Who killed the four boys on the Gaza beach?
September 29, 2014 by Thomas Wictor
On Twitter—a name I’m finding more and more apt by the day—someone did what he thought would be a drive-by trolling, accusing me of being a propagandist. We got into it, and eventually he accused Israel of committing a war crime by killing four Palestinian boys on the Gaza beach, July 16, 2014. Here’s how he described the incident.
This is obviously not a serious thinker, but in the course answering his infantile charges, I came across a lot of information and images that now make me question the entire episode. The IDF did itself no favors by refusing to explain in detail that the boys were using a known Hamas position.
Here’s a French report that’s inaccurate in virtually every possible way, but this version of events has entered the collective consciousness.
The smoke they show at 0:17 has nothing to do with anything. Palestinians burn things. All the time.
From the position of the camera, the reporter had to be in the Roots Hotel.
Nobody else saw any Sa’ar 4.5-class missile boats, the only Israeli vessels capable of shelling shore targets. The French video isn’t clear enough to show what kind of ship is out there, but if it had fired a shell, you would’ve heard the report of the 76mm gun. Also, the weapon is the Italian OTO Melara, a rapid-fire cannon. You don’t use it to shoot one shell.
The target was not a fisherman’s hut. It was a Hamas naval-police post.
Did you know that the structure was a Hamas police post? I learned this fact myself only today. The press lied about this incident in too many ways to count. They said this was a fisherman’s hut, and then they said that the building next to the post was the real police post.
It was a real police post, but it wasn’t destroyed the same day the four boys were killed. For some reason the BBC almost told the truth here.
Since the world’s press is now useless, I’ve been unable to determine when the cinder-block Naval Police post was destroyed. My best guess is July 10, 2014.
So Hamas simply moved into the metal shed. Some reporters have said that fishermen hung their nets in there. Maybe nets for catching guppies. Commercial fishing nets? Not a chance. Besides, the shed sent up a column of black smoke after it was hit. Look at the soot. Hamas stored the tools of its trade in the shed.
Back to the French video.
We see the children running, but then there’s an edit, and we hear an explosion. A Palestinian photographer was said to have caught the moment the four children were killed. That’s not true; witnesses say he caught the moment three children were killed.
One child was killed at the Hamas police post, as was reported at the time.
What was the child doing at the police post? He and his friends were playing a game.
They were carrying sticks, and they were in a Hamas police post. Why does the IDF target the Hamas police? Because the Hamas police are terrorists.
They murder Palestinians, and they use their posts as weapons depots. The Israelis saw individuals carrying what looked like guns, in a terrorist combat post, so they destroyed it.
According to at least one eyewitness, the boys weren’t alone. Peter Beaumont—the Guardian’s Jerusalem correspondent—was at the al-Deira Hotel.
So, a twenty-one-year-old man was running with the boys. But when you look at a large version of the four figures running, they’re all clearly children.
Are those photos of the children genuine? We’ll come back to that.
The children were trying to run 1000 feet (300 meters)? The Roots Hotel—where the French reporter was—is almost within arm’s length of the quay. I’ve looked at many photos and videos of the scene, and if you believe the pictures of the aftermath, this was where the children (and man?) were…engaged with some kind of weapon.
As you can see, there’s no hotel anywhere nearby. The images of the victims running show the Beach Hotel. The only Beach Hotel I’ve found in Gaza City is this one.
It looks like a different building, and it’s located quite far from the scene of the second explosion, which is marked by a red dot.
Would even a huge telephoto lens compress the scene down to just the running figures and the roof of the hotel? What happened to all those brightly colored tents?
And what are we to make of this photo?
It’s three of the same boys, but now they’re running down by the water instead of toward ostensible safety.
Everything about this story reeks of falsehood. It fits the narrative of the “child-killing Israeli army” like a glove, and that makes me not believe it.
I did a pulsating gif of the second explosion.
It just doesn’t look real to me. The central column of smoke changes place, and it doesn’t grow in height. Smoke from explosions shoots into the sky. This looks like another Palestinian special effect.
Four boys did die.
