Israel’s Apartheid Against Palestinians Reveals West’s “Double Standards”
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Israel’s Apartheid Against Palestinians Reveals West’s Double Standards

Ceasefire Following Three-day Israeli Bombardment in Gaza

A ceasefire on Sunday, 7th August 2022, ended another unjustified three-day Israeli bombardment in the besieged apartheid Gaza strip. Devastating figures reveal the civilian cost of the escalation and the impact of crimes against humanity in the occupied Palestinian territory.

The Israel Defence Forces (IDF) announced operation “Breaking Dawn” on Friday, 5th August 2022. Israel fired shots at targets it claimed were linked to the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), killing a senior commander in the PIJ. The operation caused inconceivable damage to local civilians and infrastructure with a complete disregard for human life.

The UN Human Rights Office held that 49 Palestinians were killed, including 17 children, with more than 360 people injured. Nearly two-thirds of those injured were civilians, including 151 children, 58 women and 19 older people. Furthermore, 19 Palestinian children have been killed in the occupied Palestinian territory in the past week. There were no serious injuries to report from Israel.

Most Severe Flare-up Since May 2021

Last week’s hostilities were the most severe flare-up on the Gaza strip since May 2021, when Israel attacked Gaza killing 256 Palestinians, including 66 children. In Israel, 13 people were killed, including two children. Israel has imposed tight restrictions on the movement of people and goods in and out of Gaza since 2007. The 15-year blockade has left the occupied territory of Palestine teetering on the edge of a humanitarian disaster. Following the ceasefire, the aftershock of trauma sets in for Palestinians, leaving millions of lives shattered.

15-year Land, Air and Sea Blockade in Gaza

The Gaza Strip, home to 2.1 million people, has been under an Israeli-imposed land, sea and air blockade for the past 15 years. The map below shows where the Gaza strip lies in relation to Israel and the main refugee camps.

Caption: Map of the Gaza Strip where Israel’s apartheid against the Palestinians originates. Image obtained from Wiki Media Commons.

Israel continues to launch airstrikes into densely packed cities and neighbourhoods filled predominantly with civilians. Shockingly, since 2008, Israel has initiated four conflicts in Gaza, killing approximately 4000 people, including 600 children.

Israel’s Systematic Apartheid Against the Palestinians

Israel’s apartheid of the Palestinian people is a cruel system of domination and crimes against humanity. Moreover, Israel commits unlawful killings, forcible transfers and drastic movement restrictions on Palestinians. Additionally, due to the blockade, Gaza lacks access to food, water, essential medicines, and commodities. Palestinians must smuggle food and medicines through illegal tunnels, which the IDF regularly bomb. Israel continues to carry out massive seizures of Palestinian land and property, defying international law.

Caption: The image shows the Palestinian loss of land from 1947 to 2020. Image obtained from Wiki Media Commons.

Furthermore, Israel denies nationality and citizenship to Palestinians. These listed elements of the brutal Israeli system amount to apartheid under international law. 

Amnesty International published a report titled “Israel’s apartheid Against Palestinians” in February 2022. The report calls out Israel’s systematic oppression of Palestinians as ‘apartheid’. The report concludes that Israeli laws and policies of segregation, exclusion, and dispossession constitute “the crime against humanity of apartheid” as defined in the Rome Statute and the Apartheid convention.

In addition to this, there have been calls on the International Criminal Court (ICC) to investigate apartheid in Palestine.

Caption: A Palestinian lies in his home, which has been struck by an Israeli airstrike. Image obtained from Reuters.

The West and the United Nations Impose “Double Standards” of Crimes Against Humanity

The west reveals “double standards” of crimes against humanity compared to the reaction to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. In the context of Ukraine, world leaders used solid and robust language to describe Putin’s crimes against humanity. However, Israel’s oppression of the Palestinian people is not met with the same strength of language.

In the video below, Richard Boyd Barrett captures the utter hypocrisy of the west’s “double standards” when it comes to imposing sanctions on Israel the same way they have sanctioned Russia.

Caption: Irish Politician, Richard Boyd Barrett, speaks out about Israel’s apartheid against Palestinians and the government’s double standards on crimes against humanity.

