A Well Thought Out Strategy of Terror

  • There is never an excuse for deliberate attacks on civilians in conflict. These are war crimesstatement by former US President Jimmy Carter and former Irish President Mary Robinson.

Former soldier Glenn Bradley has recently posed the question as to whether the Israeli Defence Force has been willfully targeting civilians or was simply incompetent. Either way he was not making excuses for them and was in no mood to give them leeway.

As an experienced Fire Mission Controller of old (keeping in mind that modern target acquirement is much easier and accurate) my response to Israel is simple: “If you, honestly, don’t intentionally target civilians then your soldiers are professionally incompetent at their job because there are countless examples of wrong targeting. As such, it is your moral, lawful & international duty to stop wreck-less killing of civilians by incompetent troops”.

Israel, today, is either letting incompetent troops complete fire missions that are killing civilians OR it is simply targeting civilians for murder. Either way: it is wrong and must stop.
The gravitational pull of credibility is flipped into reverse thrust each time the spin doctor for Israeli terrorism, Mark Regev, opens his mouth to assert that the IDF does not target civilians. The long standing Israeli nonsense that the IDF is the most moral army in the world simply flies in the face of what has been documented about the persistent Israeli campaign to destroy Gaza.

It makes little sense for anyone to claim that there is no deliberate targeting of civilians when 400 children alone have been killed in a series of operations which supposedly do not target civilians. As the Jewish peace activist, Russ Greenleaf, makes clear:
Israel has the most precise weapons in the world. If it were really trying to avoid civilian deaths, would more than half the dead be women and children?
While sentiment like this is likely to be dismissed by the pro-war crime lobby as the output of a 'self-hating Jew' such smearing is not going to gain traction given the evidence in abundance of atrocity after atrocity. Human Rights Watch recently accused the IDF of targeting fleeing civilians in the South of Gaza. Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East and North Africa director of Human Rights Watch asked:

When will there be justice for the civilians in Khuza’a, who suffered shelling for days, then faced deadly attacks by Israeli soldiers after being ordered to leave the town? ... Warning families to flee fighting doesn’t make them fair targets just because they’re unable to do so, and deliberately attacking them is a war crime … The horrors of war are bad enough for civilians even when all sides abide by the law ... But it’s abhorrent that Israeli forces are making matters even worse by so blatantly violating the laws of war designed to spare civilians.
It remains a source of some puzzlement that there is almost an expectation that the IDF might not behave as the Waffen SS often did during the Nazi war of aggression, that the type of atrocities witnessed during World War 2 are to be grasped in a context of then rather than now. Writing about the 900 day siege of Leningrad Svetlana Andreyeva offered this:
The atrocities of the Nazis, who tried to subdue the people of Leningrad with starvation and showered bombs on innocent civilians, are hard to grasp in the context of today.
Unfortunately they are not hard to grasp at all. They are happening in the context of today and the leading state in the West that helped bring the right wing Nazi regime in Berlin to an end is endorsing and arming the state terror of the right wing Zionist regime In Tel Aviv.

Killing civilians in Gaza is not a mistake, it is malevolence; not the unthinking work of incompetent IDF soldiers but the application of a well thought out strategy of terror.


  1. Anthony, this is spot on. Absolutely spot on.
    Sometimes it feels as if i've used up all the examples, exhausted my supply of facts and figures, yet still the people around me are banging on about Hamas and their 'human shields' and poor little Israel fighting for its very existence,'it really is the only democracy in the middle east, bubeleh....' blah blah blah and articles like this one are such an enormous help. They really are. So thank you.

    After following the link from here to Eamonn Mallie's website and reading the original piece by Glenn Bradley, i followed a link to another article on E.M's website by a chap called Paul Crawford. Three members of his family, including his father, were murdered by loyalists during the 1970s. (Sorry, i do appreciate this is not the thread for a discussion on this subject.) Very briefly though, he writes about then and now, and where to go from here, and his thoughts are really interesting. He comes across as a very decent, honest man. I just wondered if you'd read the piece,and if so, what do you - or indeed any other TPQers - think of his ideas regarding conflict resolution, truth and reconciliation etc? The article can be found here -
    Best wishes

  2. From today's Guardian (13/08/'14)
    "52% of UK voters believe Israel acted disproportionately over Gaza – poll"

    Only 52%? Shame.

  3. I agree with the analysis in this article 100% The one ray of hope throughout this dreadful conflict has been blogs like this one offering an alternative analysis to the manufactured consensus that the major media outlets( with a few notable exceptions) tried to impose on us regarding alleged Hamas culpability for the bloodshed.
    The internet and social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter has also been a positive force providing people like myself and others living over two thousand miles away the opportunity to connect with voices of dissent within the Occupied Territorie and access alternative sources of written, photographic and video reportage. The ability of people fighting for the cause in Palestine to agitate, educate and organise people overseas is just the push of a button away.
    Gil Scott Heron said the revolution will not be televised but on smartphone and laptop screens throughout the world radical international and revolutionary solidarity is being acheived at unprecedented levels This inspires with hope for the future of the people of Palestine and all the "wretched of the earth".

  4. Sarah,

    Paul Crawford has obviously thought long and hard about this issue. What he says is logical but the logical in the North pushes against the power of the irrational which is in turn rationalised by vested interest.

    While the mode of power splitting rather than power sharing continues and truth is used for recrimination rather than reconciliation, efforts like his will find it hard to make progress. Most know he is right but it is not advantageous for them to say it.

  5. Sarah,
    Regarding the guardian poll, the sad fact is that all the main stream media have to do is label a people, struggle as terrorists and in the eyes of the ordinary people in the U.S, U.K these people somehow become sub-human. Trying to counter the Zionist media is a mammoth task, but one, we have to pursue until our dying day. Who knows maybe one day people will think objectively, for themselves. I have been impressed with your energy and decency on this subject.

  6. Looks like Gaza is in for another onslaught, the Zionists are reporting rocket fire, you know what their response to such threats are, ethnic cleansing.

  7. Did youse notice how the " global community" are in outrage about the genocide in Iraq, being committed by a group financed by the very same "global community" while in Syria, and how they used the word genocide to describe events, while the same horrific collective punishment in Gaza gets labeled under "defense". The ministry of truth is in control.

  8. David

    I know that one of the stages, if not the first stage, in the Nazi plan to destroy European Jewry, was to totally dehumanise all jews, so that the foot soldiers, particularly those in the East, einsatzgruppen etc, would find it easier to murder without feeling guilt, and ordinary civilians would not feel empathy for their former friends, colleagues and neighbours, because the result of the propaganda and de humanising of jews was that they were genuinely seen by non jews as not quite human. In my opinion your insight is spot on David. The citizens of Gaza - like the European Jews in the 1930s and 40s - are not regarded as having the same feelings as 'normal' people - i.e they "love death more than Israelis love life" and are happy to "sacrifice" their children in their pursuit of the destruction of Israel.

    Regarding Israeli hasbara re the Palestinians, it is very easy to see it all as a modern Zionist take on the ancient Jewish blood libel.

    I'm sorry my reply is so late David. I've been on holiday in West Cork, out in the wilds without radio, television, house phone, mobile, laptop, wi-fi etc. It was heavenly. I think i was suffering from zionist fatigue but i've come home with totally renewed vigour! Even in just one week the world has moved on - there's so much to catch up with, and so little of it is good.
    With very best wishes