siam points out that the Palestinian territory suffers from continual shortages of medicines and medical supplies. Should complications arise during pregnancy, patients have great difficulty in getting permits to access medical treatment outside of Gaza.

Women in Gaza rely heavily on Al Sahaba, where a large percentage of staff are women. Given the conservative culture of many communities in the area, having access to female medical practitioners is vitally important.

Staff are available to offer counseling and treatment around the clock. One patient comments, “I am more confident about sharing my symptoms with doctors at this center. And I feel that I have the privacy I need to speak freely.”

Anera staff with pharmacist Hind Abu Jahal and obstetrician Dr. Ziyad Siam at Al Sahaba in Gaza.

Anera staff with pharmacist Hind Abu Jahal and obstetrician Dr. Ziyad Siam at Al Sahaba in Gaza.

Heparin is An Essential Drug in Gaza

Esmat, one of the clinic’s patients, suffered two miscarriages before learning that she has a blood-clotting disorder.

“When I first found out [about my condition] I was four weeks pregnant. After the diagnosis I underwent tests and the doctor put me on heparin for the remainder of the pregnancy,” she said.

Heparin is widely used to prevent blood clots and associated complications of pregnancy. As Dr. Siam explains, “The risk is that when a clot forms it can get lodged in the umbilical cord, cutting off blood circulation to the baby. The medication thins out the blood and prevents any clots from forming.”

Dr. Ziyad Siam, an obstetrician at Al Sahaba, talks to a patient.

Dr. Ziyad Siam, an obstetrician at Al Sahaba, talks to a patient.

The donated medicine is made available at no charge to patients at Al Sahaba. Clinic pharmacist Hind Abu Jahal underscores to patients the importance of compliance with the instructed dose of heparin to ensure mother and child safety. Abu Jahal notes that heparin is typically unaffordable for all but a few in Gaza.

Most of the clinic’s patients come from the Al Shati refugee camp and surrounding areas. The “economic situation is tough in Gaza, let alone in the refugee camps where unemployment is probably higher than anywhere else,” Hind comments.

“I am so excited for the baby,” Esmat says cheerfully. “I am due five months from today!”

Human Interest 02/20/19 ANC Youth League Affirms Support For BDS

(Source / 23.02.2019)

PCHR: “On International Childhood Cancer Day, Israel and Political Division Deepens Struggle of Children with Cancer in Gaza Strip”

16 Feb 11:04 AM

Ref: 19/2019 – Date: 14 February 2019: International Childhood Cancer Day (ICCD), which was founded in 2002 by Childhood Cancer International (CCI), is celebrated  around the world every year on 15 February to reduce children’s cancer incidence.

This occasion coincides with the deterioration of health conditions in the Gaza Strip and the increasing level of services that cancer patients receive, including children who were deprived of receiving the proper treatment in a clear violation of the children’s right to receive the highest attainable standard of health.

According to the Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR’s) follow up, patients with cancer in the Gaza Strip, an estimated number of 8500 patients, including 640 children, face difficult health conditions for ongoing lack of medicine, medical supplies and diagnostic and therapeutic devices, shortage of oncologists, and the aggravation of the ongoing electricity crisis in hospitals. The Israeli restrictions imposed on the travel of children with cancer and their companions are considered as prominent obstacles that prevent these children from receiving their proper treatment.

Dr. Mohammed Abu Selmeya, Director of al-Rantissy Hospital for Cancer Treatment, which is the only hospital that provides cancer treatment for children in the Gaza Strip, said to PCHR’s fieldworker that the number of children with cancer in the Gaza Strip has reached 640 children whose ages between one month and 12 years. He added that Leukemia is at the forefront of cancers affecting children in the Gaza Strip and then followed by lymphoma and brain cancer.

He stressed that the hospital faces difficulties in providing treatment services to these patients; most prominently is lack of medicines and medical supplies needed for their treatment, considering lack of Chemotherapy as the most serious problem facing these patients.

Abu Selmeya added that the hospital also faces difficulties in referring child patients to receive treatment abroad due to the travel restrictions imposed by the Israeli Authorities on the children in danger of dying for no reason and for long periods up to 3 months.

He elaborated that the Israeli authorities deprive several mothers and fathers of accompanying their children, who suffers from serious health conditions, during their treatment abroad.

Dr. Muneer al-Bursh, Director General of the Pharmacy Department in the Palestinian Ministry of Health, said to PCHR’s fieldworker that the shortage rate of medicines and drugs for treatment of cancer has reached unprecedented levels in 2018 as in July there was a shortage in 42 types of cancer-treatment drugs, i.e. 65% of medicines that cancer patients need.

