In past flare-ups with the Palestinians, Israel has been unsurprisingly bashed by an international media that took Arab accusations of “war crimes” at face value. It would seem that the mainstream press has either woken up to reality, or has grown weary with constantly smearing the Jewish state.
As expected, cries of “genocide” and “massacres” have accompanied the still-raging Gaza war. But this time, the many in the media aren’t buying it.
Yes, upwards of 90 Palestinians have been killed in Israel’s pinpoint aerial attacks on Gaza’s terrorist infrastructure. However, as CNN correspondent Ben Wedeman pointed out, each and every Israeli strike that occurs in a populated area is preceded by a warning call or a “knock on the roof” using a low-impact mortar.
Slate, a major US-based online magazine, was similarly impressed, calling Israel’s effort to spare Gaza civilians “exemplary.”
“According to many critics, Israel is slaughtering civilians in Gaza,” opens the article by William Saletan, who continues, “The charges are false. By the standards of war, Israel’s efforts to spare civilians have been exemplary.”
Saletan stresses that Israel did not start this fight, and gave Hamas ample opportunity to back down before retaliating. And when Israel did go on the offensive, the ratio of Israeli military strikes to the number of Palestinians killed makes it clear there is no attempted genocide.
“Given that Israel has launched more than 500 airstrikes, you’d have to conclude that either Israel is failing miserably to kill people or, more plausibly, it’s largely trying not to kill them,” noted Saletan.
Seemingly frustrated by this turn of events, Hamas is now strongly suggesting that local Gaza residents stop “cooperating” with Israel by heeding these warnings and instead purposely place themselves in harm’s way.
How long will it take before Hamas succeeds in producing a real massacre of its own people? And if and when that happens will the press still lay the blame where it really belongs?
All of that is anyone’s guess at this point. But it is nice to see, even if only for a little while, some genuine honesty in international reporting, and especially a recognition that Israel imposes upon itself ethics of war that go far beyond those practiced by any other nation.