So what are we to make of this?
The UN said Friday that south Lebanon is strewn with unexploded cluster bombs dropped by Israel, as the U.S. State Department has been reportedly investigating Israel's use of the weapon.
"There are about 285 cluster bomb locations across south Lebanon, and our teams are still doing surveys and adding new locations every day," said Dalya Farran, spokeswoman for the UN Mine Action Coordination Center, which has an office in the southern port city of Tyre.
"We find about 30 new locations per day," she said.
"A lot of them are in civilian areas, on farmland and in people's homes. We're finding a lot at the entrances to houses, on balconies and roofs," Farran said. "Sometimes windows are broken and they get inside the houses."
"It's not illegal to use against soldiers or your enemy, but according to Geneva Conventions it's illegal to use them (cluster bombs) in civilian areas," Farran said.
And it turns out that 90% of the Israeli cluster bomb strikes occurred in the last few days of its assault on Lebanon, when Israel knew perfectly well that a cease-fire was imminent:
The United Nations Mine Action Coordination Centre has just finished checking 85 per cent of the areas of southern Lebanon bombed by the Israelis, and the UN's humanitarian chief, Jan Egeland, says the findings are "shocking".
JAN EGELAND: They identified 359 separate cluster bomb strike locations that are contaminated with as many as 100,000 unexploded bomblets. [...] What's shocking and I would say to me completely immoral is that 90 per cent of the cluster bomb strikes occurred in the last 72 hours of the conflict, when we knew there would be a resolution, when we really knew there would be an end of this.
But this is just what the US has done in Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, and Iraq (to name just a few), isn't it? Yes, but not quite--the Israelis have taken this type of indiscriminate mayhem to a whole new level in their assault on Lebanon, as you can see here:
"The situation is much more severe than what the UN encountered in Iraq, Afghanistan and Kosovo," Dyala Farran, media officer in Tyre for the Mine Action Coordination Centrem a partnership between the United Nations and Lebanon's National Demining Office.
Chris Clarke, head of the UN mine action service in southern Lebanon, said: "This is without a doubt the worst post-conflict cluster bomb contamination I have ever seen." [...]
Mr Clarke, who has worked in bomb clearance in Sudan, Kosovo, Kuwait and Bosnia, said the number of confirmed strikes was "climbing every day". He said: "They are everywhere in south Lebanon. We are still looking. Pretty much the whole of south Lebanon is carpeted with these things."
Simon Conway, director of the British charity Landmine Action, condemned Israel's "cynical" use of the weapons. He said: "The premeditated targeting of residential areas with high failure-rate cluster munitions in the final days of the conflict means that the rubble-filled villages of southern Lebanon have been deliberately turned into minefields that will indiscriminately kill civilians for years to come."
So why would Israel drop such a huge amount of cluster munitions in the closing phases of their attack, hitting homes, farms, hospitals, and other civilian structures and areas? To make the south of Lebanon basically uninhabitable for the returning civilians, of course--and not just now, but for many years. To teach them a lesson they'll never forget, because they won't have the option of forgetting it.
So who's learning that lesson? The same ones who always do:
Marwa and Hassan remembered warnings not to touch strange objects. “It’s one of those bombs,” one of the children cried. Sikna panicked and dropped the cluster bomb, which exploded instantly.
“Hassan was flung about two to three metres and I flew to the other side,” she said, speaking slowly in her hospital bed. “I was on the ground with blood coming out of my stomach and I started to cry and scream. My stomach was making a funny noise as if it was whistling.”
Doctors discovered later that shards of metal had penetrated her liver. While Marwa received relatively minor injuries, Hassan was wounded in the abdomen.
“My intestine came out and I held it and began to run, shouting ‘Allahu Akbar’ (God is greatest),” said Hassan. “I collapsed, my uncle picked me up and they took us to hospital.”
Like Sikna, he spent two days in intensive care. Both children are struggling to comprehend what happened. “They left us toys that will kill us,” said Hassan blankly.
Run that through your mind once more: the "most moral army in the world" left the children of Lebanon toys that will kill them--about 100,000 of them, to be exact. And they massively ramped up their delivery of these "toys" in the last 72 hours of their assault, primarily in civilian areas, resulting in "without a doubt the worst post-conflict cluster bomb contamination" the head of the UN's mine action service has ever seen, in a deliberate strategy to cause the greatest possible damage to civilians--mainly children.
Of course, Israel's "supporters" won't hesitate for a moment to defend these monstrous crimes.