Tuesday, March 5, 2024

How silence harms us all

Former president Donald Trump is the venereal disease you cannot get rid of.  Maybe penicillin is the only thing that wipes it out and we have all become allergic to penicillin? Amanda Marcotte (SALON) writes:

It's become a tedious trope, the Beltway journalist who goes on a red state safari to ask Donald Trump voters if they still like Trump. It frustrates smart readers because invariably the answer is "yes" yet the rationale is typically incoherent babble. Even that would be fine, if these reporters dug an inch deeper, to get at the various bigotries that are actually driving the MAGA movement. Instead, most of them seem too in awe of redhats sitting in diners, as though they've just encountered a rare species of bird in the wild, to bother interrogating them in a way that reveals anything genuinely valuable. 

If readers see the title "White Rural Rage: The Threat to Democracy," they might think it's more of the same. But this book, by former Washington Post columnist Paul Waldman and University of Maryland, Baltimore professor Thomas Schaller, is a very different animal. Waldman and Schaller believe that rural white people are functioning adults who have agency and are not the childlike ciphers of Fox News. As such, the book refreshingly holds rural white voters to account for their choices, and for willfully gobbling down right-wing propaganda. It calls on rural Americans to take responsibility for themselves, by asking the harder question of what it would actually take to improve their communities. 

Waldman and Schaller spoke to Salon about what rural America actually needs, and why Republican voters stubbornly refuse to admit it. 

This interview has been edited for length and clarity. 

This book got at something that I find frustrating in a lot of the discourse about rural white conservatives. I grew up in a county that had one person per square mile in Texas. I know these people well. I resent how they're discussed in the mainstream media. Almost as if they don't have agency. Your book just really blows a hole through that argument. 

Schaller: In 2016, Kevin Williamson wrote this piece about the white working class in National Review. A very controversial piece. He was asking, don't these people have agency? Aren't they part of the representational system with elected officials? Why don't they ask for more? Are they children? A lot of people took offense to that, and we're not making an argument as aggressive as that. He had a little bit more safe harbor to do that, coming from the right. But we're basically saying that the problem here isn't the Democrats. They always get blamed for not doing enough or not reaching out or not being respectful.

It's really the quality of the Republicans that they're electing. And as Paul has pointed out, it's because of the economic malaise, because of the healthcare maladies and because of the brain drain and people moving out of rural communities. Two-thirds of rural counties lost population between 2010 and 2020. That's incredible. And a majority of counties in the nation lost population between 2010 and 2020. To our knowledge that had never happened between two consecutive censuses. This is creating this rural ruin, as we call it. We understand the anxiety that that creates. The question is, what are you going to do about it?

One option is to blame faraway cities and liberals and minorities and woke and CRT and antifa and college professors like me for all of your problems. You'll be rewarded if you say that. There's a steady diet of conservative talk hosts, from Fox News and OANN and Newsmax, who will tell you that's where all your problems come from. Read Katherine Cramer's book, "The Politics of Resentment," about Wisconsin. That's where they think all the problems come from — Milwaukee and Madison — and that everything that's going wrong in the upper part of Wisconsin is because of liberals in the cities, and Blacks in Milwaukee and the college professors in Madison. That might make you feel good on Election Day, but it's not going to solve your material problems. What rural America needs is to stop waiting on Democrats to rescue them, even though it is Democrats who are bringing rural broadband.

I disagree by the way.  Not with the whole thing.  But I disagree that we cannot do more. For example?

We should have been defending LGBTQ+ people.  

In the fall of 2022, we saw what the extremists were planning.  It had not been obvious.  C.I. caught on to it first.  The attacks on BROS (the film) was the rollout. And she saw what they were doing -- the hate merchants -- and how they were organized, had sock puppets, and an echo chamber.

And she stood up against it.

Not everyone did.  Some did not join her that fall.  In fact, LGBTQ NEWS, as late as early 2023, was attacking and mocking BROS.  Because that is how we show support for LGBTQ+ artists?

That was outrageous.  

And President Joe Biden refused to buckle.  He refused to abandon the LGBTQ+ community.  They have been scapegoated and they have been dumped repeatedly by various craven politicians.  It would have been easy for Mr. Biden to have done that.  He did not.

