Sunday, January 25, 2009

Shocking! Israel admits it used White Phosphorus in Gaza.

News item:

"On 13 January Brig-Gen Avi Benayahu, chief spokesman for the Israel Defense Force (IDF), said that in its assault on Gaza Israel was using weapons in accordance with international treaties and conventions. He denied Israel was using white phosphorus. 'I repeat Commander in Chief Ashkenazi's words: The allegations of the IDF using WP [white phosphorus] are false.'''

Times of London (Jan.21):

Martin Fletcher reports,

"As fresh evidence emerged of Gazan civilians being burned by phosphorus, Avital Leibovich, the army spokeswoman, said its use was 'legal according to international law...All the munitions we were using were legal, like the French, American and British armies. We used munitions according to international law.' (Well, if the Americans do it, it must be legal!)

The Israeli newspaper Ma'ariv reported that the Israel Defence Forces (IDF) had privately admitted using phosphorus bombs, and that the Judge Advocate General's Office and Southern Command were investigating

Yeah, I'm sure that investigation will really be thorough. The IDF can investigate themselves, you can trust them!

The problem with the whole bombing U.N. compounds where hundreds of refugees are seeking cover is that the U.N. has the clout to call for an independent, international investigation.

The Guardian:

"A visibly furious Ban Ki-moon condemned as 'outrageous, shocking and alarming' the destruction he had seen while touring Gaza, and described as 'excessive use' of force the violence wrought by both Israel and Hamas rockets . . .

'These are heartbreaking scenes I have seen and I am deeply grieved by what I have seen today,' he said, standing against a backdrop of still-smoking food aid in a UN warehouse destroyed by Israeli gunfire last Thursday.

Demanding a proper judicial inquiry and guarantees that UN buildings would not be attacked again, Ban said: 'I am just appalled. I am not able to describe how I am feeling, having seen this site of the bombing of the United Nations compound. This was an outrageous and totally unacceptable attack against the United Nations

Yeah, yeah bleeding-heart Hamas apologist!

The IDF isn't worried because, naturally, what the IDF did in Gaza was totally and completely legal . . . But just in case Haaretz reports,

"Senior Israeli ministers have expressed serious fears during the past few days about the possibility that Israel will be pressed to agree to an international investigation of the losses among non-combatants during Operation Cast Lead; or alternately, that Israelis will be faced with personal suits, such as happened to Israeli officers who were accused of war crimes in Britain for their actions during the second intifada. . .

The defense establishment has started to collect material in advance of the expected legal claims, and has prepared its defense regarding the private houses the Israel Defense Forces attacked in Gaza. The evidence includes material about where weapons were stockpiled, and sites from which Hamas was firing rockets. Social Affairs Minister Isaac Herzog (Labor), who is coordinating the humanitarian aid to Gaza, will also coordinate Israel's public relations efforts against the accusations of war crimes

For Israel's public relations efforts, read AIPAC pressuring the US government to cover their sorry asses and intimidating the media into regurgitating Israeli propaganda.

Today, AP reports:

"Special legal teams will defend Israeli soldiers against potential war crimes charges stemming from civilian deaths in the Gaza Strip, the prime minister said Sunday, promising the country would 'fully back' those who fought in the three-week offensive.

The move reflected growing concerns by Israel that officers could be subject to international prosecution, despite the army's claims that Hamas militants caused the civilian casualties by staging attacks from residential areas

Speaking at this weeks cabinet meeting Israeli PM Ehud Olmert said: "The state of Israel did everything in order to avoid hitting civilians. I do not know of any military that is more moral, fair and sensitive to civilians' lives."

Note the emergency personnel running from the streams of WP (that wasn't used). Better find yourself a good lawyer Ehud. And if I were you, I'd avoid any trips to Europe any time soon.


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