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NY Times describes Israel’s June rampage in the West Bank as a “clampdown”

Israel/Palestine
on 12 Comments
A young boy pushes a makeshift scrap metal barrier for protection from the IDF in Hebron, June 22, 2014. (Photo: Sheren Khalel)

Scene from a “clampdown”: A young boy pushes a makeshift scrap metal barrier for protection from the IDF in Hebron, June 22, 2014. (Photo: Sheren Khalel)

Today’s New York Times article by Isabel Kershner about the (now aborted) extension of the cease fire in Gaza offers a brief history of the recent events, including this line:

An Israeli clampdown in the West Bank during the search for the [three Israeli] teenagers prompted increased rocket fire from Gaza and an escalation that led to the latest conflict.

You remember Israel’s “clampdown” in the West Bank, don’t you?  In response to the disappearance of three teenagers whose fate was known but kept secret, the IDF rampaged through hundreds of homes and even universities, killing a half dozen civilians and arresting well over 500 people who had nothing to do with the Israeli teens’ disappearance and murder.

“Clampdown” is generally defined as the imposition or strengthening of regulations and restrictions.  That is hardly an appropriate word to use for Israel’s wanton and murderous actions in the West Bank in June, which of course were greatly eclipsed by its carnage the following month in Gaza.  Is that a word the Times would use if the “authorities” burst into hundreds of private homes in Ferguson, killed another five people, and imprisoned hundreds more without charge?  It’s just another subtle way the Times depicts Israel’s utterly contemptible behavior as within the boundaries of reasonableness.

On the other hand, at least Kershner acknowledged that there was some factual predicate for the renewal of Palestinian rocket fire against Israel.  The U.S. Congress would almost unanimously disagree, and in fact the Senate passed a resolution condemning the entirely “unprovoked” rocket fire by a vote of 100 – 0.  I guess Kershner’s version that the rockets were provoked by a “clampdown” is an improvement.

DaveS
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David Samel is an attorney in New York City.

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12 Responses

  1. Kay24
    Kay24
    August 19, 2014, 2:26 pm

    It is unfortunate that the US media is complicit in propagating Israel’s justifications for it’s brutality, and down playing the violence against civilians. The NYT is no longer the credible and respectable source for unbiased news. That said, we should realize that it’s main aim is to brainwash the American people, and give them a slanted version of the events occurring over there.

    OT but it seems the media over there in zio land does not have to work hard to gain the loyalty of their people, the majority of them support their war mongering government and think the violence in Gaza is justified:

    “92 percent of Israeli Jews said Operation Protective Edge was justified, according to a poll published Tuesday by The Israel Democracy Institute (IDI) and Tel Aviv University. 62 percent of Israeli Arabs said the operation was not justified.

    However, the poll found that 71 percent of Israeli Jews and 49 percent of Israeli Arabs did not believe the operation will lead to “three years or more of complete quiet from Gaza.”

    58 percent of Israeli Jews said Israel should not accept any of Hamas’ demands, compared with 54 percent of Arab Israelis. 41 percent of Israeli Jews said Israel should “respond positively to Hamas’s demands that are reasonable in terms of Israel’s national security,” compared to 54 percent of Israeli Arabs.

    The poll found a relatively high level of trust in Egypt as a mediator – 60 percent of Israeli Jews said they believe Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah al-Sissi is a fair mediator (31 percent of Israeli Arabs).

    The international community received a lower grade, with 63 percent of Israeli Jews and 45 percent of Israeli Arabs believing that “the world is against us.”

    The survey, which included 600 respondents, was conducted on August 11-12, 2014.”

    Haaretz

    • AM
      AM
      August 20, 2014, 1:34 am

      I am honestly surprised that so many Israeli Palestinians actually believe the war against Gaza was justfied.

  2. Eva Smagacz
    Eva Smagacz
    August 19, 2014, 4:24 pm

    15/5/2014:Nadeem Siam Nawara, 17, and Mahmoud Odeh, 16 of West Bank, were killed by IDF soldiers & little Ali Abd al-Latif al-Awour, 7, of Gaza, on 11/6/2014 was killed by Israeli missile strike – but lives of three settlers killed were worth SO much more, that death of mere Palestinians, (who, by virtue of not being Jewish are hardly considered human) , is not worth mentioning.

