Wednesday, December 20, 2023

FARGO -- don't cross Lorraine

FARGO aired it's latest episode last night.  Episode six.  There are only ten this season in all so we're past the half-way mark.  Sheriff Roy.  Last episode his son and goons kidnapped Wayne.  They couldn't get Dot (Roy's wife) so they went for her husband.  But Dot found out and switched the name plates on her husband's hospital room so they ended up kidnapping the wrong man.  He was being tortured in the sheriff's barn while Roy was getting a haircut from his current wife.  She had the TV on and was griping about politics (they are a MAGA family).  She accidentally cut his ear.  Right in front of their daughters, he hauled off and slapped her across the face.   Then he sees the real Wayne on TV advertising cars (Wayne owns a car lot).  He storms out to the barn where the man is still being tortured.  He yells at his son Gator who had said he got a look at Wayne when they tried to kidnap Dot on Halloween.  The man's not Wayne.  Roy shoots the man in the forehead.

Last week, Wayne's mother Lorraine (Jennifer Jason Leigh) met with two bankers.  She offered them $100 million for their bank.  They didn't want to sell, she pointed out that they didn't have enough cash on hand as required by the federal government.  They could sell it to her or she'd call the government and they'd get shut down.

Roy is angry at her because (a) she stands up to him and (b) she won't help him get Dot.

So he is outside a strip club when the main banker comes out.  He sends the bankers friends away and then takes the bankers coat and shirt.  He's not going to kill the banker.  But that's because the banker is not going to ever take a call from Lorraine again or call her.  Roy doesn't care what could happen he just knows he will kill the banker if he doesn't follow Roy's directive.

Lorraine can't get through to the banker.  She decides she needs to fix an election (Roy's most likely) but sends David Foley into Roy's town first for the banker.

David Foley finds him, where else, in the strip club.

He hands the banker the phone.

Lorraine tells him he should have accepted his offer.  Right now, as they speak on the phone, the feds are at the bank seizing the records.  Oh and she hopes he didn't waste all his walking around money on strippers because of all his accounts are frozen now.  And that ringing she's hearing of his phone?  That's his son.  The tuition wasn't paid and now can't be paid so the school has dropped him as a student.  

See, she explains, he thought the worst thing that could happen was that he could be killed.  He was wrong.  The worst thing was his son being denied a good education and the banker living in poverty for the rest of his life.
FARGO airs new episodes on Tuesday on FX and can be streamed on FX and on HULU.


Going out with C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"


Wednesday, December 20, 2023.  The UN Security Council may vote today on a cease-fire resolution or, as they've done twice already, they may push it back another day and meanwhile ugly realities from polling cover Joe Biden's self-inflicted wounds that may result in political suicide.

The assault on Gaza continues.  There was supposed to be United Nations Security Council vote on Monday.  It got postponed to Tuesday.  Yesterday, it got postponed until today.  AP notes, "U.N. Security Council members were in intense negotiations Tuesday on an Arab-sponsored resolution to spur desperately needed humanitarian aid deliveries to Gaza during some kind of a halt in the fighting, trying to avoid another veto by the United States."  AP states that yesterday's decision to postpone followed a request for "more time" by the US government. Sadly,  nearly 20,000 residents of Gaza do not have "more time" because they've already been killed in the ongoing assault.

HuffPost's Akbar Shahid Ahmed reported early Wednesday that diplomats pushing for the resolution's passage "see just 'a tiny sliver of hope'" that the Biden administration will let the Security Council approve the measure, either by abstaining or voting yes. The U.S. is one of five permanent Security Council members with veto power.

The vote, which has already been delayed twice, is expected at noon Wednesday.

In recent days, diplomats have been racing to adjust the resolution's language to avoid a U.S. veto, changing the original measure's call for an "urgent and sustainable cessation of hostilities" to an "urgent suspension of hostilities"—language resembling the resolution that the Security Council passed last month. It's nowhere near the lasting cease-fire that international humanitarian groups, lawmakers, and others around the world are demanding.

