30 December 2008

30 December 2008 - Under Israeli fire, Palestinians killing each other

Justice and human rights in Gaza today. From the NYT (emphasis added):

GAZA‚ÄďAt Shifa Hospital yesterday, armed Hamas militants in civilian clothes roved the halls. Asked their function, they said they were providing security. But there was internal bloodletting under way.

In the fourth floor orthopedic section, a woman in her late twenties asked a militant to let her see Saleh Hajoj, her 32-year-old husband. She was turned away and left the hospital. Fifteen minutes later, Hajoj was carried out of his room by young men pretending to transfer him to another hospital section. As he lay on the stretcher, he was shot in the left side of the head. A bit of brain emerged on the other side of his skull.

Hajoj, like five others who were killed at the hospital in this way in the previous 24 hours, was accused of collaboration with Israel. He had been in the central prison awaiting trial by Hamas judges, and when Israel destroyed the prison Sunday he and the others were transferred to the hospital. But their trials were short-circuited.

A crowd at the hospital showed no pity after the shooting, which was widely observed. A man in his thirties mocked a woman who expressed horror at the scene.

"This horrified you?" he shouted. "A collaborator that caused the death of many innocent and resistance fighters?"


"Short-circuited" is a glib way of describing a judicial "process" through which people already denied the presumption of innocence are brutally denied the right to life.

When a society behaves this way in times of external pressure, it has completely collapsed from within.

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