Monday, January 5, 2009

10 Days of War

An Israeli shell explodes in the air above Gaza releasing phosphorus flares

When I saw the above picture I assumed that this was an IDF weapon designed to illuminate the battlefield enabling Israeli soldiers to target Hamas fighters in close quarter warfare. But then I saw footage of the weapon being used during the day. Then it occurred to me on seeing the gradual affect of the exploded shell that its purpose was in fact the opposite, to create a smokescreen for Israeli troops and tanks. That makes sense I thought that the IDF would want to do this to an exposed open area they are about to enter. However last night I came across several reports, some in the main stream media but most in the blogosphere that suggest these phosphorus flare are highly toxic and can lead to all sorts of ugly outcomes to civilians exposed to them. I do not know if this is accurate but would appreciate it if there is anyone out there who can offer any insight into this. If true it would be outrageous for such a weapon to be used in Gaza, such a densely populated strip of land.

Palestinians flee an Israeli air strike in Gaza

In the meantime fighting continues to rage on the tenth day of war although I do not believe it has reached its maximum level of intensity. This is probably because Hamas fighters have not yet succeeded in drawing the IDF into Gaza city itself. It is in the tunnels, houses and alleyways of the city that Hamas likely feel they can inflict real damage. At this moment it appears that the IDF have surrounded the city but not yet penetrated it. They have opted to cut Gaza in three parts preventing the different cells from interacting. Unfortunately it is difficult to get any more accurate information as foreign journalists have been banned from the strip. I will continue to do my best. Look out for tomorrows post where I have decided to get off the fence for once and tell my readers what I really think of this war. It will probably be entitled "Where I stand".

The only other point I want to mention briefly is that the Israeli media are reporting that additional reservists are being called up and that the Israeli air force have stepped up patrols of Israel's northern border with Lebanon in case Hezbollah try to take advantage of the situation. As if this thing couldn't be any more of a catastrophe.

4 comments:

J Mc said...

I think it was a Banger Leddy.

Check out Picture 8 at http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/in_pictures/7812928.stm . Can you Tell me the significance of this or is it just a copy cat tactic of Muntadar al-Zaidi, aka my Hero?

Ted Leddy said...

Howya John Boy

Well spotted. I don't think there is any major significance to it. Just as you say a tribute to the shoe lobbing Iraqi. I was at the Protest outside the Israeli embassy earlier this evening. There were lots of guys holdings longs stickts with a shoe on top. Gas really. But the shoe in this picture takes the biscuit. Imagine tring to hurl that.

J Mc said...

I bet your thanking your Lucky stars you didn't get that certain job not so long ago. Try and put a brave face on this one.

I heard an Israeli lady on the radio commenting on the bombing of the School. She blamed Hamas for putting Civilians there....I mean Come on Lady, you having a Laugh, you expect that to wash. It made me severly angry indeed I must say.

Ted Leddy said...

I hear ya John. But I would still take that job if offered. As you will see in my later post today I am angered at the Israeli conduct of this war. However I am also disgusted by some of the rantings by some prominant Irish people who are bringing into question the whole concept of an Israeli state.

That being said, the incident at the UN school yesterday was horrific beyond belief. The "Hamas are hiding behind civilians" argument, which I buy to a certian extent, is beginning to sound ridiculous.