The level of harm to the civilian population is unprecedented. According to the testimony of residents of the Gaza Strip and media reports, military forces are making wanton use of lethal force which has to date caused the deaths of hundreds of uninvolved civilians and destroyed infrastructure and property on an enormous scale. In addition, Israel is also hitting civilian objects, having defined them as “legitimate military targets” solely by virtue of their being “symbols of government.”
Caught in the middle are 1.5 million civilians in extreme humanitarian distress, whose needs are not being adequately met by the limited measures taken by the army. That distress is detailed in the Appendix to this letter. Its main points are as follows:
This press release comes from eight Israeli human rights groups. Because in Israel there are just as many people with their heads screwed on straight as in the rest of the world, who can see what is going on and speak up for human rights. Only a fanatic will go on to demonize them, too.
Also: STATEMENT OF SPECIAL RAPORTEUR FOR THE PALESTINIAN TERRITORIES OCCUPIED SINCE 1967 FOR PRESENTATION TO THE SPECIAL SESSION OF THE HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL ON THE SITUATION IN THE GAZA STRIP, 9 JANUARY 2009
If you need a more neutral source than that, you’re probably a conspiracy theorist. Seriously – if you’re still for this war, or don’t know what it’s about, read this document. It’s easy to read, and not that long. It lays out in very simple and precise terms the nature of the situation.