Gaza Conflict Q&A


Eagle, CO

Last updated on Feb 27, 2024

Posted on Feb 27, 2024

I'm a proud member of Ceasefire Now Roaring Fork Valley. The group and I have put together this document to help people better understand the Gaza Conflict.

Two state solution?

There’s a mound of evidence to support that the Israeli government has never wanted a two state solution. That instead, their goal has been and is now to expel the Palestinians from their land. Groups such as these two are calling for one democratic state:

Netanyahu outlines vision for two-state solution – without Palestinian sovereignty
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has never been a full-throated supporter of a two-state solution, weaving in and out of different definitions of what that would mean. But in recent years he’s settled on the idea that he’d be open to a Palestinian state - as long as it has no military or security power, an arrangement that would have no parallel among modern sovereign states.

One Democratic State Initiative

One Democratic State Campaign

The One Democratic State Campaign is a Palestinian-led initiative that calls for the end of the colonial Zionist regime and strives for the establishment of a single democratic state in historic Palestine, based on political, social, economic and cultural justice, in which Palestinians and Israeli Jews live in equality.

1.21.24: Israel’s Netanyahu doubles down on opposition to Palestinian statehood:

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has repeated his opposition to an independent Palestinian state, saying his country needed full security control over the Palestinian territories, rebuffing United States President Joe Biden’s stance on the issue.

“I will not compromise on full Israeli security control over the entire area in the west of Jordan – and this is contrary to a Palestinian state,” Netanyahu posted on X late on Saturday night, doubling down his opposition to a Palestinian state a day after speaking to the US president, who has offered unconditional support to Israel in its war on Gaza Strip, in a phone call.

Ilan Pappé Israeli historian and University of Exeter professor: Israel cannot be democratized, the whole Palestine must be decolonized

In Gaza now, it’s worse than ethnic cleansing | Centre Stage

In today’s episode, Israeli historian and University of Exeter professor Ilan Pappé discusses the dangers of the Zionist ideology and its impact on Israel and Palestine, the historical context of October 7, and his vision for a one-state solution.

The Palestinians were forced from their homes in 1948

In Gaza now, it’s worse than ethnic cleansing | Centre Stage

In this episode of Centre Stage, our guest is Ilan Pappé. He’s an Israeli historian and professor at the University of Exeter. Pappé is known for his outspoken views on the Israeli-Palestinian question - drawing both praise and criticism. He’s the author of several books including "The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine", in which he challenges the traditional Israeli narrative over the establishment of Israel in 1948.

In today’s episode, Pappé discusses the dangers of the Zionist ideology and its impact on Israel and Palestine, the historical context of October 7, and his vision for a one-state solution.

Palestinian Historian DEMOLISHES MSNBC Reporter: ‘They Make Me Puke’ - Rashid Khalidi

Book: Hundred Years' War on Palestine by Rashid Khalidi

Breaking Points YouTube channel: Israel Crimes EXPOSED At The Hague

2:15 in:
Palestinian foreign minister presents these graphics showing Israel’s years long commitment to total and permanent apartheid. 

3:40 in:
22 September 2023 Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke to the United Nations General Assembly. He showed a map of the “new Middle East”. There is no Palestine on his map. Krystal Ball reports that “Netanyahu’s map is backed up by official government policy across successive Israeli administrations”.

4:00 in:
Ball goes on to report, “Every single year since 1976 the number of illegal Israeli settlers in the West Bank has increased” and presents this graphic as support. 

Hamas raped young girls?

Revealed: NYT “reporter” Anat Schwartz hired to lead the investigation into the rape allegations outed As IDF Propagandist

Anat Schwartz, the NYT “reporter” hired to lead the investigation into the rape allegations wasn’t a reporter. She was a Zionist extremist.

Credible reporting is surfacing indicating the entire rape story was fabricated:

More on Anat Schwartz, who’d never been a reporter prior to the NYT hiring her to lead a front page investigation.

Israel/oPt: UN experts appalled by reported human rights violations against Palestinian women and girls

Is Israel an apartheid state? A Democratic state?

