On Wednesday, Egypt announced that the Israeli regime and the Palestinian resistance movement of Hamas had reached a ceasefire agreement. Under the deal, the Palestinians and Israelis agreed to end all hostilities. But the Israeli regime did not agree to lift the blockade of Gaza.
An interview with Ralph Schoenman, a political commentator from Berkeley, to further discuss the issue.
Q: History shows Israel has never respected any truce with the Palestinians, and this time is no exception. Then why have a truce in the first place when it’s going to be violated?
Schoenman: The Israelis always function that way. The truces that they sign, they don’t honor. They utilize these things as means by which they tie the hands of the people they victimize.
You gave the example of the death of the 21-year-old Abdulhadi Qudaih, who was killed for no other reason that he and farmers were entering a buffer zone to check on their crops after hearing a news report that restrictions had been lifted in the area.
That was true for people in Gaza who were going in the areas that they once farmed, areas that were entirely theirs and part of the land that is associated with their homes and their production, and they are then treated as targets. And that is what has occurred here.
It’s a measure of the contempt of the Zionist state and its apparatus that it just does this brazenly and without any compunction…
Hamas made clear that over 1.2 billion dollars of destruction and damage had been inflicted on the buildings and infrastructure and agriculture in Gaza in this short onslaught that we’ve just witnessed. They’re not stopping.
Q: Another question that comes to mind is that why is Gaza targeted with such aggressiveness, and not the West Bank? They’re both Palestinians so what’s the difference?
Schoenman: There’s actually continuing aggression being launched against the population of the West Bank almost every day.
The area is carved into little localities under zones A, B and C: one, in which only the Palestinian Authority has police jurisdiction but this is overseen by Israeli officers; the other, in which it is joint patrols; and the third, which the Israelis themselves are the only enforcement, as it is called.
They are constantly invading, attacking and arresting and disappearing. It’s an everyday event in the West Bank, it’s repression, exploitation and subjugation that is nonstop.
It’s never ceased in the West Bank.