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Tunnels-to-kindergartens propaganda Netanyahu peddled to NYT and CNN is exploded by Israeli news site

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One of the most important strikes in the propaganda war for Israel in the last month was dealt by the New York Times and CNN when they ran long pieces giving credence to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s claim that Hamas was building tunnels out of Gaza aimed at kindergartens in nearby kibbutzes.

Back on July 22, Netanyahu asserted– on the basis of this cartoon drawing he tweeted– that the tunnels were aimed at Israeli kindergartens.

Netanyahu tweeted this cartoon evidence on July 22

Netanyahu tweeted this cartoon evidence on July 22

In fact (and as we reported), the only Israelis attacked from the tunnels were Israeli soldiers. But a week after Netanyahu’s statement, both the Times and CNN took the prime minister’s claim at face value. The Times’s piece, “Tunnels Lead Right to Heart of Israeli Fear” gave priority to rumors over actual information, and reported that “one tunnel was found over the weekend” in Kibbutz Be’eri. The piece quoted a resident of the kibbutz saying,

“The tunnels, it’s game-changing. We can’t do anything if the terrorists will come to our kindergarten. The tunnels, it’s very surprising, it can hit you don’t know where.”

Now it turns out no tunnel was found in Kibbutz Be’eri.

The Israeli site +972 has blown that propaganda completely out of the water. A well-researched article in Hebrew that it translated from an educational worker near Gaza states that the tunnels do not appear to be targeted at civilians and they come out more than a mile from any kibbutz, let alone the kindergartens.

In short, the tunnels fear was hysteria, drummed up by the Israeli government to heighten war fever, and then purveyed by the New York Times and CNN.

The piece at +972 — which is headlined in part, “In reality, every tunnel so far has been used against military targets alone” — was published in Hebrew on “Local Call,” and written by Emanual Yelin, who lives in Be’er Sheva and is said to work near the Gaza border. Yelin is a full-on Israeli patriot, but he has no truck with the lies and propaganda disseminated around the tunnels.

Here are excerpts of the Q-and-A he asks and answers.

Q. Was Benjamin Netanyahu right in his national address when he said “we will not end the mission, we will not end the operation, without neutralizing the tunnels that exist solely to annihilate our civilians and to kill our children?”

A. No. It is certain that this is not their sole purpose, and probably not their primary purpose, either. We’ve already seen six instances in which Hamas was able to use the tunnels against Israel. Once when Gilad Shalit was captured, and the rest during the current operation. In all instances, Hamas’ target were IDF soldiers, not the communities….

Q. So what is the purpose of the tunnels?

Most likely to hurt IDF forces and capture soldiers. Little by little we are starting to hear military reporters saying this explicitly…

Q. So we can be certain that the tunnels will not be used for terrorism against civilians in the kibbutzim along the barrier wall?

A. No. We must not become complacent…

Q. But if they didn’t want to hurt communities, why did they dig tunnels under dining halls and kindergartens inside those communities?

A. Here’s the thing: they didn’t. It turns out that there were no tunnels into the communities. The tunnel into the Kisufim dining hall? That was an old sewer line [Hebrew] mistakenly identified as a tunnel shaft…

Q. So where do the tunnels go?

A. Probably just a few hundred meters from the barrier wall and a few kilometers from the communities. It’s hard to find accurate data about where the exit shafts are. But in all five instances of infiltration, the militants emerged 200-400 meters away from the wall, as can be seen on the maps in the IDF Spokesperson videos. For example, the alleged penetration into Kisufim was 1.5 kilometers away from the community. And actually, the tunnel’s exit point is just as close to Kibbutz Sufa.

Kibbutz Be’eri is nearly three miles from the Gaza border, according to Google Maps. Now the +972 report documents that the tunnel openings were within half a kilometer of the Gaza border– at least 2 miles away from Kibbutz Be’eri.

When can we expect the New York Times and CNN to publish updated articles pointing out the errors in their original reporting?

Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is senior editor of and founded the site in 2005-06.

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85 Responses

  1. Edward Q on August 13, 2014, 10:41 am

    Netanyahu projects his own behavior on the Palestinians. These papers sure don’t discard skepticism when it comes to Palestinian claims.

    • light2014 on August 14, 2014, 1:39 am

      Israel has no reason to be concerned Hamas was digging a subway
      for a train.

      • Edward Q on August 14, 2014, 7:54 pm

        Israel is telling lies about the “subway” and everything else too, for decades. Israel is not interested in reaching an accommodation with the Palestinians. They want to annex the O.T. and remove the Palestinians, if possible, so this conflict won’t end. The latest outrage is the blockade on Gaza and the recent massacre.

    • ejran on August 14, 2014, 11:11 am

      Yes, yes, yes. Projection. My god, Netanyahu is so good at it.
      It’s not surprising. The more guilty you are of something, the better you become at accusing your victims of it- because you understand the motives and the tactics. Because your disgust with yourself is purged as disgust with your victim.

      Those who deliberately attack children and babies are the ones who can dream up an accusation like “tunnels to kindergartens”. Those who use human shields are the ones that can turn the argument very effectively against their enemies. Those who only understand the language of violence repeatedly say the same thing about the victims of their violence. Those who lie, lie, lie are the ones who substitute real arguments with the line, “lies, lies, lies” (see Max Blumenthal vs Morton Klein on RT).