And we should have amplified that.  We should have pointed out that LGBTQ+ members are part of our families, in our circle of friends, in our places of worship, in our schools, and that they belong in this society just as much as any other law abiding American.  

Instead, we were craven.  We were silent.  (Not aimed at everyone.  I was not silent once C.I. walked me through what was going on.  This community was not silent.  But you know that many were silent -- that includes W.S.W.S. which is why no one is really noting them these days in the community.  Trina has a gay son and she is grossly offended by W.S.W.S.'s refusal to call out the attacks on LGBTQ+ people.  I have a gay grandson and I am also highly offended.)  And we allowed laws to be passed, books to be banned, people to be bullied.  It is outrageous.  We should have been calling it out.

I assume Ms. Marcotte was.  I know she has in the past.  I know she did in 2023 and 2024 because I have quoted her here during those years.  But way too many were silent, way too many refused to defend people, way too many rushed to attack.

Jimmy Dore.  Katie Halper.  So much filth.  They could have used their platforms for good.  Instead, they hurt this country.

This is C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot" for Tuesday:

Tuesday, March 5, 2024.  A UN 'report' backs up Israel but are we the only ones who'll point out that the laughable report was written by a woman the Israeli government selected back in December (no, that's not how investigations work) and much more.

Where to start?  Where to start?

How about with this: The First Lady of Israel was raped!  

What's that?  She wasn't.  Then why does the UN offer speaking to her as proof of anything?

If you missed it, the UN sent a stooge with a team to Israel to supposedly learn if rapes took place October 7th.  You or I might call that an "investigation."  The UN didn't.  That's your first raised eyebrow -- the repeated insistence that this is not anything to take seriously.  If you wade through the actual . . . can we call it a 'report'?  Is that okay with the UN?  If you wade through it you find 23  pages of nothing.  

They found no evidence as the Israeli government led them by the hand to various people (none of them rape survivors).  They found no physical evidence.  

They found nothing:

The main challenge was the limited number of and access to survivors/victims of sexual violence, and to survivors and witnesses of the 7 October attacks. While the mission team was able to meet with some released hostages as well as with some survivors and witnesses of the attacks, it did not meet with any survivor/victim of sexual violence from 7 October despite concerted efforts encouraging them to come forward.

They found nothing:

In the Nahal Oz military base, the mission team reviewed reports of sexual violence
including a case of rape and genital mutilation, neither of which could be verified. With respect
to the latter instance, while the forensic analysis reviewed injuries to intimate body parts, no
discernible pattern could be identified, against either female or male soldiers. However, seven
female soldiers were abducted from this base into Gaza.

They found nothing:

The mission was neither intended to, and nor could the mission team, in such a short
period of time, establish the prevalence of conflict-related sexual violence during and after the 7
October attacks. The overall magnitude, scope, and specific attribution of these violations would
require a comprehensive investigation by competent bodies

Yes, an investigation would require "competent bodies" and clearly the United Nations team sent in did not qualify. 

The report is pathetic and laughable.

For the purposes of this mission and report, “conflict-related sexual violence” is defined
in accordance with the framing definition used in successive reports of the Secretary-General on
conflict-related sexual violence. The term thus refers to “rape, sexual slavery, forced prostitution,
forced pregnancy, forced abortion, enforced sterilization, forced marriage, and any other form of
sexual violence of comparable gravity perpetrated against women, men, girls, or boys that is
directly or indirectly linked to a conflict. 

Forced abortions?  I'm sorry, is that supposed to suggest that Hamas was also carrying out field abortions during the October 7th attack?  

The UN team can't get off the First Lady of Israel:

The mission team met with a wide range of national authorities including the President of
Israel and the First Lady, relevant line ministries including Foreign Affairs, Welfare and Social
Affairs, Health, and Justice. 

Again, was the First Lady raped?  Then why do you keep bringing her up.  A ceremonial post with no power and you keep trying to inflate her.  Reminder -- not all women are feminist and there's a reason that no one's ever called Pamila Patten a feminist.  What is she? Someone that determined this March report would decide rape took place.  She made that clear in repeated interviews going back to January.  Here's YNET news reporting on from February 5th:

According to Pramila Patten, the Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations and Special Envoy for Sexual Violence in Conflicts, she has been unable to sleep for a week since viewing the 47-minute video compiled by the IDF of the atrocities committed on October 7. The scenes continue to haunt her. "Only after I saw the video did I understand things that I didn't understand before in terms of the magnitude of the disaster that happened."

