‘Operation Al-Aqsa Flood’ Day 7: Israeli Genocide and Ethnic Cleansing Underway in Gaza – Mondoweiss 10/13/23

Source: Mondoweiss.net

Israel orders 1.1 million people to flee Gaza City within 24 hours to carry out ethnic cleansing and genocide. Meanwhile in the West Bank and Jerusalem, Palestinians took to the streets in a “Day of Rage.”

Israel is preparing to ethnically cleanse Gaza of its northern residents. Early on Friday, October 13, Israel ordered the United Nations that it should start evacuating the 1.1 million Palestinians who live in northern Gaza, including Gaza City and North Gaza. The UN has stated that moving over a million civilians in under 24 hours was “impossible” without devastating humanitarian consequences and that the humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip had reached “lethal lows.”

Israel’s directive to the UN was accompanied by a campaign of psychological warfare on the people of Gaza. Mondoweiss Gaza correspondent Tareq Hajjaj, who is based in Gaza City, reported that the Israeli army was dropping leaflets on neighborhoods, ordering residents to leave their homes and flee to the south.

This campaign aims to sow panic and fear among the people of Gaza so that they will flee and leave the area in the service of two objectives — one military and the other political. The military objective is to separate the Palestinian resistance from its popular base so that Israel can isolate and eradicate it, and the political objective is to realize a new phase in the Zionist colonial project, which is to ethnically cleanse yet another part of Palestine and expand its territory into Gaza.

Massacres and psychological warfare

This campaign of psychological warfare is being backed up by action, as Israel has dropped over 6,000 bombs on Gaza in the last 6 days, nearly matching the number of U.S. bombs dropped in Afghanistan within a single year. The intentional campaign of indiscriminate airstrikes is leading to massacres of entire families and the leveling of entire neighborhoods. The Ministry of Health in Gaza reported that the number of Palestinians killed in airstrikes reached 1,799, with 6,388 injured. The vast majority are civilians, and a third of the martyrs are children.

Human Rights Watch has confirmed Israel’s use of white phosphorus in both Gaza and Lebanon, which the organization confirmed through eyewitness accounts and video evidence that shows “multiple airbursts of artillery-fired white phosphorus over the Gaza City port and two rural locations along the Israel-Lebanon border.” According to HRW, white phosphorus is an incendiary weapon used to burn objects and people in wide areas, and its use in densely populated areas like Gaza is considered illegal under international humanitarian law.

The Al-Qassam Brigades, the military wing of Hamas, announced that 13 of the Israeli prisoners in Gaza were also killed by Israel’s indiscriminate airstrikes during the past 24 hours alone. According to the Hamas English-language Telegram channel, “6 of them were killed in the North Governorate in two separate places, and 7 in the Gaza Governorate in 3 different places that were affected by the barbaric Israeli bombing.”

The Qassam Brigades also released a video Friday evening, first displaying a sentence that read, “These are scenes of the Qassam fighters’ treatment of children during the battles in Kibbutz Holit during the first day of the Al-Aqsa Flood Operation,” before continuing to feature short clips of masked Hamas fighters carrying and tending to Israeli children.

Also on Friday, massive demonstrations took place across occupied Palestine and the Arab world in support of Gaza, the Palestinian resistance, and in rejection of Israel’s ethnic cleansing in Gaza. Hundreds of thousands of people took to the streets in Jordan, Yemen, Iraq, Egypt, Iran, Turkey, and Palestine. Protests were also reported in Germany and France, with more demonstrations expected to take place in the United States.

Fears of a second Nakba

The Israeli evacuation orders are reminiscent of the Zionist “radio broadcasts” of 1948 that contributed to the Nakba, terrorizing Palestinians into fleeing from their homes for fear that they would fall victim to Zionist massacres, such as those that Zionist forces perpetrated throughout 1948. Most notably, the current evacuation orders by the Israeli army have instructed Palestinians not to return to Gaza until it gives them permission — the same orders that were given in 1948 before the Nakba when Palestinian refugees attempted to return to their homes after the war of 1948 were prevented and shot on sight and labeled as “infiltrators” by the nascent Israeli state.

This order has stoked fears among Gaza’s population of an impending expulsion operation. While many have begun to flee to the south, many others in northern Gaza are refusing to leave their homes, knowing that this might spell their permanent ethnic cleansing from their lands. The vast majority of Gaza’s population are refugees or descendants of refugees from 1948, and the memory of how the Nakba took place is ingrained in the psyche of many Palestinians across generations.

Seventy-seven percent of Gaza’s population are refugees, expelled from their homelands by Israel in the 1948 Nakba. Among the areas of the northern West Bank that have been ordered to be evacuated are two of Gaza’s eight refugee camps, where hundreds of thousands of refugees live.

Images coming out of Gaza on Friday of Palestinian families fleeing on foot with their belongings in their hands and on their backs bore a stark resemblance to the images of Palestinians being forced out of their homes by Zionist militias 75 years ago….

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