Amnesty International: Rocket and mortar attacks by Palestinian armed groups is unlawful and deadly

  • mwolverine

    Posts: 3386

    Apr 02, 2015 5:30 AM GMT
    Unlawful and deadly: Rocket and mortar attacks by Palestinian armed groups during the 2014 Gaza/Israel conflict
    http://www.amnesty.org.uk/sites/default/files/unlawful_and_deadly_web_1.pdf

    Over the years, rockets and mortars launched by Palestinian armed groups have also killed Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip, including children.3 According to media reports, a three-year-old Palestinian girl was killed, and several of her family members injured, by a Palestinian rocket that landed in Beit Lahiya on 24 June 2014, two weeks before the hostilities erupted into full-scale war.

    In some attacks investigated by Amnesty International, researchers have found that the deaths or injuries of Palestinian civilians in Gaza were most likely caused by indiscriminate munitions fired by Palestinian armed groups.

    Between early 2005 and the start of Operation Protective Edge, the Israeli human rights organization B’Tselem, which has fieldworkers in Gaza, documented the deaths of 11 Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip, eight of them children, due to rockets fired by Palestinian armed groups, but the true figure may well be higher.

    In addition to firing thousands of rockets and mortars in violation of international humanitarian law, as detailed in this report, Hamas forces also summarily killed at least 23 people in the Gaza Strip who allegedly “collaborated” with Israel. Amnesty International condemned these killings during the conflict,19 and collected testimonies to document them following the cessation of hostilities. They will be the subject of a forthcoming report.

    Palestinian armed groups do appear to have aimed some mortars at military objectives. Mortars have a shorter range (of 3km to 10km) than rockets, but are still an imprecise weapon and must therefore NEVER be used to target military objectives located amidst civilians or civilian objects. The longer the range, the more inaccurate the mortar round, but numerous other variables including the stability of the weapon system, calculation of trajectory and charge conditions can also affect accuracy. Even in the hands of a highly experienced and trained operator, a mortar round can NEVER be accurate enough to hit a specific point target. Hence, when mortars are used with the intent of striking military targets located in the vicinity of civilian concentrations, but strike civilians or civilian objects instead, they constitute indiscriminate attacks. Indiscriminate attacks that kill or injure civilians constitute serious violations of international humanitarian law and are war crimes.

    Throughout the conflict, and in particular during the final week, Palestinian armed groups fired numerous mortars with a range of 6-8km in the direction of Israeli towns located near the border with Gaza.

    As already mentioned, ALL the rockets used by Palestinian armed groups, with ranges varying from 10km to 160km, are unguided projectiles that cannot be directed at specific targets. In other words, these weapons cannot be accurately aimed in a manner that distinguishes between military objectives and civilian objects, as required by international humanitarian law; they are inherently indiscriminate and using them is likely to injure and kill civilians and damage civilian objects. International humanitarian law prohibits the use of weapons that are by nature indiscriminate. Using prohibited weapons is a war crime.

    It appears that in many cases throughout the 2014 hostilities Palestinian armed groups launched both rockets and mortars in the general direction of residential centres in towns surrounding the Gaza Strip and cities in southern and central Israel. The al-Qassam Brigades, the military wing of Hamas, issued statements throughout the hostilities, in some cases several times a day, claiming responsibility for rocket and mortar attacks directed at specific Israeli communities.33 These statements, most of which specified the time of each attack, the community (or in rarer cases, the military base) targeted, and the munition used indicate that these attacks were directed at civilians or civilian objects. The al-Quds Brigades, affiliated with Islamic Jihad, issued similar statements about their attacks on populated areas in Israel.

    When rocket or mortar attacks are intended to strike homes, civilian infrastructure or civilians, they are direct attacks on civilians or civilian objects. Such attacks constitute serious violations of international humanitarian law and are war crimes.
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 3386

    Apr 02, 2015 1:11 PM GMT
    Compare and contrast to the propaganda of AyaTrolLiar pouncer:

    AyaTrolLiar> I support occupied peoples' right to armed resistance

    AyaTrolLiar> violence in the cause of national liberation, by peoples forcibly denied the right to self-determination, is not illegal under international law

    While Amnesty International unequivocally condemns such violence as "serious violations of international human rights law" and as "war crimes", the AyaTrolLiar pouncer prefers to embrace Hamas and other Arab terrorist groups. Thus again exposing that he's not really motivated by the faux highfalutin principles he invokes but rather (in the familiar reversal of the scientific method) he lives to twist anything he can for the cause.


    It gets worse. While Amnesty International specifies the constraints within which the Israel Defense Forces must operate:

    AyaTrolLiar> violence for the purpose of defeating such a ["national liberation"] struggle unequivocally is [illegal].

