US National Security Council director was asked to explain Israel evacuating a million Gazans south and then attacking the south
The US does not support Israel bombing south Gaza until it takes account of all the civilians it has forced to flee there, White House National Security Council director John Kirby told Bloomberg TV on Friday.
“We don’t support southern operations unless or until [the Israelis] have factored in all those additional civilians – actually, all civilians, but noting that there are now hundreds of thousands more civilians,” Kirby said, adding that the White House had “also urged them to think about how to do this in a way that keeps those civilians safe.”
On Saturday, Israel announced it had hit over 400 targets across Gaza since the seven-day ceasefire with Hamas collapsed on Friday, including 50 strikes in the southern city of Khan Younis. The strikes killed at least 200 Palestinians, according to Gaza’s Health Ministry.
Israel-Hamas conflict a ‘war on children’ – UNICEF
Israel has killed over 15,200 civilians in total in Gaza since launching its war on Hamas on October 7, according to the ministry, which has stopped counting exact numbers of casualties due to the utter devastation of the enclave’s hospital system under Israeli bombardment, but reports that 70% of those who have been killed thus far are women and children.
The death toll is likely to increase rapidly as Israel has revealed hundreds more targets it plans to bomb in southern Gaza, where some two million Palestinians are crammed into what was already one of the most densely populated areas on Earth before the war. Israel ordered the 1.1 million inhabitants of the northern part of the enclave to head south last month to avoid certain death, an evacuation order deemed a war crime by UN human rights experts, and there is nowhere left for them to go within the enclave.
The Israel Defense Forces recently revealed they are using artificial intelligence to select targets, resulting in a higher preponderance of civilian infrastructure being attacked than even in previous campaigns in Gaza considered controversial, if not criminal, for their high civilian death tolls.
The IDF has admitted it is “not being surgical,” despite the occasional pleas to spare civilians from West Jerusalem’s allies in the US and Europe. Indeed, officials have bragged that the target-creation platform Habsora, which translates to “the Gospel,” has proved to be a veritable “factory” of targets, upping their destruction capacity from 50 targets a year to 100 a day. Over 12,000 targets had already been identified by the technology in early November, according to the IDF.
While multiple sources told Israeli outlet +972/Local Call that IDF technicians knew in advance how many civilians would be killed by strikes on targets chosen in this manner, many expressed doubt that this information was consistently taken into account, noting that some commanders were “more trigger-happy than others.” (RT)