Around 1,000 joined the Palestine protest in central London on Saturday (Picture: Guy Smallman)

Israel’s war on Palestine is not just about Hamas

After three months of the brutal bombardment and destruction of Gaza—one thing is clear.

Israel’s assault on Gaza is about ethnic cleansing through murder and displacement, not just defeating Palestinian resistance group Hamas.

The Israeli state has now murdered over 23,000 Palestinians, of which at least 70 percent are women and children.

Palestinian media report that 65,000 homes have been destroyed and 290,000 have been damaged.

After analysing pictures from ­satellites, experts estimate that around two-thirds of all structures in northern Gaza have been destroyed.

Israel has blocked essential ­medical supplies, water purifiers, and even tent poles from entering Gaza on aid trucks.

The United Nations Palestinian relief agency estimated this week that 1.9 million people are internally displaced within Gaza — 85 percent of the population.

Ibtisam, who lives in Deir el‑Balah, in central Gaza, told Socialist Worker she has been forced to flee her home as fighting and air strikes have made it too dangerous to stay.

“We’re leaving, I pray nothing bad will happen. I must think responsibly to save my kid’s life,” she said.

The brutality that Israel has subjected the Palestinians to in Gaza is by design. Israeli politicians are explicit about plans to make Palestinians suffer.

On Friday of last week, Israel’s minister of heritage Amichay Eliyahu said that Israel must break the “national dream” of the Palestinians.

He added, the Palestinians “slaughtered us on 7 October, so they must not be there (in Gaza).

Eliyahu ended his tirade saying Israel should “find ways to deal with Gazans that are more painful than death”.

The media tells lies and always favours Israel

The mainstream media constantly defends Israel and downplays its atrocities in Gaza.

And it has blood on its hands for accepting the idea that Palestinian lives aren’t as valuable as Israeli ones.

According to a new report by media analysts Greg Philo and Mike Berry, the BBC is one of the guiltiest organisations.

Research of reports between 7 October and 4 November last year  showed that the BBC uses radically different words about the deaths of Israelis and Palestinians.

To describe the killing of Israelis, the BBC routinely uses words and phrases such as “murder”, “barbarically killed”, and “atrocity.”

But these words are never used to describe how the Israeli state kills Palestinians. In total these kinds of words were used 52 times in relation to Israel deaths by the BBC—but never for Palestinians.

Major Canadian news outlet CBC said recently that it could not refer to Israeli terror using terms such as “murderous”, “vicious”, ­“massacre”, or “slaughter” because the murder of Palestinians ­happened “remotely”.

The mainstream media has also deliberately obscured the context in which Palestinian resistance to Israel takes place. 

According to the report it fails to mention that for more than 75 years Zionists have waged a war against the Palestinians, using every method to push them from their land.

Shockingly, the media hasn’t even bothered to condemn Israel’s assault on Palestinian journalists.

Israel last week murdered Hamza al-Dahdouh, the son of Al-Jazeera Gaza bureau chief, Wael Al-Dahdouh, in a targeted attack.

He wasn’t “killed”, and he didn’t “die”, as other mainstream news outlets have reported. Israeli forces murdered him when they launched a missile at his car.

Hamza al-Dahdouh’s execution adds to the over100 media workers murdered by Israeli since 7 October.

The Palestinian resistance continues to fight

After more than three months, Israel has not been able to crush the Palestinian resistance. In Gaza, Hamas and other groups are still battling Israeli forces.

The armed wing of Hamas, the Al-Qassam Brigades, destroyed an Israeli troop carrier that had invaded the Al-Maghazi refugee camp last weekend.

Resistance forces also targeted troops which entered the Al-Mahatta area of Khan Yunis, in southern Gaza.

And, despite intense repression, resistance is also growing in the West Bank—both on the streets and through armed resistance.

“The refusing of the occupation is the most important thing,” a Palestinian living near Jerusalem told Socialist Worker.

“People are under massive pressure from the military here. People are being arrested for a post or a message on WhatsApp.

“The number of those from the West Bank being imprisoned by Israel continues to rise. But again, the people are raising their voices.

