Oppression and Resistance
Types of Oppression
The Military Occupation
The occupation is enforced
by the Israeli Defence
Force; the Border Police
and the Civil Police.
Practices they use are
“might, force and beatings”
The Military Apparatus
The security fence /
The blockade of Gaza
Closed military zones
The protection of
Since 2000, 6,311 Palestinians,
including 1317 children, have been
killed by Israeli forces (31/10/10
During the War on Gaza 431 children
were killed, (PCHR).
In the first few three weeks of the
Second Intifada the IDF fired 700,000
bullets and other projectiles in the
West Bank and about 300,000 in
Gaza. One wit in Central Command
quipped there was “a bullet for every
child,” (Maariv, 21/11/2002).
Tens of thousands of shells have been
fired into Gaza. Eg. 29/03/2006 -
12/04/2006 2,300 shells and 34
airstrikes; 27/06/2006 to August 2006
over 3,500 shells and 190 airstrikes.
Military Targets and the Goldstone Report
Hospitals, health workers, farmers, factories,
poultry farms, sewage works, schools and
Israeli forces committed “willful killing, torture or
inhumane treatment, willfully causing great
suffering or serious injury to body or health, and
extensive destruction of property not justified by
military necessity and carried out unlawfully and
Goldstone also accused Israel of depriving
Palestinians in Gaza of their right to
subsistence, and stated, that this “could lead a
competent court to find that the crime of
persecution, a crime against humanity, had
“the Mission considers the plan to have been
directed, at least in part… at the people of Gaza
as a whole.”
The Siege of Gaza
“The whole of Gaza's civilian population is
being punished for acts for which they bear no
responsibility. The closure therefore
constitutes a collective punishment imposed in
clear violation of Israel's obligations under
international humanitarian law,” (ICRC).
80% Food dependent: “Chronic malnutrition in
the Gaza Strip has risen over the past few
years and has now reached 10.2%,” (WHO).
No freedom of movement
95% of water undrinkable (Amnesty
12% of child deaths caused by diarrhoea.
95% of children experience nightmares or
bedwetting symptomatic of post-traumatic
stress-disorder (February 2009, Care
The West Bank occupation is
enforced jointly by the military
and the Civil Administration.
In line with the Oslo Accords
the West Bank is divided into 3
Zones – A, B and C.
Area C is 61% of the West
Bank and is under full Israeli
Civil and Military control.
Life in Area C
Palestinians live by permit:
45% of all West Bank land is designated as
Closed Military Zones, State Lands or
Nature Reserves, all of which are barred to
94% of Palestinian building applications are
refused, successful building applications
are generally restricted to 1% of the
Amongst children aged 6 months to 5 years
living in herding communities 5.9% suffer
from acute malnutrition and 28% have
stunted growth, (UNOCHA).
Amnesty International reports that the Israeli
army shoots up Palestinian water cisterns, and
has prevented communities whose wells have
dried up from over use by the settlements
from collecting rain water.
"We are helping very poor families to build
new tanks on their roofs... unfortunately it's a
really good target for Israeli soldiers to shoot
There are over 200 illegal
Jewish only colonies /
There are 500,000 illegal
The colonies are built on
confiscated / stolen land.
Associated with the colonies
are Israeli only roads, cordon
sanataires, water theft,
harassment and checkpoints.
There are two types of colonist –
economic and ideological.
All colonists are armed.
Colonists regularly attack
Palestinians, destroy their crops
and sometimes buildings.
“I am appalled at acts of
destruction of olive trees and
farmlands, desecration of
mosques and violence against
civilians. Israel states its
condemnation, which I welcome,
but its record in imposing the rule
of law on settlers is lamentable,”
John Serry, UN Special Envoy.
The Rule of Law
Palestinians live under Israeli military
Colonists live under Israeli civil law.
Colonists can vote, Palestinians
Colonists have their own infrastructure,
including their own roads.
