While Human Rights Watch has revealed yet more evidence showing the Israeli army’s culpability in shelling an innocent family of Palestinian bathers in Gaza, Israel still officially denies its responsibility. An Israeli parliamentarian is calling for an outside investigation.
The following was sent out by dissident newsletter The Other Israel on Nov. 3, 2005, when the Israel army had recently started shelling Gaza:
The following protest against the shelling of Gaza was circulated in Hebrew on one of the Israeli Tapuz Discussion Forums and apparently comes from within the army. Translation: TOI.
I ask you to spread this! To as many people as possible! We have already collected some signatures, I ask any artilleryman who wants to join to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I am worried and ask for your support!
Thanks, hoping for a more sane time.
We must stop the madness! This time you won’t be able to say “I didn’t know”.
This time you would not be able to say that it was a mistake by the gunlayer, the aimer, the battery commander or the Central Fire Control. Mistakes, disasters and murders by the Artillery are facts of the past and a danger for the future!
The Artillery Corps is not an effective tool for the task now imposed on it. At such a thickly-populated area as Gaza, artillery pieces are nothing but a danger to the population – and also a danger to us, to our international image.
Setting an artillery battery to shell targets in the heart of a civilian population will inevitably, sooner or later, lead to a terrible disaster which will hand an enormous victory to the Hamas and Jihad.
Sooner or later, a shell will go off course and kill dozens or even hundreds of Palestinian civilians, most of them completely innocent. Israel will be placed at the pillory and possibly be even subjected to international sanctions.
A single fiasco is all it would take to place the Hamas and Jihad at the very gates of the political victory which they desire.
There will be intensive international involvement in the Territories, aimed at protecting the Palestinians people from Israeli brutality and massacres. We will, of course, claim that it was nothing but a regrettable mistake, completely unintended. But nobody will listen to us – and rightly so.
The price in blood resulting from this inevitable coming fiasco will be unforgivable. We will not be able to deal with another massacre of civilians like that at Kanna Village in Lebanon, in 1996, where more than a hundred human beings were murdered by a single artillery shell.
We, fighters of the Artillery Corps, make our call loud and clear:
Restrain Defence Minister Mofaz and his friends!
Don’t let our fighting comrades become the “unintended” mass murderers of civilians!
In Gaza there are living people, not cardboard toys!
Remember – a stray shell is a victory for terror!
See our last post on Israel and Palestine.