Find a Security Clearance Job!

Military

Unconventional weapons: medical account from Gaza

Missionary International Service News Agency

13 Jan 2009

"Several months of lab study would be necessary to analyze test tubes and gather scientific proof, but the wounds that we are treating are similar to those already seen in Lebanon in 2006 after Israeli bombardments and they are related to 'DIME' (Dense inert metal explosive) devices as well as white phosphorous ones", said Dagfinn Bjorjlid the head of the Norwegian medical NGO, NORWAC, speaking from the Shifa hospital in Gaza, where he has been treating hundreds of people wounded in the Israeli attacks. "We are helping the Palestinian doctors to do their work – said Bjorjlid – but we are also taking pictures, taking notes and preserving test tubes to analyze when we are outside Gaza using the appropriate equipment; many people that have been taken to hospital have suffered amputations of arms, as if they were cut in one blow, something that cannot be caused by conventional explosives; it is as if arms and legs were detached from the rest of the body which shoes lacerations, even as it does not contain fragments, which is what one normally expects to see in wounds caused by conventional explosives". This type of wound, says Bjorjlid, is typical of those caused by 'Dime' devices, made in the USA, but as yet unclassified. "On other bodies – said the medical doctor – we have seen such deep burns that they match those left by white phosphorous explosives; we have also heard of cases where some asphyxiating gases were used, but I have no proof of this yet". According to Bjorjlid, who has been in Gaza since six days ago, there remains the fact that beyond the type of weapon used, the war launched by Israel has been targeting civilians in particular: "I am here and I see the dead and wounded with my own eyes – he said – 41% of the victims are women and minors which account for 50% of the wounded; when it will be over, Gaza will not only have to rebuild that which has been destroyed, but it will have thousands of maimed and disable people to care for".[AB]



NEWSLETTER
Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list



US Policy Toward Africa: Eight Decades of Realpolitik - Herman J Cohen's Latest Book