Adonis Diaries

Posts Tagged ‘RAMAH KUDAIMI

Israel Bans the famous doctor Mads Gilbert from Gaza and for life? Under which authority?

Israeli authorities cited security reasons for shutting Doctor Gilbert out from the Gaza Strip.

And it refused too the International investigative team to enter Gaza.

The Norwegian 67-year-old has travelled to and from Gaza to treat Palestinians.

This summer, the chief physician who lives and works in northern Norway, was back working at Shifa hospital, Gaza, where he spend more than 50 days treating many of the 11,000 injured.

14 Nov 2014

A Norwegian doctor, Mads Gilbert, has been hit with a lifetime ban from entering Gaza by the Israeli government.

The doctor was attempting to return to the region in October to help in the hospital and was stopped by Israeli officials from entering.

Gilbert says: “When we came back to the Erez border station, the Israeli soldiers told me that I could not go in to Gaza.”
Now the Israeli government is stating that Gilbert is banned for security reasons, according to an email from the Norwegian embassy in Tel Aviv.
The embassy took up the case on Gilbert’s behalf after he was refused entry last month.
Norway’s Secretary of State, Bård Glad Pedersen, said to VG:
 “From the Norwegian perspective, we have raised Gilbert’s exclusion from Gaza and asked Israel to change their decision. The humanitarian situation in Gaza is still difficult and there is a need for all health workers.”
Gilbert himself believes the decision is connected to his critical comments against the state of Israel.
The outspoken peace activist wrote a letter to the global media in July this year in which he spoke about the extreme conditions at the Gaza hospital where he worked.
Also,

Israel announced Wednesday it will refuse entry to United Nations human rights investigators who seek to probe potential war crimes committed in the latest 50-day military assault on Gaza.

The 47-member UN Human Rights Council in July approved the inquiry into “all violations of international humanitarian law and international human rights law in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and the occupied Gaza Strip in the context of military operations conducted since mid June,” focusing on the actions of Israel as well as Hamas.

Twenty-nine nations voted in favor of the investigation, with the U.S. issuing the sole “no” vote.

In a Wednesday evening statement reported by numerous media outlets, Israel’s foreign ministry spokesperson Emmanuel Nahshon announced that Israel will not cooperate with the rights council’s commission, which is headed by international law professor William Schabas.

As a result, the investigators will not be allowed to enter Gaza through the Erez crossing, which is under Israel’s control. The Rafah crossing was recently closed off by the Egyptian government, meaning that entry is likely to be difficult for the UN team.

In his statement, Nahshon accused the rights council of “obsessive hostility toward Israel,” echoing Israel’s previous condemnation of the investigation as a “kangaroo court.”

Critics charge that the UN, in fact, does not go far enough, as U.S. veto power prevents the international community from acting on this and other inquiries, including the Goldstone Report, which reviewed a previous Israeli military attack on Gaza in 2009.

Nahshon’s statements are in keeping with Israel’s repeated dismissal of criticisms for the war on Gaza, which killed at least 2,194 Palestinians, at least 75% of them civilians and over 500 of them children.

Seventy-two Israelis, six of them civilians, also died in the conflict. Israel destroyed over half of Gaza’s hospitals and health centers and struck six UN schools sheltering Palestinians, including in cases where the UNRWA formally submitted coordinates of the shelters to the Israeli military. Israel has been accused of possible war crimes in the offensive by Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay. 

This is not the first time Israel has publicly criticized the rights council. Israel severed ties with the body in 2012, following the council’s launch of an investigation into Israeli settlements in the West Bank, considered illegal under international law.

It’s business as usual for Israel to commit severe human rights violations and war crimes and refuse to be held accountable,” Ramah Kudaimi of the U.S. Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation told Common Dreams. “Now it’s time for the international community to take real action and sanction Israel.”

Note: The letter of Gilbert that antagonized Israel establishment

“The heroes in the ambulances and in all of Gaza’s hospitals are working 12-24hrs shifts, grey from fatigue and inhuman workloads (without payment at all in Shifa for the last 4 months).

They care, triage, try to understand the incomprehensible chaos of bodies, sizes, limbs, walking, not walking, breathing, not breathing, bleeding, not bleeding humans.

HUMANS. Now, once more treated like animals by ‘the most moral army in the world” (as Israel disseminate this propaganda).

