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Israel warns media they are at risk of ‘injury or death’ because Hamas ‘exploits journalists as human shields’

Israel/Palestine
on 34 Comments
A Palestinian journalist inspects his work car in Gaza City on November 18, 2012.

A Palestinian journalist inspects his work car in Gaza City on November 18, 2012. (Photo: AFP/ Mohammed Abed)

Peter Beaumont, the Jerusalem correspondent of the Guardian and the Observer, posted the following to Twitter:

Here is the announcement:

Subject: GPO Advisory to Journalists Covering Operation Protective Edge from the Gaza Strip

GPO Advisory to Journalists Covering Operation Protective Edge from the Gaza Strip
(Communicated by the GPO)

Hamas and other terrorist groups in Gaza continue to attack Israel’s civilian population. They have fired over 1,800 rockets at Israel’s towns and cities, putting five million of our citizens – men, women and children – in bomb shelters. They have infiltrated Israel by sea and tunnel in an attempt to murder and kidnap Israelis.

In response to these attacks and Hamas’ repeated rejection of cease-fire proposals, the IDF began a ground operation in Gaza on Thursday night.

The GPO is doing everything in its power to provide the foreign press with timely information and to facilitate access.

Nevertheless, we wish to stress that Gaza and its vicinity are a battleground. Covering the hostilities exposes journalists to life-threatening danger (and involves risk to equipment).

As part of Hamas’ strategy of hiding behind the civilian population it has frequently exploited journalists as human shields, deliberately putting them at risk of injury or death.

Israel is not in any way responsible for injury or damage that may occur as a result of field reporting.

The GPO advises the members of the press to take every possible precaution. Journalists in need of assistance should contact the GPO to facilitate expedited passage from the Erez crossing.

Be safe in your mission.

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About Adam Horowitz

Adam Horowitz is Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.

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34 Responses

  1. Kay24
    Kay24
    July 19, 2014, 6:07 pm

    Ayman Mohyledin and other brave journalists beware. When Israel pretends it cares for your safety and warns you, then be very wary of the IDF, and do not trust them.
    They would prefer you do not report on their massacre in Gaza.

    • Pixel
      Pixel
      July 19, 2014, 9:49 pm

      .
      damn straight.

      • seafoid
        seafoid
        July 20, 2014, 4:41 am

        They followed the same procedure in Jenin. They have some Zionist love for their Palestinian gimps and they don’t want anyone to know about the details.

      • Walid
        Walid
        July 20, 2014, 5:02 am

        Israeli missile missed the Jazeera building in Gaza by 20 meters. Israel will surely try again.

        Teams of Malaysian and European doctors that had Egypt’s prior approval to enter Gaza via Rafah are being refused entry this morning. Egypt is saying it’s for the medics safety that it’s not letting them in.

        This sure looks like Sabra-Chatila 82 when Israel held the Palestinians down while the Christian militias butchered them only this time, it’s Egypt doing the holding down.

        Egyptian press is saying that Israel has the world’s consent to do what it’s doing, otherwise it wouldn’t. Israel has admitted to having 7 dead so far; Kassam Brigade insisting the number is actually 20.

        Al-Arabia, the Saudi-owned TV operating out of Dubai is running its regular programing.

      • seafoid
        seafoid
        July 20, 2014, 5:27 am

        The difference with 82 is back then there were Israeli jews who could think outside the IDF bubble and protest in large numbers. Now Sharon logic is the default.

      • Walid
        Walid
        July 20, 2014, 5:40 am

        Israel just rejected a 3-hour lull requested by the Red Cross people to allow it into the Shujaia street area to look for injured survivors, so the ambulance drivers decided to go in anyway, even if Israel starts shooting at them.

    • tree
      tree
      July 20, 2014, 4:53 am

      I don’t think that Israel will let Mohyledin back into Gaza. They control the borders. They can just hold up his paperwork to re-enter Gaza.

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius
        Maximus Decimus Meridius
        July 20, 2014, 7:48 am

        @seafoid

        Most Israelis who protested in ’82 were more concerned about the ‘soul of Israel’ and the ‘damage to the Jewish psyche’ than they were about dead Palestinians. Remember that during the horrific siege of Beirut, when up to 20000 civilians were killed by Sharon’s bombs, the vast majority of Jewish Israelis were very enthusiastic about it. It was only when IDF goons started getting picked off by Hizballah, and when the ‘soul of Israel’ was hurt, that they started experiencing a moral crisis of sorts.

  2. lysias
    lysias
    July 19, 2014, 6:08 pm

    Journalists in need of assistance should contact the GPO to facilitate expedited passage from the Erez crossing.

    I.e., they’re telling journalists to leave Gaza, and using threats to try to make them do so.

