Sat. May 25th, 2024

Gaza: Washington wants to “see Israel’s plan” before Rafah operation.

By ki0nk Mar17,2024

Both the United States and Israel are becoming more antagonistic toward one another. A request was made by the White House on Friday, March 15, to study Israel’s “action plans” for its planned intervention in Rafah, which is home to more than a million Gazan refugees. The White House has made it clear that it is no longer reluctant to express its concern with the onslaught that is being led by Benjamin Netanyahu in Gaza.

At this moment, it appears that Washington and Israel are beginning to build a new dynamic. Benjamin Netanyahu, the Prime Minister of the Hebrew State, gave the “action plans” for an intervention in Rafah, which is located south of Gaza and is home to 1.5 million Palestinian refugees, the go-ahead on Friday. Rafah is located in the region of Gaza. Despite the fact that the inhabitants had already evacuated the area, an operation had been announced. According to John Kirby, who is a member of the United States Security Council, the White House went ahead and asked clearance to “see these action plans” right now.

According to the latter, the request was justified by the priority that was given to the safety of people in Gaza. He added, “We will not support a plan that does not take into account the million and a half Palestinians.” A resoluteness that is in line with the shift in attitude that has been exhibited by the American authorities ever since Joe Biden made a public statement condemning the thousands of fatalities that have occurred within the enclave.

Benjamin Netanyahu’s policies are causing the divide between the American people and those of the Israeli government to grow even wider. Additionally, on the same day, which was Friday, the President of the United States of America lauded the “good speech” that had been delivered the day before by the leader of the Democratic senators, which was quite critical of the Prime Minister of Israel. Prior to insisting that his resignation would be a good option for the future of Israel, the latter had assessed that “Prime Minister Netanyahu (had) lost his way, letting his political survival come before Israel’s best interests.” Netanyahu had let his political survival come before Israel’s best interests. In addition, the work that Joe Biden has ordered for the development of a port that will assist in the transportation of aid to the enclave is still ongoing.

In this section, our eight staff members who are still in Gaza share their accounts of the atrocities they have seen, the danger of becoming targets themselves, and their desire to capture this ongoing struggle.

In addition to the fact that Gazans had endured the hardships and travel limitations brought on by the blockade for seventeen years, the majority of them had covered half a dozen conflicts prior to October 7. They had become accustomed to the routine of going to the morgue to count the deceased and attending the never-ending funerals. On the other hand, their lives were irrevocably altered when 1,160 people, the most of whom were civilians, were killed in the unprecedented onslaught that Hamas militants carried out against Israel, as reported by an AFP count that was based on official statements from Israel.

“I was outside around six in the morning when I heard explosions that seemed to be coming from everywhere,” remembered Adel Zaanoun, who has been a journalist for the Australian Federal Police in Gaza for thirty years. “We were attempting to determine whether the shots were coming from rockets fired by Hamas or from Israeli bombardments.

I made a call to all of my coworkers at the AFP to get together at the office… While I was traveling, I called each and every spokesperson for Hamas and Islamic Jihad. They claimed that they had no knowledge whatsoever. Finally, one of them divulged the information that the Qassam Brigades, which are the armed wing of Hamas, were planning to issue a statement. Only a short while later, their head Mohammed Deif issued a communiqué in which he claimed that “Operation Al-Aqsa Flood” had begun.

Over the course of more than four months, the Gaza Strip has been completely submerged in destruction, and the humanitarian situation there is a catastrophe. Israel, which has made a commitment to eradicate Hamas, has been bombarding the territory. According to the health ministry that is managed by Hamas, the number of Palestinians who have died as a result of Israel’s attacks has already surpassed 27,800.

Every time there is a new strike, the reporters, photographers, and video journalists working for AFP attempt to arrive at the scene as quickly as they can.

Each and every time, in addition to the risk of a subsequent blow that might potentially take their lives, they are confronted with the agony, sadness, and often even rage of those who have survived something. Witnesses, descriptions, photographs, and videos of the horrifying sight of mangled bodies, which are frequently those of young children, are required.

When the internet is operational, journalists use WhatsApp to communicate with one another and share information about the locations of the most recent attacks. According to Mohammed Abed, an AFP photographer who has been stationed in Gaza for the past 24 years, “If the network is down, we try to follow the sound, and once we are in the area, people in the area guide us.”

However, moving about is not a simple task. He stated that “there are traffic jams everywhere” due to the fact that approximately two million people have been displaced, the majority of whom are currently seeking shelter in Rafah. As you make your way through the waves of people who have been displaced, you will have to navigate between tents and stalls that have been set up in the middle of the road. Entire neighborhoods have been completely destroyed, and all that is left is rubble.

According to Zaanoun, the price of a single liter of gasoline can reach $45 dollars. “So sometimes we would rather walk for an hour than take a car, because we don’t know if we will get petrol tomorrow when there could be a more important journey to make.”

Before being distributed to media outlets all over the world, the news and photographs that are obtained on the ground are brought to the editors of the AFP, who are based in Nicosia, Cyprus, which is the Middle East headquarters of the agency. There, they are checked for accuracy. None of these things would have been possible without the limitless creativity of Ahmed Eissa, who was the technician concerned. Solar panels to recharge cameras and computers, as well as inventive workarounds for power and internet outages, were among the things that he discovered in the midst of so much danger and ruin.

“We have been working around the clock for the past four months,” Zaanoun remarked. But we have no choice because what we are witnessing right now is Gaza disintegrating in before of our eyes. The Israeli strikes are causing everything to go up in smoke, including the destruction of its homes and its ancient treasures, as well as the deaths of its local population. No one is safe wherever… During the bombings, I have witnessed youngsters going out into the open air to search among garbage cans in the hope of discovering a piece of bread. They had not consumed any water in a considerable amount of time, as evidenced by the fact that their lips were cracked.

Additionally, Mai Yaghi has been forced to contend with feelings of tiredness and a sense of helplessness. Yaghi, who has been a reporter for the AFP in Gaza for sixteen years, went around the hospitals herself to investigate when several people threw doubt on the statement made by the Hamas health ministry regarding the number of Gazans who had been killed. She was able to convince officials to demonstrate the computer system that is used to count the victims. In one column, those who were killed in the war are listed, and in the other column, those who died as a result of natural causes are listed.

“Because of our work, we see more horrors than anyone else,” she stated to reporters.

Our responsibility is to recount the sorrow that people have endured. However, when you fully immerse yourself in it, you come to the realization that it is also immense for us, and that we are impotent in the face of it.

Zaanoun stated that when the war began, the AFP team had the hope that it would not persist for a long time and that life would continue despite everything, just as it has in the past during other crises. However, in a very short amount of time, “the horror and the danger took over: the strikes from the air, the sea, and the land intensified.” Previously, we had never witnessed it in such a state. During the time that the people were still inside their homes, the Israeli army attacked residences. The number of those who have been murdered or injured has not ceased to increase.–/10617491

By ki0nk

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