Israel perpetrates atrocity upon atrocity against the people of Gaza – Day 256

Israel perpetrates atrocity upon atrocity against the people of Gaza – Day 256

Israeli atrocities multiply as Gaza’s social fabric unravels; Netanyahu demands more weapons – US responds by canceling key meeting; Wikipedia bans Anti-Defamation League as “unreliable on Israel and antisemitism”; “failing” Gaza pier will reopen soon, but its days are numbered; BDS victory; Wasserman Schultz claims she saw non-existent video; more

By IAK staff, from reports.

Fears rise for Gaza’s starving children:

Electronic Intifada reports: Faiz Abu Ataya was a baby.

As he had an allergy to cow’s milk, Faiz required a special infant formula. It has been unavailable in Gaza’s pharmacies during the current genocidal war.

While Faiz needed four cans of the formula per month, the most his parents could get from a charity were two.

As his mother was not properly nourished, she could only produce a small quantity of breastmilk when Faiz was born and – after about two months – none at all.

Desperate, his parents felt they had no choice than to give Faiz the only infant formula they could find. The situation was grim as Faiz had constant diarrhea and problems with his gut after he was given that formula.

When Faiz had breathing difficulties, his father Muhammad rushed him to hospital.

Faiz’s weight began to fall. No suitable food could be found for him.

“The medics and I saw him dying before our eyes,” Muhammad said. “We were unable to do anything for him.”

At the age of just 7 months, Faiz died.

“He died of starvation,” Muhammad said. “He became a skeleton, just 1 kilo in weight.”

(Read the full article here.)

A photo of the baby –TRIGGER WARNING – can be found here.

Israel Arrested a Senior Doctor in Gaza. Six Days Later, He Died in a Shin Bet Interrogation Facility:

Ha’aretz reports: Dr. Iyad Rantisi, 53, directed a women’s hospital that is part of Kamal Adwan Hospital in Beit Lahia, in the northern Gaza Strip. He was arrested November 11 and was declared dead six days later at Shikma Prison, the site of a Shin Bet interrogation facility. According to the Shin Bet, he was interrogated on suspicion of involvement in holding Israeli hostages in Gaza.

The Justice Ministry said the department had concluded its investigation into the circumstances of Rantisi’s death and is reviewing its findings.

After Rantisi died, the Ashkelon Magistrate’s Court issued a six-month gag order prohibiting publication of all details of the case, including the existence of the gag order. The court order expired in May.

Rantisi is the second Gazan physician known to have died in Israeli custody during the war in Gaza. The first was Dr. Adnan al-Bursh, 53, a surgeon who led the orthopedic department at Gaza City’s Al-Shifa Hospital. The father of six died April 19 at Ofer Prison, in the West Bank. He was arrested in Khan Yunis in December.

No Israeli authority has provided an explanation of the circumstances of Bursh’s death. His widow, Yasmin al-Bursh, has asked the Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court to appoint an investigator to examine the circumstances of his death.

The Israeli military is investigating 36 deaths at its Sde Teiman detention facility, two deaths at the Anatot detention center and the deaths of two people who died en route to a detention center. These figures do not include Palestinians from Gaza who died in prisons operated by the Israel Prison Service.

UN says lawlessness in Gaza impedes aid despite Israeli military pause:

Al Jazeera reports: Israel’s military said on Sunday there would be a daily pause in its attacks, from 05:00 GMT until 16:00 GMT, until further notice along the road that leads from Israel via the Karem Abu Salem (Kerem Shalom) crossing to the Philadelphi Corridor and northwards in Gaza.

The UN welcomed the move, spokesperson Farhan Haq has said, but added that “this has yet to translate into more aid reaching people in need”.

He said the area between the crossing and the Philadelphi Corridor was very dangerous.

“Fighting is not the only reason for being unable to pick up aid … The lack of any police or rule of law in the area makes it very dangerous to move goods there,” he said. “But we are ready to engage with all parties to ensure that aid reaches people in Gaza, and we’ll continue to work with the authorities and with security forces, trying to see what can be done to have security conditions,” Haq said.

“When aid gets to a place, people are starving, and they’re worried that this may be the last food that they see,” he said. “They have to be assured that there’s going to be a regular flow of goods so that there’s not a panic when we get to the area.”

Israel has periodically killed police officers in Gaza:

The head of police operations in Gaza was killed in an Israeli raid on Al-Shifa Hospital in Gaza City in March.

He was responsible for coordinating the entry of humanitarian aid with Palestinian tribes and the UN agency for Palestinian refugees (UNRWA) into the northern Gaza Strip.

“This crime shows that Israel is seeking to spread chaos in Gaza and prevent the arrival of humanitarian aid to hundreds of thousands of hungry people in northern Gaza,” a Gaza official said.

