Israeli soldiers admit to deliberate killing of Gaza civilians

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The Israeli army has been forced to open an investigation into the conduct of its troops in Gaza after damning testimony from its own front line soldiers revealed the killing of civilians and rules of engagement so lax that one combatant said that they amounted on occasion to “cold-blooded murder”.

The revelations, compiled by the head of an Israel military academy who declared that he was “shocked” at the findings, come as international rights groups are calling for independent inquiries into the conduct of both sides in the three-week Israeli offensive against Palestinian Islamists.

The soldiers’ testimonies include accounts of an unarmed old woman being shot at a distance of 100 yards, a woman and her two children being killed after Israeli soldiers ordered them from their house into the line of fire of a sniper and

Another disturbing element reported by the soldiers was the role of military rabbis in distributing booklets that framed the fighting as a religious war. “All these articles had a clear message: we are the Jewish people, we have come to the land by miraculous means, and now we have to fight to remove the Gentiles who are getting in our way and preventing us from occupying the Holy Land…

soldiers clearing houses by shooting anyone they encountered on sight.

“That’s the beauty of Gaza. You see a man walking, he doesn’t have to have a weapon, and you can shoot him,” one soldier told Danny Zamir, the head of the Rabin pre-military academy, who asked him why a company commander ordered an elderly woman to be shot.

"I gathered the graduate students of the course who fought in Gaza, to hear their impressions from the fighting. I wasn't prepared for any of the stuff I heard there. I was shocked,” Mr Zamir said. “I think that the writing was on the wall, but we just didn't want to see it, we didn't want to face it."

One non-commissioned officer told Mr Zamir, himself a deputy battalion commander in the reserves, that the army “fired a lot of rounds and killed a lot of people in order for us not to be injured or shot at.

"When we entered a house, we were supposed to bust down the door and start shooting inside and just go up storey by storey… I call that murder. Each storey, if we identify a person, we shoot them. I asked myself – how is this reasonable?"

The same unnamed NCO said that his commanding officer ordered soldiers on to a rooftop to shoot an old woman crossing a main street during the fighting, which a Palestinian rights groups said left 1,434 people dead, 960 of them civilians.

"I don't know whether she was suspicious, not suspicious, I don't know her story,” the NCO said. “I do know that my officer sent people to the roof in order to take her out… It was cold-blooded murder."

Another NCO recounted a military blunder that led to a mother and her two children being shot dead by an Israeli sniper. "We had taken over the house… and the family was released and told to go right. A mother and two children got confused and went left… The sniper on the roof wasn't told that this was okay and that he shouldn't shoot… you can say he just did what he was told… he was told not to let anyone approach the left flank and he shot at them.

"I don't know whether he first shot at their feet or not, but he killed them," the soldier said.

The soldiers’ accounts were submitted anonymously at a meeting at the academy around a month ago. The Israel army said that it had started an investigation, but that this was the first time it had heard such testimony, despite having debriefed troops itself.

Breaking The Silence, an organisation of former soldiers who gather witness accounts from troops in the Palestinian territories, said that its own investigation into Operation Cast Lead, as the war was known in Israel, had revealed a similar picture of the fighting.

“It’s definitely in line with what we are hearing,” said one of the researchers.

Another disturbing element reported by the soldiers was the role of military rabbis in distributing booklets that framed the fighting as a religious war. “All these articles had a clear message: we are the Jewish people, we have come to the land by miraculous means, and now we have to fight to remove the Gentiles who are getting in our way and preventing us from occupying the Holy Land… a great many soldiers had a feeling throughout this operation of a religious war,” said one soldier. continues here

So what will they say those new breed of nationalist, those hoodwinked or worse, will “I support Israel” still display upon their sites, these purported nationalists, will they even now dismiss the murder of civilians by a rogue state, as merely the death of “pakis” of Muslims of nobodies. Will their minds ever turn towards true nationalism or will they forever be blind, in their eyes we must contest only Islam, we must denigrate it, trample it asunder, whilst evil ravages the world.

