ACCORDING to the UN, the ongoing Israeli assault on Gaza has cost 177 lives so far and the number of injured has crossed 1,400. With more than three quarters of those having died being civilians, we are forced to ask what propels such barbarity against a largely unarmed populace? Though the Israeli cabinet has apparently proposed a unilateral ceasefire, the Hamas has reacted saying that Israel must lift its eight-year blockade and release hundreds of its people who have been jailed during the current conflict.
Pitting sophisticated weaponry on a defenceless people may go down well with the Israeli electorate but it wreaks disaster on innocent Palestinian civilians including women and children. PM Netanyahu's intention is clearly to destroy whatever little infrastructure Gaza has. Are we to assume that the Western world which claims itself as the guardian of human rights and dignity will sit idle as an overwhelmingly superior military force obliterates the Palestinians?
That it took the UN's Security Council three days to come up with a statement to address the humanitarian disaster in Gaza was little more than an apologetic statement, which is hugely disappointing. The time for collective action is now and the UN must speak with one voice and move decisively to stop the carnage.