Poor Pramila, ugly and stupid.

(And she truly is ugly.)

Her laughable report fails to note so much.  Such as the reality that  Volker Turk, the UN high commissioner for human rights (OHCHR), repeatedly contacted the government of Israel to conduct an investigation into events and was refused.  But the government of Israel asked for Pramila.  Maybe they love eye bags or pinched faces or purple lips, who knows?  But they asked for Pramila.

Oh, and they asked for her in December.  January 9th, Dawn Clancy (PASS BLUE) reported:

She was invited by the government to visit the country more than a month ago to hear first-hand testimonies from Israeli survivors of sexual violence allegedly committed during the brutal Hamas and affiliated militia attacks in Israel on Oct. 7.

Patten, according to a press release in early December, had “responded positively” to the initial invitation to visit Israel. But it’s unclear if she will investigate alleged sexual violence and rape that was committed by the militias three months ago.

[Update, Jan. 10: UN spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric told reporters that Patten would conduct a “mission” to Israel and the West Bank at the end of the month “to gather information on sexual violence, reportedly committed in the context of the attacks of 7 October and its aftermath” The mission “will be conducted in the exercise of her mandate, in accordance with her standard UN methodology.” She’ll be accompanied by experts in “safe and ethical interviewing, forensic evidence, digital analysis, and accountability,” but she is not mandated to “investigate”]

[. . .]

Patten, a 65-year-old lawyer originally from Mauritius, said in another press release, on Dec. 21: “All forms of sexual violence and the taking of hostages are strictly prohibited under international humanitarian and human rights law. Accordingly, all the horrific reports of sexual violence allegedly committed by Hamas on 7 October must be promptly and rigorously investigated, and the United Nations reiterates its readiness to independently investigate any such violations.”

Is there anything sadder than a 65 year old whore?  Well, a whore with a fish face but we already told you she's ugly.  

So she didn't do an investigation.  She spoke to no one of value and she was invited in by the Israeli government as it attacked other officials.  Hmm.  Also, don't claim you filed an ethical report when you failed to disclose in your 23 pages that the government of Israel invited you in and did so in December.

A lazy whore exposed herself and, at 65, no one wanted to see it.  Sana Saeed dissects it in the following thread of Tweets.



In an unsigned, ridiculous report for the BBC, all claims are treated as researched and substantiated -- they are not -- yet there's no mention of my point above: The whore was invited in by Israel in December -- at  a time when they were refusing requests from UN figures.  It's a conflict of interest that needs to be noted.  They selected her for a reason.  People learning the unsubstantiated claims of her 'report' need to know that.  It goes to trust and its unethical not to disclose it.  It undercuts the claims so they want to keep it quiet but that's not journalism.

Oh, look, well known liar Richard Roth writes a 'report' for CNN that also hides the reality that Pramila was invited in by the Israeli government.  If only all criminals could pick and choose who investigates them, right?

And let me add something else as a rape survivor.  Five months?  My what delicate flowers Israeli women must be.  Five months after an alleged rape -- excuse me, rapes -- multiples -- none of the women can come forward.  Help me out on that, I don't see myself as exceptionally strong.  Other rape survivors, does that track for you because it doesn't for me.  It does go the sexist mind set that would use claims of rape to sell a war.  It does go to their injured manhood that would claim that a rape would turn a woman into a body of dysfunction to be shrouded and hidden away.  Or maybe they all just had an attack of the meses?  That's about the level of maturity Pramila and the Israeli government's nonsense reaches.

