Ariel Sharon says that the Israelis are civilized. Yet Israel’s ‘Ha’aretz’ newspaper, on Monday 6 May 2002, published a long account of the devastation, vandalism and looting wrought by the Israeli army in the Palestinian Authority’s Ministry of Culture in Ramallah, a building that was occupied by troops for about a month.
“In every room of the various departments – literature, film, culture for children and youth, books, discs, pamphlets and documents were piled up, soiled with urine and excrement”, wrote Ha’retz correspondent Amira Hass.
“There are two toilets on every floor but the soldiers urinated and defecated everywhere else in the building.They did their business on the floors, in emptied flowerpots, even in drawers they had pulled out of the desk. Someone even managed to defecate into a photocopier.”
Colonel Dan Hafetz of the IDF also held an investigation on Monday into an incident in which a Palestinian woman and her two children, aged three and four, were killed by Israeli soldiers. It very quickly became clear that the initial version of events issued by the IDF was erroneous, and that the tank had not come under attack before soldiers opened fire on the three civilans.
Sharon and other western leaders prefer to call such crimes against humanity, as ‘defensive actions’, or ‘collateral damage’. Is this the much talked about ‘civilisation’ that Sharon aligns himself with? I believe that no person with a conscience and moral standing would find Israel’s behaviour acceptable any more, certainly not this type of Israeli civilisation.
UN officials estimate the damage caused by the Israeli military operation to Palestinian property and infrastructure at more than $350 million. An Israeli army spokesman confirmed that ‘hundreds of thousands of dollars in damage was done to the offices of the PA and different NGO’s.’
Israeli operations also destroyed the water, electricity and sewage systems of six Palestinian towns on the West Bank. In Ramallah, the army piled up all the computers of the Ministry of Education and blew them to pieces.
Other dastardly actions, not forgetting the massacre of hundreds at Jenin refugee camp, include Israeli tanks crushing all Palestinian vehicles, soldiers emptying the fridges in Palestinian houses and destroying their furniture and appliances before pulling out.
The destruction, death and havoc caused by the Jewish state during its latest ‘operation’, as well as other previous massacres such as ‘Deir Yassin ‘, ‘Sabra/Shatila’, ‘Qana’, etc, will certainly haunt them in years to come.