Letters to the editor 

The use of white phosphorous in Gaza

It is with great disappointment that we read "What is white phosphorous and is Israel using it in Gaza?" (Don't Panic, Jan. 21).

[CL columnist Andisheh Nouraee] stated that Palestinians in Gaza were victims of white phosphorous used intentionally by Israel in Gaza, while completely ignoring all evidence to the contrary.

The International Red Cross on Jan. 13, 2009, concluded that there was absolutely NO evidence to suggest Israel used white phosphorus illegally, improperly or in a fashion which knowingly put civilians at risk.

Why does the author fail to cite any of the multiple reports that support Israel's side?

Why does the author fail to mention the terror Hamas wreaks daily on Israelis and Palestinians – a terror that is far more of an outrage than any unproven illegal or improper use of white phosphorous?

We are saddened by the tragedies that have befallen both sides during this latest conflict. We are thankful for the current cease-fire and hope for a long-lasting peace between Israelis and Palestinians.

– Jonathan Ganz and Avery Kastin, co-chairs of ACCESS, the Young Adult Division of the American Jewish Committee, Atlanta

Editor's note: Andisheh Nouraee stands by the accuracy of his column, which is supported by a story published Jan. 24 in the Times of London. The Times article states: "After weeks of denying that it used white phosphorus in the heavily populated Gaza Strip, Israel finally admitted yesterday that the weapon was deployed in its offensive."

See www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/middle_east/article5575070.ece for the full article.


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