Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Israel killed 436 Palestinians in past 'quiet' six months.

Anyone following the mainstream media couldn't miss the news today. CNN reported that two suicide bombers set off almost simultaneous blasts on buses in Beer Sheva, killing 16 people in addition to themselves. At least 93 people were wounded. Usually, such attacks are followed with a wide range of condemnations.

Ariel Sharon said: Israel will continue fighting terror with all its might." The U.S. State Department, as well as the European Union, through its foreign policy chief Javier Solana, and the United Nations, through Secretary-General Kofi Annan, in addition to Andrey Denisov, the current president of the Security Council condemned the bombings.

Most news reports stated that Palestinian groups had not carried out a major attack inside Israel since March 14, when 11 Israelis were killed in the port of Ashdod. Only a few referred to the Israeli assassinations of Sheikh Ahmad Yassin and his successor Abdel Aziz Rantisi afterwards. None, however, referred to the number of Palestinians, mostly civilians, killed in the months between. None referred to Israel's military assault on Rafah in May 2004, when Israeli forces killed 44 Palestinians, including 18 children, and destroyed 400 homes, and Beit Hanoun from June to August.

While mainstream media tend to portray suicide bombings as a return to violence after a relatively peaceful period, there have been numerous killings in the weeks leading up to suicide bombings that underscore the lack of evenhanded attention given to loss of life in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

According to statistics from the Red Crescent at least 436 Palestinians have been killed since March 14 to August 31. This month alone, Israeli forces killed 43 Palestinians and injured 285. In May Israeli forces killed 128 Palestinians and wounded 545. In March Israeli forces killed 92 Palestinians, of which 44 Palestinians were killed in the first part of that month.
"My friends, there is no Palestinian-Israeli conflict. There is only the global war on terrorism."

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