The “Incredible” Marc Garlasco on the Gaza Bomb Libel and Israel Air War

IDF Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari briefing on who perpetrated the Gaza al-Hali Hospital Explosion  Source: Reuters

by Jerry Gordon

On October 18, 2023, PBS aired an interview by Nick Schfrin, their international correspondent, with Marc Garlasco of Pax for People on the Gaza Hospital Blast. Garlasco is a purported bomb damage assessment expert -watch the episode here.

Garlasco corroborated the analysis conducted by Israeli and US intelligence sources did on the explosion at the al-Ahli Baptist Hospital that may have taken scores of lives huddled in a parking lot caused by a misfire of a suspected Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) rocket. He noted that there was not the usual deep cavity left behind by an Israeli JDAM bomb, but a small, indented cavity surrounded by a burn area encompassing the parking lot.  The explosion was caused by the fuel and warhead material of the suspected PIJ rocket- confirmed by the intercepted conversation between two Hamas operatives released in the IDF briefing by Lt. Col. John Honricus.

But then Garlasco goes on to accuse Israel’s conduct of the air war of verging on violation of rules of engagement. He contrasts the estimate of 6,000 Israel JDAMS bombs used in “one week” in the latest-Israel- Hamas war with the estimated 6,000 bombs per year used by the US in the War in Afghanistan. He accuses Israel of violating standards of proportionality threatening civilians in a small space. Schifrin of PBS, who witnessed rocket sites in Gaza noted that Israeli air strikes that take out Hamas commanders may also take out family members who are effectively human shields.

I wrote about Garlasco’s involvement in another episode back in 2006 – the Gaza Beach Explosion when he suggested that an Israeli 155mm artillery shell took out eight members of a Palestinian Family on a picnic.  At the time Garlasco was a military expert working for Human Rights Watch.

Marc Garlasco

Here is what I wrote in an Israpundit report on June 15, 2006.

June 15, 2006
The Incredible Marc Garlasco
by Jerry Gordon

You have probably read about the former Pentagon military analyst, Marc Garlasco who was given great credibility by the mainstream press over his allegations about who or what caused the death of eight hapless Palestinians on the Gaza beach last week. Yesterday’s New York Times had another front-page article by Messrs. Steven Erlanger and Ian Fisher of their Jerusalem Bureau in which Garlasco is given virtually equal standing to the IDF investigating team whose spokesperson said that “chances are close to zero” that an IDF 155MM round caused the deaths among the picnicking Ghalia family leaving unfortunate 12-year-old Hulda bereft screaming for her father.

So, there was Garlasco part of the purported Human Rights Watch (HRW) “investigating team” as its senior military analyst in full glory in front of the media stating that he was “certain it was caused by a 155MM round,” the IDF forensic, operational damage assessment and intelligence information to the contrary.

After all, if you read the HRW news releases, they had done what they deemed the requisite GPS studies and besides, “they were there in Gaza and the IDF wasn’t” so as their headline bleated the IDF “Artillery Strike Probably Killed Palestinian Family.”

Judy Klinghoffer in her posting on Tuesday on her History News Network weblog addressed Garlasco’s previous work on the Haditha episode in Iraq and likened him to the role of U.N. Rep.Ter-Larsen during the infamous Jerin “massacre” allegations-subsequently denied by a UN investigation.

Honest reporting in its report entitled “Unbiased Advice” posted today takes Garlasco to task for his Rafah Gaza reports on Housing destruction by the IDF during its campaign to uncover smuggling tunnels under the border with Egypt, prior to the unilateral withdrawal of last summer.

Yesterday, before I did my weekly stint on Alan Nathan’s Battle Line World Debate on Radio America, I played out a hunch and spoke with a close friend and military intelligence buddy, whose name for the moment will not be disclosed. Later on-air I told the Battle Line World Debate listener audience what I had found out about Garlasco from my discussions with my friend. You can go to the Radio America Battle Line website and hear my archived ex cathedra remarks about the Gaza beach killings and Garlasco’s lack of credibility as a technically qualified expert.

I knew that my buddy had been involved with doing targeting in the preparation for the big push at the outbreak of hostilities in Iraq. I had looked at Marc Garlasco’s resume online at Mother Jones radio and noted his Iraq- related stint.

As it turned out my MILINT buddy worked with Garlasco on pre-war Iraq targeting effort at DIA.

He noted that Marc had bolted when the war began, and the rest became history as Garlasco became the purported senior military analyst for Human Rights Watch with his housing destruction reports in Gaza and such.

My buddy pointed out to me that Garlasco is not technically qualified to point to a depression in the sand on Gaza beach and state uncategorical that it was caused by an Israeli 155 MM round. Why? he had no scientific training required to do bomb damage assessment-typically a USAF intel function.

That information and more might take Garlasco and the miscreants at the NYTimes Jerusalem Bureau, their foreign editor and editorial pooh bahs in New York and the BBC/CNN/Reuters news hounds down a peg!!

It makes Garlasco, incredible, doesn’t it?