The expression “self defense” has been twisted beyond recognition (as with many other words and expressions) by zionism and its apologists. Going back to the legal definition, only “reasonable force” should be used to “repel” or “fend off” an attack(er).
We’ve seen so far how (militarily) useless these “rockets” are and how ambiguous, open to manipulation, contradictory and unverifiable the statistics are, but what of the “rockets” themselves?
What Israel uses are militarily superior, high explosive shells. Not crudely made, unguided “rockets” with a fraction of the destructive potential. That’s IF they detonate.
The “Qassam” rocket.
Qassam I. This rocket weighs 77 lbs, has a diameter of 4.5 inches, a length of 6 feet, a maximum range of 1.86 miles, and contains a warhead that weighs 18 pounds. The primary target for this rocket is Sderot and its environs. The Qassam I accounts for most rockets fired to date.
Qassam II. This rocket weighs up to 88 pounds, has a diameter of 4.5 inches, a length of 6 feet, a maximum range of 4.35 miles, and contains a warhead that weighs 8.8 pounds.
Qassam III. This rocket weighs 110 pounds, has a diameter of 4.5 inches, a length of over 8 feet, a maximum range of 6.21 miles, and contains a warhead that weighs 17.6 pounds. The Qassam III has reached Ashkelon and its surrounding areas.
Qassam IV. This rocket weighs 88-110 pounds, has a diameter of 4.5 inches, a length over 8.5 feet, a maximum range of 9 miles or more, and its warhead weighs 22 pounds. The Qassam IV has hit Ashkelon and may travel even farther as technology develops.
There are 2000 pounds in one ton.
Even if we use the maximum weight (22 pounds) of explosive payload (an alleged mix of fertilizer and TNT) in the Qassam IV, in spite of the Jewish Policy Center’s claim that the Qassam I “accounts for most rockets fired to date”, and multiply this by the alleged and unverified “18928 projectiles (of which 6500 were allegedly mortars) fired since 2001” claim (Wikipedia), that means that the absolute maximum weight of (12,338 x 22 pounds of explosive composition =271,436) plus (6,500 x 2 pounds explosive composition = 13000)
[Sources for mortar type and explosive composition : http://militaryedge.org/analysis-articles/countering-gazas-mortars/ and http://www.inetres.com/gp/military/infantry/mortar/81mm.html%5D
That is, a maximum of 284,436 pounds, or 142 tons, of explosives have allegedly been fired from Gaza in to Israel, in 14 years.
Even during the most vicious assaults on Gaza in 2008, 2012 and 2014, if we believe the IDF propaganda on alleged rocket attacks, and average 2-3,000 “rockets” during each of those three years, we reach an exaggerated average figure of 54,250 pounds/27 tons of explosives during each of these most conflictive periods.
2008 — Rockets: 2048 Mortars: 1668
2012 — Rockets: 2256 Mortars: 17
2014 — Rockets: 2800 Mortars: 1700
156,000 + 6770 pounds of explosives = 162,770 / 2000 = 81 tons
[Note: Please remember that these figures are highly inflated, uncorroborated and unverified BUT I’ve taken the maximum figures according to Israeli sources at face value]
We can deduce the exaggerated (maximum) average amount of 27 tons of explosives fired during each of these periods. Around 81 tons in total.
Now let’s look at the reasonable force Israel has used.
“…while Israel did withdraw its military bases from Gaza and redeployed its forces to bases outside of Gaza in 2005, it continues to carry out daily military operations in and attacks on Gaza. According to Defense for Children International – Palestine, during the first year after the disengagement the Israeli military fired over 15,000 shells into Gaza, conducted over 550 airstrikes on Gaza, and carried out regular military incursions into Gaza. A total of 525 Palestinians were killed and 1,527 injured during these attacks. This period included two major military operations. Operation Summer Rains during June 2006 left at least 256 Palestinians dead and 848 injured. At least 85 more Palestinians were killed in Gaza during a November 2006 military offensive which was codenamed Operation Autumn Clouds.
