Family-cide, the true face of Israel
One of the things that has been inescapable has been the manner in which Palestinians are referring to the victims murdered by Israel in Gaza not just as statistics or individual names (though they are doing that too), but by families. Israel was not just content to murder a person here or a person there, but in the process of carrying out Israeli researcher Arnon Sofer's claims that Israel "will have to kill and kill and kill. All day, every day" in Gaza, they have been wiping out entire families in one fell swoop.
Al-Jazeera's website has put together a page with pictures and stories of Palestinian families who were either entirely murdered by Israel or had large numbers of their family murdered by Israel. A warning, there are many graphic images of murdered and wounded children. It is in Arabic, but even if you don't read the language, you can click through the Arabic numbers at the bottom of the text boxes (remember, right to left in Arabic):
I'm not sure if all the pictures match precisely to each family/incident or not, though they are certainly representative. And, so as to put names to them for those of you who don't read Arabic, here is a brief synopsis of each of these murdered families which I made based on the info on the Jazeera page (this is my own synopsis and language, not a trasnslation). The families in order from 1 to 13 are:
- The al-Daya family: The 65 year-old family Patriarch al-Hajj Fayiz Masabih al-Daya fearing for his family's safety - who as is often the case in extended Arab families lived in a single building built for them to live together - gathered them all onto the ground floor of the family building during Israel's rampage in Hayy al-Zaytoun. But the Israelis bombed the entire building and flattened it on top of them, killing 25 members of the family together in one swoop, ranging from the elderly family patriarch to 16 grandchildren, the youngest of whom was a six-month old baby.
- The Ba'alusha family: Sleeping one night in the Jabalya refugee camp - one of the most densely populated pieces of land on earth - Israel decided that it wanted to bomb the neighborhood and specifically target the house of worship right next door to the Ba'alusha's. The father Anwar survived after the house collapsed on top of them, only to discover the murdered bodies of 5 of his daughters in the rubble as neighbors helped him dig to find them.
- The al-Abasi family: Father Ziyad al-Abasi reports they were sleeping in their house in the Yabna refugee camp in Rafah when a missile hit their single-level house. The house and its asbestos roof collapsed on them. Israel murdered three of his children. Sidq (4 years old), Ahmad (12), and Mohammad (14). His three other children, his wife, and himself were wounded. He insisted on getting out of the hospital early despite his wounds in order to attend his children's funeral where he cried out asking what they had done to deserve Israel taking this revenge on them?
- The Kashku family: The Israeli military targeted their home in Hayy al-Zaytoun in Eastern Gaza city, wounding 13 members of the family and murdering the daughter of family patriarch Abdullah Kashku, 8 year old Ibtihal. Also murdered was the wife of one of his sons, Miysa' aged 22.
- The al-Samuni family: One of the most visible deliberate murders of civilians befell the al-Samuni family and was reported on widely even in the western press. Here Na'ib al-Samuni who survived tells how Israeli forces gathered the entire extended family into a single 2000 square foot house, and then proceeded to shell them for 10 minutes non-stop, turning the house into in his words "a well of blood", and then deliberately block Red Crescent ambulances from reaching them for 24 hours during which several family members struggled to hang on and finally bled to death. The numbers of dead and wounded in various reports have varied amidst the chaos, here Al-Jazeera reports that at least one 7-member branch of the family was entirely wiped out. Na'ib's wife Hanan was murdered by Israeli executioners along with his daughter Hoda, his 60 year old mother Rizqa, and most of his brothers, cousins, and cousins' children.
- The Rayan family: Hamas leader Nizar Rayyan lived in the middle of the Jabalya refugee camp. Not content with just killing him, Israel decided to drop massive munitions on the entire neighborhood, murdering Rayyan's 4 wives and 15 of his children and destroying 10 other homes in the process.
- The Abed Rabbo family: 8 family members including a toddler girl found with only her head peaking above the rubble murdered by Israel which bombed their home from US-supplied fighter jets.
- The Abu Aisha family: Father, mother, and 7 children murdered by Israel via missiles and bombs fired from US-supplied fighter jets onto their home.
- The al-Kahlut family: Father Khalid al-Kahlut needed to get some bread to feed his starving family. He made the mistake of believing Israeli lies that there was a 3-hour ceasefire for humanitarian purposes and took 3 of his children (15-year old Mohammad, 12-year old Habib, and 10-year old Tawfiq) and his 20-year old cousin Hasan Khalil al-Kahlut in the car to get some food. As they got back close to home in Beit Lahiya with the supposed 3-hour ceasefire still supposedly in effect, a US-supplied Israeli fighter jet fired a missile at them and murdered them all before they could get the food back to their family.
- The Abed Rabbo family: A different Abed Rabbo family, this time US-supplied Israeli planes fired missiles on their home in Jabalya, murdering three sisters (Amal age 2, Su'aad age 4, and Samar age 6 ). It took neighbors and rescue crews hours just to pull their bodies out of the rubble the Israeli terrorist executioners left behind.
- The Ulaywa family: Salim Ulaywa says he wishes he had never left his house that day. He had gone out to try to get his family some food, but when he came back and turned onto his street he found his house had disappeared into a pile of rubble with neighbors desperately trying to rescue his family. But it was no use, they were all found dead covered in dust and blood and he was left alone in the world as the piece says, his wife and 5 children murdered by having their house blown up on top of them with no warning (an old Zionist favorite tactic going back to the days of the Sa'sa massacre in Galilee in 1948 at least.)
- The Deeb family: 25 minutes before the end of the supposed 3-hour humanitarian ceasefire, Israeli tanks and US-supplied fighter jets sent 4 missiles and rounds into the Jabalya refugee camp, one of which landed in the courtyard of the house of 43-year old Samir Shafiq Deeb who was instantly murdered. His 70 year old mother and three of his children (12 year old Esam, 23 year old Mohammad, and 20 year old Fatima) were murdred as well, plus 5 of the children of his brother including 2 year old Noor, 19 year old Ala, and two other women in the family (34 year old Amal Matar Deeb and 41 year old Khudra Abdulaziz Deeb). Another family virtually wiped out in an Israeli mass murder.
- The Saliha family: 6 members of the family murdered in their home by Israeli executioners in Beit Lahiya.
I wish it weren't true, but even this is only a partial list of the families Israel has murdered the past few weeks, let alone the past 60 years. Let the deaths of these innocent families - not even individuals, entire families targeted by Israel's Zionist death squads - stand as a reminder. That while there must be reconciliation between Arabs and Jews and a united country with equal rights for all, that such reconciliation can only come by standing firm against Zionist Israel just as the world stood firm against Apartheid South Africa. Zionism is racism, period, and it must be confronted just as Jim Crow and Apartheid had to be confronted. May these families rest in peace and may we build a better world of equality so that Israeli racism will no longer be able to take innocent lives.