(Reading time: 9 - 17 minutes)
Rachel Corrie with bullhorn, bulldozer
March 16, 2003

 Rachel Corrie, 23, from Olympia, Washington, US, had joined peaceful protestors defending homes in Rafah from Israeli bulldozers when, on March 16, 2003, one of those bulldozers ran directly over her. 

And, then backed up.  Ruled an "accident" by an Israeli court, the incident was undoubtedly deliberate, and the entire world - less some of the West - knows it, and knows that the practice, far from "accidental" is not only commonplace, but continues to this day and is celebrated by Israelis commemorating Rachel in what they giddily call "Rachel Corrie Pancake Breakfasts".

For an in-depth analysis of what has been happening for decades in Palestine and why, we suggest War Against The People by Jeff Halper, or Max Blumenthal's Goliath: Life and Loathing in Greater Israel  or They Called Me a Lioness: A Palestinian Girl's Fight for Freedom by Amed Tamimi & Dena Takruri.  And, watch Abby Martin's exemplary Gaza Fights for Freedom

Gaza Fights for Freedom Ahed Tamimi They called me a lioness War Against the People 643x1024 300Comp 

Palestinian Gaza's 2.3 million population - a quarter of whom are today "one step away from famine" - have been under siege for 161 days. The 1.4 million  remnants, half of them starving, have been swept down to the southern tip of this narrow strip of land like so much refuse. And now, Netanyahu has approved plans to finish off, discard and celebrate the disposal of those whom he and his regime consider "subhuman amalekites".

In a battle that has irreparably split the world between the West's "Golden Billion" and the Global Majority's 7.1 billion, Corrie is more than a symbol of courageous resistance revered by the Global Majority.  Her horrific death touched us because she was "one of us" and it was therefore somewhat easier to hope it might possibly have been accidental. Surely, they wouldn't intentionally kill an American?

They would. They did.  Moreover, It is a matter of common practice, commemorated with glee. Her death is a vivid illustration of the evil she was just beginning to comprehend and we should honor her sacrifice by echoing her growing realization:  It is futile to appeal to conscience in those whose values do not include one.  To those who are under the sway of "morally superior", "exceptional", or "indispensable" nations, who drag couches, chairs, beer and popcorn to the heights to party and cheer while watching the bombing of Gaza below, (here and here), who call for the use of nuclear weapons on civilian populations. Examples abound. Will realization catch up? Perhaps the Baerbocks and Kallases and Tsais (or Lais) don't realize they will become the Palins and Haleys as soon as their sell-by date has past, but it's past time for normal citizens to lose their faith in some shield of "specialness".  What constitutes horror for us and most of the rest of the world is of little or no consequence for those who now hold power in Israel and the US.  Can the rest of us learn from Rachel's sacrifice and drop the attitude before it's too late? 

Below, we repost Rachel Corrie: In her own words, followed by headlines and "read more" links showing her death was far from accidental for the regimes' bulldozers, cars, and tanks used to continue this "cleansing" practice.

Excerpts from an e-mail from Rachel Corrie to her family on February 7, 2003:

rachelcorriecollege CompI have been in Palestine for two weeks and one hour now, and I still have very few words to describe what I see. It is most difficult for me to think about what’s going on here when I sit down to write back to the United States—something about the virtual portal into luxury. I don’t know if many of the children here have ever existed without tank-shell holes in their walls and the towers of an occupying army surveying them constantly from the near horizons.

I think, although I’m not entirely sure, that even the smallest of these children understand that life is not like this everywhere. An eight-year-old was shot and killed by an Israeli tank two days before I got here, and many of the children murmur his name to me, “Ali”—or point at the posters of him on the walls. The children also love to get me to practice my limited Arabic by asking me “Kaif Sharon?” “Kaif Bush?” and they laugh when I say “Bush Majnoon” “Sharon Majnoon” back in my limited Arabic. (How is Sharon? How is Bush? Bush is crazy. Sharon is crazy.)

