Amnesty International on Hezbollah's war crimes

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by dogbone, Sep 14, 2006.

  1. dogbone macrumors 68020

    dogbone

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    #1
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/5343188.stm

    The topic of this thread I guess is inevitably going to be about the specious arguments of 'moral equivalence'. So let's cut to the chase and begin right there...

    Yes, more Lebanese civillians died than Israelis but that is not for Hezbollah's lack of trying, as every single one of the 4,000 rockets were admitedly and deliberately meant to kill Isreali civillians. By definition there was no such a thing as collateral damage from Hezbollah's pov regarding its attacks on Israel.

    With an arsenal of probably 10-15,000 katyushas being able to be fired from deep within civillian areas even from the balcony of a flat, it was inevitable that there would be civillian casualities and errors on the Lebanese population by Israeli responses.

    Amnesty notes that the Israelis also have been accused of war crimes, these being the deliberate targeting of infrastructure, however it is a genuinely debatable point as Hezbollah also used civillian infrastructure. What is not debatable is that every Hezbollah rocket fired was an undeniable war crime before it even landed. It need not be proven either because Nasrallah has already admitted as much.
     
  2. miloblithe macrumors 68020

    miloblithe

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    #2
    10-15,000 Katyusha's vrs. 1.2 million cluster bombs and phosphorus...

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20060913/wl_mideast_afp/mideastconflictisraellebanonweapons_060913143214

     
  3. iGary Guest

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    #3
  4. dogbone thread starter macrumors 68020

    dogbone

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    @miloblithe

    1.2 million, that number cannot possibly be referring to individual cluster bombs but the sum total off all the 300 or so bomblets in each cluster bomb, which would make a number closer to 4,000. Nevertheless they obviously weren't targeting civillians because there was no increase in civillian deaths during the final three days. Further by the end of the war there would be better opportunities to drop these weapons on the Hezbollah fighters who were desperately trying to get as many of their missiles off as well. Missiles that Nasrallah admits were only to target civillians.

    Which raises an interesting point. Seeing as Nasrallah admits to a war crime shouldn't he be formally charged?
     
  5. miloblithe macrumors 68020

    miloblithe

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    #5
    How is that obvious? Where is your source on the rate of civilian deaths over the course of the war and afterwards? Are you suggesting that Israeli commanders don't know that cluster bombs would leave behind unexploded ordinance that would kill civilians returning to their homes?
     
  6. dogbone thread starter macrumors 68020

    dogbone

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    @miloblithe

    Do you have a source that shows any increase in the civillian death rate occured as a result of the cluster bombs? Hezbollah by their own admitance were using their missiles to target civillians deliberately, do you suggest that the Israelis do nothing?
     
  7. miloblithe macrumors 68020

    miloblithe

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    #7
    Yes. That source was the articles quoted above and the United Nations.

    And I think that both Hezbollah and Israel are guilty of war crimes. Don't you?

    Oh, and nowhere in the article you pointed to did Nisrallah or Hezbollah admit to deliberately targeting civilians.

    "It noted that although Hezbollah had said its policy was not to target civilians, its leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah said the policy was changed in reprisal for Israeli attacks on Lebanese civilian areas.

    It quoted Sheikh Nasrallah as saying: "As long as the enemy undertakes its aggression without limits or red lines, we will also respond without limits or red lines."
     
  8. mactastic macrumors 68040

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    #8
    It's obvious he doesn't.

    If only everyone who deserved to be charged with war crimes was in the Hague right now...
     
  9. dogbone thread starter macrumors 68020

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    #9
    Please cut and paste from the article where it states how many civillians were killed by cluster bombs in the final 3 days.

    From the article.
    "Hezbollah had said its policy was not to target civilians, its leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah said the policy was changed"

    When Nasrallah says the policy to not target civillians "was changed" what else can it mean but the policy *was* to target civillians. This does not require my or your opinion or an inquiry to establish any facts, it is a blatent admission of one of the most serious of war crimes.
     
  10. miloblithe macrumors 68020

    miloblithe

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    #10
    Jebus.

    I already quoted from an article (see post 2) about how many civilians died in the three days AFTER the ceasefire, which is all I ever claimed to have a number for. YOU claimed that the three days BEFORE the ceasefire, there was no increase in deaths--a claim you have not made any effort to substantiate.

    As to Nisrallah's statement, look at the CONTEXT of his statement. He is essentially saying "we will respond in kind to Israel", which is what you are saying in reverse.
     
