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Debunking Gaza war lies

The lies generated by the IDF spokesperson and the media on the Gaza war are still being endlessly quoted for the purposes of propaganda.

By John Brown (translated from Hebrew by Sol Salbe)

1. “Hamas is forcing residents to stand on rooftops, leading to their deaths.” The claim originated with the killing of six members of the Kware’a family and two others at 2:30 p.m. on July 8. According to the investigation, the family evacuated the house after receiving a phone call from the army, but returned after the “knock on the roof” missile was erroneously assumed to have been the missile intended to demolish the house.

The Israeli Air Force maintains that it knew that the family had begun to return but could not divert the missile off course. In any case, this argument no longer holds any water since the IDF has attacked other families in a similar manner without any warning. There are abundant examples such as the killing of 26 members of the Abu Jame’ family and 18 members of the Al Batsh family, as well as the widespread bombardment of civilian populations in Rafah.

Mourners fill the mosque during the funeral for 24 members of the Abu Jame' family, who were killed the previous day during an Israeli attack over the Bani Suhaila neighborhood of Khan Younis, Gaza Strip, July 21, 2014. Reports indicate that 15 of the 24 killed were children of the Abu Jame' family.

Mourners fill the mosque during the funeral for 24 members of the Abu Jame’ family, who were killed the previous day during an Israeli attack over the Bani Suhaila neighborhood of Khan Younis, Gaza Strip, July 21, 2014. Reports indicate that 15 of the 24 killed were children of the Abu Jame’ family.

2. The IDF spokesperson rushed to announce that there was an attempted infiltration into Kibbutz Nahal Oz on July 28 through a tunnel. The spokesperson also stated that at Kibbutz Ein Hahslosha, Hamas fighters were on their way to the local kindergarten. In both these cases the claims are based on a lie; all incursions have been aimed at soldiers. The tunnel exits and sites of attack were a long way off from the sites mentioned in the IDF reports. An Eshkol Council spokesperson requested that a correction be made to the announcements [Hebrew] but it was never made. Reports continued to refer to terror attacks that had been prevented. It is reasonable to assume that the reason for this has been an attempt to cover up operational failures, such as flawed preparation at the pillbox and a non-operational entry in an unarmored vehicle to a danger zone at Ein Hashlosha. Additional confirmation can be found here and here [Hebrew].

3. Notwithstanding the fact that the baseless account was published in Ma’ariv and in Avri Gilad’s absurd “Zombies” status on Facebook [Hebrew], Israel’s military intelligence does not possess any knowledge of a plan to simultaneously use many tunnels on Rosh Hashana (Jewish New Year) in order to conquer the universe. The claim has been denied by intelligence officials [Hebrew]. Even the chairman of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee denied it [Hebrew].

4. “The UN demands that Israel share the Iron Dome system with the Palestinians.” The copyright for this lie is held by a misleading headline on Israeli news sites Ynet and Arutz Sheva [Hebrew]. The UN Commissioner for Human Rights complained that the United States supplies Israel with weapons and a supplementary military budget during the fighting, such as the emergency grant for the Iron Dome, while no one provides Palestinians with protection from shelling. One can find her exact wording here. It’s interesting to note that the English version of the Ynet article didn’t repeat the same mistake.

The Iron Dome rocket defense system near the southern Israeli city of Beer Sheva, July 8, 2014. (Photo: Yotam Ronen/Activestills.org)

The Iron Dome rocket defense system near the southern Israeli city of Beer Sheva, July 8, 2014. (Photo: Yotam Ronen/Activestills.org)

5. “Hamas executed 20 people who demonstrated against it in Shejaiya,” said a news item by TV reporter Alon Ben-David [Hebrew], which was repeated dozens of times throughout the original day of broadcast and is still being repeated.

This report is not true. Five residents of Beit Hanoun were killed in an incident, after a local resident shot an UNRWA volunteer in the leg, sparking local confrontation. The Hamas police dispersed them by firing live ammunition, killing five. Alon Ben-David himself corrected the story [Hebrew], and yet it was later quoted on Channel 1. At the same time, Israeli forces killed at least 13 protesters in the West Bank, at least 10 of whom did not pose a direct threat to IDF soldiers. And though the report has been verified, it is has hardly been mentioned by the media.

6. Lieutenant Hadar Goldin was not captured after a suicide bomber blew himself up near Goldin’s unit. He was captured after he, along with soldiers in his unit, walked into an ambush near the opening of a tunnel and were killed in a face-to-face shootout. Despite the widespread media attention, the IDF’s immediate response, which whitewashed the incident using the term “Hannibal Directive,” turned into a massive, indiscriminate assault against a civilian population that killed at least 130 people and was hardly mentioned in the Israeli media.