  3. James North
    James North
    August 19, 2014, 5:00 pm

    I noticed this too; thanks for writing it up in your characteristically effective style.

    • DaveS
      DaveS
      August 19, 2014, 5:34 pm

      As you know, James, taking issue with every single objectionable word choice in the Times would be a full-time job, but some bother me more than others.

  4. LeaNder
    LeaNder
    August 19, 2014, 5:55 pm

    Pretty amazing consent really. What exactly makes all the difference between enforced and “free” consent?

    “Senate passed a resolution condemning the entirely “unprovoked” rocket fire by a vote of 100 – 0”

    concerning this:
    ” Is that a word the Times would use if the “authorities” burst into hundreds of private homes in Ferguson, killed another five people, and imprisoned hundreds more without charge? “

    Who knows, David, maybe the polite voices of public reason are getting ready to treat trouble at home, spelled: riots, the same way?

    Cynicism alert. But strictly, as long as it does not reach the gray lady’s classy ivory towers, couldn’t it work the same way?

  5. wondering jew
    wondering jew
    August 19, 2014, 7:01 pm

    There is probably a word between clampdown and rampage that would describe what Israel did on the West Bank in June. (brutal crackdown would be my offer.) I differ with this sentence: “That is hardly an appropriate word to use for Israel’s wanton and murderous actions in the West Bank in June,” The actions on the west bank were specifically the arrest of Hamas activists. That was certainly not wanton, but legal or not, a very specific targeted planned out act. The killing of stone throwers when the soldiers came to arrest the activists can be termed wanton, in terms that such lethal force is not something that should be used against stone throwers. but the act that was the cause of the stone throwing, the arrest of the Hamas activists was not at all wanton.

    • LeaNder
      LeaNder
      August 20, 2014, 7:50 am

      The actions on the west bank were specifically the arrest of Hamas activists. That was certainly not wanton, but legal or not, a very specific targeted planned out act. … but the act that was the cause of the stone throwing, the arrest of the Hamas activists was not at all wanton.

      yonah, with all due respect. You are addressing a lawyer here, if I am correct.
      Do you consider Israeli authorities above the law. No probable cause necessary as long as it concerns Palestinans?

      Or are you in fact suggesting, that the days are near when not only Israel and it’s hardcore supporters (Israel can do what it wants) but anyone else will recognize that the state and its institutions must be allowed to act beyond the law. In some kind of Emergency or State of Exception (pdf.file) framework?

      As long, as you suggest, the state acts appear “rational” to you, they cannot be described as wanton? The rationality of power?

      What precise probable cause was there for the arrest? But if there wasn’t, wouldn’t anyone but you call it wanton? So if a suspect is very specifically targetted it cannot be wanton, never mind law?

      • wondering jew
        wondering jew
        August 20, 2014, 2:09 pm

        lysias- I am not a lawyer merely an amateur english speaker and I took wanton to mean careless. I now see that its first definition is cruel.

        In layman’s terms this is how I relate to the legality. You, an expert, can correct me.

        The military occupation of the west bank is legal. It is the settler occupation that is illegal. A military occupation can arrest members of Hamas. Such arrests are cruel. They are legal, unless some other law supercedes the military law. They are certainly not careless.

  6. Pixel
    Pixel
    August 19, 2014, 9:15 pm

    .
    I object to use of the word “war” to describe this slaughter but I read it many times on MW and other places I would not expect to see it.

    I don’t understand that.

  7. eljay
    eljay
    August 19, 2014, 9:30 pm

    You remember Israel’s “clampdown” in the West Bank, don’t you? In response to the disappearance of three teenagers whose fate was known but kept secret, the IDF rampaged through hundreds of homes and even universities, killing a half dozen civilians and arresting well over 500 people who had nothing to do with the Israeli teens’ disappearance and murder.

    The Potato-man (where is he, anyway?) undoubtedly remembers. He referred to it as his government and army “doing all efforts” and he said it made him a proud Israeli.

  8. Jackdaw
    Jackdaw
    August 20, 2014, 10:20 am

    How about calling it ‘suppressing an attempted coup’.

    http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4560000,00.html

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