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Norman Finkelstein: Israel's Disgrace in Gaza

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We're approaching the one year commemoration of the events in Gaza between december 27th and january 18th, and I thought I would use this occasion to review what the record shows on what actually happenned in Gaza because a lot of material came out in the past year, both in the form of human rights reports and also in the form of various testimonies, mostly by israeli soldiers. But also other testimonies in the course of the Goldstone missions report (?) on Gaza So I wanted to first look at what happenned in Gaza, because I'm afraid the history is going to be rapidly re-written --- in fact, it's already being re-written. And then secondly, look at the Goldstone report, which seems to be the major repercussion of the Gaza events, and to try to figure out what is the significance of the report --- and since this is mostly an activist audience, what we can learn from the Goldstone report in terms of how we should procede in the future on trying to resolve the conflict. So let me begin by going through what happenned in Gaza --- for those of you who have clear memories, you'll forgive me for going over old ground, and for those of you whose memories are clouded, I think it's useful to try to recall the sequence of events. In January 2006, there were elections, parliamentary elections held in occupied territories Hamas won the elections in what Jimmy Carter called a completely honest and fair election. The immediate reaction of the United States and Israel was to impose economic sanctions on Hamas. In 2007, in june 2007, the United States, Israel and elements of the Palestinian authority attempted a coup against the elected government in Gaza. The coup was foiled by the Hamas leadership and the palestinian authority elements were forced to retreat into the West Bank. When the coup was foiled by Hamas, the immediate reaction of the United States and Israel was to tighten the blockade on Gaza, which Amnesty International called a flagrant violation of international law. Richard Goldstone, in the report under his name, he called the blockade a possible crime against humanity. At the time of the blockade, or even before the blockade was tightened the former UN high commissioner for human rights Mary Robinson, she journeyed to Gaza and she said at the time that Gaza's whole civilization has been destroyed I'm not exagerating. In June 2008, Hamas and Israel entered into a ceasefire. And there was a quiproquo with the ceasefire. On the Palestinian side, they were supposed to stop rocket attacks against Israel, and the Israeli side, they were supposed to gradually lift the blockade of Gaza. The Palestinians, as far as one can tell, honored their side of the ceasefire. The israeli ministry of foreign affairs put out a publication in which they wrote that Hamas was careful to maintain the ceasefire. On the other side, Israel did not fulfill its obligation to gradually lift the economic blockade of Gaza. In November 2008, Israel was now ready to launch its attack on Gaza, an attack which it had planned from at least 2007, march 2007. It needed a pretext --- it didn't have, at that point, a pretext. And so November 4, 2008, as the results of the US presidential elections were coming it, and all of the media were rivited to the results of those elections, Israel launched a deadly raid into Gaza in effect ending the ceasefire.

Video Details

Duration: 59 minutes and 4 seconds
Country: United States
Language: English
Genre: None
Views: 104
Posted by: sgentile on May 29, 2010

7 décembre 2009 — Norman Finkelstein clarifies Israel's invasion of Gaza December '08 was a one-sided war, disproportionate use of force, crime against humanity, a disgrace. He relies on Goldstone Report, among others, and testimony of Israeli soldiers. At the Brecht Forum in Manhattan Dec 3, '09 camera: Rosalee Grable

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