Gaza Strip

Why would Israel bomb a university?

Last night, during the second night of Israel’s unprecedented attack on Gaza, I was awakened by the deafening sound of intensive bombardment on the Islamic University of Gaza (IUG). Of course Israeli politicians and generals would claim that IUG is a Hamas stronghold and that it preaches terrorism. As an independent professor, not affiliated with any political party, I can say that IUG is an academic institution which embraces a wide spectrum of political affinities. Dr. Akram Habeeb writes from the besieged Gaza Strip. 

"They are wrong to think we are the terrorists"

Saturday was supposed to be a normal day — at least as close to normal as we are allowed to enjoy in Gaza. Where else but in Gaza are students killed in air strikes on their classrooms? From my desk in my university classroom we could see the smoke from Israel’s bombing and hear the most terrifying sound of non-stop explosions. Eman Mohammed writes from the besieged Gaza Strip. 

The longest night of my life

Here’s an update on what’s happening here from where I am, the second night of Israeli air (and sea) raids on Gaza. It’s 1:30am but it feels like the sun should be up already. For the past few hours there’s been simultaneous, heavy aerial bombardment of Gaza City and the northern Gaza Strip. It feels like the longest night of my life. Safa Joudeh writes from the besieged Gaza Strip. 

Gaza: "This is only the beginning"

Majid Salim, stood beside his comatose mother, Fatima. Earlier today she had been sitting at her desk at work at the Khadija Arafat Charity, located near the headquarters of Hamas’ security forces in Gaza City. Israel’s attack had left her with multiple internal and head injuries, a tube down her throat and a ventilator keeping her alive. Majid gestured to her, “We didn’t attack Israel, my mother didn’t fire rockets at Israel. This is the biggest terrorism, to have our mother bombarded at work.” Ewa Jasiewicz reports from the besieged Gaza Strip. 

"Shabbat Shalom" in Gaza

Shabbat Shalom! “Peaceful Saturday.” I don’t believe that Israeli leaders appreciate the meaning of this Hebrew greeting given at the start of the weekly Jewish day of rest. No more “Shabbat Shalom,” as on Saturday, 27 December 2008, just a few days before the start of a new year, Israeli warplanes dropped bombs on different parts of the Gaza Strip. The Electronic Intifada correspondent Rami Almeghari writes from the besieged Gaza Strip. 

"The amount of death and destruction is inconceivable"

It was just before noon when I heard the first explosion. I rushed to my window and barely did I get there and look out when I was pushed back by the force and air pressure of another explosion. For a few moments I didn’t understand but then I realized that Israeli promises of a wide-scale offensive against the Gaza Strip had materialized. Safa Joudeh writes from the besieged Gaza Strip. 

No bread in Gaza

Yesterday, after I finished my lecture at one of Gaza’s universities, my wife asked me to bring some bread from Gaza City. All bakeries in our area have stopped operating because of the lack of flour and cooking gas due to Israel’s 18-month siege of the territory. I drove throughout Gaza City to try to find some bread for my four children, instead finding a miserable scene. The Electronic Intifada correspondent Rami Almeghari writes from the occupied Gaza Strip. 

Hunger before the storm

Israeli politicians, in the run-up to elections, are promising to deal a severe blow to Gaza as this is how Israeli policy is made. However, every household in Gaza is already under siege. In Gaza you can only find pale, angry and frustrated faces. If you visit my house you won’t find power, while my neighbor is out of gas. Another neighbor seeks potable water as power outages have left him without for four days. A third neighbor desparately looks for milk for his child but does so in vain. Sameh A. Habeeb writes from the occupied Gaza Strip. 

"I was afraid they would destroy our trees"

Leila pointed towards a lone tree and small house on a ridge above what appeared to be a vacant lot. “This was a great field,” she said, “filled with lime, guava and orange trees. They destroyed them, killed the trees,” she explained, referring to Israeli invasions over the years. “A few days after he learned his trees had been destroyed, the man who owned and tended to the trees passed away.” Eva Bartlett reports from the occupied Gaza Strip. 

No Eid celebration in Gaza

On Saturday, banks in Gaza were thronged by lines of disappointed Palestinians who were expecting to receive part of their salaries before the Eid al-Adha holiday, which begins on Monday. Salam Fayyad, the Palestinian Authority’s appointed Prime Minister based in Ramallah, foresaw the cash crisis earlier in the week and urged Israel to allow the transfer of shekels to Gaza, citing a needed 250 million shekels ($63 million) to pay the salaries. EI contributor Eva Bartlett reports from the occupied Gaza Strip.