“My respect for the wounded is endless, in their contained determination in the midst of pain, agony and shock; my admiration for the staff and volunteers is endless; my closeness to the Palestinian sumud [steadfastness] gives me strength, although in [some of the] glimpses I just want to scream, hold someone tight, cry, smell the skin and hair of the warm child, covered in blood, protect ourselves in an endless embrace – but we cannot afford that: nor can they.

“Ashy grey faces – oh NO! Not one more load of tens of maimed and bleeding: we still have lakes of blood on the floor in the ER, piles of dripping, blood-soaked bandages to clear out. The cleaners [are] everywhere, swiftly shoveling the blood and discarded tissues, hair, clothes, cannulas – the leftovers from death – all taken away… [only] to be prepared again, to be repeated all over.

More than 100 cases came to Shifa [in the] last 24 hrs, enough for a large well trained hospital with everything, but here [there is] almost nothing: electricity, water, disposables, drugs, OR-tables, instruments, monitors – all rusted and as if taken from museums of yesterdays hospitals. But they do not complain, these heroes. They get on with it, like warriors, head on, enormous[ly] resolute.

“And as I write these words to you, alone, on a bed, my tears flow, the warm but useless tears of pain and grief, of anger and fear. This is not happening!

And then, just now, the orchestra of the Israeli war-machine starts its gruesome symphony again: salvos of artillery from the navy boats just down on the shores, the roaring F16, the sickening drones (Arabic ’Zennanis’, the hummers), and the cluttering Apaches. So much made and paid in and by US.

“Mr. Obama – do you have a heart?

“I invite you – spend one night – just one night – with us in Shifa. Disguised as a cleaner, maybe.

I am convinced, 100%, it would change history. Nobody with a heart AND power could ever walk away from a night in Shifa without being determined to end the slaughter of the Palestinian people.

“But the heartless and merciless have done their calculations and planned another Dahiya onslaught on Gaza. The rivers of blood will keep running the coming night. I can hear they have tuned their instruments of death.

Please. Do what you can. …This cannot continue.”

Who is doctor Mads Gilbert?
  • Born in Oslo, 1947.
  • Head physician specializing in anesthesiology at University Hospital of North Norway.
  • Over 30 years working in international conflict areas, especially Gaza.
  • Awards include Fritt Ords Honorary Prize (2009).
  • Appointed Commander to the Order of St Olaf (2013).
  • Received PhD at University of Iowa.

The Local Europe AB
Östgötagatan 12
116 25 Stockholm
Sweden

0

Syria Civil War: A long time colonial engineered catastrophe…

10 Do’s and Don’ts for “Progressive minded people” Discussing Syria

With Syria back in the news due to the horrific chemical weapons attack last week, which killed 600, and threats from the US to engage in military strikes, Kudami had the idea of listing  are few do’s and don’ts for progressive/radical anti-war organizations/activists in the US and to figure out a proper response in their discussions.

RAMAH KUDAIMI, a Syrian-American activist in DC, posted on Counter punch this August 28, 2013 (with slight editing, and my additional comments in parenthesis)

1. DON’T in any way say or imply both sides are wrong. Or to say “it’s not clear who we would be supporting if we get involved militarily….”

This is an insult to every Syrian who has and continues to go out in the streets and protest both the regime and those forces who are looking to use this time of war to assert their own power over others. (This was true in the first 7 months of the start of the upheaval in 2011, and lately in the Kurd dominated regions in the north east)

It is a shame how many progressive groups in the US just jump on the “both sides are bad” wagon so we shouldn’t get involved.

There are over one million children who are refugees and that is the fault of the regime. It is the regime who is bombing cities with jets; it is the regime that has ruled the country with brutal force for decades.

Any statement that doesn’t acknowledge this is again an insult to those who have sacrificed so much.

2. DON’T over conflate Iraq and Syria (meaning match the same tragedy?).  Just as ludicrous those who look to Kosovo as an example of unilateral US military intervention in order to support a strike in Syria.

It is quite pathetic when so many progressives and leftists are just obsessed with supposedly false chemical weapons claims. There are 100,000 Syrians dead, the majority killed by conventional weapons.

So there are a million and one excuses for the US to intervene and faking chemical weapons attacks is not needed. There is also no basis I believe in claiming al Qaeda has access and uses such weapons (Carla del Ponte of the UN beg to differ: The insurgents used sarin gas this April in the town of Khan al Assal near Aleppo)

Al Qaeda fought the US for a decade in Iraq and not once deployed such weapons (They didn’t possess them? Sort of getting their hands on deadly chemical agents in Syrian army depots and quickly applied them?)

