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‘NYT’ blames Hamas for civilian deaths in front-page article that sounds like Hillary Clinton

Donald Johnson writes:

A Gaza story is on the front page of the cellulose edition of the New York Timeswith the provocative title, “As Hamas Tunnels Back Into Israel, Palestinians Are Afraid, Too,” by Diaa Hadid and Majd Al Waheidi.

People living on the edges of Gaza border towns, like the Israelis a few miles away, complain of hearing surreptitious digging in the wee hours, and voice a parallel anxiety [to Israelis] about the tunnels being rapidly rebuilt near their homes becoming targets for Israeli strikes. They are raising unusually harsh — albeit anonymous, for fear of reprisal — criticism of Hamas, the militant Islamist group that rules Gaza, for putting people at risk. . . .

“Dear God — we will be torn apart,” said a 42-year-old woman in Khuzaa, a village near the fence.

Not that I approve of Hamas, but the New York Times has absolutely no hesitation writing a story that justifies Israel bombing civilian neighborhoods. They go out of their way to find Palestinians willing to risk Hamas’s wrath criticizing the tunnels. How hard did these reporters work to find Palestinians and Israelis criticizing Israeli atrocities? Remember that countless homes were destroyed in the last war and 500 children killed.

Ordinarily they never put stories on the front page about the conflict when no war is going on, but here they have an opportunity to give their blessing to past and future Israeli bombings of civilians, so —  it goes on the front page.

I look at the headline again, and it makes me livid. “As Hamas Tunnels Back Into Israel, Palestinians Are Afraid, Too.” This is exactly what the Clintons said. Every single civilian that Israel kills is blamed on Hamas using civilians as human shields by the hasbara crowd. And again, to the extent that Hamas is responsible for such behavior, it should be written about, but the NYT should also point out all the cases where Israel clearly killed civilians with no excusable reason at all. When what the paper of record does is, write about individual incidents during the war, rarely taking a clear stand, and then bury or ignore the human rights reports showing countless civilian deaths when those are published, and as time passes write crap like this, where the very clear message is that civilians die solely because of Hamas. It makes me too angry to write about calmly.

The Times might as well write Clinton’s speeches on this subject. Clinton piping hasbara on April 14:

Even the most independent analyst will say the way that Hamas places its weapons, the way that it often has its fighters in civilian garb, it is terrible. . .  Remember, Israel left Gaza. They took out all the Israelis. They turned the keys over to the Palestinian people. And what happened? Hamas took over Gaza.So instead of having a thriving economy with the kind of opportunities that the children of the Palestinians deserve, we have a terrorist haven that is getting more and more rockets shipped in from Iran and elsewhere.

I wouldn’t mind this if they were genuinely fair and wrote also hard hitting pieces about Israeli brutality, but they are incapable of doing that.

James North adds:

Consider the Times’s agenda in this article; the reporters looked for Palestinians who are living right near the tunnels. These people might be anxious, and understandably, but did the Times even attempt to talk to any of the other 1.8 million people in the Gaza open-air prison and ask what they think of resistance? The implication is that a small minority of people are putting Palestinians at risk. If so, go out and find out if it’s true.

But Palestinians voted for Hamas, the last time they voted; and if you read Max Blumenthal’s excellent book, The 51-Day War, it is obvious that there is broad support for armed resistance across Gaza. Or look at this video of an old man in the occupied West Bank fearlessly confronting Israeli gunfire at a demonstration during the Gaza war with a cardboard model of a rocket attached to his arm, the rocket painted green with Hamas’s colors. He clearly approves of resistance.

The Times front-pager is 2 percent of what the reporting should be. Even readers who support Israel are being ill-served by this distorted article. Pro Israelis should want to know what the opposition is in Gaza to the occupation. The Times’s implied narrative is that the opposition is restricted to a minority of militants who most of the public shuns or is afraid of. But what if the armed resistance has the overwhelming support of the Gazans?

Why did the Times place this misleading article right on the front page? The rest of the world’s press is concentrating on former Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon, and his strong warnings about worsening Israeli “extremism.” The Times today puts Ya’alon on page 5, and “extremism” isn’t in the headline.

The article has been happily tweeted by the Israeli army spokesperson:

Donald Johnson and James North

Donald Johnson and James North are independent NY writers

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42 Responses

  1. annie on May 21, 2016, 11:07 am

    “And my big beef is: this is on the front page of the New York Times”

    it makes perfect sense. it wasn’t just phil writing about i/p being a big deal at the convention and a thorn in clinton’s side yesterday.

    wapo, nymag and haaretz also covered it. plus, bernie’s been saying as much on the campaign trail. so the nyt is probably getting ready for the showdown and softening the target.