Moreover, Israel’s position of an apartheid system weakens any prospect of establishing an independent Palestinian State. Moreover, despite the UN’s willingness to act decisively on other issues, the Council’s inability to act against Israel illustrates the persistent double standards through its selectivity on which principles apply to certain states.

Putin is Holding Up a Mirror to Israelis

Gideon Levy, an Israeli journalist and author, compared Israel and Russia as essentially interchangeable. Levy writes how Israel has behaved precisely like Russia more than just once. Israel and Russia use the same demonization strategy. The Ukrainians are depicted as Nazis, and the Palestinians are labelled as terrorists who wish to destroy Israel. With the assistance of Egypt, Israel has essentially turned the Gaza strip into an open-air prison.

International Finacial Aid Focused on Ukraine

The world will soon be on the edge of a global recession due to the financial constraints arising from the COVID-19 pandemic and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Skyrocketing inflation rates in the United States and other major European economies make obtaining international financial support for Palestinians very difficult at these times.

How Much Blood Must Be Shed Before We Take Collective Action?

Israel treats Palestinians living in Gaza, East Jerusalem and the rest of the West Bank, or Israel itself, as an inferior racial group and systematically deprives them of their fundamental human rights. 

There is a persistent lack of accountability for Israel’s actions in the occupied Palestinian territory. Israel commits recurring violations of international human rights law and the law of occupation of the West Bank while persistently using unnecessary and disproportionate use of force.

We must hold Israel accountable by urging the ICC to consider the crime of apartheid in its current investigation of Palestine. Furthermore, the UN Security Council has the ability to impose an arms embargo on Israel to cover all weapons and munitions. The UN Council can impose targeted sanctions such as freezing the assets of Israeli officials heavily involved in perpetrating the apartheid.

The war and persecution of the Palestinian people will continue while the climate of impunity prevails.

The real question now is whether the world will apply economic sanctions to Israel just as it did to end apartheid in South Africa and restrict Russia’s power in its invasion of Ukraine. Or will we continue to impose double standards on crimes against humanity?

Laura Shorten
Laura Shorten is an Irish human rights consultant and researcher based in the Netherlands. Laura qualified with an International Bachelor of Social Sciences degree from University College Dublin. She majored in politics, international relations and social policy. Laura graduated from Technological University Dublin with a Postgraduate Diploma in Law. In 2021, she graduated with an Advanced LL.M in International Children’s Rights at Leiden University. Laura specializes in international law, children’s human rights, political science, international relations, middle eastern studies, refugee/migration law, gender studies, strategic litigation and global diplomacy. Laura has published various articles pertaining to international law and human rights violations occuring worldwide. Laura defended her Advanced Master’s Thesis entitled “An Analysis of the Convention on the Rights of the Child’s Legal Framework in Protecting Children’s Right to Health and Right to Life in the Face of Climate Change”. This thesis is published on the Leiden University website under the Advanced Master of Law Theses for children's rights. Laura has previously worked for UNICEF Ireland, campaigning for children worldwide who are facing discrimination and living in war zones.

One Reply to “Israel’s Apartheid Against Palestinians Reveals West’s Double Standards

  1. Hello Members,

    I wonder how to reach the consciousness of the Russians and make them realize that every day in Ukraine RUSSIAN SOLDIERS DIE and military equipment is being destroyed on a mass scale. Why destroy and demolish when you can build and create a new, better world.
    WAR is suffering, crying, sadness and death, do you have any ideas to convince Russians that Vladimir Putin should retire, bask in the sun somewhere in warm countries and end this bloody conflict in Europe.

    It is a great idea to select random companies from Russia on Google business cards and add opinions about anti-war content and make people in the country aware that Putin is doing wrong.

    Please take a moment to select a random company on the Google map and add your opinion about anti-war content.

    It is also worth informing Russians about the possibility of VPN connections because Russia is blocking a lot of content on the Internet and sowing sinister propaganda by not giving people access to real information

    Peace be with you!
    Thank you
    Tomasz Jerzy Michałowski
    Poland

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