Sunday, 25 January 2009


The picture above shows an air-bursting tank or artillery shell above a street in Gaza City. If you look closely you will see that it spreads downwards a chemical incendiary spray of material over an area. The use of white phosphorus as a smoke screen is well established military practice; but using an area incendiary weapon, as above, in a built up area populated by innocent civilians, is barbaric.

I cannot judge the Israeli Armed Forces concerning its methods in Gaza, I hope the UN will look into the matter but as the pictures above illustrate, the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC), are absolutely justified in initiating a relief effort for hundreds of thousands of residents of Gaza to provide drinking water, food and shelter.
Our BBC , together with Sky TV, somehow sees giving air-time to a DEC Appeal for Gaza as 'compromising its impartiality. When was the BBC last impartial in its news reporting?
I am disgusted with the BBC and it will be interesting to see if a 'howl of protest', similar to that concerning Jonathon Ross, will get the BBC to change its indefensible position. Has the BBC forgotten that the Israeli Armed Forces targeted the main UN Relief Depot in Gaza?
If the BBC does not re-consider airing the DEC Gaza Appeal, the funds in Bertie's Piggy Bank to pay my Licence Fee will be diverted to DEC.
Have a good sabbath.


Anonymous said...

The funds in my piggy bank have already gone to the DEC - impartiality at the BBC = you must be joking. Perhaps they are worried that if they show the appeal people will start to question what has gone on and is still going on in Gaza.

Anonymous said...

I'm with you all the way on this one Bertie.

'MR X'

Tony Beachcomber said...

Bertie, at first I thought reading media reports that the Israeli army was ordered to target the rocket launch sites that were firing rockets on Israeli civillians. Now the dust has settled and the media is allowed in, it is so obvious that the Israeli army was odered to wreck the Palestinian economy and inflict maximum damage. I believe the Israeli army is a proffessional army and does as it is ordered often with great efficency as History has prooved . Personally I think the whole military operation was to bring the Gazza strip to its knees before President Obama was sworn in.

Bertie Biggles said...

I think you might be right in that assumption, Tony.

Good on you, 10.55.

I am rather interested in that air-burst picture. Does any-one know of this type of shell being used before and its design? Is it a US designed and supplied ordnance or self-made and being 'trialled' by the Israelis for the first time?

Thanet Observer said...

"Accrding to IHS Jane’s Weapons Technology Analyst commenting on the discussions surrounding the Israeli use of white phosherous agents in Gaza, “The round so far specified as being fired are the M825A1 which is purely an air-burst white phosherous smoke projectile." the analyst said. 'It’s construction and function is highly elaborate and I would say deliberately so to make it inappropriate for anti-personnel use'.

M825A1 shell is not defined as an incendiary weapon by the Third Protocol to the Convention on Conventional Weapons because its principal use is to produce smoke to protect troops.
White Phosphorous weapons banned by the protocol are ground or low level burst weapons designed primarily for anti-personnel use.
The primary function of the M825A1 is for the rapid creation of a highly effective, but short lived visible and infrared smoke screen."

Anonymous said...

BBC director general made a very poor defence of their policy when under pressure from John Humphries this morning, the BBC just doesnt seem to know how to avoid gaffes that's for sure! Perhaps it's indicative of the low levels they have sunk to and unfortunately our national standing as well.
What other country would allow demonstrations in their capital city to bring the whole centre to a stand still for 2 weekends out of 4 this month

Bertie Biggles said...

Thanks for that Thanet Observer.

Anonymous said...

Quite honestly, BBC's coverage of the Gaza situation over the past few weeks is biased enough already to make an appeal by the DEC wholly unnecessary.

I'm glad the Israelis are prepared to stand up to the Arab and Muslim world, they're about the only people who are. After all, the Arab world wouldn't, and doesn't, think twice about wanting to flatten Israel completely at any given opportunity - thus paving the way for many more thousands of unnecessary deaths and casualties, centring around religion - one of the globe's greatest tools of repression and cause of misery.

Bertie Biggles said...

17.45, I think few would argue that Israel does not have the right to self defence. Its cynical operations in Gaza and the resulting humanitarian catastrophe can only be ameliorated by aid and DEC is attempting to do this. The providers of AID involved with DEC are solely concerned with vital relief of suffering. The BBC's sanctimonious and untenable stance on not supporting DEC in its appeal brings shame on the BBC.