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A father's loss - The conflict between Hamas and Israel

Discussion in 'Hard Talk' started by Randip Singh, Feb 10, 2009.

  1. Randip Singh

    Randip Singh
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    Hi all,

    Last night I saw a programme called Panorama about the Gaza conflict and what isaw made me sick to the stomach. I have not slept all night for seeing the image of this man watching his 6 month son die.

    BBC NEWS | World | Middle East | Bowen diary: A father's loss

    Bowen diary: A father's loss

    BBC Middle East Editor Jeremy Bowen is writing a diary of the conflict between Hamas and Israel.

    [​IMG]

    Helmi al-Samouni kissed his dead son Mohammed goodbye


    23 JANUARY
    Back on 6 January I wrote in this diary about one of the most affecting pieces of video I had seen coming out of Gaza.
    For me, it is still the most memorable single image of the war. It showed a young Palestinian father kissing his dead baby son goodbye. He was murmuring farewells to his boy and I defy anyone to view it and not be profoundly moved.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]He kissed the boy's face, and kept murmuring "you're gone, you're gone" [​IMG]

    I was frustrated that I did not even know the names of the man and his son. Despite Israel's decision to ban foreign journalists from crossing into Gaza, I think the BBC did some very good journalism during the 22 days of war, not least because we have two great Palestinian producers in Gaza, Hamada Abu Qammar and Rushdi Abu Alouf.

    Israel did not stop the truth coming out but it did force us to cover the war in an incomplete way. The pictures of the man and his baby son had come from one of the brave Palestinian cameramen who were working for the international news agencies Reuters and APTN. Agencies are news wholesalers who sell news pictures and stories to broadcasters like the BBC. We could not have functioned without them at the height of the Gaza war.

    But I wanted to know more about the man, much more.

    After a couple of days in Gaza I can tell you a great deal about him. His name is Helmi al-Samouni and he is 27. His son was called Mohammed. He was six months old and he was dead because he had been shot in the head by an Israeli soldier. Helmi's wife Maha, 19, was killed shortly afterwards, he says, by a rocket launched from a helicopter, which also killed his parents.

    I mentioned the Samouni clan's experience in this diary yesterday. A woman called Zeinat (Helmi's aunt) said she had seen soldiers shoot dead her husband and four-year-old son.
    I didn't realise then that Helmi, whom I met yesterday, was the man who had been kissing his son goodbye so tenderly. It was only when I went back to the office and looked at the original pictures that I realised that he was the same person. He has grown a beard and in a couple of weeks looks about 10 years older.
    We have been trying to put together his story.

    They had been herded into a building in their home of Zaytoun, just outside Gaza City, by Israeli soldiers. Survivors say that as many as 29 people died in brutal, inhuman circumstances, and the Israeli army is already facing accusations that its soldiers committed war crimes that day.

    The incident was first reported by the International Committee of the Red Cross when the war was still going on. Now that the Israelis have pulled out, journalists and human rights investigators are all over Zaytoun. When I have all the details, I will write more about what happened to Helmi Samouni on the worst day of his life, the last day for his wife and child.
    The Israelis, who are fond of saying that they have the most ethical army in the world, say that they are investigating too.
    I asked a former military man who is here working for a human rights group what he thought of the way that the Israelis had left the house that they were using as a base. He was not impressed by the way that soldiers had defecated on the floors of some rooms, even though there were functioning lavatories. (There's evidence it was soldiers, by the way, which in the interests of taste I will not set down).

    My military friend told me that fouling their own base showed a lack of discipline. So did leaving behind pieces of kit, bodywarmers, and heavy tools which were abandoned when they pulled out.

    I could see the logic of some of their actions, which look as if they can be justified on military grounds. They pulled up floor slabs to fill sandbags from the earth under the house. Presumably they did not want to take the risk of going outside to do it. Holes have been smashed in the walls to create firing positions.
    But other things look like out-and-out vandalism. Very typically for Palestinians, different generations of the same family lived on different floors of the same house.
    Helmi told me that the soldiers had thrown children's furniture out of one of the flats in the house. I looked out of the windows and saw broken chests of drawers and clothes strewn over the sand outside. Other rooms have been smashed up, clothes pulled out, cupboards broken.
    It is clear that in Zaytoun civilians were not treated with respect, and that many of them - as many as 29 - died in circumstances which should worry the Israeli army very much.
    And I am glad that I can finally put a name to a face.


