Take, for instance, Yaacov Lozowick's piece of yesterday. It was immediately transcribed verbatim by Elder of Ziyon, with the customary commendation, and from then on it seems to have gone viral. In due time, Lozowick will approvingly reproduce a post by Elder of Ziyon and the masturbatory cycle will be completed.
The post is part of a massive Zionist effort to trash the Goldstone Report, the document produced by an inquiry mission sent to Gaza to investigate Israeli and Hamas war crimes during Israel's invasion of the Strip in early 2009. The strategy of the whole effort is disturbingly reminiscent of Holocaust denial techniques. The Zionists pick on this or that minor detail that may be wrong, just like the deniers point to several inconsistencies in the stories of Holocaust survivors, and they conclude that there were no Israeli war crimes, just like the deniers conclude that there was no Holocaust. Let's quote it in full to see how it works:
On page 200 of the Goldstone Report we find this sentence:706. The Israeli ground offensive from the east reached al-Samouni neighbourhood around 4 a.m. on 4 January 2009. In addition to the ground forces moving in from the east, there were, in all likelihood, heliborne398 troops that landed on the roofs of several houses in the area.
Should you wonder what that means, heliborne troops (and how would the Commission members have known?), you can follow footnote 398:One witness told the Mission that on 5 January 2009, walking on Salah ad-Din Street towards Gaza, he saw by the roadside parachutes Israeli troops had used to land in the area.
Israel has not used parachutes in battle since 1956. I've never heard of parachutists in any army jumping from helicopters, because the two methods contradict one another. Parachutists jump from mid-altitude airplanes, and aim at large areas since they cannot be guided to precise points. Helicopters land troops on precise points; the troops jump out from a height of a foot, or three.
I haven't heard of Israeli troops being flown by helicopter into battle in Gaza, but who knows? Maybe it happened. If so, eyewitnesses would be able to tell about it in one, very clear case: if they saw the helicopters coming in, effectively landing, and then leaving troops behind them. It's that simple.
The story told by the witness is straight from some Arabian tall tale. I am totally at loss for an explanation as to why the fact finders would have wished to cast themselves as giving the time of day to such fabulists, but I'm at loss for an explanation about lots of things in their report. Keep in mind, however, that one of the four members was chosen for being a military man, and some of their staff were hired for their military expertize, so it's not that they didn't know better.
Unfortunately for Lozowick, he can't rein his own troops in, and his followers, unable to refrain from boasting their own expertise, comment:
I had a friend who served in the US green berets who told me that during training they used to jump with small parachutes from the heights of around 10 meters. Ussually such jumps are necessary for cases where the surface doesn't allow the helicopter to land or where rapid dislodge is needed.(Anonymous)
I remember reading similar accounts from Soviet Spetsnaz - 50 meter parachute descents - but we're talking special forces jumping out of a ultra-low flying aircraft attempting to evade radar. (Victor)
Although the reader then adds "There is simply no need for this kind of drama in Gaza," it's clear from the start that Lozowick is no expert in what he so authoritatively talks about.
But that's not the main point here. The main point is that from Lozowick's post it would seem that how the troops arrived to the site is essential to the war crime being described, and that if ground vehicles were used instead of helicopters the whole accusation will be debunked.
And that's not the case. The paragraph cited is the introduction to a story called "The killing of Ateya al-Samouni and his son Ahmad," which describes the murder of a man who was shot at point-blank range while he was with his arms raised, and of his 4-year-old son, who was denied medical attention after having sustained critical wounds from shots fired by the soldiers occupying the al-Samounis' house.
Now while the parachutes by the roadside are hearsay, the crime itself is not hearsay. There are names and death certificates, and a forensic examination of the corpses can be demanded. By making an enormous deal of a minor and thoroughly peripheral detail, the Zionists make an attempt, not very successful, at planting a red herring that will divert attention from documented deaths that appear to have taken place outside of a combat situation.
The world, however, knows better than that, and understands that a (possibly) inaccurate claim about troop transportation or a misplaced semicolon do not alter the general picture of lots of unwarranted deaths. That's why some top Israelis are beginning to regret that Israel chose to boycott Goldstone: Israel could have described exactly what happened to the al-Samounis if it had collaborated with the mission. Although, from another perspective, maybe it's precisely because it would have had to that it didn't.