  2. philweiss on May 21, 2016, 11:46 am

    Yes and I thought Eric Levitz article in NY Magazine was very fair. Goes to show that when this issue is allowed to get into the mainstream, journalists will make US more evenhanded whether they want to or not. Like Wolf Blitzer formerly of AIPAC being evenhanded.

    • annie on May 21, 2016, 11:58 am

      it is a good nymag article phil

      A 2014 poll found half of all Democrats under 30 supported punishing Israeli settlement expansion with economic sanctions. The vast majority of this demographic also preferred the United States to remain neutral in the Israel-Palestine conflict. But among those who wanted America to pick a side, more wished for their government to support the Palestinians, a stance shared by no other age group in either party.

      • JWalters on May 22, 2016, 8:04 pm

        I also agree on the Levitz article. Progress on getting the truth out is heartening (and Mondoweiss is contributing greatly to that). But it remains amazing to contemplate that the “paper of record”, along with the bulk of the establishment media, is conspiring to keep the American people in the dark.

        (Sorry to have to use the discredited word “conspire”, but there’s no other reasonable explanation in this particular case. All the people involved are too intelligent and educated for ignorance to be the explanation.)

        The Widening Cracks in Zionism is another heartening article on this subject.

  3. gamal on May 21, 2016, 12:06 pm

    “Not that I approve of Hamas” then don’t vote for them.

    isn’t this a non-sequitur given the subject under discussion, are you not genuflecting towards precisely the prejudice you purport to be attacking.

    as a writer its not really what you approve of that is of interest, especially when you fail to elaborate, but what you understand and can explain

    you might find this interesting perhaps even informative,

    from: Hamas Gaza and the Blockade by Jamie Allinson

    “The rise of Hamas is the latest episode in this history. The exhaustion of Fatah and the Palestinian left in the early 1980s arose from their detachment of the struggle for Palestinian liberation from “internal” struggles against the surrounding Arab regimes, in particular from the potential power of the Egyptian working class. The Palestinian Liberation Organisation (PLO), under Fatah’s leadership, followed a strategy of establishing bases in neighbouring Arab states while avoiding any challenge to the ruling regimes.35 The regimes themselves observed no such restraint. Thus the PLO were driven from even the weakest frontline Arab states—Jordan in 1970 and (in the midst of civil war and Israeli invasion) Lebanon in 1982. The Palestinian left in the more left-wing “fronts” did recognise that revolution in the Arab states was a precondition for the liberation of Palestine but their idea of this revolution was Mao Zedong’s “protracted people’s war” or Che Guevara’s guerrilla focos.36 Although the revolutionary and proto-revolutionary movements inspired by the Palestinian left did reach the non-Palestinian populations, any attempt to establish liberated areas in the refugee camps was doomed: Israel, the local Arab ruling class or both would intervene to crush such areas—precisely what happened in Jordan and Lebanon.”


    “The charter of the new movement insisted upon the Palestinians’ claim to all their homeland, including that part which became Israel in 1948. It also included an ample share of what Lenin called the “prejudices” of the petty bourgeoisie.41 So, for example, the charter considers Judaism a kindred monotheism to be protected by Islamic rule but also repeats anti-Semitic claptrap found in the Protocols of the Elders of Zion.42 These ideas have been abandoned by Hamas leaders and their original authors have long passed out of influence. Such passages—repugnant and counterproductive in equal measure—persist not because of any ingrained Arab or Islamic anti-Semitism but rather as a symptom of dangerous political confusion among those Palestinians who have only encountered Jews as agents of an oppressive colonial project.43 This confusion can only be effectively challenged from a standpoint that supports resistance to that oppression. To do otherwise is to permit or encourage the identification of opposition to anti-Semitism with Zionism.