A tunnel in Gaza (Marius Arnesen, Flickr)

A tunnel in Gaza (Marius Arnesen, Flickr)

“Hamas invests 40 percent of its budget in the tunnels.” According to leaked Israeli sources, Hamas spends less than 14 percent of its budget on defense. This is less than the Israeli rate of investment in its military buildup.

8. “Human rights organizations forced Israel to provide cement to Gaza, which allowed it to build the tunnels.” From 2007 until September 2013, Israel allowed the entry of cement only for use by international organizations. Throughout September it allowed the entry of cement for use by the private sector. However, the government banned the entry of cement in October after a tunnel was exposed. All these restrictions did not affect Hamas [Hebrew], which continued to smuggle cement from Rafah. Therefore, the restrictions only hampered the private sector.

*Thank you to Itamar Shaltiel and Gisha for data provided in points 7 and 8. 

John Brown is an Israeli blogger for Local Call. Read this article on Local Call in Hebrew. Translated by Sol Salbe.

Related:
The ‘terror tunnels’: Another Israeli self-fulfilling prophecy
Blaming Palestinians for their own deaths
A Gaza funeral for 26 members of one family

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  • COMMENTS

    1. tomer

      I agree with the fact of propanda. The hamas are:
      homophobic, antisemitic, anti-female, fanatics.

      The time is coming when Moshe Feiglin will delete this aberration from the history. Aza will be re-united with the land of Israel.

      Reply to Comment
      • peter wilson

        Oh, what a small minded hate filled person you are. Perhaps it is coincidience tha the Nazis held a similar view about Jewish people.

        Reply to Comment
        • Average American

          Peter there are alot of similarities between what Israel is doing and what Nazi Germany was doing. 1)Regional superpower 2)Superiority of race 3)Berlin Walls and Police Authority 4)”Us” against “The Others” 5)Expansion equates to national pride 6)Anything is ok to reach their goals 7)Hide goals in diplomacy.

          Reply to Comment
          • hans

            since when did the nazis build the berlin wall?

            Reply to Comment
          • Antifas

            No, you’re right average got that one point wrong, but the rest was pretty spot on. A better analogy would be between the Wall today, and the ones the Nazis threw up around the Warsaw Ghetto.

            Reply to Comment
        • Alan Sklan

          Peter Wilson. Don’t you read the words of Hamas? The lies of the Nazi’s about Jews are not true.

          Reply to Comment
      • andrew r

        And the best way to fight homophobia and misogyny is through ethnic cleansing. Maybe the Jews should thank Herr Himmler for abolishing arranged marriage in their communities.

        Reply to Comment
      • Ray

        Moshe FEGELEIN, more like.

        Reply to Comment
        • andrew r

          Heinrich Feiglin.

          Reply to Comment
    2. John

      Thank you for writing this.

      Reply to Comment
    3. christian

      LOL oh yeah because Muslims are a bastion of good will and tolerance please…The Baghdad bob Of Palestine. Don’t you have some suicide bombings to plan?

      Reply to Comment
    4. Gustav

      To the Israelisalwayswrongnomatterwhat crowd:

      What is going to be your strategy as events unfold with ISIS? After America will realise that the only reliable ally which is capable of standing up to ISIS, that America has in the Middle East, is Israel.

      Oh and maybe the Kurdish Peshmerga too to some extent.

      What are you guys going to do then? Go on holidays? Or side with ISIS? I would not be surprised if you would.

      Reply to Comment
      • andrew r

        ISIS is going to be rolled back and spending the next decade like the Khmer Rouge after its overthrow, confined to wherever it has the most fanatical support and staging occasional terrorist acts. The Gulf Monarchs aren’t going to let them go any further (Saudi just gave 1 bn to the Lebanese Army, which just battled ISIS in Arbal), they’re outliving their usefulness to Assad (who freed many Islamic militants from prison and refrained from attacking them while they fought other rebels) and by taking over oil fields in Iraq they’ve finally agitated the US enough to bomb their positions. Plus they’ve now made enemies of Sunni tribesmen in a few Syrian villages. They’re going to be victims of their own success before too long.

        Reply to Comment
      • Ray

        Israel is hardly needed to fight Islamic State. Perhaps you haven’t heard, but they’ll be too busy fighting the Iraqis, and Iranians, plus all the Shia militias on Tehran’s payroll (including Hezbollah). And just about every group in the Syrian Opposition (yes, including the al-Nusra Front).

        Thanks, but we’ve got this.

        Reply to Comment
        • Gustav

          “Thanks, but we’ve got this.”