"The statistics are clear: 66% of the American people want an immediate cease-fire, including 80% of Democrats," Phyllis Bennis, a fellow at the Institute for Policy Studies, wrote earlier this week. "Protests in favor of a cease-fire are continuing across the country and include Jewish organizations, unions, city councils, elected officials at all levels, churches of all denominations, and many others." 

Most people are repulsed by Joe Biden's actions regarding Gaza.  That's why he's being destroyed in the polls.  Jonathan Weisman, Alyce McFadden and Ruth Igielnik (NEW YORK TIMES via SEATTLE TIMES) report, "Voters broadly disapprove of the way President Joe Biden is handling the bloody strife between Israelis and Hamas, a New York Times/Siena College poll has found, with younger Americans far more critical than older voters of both Israel’s conduct and of the administration’s response to the war in the Gaza Strip."

Stop right there because nothing else matters in the 2024 vote.  Joe can't win without "younger Americans."  They're the ones who carried him across the finish line in 2020.  Not only did those voting overwhelming choose him but also there's the issue of the number of young Americans  -- ages 18 to 29-- who voted.   The number of them voting?  There was an 11% increase in the turnout of young Americans from 2016 to 2020.  They delivered and then some.  If the election were today, Biden would be on his own.  Brookings tries to dismiss it but they don't seem to grasp much of anything -- they so rarely do, remember their cheerleading for the Iraq War. 

Reality, they are being pushed into this decision not to vote by Biden's actions regarding Gaza.

They have conviction.  Most people tend to lose some of that as they age.  But the youth still has it.  Brookings doesn't factor that in.  Because they never know what's happening.  Here's what's happening: We just had Thanksgiving.  Hanukah's just wrapped up.  Christmas is next week.

Brookings doesn't seem to grasp that or the fact that many young people are taking stands when they gather for these holidays with family.  They're saying what they're going to do next year.  They're being backed into a corner.  It's not going to be easy for Joe to win over the numbers he needs in the next 11 months after some people have already gone public with their condemnation of his position and how they don't plan to vote.

Do we get how big that group is right now?

Earlier this month, NBC NEWS noted, "The NBC News national poll, conducted more than a month after the start of the Israel-Hamas war, shows 70% of voters under 35 disapproving of Biden’s handling of the war."  So when a Harvard poll earlier this month finds that less than half of young voters right now plan to vote in 2024, that's alarming.  The ship is going down right now and Brookings wants to say, "Hey, listen to the pretty music, ignore the lack of row boats."

Back to THE TIMES article:

Voters between 18 and 29 years old, traditionally a heavily Democratic demographic, jump out. Nearly three-quarters of them disapprove of the way Biden is handling the conflict in Gaza. And among registered voters, they say they would vote for Trump by 49% to 43%; in July, those young voters backed Biden by 10 percentage points.

“I don’t want to vote for someone who is not aligned with my own personal values, as Biden has shown he is not when it comes to Gaza,” said Colin Lohner, a 27-year-old software engineer in San Francisco. But, he asked, “Do I vote for Biden or do I not vote at all? That’s really difficult, because if I don’t vote for Biden, I open up the possibility that Trump will win, and I really do not want that.” 

Brookings is in denial as  is Joe Biden.  And they're acting as though the GOP is going to be Donald Trump.  America is sick of both Joe and Donald.  Imagine if the GOP's nominee is Nikki Haley?  You could have a significant number of voters drift to her just to escape the Biden-Trump trap.  Jake Johnson offers this:

  Matt Duss, a former foreign policy adviser to Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), responded that Biden's choice is clear.

"He should choose the option that upholds human rights and international law, which is what he promised during his campaign," wrote Duss, executive vice president of the Center for International Policy. "Support a cease-fire."

The Times/Siena College poll of U.S. voters found that Biden's current approach—which has consisted of unconditional military support for Israel accompanied by mild calls for the protection of Gaza civilians and opposition to a lasting cease-fire—has just 33% support and 57% opposition.

