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Israel Packs Plastic Shrapnel Into Rockets- Leaving Palestinians Painful Deaths from Undetected War DebrisTim King Salem-News.com
The folks in Geneva with ICC need to take a serious look at this.
(SACRAMENTO, CA) - This article is about war-related issues in Palestine that are missing the radar in western newsrooms. It is an article that I first wrote a little more than a year ago when our writer Ken O'Keefe was in Gaza covering the violence from a first-person view, however the message seems vitally important now as Gaza remains under a full scale Israeli war - and civilians are dying at astronomical rates.
I am referring to the use of plastic shards intentionally placed in rockets that leave behind undetectable shrapnel in humans; munitions that puzzled doctors because they amputate human limbs by heat, and the massive killings of Palestinian farm animals and wildlife through the use of Israeli-manufactured tablets deposited on Palestinian land.
It is interesting in light of news items like this, that Israel continues to call the defenseless Palestinian masses, "terrorists".
With the exception of the Seattle PI which attained permission from us to carry a report that revealed the plastic shrapnel, I would suspect that almost no 'mainstream media' as we refer to the U.S. TV networks, daily newspapers and AM radio talk shows, carried any of this information. However, an Israeli blog provides the information we now have on the latter two items.
Those who find this puzzling should understand that some of our best allies in this ongoing effort to raise awareness of Israeli war crimes against Palestinians, are our Jewish friends and fellow resistance activists in Israel.
The fact that the information is widely published by Israeli media in English, in itself proves that the information is out there at all times but overlooked, and that the U.S. networks which almost exclusively treat stories about tragedy in Palestine with disregard, have no excuses for their continual pro-Israel version of the news.
This is important to bear in mind as you digest this information. With regard to the labeling of resistance fighters in Palestine as terrorists, it is a statistically documented fact that the situation is exactly the opposite of how it is projected. Israel has and continues to function in the role of 'terrorist' toward Palestinian people, according to the definition provided by any dictionary.
First, we tell people about Israel's apartheid laws that regulate and punish Jews and non-Jews under totally different rules and standards. There are actually "Jew only" roads in Israel. We explain the real expression of Zionism to westerners raised to believe that Israel is exclusively good by nature. Zionism is the belief that Jews' have a right of return to the 'Holy Land', in this case Palestine, which they have done, leaving only a small amount of land that is not officially 'Israel'.
Since 1947, Israel has been plowing down (literally) Palestinian villages and planting 'settlements' that are Jewish only communities specifically constructed to absorb land that has existed in the hands of Palestinian families for years.
If this isn't getting the point across, we explain how Israeli snipers shoot and frequently kill Palestinian farmers from guard towers that surround all of Palestine. This is highly documented and the actions have been viewed by millions on YouTube.
We explain how Gaza fishermen are constantly being shot at and attacked by Israeli patrol boats. It is all cruel and unnecessary, yet it achieves Israel's apparent goal of reducing any chances for the Palestinians to earn a living.
Israeli soldiers even shoot kids who collect rocks used to crush into concrete, and rebuild the endless list of homes that Israel destroys.
It isn't just Operation Cast Lead that we are talking about. That highly planned precision military attack left almost 1500 dead, and thousands and thousands seriously injured. We're talking about what Israel does every day in Gaza.In examining the record, compared to the way other nation's crimes have been regarded in the past, such as Yugoslavia, there is no accountability for any of this, unless the Israelis kill a westerner.
In that event, as we saw with the death of a young Englishman named Tom Hurndall, a family with sufficient resources can make a with the Israeli government, but what a difficult thing it was for them, and even in the end the punishment for the death of this young man of high ideals, was a slap on the wrist; a minor jail sentence.
Israel made the Hurndall's quest as difficult as possible, refusing at times to meet with the family, failing to properly investigate Tom's death, etc. Still, that is the most extensive bout of accountability that I know of over Israel's wanton murder that began with Israel itself. (see: The Shooting of Tom Hurndall on Salem-News.com)
In explaining how the Palestinians didn't have anything to do with the Holocaust, we talk about how Jews and Muslims and Christians lived in relative peace in the area together for the last several hundred years, with Muslims as the majority population, with no war or bloodshed. That all changed with the establishment of Israel and that, is the 'brainchild' of a man named Theodor Herzl, the founder of modern day Israel. He was, prior to the Zionist movement, an openly declared antisemite.
These are the basics.
Israel's Shield from War Crimes in the UN
At the root of the problem is Israel's absolute, rock-solid, 'take it to the bank' knowledge that regardless of any crimes it commits, Genocide, apartheid or otherwise; the United States government will offer protection.