    Hamas’s primary appeal lay not in its charter, whatever the contents of that document. Rather Palestinians were drawn to Hamas’s rejection of the PLO’s proposed compromise with Israel on a two-state solution. The PLO’s Tangiers Declaration of 1988 and Jordan’s renunciation of any claim to the West Bank offered recognition to Israel in return for ending the intifada.44 That compromise was particularly unpalatable to the Gazan population, the majority of them refugees who would be denied any prospect of return to their homes under a two-state deal with Israel. Hamas refused to join the PLO during the intifada but carried out essentially the same acts of resistance”

    • Donald on May 21, 2016, 12:32 pm

      I am responding in advance to someone who might accuse me of only being angry because I must allegedly support Hamas. The point is that if the NYT wishes to write about the plight of Palestinian civilians in an objective way, they would write about Gazan fishermen being shot, protestors being shot, hundreds of children killed in their homes and yes, if Hamas digs tunnels in densely populated neighborhoods then they should write about that too. They don’t do this. The only time I can remember them reporting an Israeli action in harsh unalloyed terms was when the boys were killed on the beach, and that piece was written by a photographer who was there, not one of their usual reporters.

      What they generally do is report some fraction of Israeli brutality when it happens, usually closely accompanied by Israeli rationalizations and then when referring to the war later on they adopt the Israeli viewpoint as a summary of what happened. So the message is that Israeli actions are justified. This piece went on the front page because it had the right message.

      • gamal on May 21, 2016, 2:53 pm

        “if Hamas digs tunnels in densely populated neighborhoods then they should write about that too.”

        why? and what should they “write” about it,

        are you implying that Hamas, in blockaded Gaza brim full of displaced persons dense with them, in a Gaza minus the shot on sight buffer zone regularly destroyed by the IDF, sometimes for reasons of internal Israeli politics are endangering civilians?

        what precisely are these shortcomings of Hamas relevant to?

        where should they dig tunnels and how should they resist to gain your approval?

        since you are not going to read the link just one para

        “Hamas opposed the Oslo accords from the start and throughout. They insisted on the Palestinian claim to all of historic Palestine and the right of refugees to return. They also denounced the PLO leaders who returned to run the PA and crassly enrich themselves in the manner of other Arab rulers.49 Hamas refused to participate in elections at this time, not because they rejected democratic procedures but because they refused to legitimate Oslo.50 It was a shrewd decision. As the Oslo process faltered the PA became more and more irrelevant. Hamas did not (and does not) reject the effective principle of a two-state solution. All of its major figures have stated their willingness to sign a generation-long ceasefire provided that Israel withdraws its troops and settlers behind the 1967 border.51 The supreme malleability of religious language allows Hamas to preserve the image of fighting for all of historic Palestine, but in practice the ceasefire means recognition of Israel. Hamas was not prepared, however, to renounce military resistance until such an agreement was achieved. “.52

        do you approve?

      • Donald on May 21, 2016, 4:22 pm

        I read the link, but I need to read it again, as there is a lot there. I “approve” of the paragraph you quote. It doesn’t matter, though, as I mentioned my personal feelings mainly because many people seem to think that facts should only be reported if they support their views.

        The NYT and others should report what Hamas is doing and what various Palestinians think about it because that’s what a newspaper should do. If most Palestinians support the tunnel building they should report this. If some don’t they should report that as well. .They should also report what Israel does, but for the most part they don’t. They choose to highlight those facts which in their mind justify Israel when it kills civilians. That’s what I wrote about.

        You clearly want to have an argument with me about Hamas, resistance and so forth. I don’t, but I will write a few lines. Palestinians are the victims here and the Israelis are the aggressors, so Palestinians have the right to use violence to overthrow their oppressors. However, it hasn’t worked for them. Frankly, if they could win their freedom with tunnels and rockets then they will do it and criticism would be silly. There’s not a people on earth that wouldn’t fire rockets and build tunnels if it would enable them to win their freedom. Since they are unlikely to win this way, it seems like a waste of effort and lives. Nonviolent protest hasn’t worked either, which is why I don’t feel like arguing about this.

      • shakur420 on May 21, 2016, 6:28 pm

        lol not sure what the problem is with being called a supporter of Hamas. I support Hamas, fully, in the case of their resistance to the illegal occupation. I would reject and despise their religious rules, the brutality they no doubt hand out – without due process – in certain cases and probably 100 other things. So what?

        I love where I live and am happy to pay my taxes that go to roads, school, social services, etc. I hate that those same taxes support the illegal Israeli occupation, the illegal destruction of Afghanistan and the place where our last Prime Minister lived. I reject the nationalism associated with the flag and national anthem, but I sure am hoping the Raptors contain Lebron tonight lol. So what?

      • Sibiriak on May 21, 2016, 7:53 pm

        shakur: lol not sure what the problem is with being called a supporter of Hamas. I support Hamas, fully, in the case of their resistance to the illegal occupation

        No problem. Unless you are under U.S. jurisdiction and that support involves “material support or resources”. The U.S. has designated Hamas a “Foreign Terrorist Organization” (FTO).

