Questions on Qana

August 1, 2006

Everyone was shocked by the IDF attack on the Lebanese village of Qana, and sickened by the awful images of dead children being carried from the ruins of the house in which they had sheltered. The event had huge international repercussions. Visibly shaken, Israel’s ambassador to the UN, Danny Gillerman, offered Israel’s apologies to the world. The Lebanese Prime Minister spurned a visit by US Secretary of State Condaleezza Rice. Israel declared a 48-hour moratorium on aerial attacks. The world shook with outrage.

And yet….. there are uncomfortable questions emerging as to what actually happened. Even as I watched the dreadful scenes on CNN, I wondered how the journalists, talking earnestly to the camera while the bodies were being evacuated behind them, had managed to get there so quickly, and why the dead had been left where they lay until the cameras arrived. And if the civilians could not get out because of Israeli blockades, how did the journalists manage to get in so easily?

Now the IDF has identified an unexplained seven-hour gap between the IDF strikes that hit the building and first reports of the building’s actual collapse. They claim to have evidence from their intelligence sources that the building was used to store explosives. They suggest this ordance exploded, and caused the house to collapse. All of which remains to be proved.

IsraelInsider went further yesterday and claimed that the whole thing was staged.

Meanwhile, at EU Referendum, blogger Richard has done some revealing forensic analysis of the pictures that so moved and horrified us.

What really did happen?

I am a supporter of Israel, but not an apologist for it. If a war crime was committed at Qana, the IDF must be held to account for it. But it seems, at the very least, that there was a lot more to this incident than immediately met the eye.

Update: An indication of how this is playing out on the Palestinian part of the blogos is here at Palestinian Pundit (scroll down). And at Sabbah’s Blog.

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