          Really? Enjoy. Don’t forget about not hurting civilians. Ya didn’t do so well on that front in Afghanistan, Serbia and Iraq.

          But if you work out how to fight a total sanitary war, against Jihadis, in which you can surgically take out the bad guys only, please sell us the technology, we would be happy to pay for it. In the meanwhile, stop lecturing us about it. Ok?

          Reply to Comment
          • Andrew r

            Israel would have Palestinian enemies regardless if they’re Muslim, Christian, or Buddhist, because Zionism itself is nothing more than racial warfare. Of course, that goes for the US wot as well.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            “because Zionism itself is nothing more than racial warfare.”

            No it isn’t. Zionism is the national liberation movement of the Jewish people. If Zionism is racism then the Palestinian national movement is racist and so is every other national movement. And those who single out only the Jewish national movement adversely are racist themselves. Are YOU racist Andrew?

            Reply to Comment
          • JG

            Are YOU retarded Gutav or just not able to think dialectic?

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            “Are YOU retarded Gutav or just not able to think dialectic?”

            Calling me retarded is the extent of your intellectual capacity, JG.

            If I am retarded then you are an amoeba.

            Reply to Comment
          • Judith

            “If I am retarded, then you are an amoeba? I LOVED this quote—finally I was able to smile after reading all that ugly hate-Palestinians polemic and specious argumentation.

            By the way for all of of those who accuse Hamas of using human shields, look into the Goldstone Report . . . and also the testimonies of IDF soldiers (in Breaking the Silence)—it’s common practice for IDF soldiers to use human shields, including young children!

            Reply to Comment
          • andrew r

            A national liberation movement which had no plan to rescue the Polish and Russian Jews under persecution (And why should it have? They were emigrating to the US), did not organize any rebellion against the enemies of the Jews and in fact made alliances with them (The Ha’avara Agreement) while taking its real battle to a place Jews were not being persecuted in order to colonize it.

            Most major liberation movements at least fight the invaders of their own country instead of trying to conquer a third party’s.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            Thank you Andrew for confirming that YOU are the racist because you measure us by one standard and everyone else by a different standard.

            “A national liberation movement which had no plan to rescue the Polish and Russian Jews under persecution”

            The Zionists were one of the few who actively fought the Nazis and were actively rescuing Jews from the Nazis. I have relatives who survived only because of the forged identity papers that they were given to them by Zionists.

            “(And why should it have? They were emigrating to the US)”

            That is just your malicious take on it. It isn’t fact. Go read up on Hana Szenes. She was one of the Zionists who parachuted behind the lines of Nazi occupied Europe. She was captured, tortured by the Hungarian Arrow Cross and executed.

            “did not organize any rebellion against the enemies of the Jews and in fact made alliances with them (The Ha’avara Agreement)”

            Yea, in 1933, before the war. It consisted of the following:

            “The agreement was designed to help facilitate the emigration of German Jews to Palestine. While it helped Jews emigrate, it forced them to give up most of their possessions to Germany before departing. Those assets could later be obtained by transferring them to Palestine as German export goods”

            That was a crime? If so, what do you make of the Soviet Nazi non aggression pact?

            Or what do you make of the pact between the leader of the Palestinians, the Mufti of Jerusalem, and Hitler, to exterminate the Jews of Palestine?

            “while taking its real battle to a place Jews were not being persecuted in order to colonize it.”

            The Jews were not persecuted in Palestine by the Arabs? Not much. Have you heard of the 1929 massacre of Jews in Hebron? That wasn’t the only one.

            “Most major liberation movements at least fight the invaders of their own country instead of trying to conquer a third party’s.”

            Oh so in 1948, we did not fight the Arab invaders of our own country Andrew? You are delusional.

            Reply to Comment
          • andrew r

            “I have relatives who survived only because of the forged identity papers that they were given to them by Zionists.”

            And the Yishuv survived WWII only because Palestine was defended by the British. During the whole 40 years between the advent of political Zionism and 1939, all they did was pursue a colonial regime over Palestine that wouldn’t have been able to save many more people than lived there in 1939, even with unrestricted immigration.

            The major crime of Ha’avara is that it broke a growing boycott movement against Germany. The Jewish Agency, which was empowered by the British to allocate immigration papers, prioritized based on the usefulness of the individual to building the Zionist proto-state. So between 1933-35 it turned down two-thirds of German applicants while admitting 6000 from the US, Britain, South Africa and Turkey*. Palestine took in 60,000 of the ~400,000 Jews who fled Greater Germany (including Austria).
            ushmm.org/wlc/en/article.php?ModuleId=10005468
            books.google.com/books?id=8xhE8AfJ03QC&pg=PA559
            * cited second hand in “Zionism and the Age of Dictators” p. 130

            While I don’t want to belittle the efforts of those who infiltrated occupied Europe, Political Zionism was unprepared for Nazi Germany and should not be able to retroactively cast itself as a rescue movement when it was hellbent on colonizing a territory that went from exporting grain to importing it overnight.