      “Projection is not just a Freudian defense mechanism, it a powerful tool for justifying aggression. The junkie, the borderline personality, and other people that have regressed to a primitive and chaotic level level will project accusations like a firehose, and the increasingly wild nature of the accusations will reflect the decay of their mental condition.
      And then, projective identification. “Instead of just making foolish ad hominem attacks, the aggressor tries to bait a victim into giving them the proof they need so desperately to validate their own anger. Then they can rally their friends or family for an attack. Bonus points are awarded for gaining sympathy and being the center of attention. The manipulator poses as a hapless victim, but orchestrates the whole performance for an audience.
      First, projection:
      1) A liar accuses others of lying.
      2) The cheater accuses others of cheating.
      3) The thief accuses others of stealing.
      And here’s projective identification:
      1) An angry person accuses their victim of being angry, until the victim becomes angry.
      2) An depressed person accuses their victim of being depressed, until the victim becomes depressed.
      3) The parent constantly accuses their child of being defiant until the child becomes defiant.
      4) The person who feels crazy accuses the other of being crazy (projection of bad thoughts) with the intention of making them believe they are crazy (“gaslighting”).”

      “That’s the other thing about projective identification – don’t be afraid to gin up an existential threat. If you are planning a takeover, you need a Beast, you need to be the hero fighting a conspiracy…. Of course, claiming there is an existential threat is tricky unless the accuser has allies who back up their paranoid stories about existential threats. This is easier than you would think.
      But being the phony “good guy” takes more than he-said-she-said to conceal covert aggression. It also requires a public mask, and private denial. It requires an audience that supports and applauds the performance. The line between audience and participant is blurry.

      And “if someone resists the demand to be the bad guy, the projector responds with rage.”

      Exactly Israel’s response to the non-violent demonstrations in the west bank.
      Exactly what drove Israel to create the need for Operation Protective Edge.

      • Edward Q on August 14, 2014, 7:46 pm

        An interesting article, ejran, although I am not sure if it exactly describes this situation because I think the Israeli propagandists (though not necessarily the public) know they are lying; do they really believe Hamas is using human shields?

        It generally seems to me that Israel wants to be more violent then is acceptable to the U.S. or European publics so they are looking for ways to disguise what is really going on from them. But the projection described in the article seems to be an unconscious act.

  2. Pretext on August 13, 2014, 10:45 am

    One would think the incorrigible Netanyahu Cartoon Network would have lost it’s credibility by now with the mainstream press.

  3. ckg on August 13, 2014, 10:49 am

    Are you doubting Dershowitz?

    Just a few weeks ago I was in one of those tunnels a mile or so from the Gaza border. The tunnels begin in Gaza and snake under the Gaza-Israel border to unknown locations within Israel. The tunnel I was in ended very close to an Israeli kindergarten in a kibbutz. The purpose of that tunnel was to allow Hamas terrorists to emerge from underground and kill and kidnap the 57 babies and children who attend the kindergarten every day.

    Perhaps he plagiarized his information.

    • just on August 13, 2014, 11:01 am

      Are you doubting Blitzer and Rudoren? They ‘bravely’ entered the ‘tunnels’ too!

      • ckg on August 13, 2014, 1:03 pm

        @just — The three of them should spend time exloring that sewer line and reporting what they find.

    • Justpassingby on August 13, 2014, 11:13 am


      ” The purpose of that tunnel was to allow Hamas terrorists to emerge from underground and kill and kidnap the 57 babies”

      “hamas” “terrorists” “kidnap” “kill” “57 babies”.

      Enough said of this crazy man.

    • DaveS on August 13, 2014, 12:03 pm

      Give Dershowitz a break. He confused the numbers of kindergarten kids with the varieties of Heinz products. Also, if he claimed to have personally observed that the tunnel “ended very close to an Israeli kindergarten in a kibbutz,” his stellar record of honesty and integrity make his report unimpeachable. At least he has the aura of truthiness even if the precise words he is saying are technically “false.”

  4. just on August 13, 2014, 10:49 am

    “When can we expect the New York Times and CNN to publish updated articles pointing out the errors in their original reporting?”

    The damage has been done. Most people won’t care. If it does happen, it’ll be buried. “If it bleeds, it leads”. Striking terror into the hearts of folks also seems to be a favorite among some.

    What is positively unconscionable is that media believes anything that Netanyahu says, and then broadcasts it in an endless loop of lies.

    • Kay24 on August 13, 2014, 11:18 am

      More like endless “poop” of lies.

      No surprise but it seems Israel is once again going to investigate its own self, this time their “decision making process” in attacking Gaza:

      “State Comptroller Joseph Shapira has decided to examine the decision-making process and oversight mechanisms employed by the country’s political and military leadership before and during Operation Protective Edge, the Israel Defense Forces operation launched last month against Hamas and its allies in the Gaza Strip.”

      The charade goes on. Will the US media challenge the lies?

