“Moral Bankruptcy: the state a person reaches when he trades away or violates too many moral values.” – Peg O’Connor, Ph.D.
The moral bankruptcy of a people can easily be gauged by the way they treat children. Israel has shown time and time again that it is past being morally bankrupt. It is way into dark territory, satanic even.
“The Israel Defence Force’s arbitrary use of violence against Palestinian children, including forcing them to act as human shields in military operations, has been exposed by veteran soldiers in detailed statements chronicling dozens of brutal incidents,” writes journalist Ruth Pollard.
“The most disturbing trend that emerges from the soldiers’ testimonies relates to the wounding and killing of children in the occupied West Bank and Gaza by either targeted shooting or by failing to protect minors during military operations, the report from veteran soldiers’ group Breaking the Silence says.”
Children who survive the IDF’s inhumane treatment while in detention are left scarred for life.
“In most cases, I found children who suffer from various traumas,” recounts documentary photographer Samar Hazboun. “Some were not able to talk about what had happened in prison; others burst into tears. In many cases, the children suffer from insomnia, involuntary urination, nightmares, depression, and fear of going out and facing people.”
Political analyst Randa Wahbe goes further: “Since the beginning of the second Palestinian uprising against Israel’s occupation in the early 2000s, over 10,000 Palestinian minors have been arrested by the Israeli military and subjected to cruel treatment, interrogation, and imprisonment – most are arrested on flimsy charges of stone throwing, punishable for up to 20 years. According to Defense for Children International-Palestine and UN OHCHR, 82% of minors experience physical violence at the hands of Israeli soldiers during their arrest and detention, and 97% of children undergo military interrogation without a parent present.
“On average, children spend 13 days in solitary confinement. During this period of intense isolation and questioning, children are coerced into signing confessions, written in Hebrew, a language most cannot understand or read, and are then indicted on that basis. Considering that the military court has a 99.7% conviction rate, the fastest way for a child to be released from custody is by pleading guilty, even when they are innocent.
“Israel is the only country in the world that systematically tries children in military court. At least 700 children are tried every year. It is worth noting that Israeli children illegally living in settlements on Palestinian land are subject to Israeli civil law rather than military law, further indicating the racist and discriminatory use of law for the purpose of criminalizing Palestinians.
“Now, more than ever, it is urgent for Congress to pass Betty McCollum’s proposed bill, which would prevent the use of US tax dollars for the Israeli military’s detention and mistreatment of Palestinian children.
“The message of McCollum’s bill is simple: As Israel’s largest benefactor, the US must stop funding Israel’s human rights abuses against children.
“Congress shouldn’t stop with this bill. Israel uses military law as a weapon to stifle any form of Palestinian resistance against its now 69-year-old military occupation and colonization of Palestinian land. Over 800,000 Palestinians have been arrested since the military occupation of the West Bank and East Jerusalem, and upwards of one million have been arrested since 1948. Political detention is central to entrenched occupation, and Congress must stop funding the instruments of oppression that affect Palestinians.
“Palestinians of all ages should not be persecuted for maintaining steadfastness on their land, nor should they be targeted for struggling for their freedom.”
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