Of course this isn’t quite what I believe, and some of the adults who have the English correct me: Bush mish Majnoon… Bush is a businessman. Today I tried to learn to say “Bush is a tool”, but I don’t think it translated quite right. But anyway, there are eight-year-olds here much more aware of the workings of the global power structure than I was just a few years ago—at least regarding Israel.

Nevertheless, I think about the fact that no amount of reading, attendance at conferences, documentary viewing and word of mouth could have prepared me for the reality of the situation here. You just can’t imagine it unless you see it, and even then you are always well aware that your experience is not at all the reality: what with the difficulties the Israeli Army would face if they shot an unarmed US citizen, and with the fact that I have money to buy water when the army destroys wells, and, of course, the fact that I have the option of leaving. Nobody in my family has been shot, driving in their car, by a rocket launcher from a tower at the end of a major street in my hometown. I have a home. I am allowed to go see the ocean. Ostensibly it is still quite difficult for me to be held for months or years on end without a trial (this because I am a white US citizen, as opposed to so many others).

When I leave for school or work I can be relatively certain that there will not be a heavily armed soldier waiting half way between Mud Bay and downtown Olympia at a checkpoint—a soldier with the power to decide whether I can go about my business, and whether I can get home again when I’m done. So, if I feel outrage at arriving and entering briefly and incompletely into the world in which these children exist, I wonder conversely about how it would be for them to arrive in my world.

They know that children in the United States don’t usually have their parents shot and they know they sometimes get to see the ocean. But once you have seen the ocean and lived in a silent place, where water is taken for granted and not stolen in the night by bulldozers, and once you have spent an evening when you haven’t wondered if the walls of your home might suddenly fall inward waking you from your sleep, and once you’ve met people who have never lost anyone— once you have experienced the reality of a world that isn’t surrounded by murderous towers, tanks, armed “settlements” and now a giant metal wall, I wonder if you can forgive the world for all the years of your childhood spent existing—just existing—in resistance to the constant stranglehold of the world’s fourth largest military—backed by the world’s only superpower—in it’s attempt to erase you from your home. That is something I wonder about these children. I wonder what would happen if they really knew.

As an afterthought to all this rambling, I am in Rafah, a city of about 140,000 people, approximately 60 percent of whom are refugees—many of whom are twice or three times refugees. Rafah existed prior to 1948, but most of the people here are themselves or are descendants of people who were relocated here from their homes in historic Palestine—now Israel. Rafah was split in half when the Sinai returned to Egypt.

Currently, the Israeli army is building a fourteen-meter-high wall between Rafah in Palestine and the border, carving a no-mans land from the houses along the border. Six hundred and two homes have been completely bulldozed according to the Rafah Popular Refugee Committee. The number of homes that have been partially destroyed is greater.

Today as I walked on top of the rubble where homes once stood, Egyptian soldiers called to me from the other side of the border, “Go! Go!” because a tank was coming. Followed by waving and “what’s your name?”. There is something disturbing about this friendly curiosity. It reminded me of how much, to some degree, we are all kids curious about other kids: Egyptian kids shouting at strange women wandering into the path of tanks. Palestinian kids shot from the tanks when they peak out from behind walls to see what’s going on. International kids standing in front of tanks with banners.

Israeli kids in the tanks anonymously, occasionally shouting— and also occasionally waving—many forced to be here, many just aggressive, shooting into the houses as we wander away.

In addition to the constant presence of tanks along the border and in the western region between Rafah and settlements along the coast, there are more IDF towers here than I can count—along the horizon,at the end of streets. Some just army green metal. Others these strange spiral staircases draped in some kind of netting to make the activity within anonymous. Some hidden,just beneath the horizon of buildings. A new one went up the other day in the time it took us to do laundry and to cross town twice to hang banners.

Despite the fact that some of the areas nearest the border are the original Rafah with families who have lived on this land for at least a century, only the 1948 camps in the center of the city are Palestinian controlled areas under Oslo. But as far as I can tell, there are few if any places that are not within the sights of some tower or another. Certainly there is no place invulnerable to apache helicopters or to the cameras of invisible drones we hear buzzing over the city for hours at a time.