“Human rights group B’tselem, citing the Israeli Shin Bet, notes that nearly 14,000 projectiles (12,000 by Wiki) were (allegedly) fired from Gaza from 2005 to 2013. UN OCHA noted that Israel fired about the same number of artillery shells into Gaza……in 2006 alone.”
“Very early on in Operation Cast Lead, the scale of Israel’s attack became apparent. In just the first six days the Israeli Air Force carried out more than 500 sorties against targets in the Gaza Strip. That amounted to an attack from the air roughly every 18 minutes — not counting hundreds of helicopter attacks, tank and navy shelling, and infantry raids. All of this on a territory similar in size to the US city of Seattle.”
During Cast Lead, 3000 TONS of weaponry was casted on Gaza in only 22 days.(http://nevercastleadagain.wordpress.com/2011/01/05/gaza-police-israel-dropped-over-3000-tons-of-explosives-on-gaza-population)
Of those 3000 Tons, 75 Tons were depleted uranium (http://nuclear-news.net/2010/07/19/75-tons-of-depleted-uranium-in-gaza-following-israeli-attacks)
“Estimates based on partial information from Israeli sources indicate that Israel has fired tens of thousands of artillery shells into Gaza and dropped a bare minimum of six thousand tons of bombs from the air.”
“on 20 July alone, “some 600 explosive artillery shells were shot within one hour” into the eastern Gaza City neighborhood of Shujaiya.”
“The estimated cost of the total ammunition used in Gaza fighting is estimated at about 1.3 billion shekels [$370 million]. According to the army’s figures, 39,000 tank shells, 34,000 artillery shells, and 4.8 million bullets were supplied during the fighting. Senior military figures estimate that land forces alone used at least 60 percent of the 5,000 tons of ammunition given to them, but the IDF [Israeli army] cannot yet evaluate it accurately.”
[Source (in Hebrew): http://www.haaretz.co.il/news/politics/.premium-1.2406551%5D
“If, as reported, 60 percent of the stores were used, that would mean 23,400 tank shells, 20,400 artillery shells and 2.9 million bullets. That is almost two bullets for every man, woman and child in Gaza.”
“But, by at least one account, this is a woeful underestimate. According to the website Israel Defense, citing military sources, the Israeli army fired ‘not fewer than 40,000 155 mm artillery shells’ into Gaza.”
[Source (in Hebrew): http://www.israeldefense.co.il/?CategoryID=483&ArticleID=6821 ]
— Electronic Intifada
“The most common artillery munition Israel employs is the 155 mm M107 high-explosive shell, according to a 2007 Human Rights Watch report titled “Indiscriminate Fire”:
“M107 shells are extremely deadly weapons. The expected lethal radius for a 155 mm high explosive projectile is reportedly between 50 and 150 meters and the expected casualty radius is between 100 and 300 meters. IDF [Israeli army] officials have said that the error radius for a 155 mm shell is usually 25 meters. Therefore, if shells are lobbed as close as 100 meters to populated areas, as allowed under an IDF policy … or even closer, as sometimes happened, it greatly increases the likelihood of civilian casualties.”
When the shells explode they can spread about 2,000 fragments in all directions. Sometimes they fail to explode and “become potentially explosive duds,” according to Human Rights Watch.”
“155 mm shells are generally shot toward an area 50 by 50 meters; hitting anywhere within this area is considered by professionals hitting the target. In densely constructed areas like the Gaza Strip, such an area could include more than five buildings.”
— Electronic Intifada
“According to partial data provided by the army on 29 July, after three weeks of combat (of which 12 days were in the course of ground operation) approximately 30,000 shells had been shot by that time. The ground operation continued for more than one additional week, so we can estimate that the final number of shells shot is significantly higher….An estimate can be made that the total number of artillery shells shot during Protective Edge is more than four times as high as during Cast Lead.”
“Bombs dropped from the air”
On 10 July, the fourth day of Israel’s [current] assault on Gaza, The Jerusalem Post reported, citing a “senior military source”:
Around 800 tons of explosives have been fired by air force jets on targets this week, the source said. The IAF’s [Israel Air Force] current rate of fire is double that of Operation Pillar of Defense, launched in 2012 to stop Hamas rocket fire from Gaza. “We’ll see this trend increasing, as part of our firepower policy,” he said.