Gaza remains under assault. Day 151 of  the assault in the wave that began in October.  Binoy Kampmark (DISSIDENT VOICE) points out, "Bloodletting as form; murder as fashion.  The ongoing campaign in Gaza by Israel’s Defence Forces continues without stalling and restriction.  But the burgeoning number of corpses is starting to become a challenge for the propaganda outlets:  How to justify it?  Fortunately for Israel, the United States, its unqualified defender, is happy to provide cover for murder covered in the sheath of self-defence."   CNN has explained, "The Gaza Strip is 'the most dangerous place' in the world to be a child, according to the executive director of the United Nations Children's Fund."  ABC NEWS quotes UNICEF's December 9th statement, ""The Gaza Strip is the most dangerous place in the world to be a child. Scores of children are reportedly being killed and injured on a daily basis. Entire neighborhoods, where children used to play and go to school have been turned into stacks of rubble, with no life in them."  NBC NEWS notes, "Strong majorities of all voters in the U.S. disapprove of President Joe Biden’s handling of foreign policy and the Israel-Hamas war, according to the latest national NBC News poll. The erosion is most pronounced among Democrats, a majority of whom believe Israel has gone too far in its military action in Gaza."  The slaughter continues.  It has displaced over 1 million people per the US Congressional Research Service.  Jessica Corbett (COMMON DREAMS) points out, "Academics and legal experts around the world, including Holocaust scholars, have condemned the six-week Israeli assault of Gaza as genocide."   The death toll of Palestinians in Gaza is grows higher and higher.  United Nations Women noted, "More than 1.9 million people -- 85 per cent of the total population of Gaza -- have been displaced, including what UN Women estimates to be nearly 1 million women and girls. The entire population of Gaza -- roughly 2.2 million people -- are in crisis levels of acute food insecurity or worse."  ALJAZEERA notes, "The Health Ministry in the Gaza Strip says the death toll of Palestinians killed by Israeli forces since October 7 has risen to 30,631, with 72,043 others wounded."  Months ago,  AP  noted, "About 4,000 people are reported missing."  February 7th, Jeremy Scahill explained on DEMOCRACY NOW! that "there’s an estimated 7,000 or 8,000 Palestinians missing, many of them in graves that are the rubble of their former home."  February 5th, the United Nations' Phillipe Lazzarini Tweeted:

And the area itself?  Isabele Debre (AP) reveals, "Israel’s military offensive has turned much of northern Gaza into an uninhabitable moonscape. Whole neighborhoods have been erased. Homes, schools and hospitals have been blasted by airstrikes and scorched by tank fire. Some buildings are still standing, but most are battered shells."  Kieron Monks (I NEWS) reports, "More than 40 per cent of the buildings in northern Gaza have been damaged or destroyed, according to a new study of satellite imagery by US researchers Jamon Van Den Hoek from Oregon State University and Corey Scher at the City University of New York. The UN gave a figure of 45 per cent of housing destroyed or damaged across the strip in less than six weeks. The rate of destruction is among the highest of any conflict since the Second World War."   

Lets drop back to yesterday's DEMOCRACY NOW!

AMY GOODMAN: We begin today’s show in Gaza, where Palestinian health officials say at least 16 children have died in recent days from starvation and dehydration as Israel’s assault continues. UNICEF warns the number of child deaths will likely “rapidly increase” unless the war ends.

Palestinians in Rafah searched Sunday under the rubble of a family home hit by an Israeli airstrike the night before that killed as many as 14 people, including a father and twin babies born in the last few months.

PALESTINIAN WOMAN: [translated] We want the United States to get away from us. We don’t want anything from them. We don’t want anything from the United States. They are lying and conspiring against us. God is my suffice and the best deputy.

AMY GOODMAN: Here in the United States, Vice President Kamala Harris Sunday called for a ceasefire in Gaza. She made the comments in a speech in Selma, Alabama, marking the 59th anniversary of Bloody Sunday.

VICE PRESIDENT KAMALA HARRIS: And given the immense scale of suffering in Gaza, there must be an immediate ceasefire, for at least the next six weeks, which is what is currently on the table. This will get the hostages out and get a significant amount of aid in. This would allow us to build something more enduring to ensure Israel is secure and to respect the right of the Palestinian people to dignity, freedom and self-determination. Hamas claims it wants a ceasefire. Well, there is a deal on the table. And as we have said, Hamas needs to agree to that deal. Let’s get a ceasefire. Let’s reunite the hostages with their families. And let’s provide immediate relief to the people of Gaza.

