Saturday, July 19, 2014

CAMERA: Top Eight Media Myths About Gaza

Here's one of them:
Myth: Israel is in the wrong because it's not fighting fair: it has anti-missile defenses and bomb shelters, while the Palestinians don't.
BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It's getting a lot worse. It's already worse here in Gaza where we have a death toll at this point, Erin, of about 113 according to our sources. Keeping in mind of course that the Palestinians don't have an iron dome system to stop the Israeli rockets from coming in, for civilians there are no air raid sirens to warn people of incoming air raids. There's no bunkers. There's no bomb shelter, there's nowhere to hide. (CNN, July 11, 2014)
Fact: Why hasn't Hamas built bomb shelters for civilians in Gaza? Who's stopping them? Hamas has imported huge quantities of cement, but it's been forcefully diverted from the civilian sector and instead used to build bunkers and tunnels for Hamas leaders and fighters, along with hidden missile firing positions and underground warehouses full of weapons including long range missiles. 
On the other hand, Israel's requirement since the early 1990's that all new homes have a secure reinforced room, and its building of (often rudimentary) bomb shelters in communities near Gaza have helped to shield Israeli civilians from Hamas attacks, though at a cost of over $1 Billion dollars. 
It is ironic that Israel is criticized for successfully protecting its civilians by following international law, while Hamas is portrayed as a victim because it violates that same international law.
If Hamas really wanted to save lives, it would have sheltered Gazans in its network of underground tunnels. (Personally, I guffaw like crazy whenever I hear the Ceeb's man-in-Gaza Derek Stoffel refer to these tunnels, the ones on which Hamas has lavished so much money and effort, as "Gaza infrastructure"--as if they were the equivalent of roads and bridges in a normal country.)

No comments: