Tuesday, January 12, 2010
Al-Jazeera Video: Riz Khan - GAZAS OPEN WOUNDS
"A year has gone by since Israel launched a crushing military offensive against the 1.5 million Palestinians in the Gaza Strip. For 22 days in December 2008 and January 2009, Israel bombed the territory from the air, land and sea, killing 1,400 Palestinians. Thirteen Israelis were killed during the war.
Israeli officials gave many reasons for the war, including a stop to the Palestinian missile attacks launched from Gaza, ending the illicit tunnel trade between Egypt and the Palestinians, and even, at one point, ending Hamas' control of Gaza.
The United Nations found that both Israel and Hamas had committed war crimes in the course of the fighting. Israel was accused of deliberately targeting civilians, industrial sites and water installations, and using disproportionate force to destroy civilian property and infrastructure. Hamas was criticized for using civilians as human shields, and for firing rockets into Israel to spread fear among Israeli civilians.
A year on, Palestinians have largely not been able to rebuild their homes, schools, ministries, water and sanitation networks, roads or hospitals largely due to the ongoing Israeli siege on the Gaza Strip.
In this episode, Riz takes a closer look at the human toll of the war. He speaks with Dr. Ezzeldeen Abu al-Aish, a Palestinian gynecologist who practiced medicine in Israel and Gaza, and who was well known to Israelis as a peace activist. He lost three daughters and a niece when the Israeli military bombed his home in Gaza 20 days into the war. Riz also speaks with Eyad Sarraj, a prominent Palestinian human rights activist from Gaza who also heads the efforts to reconcile the two main Palestinian factions, Fatah and Hamas. "