The IDF's wholesale butchery of Palestinians continued today. According to The Guardian:
A deadly attack on a school in the city of Rafah in the south of Gaza has been denounced as a "moral outrage" and "criminal act" by the UN secretary general, Ban Ki-moon.This is the seventh UN school hit by the IDF in its one-sided attack on Gaza. Elswhere in Rafah, 30 more people were killed just this morning, bringing the total number of dead in Rafah to 100 in the last 48 hours alone.
At least 10 people were killed and dozens more wounded after a projectile struck a street outside the school gates on Sunday morning.
The school was sheltering more than 3,000 people displaced by fighting in the area. It has been the scene of heavy bombardment by the Israeli military and fierce clashes following the suspected capture by Hamas fighters of an Israeli soldier, later declared killed in action.
In a statement, Ban called on those responsible for the "gross violation of international humanitarian law" to be held accountable. He said the "Israel Defence Forces (IDF) have been repeatedly informed of the location of these sites."
At the time of the strike – about 10.50am local time – dozens of children and adults were clustered around the gates buying biscuits and sweets from stalls set up by locals.
The missile struck the ground eight to 10 metres from the open gates. Witnesses at the scene less than an hour after the explosion claimed it had been fired from one of the many unmanned Israeli drones in the air above Rafah.
The Guardian added:
The school – the Rafah Preparatory A Boys school – is one of more than 90 shelters run by the UN in Gaza to provide a safe haven to Palestinians fleeing the fighting. Air strikes and shelling continued across much of Gaza on Saturday despite the Israeli military operation "changing gear", according to spokesmen.So this what it looks like when the IDF 'changes gear': more dead children, more collective punishment, more misery.
Amid scenes of chaos, wounded from the school were taken to the two small hospital facilities still open in Rafah. With no mortuary facilities available, families collected the bodies of the dead almost immediately. In the corridors of the Kuwaiti hospital, stunned casualties lay on beds or slumped in chairs.
When is President Obama going to grow a spine and say what needs to be said to the war criminals of Likud? What the hell has he got to lose? They hate his guts anyway. For pity's sake, Mr. President, show some courage.
Update: From The Guardian:
The United States said on Sunday it was “appalled” by the “disgraceful” shelling by Israel of a United Nations school sheltering some 3,000 displaced people in southern Gaza.Update 2 - From The Guardian:
In language that was rare in its directness and severity, the US denounced the attack which occurred earlier in the day and killed 10 people, noting that the school had been designated a protected location and the Israel Defense Forces had been informed numerous times of the school’s coordinates.
The State Department spokeswoman, Jen Psaki, called on Israel to do “more to meet its own standards and avoid civilian casualties”.
“The United States is appalled by today’s disgraceful shelling outside an UNRWA [United Nations Relief and Works Agency] school in Rafah sheltering some 3,000 displaced persons, in which at least 10 more Palestinian civilians were tragically killed,” Psaki said in a statement.
The Israeli defence ministry said on Sunday night that Israel would hold a truce in most of Gaza for seven hours on Monday for humanitarian aid and to allow displaced Palestinians to return to their homes, but would fight back if attacked.
The humanitarian truce, beginning at 10am (0700 GMT), would not apply in areas of Rafah, the ministry said, because Israeli forces are remaining on the ground in and around the southern Gaza town to destroy a cross-border tunnel.
A hospital near the site of the attack, in the southern town of Rafah, was overwhelmed with the dead and injured. Children's bodies were stored in an ice-cream freezer as the morgue ran out of room.
The UN warned of a rapidly unfolding health disaster in Gaza, with overwhelmed medical services on the verge of collapse. It said a third of hospitals, 14 primary healthcare clinics and 29 ambulances had been damaged in the fighting, at least five medical staff had been killed on duty and more than 40% of medical staff were unable to get to places of work.
Critical supplies of medicines and other supplies were almost depleted and damage and destruction of power supplies had left hospitals dependent on unreliable generators.