“There are people from Fatah fighting the Israelis in the refugee camps in the north. There are groups of all different colours fighting back with the basic weapons that are available to them. 

“We are also engaging in boycotts. The Israelis control what we buy, so we are boycotting their goods.

“After the assassination of Hamas leader Saleh al-Arouri by Israel in Lebanon, there was a general strike. Near me no shop or bakery was open.”

The West Bank resident added that Israeli repression is increasing.

“In my area, Israel killed a 17- year-old who had been protesting. In areas B and C of the West Bank, it is much more difficult to protest because of the Israeli soldiers and the settlers. It is easier in the bigger cities in area A.

“But in every district there are daily demonstrations. People are still using social media and having meetings. They are coming together to say how they are feeling.

“To me it feels like the Palestinian national movement is growing and it is trying to get together to stop the attacks on the Palestinian people.”

Israel is deepening the occupation of the West Bank

For Palestinians living in the West Bank life has completely changed since 7 October. Mayar Derbashi explained to Socialist Worker how her life has been altered.

“I lost my job due to cancellation of all Palestinian entry permits as I worked in Jerusalem. I’ve been forced to cancel my wedding,” she said.

“Most West Bank residents are grappling with income loss, including those who work for the Palestinian Authority.

“I live in a refugee camp, and the security and policing is getting more intense with each passing day. The camp’s entrance remains inaccessible for nearly 100 days.

“This has severely restricted movement and has significantly impacted the elderly and sick.

“Security measures, invasions, and closures have intensified, disrupting travel to work and daily activities.

Increased attacks by Israeli soldiers and settlers on highways have contributed to an overall sense of instability and fear for Palestinians.

“Palestinians face indiscriminate targeting, making routine activities perilous.

“Whether you’re casually walking on the street, driving your car, or simply watching an Israeli invasion through your window, you are targeted.”

Mayar adds that Palestinians living in the West Bank are terrified of what Israel is planning for them.

“There’s a widespread belief that Israel’s plan involves a sequential approach, first finishing off Gaza and then dealing with the West Bank.

“I find it challenging to make predictions given the sudden and intense nature of events here. Shortly after 7 October, I believed that the situation had reached its peak, but it proved otherwise, consistently revealing more horrific developments.

“Now, I can’t help but contemplate how much worse it could become.

“I thought this war would be shorter. But the continuation of hostilities has created an atmosphere of unpredictability, making it difficult to anticipate what tomorrow holds.”

Mayar adds that there is a “heightened desire for resistance” in the West Bank. “The increased security measures, heightened policing since 7 October, and various closures, invasions, and arrests have significantly constrained and restricted the ability of resistance groups or individuals to organise and act.

“But resistance has many other forms, and Palestinians have been resisting by all means,” she added.

Imperialist leaders will do nothing to stop the slaughter

Western leaders, including those of Britain and the US, cheer on Israel’s assault on the Palestinians.

US secretary of state, Antony Blinken, began a tour of the Middle East last week. On the tour, he said that it is “imperative” to protect civilians.

Yet it has not been two weeks since US president Joe Biden bypassed Congress to hand Israel £116 million to help it kill more Palestinians.

Warmongers are also using Israel’s war to justify arms sales to regimes they previously rebuffed.

Germany’s Green party foreign minister Annalena Baerbock wants to lift the ban on selling Eurofighter jets to Saudi Arabia.

That’s because, she says, the brutal dictatorship is now playing a good role in helping Israel to attack Yemen.

Germany paused arms sales to Saudi Arabia after it assassinated journalist Jamal Khashoggi in 2018.

“The world, especially here in the Middle East, has become a completely different place since 7 October,” she said.

Britain also wants the Saudi kingdom to continue its murderous work in Yemen.

That’s because Houthi fighters are targeting Western shipping in the Red Sea (see pages 10&11).

The US wants to take military action against the Houthis.

Blinken said that its attacks are “hurting people around the world” and added that “over a dozen countries have made clear that the Houthis will be held accountable for future attacks.”

Not only are Western ­leaders encouraging the slaughter in Gaza, but they are also using Israel’s assault to expand their own ­imperialist goals.

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