There are some very gruesome photos and videos of four dead children. I won’t post them, because it’s not necessary. Instead, I’ll describe what I saw.
One child was killed in the Hamas police post. Of the runners, the boy in the green shirt was hit with fragments in the face and chest. The boy in the red shirt was hit in the back and right side, he lost most of his clothes, and he was burned. The smallest boy was terribly mutilated; his legs were broken and bent to his right, and he was thrown several yards-meters from the explosion.
The boys’ wounds are exactly consistent with a fragmentation-blast munition that exploded at the red oval, relative to the boys’ positions.
However, there’s no crater. I’ve looked at every piece of film and photo available, and there’s no sign of a crater. Yet the wounds of the smallest boy could not have been caused by an airburst munition. None of the children appear to have been killed by a munition that exploded over their heads.
In the French video, watch what happens at 0:45.
Here’s the final view of the boys running.
Note yellow-and-blue tent.
The French cameraman stopped filming and repositioned himself on the patio. I think he was panning out to sea, looking for the ship, when the second explosion happened. He then swung the camera around to catch the smoke.
In the screen grab above, see the banner marked with the green arrow? Here it is below.
That’s the reason there’s no crater at the “explosion” site, and why there’s no blood in the sand from those horrendous wounds. The boys were killed further up the beach, and then their bodies were moved back to the the yellow-and-blue tent.
A closeup of the area near the banner shows interesting details.
The darkened area stands out in comparison to the rest of the bright, flat sand, and the location corresponds with the explosion site in the French video.
Remember that western journalists had to run 1000 feet (300 meters) to get to the scene. In those few minutes, the Palestinians concocted the fiction that the boys were killed on an empty, open beach while playing soccer. Therefore the bodies had to be moved out from among the umbrellas and tents, away from the the actual site of their deaths. The top of that one umbrella had been blown off, which would give away where the boys really died.
Since the French film proves that boys were killed among the umbrellas and tents, the images of them running and being targeted must have been faked. I’d already concluded that, based on the weird explosion and the shadows.
The shadows of the children and the sticks in the ground are longer than those of the cinder blocks on the roof of the five-star(!) Beach Hotel. Thus the images are almost certainly composite photos.
In a blowup you can see how it appears that the hotel was pasted over the image of the boys. Look at the red arrow. See how the edge of the building looks animated?
The Beach Motel sign is faded, rusty, and has neon over the letters; is this place really in the most upscale tourist spot of Gaza City? Note the dumpster on the beach, marked with a green arrow. It’s the same one that appears in the pornographic photos of the smallest, most mutilated dead child.
Here’s a long view, the dumpster identified by a green arrow.
Where’s the hotel? The photographer obviously took the pictures from a highrise; according to his photos, the boys were killed here, at the green X.
It’s all five-star luxury hotels there. Would they tolerate a run-down, mid-century eyesore with a neon sign and cinder blocks on the corrugated tin roof?
Why aren’t there any more photos of this hotel? I can’t make out the name. If anyone recognizes this establishment, let me know.
A final embellishment: The pictures of the dead boys lying in the sand show no blood. Yet at the funeral, one child was wrapped in a bloody shroud.
That’s fake blood. No question. If you doubt it, look up the photos of the bodies on the beach.
What kind of people use dead children as props to advance their totalitarian politico-religious agenda? The Palestinians.
I can’t tell you what actually happened, but the boys weren’t playing soccer, the target was legitimate, and the IDF did not deliberately kill children. Yes, the Israelis took responsibility for the deaths; however, the IDF stopped using the M825A1 smoke shell for no reason. The IDF was also unable to determine how Mustafa Tamimi and Bassem Abu Rahmeh died. From the standpoints of PR and forensic investigation, the IDF needs major reform.
Knowing what I do about Hamas, my gut tells me that someone tossed a hand grenade. At close range that would cause all the wounds, burn the children, and tear off their clothes.
Hamas are just the type of creatures to instantly exploit a situation by murdering children.
Mohammed Bakr, Ahed Bakr, Zakaria Bakr, and Mohammed Bakr were living souls, not objects to be used in film production.