Among young voters who were critical to Biden's 2020 victory over former President Donald Trump, the opposition is even more pronounced, with 73% of those between the ages of 18 and 29 saying they disapprove, according to the new survey. Forty-seven percent of young voters said they believe Biden is too supportive of Israel, while just 6% said he's too supportive of the Palestinians.

The survey's findings amplified concerns that, in addition to rendering himself complicit in genocide, Biden is alienating key elements of the Democratic base by arming the Israeli military as it carries out mass atrocities in the Gaza Strip.

"Yet another major poll finds that Biden is killing his own reelection bid with his inhumane and strategically nonsensical Gaza policy," Trita Parsi, executive vice president of the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft, wrote on social media.

The survey was released ahead of an expected United Nations Security Council vote on a resolution calling for a "suspension of hostilities." A previous version of the resolution called for a "cessation of hostilities," but the text was reportedly watered down in an effort to prevent the U.S. from once again wielding its veto power.

As the Biden administration's opposition to a sustained cease-fire leaves the U.S. increasingly isolated on the world stage, the Times/Siena College poll found that 44% of U.S. voters—including 59% of Democrats—believe Israel should "stop its military campaign in order to protect against civilian casualties, even if not all Israeli hostages have been released."

Sixty-five percent of Democratic voters believe Israel should stop its assault on Gaza to prevent additional civilian deaths "even if Hamas has not been fully eliminated" in line with the Israeli government's stated objective.

During a meeting last week with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Biden national security adviser Jake Sullivan reportedly urged the far-right leader to transition to a "lower intensity" form of warfare in Gaza "in a matter of weeks, not months," the latest signal that the Biden administration is feeling domestic and international pressure as the humanitarian catastrophe worsens and the death toll climbs. 

AMY GOODMAN: This is Democracy Now!,, The War and Peace Report. I’m Amy Goodman in New York, with Democracy Now!’s Juan González in Chicago.

As the humanitarian crisis in Gaza deepens, we turn now to Palestinians and Palestinian Americans who are trying to evacuate their family members to the United States. At least two Palestinian Americans have now filed a lawsuit against the Biden administration, saying its failure to help them violates their constitutional rights. This is Yasmen Elagha, who says she lost at least a hundred relatives in Gaza, including two American citizens.

YASMEEN ELAGHA: The only thing that I’m being told is that there is nothing further that the U.S. government can do, which I don’t believe all.

AMY GOODMAN: The lawsuit notes that after the October 7th Hamas attack on Israel, the U.S. government organized charter flights from Tel Aviv for Americans to leave Israel. So far, they say, the United States has not organized any flights to secure the exit of at least 900 U.S. citizens, residents and family members still in Gaza.

Al Jazeera reports more than a hundred staff members at the Department of Homeland Security signed an open letter to Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas denouncing the response to humanitarian crisis in Gaza so far, saying it should be, quote, “commensurate with past responses to humanitarian tragedies” and offer a humanitarian parole program to Palestinians like it did after conflicts in Afghanistan and Ukraine.

More than a hundred Democrats, led by Illinois Senator Dick Durbin, have called on Biden to make Palestinians who are already in the U.S. eligible for temporary protected status, or TPS.

Today we’ll hear two stories, one a Palestinian American woman in Detroit whose mother died in Gaza. She was approved to evacuate but was still but waiting to get out. The daughter is desperately seeking the government’s help to evacuate the rest of her family. We’ll also be joined by her attorney, Sophia Akbar. But first, we go to Cairo, Egypt, with another one of Sophia’s clients, Fadi Abu Shammalah. He is Just Vision’s outreach associate in Gaza, executive director of Gaza’s General Union of Cultural Centers. We spoke to him last month, when he was still in Gaza, about his New York Times op-ed, “What More Must the Children of Gaza Suffer?” Well, he was able to leave Gaza and is joining us now as he works to be reunited with his wife and his three children, who are still in Gaza — Ali, Karam and Adam.

Fadi, welcome back to Democracy Now! In a moment, we’re going to talk about the legal case here. But if you can talk about what is happening in Gaza right now, what’s happening in Rafah, in Jabaliya? Talk about why you left Gaza and what you think needs to happen.

