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Investigators also discovered shrapnel and pieces of a copper ring that they identified as fragments of a 155-mm artillery shell. HRW senior military analyst Marc Garlasco, a former official at the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency, says, "It's absolutely clear to me that this has to be from a 155 shell." And while it's possible that the shell was planted, the preponderance of head and torso wounds rather than lower-body injuries casts doubt on the theory that the blast came from the ground.
So who is right? The Israeli government is unlikely to reopen the probe or permit another team of independent investigators to examine the evidence. Defenders of the army's practice of shelling Palestinian targets in response to rocket attacks say responsibility for civilian deaths lies with Palestinians who refuse to prevent violence against Israel. But, as other Israelis point out, shelling a densely populated region with imprecise munitions cannot help putting civilians at risk. Huda Ghaliya now lives with her mother and a brother who survived the blast. "She has a masked face, no emotions," says Eyad Sarraj, founder of the Gaza Community Mental Health Clinic. "She will never forget."