Here are 9 ways Israel perpetrates collective punishment on Palestinians

Published November 10th, 2015 - 07:46 GMT

“Man is the cruelest animal,” wrote German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche in the 1880’s, and the axiom holds true today -- especially in Israel-Palestine. The Israeli government has dreamed up a number of uniquely brutal measures with which to punish all Palestinians for the crimes of the few transgressors among them. Though collective punishment is illegal under the Geneva Conventions, Israel often perpetrates it with impunity. Here are 9 different ways the Netanyahu administration penalizes, worse still terrorizes, Palestinians in the name of “security.”

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gaza destruction

The Gaza blockade: Since Hamas’s ‘07 takeover of the Gaza Strip, Israel has imposed a land, air & sea blockade of the area, which it says is to prevent Hamas from importing arms. The flip side of the blockade is that Gaza’s 1.8M residents, many of whom don’t support Hamas, suffer scarcities of goods like food, fuel and building materials.

gaza children starving

The blockade of Gaza has resulted in food scarcities so bad that many children have medical issues as a result. A 2012 study by two international aid organizations found that 10% of children in Gaza under age 5 have stunted growth from malnutrition and that 60% of Gazan children are anemic.

truck at israeli checkpoint barrier

The separation barrier: The three-storey concrete barrier separating Israel from the West Bank, which Israel says is a counter-terrorism measure, imposes incredible hardship on millions of Palestinians who themselves have committed no crime, by dividing them from their jobs, their family and friends, and sometimes even their own homes.

israeli checkpoint with palestinian man

Checkpoints: As a security measure, Israel has placed barriers & checkpoints on hundreds of roads throughout the West Bank, using concrete blocks, spike strips, and trenches. The result is that law-abiding Palestinian civilians wait in suffocating traffic jams nearly every time they need to travel for work, errands or to visit friends.

israeli soldiers check woman's ID

Curfews: After especially severe targeted attacks, Israel is known for imposing 24-hour curfews on Palestinian cities and villages for days or weeks at a time. Though the curfews are lifted for a couple hours a day to allow people to buy food, they otherwise put regular people on virtual house arrest, punishing everyone for the crimes of a few.

israel demolishes palestinian home

House demolitions: The homes of Palestinians who attack Israelis are bulldozed in order to punish their families. Human rights groups say such demolitions are illegal under international law because they make innocent civilians homeless. The demolitions also often damage neighboring houses, too.

palestinian children barbed wire checkpoint

Revoking residency permits & social benefits from criminals’ families: To deter Palestinians from hurting Israelis, the Israeli government takes away residency rights and welfare benefits from the family members of those convicted of violence against Jews. Activists say that such punishments only create more extremism among Palestinians.

palestinians queue at israeli checkpoint

Arbitrarily canceling entry permits: As collective retribution for targeted attacks in Israel, Netanyahu has been known to cancel the entry permits for hundreds of innocent Palestinians. This prevents law-abiding civilians from getting to work in Jewish settlements in the West Bank or in Israel proper.

israel truck sprays skunk water protesters

Skunk water: Made with yeast & baking powder, this noxious substance is sprayed by the Israeli army from water cannons onto crowds of Palestinian protesters. It’s been described as smelling worse than raw sewage. Videos have documented instances where the IDF sprays it on entire neighborhoods as retribution for Palestinian demonstrations.

palestinian candles electricity outage

Power cuts: Earlier this year, Israel’s state-owned electric company cut power to major Palestinian cities, which it said was because of debts owed by its Palestinian corporate partner. But critics said the move was also intended as collective punishment for Palestinians having joined the International Criminal Court.

gaza destruction
gaza children starving
truck at israeli checkpoint barrier
israeli checkpoint with palestinian man
israeli soldiers check woman's ID
israel demolishes palestinian home
palestinian children barbed wire checkpoint
palestinians queue at israeli checkpoint
israel truck sprays skunk water protesters
palestinian candles electricity outage
gaza destruction
The Gaza blockade: Since Hamas’s ‘07 takeover of the Gaza Strip, Israel has imposed a land, air & sea blockade of the area, which it says is to prevent Hamas from importing arms. The flip side of the blockade is that Gaza’s 1.8M residents, many of whom don’t support Hamas, suffer scarcities of goods like food, fuel and building materials.
gaza children starving
The blockade of Gaza has resulted in food scarcities so bad that many children have medical issues as a result. A 2012 study by two international aid organizations found that 10% of children in Gaza under age 5 have stunted growth from malnutrition and that 60% of Gazan children are anemic.
truck at israeli checkpoint barrier
The separation barrier: The three-storey concrete barrier separating Israel from the West Bank, which Israel says is a counter-terrorism measure, imposes incredible hardship on millions of Palestinians who themselves have committed no crime, by dividing them from their jobs, their family and friends, and sometimes even their own homes.
israeli checkpoint with palestinian man
Checkpoints: As a security measure, Israel has placed barriers & checkpoints on hundreds of roads throughout the West Bank, using concrete blocks, spike strips, and trenches. The result is that law-abiding Palestinian civilians wait in suffocating traffic jams nearly every time they need to travel for work, errands or to visit friends.
israeli soldiers check woman's ID
Curfews: After especially severe targeted attacks, Israel is known for imposing 24-hour curfews on Palestinian cities and villages for days or weeks at a time. Though the curfews are lifted for a couple hours a day to allow people to buy food, they otherwise put regular people on virtual house arrest, punishing everyone for the crimes of a few.
israel demolishes palestinian home
House demolitions: The homes of Palestinians who attack Israelis are bulldozed in order to punish their families. Human rights groups say such demolitions are illegal under international law because they make innocent civilians homeless. The demolitions also often damage neighboring houses, too.
palestinian children barbed wire checkpoint
Revoking residency permits & social benefits from criminals’ families: To deter Palestinians from hurting Israelis, the Israeli government takes away residency rights and welfare benefits from the family members of those convicted of violence against Jews. Activists say that such punishments only create more extremism among Palestinians.
palestinians queue at israeli checkpoint
Arbitrarily canceling entry permits: As collective retribution for targeted attacks in Israel, Netanyahu has been known to cancel the entry permits for hundreds of innocent Palestinians. This prevents law-abiding civilians from getting to work in Jewish settlements in the West Bank or in Israel proper.
israel truck sprays skunk water protesters
Skunk water: Made with yeast & baking powder, this noxious substance is sprayed by the Israeli army from water cannons onto crowds of Palestinian protesters. It’s been described as smelling worse than raw sewage. Videos have documented instances where the IDF sprays it on entire neighborhoods as retribution for Palestinian demonstrations.
palestinian candles electricity outage
Power cuts: Earlier this year, Israel’s state-owned electric company cut power to major Palestinian cities, which it said was because of debts owed by its Palestinian corporate partner. But critics said the move was also intended as collective punishment for Palestinians having joined the International Criminal Court.