The Pantry of the Future-Devourers
As Palestinians mark the dismal 40th Anniversay of the Israeli Occupation, Israel rains bombs on the crowded cities and refugees camps of Gaza, among the most densely populated pieces of land in the world.
Behind all the bluster, it is seldom mentioned that nearly half of the population of the Gaza Strip are under the age of 14, and that the majority of all victims of Israel's daily attacks are children and other civilians.
Virtually all of these children have either personally witnessed people murdered by israelis, or lost one or more family members or relatives to Israeli attacks. Virtually all of them, unsurprisingly, exhibit symptoms of acute forms of psychological trauma.
Virtually none of these children have ever been permitted outside the walls which enclose Gaza. Until recently, most of them had never even seen the ocean, even though the Strip is only two miles wide, because of Israeli movement restrictions and the Jewish-only beachfront settlements which took up one-third of the land of Gaza.
Of the 1,500,000 people crammed into the Gaza prrison - most of them refugees from Israeli ethnic cleansing - fully 1,100,000 of them are entirely dependent on ouside food aid to survive.
Perversely, Israel routinely blocks and restricts the delivery of food and water to gazans, and constantly lobbies other states to do the same. As a consequence, according to the UN, Gazans are suffering from malnutrition at levels comparable to the worst famine zones of sub-saharan Africa, and one in ten of these children will suffer some degree of phsyical and mental retardation.
This week, former Chief Rabbi Mordechai Eliayhu declared that every one of these children is a legitimate target for Israeli attack. He proposed that the launching of rockets from Gaza against the city of Sderot, which recently killed two Jews, permits Jews to indiscriminately kill "even a million" Palestinians.
The Jerusalem Post notes that his religious ruling will be distributed to every synagogue in Israel.
Eliyahu advocates carpet bombing Gaza
by Matthew Wagner
Jerusalem Post, May. 30, 2007
All civilians living in Gaza are collectively guilty for Kassam attacks on Sderot, former Sephardi chief rabbi Mordechai Eliyahu has written in a letter to Prime Minister Ehud Olmert.
Eliyahu ruled that there was absolutely no moral prohibition against the indiscriminate killing of civilians during a potential massive military offensive on Gaza aimed at stopping the rocket launchings.
The letter, published in Olam Katan [Small World], a weekly pamphlet to be distributed in synagogues nationwide this Friday, cited the biblical story of the Shechem massacre (Genesis 34) and Maimonides' commentary (Laws of Kings 9, 14) on the story as proof texts for his legal decision.
According to Jewish war ethics, wrote Eliyahu, an entire city holds collective responsibility for the immoral behavior of individuals. In Gaza, the entire populace is responsible because they do nothing to stop the firing of Kassam rockets.
The former chief rabbi also said it was forbidden to risk the lives of Jews in Sderot or the lives of IDF soldiers for fear of injuring or killing Palestinian noncombatants living in Gaza.
Eliyahu could not be reached for an interview. However, Eliyahu's son, Shmuel Eliyahu, who is chief rabbi of Safed, said his father opposed a ground troop incursion into Gaza that would endanger IDF soldiers. Rather, he advocated carpet bombing the general area from which the Kassams were launched, regardless of the price in Palestinian life.
"If they don't stop after we kill 100, then we must kill a thousand," said Shmuel Eliyahu. "And if they do not stop after 1,000 then we must kill 10,000. If they still don't stop we must kill 100,000, even a million. Whatever it takes to make them stop."
In the letter, Eliyahu quoted from Psalms. "I will pursue my enemies and apprehend them and I will not desist until I have eradicated them."
ORIGINAL PHOTO: Ibrahim Abu Mustafa, May 28, 2007, Gaza.
IMAGE ALTERATION: /anomalous