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Saturday, December 26, 2009

Israel's "Cast Lead": The Art Of Murdering Unarmed Women Bearing White Flags

In one of the final days of Israel's blood-thirsty rampage in Gaza last January, a Jewish member of the British parliament rose from his seat to urge an arms embargo on Tel Aviv.

But MP Gerald Kaufman, brought up as an orthodox Jew and Zionist, said something else that caught world attention.

"My grandmother was ill in bed when the Nazis came to her home town," railed Kaufman, "a German soldier shot her dead in her bed. My grandmother did not die to provide cover for Israeli soldiers murdering Palestinian grandmothers in Gaza. The present Israeli government ruthlessly and cynically exploit the continuing guilt from gentiles over the slaughter of Jews in the Holocaust as justification for their murder of Palestinians."

Tomorrow will mark the official one-year anniversary of the start of the 22 days of Israel's mayhem and massacre on Gaza's 1.5 million men, women, and children. It is hoped that not only will the world take note, but also never release the Israeli regime of war criminals from their accountability.

Insidious and utterly evil it was. And they pulled off day after day of massacres by tossing aside their "purity of arms" facade and replacing it with rules of engagement turning the world's largest open air prison into a free fire zone.

And what, precisely, is meant by "free fire"?

It's really very simple. Just shoot, blast, burn, or demolish anything at will, be it a school, home, or hospital, along with the men, women, and children that go with 'em.

An exaggeration, perhaps? Arab propaganda, maybe??

Not exactly. Here's some chilling testimony from an Israeli soldier and Gaza Massacre vet, who explained the dynamics of their "standing orders."

One of the many international human rights groups monitoring Israel's violations of international law is Human Rights Watch. In their official report on Gaza, they meticulously documented case after case of war crimes, including the fate of the Abd Rabbo family:

"According to all three family members, around noon the family heard the tank outside their house and then a soldier on a megaphone calling on them to come outside. Afraid to send out any men, two women and three female children gathered at the door, at least three of them holding pieces of white cloth.

They stepped outside and saw an Israeli tank about 10 meters away with its turret pointed at the house. On the front steps stood Khalid’s mother, Su’ad, 54, his wife, Kawthar, 26, and their three girls, Su’ad, 7, Samar, 4, and Amal, 2.

Khalid’s mother, Su’ad, explained what happened next:

'We saw one tank and we saw others behind. We were with the white flags in order to make them see that we were civilians. We spent seven to nine minutes waving the flags and our faces were looking at them.

And suddenly they opened fire and the girls fell to the ground. Su’ad fell and when I saw her, I turned to my right and when I turned, I got hit....The shooting came from where the tank was but I don’t know who shot.

Su’ad was wounded in the neck and chest. Amal was hit in the chest and abdomen and her intestines came out. Su’ad died immediately. We took Amal inside and she died in
there because the ambulance could not come. Samar was injured in the chest and the shots exited her back, leaving large holes and damaging the spine. She is now paralyzed...

We had stood there for maybe ten minutes. The soldiers were sitting on top
of the tank. The area was quiet. We saw no people. There was no shelling.
We heard no fighting. They had full control of the area since the first day of
the ground invasion. They had the area and also [nearby] Kashef Hill.'

Interviewed separately, Khalid and his brother, who had both remained inside the house, confirmed this version of events. According to Khalid, the women and girls were outside for about five minutes when an Israeli soldier emerged from the top of the tank and without warning opened fire with automatic gunfire.

The women and girls managed to scramble back inside the house, some of them bleeding badly, he said.

In Brussels, Human Rights Watch interviewed Khalid’s brother Hasan, where he was tending to the wounded Samar in a hospital. His recollection of some details varied slightly from his brother and mother, but his general account was the same.

According to Hasan, the IDF soldiers ordered the family to come outside and then opened fire on the women and children. 'The area where we lived was under Israeli control, it was a safe place for them,' he said. 'There were no fighters.'

....Khalid ‘Abd Rabbo said he cannot understand why an Israeli soldier opened fire on unarmed women who bore white flags, and then destroyed his home:

'I only want one thing. I want to understand whether I did something wrong to
Israel to be punished like this. I want this to be the last crime committed
against Arabs and against Palestinians because we want peace. Hopefully
I’ll be the last one who suffered. I lost my children and house.'"

Sadly, Kahalid, the blood just keeps flowing. Today six more Palestinians were mowed down by Israeli gunmen.

No Palestinian or his family is safe in this hellish world of occupation, humiliation and confiscation. Clearly Israel's "Cast Lead" crew didn't hesitate at outright annihilation--at will--either. The following example shows just how perilous things are, even for a compliant, law-abiding, non-terrorist Palestinian such as Israeli-educated Dr. Ezzeldeen Abu al-Aish.

He's also a peace activist. But that didn't slow down one bit the "purity of arms" bearing Israeli tank that deliberately blasted a shell into the family home, obliterating al-Aish's three daughters and a niece.

Anyone care to guess if any of their murderers were sporting a "one shot two kills" t-shirt that day?

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