            “Or what do you make of the pact between the leader of the Palestinians, the Mufti of Jerusalem, and Hitler, to exterminate the Jews of Palestine?”

            Not relevant in my assessment of Zionism (and not proven, either), although Hitler collaboration or not, Husseini was not a very good leader.

            “The Jews were not persecuted in Palestine by the Arabs? Not much. Have you heard of the 1929 massacre of Jews in Hebron? That wasn’t the only one.”

            The violence during the British Mandate-era was a reaction against the Balfour promise and gradual encroachment on peasant lands by JNF settlements. It happened in India and South Africa and it still would’ve happened to anyone the British allowed in.

            Otherwise Jews were not being persecuted in Ottoman Palestine, the best evidence of that being the pre-Herzl Zionists’ attempts to settle there at all.

            Re: 1948 the Zionist paramilitaries were invading the Palestinian Arab cities of the UN-allocated Jewish state, the territory of the UN-allocated Arab state (including Jaffa) and the Corpus Separatum – that’s what triggered the Arab League intervention.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            BS Andrew.

            1. The Zionists were not colonists in Palestine. They were the returning natives returning to the place from which European colonists kicked them out of 2000 years before. And some Jews never left.

            2. Palestine was not an Arab state when Jews returned. It was a British colony. And prior to that it was an Ottoman colony.

            3. Palestine was sparsely populated when Zionists were starting to return. There was room in it both for a Jewish state and an Arab state.

            4. Jews were persecuted in Palestine by Muslims, even before the onset of modern Zionism. Read what Karl Marx said in the NY Herald tribune about the persecution of Jews in 1855 in Jerusalem.

            5. I’ll say it again, the Zionists were one of the few organizations who were helping European Jewry during the Holocaust.

            6. Contrary to your claims, the Zionists were fighting for their life defending their country after 7 Arab nations invaded the new state of Israel in 1948.

            7. Yes, after the Palestinian Arabs rioted and went on a murderous rampage against Palestinian Jews following the partitioning of Palestine by the UN in 1947, the Yishuv went on a counter offensive against the Palestinian Arabs and taught them a lesson they have not forgotten to this day. They taught them what happens to those who murder the remnants of of Jews who just survived a Holocaust in Europe and who are threatened with another Holocaust by Palestinian Arabs in Palestine.

            So, Andrew, you are the racist for trying to deny our right to have a nationsl movement, Zionism, while in yhe same breath you never stop whining about the national rights of Palestinian Arabs. Even though Arabs already have 22 independent states which span most of the Middle East and North Africa. Poor Arabs, according to you they are short of land. Your attitude is disgusting!

            Reply to Comment
          • MuslimJew

            Gustav: “Zionism is the national liberation movement of the Jewish people. If Zionism is racism then the Palestinian national movement is racist and so is every other national movement. And those who single out only the Jewish national movement adversely are racist themselves. Are YOU racist Andrew?”

            Naziism is the national liberation movement of the German people. If Naziism is racism then the “Jewish” national movement is racist and so is every other national movement. And those who single out only the German national movement adversely are racist themselves. Are YOU racist Gustav?

            Or perhaps you prefer:

            Hydrochloric acid is a clear, colorless liquid. If hydrochloric acid is poisonous then water is poison and so is every other clear, colorless liquid. And those who single out only hydrochloric acid adversely are poison themselves. Are YOU poison Gustav?

            Reply to Comment
          • andrew r

            Usually I roll my eyes at fill-in-the-blank rebuttals, but this latest pogrom cast off whatever doubt I have about Israel-Nazi analogies. Israel isn’t a Final Solution state yet but it’s definitely at Guernica.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            “Israel isn’t a Final Solution state yet but it’s definitely at Guernica.”

            Not even close Andrew. We are rank amateurs even compared to you guys. How many civilian deaths in Hiroshima Nagasaki, 140,000? Oh but it was too long ago? Try Afghanistan, 20,000 civilian deaths? Iraq? 60,000. Don’t fret, we have a lot to learn from others.

            And what about your fellow ideologue with the ridiculous name (MuslimJew) who claims that all national movements are racist? I suspect you agree with him. Yet all of you pick ONLY on the Jewish national movement. Why not pick on the Palestinian Arab national movement? That’s easy, because you people are racist!

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            “Naziism is the national liberation movement of the German people. If Naziism is racism then the “Jewish” national movement is racist and so is every other national movement. And those who single out only the German national movement adversely are racist themselves. Are YOU racist Gustav?”