    • Maximus Decimus Meridius on August 13, 2014, 3:19 pm

      I agree. We have seen this so many times. The Israelis know that so long as they can control the immediate news cycle, it barely matters if/when the truth comes out weeks or months down the road. By then, nobody will be watching anymore as the public is fickle and are already more interested in Robin Williams or the ‘humanitarian operation’ in Iraq.

      As you say, the damage has been done. The Terror Tunnels of Doom line has already been planted in the mainstream, and there it will stay.

    • michelle on August 13, 2014, 4:59 pm

      does anyone really believe that the media believes that what they’re reporting is true
      ‘if it bleeds it leads’ isn’t true either Gaza is bleeding but their truth isn’t leading
      the media has killed the Palestine story and buried it on the 6th page there are no plans for a wake
      propaganda journalism is murder
      G-d Bless

      • peeesss on August 14, 2014, 2:15 am

        The horrific slaughter by Israel’s ” Protective Edge” invasion of a refugee civilian population, crowded in an open air concentration camp, has , temporarily subsided. Israel has accomplished its ghoulish goals of destroying thousands of lives, homes, power plant, , schools, hospitals, UN shelters, refugee camps, farmland, businesses. Israeli’s call it “mowing the lawn” every couple years. Show those pesky Palestinians that they are only to live their lives as slaves and never to raise their heads . To do so will bring down the wrath of their God as Rabbi’s and Rabbinical scholars quote references from the Torah and Talmud to justify the slaughter of children. The people of Israel, the 80% of the Jewish faith, support this massacre while some even cheer loudly as they watch the children being blown to bits from the hills surrounding Gaza.. As Joel Kovol, Norman Finkletstein, Illan Pappe, Max Blumenthal, Noam Chomsky have stated, Israel is a : “racist, lunatic , insane, fanatic society”. The whole Palestinian society, men woman and children are called terrorists. Babies are “snakes”. Women the bearer of “snakes”. Men “roaches scurrying around in a bottle”. All to be killed , the new “Ameleks” , the ancient Persians. Jews were told by their God to “kill every man , woman, child, baby, oxen'”. Truth or myth.this mass murder of a whole civilization has become the Jewish Holiday of “Purim” celebrated, every year with children in costumes and singing and dancing joyously , This occupied nation, Palestine, somehow becomes the “criminal” and the Occupier, somehow, the “victim” according to our mainstream, corporate Zionist media. But to the chagrin of Israel and its supporters social media, foreign media, alternate US media showed the world the true face of Israel’s militarist , fascist society and its cruelty that was proudly and loudly defended. by Zionists, politicians , and Govt. spokesmen and women.

        So mainstream media has to change the coverage. Too many people ,are seeing the true nature of Israel’s character. What do we get now. . Wall to wall , 24/7 coverage of the suicide of an actor. Obama’ s hypocritical assault on Iraq to “protect civilians.” CIVILIANS. . For one month , every day Obama watched, approvingly, as the slaughter of civilians , of the children , of Gaza went on.. Every day Obama, Kerry, and their spokespeople stated “Israel has a right to defend themselve “. Every day Obama gave Netanyahu the approval to go on with this slaughter. .Every day more children were killed, hospitals bombed while Obama watched. . Now he is ready to “defend” civilians. .PLEASE. Obama is a most narcisstic,, cold, cynical human being, for sure. If that wasn’t enough to satisfy his Zionist masters, he resupplied Israel with the weapons, munitions, missile’s, bombs for Israel to continue the carnage.. So now our mainstream media will get back to important issues such .as celebrities, actors, gossip, football, Kim Kardasian , Gaza will be forgotten until the next “mowing of the lawn”. The bi annual slaughter of Palestinians. The OCCUPATION , siege, blockade, checkpoints, humiliations, midnight raids of sleeping people, .beatings, torture, murder will go on. But when a Palestinian lifts his head and says “I will no longer be a slave in the land of my birth” , this “terrorist” will be silenced and the world will watch ,silently, as the Israeli state continues the genocide of the Palestinian people and destruction of Palestine.

        Hey, but lets talk about Robin Williams

      • michelle on August 14, 2014, 11:56 am

        would America better hear the voices of Palestine’
        if the people of Gaza were pictured with
        signs that read please don’t let me be killed
        by arms that were supplied by American
        tax dollars
        or civilians holding/waving flags of
        Palestine America and Truce
        all three together united
        seems like people take more notice when
        they see the flag of their country (in the picture)
        most of the people in this world (if made aware) do care
        G-d Bless

      • hholta on August 15, 2014, 6:53 am

        I wish I could say French politicians & people are les hypocrits, but this wouldn’t be the truth… I’m just disgusted to watch and listen the non-reaction of my entourage, all people who consider themselves educated (most of them have a Ph.D.) and persons of value… During the last days I felt surrounded by rats, rats that would have been collaborators during German occupation in France (at least by their silence)… Sad… But, hey, let’s talk about Robin Williams;-))))

      • michelle on August 15, 2014, 1:57 pm

        some people need to be reminded how to care
        caring is a muscle in the heart that must be exercised often
        lucky for us there’s lots to care about
        G-d Bless

  5. Chu on August 13, 2014, 10:53 am

    Linked are some graphics on Palestine (with sources):
    Not enough water in the West Bank

  6. Kay24 on August 13, 2014, 10:59 am

    It was obvious that Nutanyahoo was making a big deal out of this. There were no attacks on Israel before the war though these tunnels, only after, which proves that these tunnels were perhaps being readied to be used in case Israel decided to mow the lawn once more. This also gave Beebs the excuse to keep pummeling Gaza and justifying the massacre of civilians. Now that it is becoming clearer that Israel has lied (once more) about these tunnels, will the media in the US retract their accusations and reports about these tunnels? No chance in hell. They did not report the fact that Israel knew the 3 kids were killed one day after they were missing, and yet attacked Palestinian homes, destroyed some of them, and arrested many who were innocent of that crime. The US media is known for being complicit in Israel’s many crimes and it’s dishonesty, by not reporting it.

