U.S. Covers for and Defends Israel’s Mass Murder of Civilians

December 11, 2023

Permalink: https://revcom.us/en/us-covers-and-defends-israels-mass-murder-civilians

The U.S. is fully backing, funding and supporting Israel’s genocidal slaughter against the Palestinian people in Gaza. Almost 18,000 Palestinians have been officially counted as dead and 7,000 reported missing, many if not most buried under rubble from Israeli bombing.

While Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, or better called Netan-Nazi, openly upholds mass murder of civilians, Genocide Joe Biden and his criminal accomplices in the U.S. government lightly condemn—and even try to distance themselves from—the wanton murder of civilians, even as they lie about what’s actually happening. 

This week, in a press conference which discussed ongoing military backing of Israel, Biden’s National Security Council Coordinator for Strategic Communications, John Kirby, said, “We don’t want to see any more civilians harmed…” But that “it is not the Israeli Defense Forces’ strategy to kill innocent people. It’s happening; I admit that…. But it’s not like the Israelis are sitting around every morning and saying, ‘Hey, how many more civilians can we kill today? Let’s go bomb a—let’s go bomb a school or a hospital or a residential building and just—and cause civilian casualties.’ They’re not doing that. They’re trying to go after Hamas.”

First of all, on the face of it, you don’t lock 2.3 million people into a small enclosed area, cut off access to food, water and fuel and then bomb the shit out of it without consciously intending to murder civilians. This is the situation in Gaza—with people having nowhere to flee to.

But, even more, it turns out that’s EXACTLY what they do. Killing Palestinian civilians IS part of Israel’s fighting doctrine. 

Sources: Israel Foreign Ministry, AP

A recent article, “A mass assassination factory”: Inside Israel’s calculated bombing of Gaza, documents how Israel classifies private residences as well as public buildings, and high-rise apartment buildings as so-called “power targets.” Intelligence and military insiders told the author of the article that the point is “mainly intended to harm Palestinian civil society: to ‘create a shock’ that, among other things, will reverberate powerfully and ‘lead civilians to put pressure on Hamas.’”

In other words, precisely: “Let’s go bomb a school or a hospital or a residential building and just cause civilian casualties” to maim, murder, and terrorize the civilian population as part of Israel’s war-fighting doctrine.

As for Israel “trying to go after Hamas” (when blowing up schools, hospitals, and residential buildings), as Kirby claims, the article includes inside “whistle-blower” exposure of how essentially fabricating “evidence” of Hamas activity as an excuse to bomb these “power targets” is unwritten but real policy.1 That mass murdering, baby-and-child-killing bombing of Gaza under the pretext of targeting Hamas is exactly Israeli military doctrine. The article includes this from a source in or formerly in the Israel air force or “intelligence” structure:

Palestinian houses destroyed on the fifth day of temporary ceasefire, Gaza City, November 28, 2023.    Photo: AP

“We are asked to look for high-rise buildings with half a floor that can be attributed to Hamas,” said one source who took part in previous Israeli offensives in Gaza. “Sometimes it is a militant group’s spokesperson’s office, or a point where operatives meet. I understood that the floor is an excuse that allows the army to cause a lot of destruction in Gaza. That is what they told us.

“If they would tell the whole world that the offices of Islamic Jihad, [another Islamic fundamentalist group in Gaza] on the 10th floor are not important as a target, but that its existence is a justification to bring down the entire high-rise with the aim of pressuring civilian families who live in it in order to put pressure on terrorist organizations, this would itself be seen as terrorism. So they do not say it,” the source added. [emphasis added]

The author of this article, Yuval Abraham, has written for the influential Israeli newspaper Haaretz and The Nation magazine and has been interviewed on Democracy Now!, and The Intercept. He and a Palestinian colleague were profiled in a piece at the BBC titled “The writers who reached out across the divide,” a profile that includes the fact that his reporting, as a Jewish Israeli inside Israel, has made him the target of threats.

The assertions in his article that bombing “power targets” with no connection or only the most tenuous connections to Hamas is policy (even if not formally written down) are confirmed by documented massacres of civilians in Gaza after October 7. Several of those massacres are detailed in an October 20, 2023 report from Amnesty International, Damning evidence of war crimes as Israeli attacks wipe out entire families in Gaza. That article describes instances where apartment buildings were bombed, and the inhabitants (including in one case a baby) were murdered, where the Israeli military claimed the target was Hamas-related but where there was no conceivable connection to Hamas.

The Biggest Terrorists on the Planet

After the 9/11 attacks, the U.S. attorney general defined terrorism as “premeditated, politically motivated violence against noncombatant targets.”

No decent person can look at the blood-soaked siege of Gaza without recognizing this for what it is—the murder of men, women, babies, journalists, poets and doctors… the bombing of hospitals, schools, refugee camps, mosques, bakeries and more. This is terrorism on an industrial scale.

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1. For important perspective on the significance of, and challenge to people within or with connections to official institutions who are exposing and opposing Israel’s crimes against humanity in Gaza, see An Open Letter to the People of Conscience Within the U.S. Government’s Institutions Protesting the U.S.-Backed Israeli Slaughter of Palestinians by Annie Day). [back]