            Calling yourself MuslimJew, says it all. That alone should alert me to ignore you. But then I read your rant which I quote above. And that tops even your silly name that you gave yourself. Let’s just quote you again for emphasis:

            “Naziism is the national liberation movement of the German people.”

            Really? Liberation from what? Have you consulted the German people to see if they agree with you?

            And here is another quote from your rant:

            “If Naziism is racism then the “Jewish” national movement is racist and so is every other national movement.”

            So is every other national movement? Really? Even the Palestinian Arab national movement?

            Then all I have to do is to rest my case. Now, go bug someone else.

            Reply to Comment
    5. Gustav

      … would side with ISIS.

      Reply to Comment
    6. Adam Young Bennion

      How ignorance dominates in Israel — the rest of us experts in the world have already seen evidence of Israel’s cynical BACKING of ISIS, precisely as it previously backed HAMAS, just to introduce a ‘new’ element just as you do, a new BOGEYMAN only you uniquely understand — OF COURSE no one knows these fiends like Israel, IT SPAWNS IT! The rest of the world is quite capable of defending itself, only blinded still by tough-talking anti-democratic frauds masquerading as inheritors & promoters of Western Civilization such as seem happily ensconced in TEL AVIV with middle finger in the air to the world of law & human dignity possessed by all, equally!

      Reply to Comment
    7. Arieh

      A blood libel is born again. Anti-Semites have no shame. According to them, Jews spawned every evil in this world. They say:

      - We created communism
      - We created Nazism
      - We created Hamas
      - We created ISIS

      Maybe we created the mongol hordes who conquered half the world?

      What else? We create Tzunamis? We create earthquakes? We created the Black Death? AIDS? Oh yea, what about climate change that is our fault too?

      Never mind. The day will come when the Jew haters will be judged and they will be made to pay for their hate crimes. Every one of them to the last man and Jew hating women too.

      Reply to Comment
    8. Tomer

      What kind of people do they think we are?

      That they can fire rockets at our kibbutzim and towns 24 / 7 and that we will not fight back?

      Like the Nazis, the hamas need to be taught a lesson that they & the World will never forget.

      Moshe Feiglin is coming…

      Reply to Comment
      • Felix Reichert

        Israel broke the truce with Hamas in 2014, just like the last two times.

        The Israeli Airforce started bombing Hamas outposts in Gaza from the beginning of Operation Brother’s Keeper (from the 14th of June onward).

        Only on July 8th did Hamas fire its first rockets into Israel. Almost one month later.

        “What does Israel think that they can bomb their people and towns 24/7 and that they will not fight back?”

        Reply to Comment
        • Gustav

          “Israel provoked this war. Israel broke the truce with Hamas from June 14th (at least), when it first bombed Hamas infrastructure.”

          Really , Felix?

          Then read this article:

          http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Palestinian_rocket_attacks_on_Israel,_2014

          It shows that Hamas fired rockets on Israel before June 14, 2014, on: June 1 and June 11. And before that, several times in January, February, March, Apriil in 2014.

          Now tell us: were you lying? Or was it just ignorance on your part?

          Reply to Comment
          • Felix Reichert

            “It shows that Hamas fired rockets on Israel before June 14, 2014, on: June 1 and June 11.”

            No, it does not. It shows that rockets flew into Israel from Gaza. It DOES NOT show that Hamas fired them. There are several other groups in Gaza that have rockets, Islamic Jihad is one of them.

            Israeli security officials are quite clear: all rockets before July 8th DID NOT come from Hamas. They were shot by other radicals.

            Show me one, ONE source where an Israeli official explicitly blames one of the rockets before July 8th on Hamas.

            Have fun finding one.

            Reply to Comment
          • Felix Reichert

            Here’s an article from June 15th:
            “Hours earlier, Palestinian terrorists fired a salvo of rockets from Gaza at southern Israel. Two of the rockets were intercepted over the city of Asheklon by an Iron Dome anti-rocket battery. According to IDF assessments, the rockets were fired by Islamic Jihad operatives.”

            Read: NOT BY HAMAS.

            http://www.jpost.com/Defense/Iron-Dome-battery-intercepts-2-rockets-over-Ashkelon-359425

            If you still disagree I dare you again to show me one, ONE statement by ANY Israeli official that explicitly blames ANY rocket before July 8th on Hamas.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            “No, it does not. It shows that rockets flew into Israel from Gaza. It DOES NOT show that Hamas fired them.”

            This is the most ridiculous excuse that I ever heard. You are joking Felix, right? Please tell me that you are joking.