Time after time, the U.S. has used special veto power in the United Nations to shield Israel from war crimes prosecution. This too is a fact, not a theory, and there are two recent significant events; one is the 2008/2009 Cast Lead attack, and the other is last year's deadly assault on the Freedom Flotilla ship Mavi Marmara which left nine unarmed Gaza activists dead from gunshot wounds, and several dozen more badly injured.
Israel portrayed the people it attacked as terrorists, as expected, when there was never any real evidence to support the allegation. Israel justified its deadly behavior; killing nine human beings, and denying the wounded medical treatment, because they resisted the boarding in open ocean waters, with lead pipes and slingshots. People believe it.
If people adamantly believe that this type of approach used by Israel is justified, then there is little one can do to convince them their belief is not true. However, the plain reality is that no quarter has been given to the people of Palestine who suffer at Israel's hand. Israel is obviously incapable of policing its own behavior, and that means intervention is required by a higher body such as the United Nations Human Rights Commission. Unfortunately this entity is powerless as long as U.S. government keeps it that way.
UN countries that do not want to see the United Nations investigate extremely clear
Guilty or not guilty, until Israel's leaders suspected of the darkest of crimes against humanity are tried in a court of justice, they will go on believing they are above prosecution and that their existence, due to the plight of their ancestors, allows them to exist above international law.
Working in Gaza with Bassam Elmassri, Mousheera Jammal and Noor Assan, as interpreters, our Correspondent Ken O'Keefe, visited a Palestinian home shortly after it was targeted and attacked by Israel last February.
Even though the rocket that killed and severely wounded several female members of this family was manufactured in the USA, and in spite of the fact that Ken himself was born and raised in America, this family, those left, welcomed both Ken and his camera and his friends.
They shared in depth, a tragic story. Ken said at the times that they were willing to talk because they believed it would make a difference.
The rocket came when the men were at prayer. Only women were home and were killed and maimed. One of the daughters of Ebrahim Qudih, was preparing to get married. The women were picking out designs for the special ceremony which would never happen.
Framing the incredible video that Ken produced and quickly delivered from Gaza via YouTube, Bonnie King wrote about this egregious attack on the Qudih family, 29 April 2011, in the article, 'Israeli Drone War Crimes Exposed'
Seemingly accepting of this military brutality as a fact of life, father Ebrahim Qudih asked, "Why this family... why this house?"
"If I don't have safety in my house, where can I find it?"
"How do they (pointing to photo of daughters) make any danger to Israel?" Mr. Qudih added.
The rocket attack would strike most human beings as a reprehensible method for dealing with national security in the first place; annihilating family homes, etc. To object to this is not a criticism of religion, it is simply to decry the behavior. Israel supporters typically reply with, "Well they are terrorists, or connected to terrorists, it was their choice", and this thinking, most of humanity would firmly and unequivocally reject.
Fathi Qudih, Ebrahim's brother, explained that the tragedy is beyond description, and his niece was left in a coma with terrible injuries. In regard to this event, Salem-News.com officially asked questions of the Israeli Defence Forces that they failed to address with any satisfactory answers.
The IDF's claim the home of this family was tied to Hamas. It was not, but God help us all for any nation's tolerance of Israel's in-your-face war crimes that are not allegations but hard, deadly facts. Attacking a family home with only the women home?
Hamas is not a terrorist organization anyway, that is a phrase of convenience for western and Israeli governments that are thus able to dis involve Palestinians from any real representation in Gaza. As an organization, Hamas has committed far less terror and claimed a minuscule fraction of the lives Israel has snuffed out in their quest for an exclusive Jewish state.
Translating the words of this grief-stricken family, Bassam Elmassri learned about the shadowy side of Israel's munitions. Manufactured in the USA, the rocket that struck the Qudih family home, contained the usual deadly ingredients, but also something that doctors in Gaza are reported to be seeing more of: undetectable plastic shrapnel that becomes embedded in the flesh of these victims.
Bassam Elmassri explained:
"Small pieces come out from the rocket, it's like plastic pieces because when they take the injured people to the hospital to do the x-ray on them, it's not working. So they can die, because this makes it more difficult to remove the pieces from the body. The plastic pieces are not seen on the x-ray".
