Saturday, December 05, 2015

Impunity Continues: Child Murderer Deemed 'Not Responsible' by Israeli Court

Impunity Continues: Child Murderer Deemed 'Not Responsible' by Israeli Court

by Mazin Qumsiyeh -

Israeli murder of Palestinian civilians continues with impunity.108 Palestinians were killed since 1 October. In one incident over 1500 heavily armed Israeli colonial soldiers invaded Shufat refugee camp in Jerusalem (yes there are refugee camps also in Jerusalem) and demolished a home while injuring many natives. Yosef Haim BenDavid is an “adult” Israeli settler who recruited two other teenage Israelis and went looking for “Arabs” and managed to kidnap a child Mohammad Khdair. The three then tortured and burned the child to death. An Israeli judge aided by Israeli system ruled that indeed the murderer did the deed but he is not responsible  because of his “mental state”.

The same system refuses to punish murderous Jews who burn whole families (like the Dawabsheh family (father, mother and child burned in their own home by colonial Jewish terrorists). Israeli authorities are even sending bills to the Palestinian authority for costs of treating the Dawabshe family (what Chutzpah!).

Israel also protects its political and military elites who regularly engage in crimes against humanity and war crimes (Sharon, Begin, Peres, Netanyahu etc). The same Israeli system executes innocents and many  Palestinians almost daily without trials and when there are trials, Israeli prosecution and Israeli judges sentence Palestinians including children to long jail sentences for “throwing stones” or even concoct charges and plant “evidence” to convict them. Palestinian mental state is not considered in this one country with two systems of laws one for the privileged “chosen” and one for the natives.

But I continue to be most inspired by Palestinian children and youth all around us (60% of us). The spirit  should teach something to old politicians who have been doing the same futile things over and over again. The spirit is of change and youth. That is the future and we let children literally draw inspiration for us (see  calendar below). For those interested look at our Palestine Museum of Natural history facebook page
(under that name). Available Children Calendar of Palestine Natural History, Chronique
palestinienne (voir ci-dessous/see below) ...

I gave the keynote speech for the East Jerusalem Hospital Network. This is a network of six Palestinian hospitals in illegally occupied and annexed Eastern part of the city. My background is in medical genetics (in  addition to biology and other areas) and I discussed briefly challenges and opportunities facing provision of medical healthcare under Israeli repression.

These range from denial of access and movement, invasion of hospitals, kidnapping patients, and even  attacking and injuring and killings of patients and medical staff. It was truly inspiring to see the excellent level of care provided despite these obstacles and discuss ways to improve it especially in times of conflicts with increased demand and limited resources (e.g. Palestinian Authority was tied by Oslo process to spend 40+% of its budget on security which leaves little for healthcare, education, environment, research and other important areas).

2016 Calendar of Palestine Natural History available and proceeds help
Palestine's children, see:

And if you like to donate directly before year-end to the Palestine Museum of Natural History, please go to and here are activities of the first year:

Chronique palestinienne : 29 novembre, Journée Internationale de Solidarité
avec la Palestine

Mazin Qumsiyeh
Professor and Director
Palestine Museum of Natural History
Bethlehem University
Occupied Palestine

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