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Those outside of Israel are probably seeing a somewhat different war than we are. In particular, today's tragic incident in which IDF shelled a school and killed about 28 civilians, will probably be recorded as an unprovoked "massacre" that caused the end of the Gaza operation.

It is probable that this incident will be used as the centerpiece of a major propaganda effort to legitimize and glorify Hamas as well as being a weapon in current efforts to gain a Hamas victory from the operation. Many will recall the real or imagined death of 12 year old Muhammad al Dura, supposedly killed by IDF troops -- an event recorded in dubious footage of French television. In a stroke, numerous Muhamad Al-Duras may have been created today.

Given the inevitability of such incidents, wiser (and more cynical) planning might have tried to complete the operation in a much briefer time, with a much higher concentration of force. That would certainly have resulted in more civilian casualties as well as more IDF casualties, but it would have at least assured a decisive military success.

The Palestinian Maan news service reported that "dozens" of people had been killed, and the "moderate" Palestinian authority is trying to prosecute the "war criminals" who perpetrated the "massacre" in Gaza.

As far as is known, the facts regarding the Gaza incident are that about thirty people were killed, including 28 civilians and two Hamas terrorists. The terrorists, Imad Abu Askhar and Hassan Abu Askhar, had gathered refugees fleeing the shelling and forced them into the school yard, where they were used as human shields. An IDF film made in 2007 shows similar use of human shields, a policy that has been repeatedly endorsed by the Hamas.

Yesterday, 80 truckloads of humanitarian aid were shipped into Gaza from Israel. While UN officials complain of a humanitarian crisis in Gaza, Hamas has been seizing humanitarian aid, food, medicines and fuel for its own use or to sell to residents. Hamas has also been preventing civilians from fleeing south out of Gaza city to avoid the fighting. Inside Gaza, IDF soldiers found a maze of tunnels beneath Gaza houses, including one that was a setup for kidnapping Israeli soldiers by mounting an operation similar to the 2005 Hezbollah operation in Rajjar.

That is the reality behind the images, but it is mostly likely the manufactured images that will shape international policy and be recorded as "history."

Ami Isseroff

Original content is Copyright by the author 2009. Posted at ZioNation-Zionism and Israel Web Log, http://www.zionism-israel.com/log/archives/00000647.html where your intelligent and constructive comments are welcome. Disributed by ZNN list. Subscribe by sending a message to ZNN-subscribe@yahoogroups.com. Please forward by e-mail with this notice, cite this article and link to it. Other uses by permission only.

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Replies: 4 Comments

sajjad sarwar,

Its not twigs. I live in london and I have to say that during the IRA bombing campaign, a hoax call woudl cause just as much disruption as real bomb, but without the loss of life. But even a hoax can result in a stamped as we say in a Iraqi Shia pilgrimage. If every day the air raid siren goes of and you have 60 seconds to get to your shelter or risk a random (lottery) of death or injury, then it does not matter if it is one or hundred missiles a day. My advice would be to stop firing the missiles.

E ELLIOTT, Monday, January 12th

Military operations in residential areas are extremely difficult and time consuming. I can't understand why this reckless approach was taken in the first place - oh that's right - politics.

Israel can't win this adventure unless every building in Gaza is raised to the ground and there is no way that is going to happen.

This adventure has been a PR disaster for Israel, the people who planned this should be fired.

And when the shooting stops how many militants will have been disposed of, all of which will be replaced in the weeks to come.

This adventure up was always going to be unsuccessful (but the politicians will claim otherwise - lie) and was always going reveal Zionism in its ugliest attire.

Sheesh even 6,000 year old Sun Tze knew this was going to be a bummer, but some people never learn - do they?

David B, Saturday, January 10th

Imagine there that were a group of gangsters surrounding your house who didn't allow you and your children to freely leave or enter your house and as a result your children and family suffered in every way causing death and illness. In other words you were being held hostage in your own house living a life of misery and fear with many dying a slow death. You witness with your own eyes your elderly parents and relatives die due to lack of necessary medication not reaching them because of this terrorising hostage situation. You witness the pain and suffering of loved ones and feel so helpless.

As a result of this dire situation you reach breaking point and a couple of you decide to face and attack the gangsters out of sheer frustration by throwing twigs at them; hardly causing them any harm. Now in retaliation to that twig throwing these gangsters come into your house with guns and bulldozers to find, torture, burn and kill the twig throwers; but along with the two twig throwers punish and slaughter 10 innocent women and children and critically injure 20 others.

When the gangsters are interviewed by pro-state terrorism TV channels such as BBC, Sky News and CNN and are asked to justify their actions, the gangsters cite the reason as ďthey throw twigs at us which hurt us so we had no choice". Everybody then says these gangsters are defending themselves from these twig throwers. But nobody goes a step back and asks why they throw the twigs in the first place? The real reason why they throw the twigs in the first place is that they are sick of living like hostages in their homes with a lack of basic living requirements that the rest of us all take for granted.

it is funny how all people want knowledge yet they prefer to sit infront of a tv and let the media tell them instead of going out the way and reading facts from both sides. most media in america is one sided because they just listen to the officials whom support israel with money and state of the art weapons. so obviously a friend will support a friend and the stories they tell are in form of propaganda.. the bombs that hamas are using are to blow up motorbikes and cars not buildings. look at the difference in fire power between the two countries. one israeli bomb is equivilent to 1000 bombs of the kind that hamas has used.

it is because of attacks that israel has made upon palestine over the past 60 years that has angered the palestinians. Even now most the death victims in gaza have been women and children. this is not history, it is infront of us, yet we do nothing. how the hell in the name of any god do you justify that. you cannot be a believer in god and justify yourselves by killing civilians and not even stop to think about what you are doing. now imagine that these children that will survive this cold war will see how helpless their fathers were in the war and how civilians are left to die at their own accord by the world community, to get slaughtered like animals. when these chirldren grow up they will want justice yet you will call them terrorists in 10 years when no super power will support them with money and state of the weapons. and so will go on the net and find out how to make a bomb. he will strap it to himself because he himself wants justice and believe me any man living in an areas where terrorist countries that are using propaganda to oppress them will see nothing wrong in this. what they have lost we can never compare. a building is not more valuable than a life for christ sakes. our god is one. whether you call yourself muslim, jew, christian, our god is one. we all believe there is one god but we do not agree on his name. so then do we not realise by killing any other human will send us to hell.

sajjad sarwar, Friday, January 9th

With respect Ami, events in 2007 show that the Hamas are willing to fire from UNRA, but they are not proof of what happened in this specific attack.

Micha, Wednesday, January 7th

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