Two hundred and sixty names of babies whose age was 0; names of babies who didn’t get to celebrate their first birthday, nor will they ever celebrate anything else. Here are some of their names: Abdul Jawad Hussu, Abdul Khaleq Baba, Abdul Rahim Awad, Abdul Rauf al-Fara, Murad Abu Saifan, Nabil al-Eidi, Najwa Radwan, Nisreen al-Najar, Oday al-Sultan, Zayd al-Bahbani, Zeyn al-Jarusha, Zayne Shatat. What dreams did their parents have for them? Then there are hundreds of names of one- and two-year old children; toddlers three or four years of age; children who were five, six, seven or eight, up to the youths who were 17 when they died.
Thousands of names, one after the other, out of the 11,500 children killed by the Israel Defense Forces in Gaza over the last four months. The list flows like credits at the end of a long movie, a mournful tune in the background. The Al-Jazeera network posted the list of names known to it over the weekend, a total of half the 11,500 who were killed, according to Hamas’ health ministry. A child killed every 15 minutes, one out of every 100 children in Gaza.
Around them remained the children who witnessed the deaths of their loved ones, the parents who buried their babies, the people who had extricated their bodies from the fire and rubble, thousands of crippled children and tens of thousands forever in shock. According to UN figures, 10,000 children lost both parents in this war, a war in which two mothers die every hour.
No explanation, no justification or excuse could ever cover up this horror. It would be best if Israel’s propaganda machine didn’t even try to. No stories of “Hamas is responsible for it all,” and no excuses pointing to Hamas hiding among civilians. Horror of this scope has no explanation other than the existence of an army and government lacking any boundaries set by law or morality. [Continue reading…]