He added that some of the medicines, which ran out of stocks, were the Chemotherapy drugs and the Neupogen injections used to boost cancer patients’ Immune system.  He elaborated that any delay in giving this medication would lead to complications, especially that cancer treatment is comprised of a 5-medicine protocol and so the lack of any of them would fail the whole treatment process.

He also said that the Israeli ban on the entry of diagnostic radiological devices needed for the diagnosis of cancerous tumors causes delayed detection of these tumors, obstructs the therapeutic intervention, and puts patients’ life at risk.

It should be noted that patients with cancer, especially children, who are referred to receive treatment abroad, face many obstacles that have negatively affected their health conditions.

According to the information available at the Coordination Department in the Ministry of Health, during 2018, the Israeli authorities obstructed the travel of 10,057 patients referred to receive treatment in the hospitals in Israeli or the West Bank.

The Israeli authorities adopt a series of restrictions that deliberately aim at depriving patients of receiving treatment abroad; most significantly depriving patients of traveling without any reason; depriving patients of traveling due to family-related reasons; arresting patients at Beit Hanoun “Erez” crossing; blackmailing and bargaining patients to collaborate with the Israeli authorities; interrogating the Patients; delaying responses to their travel permits; disregard for patient’s appointments at hospitals and imposing tightening restrictions on the travel of patients’ companions.

On the other hand, the political division increasingly deteriorate the standard of health services provided by hospitals and medical centers to these residing the Gaza Strip.

The chronic shortage of specialized medical staff and the Palestinian government failing to allocate new posts in hospitals in the Gaza Strip and cutting the salaries to 263 employees working in the Ministry Of Health in Gaza during February, have negatively affected the quality of health services and put patients’ life at risk.

The employees, whose salaries were cut, are the backbone of the health sector in Gaza as they represent 67% of the medical specialists and 28% of the doctors in the Ministry of Health. During the past January, Ministry of Health had to minimize its services and stop operation of some health facilities due to the shortage of fuel needed to operate the generators in hospitals and medical centers in light of the ongoing electricity crisis.

PCHR is deeply concerned over the life of children with cancer in the Gaza Strip. Thus, PCHR:

– appeals the international organizations, including the United Nations specialized agencies, to immediately intervene to provide an immediate assistance for the health sector for guaranteeing the continuation of health facilities’ work in the Gaza Strip, especially the only hospital that provides treatment for cancer patients in the Gaza Strip.

– calls upon the international community to practice pressure on the Israeli authorities in order to end all restrictions imposed on patients’ travel, especially children with cancer who need special care.

– calls upon the international community to pressurize the Israeli authorities in order to allow the entry of all types of medicines and medical supplies into the Gaza Strip, including Radiological diagnostic devices for the diagnosis of cancerous tumors.

– appeals the Palestinian Authority (PA) to resume their responsibilities and immediately intervene to guarantee the entry of all types of medicines and medical supplies needed for cancer treatment.

– Calls for the importance of coordination between the department of the Palestinian Health Ministry in each of Ramallah and Gaza to guarantee that every person enjoys their  right to health, including the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health.

(Source / 16.02.2019)

WHO: $32m Needed to Address Humanitarian Needs in the oPt

11 Feb 3:43 AM

Al-Awda hospital ER team providing emergency care to an injured patient. Credit: UHWC

A new report by WHO shows that, since the start of the mass demonstrations in Gaza, on 30 March, 2018, 261 people have been killed and a total of 27,942 people injured:

“13,174 were treated and discharged from the Trauma Stabilization Points (TSPs) and the remaining 14,768 casualties were transferred to MoH and NGO hospitals. 6,386 people had live ammunition gunshot wounds, of which 5,561 (87%) presented limb gunshot wounds.”

The report additionally said that, as the current fuel reserve for hospitals declines, mitigation measures continue to affect the health system, such as reduced sterilization, diagnostic imaging, cleaning, laundry and catering services. However, the Electricity Distributing Company has connected some of the hospitals with extra grid lines, which has in turn decreased the dependency on fuel to run-backup generators; in addition, ad-hoc donations from various charities have prevented the closure of hospitals.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Health continues to highlight the potential threat facing the health sector, should the remaining fuel gets completely depleted.

The report added that chronic shortages of pharmaceuticals and medical supplies at all facility levels continue to pose major challenges for health services, saying that the Health Cluster requires $32 million USD to response to humanitarian needs in the oPt.

The Humanitarian Response Plan for the Health Cluster will target 900,000 people out of the 1.2 million identified as acutely in need of humanitarian health assistance.

