Thursday, January 15, 2009

Increasing Evidence That Israel Is Using White Phosphorus Weapons Over Heavily-Populated Gaza

White Phosphorus:
"White phosphorus ignites and produces layers of thick white smoke when exposed to oxygen, but phosphorous from an explosion will cause serious burns that can melt flesh to the bone and kill. Its use as an offensive munition is banned by the chemical weapons convention."

Increasing evidence from eyewitness accounts and people on the ground in Gaza is pointing to Israeli Forces loading its shells and mortars with the highly-incendiary chemical known as 'white phosphorus'.

International concerns for the safety of Palestinian civilians are "... amplified, given the technique evidenced in media photographs of air-bursting white phosphorus projectiles. Air bursting of white phosphorus artillery spreads 116 burning wafers over an area between 125 and 250 meters in diameter, depending on the altitude of the burst, thereby exposing more civilians and civilian infrastructure to potential harm than a localized ground burst." - (From:

In spite of these reports and video evidence, IDF (Israel Defense Forces) spokespersons are continuing to deny using the caustic chemical. They also continue to declare that they are following the guidelines put forth in international law regarding what materials/chemicals may be used, how they may be used and for what reasons - as it regards heavily-populated areas being targeted... like Gaza.

Recently, some Israeli officials have gone a bit further, in that they aren't denying using the disgusting stuff - something which they did in recent past military actions against Gaza - but they aren't admitting to it, either.

Only adding sociopathic insult to excruciating injury... Seeing various Israeli talking heads - such as the head of the Israeli Consulate here in San Francisco - calmly and without the tiniest hint of humanity, let alone any sense of regret - speak expressionless about the ongoing and growing Palestinian civilian deaths and injuries as well as the unpleasant results of "wayward" Israeli shells or Israel's intentional bombing of a known UN shelter... and, now, the shelling and subsequent fiery destruction of a UN compound that included food and other relief supply storage... who so blankly continue to claim that their actions are only taken in self-defense and that everyone should blame Hamas for all of the pain, suffering and death.

It boggles the mind that these apparently educated people are so caught up in their own bs party line that they are blinded to the simple fact that they are doing exactly what Hamas wants them to do... Injuring, maiming, terrorizing and killing countless Palestinian civilians in their mad drive to eliminate Hamas leadership... All the while remaining Unflinchingly Unapologetic.

Their military might just may, in fact, eliminate a handful of Hamas leaders. But, their complete and utter lack of genuine empathy or human compassion for the terrible suffering of Palestinian civilians will only inspire the survivors of this over-the-top offensive to line-up to sign-up and replace those Hamas members that the bombings actually killed.

This isn't cutting off your nose to spite your face... This is Blowing It Off... Along with blowing away any innocent persons who just so happened to be in the vicinity.

The "Chosen People"?... Hmmm, apparently, they never got the memo. Or, perhaps it got incinerated by some of their white phosphorus... along with the Messenger carrying it.

Peace... Please.



Evidence Grows That Israel is Using White Phosphorus in Gaza
By Greg Mitchell.

For several days, charges that Israel has been using white phosphorus in its Gaza bombing have spread, unconfirmed but gaining some credibility as some human rights groups have weighed in. But today the charges are reaching critical mass in the wake of the bombing of the main United Nations compound in Gaza City.

This just in from Reuters:

A warehouse in a U.N. compound in Gaza that came under Israeli fire on Thursday was apparently hit by white-phosphorus shells, U.N. humanitarian affairs chief John Holmes said. "The main warehouse was badly damaged by what appeared to be white-phosphorus shells," Holmes told reporters at a news briefing in New York. "Those on the ground don't have any doubt that's what they were. If you were looking for confirmation, that looks like it to me."

And update from BBC:

"Human Rights Watch says it has observed "dozens and dozens" of white phosphorus shells being fired by Israel at the Gaza Strip - a heavily populated civilian area where its use is prohibited."

Palestinian medical officials said they had treated large numbers of casualties with unusual burns that were extremely painful to treat and could be consistent with exposure to white phosphorus (WP).

The Times of London reported earlier today:

"The Israeli military has denied using white phosphorus shells in the Gaza offensive, although an investigation by The Times has revealed that dozens of Palestinians in Gaza have sustained serious injuries from the substance, which burns at extremely high temperatures. The Geneva Convention of 1980 proscribes the use of white phosphorus as a weapon of war in civilian areas, although it can be used to create a smokescreen. The Israel Defence Forces (IDF) said today that all weapons used in Gaza were "within the scope of international law.""

In fact, the International Red Cross has stated that Israel is certainly using it and Israel's response was a non-denial, a spokesman explaining that the military "wishes to reiterate that it uses weapons in compliance with international law, while strictly observing that they be used in accordance with the type of combat and its characteristics."

Foreign press cannot get to bottom of it due to Israel refusing journalists' entry to Gaza.

The use of white phosphorus as an illuminating device only is okayed by international law but such use is extremely risky and banned for use in dense civilian areas. The fires it sets cannot be put out with the usual water or fire extinguishers.

Today, at least two United Nations officials have flatly declared that three or more white phosphorous shells were part of the attack today that set a UN building and compound ablaze in Gaza City. Here is just one of many press reports, just posted by The New York Times:

"A spokesman for the Relief and Works Agency, Christopher Gunness, said that the Israelis had been provided with the GPS coordinates of all United Nations facilities in Gaza. He said that two buildings were ablaze and that there were five fully laden fuel vehicles at the site....
In the attack on Thursday, Mr. Gunness said, the Israelis used phosphorous shells, according to Bloomberg. "The Israelis have shot three phosphorus shells against the compound, where hundreds of civilians are being sheltered," he was quoted as saying.

Earlier this week The New York Times reported on growing civilian charges of white phosphorus use:

Luay Suboh, 10, from Beit Lahiya, lost his eyesight and some skin on his face Saturday when, his mother said, a fiery substance clung to him as he darted home from a shelter where his family was staying to pick up clothes. The substance smelled like burned trash, said Ms. Jaawanah, the mother who fled her home in Zeitoun, who had experienced it too. She had no affection for Hamas, but her sufferings were changing that. 'Do you think I'm against them firing rockets now?' she asked, referring to Hamas. 'No. I was against it before. Not anymore.'
Also this week, AFP reported:

"Medics in Gaza say they have treated more than 50 people suffering burns caused by controversial white phosphorus shells, a claim backed up by a report of the New York-based Human Rights Watch. And two Norwegian doctors, recently returned from working in the Gaza Strip, accused Israel of using the territory as a testing ground for a new "extremely nasty" type of explosive."

Then there is today's report by The Times of London from correspondent Sheera Franklin in Jerusalem:

"Remnants of an Israeli white phosphorus shell, identified by the marking on the outer casing -- M825A1 -- have been found in the village of Sheikh Ajilin in western Gaza. Witnesses in Gaza said that the shell was fired on January 9 and was taken indoors as evidence. They recalled seeing thick smoke and smelling a strong odour in keeping with the garlic-like smell associated with white phosphorus.
Hebrew writing on the shell casing reads "exploding smoke" -- the term the Israeli army uses for white phosphorus. Doctors who examined the shell said that it appeared to include phosphorus residue. Residents said that they suffered burns on their feet when they walked where the shelling had taken place."

(From:*"Medics and human rights groups are also reporting that they are seeing injuries distinctive of another controversial weapon, Dense Inert Metal Explosive, known as DIME, that was designed by the US Air Force in 2006."
Gives a new and very ugly meaning to the phrase: "Dropping a DIME."

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