    • Maximus Decimus Meridius
      Maximus Decimus Meridius
      July 19, 2014, 6:31 pm

      Exactly. This is a threat, not a warning. The journalists are big boys and girls, they already know reporting from a war zone is dangerous. The Israelis are pissed off because their little war hasn’t been as sweet as they expected, and damned journalists had the temerity to see them shooting kids for fun. That cannot be allowed.

      BTW I doubt they would target a high-profile presenter on US news like Ayman. It’s the Arab journalists we should be really worried about.

      • seafoid
        seafoid
        July 20, 2014, 3:58 am

        Israel needs a short war. Haaretz report hotel losses of $125m. Retail sales taking big hits too. All those sirens very disruptive for business. The bill for the occupation.

  3. a blah chick
    a blah chick
    July 19, 2014, 6:11 pm

    I still maintain they were aiming for Ayman on that beach.

  4. ahhiyawa
    ahhiyawa
    July 19, 2014, 6:24 pm

    Targeting and killing war correspondents and journalists is not only a war crime, its a strategic blunder that would yield high negatives for Israel in spades.

    • kalithea
      kalithea
      July 20, 2014, 1:44 am

      Yeah, and that’s why the IDF are covering their asses by pretending that its Hamas’ fault and jouralists responsibility if Israel drops one of the big ones on journalists. But we all know that Israel’s forces have killed scores of journalists over the years no doubt because they abhor the truth and proof of their crimes.

    • amigo
      amigo
      July 20, 2014, 11:27 am

      “Targeting and killing war correspondents and journalists is not only a war crime, its a strategic blunder that would yield high negatives for Israel in spades.”.ahhiyawa.

      I wonder if we will see the same level of protest I see on Al Jazeera .I am referring to the body of Journalists who have been videod with their mouths taped in protest of the sentences handed down by the dictator Sisi.

  5. Donald
    Donald
    July 19, 2014, 6:43 pm

    Maybe they want to avoid having another case where Israeli forces kill children right in front of a hotel of foreign journalists. The NYT story (written by a photographer) was one of the harshest things about Israeli behavior ever to appear in print in that paper.

    Incidentally, a side issue, but the news section of the NYT is much better than usual. Not perfect, but much better. The editorial page, on the other hand, is a disgrace–the Saturday editorial piece condemned Hamas crimes, but used the passive voice when describing the deaths of Palestinian civilians and implicitly blamed the deaths on Hamas. They also never mention the Palestinian demand that the blockade be lifted, which is repeated by several ordinary Palestinians in the NYT stories. There’s now a gap between their news coverage and their editorial page. It probably won’t last, but it’s there.

    • michelle
      michelle
      July 20, 2014, 6:40 am

      .
      sounds like the truth is tunneling it’s way out
      .
      G-d Bless
      .

      • michelle
        michelle
        July 20, 2014, 6:43 am

        .
        i wish the moderators would fix typos
        while they are reviewing oh well
        .
        G-d Bless
        .

      • amigo
        amigo
        July 20, 2014, 11:31 am

        “i wish the moderators would fix typos
        while they are reviewing oh well” michelle.

        No, no , no.My posts are already taking too long to pass moderation.(at times).

        We will accept typos so that my posts are seen sooner in all their grammatical glory.

  6. just
    just
    July 19, 2014, 6:43 pm

    “Israel is not in any way responsible for injury or damage that may occur as a result of field reporting.”

    Priceless.

    Disgusting– of course they are responsible.

  7. a blah chick
    a blah chick
    July 19, 2014, 9:17 pm

    “Message to journalists in Gaza from the Israeli Government Press Office which I reproduce without comment”

    Beaumont’s tweet practically drips “stiff upper lip” contempt.

    • seafoid
      seafoid
      July 20, 2014, 3:59 am

      It says zionists are trash so eloquently.

    • Maximus Decimus Meridius
      Maximus Decimus Meridius
      July 20, 2014, 7:42 am

      As I’ve said several times before, until he went to Gaza, Beaumont’s work as The Guardian’s Jerusalem correspondent had been disgraceful. His ‘articles’ read like IDF press releases, and when Israel was conducting its West Bank rampage last month, Beaumont was busy reporting about…….. social tensions between different Jewish groups on a beach near Jerusalem.

      Now that he’s seen the full horror of Israel, he cannot but tell the truth. I hope he never goes back to being the IDF’s Guardian stringer again. Somehow I doubt he will.

  8. eljay
    eljay
    July 19, 2014, 10:14 pm

    >> Israeli GPO: Hamas and other terrorist groups in Gaza continue to attack Israel’s civilian population. They have fired over 1,800 rockets at Israel’s towns and cities, putting five million of our citizens – men, women and children – in bomb shelters. They have infiltrated Israel by sea and tunnel in an attempt to murder and kidnap Israelis.