  7. Justpassingby on August 13, 2014, 11:09 am

    Not surprising, everything netanyahu is saying is a lie, although why shouldnt he lie?
    In 2002 Netanyahu said that he can fool the United states easily.

    • bryan on August 14, 2014, 5:40 am

      Who is more to blame in the matter? Netanyahu for exploiting the gullibility of America or America for willingly swallowing every Zionist myth under the sun – plus all the other myths that deregulation benefits society as a whole, that the wealth of the 1% trickles down to the 99%, that the purchase of political favours and indeed the purchase of Congresspersons is consistent with democracy, that the exercise of American state power is a force for good in the world. Instead of complaining about being exploited by war criminals, why not put your own house in order?

      (P.S. please don’t take this as an anti-American rant – other states like Britain are equally culpable for accepting American exports like corporate control of mass-media, the dumbing down of popular culture, the monetarisation of the electoral process and obeisance to Zionist hegemony!)

      • Justpassingby on August 14, 2014, 8:35 am

        You can add the west in whole, they believe this liar, whatever he’s saying.

      • scott9854958 on August 14, 2014, 8:43 am

        Uh, when Britain ran things, we had 2 world wars, 100m dead. And your BBC is a joke….

  8. Citizen on August 13, 2014, 11:11 am

    Figures–after all, we are talking about facts versus the US mainstream media on the I-P conflict. Said media is an aider and abetter to keep the US public ignorant of facts about Israel’s policies & conduct; Israel, is the biggest beneficiary of US largess in all US history. Actual facts might put a damper on those freebies and US diplomatic cover for Israel at the UN.

  9. Citizen on August 13, 2014, 11:20 am

    Get ready for Goldstone Report II. This time, the head of the commission to investigate is not a Zionist.

    Report will be issued in March of 2015.

    • Justpassingby on August 13, 2014, 11:52 am

      7 months to investigate OBVIOUS violations of international law?
      By that time Israel would have started another 2 wars.

  10. eljay on August 13, 2014, 11:23 am

    >> Zio-supremacist: “The tunnels, it’s game-changing. … The tunnels, it’s very surprising, it can hit you don’t know where.”

    Are these scary tunnels that “hit you don’t know where” game-changing in the sense that they will cause you:
    – to stop oppressing, torturing and killing Palestinians;
    – to stop stealing, occupying and colonizing Palestinian land;
    – to withdraw to within your / Partition borders;
    – to honour your obligations under international law;
    – to accept responsibility and accountability for your past and ON-GOING (war) crimes; and
    – to enter into sincere negotiations for a just and mutually-beneficial peace?

    Or do they really not change your game of Zio-supremacist injustice and immorality at all?

  11. ckg on August 13, 2014, 11:26 am

    HRW’s Ken Roth said

    Tunnels used to attack or capture civilians is a rights violation. Tunnels used to attack or capture soldiers isn’t.

  12. Kay24 on August 13, 2014, 11:32 am

    Talking about New York Times:

    “Thomas Friedman was once brave. This New York Times columnist and author established his reputation reporting on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. His

    early work gave objective accounts of the suffering of the Palestinian people, placed blame for the failed peace talks squarely on the Israeli government,

    and exposed the undue influence that pro-Israel lobbyists wield on policies of the U.S. government.

    Then the Israel lobby went to work on him.

    In July 2001, the Media Monitor of the Jewish Press put Mr. Friedman on their Enemies List. Groups like CAMERA and AIPAC castigated his reporting as

    being anti-Semitic. The president of the Zionist Organization of America claimed “Friedman’s language conjures up disturbing stereotypical images of Jews

    conspiring to manipulate world leaders and events.” He was branded a “self-hating Jew.”

    These relentless attacks worked their desired effect.”


  13. justicewillprevail on August 13, 2014, 11:41 am

    This ought to be a case study in fear mongering propaganda. We used to be amazed that people would believe the ‘reds under the beds’ hysteria about the Cold War. But now we have ‘terrorists under the kindergarten’, a variation on the same theme. With extra bonus ‘baby killers’. That a supposedly reputable news organisation can publish this stuff unquestioningly is bad enough, but not to even see the hypocrisy of these empty claims when Israel is actually killing babies, and murdering children in schools and hospitals is beyond belief. But that doesn’t warrant hysterical headlines or wide-eyed fear, because they ‘deserve’ it, so demonised and dehumanised are they by cartoon propaganda of this sort. Reds under the beds hysteria at least had the excuse of limited information and a compliant readership, but the cynical deployment of such cartoon tropes in a far more information-rich age is a reminder how easily people are manipulated by fear and prejudice – the same tactics used since the 1930’s.