On 20 July (2014) in Shujaiya, for example, according to Haaretz, Israeli warplanes carried out “a broad aerial attack that included about 100 one-ton bombs.” That was only in one location; Israeli warplanes were bombing all over Gaza as well.
A maximum, exaggerated and unverified weight of 142 tons of explosives total were allegedly fired from Gaza in line with the supposed “12,338 rockets” and “6,500 mortars” claims over a 14 year period.
During and because of which 32 civilians died on Israeli soil.
Around 27 tons of explosives (maximum) were allegedly fired from Gaza during each of the most conflictive periods (2008, 2012 and 2014)
In ONE YEAR alone, 2005-2006, 15,000 shells were fired in to Gaza by Israel, along with 550 airstrikes. A total of 525 Palestinians were killed and 1,527 were injured.
Within a 22 DAY period in (Dec) 2008 – (Jan) 2009, Israel dropped 3000 TONS of explosives, 75 of which contained depleted uranium, in to Gaza.
So, in this 22 day period in 2008, 21 times more TONS of (higher, more deadly and far more toxic) explosives were launched by Israel in to a very densely populated area, void of shelters, than in 14 YEARS of ALLEGED Palestinian projectiles.
According to Haaretz, in 2014 alone, a “bare minimum” of “6000 TONS” of bombs were dropped on Gaza by aircraft ALONE.
More than “800 tons” of explosives were boasted by the Israeli military to have been dropped on Gaza during the first WEEK of the 2014 slaughter.
An average of 200 TONS of explosives, over 1.5 times the alleged total tonnage of explosives fired from Gaza over 14 YEARS was being fired by Israel PER DAY.
During the same period “not fewer than 40,000 155 mm artillery shells” were fired in to Gaza AND an estimated 23,400 tank shells (according to “senior Israeli military figures” and their official website “Israel Defense”)
So within a four to five week period in 2014, 42 times the tonnage of 14 years of alleged Palestinian projectiles AND an extra almost FOUR times as many land and sea based explosive projectiles were fired as the much touted “19,000 projectiles” mantra.
A prime example of how crass and absurd it is to compare Palestinian projectiles to Israeli weaponry, technology and advantage is the “600 projectiles per civilian fatality on Israeli soil” scenario (whereby the alleged “19000 projectiles” in 14 years have killed 32). Compare this to the 600 artillery shells that were dropped in ONE HOUR IN the eastern Gaza City neighborhood of Shujaiya on July 20 2014. One hundred ONE TON bombs were also dropped from aircraft that same day within that same area. NINETY Palestinians were wiped out, property destroyed and hundreds injured
[Sources: http://www.haaretz.co.il/news/politics/.premium-1.2406918 http://www.democracynow.org/2014/9/12/the_untold_story_of_the_shejaiya ]
“In one of the most severely hit areas, Khuzaa and al-Qarara in the southeastern Gaza Strip, the UN counted 2,493 destroyed structures, 1,243 severely damaged structures and 2,014 impact craters.”
[Source: http://www.haaretz.co.il/news/politics/.premium-1.2406918 ]
How can Palestinian projectiles and this wanton ferocity of high tech Israeli technology and the sheer SCALE of it possibly be placed on the same level? How can they be compared?
[Between July and August 2014] in 72 incidents of bombing or shelling [on 72 houses where entire families were sheltering]…547 people were killed, including 125 women under the age of 60, 250 minors, and 29 people over the age of 60.
In one single “incident” on 29th July 2014, 35 people, of which 20 were children and 8 women belonging to four families gathered under one roof were wiped out in a MOMENT. More than the number of civilian fatalities on Israeli soil (32) killed in FOURTEEN YEARS.
Given the massive numbers listed above for just a few of the most conflictive periods, how many tons of explosives have been dropped on Gaza since 2001? How many projectiles?
THERE IS NO COMPARISON!