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IDF soldiers tell all about the Gaza War

Whilst Israel is forever extolling its virtues as having the most moral army in the world - both an oxymoron and a blatant lie - the revelations today by IDF soldiers who fought in last year's Gaza War lends more than compelling support to the findings of bodies such as Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, amongst many others, that Israel transgressed international law in the way it went about its relentless attack on an almost defence-less Gaza.

"Testimonies provided by more than 60 Israeli soldiers who fought in last summer’s war in Gaza have raised serious questions over whether Israel’s tactics breached its obligations under international law to distinguish and protect civilians.

The claims – collected by the human rights group Breaking the Silence – are contained in dozens of interviews with Israeli combatants, as well as with soldiers who served in command centres and attack rooms, a quarter of them officers up to the rank of major.

They include allegations that Israeli ground troops were briefed to regard everything inside Gaza as a “threat” and they should “not spare ammo”, and that tanks fired randomly or for revenge on buildings without knowing whether they were legitimate military targets or contained civilians.

In their testimonies, soldiers depict rules of engagement they characterised as permissive, “lax” or largely non-existent, including how some soldiers were instructed to treat anyone seen looking towards their positions as “scouts” to be fired on.

The group also claims that the Israeli military operated with different safety margins for bombing or using artillery and mortars near civilians and its own troops, with Israeli forces at times allowed to fire significantly closer to civilians than Israeli soldiers.

Continue reading this report from The Guardian here.

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