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Date: Sat, 11 May 1996 14:09:04 -0500
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>>> Item number 7583, dated 96/05/09 17:30:08 -- ALL
Date: Thu, 9 May 1996 17:30:08 CDT
Reply-To: ww@wwpublish.com
Sender: Activists Mailing List <ACTIV-L@MIZZOU1.MISSOURI.EDU>
From: NY Transfer News Collective <nyt@blythe.org>
Subject: Lebanon Massacre: U.S. Knew Israelis Knew

Massacre in Lebanon: Israelis knew, and U.S. knew they knew

By Hillel Cohen, Workers World,
16 May 1996

An Israeli artillery barrage on April 18 killed 102 Lebanese civilians who had taken refuge in a United Nations peacekeeping encampment.

At the time, Israeli government officials, including Prime Minister Shimon Peres, claimed that the attack on the civilian camp in Lebanon was a mistake.

But a UN investigation has confirmed that the attack on the UN-sponsored camp and the hundreds of civilians inside it was a deliberate move by the Israeli army.

Lt. Col. Frank von Kappen, a Dutch military advisor to UN Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali, is preparing a report that documents the pattern and type of artillery shells that hit the camp. These included 25 artillery rounds, at least seven of them with `proximity fuses.' These shells explode about 7 meters (23 feet) above ground in order to kill and maim the maximum number of people, says the report.

Furthermore, a UN soldier at the camp videotaped an Israeli reconnaissance plane--a pilotless `drone' of the kind used to pinpoint artillery targets--flying over the camp.

The Israeli military had denied that any drones were in the area. But then the videotape was released that refuted their claim.

Although the UN investigation has not been officially released, it has been reported in the newsletter of the Jane's Information Group--a recognized world authority on military affairs.

The UN General Assembly has already condemned Israel for the 16-day offensive in Lebanon, but that resolution has received little notice in the U.S. media. Secretary-General Boutros-Ghali is scheduled to report on the investigation to the UN Security Council, which has been totally dominated by the U.S. since the fall of the USSR and the Gulf War.

The report is embarrassing to the U.S. government and ruling class. The State Department had recently tried to bolster Israel's story that the attack on the camp was a mistake. We have no reason to believe the Israelis are not telling the truth, said Washington.

Through both Democratic and Republican administrations, the U.S. government has supported Israel's occupation of southern Lebanon since its invasion more than 10 years ago.

This kind of bipartisan foreign policy reflects interests much more important to the U.S. billionaire ruling class than defense of Israel. What is at stake is U.S. control over the whole Middle East, with its fabulous oil riches. Israel has been a willing tool and ally in keeping the Arab countries off balance and under the gun.

Much of Israel's ammunition and many of its planes and artillery pieces are made in the U.S. or paid for by U.S. military aid to Israel, which amounts to about $7 million per day.