They’ve done it again. Those pin-point accurate IDF pilots who hardly ever kill civilians in error had a bad day today. They were supposedly targeting a Fatah cell on its way to launch Qassam rockets. The militants got away with a few scratches. Three young children were not so lucky according to Haaretz:
The dead children were identified as Mohammed al-Roka, his sister, Nadia, and Bilal al-Hassa. Seven children were also among the injured, one seriously.
In writing this blog, I unfortunately feel I’ve had to become much more familiar than I’d ever want to be at plumbing the depths of the hypocrisy and mendacity that fills IDF public statements meant to defend such disastrous mistakes. Today’s statement is garden variety. But it somehow irks me more than usual. After three innocent children were killed in this incident (which is the third this month in which a total of 13 civilians have been killed), this is all the IDF could muster by way of explanation:
“When a cell goes to carry out a launch, we are working against a ticking clock. We have to find the right place to hit them, before they operate. We do everything we can not to injure civilians, even aborting a strike where there is doubt.“
Guess they didn’t find the “right place” this time, now did they? As for “aborting the strike when there is doubt”…they didn’t do that either.
The IDF Spokesman’s Office said, “The IDF regrets any loss of life among non-combatants. Responsibility for this rests with the terror organizations and the Hamas government.”
What do they take us for–fools? “Responsibility rest with the terror organizations?” You must be joking. Your bomb killed those kids, buddy. Not a “terror organization.” No one forced you to pull the trigger at that precise moment. No one compelled you to kill those civilians.
A ‘senior IAF officer’ attempted to justify the strike by claiming:
[it] took place “in an area where traffic was very light, and that the civilians that were injured were not seen by military cameras before the hit.” The officer said the two missiles fired hit the vehicle directly. He was unable to explain how the two targets escaped with light injuries while nearby civilians were killed.
However, the attempted assassination took place at 7:15 PM and Palestinian eyewitnesses dispute the IDF statement saying:
Tuesday’s strike came at an hour when the streets were busy and many children were playing in the area….[It] took place on a narrow and crowded commercial street in the Sheikh Radwan neighborhood of Gaza City.