Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Garlasco did not change his mind
Despite a report in the Jerusalem Post that Human Rights Watch activist Marc Garlasco changed his mind, the Human Rights Watch website says otherwise. In a dispatch dated June 20, 2006 after meeting with Gen. Klifi Garlasco said “An investigation that refuses to look at contradictory evidence can hardly be considered credible ... The IDF’s partisan approach highlights the need for an independent, international investigation.”

So what happened?

In addition to the IDF investigation, Daled Amos - Hurray For Pallywood--At Gaza Beach - reported that a German newspaper raised a number of significant questions about the filming of the tragedy.
In the footage taped by an IDF drone during the attack, you can see five craters left by IDF artillery shells, but 250 meters away people could also be seen--but no one is seen running away or showing any signs of fear.

Irbad told the German newspaper that paramedics told him about what had happened and took him to the scene--but there are no paramedics on the scene until later in the footage, apparently indicating that Irbad was actually the first on the scene.

And if Irbad was the first one there, why were most bodies covered by sheets--who was there before to cover the bodies?

According to Irbad, that reason that Hadil Ghalia was not injured, is because she was swimming--but the footage he took shows here fully clothed and dry.

The newspaper notes that there is a shot of a man carrying a rifle next to the dead body of Hadil's father--but in earlier footage, the same man can be seen lying on the beach along with the injured.

Irbad's footage shows paramedics in green clothes and a dozen bearded men looking for evidence on the beach--but the question is whether those are Hamas affiliates and why they were preoccupied with collecting evidence instead of helping the injured.

Irbad said the reason he filmed Hadil istead of trying to calm her is that: "She asked me to film her. She wanted to be seen next to her father to show the world the crimes that Israel is committing."--but the newspaper asks, "Did the shocked 10-year-old girl, who had lost her father minutes earlier, give the cameraman direction instructions?"

He also linked to Deja Vu, who quoted from an e-mail sent by Dr. Michael Bayme
Some of you may have been following the tragic story of a Gazan family that was destroyed by some sort of bomb last friday. The world of course chose to blame Israel - without verifying any facts. The fact that Israel immediately accepted all the victims to its hospitals was seen as an admission of guilt, and not as a humanitarian gesture.
There is now incontrovertible proof that Israel did not cause the tragedy - shell fragments extracted from one bomb victim match the types of bombs made by Hamas - and not Israeli artillery shells. How do I know? I received the victim last Sunday (at 2:00 am), operated on her until 5am, and have re-operated every night since. Now she's out of danger, and will survive to rejoin her family.

AbbaGav, by the way is right.

Clearly Garlasco and Human Rights Watch want an independent inquiry. Did Garlasco say one thing in the presence of the Jerusalem Post's reporters to avoid further questioning and then say what was expected of him when he returned to headquarters? Or did the Jerusalem Post get it wrong?

The Washington Post, for its part, suggests that there's been no change in Garlasco's opinion
Also this month, an explosion on a beach in northern Gaza killed eight Palestinian civilians. Palestinian officials and a rights group have said an Israeli artillery shell may have caused the blast. Israel has denied involvement.

While there seems to be a bit more uncertainty "may have caused" is not definite, the "rights group" still seems to contradict Israel's version.

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