The Israeli Defense Ministry awarded the “Israel Defense Prize” to the Calanit artillery tank shell, a new type of shell which has been deployed in tanks stationed along the Israel-Gaza border.Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak awarded the prize, with President Shimon Peres looking on.
According to the Israeli military, the Calanit artillery shell “reduces the chance for human error” when firing from tanks stationed on the border with Gaza.
In the award ceremony, military official Danny Peretz praised the shell, saying, “In this new reality we must hurt the people themselves, the enemy, who know where to hide.”
Israeli forces have declared a ‘kill zone’ that varies between 50 and 300 meters from the border on the Gaza side, depending on who is on duty. Farmers, children and mentally-disabled individuals have all been targeted in cross-border attacks by Israeli tank squads.
Another military official stated, “There is no doubt that without the effectiveness of this shell, the outcomes would have been different”.
Five Palestinian children killed by these shells in the last four months went unmentioned by the military officials in the ceremony. Among the casualties of Calanit shells were Mahmoud Jalal al-Hilu, 10, of Shujaiya, east of Gaza City, Gaza, killed, with his 15-year old cousin and their granduncle, by military shelling near thir home.