AMY GOODMAN: Vice President Harris spoke three days after the United States blocked a U.N. Security Council statement condemning Israel after Israeli soldiers opened fire on Palestinians seeking aid in Gaza City, in a massacre that left at least 118 people dead. On Sunday, officials in Gaza accused Israeli forces of killing and wounding dozens more aid seekers who had gathered at the Kuwaiti roundabout in Gaza City. Facing growing international criticism, President Biden Friday announced the United States would begin airdropping food aid into Gaza.

Negotiations for a temporary ceasefire faced another setback Sunday when Israel boycotted talks in Cairo after Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu accused Hamas of failing to provide a list of all living Israeli hostages.

Meanwhile, Israeli war cabinet minister Benny Gantz is in the U.S. for what’s being described as an unauthorized trip to hold talks with Vice President Harris, Tony Blinken and other top officials. Gantz is seen as a rival to Netanyahu, who reportedly lashed out at Gantz for making the trip without his approval.

All of this comes as the official death toll in Gaza has topped 30,500.

For more, we go to Rafah for an update from Akram al-Satarri, the Gaza-based journalist.

Akram, your brother was at the aid convoy when Israeli soldiers opened fire. What did he explain to you happened, what’s being now called the flour massacre, for the flour that people were coming to get to make bread?

AKRAM AL-SATARRI: Good morning, Amy.

Yes, indeed, my brother was one of the people who were targeted by the Israeli tanks and artillery fire in that area of al-Rashid Street, particularly al-Nabulsi roundabout, when they were trying to seek food for their children. To start with, it is the very personal story of my brother in mind, who was in direct contact with me, seeking to secure any help whatsoever for his children. He was taking that unsafe trip towards al-Nabulsi roundabout. He was waiting there. He was waiting from 3:00 in the afternoon. He was hoping that he would get at least some wheat flour for his children, because they have not eaten bread for around 25 days or even more than 25 days. He saw many people there coming from the Gaza north, as well, in the hope that they can secure some food for their children.

All of a sudden, the bombardment started — not the bombardment; rather, the tanks’ gunfire started. And, of course, the tanks are using 1.5-millimeter caliber guns, and those guns are very lethal. They can split a person into two halves. The fire started. The tanks never stopped shooting at them. And the observation that was — the observation that was made by the people who were there, including my brother, that the number of the tanks that were present in that particular time was [inaudible], in the sense that in the last few days they knew tanks were like there, but not in the large number that was in that particular day. The fire started. The fire never stopped. People were shot. People were falling on the ground. People were running. And some of the wounded people were grabbing the legs of the other people, asking them to save and help them. The ones even whose legs were pulled were shot, as well, and were killed. So, people were crawling. My brother told me that he was crawling for around 1.5 kilometers, from this al-Nabulsi roundabout up to al-Shalihat roundabout, which is an area that is around 1 kilometer or 1.2 kilometers far away from the area that they were in. The firing never stopped.

And to him, it looked like that was preplanned and that the massacre that was planned, according to the description of my brother and any other people, was intentional. And the firing never stopped 'til that very large number of people were killed. And a very large number of people also was injured. Some of them are dying every day. And this specific incident was replicated the day after this massacre took place and the day, three days or even four days after that. So it looks like this is a policy that is followed by the Israeli occupation army, and it looks like the objective is to continue the starvation of the people of Gaza and to kill them when they dare to think that they can secure something to feed their children. So they were killed when they're trying to get the wheat flour. They were killed while they were seeking life.

AMY GOODMAN: So, the Israeli military says it started a preliminary review and that Israeli forces did not attack the convoy, but that most of the fatalities were caused by a stampede. At the same time, the director of the Al-Awda Hospital told the United Nations some 80% of the wounded brought into the hospital had been shot. If you could respond further, Akram?

AKRAM AL-SATARRI: Well, according to the preliminary diagnoses of the hospital and of the people who were there, most of the people who were there were suffering from upper body parts injuries, which is indicative of the gun that was used, of the fire that was used against them. Some were hit also by shrapnel because of the — by artillery fire that was hit at them.

Of course, if I were Israel or if I were the occupation, I would tell the world that I have already started a preliminary investigation, and they might also [inaudible] came from us, and shoot the Palestinians, who were not using any arms and who were seeking to feed their children. That’s typical. That’s normal. This is the Israeli habit. They will say — because they targeted the Baptist Hospital, and they also said that was not them, that was an Islamic Jihad rocket, missile, that hit the people and killed around 600 people. That’s normal.

