Not just numbers: online memorial publishes names, faces of Palestinians killed in Gaza

Qassem Talal Hamdan, 23, was killed on 13 July 2014 in Beit Hanoun in northern Gaza. An engineering student, his “dream was to be a successful engineer to build and develop his country.”

Iman Khalil Abed Ammar was just nine years old. She was killed on 20 July in the Shujaiya massacre along with her brothers, four-year-old Asem and thirteen-year-old Ibrahim.
Mahmoud Abdel Hamid Elzowidi, 23, and Mohammad Khalid Jamil Elzowidi, 20, were among five members of their family killed on 19 July when Israel bombed their house in Beit Hanoun.
These are the names of just six of the more than 1,000 Palestinians known to have been killed in almost three weeks of relentless Israeli bombardment of the Gaza Strip.
On Saturday, during a twelve-hour “humanitarian truce,” the full extent of the mass destruction Israel has inflicted was revealed as people were able to re-enter neighborhoods such as Shujaiya, and dozens more bodies were pulled from under the rubble. Many people are still missing.
Afraid that the names of those slaughtered by Israel would get lost in the staggering statistics of death, two women have set up the website Humanize Palestine (humanizepalestine.com) as an online memorial to Palestinians killed in Israeli attacks.
Bayan Abusneineh and Dana Saifan are both recent graduates of the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) and have both been active in Students for Justice in Palestine.
I spoke with Abusneineh, who told me that she and Saifan got the idea to start the project after seeing many graphic images of the bodies of Palestinians who had died violent deaths circulating through social media.
“Initially when everything was happening it was necessary for people to see these graphic images, to know the reality of what is going in Gaza,” Abusneineh explained. “But then I started thinking about those three Israeli settler youths who were kidnapped – their faces were everywhere. Generally, when Israelis are killed, their bodies are not shown. You only see smiling faces, and that creates empathy.”
Abusneineh said that Humanize Palestine was intended to serve first and foremost “as a reminder and memorial for our own community. People were already making an effort to put names out there, and we saw them sharing some of the images of friends and relatives when they were alive, so our project is another way to bring them together.”
But she also says she hopes that people outside the Palestinian community will “see it and understand better who Palestinians are. This is how they lived. This is how their lives were ended.”
(continued)

Not just numbers: online memorial publishes names, faces of Palestinians killed in Gaza

Qassem Talal Hamdan, 23, was killed on 13 July 2014 in Beit Hanoun in northern Gaza. An engineering student, his “dream was to be a successful engineer to build and develop his country.”

Iman Khalil Abed Ammar was just nine years old. She was killed on 20 July in the Shujaiya massacre along with her brothers, four-year-old Asem and thirteen-year-old Ibrahim.

Mahmoud Abdel Hamid Elzowidi, 23, and Mohammad Khalid Jamil Elzowidi, 20, were among five members of their family killed on 19 July when Israel bombed their house in Beit Hanoun.

These are the names of just six of the more than 1,000 Palestinians known to have been killed in almost three weeks of relentless Israeli bombardment of the Gaza Strip.

On Saturday, during a twelve-hour “humanitarian truce,” the full extent of the mass destruction Israel has inflicted was revealed as people were able to re-enter neighborhoods such as Shujaiya, and dozens more bodies were pulled from under the rubble. Many people are still missing.

Afraid that the names of those slaughtered by Israel would get lost in the staggering statistics of death, two women have set up the website Humanize Palestine (humanizepalestine.com) as an online memorial to Palestinians killed in Israeli attacks.

Bayan Abusneineh and Dana Saifan are both recent graduates of the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) and have both been active in Students for Justice in Palestine.

I spoke with Abusneineh, who told me that she and Saifan got the idea to start the project after seeing many graphic images of the bodies of Palestinians who had died violent deaths circulating through social media.

“Initially when everything was happening it was necessary for people to see these graphic images, to know the reality of what is going in Gaza,” Abusneineh explained. “But then I started thinking about those three Israeli settler youths who were kidnapped – their faces were everywhere. Generally, when Israelis are killed, their bodies are not shown. You only see smiling faces, and that creates empathy.”

Abusneineh said that Humanize Palestine was intended to serve first and foremost “as a reminder and memorial for our own community. People were already making an effort to put names out there, and we saw them sharing some of the images of friends and relatives when they were alive, so our project is another way to bring them together.”

But she also says she hopes that people outside the Palestinian community will “see it and understand better who Palestinians are. This is how they lived. This is how their lives were ended.”

(continued)

"The officials added that the deal would not be a written agreement, and that no papers will be signed. “There will be understandings that will center on the cessation of Gaza rocket fire and the end of IAF strikes,” the officials said, adding that “discussions with the Egyptians on other issues like border crossings and arms smuggling will take place down the line” (Barak Ravid)"

Ha’aretz (via fireintheheart)

Well.

fireintheheart:

The Guardian: Gaza-Israel crisis, every verified incident mapped.
You can click the link and zoom on the map, this is just an overview. You can also click on the red dots and view the details of each incident. 

fireintheheart:

The Guardian: Gaza-Israel crisis, every verified incident mapped.

