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Archive for the tag “Gaza”

Israel’s White Phosphorous in Gaza

The last I heard from Israel was denying using white phosphorous bombs on Gaza. These disgusting weapons (aren’t they all) burn with great intensity and can only be put out by covering them and keeping them covered with sand. Should a piece of this substance strike a human being it will stick on and burn right through to the bones.  These bombs are intended to provide smoke screens on the battlefield and are illegal to use against civilians. A question was asked in the Commons yesterday about mine clearance in Gazaen schools and the Minister confirmed a report by MAG that white phosphorous bomb parts had been removed. Q.E.D.

Colin Breed (South East Cornwall, Liberal Democrat) | Hansard source

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what recent reports he has received from the Mines Advisory Group on the types of unexploded ordinance it has removed from schools in Gaza.

Douglas Alexander (Secretary of State, Department for International Development; Paisley & Renfrewshire South, Labour) | Hansard source

There are 157 UNICEF-supported schools in Gaza, and work with the Palestinian Ministry of Education identified 40 as high risk in terms of potential unexploded ordnance (UXO) contamination. These schools have been visited by technicians from the Mines Advisory Group (MAG). During this clearance 40mm high explosive grenades, as well as 81mm and 120mm high explosive mortars, were removed. Remnants of exploded ordnance were also taken away, including parts of Hell Fire missiles and 155mm high explosive and white phosphorous artillery shells.

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Heartening

I’m not going to bang on about the BBC’s disgraceful decision to refuse the DEC’s request to broadcast an appeal for donations to help the injured and homeless victims of war in Gaza. Nor will I comment on the Mark Thomson, Director General of the BBC, blog with his pathetic reasoning.

I will though sound the trumpets and bang the drums for the vast majority of licence fee payers who posted comments condemning the BBC stance, as well as government ministers, the Charity Commissioners and many others. Not forgetting of course Tony Benn’s brilliant interview on Radio 4’s Today Programme.

Most people do care so let’s take heart from this and who knows, maybe the appeal will generate even more cash as a result of this lamentable stance.

As an after thought I think there is a strong case for the licence fee payers to elect the BBC directors.

Human Depravity

I am regularly shocked at the evil depths to which human beings can sink and the use of new weapons by Israel against men, women and children in Gaza is but the latest horror.

Given the incredible acronym DIME, Dense Inert Metal Explosives, these weapons cause horrendous injuries slicing off not one but both legs right up to the groin. Others send tiny particles  to penetrate deep into the abdomen  where they are  barely noticeable until the victim contracts septicemia and dies. You can read surgeon’s reports here.

The evil lies not just with those who drop the bombs or release the rockets but with those who authorise their use and those who buy them. Those who sell them and perhaps worst of all those who waste their undoubted talents and design these abominations. How anyone can turn up for work in the morning to sit down at their design board, pick up a coffee maybe have a laugh with collegues and set about designing a missile to cut off peoples legs including those of children. How can they do this? How can they do this and go home in the evening, perhaps expecting their own children to run up and great them as they come in the door? As long as there are people like this and governments to back them can there be any hope for Peace in the World?

Israel – Rogue State

The Israeli bombardment of Gaza continues, with the body count now at around 850 with 265 children confirmed dead by the UN. Leaflets are dropped telling Palestinians that worse is to come so they should leave their homes and find safety. Gaza, one fifth the size of London, most of it’s borders abut Israel which has sealed them off and just a small crossing into Egypt, also closed. Just where are Palestinians supposed to hide?

This rogue State of Israel continues to ignore UN resolutions calling for a truce, with no International sanctions imposed upon it, thereby giving it a carte blanch to carry on with it’s terror. It is becoming obvious that the real aim behind this attack is to destroy much of the infrastructure of Gaza, leaving it totally devastated and even more impoverished. The expectation being that the Gazans will turn against Hamas and become compliant with every whim of Israel. I fear they will be sadly disappointed.

There is something that we can do on a practical level by supporting the Boycott Israeli Goods Campaign and not buying anything with the ‘made in Israel’ bar code commencing with 729.

barcode

Palestinian Crisis 2008 into 2009

The attack by Israel on Gaza escalates with more air attacks and now the beginnings of a ground invasion of troops. There are now approaching 400 deaths of people in Gaza including many women & children in response to four Israelis regrettably killed. If 400 Israelis had been killed there would be massive outrage and action taken by World Governments, are the lives of Palestinians worth so much less? I try to repress the notion that this death and destruction may be a part of an election campaign to be held in Israel in six weeks time.

Demonstrations all over the Globe are making no difference and there are the inevitable calls for a UN Security Council Resolution calling for Israeli restraint. Even if a resolution was passed without the US veto, what difference would this make.

Israel, ….has been the subject of 138 resolutions. Not surprisingly, most of those resolutions call upon Israel to comply with basic principles of international law embodied by the UN Charter. Many of them condemn actions taken by Israel and call upon Israel on more than one occasion to comply with previous resolutions that Israel ignored and continues to ignore to this day.” (From Media Monitors)

In addition Israel has illegal nuclear weopons in defiance of International Law.

This country, Israel, considers itself above the Law and believes, I suspect, that the Holocaust sixty years ago absolves it from any condemnation of any action it may take. Well not any more, that was all several generations ago and Israel will be judged on its deeds. The US should find some courage, resist the Jewish vote and threaten to cease or reduce its financial support unless Israel returns to the original UN recognised borders and co-operates with it’s neighbours, including Palestine.



Utter Stupidity

Israel is once again bombing Gaza and so killing and maiming hundreds of men women and children and of course destroying infrastructure. What amazes me is the utter stupidity of it all; it will not end the violence, it will only serve to increase it.

Palestinian dead (From BBC)

Palestinian dead (From BBC)

It doesn’t take much commonsense to put oneself into a Palestinian’s shoes. Let’s have a little go at it.

A huge portion of my land was stolen after the second world war and we became refugees in what was left of our own country. In 1966 even more land was seized by the Israelis who also controlled our supply routes which are frequently cut off by them. What little resistance we can put up by way of home made rockets and mortars are met with massive force from Israel by way of air attacks and incursions into Palestine with tanks and high explosives. The West, in particular the USA, supplies these advanced weapons and provides financial support on a huge scale. The Arab nations mutter condemnation of Israel but give us little by way of real assistance. The West calls for democratic elections and when we elect our choice in Hammas the West condemns our decision and helps implement sanctions against us.

They call us terroists when we fight with what we have for our freedom.

We who think freely can and must argue against this cruelty and lobby our elected leaders but we can also refuse to buy anything made in Israel. Look at the bar code of any potential purchase, the first three numbers denote country of origin and Israel’s is 729. The Boycott Israel Campaign gives more information on how to help.

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