I have been in contact with doctors in Gaza before and that is one present goal, I encourage anyone reading this who is familiar with plastic shrapnel or has contact information to medical crews in Gaza, to write and share what they know. It is imperative that this is researched and exposed so that doctors can at least treat civilian victims injuries in a reasonable way. (Write to: email@example.com)
Asking for metal shrapnel instead of plastic seems the strangest request, no more bombs would obviously be a preferable scenario; but anyone in the chain of command responsible for this inhumane choice should be investigated for possible war crime violations. It seems clear that the plastic is seeing its intended purpose, this should not be deemed an acceptable practice.
Amputation by Severe Heat?
This information comes from the Website Palestine Outcry. It is the intro to the story, First, Dense Inert Metal Explosive (DIME)
In mid-October 2006 a team of investigative journalists at RAI Italian television reported that Israel had been using a new weapon in the Gaza Strip, similar to DIME – dense inert metal explosive. The report was produced by the same journalists who claimed without foundation that the US used White Phosphorus (WP) against civilians during attacks on Fallujah. According to the Israeli daily Haaretz, the weapon was launched from drones in the summer of 2006, most of them in July, and led to "abnormally serious" physical injuries. Physicians in the Gaza Strip noted the pattern of wounds they were treating were unusual, with severed legs that showed signs of severe heat at the point of amputation but no metal shrapnel. The American version is still in a testing stage and had not been used on the battlefield at that time. It has not been "declared an illegal weapon", though the weapon was claimed [without described basis] to be "highly carcinogenic and harmful to the environment".
Many of us who try to raise awareness about Palestine have what you might define as a love-hate relationship with Ha'aretz, the Israeli newspaper. Some of their writers are the best people I know of, and yet some might as well work for the public affairs agency Jerusalem Post that works steadfastly in the interest of Israeli policy. That is one of the numerous groups that carried the following piece of information, however I drew the information from the Israeli Palestine Outcry Website.
The following is an excerpt from the story, Pollution, Apartheid and Protest in Occupied Palestine by: Ethan Ganor
Israel's much-touted "disengagement" from the Gaza Strip, while proof that decolonization is possible, is also a smokescreen, distracting attention from the escalation of violence in the West Bank. Fully chronicling the current devastation in Palestine could fill several volumes; what follows is only a few snapshots.
If anyone has information about these events which date back to 2005 relating to animal poisonings and the high heat projectiles causing amputations, or the use of undetectable plastic shrapnel, please contact our newsroom.
Tim King has more than twenty years of experience on the west coast as a television news producer, photojournalist, reporter and assignment editor. Tim is Salem-News.com's Executive News Editor. His background includes covering the war in Afghanistan in 2006 and 2007, and reporting from the Iraq war in 2008. Tim is a former U.S. Marine who follows stories of Marines and Marine Veterans; he's covered British Royal Marines and in Iraq, Tim embedded with the same unit he served with in the 1980's.
Tim holds awards for reporting, photography, writing and editing from traditional mainstream news agencies like The Associated Press and Electronic Media Association; he also holds awards from the National Coalition of Motorcyclists, the Oregon Confederation of Motorcycle Clubs; and was presented with a 'Good Neighbor Award' for his reporting, by the The Red Cross.
Tim's years as a Human Rights reporter have taken on many dimensions; he has rallied for a long list of cultures and populations and continues to every day, with a strong and direct concentration on the 2009 Genocide of Tamil Hindus and Christians in Sri Lanka. As a result of his long list of reports exposing war crimes against Tamil people, Tim was invited to be the keynote speaker at the FeTNA (Federation of Tamil Sangams of North America) Conference in Baltimore, in July 2012. This is the largest annual gathering of North American Tamils; Tim addressed more than 3000 people and was presented with a traditional Sri Lanka ‘blessed garland’ and a shawl as per the tradition and custom of Tamil Nadu
In a personal capacity, Tim has written 2,026 articles as of March 2012 for Salem-News.com since the new format designed by Matt Lintz was launched in December, 2005. Serving readers with news from all over the globe, Tim's life is literally encircled by the endless news flow published by Salem-News.com, where more than 100 writers contribute stories from 23+ countries and regions.
Tim specializes in writing about political and military developments worldwide; and maintains that the label 'terrorist' is ill placed in many cases; specifically with the LTTE Tamil Tigers in Sri Lanka, where it was used as an excuse to slaughter people by the tens of thousands; and in Gaza, where a trapped population lives at the mercy of Israel's destructive military war crime grinder. At the center of all of this, Tim pays extremely close attention to the safety and welfare of journalists worldwide. You can write to Tim at this address: firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit Tim's Facebook page (facebook.com/TimKing.Reporter)
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