As for the recent bombings, it is horrible and an ugly thing to comprehend. The unfortunate situation is that the Hamas and Jihad do not have a good since of International PR. Their timing sucks. As I have been sitting here watching the war between the two tribes, I do not know if there is a true definition for “terrorism”. Last week five Palestinian children were killed on school grounds from picking up a live motor shell and in other situations, Just today, 2 Palestinians were killed, one a 12 year old and 11 wounded four of them were children as well. So far in two days, 10 Palestinians were killed, 4 were children. Two West Bank cities were under military siege in Ramallah and Jenin for the last four days. Tanks roll in, and fire randomly to get everyone inside. The families are not allowed to leave their homes. One just hopes that there is food inside of the homes because you never know how long the siege will last. What is terrorism here? I really wonder. The stories that I hear and the things that I see would make ones hair rise while the media ignores the real situation that is involved. Israel is very good with the media and their usage of vocabulary. They understand the Western mentality and win many hearts to their side. I cannot think of any other country that could get away with the things that I know about.
The treatment towards the Palestinians has been going on for many years. This is why the Intifada started in the first place. If they were to stop now, then all of the casualties within the past year would have been for nothing. Both governments need to quit pointing fingers at one another and take responsibility for their own actions then sit at a table and start over. But that will never happen.
Sharon continues to build new settlements, and expand the old ones while taking land for safety reasons, to build highways; while the taxpayers (and our money, i.e. U.S) pay for the roads, the empty homes and military security expenses. So far 40% Of Palestinian land has been bulldozed. I see settlers traveling in new bullet proof automobiles accompanied by two to three armed solders while going to and from their home inside the dead center of a Palestinian controlled and occupied West Bank town. Not to mention that the travel and walking is with 7 or 8 of their children. Who would want to live under those conditions? Who would put their own children at such risk and what man would love their family so much to put them in such a situation? 70% of the settlers are American foreigners who decided to move into Israel. Interesting huh?
I suppose I am the angriest at the Media when breaches of cease-fire, killings, confiscations of homes/land, imprisonment, and checkpoint harassment/abuse are totally being ignored. Funny, I just did some stats on the last 6 days. 12 Pals killed, 109 wounded, 27 of those children and 9 children who are critical. One of the children is 1.5 years old. This is only in 6 days.
The “hidden” numbers from the public’s eyes has been going on for one year now. In the past year, I have seen an increased amount of children walking around with missing limbs/eyes/or are now mentally damaged. As well as unknown and future psychological damage that is caused from the experience they have had to witness.
I know that many of the American and Israeli population do not get the real news. The news is censored in both areas. The news is also censored in the Arab countries as well.
The situation with the Sept. 11 celebrations is this: I know a woman (friend) who worked on the same street where that footage was filmed. The children were celebrating immediately after the first attack. The film footage was not yet shown, and the announcement was that America was attacked. She said that about 10 children and three adults went to the street to celebrate. At that particular moment, the stats were not in as to the casualties. This is what the Media is good at. They do not tell the entire story, only a part of the story. That shot was shown over and over and over again to the entire world. I feel that a major role of this situation/war is in using the Media to portray a certain image of what the powers with power and money want the people to see and to believe. Why don’t I make any real money with my stories and photographs? It is because those that are interested are not in control of the major international networks. We are a few alternative news reporters that tell the stories and news financed from our own pockets. Who reads this type of alternative news? Only those people who are aware of the situation and want the real news. Therefore, the major population in the media controlled areas does not have a clue as to the real situation and that population develops a false reality regarding the situation.
America funds Israel with enough money to pay each and every Israeli family 16,000 a year. This money goes into building settlements and the military. Most of us out this area is very well aware that if America cuts even 1/2 of the funds, Israel will not survive on its own. All of the bullets, missiles, tanks, helicopters and F-16s say, “Made in U.S.A”. When a child picks up a bullet from the ground, this is what he reads. The solders belts and bags say, U.S.A. So if you’re eye level is at the solders belt level while your mother or father is being yelled at or made to stand in the sun for an hour, this is what you read U.S.A. while you are quiet, scared and wait. If we cut our funding, then Israel may be forced to look at the situation a little harder and may have to figure out a way to get along with their neighbors for the next 400 years. Right now, they really do not have a concern or a desire to solve this issue. We have made this country dependant on the U.S. We are enablers to the situation. The Palestinians see America as Israel. We are one in the same to them as a nation.
My concern is that the children now are a third generation occupied and neglected population being treated without dignity and without hope. Each and every child has seen their parents get spat upon, beat up, had their homes occupied by solders, has had a relative killed and has had to listen to shooting, missiles and helicopters at night. In the last year they missed more than 1/2 of their schooling. In Hebron, many of the children have not started school yet because of the city checkpoints between their homes and the schools. Sometimes, they do not allow the teachers to pass through. They have sleeping disorders, wet their beds and lack respect for their elders. The children from the ages of 11 and up are getting out of control. No one can control them. This is what happens and the parents are deeply concerned.
I was in Gaza this weekend and went into a refugee camp. I walked for four blocks; by the end of the 4th block my friend and I were surrounded by over 100 children. Seventy-five percent of the boys had a toy gun. They do not think anything about guns. In Biet Hanina, an area near Jerusalem, a teacher asked a group of children what they wanted to be when they grew up, 100 percent of the boys said a suicide bomber. I am greatly concerned for the next generation of children in Palestine and what will become of them.
The parents couldn’t stop the violence; they think that they need to do something. The children see all and what they have seen would be enough to drive any adult crazy. I imagine this suicide ideology is something of a hope that they feel they can hold on to. They see it as an answer to their and their families’ problems. Death is nothing to them anymore. This is my great concern.
What to do with the population then? As one Israeli settler told me, is to give them to another Arab country to be concerned about or to drive them into the sea. We all know that the Palestinians were here in the first place and they were forced by the world to allow the Israelis to settle this land under the guise to share and live as equals. What happened to that perspective?
Under the current leadership from the side with all of the power this “peace” will not occur. The lies have been told and the damage is well done.
The children will continue to ask for their freedom in the only way that they feel they have the power and any control by continuing to use the act of suicide bombing. Although it is horrible and sad, the scream and cry for freedom is loud and clear.