  11. dogbone thread starter macrumors 68020

    dogbone

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    @miloblithe

    The thread is about Hezbollah's admittance of deliberately targeting civillians. You try some moral equivalence argument by posting an exaggerated number refering to cluster bombs. But using a cluster bomb per se is not in itself a war crime, in spite of the fact of their known failure rate, otherwise the US couldn't sell them.

    If Israel had indeed dropped 4,000 cluster bombs in the final 3 days and there was no extra deaths from these there one must conclude that they were not used to target civillians.

    Now you can ask for opinions and you can give your moral equivalence arguments but I'm just quoting Nasrallah himself who said he changed his policy not to target civillians. There's no spin there it's a clear cut statement.

    Isn't it amazing that there are no calls to drag Nasrallah before The Hague on the strength of his own admissions?
     
  12. mactastic macrumors 68040

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    #12
    Isn't that what this thread is? Your call to drag Nasrallah before the Hague (despite your lack of interest in dragging anyone else before the Hague)?
     
  13. miloblithe macrumors 68020

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    #13
    You really are incapable of backing up your assertions aren't you. Please produce evidence that there was no rise in civilian casualties over the last three days before the ceasefire.

    OK. My numbers were off. Instead of "10-15,000 Katyusha's vrs. 1.2 million cluster bombs and phosphorus..." I should have said "nearly 4000 Katyushas vrs. 1.2 million cluster bomblets from maybe 4000 cluster bombs plus phosphorus and other munitions." I see you didn't object to my inflation of the number of Katyushas launched by Hezbollah.

    Can you admit that 50+ civilians were killed by unexploded cluster bomblets in the three days after the war, as references by the articles above?

    You may want to take a look at this:

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/5257128.stm
     
  14. zimv20 macrumors 601

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    #14
    or one could conclude that they missed. or that there were no civilians left in the area. or that the reporting was wrong. or that it was spun. or...
     
  15. dogbone thread starter macrumors 68020

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    #15
    @miloblithe

    How can I provide evidence for something that didn't happen?. It is up to you to provide evidence if you disagree that the cluster bombs didn't cause any more fatalaties than were happening as a result of the war before they were used.


    Can you admit that 50+ civilians were killed by unexploded cluster bomblets in the three days after the war, as references by the articles above?


    Yeah I can accept that figure, I'm aware that cluster bombs do not detonate with 100% success rate. But this is a separate issue and not nearly as bad as the use of land mines. But cluster bombs per se are not illegal. And what you are doing is providing some kind of moral equivalence that goes... Nasrallah deliberately targeted civillians, he admitted as much. This *is* a bona fide war crime. And there need not be speculation or spin as to whether it happened. He admitted it. You seem to counter this by referring to some accidental deaths that occurred after the war by unexploded munitions.

    Nasrallah should be brought before a war crimes tribunal as he has unequivically admitted that the army under his command was ordered to attack civillians. A public admission, a certified war crime. An open and shut case.

    That's the one I'd go for. I would guess that by the end of the war there were only Hezbollah fighters left in the areas that were heavily bombed with cluster weapons.
     
  16. Ugg macrumors 68000

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    #16
    Linky

    Looks like the war with Lebanon was used in part to cover up corruption at the highest levels in the Israeli govt.
     
  17. miloblithe macrumors 68020

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    #17
    It's a simple concept. If you make an assertion, you need to be able to back it up with something. If you are unable to do so, you should admit that there is no basis to your argument (that Israel was not targeting civilians).
     
  18. lord patton macrumors 65816

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    #18
    Ugg, the article you reference doesn't say the war was cooked-up for spin purposes, only that the ground movements of the final days were. And the commission that Olmert is trying to avoid isn't for general, "high-level" corruption, it's for why the war was prosecuted so poorly (for example, not sending in ground troops till the final days).
     
  19. dogbone thread starter macrumors 68020

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    #19
    @miloblithe


    The 'evidence' for the event that did not happen, (civillians being killed by the 1.2 million bomlets dropped during the final 3 days) is that there was no reported increase in civillian casualties, not by they UN nor the Lebanese government, I can't very well give you a link to a report about an event that didn't happen can I. Dropping cluster weapons is not a war crime unless they target civillians, and if that's what the Israelis did then we would have seen a very sharp increase in civillian deaths. Seeing as civillian deaths were reported on a daily basis we would, would we not have been made aware of this.

    Now if you want to suggest that the cluster bombing was a war crime then it is for you to show how. As is well known cluster bombs per se are not war crimes. In fact any war crimes alluded to in the UN report refer to civillian infrastructure.

    But there were civillians deliberately targeted which *is* a war crime. These were the Israelis targeted by Hezbollah. Now the proof for that is that Nasrallah said thats what he did. Pretty conclusive I'd say.

    So if you cannot provide a link to show that the final 3 days of cluster bombing was targeting civillians we can only assume that their use was legitimate.
     
  20. mactastic macrumors 68040

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    #20
    Again, another example of why your arguments cannot be taken seriously. You conflate lack of public proof with a lack of a crime.

    You don't suppose Israel might want to keep that information hush-hush, do you? Unless and until there is an investigation, we won't know what Israel's real targets were.

    And before you get all butt-hurt, I agree with you that Nasrallah has most likely committed at least one war crime and should face prosecution at the Hague. Of course, I also think there are other leaders in the world who deserve the same fate, who will most likely never be tried.
     
  21. miloblithe macrumors 68020

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    #21
    http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/761910.html

     
  22. miloblithe macrumors 68020

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  23. zimv20 macrumors 601

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    #23
    on pp 55-56 of the current (16 Sep 2006) and american print version of the Economist, in an article called "Hizbullah's new offensive", we have:
    btw, the article is about hizbullah's increased political standing in the light of the lebanese, many of whom didn't support hizbullah before the conflict. part of the reason is the manner in which hizbullah is already -- and pretty much by itself -- doing the reconstruction.
     
  24. dogbone thread starter macrumors 68020

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    #24
    @mactastic

    You conflate lack of public proof with a lack of a crime.


    Why the word 'public', Do you have special access to non public proof?

    You don't suppose Israel might want to keep that information hush-hush

    How would Israel keep the inevitable large number of casualties caused by a million cluster bombs targeting civilians, "hush-hush"?


    I agree with you that Nasrallah has most likely committed at least one war crime and should face prosecution at the Hague. Of course, I also think there are other leaders in the world who deserve the same fate, who will most likely never be tried.


    Of course anyone convicted of war crimes should be charged. I'm intrigued by you use of "most likely". This is the point I'm making with this thread. It isn't a matter of proof or likelyness at all is it? Nasrallah has publicly admitted his crime. Yet you only think it likely. Oh wait, that's right according to your previous argument he's a terrorist liar isn't he, that means when he says he deliberately targets civillians, we must not believe him.
     
  25. mactastic macrumors 68040

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    #25
    No, what I'm saying is that Israeli higer-ups wouldn't be so stupid as to admit publicly that they had ordered attacks on civilian targets. But just because they deny the charge doesn't mean that it can't be true at the same time. That's why we have investigations after the fact. It's why we have police who's job it is to sniff out someone who is hiding something.

    Most criminals don't admit what they've done, wouldn't you agree? By your logic, there would have been no need to investigate Duke Cunningham or Bob Ney, since they claimed innocence of all wrongdoing. Of course, both later were found to have been lying through their teeth to the press and the public, and both are now facing jail time.

    You claimed that because there is no proof right now, that that is a guarantee that there was no crime. This is false logic of the highest order, and similar to much of your other arguments.

    That's not what I'm talking about. The ORDERS as to where those cluster bombs were dropped would be the proof of potential crime, not the bombs themselves. And those orders are likely to be much more difficult to ferret out. I'm sorry things like this are so hard for you to understand, but actually reading what I post, as opposed to reading what you want into my posts, would go a long way towards clearing these things up.

    What are you talking about in that bolded part of your quote? Anyone convicted of war crimes should be charged? WTF is that all about?

    Mark Karr publicly admitted his crime too, didn't he? And how did that turn out?

    What I haven't yet seen is proof that Nasrallah actually gave the orders he says he did. That's why I say "likely". I know that word freaks you black-and-white thinkers out, but in terms of a court of law, more than just Nasrallahs TV statement is needed to actually convict him. The Hague isn't some Gitmo tribunal, or a dogbone post, where guilt is a foregone conclusion. Prosecutors would need corroborating evidence from other sources to actually build a case.

    How about this -- There is DEFINITELY enough evidence to bring charges against Nasrallah, and it is LIKELY that he could be convicted of those charges based on what we now know. But from what you've posted I haven't seen what a prosecutor would like to have to actually convict. That doesn't mean it's not there either. An investigation into Hizbollah's actions would be justified, as would one into Israeli actions.
     

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