“When we have settled the land, all the
Arabs will be able to do about it will be
to scurry around like drugged
cockroaches in a bottle… We declare
openly that the Arabs have no right to
settle on even one centimeter of Eretz
Israel…” Rafael Eitan, Israeli Chief of
The Seam Zone
Approximately 260,000 Palestinians living in 81
communities are trapped in the so called “Seam Zone,”
(Save the Children).
A further 98 communities comprising 312,810 people
are surrounded by the wall, settlements or other illegal
Israeli infrastructure, (Ma‟an Development Agency).
In villages in the seam zone pregnant women usually
leave their homes a month early as they may not be
able to cross the checkpoints to hospitals (WHO).
“Even in the weird reality of the occupation, some
situations are particularly absurd. Every morning the
Jadallah children cross the road on which their house
is built. A road on which they are forbidden to travel or
walk along, and go by foot about 3 kilometers to
school in the nearby village of Faqiqs, along a path full
of sharp ascents and descents difficult for even good
walkers. The prohibited road, Route 3265, used to
take them directly to school, a maximum of two
minutes from their home.”
The wall is built mostly inside Palestinian
territory. It annexes up to 10.5% of the
West Bank, 80% of the illegal colonists and
the major water resources.
The wall separates East Jerusalem from
the rest of Palestine.
Some communities and towns are entirely
surrounded by the wall making their future
unviable, (World Bank).
The Wall, “almost totally ignores the daily
needs of the Palestinian population” and is
“focused almost exclusively on the desire to
maintain the fabric of life of Israeli settlers,”
A city of 140,000 it is split in two.
20% of the city is under direct
military control because 500
illegal colonists live there.
Even by Israeli standards the
behaviour of the colonists is
“intolerable… The sight of Jews
firing at innocent Palestinians
has no other name than pogrom.
I am ashamed that Jews could
do such a thing," Ehud Olmert.
Palestinians live under continue
harassment, curfews and
Annexed by Israel it remains the capital of Palestine.
Jewish residents have Israeli citizenship – Palestinians do not.
Palestinian residency is temporary can be revoked for a variety of
Palestinian areas lack infrastructure and have a much lower percentage
of the budget spent on them.
To build a Museum of Tolerance Israel has demolished an ancient
Cut off from the West Bank only approximately 10% of West Bank
Palestinians and no Gaza Palestinians have permits to travel there.
The regime of house demolition applies but Palestinians find it almost
impossible to gain planning permission.
“Life in East Jerusalem can be described as a continuing cycle of
neglect, discrimination, poverty, and shortages,” (ACRI).
Israel‟s actions present “an extremely worrying pattern of Israeli efforts to
drive Palestinians out of East Jerusalem - all of which are illegal under
international law,“ Richard Falk UN Human Rights Raporteur.
The Rule of Law
Palestinian citizens of Israel are
promised equal rights.
ACRI reports the reality is they
“face entrenched discrimination in
all fields of life.”
90,000 Palestinian Israelis live in
“unrecognised” villages. Denied
health care, water, education, post,
etc their homes are frequently
The Hebrew University reports that
in education 3 times as much is
spent on a Jewish child as on a
A refusal to give up;
a refusal to be
humiliated, and a
maintain the dignity
and routines of daily
life is the main type
Beginning in 2005 villagers in Bil‟in have held
weekly protests against the illegal wall that
confiscates their land.
This model has been taken up by other villages who
formed Popular Committees Against the Wall.
In weekly protests Palestinians are joined by Israelis
and International Volunteers.
Israel‟s response has been violence and
imprisonment. Abu Bassem Rahme (the young
man in the photograph) was shot dead. Many
others have been injured, and between June 2008
and January 2009 32 of Bil‟in‟s residents arrested,
in the neighbouring village of Ni‟lin, over a period of
18 months 94 residents had been arrested.
Many forms of Palestinian
In Gaza Palestinian farmers
and international volunteers
regularly challenge Israel‟s
buffer zone. Often they are
shot for doing so.
In 2009 the Arab League
declared Jerusalem a city
of Arab Culture – the
festival was banned and its
The Olive Tree
Over a million fruit trees and
500,000 olive trees have
been destroyed in the last
The YMCA Joint Advocacy
Initiative have replanted
over 50,000 new olive trees.
