"In 2011, the projectiles fired by the Israeli military into Gaza have been responsible for the death of 108 Palestinians, of which 15 where women or children and the injury of 468 Palestinians of which 143 where women or children. The methods by which these causalities were inflicted by Israeli projectiles breaks down as follows: 57% or 310, were caused by Israeli Aircraft Missile fire, 28% or 150 where from Israeli live ammunition, 11% or 59 were from Israeli tank shells while another 3% or 18 were from Israeli mortar fire." ( United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UN OCHA), which keeps detailed data on casualties in Palestine - more here.)
Every two or three years Israel goes on a killing rampage. In between, the killings sometimes dwindle to a few a week. I recently posted one of the weekly PCHR reports that detail the killings, house demolitions, detentions and so forth that Israel invokes on Palestinians, non stop, year after year.
The US media and the US political establishment all echo the Israel public relations line to justify the ongoing ethnic cleansing of Palestinians from land Israel wants. Say what you will about the little home made rockets Palestinians fire toward Israel, but they are always in response to an upsurge in Israel's extra judicial murders of Palestinians. If there's a cease fire between Israel and Hamas, Israel breaks it. If there's an election coming up in Israel, more Palestinians will be killed following a barrage of propaganda from the Israeli government about how Israel's very existence is being threatened.
The Electronic Intifada details how Israel began this latest round of violence by provoking rocket attacks from Palestine.
It's important to remember that recently there have been two rampages, one in the West Bank, where the old PLO is in charge, which was supposedly about three youths being missing, although Israeli officials, it is now known, already knew the boys were dead when the rampage began.
Now it's in Gaza, where Hamas is in charge.
Just prior to the first rampage the POL and Hamas agreed to stop fighting each other and unite, confirming Israel's worse fears. It's not widely known but Israel if not created Hamas made it into what it is today, to be a counterweight to the secular PLO. As UPI reported in 2002:
Israel and Hamas may currently be locked in deadly combat, but,
according to several current and former U.S. intelligence officials,
beginning in the late 1970s, Tel Aviv gave direct and indirect financial
aid to Hamas over a period of years.
Israel "aided Hamas directly
-- the Israelis wanted to use it as a counterbalance to the PLO
(Palestinian Liberation Organization)," said Tony Cordesman, Middle East
analyst for the Center for Strategic Studies.
for Hamas "was a direct attempt to divide and dilute support for a
strong, secular PLO by using a competing religious alternative," said a
former senior CIA official.