    By which he means that the IDF cannot, in any way, shape or form, counter the illegal violence directed at Israel and its civilians. They need to be "good Jews" and just sit there and take it. Maybe even "get out and go 'back' to Europe"?

    AyaTrolLiar> Foreign occupiers have no "rights", only responsibilities - namely to leave and not let the door hit them in the ass on the way out.

    Just how mentally deranged and sick with hate must one be to say such things out loud?
    It is zealotry like the Phelps klan (of "God Hates Fags" infamy).
    He is the victim of his own propaganda. He has fooled no one but himself.

    The proof will be forthcoming. If the AyaTrolLiar even responds here (trolls like him avoid specific threads, preferring to raise and rehash their nonsense in numerous other threads), it will be to raise allegations of Israeli wrong-doing as diversions.

    What he will not do is concede that ALL rocket fire by Palestinian terrorist groups (including Hamas) is NEVER legal and is a war crime.

    He won't question the sanity of launching these rockets. As he says, they have killed and injured a relatively few Israelis let alone Jews. As if these are thus acceptable war crimes.

    AI notes that these rockets have directly killed more Gazans than people in Israel. When the rockets start coming in the hundreds and Israel responds with force (as is its right, as AI confirms), there are many more casualties.

    What purpose then do these rockets achieve? What ghastly cost/benefit analysis would propel anyone to continue firing them?

    People like the AyaTrolLiar only pretend to care for the Palestinian Arabs because the enemy of their enemy (Jews) is their friend. They would gladly sacrifice all the Palestinian Arabs in their war against Israel/Jews. What then is a few dozen, hundreds or thousands in an effort to vilify Israel?
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 3386

    Apr 03, 2015 6:46 AM GMT
    Elsewhere, of course:

    AyaTrolLiar> "rocket" attacks that killed no one, carried out by an occupied and besieged people in the cause of a defensive war

    ROTFL.
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 3386

    Apr 03, 2015 2:27 PM GMT
    Can anyone explain how shooting rockets at civilians is "defensive"?
    How is blowing up buses, markets, cafes, hotels, restaurants and discos "defensive"?

    As if Hamas and other terrorist organizations (or the AyaTrolLiar) are even interested in peace?

    The two-state solution: Revisiting the Clinton Compromise Parameters and the Olmert Plan.
    http://www.realjock.com/gayforums/2670812

    See also:

    Hamas war crime: using Gazans as human shields
    http://www.realjock.com/gayforums/1736068

    Free Gaza from what truly afflicts it: Hamas
    http://www.realjock.com/gayforums/973888

    A sad reminder that AyaTrolLiar pouncer's priority, his motivation, isn't the welfare of Gazans but to "punish" Israel/Jews.
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 3386

    Apr 05, 2015 8:56 PM GMT
    It's funny that too scared to post here, the AyaTrolLiar pouncer spammed an article (from a highly biased source) as a new thread. The author is not an expert on international law and evidently didn't even think through his own arguments.

    He starts out by criticizing not just Amnesty International and HRW for calling out Hamas for its egregious war crimes, but for stopping short of accusing Israel of the same. Then, trying to prove that Israel targeted civilians, this:

    || If, however, Israel’s “precision attacks” killed civilians in the absence of any military objective, did these not precisely constitute war crimes? “Israel launched 1,800 air raids in one of the most densely populated areas of Gaza,” Raji Sourani, the respected human rights lawyer and founder of the Palestinian Center for Human Rights, observed. “It is a shame that Israel and the international community allow this to happen. These are war crimes, just as simple as that.”

    Let's help him out with a couple of ridiculous assumptions:

    1) 0 Gazans were killed by ground forces.
    2) Israel in 50 days of fighting didn't manage to kill a single terrorist.

    Given these ridiculous assumptions, that's about 1 casualty per air raid - in "one of the most densely populated areas of Gaza".

    Now let's move away from those ridiculous assumptions.

    In previous battles, it eventually turned out that the majority of casualties were terrorists:

    Hamas admits it lied about Casualties
    http://www.realjock.com/gayforums/1217613

    Prior to the ground war, the propagandists criticized the air strikes, egging on a ground war (because then some Israeli Jews and their Arab "collaborators" would get killed. That it would be a 10:1 or 100:1 ratio was known, but it didn't matter how many Gazans died as long as some Jews did, too).

    Once the ground war started, despite the contradiction, their shrieking intensified that of course there would be more civilian casualties if there were pitched fighting in the streets.

    So let's take them at their last word and assume that 2/3rds of casualties resulted from the ground war and only 1/3rd from those 1,800 air strikes.

