Free Gaza

A controversial subject is once again on Beta Bridge — as the conflict between Israel and Palestine is intensifying, we have double paintings that appear to reflect the two sides of the issue.  First, a Palestinian flag on the east side:

ALL LIVES ARE VALUABLE FREE GAZA THX BETA

Could any readers translate the Arabic for us?

The west side represents Israel, with the blue and Star of David:

ALL LIVES ARE VALUABLE ✡ FREE GAZA FROM HAMAS THX BETA

To be more geographically accurate, the Gaza painting should have been on the west side of the bridge, and Israel on the east… I’m no Middle East expert, but there is something else I’m more curious about:  writing “all lives are valuable” is about as neutral as you can get, but saying “free Gaza” seems very pro-Palestinian if you assume this means Gaza should be freed from Israel’s control (which I imagine would be the pro-Palestinian position, right?).  However, the call is for Gaza to be freed from Hamas, which seems like an overwhelmingly pro-Israeli position.  So I guess both sides can agree that they want to free Gaza, but the question is:  from whom?

I’d be interested to know who painted this and if they really associate with one side or the other.  In the meantime, the painting has generated a fair amount interest on Twitter:

Tweets about the Israel/Gaza painting on Beta Bridge.

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