    • ezra greenberg on August 13, 2014, 11:37 pm

      What do you think the tunnels were for, fruit import/export? I would not put anything past Hamas, who encourage the little darlings of Palestine to strap bombs to their bodies and blow up. Make all the snarky saracastic comments you like–Israel was being justifiably prudent in destroying these tunnels. Those tunnels had only one purpose: kill and terrorize Jews.

      • Mooser on August 14, 2014, 8:59 pm

        Ezra, the point is, that particular tunnel into the kindergarten did not exist, and is a lie.

      • justicewillprevail on August 14, 2014, 9:16 pm

        Tunnels don’t kill people, as Charlton Heston almost said. Have you checked under your bed lately?

  14. ThorsteinVeblen2012 on August 13, 2014, 12:06 pm

    You wouldn’t imagine any of these tunnels were made in collaboration with Israeli black marketers eager to make a few shekels for themselves and not having to share it with the government.

  15. justicewillprevail on August 13, 2014, 2:03 pm

    And here is a sober and moving account of the post apocalypse Gaza, heartbreaking but with some slivers of hope among the ruins, mainly from a people who have suffered unimaginably but who still, remarkably, have incredible dignity and forbearance.

    They should pierce the hearts of all israelis who cheered on this slaughter, but sadly they will once again not be listened to, or even acknowledged.

  16. Mooser on August 13, 2014, 2:15 pm

    Gosh, do I hear the sounds of pins being knocked down?

  17. talknic on August 13, 2014, 2:24 pm

    Lies lies lies lies
    Lies lies lies lies
    Who’s the leader of the club that lies to me and you
    B i b i N e t a nyahu

  18. RobertB on August 13, 2014, 2:52 pm

    Quiz: Who Said This?
    Hillary Clinton or Benjamin Netanyahu?

    By Glenn Greenwald
    August 13, 2014

    “1) “Israel has a right to defend itself. The steps Hamas has taken to embed rockets and command-and-control facilities and tunnel entrances in civilian areas, this makes a response by Israel difficult.”

    2) “Israel did what it had to do to respond to the rockets.”

    3) On civilian casualties in Gaza: “That doesn’t mean, just as the United States [tries to] be as careful as possible in going after targets to avoid civilians, that there aren’t mistakes that are made. We’ve made them. I don’t know a nation, no matter what its values are — and I think that democratic nations have demonstrably better values in a conflict position — that hasn’t made errors, but ultimately the responsibility rests with Hamas.”

    4) Asked about the bombing of UN schools and killing of Palestinian children: “It’s impossible to know what happens in the fog of war. Some reports say, maybe it wasn’t the exact UN school that was bombed, but it was the annex to the school next door where they were firing the rockets. And I do think oftentimes that the anguish you are privy to because of the coverage, and the women and the children and all the rest of that, makes it very difficult to sort through to get to the truth.”

    5) On civilian casualties in Gaza: “There’s no doubt in my mind that Hamas initiated this conflict. … So the ultimate responsibility has to rest on Hamas and the decisions it made.”

    6) “When I asked [him/her] about the intense international focus on Gaza, [s/he] was quick to identify anti-Semitism as an important motivating factor in criticism of Israel: ‘It is striking … that you have more than 170,000 people dead in Syria. … You have Russia massing battalions—Russia, that actually annexed and is occupying part of a UN member-state—and I fear that it will do even more to prevent the incremental success of the Ukrainian government to take back its own territory, other than Crimea. More than 1,000 people have been killed in Ukraine on both sides, not counting the [Malaysia Airlines] plane, and yet we do see this enormous international reaction against Israel, and Israel’s right to defend itself, and the way Israel has to defend itself. This reaction is uncalled for and unfair.’”

    7) Asked about worldwide objections to Israel’s attacks: “You can’t ever discount anti-Semitism, especially with what’s going on in Europe today. There are more demonstrations against Israel by an exponential amount than there are against Russia seizing part of Ukraine and shooting down a civilian airliner. So there’s something else at work here than what you see on TV.”

    8) “What you see on TV is so effectively stage-managed by Hamas, and always has been. What you see is largely what Hamas invites and permits Western journalists to report on from Gaza. It’s the old PR problem that Israel has. Yes, there are substantive, deep levels of antagonism or anti-Semitism towards Israel, because it’s a powerful state, a really effective military. And Hamas paints itself as the defender of the rights of the Palestinians to have their own state. So the PR battle is one that is historically tilted against Israel.”

    9) On Iran: “I’ve always been in the camp that held that they did not have a right to enrichment. Contrary to their claim, there is no such thing as a right to enrich. This is absolutely unfounded. There is no such right.”

    10) On Israeli efforts to minimize civilian casualties in Gaza: “There is the surprising number and complexity of the tunnels, and Hamas has consistently, not just in this conflict, but in the past, been less than protective of their civilians.”

    11) “As a U.S. official, you have to pay attention to anything that threatens Israel directly, or anything in the larger Middle East that arises out of the Palestinian-Israeli situation. That’s just a given.”

