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Sunday, June 11, 2006

More evidence Israel not behind shelling on the beach

Arutz Sheva is reporting more evidence that Israel was not behind the shelling on the beach Friday night and that the 'Palestinians' did it to themselves:
More than 24 hours after the deaths, the winds started to change. Peretz himself said last night that indications are that the fatal shells were fired by Arabs of the PA. Brig.-Gen. Aviv Kokhavi, Commander of the Gaza Formation, said that the Palestinians were not cooperating in the investigation of the incident, and that the data gathered at that point showed that it could well be that the seven were killed by Arab-fired mortar shells.

Some of the evidence shows that the incident on the beach occurred 15 minutes after Israel stopped firing shells. In addition, none of the shells fired at the northern Gaza Strip were directed at the area in which the people were killed.

Under investigation is the possibility that a misfired Kassam rocket was responsible. A significant proportion of Kassams fired by the Palestinian terrorists land in Gaza or otherwise miss their mark, and in fact one landed in a Gaza refugee camp just yesterday afternoon, wounding several Arabs.

Government press spokesman Raanan Gissin had strong criticism of the government figures' reactions:

"Unfortunately, we are repeating the same mistakes we made in the past, in the way in which we deal with incidents like this, such as that of Muhammed Al-Dura." That incident involved a 12-year-old boy who was killed near Netzarim at the beginning of the Oslo War in late 2000; Israel quickly apologized, and when it later became clear that he was probably killed by Arab fire, the public relations damage to Israel had already been done.

Gissin continued,

"Brig.-Gen. Kokhavi said this is a battle scene, but I don't think so. This is a crime scene, in which the Palestinians rule and from which they removed all the evidence - while on our side, no one even raised the slightest doubt that perhaps it wasn't us who had done it."

"I think that there should have been lessons learned from previous incidents," continued Gissin, who may be leaving his position after five years on the job. "The highest levels should immediately have made it publicly clear that it wasn't at all sure that we did it, and that other scenarios were likely. I ask a very simply question: Why did the Palestinians, who rule the area now, so quickly remove all the evidence from the scene?"

The army has fired "thousands of shells" in the area of late, Gen. Kokhavi said: "We fired towards open areas [and] towards the ruins of [the former Jewish community] Dugit, an area which is routinely used for rocket launching. The Palestinian population was warned to steer clear of this area."
Read the whole thing.


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