    I feel so powerless to do anything.:(
     
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  3. Gyani Jarnail Singh

    Gyani Jarnail Singh Malaysia
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    This is WAR....untellable things happen...
    I am reading Bhikhhra painda by Sandeep kaur about the Punjab in 1984++..
    "Untellable" things unfold...extreme cases of torture of innocents..nails being driven into the heads of University students simply because they are amritdharees/relatives of so called kharkoos.....Delhi 1984...etc etc etc...
    Man can do untellable/unthinkable things to his fellow Man....????
     
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  4. Randip Singh

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    You are right Gyani ji, but I watched the documentary and this man saying goodbye to his baby. Seeing it infront of your eyes on film is so much more painful.
     
  5. whitelotusflower1

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    There is a fearless Iranian channel called Press TV on sky on 515 and they have all the coverage of the Israeli butchering of Palestinians with white phosphorus bombs on civilians, women and children. Seecurrent and previous programmes online on www.presstv.ir. The Iranians were cut off with all trade with USA 30 years ago when the USA puppet King was deposed by public protests and replaced with a Holy man Imam Khomeni.

    What has all this got to do with Sikhs? Well, we believe in destroying the 5 evils, lust greed pride emotion anger. In the west, there is a predominance of pride and greed. These two forces, combined, in the absence of a restraint (such as those with a conscience) there is a force that believes in selling arms, trading in arms, growing drugs, selling drugs, to the rest of the world, to make money, more money, so much money that a whole prehistoric monster nation grows within a few decades and calls itself the most civilised and powerful nation in the world.

    Whilst the Indians from the Motherland are similarly intoxicated by the values of the West, its Media equally steering into escapism, where do decent Indians outside India, who are more Indian than the Indians in India, go? There is a unprovoked invasion of Palestine, by its hostile Israeli "refugees", who have built a huge wall around the West Bank, and cut off all trade within the GAZA strip by having tens of border crossings and preventing food and medical supplies reaching the wounded, maimed and dying in hospitals and at home.

    I remember the Sikh uprising when such atrocities were inflicted by Aurangzeb, the decendant of Ghengis Khan, who had not only murdered his three elder brothers, but kept his father the King Shahjahan imprisoned. It is time for those who are good in this world to attach themselves to a good cause.

    There are issues of global warming, guess who is the culprit? The West most "civilised" nation in the world! Contaminated water and water shortage will cause one quarter of Indians in India to die within the next few decades, if not sooner. Where is the common sense that powerful nations are fighting for oil, which is poisoning the countries on the other side of the globe.

    Its time to educate the politicians of India as to who to trust and who not. The Raj left its poison in India and old India got divided and divided. We are the same people, the same blood, the same values. There are good and bad everywhere. We, in the UK, know the challenges we faced to retain our identities, values, cultures despite much resistances. We can teach the Indians in India the way forward on an international front. Wake up MOTHER INDIA. The world is on the brink of an atomic war. The oscars won by Slumdog Millionaire will not excuse Mother Indians from an atomic world war.
     
    #4 whitelotusflower1, Feb 16, 2009
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2009
  6. spnadmin

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    whitelotusflower ji

    The Iranians were cut off with all trade with USA 30 years ago when the USA puppet King was deposed by public protests and replaced with a Holy man Imam Khomeni.

    Things might have been very different if only....
     
  7. Jas

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    Holy Man? Puppet King? You my friend need to recheck your facts.

    It is common knowledge that the so called Islamic revolution in Iran happened with the help of the CIA!

    Since then, Iran has been falling deeper and deeper into the pits.

    Women had more rights under the Kings rule, with this "holy man" they were reduced to second class citizens.

    Questions you need to ask is why was Iran cut off from the west, i.e. America? Could it be that he didn't want the Oil/Gas hungry American corporations to come in and take this revenue away from Iran?

    Regarding the documentary. You can't help but think why would the Jews, who never let the world forget what happened to them, behave in the same fashion as the nazis did to them?

    I quote Sir Winston Churchill from Churchill and the Jews - "I do not agree that the dog in a manger has the final right to the manger even though he may have lain there for a very long time. I do not admit that right. I do not admit for instance that a great wrong has been done to the red Indians of America or the black people of Australia. I do not admit that a wrong has been done to these people by the fact that a stronger race, a higher grade race, a more worldly wise race to put it that way, has come in and taken their place".
     
  8. spnadmin

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    jas ji

    You seem to make a lot of assumptions based on one line that I quoted from another post and a one sentence reaction. I could say a lot in sarcasm but will not because today I want to work on moving closer to the Sat. Life is long and tiring. I cannot waste this moment indulging my petty need to have the last word.