FADI ABU SHAMMALAH: Oh, thank you so much for having me for the second time. I wouldn’t do the — I wouldn’t do the same for me. But, yeah, again, thank you so much for having me in this interview.

I will start by telling the situation on the ground, not in Rafah city itself, like in every city in Gaza Strip, is beyond our imagination. Like, not all of the news really come out to us here. I’m talking with you from Cairo. And the situation on the ground itself, it’s more horrible than what you can see by your screens and TVs. I would say also a horrific number. Like, all I would say that 1.9 million of the Palestinian people are displaced, already displaced, their homes. They all, most of them, were pushed into the far south of Gaza Strip in a city called Rafah. In the last — sorry, in the last 36 hours only, 177 Palestinians, civilian Palestinians, were killed.

This war, I would call it the war against the civilian, the Palestinian civilian, in order only to kill. That’s it. This is the main goal. I would say that there’s two goals. The first one is to kill the civilians as much as they can, and the second goal is to destroy as much as they can. Gaza City itself is erased. You will be shocked when you — if you will send your cameras after, hopefully, this nightmare and this war will end. You will be shocked because of the numbers of the neighborhoods, that it’s completely, completely damaged.

The south — the north, sorry, the north of the Gaza Strip, no one knows about the north of Gaza Strip. Only there is two journalists, according to what I knew — according to what I know, that only there’s two journalists who are trying to cover the situation, the situation there. Like, they are killing people in tents. That’s what I hear also. Like, also, sorry, witnesses say that the Israeli bulldozers buried the injured people in Kamal Adwan Hospital. They buried them while they are alive. They were still alive. They killed and they buried them.

This is — we should find a word that can express more than the word of “genocide.” That’s what is going on there. Like, the medical situation is horrible. The humanitarian situation is horrible, the water itself, the food itself, the electricity, the number of the killed people, the number of the bombed homes over the head of its residents. At the end, no one knows when this war is going to end. But what I know for sure, that we were all devastated, that our all hearts is broken for the destruction —

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: Fadi, I wanted to ask you —

FADI ABU SHAMMALAH: — that’s happened, the cruel destruction that’s happening.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: — about your decision to leave Gaza. And also, what is the situation with your wife and your three children? Could you talk about the obstacles of them not being able to get out? Fadi, could you hear me?

AMY GOODMAN: Fadi, I’m going to put Juan’s question to you. For some reason, you’re not able to hear him. He’s talking about — he’s talking about your family and trying to get your family out. Can you describe —

FADI ABU SHAMMALAH: I don’t hear you, sorry.

AMY GOODMAN: I think the IFB has dropped, and we’re going to go back to you.

Of course young Americans are against Joe right now.  They see what's going on.  They see the suffering and the death and they were raised to believe in this country but this country's government is on the wrong side.  Again from yesterday's DEMOCRACY NOW!

AMY GOODMAN: This is Democracy Now!,, The War and Peace Report. I’m Amy Goodman, with Juan González.

As the death toll in Gaza nears 20,000, Human Rights Watch has accused the Israeli government of using starvation as a weapon of war in Gaza. Human Rights Watch says Israel has deliberately blocked the delivery of water, food and fuel, while willfully impeding humanitarian assistance. The group said Israel has also apparently razed agricultural areas inside Gaza as many Palestinians face starvation.

We’re joined now by Omar Shakir, Israel and Palestine director at Human Rights Watch, which has just published a report headlined “Israel: Starvation Used as Weapon of War in Gaza.” He’s joining us from Amman, Jordan.

Omar, why don’t you lay out your findings?