But all of a sudden they’re using them in Syria? And if the rebels had these weapons, the regime would’ve fallen a long time ago (not that rational a conclusion, since Syrian regime is one of the top nations that hoards chemical weapons)

3. DON’T obsess over al-Qaeda, Islamist extremists, jihadists, etc. (Not living among you?)

Since 9/11, progressive minded people have rightly shunned the use of all these labels when it comes to the US War on Terror, yet we now use them freely when it comes to Syria (or anywhere in the Islamic world) and actually believe it.

The overwhelming majority of Syrians, both those who have taken arms and those who continue to resist through nonviolent means, have nothing to do with the extremist groups and are rising up against all forces who are destroying their country, whether they be regime or supposed “opposition” groups.

It is also important to understand that the Free Syria Army is not a central command army with orders given from the top. It is a loosely affiliated group of different battalions and anyone can claim to be part of it.

4. DO point out all the US failures toward Syria and how dropping bombs on the country is not what is needed.

I personally don’t believe that US is going to get militarily involved. They promised weapons to the rebels and have yet to deliver.

No way is the US getting in because as has been pointed out by Gen. Martin Dempsey and in a NYT opinion piece, “it is so much useful for US interests for Syrians to kill each other…” (It doesn’t follow that a restricted strike is not meant to enflame the region even further…)

I think taking a position of the US should not get involved through a military intervention is fine.

DON’T put it as “Hands off Syria” implying this is some kind of American conspiracy.

DON’T argue this is about US not having a right to taking sides in a civil war.

DON’T make it all about money for home since we do want more humanitarian aid.

DO frame it as what will help bring the suffering of Syrians to an end.

5. DO point out US hypocrisy as it judges Russia for sending weapons to the regime.

Just last week a story came out that the US is sending $640 million worth of cluster bombs to (this obscurantist) Saudi monarchy.

Weapons continue to flow to Egypt, Bahrain, and Israel despite massive human rights violations.

DO call for an end to all sales of weapons to all regimes in the region.

6. DON’T let genuine concerns with US imperialism, Israel, Saudi… make you look at pictures and videos of dead children and think conspiracy.

Bashar Assad is an authoritarian dictator and his record of resistance is a bit sketchy. Just remember he collaborated with the US on things such as CIA renditions.

Just because the CIA is training a few fighters in Jordan or some anonymous rebel leader is quoted in some Israeli paper doesn’t mean this isn’t a legitimate Syrian uprising against a brutal regime.

7. DO highlight the continued bravery of the Syrian people who take to the streets and protest against the regime, extremists, and all others looking to destroy their struggle for freedom and dignity.

As in everywhere, coverage of violence trumps coverage of continued nonviolent resistance.

8. DO strongly urge people to donate for humanitarian aid. Between deaths, imprisonments, internal displacement, and refugees, I think 30-40% of the Syrian population is in one way or another uprooted.

9. I have no actual solutions to suggest on how to encourage people to support (a political transitional peace negotiation?)

Perhaps pushing for an actual ceasefire might be an option, which would require pressure on Russia to tell Bashar to back down (and the western nations to desist recovering a military balance on the field in Syria).

I know my not having answers about how to resolve anything is a shortcoming, but sometimes the best course of action is to just be in solidarity with folks in their struggle through simply recognizing it.

10. Syrians deserve the same respect for their struggle as all other struggles in the region: Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, Bahrain, Yemen, and always Palestine.

Ramah Kudaimi can follow her on Twitter @ramahkudaimi.

Note1: It was inconceivable that any free thinking Syrian could support this enduring 40-year dictatorship and humiliations before 2012.  Around 2012, the popular tide has shifted, not in support of the dictatorial regime, but:

1.  Against the extreme religious alternative of the Nusra Front ideology.

2. The Syrian people want to survive and only the institutions of a government can supply the needed daily requirement for survival.

3. The Syrian people are convinced that any political resolution for a transitional government will clip the wings of this horrible dictatorship.

4. In the mean time, the minority religious sects have better side with the government or flee the country as the Nusra Front advances…

In any case, the current Syrian army is united and has acquired field engagement against the staunchest of well-trained resistance forces from dozen countries.

Note 2: The initial insurgents were not sectarians, until the regime on purpose liberated over one thousand leading extremist jihadists from prisons without any preconditions, in order for those radical Islamists to ignite this civil war with the flame of sectarian overtone…


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