(Source / 11.02.2019)

Hebron on my mind

By Jafar Ramini

It’s been exactly a week since the colonisers of our land, Mr. Netanyahu and his gang of war criminals, decided not to renew the mandate of TIPH, the Temporary International Presence in Hebron whose role has been to observe and report. These observers were volunteers and they come from Turkey, Switzerland, Norway, Sweden and Italy and their job was to observe any violations of the human rights of the Hebronites and report. Not to the United Nations, you understand or to any international body but to the Israeli Government, the Palestinian Authority and their own governments of course.

The decision was unilateral. But when did Israel take any notice of the Palestinian Authority, the UN or the International Community for that matter.

In answer to a question why he is not renewing the mandate, Prime Minister Netanyahu said that he would force the TIPH out of the city, “We will not allow an international force to act against us,” he stated.

Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan, who had been urging Netanyahu to scrap the mission, said that TIPH members had “cooperated with extremist organisations and promoted de-legitimisation of Israel.” But Israel, as per usual, does not tolerate anybody that will bring its atrocities and infringements of Palestinian human rights to the world. As such the TIPH had to go.

The Palestinian Authority is warning that Israel is planning to perpetrate a second massacre against Palestinians in the occupied city and take control of the Ibrahimi Mosque. One member of Fatah’s Revolutionary Council, Osama Al-Qawasmi, said in a statement that the only explanation for the Israeli decision is that it plans to seize the Old City and the Ibrahimi Mosque and complete its colonial plan in Hebron.

Those words, ‘second massacre’ fill me with foreboding.The TIPH was formed and stationed in Hebron in the aftermath of the first massacre at Al-Ibrahimi Mosque in Hebron in 1994 when an American Jewish Extremist settler, Baruch Goldstein mowed down 29 Palestinian worshippers at the Mosque and injured over 130 others.

Their lust for our blood it would seem is unquenchable. Since that first massacre, Hebron, an ancient city with 40,000 inhabitants, has been plagued by a group of extremist and heavily armed Jewish settlers, not dissimilar to Goldstein. They have made the lives of every man, woman and child of Hebron an utter misery. The depths of their depravity in their treatment of the Hebronites are such that no normal human being would ever contemplate, let alone undertake. The aim of these extremist zealots is, of course, to empty Hebron, steal the land, occupy the Al-Ibrahimi Mosque and turn it into a Jewish shrine.

Believe me when I say that during the last week I sat down to write about Hebron on more than four occasions. Each time I was prevented by a torrent of emotion and foreboding. Hebron and I have a long and enduring history.

My late mother was a Hebronite. Her family, the Al Qaisi Clan are still in Hebron and have been there for millennia. My connection to the city and its people did not stop with the death of my late mother. Three of my sisters are married to Hebronites. One in Halhoul, within walking distance from Hebron and the other two in Beit Ummer, a stones throw away. Another sister was the Head Mistress of the girls’ school in another Hebron village, Al Khadir, know to Christians as St George.

Hebron knows my footprint. I have walked all over the city and visited those surrounding villages. I have stopped at my sisters’ homes and spent time in the fields and orchards in the fifties and early sixties before I left Palestine. The last time I visited Hebron with my wife was 9 years ago. Hebron looked and felt like a ghost town. But despite the cruelty and barbarity of the settlers and the Israeli Occupation Forces, the Hebronites are still and will continue to be unbowed. Israel will never prevail. We Palestinians don’t do defeat and that terrifies them.

(Source / 09.02.2019)

Cancer Patients Face Slow Death in Gaza

06 Feb 4:10 AM

About 8515 cancer patients in the Gaza Strip are facing a fate worse than death, as they do not have adequate resources for medical treatment, Al Mezan Center for Human Rights reported, according to Al Ray.

On Monday, World Cancer Day, the center published a report about the conditions of cancer patients in Gaza Strip.

The report explained that 607 cases of cancer were recorded among children, which constitutes 7% of the total number.

While the number of female cancer patients reached 4705, constituting 55.3% of the total number.

The center warned of the psychological and physical suffering of patients in Gaza, as a result of the weakness of the possibilities and the permanent shortage of equipment and diagnostic equipment, drugs and the inputs of operating equipment and therapeutic devices.

The center stressed that the big challenge facing cancer patients is the severe shortage in basic medications.

The average rate of deficit in the drugs needed to treat cancer and blood diseases was 58%, during 2018.

Israeli siege on the Gaza Strip and the restriction of movement of patients constitute a violation that threatens the lives of patients since it deprives them of access to treatment.

38% of cancer patients in Gaza Strip could not leave Gaza to receive treatment abroad, while 5% of patients were detained.

PCHR documented the deaths of 45 cancer patients, between 2016 and 2018, due to Israeli restrictions, especially at Beit Hanoun (Erez) crossing, in the northern Gaza Strip.

(Source / 06.02.2019)