You can click the link and zoom on the map, this is just an overview. You can also click on the red dots and view the details of each incident. 

alivesonofawake:

The assassination of Jabari will go down in history as another showy military action initiated by an outgoing government on the eve of an election.

This is what researcher Prof. Yagil Levy has called “fanning the conflict as an intra-state control strategy:” The external conflict helps a government strengthen its standing domestically because the public unites behind the army, and social and economic problems are edged off the national agenda.

Aluf Benn

I’ve always had mad respect for Aluf Benn.

Internet intimidation between armies is apparently the new norm.

Internet intimidation between armies is apparently the new norm.

IDF kills top Hamas commander; prepares for ground offensive - Israel News, Ynetnews →

The Paris Protocol and the Palestinian economy
972 Mag | 22 September 2012

In April 1994, Israeli and Palestinian negotiation teams met in Paris to sign one of the most important annexes to the Oslo Accords – the Paris Protocol, the agreement which regulates the economic relationship between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.
Today, 18 years after the protocol was signed, demonstrations against the agreement have spread across the West Bank. A Palestinian from the Gaza Strip set himself on fire and two Palestinians in the West Bank tried to do the same in protest against the economic situation. Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad was reported to be considering resignation and Palestinian Authority Minister of Civilian Affairs Hussein a-Sheikh submitted an official request to Israel to review the Paris Protocol. In view of the heated debate, here we provide some general background on the agreement and its implications.
The Paris Protocol?
The protocol defines the economic relationship between Israel and the Palestinian Authority. It was signed for an interim period of five years and was to be implemented gradually. A senior official in the Israeli Ministry of Industry, Trade and Labor told Gisha that the fact that the agreement was due to remain in effect for only five years helped encourage Palestinian negotiators to sign it: “They understood that in order to make progress, they had to agree to some very practical things. It was a five-year agreement so they said ‘let’s take the first step.’”
According to the same official: “At that point in time, it was the optimal agreement and the Palestinians entered it wholeheartedly. By the way, there are still people today who think it’s a good agreement. Albeit with limitations… as long as people are thinking about what is and isn’t good, you know you have some kind of balance.”
How is the protocol connected to the protests in the West Bank?
According to the Paris Protocol, the Palestinian Authority must peg its gasoline prices and value added tax (VAT) rate to Israel’s. Therefore when VAT in Israel was recently raised by one percent, the Palestinian Authority also raised its own VAT from 14.5 percent to 15.5 percent. A senior Palestinian official told Israeli news website Walla! (Hebrew): “There is no denying that we are a part of Israel’s economy. If Israel raises the price of cigarettes, our cigarette prices go up. If the price of gas goes up, so does ours. If things are expensive in Israel, they are expensive here too.” The official also believed that the Palestinian VAT increase would “not cause a stir” among the Palestinian public. He was wrong.
In response to the demonstrations, the Palestinian Authority announced (Hebrew) that it would cut fuel and cooking gas prices, reduce the VAT to 15 percent and pay Palestinian Authority employees NIS 2,000 from their August salaries, which have yet to be paid. It is unclear whether the Palestinian Authority has reached a new agreement with Israel on fuel prices and the VAT rate, but statements made by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu seem to indicate that the agreement was in fact changed (Hebrew): “We have made some changes to the tax agreements. We are advancing certain transfers. We have also helped with Palestinian workers and a number of other measures to assist them.”
(Read more.)

The Paris Protocol and the Palestinian economy

972 Mag | 22 September 2012

In April 1994, Israeli and Palestinian negotiation teams met in Paris to sign one of the most important annexes to the Oslo Accords – the Paris Protocol, the agreement which regulates the economic relationship between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.

Today, 18 years after the protocol was signed, demonstrations against the agreement have spread across the West Bank. A Palestinian from the Gaza Strip set himself on fire and two Palestinians in the West Bank tried to do the same in protest against the economic situation. Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad was reported to be considering resignation and Palestinian Authority Minister of Civilian Affairs Hussein a-Sheikh submitted an official request to Israel to review the Paris Protocol. In view of the heated debate, here we provide some general background on the agreement and its implications.

The Paris Protocol?

The protocol defines the economic relationship between Israel and the Palestinian Authority. It was signed for an interim period of five years and was to be implemented gradually. A senior official in the Israeli Ministry of Industry, Trade and Labor told Gisha that the fact that the agreement was due to remain in effect for only five years helped encourage Palestinian negotiators to sign it: “They understood that in order to make progress, they had to agree to some very practical things. It was a five-year agreement so they said ‘let’s take the first step.’”

