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Sabra and Shatila massacre one of the most horrific Israeli crimes against the Palestinian people

Today marks the 38th anniversary of the Sabra and Shatila massacre, which is one of the most horrific crimes, perpetrated by the Israeli occupation against the Palestinians and the Lebanese and that claimed the lives of thousands of innocent people amid the complete silence of the international community.  The mere condemnation of this massacre by major powers confirmed their collusion with the Israeli occupation entity.

The Sabra and Shatila massacre, committed in 1982, was planned and implemented by the then Israeli War Minister Ariel Sharon, the Chief of Staff of the Israeli occupation forces Rafael Eytan and Israeli-affiliated militia with the participation of American parties, according to classified documents published by the American “New York Times” Newspaper in 2012.

The Israeli occupation forces together with the Lebanese Forces militia and the so-called South Lebanon Army, also known as Lahad militia, started their butchering during the night of September 16th, 1982 after the occupation’s vehicles tightened the closure of all the escape gates in the Shatila camp as well as the adjacent Sabra neighborhood and did not allow anyone to enter until the massacre ended on September 18.

 The occupation forces fired light bombs over the crime’s scene to help the militants attack the camp and savagely kill hundreds of people. They opened fire at everyone moving in the alleys of the camp.

Despite the ugliness of the massacre that shocked the world, the international community did not present the perpetrators and their leaders to any court and did not punish any of them for what they committed. The response was limited to forming  investigation committees whose conclusions were not followed by any legal proceedings.

The number of martyrs from this massacre is not clear until now, but estimations indicate the martyrdom of 5000-7000 innocent people, including children and women. The pictures of the children, who were not more than three or four years old with blood on their pajamas and blankets, in addition to the pictures of the families killed while they were asleep by the occupation forces, will continue to be a live witness and an evidence of the ugliness of that crime. Some of the victims were buried in mass graves and others were buried under the rubble of their homes.

While the international community was satisfied with condemnation, formal international investigations into this crime were limited to the independent McBride Commission, which confirmed in its report in 1983 that the Israeli occupation entity bears legal responsibility for the massacre and that the occupation participated in planning and preparing for the crimes and in facilitating the killings.

The report of the McBride Commission did not stop the crimes of the Zionist entity in the light of the inability of international bodies, mainly the UN Security Council, to punish the Zionist criminals for their heinous crime.

The Sabra and Shatila massacre was not the first to be committed by the Israeli occupation forces against the Palestinians, and it will not be the last.  It was preceded by the massacres of Qibya, Deir Yassin and Tantura, which were followed by the massacres of Jenin camp and Qana not to mention the massacres in Gaza and other cities.

Despite the ugliness of the killing and destruction that took place in the Sabra and Shatila massacre, and despite the shameful international silence, the Palestinian people will continue with their steadfastness and sacrifices in the face of the Israeli usurper and occupier until occupation comes to an end.

Hamda Mustafa

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