Under Fire: White Phosphorus, Civilians, and Arkansas

Israeli army ‘using white phosphorus’ – 12 January 2008

White phosphorus, often supplied by the US, has accounted for approximately 100 deaths and injuries in Gaza, as of February 3.  The pain of the burns alone frequently leads to death.   The questions remain, did Israel use white phosphorus on civilians in violation of international law and if so, who supplied them with it?

According to many eye-witness accounts and investigations, for example, the Israeli military systematically fired White Phosphorus munitions, including those made by the United States, over or near heavily populated areas of Gaza, killing and injuring scores of civilians and damaging residential buildings. […] More investigation needs to be done to determine whether Israel used U.S. weapons to violate international law and thus not a legitimate use of force, there is an overwhelming amount of evidence that suggests Israel has violated international law.  – Amnesty International.

The evidence leads to a question of the structure of arms trade between the U.S. and any country, but especially where U.S. weapons have been used against civilians.  In the following video, U.S. citizens in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, react to the Pine Bluff Arsenal’s exclusive production of white phosphorus weapons.

Following the White Phosphorus Trail

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2 thoughts on “Under Fire: White Phosphorus, Civilians, and Arkansas

  1. This story is disingenuous if not outright dishonest. Under international law, it IS NOT illegal to use WP as a covering mechanism or to light a scene at night. When this story says, "The questions remain, did Israel use white phosphorus on civilians in violation of international law…", it's not true. Using WP is only illegal if it is PURPOSEFULLY used against civilians.

    This story has made me question the legitimacy of Amnesty. If they are wrong about such a simple issue, what else are they wrong about?

  2. This story is disingenuous if not outright dishonest. Under international law, it IS NOT illegal to use WP as a covering mechanism or to light a scene at night. When this story says, “The questions remain, did Israel use white phosphorus on civilians in violation of international law…”, it’s not true. Using WP is only illegal if it is PURPOSEFULLY used against civilians.

    This story has made me question the legitimacy of Amnesty. If they are wrong about such a simple issue, what else are they wrong about?