        It is unlawful for a person in the United States or subject to the jurisdiction of the United States to knowingly provide “material support or resources” to a designated FTO.[2] (The term “material support or resources” is defined in 18 U.S.C. § 2339A(b) as “currency or monetary instruments or financial securities, financial services, lodging, training, expert advice or assistance, safehouses, false documentation or identification, communications equipment, facilities, weapons, lethal substances, explosives, personnel, transportation, and other physical assets, except medicine or religious materials.”)


        In April 2014, Noam Chomsky criticized the list, saying:

        Why should we even take the terrorist list seriously? What’s the terrorist list? The executive branch of the government simply determines you’re a terrorist. I put you on the list. No review. No judicial review. No defense. It’s just an executive act of an authoritarian state. Why should the state have the right to determine unilaterally who’s a terrorist? Do they have that right? No, they don’t.

      • shakur420 on May 22, 2016, 8:17 am

        Sibiriak lol oh yeah I’ve seen all that before. Applied to legal advice lol ridiculous. But I think right now journalists, commentators and gen pop are safe from prosecution. It probably has more to do with social/cultural ostrasization and pre-empting accusations of terrorism.

        Like Seinfeld, saying “not that there’s anything wrong with that” lol.

      • Sibiriak on May 22, 2016, 11:08 am

        shakur 420: … right now journalists, commentators and gen pop are safe from prosecution

        Yeah. The worst might be you end up on the NO FLY list.

        The No Fly List has been variously described as Orwellian and Kafkaesque. Individuals usually do not know they have been put on the list until they attempt to board a plane. Efforts to discover the reasons for being barred from flying meet with indeterminate responses from the authorities, which would neither confirm nor deny that a name is on the List.

    • Mooser on May 21, 2016, 12:38 pm

      “To do otherwise is to permit or encourage the identification of opposition to anti-Semitism with Zionism.”

      Yes. If there is one thing Zionists don’t like, it’s opposition to antisemitism that they can’t use for Zionism.

    • traintosiberia on May 22, 2016, 12:59 pm

      If not Hamas,then who?

      Israel is getting disenchanted with Hamas because of Hamas’s failures to maintain constant sate of war between Israel and Hamas .

      Israel is angling for emergence of more radical more cruel more angry more religious more fanatic . Israel wants ISIS ( remember when the Al Quida operative financed and trained by Israel was unearthed by PA in earlier part of the last decade )

      Israel benefits – it can kill some leaders who are moderate who have vision and who have followers ,

      Israel can ask for one billion extra US dollars for every Palestinian killed by Israel .
      Israel can tell EU- “not now,this is not the time , this is not time to start any process of any kind with anybody out of Palestine . Just stop BDS . That is an incitement and is a reward to those in Palestine who wants us to be gone . BDS allows Palestinian to think that they can erode our confidence and destroy our alliance with EU . That is not desirable at all in given circumstances . ”

      History tells us that Israel like the hybrid of FOX-Hyenas dont change its dark stripes

      “in 1982 Israel had a problem. Yasir Arafat, headquartered in Beirut, was making ready to announce that the PLO was prepared to sit down with Israel and embark on peaceful, good faith negotiations towards a two-state solution.

      Israel didn’t want a two-state solution, which meant — if UN resolutions were to be taken seriously — a Palestinian state right next door, with water, and contiguous territory. So Israel decided chase the PLO right out of Lebanon. It announced that the Palestinian fighters had broken the year-long cease-fire by lobbing some shells into northern Israel.

      Palestinians had done nothing of the sort. I remember this very well, because Brian Urquhart, at that time assistant secretary general of the United Nations, in charge of UN observers on Israel’s northern border, invited me to his office on the 38th floor of the UN hq in mid-Manhattan and showed me all the current reports from the zone. For over a year there’d been no shelling from north of the border. Israel was lying.

      With or without a pretext Israel wanted to invade Lebanon. So it did, and rolled up to Beirut. It shelled Lebanese towns and villages and bombed them from the air”

  4. Blake on May 21, 2016, 2:27 pm

    She cannot be that naive about the history. Its obvious why she is keeping her job at the nyt. Lying for filthy lucre.

  5. ritzl on May 21, 2016, 2:31 pm

    How does building tunnels inside Gaza justify bombing civilian neighborhoods again?

    I know the contorted-beyond-all-recognition logic that asserts that it does, but does it actually?