    12) For a “prime minister of Israel, you’re damn right I would expect to have control over security [on the West Bank], because even if I’m dealing with Abbas, who is 79 years old, and other members of Fatah, who are enjoying a better lifestyle and making money on all kinds of things, that does not protect Israel from the influx of Hamas or cross-border attacks from anywhere else.”

    13) “Well, first of all, Hamas is responsible for the deaths of civilians. [Israel is] not targeting a single civilian. [Israel is] responding to Hamas action and [Israel is] telling the civilians to leave, Hamas is telling them to stay. Why is it telling them to stay? Because it wants to pile up their own dead bodies.”

    14) “Hamas is making sure that they don’t go anywhere. Let me tell you about the UN school. Secretary General of the United Nations, before this incident took place, admitted that two UN schools in Gaza were used to stockpile rockets. And he condemned Hamas, he condemned Hamas for turning these schools into military targets, legitimate military targets.”

    15) “The important thing to understand is that the reason … civilians are killed [is] not because Israel is targeting civilians, but because Hamas is using civilians as human shields.”

    16) “I know what efforts the Israeli army takes to minimize civilian casualties, to directly target at terrorists. I think everybody understands that. The United States has been unequivocal in support Israel’s right of self defense and condemning Hamas for using the civilians as human shields. And I think that unequivocal support is necessary if we’re going to have a successful conclusion to this operation.” “

  19. ckg on August 13, 2014, 3:08 pm

    John Kerry lied on July 28:

    Before we begin, I just want to say a very few words quickly about the events in Gaza and what is happening and what we’re trying to do. As you all know, I just returned from the Middle East and from Paris, where I had a series of discussions aimed at de-escalating the conflict, ending the rocket and tunnel attacks against Israeli civilians, and easing the suffering of innocent people everywhere – in Gaza, in Israel, in the West Bank.

  20. German Lefty on August 13, 2014, 3:56 pm

    Chris Hayes tweeted this today:

    Whenever you hear some say Israel “withdrew” from Gaza, keep this in mind

  21. jon s on August 13, 2014, 4:57 pm

    This from The Age (Australia):

    And note the final line in the report, about the hq in the hospital.

    • justicewillprevail on August 13, 2014, 5:27 pm

      You must have scoured the web to find a small, unsourced, unverified article written straight from the IDF press bureau. By a right wing blowhard who spends a lot of his time fulminating against immigration and ‘multiculturalism’ – a white ethno nationalist who is an Australian immigrant. Remind you of anybody? An impeccable neutral. Not.

      • Mooser on August 13, 2014, 6:41 pm

        “By a right wing blowhard who spends a lot of his time fulminating against immigration and ‘multiculturalism’ – a white ethno nationalist who is an Australian immigrant.

        Now, don’t confuse poor “jon s”! By his standards, the guy is a flaming liberal!

    • straightline on August 13, 2014, 6:10 pm

      You’re quoting Paul Sheehan?

      Anyway he retracted:

      Next it will be Greg (Jerusalem Prize) Sheridan.

      • jon s on August 14, 2014, 4:33 am

        He retracted one error , not the entire report.

    • Bandolero on August 13, 2014, 6:15 pm

      The final line I read in this hasbara piece is:

      Clarification: An earlier version said a building in Gaza that was booby-trapped, killing three Israeli soldiers, was designated as a United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees. This was based on information provided by the Israel Defence Forces, which has since confirmed the building has not been used as a UNRWA facility for many years. The IDF said it regrets the error.

      One more hasbara propaganda lie blown away.

      • Mooser on August 13, 2014, 6:45 pm

        “One more hasbara propaganda lie blown away.”

        It’s like a bowling alley. They set ’em up, and then all their points get knocked down. You would think they would get tired of being played for fools. But nope, they will embrace the next pretext as wholeheartedly as the last.
        And each time they wail, “But why don’t you beleeeeve me?” I’ve never seen anything like it.

      • Kay24 on August 13, 2014, 10:08 pm

        I guess they are experts at committing crimes, then whine they are victims.
        They kill Palestinians by the thousands, and then whine it was all their fault.
        Everything that the Israelis do wrong, is the fault of everyone else.
        See a pattern here?

      • Qualtrough on August 13, 2014, 10:30 pm

        Hi Mooser–I respectfully disagree that having their lies uncovered is a stupid move for them. Your average Joe is going to remember the lie that was on the front page or the lead story on CNN, not a tiny correction (if it ever comes) at the bottom of page A13. I would also wager that if you polled Americans and asked them if they saw the story about the threat to kindergartens you would get a very high response, whereas if you asked them if they had seen the news that this was a falsehood positive responses would be nil. Sad as it may be, each lie is a victory for them, and that’s why they continue to lie.

      • Mooser on August 14, 2014, 9:03 pm

        “I respectfully disagree that having their lies uncovered is a stupid move for them.”

        You are right, but I was speaking a little more specifically about those who feel compelled to defend Israeli pretexts in the comment section here. They seem to suffer a kind of amnesia between incidents, and embrace each pretext as rock-solid fact.

      • Marnie on August 13, 2014, 11:56 pm

        The IDF (BOOM) regrets the (BOOM) error.

