Friday, January 9, 2009

Another Massacre in Gaza

When this brutal invasion ends, I am sure more stories like this will be discovered.

(excerpts from article)

The United Nations says it has received reports that about 30 Palestinians were killed when Israeli forces shelled a house after they had moved about 110 civilians inside it.

"According to several testimonies, on 4 January Israeli foot soldiers evacuated approximately 110 Palestinians into a single-residence house in Zeitun, warning them to stay indoors," the UN report said on Friday.

"Twenty-four hours later, Israeli forces shelled the home repeatedly, killing approximately 30."

The incident took place on Monday in the Zeitun neighbourhood of Gaza City on Monday, the report said.

The UN Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) called it "one of the gravest incidents since the beginning of operations" by Israeli forces in Gaza on December 27.

"Those who survived and were able walked two kilometres to Salah Ed Din road before being transported to hospital in civilian vehicles," OCHA said.

"Three children, the youngest of whom was five months old, died upon arrival at the hospital."

The Israeli military said on Friday that it had no knowledge of the incident.


big heart said...

good job Michael, you are really a person with big heart and brave soul

Anonymous said...

The fact that something like this has occurred at all certainly warrants questioning and reporting. However, I find it very challenging to accept the way this story has been reported as the complete truth. If you find yourself accepting the claims of this report with no questions, then you should ask yourself how Israel, a country that places so much value on their own humanitarian beliefs, could commit such an atrocity. Of course, war is war, and it is obviously difficult to maintain the highest standard of humanitarian values during such times. However, unlike Hamas that randomly fires rockets into civilian locations (i.e. schools, hospitals etc.), the IDF understands that Palestinian civilians are not responsible for the current conflict. Because of this, Israel does everything they can to limit civilian casualties.

If Israel went into this conflict with intentions of killing anyone and everyone, then why would they send in foot soldiers at all? Many anti-Israel thinkers claim that Israel’s war with the Palestinians is an attempt of genocide, comparing Jews to the Nazis and their actions to the “Holocaust.” If this were the case, then why risk Israeli lives by sending in IDF foot soldiers? Israel clearly has the firepower to destroy all of Gaza if they want to. However, they elect not to because they target only those who hold intentions of harming them (i.e. Hamas and other active terrorist organizations). Thus, Israel essentially values the lives of Palestinian civilians as much as their own, as they are willing to risk the lives of their own soldiers in order to save the lives of Palestinian civilians.

Another act that Israel engages in during times of war in order to avoid civilian casualties is to drop leaflets and/or call civilians prior to bombing any specified location, so they will know not to go near the targeted area. Of course, this makes the story reported in this article even less logical. Why would Israel go out of its way to save so many civilian lives from bombs if they were simply going to execute them at some later point? This is because there is clearly something missing from this story.

A more plausible explanation is that IDF soldiers did not tell the civilians to go into the building that was attacked, but they instead told them not to go into the building, as it was a target for future attacks. This may be the case, as there are times that Palestinian civilians are unfortunately used as human shields as a result of Israel’s warnings of future attack. This can either occur through force or through their volition because of their religious beliefs about death and martyrdom.

Assuming that the IDF did actually told the Palestinian civilians to go into the building, a more plausible explanation to the events would be that Hamas initiated fire with the Israeli soldiers, using the Palestinian civilians as a source of cover. This would cause the IDF to react more slowly and with limited force, while leading to a more negative image of Israel and the IDF, as there would be a great amount of civilian casualties. However, this would also place Hamas and the reporters who left so much of this story untold much more in the wrong than Israel and the IDF. It is a war crime to use civilians as a source of cover, and it is any journalist’s ethical duty to be honest in their reports. However, it’s also true that a story reporting evil will sell more than a story reporting good, whether it’s the truth or not. With this being the case, ask yourself this. Who would you rather portray as being evil, the country with the freedom of speech and the freedom of the press or the terrorist regime that just might kill you?