But the issue now, if the international community is failing to compel Israel to conduct a scrutiny into the things that happened, I think the international community failed before and is still failing to stop the ongoing atrocities and is helping somehow. When they are condoning the ongoing bombardment, they are failing to do justice for the people of Palestine, and they are failing to observe the international humanitarian law coordinates — the international humanitarian law dictates, that asks the government to take whatever precautions are needed to protect the civilian population, civilian population that is living in Gaza, extremely difficult conditions [inaudible] food [inaudible]. They were not [inaudible] in a fire exchange. They were seeking food for their families and for their children and for themselves, and they ended up being killed.

So, Israel will deny. And I wouldn’t be surprised also if Israel said that they were killed by other Palestinians. That is a scenario, I think, that is extremely acceptable for Israel. And Israel allies would buy anything from Israel. So, no need. The ones who were killed are just Palestinians, Palestinians who were treated as second-grade humans, who are still besieged, who are still starving, who are still killed, who are still displaced for around second or six or seven or eight times, and who are expecting more of the misery and the death and displacement.

So, the international community is failing, and I don’t think the Palestinians trust any statements made by the Israeli army about any preliminary investigation, because there were many preliminary investigations to be done, but they were never done, and there was many justice that is expected to be done for the Palestinians but was not done.

AMY GOODMAN: Akram, if you can comment on the United States working with the Jordanian Air Force, dropping 38,000 ready-to-eat meals, largely on the beach in Gaza? If you can respond to — we just played clips of mass protest, that there was protest around the world, but one person in Washington, D.C., commented on the fact that while the U.S. is providing, is dropping this food, they should stop providing Israel with the bombs they drop on Palestinians.

AKRAM AL-SATARRI: The clear analysis of this situation when it comes to the cause-and-effect relationship between Israel and the misery that the Palestinians have been living, the United States and the misery that Palestinians have been living, three C-103 planes were dropping food on the Palestinians, while countless number of F-16s, F-15s, F-22s and F-35s, also with the most advanced technology and with the ammunition that are provided by the United States to the Israel — so, in one hand, they are providing people with food, and in the other hand, they are providing people with death, taking their lives.

I think the United States should be reconsidering its position when it comes to providing Israel with killing ammunitions and thinking that they are providing people in Gaza with around 35,000 or 36,000 meals that are ready to eat. The Palestinians might not be able to eat them. And some of the airdropped assistance that was dropped in Gaza went to the sea. And one of the people that I was talking to, he was joking and mocking the whole situation we are living in. He was saying the fish is very grateful for the American administration because they dropped the food that was sent to Gaza to the fish in the Gaza Sea. And I think a president that is dropping the aid for the Ukrainians while the Gaza is the target is, in a way — needs to reconsider everything about that, and they need to make sure that they provide unhindered access through the recognized crossings of Gaza for the people who are displaced, in the Gaza south and in the Gaza north. So, somehow, it’s — Palestinians find it ridiculous. Palestinians find it a way that needs to be reviewed and changed.

AMY GOODMAN: What word are you getting of ceasefire negotiations? And also, what is happening on the ground where you are, in Rafah, right now? Al Jazeera reporting at least 11 were killed, 50 wounded, after an Israeli air attack on a tent housing displaced people next to an entrance to a hospital in Rafah city, not far from where you are standing.

AKRAM AL-SATARRI: Well, the negotiations are still underway. It looks like Israel has some demands to make. Some of them were not agreed upon in the past, but now they are coming up with them. Palestinians don’t have high expectations when it comes to the negotiation.

Palestinians are extremely busy now trying to survive because of the expansion of the ground operation. In Khan Younis area, they have already targeted — the Israeli occupation targeted Hamad City area and also the al-Qarara area, which is an expansion of the ground operation that has been already starting in Khan Younis for the last — have been already rolling in Khan Younis for the last three months. The Israeli occupation forces targeted a tent by a hospital in the Rafah west area, and they also targeted a home. The number of people who were killed in Rafah for the last 24 hours is more than 50 people in different incidents taking place in different parts of Rafah.

