Graffiti left by Israeli soldiers in Gaza. Other pieces said, "Death to Arabs,"
"Arabs must die," and "One down, 999,999 to go."
At least 400 Palestinian children in Gaza were killed by Israel during its three-week massacre there. At least 1,630 children were injured. As the media was prevented by Israel from entering Gaza during the attacks, the horrific tales of "Operation Kill As Many Palestinians As Possible Before Obama Takes Office And Help Kadima Gain In The Polls Cast Lead" have just started to emerge. And of course some of the most tragic involve the children.
For example, four-year-old Samar Abed Rabbu:
At her bedside, her uncle Hassan told us the family had been ordered out of their home by Israeli soldiers who were shelling the neighbourhood.
A tank had parked in front of the house, where around 30 people were taking shelter.
The women and children - mother, grandmother and three little girls - came out waving a white flag and then, he said, an Israeli soldier came out of the tank and opened fire on the terrified procession.
Samar's two sisters, aged seven and two, were shot dead. The grandmother was hit in the arm and in the side, but has survived.
Or Abdul Rahim Abu Halima, 14:
killed when his home was hit by an Israeli white phosphorus artillery shell in Atatra, in north-eastern Gaza, on 4 January. He died along with two of his brothers, Zayed, eight, and Hamza, six, his sister Shahed, who was 15-months-old, and their father, Saad Allah, 45, who was sheltering them in his arms in the hallway when the shell struck.
Then there are the children who witnessed family members executed in front of them. There were four children among the 13 people who saw Fuad Helw murdered by Israeli soldiers in his home:
As the troops burst inside, family members said Fuad Helw, 55, jumped up with his arms in the air.
"We all put our hands up and yelled, 'We're women and children. We're not the resistance,' " recalled Sherine Helw, Fuad's daughter-in-law.
The soldiers opened fire on Fuad, said Sherine, and he died in front of his family.
Nine-year-old Abdullah Samouni lost his father in a similar way. He:
described the moment his father was allegedly "executed" by Israeli soldiers.
Holding his arms in the air, he said: "He was surrendering like this. My father came out and they shot him right away."
Of course such acts, along with the use of white phosphorous and DIME bombs, are war crimes. And Spain is showing its willingness to act on a previous Israeli war crime in Gaza. Hopefully more investigations continue. (And here are some of the people who should be prosecuted.)
Israel does not seem to care. Instead there are high schoolers screaming "Death to the Arabs" and the Israeli army's chief rabbi saying mercy is "terribly immoral." Meanwhile, Obama's envoy to the region, George Mitchell, has assured Israel that no change will occur during this new administration. Mitchell even promised Israel that Obama stood by Bush's 2004 letter to Ariel Sharon, barring the return of Palestinian refugees to Israel and ceding large settlements in the West Bank to Israel.
Amidst all the horror and slaughter, at least some in the U.S. mainstream media are beginning to ask the touch questions, such as the 60 Minutes report below.
May Palestine and all of us see justice and liberation. The struggle continues.