Tens of thousands of Palestinians living under a suffocating Israeli blockade in Gaza organized a massive peaceful march on the border with Israel. And they were met with a sea of bullets.

Israel crushed the historic protest with extreme violence, mowing down the unarmed protesters. More than 1,400 Palestinians were injured. The Israeli military deployed more than 100 snipers, who shot 773 protesters with live ammunition. At least 16 Gazans were killed in the massacre.

Israel’s military later openly admitted that the massacre had been intentional and pre-planned. The IDF wrote on Twitter, “everything was accurate and measured, and we know where every bullet landed.” Soon after, it deleted these tweets.

The demonstration, which was dubbed the “Great Return March,” had been organized for months, in order to demand the right Palestinian refugees have under international law to return to their homes, which Israel ethnically cleansed in 1948.The protesters also condemned Israel’s decade-long blockade of the Gaza Strip, which United Nations experts have explicitly said is illegal.

Because of this smothering siege, 1.8 million Palestinians are trapped inside Gaza with little water, food, and electricity. Even the United Kingdom’s Conservative former Prime Minister David Cameron has described the Israeli-besieged Gaza Strip as a “prison camp” and “open-air prison.”

The Real News spoke about the historic protest with journalist Max Blumenthal, who recently reported from on the ground in Gaza. (See video player above.)

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