It does not matter what excuses Israel tries to proffer, there was absolutely no justification for the killing of 59 Palestinian protestors and the injuring of hundreds more who were demonstrating near the border with the Gaza strip against the opening of the new US Embassy to Israel that was, contentiously, re-located to East Jerusalem.
Whether or not Hamas put the protestors up to it is irrelevant. The shots that killed the protestors were fired by Israeli army snipers and some of that blood is also on American hands, and especially those of US President Donald J Trump, whose daughter, Ivanka, and her Jewish husband Jared Kushner, represented him at the embassy opening ceremony, while not too far away, Palestinian protestors were being picked off by heavily-armed Israeli soldiers.
The huge outcry of international outrage reflected the opinion of the vast majority of civilised people who cannot countenance that Israel has the audacity to carry out more such cold and calculating acts of violence, seemingly with impunity, and – to add insult to injury – that they were condoned by the United States. Mr Trump’s mission at the moment seems to be to upset as many as he possibly can in the Middle East and his withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal is adding fuel to the fire and – of course – we are paying for it here with the rise in the price of oil it has caused leading to hikes in the cost of petrol and diesel.
Such price rises are cyclical and we will survive them somehow – especially if we move away more from using fossil fuels – but human life is precious and there is no justification for taking it so cheaply as was cold-bloodedly done last week. The new embassy opening coincided with the 70th anniversary of the founding of the State of Israel, making it an even more provocative act to the Palestinians.