Gazans, desperate for anything to feed their families, climb onto an aid truck while still moving.
Gazans, desperate for anything to feed their families, climb onto an aid truck while still moving. (screenshot)

Gaza conflict has caused major environmental damage, UN says:

Reuters reports: The conflict in Gaza has created unprecedented soil, water and air pollution in the region, destroying sanitation systems and leaving tons of debris from explosive devices, a United Nations report on the environmental impact of the war said on Tuesday.

The war between Israel and Hamas, the Islamist movement that controls the Gaza Strip, has swiftly reversed limited progress in improving the region’s water desalination and wastewater treatment facilities, restoring the Wadi Gaza coastal wetland, and investments in solar power installations, according to a preliminary assessment, opens new tab from the U.N. Environment Programme (UNEP).

Explosive weapons have generated some 39 million tons of debris, the report said. Each square metre of the Gaza Strip is now littered with more than 107 kilograms (236 lbs) of debris. That is more than five times the debris generated during the battle for Mosul, Iraq, in 2017, the report said.

“All of this is deeply harming people’s health, food security and Gaza’s resilience,” said UNEP Executive Director Inger Andersen.

Water, sanitation, and hygiene systems are now almost entirely defunct, the report found, with Gaza’s five wastewater treatment plants shut down. Israel’s long-term occupation had already posed major environmental challenges in the Palestinian territories with regards to water quality and availability, according to a 2020 report by the U.N. Development Programme.

Over 92% of water in the Gaza Strip was then deemed unfit for human consumption.

The Gaza Strip had one of the highest densities of rooftop solar panels in the world, with the U.S.-based Centre for Strategic and International Studies estimating in 2023 some 12,400 rooftop solar systems. But Israel has since destroyed a large proportion of Gaza’s burgeoning solar infrastructure, and broken panels can leak lead and heavy metal contaminants into the soil.

Looking at the scale of environmental destruction, “it is my opinion that large areas of Gaza will not be recovered to a safe state within a generation, even with limitless finance and will,” said Darbyshire.

Israeli army kills again in occupied West Bank:

IMEMC reports: Gaza’s Ministry of Health says 39-year-old Bilal Adel Abdel Fattah Bello was shot by Israeli forces south of Bethlehem.

The Palestinian Health Ministry announced that the General Authority for Civil Affairs informed it of the death of the citizen, Bilal Adel Abdul Fattah Bellu, 39, after he was shot by the occupation army with live ammunition, then prevented ambulance crews from approaching him to provide first aid. He bled to death.

Israeli raids in the occupied West Bank have intensified since the war on Gaza began on October 7, with 550 people killed and more than 9,100 people detained.

Itamar Ben-Gvir, Israel's minister of national security
Itamar Ben-Gvir, Israel’s minister of national security (screenshot)

Israel’s Ben-Gvir demands resettlement of Gaza, ‘voluntary migration’ of Palestinians:

Netanyahu demands US give Israel even more weapons:


Netanyahu said in a video statement on Tuesday that it was “inconceivable” that the United States had been “withholding weapons and ammunitions to Israel” in recent months.

“Secretary [of State Antony] Blinken assured me that the administration is working day and night to remove these bottlenecks. I certainly hope that’s the case. It should be the case.”

Al Jazeera reports that the White House denied Netanyahu’s claim that the US has been withholding weapons to Israel for months, stressing that the US has only paused a one shipment of bombs.

“We genuinely do not know what he’s talking about. There was one particular shipment of munitions that was paused,” White House spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters. “We continue to have these constructive discussions with Israelis for the release of that particular shipment… There are no other pauses – none.”

HA’ARETZ ADDS: The White House cancelled a key strategic meeting with Israel following a video released by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday, in which he publicly criticized the Biden administration and accused the U.S. of delaying arms shipments to Israel.

The meeting was set to take place in Washington on Thursday and was set to focus primarily on the progress of Iran’s nuclear program. A senior Israeli official told Haaretz that instead of the delegation that was supposed to travel to Washington, led by Strategic Affairs Minister Ron Dermer, there will only be a meeting between National Security Council head Tzachi Hanegbi and U.S. National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan.

Biden and his top aides often stress their commitment to Israel, but Washington confirmed last month holding up a single shipment of 900kg (2,000 pound) bombs to the Israeli military over concerns about civilian casualties in Israel’s assault on Rafah in southern Gaza.

Since then, the Biden administration has authorized further weapons sales to Israel, according to US media accounts, including a package worth $1bn last month.

Washington provides $3.8 billion in military assistance to Israel annually, and in April, Biden signed a law granting the US ally $17 billion in additional aid amid Israel’s war on Gaza.