    As usual, the Zio-supremacists neglect to mention that Israel, which was born of terrorism and the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians from their homes and lands, and which was and remains an oppressive, colonialist, expansionist and supremacist “Jewish State”:
    – has been engaged for over 60 years in an offensive (i.e., not defensive) campaign of aggression, oppression, theft, colonization, destruction, torture and murder;
    – refuses to honour its obligations under international law;
    – refuses to accept responsibility and accountability for its past and ON-GOING (war) crimes; and
    – refuses to enter into sincere negotiations for a just and mutually-beneficial peace.

  9. kalithea
    kalithea
    July 20, 2014, 1:51 am

    Translation: The next time you see Palestinian kids playing on a beach and a bomb gets dropped on them, don’t rush to the scene demonstrating sympathy with the victims and report the truth i.e. what you witnessed or you’ll become the next collateral damage. In other words, leave or else! We don’t want witnesses to our war crimes who can then foil our deception.

  10. Citizen
    Citizen
    July 20, 2014, 2:43 am

    Yes, it’s a threat. I think Israel’s biggest concern is average Americans may start actually getting wind of what Israel has been doing all these years with that $8.5 million we give it, with interest, no strings attached. Our congress critters may suddenly get besieged by constituents as they did when it looked like we were going to attack Syria. Americans may start pushing for enforcement of our statute that does not allow military aid to a state committing war crimes. And Dick and Jane might suddenly realize that what Israel is doing with our daily financial aid & diplomatic support is painting a target on every American’s back. http://original.antiwar.com/yousaf-butt/2014/07/18/further-military-assistance-to-israel-may-be-illegal-under-us-law/

  11. Marnie
    Marnie
    July 20, 2014, 7:20 am

    5 million israelis in bomb shelters? Well that sucks! Never would have guessed that it was possible to squeeze 5 million israelis (some of whom are supersized, like me) into them, but especially didn’t realize there were enough, as 2 short years ago there apparently weren’t enough bomb shelters for the citizenry and many were in disrepair! Also the malls and grocery stores have plenty of shoppers. I’m no Einstein (duh) but I think this “warning” is actually a threat to all you journalists out there reporting what you see, without zionizing it first (like bleach, only 100x more toxic). Please be careful as we are all counting on your truth – God bless you all –

  12. Egbert
    Egbert
    July 20, 2014, 7:23 am

    But Israeli’s are really suffering. Here’s the evidence of a recent outrageous attack and this too. The suffering in Gaza is noting compared to this.

    • Marnie
      Marnie
      July 20, 2014, 9:31 am

      Suffering ensures the money keeps rolling in, it serves a purpose, it keeps everyone all the players in place playing their parts. If there was actual peace in this region, real peace, the place would fall apart. There’s no profit in peace, none whatsoever. This is my opinion what I think is the truth here, there is no desire for peace by the israeli government, individual citizens maybe, but not the government. There’s too much to lose if there isn’t a constant crisis. I don’t believe anyone in the government when they speak of peace, because when they do, they start wars.

  13. michelle
    michelle
    July 20, 2014, 7:27 am

    .
    No new news here
    Israel doesn’t take the blame for its actions ever
    not that many have the moral fiber to put Truth
    before Israel
    .
    over 8 million a day that could go a long way
    toward Americas needs
    .
    G-d Bless
    .

  14. Qualtrough
    Qualtrough
    July 20, 2014, 8:24 am

    With the frequency with which Israel claims this happens one would think the Internet would be awash with images of Hamas using civilians as human shields. Despite spending most of my waking hours on the Internet I seemed to have missed those. Is it just me?

  15. Maximus Decimus Meridius
    Maximus Decimus Meridius
    July 20, 2014, 9:58 am

    Seems journalists crossing into Gaza are being forced to sign a waiver saying Israel is not responsible for anything that happens to them in Gaza:

    https://twitter.com/RosenfeldOren/status/490838676146896898

    A Palestinian cameraman has already been killed. Of course, he’s only an Arab so the world won’t much care. But what if a white journalist working for a major Western channel were to be killed? What then? Probably nothing.

  16. Maximus Decimus Meridius
    Maximus Decimus Meridius
    July 20, 2014, 10:07 am

    Even for this hardened professional, it’s all too much:

    https://twitter.com/SherineT/status/490850628030439424

  17. ejran
    ejran
    July 20, 2014, 10:41 am

    “Israel is not in any way responsible for injury or damage that may occur as a result of field reporting.”
    This is very worrying. This is serious. This is actually a threat.

    And isn’t Israel and their media tired of justifying everything with the “human shields” line?

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