    This acceptance of the completely psychopathic Israeli killing mentality as a normal/immutable/driving condition of life in Gaza is ultumately going to come to be known as “Gaza Syndrome. “Don’t build tunnels near me!” is not a criticism of Hamas, it’s a simple [generational?] survival mode based on past experience with Israel’s Golda Meir-ish glee at slaughtering Palestinian children by the hundreds for no reason whatsoever – and repeatedly watching the world say that psychopathy just fine and dandy (or alternately, watching the blood drip from George Stephanopoulos’ smiling mouth as he calls slaughtering children, “Mowing the Grass.)

    At some point all that environmental psychopathy-as-normal has got to shift your priority from what’s right to what’s survivable.

    Sadly in the case of Gaza it doesn’t matter. Israel doesn’t need a reason (or can create one instantly) to slaughter children in Gaza. There is no stopping it, nor is there a way for residents to position themselves away from harm.

    Has the world ever seen a concentration camp population of millions of people subjected to this treatment for years and years? Don’t think so.

    Yup. Gaza Syndrome.

    • MHughes976 on May 21, 2016, 5:05 pm

      You make a crucial point, ritzl, about the sheer difficulty, in the conditions of Gaza, of separating non-combatants from military installations. Furthermore, the point of making this separation is much lessened when the other side has a proclaimed intention to use disproportionate force and to accept serious risk – which would have to be disproportionate and lethal risk – to the civil population. And again, the civil population is constantly at risk from the Israeli blockade, which is bound to cause not only miserable hardship but at least some ‘excess deaths’. Donald makes this point.
      The NYT journalists do at least allow Hamas to speak and they do allow Palestinians to be presented sympathetically, though they don’t put these two things together. The Hamas spokesman refers to Israeli aggression, therefore implies that Hamas considers itself to be acting in legitimate defence of the very same people with whom sympathy is invited.
      If you think about the information given by the NYT you appreciate that the tunnels are meant to deter Israeli attack – and Israeli attacks are drastic and disproportionate, as no on denies – by threatening that some retaliation might be possible through the use of these tunnels. Is this policy more genuinely defensive of an immensely vulnerable (and on the NYT evidence distressed and anxious) population, less irrational and inhumane than the Clinton rhetoric claims? It takes no prejudice in favour of Hamas to argue that it is.

    • traintosiberia on May 22, 2016, 1:38 pm

      West anticipating a long lull, a long respite from war of conquest ,a long pause from constant warfare because no war was needed any more was getting ready to settle down and exhort, was getting seated slowly in most pompous imperial way in the most comfortable chair to preach the values of democracy, self rule,non violence,free trade,unrestricted access to safety and security with honor and respect , and of global values to the vanquished and to the conquered from tip of Argentina to the tip of North Africa ,from Guam to Georgia. It almost succeeded in enjoying the fruits of the labors spent from 17 th century until Israel started upending the polemic and the rhetoric by reenacting the past drama in most gruesome ways .

      This is why US may deplore Liberman but will abide by the decisions of Lieberman . This si shy US may decry fascism or Nazism but will ignore the creeping Nazification of Israel

      US might go to war against a neutral nonthreatening country because a terrorist is hiding there who has made vows of loyalty to somebody already killed by US drone in another country . US might even confuse the world into thinking that the war is legal because it has been authorized by Congress . US might see creeping Nazism and fascism and coin the term Islamofascism to bolster its case because , it claims, at one point those two philosophies threatened US

      But not when it is Israel. Because it has the right to do what it thinks it should . Even if that included some segueing into the dark side of Nazism and bolder side of daytime assassination which is nothing but terrorism. Because Israel needs it .

      It seems the empire did not know how figure out the rule of succession . The election of the leaders have always been a quandary throughout the ages -how to choose , how to find how to anoint the next successor – and this black hole of uncertainty of who will wield power next time has given the opening for Israel to flourish .Money anoints the leaders .In the process it has been taking down all those hard earned opportunities of lecturing the world how to live ,how to behave,how to subscribe to any view , how to be rational global responsible bias free citizen . It’s a pity that the conquest and the vanquishing of the third world did not leave it with some time how to protect those ill gotten wealth from the hyena and how to maintain this persona of being a better society with honest leaders with universal values and not getting detected .

      Israel kneecaps every time the leaders of the free world wants to stand up on its values . Because there was no value .

  6. KM363 on May 21, 2016, 3:26 pm

    God sometimes the Times can just be revolting, and so obvious. Out of all the distorted articles in the Times in the past few years or so, many of them ably documented here by North and Johnson, and by Barbara Erickson in her excellent series at, I think this one takes the cake.

