Human Lives Human Rights: Israeli forces killed a five-year-old girl and at least several other Palestinians on Friday in an occupied and deeply impoverished territory that Israel has been strangling for decades.
A wave of deadly airstrikes killed at least ten people including the young girl and a “senior resistance leader” identified as Tayseer al-Jaabari.
At least 40 people were wounded, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry.
Israel claimed it carried out the assault to preempt an “imminent threat” from Palestinian militants who vowed retaliation after Israeli forces arrested a Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) militant in the occupied West Bank earlier this week.
But observers were quick to cast doubt on that rationale.
“Despite threats by PIJ, there had been no Palestinian escalation from Gaza and the ceasefire formula in place since the last war in May 2021 had been working,” Hugh Lovatt, a senior policy fellow and Middle East analyst at the European Council on Foreign Relations, said Friday, referring to the tenuous agreement put in place after Israel’s previous large-scale attack on Gaza, which left hundreds of Palestinians dead and nearly 2,000 wounded.
“This is unnecessary, unprovoked, reckless,” Lovatt said of Israel’s new attack.
Jewish Voice for Peace Action, a grassroots group that opposes Israel’s occupation of Palestinian territory, noted on Twitter that U.S. support for the Israeli government continues to enable its deadly actions in Gaza.
In May 2021, the Biden administration moved to greenlight a $735 million weapons sale to Israel just days before the country launched its deadly bombing campaign in the densely populated strip.
“There are U.S. funded planes and U.S. funded bombs killing Palestinians in Gaza,” the group wrote Friday. “Again.”