Horrified anew at Israel’s massive crime against Gaza

This is beyond words.  An Israeli soldier recounts what his marching orders were in the invasion of Zeitoun:

“Fire on anything that moves in Zeitoun” – that was the order handed down to Israeli troops in the Givati Shaked battalion, who reduced the eastern Gaza City suburb to little more than rubble in a matter of days.

According to Israeli soldiers who took part in the three-week offensive, the destruction of the area, a known Hamas stronghold, was designed to send a wider message to Gazans. “We pounded Zeitoun into the ground,” an Israeli soldier who was deployed in the area, told The Times.

Now we can understand why so many children were killed in Gaza.  This is a massive war crime.  This reminds me of the words of Kissinger with regards to the bombing of Cambodia when he said:

Anything that flies, on anything that moves.


The words “war crime” together are a strange combination for me anyway.  It’s like saying “murder crime.” 

The stories that have emerged from Zeitoun have been some of the most shocking of the war. The Samuni family said they lost 29 members after soldiers forced them all into one building that subsequently came under fire. Survivors said that the initial shelling killed 22 people, while others slowly bled to death after being denied medical care for nearly three days.

Others, including the Helw and Abu Zohar families, have similar accounts of watching loved ones dying of their wounds and coming under fire after emerging from their homes carrying white flags.

Now one can understand how these crimes occurred.

“Having interviewed dozens of victims and witnesses and, having examined the ballistic evidence from north to south, we are convinced that Israel did not do everything possible to minimise civilians’ harm and death,” said Fred Abrahams, of Human Rights Watch.

“The rules of engagement were exceedingly loose, and they dropped the bar on the laws of war. This allowed civilian casualties to rise.”


I’ve got to go back to this “war crime” issue.  The International Criminal Court describes war crimes thusly:

  1. Grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions, such as:
  2. Willful killing, or causing great suffering or serious injury to body or health
  3. Torture or inhumane treatment
  4. Unlawful wanton destruction or appropriation of property
  5. Forcing a prisoner of war to serve in the forces of a hostile power
  6. Depriving a prisoner of war of a fair trial
  7. Unlawful deportation, confinement or transfer
  8. Taking hostages
  9. The following acts as part of an international conflict:
  10. Directing attacks against civilians
  11. Directing attacks against humanitarian workers or UN peacekeepers
  12. Killing a surrendered combatant
  13. Misusing a flag of truce
  14. Settlement of occupied territory
  15. Deportation of inhabitants of occupied territory
  16. Using poison weapons
  17. Using civilians as shields
  18. Using child soldiers
  19. The following acts as part of a non-international conflict:
  20. Murder, cruel or degrading treatment and torture
  21. Directing attacks against civilians, humanitarian workers or UN peacekeepers
  22. Taking hostages
  23. Summary execution
  24. Pillage
  25. Rape, sexual slavery, forced prostitution or forced pregnancy

You can find information about the Geneva Conventions, which are the basis for what is considered a war crime, here:


Still,  it is exceedingly odd to me that we have rules that govern wartime behavior.  It seems to me that the whole affair ought to be called a massive crime and be done with it.  I can think of very little good that ever comes out of war.  I agree with the framers of the Nuremberg principles who stated that the waging of an aggressive war is:

essentially an evil thing…to initiate a war of aggression…is not only an international crime; it is the supreme international crime, differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole.”[2]

I pray for the day that these crimes may no more polute our planet.


6 Responses to “Horrified anew at Israel’s massive crime against Gaza”

  1. 1 Stella February 7, 2009 at 11:15 pm

    War Crime

    Rape Crime
    Abuse Crime
    Murder Crime

    Agreed. It’s redundant. And yet, to so many minds, war is often so needed in defense of all that people cherish and hold holy.

    Are we raised to believe in War?

  2. 2 Forest Simmons February 8, 2009 at 12:58 am

    Section 98 says to renounce war and proclaim peace, and then goes on to give the “Lord’s law of retribution,” which basically says that after you have tried all peaceable means and they have attacked you three times without repenting, then if they do not ask for forgiveness, you may defend your families in good conscience on the occasion of further attacks.

    However, even in this case if you choose to suffer patiently rather than fight back, the Lord will fight your battles, and you and your posterity will be blessed for ever and ever because of your refusal to fight.

    In any case, whenever your enemy stops and asks for forgiveness you must stop and forgive.

    The people of Ammon chose the better part by burying their swords and putting themselves at the mercy of their enemies. We should be quick to grant asylum to all such pacific people, as the Nephites of that day did.