            Hamas won a majority vote in the last democratic elections, you lot never stop reminding us of that fact. In 2007, Hamas took over Gaza when it ousted the PLO. As such, Hamas is responsible for what happens in Gaza. Including the rockets that are fired out of Gaza.

            Are you seriously expecting Israel to ignore rockets fired out of Gaza when a cease fire is supposed to be in place? It is Hamas’s job to stop anyone from firing on Israel during a cease fire. If they can’t do it, then Israel has the right to take matters into it’s own hands.

            Germany, the place where you live would not tolerate a neighboring country lobbing thousands of rockets on it’s civilians for 15 years, no matter who would be firing those rockets from the neighboring country. It would expect it’s neighbor to police their own territory or it would take matters into it’s own hands. Don’t even try to deny it Felix.

            Reply to Comment
          • Goldmarx

            “Hamas is responsible for what happens in Gaza. Including the rockets that are fired out of Gaza.”

            Prior to the establishment of the Palestinian Unity Government in April, Bibi himself admitted that Hamas had observed the ceasefire going back to the end of the 2012 ‘Operation’. He did not hold Hamas “responsible” for attacks by Islamic Jihad, for example.

            You want to argue with Bibi?

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            Yes, I’ll argue with Bibi too if necessary. Not that in this case it is necessary.

            It is really a simple concept. Hamas took over Gaza. It is therefore responsible for law and order in Gaza. So if someone fires rockets out of Gaza at civilians, it is their job to stop it. It is also in the interest of Gazans too.

            If Hamas can’t or won’t, then Israel has every right to do what is necessary to try and stop it itself. Not only the right, but the duty.

            Reply to Comment
          • Goldmarx

            Just as Israeli security forces have worked together with Mahmoud Abbas to keep things relatively quiet on the West Bank as Larry Derfner has written about), Israel could have made a similar offer to Hamas in the context of negotiations.

            Bibi did not charge into Gaza when non-Hamas groups fired rockets into Israel from Nov 2012 through April 2014.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            “Just as Israeli security forces have worked together with Mahmoud Abbas to keep things relatively quiet on the West Bank as Larry Derfner has written about), Israel could have made a similar offer to Hamas in the context of negotiations.”

            Hamas is not willing to negotiate with Israel. Certainly not face to face.

            And in the indirect negotiations, Hamas has made it clear that it is only interested in negotiating only things that are of interest to it.

            Essentially, they demand an end to the blockade. And prisoner release. In exchange they offer a temporary lull in their war against Israel.

            That is not a good deal for us.

            “Bibi did not charge into Gaza when non-Hamas groups fired rockets into Israel from Nov 2012 through April 2014.”

            So what? Bibi demonstrated restraint and now you blame him for that? He can’t take a trick with you can he?

            Reply to Comment
          • Goldmarx

            “Hamas is not willing to negotiate with Israel. Certainly not face to face.”

            Has this Israeli government even tried? Think of the PR coup for Israel if it said it agreed to meet with Hamas face to face to negotiate on all major issues, but then Hamas would say no.

            “That is not a good deal for us.”

            Really? For a nation so concerned about being constantly on edge and biting their fingernails, a ten-year-truce sounds like great therapy.

            “So what? Bibi demonstrated restraint and now you blame him for that? He can’t take a trick with you can he?”

            The words ‘Bibi’ and ‘restraint’ should never be used in the same sentence.

            If he felt Hamas was, in the broad sense, legally responsible for the rockets fired by other factions during the Nov 2012 – April 2014 ceasefire, he would have at least said so.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            “Has this Israeli government even tried? Think of the PR coup for Israel if it said it agreed to meet with Hamas face to face to negotiate on all major issues, but then Hamas would say no.”

            Has Hamas tried what you suggest for Israel? Think of the PR value for Hamas if it would have, and Israel would say no.

            “Really? For a nation so concerned about being constantly on edge and biting their fingernails, a ten-year-truce sounds like great therapy.”

            Not really. Because Hamas makes such a truce conditional on the removal of the blockade.

            If Israel would agree to that, Hamas would import much more lethal weapons than it has now. And at the end of the 10 years or even before, Hamas would resume it’s attacks against us with those weapons.

            “The words ‘Bibi’ and ‘restraint’ should never be used in the same sentence.”

            If you say so.

            “If he felt Hamas was, in the broad sense, legally responsible for the rockets fired by other factions during the Nov 2012 – April 2014 ceasefire, he would have at least said so.”

            Weren’t you the one who constantly talks about how Hamas was democratically elected? If so, Hamas is responsible for policing Gaza. That means that it has to stop those who fire rockets out of Gaza during cease fires. It is their legal obligation. If they don’t want to or can’t then Israel has the right to try and stop the rockets itself.