    • TW on May 21, 2016, 8:02 pm

      New Film Reveals Israel’s US Propaganda War : ‘The Occupation Of The American Mind’

      “I wish every American would watch this powerful documentary. Not only every person of conscience, but every taxpayer, must see it — and then ask themselves if the status quo is acceptable and can continue deep into the 21st century.”

      —Gideon Levy, columnist for Haaretz newspaper of Israel

  7. hophmi on May 21, 2016, 4:57 pm

    Lol. Did reality bite you in the ass? The story is written by a lady who used to write for Electronic Intifada. You’re so completely deluded and drunk on Hamas Kool-Aid, that you can’t even deal with the possibility that people in Gaza might not like them. For you, Palestinians are only allowed to be pro-Hamas maximalists, which is exactly what people in the BDS movement are.

    • Mooser on May 21, 2016, 6:02 pm

      “The story is written by a lady who used to write for Electronic Intifada. “

      Yeah. Only things written by Zionists are objective about the situation. Everybody else has some kind of ox to grind.

    • Donald on May 21, 2016, 8:34 pm

      It’s possible that people in Gaza don’t like Hamas. My impression was they stood behind them during the 2014 slaughter, hoping that the Israelis would lift the blockade. They might be tired of them now– do you have links to any sort of poll?

      Personally I have no stake in any Palestinian group– I just want the NYT to stop writing apologetics for the Israelis. And I know one of the reporters used to be an activist. It’s irrelevant. The NYT has a fairly consistent bias– how Hadid reconciles her convictions with her job is her problem.

  8. wondering jew on May 21, 2016, 5:29 pm

    James north writes: the people of Gaza voted for hamas the last time they voted. An accurate statement, as far as it goes, but it does not go nearly far enough. That vote was held in 2006, more than 10 years ago, and no vote has been conducted since. Omitting this minor fact is a mild form of lying.

    • annie on May 21, 2016, 5:49 pm

      have you seen any polls in the last few years that support the notion fatah is more popular amongst the palestinian people than hamas. because i have not. only when you factor in marwan barghouti does hamas popularity shrink and since he’s imprisoned by israel there is no option to vote for him anyway. otherwise hamas is either ahead or the 2 parties are neck and neck (within 1% of eachother).

      is omitting this minor factoid is a mild form of lying? or do those kinds of ad hominem accusations only work on your ideological opponents? or are you a liar?

    • Mooser on May 21, 2016, 6:25 pm

      ” That vote was held in 2006, more than 10 years ago, and no vote has been conducted since”

      How often does Zionism require the Palestinians to hold these elections? Is there a certain frequency of election which will validate Hamas? What is it?

    • oldgeezer on May 21, 2016, 6:59 pm


      When the PA amd Hamas formed a unity govt the GoI was very vocal in it’s opposition to it’s existence. The parties to the unity govt agreed to hold elections within 6 months of April 2014 at which point the GoI upped it’s provocations, including the use of murder, in order to get a reaction from Hamas. Hamas eventually retalliated creating the opportunity for the GoI to slaughter women and children forestalling any hope of elections being held at that time.

      Omitting this is equally a form of lying.

      • wondering jew on May 21, 2016, 8:07 pm

        James north, a journalist, could have included seven to 13 words that would have put his statement right as in hamas won the last election (in 2006. No elections have been held since for a variety of reasons.) He did not include this sentence for a variety of possible reasons- sentence flow was one and why weaken an argument was another. I accused him of a mild form of lying, it would have been more accurate to accuse him of hasbara.
        If you think this was ad hominem you’re being mildly silly but totally full of it.

      • annie on May 21, 2016, 9:38 pm

        If you think this was ad hominem you’re being mildly silly

        ha! dude, essentially suggesting someone is a liar is definitely of an ad hominem nature .. that’s not silly it’s reality.

        it would have been more accurate to accuse him of hasbara.

        your apology is accepted — even tho i can’t really accept an apology meant for james :)

      • Mooser on May 22, 2016, 7:32 pm

        “have been more accurate to accuse him of hasbara.”

        Now, what is it, who is it, that makes “hasbara” an accusation?
        I thought we were supposed to be proud of inventing our own special way of lying?
        I’ll never get the hang of this whole Zionism thing.

