Sunday, July 30, 2006

Qana Massacre - repeat 

April 1996 | July 2006

NOW: (Israeli occupation of Lebanon)
Jul. 30, 2006 9:53 | Updated Jul. 30, 2006 11:19
Report: Rice cancels visit to Lebanon after Qana attack

US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has reportedly cancelled her visit to Lebanon after an IAF strike in the village of Qana in which sixty people were killed. On Sunday morning, IAF fighter jets bombed the southern Lebanese town, destroying several houses in which dozens of people were trapped, Israel Radio reported.

Nearly half the victims were reported to be children.

THEN: (Israeli occupation of Lebanon)
Qana shelling

Memorial to the victimsThe Qana shelling took place on April 18, 1996 in Qana, a village located southeast of Tyre, Lebanon. Qana is one possible site for the Biblical Cana, where Jesus is said by John 2 to have turned water into wine. Amid heavy fighting between the Israeli Defense Forces and Hezbollah during "Operation Grapes of Wrath" a Fijian UNIFIL compound in the village was shelled by Israeli artillery. Around 800 Lebanese civilians had taken refuge there to escape the fighting, of whom 106 were killed and around 116 others injured. Four UNIFIL soldiers were also seriously injured. [1][2] The event has sometimes been referred to as the Qana massacre, for example by Human Rights Watch[3] and the BBC.[4]


UNIFIL = United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon

Operation Grapes of wrath

Meahnwhile: Operation "Samson's Pillars"

********** addendum July 30, 2006 **********

The Deadly Secret that led to Bloodbath at Qana
By Robert Fisk - THE INDEPENDENT 01st June 1996

Tyre -- An Israeli army operation to plant booby-trap bombs inside the United Nations zone in southern Lebanon led to the Qana massacre last month in which well over 100 Lebanese civilians were killed by Israeli shells while sheltering in a UN base. It now emerges that the Israeli "patrol" which came under mortar fire from Hizbollah guerrillas on 18 April -- the incident which led to the Qana bloodbath -- had been tasked to leave plastic explosive charges and mines near the village of Henniyeh, about five miles from Qana. The UN's official report, which suggested that the Israeli massacre of civilians was deliberate, quoted Brigadier General Dan Harel, the commander of the Israeli army's artillery corps, as saying that an Israeli patrol, whose location was not given, had come under mortar fire from the Qana area and that at least one round landed 40m from the Israeli troops. What had not hitherto been revealed was the task the Israeli soldiers had been engaged in, north of their occupation area and inside the UN zone, when they came under fire. A similar and even more complicated field of plastic mines and booby traps was left by Israeli soldiers close to the village of Bradchit in the UN's Irish battalion area at around the same time.

Shortly after the Israeli bombardment ended, it now transpires, Israeli officers met UN ordnance officers and handed them detailed maps of the booby traps and mines they had planted. Polish troops subsequently defused the booby traps at Henniyeh on a hilltop from which Katyusha rockets had been fired in the past, although the Irish army took longer to complete its disposal of the Bradchit minefield. What has caused particular concern to UN personnel is that it was a roadside bomb in the village of Bradchit that killed a Lebanese teenager last month, an explosion which prompted the Hizbollah to blame Israel and fire Katyushas across the border into Galilee in retaliation. [ full story - see link above ]


Massacre in Sanctuary; Eyewitness
By Robert Fisk - 19th April, 1996

Qana-South Lebanon: the place where the Israeli shells killed 102 people, mostly women and children, taking refuge in a United Nations headquarters on April 18, 1996.

Qana, southern Lebanon - It was a massacre. Not since Sabra and Chatila had I seen the innocent slaughtered like this. The Lebanese refugee women and children and men lay in heaps, their hands or arms or legs missing, beheaded or disembowelled. There were well over a hundred of them. A baby lay without a head. The Israeli shells had scythed through them as they lay in the United Nations shelter, believing that they were safe under the world's protection. Like the Muslims of Srebrenica, the Muslims of Qana were wrong.

In front of a burning building of the UN's Fijian battalion headquarters, a girl held a corpse in her arms, the body of a grey- haired man whose eyes were staring at her, and she rocked the corpse back and forth in her arms, keening and weeping and crying the same words over and over: "My father, my father." A Fijian UN soldier stood amid a sea of bodies and, without saying a word, held aloft the body of a headless child.

"The Israelis have just told us they'll stop shelling the area," a UN soldier said, shaking with anger. "Are we supposed to thank them?" In the remains of a burning building - the conference room of the Fijian UN headquarters - a pile of corpses was burning. The roof had crashed in flames onto their bodies, cremating them in front of my eyes. When I walked towards them, I slipped on a human hand...

Israel's slaughter of civilians in this terrible 10-day offensive - 206 by last night - has been so cavalier, so ferocious, that not a Lebanese will forgive this massacre. There had been the ambulance attacked on Saturday, the sisters killed in Yohmor the day before, the 2-year-old girl decapitated by an Israeli missile four days ago. And earlier yesterday, the Israelis had slaughtered a family of 12 - the youngest was a four-day-old baby - when Israeli helicopter pilots fired missiles into their home. [ full story - see link above ]


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