cue the lightning bolts

the only question that matters: is it true?

Iran has signed the NPT. As a signatory to the NPT, Iran may rightfully, legally, use nuclear technology for peaceful energy purposes. Iran has submitted to and passed repeated IAEA inspections. The US intelligence community (NIE) does not consider Iran a nuclear threat. Israel refuses to sign the NPT. Israel has an estimated several hundred undeclared nuclear weapons. Russia and China have warned that an attack on Iran will have global consequences. That's the situation in a nutshell. Where to next, people? Where to?

Have I now become your enemy by telling you the truth? - Galatians 4:16


NGO reports on Gaza war belie Israeli claims

This week, two respected human rights organisations - one Palestinian, one Israeli - each came out with very full reports into the extent of the damage caused by the assault Israel waged against Gaza last winter.

According to the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR), which is based in Gaza, 1,419 Palestinians were killed during the fighting, of whom 252 were combatants and the rest noncombatants, including members of the civilian police. Three hundred and eighteen of those killed were, it said, children.

The Israeli group B'Tselem ("In the Image") tallied 1,387 Gazans killed by the Israelis, including 320 minors. It assessed that 330 of those killed had taken part in the hostilities. B'Tselem also noted that three Israeli civilians and nine soldiers were killed during the fighting.
The Israeli government earlier claimed that 1,166 Palestinians were killed in the fighting, of whom only 89 were minors under the age of 16, while 60 percent were "members of Hamas and other armed groups".

PCHR and B'Tselem published their latest reports in the lead-up to next week's widely awaited presentation to the U.N.'s Human Rights Council of the final report on Gaza war casualties prepared by the investigative commission headed by South African judge Richard Goldstone.

PCHR and B'Tselem based their tallies on painstaking field research. (There are some small discrepancies between them. But most can be explained by differences in the definitions used.)

The Israeli government, by contrast, has not revealed the methodology by which - without having any access at all to surviving family members or local officials on the ground - it felt able to compile its much lower tally.

Meanwhile, in the lead-up to the publication of Goldstone's report, the Israeli government has launched a very tough offensive against all the Israeli and international rights organisations that have been documenting the damage in Gaza.


These organisations have all come under particularly sharp attack from the government of Benjamin Netanyahu and its supporters since last July, when Netanyahu openly accused them of pursuing an anti-Israel agenda.

Netanyahu's attack gave great encouragement to a hitherto small Israeli body, itself a non-governmental organisation, or NGO, which is called "NGO Monitor".

Members of the Netanyahu government and NGO Monitor have launched blistering attacks against Israeli groups like "Breaking the Silence", which did breakthrough work in publicising accusations made by Israeli soldiers who served in Gaza regarding the laws-of-war violations they saw while there.


Other organisations worldwide are meanwhile placing more of their focus on the violations of the Geneva Conventions that Israel continues to perpetrate with respect to Gaza - in particular, its continued refusal to allow the passage into the Strip of any goods except those needed for minimal physical survival.

Israel is still, eight months after last winter's fighting ended, blocking the shipment into Gaza even of basic construction materials, needed to repair the extensive damage the Israeli forces caused to homes, schools, and infrastructure throughout the Strip.

read the whole thing @ the rebel

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