RAMALLAH (Dispatches) – The latest escalation by the Zionist regime served to unite the geographically fragmented Palestinian community in a way not seen in years, analysts say.
From the blockaded Gaza Strip to the occupied West Bank and illegally annexed East al-Quds to Palestinians living inside the occupied territories, scattered people pulled closer together.
A sea of Palestinian flags flew in solidarity rallies, especially during “Day of Rage” protests and a general strike on May 18 that cut across separate areas.
Administrative offices, schools and businesses closed across the West Bank not only to protest the bombardment of Gaza but also against expanding Zionist settlements in the occupied territories.
“To see every single Palestinian community rise up together, this is extremely rare,” said Salem Barahmeh, director of the Palestine Institute for Public Diplomacy.
“To go on a national strike and protest and to have the Palestinian diaspora also involved, that’s pretty historic,” he said, referring to rallies by Palestinians abroad.
A Palestinian living in the occupied territories, Mussa Hassuna, was killed in a confrontation between extremist Zionists and young Arabs in Lod, in central parts of the occupied territories.
While Gaza, besieged by the Zionist regime for over 14 years, is mired in poverty, the West Bank have seen successive intifadas (uprisings).
Mariam Barghouti, a researcher and Palestinian activist, said that in the wider community each person has a different experience with the Zionist regime, but amid the recent surge in violence, Palestinians found themselves confronted by “people shouting ‘death to Arabs’ and attacking Palestinians with weapons.”
They realized that “it’s not just a West Bank problem, not just a Gaza problem,” said Barghouti. “It is an apartheid problem, a colonial problem, it’s an Israeli state problem.”
The U.S.-based group Human Rights Watch and Israel’s B’Tselem recently accused the Zionist regime of running an “apartheid” system.
Another Palestinian also said that the recent flare-up “made everybody feel how Palestinian they are.”