OMAR SHAKIR: We found five very disturbing trends coming together that led us to this conclusion, the first of which has been for more than two months now the Israeli government has been blocking all but a trickle of aid, food and water from entering the Gaza Strip. Secondly, the Israeli government has, in essence, cut off the entry and exit of goods from its own crossings with Gaza, despite being the occupying power that’s obligated to provide for the civilian population. Third, satellite imagery that we’ve been carefully studying shows the apparent deliberate razing of agricultural land. You can see entire farms and other areas turned from lush green agricultural land into barren wasteland in different parts of the Gaza Strip. Fourth, we look at the destruction of the kinds of objects necessary for human survival — bakeries, wheat mills, sanitation and water facilities, hospitals. In northern Gaza, you cannot find many of these facilities that are functioning. And fifth and finally, statements from Israeli government officials that set out in very plain terms — and this includes the defense minister, the national security minister, members of COGAT, the Israeli army — that state clearly that they will continue to prevent these basic supplies — food, water, aid — from entering until they accomplish the objectives they’ve set, such as the return of hostages and the destruction of Hamas. All this collectively amounts to starvation used as weapon of war, which is an abhorrent war crime, adding to the Israeli government’s many other war crimes, like collective punishment, that have been taking over the last 10 weeks.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: And, Omar, specifically in terms of the deprivation of clean water to drink and fuel, could you talk about the impacts of this policy in terms of the spread of disease and access to food?

OMAR SHAKIR: Absolutely. Look, I mean, I think water is a basic thing that’s needed for health services, for everyday life, for cleaning. And you’ve seen several things take place with water. The first thing is to note that 97% of the groundwater in Gaza is unfit for human consumption as a result of overextraction of the ground aquifer that comes in from Israel, so Gaza has long relied on water that’s coming in from Israel. Israel cut that water supply after October 7th. It’s resumed piping to parts of southern Gaza, but in northern Gaza that’s not the case. We’ve also seen significant destruction of the water infrastructure. We’ve also seen destruction to other water facilities, pipelines. And you have the lack of fuel, that’s led to the shutdown of desalinization and water pumping facilities.

So you have some water coming in on trucks, but bottled water is not enough to allow the population to drink, for hospitals to function, for sanitation to take place. And the results are quite deadly. We’re already hearing, seeing reports of thousands of cases of contagious diseases, and we’re seeing hospitals trying to make do. And, of course, the majority of hospitals in Gaza are not functioning. The Israeli government has been systematically attacking hospitals, especially in northern Gaza. But those that are operating are trying to do so without adequate supply of medical supplies and water. And the consequences are stark. And they will get worse unless we see the taps switched on water and the ability for the water infrastructure to be repaired, and fuel to enter, so those pumping stations and desalinization plants can operate.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: What actions do you see necessary by the international community at this point, especially given the fact that the United States continues to veto any resolutions in the Security Council?

OMAR SHAKIR: I think today’s U.N. Security Council vote is quite essential. There’s an opportunity to take concrete action to protect civilians. It’s critical that states support that resolution, and the United States not exercise its veto. Lives quite literally hang in the balance.

Beyond the action at the Security Council, there is absolutely a need for states to unequivocally condemn this war crime. We’ve seen far too often, especially the United States and its allies in Europe that are condemning, rightfully, abuses that are carried out by Palestinian armed groups, but not using the same language to condemn the clear war crimes committed by the Israeli government.

There needs to be a call for an immediate resumption of full aid, not the trickle that’s being allowed in. But the aid alone is not enough. There needs to be a restoration of electricity, water and other basic services. And ultimately, that’s not going to matter, if unlawful attacks and incessant bombardment continue to wreak havoc on the lives of people. There must be an end to unlawful attacks.

And obviously, more long term, beyond these sort of immediate needs of the civilian population, there are a couple of essential things that are needed. One, there must be accountability for unlawful attacks and other violations, including at the International Criminal Court. Secondly, there must be an addressing of root causes, such as Israel’s apartheid against Palestinians. And finally, all states must evaluate all forms of potential complicity in these grave abuses. And in the case of the United States, that means imposing an arms embargo, ending the provision of military assistance and arms, given the high risk they’ll be used in the commission of grave abuses.

