Cluster Bombs: “Bomblets” that Keep on Killing
Yemen. Where the US is NOT even “illegally” and “pre-emptively” at war! 35 women and children were killed during a US attack on an alleged al Qaeda hideout on December 17th Amnesty International revealed. According to Ramzy Baroud attempts were made to hide the story but the high number of casualties made that impossible for the Yemen government. It is the highest loss of human life from a single attack in this country thus far. (Does Ripley's have a "collateral damage" category? Anyone know?)
Cluster munitions, especially in civilian areas, are an atrocity, whether Yemen, Gaza, Lebanon or Afghanistan!
According to Bazoud:
According to the group Handicap International, a third of cluster-bomb victims are children.
Equally alarming, 98 per cent of the weapon’s overall victims are civilians. The group estimates that about 100,000 people have been maimed or killed by cluster bombs around the world since 1965.
Unlike conventional weapons, cluster bomblets survive for many years, luring little children with their attractive appearance. Children often mistake the bomblets for candy or toys.
But we must remember, the production of cluster bombs is, though psychopathic in intent, a very lucrative product Bazoud reveals for the US, Russia, China, Israel, India and Pakistan, the biggest makers and users of the weapon. Which is why when international meetings on banning cluster bombs were held first in Ireland in May 2008 and then in Oslo in December 2008, they were ignored by the super-powers. Bazoud writes:
In a world that is plagued by war, military occupation and terrorism, the involvement of the great military powers in signing and ratifying the agreement would have signaled – if only symbolically — the willingness of these countries to spare civilians’ unjustifiable deaths and the lasting scars of war. Fortunately, the refusal didn’t completely impede an international agreement. The incessant activism of many conscientious individuals and organisations came to fruition on December 3 and 4 in Oslo, Norway, when ninety-three countries signed a treaty banning the weapon.
Ninety-three countries with conscience. Non-imperialistic. Without the corporate conflict of interest of profit over humanity.
As for Israel in particular, it was Israel that fired millions of “bomblets” into Lebanon in 2006 and civilians, mostly children, continue to die from their killing ambushes to this day. Again in 2008 and 2009 Israel used cluster bombs, dropping them into population-thick Gaza.
The Jerusalem Post reported on July 2 that the army "has carried out a series of tests with a bomblet that has a specially designed self-destruct mechanism which dramatically reduces the amount of unexploded ordnance."
Now Israel is anticipating another war with the Lebanese resistance. In preparation for this, an Israeli PR campaign is already underway. It seeks to convince public opinion that Israel is doing its utmost to avoid civilian casualties. "Ahead of a potential new conflict with Hezbollah, the IDF has decided to evaluate the M85 bomblet manufactured by the Israeli Military Industries," reports the Jerusalem Post. Of course, Israel’s friends will be pleased by the initial successes of the Israeli army testing
Isn’t it nice war criminal nations make such reassuring public relations efforts for themselves and their war criminal codependent allies? It gives the respective citizenries the illusion of pragmatic, incremental progress for peace, while their militaries continue to kill or maim innocent men, women and children. All for power and profit.
And "bomblet"? What a cunning, Orwellian name.