24 July 2014
Beit Hanoun, Gaza City,Palestinian Territories / Israel
Chaos persists in the Middle East as Israeli and Palestinian forces take part in explosive military exchanges. Often blaming each other for their actions, these opponents inflict attacks on the other, often causing extensive damage to towns and neighbourhoods. Unfortunately its not just mere bricks and mortar that bare the brunt of the countless acts of aggression - fatalities are inevitable as a result. Civilians on both sides have suffered with their lives being sacrificed as the ultimate fight over ownership of the Holy Land rages on and on. Ceasefires are seemingly negotiated upon, and then almost immediately broken before the Bic ink has even dried up on the parchment.
In this latest round of discord, notable recent incidents including that of the murder of a Palestinian teenager and then of three young Israelis left the Jewish state's military arm feeling that it had "no alternative"but to commence a firm open-ended sequence of airstrikes over the unimaginably densely populated area of Gaza on July 8. Within this region, the Palestinian offence is spearheaded by the democratically elected Islamist party Hamas, whom fight with what means they have; usually firing rockets into Israel whilst being rained on from Israeli shells. Over these last two and a half weeks or so, over 750 Palestinians and roughly 33 Israelis have been killed due to this relenting wave of hostilities.
Today's episode involves the shelling of a UN-run school-turned makeshift shelter for Palestinian refugees. So far, 15 people are reported to have been killed, and over 200 injured. Children are believed to be amongst the dead. The UN have stated that it gave the co-ordinates of the school to the IDF [Israeli Defence Force] in order to avoid it from being bombed on. As things stand, neither the IDF or Hamas are officially claiming responsibility for carrying out the brutal assault.
(WARNING - Following images may be disturbing to some; AYTD doesn't intend to offend or upset)