    Since I won't be able to moderate all day and keep tabs on who is taking threads of track and who is not, I leave you with this request. Please try to respect others who are posting in the threads. Treasure their right to speak as you value your own right to do so. Try to guard your anger. I know that you think it comes from a righteous place. However anger separates us from our divine soul, and in that damages the connection that each of us can hope to have with one another.

    Sat Nam
    Antonia
     
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  9. Randip Singh

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    hmm we argue about politics while a father mourns a 6 month son shot in the head. Hamas and Israel are equally to blame.:(
     
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  10. Archived_member7

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    The first casualty of war: Truth

    Which is the greater factor in getting consumers of news to believe that "1,300 Palestinians, most of them civilians" were killed during Operation Cast Lead? Intrinsic anti-Israel bias - or a high degree of gullibility to manipulative international media coverage?
    [​IMG] Anas Naim, a nephew of Hamas Health Minister Bassem Naim, who was killed on Jan. 4 in Gaza City, was described in Palestinian reports as a 'medic.'
    Photo: Courtesy




    Put another way, do you have to be anti-Israel to believe Palestinian lies, or is Palestinian mendacity so well-constructed, so plausible, and so well disseminated by collaborative media outlets like Al Jazeera that even well-meaning people can't help but believe the worst of Israel?
    These questions are prompted by some significant reporting in Monday's Jerusalem Post ("Int'l community was duped by Hamas's false civilian death toll figures, IDF claims").
    Even well-regarded Palestinian pressure groups have been claiming that Israel killed 895 civilians in the Gaza fighting. Operating on the basis of such "data," coupled with a poisoned wellspring of antipathy against the Jewish state, Mahmoud Abbas has been making the case for indicting Israeli cabinet ministers and military officers for international war crimes. RELATED


    Pro-Palestinian campaigners allege that two-thirds of the Arab fatalities were civilian. The IDF insists that no more than a third of the dead were civilians - and not a one was targeted intentionally. So instead of "1,300 killed, most of them civilians," we now have reason to believe, based on the IDF's methodical analysis of 1,200 of the Palestinian fatalities thus far identified by name, that 580 were combatants and 300 non-combatants. Of these 300, two were female suicide bombers, and some others were related to terrorists such as Nizar Rayyan, a top Hamas gunman who insisted that his family join him in the hereafter.
    [​IMG]




    "The first casualty when war comes is truth," said US senator Hiram Warren Johnson.
    Take, for instance, Arab eyewitness accounts of the number killed at the Jabalya UN School on January 6 - some 40 dead, maybe 15 of them women and children. The IDF says the actual figure is 12 killed, nine of them Hamas operatives.
    With time, perhaps, the names and true identities of each and every one of the Gaza dead - including the 320 as yet unclassified - will be determined.
    One point is indisputable: Despite the best efforts of both sides, the IDF wound up killing more Palestinians unintentionally than the Palestinians killed Israeli civilians on purpose. This is known as "disproportionality."
    Israeli officials, given bitter experiences such as Jenin in 2002, when a grossly false narrative of massacre and massed killing was disseminated by Palestinian officials, should have long since internalized the imperative to try to ascertain the number and nature of Palestinian dead in real time.
    But while the figure "1,300 Palestinians killed, most/many of them civilians" is now embedded in the public consciousness, it is emphatically not too late to try to set the record straight.
    Atrocity stories are nothing new. The British have been charged with using them to create popular outrage during the Boer War. The allies used them against Germany during World War I - which, incidentally, allowed the real Nazi atrocities during WWII to be dismissed long into the Holocaust.
    Nowadays, it matters what masses of uninformed or ill-informed people far removed from the Arab-Israel conflict think. Dry statistics released so belatedly will win Israel no PR credit in a world of 24/7 satellite news channels and real-time blogging. Nevertheless, the fact that an Israeli narrative is finally out there is significant. Perhaps responsible news outlets will want to reexamine some of their original reporting, along with the assumption that "most" of the dead were non-combatants.
    Palestinian propaganda is insidious because those being manipulated are oblivious to what is happening. Chaotic images of casualties being hurried to hospitals, gut-wrenching funerals and swaths of shattered buildings create an overarching "reality." Against this, Israel's pleadings that the Palestinians are culpable for the destruction, and that the above images lack context, scarcely resonate.
    Despite six decades of intransigence and a virtual copyright on airline hijackings and suicide bombings, the Palestinians have created a popular "brand" for themselves by parlaying their self-inflicted victimization into a battering ram against Israel. Disseminators of news should have learned better than to take Palestinian death-toll claims at face value, least of all when sourced directly or indirectly from the Hamas-run government of Gaza.
     