    • Blownaway on May 22, 2016, 12:56 pm

      There have been no recent elections because the occupation army and their extension force the PA and backed by big brother the democracy police the US won’t allow it because they know Hamas will win

  9. shakur420 on May 21, 2016, 6:21 pm

    If I’m not mistaken, Geneva IV puts the responsibility of safety (of the occupied population) in the hands of the Occupying Power, only. People proven to be “engaged in hostilities”, I think the phrase is, may be treated as combatants but only once that’s been established – Israel is rarely able to qualify such labels.

    In the case of the tunnels and attacking them, Geneva IV does not allow for the Occupying Power to launch military attacks of any kind on occupied territory and the ICJ ruled in 2004 that Israel has “no ability” to invoke the right to self-defence found in the UN Charter in regards to the OPT.

    If Israel qualifies that it is indeed dealing with people “engaged in hostilities”, say in the tunnels, I believe Geneva IV requires that normal rules of engagement apply, meaning that they cannot bomb cvilian areas because “militants” are using tunnels underneath. The impact on non-combatants must be taken into account, weighed against the importance of the military objective. Israel has always tried to say the military needs come out on top, none of the major human rights regimes or investigations have ever agreed (the recent report on the flotilla attack is the only exception I’ve come across).

    It seems like occupation law rejects the idea Hamas would be responsible for illegal Israeli attacks on areas above tunnels. Maybe I’m wrong, not sure, but if I’m right it is another case where the major human rights regimes are ignoring the law. HRW and AI ignore the law concering “reprisals” and have been empirically shown to be ignoring their own data on “rockets”, and produce conclusions inconsistent with the information they themselves have collected/provided.

    If anyone reads this and has a better understanding of these issues, or can point me to any sort of authoritative source on them, it would be much appreciated.

    • annie on May 21, 2016, 6:47 pm

      It seems like occupation law rejects the idea Hamas would be responsible for illegal Israeli attacks on areas above tunnels. Maybe I’m wrong

      i don’t think you’re wrong. and your other comment re hamas. if i were palestinian, i would vote for them if the election was today.

      • shakur420 on May 21, 2016, 7:19 pm

        Well, not sure about the voting thing, hard to say without actually living there.

        I probably should’ve qualified the part you quoted cause I’m pretty sure, lile I said, that Geneva IV would regard persons “engaged in hostilities” as combatants and even though the entire (non-settler) population of the OPT is defined as “protected persons”, once the combatant status is established, armed force towards them would be legitimate with all the normal rules that apply.

        My guess, just from going through Geneva IV and various human rights reports is that protection of civilians and infrastructure would be a little stonger just because the context of occupation is taken into account. Destroying a water treatment plant in a functioning country obviously doesn’t carry the same consequences as doing that to the only such plant in occupied territory, for example.

        But, I’m quite sure that Geneva IV does put responsibility on combatants from the occupied population, say if they launch attacks dressed as civilians or whatever. But Israel would have to be certain they were combatants first, and follow the rules of engagement. So blowing up entire neighbourhoods to get rid of tunnels underneath is just not legitimate. Sisi destroyed hundreds if tunnels in the Sinai without blowing up Gaza, right? lol the Israeli attacks won’t be legitimate when other options are available and in any case, it’s been proven that the tunnels were used to attack military targets only inside Israel. Not sure what legal way you could justify demonizing or destroying those tunnels, but that’s why I’m asking. Haven’t seen anything completely authoritative on it.

        Thing is, no investigations over the decades have ever concluded that this is regular practice among Palestinian (or Hezbollah) combatants. In fact they always conclude that zero such cases took place, that these fighters usually move away from civilians and in fact the IDF does commit these types of crimes consistently.

        Hillary’s comments about the hospitals and civilian clothing is pure fiction, specifically disproven in decades worth of human rights monitoring/investigating and to me, that’s what outrages me. Not that the NYT is repeating, word for word, Israeli hasbara or bending over backwards to ignore Israel’s crimes and distort the narrative of the victims. That’s standard practice and fully expected at this point.

        What kills me is that people walk around thinking of themselves as genuine journalists, repeat propaganda and don’t even bother checking the human rights reports. Again, not surprising, really, but just the audacity of so many so-called professionals lol not many other proffessions where someone could fake it so blatantly and get away with it.

      • JWalters on May 22, 2016, 8:38 pm

        “the audacity of so many so-called professionals lol not many other professions where someone could fake it so blatantly and get away with it.”

        I agree it boggles the mind. In this case, though, because of the intelligence and education of the people involved, it seems to me they must be well aware of the vast discrepancy between their reporting and reality.