So, the misery is continuous, and the bombardment is continuous. And the number of Palestinians who are killed because of that and the number of people who are displaced because of that is increasing, I would say, by the second, not by the minute.

AMY GOODMAN: Finally, Benjamin Netanyahu, the Israeli prime minister, has the negotiating team boycotting the negotiations now in — the ceasefire negotiations in Cairo, because he says Hamas has refused, as part of the deal, to provide the list of living hostages. Your thoughts on this and where these negotiations stand?

AKRAM AL-SATARRI: As a matter of fact, that — I’ve been following the news about this from the Israeli media sources and from the Palestinian media sources, as well. That specific request was not made by the Israeli security forces, security agencies in the past. Now Netanyahu is inventing something new for the sake of just continuing the delay.

It looks like this delay is taking place for some purely political reasons where Netanyahu is interested in prolonging the war. They have disputes. They have issues. One of the top leaders is now in the U.S.A. Netanyahu is busy calling Blinken and calling other people, telling them that it is an unauthorized trip. It looks like there is something that is internally happening in the Israeli political arena that Netanyahu wants to stop and prevent from happening. And that’s why everything that he wants to do eventually reflects on the Palestinians, now more killing, more displacement, now refusing the request to provide some names — now asking to provide some names.

So, I think we will see a great deal of procrastination like the one that we have been seeing for the past few months. Netanyahu is interested in his personal safety when it comes to his political career, political life, and I think that’s why even the Israeli security forces, that are not being able to end this military confrontation with the Palestinian factions in Gaza, are now trying to, through the political means, to come to, I would say, honorable end for this, but they are failing to do so.

AMY GOODMAN: You’re talking about Benny Gantz being in Washington now to meet with today Kamala Harris, Tony Blinken — she’ll be meeting with — and other officials. I wanted to, finally, ask you about the issue of famine, about the number of children who are dying of hunger and dehydration, and how the Palestinians are dealing with this at this point.

AKRAM AL-SATARRI: Well, according to the statistics that were released by the Palestinian Ministry of Health, around 1 million Palestinians have developed some diseases of any kind, be them some diseases that have to do with the digestive system, with the respiratory system, with the upper respiratory system, which is indicative of the quality of life, where quality of life has reached in Gaza, and what is the situation of the public health. When you don’t have water desalination plants, when you destroy the water purification systems, when you destroy the solar panels that are on top of the houses of the people, when you destroy the heavy vehicles that are used by the municipalities to remove the waste, when you are destroying everything that has to do with the life of the Palestinians, this result is normal and is projected, and it will continue to deteriorate.

Now, with the children, 18 children have died in northern Gaza. More children are dying in southern Gaza. People cannot get decent food for their children. When people are drinking the water, the water is polluted, and it causes them some serious public health issues. And now the children are the most vulnerable people within the community. We have 1 million child in Gaza, 1 million child that do not have appropriate shelter, do not have appropriate feeding systems. They don’t have appropriate water systems, and they end up consuming water that is polluted, food that is polluted. They end up exposed. The twins that were killed yesterday, they were just twins. They were children. They were killed with their father. So they were deprived from the right to live, and they are still deprived from the right to access decent water, shelter and food supplies. So this is the situation in Gaza as it is. It is an ongoing suffering because of the fact that the Israeli occupation denied them the right to be treated as humans. This is the whole issue.

AMY GOODMAN: Akram al-Satarri, we want to thank you so much for being with us, a Gaza-based journalist, speaking to us today from Rafah. Please be safe.

Where's the video?  We posted it yesterday.  For a few hours you could stream it.  YOUTUBE's now put a warning on it.  The Israeli government can kill but YOUTUBE won't allow the damage to be shown.

A severe lack of food led to the deaths of 10 children at Kamal Adwan Hospital in northern Gaza, the head of the World Health Organization said Monday, a day after the Gaza Health Ministry reported that 15 children there have died of malnutrition or dehydration. Visits to two hospitals in the area — the first the WHO has been able to make since October — revealed “severe levels of malnutrition, children dying of starvation, serious shortages of fuel, food and medical supplies, hospital buildings destroyed,” Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus wrote on social media.

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