The Price of Occupation

Abby Zimet

Days after U.S. activist Tristan Anderson was shot in the head by Israeli forces in the West Bank – and days before a March 21 protest in Washington D.C. to end the Israeli occupation – the International Solidarity Movement has posted a video of the event and its aftermath. The blood, the chaos, the Palestinian medics scrambling with stretchers are harrowing reminders of the price paid daily by too many Palestinians, without the cameras rolling.

Anderson, 37, was shot by a controversial high-velocity tear gas canister fired by the Israeli army in the West Bank village of Ni'lin. He was photographing a weekly demonstration against the building of the so-called Apartheid Wall, declared illegal by the International Court of Justice in 2004, which cuts off Ni'lin residents from much of their land.

To date, Israel has killed four Palestinians during the protests: Yousef Amira, 17; Ahmed Mousa, 10, Arafat Rateb Khawaje, 22; and Mohammed Khawaje, 22. They were unarmed.

Anderson was unconscious and bleeding heavily from the head when he was taken to an Israeli hospital, where he underwent brain surgery. His family has said they are "deeply hopeful that Tristan will recover."

Amidst screaming, the footage of the shooting shows the practised Palestinian medics, red crescents on their backs, doing what they have been doing for too long, too many times, for their own people – scrambling to unroll a stretcher, load Anderson, and get him into an ambulance.  The March 13 shooting came almost exactly six years after the death of U.S. activist Rachel Corrie, killed while trying to protect a Palestinian home from being destroyed.

To see the footage, which is graphic, go here

To find out about Saturday's march to protest the occupation, sign a petition to cut off U.S. military aid to Israel, or get more information on the U.S. Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation, go here


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