For god’s sake, Israel, get your fucking house in order

The Guardian has compiled detailed evidence of alleged war crimes committed by Israel during the 23-day offensive in the Gaza Strip earlier this year, involving the use of Palestinian children as human shields and the targeting of medics and hospitals.

A month-long investigation also obtained evidence of civilians being hit by fire from unmanned drone aircraft said to be so accurate that their operators can tell the colour of the clothes worn by a target.

The testimonies form the basis of three Guardian films which add weight to calls this week for a full inquiry into the events surrounding Operation Cast Lead, which was aimed at Hamas but left about 1,400 Palestinians dead, including more than 300 children.

The Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) refused to respond directly to the allegations made against its troops, but issued statements denying the charges and insisted international law had been observed.

continue here

Update: this editorial from Ha’aretz is, contrary to the above, thoughtful and sane

It is clearly in Israel’s interest to halt Iran’s nuclear program, but it is no less in our interests to have close ties and a coordinated policy with the United States. The new government should give Obama’s diplomatic initiative a chance; it must not come out against it or portray it as tacit acceptance of a nuclear-armed Iran or as American abandonment of Israel’s security.

The initial reaction in Iran to Obama's message was far from enthusiastic, but this is just the beginning of the dialogue. If Obama manages to reduce the rising tide of tension in the region and to introduce a new framework of dialogue and cooperation between nations, he will have made an important contribution to Israel's security and to its international standing. This is the approach that should guide Netanyahu when he holds his first meeting with President Obama at the White House.

full editorial here

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