From The Guardian:
Thousands of Gazans fled their homes … on Sunday after Israel warned that it would “strike with might” against what it says are rocket-launching sites.
The exodus … came after Israel dropped leaflets and sent text messages warning civilians to evacuate northern Gaza by midday on Sunday in advance of a large-scale bombing campaign. The area is home to at least 100,000 people….
The warning was issued hours after Israeli naval commandos launched an early morning raid on a beach … in the north of Gaza City, targeting another rocket-launching site. On Saturday the coastal enclave suffered the bloodiest day of the six-day Israeli assault, with 54 Palestinians reported killed.
There has been speculation that Israel may launch a ground offensive into Gaza, a move likely to sharply increase the number of civilian casualties. So far 166 people have been killed, including 30 children, according to Gaza’s health ministry. There have been several Israeli injuries but no fatalities….
In the worst single incident of the conflict so far, at least 17 people were killed and 45 injured when two large Israeli bombs hit a house in the Tuffah neighbourhood of Gaza City where the city’s chief of police … was sheltering. Five other people were missing, presumed dead.
Most of the injured were returning home from a mosque when they were caught by shrapnel from the blast.
Israel has been massing tanks and soldiers at Gaza’s borders, which some fear could signal a wider ground offensive that would cause heavy casualties. “We don’t know when the operation will end,” the Israeli prime minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, told a cabinet meeting on Sunday. “It might take a long time.”
The United States gives more military aid to Israel than to any country except Afghanistan. This year we’re giving the Israelis more than 3 billion dollars to spend on their military.
That’s between 15% and 20% of Israel’s military budget, even though Israel is a relatively wealthy country. According to the International Monetary Fund, Israel has a higher gross domestic product per capita than South Korea, New Zealand, Italy or Spain.
We should immediately cancel all military aid to Israel. They would still survive and prosper with a smaller military budget; we could create some jobs in America with $3 billion; our standing with the rest of the world would improve; and the right-wing Israelis might finally understand that they need to reach a reasonable accommodation with the Palestinians instead of treating them as if they’re less than human.