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Saturday, August 2, 2014

Saturday Updates (From the Top) on Gaza-Israel Tragedy

12:00 Apparently Isaeal has no shame.  Here a spokesman trumpets fact that their analysis shows that only 53% of the 1700 dead in Gaza are non-combatants.  This is well below all other estimates but even so--to seemingly take pride that you've almost killed as many alleged bad guys as innocents...

10:20  NYT:  Israeli spokeswoman refuses to say how soldier died:  On Sunday, a military spokeswoman declined to say whether Lieutenant Goldin had been killed along with two comrades by a suicide bomb one of the militants exploded, or later by Israel’s assault on the area to hunt for him; she also refused to answer whether remains had been recovered.

7:30 p.m. ET  So, after all the misleading coverage and 200 more Palestinians killed, Israeli confirms that the soldier is dead, "in battle," not (or no longer) "abducted." Hamas had claimed that he was likely killed in an Israeli bombing--or ambush--but no details on cause of death yet from Israel.

NYT and others in media reported, with no doubts, that the soldier was indeed captured--relying on IDF narrative.  Will any now admit they should have waited, or been more skeptical? Recall that the Times has said it was under Israeli censorship on this issue.   Next we may see change in timeline to show it happened before cease fire?

Not sure what this means but Haaretz reports:  "A statement issued by the IDF Spokesperson's Unit said that a special panel led by IDF Chief Rabbi Brig. Gen. Rafi Peretz arrived to the conclusion, based on evidence found at the scene of the attack. It added that prior to the decision, religious, medical and other relevant issues were taken under consideration." Some feel this signals he was blown up by suicide vest worn by foe or in bombing, with DNA analyzed after.

Jodi Rudoren home movie--made by husband of the NYT bureau chief, and co-starring Abraham Foxman--must be seen to be believed.  And maybe not even then. 

Speaking of Rudoren, Patrick Connors, who has tipped me off to a few stories this week, now out with his own detailed analysis of poor coverage by NYT.  "The paper has deliberately obscured or lazily failed to examine key events and realities, and presented information in a way that attempts to portray a balanced conflict where both sides are suffering similarly, rather than the reality of a one-sided Israeli massacre of Palestinian civilians. The Times has omitted key facts in a way that hypes threats to Israel while obscuring Israel’s overwhelming power, and control over and brutal repression of Palestinians. All this seems aimed at shielding Israel and the US, Israel’s most dedicated and uncritical backer, from facing the troubling realities that most of the rest of the world now sees."

2:00 p.m. ET @AymanM of NBC with new piece on "1.8 million stories of grief and fear."

No update needed on Israeli civilian death toll again (now for two weeks): still at three--Thai worker, Bedouin, settler.  That's good but ratio now is about 1200 to 3.

Haaretz:  In 24 hrs, IDF will announce all known tunnels reaching from Gaza into Israel have been demolished.  Others say they will then withdraw to edges of Gaza and declare unilateral (if partial) ceasefire. 

Amos Oz cops out: Massive Israeli attacks "justified...but excessive." Can't really be both. 

Took them many hours, but NYT finally covers Hamas claim they do not have captured soldier and that he may have died in Israeli bombing or in ambush. Also: The Associated Press reported that Mr. Netanyahu had expressed frustration with Washington’s diplomatic efforts in a Friday phone call to Dan Shapiro, the United States ambassador to Israel. Mr. Netanyahu told Mr. Shapiro he “expected” the Obama administration to back Israel’s Gaza offensive and “not to ever second-guess me again” regarding Hamas, The A.P. said, citing “people familiar with the conversation.”

Death toll in Gaza now placed at 1624 with dozens added from Najaf overnight, and so the 10,000 casualty mark has been passed (including injured).

Max Blumenthal in article claims Hamas did not break truce, citing tweets from key period. Who knows, but the point is: Obama and media (especially NYT) fully accepted the Israeli version, which could only have been based on IDF narrative and nothing else.

@AymanM of NBC posted this El Pais photo (above) with tweet, "Unexploded bomb dropped on Deir el Balah reveals the size of munitions Israel using."  The Hamas rockets are only about 1/4 length and half of girth.

Bill Maher again backs Israel, says of civilian carnage "people die in wars," and battles with guest Reza Aslan over it.   Glad to see point that it's with American weapons is raised. This is Amnesty report that backs Aslan on Hamas not using "human shields."

NBC:  Hamas claims Israeli soldier, if captured, probably killed in Israeli bombing--or ambush, the stories vary (see Reuters).   Who knows but it did seem bizarre to me that Israeli unleashed massive bombing in the very area the soldier was captured.

Video is said to capture final moments of Palestinian journalist Sameh Al Aryan  as he filmed air raid.  Ambulance pulls up about the 5:00 mark and then it gets blasted with another explosion and camera falls to ground and keeps shooting in dense haze but he is gone.  Friends say he is indeed dead. Committee to Protect Journalists confirms.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

"Who knows but it did seem bizarre to me that Israeli unleashed massive bombing in the very area the soldier was captured.

In contrast to the US military's policy of "leave no one behind," the IDF has a policy the name of which sounds like a cheap pulp spy novel: Hannibal Directive.

This policy means that if the IDF thinks you're being taken prisoner, they'll kill you before that happens. So indeed, the IDF bombardment was all about killing that soldier, rather than letting him be taken alive.