The Curse of the curfew

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I always knew that Israel had strong Nazi elements in its state ideology and collective mindset. Her insidious apartheid, sinister occupation and virulent treatment of its non-Jewish citizens and subjects left no doubt in my mind as to the sheer evilness of the Jewish state.

However, it was the appalling massacres at the Jenin refugee camp, coupled with the wanton destruction the Israeli army has been wreaking on Palestinian population centers, that convinced me (and many others around the globe) that Israel is actually a Nazi state, adopting a Nazi ideology, following Nazi policies, and indulging in Nazi-like practices.

TThe nefariousness of Israeli behavior simply transcends reality. Ir defies linguistic description, as Christian Orthodox leader Hanna Atallah rightly described what he saw at the camp.

This article will shed some light on another virulent aspect of Israeli behavior in the West Bank during the past six weeks, namely the “military curfews,” which truly caricature the brutal ugliness of Zionist mentality and racism.

When the Israeli occupation army stormed Palestinian population centers in late March, employing more than 700 battle tanks and 50,000 troops, the fist step it took was to impose a draconian curfew on Palestinian towns and villages, imprisoning millions of people in their homesé”until a further notice.”

The further notice could come up after a week, a month, two months, or never, as has been the case in the old town of Hebron, which has been under intermittent curfew since the outbreak of the intifada against Israeli occupation and apartheid nearly 19 months ago.

This is not the sort of curfew local authorities would imposed on the population for a few hours for public safety purposes.

It is a belligerent, harsh, hateful and hostile act of collective punishment aimed at tormenting, frustrating and humiliating an entire civilian population for political reasons.

The curfew usually begins with Israeli occupation soldiers announcing in heavily accented Arabic that a given town or village is under curfew.

“Mamnou’ al-Tajawul Hatta Isha’ren Akhar” or “curfew is in effect until a further notice,” come the hateful words out of the loudspeakers fixed at the hoods of army jeeps.

The menacing announcement itself is often coupled with random shooting and other insolent expressions aimed at terrorizing the population.

Sometimes, the curfew is imposed without a prior announcement, as happened in Dura, 12 kilometers south West of Hebron, when the Israeli army invaded the town, pop. 25000, on 9 April.

There, the occupation army started shooting at people at the outlying neighborhoods who simply didn’t know what was going on.

In one bloody incident, an Israeli apache helicopter gun-ship opened a volley of machinegun bullets at a group of unsuspecting people at the Rafadi neighborhood, who were going home, having just finished the dawn prayer at the neighborhood mosque.

The perfidious bullets immediately killed Nayef Sayyed Ahnmed, who has just graduated from college.

His cousin, Aref Sayyed Ahmed, a father of eight children, was moderately injured in the strafing.

However, as the Israeli army adamantly refused to allow rescuers to reach him, the poor man simply bled to death.

Both Men were ordinary citizens who struggled to make ends meet and had no connection to any political groups or “terrorist organizations,” the mantra Israel evokes to justify her Nazi-like treatment of the Palestinian people.

They probably didn’t realize that every Palestinian is a potential target of Israel’s death machine, regardless of any other considerations.

The murder of innocent civilians is only one aspect of the Israeli army’s criminal behavior.

Indeed, the invading troops barred the family of the victims from collecting their bodies and bury them in dignified manner, threatening to shot and kill anybody approaching the bodies.

Only after 72 hours had passed, did an Israeli officer allow two men to take the bodies into the homes, where they were kept two more days, in which case they already began to decompose, before they were finally allowed to be buried.

Israeli occupation soldiers not only incarcerate people in their homes and threaten to shoot those who step out of their homes or look through the windows.

They also raid homes, humiliate families, and vandalize people’s property on a large scale and in a systematic way, apparently with the aim of inflicting as much losses as possible on the civilian population.

For example, it has been reported that in hundreds of cases, Israeli soldiers used powerful explosives to force-open doors of buildings or homes whose occupants have moved elsewhere for safety.

And when the soldiers get inside, they indulge to every conceivable act of savagery, theft, vandalism and ransacking, because “they have the guns and could easily kill anybody opposing them.”

Some of the bestial acts the soldiers indulge in include urinating and defecating in living rooms, displaying their genitals in front of women, and vandalizing television sets and computers.

In Ramallah, as elsewhere, Israeli soldiers reportedly looted many stores, stealing easy to carry valuables such as expensive watches, mobile phones, and similar objets.

Similar stories will certainly emerge when the curfews on Palestinian towns are over.

Some Israeli soldiers indulge in deviant lewd acts especially when they invade homes where there are young women alone, e.g. when male relatives have been arrested.

According to al-Jazeera television report on 18 April, Israeli soldiers who broke into a home in Bethlehem that day forced at gun point three young women to undress.

Other soldiers watched sadistically, as the women were being tormented and humiliated.

It is believed that this phenomenon is widespread and the reason they are not disseminated and publicized is due to the fact that the generally conservative Palestinians don’t like to talk about sexual harassment by the soldiers for fear of undermining their personal and family honor.

Another particularly wicked aspect of Israeli army behavior during the administration of curfews is the suspension of all vital services to the Palestinian population, often causing preventable deaths.

On 14 April, this writer called the emergency department at Dura city hall, asking whether ambulances could move throughout the town under the curfew.

The person in charge had this to say: “The army told us they would shoot at any car moving including ambulances.”

I asked “and what if somebody needs urgent medical attention or hospitalization?”

And this was his answer “He or she should wait and pray to God to end this nightmare.”

The curfews which the Israeli occupation army imposes for prolonged periods of time on three and a half million Palestinians express the almost total Israeli disregard and callousness toward the Palestinians, their needs, their feelings, their lives, and their very humanity.

And the message is too clear, namely that “we are the masters and you are the slaves, and the master can do whatever he likes to the slave.”

Now, does the world have a better understanding of the suicidal bombers?

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