Shuja’iya will certainly go down in the history books as the ‘Deir Yassin‘ of Israel’s Operation Protective Edge. In two days (July 19-20, 2014) the Israeli military killed 55 civilians, including 19 children and 14 women, in the process of razing Shuja’iya.
The most moral army in the world executed an unarmed young man searching for his family in the Shuja’iya rubble. The U.N. Independent Commission of Inquiry described the killing:
At about 3.30 p.m., Salem Shamaly, a local resident who had joined a group of international volunteers while searching for his missing cousin, was killed. As the volunteers were crossing a small alley, they heard a shot. The group immediately divided into two and took cover at opposite ends of the alley. Shortly afterwards, Salem Shamaly moved out of the area where he was taking cover and was shot. As he lay injured on the ground, he was shot twice again and killed. This incident was recorded on video.
Salem Shamaly’s parents learned of his death when they heard his voice on a video posted online by human rights activists who witnessed the killing. (Palestinian Family Finds Missing Son in YouTube Video of His Shooting, New York Times, July 22, 2014) Joe Catron, an American activist in Gaza, witnessed the murder and posted these photos.
Until someone in the Israeli military is held accountable for Shamaly’s execution, the IDF will continue to act with impunity.