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 - Truth about Gaza War / Assualt
    Sheikh Radwan Cemetery Graves Bombed in Gaza

    January 15, 2009

    GAZA CITY: Israel yesterday bombed the crammed Sheikh Radwan cemetery, sending body parts flying onto neighboring houses and blasting craters into the graveyard.

    After the bombing, Palestinians were seen collecting charred body parts in plastic bags and placing them back into the crater that was all that remained of the graveyard. Scores of tombstones were smashed in the bombing on Day 19 of the war on Gaza.

    The area smelled of rotting and charred flesh. Passersby covered their faces with cloths as they walked around.

    “There was flesh on the roofs, there were small bits of intestines. My neighbor found a hand of a woman. We put it all into a plastic bag,” said resident Ahmad Abu Jarbou. “One man who buried his cousin yesterday couldn’t find the body at all.”

    “The Israelis have struck even the dead. There is nothing they have not hit in the Gaza Strip,” lamented Abu Fayez Al-Shurafa, leaning on a cane. “I was shocked they would dare do this. The flesh of the dead flew in the streets and we are collecting them in bags.”

    In a predictable response, Maj. Avital Leibovich, an Israeli military spokeswoman, said the fighter jets targeted a weapons cache next to the cemetery and a nearby rocket-launching site. She claimed the heavy damage was the result of secondary explosions.

    Palestinians were unimpressed, complaining that the bombing offended religious sensibilities common to Muslims and Jews. Abdel Karim Al-Kahlout, the city’s grand mufti, said: “Jews would rise up if anyone so much as broke a tombstone in their cemeteries. Attacking the dead is forbidden in every religion and in every belief.”

    Israel, meanwhile, tightened its hold around the city. And a top Israeli general said “there is still work” ahead against Hamas. Explosions and heavy machinegun fire echoed through the city yesterday after tanks drew close to Gaza’s densely populated center.

    Talat Jad, a 30-year-old resident of the Gaza suburb of Tal Hawa where tanks thrust overnight, said he and 15 members of his family gathered in one room of their house, too frightened to look out of the window. “We even silenced our mobile phones because we were afraid the soldiers in the tanks would hear them,” Jad said. “Some of us recited verses from the Qur’an and others prayed the sounds of explosions would die down.”

    Palestinian medical officials said more than 1,000 people have died and nearly 5,000 wounded since Israel began its offensive on Dec. 27. The health minister in Gaza’s Hamas-run government said close to 400 of those were women and children.

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