The third part of our summary from the Civilian Press Conference that took place on twitter earlier today. The conversations were ‘expanded’ (meaning we removed the short ‘twitter talk’ and re-wrote fully spelled words) but otherwise unchanged.

shahidkamal: When will you stop using the citizens of Sderot as human shields?
For the definition of human shield see http://tinyurl.com/94vdgn

chucaodemente: When you leave the occupied Palestinian territories?
Israel began with a 2005 withdrawal from Gaza. Israel wants to realize a two-state solution, but not under the constant missile fire from Hamas.

skap5: Do you expect Mubarak to keep the Rafah border crossing closed between Egypt and Gaza?

Expect Egypt to continue what they’ve been doing thus far: Trying to convince Hamas to stop firing rockets, and instead make peace with Israel.

leah144: Israel gave away Gaza and no peace resulted. Will Israel continue giving away land?!

Israel still feels only solution is two states. When Hamas stops firing rockets, we are willing to make more painful
concessions.

mondowitz: How do you justify the killing of children? How will that lead to peace?

Israel does not target civilians the way Hamas does. We mourn every casualty, Palestinian and Israeli.

BhamaPostJoanna: You say this is for protection. How do you justify the higher number civilian deaths in Palestine than Israel from the action?

Hamas fires missiles from civilian areas, a violation of international law.

curvaspoliticas: Please explain the visit by Israel’s UN Ambassador to the Secretary General’s office on the night of December 23. What was discussed? Why did she go?

It was the, 22nd I believe, see
link: http://www.mfa.gov.il/MFA/Foreign+Relations/Israel+and+the+UN/Issues/Israel_submits_letter_of_complaint_to_the_UN_22-Dec-2008.htm

rafaelprince: Isn’t such a harsh, intense and merciless strike on Gaza a form of collective punishment? (4Geneva Conv, Art. 33)

Israel targets Hamas installations, which are, unfortunately, located within civilian areas. Our war is with Hamas, not with Gaza civilians.

didgeman: Will Israel finally do what needs to be done to end the terrorism once and for all or bow to world pressure?

Our main goal is to protect citizens from missiles. We hope the international community will pressure Hamas, not Israel.

anotherpundit: How do you reconcile the number of civilian deaths from airstrikes with your definition of terrorism?

Israel only targets military installations, but unfortunately, damage to civilian targets occurs. However, Hamas purposely puts civilians at risk.

schausse: It seems it’s possible that eliminating Hamas is a first step towards taking on Iran–is that a possibility?

Though Iran is big threat to world peace and provides arms to Hamas, these are different topics.

WyldDarkHeart: Follow up question: You said your ships “escorted [DIGNITY] to international waters.” FreeGaza says DIG was in international waters. Are they mistaken?

The Dignity entered Israeli waters and was escorted out.

tova_s: Why have international personnel from humanitarian organizations been denied entry to Gaza the last few weeks?

The borders are open.  Today, 38 trucks entered Gaza with goods from UNRWA, IRC, WFP etc. 17,000 trucks entered during the state of calm.

majdal: Why is the press not allowed inside Gaza?

The only reason is to keep them out of harm’s way. As of now, all major wires have footage coming out of Gaza.

theresaway: International law criminalizes targeting civilians. Are Israeli leaders scared they will be charged with war crimes for killing so many civilians?

Hamas is the real violator of international law according to Human Rights Watch: http://tinyurl.com/9osg3g

dwightcook: Is there truth to reports that the terrorists place installations and targets around women and children as shields?

Hamas tries to maximize civilian causalties. This is one method. http://tinyurl.com/3nbxqp

carrotderek: Intelligence gathering for targets to strike must take planning months
in advance. Was Israel going to attack regardless?

Responsible countries must be prepared for any event, whether war or peace.

rahafharfoush: What is your definition of Terrorism?

Purposely targeting innocent civilians, like Hamas does in firing 10000+ projectiles since 2001.

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