Globalization of Repression: They are blinding protesters

At least 24 Yellow Vests lost eyes in violent protests. Now they’re more determined than ever

July 14, 2019
t was a warm afternoon in March. David Breidenstein says he looked on as some of the more radical yellow vest protesters set fire to Le Fouquet’s, not just a restaurant but a symbol of wealth and power in France.
As the flames spread licking at the famous red awning, Breidenstein quickly turned on his feet hoping to distance himself from the blaze, fearful of getting caught up in the violence he says he wasn’t fueling.
A few seconds later he stopped, lit a cigarette, and as he looked back towards the riot police he felt the full force of a golf-ball-size rubber bullet strike his left eye.
“It felt like a lump of concrete. I fell to the ground and thought ‘I’ve lost my eye, it’s gone.'”

No Accident: Israel Targets Eyes

January 22, 2020
Media coverage and social media posts went wild when Palestinian photojournalist Muath Amarneh was blinded in his left eye after he was hit by a rubber bullet while covering a protest in the West Bank.
However, Amarneh was far from unique; Israeli snipers targeting participants in Gaza’s weekly Great Return March protests have aimed for the legs—and eyes. To date, Gaza’s Ministry of Health reports that 50 protesters have been shot in the eye since the demonstrations began March 30, 2018—leaving them permanently blind.
“Some of these protesters and journalists were hit in the eye with teargas canisters, but most were targeted directly with what is commonly called a ‘rubber bullet,’ giving the impression they are somehow benign,” says Ashraf Alqedra, MD, a treating physician at Gaza City’s al-Shifa Hospital and spokesperson for the Ministry of Health. “But there is still steel at the core, and although these bullets don’t usually kill, they do grave damage. It is impossible to save an eye hit directly by a rubber-coated steel bullet.”

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‘It wasn’t a mistake’: Palestinian boy loses eye after being shot by Israeli police

17 February 2020
An eight-year-old Palestinian boy lost his left eye on Tuesday, a few days after being shot by Israeli police with a rubber-coated steel bullet after he stepped out from a restaurant in occupied East Jerusalem.
According to the boy’s family and eyewitnesses, Malek Issa was deliberately shot between the eyes on Saturday after he bought a sandwich in the East Jerusalem village of Issawiya.
Medics said the impact of the shooting was so severe that Issa may have suffered brain damage.
“Malek is awake but his condition is difficult. The shot has caused fractures to the skull and face, and brain haemorrhage,” Issa’s father, Wael Issa, told Middle East Eye.

Chilean Police Are Blinding Protesters: We Spoke to the Injured

Nov, 11, 2019