    So now it's only about 1 casualty every 3rd strike, and if we assume that even only half the casualties were terrorists, then it's only 1 civilian casualty every 6th air strike.

    Does anyone believe that the Israeli Air Force, one of the best in the world, is so inept it can't shoot fish in a barrel 5 out of 6 times and only averages 1 civilian kill on the 6th time?

    Clearly the IAF/IDF were NOT targeting civilians, even if some were killed.
    To the contrary, they were doing an excellent job avoiding civilians.
    (Else the death toll would be in the scores of thousands.)

    Why were some killed? Why were there pitched battles in "the most densely populated areas of Gaza"? From near (and within!) hospitals and schools? Because that is precisely where Hamas concentrated its forces and munitions (seeking to lure the IDF into traps amidst the population, into its internal network of tunnels), with no concern for its own people! In fact, using them - en masse - as human shields.

    And not a peep from the AyaTrolLiar, who again shows he hates Jews more than he cares for Gazans.

  • mwolverine

    Posts: 3386

    Apr 06, 2015 1:38 AM GMT
    Human Rights Watch reached similar conclusions back in 2009:

    http://www.hrw.org/pt/node/84867/section/2

    HRW> Hamas and other Palestinian armed groups have frequently violated the laws of war by firing rockets from within populated areas.

    http://www.hrw.org/es/node/84867/section/7

    HRW> parties to a conflict violate the laws of war when they fail to take all feasible precautions to avoid placing forces, weapons, and ammunition within or near densely populated areas. Deliberately using civilians to deter attacks on military targets amounts to “human shielding,” which is a war crime.
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 3386

    Apr 09, 2015 2:23 PM GMT
    Trolls like pouncer tend to avoid focused discussions, preferring to spam their already discredited nonsense and lies elsewhere.
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 3386

    Apr 10, 2015 5:19 AM GMT
    And while trolls like pouncer quote non-experts who write unreviewed opinions on biased hacktivist web-sites, I can quote from articles written by international experts (in the field) appearing in international law journals:

    Excerpts below are from an article in the San Diego International Law Journal (Volume 11, Number 1, Fall 2009, 5.).
    The article has 11 pages of end notes - longer than some opinion (shmopinion) exercises.

    || The Palestinian attacks violate one of the most basic rules of international humanitarian law: the rule of distinction, which requires combatants to aim all their attacks at legitimate targets - enemy combatants or objects that contribute to enemy military actions.17 Violations of the rule of distinction - attacks deliberately aimed at civilians or protected objects as such - are war crimes.18

    || One of the corollaries of the rule of distinction is a ban on the use of weapons that are incapable, under the circumstances, of being properly aimed only at legitimate targets.19

    || The rockets and projectile weapons being used by the Palestinian attackers are primitive weapons that cannot be aimed at specific targets and must be launched at the center of urban areas. This means that the very use of the weapons under current circumstances violates international law

    || Consequently, each one of the 6,000 attacks by Palestinian terrorists on civilian targets in Israeli towns is a war crime. Both the terror squads carrying out the attacks, as well as their commanders, bear criminal responsibility for these war crimes. Indeed, criminal responsibility for these crimes extends up the chain of command to the most senior officials in the terror groups who have approved these rocket attacks.

    || The Palestinian attacks, because they are intended to kill or seriously injure civilians in order to intimidate a population, are also terrorist acts within the scope of the International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism.22

    || The Palestinian attacks must also be seen as terrorist attacks under a related international convention: the International Convention for the Suppression of Terrorist Bombings. This convention makes it a crime to bomb public places (such as city streets) with the intent to kill civilians.

    || Palestinian authorities in Gaza also violate anti-terrorism provisions of international law by providing a safe haven for Palestinian terrorists. UN Security Council Resolution 1566, which was adopted by authority of Chapter VII of the UN Charter and is therefore binding international law for all states, requires states to deny safe haven to “any person who supports, facilitates, participates or attempts to participate in the financing, planning, preparation or commission of terrorist acts or provides safe havens.”25 Similarly, Security Council Resolution 1373, also a Chapter VII resolution, requires states to “deny safe haven to those who finance, plan, support, or commit terrorist acts, or provide safe havens.”26 Together, these documents establish that, under international law, providing safe haven for terrorists is itself a criminal terrorist act. Thus, all Palestinian governing authorities in Gaza, whether directly involved in terror attacks or not, are criminal terrorists under international law, by virtue of their willing provision of safe haven for terrorists.

    || At the same time, it is clear that Palestinian actions in conducting military operations from within built-up civilian areas, thereby increasing Palestinian casualties, constitute war crimes. It is important to note that Israel is not required to refrain from attacking Palestinian combatants simply because they have chosen to hide behind civilians. As Article 28 of the Fourth Geneva Convention makes clear, the presence of civilians “may not be used to render certain points or areas immune from military operations.”76 The article also makes Palestinian attempts to use civilian shields unlawful.
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 3386

    Apr 13, 2015 12:41 AM GMT
    What is the value of personal attacks from someone who is on record saying that "lies for the cause" are morally right, no different from telling "white lies"?
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 3386

    Apr 13, 2015 12:42 AM GMT
    What's the matter, Samer, can't address the topic of this thread?!

