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Israeli forces kill 14 Palestinians in West Bank refugee camp raid: Red Crescent

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Nur Shams, West Bank – A catastrophic humanitarian crisis is unfolding in the Nur Shams refugee camp, where a scorched-earth Israeli military operation has killed over a dozen Palestinians and left the densely-populated area resembling the aftermath of a full-scale war.

At least 14 bodies have been pulled from the bombed-out ruins so far, according to Palestinian medical crews. But that grim toll could rise as more residents are potentially trapped in the increasingly unrecognizable maze of blasted buildings, collapsed homes and streets choked with rubble and debris.

“We’ve recovered 14 corpses, but who knows how many more are still buried?” a ashen-faced Palestinian Red Crescent medic asked despondently on Saturday. “The Israelis are waging a relentless bombing campaign while denying us access to search for survivors.”

What human catastrophe hath Israel wrought?
Indeed, the images and firsthand accounts emerging from Nur Shams are nothing short of post-apocalyptic. Israeli drones persistently buzz like lethal mechanical hornets over the pulverized landscape. The acrid stench of smoke and dust hangs thick in the air, blocking out the sun’s rays.

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One refugee recalled huddling with her children, their screams drowned out by the deafening barrage of explosions that shook the ground in seeming defiance of geological forces. “It sounded like hurricanes were swirling all around us, like the earth itself was being ripped apart,” she told reporters through frightened sobs.

Another man excoriated the Israeli forces for using excessive firepower, pointing to the gaping craters and craters left by munitions powerful enough to collapse three and four-story residential buildings. “Look at the sheer scale of destruction! How can they claim to be conducting a surgical operation when they’ve reduced our homes to apocalyptic rubble?” he cried.

An untenable siege and shrinking humanitarian lifelines
Four days into the Israeli offensive, critical supplies are dwindling fast in the sealed-off camp. Food stocks are depleted, electricity has been cut, and the few remaining civilians are struggling to find sources of clean drinking water amid the mounting piles of debris.

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“Residents are suffering the total devastation of their homes, businesses, basic utilities and infrastructure – everything has been bombed into oblivion,” a Palestinian government spokesman lamented, decrying what he called Israel’s policy of collective punishment against Nur Shams.

Despite urgent international calls to allow humanitarian access, Israel has thus far refused to ease the siege, vowing to continue its operation until alleged militants are captured or killed. Eight soldiers and a police officer were injured in Nur Shams, Israeli officials said, defending the drastic use of force as justified against terrorist threats.

But such self-serving justifications rang hollow amid the overwhelmingly civilian death toll. Among the first victims identified was 16-year-old Qais Fathi Nasrallah, killed by Israeli gunfire in a nearby camp.

“My nephew was just a child, a sweet young boy who loved playing football with his friends,” his bereaved uncle cried, openly mourning with body-heaving sobs. “What threat could he have possibly posed to heavily armed soldiers?”

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Unforgivable attacks on medical workers
The tragic scenes were compounded further on Saturday when rescue teams came under fire attempting to evacuate wounded Palestinians from areas near Nur Shams. A Palestinian Red Crescent ambulance driver named Mohammed Awad Allan paid the ultimate price – his life.

“Those murderers struck down Mohammed as he tried bravely to save others,” one of his colleagues said, his gasping breaths barely restraining the fury and sadness welling up inside him like a shaken can of soda waiting to erupt.

Israel fanned the flames of violence even further by accusing Palestinian civilians of instigating the clashes by throwing rocks at soldiers. But eyewitnesses said it was in fact Israeli settlers who initiated the confrontation, storming into a local village firing indiscriminate volleys of gunshots and hurling jagged rocks.

“The settlers were the aggressors – we were simply trying to defend our homes and families from their attack,”

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Mezhar Alee
Mezhar Alee
Mezhar Alee is a prolific author who provides commentary and analysis on business, finance, politics, sports, and current events on his website Opportuneist. With over a decade of experience in journalism and blogging, Mezhar aims to deliver well-researched insights and thought-provoking perspectives on important local and global issues in society.

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