Hunger-striking terrorist caught eating
For some of us the Saltwater Challenge is a stupid and dangerous teenager craze from about one year ago, something like the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge of 2014. For others it’s a series of videos about fishing on the ocean waves.
There is a third option. In the last few weeks supporters of the hunger strike by Palestinian security prisoners in Israeli prisons, have attempted to mimic the viral success of the ALS challenge by posting videos of them drinking a glass of salt water, in solidarity.
The stunt was introduced by Aarab Marwan Barghouti the son of gaoled convicted murderer and sometime Palestinian Authority politician Marwan Barghouti.
And then Barghouti Snr. was caught by cameras hidden in his cell eating while his fellow prisoners abstain from food – drinking saltwater to stabilize their health, if they are to be believed.
Five Minutes for Israel hasn’t posted an action item for a while. This will really piss them off and could help stop the viral campaign in its tracks.
Be careful and stick to ‘challenges’ published in the last week or so. No need to waste time on stupid, dare-accepting teens or anglers.
- Share the video widely. If you have any problems with the video embedded above, the URL is https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3TknOt_GSkQ .
– OR –
Share Israellycool’s† great post ‘WATCH: ‘Hunger Striking’ Terrorist Marwan Barghouti Caught Eating’.
– OR –
Preferably share 5MFI’s post. I could use a little publicity.
- Comment on every video you find of an Israel Hater taking the challenge linking to this 5MFI post, Israellycool or the YouTube video. I shamelessly plagiarised, “Lying to his own people and allowing them to starve while he stuffs his face – sounds like he has the makings of a Palestinian leader alright!” It’s a great line even if I didn’t invent it.
- When an Israel Hater is faced with an uncomfortable fact they tend to descend to spluttering abuse or slink away. Either way, bring up Marwan Barghouti’s hypocrisy whenever the hunger strike is brought up on all social media. It won’t be ignored.
Pros and cons
What a government/prison system is legally and morally obliged to do when prisoners refuse to eat to the point that their health or even life is endangered is not clear. I do not consider myself an expert and would be delighted if some lawyers added their comments.
One argument is that the prison authorities are obliged to safeguard the inmate’s health. This is why gaols try to prevent suicide. From that point of view they are not only permitted but must force feed the prisoner. A very brief Google search shows that the courts have almost always upheld the legality of force feeding in these circumstances.
The opposite argument is that hunger striking is an accepted form of passive resistance. To feed them by force can be considered torture.
To my surprise I find myself agreeing, at least partly with Joint (Arab) List MK Ahmad Tibi who is also an Israel qualified medical doctor. If refusing to accept medical treatment is a human right then so is refusing to eat. Aside from my long conviction that Tibi should be hunger striking behind bars along with them my point of departure from him is his claim in a previous case of a single prisoner that if a hunger striker has damaged himself to the point that his life is endangered he should be released.
Let them starve.
What happens when you drink salty water?
Apparently this could be quite dangerous if enough fresh water isn’t drunk to compensate. The cell process of osmosis (net transfer of water from the inside of the body’s cells to the outside) will cause the cells to shrink considerably. The body compensates by increasing urine to the point of dehydration leading to depleted body fluids, muscle cramps, dry mouth, and yes, thirst.
If not compensated for ultimately that can result in coma, organ failure and eventually death. Which is why I’m dubious about the prisoners’ salt and water diet.
Of course one glass is unlikely to kill someone but that depends on body weight and how much salt they added but it is possible.
If someone drinks too much salt in solidarity with people who want to see us dead, should we care?
The Israeli-Jordanian Peace Treaty so enraged Yasser Arafat that he declared that anyone who is not prepared to acknowledge Palestinian responsibility over Jerusalem’s Muslim shrines could “drink Gaza seawater”.
Just who is drinking over-salted water, now?
- What if you drink saltwater?, Vicki M. Giuggio, 16 February 2012
- Palestinians highlight prisoners’ strike with ‘Salt Water Challenge’, Nadeem Muaddi, CNN, 28 April 2017
- Tibi incensed: An outrageous and shameful idea, Arutz Sheva Staff, Arutz Sheva, 5 May 2017
Hunger Striking Prisoners: The Constitutionality of Force-Feeding, Joel K. Greenberg, Fordham Law Review, vol. 51, issue 4, 1983
- The Truth About the Conditions of Security Prisoners in Israel, COGAT Coordination of Government Activities in the Territories, undated probably May 2017
No credit for discovering the video. I read about it on Facebook. I’m sure Aussie Dave won’t object if you share from the Israellycool site, 5MFI or YouTube
‡ Photo credit: Courtesy of Knesset Channel