The Washington Post also reported on Monday that the Biden administration pressured top Democratic lawmakers to sign off on the $18bn sale of 50 F-15 fighter jets to Israel.

ADL faces Wikipedia ban over reliability concerns on Israel, antisemitism:

Pentagon: Gaza Pier Expected to Reopen This Week:

US Dept. of Defense reports: The temporary pier that’s been used since May 17 to deliver humanitarian aid into Gaza was removed Friday and towed to Ashdod, Israel, as a way to avoid potential damage from high seas. It’s expected the pier will be back in place on the Mediterranean Sea this week to once again facilitate the delivery of humanitarian aid into Gaza.

“In terms of the [Joint Logistics Over-the-Shore pier], we expect it will go operational again this week,” Pentagon Press Secretary Air Force Maj. Gen. Pat Ryder said during a briefing today. “As far as airdrops go, we do have the capability and do intend to continue conducting airdrops.”

“We’ve said all along … that the pier is a temporary measure,” he said. “I don’t have any dates to announce in terms of when it will cease operations … we’re looking forward to getting it operational again soon and to delivering aid.”

The pier was anchored to the Gaza shore on May 16 and since then, due to weather, has experienced both damage and temporary shutdowns.

NOTE: Before the most recent shutdown, CENTCOM reportedly facilitated the delivery of more than 3,500 metric tons of humanitarian aid. The UN indicates that one truckload of aid might contain 20 metric tons. With 3,500 metric tons of aid delivered since the pier began operating on May 17, it has averaged less than 6 trucks per day. (The New York Times reports that the pier has been operational for just ten days.)

New York Times reports: The $230 million temporary pier that the U.S. military built on short notice to rush humanitarian aid to Gaza has largely failed in its mission, aid organizations say, and will probably end operations weeks earlier than originally expected.

In the month since it was attached to the shoreline, the pier has been in service only about 10 days. The rest of the time, it was being repaired after rough seas broke it apart, detached to avoid further damage or paused because of security concerns.

The pier was never meant to be more than a stopgap measure while the Biden administration pushed Israel to allow more food and other supplies into Gaza through land routes, a far more efficient way to deliver relief. But even the modest goals for the pier are likely to fall short, some American military officials say.

The Biden administration initially predicted that it would be September before surging seas would make the pier inoperable. But military officials are now warning aid organizations that the project could be dismantled as early as next month, a looming deadline that officials say they hope will pressure Israel to open more ground routes.

The pier “is not working, at least not for Palestinians,” Stephen Semler, a co-founder of the Security Policy Reform Institute, wrote in an essay for Responsible Statecraft, a Quincy Institute publication. Mr. Semler argued that the pier had succeeded only in providing “humanitarian cover” for the Biden administration’s policy of supporting Israel’s bombardment of Gaza.

With 3,500 metric tons of aid delivered since the pier in Gaza began operating on May 17, it has averaged less than 6 trucks per day.
With 3,500 metric tons of aid delivered since the pier in Gaza began operating on May 17, it has averaged less than 6 trucks per day. (screenshot)

US troop numbers in Jordan surge to record high amid Gaza war:

Middle East Eye reports: The number of US troops stationed in Jordan has soared to a two-decade high amid Israel’s war on Gaza, according to a new congressional report.

US President Joe Biden informed Congress on 7 June that the US had deployed 3,813 to the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, a nearly 20 percent increase in troop numbers from December.

The troop levels are higher than at any time since the 2003 US invasion of Iraq, according to US troop levels reported at the time.

The surge in troop numbers coincides with Israel’s war on Gaza, which has seen the relatively stable Kingdom of Jordan cast into the center of soaring tensions between the US and Iran.

New York Times reports: A court in Paris ruled on Tuesday that France’s decision to bar Israeli companies from one of the world’s largest weapons shows was discriminatory and ordered the ban to be rescinded.

Eurosatory, an exhibition for the defense and armaments industry held every two years northeast of Paris, opened on Monday without any Israeli representatives. The organizers had complied with a French government order to cancel their invitations because of Israel’s military offensive in Gaza.

The government’s decision, which has prompted legal challenges, was made last month after an Israeli strike killed dozens of Palestinians in a tent camp in Rafah, in southern Gaza. President Emmanuel Macron of France said at the time that he was “outraged” by the strike and declared that such Israeli operations “must stop.”

More than 2,000 exhibitors from over 60 countries are at Eurosatory, where military and security officials from around the world rub shoulders with manufacturers showcasing drones, missiles, and other weapons and technologies.

