Posted by Curt on 14 June, 2015 at 6:15 pm. 3 comments already!


Le·gal In·sur·rec·tion:

It’s too late to undo the massive propaganda campaign surrounding the 2014 Gaza conflict, which Israel called Operation Protective Edge.

False statistics about civilian casualties were put out by Hamas ministries then adopted without question by the UN, “human rights” groups and the media to create the narrative that “most” or “almost all” or the “vast majority” of deaths were civilians.

No critic of Israel has yet to explain how Israel was supposed to stop Hamas from firing rockets, tunneling under the border, or landing commandos by sea without firing into the civilian areas from which Hamas was operating.

During the 2014 Gaza conflict we covered the deliberate Hamas tactic of firing from civilian areas, including next to hospitals and apartments, as well as how Hamas used the main Gaza hospital as a military headquarters, almost all of which was covered up by the media:

Round two in the propaganda war against Israel will take place this week, when the U.N. Human Rights Council releases its report on alleged Israeli war crimes. The UNHCR is the body completely obsessed with Israel.

In advance of the UNHRC report, an international group of military experts released a report demonstrating that Israel complied with the laws of warfare in its response to Hamas attacks.

UN Watch has the full report.

We were well aware of the allegations made by some governments, the United Nations, human rights groups and the media, that Israel acted outside the laws of armed conflict in Gaza. Some have suggested that the IDF lacked restraint or even deliberately targeted innocent civilians.

Our findings lead us to the opposite conclusion. We examined the circumstances that led to the tragic conflict last summer and are in no doubt that this was not a war that Israel wanted. In reality Israel sought to avoid the conflict and exercised great restraint over a period of months before the war when its citizens were targeted by sporadic rocket attacks from Gaza. Once the war had begun, Israel made repeated efforts to terminate the fighting. The war that Israel was eventually compelled to fight against Hamas and other Gaza extremists was a legitimate war, necessary to defend its citizens and its territory against sustained attack from beyond its borders….

Hamas launched attacks against Israel from the heart of its own civilian communities in Gaza and positioned its munitions and military forces there also, including in schools, hospitals and mosques. As well as carefully documented IDF evidence of this, we have viewed international media footage confirming several cases and are aware of senior Hamas officials’ own claims to have used human shields. A recent report by the UN Secretary General confirmed that in some cases Hamas even used UN facilities for storing munitions and launching attacks….

The Israel Defence Force employed a series of precautionary measures to reduce civilian casualties. Each of our own armies is of course committed to protecting civilian life during combat. But none of us is aware of any army that takes such extensive measures as did the IDF last summer to protect the lives of the civilian population in such circumstances….

Measures taken to warn civilians included phone calls, SMS messages, leaflet drops, radio broadcasts, communication via Gaza-based UN staff and the detonation of harmless warning explosive charges, known as “knock on the roof”. Where possible the IDF sought also to give guidance on safe areas and safe routes….

Our overall findings are that during Operation Protective Edge last summer, in the air, on the ground and at sea, Israel not only met a reasonable international standard of observance of the laws of armed conflict, but in many cases significantly exceeded that standard. We saw clear evidence of this from the upper to the lower levels of command. A measure of the seriousness with which Israel took its moral duties and its responsibilities under the laws of armed conflict is that in some cases Israel’s scrupulous adherence to the laws of war cost Israeli soldiers’ and civilians’ lives.

Israel today released its own report (pdf.) on the conflict, as The Times of Israel reports:

Anticipating the imminent publication of a United Nations report on last summer’s war in Gaza, the Israeli government on Sunday published its own account of the events surrounding the conflict, known in Israel as Operation Protective Edge.

The 275-page report, which officials say has been in the making ever since the war ended in late August 2014, places the blame for the war’s casualties squarely on Hamas and armed factions operating in the Strip.

While Israel has previously published much of the information and many of the arguments provided in the report, it also contains some new data. For instance, it presents for the first time the army’s analysis of the war’s casualties. According to the IDF’s account, 44 percent of the 2,125 Palestinians killed in Gaza were “militants,” and 36% were “uninvolved civilians.” Some 20% of victims have yet to be identified.

I found this chart in the report (p. 54) to be particularly interesting. It details the ceasefires agreed to by Israel, and violated by Hamas. That is a critical fact — Hamas started and continued the war.

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