        Given well-documented human nature and history, the most likely explanation is coercion. They are faced with a combination of carrots and sticks. If they go along they are rewarded with a plush life-style. If they don’t their plush life-style is snatched away, and they are relegated to the backwaters of their profession (or worse).

        Even CBS News anchor Dan Rather was quickly thrown overboard when he pushed too deeply into the history of neocon president George W. Bush. That also cut short many other establishment media investigations into the same story. Probably not a coincidence.

  10. Kay24 on May 21, 2016, 10:25 pm

    Hillary Clinton:

    ” “As long as children anywhere are being killed by gun violence, we will keep fighting for our kids, because they deserve a president who stands up for them and stands with the mothers here. Their lives are valuable.”

    Aw Madam President, how about the Palestinian kids who are being thrown in jails, kidnapped and killed then? Shouldn’t you be standing up for them, and fighting their killers too?
    Shouldn’t we stop sending the occupier weapons too? Be fair now dear Hillary.

  11. Ossinev on May 22, 2016, 12:55 pm

    “That vote was held in 2006, more than 10 years ago, and no vote has been conducted since. Omitting this minor fact is a mild form of lying.”

    You are of course omitting the fact that Gaza has been Dresdenized a few times during the 10 years with regular JSILi target practices in between to keep the Gazan electorate on their toes.

    Hamas could of course dig a few tunnel voting booths but I have a strong suspicion that the new JSILi Defence Minister might bounce a few bombs on them.

    Best way forward Yonah would be to visit Gaza (nb watch out for drone operators and F16 pilots on the look out for live target practice ) and come up with a working plan which will enable those nasty anti – democratic Hamastites to organise an election.

  12. traintosiberia on May 22, 2016, 2:36 pm

    Don’t they all think same? The group think is the litmus test fore getting into the front of any page

    WASHINGTON — Why was there an Israel-Gaza war in the first place? Resistance to the occupation, say Hamas and many in the international media.

    What occupation? Seven years ago, in front of the world, Israel pulled out of Gaza. It dismantled every settlement, withdrew every soldier, evacuated every Jew, leaving nothing and no one behind. Except for the greenhouses in which the settlers had grown fruit and flowers for export. These were left intact to help Gaza’s economy — only to be trashed when the Palestinians took over.

    Israel then declared its border with Gaza to be an international frontier, meaning that it renounced any claim to the territory and considered it an independent entity. In effect, Israel had created the first Palestinian state ever, something never granted by fellow Muslims — neither the Ottoman Turks nor the Egyptians who brutally occupied Gaza for two decades before being driven out by Israel in the 1967 Six-Day War.

    Israel wanted nothing more than to live in peace with this independent Palestinian entity. After all, the world had incessantly demanded that Israel give up land for peace.

    It gave the land. It got no peace.

    The Gaza Palestinians did not reciprocate. They voted in Hamas, who then took over in a military putsch and turned their newly freed Palestine into an armed camp from which to war against Israel. It has been war ever since.

    Interrupted by the occasional truce, to be sure. But for Hamas a truce — hudna — is simply a tactic for building strength for the next round. It is never meant to be enduring, never meant to offer peace.

    But why, given that there is no occupation of Gaza anymore? Because Hamas considers all of Israel occupied, illegitimate, a cancer, a crime against humanity, to quote the leaders of Iran, Hamas’ chief patron and arms supplier. Hamas’ objective, openly declared, is to “liberate” — i.e. destroy — Tel Aviv and the rest of pre-1967 Israel. Indeed, it is Hamas’ raison d’etre.

    Hamas first killed Jews with campaigns of suicide bombings. After Israel built a nearly impenetrable fence, it went to rockets fired indiscriminately at civilians in populated areas.


    Israel has once again succeeded in defending itself. But, yet again, only until the next round, which, as the night follows the day, will come. Hamas will see to that.

    Washington Post Writers Group

    Charles Krauthammer is a Washington Post columnist.


    • JWalters on May 22, 2016, 8:25 pm

      The amount of information Krauthammer omits in order to concoct this fairytale is staggering!

    • talknic on May 23, 2016, 12:10 am

      If the blatant lies were to be retracted, there’d be little more than punctuation remaining

  13. Boo on May 24, 2016, 10:12 pm

    Chuckie Cabbagepounder has long been deprecated as a source of anything remotely resembling truthiness when it comes to P/I. It’s a travesty that there’s still a paper out there who will give him column inches for his codswallop. Perhaps they do it for their dog-owner readers who need something to take along when they walk Fido.

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