In Gaza now, it’s worse than ethnic cleansing | Centre Stage

Book: Gaza An Inquest Into Its Martyrdom by Norman Finkelstein; 394 Appendix:

A growing consensus has emerged, embracing authoritative legal, political, and moral personalities - many of them many Israelis - that Israel has established an apartheid regime in the occupied Palestine territory. The lengthy roster of those making the apartheid analogy in the context of Israel's occupation includes former US president and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Jimmy Carter; South African Archbishop and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Desmond Tutu; distinguished South African jurist John Dugard; Former Israeli Deputy Prime Minister Dan Meridor (Lukid), former Israeli attorney general Michael Ben-Yair, former Israeli ministers of education Shulamit Aloni, and Yossi Sarid, former former deputy mayor of Jerusalem Meron Benvenisti, former Israeli ambassador to South Africa Alon Liel, veteran Israeli journalist Danny Rubinstein, the Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories (B’Tselem) the Association for Civil Rights in Israel, and the Haaretz editorial board.

A monograph by South African international law experts found that “Israel has introduced a system of apartheid in the OPT ( occupied Palestinian territory), in violation of a peremptory norm of international law”, while an article published in the prestigious European Journal of International Law concluded that “a system of apartheid has a developed in the occupied Palestinian territory” that is “not only reminiscent of,” but also “in some cases worse than... apartheid as it existed in South Africa”. 

The reference point of the apartheid analogy is most often the dual system of law that Israel has established within the occupied Palestinian territory that privileges Jewish settlers. But even in the absence of Jewish settlements, the occupation itself would by now constitute an apartheid regime vis-a-vis Israel proper. Some decades ago, noted international law expert Adam Roberts speculated, “Israel may see some advantage in the continuation of the status of the occupied territory because this arrangement provides a legal basis for treating the Arab inhabitants of the territories entirely separately from citizens of israel.” If a prolonged occupation in which Israel “refuse(d) to negotiate a peace treaty,” came to pass he continued, it would, “pave the way for a kind of apartheid.”

Jimmy Carter Defends 'Peace Not Apartheid'

Hisham B. Sharabi Memorial Lecture: Apartheid and Occupation under International Law

Haaretz: Opinion | The Time Has Come to Admit: Israel Is an Apartheid Regime

Haaretz: 'There Is an Apartheid State Here': Ex-Mossad Chief on Israel's West Bank Occupation

The Times Of Israel: Meridor compares Likud policies to apartheid

Is Israel committing genocide or war crimes?

Democracy Now!: Ralph Nader at 90 on the “Genocidal War” in Gaza & Why Congress Is a Weapon of Mass Destruction

56:13 in:
Ralph Nader: “There are 5 federal laws that the US and Israel are violating by unconditional and unconstitutional support of the illegal, genocidal war in Gaza: The Foreign Assistance Act, The Arms Export Control Act, The Leahy Law protecting human rights and the Genocide Convention Act”. 

The Foreign Assistance Act:

The Arms Export Control Act:

The Leahy Law protecting human rights (The term “Leahy law” refers to two statutory provisions prohibiting the U.S. Government from using funds for assistance to units of foreign security forces where there is credible information implicating that unit in the commission of gross violations of human rights (GVHRs).

Genocide Convention Act:

According to article II of the Convention, genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group:

(a) Killing members of the group

(b) Causing serious physical or mental harm to members of the group

(c) Intentionally subjecting the group to living conditions intended to cause its physical destruction, in whole or in part

(d) Imposing measures aimed at preventing the birth of children within the group

(e) Forcibly transferring children from the group to another group

Collective Punishment (collective penalties) is a war crime.

ART. 33. — No protected person may be punished for an offence he or she has not personally committed. Collective penalties and likewise all measures of intimidation or of terrorism are prohibited.

Pillage is prohibited.

Reprisals against protected persons and their property are prohibited.

International law posits that no person may be punished for acts that he or she did not commit. It ensures that the collective punishment of a group of persons for a crime committed by an individual is forbidden...This is one of the fundamental guarantees established by the Geneva Conventions and their protocols. This guarantee is applicable not only to protected persons but to all individuals, no matter what their status, or to what category of persons they belong..."

Ralph Nader Radio Hour: Bruce Fein is a Constitutional scholar and an expert on international law.  Mr. Fein was Associate Deputy Attorney General under Ronald Reagan.

10:00 in

The genocide convention has several definitions. One of which is “deliberately inflicting on a group conditions of life calculated to bring about its destruction in whole or in part”.

