UK doctor in Gaza during Israel’s invasion demands global overhaul of war rules to prevent future horrors

Doctor’s Plea for Redefining War Rules

Dr. Ghassan Abu-Sittah, a British doctor, recently returned from Gaza, where he spent 48 hours amidst a staggering number of casualties.

He’s advocating for a redefinition of war rules to prevent the recurring horrors of conflicts in the Middle East.

Collaborating with Scotland Yard, he aims to aid the International Criminal Court’s probe into alleged war crimes during the Israel-Hamas conflict.

His goal is to reinstate the norms of war established after World War II, which he believes have been disregarded since the conflict started in October.

Witnessing Unfathomable Suffering

Recalling his time in Gaza, Dr. Abu-Sittah vividly remembers tending to severely injured children, their haunting images still vivid in his mind.

He emotionally shared an incident about a girl, her face maimed, who had lost everyone.

It was while cleaning the layers of blood and mud that he glimpsed her life before the injury—the hair bands, the painted toes—humanizing the child amidst the horror.

He emphasized the emotional struggle faced while trying to gather strength to continue in such harrowing situations.

Vast Experience in Conflict Zones

With experience from conflicts in Iraq, Syria, and Yemen, Dr. Abu-Sittah, an honorary professor at prestigious London colleges, co-founded a conflict medicine program at the American University of Beirut.

In Gaza, he witnessed unprecedented injuries, including phosphorus burns and brutal amputations from Hellfire missiles—unseen in previous wars.

Impact of Ongoing Conflict

As Israel’s retaliatory strikes intensified, Dr. Abu-Sittah found himself in the midst of the chaos at a hospital in Gaza, which was soon hit.

He expressed concerns about the mounting civilian casualties, emphasizing the devastating toll on Gazan civilians amidst ongoing fighting between Israel and Hamas.

Continued Conflict and Military Standpoint

Despite mounting international pressure to reduce hostilities, Israeli military leaders are resolute in their aim to dismantle Hamas.

The IDF spokesperson affirmed preparations for prolonged fighting in the new year, citing expectations of continued missions and ongoing conflict throughout 2024.