In this picture, the rocket is being launched by Hamas from:
(A) a military base,
(B) a battlefield,
(C) a naval vessel, or
(D) an area surrounded by civilians.
The answer, of course, is self-evident. Isn't it curious, therefore, that the Associated Press doesn't see fit to include that little tidbit of information in the caption?
IMPORTANT: See Carl in Jerusalem's post here for more direct proof of Hamas' continued use of civilian infrastructure for warmaking purposes. Then click on ye "Continue Reading" link and keep on truckin' for my take on things. Not that I've got anything important to say or anything...
The rules of modern warfare, which all civilized
nations choose to abide, dictate that the warring forces should take every measure possible to distance themselves from areas of civilian life, so as to minimize
any possible loss of life amongst said civilian population.
Hamas, on the other hand, chooses to surround
itself with civilians, which is a war crime
. From the Fourth Geneva Convention
Art. 27. Protected persons [Ed.:—Including "civilians"] are entitled, in all circumstances, to respect for their persons, their honour, their family rights, their religious convictions and practices, and their manners and customs. They shall at all times be humanely treated, and shall be protected especially against all acts of violence or threats thereof and against insults and public curiosity.
However, the Parties to the conflict may take such measures of control and security in regard to protected persons as may be necessary as a result of the war.
Art. 28. The presence of a protected person may not be used to render certain points or areas immune from military operations.
Notice Article 28, which international human rights' groups tend to overlook?
While Article 27 instructs all warring parties (Israel and Hamas, in this case) to do everything within their power to protect civilians that are in areas of conflict, Article 28 declares that keeping civilians strategically placed around military targets does not protect the military target
. Just as the same Convention removes the immunity on hospitals if they are actively used to wage war (which, fortunately, Hamas has not done yet).
Given all that, one really must wonder where the outrage in the editorial rooms of the world is against Hamas
endangerment of the Gaza population?Update:
While I think there's a decent fair-use case for posting the picture, in that I'm arguing that the associated caption is significantly lacking in context, I've decided that it's not worth the risk of repeating history
. Thus, the now-traditional Daylife link.