Collective punishment is a punishment or sanction imposed on a group for acts allegedly perpetrated by a member of that group, which could be an ethnic or political group, or just the family, friends and neighbors of the perpetrator. Because individuals who are not responsible for the acts are targeted, collective punishment is not compatible with the basic principle of individual responsibility. The punished group may often have no direct association with the perpetrator other than living in the same area and can not be assumed to exercise control over the perpetrator's actions. Collective punishment is prohibited by treaty in both international and non-international armed conflicts, more specifically Common Article 33 of the Fourth Geneva Convention and Article 4 of the Additional Protocol II.[1][2]

Huffington Post: Israeli Defense Minister Announces Siege On Gaza To Fight ‘Human Animals’

Israel Defense Minister Yoav Gallan: “We are fighting human animals and we act accordingly,” Gallant said.While it appears that Gallant was specifically referring to Hamas fighters in that comment, the rest of the minister’s remarks called for further oppression of all people in Gaza by denying them basic human needs.“We are imposing a complete siege on Gaza,” Gallant said. “There will be no electricity, no food, no water, no fuel. Everything will be closed.”

Israel left Gaza in 2005, is no longer occupying Gaza?

Human Rights Watch: How Does International Humanitarian Law Apply in Israel and Gaza?

>>Israel has been occupying the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and Gaza, which collectively constitute the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT), since 1967.

Contrary to what the Israeli government claims, Israel’s withdrawal of its ground forces from Gaza in 2005 did not end its occupation of Gaza.

That is because, ever since, Israel has maintained effective control over Gaza, including its territorial waters and airspace, the movement of people and goods, except at Gaza’s border with Egypt, and the infrastructure upon which Gaza relies, rendering the Strip an open-air prison

Under IHL, Israel is required, as the occupying power, to make sure that the basic needs of the population of Gaza, such as food and water, are met.

International human rights law also governs the legal duties of the Israeli authorities towards the population of the OPT, especially given the long duration of the occupation.

Book: Gaza An Inquest Into Its Martyrdom by Norman Finkelstein
Professor Finkelstein is considered to be the world’s foremost expert on Gaza, dedicating 40 years to studying Gaza. 

His many books have been translated into some fifty editions. He is a frequent lecturer and commentator on the Israel-Palestine conflict. 

From Page 9:
Israel has subsequently purported that it was no longer the occupying power in Gaza. However, human rights organizations and international institutions rejected this contention: the fact was, in myriad ways Israel still preserved near-total dominance of the Strip.  

Whether the Israeli army is inside Gaza or deployed around its periphery”, Human Rights Watch concluded, “it remains in control”. 

Human Rights Watch: Israel: 'Disengagement' Will Not End Gaza Occupation

Cambridge: The International Law of Belligerent Occupation Israel’s own leading authority on international law, Yoram Dinstein, aligned himself with the “prevalent opinion” that the Israeli occupation of Gaza was not over.

Katie Halper YouTube channel: Norman Finkelstein DESTROYS Amy Schumer

4:40 in: “Every human rights organization, and every UN body, including Israel’s senior expert on international law - Yohan Dinstein, all concurred that Israel remains the occupying power in Gaza”. 

Hamas was elected by the citizens of Gaza, therefore citizens of Gaza support Hamas? 

Former President Jimmy Carter commenting on the 2006 elections:

“The three Palestinian elections were among the best we've ever seen. The election council is comprised of some of the finest and most distinguished people in the Occupied Territories”. 

The 2006 elections weren’t an affirmation of Hamas.Hamas won in a plurality, with 44%. There hasn’t been an election since.

Ralph Nader Radio Hour: Invisible Palestinians:
Guest James Zogby, co-founder and president of the Arab American Institute and author of "Palestinians: The Invisible Victims.”

20:04 in - Zogby debunking 'all Palestinians are Hamas’

Saturday 28 Oct 2023 Ahram Online: Debunking 'all Palestinians are Hamas"';all-Palestinians-are-Hamas%E2%80%9D;.aspx

Hamas was a tiny religious organization which was fostered into a more powerful political organization by the United States and Israel to undermine the PLO. 

James Zogby, co-founder and president of the Arab American Institute and author of "Palestinians: The Invisible Victims.”

But what about the claim that “all Palestinians support Hamas”? 

Our frequent polling across Palestine and Israel provides data that easily debunks that characterization. In our last poll in Gaza (July, 2023) only 11 percent identified themselves as Hamas supporters—as opposed to 32 percent identified with Fatah. Eleven percent hardly constitutes “all Palestinians.”

As for the claim that Palestinians voted for Hamas and are therefore culpable for their behavior, the same dangerous generalization would hold all Americans responsible for the actions of the US government, or all Israelis, or Jews, responsible for the atrocities committed by the Israeli government. But more to the point, most Palestinians did not vote for Hamas, and those who did, did not vote for them for the reasons being suggested.

In our 2006 poll, the Fatah margin over Hamas in Gaza was 34 percent to 29 percent. How and why, then, did Hamas win the 2006 legislative elections?