  22. ToivoS on August 13, 2014, 10:31 pm

    I am involved in a debate with a PEP that really thinks this Dennis Ross piece in the WaPo is definitive. I have my doubts but there are points here I have difficulty in refuting. In any case here it is: Denis Ross. Any suggestions would be helpful.

    The main point of Ross’s article is that Israel left peaceably but it was Hamas that began the war after Israeli withdrawal and therefor forced Israel to impose the siege. I am unclear on what happened immediately after the initial withdrawal.

  23. Qualtrough on August 13, 2014, 10:34 pm

    I don’t think it should be ruled out that some of these tunnels could even have a smuggling purpose in mind. It would be surprising if there were no parties in Israel interested in making some big bucks smuggling supplies of any sort into Gaza, or even illicit goods into Israel. Attacks/smuggling? Por que no los dos?

  24. Atlantaiconoclast on August 13, 2014, 10:57 pm

    The simple reply is that Israel did not stop occupying Gaza when it transferred Gazan settlers to the WB. It’s really that simple, and Dennis needs to explain the pesky timeline of events for this latest massacre, in which Hamas only fired rockets AFTER Netanyahu killed 10 Palestinians in retribution for the deaths of the three settler teens.

  25. ckg on August 14, 2014, 12:13 am

    ToivoS–I believe your link is broken.

  26. Daniel Rich on August 14, 2014, 12:52 am

    “3 vs 1,300 dead civies. We won! :(~ ” – team Apartheid State

  27. piotr on August 14, 2014, 1:10 am

    It is a pleasant surprise that a Hasbara drawing contains an accurate piece of information: “underground”. Otherwise we would be at loss to figure out how the tunnels could exist: two islands, one terrorist and gloomy, one good and shiny, suspended in universe: what could possibly connect two worlds so different? Ether?

    Otherwise, I am eagerly anticipating detail disclosure how the “funds intended for building kindergartens for Gaza’s children” were diverted “to build tunnels of terror”. How the intellects of Israeli intelligence uncovered that, and yet were surprised by the existence of the tunnels?

  28. talknic on August 14, 2014, 3:49 am

    piotr ” what could possibly connect two worlds so different? “

    Easy. They’re connected with Hasburrows lined with Ziopoop

    ” the “funds intended for building kindergartens for Gaza’s children” were diverted “to build tunnels of terror” How the intellects of Israeli intelligence uncovered that, and yet were surprised by the existence of the tunnels? “

    Simple…. unlike charges attract connecting blobs of Ziopoop

  29. jaybs on August 14, 2014, 5:31 am

    I would not Believe one word that comes from the mouth of Netanyahu, he is as bad with his propaganda and the way he treats the people of Gaza as tyrants in the past, what is it greed, do Israel want Gaza for a sunshine resort or theme park, why is it that the world community have never resolved this problem once and for all, the conflict has gone on for far too many years, financed by USA tax payer. The people of Gaza need to be protected as much as those in Iraq or Syria, but not in the eyes of such as Obama.

    The UN has just become pointless at times, because of the use of the veto, Israel does not accept The Court of Human Rights, so does not fear threats of War Crimes in fact they have never been tried once. If Israel had shown some common sense which they do not seem to have any of a agreement could be reached, let the UN control the borders, harbours of Gaza, give the people who are imprisoned by Israel some freedom, I wonder if Hamas would have ever developed the support they have, it is simply because their leaders got no where.

    Mark Regev the voice of Israel, I have never seen and heard such a snide man, he appears on TV screens currently throughout the day here in the UK with his propaganda 5 minutes in news bulletins, again I now would never believe a word, then Ron Prosor at the UN, last week he talked about the unfortunate deaths in Gaza, all the fault of Hamas of course, and grinned/smirked all the time.

    Last night just before the 3 day truce ran out, Israel was again quick to the trigger, claiming a rocket had landed in fields, propaganda was put out it was Hamas, and within minutes building were being flattened in Gaza, is this how a part of the world community acts? not in my eyes.

    • Kay24 on August 14, 2014, 9:04 am

      I have come to a point that whatever the zionists say in the media, whether Bibi, Regev, Dermer or Oren, I tell myself they are damned liars, and most probably the truth is the exact opposite of what their talking points are.

  30. scott9854958 on August 14, 2014, 8:39 am

    If you want examples of dead kindergartners, scenes from Gaza will do quite nicely. But sure, the Israelis want to flip the narrative, it’s what they do best. It would be nice if our journos didn’t accept their PR flackery at face value. But when Jodi Rudoren is your bureau chief and she’s thick as thieves with Abe Foxman, what are you gonna do? Go to Human Rights Watch to check out what the Israelis say?

    • Kay24 on August 14, 2014, 9:12 am

      Talking of Foxman, of the ADL, you have to wonder why the ADL seems mostly doing Israel’s dirty work, supporting and protecting it at every turn, instead of focusing on maybe other ethnic groups. Between AIPAC and the ADL, our 51st state of Israel and it’s interests, are well looked after.

      Even Israel’s mail must flow smoothly according to Foxman:

      “The Anti-Defamation League is “urging the U.S. Postmaster General to take prompt action to ensure that offices in all 50 states accept and process packages and letters destined for Israel,” in response to reports that some local post offices are refusing to accept mail for delivery to Israel, the anti-Semitism watchdog announced Wednesday.

