|Vile Graffiti In Edinburgh endorsing the Israeli mass murder|
Under a sky illuminated by night flares, and within close earshot of the screams emerging from the horror, IDF commanders sat perched above the camp watching through binoculars as if at a coliseum sporting event, looking down, occasionally pointing, monitoring the killers through line- of-sight as well as by radio contact. The victims were a defenseless civilian population. The instrument used to kill them? A drug, alcohol, and hate-filled militia which had been provided abundant aid and assistance, including a bulldozer to bury evidence of its crimes. Israel, whose continued occupation of Palestine is possible only because of arms, funding and diplomatic cover from the United States, and despite its accelerating pariah status, has largely escaped international legal accountability for its crimes at Sabra-Shatila, even though universally condemned for the carnage it organized and oversaw there.
Long after Palestine is liberated, our country and the world will remember this horrific crime and those who continue to protect the criminals with arms, their taxpayer’s money, diplomatic cover, and political collaboration.
Defendant Amos Yaron is accused of perpetrating War Crimes, Crimes Against Humanity, and Genocide in his capacity as the Commanding Israeli General in military control of the Sabra and Shatila refugee camps in Israeli occupied Lebanon in September of 1982 when he knowingly facilitated and permitted the large-scale Massacre of the Residents of those two camps in violation of the Hague Regulations on Land Warfare of 1907; the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949; the 1948 Genocide Convention; the Nuremberg Charter (1945), the Nuremberg Judgment (1946), and the Nuremberg Principles (1950); customary international law, jus cogens, the Laws of War, and International Humanitarian Law.
The verbatim transcripts reveal that the Israelis misled American diplomats about events in Beirut and bullied them into accepting the spurious claim that thousands of “terrorists” were in the camps, when both countries knew the camps’ residents were defenseless—since their PLO protectors evacuated Beirut the month before once Yassir Arafat received written assurances from Ronald Reagan that the US government guaranteed the safety of Shatila’s residents. When the United States was in a position to exert strong diplomatic pressure on Israel that could have ended the atrocities, it did essentially nothing. As a result, Phalange militiamen were able to murder Palestinian civilians at their own pace. And they did.
“By Sept. 16, the I.D.F. was fully in control of West Beirut, including Sabra and Shatila. In Washington that same day, Under Secretary of State Lawrence S. Eagleburger told the Israeli ambassador, Moshe Arens, that 'Israel’s credibility has been severely damaged” and that “we appear to some to be the victim of deliberate deception by Israel.' He demanded that Israel withdraw from West Beirut immediately.
In Tel Aviv, Mr. Draper and the American ambassador, Samuel W. Lewis, met with top Israeli officials. Contrary to Prime Minister Begin’s earlier assurances, Defense Minister Sharon said the occupation of West Beirut was justified because there were “2,000 to 3,000 terrorists who remained there.” Mr. Draper disputed this claim; having coordinated the August evacuation, he knew the number was minuscule. Mr. Draper said he was horrified to hear that Mr. Sharon was considering allowing the Phalange militia into West Beirut. I.D.F. chief of staff, Rafael Eitan, also acknowledged to the Americans that he feared “a relentless slaughter.”
All this occurred before the Massacre was launched by Amos Yaron and Ariel Sharon who oversaw the transfer of the killers from East Beirut to the airport just south of Shatila and then into the camps where they immediately sought out the 11 shelters that camp residents had identified the day before to some “foreigners who said they were from a European NGO and would repair the shelters” Rather, they were agents of Mossad.
Just before the slaughter began, and on the evening of Sept. 16, the Israeli cabinet met and was informed that Phalange fighters were entering the Palestinian camps. Deputy Prime Minister David Levy worried aloud: “I know what the meaning of revenge is for them, what kind of slaughter. Then no one will believe we went in to create order there, and we will bear the blame.” That evening, word of civilian deaths began to filter out to Israeli military officials, politicians and journalists but there was little if any reaction.
At 12:30 p.m. on Sept. 17, Foreign Minister Yitzhak Shamir hosted a meeting with Mr. Draper, Mr. Sharon and several Israeli intelligence chiefs. Mr. Shamir, having reportedly heard of a “slaughter” in the camps that morning, did not bother to mention it.
The transcript of the Sept. 17 meeting reveals that the Americans were browbeaten by Mr. Sharon’s false insistence that “terrorists” needed “mopping up.” It also shows how Israel’s refusal to relinquish areas under its control, and its delays in coordinating with the Lebanese National Army, which the Americans wanted to step in, prolonged the slaughter.
Mr. Draper opened the meeting by demanding that the I.D.F. pull back right away. Mr. Sharon exploded, 'I just don’t understand, what you are looking for? Do you want the terrorists to stay? Are you afraid that somebody will think that you were in collusion with us? Just deny it. We denied it.' Mr. Draper, unmoved, kept pushing for definitive signs of a withdrawal. Mr. Sharon, who knew Phalange forces had already entered the camps and were slaughtering everyone they came upon, some killers to the point of exhaustion, cynically told Draper, “Stop worrying. Nothing important will happen. Maybe some more terrorists will be killed. That will be to the benefit of all of us.” Mr. Shamir and Mr. Sharon finally agreed to gradually withdraw once the Lebanese Army started entering the city — but they insisted on waiting 48 hours (until the end of Rosh Hashanah New Year, which started that evening).
Continuing his plea for some sign of an Israeli withdrawal, Mr. Draper warned that critics would say, 'Sure, the I.D.F. is going to stay in West Beirut and they will let the Lebanese go and kill the Palestinians in the camps.' Mr. Sharon replied: 'So, we’ll kill them. They will not be left there. You are not going to save them. You are not going to save these groups of the international terrorism.' Mr. Draper responded with shocking words as an employee of the American people: 'We are not interested in saving any of these people.'
Mr. Sharon declared: 'If you don’t want the Lebanese to kill them, we will kill them.'
Mr. Draper then caught himself, and backtracked. He reminded the Israelis that the United States had painstakingly facilitated the P.L.O. exit from Beirut 'so it wouldn’t be necessary for you to come in.' He added, 'You should have stayed out.' Mr. Sharon exploded again: 'When it comes to our security, we have never asked. We will never ask. When it comes to existence and security, it is our own responsibility and we will never give it to anybody to decide for us.' The meeting ended with an agreement to coordinate withdrawal plans after Rosh Hashanah (“head of the year”) and the Israelis rushed from the meeting to begin its (the new year’s) celebration.
An American Congressman, noted at the time the cynical irony of the Begin government allowing forty eight more hours of slaughtering Palestinians during the Rosh Hashanah two-day celebration, which many believe to be the anniversary of the creation of Adam and Eve and their first actions toward the realization of mankind’s role in God’s world.