Israel has snubbed calls for a ceasefire and has failed to deliver humanitarian pauses to allow sufficient aid to reach Gaza. According to Israeli officials, international pressure on the country to stop the war will increase over the next two to three weeks. Tens of millions of people around the world have come out to call for an end to the war.
In the eyes of many, this is no longer a war to destroy militant group Hamas, but a war of extermination. The appeals of UN agencies, the International Committee of the Red Cross, Human Rights Watch, and other nongovernmental organizations faced rejection.
Arab leaders have been explicit about the war crimes, genocide, and ethnic cleansing perpetrated by the invading Israeli army. They have pointed to the double standards the West uses when applying international law. The US has hindered attempts by the UN Security Council to adopt a ceasefire resolution; not that Israel, with its dismal track record at the UN, would honor it anyway.
The world cannot continue with business as usual following the war on Gaza and its egregious outcome. The West says that, once the war is over, it will push for a two-state solution and a state for the Palestinians. This is a false and vacuous mea culpa and those who say this are either disingenuous or naive, or both. The Israeli political clique is vehemently and ideologically against such a proposal. The two-state option is long gone.
Every day, we hear cries for help, from Gaza. The besieged and occupied Gaza, the open-air prison transformed into a slaughterhouse. Some cries come from families, besieged in their homes not far from al-Shifa Hospital. They were also trapped, immobile, together with their children and the elderly with little access to food or water. Tanks were ravaging their surroundings and firing at anything that moved.
Israel’s military continues to target doctors, nurses, patients and medical facilities. At least 200 doctors and medics have been killed in the ongoing genocide. In stark numerical terms, the occupying force has claimed the lives of six doctors and medics on average every single day since the beginning of its latest assault on the besieged Strip.
Just a few days ago, a doctor at the Nasser hospital, narrowly escaped death. He had stepped out of his office to check on a patient when a nearby mosque was struck. The shelling also damaged the radiology unit of the hospital. The ceiling collapsed, creating a scene of devastation.
Shortages have become the norm in Gaza, causing tragedies. People are grappling with kidney problems, and diseases like diarrhea, due to a lack of clean water. They are also suffering from hunger-related illnesses and anemia. Communicable diseases like chickenpox are spreading rapidly. Newly married girls expecting their first babies live in fear that when the time comes to deliver the baby, no one will be able to assist them.
Two children in the school lost their lives in the past week due to a lack of medication. The desperation is overwhelming. Most Gaza hospitals have run out of essential supplies, and become literal graveyards. The bodies of those murdered, lie both inside and outside of al-Shifa Hospital, now occupied by Israeli soldiers. The world has ignored the calls from Gaza’s doctors for fuel to keep hospitals operational.
Israel’s war on Gaza led to a global crisis in the systems and mechanisms designed to protect civilians. All international institutions like the ICC, and the United Nations Security Council offered just hollow words.
Unless we act today and immediately, we risk accepting a world order where the license to kill rules, and the powerful are allowed to crush the weak.