But the Paris Commercial Court, ruling on a suit filed by the France-Israel Chamber of Commerce, said on Tuesday that the ban was illegal and ordered COGES Events to reinstate Israeli companies. The court said that the ban unfairly discriminated against Israeli exhibitors.

According to Al Jazeera, after the French government decided to ban Israel from the show, Jerusalem’s deputy mayor, an ultranationalist Israeli politician, sent a letter to the municipal sanitation department, asking “to instruct Jerusalem municipal maintenance workers to cease immediately garbage removal service from the French consulate building”.

A City Hall statement said King’s request would not be implemented.

Intel stops $25 billion investment in Israel — ‘Biggest victory yet,’ says BDS campaign:

Middle East Monitor reports: US technology giant Intel has halted the construction of a new $25 billion factory in Israel, raising speculation that the factory construction is at risk of being cancelled as the war on the Gaza Strip continues for an eighth month.

The Sicho Infrastructure Company reported that it had received notification from Intel delaying and halting some work related to the expansion of the company’s new microchip factory in Kiryat Gat, Israel’s Calcalist website has reported. The remaining work related to the current halt amounts to only about 90 million shekels, while the company in charge of construction was supposed to receive half the amount in 2024.

The report added that it is continuing other work on the site and that the company is looking into the meaning of Intel’s announcement and whether it is entitled to compensation.

Dana Bash broadcasts Wasserman Schultz’ claim that she saw a non-existent video:

CNN’s Dana Bash with Congress member Deborah Wasserman Schultz, June 17, 2024. (screenshot)

Breaking Points’ Krystal Ball analyzes a recent CNN program in which anchor Dana Bash features false claims by Congress member Deborah Wasserman Schultz that Hamas allegedly committed widespread rapes on October 7th and that she had seen videos of this.

Ball says they persist in disseminating these falsehoods in order to justify the atrocities Israel is committing in Gaza. She reports that CNN afterward apologized for the segment.

[See related information here and relate video here.]


Mondoweiss: The kibbutzniks blocking humanitarian aid to Gaza.
Middle East Monitor: US advisor warns Tel Aviv of Iran attack if conflict with Hezbollah continues – Israeli daily.
IMEMC Reports.

Translation: Six Palestinians, including children and women, were killed and others were injured in an Israeli bombing that targeted a residential apartment inside a house in the Sheikh Radwan neighborhood, north of Gaza City | Report: Ismail Al-Ghoul.

Palestinian death toll from October 7 – June 18: at least 37,946* (37,396 in Gaza* – 4,959 women (20%), 7,797 children (32%). This is expected to be a significant undercount since thousands of those killed have yet to be identified – and at least 550 in the West Bank (~134 children). This does not include an estimated 10,000 more still buried under rubble (4,900 women and children). Euro-Med Monitor reports 45,223 Palestinian deaths. (Ralph Nader has estimated 200,000 Palestinians may have been killed in Gaza.)
At least 42 Palestinians have died in Israeli prisons (27 from Gaza, 14 from West Bank).
At least 40 Palestinians have died due to malnutrition**.
About 1.7 million, or 75% of Gaza’s population are currently displaced.
About 1.1 million (out of total population of 2.3 million) are facing Catastrophic levels of food insecurity.
Palestinian injuries from October 7 – June 18: at least 90,723 (including at least 85,523 in Gaza and 5,200 in the West Bank).
It remains unknown how many Americans are among the casualties in Gaza.
Reported Israeli death toll from October 7 – June 18: ~1,466 (~1,139 on October 7, 2023, of which ~32 were Americans, and ~36 were children); 311 military forces since the ground invasion began in Gaza; 16 in the West Bank) and~8,730 injured.
Times of Israel reports: The IDF listed 41 soldiers killed due to friendly fire in Gaza and other military-related accidents – nearly 16%.
NOTE: It is unknown at this time how many of the deaths and injuries in Israel on October 7 were caused by Israeli soldiers.
*Previously, IAK did not include 471 Gazans killed in the Al Ahli hospital blast since the source of the projectile was being disputed. However, given that much evidence points to Israel as the culprit, Israel had previously bombed the hospital and has attacked many others, Israel is prohibiting outside experts from investigating the scene, and since the UN and other agencies are including the deaths from the attack in their cumulative totals, if Americans knew is now also doing so.
**Euro-Med Monitor reports that Gaza’s elderly are dying at an alarmingly high rate. The majority die at home and are buried either close to their residences or in makeshift graves dispersed across the Strip. There are currently more than 140 such cemeteries. Additionally, according to Euromed, thousands have died from starvation, malnourishment, and inadequate medical care; these are considered indirect victims as they were not registered in hospitals. 
Find previous daily casualty figures and daily news updates here.

Hover over each bar for exact numbers.

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