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Israel wants pieces of Palestine, not peace, and they want Palestine without its people.

The latest violence is yet another form of carnage directed at the Palestine people. The occupation of Palestine is the root of the violence. Israel wants to dominate people and insist on peace. That is impossible to achieve. Israel frames their attacks on the Palestinians as defense, a narrative we have adopted in the U.S. However, the killing of more than 1,000 people, mostly unarmed civilians and children, are making their rounds on social media. Israel can no longer hide its illegal ethnic cleansing of Palestine with their well-orchestrated propaganda. What is going on in Gaza is simply genocide.

For years, Israel has perfected the dehumanization of the Palestinian people. In 1948 they labeled Palestine “a country without people for people without a country” and expelled 750,000 people from their homes (including my mother and her family) and erased 453 villages. From 1967-1993, they labeled the Palestinian Authority a terrorist organization and created an illegal occupation of 4.5 million Palestinians. Today, they use Hamas as a ruse, (this is an organization they nurtured to oppose the Palestinian Authority), to attack Gaza, a caged city with 1.8 million mostly unarmed civilian. Three quarters of the people killed are unarmed civilians.

Israel’s narrative is defense. In reality, Israel is continuing their strategic and brutal occupation. The latest killing is an escalation of continuous violence. According to B’Tselem, an Israeli human right agency, 561 Palestinians were killed by Israel since the last cease-fire. In addition, Israel stole land and built 165 illegal settlements, imprisoned thousands without charges and injured thousands. A recent UN human rights investigator accused Israel of the “ethnic cleansing” of Jerusalem. Israel has the power but is powerless. They have the guns but fear children without guns. They talk about peace but they work on disseminating Palestine with their settlements. If Israel wants peace, they must begin with the truth.

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Terry Ahwal

Past President, American Ramallah Federation of Palestine

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