    Is it OK for terrorists in Gaza to launch rockets or should they refrain from doing so because:

    S1. Targeting Israeli civilians is morally wrong and a violation of international law.

    S2. Firing rockets from densely populated areas endangers the Gazans living there, who are are human shields (or cannon fodder) when Israel shoots back.

    S3. Misfired rockets can and do land in Gaza, killing Gazan civilians.
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 3386

    Apr 14, 2015 3:01 PM GMT
    Elsewhere, of course, AyaTrolLiar pouncer quotes John Dugard.

    But note the trickery: he quotes Dugard - who does not legitimize rocket attacks - and then mixes in a quote from a non-expert (prefaced only with something like "as quoted in the OP") to make it appear that Dugard endorses the heresy that "resisting" an "occupation" legitimizes the use of illegal weapons and tactics and permits attacks targeting civilians.

    Asked to comment specifically about the Amnesty International report referenced in this thread, Dugard said:

    || There is clear evidence that... Palestinian factions... have committed war crimes

    Now that his own expert disputes his warped thesis, will pouncer modify his model to fit the facts or will he persist with his reversal of the scientific method confirming he arrived at his premises (masquerading as "conclusions") not through reason but via hate?
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 3386

    Apr 29, 2015 5:38 AM GMT
    SDH> I believe Hamas existed today because the root of Israeli occupation.

    Nonsense. Hamas is the Palestinian Arab branch of the Muslim Brotherhood, founded in 1928.
    Two decades prior to Israel's existence.

    Hamas rose to infamy in the 1990s.
    Not for "resisting" the Israeli "occupation", but for trying to blow up the then-current peace process.


    SDH> I don't support Hamas

    That's not credible when you fail to disagree with AyaTrolLiar pouncer, who embraces and supports Hamas.


    SDH> Any attack against civilians (both sides) are wrong

    False equivalence given that the IDF, like US forces, does NOT target civilians.

    If you truly believe what you pretend to say (lip service), why hide behind such false equivalences rather than unequivocally condemn them?

    Why no disagreement with AyaTrolLiar pouncer who claims that attacks on Jewish Israeli civilians are legitimate "resistance"?

    Indeed, in his thread you contradict your statement above and say:

    SDH> Pouncer, why don't you post that in our Pro-Palestinian Library FB group page too?

    Surely you didn't suggest that because you believe it's wrong, eh?

  • mwolverine

    Posts: 3386

    Apr 29, 2015 11:55 AM GMT
    SDH> Hamas was founded in 1987

    At least you're no longer lying that Israel supported Hamas in the 1970s.


    SDH> Don't compare IDF with US military.

    The US and Israeli military run on similar principles, rules of engagement and codes of conduct.
    Last I heard pouncer considered US forces worse than Israeli forces.


    Back to this topic, AyaTrolLiar pouncer says that Hamas has the right to attack Israeli civilians.
    You claim to disagree.
    But in his thread you supported him?
    Feh!
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 3386

    May 01, 2015 9:33 PM GMT
    Samer, please state your position clearly and unequivocally:

    Does the Palestinian Arab "resistance" have the "right" to attack CIVILIANS in Israel?

    Yes or No?

    When Palestinian Arab terrorists target and kill civilians - be it by suicide bombings, individual stabbings or rocket attacks - is that murder or legitimate "resistance"?
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 3386

    May 27, 2015 2:58 PM GMT
    samylicious said1. violence is not an answer.

    2. Any attack against [targeting] civilians (both sides) are wrong.

    I agree.
    Anyone other than the warmonger AyaTrolLiar pouncer disagree?
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 3386

    Jun 18, 2015 2:25 AM GMT
    Pierre Krahenbuhl, the Commissioner-General of UNRWA:

    || I was the only high level international official to denounce the rocket fire to Israel, and not from a place where it is comfortable to speak from like Jerusalem or Geneva, but from inside Gaza itself. I can testify about myself that I take international law very seriously, and if I know rockets are purposely being fired at areas where civilians can be hurt, then I will condemn it.