Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Colorful Clusters

This photograph could appear in Metalsmith magazine as a beautiful brooch, ring or pendant. Unfortunately, it is none of these things. It is instead a cluster bomb.

I found this image and the following information about cluster bombs on Qursana's blog.

A basic design of cluster bombs is a hollow shell hosting hundreds of “small bomblets” varying according to model and design. These little bomblets are scattered over with a possible affected area getting as wide as three football fields. Cluster bombs are known to have a high rate of leaving unexploded bombs behind - still they are in use. Absurdly enough some manufacturers of these bombs decided to give them bright colors in an alleged attempt to undermine their risk by making the leftovers more visible to civilians. Not-surprisingly, it turned out that the new introduced bright colors are only worsening the situation because they are attracting children.

This exactly what is happening in Southern Lebanon. The Israeli military scattered them all over especially during the last 72 hours before the cease-fire when it was very well aware that the cease-fire was about to take place. Nice colorful handsized toys for children to play with.

Over a hundred civilian casualties since the cease-fire thanks to the unexploded cluster bomblets. According to Handicap International an estimated 3 civilians daily fall victims to unexploded clusters.

They are everywhere, scattered in fields that farmers should be cultivating, in olive trees that they should be harvesting. Nice colorful handsized toys for children to play with.

But again we turn a blind eye and send Israel more money. They are not our children after all.

I'm disgusted. I wish you would be too.

For more photos, go to electronic lebanon.

To get a sense of the work that is happening to remove them, go to Mine Action Coordination Centre South Lebanon.

I don't have anything else to say but that I hope that you and many others will open your eyes and "see the light."

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