  11. Archived_member7

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  12. Archived_member7

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    Israeli war deaths go largely unnoticed
    Hours after mother and two daughters are killed in Hizbullah rocket attack, media outlets around world fail to report deaths; meanwhile, British press continues anti-Israel tirade Yaakov Lappin Published: 08.06.06, 02:25 / Israel News

    Hours after 60-year-old Fadia Jumaa and her two daughters, Samira, 31, and Sultana, 33, were killed by a Hizbullah rocket attack on their home in the Israeli-Bedouin village of Arab al-Aramshe, the international media has so far largely ignored their deaths.

    Reuters was alone among non-Israeli media outlets to report the deaths, according to a Google news search, a number of hours after the first reports of the attack surfaced.

    The lack of coverage of the Israeli civilian war casualties stands in marked contrast to the swift response by many sections of the international media to reported Lebanese casualties.

    Meanwhile, the British press, which has produced some of the most venomous anti-Israel coverage during the war, has continued its tirade against Israel.

    Inaccuracies

    An article in the London-based Guardian, entitled "Militants merge with mainstream," argues that Hizbullah has gained widespread, cross-religious support in the Arab world, and uses terms such as "the Qana massacre" to explain the apparent newfound unity.

    The article argues that Sunnis and Shiites have come together in their backing of Hizbullah: "Whatever qualms Arabs once had about Hizbullah they have since been dissipated by Israel's attacks, the hundreds of deaths, the sight of up to a quarter of the Lebanese population fleeing their homes, and especially the bombing of UN observers and the massacre at Qana. The Shiite organisation and its leader, Hassan Nasrallah, have become symbols of resistance even in such unlikely places as the Gulf countries where Sunnis and Shiites have been spotted waving the yellow-and-green flag."

    The article was co-written by Issandr el-Amrani, a freelance journalist in Egypt who referred to Hizbullah as " Lebanese resistance fighters " on his personal blog and who describes reports of Hizbullah members operating out of civilian areas as "Israeli lies."

    The article's authors failed, however, to note that an influential Saudi Sunni cleric, Sheikh Safar al-Hawali, has issued an anti-Hizbullah fatwa declaring that "Hizbullah is not the 'Party of God' but the 'Party of Satan.'"

    An Associated Press report, which undermines the Guardian's claims, says that "Al-Hawali's words are an addition to a previous fatwa issued two weeks ago in Saudi Arabia by the leader of the Wahhabi movement, Sheikh Abdullah bin Jabrin, which declared that it is illegal to support, join, or even pray for Hizbullah."

    BBC correspondent reports his own views

    Meanwhile, an article has appeared on the BBC website in which a reporter for the British broadcaster, Hugh Sykes, relays a conversation he has with Lebanese residents.

    The article is remarkable as it contains the views of a BBC journalist being given to Lebanese locals, rather than the other way around.

    In the piece, written in first person narrative, Sykes tells people in Lebanon that there would be "no point" for Israel to strike Hizbullah targets in Lebanon: "'People keep asking me… ' Beirut - will they bomb Beirut again?' 'What would be the point?" I reply.'"

    The BBC journalist also attempts to second guess where Israeli strikes hit.

    "Four massive thumps one night, and six the next, as Israeli bombs or shells slammed into the ground a few kilometres away. Or into the children's homes," Sykes wrote.
     
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  13. pk70

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    Rajkhalsa ji
    I think Randip Singh’s concern was about a child victim and its death in hands of a father, who is right wrong, is a different issue. Personally I wouldn’t take side until I get true picture. This time I supported Israelis as the war was forced on them, they have the right to defend themselves unless International community comes to stop it. Death of innocents is horrible regardless it happens at whose hands. People cry when they read or see innocents suffering and forget to notice who was the cause to initiate war.
    Its sad though both ways.
     