      The U.S. Postal Service suspended mail delivery to Israel for 36 hours last month in the wake of the Federal Aviation Administration’s temporary ban on flights to Ben-Gurion International Airport.

      The ADL suggested in its letter to Postmaster General Patrick R. Donahoe that local post offices may be under the impression that the ban was permanent and urged USPS to make sure all its employees realize that service to Israel has resumed.”

  31. Daniel Rich on August 14, 2014, 8:41 am

    “I brought peace… through death and destruction.” – BiBi, addressing wandering congress critters, lost somewhere in the Sinai desert.

  32. fayez chergui on August 14, 2014, 8:52 am

    Issue is not what a Netanyahu says, issue is what people wants to listen and believe… remember C. Powel and it’s proof on Iraki’s WMD, 9/11, and so on.

  33. just on August 14, 2014, 9:44 am

    From the department of wth:

    “WASHINGTON (AFP) — Israel secured supplies of ammunition from the Pentagon last month without the approval of the White House or the State Department, the Wall Street Journal reported Thursday.

    Since officials there were caught off guard as they tried to restrain Israel’s campaign in Gaza, the administration of President Barack Obama has tightened controls on arms shipments to Israel, the newspaper said, quoting US and Israeli officials.

    But the case illustrated that the White House and the State Department have little influence over the government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the paper said, quoting officials from both countries.”

    One is left to wonder…

    • just on August 14, 2014, 10:07 am


      Looks like the “police” in Ferguson (wearing camouflage, deadly force, tear gas, ‘rubber’ bullets, detaining the press, etc) are following the Israeli handbook.

      Frightening and shameful.

      • lysias on August 14, 2014, 11:21 am

        Ali Abunimah discusses in his new book The Battle for Justice in Palestine all the training people from local police forces in the U.S. get in Israel.

      • lysias on August 14, 2014, 5:19 pm

        By the way, Rand Paul had something interesting to say about the police in this country today: The Hill: Rand Paul: Demilitarize police forces:

        Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) is calling for the demilitarization of the nation’s police forces following severe unrest in Ferguson, Mo., warning in an op-ed for Time magazine of a “systemic problem with today’s law enforcement.”

      • just on August 14, 2014, 5:39 pm

        Thanks lysias. I’m glad he wrote about the abysmal racism in the US as well. It was a good piece.

        {Wish he would speak in similar terms about the Apartheid state and the militarization of you-know-wh0– the scenes were eerily similar to Gaza before the Edge}

        btw, Cruz is a weenie.

      • lysias on August 14, 2014, 5:59 pm

        Glenn Greenwald tweeted today that St. Louis County police chief Timothy Dwight was one of those police officials who received law enforcement training in Israel.

      • just on August 14, 2014, 6:01 pm

        There ya go! Thanks again, lysias. It just is so similarly creepy. The long arm of the IOF, etc reaches to MO… and all over the US. Racial profiling is one of their specialties.

      • lysias on August 14, 2014, 6:50 pm

        Sorry, I got the name wrong. The St. Louis County police chief is named Timothy Fitch, but Trita Parsi produced a press release from 2011 stating that Fitch was scheduled for a week’s training in counterterrorism in Israel. I assume the training took place.

      • just on August 14, 2014, 6:55 pm

        It certainly looks like it did.

    • justicewillprevail on August 14, 2014, 6:22 pm

      Here’s a nice rejoinder to this nonsense, as Palestinians give Americans advice about how to deal with tear gas:–eknf701lmg

      • just on August 15, 2014, 8:50 am

        More, including the advice from Palestinians and the reactions of Ferguson folks:

        “Since the killing of 18-year-old Michael Brown by Ferguson police in Missouri last weekend, the people of Ferguson have been subjected to a military-style crackdown by a squadron of local police departments dressed like combat soldiers, prompting residents to liken the conditions on the ground in Ferguson to the Israeli military occupation of Palestine.

        And who can blame them?

        The dystopian scenes of paramilitary units in camouflage rampaging through the streets of Ferguson, pointing assault rifles at unarmed residents and launching tear gas into people’s front yards from behind armored personnel carriers (APCs), could easily be mistaken for a Tuesday afternoon in the occupied West Bank.

        And it’s no coincidence.

        At least two of the four law enforcement agencies that were deployed in Ferguson up until Thursday evening — the St. Louis County Police Department and the St. Louis Police Department — received training from Israeli security forces in recent years.
        Still, police did not relent, prompting one Ferguson protester to shout at a row of military-style tactical vehicles, “You gonna shoot us? Is this the Gaza Strip?”

        “Will we as a people rise up like the people of Gaza? Will our community be bombed like last night with tear gas? That was a terrorist attack,” remarked another Ferguson protester to The Daily Beast.”

        much more @

        btw, last nite was calm with Commander Johnson taking over. Maybe he should train Israeli police……

  34. Vera Gottlieb on August 14, 2014, 11:38 am

    This guy knows no shame and with all his lies, he’ll be the downfall of israel. A born liar – his family must be really proud of him.

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