US Tries, Fails to Mimic Israeli ‘Roof-Knock’ Bomb Warning in Iraq

Initial Attempt at Roof-Knock Bombing Failed

Even in cases where Israel is clearly not the picture of success, US officials tend to look to them as a model to copy, particularly on various war tactics. So when the Pentagon was looking to reduce civilian deaths in Iraq bombings, they looked at what Israel did in Gaza, where they killed thousands of civilians.

According to Maj. Gen. Peter Gersten, the US is said to have attmepted to copy Israel’s “roof-knocking” strategy, dropping smaller bombs on civilian homes first to chase them out before dropping the bigger bombs. Even though it clearly didn’t work well for Israel, US officials tried, and say it “failed” for them.

US officials are also said to be “copying Israel” by dropping leaflets into populated areas demanding the civilians flee, even though by and large they have nowhere to go, a tactic Israel similarly used to warn Gazans out of Gaza, despite all borders being closed.

Bombing civilian locations is flat out illegal under international law, though Israel has mostly gotten a pass for repeatedly doing so, because the US vetoes all the resolutions criticizing them for that. Vetoing criticism of all the civilians they kill, ultimately, is likely to be the “Israel copying” strategy the Pentagon settles on.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of