Daily Israel Report

Jimmy Carter in Egypt: Gaza Arabs "Starved to Death" by Israel

Former US President Jimmy Carter tells students at the American University in Cairo that Gaza Arabs are being “starved to death” by Israel.
By Hana Levi Julian
First Publish: 4/18/2008, 9:05 AM

Former US President Jimmy Carter says Palestinian Authority Arabs living in Gaza are being “starved to death” by Israel.

Carter made the claim speaking with students at the American University in Cairo on Thursday, saying that Gaza Arabs are receiving fewer calories per day than people in the poorest regions of Africa.

“It’s an atrocity, what is being perpetrated as punishment on the people in Gaza,” said Carter. “It is a crime… I think it is an abomination that this continues to go on.”

The former president has not actually visited Gaza; Israel declined to authorize his use of the Israel-Gaza crossings and there were no indications he requested an entry from Egypt.

Carter neglected to mention that the region’s crossings with the rest of Israel have been closed since the Islamist Hamas terrorist organization seized total control of the area and began launching constant attacks on Israeli civilians. He also didn’t mention that the crossings are opened daily for the delivery of humanitarian aid, including truckloads of food, medical and other supplies into Gaza.

On Thursday, while Carter was denigrating Israeli treatment of Gaza residents, Hamas terrorists infiltrated through the Kerem Shalom Crossing and attacked an IDF post while trucks were passing through the crossing with essentials for Gaza.

The terrorists attacked the same area in which IDF Cpl. Gilad Shalit was kidnapped in June 2006. Two soldiers were murdered and another soldier was seriously injured during that attack as well. Shalit’s condition and whereabouts are unknown; his parents have been hoping that Carter will be able to find out information about their son, if not convince his Hamas captors to free him altogether.

Despite the opposition of the American government, Carter was to meet Friday in Damascus with Hamas politburo chief Khaled Mashaal, who is the apparent power behind Shalit’s kidnappers.

Carter met Thursday in Cairo with two senior Hamas officials from Gaza, Mahmoud al-Zahar and Said Seyam. The Israeli government refused to allow the former US president to meet in Gaza with the Hamas terrorists.