The YMCA works with
international volunteers and
is supported by Trocaire.
The Palestinian Authority
The PA is actively trying to
break links between the
illegal colonies and the
Colony goods are banned.
From next year it will be
illegal for any Palestinian to
work in a colony.
As guaranteed in
international law (UDHR
Article 13) the 7.2 million
Palestinian refugees (4.7
million registered) remain
committed to their right of
Badil puts it this way: “It‟s
either return… or return.”
attempt to alleviate injustice.
ICHAD rebuilds houses
Gush Shalom and Rabbis for
Human Rights protest against
family evictions in East
Israeli artists have called for a
cultural boycott of the illegal
B‟Tselem, Bimkom, Hamoked,
Gisha and Physicians for
Human Rights all campaign
for Human Rights standards.
In 2005 170 Palestinian civil
organisations called for Boycott,
Divestment and Sanctions in order
to “besiege the siege.”
Since then ICTU, STUC, COSATU
and other Trade Unions have either
entirely or partially endorsed this
In 2009 the Palestinian Churches
added their endorsement calling the
occupation “a sin against God.”
Israel is considering making support
for BDS a criminal offence.
Over to you
“The right of self-determination
is of particular importance
because its realization is an
essential condition for the
effective guarantee and
observance of individual human
rights... It is for that reason that
States set forth the right of self-
determination… apart from and
before all of the other rights...”
High Commissioner for Human
Israel‟s actions daily violate this
fundamental right. States have
failed to fulfil their obligation to
act so it is over to you.
Index to Photos
1. The Israeli army occupy a Palestinian home – they can stay for up to a month and use the home as a base for military operations.
2. The entrance to Bethlehem, 2006. Note the sign from the Israeli Ministry of Tourism – “Peace be with you.”
3. Israeli soldier threatens two Palestinian women.
4. Blindfolded Palestinian kneels beside a checkpoint.
5. Israeli airman‟s photograph of an air strike on Gaza during Operation Cast Lead, 2008-09.
6. Al Quds Hospital Gaza after having been shelled with white phosphorus during Operation Cast Lead, 2008-09.
7. Children in Gaza demonstrate following the destruction of their school, 2009.
8. Map of Israeli settlements and areas A, B and C in the West Bank.
9. Palestinian family in Area C, note the water containers as they are not connected to the water supply.
10. Palestinian Shepherd with Israeli settlement in the backgound.
11. Armed Israeli settlers approaching Palestinian farmers in south Hebron hills, June 2008.
12. Palestinian school children rush through a security gate in the West Bank.
13. An Israeli only road in the West Bank.
14. The separation wall.
15. School children in Hebron blocked from going to school.
16. Ariel Sharon‟s house in East Jerusalem. Note the huge flags and menorah.
17. A Syrian bride in the Occupied Golan Heights preparing to cross the ceasefire line to get married – once she has crossed she
18. An Israeli Palestinian citizen sits on the ruins of her demolished home in an „unrecognised‟ village in the Israeli Negev, 2010.
19. Palestinian children on Hebron have lessons beside a checkpoint having been refused access to school.
20. Israeli politician and peace activist Uri Avnery walks beside Palestinian campaigner Bassem Abu Rahma at a protest against the
wall in Bil‟in. Subsequently Bassem was shot and killed by the Israeli army whilst peacefully protesting in April 2009.
21. Palestinians performing the traditional Dabkeh dance.
22. A field of cut down olive trees outside Bethlehem in October 2006, (John Levanz) and Palestinian farmers are water cannoned
for protesting against the wall that confiscates their lands.
23. Palestinian prime minister Salaam Fayyad burns settlement goods to enforce a boycott, 2009.
24. Palestinian children commemorate Nakba Day sending balloons into the sky. The balloons can travel where they can not.
25. Tent of the Palestinian family al –Gawi outside the home they were evicted from in East Jerusalem, 2008. Israeli and
international volunteers work with the Israeli Committee Against House Demolition (ICAHD) to rebuild demolished Palestinian
26. Consumer boycott poster.
27. Palestinian boy in Jayyous market, the West Bank.