Israel's current attack on a basically defenseless population in Gaza is a repeat of its massacres of Palestinians in November 2012, December 2008-January 2009 and June 2006.

This time Israeli forces have already slaughtered more than 200 Palestinians, while one Israeli has been killed. The imbalance of these death tolls is staggering but not surprising. It's not surprising because Israel has one of the strongest militaries in the world whereas Palestinians have no army and no real defense against Israeli air raids and missiles.

In each of these massacres, the scenario was similar. Palestinians react to some Israeli provocation and Israel uses the Palestinian reaction as an excuse to launch its attack. This is a long-standing Israeli tactic. For example, Moshe Dayan discussed the use of this tactic against the Syrians, claiming that more than 80 percent of the incidents with Syria under the armistice agreements were caused by Israeli provocations.

Despite this record of Israeli duplicity, the U.S. government and the U.S. corporate media serve as megaphones for Israeli propaganda, spinning the story as Israel simply defending itself. This version ignores the fact that Israel is a military occupier of Palestinian lands that brutally oppresses Palestinians and steals more Palestinian land each year.

Why hasn't the U.N. imposed sanctions against Israel for its many and repeated violations of Palestinian human rights and international law? Simply put, the U.S. protects Israel by its use of the veto or the threat of a veto in the U.N. Security Council.

Ellen Cantarow, a noted Jewish writer who reported on Israel and the West Bank for various U.S. publications from 1979-1989, expressed the situation very well when she wrote in 2002: "I am filled with a mix of grief, helplessness, despair and anger as Israel, pretending to act in my name and using the Nazi holocaust against the Jews to exonerate its crimes, proceeds with a clear effort to obliterate the economy, the social, political and cultural institutions, and the entire infrastructure of the Palestinian people. Those who do not speak out against the abominations of these horrors are complicit by their silence. Those who exonerate or apologize for Israel as it commits them are guilty by association."

There will be a rally and march in Denver this Saturday at 12:45 pm beginning at the Capitol to protest Israel's attack on Gaza.

The Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center's "Peace Train" column runs every Friday in the Colorado Daily.