Israeli Strikes Hit US-Built Schools in Gaza

A military financed by Washington damages facilities funded by US taxpayers

by Alex Park | Mother Jones | August 5, 2014


According to Human Rights Watch, an Israeli white phosphorus shell hit a UN school in Beit Lahia in 2009, where civilians were seeking refuge during Operation Cast Lead.

According to Human Rights Watch, an Israeli white phosphorus shell hit a UN school in Beit Lahia in 2009, where civilians were seeking refuge during Operation Cast Lead.

Three schools in Gaza that were severely damaged by Israeli attacks in recent days were funded by US taxpayers. The Deir El Balah Preparatory Girls School A & B, Beit Hanoun Elementary Co-ed School A & D, and Zaitoun Preparatory Girls School B in Gaza were all funded by the United States through the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, according to the UNRWA.

Deir El Balah, completed in 2013, was being used as a refuge for 1,500 Palestinians at the time it was hit on July 23. Beit Hanoun, completed in 1997, was a shelter for 1,200 internally displaced persons in Gaza when an Israeli shell hit its courtyard the following day, on July 24, killing 15. Zaitoun Preparatory, completed in 2012, sheltered nearly 2,200 Palestinians at the time it was struck on July 29. Each school cost the United States about $2 million to build, according to the UNRWA.

A fourth school, the Jabalia Elementary Girls School A & B, completed in 1960, was sheltering more than 3,200 internally displaced people when it was shelled by the Israeli military on July 30. Jabalia Elementary was funded by the European Commission. All the schools were managed by the United Nations.

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