20 September 2006

cluster bombs

I hate to get all political again, but I like to think that people power is still alive and kicking and that we can make a difference. I guess most will know that Israel chose to drop a monstrous number of cluster bombs in the last three days of it's war with Lebanon in civilian areas. This just as they were finalising the terms of the ceasefire. Even the Americans are like 'hmmmm...not too sure that was appropriate' and that really takes something!

Cluster bombs are specially designed to be indiscriminate and with a large number of the bomblets not exploding on impact they lie in wait to explode sometimes many years after the war is over. If they are disturbed later, for example while trying to rebuild a house or often when kids are playing in the rubble, they can explode causing severe injury or death.

Clearly these weapons have no place in civilian areas, but even in completely military cases they are of dubious morality given how indiscriminate they are and how long they can remain on the ground unexploded after battle lines and military targets have changed. These weapons are produced, used by and exported by our very own British government. In my opinion we should be pressuring our government to set up and heavily lobby other countries (in particular the USA and Israel) to sign an international agreement stopping the use and production of these weapons. There is a petition online for just this cause so if you're interested go along and sign it. Go to the British petition site or the international site.

As an aside the Israelis are still refusing to give the UN a map detailing where they dropped cluster bombs making the job of clearing them much more difficult and much more dangerous for the peacekeeping troups who have the job of clearing up Israel's mess. Yeah, cheers guys. We'll come bail you out again anytime.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This is just not acceptable. It seems to me Israel is just organising a good old genocide... quite typical in case of territory disputes. Cluster bombs allows you to do that without even having soldiers there.
Ps: I signed the petition.