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  • Writer's pictureMike Parker

The sacrifice of innocents at Al Shifa Hospital in Gaza

In the ceasefire, sorry "pause", some Palestinians were finally able to return to Al Shifa Hospital. In one room they found five premature babies, who had been on life support, dead, their bodies decomposing and crawling with maggots.

Many of the premature babies at the hospital, around 30 infants, were evacuated to Egypt, presumably by the Palestinian medical team before Israel took control of the Hospital [Reuters]. However this new footage, which has blurred out the bodies, shows not everyone made it out, and under Israeli control these kids were somehow "missed". So they managed to find a couple of riffles hidden behind an MRI machine, but they missed a room full of crying children.

I remember the outrage at the story of 40 beheaded Israeli babies. Joe Biden claimed to have seen pictures of beheaded babies, which turned out to be propaganda presumably intended to rile people up for war. A White House spokesperson later clarified that US officials and the president have not seen pictures or confirmed such reports independently [Al Jazera].

Al Jazera claim to have disproved the claim tracing it to an interview by Israeli news agency i24 with one Ben Zion (interesting surname), a "radical" (the correct word is extremist) leader in the West Bank. For context I'll remind you that the Israeli settlements in the West Bank are illegal settlements, by mostly foreign religious nut jobs who moved to Israel specifically to steal this land because they have a misguided sense of entitlement to the region based on some words written in a book a few thousand years ago. Al Jazera found no evidence for these deaths and no photos, just headlines reporting headlines like Chinese whispers.

In this case at Al Shifa there are photos, stills taken from video footage. The footage is blurred, thankfully. Nonetheless you can make out the bodies of children. The thought that these innocents may have been left to die by IDF is heartbreaking.

One reaction shared by by a girl on Facebook got to me, and I'm a fairly tough nut to crack. The girl, user binthusayn313 on Instagram, from her profile could be called a Palestinian activist, and in this context she has assumed that the IDF left them there willfully. She may be right, but we don't definitively know that.

Putting emotion aside and thinking more critically, we can consider the possibilities:

1. There is a slim possibility of this being staged, although I think this is unlikely.

2. There is another more plausible possibility that these were some of the children who died in the power outage before the hospital was evacuated, who's bodies were not removed in the rushed evacuation.

3. There remains the more horrific possibility that they were still alive and got missed in the chaos. Al Jazera reported that they were given less than an hour to evacuate the Hospital [Al Jazera]. I can understand how they could be missed by the evacuating Palestinians in that brief time period. But the IDF have been in control of that hospital for weeks. They were searching high and low for Hamas, who weren't there. Not even in the underground "bunker", that Israel built by the way. I cannot understand how they could be missed by the IDF soldiers under those circumstances.

Were these children alive or dead when IDF had control of the Hospital? Had the particular soldiers who found them, lost all human compassion towards the Palestinians, having been raised amongst conflict and hatred? So they walked past and left them to die. I don't know, but I shudder when I think of that possibility. Hatred and dehumanisation of your opponent can make you do terrible things, and there is certainly plenty of that fueling this conflict.

What next?

Now the "pause" has ended, what next? A resumption of the conflict that has seen in excess of 5000 Palestinian kids murdered by air strikes on densely populated civilian areas above ground even though the IDF suspect Hamas are underground. Apparently Israeli air strikes resumed at 7am this morning. Save the Children are now reporting 6150 children killed so far in the Gaza genocide [Save The Children].

Judging Israel by their actions, not their words, it seems to me their intention is to level Gaza, making it uninhabitable, forcing the entire population of Gaza into the southern half of the strip. Time will tell whether they attack that next to "wipe out Hamas". Given that the Gaza strip, before this conflict, was already one of, if not the most densely populated places on earth, and with it's population being roughly 50% children, the conditions will be unbearable, especially with Israel controlling electricity, gas, food, water and medical supplies etc, which it seems they've been willfully restricting. Again judging by their actions, not their words, this looks to be an attempt to drive the millions of Palestinians out of the Gaza strip and into the Sinai. Disturbingly this was also "option C" in a leaked Israeli intelligence document [972 Magazine].

Will the world sit by and watch as our ally commits this biblical atrocity? In Exodus the Jews were driven out of Egypt, into the Sinai and ultimately to Israel by Pharaoh. From discussions with Jewish friends, I get the sense that thousands of years later there is still a sense of victimhood because of this. Yet here is Israel in 2023, on course to do exactly the same thing. Now it is the Palestinians being driven out of Israel/Palestine, into the Sinai and ultimately to Egypt by Netenyahu.

Is the Golden Rule different in the Torah? I thought it was "treat others as you would wish to be treated" (future tense), not "treat others as you were treated" (past tense). The suffering of your ancestors is not a license for you to inflict the same on others.

Source: Image from the Daily Mail.




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