I’ve been having trouble accessing news about the outside world here, but I hear an escalation of war on Iraq is inevitable. There is a great deal of concern here about the “reoccupation of Gaza.” Gaza is reoccupied every day to various extents, but I think the fear is that the tanks will enter all the streets and remain here, instead of entering some of the streets and then withdrawing after some hours or days to observe and shoot from the edges of the communities. If people aren’t already thinking about the consequences of this war for the people of the entire region then I hope they will start.

I also hope you’ll come here. We’ve been wavering between five and six internationals. The neighborhoods that have asked us for some form of presence are Yibna, Tel El Sultan, Hi Salam, Brazil, Block J, Zorob, and Block O. There is also need for constant night-time presence at a well on the outskirts of Rafah since the Israeli army destroyed the two largest wells.

According to the municipal water office the wells destroyed last week provided half of Rafah’s water supply. Many of the communities have requested internationals to be present at night to attempt to shield houses from further demolition. After about ten p.m. it is very difficult to move at night because the Israeli army treats anyone in the streets as resistance and shoots at them. So clearly we are too few.

I continue to believe that my home, Olympia, could gain a lot and offer a lot by deciding to make a commitment to Rafah in the form of a sister-community relationship. Some teachers and children’s groups have expressed interest in e-mail exchanges, but this is only the tip of the iceberg of solidarity work that might be done.

Many people want their voices to be heard, and I think we need to use some of our privilege as internationals to get those voices heard directly in the US, rather than through the filter of well-meaning internationals such as myself. I am just beginning to learn, from what I expect to be a very intense tutelage, about the ability of people to organize against all odds, and to resist against all odds.

Thanks for the news I’ve been getting from friends in the US. I just read a report back from a friend who organized a peace group in Shelton, Washington, and was able to be part of a delegation to the large January 18th protest in Washington DC.

People here watch the media, and they told me again today that there have been large protests in the United States and “problems for the government” in the UK. So thanks for allowing me to not feel like a complete polyanna when I tentatively tell people here that many people in the United States do not support the policies of our government, and that we are learning from global examples how to resist.

American peace activist Rachel Corrie (23) from Olympia, Washington, was murdered by an Israeli bulldozer driver on March 16, 2003 in Rafah. Rachel was in Gaza opposing the bulldozing of a Palestinian home as a volunteer with the International Solidarity Movement.

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Lowkey EXPOSES The Dark History Behind Israel’s Murder Of Rachel Corrie | Double Down News



Palestinian Killed by Israeli Settler Hit and Run near Salfit

SALFIT, August 14, 2014 – (WAFA) – A Palestinian youth was killed on Thursday after he was deliberately ran over by a settler’s vehicle near an illegal settlement in Safit, according to witnesses.
An Israeli settle ran over Mohammad ‘Abdul-Karim Salim, 24, a resident of Hares to the northwest of Salfit, in a deliberate hit and run, killing Salim before fleeing the scene.


Sep 13, 2016 | BY: Josie2BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — A six-year-old Palestinian girl was run over and killed by an Israeli settler Saturday evening in the village of al-Khader south of Bethlehem, on the road to the illegal Israeli settlement of Efrat in the southern occupied West Bank.

Initial reports from local sources said the girl was hit by accident. However locals told Ma’an the girl was standing on the sidewalk in front of her house when a fast-moving vehicle approached and hit her. The impact reportedly broke her neck.

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Palestinian killed after being run over by settler in West Bank

Iqab Darawsheh, a young Palestinian man from Nablus was killed in a 'deliberate' car attack by an Israeli settler, reports said.
MENA |2 min read |The New Arab Staff |16 August, 2020

Twitter Palestinian

The 21-year-old is the latest victim of Israeli settler violence [Twitter]

Dozens of Palestinians have been killed by settlers intentionally ploughing vechicles into Palestinians in alleged hate crimes, often on bypass roads in the West Bank.

