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Tuesday, January 06, 2009


Is there a bridge too far?

Will this be it?
Israel Defense Forces tank fire killed up to 40 Palestinians at a United Nations school in the Gaza Strip on Tuesday, medical sources at two hospitals said.
Or this?
Earlier Tuesday, Palestinian medical officials reported that 10 civilians were killed when a shell fired by an Israeli ship hit their house on the Gaza shore.

Officials in Gaza said at least 20 people were killed [in addition to the 40 at the U.N. school] in shelling up and down the strip on Tuesday. Only two of the dead could could be immediately confirmed as militants.
And, just so we're clear on this:
U.N. officials say they provided their location coordinates to Israel's army to ensure that their buildings in Gaza are not targeted.
Unfortunately, as the people in the Al Jazeera offices in Kabul and later in Baghdad found out, that might be exactly the wrong thing to do. And definitely it's no guarantee.

Well, will we hear Barack "there's only one President at a time, well, I mean when it comes to foreign policy, oops, I mean when it comes to foreign policy pertaining to Israel" Obama finally open his mouth on the subject? Will George Bush even utter condolences for the dead, much less condemnation of the perpetrators of this terrorist massacre? How about the Pope? The Security Council? When will we get to the bridge too far?

Update: An absolutely disgusting Israeli military spokesperson on Al Jazeera claims that not only was the U.N. school a target because a mortar had been fired from there, but that the school was booby-trapped and it was those familiar "secondary explosions" which killed the 40 people, not Israeli bombs. She went out of the way to make clear she was not apologizing for anything that happened. Taking its cue, the White House "we don't know all the facts yet."

Update: Barack Obama says he's "deeply concerned" about civilian casualties "in Gaza and Israel." Nothing like that even-handed approach when comparing hundreds of deaths to a handful. And nothing to suggest he plans to do anything to prevent those deaths, not even a call for a ceasefire.

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