AMY GOODMAN: If you can talk, Omar Shakir, about the Biden administration’s, to say the least, mixed message, bypassing Congress, sending tank artillery that is being used against Palestinians, saying that they’re staunchly behind Israel, then at the same time saying they’re putting out a private message that they’ve got to reduce the casualties, and at the same time vetoing U.N. Security Council resolutions, though it’s not clear what’s going to happen today? They want the language watered down, but may not stop that resolution from going forward. We’ll find out soon. Can you talk about what exactly the U.S. is doing versus France calling for a ceasefire, versus Germany, Britain, and what it would mean if the U.S. were on the front of calling for permanent ceasefire?

OMAR SHAKIR: Look, I think the United States and Israel are isolated in the international community. There’s a growing consensus, as reflected in U.N. votes and otherwise, about the enormity of the catastrophe that we’re seeing taking place in Gaza and the urgent need for action to end that.

There has indeed been a shift in the U.S. government rhetoric. President Biden spoke of Israel’s indiscriminate bombing in Gaza. Indiscriminate bombing is a violation of the laws of war. So, if this is the assessment of the Biden administration, how can it justify providing military support? That risks complicity in what they themselves have acknowledged to be war crimes. The reality here is the Israeli government has a long track record of unlawful attacks. U.S. weapons, as has been documented in previous rounds of hostilities by Human Rights Watch, as has been documented by Amnesty International, has itself been used in the commission of grave abuses over the years. The reality here is the United States, by continuing to provide arms and diplomatic cover to the Israeli government as it commits atrocity, risks complicity in these underlying abuses. That not only sends the wrong message, that not only undermines the protection of Israeli and Palestinian civilians, but it undermines the very international human rights and humanitarian law that the United States mobilizes and cites when it comes to places like Ukraine and elsewhere in the world. Undermining the protection of civilians, the use of double standards in Israel-Palestine harms civilians everywhere in the world.

The Biden administration has the chance to make the right choice here to begin to match some of its recent words with action, and we hope the United States will not veto today’s resolution. Doing so will be incredibly damaging to civilians on the ground and to the United States in its position globally.

AMY GOODMAN: We just have 30 seconds, but this issue of starvation is not only being raised by Human Rights Watch. World Food Programme warned of the immediate possibility of starvation on December 6th. You have this high risk of famine right through to now. As we wrap up, what this means? We just heard our previous guest talking about what’s happened to his children, from disease to hunger. Your final comment?

OMAR SHAKIR: Look, you have a reality where nine out of 10 households in north Gaza have gone — you have a reality where nine of 10 households, according to the World Food Programme, in north Gaza have been without food for a whole day and a whole night. Imagine families that have to spend hours or more a day just to be able to get a couple of pieces of bread to feed their family. We’re seeing hundreds of bodies pile up a day in airstrikes. We risk seeing that or more in the days ahead if there isn’t urgent action by world leaders to end these atrocities. We’ve been on the wrong side of this.

AMY GOODMAN: Omar Shakir of Human Rights Watch, we thank you so much for being with us. And we wrap by saying happy birthday to Renée Feltz.

