A senior officer with the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said he witnessed a member of Hamas grab two children to hide behind during a firefight.
IDF Colonel Yonatan Branski, who served as the Deputy Commander of the Southern Command’s Gaza Division, told the publication The Algemeiner, a Jewish publication based in the United States, that Hamas “[does not] have a problem using United Nations (UN) facilities or schools.” He said he was not certain how the terror group gains access to UN facilities but asserted:
“Maybe some of the people who work for the UN are.. connected to Hamas.”
Branski said the most unconscionable thing he saw while fighting in Gaza was when he witnessed a Gaza fighter who, by his account, “launched an [anti-tank] missile, and then he grabbed two children… [and] ran them across the street to hide.”
The IDF Colonel told the outlet that Hamas fighters often would go outside schools, and knew full well the repercussions of firing towards one:
“[Hamas fighters] stood outside the school yard, and shot. Then they hoped that we’d shoot back… It happened 21 times, one after the other.”
Nobel Laureate Elie Wiesel called for an end to using children as human shields last month, labeling Hamas a “death cult.”
“Do the two cultures that brought us the Psalms of David and the rich libraries of the Ottoman Empire not share a love of life, of transmitting wisdom and opportunity to their children? And is any of this discernible in the dark future offered by Hamas to Arab children, to be suicide bombers or human shields for rockets?”
An official for Hamas acknowledged this week that they used children for human shields to launch rockets at Israel. Ghazi Hamad said “mistakes were made,” but still blamed Israel for the deaths of civilians.
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