  14. Gyani Jarnail Singh

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    Taking sides is only natural...
    In all the past 20 years or so of reading Malaysian Newspapers...I have yet to see a photo of an Israeli child/man/woman/house/building destroyed....BUT each newspaper DAILY carries on the Front Pages..and inside pages.."palestine" victims...Funds for palestine..donation drives for palestine....we are more palestine than the palestinians...
    Similarly not a peep...Or just a small item ocassionally just to keep the "fair reporting" about the civilian Tamil casualties in Sri lanka..or Dafur..or Somalia..Congo..Rawanda..etc etc....Similar way Punjab 1984 was treated...
    Thus we have to go actively s eek information a nd make our own decisions...everyone out there has his own agenda...we must have our own... AAklleen Sahib seveah...akleen keecheh daan...Gurbani also tells us to USE OUR INTELLECT and WISDOM....not depend on others /spoon fed propoganda....:happy:
     
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  15. Randip Singh

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    Precisely.

    If there is a blame then I blame Hamas as much if not more than the heavy handed tactics of Israel.
     
  16. Archived_member7

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    Well all i will say is ..if there is so much compassion for people who are creators of this mess..where on earth does this compassion go when we proclaim satwant singh and kehar singh martyrs...they commited this act of firing on a unarmed woman who's security was their duty ....

    I have no regards for Indira ..in fact had wrote a poem at one point of time to appreciate Satwant and Kehar ...but as i matured ..i realised ...that deed was adharam....
     
  17. whitelotusflower1

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    We the international public need to consider the history of this war....which goes back to the second world war, and look at how an Israeli refugee camp within palestine has grown like a Cancer in the host of Palestine. Palestinians have been imprisoned in their own homeland. They cannot come and go, they cannot receive humanitarian aid or food or medical supplies. They have built tunnels to transport food. The Egyptians are now putting chemical gasses to kill the youth who work in these two-foot-squared tunnels.

    What hypocrits would say they would allow a guest to their home to throw them out of that home and do nothing?

    Palestinians have been hospitable to the Israelis, but the latter have been hostile. The casualties on the Palestinian side speak who is the predator and who is the victim

    Please go to www.davidicke.com if you want to know how this butchering arose and who is to blame.
     
  18. Gyani Jarnail Singh

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    1. First of all there is no such thing as "Palestinians" ?? The name was invented by the Romans as enemy of the Jews and comes from the Phillistines..who are long extinct.
    2.The Palestinians are in relaity ARABS...and Arabs have so much land and several states surrounding the jews. Arabs population 200++ millions..Jews only 15 million.
    3. The Arab bedouins roaming the DESERTS were only willing to SELL the useless desert sandy/stony fields to the "stupid Jews" at HIGH PRICES...its only NOW when they saw the Jews have irrigated the lands and grow "GOLD"...that they scream ****** murder..we were cheated..its our land...well the Red Indians did the same thing in Manhattan Island....any RED INDIAN screaming to take Manhattan Back from the USA ?? Any Aussie aborogines asking for the land back ??.....The SIKHS suffered the same FATE..in the SWAMPS of UP..they were given "free" land full of malaria and yellow fever...when the Sikhs managed to make that swampy land grow "GOLD"....the UP govt wanted it BACK....TARAII FARMS in UP !!! YET there are NO SIKH CANCERS growing in UP..or any SIKH REFUGEES...
    4. Arabs have been refugees for 60 YEARS.... SIKHS LOST everything in Pakistan ( an IMAGINARY CREATION for RELIGION...just like Israel ??) BUT NOT a Single Sikh remained a REFUGEE for more than 6 months...then also in their own GURDWARAS and not a cent in International AID from any country... Sikhs could have "rotted" in Refugee Camps in India and given birth to "terrorists//suicide bombers..suicide squads...they DIDNT.
    7 There is just too much HYPE about all this....Media hype..govt hype..hype here hype there....and NO SOLUTION in sight..because to have a solution..BOTH sides must agree in Good Faith....that i dont see..yet...but i have hope....sense will prevail...
    8. Israeli caualities seldom make it out because thats not "news"......bleeding palestinian babies make news...just see how much "punjab casualities in 1984 and the DECADE when a SIXTH river of BLOOD flowed in Punjab..made it to the world press and Media ?? ALL we see is NOT reality....there is much UNDERGROUND...sad but true ...
     
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  19. Randip Singh

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    Just for the record. David Icke is "off his trolley".:crazy:
     
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  20. whitelotusflower1

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    Summary of Wikipedia: David Icke retired as a professional footballer at the age of 21 to become a Sports Commentator, to be humiliated publicly by Terry Wogan for his spiritual views. He went abroad and was fearless to write against the establishments and the Zionists. He returned to the UK Isle of Wight as a world renowned highly respected speaker of wisdom and international humanitarian/educationalist leader.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Icke
     

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