The assault on Gaza continues.  Binoy Kampmark (DISSIDENT VOICE) points out, "Bloodletting as form; murder as fashion.  The ongoing campaign in Gaza by Israel’s Defence Forces continues without stalling and restriction.  But the burgeoning number of corpses is starting to become a challenge for the propaganda outlets:  How to justify it?  Fortunately for Israel, the United States, its unqualified defender, is happy to provide cover for murder covered in the sheath of self-defence."   CNN has explained, "The Gaza Strip is 'the most dangerous place' in the world to be a child, according to the executive director of the United Nations Children's Fund."  ABC NEWS quotes UNICEF's December 9th statement, ""The Gaza Strip is the most dangerous place in the world to be a child. Scores of children are reportedly being killed and injured on a daily basis. Entire neighborhoods, where children used to play and go to school have been turned into stacks of rubble, with no life in them."  NBC NEWS notes, "Strong majorities of all voters in the U.S. disapprove of President Joe Biden’s handling of foreign policy and the Israel-Hamas war, according to the latest national NBC News poll. The erosion is most pronounced among Democrats, a majority of whom believe Israel has gone too far in its military action in Gaza."  The slaughter continues.  It has displaced over 1 million people per the US Congressional Research Service.  Jessica Corbett (COMMON DREAMS) points out, "Academics and legal experts around the world, including Holocaust scholars, have condemned the six-week Israeli assault of Gaza as genocide."   The death toll of Palestinians in Gaza is now well over 18,000. NBC NEWS notes, "The vast majority of its 2.2 million people are displaced, and an estimated half face starvation amid an unfolding humanitarian crisis."  ABC NEWS notes, "In the Gaza Strip, at least 19,667 people have been killed and more than 52,000 others have been wounded by Israeli forces since Oct. 7, according to figures released by Gaza's Hamas-run Ministry of Health and the Hamas government media office."  In addition to the dead and the injured, there are the missing.  AP notes, "About 4,000 people are reported missing."  And the area itself?  Isabele Debre (AP) reveals, "Israel’s military offensive has turned much of northern Gaza into an uninhabitable moonscape. Whole neighborhoods have been erased. Homes, schools and hospitals have been blasted by airstrikes and scorched by tank fire. Some buildings are still standing, but most are battered shells."  Kieron Monks (I NEWS) reports, "More than 40 per cent of the buildings in northern Gaza have been damaged or destroyed, according to a new study of satellite imagery by US researchers Jamon Van Den Hoek from Oregon State University and Corey Scher at the City University of New York. The UN gave a figure of 45 per cent of housing destroyed or damaged across the strip in less than six weeks. The rate of destruction is among the highest of any conflict since the Second World War."  Max Butterworth (NBC NEWS) adds, "Satellite images captured by Maxar Technologies on Sunday reveal three of the main hospitals in Gaza from above, surrounded by the rubble of destroyed buildings after weeks of intense bombing in the region by Israeli forces."

When the United Nations Children’s Fund featured 12-year-old Dina on its Instagram feed on Sunday, she said she would “become a lawyer so that I can enjoy my rights and the rights of all children.”

The following day UNICEF said she was killed at the Nasser Hospital in the southern city of Khan Younis.

In Sunday’s post, the organization said she was being treated for wounds and her right leg had been amputated.

In Monday’s update, it said the killing of children “must stop.”

But the killing of children sadly continues.  CNN’s Kareem El Damanhoury notes this morning:

Children in Gaza are getting only about 10% of the water they would normally use, leaving them with “barely a drop to drink,” UNICEF said in a statement on Wednesday. 

“Recently displaced children in the southern Gaza Strip are accessing only 1.5 to 2 litres of water each day,” the statement said.

It added that 15 liters are the minimum standard per day for drinking, washing, and cooking, while three liters are the minimum for survival alone.

UNICEF says water and sanitation services in Gaza are “at the point of collapse,” which could have severe repercussions on children.

“The impact of this on children is particularly dramatic because children are also more susceptible to dehydration, diarrhea, disease and malnutrition, all of which can compound to present a threat to their survival,” UNICEF said.

“Concerns of waterborne diseases such as cholera and chronic diarrhea are particularly heightened given the lack of safe water, especially following this week’s rains and flooding," added the statement.

Last week, the World Health Organization said it had recorded about 165,000 cases of diarrhea amongst children under the age of five, which it described as “much more” than normal.

“Without safe water, many more children will die from deprivation and disease in the coming days” UNICEF Executive Director Catherine Russell said. 

From the scene of one bombing this morning, Hani Mahmoud (ALJAZEERA) reports on the stark conditions:

I see more people, rushing carrying bodies, people with injuries.

There is a group of people running and carrying what seems to be a body to the hospital.

This is the situation in every place where relentless targeting takes place.

We’re not in the northern part to report the tragedies people have experienced since the early hours of this morning in Jabalia and Gaza City, but this is a real-life example.

[. . .]

It’s chaotic here. People are panicking.

We are getting reports that some 25 injured people were being brought to the Kuwaiti hospital, many of them women and children.

People have just brought an injured person to the hospital on a donkey cart, since an ambulance was not available, while performing CPR on him.

The following sites updated:

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