What if to be nationalist means more, what if the idea of being nationalist meant that all peoples should have our support to preserve and protect their traditions and culture and dare I say genotype, what if to support the beast, the bully and the well financed coward was anti-nationalist. It always was you know, always was until this contrived direction, until this sham and play, until something seized the hair of nationalist leaders heads and propelled them in a given direction, a direction alien to nationalist thought.

Now of course it is the new way, the other way, the purported best way, nationalism must lay down its beliefs for all to walk on them, it must succumb to stupidly and dance to alien tune, it must become something else. Yet if it is to change how can it be nationalism, how can it bear the name, fight under the tag or indeed defend under such a moniker or is it something else a new beast dressed up in other clothes. Today we must hate for hatreds sake, we must turn our attention to who they so define and in doing so we become merely an extension of evil an arm of the beast and nationalist in name only.

What is left then of nationalism, what shards do we hold in our hands, we no longer contest non-white immigration, no longer support the unborn, Israel for all its evil is a friend and it is only Islam that presents threat, such abject stupidity as if true nationalism would die for you so easy, as if the truth that lies in the heart of many men would dim for your new age. Nationalism is waiting, it bides its time, it looks down on the battle awaiting the charge, so much flag waving upon the field, so much chaos created but our line is clear, our sight good and we shall not baulk, shall not flinch, we still stand.

Oh but this new breed is trained so well, so very well, look here not there ,think this not that, this way or the highway, as if vision were but made of words as if comprehension were never sound. When Islam has returned to its milieu what then, what then, freedom and a return to us or the same by other names, when our leaders support a rogue state will the east not still see us target, will support of evil ever bring anything other than death and devastation. Will the shackles fall from the media and our politicians then work for us, will interested parties leave us in peace and liberty hold court or will the iron fist tighten its grip and the world convulse in death.

Your nationalism and mine are of different worlds, mine has always been and yours is at best error, mine supports all peoples, whereas yours bows to other masters, other deities but surely not the people. I bent my knee to nature’s law not to mammon’s charity; I desire true freedom, not piecemeal easiness and the long road to nothing, except perhaps despair. I tell you dear reader past all that populism, past all the wannabe-hard-men, past the fools and fools to be, there is nationalism, true nationalism, motivated by the very soil we stand upon and the blood that runs a course through our veins, so we look on.
There is nothing to see, nothing to challenge the growing evil and so we wait and we grow, awaiting destinies call, perhaps it is too late, perhaps the grip upon us is too much, perhaps the people see nothing and merely our grave awaits but better than that, better than down that road, a road created by puppet-masters whilst they restrain their laugh. Time will tell, time will see, perhaps their game is over the last dice thrown, that is not for us but for the people to decide and so we wait, at least here in the sanctuary of nationalism we know our truth, we realise our desire and we work for it.

I can say that race is primary, that culture is crucial and there can be no waver, yet it is not for us to disparage, to denigrate, to ratchet up tension, to become soldiers for the new order, do you wonder why they hate us when you support that, do you wonder why they head west, heads full of revenge, we are an easier target and we finance that state, prop it up and therefore sanction its crimes. Support Israel, no, never, I am a nationalist and in being a nationalist I cannot sanction nor support the aggressive take-over of another’s land, the slaughter of its people and the trashing of its traditions, it matters not to me that many within Palestine are Islamic, I have no quarrel with the creed as long as it stays peacefully in its home, than I shall not lift a hand.

My quarrel lies with those who would colonise my land, place their alien tradition above mine and leave for my children nothing, so it is not just Islam I contest within this country, better Islam than leftism, better Islam than gulags, than secret police and civilian terror. No there are many creeds that vie to supplant our own, many others that wish us gone, we are hated and feared by many, not least those that play fools each day in the house of treason.

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