            If 1000s of rockets would be fired from Mexico on say Texas for the last 15 years, Mexico would be obliterated by now. Like Hiroshima and Nagasaki were obliterated.

            Reply to Comment
          • Jesse

            Gustav, you’re trying to argue the merits of law and order with regards to a society/country with no law and order. That’s why Gaza is a pile of mud structures (and don’t give me blockade BS, you’ve been on that land for centuries), while Israel is a developed 1st-world nation with democracy, human rights, gender equality and functional society. There is no heirarchy to somewhere like Gaza. The government has little control, it isn’t concerned for the welfare of its citizens (only for the PR), there is no order, economy, currency, banking systems, and more it seems because money is poured into useless military activity.

            Seriously, Israel just needs to do a ground assault, destroy their government, and annex Gaza as an independent state with a proper government, infrastructure, and rights for the citizens.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            “Seriously, Israel just needs to do a ground assault, destroy their government, and annex Gaza as an independent state with a proper government, infrastructure, and rights for the citizens.”

            Sorry we are not interested in annexing them. Egypt can have them instead.

            Reply to Comment
    9. Joel

      Al Batsh family was the family of the Hamas police commander.

      Newsman, Ben Wedeman, found evidence of tunnels under the Al Batsh family home after the home was destroyed in an Israeli airstrike.

      Reply to Comment
    10. Bill Michtom

      Don’t equate Jews with Zionists. It’s like calling all Muslims terrorists because of al Qaeda or ISIS or Boko Haram.

      If you intend to criticize the actions of Israel’s government, don’t talk about Jews. Talk about Zionists or Likud or Israeli leaders. Otherwise, you are being a bigot.

      Reply to Comment
    11. Bill Michtom

      To Steven Plaut:

      “Hamas savages”
      Help us out here. Over 10,000 Palestinians have been injured or killed, the vast majority non-combatants. Three Israeli civilians have been killed.

      As has already been mentioned, Israel, as the occupying power, has a legal obligation to protect civilians.

      Israel (using its own words) has put the Palestinians “on a diet,” ensuring that they have no more nutrition than the absolute minimum required to maintain life. Israel prevents the importation of medicines, blocks ambulances from reaching injured Palestinians, attacks Palestinian with their navy to prevent them from fishing, controls the entire airspace of Gaza, as well as ALL ways of importing supplies or exporting goods.

      Who are the savages?

      Reply to Comment
      • JohnW

        “Who are the savages?”

        Hamas because they have been lobbing their rockets onto the heads of 1 million Israeli civilians in the south of Israel for the last 15 or so years.

        You want suffering to end? Then put the blame where it belongs. On Hamas. I guarantee you that if people world wide start putting pressure on the true war mongers (Hamas) instead of their preferred villain just because they don’t like the idea of self determination for those Jews who want it, then the war mongers (Hamas) will be forced to listen. As it is, whether you intend to or not, people like you just empower Hamas and their Johad.

        Reply to Comment
        • JohnW

          Oops, a typo.

          Jihad, not Johad.

          Reply to Comment
      • JohnW

        “Hamas savages”
        Help us out here. Over 10,000 Palestinians have been injured or killed, the vast majority non-combatants. Three Israeli civilians have been killed.”

        Yes, and?

        In WW2, 7 to 9 million Germans died. This included between 400,000 to 2.4 million civilian deaths. While American casualties included 420,000 military dead and virtually no civilian deaths.

        So are you going to claim with a straight face that Americans were the savages in WW2?

        Reply to Comment
        • Peter L

          John W. In fact, the US, (and British and Canadian) carpet bombing of the Ruhr would be considered a war crime today.
          We’ve learned. Clearly Israel has not…. they are basically random/carpet bombing…. and they know it…. and targetting schools used to shelter refugees after being notified 17 times by the UN of their locations as refuges.
          In addition, rather than destroying the tyranny of the Nazis (as the WW2 allies were), Israel is enforcing a punitive siege threatened by Hamas agreement to turn over control of Gaza to a joint and peaceful government as well as enforcing their further ethnic cleansing or all of Palestine for more illegal expansion of Israel.
          Israel could have peace if they wanted it… especially with the Fatah / Hamas agreement … but they do not.

          Reply to Comment
    12. Avdim

      Such a big headline…

      1. “Hamas is forcing residents to stand on rooftops, leading to their deaths.” Never heard this claim, but there is evidence of intentional use of civilians as human shield by Hamas.

      2. This claim is just as bad as the one by IDF spokesman. How do you know what the Hamasniks were thinking? The Eshkol spokeswoman, you and IDF spokesman all have an agenda and wish to present the same facts in different manner. But none of you know for certain.