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Israeli settler runs car over Palestinian

Israeli policeman points his gun at protesters reacting over incident, video shows

Enes Canlı  | 10.05.2021 - Update : 11.05.2021

Israeli settler runs car over Palestinian


A video showed an Israeli settler ran his car over a Palestinian participating at the Al-Aqsa Mosque protest.

The video also shows that an Israeli policeman pointed his gun at the protesters reacting over the incident.

The Palestinian National Liberation Movement also shared the video of the incident that took place in the Lion Gate area of Jerusalem.

According to the Palestine Red Crescent, at least 305 people were injured on Monday as Israeli forces fired rubber-coated bullets, tear gas, and stun grenades at Palestinians who were on guard to prevent possible raids by extremist Jews.

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 Palestinian brothers killed after settler runs them over: Reports

Palestinian brothers run over

17 Dec 2022

The brothers were fixing a tire after their vehicle broke down when an Israeli settler ‘deliberately’ ran a car into them, local media reported.

Two Palestinian brothers have been killed after an Israeli settler ran them over with his car near a checkpoint in the occupied West Bank, according to the Wafa news agency.

The two brothers, Mohammed and Muhannad Mutair, were “deliberately” run over at the Zaatara checkpoint, south of Nablus, the official Palestinian news agency said on Saturday.

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Israeli tanks have deliberately run over dozens of Palestinian civilians alive

Israeli tanks have deliberately run over dozens of Palestinian civilians alive

04 Mar 2024

Palestinian territory- The Israeli army’s repeated killings of Palestinian civilians by deliberately running them over alive with military vehicles was vehemently denounced by Euro-Med Human Rights Monitor on Sunday, as was the widespread destruction of civilian property. These crimes are part of Israel’s genocide against Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, the rights group said, ongoing since 7 October 2023.

Euro-Med Monitor documented the Israeli army’s killing of a Palestinian man who was deliberately run over in Gaza City’s Al-Zaytoun neighbourhood on 29 February after he was arrested. The man was subjected to harsh interrogation by members of the Israeli army, who bound his hands with plastic zip-tie handcuffs before running him over with a military vehicle from the bottom to the top of his body.

The incident occurred on the main Salah al-Din Street in the Zaytoun neighbourhood, according to eyewitnesses who spoke to the Euro-Med Monitor team. Israeli soldiers restrained the victim’s hands before they crushed him, and tramped on his body from the legs up, confirming that he was alive during the incident. To guarantee thorough and complete crushing, the victim was placed on asphalt rather than in an adjacent sandy area.

The victim’s mutilated body and the surrounding area bear obvious signs that a military bulldozer or tank was present. It appears that the victim was purposefully stripped of his clothes, as he was seen wearing only his underpants at the time of his death...

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Witnesses say Israeli tanks 'crushed' bodies at Gaza al-Shifa Hospital as scale of tragedy unfolds

Eyewitnesses to Israel’s week-long raid on the al-Shifa Hospital and its vicinity in Gaza City say they saw the regime’s armored vehicles running over bodies and ambulances at the medical complex.  Jameel al-Ayoubi, who was sheltering at the hospital during the attack, said tanks and armored bulldozers plowed into the hospital courtyard, crushing ambulances and civilian vehicles.  He also saw tanks running over at least four bodies of the Palestinian people killed during the assault. Abed Radwan, who lived near the al-Shifa Hospital, said Israeli forces detained several people and forced the rest to march to the south.

“They left nothing intact,” he further said, adding that bodies of the victims were scattered in the streets and homes were flattened in the aftermath of the Israeli raid. Read More Button

Israeli soldiers eating a meal of "Rachel Corrie" pancakes

17.10.2023, 06:42

Israeli soldiers eating a meal of "Rachel Corrie" pancakes. A reference to White, American woman, Rachel Corrie, whom died and was "pancaked" by an Israeli bulldozer on purpose, when she tried to prevent the demolition of a home in Palestine.

Israeli soldiers eating a meal of "Rachel Corrie" pancakes


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