In these past few sleepless weeks, I have seen images and videos that will haunt me forever. Palestinian parents carrying their children’s charred and dismembered bodies in plastic bags to makeshift morgues; whole families, across three generations, crushed under the homes they built; exhausted doctors working desperately by torchlight and operating on patients without anaesthetic; one of the oldest churches in the world, sheltering the displaced, bombed. So far more than 10,000 Palestinians have been reported killed – more, after one month, than the number of civilians killed in Ukraine after two years of war.
The Israeli war machine is always horrifically ruthless. But this time we are witnessing a level of violence not seen since the 1948 Nakba – during which about 70% of the Palestinian population was forcibly displaced and more than 500 communities were wiped out completely. Indeed, for nearly four weeks the Israeli regime has cut off power and limited access to the internet, reducing contact with the outside and meaning the full scale of its assault has been hidden from the world. Some Palestinians in Gaza are still managing to maintain some communication by charging phones in cars and using power from what solar panels are left. Among them are Palestinian journalists – at least 32 media workers have been killed since Hamas’s offensive on 7 October – who are risking their lives to show us the devastation that is being wrought upon them.