According to the same official: “At that point in time, it was the optimal agreement and the Palestinians entered it wholeheartedly. By the way, there are still people today who think it’s a good agreement. Albeit with limitations… as long as people are thinking about what is and isn’t good, you know you have some kind of balance.”

How is the protocol connected to the protests in the West Bank?

According to the Paris Protocol, the Palestinian Authority must peg its gasoline prices and value added tax (VAT) rate to Israel’s. Therefore when VAT in Israel was recently raised by one percent, the Palestinian Authority also raised its own VAT from 14.5 percent to 15.5 percent. A senior Palestinian official told Israeli news website Walla! (Hebrew): “There is no denying that we are a part of Israel’s economy. If Israel raises the price of cigarettes, our cigarette prices go up. If the price of gas goes up, so does ours. If things are expensive in Israel, they are expensive here too.” The official also believed that the Palestinian VAT increase would “not cause a stir” among the Palestinian public. He was wrong.

In response to the demonstrations, the Palestinian Authority announced (Hebrew) that it would cut fuel and cooking gas prices, reduce the VAT to 15 percent and pay Palestinian Authority employees NIS 2,000 from their August salaries, which have yet to be paid. It is unclear whether the Palestinian Authority has reached a new agreement with Israel on fuel prices and the VAT rate, but statements made by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu seem to indicate that the agreement was in fact changed (Hebrew): “We have made some changes to the tax agreements. We are advancing certain transfers. We have also helped with Palestinian workers and a number of other measures to assist them.”

(Read more.)

Bedouin women graze their sheep in the Zeitoun neighborhood southern Gaza City, 9 July.
(Ashraf Amra / APA images)

Bedouin women graze their sheep in the Zeitoun neighborhood southern Gaza City, 9 July.

(Ashraf Amra / APA images)

PA prepares for local elections despite Gaza objections

BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — The Palestinian Authority on Sunday pledged to prepare for local government elections, despite objections from the Hamas government in the Gaza Strip.

The Fatah governing body, meeting on Sunday, agreed to form a committee headed by President Mahmoud Abbas to prepare for the municipal vote, Fatah spokesman Nabil Abu Rudaineh said.

Presidential, parliamentary and local government elections are all overdue since Fatah and Hamas split bitterly over Hamas’ electoral success in 2006.

A government source told Ma’an earlier that Abbas was delaying local elections until finalizing his reconciliation accord with Hamas, signed over a year ago but never implemented.

The Palestinian leadership decided to go ahead with the vote due to considerable pressure at local level, the source said, speaking on condition of anonymity. 

Yousef Rizqa, advisor to Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh, hit back at the report, telling Ma’an: “There will be no elections.” 

The independent commission tasked with organizing Palestinian elections is still not operational in Gaza, despite the assurance of Haniyeh’s government it could resume work.

Hamas and Fatah signed a deal in May 2011 to unite their rival governments in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, and hold fresh elections within a year. The deal was scuppered as the parties battled over implementing its terms.

(Source: maannews.net)

Israeli minister: Cut power supply to Gaza this summer

Faced with a power shortage for Israelis, the environment minister offers to cut the life-saving power Israel is selling to Gaza strip.

Israel’s minister of environmental protection, Gilad Erdan (Likud), has demanded that the government stop supplying power to the Gaza Strip in order to prevent power failure in Israeli cities this summer. In an official letter addressed to all government ministers (below), Erdan notes that 4.5 percent of Israel’s power supply is sold to Gaza.

Erdan writes (emphasis in the original):

The State of Israel is preparing itself for a power shortage during the summer of 2012. In order to continue the steady supply of power, we [the government] are presented with a decision which details measures for the prevention of a power shortage. Before the government discusses this option, I ask you to add a condition which states that prior to placing any limit on the power supply to Israeli citizens, power supply to all foreign elements will stop, most notably to the terror authority of Hamas in Gaza.

The collapse of the natural gas agreement between Egypt and Israel will probably lead to a power shortage in Israel – a temporary problem, which can be solved when Israel begins using its own huge natural gas resources in 2013. As a result, Israelis are likely to suffer a few hours of power shortage at the peak of this summer’s heat.

The 1.5 million Palestinians in Gaza already suffer 12 hours of blackout a day on average. Israel bombed the Gaza power plant in 2006, and didn’t allow in the necessary materials needed for the reconstruction since. As a result, even Israel’s own Supreme Court recognized in 2007 that the survival of the people in Gaza depends on the Israeli power supply. Israel has declared before the court that power supply to the Strip would not be stopped.

According to the non-profit organization Gisha, the Israeli supply accounts for 35 percent of the power Gazans use. Due to the fuel shortage in the Strip, using power generators is also limited, and critical medical supplies is lost every year due to lack of proper storage conditions.

Israel’s minister of environmental protection, a senior member of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government, is now asking to leave 1.5 million people without the little they need to survive, so that Israeli citizens can enjoy their air-conditioning undisturbed this August.

(Source: 972mag.com)