The slim Hamas margin of victory in that year’s election was 44 percent to 41 percent. Hamas took control of the legislature because of the way seats were apportioned and because of internal divisions within Fatah. And while “pundits” say Hamas won because of the PA’s corruption, polling tells a different story.

The outcome of the 2006 election was shaped by a classic “throw the bums out” message. Fatah and Hamas were viewed equally as corrupt.

Hamas has declared to wipe the Jews off the map, therefore the citizens of Gaza support wiping the Jews off the map - since they voted for Hamas? 

See prior comment. Most Palestinians didn’t vote for Hamas. Those born since, now eligible to vote, didn’t vote in the 2006 election. 

From the prior comment:

As for the claim that Palestinians voted for Hamas and are therefore culpable for their behavior, the same dangerous generalization would hold all Americans responsible for the actions of the US government, or all Israelis, or Jews, responsible for the atrocities committed by the Israeli government. But more to the point, most Palestinians did not vote for Hamas, and those who did, did not vote for them for the reasons being suggested.

Hamas uses children and the Gazans as human shields?

From the Goldstone Report on Operation Cast Lead (Gaza war, often referred to as the Gaza massacre, 2008-2009)

United Nations Fact Finding Mission On The Gaza Conflict:

“In Chapter XI of the Report, for example we detail a number of specific incidents in which Israeli forces launched direct attacks against civilians with lethal consequences. These were, with only one exception, where the facts establish that there was no military objective or advantage that could justify the attacks.

“You will find details of the other 35 incidents in the Report. Some of them relate to the use by the Israel Defense Forces of human shields in violation of an earlier ruling by the Israel Supreme Court outlawing such conduct”.

Book: Gaza An Inquisition Into Its Martyrdom by Norman FinkelsteinAn entire chapter (chapter 4) is titled Human Shields and dedicated to the discussion. There are  many examples of Israel using Palestinians as human shields. 

As Professor Finkelstein so carefully notes, all with sources, there is no evidence that Hamas used Palestininas as human shields. No human rights organizations have any evidence of Hamas using Palestinians as human shields. There’s plenty of evidence showing that Israel uses human shields.

Book: Gaza An Inquest Into Its Martyrdom by Norman Finkelstein. Page 47, quoting the Goldstone report:
“Men and women and children (Palestinians) were held close to artillery and tank positions, where constant shelling and firing was taking place, thus not only exposing them to danger, but increasing their fear and terror”; Palestinian detainees were “subjected to beatings and other physical abuse that amounts to torture”, were “used as human shields”. 

Page 69:
Operation Cast Lead – 

To deflect its culpability for the loss of life (1400 Palestinians were killed, 350 children; on the other side total Israel casualties amounted to 10 combatants - 4 killed by friendly fire), Israel alleged that if many Gazan civilians were killed, it was because Hamas used them as “human shields''. Hamas, “chose to base its operations in civilian areas not in spite of, but because of, the likelihood of substantial harm to civilians'', an Israeli “factual and legal” brief purported, and “Hamas operatives took pride in endangering the lives of civilians”. But these charges were not borne out by human rights investigations. In one of the most extensive postinvasion human rights reports, Amnesty International did find that Hamas breached certain laws of war. It “launched rockets and located military equipment and positions near civilian homes, endangering the lives of the inhabitants by exposing them to the risk of Israeli attacks. They also used empty homes and properties as combat positions during armed confrontations with Israeli forces, exposing the inhabitants of nearby houses to the danger of attacks of or being caught in the crossfire”. The Amnesty report proceeded, however, to enter critical caveats: there was “no evidence that rockets were launched from residential houses or buildings while civilians were in these buildings”; “Palestinian militants often used empty houses but…did not forcibly take over inhabited houses”; Hamas “mixed with the civilian population, although this would be difficult to avoid in the small and crowded Gaza Strip”; “Palestinian fighters, like Israeli soldiers, engaged in armed confrontations around residential homes where civilians were present, endangering them. The locations of these confrontations were mostly determined by Israeli forces, who entered Gaza with tanks and armored personnel carriers and took positions deep inside residential neighborhoods”. On the most explosive charge, Amnesty categorically exonerated Hamas:

Contrary to repeated allegations by Israeli officials of the use of “human shields”, Amnesty International found no evidence that Hamas or other Palestinian fighters directed the movement of civilians to shield military objectives from attacks. It found no evidence that Hamas or other armed groups forced residents to stay in or around buildings used by fighters, nor that fighters prevented residents from leaving buildings or areas which had been commandeered by militants. 

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