Sat 02 Dec 2023 5:10 pm - Jerusalem Time
United States provided Israel of 15,000 bombs and 57,000 shells since October 7
On Friday, the Wall Street Journal published details about the secret arms transfers sent by the White House to Israel since October 7, revealing that the United States had supplied Israel with 57,000 artillery shells and 15,000 bombs, including more than 5,000 bombs with warheads weighing 2,000. pound.
According to a weapons list obtained by the newspaper, the United States has shipped to Israel “more than 5,000 unguided or ‘dumb’ Mk82 bombs, more than 5,400 2,000-pound Mk84 bombs, and about 1,000 GBU-39 small-diameter bombs.” And about 3,000 JDAMs.
In addition, the United States shipped 57,000 155 mm shells to Israel. NBC News reported earlier last October that Washington had sent artillery shells consisting of cluster munitions to Tel Aviv.
Mick Mulroy, a former deputy assistant secretary of defense and Marine Corps officer, described the weapons as those the United States would use in non-urban areas. He added: "It is a preferred type of weapon for the battles we fought in Afghanistan and Syria in open, non-urban areas." “The United States may use it in more urban areas, but it will first do a lot of analysis of the targets to make sure the attack was proportionate and based on military necessity.”
By contrast, Gaza has an area of about 140 square miles, is home to 2.3 million people, and is one of the densest areas on Earth. In addition, Israel has relied on artificial intelligence software to quickly prepare lists of suspected low-ranking Hamas members to target, without respect for nearby civilians.
Israeli policy has led to widespread destruction in Gaza. At least 15,000 civilians were killed. The number of Palestinian children killed exceeds the number of Hamas fighters whom Israel claims to have killed by several thousand. Nearly 100,000 buildings in Gaza have been damaged by the Israeli bombing campaign, including the destruction of universities, hospitals, schools and entire residential neighborhoods.
The New York Times reported last week that Israel is killing civilians in Gaza at a "historic pace." The newspaper added that part of the explanation for the huge death toll is Tel Aviv's willingness to drop 2,000-pound American-made bombs on various civilian centers.
Mark Garlasco, a former Pentagon analyst who advises the Dutch organization PAX, told the New York Times that he had never seen anything like this before. “It goes beyond anything I've seen in my career,” he said. In order to find a historical comparison for so many large bombs in such a small area, one has to "go back to Vietnam or World War II," Garlasco added.
Israeli officials and American politicians have tried to justify Tel Aviv's massacre of Palestinians in Gaza by pointing to the Allied bombing of Tokyo during World War II. In one night during the bombing of Tokyo, more than 100,000 people were burned to death by American incendiary bombs.
The White House has submitted some requests to Tel Aviv to try to limit civilian casualties. However, the Biden administration has refused to condition future arms shipments to Israel on a reduction in civilian death tolls.
The United States has relied primarily on aircraft to quickly ship hundreds of millions of dollars worth of weapons to Israel over the past two months. In contrast to arms shipments to Ukraine, the Biden administration has refused to provide the public with information about the weapons it is providing to Tel Aviv.