Remember those white phosphorus shells that the Israeli government swore up and down were never used on the United Nations compound in Gaza last January? Well, they were wrong.
Buried in paragraph 108 of the Israeli report to the UN is the key fact of the document. Two senior officers were reprimanded for failing to follow their own rules of engagement.
This is an explosive admission, especially as this is about an incident involving white phosphorus and Israel had always maintained that this was not misused in Gaza.
This is the first time that Israel has acknowledged, at least in part, allegations that civilians were jeopardised by the misuse of artillery at the main UN warehouse in Gaza City.
The officers will not face criminal prosecution. That is something the Israeli political-military establishment is desperate to avoid. They fear it would be disastrous for morale and would damage the ability of Israel’s army to fight the next war.
However, Israel’s problem is that if its own investigations appear to the outside world to be a whitewash, the UN is all the more likely to order a special tribunal at The Hague.