    That’s what I call “radically simple intervention policy.”

  3. 3 Forest Simmons February 8, 2009 at 1:56 am

    A brief comment in another direction.

    Was Mormon thinking about 20th century Jewish zionism when he included the following two verses about Zeniff?

    Mosiah 7:21 And ye all are witnesses this day, that Zeniff, who was made king over this people, he being over-zealous to inherit the land of his fathers …

    Mosiah 9:3 And yet, I being over-zealous to inherit the land of our fathers, collected as many as were desirous to go up to possess the land, and started again on our journey into the wilderness to go up to the land; but we were smitten with famine and sore afflictions; for we were slow to remember the Lord our God.

    Are the Israeli Jews over-zealous to inherit the land of their fathers? Do they know that there are twelve tribes that have equal claim on that land? And that every Palestinian has (with statistical certainty) ancestors from every one of those twelve tribes?

    Of course they also have other ancestors, but pure Israelite ancestry was never a prerequisite for the blessings promised to Israel (Jewish snubbing of Samaritans notwithstanding). Or why would Joseph’s sons whose mother was an Egyptian woman have their place of prominence? And how would all of the heathen kindreds of the earth be blessed by mingling with Abraham’s seed if there were some stigma to mixed ancestry?

    More are the children of the desolate than of the married wife. Who hath begotten me all of these?

    Why would Jesus spend many hours teaching the woman by the well and other Samaritans if he didn’t consider them as part of the covenant people.

    He told the Nephites that he never taught non-Israelites during his mortal ministry, and yet he did minister to Samaritans. Therefore he considered Samaritans as heirs to the covenant even though they were of mixed ancestry.

    He also blessed another Samaritan woman and asked rhetorically if she considered herself as worthy as the pure blooded Jews. She humbly compared herself to a dog getting crumbs from the table, but Jesus never said that she was any less worthy than the pure blooded Jews of the day.

    The story of the Good Samaritan has relevance here. In that parable, the Samaritan is a type of Jesus himself, who (by telling it) shames and rejects the hypocritical priests and Levites of his day.

    The Samaritans were remnants of the Northern Kingdom, i.e. the Kingdom of Israel (as opposed to the southern Kingdom of Judah). The Northern Kingdom was often referred to as Ephraim or Joseph (as in Ezekial 37), progeny of Rachel. (Judah was a son of Leah.)

    So Jeremiah 31:15

    “Thus saith the Lord; A voice was heard in Ramah, lamentation, and bitter weeping; Rahel weeping for her children refused to be comforted for her children, because they were not.”

    is at least as aptly fulfilled today as on the occasion of King Herod’s slaughter of infants described in chapter two of Matthew.

    But according to Isaiah, the day will come when Judah ceases to vex Ephraim.

    I pray for the baring of the Lord’s arm to hasten that day.

  4. 4 Forest Simmons February 8, 2009 at 2:02 am

    Just a small addition to the third from last paragraph of my previous comment:

    is at least as aptly fulfilled today as on the occasion of King Herod’s slaughter of infants described in chapter two of Matthew. (Herod’s victims were predominantly Jewish, i.e. children of Leah, not Rachel.)

  5. 5 theradicalmormon February 8, 2009 at 7:18 am

    One scripture I feel fairly confident applies to the Zionist Israelis of today is Isaiah 59 where it says:

    2 But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.
    3 For your hands are defiled with blood, and your fingers with iniquity; your lips have spoken lies, your tongue hath muttered perverseness.
    4 None calleth for justice, nor any pleadeth for truth: they trust in vanity, and speak lies; they conceive mischief, and bring forth iniquity.
    5 They hatch cockatrice’ eggs, and weave the spider’s web: he that eateth of their eggs dieth, and that which is crushed breaketh out into a viper.
    6 Their webs shall not become garments, neither shall they cover themselves with their works: their works are works of iniquity, and the act of violence is in their hands.
    7 Their feet run to evil, and they make haste to shed innocent blood: their thoughts are thoughts of iniquity; wasting and destruction are in their paths.
    8 The way of peace they know not; and there is no judgment in their goings: they have made them crooked paths: whosoever goeth therein shall not know peace.

  6. 6 goodbye romantic nostalgia February 12, 2009 at 9:36 pm

    thanks for the threads, folks! appreciate your thoughts!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Just Foreign Policy Iraqi Death Estimator
Impeach Cheney

%d bloggers like this: