Israel Admits Hitting U.N. in Gaza With White Phosphorous

An Israeli report to the U.N. put out with the trash Friday acknowledged that military commanders recklessly endangered human life by firing white phosphorous shells in the direction of the U.N.’s Gaza compound.

Israel has consistently defended its use of the highly controversial material, which is designed to create smokescreens, but which also burns human flesh.

The U.N. report said that the two high-ranking commanders responsible for the decision had been reprimanded, but Haaretz is reporting that the Israel Defense Forces denies that the men were disciplined.

The incident in question took place during the 2008 assault on Gaza known in Israel as Operation Cast Lead. — PZS

As the BBC notes, this report is significant, but also cause for skepticism:

And this is in relation to one of the most notorious incidents of the conflict, the burning of the main UN warehouse in Gaza City with white phosphorus shells.

UN officials are, though, privately sceptical of the process by which this admission of wrongdoing emerged.

“This is the IDF [Israel Defence Forces] investigating the IDF,” said one UN official who was in Gaza at the time.

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