some questions i am holding about gaza

May 10, 2010 § Leave a comment

some questions i am holding:
1. what is the connection between the reproductive justice, the occupation and isolation of gaza, and the destruction of the landbase?
2. why are gazans starving?  what has happened to their landbase that they can’t grow their own food?
3. what are the conditions and outcomes of birth in gaza?  what does the starvation of gazans do to the possibilities for women’s reproductive health?

4. what is my response to this?  what is my response to the fact that i live in a country that is building/has built a steel wall to stop the tunnels that provided the vast majority of basic goods foods, fuel to gaza?  while i do not identify with this nationstate nor with the usa, or any other abusive system, what is my human response to this human violence and violation?

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this is an interview with the unrwa chief about gaza.  some excerpts…

But, obviously the pollution that has been going into Gaza has severely damaged the water quality in the area and is damaging the fishing fleet. The main restrictions on fishing at the moment are those imposed by the Israelis, because they prevent the boats going out to sea in order to be able to catch the more lucrative fish which are a little bit further off shore. As far as agriculture is concerned; that is a long-term trend. Most of Gaza’s traditional agricultural lands have been built over. A lot of it has been destroyed in the repeated Israeli incursions that have been coming in as bulldozed ……….. the traditional date palms or orange groves or other normal crops that they had in the area. It is not completely destroyed, but just recently Hamas took a decision to ban farming in certain areas of Gaza, because they said that the land had been contaminated as a result of the toxic metals that were left behind after Israel’s operation a year ago. So, that was a further blow to people wanting to have a little bit of agriculture. People are just about surviving in Gaza today. Through ways that they hardly know how they are going to manage.

People have to remember that Gaza depends for 80-90 percent of its normal subsistence on imports and on exports. Most of that in the past used to come through Israel. Israel has closed that door, and attempted to throw away the key, allowing in only a very small quantity of goods, most of which comes in through the United Nations and most of which my agency is responsible for distributing.

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Free Gaza Movement Statistics

•     To date the Free Gaza Movement has organized 8 voyages to Gaza,
successfully arriving in Gaza Port on 5 separate occasions. We have taken
142 international passengers, in addition to 38 Palestinians on our boats.
Ours are the first ships to sail to Gaza since 1967.

•    We have brought several tons of medical aid and toys to Gaza on our ships.

•     Our passengers have represented 26 different countries: Australia, Bahrain,
Canada, Cyprus, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Iraq, Ireland, Israel,
Italy, Jamaica, Jordan, Lebanon, Palestine (‘48/West Bank/and Gaza), Poland,
Qatar, Scotland, Spain, Sudan, Switzerland, Tunisia, the UK, US, and Yemen.

•     17 current and former parliamentarians have traveled with us, representing
Cyprus, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Palestine, Scotland, Spain, Switzerland, the UK,
the US, and the European Parliament.

•     12 film makers, 10 doctors, 8 long-term human rights workers, and 6
professors have sailed with the Free Gaza Movement, in addition to dozens of
journalists from the BBC, CNN, al-Jazeera, Ramattan, and other media outlets.

•    We have taken out 22 Palestinian students from Gaza, allowing them to
attend their universities abroad after Israel had denied their esit, as well as
assisting 4 Palestinians to exit Gaza for medical care, and helping 2
Palestinian families to be reunited.

•     It is the first time in over 60 years that Palestinians have been able to freely
enter and exit their own country.

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