Israeli Army Rehearsing The Taking Of Gaza City!


BESIEGED GAZA is under a heavy non-stop Israeli siege and onslaught. The Palestinian resistance movement, Hamas, has warned Israel of ‘dangerous consequences’ as the Netanyahu regime tightens the inhumane siege on the Gaza Strip by blocking fuel shipments, to bring life, including hospitals and schools, to a halt.

On Monday night the Israeli minister of military affairs’ office announced in a statement that Avigdor Lieberman had decided to halt fuel transfer into Gaza from yesterday morning until Sunday. ‘Lieberman, in consultation with the chief of staff, has decided to close the Kerem Shalom crossing to imports of oil and gas until this Sunday,’ the statement read.

In response, Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum condemned Israel’s closure of the crossing as a crime against Palestinian people. He said: ‘The Israeli occupation’s closure of the Kerem Shalom crossing and depriving Gaza of the most simple necessities of life is a crime against humanity that will be added to its list of crimes at the expense of the Palestinian people including those living in the Strip.

‘These vengeful measures reflect the degree of the oppression and the ugliness of the crime that Gaza is facing that will have dangerous consequences for which the occupation will bear full responsibility,’ he added. According to latest reports, the number of trucks which carried food into the Gaza Strip last week was the lowest in recent months.

Meanwhile, Tel Aviv is continuing its airstrikes against Gaza. On Monday, the Israeli air force hit two alleged Hamas positions in northern Gaza. The Israeli strikes came two days into a fragile ceasefire between Israel and Hamas amid a major flare-up in Gaza over the weekend.

Tensions have been running high near the Gaza fence since March 30, which marked the start of a series of protests, dubbed ‘The Great March of Return’, demanding the right to return for those driven out of their homeland.

The Gaza clashes reached their peak on May 14, the eve of the 70th anniversary of the Nakba Day (the Day of Catastrophe), which coincided this year with the US embassy’s relocation from Tel Aviv to occupied Jerusalem al-Quds. Palestinians in Gaza have been rallying every Friday since March 30 as part of a peaceful campaign known as the Great March of Return. So far, 146 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces in anti-occupation protests in the Gaza Strip. A total of 14,811 Palestinians have also sustained injuries, of whom 366 are reportedly in a critical condition.

Israel last Sunday launched a series of war games throughout the occupied territories, including one in southern Israel that reportedly simulate the capture of Gaza City. The war games will see ‘increased movement by security forces, vehicles and aircraft,’ the Israeli military said. Its Walla news agency added that the games, led by the 162nd Armoured Division, will rehearse the capture of Gaza City!

The drills began a day after Tel Aviv launched its heaviest bombing of the Gaza Strip since 2014, prompting UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Nickolay Mladenov to warn that Israel and Gaza are on the brink of war. In early July 2014, Israel invaded the Gaza Strip. The 50-day military aggression, which ended on August 26, 2014, killed nearly 2,200 Palestinians, including 577 children. Over 11,100 others – including 3,374 children, 2,088 women and 410 elderly people – were also wounded in the war. A new invasion will bring even greater casualties.

The working class in the UK must come to the aid of the Palestinian people. The TUC trade unions must impose a complete boycott of Israel until the Palestinian state is established, with Jerusalem as its capital. They must organise a major national emergency demonstration that will bring millions onto the streets to demand no new Israeli invasion of Gaza, and that the UK government recognises the State of Palestine and stops arming Israel.

It must also demand that the UK government pays billions of pounds to the Palestinian government in part-compensation for the enormous and horrific damage that the UK’s Balfour Declaration did, and continues to do, to the Palestinian people and the struggle for their state and their freedom.