      The ONLY thing we know for certain is that Hamas has sent armed men into Israel. Non of them wanted to help children with their homework.

      3. Never heard of this claim before. But an anonymous source cannot be used to refute anything. The second source is also an automatic denial.

      4. You’re probably now familiar with YNET. This is how this crappy site works. They post misleading headlines. Please note that the article itself states exactly what you state. Again, never heard this claim.

      5. Here’s another source for something similar –

      http://www.wnd.com/2014/07/hamas-used-cease-fire-to-execute-suspected-collaborators/

      6. Please provide a source for your claim that is not Haaretz (or Ynet).

      7. I don’t know how many percent the invest in what, but several months ago they didn’t have money to pay their huge civil service. And I bet half of that “civil service” is simply the military wing in disguise. Anyway, Israel’s defense budget (2013) is smaller.

      8. What’s easier – to get cement from Israel or smuggle it via Rafah? Even you and Gisha acknowledge the fact that the restrictions are enforced BECAUSE Hamas uses cement to build tunnel into Israel. This is classical.

      Is this all? Are these the all the BIG WAR LIES you managed to uncover and debunk? I didn’t even hear more than half of them.

      How about the fake death information coming from Gaza, with all those executed by Hamas becoming civilian casualties? Or about militants suddenly becoming civilians upon dying? Or misfires that are blamed on Israel? What about the staged photos and videos? What about the fact that most of the reporters from Gaza operate under threats by Hamas? What about the fact that in ALL the pictures taken in Gaza there are 0 combatants? Did you have time to debunk the electricity-candle charade pulled by Hamas several years ago?

      Reply to Comment
    13. JohnW

      “John W. In fact, the US, (and British and Canadian) carpet bombing of the Ruhr would be considered a war crime today.
      We’ve learned.”

      No you have not learned, Peter. War is still as a very messy business. It is impossible to avoid civilian casualties particularly when fighting Jihadis who use civilian deaths as a propaganda tool.

      Here are a few stats that prove that you have not learnt how to fight a clean war without civilian deaths.

      Afghanistan: 18,000 to 20,000 dead civilians.

      Iraq: about 65,000 dead civilians.

      Serbia NATO air bombardment: About 500 dead civilians.

      Now give us a break and stop preaching to us. You are not better than us. Blame Hamas who insist on war. You don’t believe it? Just read their charter and see what they themselves say. Still don’t believe us? Just look what they do. They don’t even agree to a cease fire. Instead they obscenely parade their dead on TV to blackmail us while they continue their rocket fire on our civilians.

      Reply to Comment
    14. Corey

      The Elephant in the Room is this: Israel was illegally and unlawfully created, breaking UN Sec Council Laws, and against the will of the Arab Leagues (not to mention the Palestinians themselves). Israel was forged on the back of ethnic cleansing. The WHOLE country was formed via the forced removal of over eighty five percent of the indiginous peoples.

      If you want to solve the Israeli/Palestine problem, start FROM that premise.

      Of course we can’t start from that premise, because Israel has lots of guns. So we start from another premise, which the UN, Hamas and Palestine agree upon: a 2 state solution based on UN Res 1967 borders.

      Israel does everything it can to illegally ignore those 1967 UN Res borders. They dont want peace, they lie about all the peace talks (imagine, Zionists think the 2000 Camp David talks were “favourable” to Palestinians) and they lie about “making concessions”. Under International Law, Palestine is making all the concessions. Isreal doesnt give them anything. Israel can stop complaining about “terrorists” when it gives back almost a century’s worth of stollen land.

      Reply to Comment
      • JohnW

        Oh Corey, give it a break. Just give it a break. You tell so many untruths in your above posts that I won’t even debunk it. I would be wasting my time with you.

        I’ll tell you what though, go read up on UN GA Resolution 181 and then come back and tell me with a straight face that Israel is an illegal state. You might also read up about who attacked whom in 1947 and 1948.

        And seeing you chose to lecture us about forced removals, go read up about how Native American Indians, Australan Aborigines and New Zealand Maoris were treated historically and more. Then come and lecture us about how we need to take a subservient role.

        Oh, you might also read about how European colonists, the Romans, removed us from our native country which was known as Judea and how they renamed it Palestine.

        Want more? Then read up about how we were treated in Europe for 2000 years then see if you can lecture us with a straight face about how evil we are and how altruistic you people are.

        Okey, Corey?

        Reply to Comment
    15. Alain

      Haaretz just wrote : “Reporters were prevented from filming anti-Hamas demonstrations where more than 20 Palestinians were shot dead by Hamas gunmen.” So it’s still untrue?

      Reply to Comment
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