Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Support our troops? Not if they did THIS!

According to Italy's RAI News 24, U.S. forces used white phosphorous in Fallujah:
But now new information has surfaced, including hideous photographs and videos and interviews with American soldiers who took part in the Fallujah attack, which provides graphic proof that phosphorus shells were widely deployed in the city as a weapon.

In a documentary to be broadcast by RAI, the Italian state broadcaster, this morning, a former American soldier who fought at Fallujah says: "I heard the order to pay attention because they were going to use white phosphorus on Fallujah. In military jargon it's known as Willy Pete.

"Phosphorus burns bodies, in fact it melts the flesh all the way down to the bone ... I saw the burned bodies of women and children. Phosphorus explodes and forms a cloud. Anyone within a radius of 150 metres is done for."

Photographs on the website of RaiTG24, the broadcaster's 24-hours news channel, www.rainews24.it, show exactly what the former soldier means. Provided by the Studies Centre of Human Rights in Fallujah, dozens of high-quality, colour close-ups show bodies of Fallujah residents, some still in their beds, whose clothes remain largely intact but whose skin has been dissolved or caramelised or turned the consistency of leather by the shells.

A biologist in Fallujah, Mohamad Tareq, interviewed for the film, says: "A rain of fire fell on the city, the people struck by this multi-coloured substance started to burn, we found people dead with strange wounds, the bodies burned but the clothes intact."
The Italian video can be found here (scroll down) and here.

This site quotes an eyewitness to the bombardment in Fallujah:
"They (US military) used these weird bombs that put up smoke like a mushroom cloud. Then small pieces feel from the air with long tails of smoke behind them. "He explained that pieces of these bombs exploded into large fires that burnt peoples skin even when water was dumped on their bodies, which is the effect of phosphorous weapons, as well as napalm. "People suffered so much from these, both civilians and fighters alike."

My first impression was that Jamail's eyewitness might have been describing one of the "non-lethal" chemical weapons of the type the Russians reluctantly admitted they had deployed during the Chechen hostage rescue attempt that subsequently killed 117 hostages along with the Chechen terrorists. The Israeli 2001 chemical attack in Khan Younis also came to mind.
Believe it or not, the military argues that white phosphorous (usually used to provide a smoke screen) counts as an incendiary, not as a chemical weapon, when directed at human beings. Semantic arguments aside, white phosphorous is a weapon of unthinkable horror; international treaty bans its use in a civilian environment.

Any commander who ordered such use should be tried and punished with the utmost severity. Any grunt who executed an unlawful order deserves the same treatment.

As I mulled over the atrocity of Fallujah, my thoughts drifted toward the infamous cartoons which appeared in Der Stuermer before the Nazis seized full power. Those images depicted Jews using "Giftgas" -- poison gas -- to kill Germans. That was hallucination; in real life, just the opposite occurred: The Nazis used poison gas against the Jews.

The parallel to the current situation is not exact, but it is disturbingly close. The American people hallucinated that Saddam Hussein would use chemical weapons against us, even though he had no such arms. Now, our military uses white phosphorous against the Iraqi insurgency -- an insurgency created by Bush's own stupidity and arrogance. Only a fool would attempt to justify the unjustifiable with ludicrous arguments over WP's classification.

How can we damn Saddam Hussein for using CBW to quell an insurgency when "our boys" have used white phosphorous to quell an insurgency? Never mind the legalities. Morally speaking, what is the difference?


Morrigan said...

Dahr Jamil's blog was reporting this last year. At least now there is further confirmation that it actually did occur.

Anonymous said...

I think it was Napalm and not something toxic or nucleair.