The first moments of Operation Cast Lead (video)

Warning: This 10-minute video provides gruesome and very disturbing images of death. I normally would not share such media, but Israel’s attack on Gaza on December 27, 2008 needs to be remembered in all of its details if Americans are going to learn any lessons from our financing and support of this carnage.

Mural on wall one block from the Arafat police station in Gaza.  The artist is Mohamed al-Derie, who participated in this season's Arabs Got Talent.

Mural on wall one block from the Arafat police station in Gaza. The artist is Mohamed al-Derie, who participated in this season’s Arabs Got Talent.

Israel’s first target that day was the police station where new recruits were gathered. I believe this might have been their graduation day from police training.

International law distinguishes between military and civilian targets. Under some circumstances, it’s permissible to kill members of the military, but never civilians who are not engaged in combat. The Goldstone Commission visited the police station, interviewed witnesses to the attack, and reported its extensive findings, available on pp. 99-111.

437. From the facts available to it, the Mission finds that the deliberate killing of 99 members of the police at the police headquarters and three police stations during the first minutes of the military operations, while they were engaged in civilian tasks inside civilian police facilities, constitutes an attack which failed to strike an acceptable balance between the direct military advantage anticipated (i.e. the killing of those policemen who may have been members of Palestinian armed groups) and the loss of civilian life (i.e. the other policemen killed and members of the public who would inevitably have been present or in the vicinity). The attacks on the Arafat City police headquarters and the Abbas Street police station, al-Tuffah police station and the Deir al-Balah investigative police station constituted disproportionate attacks in violation of customary international humanitarian law.

438. From the facts available to it, the Mission further believes that there has been a violation of the inherent right to life of those members of the police killed in the attacks of 27 December 2007 who were not members of armed groups by depriving them arbitrarily of their life in violation of article 6 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

This 10-minute amateur video begins with a view of the Gaza skyline moments after the attack on December 27, 2008, the beginning of Operation Cast Lead. The videographer proceeds through the streets of downtown Gaza on his way to the police station where new recruits were gathered that morning, the first victims of the attack. Warning: the images and sounds are very disturbing. Video available on this link.  اللحظات الأولي لقصف مدينة عرفات للشرطة في حرب الفرقان (The initial moments of the bombing of the city police Arafat in war.)

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