Photo: An IDF soldier prays in Gaza in 2009
NOTE TO READER: The Israeli Defense Forces just published its verified death list for the 2009 Gaza operation, Operation Cast Lead, in which they dispute previous death tolls issued by Palestinian organizations. The Palestine Center for Human Rights has put the death toll from that conflict at 1417, 926 civilians, 236 "fighters" meaning armed combatants or 65% civilian death toll. Since the IDF spent over 6 months preparing its list, exhaustively cross-checked its lists of known Hamas, Fatah, Islamic Jihad, etc. with their own lists. They monitored funerals in Gaza and took note of which deaths were dubbed "martyrs" for Hamas, and they were able to weed out the approximately 400 or so "natural" deaths which occur each month in Gaza. A final note is that PCHR claims 116 women lost their lives in the conflict, and the IDF claims 49 women perished from the conflict. Even if we take the PCHR's higher number, that means that only 8% of the deaths were women. The IDF figures are even lower at 4%. If the IDF REALLY were bombing civilians indiscriminately as many "Peace" organizations claim, why aren't more of the deaths women?
--Becky Johnson, editor
FROM THE INDEPENDENT MEDIA REVIEW AND ANALYSIS SITE:
Read the report from its source here.
IDF SPOX Ann - 260309 - Gaza Strip Casualties
Vast Majority of Palestinians Killed in Operation Cast Lead
Found to be Terror Operatives
Following the publication of reports that introduced false information originating from various Palestinian sources, and in order to remove any doubt regarding the number of Palestinians killed in Operation Cast Lead, the IDF wishes to introduce the accurate figures to the public. The figures were gathered following the examination of various intelligence sources and after the names and numbers were thoroughly cross-referenced and examined.
According to the data gathered by the Research Department of the Israel Defense Intelligence, there were 1166 names of Palestinians killed during Operation Cast Lead. 709 of them are identified as Hamas terror operatives, amongst them several from various other terror organizations. Additionally, there are 162 names of men that have not yet been attributed to any
organization. Furthermore, it has come to our understanding that 295 uninvolved Palestinians were killed during the operation, 89 of them under the age of 16, and 49 of them were women.
The IDF wishes to emphasize that its objective during Operation Cast Lead was to target the Hamas terror organization and not the citizens of the Gaza Strip. It must be stressed that the fighting took place in a complex battlefield, defined by the Hamas terror organization itself. The Hamas terror organization placed the primary fighting scene at the heart of civilian neighborhoods, as it booby-trapped homes, fired from schools, and used civilians as human shields.
The IDF took extensive measures in order to prevent harming uninvolved civilians, including the dropping of leaflets, broadcasting warnings in local Palestinian media, and placing numerous phone calls to homes. The procedure of making use of warning shots and the briefing of the commanders to take extra precaution in populated areas were also among the measures
taken by the IDF.