NST Leader: Turning tides

In the latest Israeli Defence Forces' murderous rampage, Gaza City's Al-Shifa Hospital was destroyed, resulting in the deaths of an untold number of civilians.

However, it was their airstrikes that killed seven World Central Kitchen aid workers that hogged global headlines.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's response was pathetically predictable. To wit: "Unfortunately, in the last day, there was a tragic incident where our forces unintentionally struck innocent people in the Gaza Strip. It happens in war, and we are thoroughly investigating it…" Sense the cynicism that abetted Netanyahu's clichéd remarks.

For as long as we can remember, anyone delivering emergency aid would inevitably be bombed, never mind if they were unarmed and clearly identified. Food aid subverts the overriding Israeli strategy of starving Palestinians to the brink of famine.

Recall the late February massacre of 100 Palestinians rushing for food from aid trucks and another 20 more killed under heavy Israeli shelling while waiting for food supplies.

The pattern is demonic, the looming famine reflected in Unicef's grim tally: one in three children under 2 years old are highly malnourished because food trucks are obstructed by inane inspections and bombed roads.

Of course, Israel denies exploiting hunger as a weapon, but their pattern of airstrikes screams otherwise, as the death toll tops 33,500, including 200 aid workers and 103 journalists.

This twisted irony can't be downplayed: in surreptitiously creating the Zionist state out of the ashes of the Hitler-induced Holocaust, the Jewish nation has morphed into a brutal mirror of what they abominated — the Third Reich. But there are tectonic shifts: for the first time, Israeli sympathisers have resisted Netanyahu's lunacy — at high-profile bully pulpits.

Noted remonstrations: in mid-March, US Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, the highest-ranking Jewish elected official, harshly criticised Netanyahu as an "obstacle to peace". Days later, while accepting the Oscar for best international movie The Zone of Interest, British Jewish filmmaker Jonathan Glazer "refuted their Jewishness and the Holocaust being hijacked by (Israeli) occupation".

Earlier in the month, US Vice-President Kamala Harris defied the Israeli lobby, calling for an immediate ceasefire to facilitate the exchange of Israeli hostages for Palestinian prisoners. Coupled with South Africa's successful indictment of Israel at the International Court of Justice for state-led genocide in Gaza and more allies are now beginning to oppose Israeli atrocity.

US president Joe Biden is reeling, unnerved by loud protests from his own Democratic Party and Muslims who walked out of a breaking-of-fast gathering at the White House that Biden had hosted.

At the same time, Biden's public rift with Tel Aviv was reflected for the first time in a stunning US refusal to veto a United Nations Security Council resolution calling for a Gaza ceasefire.

Yet, these critical broadsides, while profound, are unlikely to stop the bloodlust. Maybe this? Israeli protesters demanding a snap election after they suspect Netanyahu of prolonging the conflict to stay in power to stay ahead of corruption indictments. We aren't holding our breath just yet.

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